Minimalism vs. Hygge.

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The definition of Hygge:

Hygge (pronounced hue-guh not hoo-gah) is a Danish word used when acknowledging a feeling or moment, whether alone or with friends, at home or out, ordinary or extraordinary as cozy, charming or special.

This was found on the website: http://hyggehouse.com/hygge

It has come to my attention that this Hygge thing is becoming very popular.  I see books on the subject popping up on Amazon in the homemaking sections.  I also see minimalism thriving in those areas as well.  I have actually read books on minimalism and decluttering such as Marie Kondos book The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up and Clutter Free with Kids by Joshua Becker.

I have yet to read anything Hygge, except this website that I will dive into one of these days.  It looks fun and cozy.

I don’t really need to read about this Danish way of living.  I am actually part Danish on my fathers’ side and cozy must be in my blood.  I love all things festive, family and cozy.  I love my big, scented candles burning in the kitchen window and on the dining room table.  I love my scented wax burner, my lush, green plants everywhere giving us oxygen, the enlarged photos of my family captured in their most adorable states of being, the colorful area rugs on the old wooden floors, the piles of colorful pillows on the couch and beds.

I love my holiday decorations and seasonal decorations and flags as well.  I love baking yummy loaves of bread, muffins, and scones.  I love good homecooked food and coffee in the afternoon.  I still love chatting on the house phone (a lost art), sending handwritten cards in the mail, and having guest over for tea or the whole weekend.  My life revolves around family and friends and therefore my house has been created to serve them in the warmest and most delicious way.

Some practice minimalism and clear their living room of anything warm and inviting but they keep the huge TV and electronics.  How cold and sad.  Where is the warmth?  When guest visit do they just sit on a hard couch and watch TV?  A family portrait or decorations used to be over the fireplace mantle, now it’s a 40″ TV screen.  What does that say about us?  Minimalism is about clearing out unwanted things and clutter, not being a pack rat, not being a mindless consumer.  This I get but does it mean living in a bland and empty home for the sake of easy cleaning and being free for life outside the home?

We love being outside the home and I love cleaning in a short and swift manner.  I have gotten rid of extra furnishings and knick knacks to downsize the time I clean and make tidying easier.  However, I love my home and being a housewife with little children, we really, really live in our home and yards.  It has to be yummy and fun being here.

In my living room, I have an old, old TV that is 30″ and in an oak cabinet that I can close.  There are comfy chairs and couch, warm lamps, shelves loaded with books and photo albums.  The TV is not our focus.  We build legos and blocks on the floor and eat all our meals at the table that has a plant, candles, a basket of cloth napkins, and some condiments.  Our table is well used and set up to receive 2 to 3 meals a day.

When we have visitors I cook a lot, I bake, I brew coffee and steep tea.  I have music in the background all the time.  My Pandora is filled with everything from Toddlerville, Native American, to Rascal Flatts, Vivaldi, Gospel, Disney, Patsy Cline, Fred Astaire, even Metallica!  I have it set up in the dining room which is the middle of the house so all the rooms can enjoy music all day.  The TV is off, the laptop for Arjans schooling is in a drawer, there are no iPads and my cell phone is in a basket on the frig.

I have decluttered and downsized on a huge scale.  I’m talking truckloads.  We have moved from a 2,000 square foot home with plenty of rooms and yards to 860 feet and a tiny yard.  I have cleared out all the old, torn, stained, unwanted, unhappy, junky stuff.  I have gifted others and filled the bins at thrift stores.

Now I am very selective as to what I bring into the home.  We now own a 1,000 square foot home with the main rooms and two yards equaling 5,000 square feet of outdoor space.  We have filled it with vegetable gardens, fruit trees, a chicken coop, and I’m planning berries and grapes on the fences this spring.  Because there can never ever be enough trees and vines and green as far as I’m concerned.

I shop at thrift stores and recently redecorated my living room for $160 with a lovely almost new antique couch and light green velvet chair.  The trick is to shop in wealthy towns.  I accept hand me downs gratefully.  I never refuse for I believe in the flow of abundance and you need to never shut that off or it sends the wrong message to the Universe.  However, if I’m not crazy about a thing I just gift it to another or take it to the GoodWill or local Hospice.

When I buy something for the house it is well thought out and lately, I’m big on handcrafted, local artistry or woodwork.  I have vowed to never step foot into another Walmart again.  I desire lovely things for my home that enhance its charm.  This can be a throw rug or laughing Buddha in my kitchen window.

I rarely need to declutter.  Usually just outgrown clothes and odd things here and there.  Our home is filled with things we adore and use or enjoy.  It is simple but charming and cozy.  It is the kind of scene where guest fall asleep on the couch after a homecooked meal.

I’m not sure what my point is here except that I have found that a minimal amount of the practice of minimalism is great for Spring cleaning and getting the home tidy but too much can leave a home barren and lonely.

Hail to the Hygge!

 

 

5 comments

  1. In my view, minimalism is getting by with the minimum that you can without having left over stuff. It sounds like you have your version of minimalism going on already – and certainly you are following the Marie Kondo philosophy of keeping what sparks joy for you.
    Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you and I agree. You are right in saying that it seems minimalism has levels. Beginner to advanced. I don’t think I would pass the test for minimalism…close but no cigar, however, I do live simply and I don’t enjoy clutter for sure.

      Like

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