How to create Koselig during the winter pandemic

Kose who?

So let’s be real, most of us are experiencing social distancing isolation and Covid fatigue right about now(or for some of us for a while now).  Our calendar is almost empty for the upcoming winter months with no planned holiday celebrations or trips to visit friends and family… sigh!   I miss the old life of going out to restaurants and social events with friends and shopping at real stores for Christmas gifts.   I’ve been saying to myself and my friends, STAY POSITIVE AND STRONG but I did not have a real plan for doing so.

By happenstance  while cruising the internet last night, I am happy to say that I think I have found a way to make this winter a more pleasant, happy experience.   KOSELIG!!!  You may be wondering, what the heck is Koselig (pronounced “koosh-lee”)?  It is a word from the Netherlands that describes a feeling.  Unfortunately, there is no comparable word in the English language.  Picture this, after a fun day outdoors playing in the snow, you go inside, put on fuzzy socks and a sweater and enjoy a warm meal of homemade comfort food with friends and family (a small group given the times).  Then you cozy up to a fire and play games with friends or read a good book.  Doesn’t that sound wonderful?  That encapsulates the experience of koselig. 

Koselig is a Norwegian word and translates most closely to “suffused with warmth”, i.e. cozy, contented, happy, and connected to others.  Studies show that Norwegians are one of the happiest people on earth and perhaps koselig is the reason.   I’m definitely a newcomer to this concept but have created a list of ways to create koselig for myself, my friends, and my family this winter season!    

  • Get Outdoors – Get outside and enjoy the day by going hiking, skiing, snowshoeing, snowmobiling… whatever makes you happy!  Since we live in Colorado, there are a plethora of outdoor activities to enjoy in the winter.  Just a short time outdoors in the sunshine will make you feel alive and invigorated.  Coloradans are lucky to have over 250 days of sunshine each year so seize the day and enjoy the beautiful outdoors!
  • Ambiance – Make your home a beautiful sanctuary to escape from the outside world.  For a cozy home, make sure your furniture is comfortable, everything is not perfect, and the house reflects the personality of the people that live there.  Turn off the overhead lights and fire up the fireplace for a warm and inviting glow.  Light a few candles for their fragrance and beauty.
  • Cozy – make yourself warm and cozy with blankets,  comfy socks, sweaters, and pants.    Create coziness for your friends and family too by having extra blankets and socks on hand!
  • Connectedness – Even during a pandemic we need togetherness with other people for our mental health.  Choose a small group of friends and family who all get along well and enjoy time together.  Play games, have deep conversations, laugh at stupid jokes…. Connect!
  • Nourish your body – Take time to make simple but wholesome meals.  Learn some new recipes, make things from scratch, bake some cookies or breads, and experiment with new foods.  Keep a variety of beverages on hand from hot chocolate and apple cider to a few bottles of wine or spirits.   Slow down and share these delicious experiences with your friends and family.
  •  Disconnect – Here comes the tough one…turn off and stowe away any electronic devices.  This may be the most important aspect of koselig.  It may take a little while to get used to being disconnected from the world wide web but do it anyway.   Find other things to do… create, read, learn, talk, walk!
  • Live with Gratitude – Almost everyone has something to be thankful for even during their darkest times.  Focus on the good and give thanks!!  Live your best life at this exact time in your life.  Celebrate these every day moments and they will become special. 

I am excited as this is now my plan to have a wonderful winter in 2020!  If you decide to try your hand at koselig too, please write and give me your ideas.