Comfort, Coziness and Connection:: Bringing Hygge to Houston

Here in Houston we don’t experience winter quite the same as our friends in the north {or at all the same- could we get a fun snow day more than once every ten years?}. But listen, I’m not complaining. Shoveling snow, driving on ice, or bundling up children in mittens and hats just to run to the grocery store does not sound like my idea of a good time.

I do, however, appreciate a good crackling fire, cozy slippers, and a hot cup of coffee. You know what I’m talking about! This is essentially the heart of “Hygge!” You pronounce it like this:: HOO-ga. It’s a Danish word that doesn’t exactly translate into English but conveys a feeling of coziness. You know, that first cup of coffee in the morning, the feeling of a really soft warm blanket on a cold day, the flicker of a fireplace in a dark room, and the shared laughter of friends.

Even though we don’t experience intense cold here in Houston, we still experience the month of January just like everyone else in the world. It feels like the longest month of the year! It’s cold and dreary, but there’s no Christmas. We all just spent time with family, went on vacations, ate lots of delicious goodies, and now it’s back to routine. Or in the case of 2020, we just spent lots of time at home with our kids and now we’re about to spend even more time at home with our kids. We already decided we’re not doing resolutions this year, right? So let’s make the most of this winter in particular and invite some cozy-hygge-goodness into our homes.

The main thing to know is that hygge is about simplicity. This is not some grand scheme to declutter, reorganize, and redecorate your home to look like the newest hipster coffee house. It’s more about appreciating simple pleasures and enjoying the comfort, coziness, and connection available here and now.


Twinkle lights aren’t just for Christmas. Pull them back out and drape them over your mantle or headboard. Put tiny ones in a houseplant. It’ll bring some whimsical joy to your space. I’ve linked my favorite indoor string lights here. And light those candles! You know those decorative ones collecting dust? I know about those because I have them too. Let’s put them to use this month and light them up! This is one of my personal favorites right now.

Bringing Hygge to Houston


Have cozy blankets around. Invest in loungewear and slippers you love. This doesn’t need to be fancy or expensive, but it will make a difference. If 2020 taught me anything it was that jeans are uncomfortable and mostly overrated. I live in leggings and sweatpants, so why not actually get a few that fit me well and don’t have holes in them? Here is my favorite pair of comfy joggers that I recently discovered! I also love a good heavy, furry blanket. My kids love them too. I like to have a few scattered around the house so coziness is available any moment it’s needed.

cozy hygge living room with fireplace, soft blanket, and cup of tea

Taste & Smell

Okay, I already mentioned coffee but for those of you who don’t drink it, what other hot beverage do you love in the wintertime? Whatever it is, make it easy and accessible. Love tea? Treat yourself to a cute kettle and a new mug. I love my rapid electric boiler! And what about soups and baking? I’m generally not much of a cook, but soups, where you can just dump all the ingredients in, are an easy and quick way to feed your family on a cold night. A big loaf of crusty bread to go with it really hits the spot, too. Again, nothing here has to be fancy. Simple and cozy is the motto of hygge!

bowl of vegetable soup with grilled cheese sandwich on the side


What are the sounds of your home? Things get tense sometimes with schooling at home- I just spent the last 6 months doing it, so I definitely know. Or maybe it’s a little quiet and you’re feeling bittersweet because you just sent your littles back to school. Whatever it is, music can soothe the soul. To experience the sound aspect of hygge, create a Winter 2021 playlist with some of your favorites! Mine has a lot of Taylor Swift on it; I can tell you that much.

Hygge is About Connection

Reach out to a friend. Another thing 2020 taught me was the importance of staying connected during long isolating months, no matter the weather outside. Hygge is about simple connection- nothing extravagant. There’s no need to host a themed dinner party or spend all day in the kitchen cooking or cleaning in order to really connect with someone. A gift of this current pandemic is that outdoor socializing is ideal right now. It may be cold out there, but with a fire in the firepit and maybe some cozy blankets or string lights, you can create a sweet little space for a hangout. No vacuuming or cooking required. Text a friend or another family and see if they want to split the bill for pizza and drinks and hang out in your backyard this weekend.

Can’t get together with friends right now? How about a board game with the family or a read-aloud by candlelight tonight? That would be so hygge.

Want to explore Hygge more for yourself? This little book is a quick read that in itself gives you that warm hygge feeling. Let’s bring Hygge to Houston, baby!

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Bethany Dufilho
Bethany, the daughter of an army chaplain and a special education teacher, grew up moving every 2-3 years. She considers herself an introvert who had to learn how to make friends quickly! She met her Houstonian husband, Paul, in college and they married in 2004. They first settled just north of Houston, where she earned her master's degree at Sam Houston State in School Psychology. After working in public education for a couple of years, she decided to stay home full time with their children, Charlie {2008}, Norah {2010}, and Will {2013}. The family moved to Katy in 2012, where they’ve been ever since. She loves decorating and even had her own small business for a while. She also loves to read, binge-watch old TV shows, talk politics and enneagram, and will not turn down a cup of strong coffee or a good conversation with a friend.


  1. This is the first time I’ve heard of the term “Hygge,” and it 100% speaks to my soul. I think I’m going to curl up in a warm, cozy blanket and light some candles right now! Thanks for the twinkle light suggestion, I love it!


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