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Our Opinion: Got winter blahs? Live like a Dane

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Our Opinion: Got winter blahs? Live like a Dane
Detroit Lakes Minnesota 511 Washington Avenue 56501

Welcome back to the deep freeze. The area had a nice little reprieve, but winter is back with a vengeance.

Things may seem dark right now, but that’s only because they are. After all, the Old Farmer’s Almanac puts sunrise for Jan. 1 in Detroit Lakes at 8:08 a.m. and sunset at 4:46 p.m.

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And all of January and February stretch before us.

Now is the time to practice what the Danish call hygge (pronounced hue-gah) and embrace the comfort of warm blankets, fireplaces, candles and saunas — and family and friends to share them with.

According to the Hygge House blog, hygge is a feeling or mood that comes from taking genuine pleasure in making ordinary everyday things special — whether it’s lingering over a cup of coffee or tea during a cozy evening in with friends or lighting a candle with every meal.

It’s about owning things you only truly love or that inspire, being present in yourself and your life, and putting effort into your home without going overboard.

It’s also about being aware and in-tune with your surroundings from home to work to friends to celebrations and making all events matter —no matter how big or small.

Words like coziness, security, familiarity, comfort, reassurance, fellowship, simpleness and living well are often used to describe the idea of hygge.

It’s an old idea, but makes life in Denmark enjoyable in spite of the bad weather there.

Hygge provides warmth when the weather doesn’t. A visitor  to Denmark will find candles in the windows, and welcoming torches in front of the restaurants.

It’s a great example of the power of positive thinking, reminding people that that life should be savored, and that comfort, beauty, and warmth make life worth living in the frozen places of the Earth.

So practice a little hygge today, and pass it on — there’s a lot of winter left ahead. We need all the help we can get.

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