The Scandinavian concept of Hygge is a big thing for a few years now. We are all talking about it, forgetting that most countries/languages have a word do describe cosiness, happiness and wellbeing. For Scotland is coorie, for Japan’s ikigai, for Macedonia quite a few words actually… I’ve recently had a holiday there. Every time I come back I feel very relaxed but then I give in to the daily stresses. In an effort to preserve that calm I wrote those tips to remind myself of what I enjoy there:
BE IN THE MOMENT
The most important tip is enjoying each session. I usually go to Macedonia in the summer and the weather is glorious all the time but this time – spring, was a bit changeable, just like in Scotland. First I was a bit grumpy but then… I enjoyed smelling the tree blossom after the rain, the sun on my face, the sound of the falling rain and the crackling of the fire. I enjoyed waking up one morning to see the mountain peaks covered in snow although it meant we need to get the fire going.
FRIENDS AND FAMILY
A very relaxed way of socialising. No arrangements are done months in advance, people just pop in to see you. If you are busy – it’s fine, they will come again or if you already have some friends around it’s an impromptu party. The more the merrier…
(I’m currently trying this concept on our friends here in Scotland, inviting them to pop by if they are in the area)
I just adore eating alfresco, I did have few opportunities to do that this holiday and loved every minute of it!
TAKE A NAP
I know it’s a different way of living but taking a short nap in the afternoon is terrific. Lot’s of nations in the Mediterranean do it so do Macedonians. It doesn’t mean you are lazy, you recharge your batteries and then you are more productive.
We had a wood burning stove and it was tricky to start it. I don’t think we were very good at it but we got better. I love fire, I love the sound, the warmth, the smell – it’s so comforting. Also when we had guests everybody loved tending to the fire or just being next to it.
They are fab! I got a huge supply with me on this trip. There is something so relaxing when you light candles. I’ve always liked them, I would set the table on a Sunday when I was a little girl and ask my mum to light some candles – I thought the lunch feels so special that way.
We did the same thing on this trip except for my two-year-old is obsessed with Fireman Sam. He shouts “ Pire, Pire” (Can’t say F, bless him) and blows the candles…
Oh well, it’s all about enjoying the moment, when is his bedtime anyway?! Which brings me to:
Macedonians have a very relaxed way of bringing up children. And some people might judge me but I change my parenting skills there too. There are no strict rules of bedtime, naps, food but it somehow works. It even works better, can’t explain it but maybe has something to do with toddlers not liking to be told what to do. It was my son asking to go to bed at night (what!!!???).
That’s it! I feel more relaxed already 🙂