There are days when waking and having an hour of peace is absolutely wonderful.
And there are days when the bed calls me back.
Today was the second sort of day, so after waving Son Number 1 off to work at 8, I crept back into my warm bed and had a half hour of cosy wrapped up resting. I don’t very often drop off back to sleep once awake, but snuggling under the covers can be just the top up I need before the day starts.
Before that, though, I’d had a few minutes free to crochet. Sometimes repetitive crochet works as the mindful activity I need. Crochet, more than knitting, lets me fall in to a sense of flow because it demands I use my eyes, ergo it’s useless for properly watching anything else. And this pattern… the Attic 24 Neat Ripple Pattern… is ideal for meditative crochet, as it has groups of four. You count four trebles, four stitches gathered into two, four trebles and four stitches increased from two all the way along. Because you’re only ever four stitches away from another break, it’s also ideal pick-up-and-put-down crafting.
I’m still working on my Nefyn blanket, and loving the colours I chose. At a guess, I’m nearing halfway now, but I could do with a few evenings just sitting and going back and forth along the rows. September may be the ideal month for that.
And now I sit at my computer in work, ready to begin, once this post is done. My computer has already rewarded me for my patience by throwing up a screenshot of a beautifully crazy bridge in a German town called Kromlau. It’s nothing special as a town, just a small place on the German-Poland border, but it contains the largest Rhododendron park in Germany and the Rakotzbrucke (the bridge) is beautiful, and known locally as the Devil’s Bridge. Rumour has it the architect made a pact with the Devil for the skills to design and build the bridge. The Devil agreed… as long as he got the soul of the first living thing to cross the bridge. You decide from the alternative endings: did the architect send a dog across first or, as an honourable German man, cross himself….
I’ve saved details of the bridge on my Pinterest board, Places I Want to See. One day I’ll plan a fantastic road trip through Europe, just me and the Husband, driving around an dstopping off at all the places that are too small to visit for any length of time really, but ideal for an afternoon or an evening. Sometimes the most beautiful gems are hidden in a far-from-ideal setting.
I’ve decided to have one header for the whole season of small things: it’s one of my favourite pictures by Alex Geerts on Unsplash. I love the whole colour scheme, which just makes me feel so autumnal. I love the socks, the book, the blanket, the tea, the leaves and pumpkin. There are so many small pleasures in the picture, it’s like my ambition for this whole series in one simple shot.
How to Hygge the British Way is my gift to the world. I don’t get paid for writing it, I’m not in it for the kudos, financial rewards, to become an influencer, work with brands or otherwise make any money from the blog. That’s why there are no ads, and any products I mention and recommend have either been gifted to me or bought by me with my everyday wages or donations from supporters. Every book I review has been bought and read by me, unless stated otherwise.
I do get a couple of pennies each time someone buys from the Amazon links on my page, as an Amazon Affiliate, but otherwise if you’d like to support me, I like to give something back in return. That’s why I write books. It always feels good if you get a book back in return for some money. You can find a full list of my books at my Author’s Page on Amazon, but especially recommended for this time of year are:
Cosy Happy Hygge: Setting up a rhythm to life and rituals to enjoy it to make for a more balanced life that handles waves and storms better. August is like a pause before real life begins again in September, so it’s a second chance to set up rituals and rhythms that boost happiness and work for you.
Happier: Probably my most personal book, it’s the story of how I used hygge and the little things in life to help boost my happiness. I still go back and reread to remind myself what I need to do to be a happy human.
On the principle that it’s never too early to start thinking ahead, really, and that Christmas is always on us before we know, how about Have Yourself a Happy Hygge Christmas? Christmas is about the small things in life, much as hygge is, and establishing what you want from Christmas and then being able to say no to the excess is important. The book has hints and tips that hopefully will help you enjoy what is, too often, a frantic season.
Available as just an ebook, and a short, sharp read, is Enjoying a Self-Care Christmas: Easy Ways to keep the Joy of Christmas, and your Sanity, intact. It’s an easy read, with ideas and hints to keep you sane through the season. The self-care advent calendar is one I’ve followed for a few years now, and it really is a small daily dose of calm in a manic month.
And on the basis that we may well find ourselves in Lockdowns or unable to enjoy an absolutely normal Christmas under Covid regulations if numbers spike, why not read and plan alternatives? Celebrating a Contagious Christmas was written in response to the pandemic last year, and will need updating soon, but it is about celebrating whatever the situation, and does have good advice on stocking up an emergency cupboard, celebrating when travelling to relatives is impossible and putting the heart of Christmas back into the heart of the celebrations.
If you’d like to support me, but don’t want to buy a book, I have a Paypal.Me account as Hygge Jem. Every little helps, so even a few pence goes towards the books, goods and courses I use and recommend on the site. I’m grateful for every little bit that brings me closer to my dream of full-time writing, and I know I couldn’t still be writing if it weren’t for the support of many readers and friends out there. Thank you all for every little bit of support, emotional, physical and financial, you give me.
If you’ve enjoyed this article, don’t forget to share it or save it so others can enjoy reading, thinking about and living hygge as well, and read the other posts in the series, too.
My September of Small Things:
Day One: A New Book on the Kindle and a New Tea
Day Two: Five Minutes Crochet and A New Place to Visit