THE CONCEPT OF HYGGE

In the beginning of the year I decided that, except for the usual lose weight, save money repetitive New Years resolutions which I usually break by the 10th of January, I am going to make it my goal to find happiness. True, make you feel warm and fuzzy on the inside, happiness. Turns out I am not alone.

So apart from extensive Ted Talks I watched on the subject I found a book as well. Strangely that excited me more than the “answers” I found on the internet. (I am a pre-historic creature that loves old school, I am convinced I’m living in the wrong century but for now let’s just say vintage brings me joy.)

Now you must have heard of hygge, I actually saw a big chainstore use the word in one of their advertisements and I am pretty sure that it’s going to become quite a trendy term.

But what does it mean?

Hygge {pronounced HUE-gah} is of danish origin and though there are many ways to describe it, the best way would be to see it simply as the Danish ritual of enjoying life’s simple pleasures. Friends. Family. Graciousness.

You see Hygge is more of a concept, a feeling, which can incorporate many things. Hygge is about atmosphere, an experience rather than about physical things. It is about the people we love, a feeling of home. A feeling that we are safe, shielded from the world and able to let your guard down.

It can be an endless conversation with an old friend or just enjoying each others silence. It can also be just you drinking hot chocolate by the fireplace in warm knitted woolen socks while just looking at the flames licking at the wood.

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There are a few materialistic things you can add to help sweeten the mood. Lighting plays an important role. Soft light that creates a warm ambience. Yes you guessed it. Candles. Other things can include a fireplace, things made out of wood, nature.

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In the book I got Meik Wiking says;

“Wood is not enough,Danes feel they need to bring the entire forest inside. Any piece of nature you might find is likely to get the hygge greenlight. Basically you want to think: How would a Viking squirrel furnish a living room?”

Examples would be covering windowsills and couches in sheepskins and animal skins and of course greenery. Throw in some books and ceramics for good measure. It’s not just about how things look but also how they feel, so think tactile add some blankets and throws. Vintage goods are also very hygge. You can pick up vintage items from second hand shops but if it’s a family heirloom with a story that comes with it, it makes it so much more appealing.

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Probably the most important thing is to be present in the moment. Switch off all technology. Yes even your cell phone, and just enjoy it for what it is. You will see finding hygge actually comes a lot easier than you think.

You can purchase The Little Book of Hygge here.

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DISCLAIMER: Images were sourced from pinterest

 

 

 

 

LIFE WITH A TWO YEAR OLD

It’s five pm and I am counting down the hours until “wind down time” aka bedtime. One more hour until I can give her supper followed by some loose entertainment before we hit the bath.

Routine, routine, routine. I’m a sucker for timelines. Everything must have a time and a place. That is my coping mechanism, I am not a perfectionist but I thrive on routine. I’m not your spur of the moment kind of girl, and regrettably my sense for adventure is getting less as my age number is getting higher.

My little human is a full two years old now (a little older but who is counting) and she is more adventurous than ever. Her attitude is pretty much “I don’t give a damn about your silly timelines woman, let me do what I want to do and let me do it now.”  Yes I am a mother. I am a lot of other things as well, many wonderful magnificent things but in my daughter’s mind I am just a mom. So here I am, quite desperately trying to tame the wildness that is this beautiful little human.

 

She is wild and free and lives pretty much for the now, no consequences, no outlook for the future, all that matters is this moment, here .

So what I have seen so far is that with two comes a voice, a very strong opinionated voice. This voice is also quite selfish at times, which is to be expected as she is entering the egotistical phase of her development.

In all honesty it is exhausting, especially at 2h30am when she wants to pet her toy poodle, or is adamantly looking for a stuffed animal that you know you hid somewhere to make sure she doesn’t get it. These 2 year olds have memories like elephants, you can’t make promises and hope they forget by tomorrow, oh no, it’ll come back and bite you in the ass. Little gargoyles I tell you. (yes you read correctly I did compare my child to a stone figure that sits on top of church towers, demon sounded a bit harsh)

But it is also magical, a kind of magic that is beautiful to witness and just wants to make you cry-the weeping might also just be exhaustion but I will leave it at that. Magic that moulds and develops right in front of your very eyes.

Do I think my daughter is more special than any other two year old? Of course I do, she is my kid. However I can vouch that almost every mom feels like this, and that almost every toddler goes through this.

One of the greatest things I’ve learned from my little human is patience. Patience has always been my achilles heel, I’ve never been able to just stand watch someone do something wrong over and over again. Papa Coombes will be able to affirm this-I planned our wedding all by myself, and made most of the things myself. (I am pretty damn stubborn as well) That is just one of many examples I can think of now.

So as my little human is learning with her little brain (with mammoth capabilities) she also wants to help, constantly, with everything. And it’s anything from cooking to cleaning to getting dressed, she wants to either try or just do it herself. As much as all of this annoys me at times-my lack of patience does still want to stick its ugly head out-that look of accomplishment is just so rewarding, so satisfying and make it worth every second it took longer.

I am going to end with a quote by James Lucas Scott;

“All you can do is your best, okay?”

 

 

Blogpost numero uno

Oh my goodness, here I go again.

So firstly I would like to thank you for actually coming and reading my blog (again) I know I’ve given this a go twice before, and you know what they say; “Third time’s a charm.” So let’s hold thumbs. (Please don’t hold your breath though-I can’t deal with that kind of pressure)

If it is the first time you are reading my blog, welcome. My name is Chantelle. I am a woman, a girl at heart-sometimes I actually find it hard to believe that I can drive a car, yes I often sit in my car thinking this is so freaked awesome-perks of traffic. I am a wife to the most amazing human, Terrence and mother to an even more astonishing little person, Mila. I know I honestly do know amazing people, they also just happen to be family. I moved to Cape Town 10 years ago and this is where I decided to adult. Not sure how I am doing but hey I not wanted by Interpol so I must be doing okay.

I am also an optometrist, I think the best way to describe that one is like a little boy once said to his mom; “so the lady is an eye mechanic?”

I know you are probably wondering why is she at it again? Well quite a few things have changed for me personally in the past year, I am hoping to enlighten you as we go along but one thing is I have a bit more time on my hands. Time, with a two year old? What is this woman on-crack?

Actually my permanent job has become less permanent, or less hours, which just means I have a little more time to doodle and write long ramblings of all the insignificant manifestations in my head. I figured my Instagram photo descriptions were getting a bit long.

I look forward to sharing with you, and I am actually excited about writing as a creative outlet. I have tried drawing again, I just get bored or it just doesn’t sit well and I feel disappointed and then I just give up. Fantastic way to approach life I know-note the sarcasm. I have actually explored a few avenues but just haven’t found it to sit well with me. I so badly wish I could get exercise to “sit” well with me, thats a story for another day.

Thank you for reading.

Cxx

 

 

 

Mila

 

Mila was born on the 17th of February 2015 at 13h44.

A tiny perfect brand new little human. Weighing 3.105kg and only 48cm long. She was so damn perfect (note the mother bias in that sentence) Everything about her, her smell, her small jerky movements, her little dark eyes searching for the familiar, her black hair, those tiny little fingers, teeny toes-all just breathed perfection. Even the pediatrician commented on our beautiful new born with her little elf ears. (I know he probably compliments everyone, he does still refer to her as he baby with the elf ears)

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I was pretty chuffed with myself and the husband for making such a precious little person, yet I was freaking out. Here was a little peace of heaven that had to be taken care of. I still find it hard to wrap my head around that.

Our hospital stay kept us isolated from the real world, which I think is only fair. It gives you time to absorb the wonderous nature of the event that has taken place, it gives you time

I found my transition into taking care of little Mila quite effortless, in the sense that I didn’t have issues breastfeeding, she seemed pretty content and was quite healthy. We were making a pretty good team so far.

My darling husband was a superstar, wanting to be involved with everything and we were going to  conquer this parenting gig as a team.

Four days in hospital seemed like an eternity but at the same time went by so fast. I think they should look into setting up retreats for new families for at least a few weeks, to help ease into real life.

Before I knew it our hospital stay was over and we got to bring our new addition home, to officially start our family.

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