WITH Christmas decorations coming down – in theory – last weekend, we can now see clearly the collateral damage of the silly season.
However, I was running 24 hours late this year on packing up the decorations after spending the whole weekend away in Sydney.
When we got back home late on Sunday night, Christmas did look a little the worse for wear.
Aside from piles of pine needles under the tree on Monday, there were books and dog toys cast aside from Christmas morning and a couple of gifts that were yet to be handed out.
Miraculously, there was a bottle of untouched French Champagne behind some of the low-lying branches.
There was a Barbie camper van taking up an inordinate amount of parking at the end of the dining room.
What was Santa thinking? A small, electric car without any extras would have better suited a modern-day Barbara Millicent Roberts.
There is a Barbie camper van taking up an inordinate amount of parking at the end of the dining room. What was Santa thinking? A small, electric car without any extras would have better suited a modern-day Barbara Millicent Roberts.
Anyhow, Barbie has pegged out her camp site until mid-January.
Meanwhile, the rest of the population is struggling to remember their computer logons and children’s middle names (required general knowledge when trying to reset all of your passwords) and dealing with the after-effects of too much sun, Christmas ham and chardonnay. Not necessarily in that order!
January is the time to ease back into routines.
Like my wise Danish host mother always said, summer holidays are wonderful but the return to routine is just as important for our health and wellbeing.
The Danes are masters at bringing hygge – cosiness and comfortable conviviality with feelings of wellness and contentment – into the daily grind.
Hygge is the cosy rituals we can learn to embrace in between holidays.
Here’s some simple ways to get back in the game after the silly season and up your helpings of hygge.
- Swim: If you’re working throughout January, why not invest in a swimming pool family season pass (unless, of course, you have your own pool! Then it’s a dumb idea!!). It’s amazing how a daily swim after work can make you think you’re actually still on a long staycation. Okay, it’s not Noosa but it’s still fun! There’s also a number of top water holes around the North East. I have a couple of favourite spots but surely someone must know more! Message me.
- Movies: Nothing says school holidays like mid-week movies. Cinema, Netflix, movie hire, any way you choose it. Mary Poppins Returns is good middle ground for the whole family. I can also recommend Dumplin’ on Netflix for a feel-good summer flick.
- Berry picking: If you haven’t already been berry picking, you still have plenty of time this month. There’s nothing like visiting the North East orchards and choosing your own fruit. Eat fresh raspberries now or freeze them to go into baking or smoothies for the next six months. Get a group together for cherry picking and/or pickling and make it an annual ritual. Top hygge, really!
- Baking: Baking can still be a summer sport! Early in the morning or last thing at night. Better still, invite someone over to share in the results.
- Road trip: We’re spoilt for choice when it comes to tourist attractions around the North East and southern Riverina. A weekend stay or day trip can be just as good as a holiday in the early weeks of going back to work.
While it’s been top hygge having Barbie stay in my dining room, I will soon have to resort to a note on her windscreen.
Barbara Millicent Roberts, you’ve outstayed your welcome.
The holiday’s over! Happy travels!!