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Hygge Holidays – From CSW Faculty & Staff

a shot from above a person sits on a blanket, one hand about to turn the page of a book, the other hand holding a mug.Hygge: a Danish word – coming from the country at the top of the world’s happiness scale – that sort of means comfort, nurturing, self-care, connection, coziness, and warmth rolled together. In a difficult year, some of the faculty and staff in the College of Social Work shared ways we embrace hygge in our lives. 

“I love snuggling with my kids under the covers; sitting by my gas fireplace. I don't know if it’s technically hygge, but also smoking a turkey in the snow on Thanksgiving.”
     —Eric Garland, Associate Dean for Research

“I feel hygge when snuggling up on the couch with my family and watching holiday movies. Accompanied by candy cane hot cocoa—can't beat that feeling.”
     —Paige Bolingbroke, Special Events Assistant

“We love watching a movie together and sharing a warm blanket – in the deeps of January cold, we add warm socks, too. Candlelight or firelight for a warm, quiet glow. Making a tent with the grandkids and sipping hot cocoa together.”
     —Christina Gringeri, Interim Associate Dean for Academic Affairs

“I’ve been a long lover of hygge! It’s such a wonderful concept and so helpful for me as a reminder to slow down and enjoy this moment. Things that help me embrace hygge: reading or knitting in my cozy arm chair, playing a board game with my husband, and snuggling with my little one.”
     —Stephanie Dawson Pack, Public Relations/Marketing Assistant

“My son saved his allowance for a year so he could buy socks this winter for foster kids. Warmed my heart. Spending time with my boy, my niece, my family, and my friends on the river is my hygge.”
     —Richie Landward, Assistant Professor/Lecturer

“We feel so fortunate to get unexpected, extended in-person time with our adult daughters this year. In addition to many shared times in the kitchen, we bond/embrace our hygge over intense games of Cities and Knights, movie nights, and cute pet moments.”
     —Lisa Himonas, Assistant Dean for Development

“My spouse and I walk about 12 miles every day around the neighborhood and on the Jordan River trail throughout the different seasons. This winter, too, we will walk everyday on the same route. Over the past several years of doing that, we have gotten to know many people. Some people come out from their house saying, ‘You are the only thing that didn't change in the pandemic. You give me stability.’ Some kids wait at their windows at exactly the same time that we would pass their house to do peek-a-boos (we have to hide behind trash cans on the street), or open windows to show their tricks. It has been so fun! Making and keeping some fun routines that we wait for with a happy heart, without pretense, adds to our hygge.”
     —Jaehee Yi, Associate Professor

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Last Updated: 12/12/23