Defined by Uschi Jeffcoat

I had a conversation yesterday with a friend. She was describing how she is motivated by concepts. Defining things in her life help her,  such as having a word for the year.

And I was thinking, "Huh, wonder what my word for right now is?"


It has been a very focused past two months, of work. Both in and out of the studio.

I've been wondering why it's felt so intense and then I recalled what all the "day job" has experienced since January: the snow days, the flu epidemic and then the tragedy in Florida. All those items will shake up the day to day, just a little bit.

And I thought, "Hmm, I could use a good word right about now."

One of the perks of teaching is that you typically work with people who are life long learners and have wonderful knowledge to share.

So on a day, (like today) when you are feeling very bleh, because the pollen is not your friend and you know you need the energy of a Duracell Battery Factory to teach middle school kids in the Spring Time . . . you put on your most comfy flats, roll up the cuffs of the grey wool pants, and put on the softest sweater you own.

And what greets you in your hall?  YOUR word! And I quote . . .


"You look so cute and very hygge today!"

hygge ???

(I love working with a good ELA teacher! They are some of the most insightful people I know.)

See the definition below of hygge from the Oxford University Press:


Pronunciation /ˈhʊɡə//ˈh(j)uːɡə/  noun

A quality of coziness and comfortable conviviality that engenders a feeling of contentment or well-being (regarded as a defining characteristic of Danish culture)

So I am declaring this as the year of hygge for me. In and outside of the studio.

Continued contentment, comfort and enjoyment in what I paint and how I paint. An appreciation for the simple. Thankfulness for work and the ability to do so. And delight in that there is time for the sacred in it all. I'm saying Good-bye to Artist Angst. Hello to hygee.

knew there was a reason why I've been needing and burning through all those Carolina Wren candles! It's all been part of this hygge and the Danish way! :-)