“And when they came to Bethlehem
Where our dear saviour lay
They found him in the manger
Where oxen feed on hay
His mother Mary kneeled down
And to the Lord did pray
Oh tidings of comfort and joy
Comfort and joy
Oh tidings of comfort and joy” – Lyrics 15th Century, author unknown
It’s that time of year again! The months have flown by so fast for us all and I’m sure, like me you’re wondering where has the year gone. Do you also find that in our modern age of technology where our senses our constantly stimulated it can be difficult to relax, and step back from the busyness of life? The Danish concept of Hygge (pronounced hue-gah) is currently gaining in popularity and when you understand what it stands for you will appreciate why. It is not something you can buy, but rather is a feeling or mood that comes from taking genuine pleasure in the ordinary and every day. It is embracing a moment where time has slowed and you can take things at your leisure. You are in no rush to go anywhere, but rather are content to be present in the here and now. There is no one word in the English language to describe Hygge but several can be used to convey the idea; cosiness, happiness, comfort, simplicity, charm, familiarity, and security.
And Christmas is the perfect opportunity to explore this notion. To rest and take stock of the many blessings we have been given, from good friends and family, to the roof over our heads. If you’re planning to stay at home this season and enjoy your holiday surrounded by loved ones now is the time to bring some comfort and joy into your interiors. Layer up with soft cushions and cosy wool throws, light some candles which will give off a delicate warming scent and feed your family with wholesome fayre to nourish and sustain. Take time to talk and listen with your guests, enjoy their presence and the feeling of love and security which they bring. And just as the birth of Jesus into simple surroundings brought peace into the world , so it is in such things that you will find comfort and joy this season. I wish you all a merry Christmas and a happy New Year.