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LIFESTYLE

SEEKING COZINESS EVERYDAY

I loved May, but is it just me or did it disappear so quick? For me, it is the perfect month. A lovely temperature and a time full of happiness. Everyone is smiling because summer is arriving and there so much to look forward to.

For many people seeking coziness everyday is necessary for feeling happy. It is about finding a calm in a stressful world, a little hyggekrok (cozy nook) where it is ok to slow down and relax. What better way to do so than in a minimal space with a cup of coffee in hand. This dark and flavorsome happiness-potion has become the symbol of hygge, and the latest trend is having a coffee-nap. A coffee-nap is the perfect way to get a quick pick-me-up, it literally means to drink a coffee followed by a 15-minute nap. When you wake up the caffeine kicks in, this way you can get an effective rest that makes you feel ready to tackle the rest of the day. Next time you feel tired – try it!

I have selected 4 of the images from Instagram to share with you, these images all have a calm and lovely tone that captures That Scandinavian Feeling perfectly. If you want to discover more, grab a coffee and click on the hashtag below;

1 // @by_cwpg_coffee_moment
“With my image, I want to convey the Nordic light surrounded by clean lines, simplicity, the purity that emerges from the light in the room.”

2 // @laura_ascari
“Staying home and enjoying the little things in life on rainy days gives me That Scandinavian Feeling.”

3 // @acuriousfind
“That Scandinavian Feeling for me is living in a stripped back and minimal space. I like to have a white background and add in simple furniture pieces, with clean lines and no fussiness. Our lives are so busy, it’s important to me, to have a clean, simplistic space that helps me clear my head after a busy day. I like to add in wooden tones throughout. This adds warms and interest, and stops the space from being cold and bare.”

4 // @a_frebel
“That Scandinavian Feeling to me means seeking coziness everyday, finding comfort in the ordinary, and striving to keep things simple but significant. It is enjoying slow mornings with coffee and my dogs, and wearing fuzzy socks while watching the snow fall. It is clean sheets, the subtle sound of falling rain, and vanilla scented candles.

In relation to this image, my Scandinavian feeling usually involves coffee. I find comfort in coffee because it is warm and fuzzy, it represents routine & productivity. Coffee can be drank at any time and with anyone. Many conversations, moments, and memories have been shared over coffee.”

What gives you That Scandinavian Feeling? Share your images on Instagram too for a chance to be featured, and let’s spread some summertime hygge!

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A SENSE OF CALM AND PEACE

May is finally here, but before we fully start to embrace this new month let’s take a look at some highlights from the ever growing #thatscandinavianfeeling Instagram feed. Each month that goes by I love discovering new accounts and seeing how you all interpret what That Scandinavian Feeling is. What seems to be constant is that sense of calm and peace, enjoying life and it’s everyday moments. I believe coziness is key to this, making sure you fully appreciate everything around you and not missing the little moments. At home calm and peace can be achieved with minimalism and decluttering, and what better time to do so than spring?

In my home, I try to keep a minimal colour palette, with mostly white or light wood surfaces as well as a lot of grays. I recently bought all white bed linen, and what a difference it makes! Waking up in a bright and airy environment does wonders for your mood and even though colours can make you happy, I find that white and paler shades do the trick for me.

Another way to feel tranquil is to have a walk and just be at one with nature. A lovely scenic view over the peaceful sea can have a soothing effect and make you forget about all of the everyday stress. Sometimes we tend to stress a lot for no reason when what we should be doing is slowing down and enjoying a nice cup of coffee while thinking about ways to minimize those stressful elements. Many of the things we stress about in our everyday life are just small things we could resolve quite quickly instead of dwelling on. I read somewhere that; if something is on your mind and making you feel stressed that could be dealt with in 5 minutes or less – just do it and get it out of the way! This is something I have been trying to live by recently, and I find it helping me to decrease those long lists in my head of things that always seem to stress me out. So if you too are feeling a bit overwhelmed and need more calm in your life, try it out for the rest of the week and see if it helps.

I have selected 4 of the images from Instagram to share with you, these images all have a calm and lovely tone that captures That Scandinavian Feeling perfectly. If you want to discover more, grab a coffee and click on the hashtag below;

1 // @momentsandays
“Calm moments and simplicity, time with family and friends. This picture is telling about our Easter tradition in Scandinavia, spring time and new beginnings.”

2 // @annahsalter
“For me That Scandinavian Feeling is simplicity. It’s inviting spaces that draw you in and make you feel at home. It’s ordinary moments that make you feel cozy and content.”

3 // @designandnicethings
“Bright skies, blue water, and fresh air. That Scandinavian Feeling is a sense of calm and peace.”

4 // ​@ingvildye
“​​Now that spring has finally arrived in Norway, it’s great to be able to listen to the birds singing, with a coffee cup in hand and know that the sun is warming up my cheeks. Bright, long and lazy days.”

What is That Scandinavian Feeling to you? Share your images on Instagram too for a chance to be featured​, and let’s spread some hygge!

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ENJOYING THE LITTLE THINGS IN LIFE

As April starts it’s nice to look back at some of the moments shared throughout March. We have now reached over 1000 images which is amazing, I am so happy that so many of you are using the hashtag and sharing your Scandinavian feeling with us! In the build-up to Easter and springtime, you have all been loving spending time at home creating a cozy environment full of joy where you can enjoy those little things in life. Because hygge is not just for winter, it can be enjoyed all year long! We see a lot of white and wood elements in the interior, but colour are starting to pop up more as we now go towards sunny days.

Here in Italy Spring is already in full bloom, with the sun shining through my windows in the mornings spreading happiness and hope. Growing up in Norway, I remember it still being quite gray in this period and that can really dampen your mood when you wake up. Because of that, Scandinavians are used to trying to make the best out of the situation and create a lovely environment at home that we can enjoy. Having lovely, sentimental items around our house as well as fresh flowers and plants helps us getting through the darker days. We are also very good at using this period to invite friends or family around for coffee and cakes or a dinner party to have something to look forward to. And believe me, when the sun comes out and the weather is great Scandinavians are the best at getting out and enjoying every drop of sunshine to the fullest! But when that’s said, we are also pretty good at staying optimistic on a gray day too, because you never know when the sun decides to make an entrance.

I have selected 4 of the images from Instagram to share with you, as well as a quote from each of them about what That Scandinavian Feeling means to them. Be sure to check out the #thatscandinavianfeeling feed for more! Just click on the hashtag below and it will take you to the feed;

1 // ​​@mich.elle.imagery
“​​That Scandinavian Feeling to me translates to curating and living everyday moments with a sense of joy and inner warmth. This little still life is a collection of those moments for me. A little wood horse picked up during a memorable trip. Pictures of quiet moments, white vases to fill with flowers, and the perfect light filtering through a window nearby adding warmth to my Scandinavian feeling.”

2 // ​​@koivu9902
“​​That Scandinavian Feeling is the coziness I can experience at home surrounded by my family and by the objects I love more, it’s white and minimalistic spaces warmed up by wood and spiced up by bold patterns, it’s lighting candles in winter nights, it’s hot tea in nice mugs and homemade bread, it’s sharing food with friends, it’s curling up on the sofa with a good book… in a word; it’s enjoying the little things that everyday life offers.”

3 // ​​@wealllovebeautifulthings
“​​That Scandinavian Feeling is kicking my shoes off after a long winter day, wrapping up in a warm blanket, sitting on my favorite chair, and relax… I’m home…”

4 // ​​@silje_li_
“​Scandinavians spend a lot of time indoors during a year, and to me That Scandinavian Feeling is about bringing brightness, lightness and «hygge» into our home. It’s about getting that cozy and homey feeling, and using delicate colors and different materials to bring light and everyday-joy indoors. To me, it’s also about bringing nature inside. I love mixing materials like wood, concrete, glass and last but not least: plants and flowers. It’s about mixing old with new, like in this picture with my grandmother’s old wooden crate together with modern design objects. To me, That Scandinavian Feeling is about creating your own style, using objects, pictures, and colors that you like and making your home nice and cozy the way you like it.”

What is That Scandinavian Feeling to you? I hope you want to join in and share your images on Instagram too! It’s a great way for us all to get together and spread some hygge while we wait for summer to arrive.

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LITTLE EVERYDAY THINGS YOU CAN DO TO BOOST YOUR MOOD ON A BAD DAY

We all have them, those bad days when everything gets a bit too much and you just feel like crawling under a blanket and hide. On those days there are many small everyday things we can do to feel at least a little bit better, things that will boost your mood and improve your day.

Over the years I have figured out things that work for me, everyday things that will make me happy when I feel blue, and I thought I would share a couple of them here with you. So, here are my top tips on how to make yourself feel happier on a bad day;

When I wake up and feel a bit down I love to take my time with breakfast, after all, it is the most important meal of the day! Starting the day with a little pick-me-up like delicious pancakes or a lovely chia pudding with fresh fruit certainly, sets a good base for the rest of the day. I believe it’s important to create a lovely setting too, so make sure the table is set even if it is just for you.

Lately, my favorite go-to breakfast on those days are these delicious banana pancakes. They are so easy to make and as long as you prepare the batter first thing when you wake up and let it rest while getting ready for the day, they don’t take much time to make either. (This is so that they will rise and get nice & fluffy). To make these pancakes I mix together 1 egg with about 1dl natural yogurt, then add about 70g of flour and half a teaspoon of natron. I also melt a spoon of butter and mash up a banana to add in at the end. If the batter is too thick I also add a bit of milk, but I always play it a bit by ear. So next time you wake up and feel a bit rubbish, try these pancakes for yourself and see!

If I’m feeling a bit down I love browsing through my photos, it reminds me of better days and those little moments that I like to remember. It can either be the photos saved on my phone, tagged photos on Facebook, my Instagram feed or photos and albums I have printed. It is bound to put a smile on your face, and a way to remember for yourself that there are plenty of good days!

And while you’re at it, send a text to a friend to plan your next get-together. Having something to look forward to will make you feel a lot better and will create even more memories to look back at.

I work from home, and I see a big difference in my mood if I don’t listen to music during the day vs if I do. When I need a little extra boost on a bad day I put on my favorite music and sing out load (even if I don’t always know the lyrics..) It’s funny how a little thing like being a bit silly can make you feel so much better.

A walk in the park or in the neighborhood always makes me feel better, the combination of fresh air and exercise seems to always do the trick. I live close to a large park so in spring and summertime I try to get out in the morning for a walk or run after breakfast. Since I do work from home I see it as my “walking to work time” where I can reflect on things I have to do that day, or just clear my mind completely. If I have quite a busy morning a lunch walk or evening stroll is just as good. The change in scenery is something that will boost your mood and make you feel ready to tackle the rest of the day.

It’s important to have little everyday luxuries, something you do for yourself which you know will make a difference. I recently discovered linen spray, and I think it’s such a great way to prepare your bedroom by spraying a bit on the sheets after making your bed in the morning. Those days when I do it, by the end of the day when I crawl into bed it does lift my mood and helps me get a good nights sleep. So find one of life’s little luxuries to start doing yourself, something a bit extra that will spark joy and help you get through the day.

You know the feeling, you are not hungry but you just need something.. Well do it, have a little treat and don’t feel bad about it! Sometimes those little indulgences can be a little mood boost and exactly what you need to feel better. For me, it can be anything from salty licorice, biscuits, some chocolate or a coffee.

If the blues hit you, I recommend getting yourself some beautiful fresh flowers to brighten up your day. While having that walk I mentioned earlier, either pop into your nearest flower shop and purchase a lovely bouquet for yourself or pick some wildflowers in the park. Just the idea of walking down the street with flowers in my hand makes me smile, and when you get home and put them in a vase every time you see them it will for sure lift your spirit. As a matter of fact, I think I will go out and do just that now to make today more bearable…

What little everyday things do you do to feel better on one of those days?

// Photo credit: Ingrid Opstad

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NORWAY IS THE HAPPIEST COUNTRY OF 2017

So it’s official; Norway is the happiest place on earth, at least according to The World Happiness Report just released today on the International Day of Happiness! This report is based on measuring how happy people are and why, and it is great to see that all the Nordic countries are in the top 10. In fact, the Nordic countries have been dominating the top spots in this report for all of the five years it has been published.

Top 10 happiest countries 2017;

    1. Norway
    2. Denmark
    3. Iceland
    4. Switzerland
    5. Finland
    6. Netherlands
    7. Canada
    8. New Zealand
    9. Australia
    10. Sweden

“What works in the Nordic countries is a sense of community and understanding in the common good.” – Meik Wiking (chief executive officer of the Happiness Research Institute, Copenhagen)

// Photo credit: Ingrid Opstad

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CREATING SPECIAL HAPPY MEMORIES

Another month has gone by and we finally say hi to March. But first, let’s have a look at some of the many moments shared through February. I love seeing all of your beautiful images from home or traveling, they really capture that lovely Scandinavian feeling I so long for. Although it is still quite cold outside, we can finally start to see signs of Spring which gives hope after a long and dark winter.

This period is the perfect time to create special happy memories with your loved ones, whether inviting them over for coffee & cakes or exploring a new city together. Speaking of exploring, I am planning a trip to Copenhagen soon and cannot wait to see what this vibrant Danish city has to offer. Do you have any fun travel plans lined up?

I have selected 4 of the images from Instagram to share with you, as well as a quote from each of them about what That Scandinavian Feeling means to them. Be sure to check out the #thatscandinavianfeeling feed for more! Just click on the hashtag below and it will take you to the feed;

1 // ​​@suffolk_wife
“​To me That Scandinavian Feeling is happy times with my family, enjoying comfort food and creating special memories.”

2 // ​​​@veerle2412
“​My bedroom has windows from floor to ceiling and even on a dark and rainy day it’s still bright in there. After a long workday and taking care of my two-year-old, I love to snuggle up there under some blankets with a cup of tea and edit some photographs or read a book. This dresser I got from an old neighbor when I moved out of my parents house at the age of 18. The dressers history combined with a light print and some plants really make my bedroom a calm, fresh and hyggelig place to be.”

3 // ​​​@latazzinablu
“​That Scandinavian Feeling to me means stay at home enjoying the precious moments, buy fresh flowers and light up some candles.”

4 // ​​​@whotookmymojo
“​No one ever said being seperated from someone you love was meant to be easy. You only have to observe the number of times those doubtful feelings come and go. That Scandinavian Feeling to show where she’s coming from, only the sea set us miles apart. That Scandinavian Feeling of her postcards which never cease to amaze me, pulled me back where we departed.

That Scandinavian Feeling I had everytime I set foot on foreign soil, either calling it quits or battling with the law of emotions to realise that achieving longetivity and that long term respect of a fickle world is much, much harder than it looks.”

I hope you join in and share your images on Instagram too! It’s a great way for us all to get together and spread some hygge while we wait for warmer weather. So what is That Scandinavian Feeling to you?

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