As you know, 'Hygge' is the Danish word describing a mood of coziness and togetherness. You might think hygge is a fall- or winter thing, but summer hygge can be just as nourishing for the soul as fall and winter hygge. So let me offer you some of my best personal tips for genuine Scandinavian summer hygge on a perfect summer day.
1. The sunrise
I get up early! And take my youngest daughter down to the nearby boardwalk (where I also do my coldwater dips in the winter). We get there early enough to see the sunrise over the water. We sit there quietly on the wooden bench, just the two of us (she is a bit of a dreamer, just like me), and watch the sun as it rises. We breathe in the fresh seawater air and enjoy the beautiful view of the Swedish coastline just on the other side of the Sound. On the way home, we get fresh croissants for the rest of the family, still asleep as we get back.
2. Morning coffee
My morning coffee is a ritual all through the year, summer and winter. But in the summertime, I take it on my patio. This is my daily Fika break, and I take care to make a really good cup of coffee.
In the summer my daily fika break envolves a very good cup of coffe and my newspaper on the patio.
3. Lunchtime: Have a picnic!
Once in a while, I plan a picnic. For me, picnics are just the epitome of summer hygge. Whether you go to a state park, a green spot in the city, or even have a picnic on the balcony, you won't fail to feel hyggelig with a picnic!
To make the picnic super nice, I add a bit of luxury: I arrange the food on proper wooden boards. I use real drinking glasses (disposable plastic cups are not hygge). It takes a little more effort, but it makes the experience way more special. My picnic guests will for sure sense and appreciate the extra effort. I might also bring tealights and a throw when I know we'll be lounging until the sun goes down.
4. Afternoon: find a sunny spot and read
The essence of hygge, whatever the season, is to remain in the present and find joy in the simple things. In summer, one of the best ways to embrace hygge for me is by finding a sunny spot in my garden or on the porch and getting comfy with a good book. To get the most out of my experience, I turn off the cell phone (which is really hard!!) and enjoy the afternoon between the pages of a great book. I might secretly add some tasty snacks and a cool drink. Recently I got a beautiful linen hammock, and being able to lie in that for hours on end, gently swinging, with my book has got to be one of my ultimate summer hygge activities.
5. Evening; My festive evening at home with friends:
There is nothing like a festive evening gathered at home with good friends for some delicious food and drink. In my case, it had been far too long since I spend quality time alone with my close friends.
First, I get a handle on the evening's menu. Once that's under control, I feel I've come a long way with the planning. If you are skilled in the kitchen or enjoy cooking, you can prepare the dishes yourself. On the other hand, if you do not like to work in the kitchen or want to save time to make it totally stressless, why not make it 'take away.' I often make it a crossover: a little bit of take away and then some of my own food creations - and call it tapas (I'll be wearing my new apron from Norlii August box the whole time, of course 😀). I use most of my efforts on the table setting, because that's what I love.. And it shows that you have poured your soul into it.
When it comes to choosing drinks, I will go for a nice bottle of white wine for summer hygge. Most importantly, the get-together does not have to be fancy or wildly accomplished, but it's fun to do it properly. The settings are so important: the table, the dining chairs, candles on the table, a bouquet in a simple vase, glasses for wine, glasses for water - the whole thing sets a relaxed and genuine atmosphere of hygge.
I have candles, cushions, pillows, blankets - the whole thing. Now that is simple summer hygge.
6. Late evening: Move outdoors
Every day does not have to be a party and colors during the summer, but it will not stop me from getting the best out of the long Nordic summer evenings. Sometimes I replace the sofa with a blanket on the patio and watch a movie with the kids. We just use a tablet instead of a TV. I have candles, cushions, pillows, blankets - the whole thing. Now that is simple summer hygge. I realize not everybody has a patio, but maybe they have outdoor movies play somewhere in your area.
This summer the family went Glamping for the summer vacation. This way every night was spend out door by the fire.
I hope I have inspired you to make the most of your summer hygge. Let me know if you have other ideas for the hygge in August.