Summertime and the livin’ is easy

June is upon us and I am most pleased! 

After a long, cold winter, spring has been a much welcomed deliverance into the land of the living. I tend to hibernate during the cold months; it’s dark outside and lack of vitamin D depletes my boundless energy (although close friends would tell you I’ve still got more energy than the average gal ha ha).  Winter is a tough time for a lot of us. SAD or Seasonal Affective Disorder, is very common among fellow Canadians and those living in the north. My friends and I, we try to hold each other up with positivity and gently coax each other out of our comfortable – and warm – domains to bravely face each day. One foot in front of the other. We say with encouragement and hope, “Spring is just around the corner; I can feel it!”

I practiced Hygge (pronounced Hoo-ga) every damn day. In case you’ve been living under a rock or hiding like a hermit all winter long like myself, Hygge is defined as, a Norwegian and Danish word for a mood of coziness and comfortable conviviality – oooh I like the way that word sounds – with feelings of wellness and contentment. Some ways that I bring this state of mind into my life while enduring the cold is to:

  1. Light candles. Lots and lots of candles. I love scented candles; the olfactory senses can be positively affected by pleasing scents. The glow of the flame provides a feeling of warmth.
  2. Faux fur everything – throws, pillows, rugs
  3. Slow cooker meals – minimal effort, comfort food.
  4. Essential Oils – diffusers with invigorating and energizing scents
  5. Hot baths – what else can I say, other than it’s a cure-all for many ailments, according to Nana.

There are many ways to practice Hygge in the wintertime, but it is currently June and I’m aiming to keep this feeling of wellness and contentment alive! Just this morning, I had the opportunity to practice another passion of mine – yoga, with some lovely ladies at my son’s school, bright and early this morning. We used our breath to encourage our bodies into a state of relaxation and contentment. One part of Hygge is sharing quality time with those you love, creating fellowship with like minded souls. This spring I have been able to recognize Hygge in my other activities of daily living.

Gardening is another love of mine. Where some may say it’s just plain hard work, I can agree that it is, but the rewards of seeing my perennial beds take shape, fill out and mature, outweigh the physical effort it took to create my living work of art! I find it is mentally relaxing, because I can ‘zone-out’ while pulling weeds and pruning in a meditative-like state.

Spring-cleaning, oh I could write a whole piece on this topic! The feeling I get after a good purge and a deep clean is like a rebirth, a phoenix rising from the ashes. I can stand back and admire my work. Everything has a place and there’s a place for everything, according to Mom. (I’m a chip off the old block. Mature block? Old isn’t nice).

Art! Art outside; even better. I love to paint and painting plein air is a great way to achieve that feeling of contentment and relaxation. Choosing subjects that remind me of Spring/Summer, like flowers, plants, botanicals, birds and all things nature related inspire and bring me joy.

brush painting color paint
Photo by Daian Gan on Pexels.com

Walking with my loved ones on the waterfront trail, observing the swans on the bay and receiving a healthy dose of the aforementioned vitamin D, awakens certain muscles that have laid dormant all winter long. Yes, it’s a rare occasion that I will walk the waterfront trail mid-January. Enjoyable outdoor activities are a component to any good Hygge practice.

Back yard barbecues with friends produces that feeling of conviviality and togetherness. Again, great food is a comfort to us and great company is another key to Hygge. It’s a chance to connect during a meal and enjoy this beautiful weather! Summertime, and the livin’ is easy, according to Ella Fitzgerald.

Let’s stay present and appreciate the sunny days, the sand beneath our feet and the warm wind on our faces.

Love to you all! xo

 

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Why start a blog?

I have opinions, interests, hobbies, life experiences and lessons learned.

“You should start a blog!”

I’ve heard this more than a few times from friends and people I’ve connected with by striking up a conversation. Most people are surprised that I identify as an introvert, because I will speak to strangers with comfort and ease — as long as it’s a meaningful topic and a chance to connect, to learn from and appreciate another experience and perspective.

Being introverted is NOT about being shy.  That is a misconception. It is needing a connection to people that has substance, acceptance, comfort and most importantly, a time limit! We introverts need our alone time, our downtime, a chance to decompress and recover from outside stimuli. It can feel overwhelming, at times, to be social. It takes all kinds of mental prepping to attend events! Chit chat is not my forte. Stepping into a room full of people gives me acute anxiety; there is a palpable feeling, a buzzing in the room.  I feel everyone’s energy, mood or vibe as strongly as my own.  You see, I’m also an Empath.

From early childhood memories, I can tell you this has always been my temperament. When I was four years old, I wandered off from my mother in our local shopping mall. She was distracted by the sea of round clothing racks in search of what, I cannot recall, but to me it felt like being lost in a giant corn maze with no beginning or end. I just HAD to get out of there! This was the 80’s, a time when the world still seemed somewhat safe and helicopter parenting was not a ‘thing’ yet. At the time, I was more afraid of the giant clothing racks swallowing up my little twiggy body and the hyper-focused Sears shoppers looking like they’d fight you for the last, coveted sale item than fear of the great unknown that was just beyond the big glass doors. I needed to get out!

Wandering through the mall, looking for refuge I came upon a bench adorned with bodies. Friendly, wrinkled up faces with warm smiles. They knew I shouldn’t be alone at four years old and allowed me to sit with them and share my short life’s story. This was the beginning  of a lifelong fascination for me. Old people. I can’t say enough about our geriatric generation. Our octogenarians; my peeps.  They get it. They want to share their wisdom and I want to listen and learn. And, they enjoy silence just as much as I do! Tolerance for loud or obnoxious people, large or little, is minimal and takes great effort to endure politely.  All’s well that ends well and my mother eventually found me. Safe and sound, I had made an impression on my new found comrades and they on me.

“We knew she must have been lost”, one gentleman said.

“She had a lot to tell us!”

So it begins. My blog! This is a great outlet for my thoughts, my ideas and opinions. Will people care to read it? Is that the objective? I’m not sure.

The Journey Begins

Thanks for joining me!

Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton

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