Being creative in any number of ways is a perfect way to work together and make something that both delights and brings with it a sense of true achievement. Achieving a goal and enjoying the results of labor is the most satisfying and a great way to spend an afternoon. This post looks at just a few ways you can implement creative hygge with your family.
Coloring books have become a big recent fashion trend and are highly effective in getting you to think at the moment, leaving behind the stresses and worries of everyday life. They very much fit the hygge way of thinking. Children always love being creative and coloring in every kind of design, from the simple to the highly intricate. They will enjoy you being there with them and coloring side by side. The completed design can also look beautiful when hung on the wall in a simple frame. This gives you all a chance to admire your handiwork for years to come!
Make your decorations
Why go to the expense of buying your decorations, when you can add the personal touch and create your own? At the same time, the kids get to be creative. They can then see their creation on the wall or the table for years to come, basking in the inevitable praise that will come from visitors and family. You can add a personalized touch to all kinds of everyday, mundane possessions that make looking at or using them a joy. A boring, white mug can be transformed for example with a personal message that is inscribed with a permanent Sharpie pen.
A standard plain, the white mug should cost less than $2, yet can be enhanced tremendously to match those that sell for five times that in a store. Add your inscription to the mug with the pen. Place the mug in the oven for 30 minutes and let it cool down for as long as it takes. The message or picture is permanent and will bring you and your guests a little joy each time they are used.
You can create your decorative candle holders or lanterns or framed pictures. You can also learn to knit and sew your creations. Creating a warm hat is a relatively easy task and can make a great gift. Encourage your children to look around the house and see what they can enhance themselves.
Make your presents
If you want to give a gift of hygge, then you can create your special hygge box with ease. Take a normal box and cover it with some form of decorated paper. Or have the children create their artwork with which to cover it, along with whatever additions seem to be fun at the time. Then simply add all the elements of hygge that you enjoy so much to make the perfect gift for a loved one. As inspiration, you could add various forms of tea or cocoa. Chocolate would be a must, perhaps three or four special varieties that the recipient may not normally buy themselves. Add some cookies or a delicious cake. You will need candles of course and perhaps a lovely, warm pair of socks. A favorite book could be added, along with a card from you and the family explaining the purpose of the hygge box and why you have given it to them.
This is a beautiful gift that will appeal to anyone and be appreciated by all. Not just for the contents, but for the thought and effort that has been put into the presentation and gathering of the various elements.
Make your cards
Why spend money on expensive, shop-bought cards when you can explore your creativity with your children and make your own? This works equally well with festive Christmas cards or birthday cards at any time of the year and is guaranteed to have more of an impact on the recipient than a commercially made product.
You can keep it relatively simple and make something elegant and beautiful with pre-folded card paper. Equally, just buy a thicker card in the shops which you can then fashion to your specified size. You can use various forms of hole punch for extra impact and then decorate by coloring in or adding glitter or any other craft item that enhances the look. The main idea is to create something bespoke and unique which will delight the recipient.
Take the outside inside
Nature is a wonderful – and free – resource of all kinds of decoration that can look stunning either used in conjunction with cards or presents or wrapping paper or even simply standing on its own. Encourage your children to rug up and head outside in search of different colors and textures to bring a touch of the natural world inside. This might include berries, pinecones, twigs or stones, or even plants that may prefer the warmth inside rather than the bitter winter. Flowers in a vase make a beautiful addition to any room and are perfect to add a little touch of the outside to your home.
Arrange your plants
Taking your children down to a garden center or local florist can be an exciting trip. Have them choose their plant to look after during the winter and watch it grow and mature over the coming months. If you are worried about the plant dying, you can always go for a low maintenance plant such as a succulent which comes in thousands of different varieties and requires very little care. Cacti always prove fascinating as well. Choose three or four mini cacti and create your rock garden with little pebbles and some sand. Beware their prickly nature of course – this may need to be a joint exercise! Just having these plants in the same room and seeing them grow while being nurtured will make your children appreciate nature at work and add hygge to any home.
Enjoy wildlife together
Pets are a huge amount of work and responsibility. Although I have loved having them, I would not recommend them to any family unless everyone is fully aware of how much time and effort they take to look after. Kids love playing with them and having a pet can be a life-altering experience that brings innumerable physical and mental benefits. However, be aware as a parent, that you will probably end up doing most of the work.
If the thought of having a pet is too much, then you can still encourage as much natural wildlife to visit your home as possible. Leave full bird feeders out. It will not take long before birds discover the bounty that lies at your house and you will see all kinds of birdlife descending upon you for breakfast and dinner. Get the children involved in repacking the feeder. They can observe which animals come and keep a journal perhaps of regular visitors or draw them as well. They can do additional research to discover more about the particular bird that comes to the garden. You can also add a water bath at the same time which will be frequented by every kind of creature during hot summer days.
Watching these animals eat and drink is a wonderful experience that can be shared with all the family, away from screens and other distractions. Hygge is as much about embracing the outside as it is hibernating inside. Witnessing animals in nature benefit from your kindness and hospitality is a great way of encouraging and fostering it.
Make a candle holder decoration
Of course, candles are fundamental to hygge, but you can make them even more interesting by creating your landscape. Add the candles or a simple tea light into an empty jar. Use some card and cut out a landscape of your own. Create the outline of a house or a little village and cut out squares for the windows. You can then stick the card onto the outside of the jar. Spray the remaining visible part of the jar with snow spray for the final effect. If you don’t have a card, then simply add acrylic paint directly onto the jar, leaving the appropriate spaces for the candlelight to shine through. Add your candle, light it, and create your winter wonderland, free of charge!
Create your mug cozy
These look beautiful and are easy to make. They will also make lovely gifts. You can go to the trouble of knitting these yourself, however, if you prefer something even more simple, then you can use old, woolly socks instead. Measure the height of your mug and cut the top half of the sock to fit with an extra inch or so at the top. Once you have turned the sock inside out, fold that extra inch at the top down over the sock and glue it. Leave something heavy on the top for a couple of hours to ensure the glue takes.
Fold the sock the right way around and add it to the mug. Cut a small opening in the sock for a handle, cutting away any excess threads and you’re done! If you’re feeling adventurous, you can stick on some extra decorations or even sew on buttons for extra effect.
Create an inside den
It can be quite cathartic to throw all the cushions off the sofa, re-arrange the furniture and create your den with the children in a living room. Get together all the cushions, blankets, and pillows you can find, throw them all together, and with the aid of more sturdy furniture, see what you can create. Let imaginations run wild and you will soon find yourself in a castle surrounded by a moat with snapping crocodiles at your feet (or something similar). You can then sit down together and read a story or make up your own based on your recent building together.
Create your memory wall
Creating your wall of memories with old photographs is a great activity that children love. Go through old photographs and pick out ones that look most appealing or hold a memory or emotional resonance for you and your family. While many may be of more recent events, don’t neglect older photographs perhaps of previous generations that your children may not know much about. Going through these photographs will give you all a chance to share memories and recount stories. You can then add these to frames of every size, shape, and color and position them on a wall. The cumulative effect of all these photos is huge and the memory wall will become a talking point of any room.
When you take new photographs, be sure to continually update the wall with memories of recently shared experiences. If you have taken them digitally, then you can print them out at home or have them professionally printed. Having a living, dynamic, pictorial representation of your life together is a great way to get children to build memories and treasure time spent together. They will enjoy reminiscing and sharing their stories with your guests and family as they look together at the pictures.