HYGGE. Henry Nejako sent me this post by Russell McClendon on the Mother Nature Network website on how “hygge” can help you get through the winter.

McClendon points out that Denmark is rated as the happiest country in the world despite its long, dark winters. McClendon says that Denmark endures dreary winters with the help of an arcane cultural concept known as “hygge.” There is no equivalent in English, but words like “coziness,” “togetherness” and “well-being” are related to it. Danes emphasize that it is a mental attitude rather than a physical feeling of, say, “coziness”. McClendon compares it to the feelings of thankfulness that Americans feel around Thanksgiving and Christmas, but says that that the ideal persists throughout the year. And you have to slow down to experience it.

My Danish mother never used the word that I can remember, but I recognize my mother’s attitude toward life in the concept.

May we all have hygge this Thanksgiving and during the next year.

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