Day 7: Try a New Soup Recipe

What a cozy, homey way to end the 7 Day Winter Hygge Challenge. This morning I selected this final activity.

Try a new soup recipe

Hygge encourages simple wholesome nutritious meals. On this windy, chilly overcast day, the thought of dining on hot soup tonight warmed me all afternoon.

Day 8: Try a New Soup Recipe

Finding a New Soup Recipe

I made use of the Yummly app to find a new soup recipe. Called a “smart cooking sidekick”, Yummly allows me to find the perfect recipe. By entering in preferences and filters I can narrow down my search by cook time, course, cuisine, occasion, diet, allergy, nutrition and the ingredients I have on hand.

I already have my Yummly app set up with a vegan preference. The app stores my saved info as well, such as no meat, dairy products, gluten, eggs, soy or sugar.

Tonight I listed ingredients I had on hand, a prep and cook time of under an hour, and hit search. A list of recipes popped up, featuring their eye catching photos. Much like Pinterest, clicking on the photo takes me to a contributor’s website, where a full list of ingredients and directions for the recipe are posted.

Day 7: Try a New Soup Recipe

Vegan Potato Carrot Soup

I settled on a potato leek carrot soup, minus the leeks, which I did not have on hand. This vegan recipe, from Healthier Steps, was simple to prepare with a couple of adaptations to match my available ingredients. Check out her website for amazing plant based recipes.

I doubled this recipe, as noted below.

Vegan Potato Carrot Soup

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 3 celery stalks, chopped
  • 4 medium potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • Sea salt & pepper to taste

Directions:

Heat olive oil in a large soup pot. Sauté onion, carrots, celery and garlic until soft, about 4 minutes.

Add thyme and stir. Add potatoes, coconut milk, vegetable broth, water, coriander, turmeric and cumin. I also added a teaspoon of sea salt.

Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 20 minutes, until potatoes are cooked through and tender. Season with black pepper and more sea salt, if needed. Makes 6-8 servings.

Day 7: Try A New Soup Recipe

Day 7: Try a New Soup Recipe

Hygge Goodness

The new soup recipe proved to be delicious. Full of veggies and savory with a subtle blend of spices, the Potato Carrot Soup goes into my “keep” section on Yummly.

I enjoy cooking, especially on cool evenings. A hot bowl of soup is satisfying comfort food and serves up warmth, nutrition and a perfect hygge experience.

The 7 day hygge challenge is finished. Practicing coziness continues. I’ll randomly select the remaining hygge activities from the jar, over the winter.

Even as Christmas decorations come down, winter deepens and will remain for three more months. I’ll practice creativity, finding ways to display candles and pile up the thick blankets and bring natural elements indoors. It’s going to be very cozy around here.

Day 7: Try a New Soup Recipe

 

Day 7: Create a Fall Themed Front Porch

The last day of the 7 Day Fall Hygge Challenge brought me full circle, activity wise. This morning I drew this slip of paper:

Create a Fall Themed Front Porch

The challenge began last week with creating my first fall vignette, and ended late this evening with a reset on the covered porch. I was grateful for the illumination from the porch light!

Day 7 Create a Fall Themed Front Porch

Summer to Fall on the Porch

I cleared away summer décor with the realization that 2018 was quickly “clearing out” as well. The slightly cooler weather this week is welcomed however and brings with it the promise of leaves changing colors, mild temps and crisp evenings.

The summer palette of blues, greens, yellows and pinks disappeared, making room for the earthy hues of autumn.

Day 7 Create a Fall Themed Front Porch Clean slate.

Day 7 Create a Fall Themed Front Porch Summer begonias are still doing well. Annie’s red box stays the same.

I love the fall colors of red, rust, orange and yellow with hints of green and black. A multicolored rug across the bright yellow entry table sets the tone for ceramic pumpkins, bird cages, scented candles and the perfect word for the season…thanks. The flower wreath above the table echoes the colors of the cotton rug.

Day 7 Create a Fall Themed Front Porch

Day 7 Create a Fall Themed Front Porch

Cozy Front Porch

Beneath the table I grouped together a vintage metal gas can and a small bucket filled with berry sprigs at one end. On the other side a green plant remains, partnered with a spice scented jar candle.

Because of my late start on the porch, my reset ended with the entry table. Tomorrow I’ll finish this task by converting the rest of the space. Tonight however, I lit candles and basked for a moment in the cozy glow of flickering flames.

I typically begin my fall decorating with the front porch and then move indoors. The Fall Hygge Challenge reversed that process. I began with a vignette in the dining room, the center of my house, and moved outward.

How very hygge-like, to begin with the interior, the heart, and move outward to the exterior. Coziness is more than a comfortable feeling. It is an expression, a way of life, that does indeed radiate outward from the world I envision to the world I create.

I’m grateful for the Fall Hygge Challenge that helped me to welcome a new season, in my home, on my front porch, and in my life.

Day 7 Create a Fall Themed Front Porch

Day 7: Play in the Water

I was not able to turn my attention to the final summer hygge challenge, until shortly after sunset. The lateness of the day wasn’t a problem, except that I selected an outdoor activity. I drew out this slip of paper for today:

Play in the Water

Water play is such a fun, traditional summertime activity. I don’t have a backyard pool, however I have a backyard garden. Which means I have an assortment of water hoses and sprinklers. One of my favorite ways to cool off quickly as a child was to play in the spray from the garden hose. I was thoughtful as I looked outside. Light was quickly fading from the sky. If I was going to accomplish this task, it was a now or never situation. I decided to go for it.

Day 7: Play in the Water

I confess, I don’t even own a swimsuit, so my first consideration was what to wear as I played in the water. I made a quick decision to slip on a long, lightweight tie-dyed dress, primarily because I could mentally “see” myself playing in the sprinkler while wearing it.

I changed clothes, grabbed a towel and my iPhone, and hurried outside. For tonight’s water play I used a resin sprinkler, that looks like a wheelbarrow piled high with flowers. Hooking up the hose and turning on the faucet sent water spraying through the sprinkler, in a wide circular pattern.

Day 7: Play in the Water

With child-like glee, I stepped into the spray. The high temperature today was 95 degrees…creating hot and humid conditions. I’m not sure what the temperature had fallen to at 8:30 in the evening, but the water that rained down on me felt cold! I squealed and then laughed.

I had two thoughts, as I frolicked in the water: My long dress clung to me as the material became soaked, making me think of the old fashioned bathing suits women used to wear, that covered most of the body. And I hoped the neighbors weren’t watching as a mature woman danced around in the sprinkler, playing in the water while trying not to get too wet!

That last thought broke through any reserve that I had left. I played in the water, in earnest, feeling refreshed now rather than chilled. And I did indeed get soaked.

Day 7: Play in the Water

The last seven days have been fun, as I’ve welcomed summer with a different hygge activity each day. Drawing out a random slip of paper daily solidified my belief that when I stay in Life’s flow, and pay attention to Divine guidance, the people, events, opportunities and activities that come to me are perfect for that moment.

I love living a magical, enchanted life that is never dull or boring but inspires me to engage creatively, live openly, learn continually and play with joyful abandon. Happy summer.

Day 7: Play in the Water

Day 7: PJ Day

This was the final day in the 7 Day Hygge Challenge. And the perfect way to end this extraordinary week of creating coziness in my home and my life was to have a PJ Day.

PJ Day

Sunday – PJ Day

This was more than a lounge around in my comfy clothes day. The intent was to be comfortable and stay comfortable, without making plans or creating an agenda for the day. This was about self pampering and doing things that I enjoy.

I decided to let it be a go with the glow sort of day. Without making plans, I did what I wanted to do, at that moment.

Here is my day, captured in photos.

PJ Day

After an extended quiet time this morning, I enjoyed a couple of episodes of Big Dreams, Small Spaces, the British TV series featuring master gardener Monty Don. I get so inspired as he helps people create the gardens of their dreams. Look at that gorgeous backyard garden on my tv screen! This is the perfect time of year to be watching this show. My garden is waking up. I look forward to creating in it this season.

PJ Day

This was something that needed doing, but that I could have put off until another day. It felt like the right time to sort through receipts and docs from 2017, in preparation for turning numbers in to my accountant. There’s a portion of my sorting, in the pic above. Maybe because I was in a relaxed state of mine, or perhaps because I was in the flow…this task took far less time than I thought it would. It felt wonderful to get this out of the way. Tomorrow I will email a spreadsheet to the accountant and be done with it.

PJ Day

Two of my three cats, Angel and Shy Boy, joined me as I did my Morning Pages, in the early afternoon, and read for a bit in Under the Tuscan Sun. Cats, I’ve discovered, think every day should be unhurried and unscheduled!

Siberian Ginseng

I write two blogs. I post in this one every day and my health blog at least three times a week. Creating a Sunday/Tuesday/Friday posting schedule for Journey With Healthy Me has helped me tremendously with consistency. Which meant today was a double post day. Before preparing dinner, it felt like the perfect time to write today’s Sunday Supplement post about Siberian Ginseng. You can read that post HERE if you’d like.

PJ Day

Meals today have been simple: celery juice first thing this morning followed by a fruit smoothie, left over veggies and rice for lunch, lemon water, ginger water, hot herbal tea (lemon balm, thyme and fennel seeds), and for dinner homemade gluten free veggie pizzas. I made the crusts from a mix I purchased at Natural Grocers. It is also dairy free. I topped the crusts with organic marinara sauce and sautéed veggies that included onion, green pepper, garlic, zucchini and mushrooms. No cheese needed or wanted. These personal sized pizzas were delicious!

And finally this evening, I have a short stack of books to read in and my writing journal near by. I may draw or color…or not. I may watch a movie…or not. I’m enjoying each moment and responding to whatever my whim is in the next one.

This has been a beautiful week for me. Hygge isn’t a trend for me or an experiment to try. It is a lifestyle. It connects me with coziness, with nature, with other people, with simple pleasures, and it centers me more deeply within myself. I’m excited to continue with this way of life and learn more about hygging and more about myself. The 7 Day Hygge Challenge is completed…and it was most appreciated and enjoyed.

PJ Day