A friend and I were having coffee when we started talking about how lovely it was not to go out any more. She’d seen a sign in a gift shop that read, Let’s Stay Home, and we both thought it was just beautiful.
The whole Hygge trend, embracing the Danish notion of comfort, reflects that my friend and I are not alone.
Dining out at the new hot restaurant or going to an A-List party has been surpassed by pillows, reading socks and tea.
I think as the world seems scarier and more polarized, there’s a strong temptation to stay in. An innocuous dinner party can turn into a shouting match if you don’t match the guests’ political affiliations carefully. The decision to get a ride home can erupt into a battle over the ethics of taxis versus ride-sharing services. As Mike on the TV show, The Middle, said, “Nothing good ever happens when you leave the house.”
In my late 20s and early 30s, I worked all the time. When I wasn’t working, I was out at dinner, a film premiere, or I was travelling. I ran around town in leather leggings and high heels. It was all very glamorous.
In my early 40s, after several years of staying home with young kids, I again found myself going out all the time. I was divorced, and I didn’t like staying put in an empty house when the kids weren’t there. I discovered a group of adults who loved to go to concerts, bars and parties, and I went with them. When my kids were away, I’d regularly be out until the wee small hours, and I travelled whenever I could. By then my feet ached in heels, and although it was glamorous, it was also exhausting. There was so much drama all the time. It was like a living episode of the Real Housewives, complete with drunken women yelling because someone’s aging husband was leering at someone else. Frankly, it was all too much.
Now that I’m in my mid-40s, remarried and more settled, it’s such a treat to stay home. At home, there’s no drama. At home, there’s no risk of getting into a yelling match with a drunken housewife or spending $14 on a middling glass of wine. There are pillows and reading socks and tea.
When the world is topsy-turvy, it’s a luxury to den in with family, pets, and friends. Open a bottle of wine, pour yourself a cup of tea, invite a friend over for a chat, order in dinner, or crack open that book you’ve been meaning to read.
Let’s stay home.
Jen, my husband and I consider it a huge gift when we don’t have to go anywhere on the weekend! It is like a little piece of heaven when we get to relax, have a quiet dinner together, maybe watch a movie, and get caught up on things we’ve been needing to do around the house. I’ve gotten much better at saying “no” to some invitations for evening events. Rest is much more important these days!
I so agree. I think staying in really is the new going out. I so appreciate it these days. I really wish people hibernated – like bears!! xo
Perhaps it’s because I’m an only child, but I’m great at entertaining myself. Then again, my 20s and 30s were glam and adventurous, so I’ve experienced that kind of lifestyle, and now… I don’t miss it at all. I’m working to create my own world here in my new home and am inviting–when I want–people to come here. That way I can hibernate and be social when I want, all on my own turf. I’m glad to know there are others who like staying home. xoxox, Brenda
Hmm, maybe the only child thing explains me too! I feel like I’ve seen so much of life – I now really appreciate the quiet moments. I love your home as haven concept. From the peeks you’ve given us, you are doing a terrific job! xo
I love being at home and so does my husband, we get quite excited when we discover we’ve got a free night on the weekend (or even better – the entire weekend) and love cooking good food, getting comfortable with books or a movie and relaxing. Sometimes we just look at one another and declare, “I love nights in with you!” Esther xx
Oh my goodness…thank you! The luxury of having dinner IN with friends or not is wonderful. We eat out just often enough to keep me inspired to cook very good meals. I even set things up as though we are eating out just for fun. Home is such a wonderful word.
Hygge? So the idea is Danish? Who knew?
I just turned 60 and can honestly say that for the first time, I am as comfortable inside my house as outside. I’ve learned that the comfort happens within. My friends all have different political views- socialist to neo-con, an yet we all get along. It’s because we are carrying the comfort of our homes within our hearts. One of the benefits of age, I guess.
Balance. I love this post. There’s too much go-go. We need the quiet. The no-go. The regroup time. <3
Beautiful post, Jen! I feel like I have the best of all worlds right now – with a motorhome, the scenery outside my window can change but I still have the comforts of my home, my books, and cup of tea right there.