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Healthy Hygge Foods and Natural Cold Remedies: An Interview with Superfoods on Main

If there is one place that always makes me feel great it is the Superfoods on Main cafe in Mount Airy, Maryland. And I do not mean the kind of “great” that lasts for about thirty minutes, I am talking about feeling great for days! Superfoods on Main is a cafe with a homey cozy atmosphere that reminds me of some cafes in Copenhagen. Meanwhile, their drinks and foods are mainly raw, organic and vegan which means you get both hygge and healthy energy there. Maybe even better is that my two young children love going there for a colorful smoothie and time in the play corner. So on this cold and snowy morning I decide to venture out to meet raw foods chef, Darlene Union, and nutritionist, Elina Jelena-Kopic Myers, co-owners of Superfoods on Main to talk about healthy hygge foods and how to be healthy in the Winter months. Darlene and Elina always seem happy and energetic – the living proof that a raw or vegan lifestyle really works and I am eager …

Happy Foods

Our January started off with constant colds and coughs and the Arctic blast with many snow days stuck inside. So my hope of kicking off the new year with a healthy and active lifestyle has been on hold. The result is that I feel like “a hanged cat” (a Danish expression) being dragged around from the kids wake up at 6:30 am till I crash on the couch as soon as they go to bed. Being a couch potato was not exactly my new years resolution and I am determined to find a better way to get through the cold Winter months. All the hygge foods I have been advocating on this blog, like cakes and hot chocolate, bring me a sweet momentary happiness. This is why I have decided to give me, my family and this blog a healthy vitamin shot with foods that provide the energy we need to be happy and active all day long. I will also discover healthy hygge foods that won’t send us on a sugar crash shortly after …

Danish Christmas Cookies and Mulled Wine / Glögg

To me, nothing tastes more like Christmas than Danish Christmas Cookies / Brunkager – a crisp, spiced cookie – and Glögg – a mulled hot wine. Here are my family’s recipes 🙂 Danish Christmas Cookies / Brunkager 7 ounces butter 7 ounces sugar 1/2 cup sirup 1 tbsp cinnamon 1 tbsp ginger 1 tsp ground cloves 12.5 ounces all-purpose flour or more 1 tsp baking soda 3.5 ounces chopped almond slivers (optional) 1.8 ounces grated organic orange peel How you do it: Mix butter, sugar, sirup and spices well. In a separate bowl mix the flour and baking soda well. Then mix this into the first mixture. Knead the dough together with almonds and orange peel. Add more flour if needed. Divide the dough into 2-3 equally big parts. Roll and shape them so you have 2-3 fat rolls. Then you wrap each of them in plastic foil and store them in the fridge overnight – or longer. Cut the rolls into 3-4 millimeter thick slices which you place on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper. Leave …

A Danish Christmas

Originally posted on Happy as a Dane:
Here is a little sample of my Danish Christmas. The old streets of Copenhagen decorated with garlands, lights, hearts and stars. White hyacints and pine cones are important too. But lets not forget the mouth watering marzipan (almond paste) and nougat on coffee tables all around the country… I know bicycles aren’t exactly a Christmas thing but only in Denmark will you see a baby chair that matches the color of the mother’s bicycle! Says so much about the importance of bicycles and design to the Danes. ?

Hygge Ideas for the Fall

It is a misty, grey day. One of those days where the sun will never come out. Now rain is pouring down in heavy streams. And I love it! What better excuse is there to hygge inside? Fall is prime time for hygge. Hygge is giving yourself some love in the darkening, cold months to come. It is really a gift to be able to hygge and this Fall and winter I am determined to make my kids feel a lot of hygge so that one day they will be able to create a home full of hygge. Here are some of my ideas on how to hygge in the Fall. First, go outside and enjoy the beautiful colors before they disappear! It is hard to think of anything more beautiful than the colorful leaves against a crisp blue sky. It almost looks as if the trees have dressed up in golden jewelry. Even on grey days the colors are stunning. After a cold but beautiful walk you will be ready to get some warmth …

Live, Laugh, Love – Truths of Happiness from Children

Sometimes the deep truths of life are pretty simple and cliché like, yet we often forget them. I was having a stressed out day trying to be five steps, or actually months, ahead of myself when a displaced coloring book with the title “Just Breathe” suddenly popped up on the children’s book shelves in Walmart.   When my daughter came home from a long day in kindergarten I let her choose a couple of pages to color and out of all the life wisdom quotes this is what she picked out: There you go. It is that simple. That got me thinking about how good children are at making themselves happy when we give them the chance. If we give children time and freedom to do what they want (within reasonable and safe limits of course;) they will just go out and have fun and be happy. For adults it can be so much more complicated to find happiness even in our free time. There are always so much on our to-do-lists and things we should …

Fairies, Merpups and Finding Joy When Things Don’t Go as Planned

In my last post I promised to give you an update on my use of the playguide in the book Play – The Danish Way by Iben Sandahl. I am not sure what happened but we went on vacation to Cape Cod and now suddenly half the summer has gone by. I am so excited that we have been electronics free for two entire weeks now (two hours after I published this post my kids were watching “Chuggington”… oops)! The absence of electronics has definitely made room for a greater imaginary universe but the summer still has not been as perfect as I imagined: me sitting in a garden chair, reading books while my children would play joyously for hours by themselves. A lot of times, I have had to dig deep in order not to get (too) frustrated with constant requests for help, questions about every possible thing (“why do people have swimsuits?”) and cleaning in 95 degrees fahrenheit with what seems like max air humidity (Maryland summers are tough for a Dane!). But I …

Play – therapy for the mind and soul

“I never want to grow up,” he (Tommy) said determinedly. “Me either,” said Annika. “No, that isn’t something to strive for. Grown-ups never have fun. They just have a lot of boring work, stupid clothes and calluses and taxes.” (….) “They don’t know how to play either,” said Annika. “Ooh, that you are forced to grow up!” (free translation from Astrid Lindgren’s Pippi Longstocking in the South Seas, 1948) Last night as I was reading Pippi Longstocking to my children we came across this great passage where the children, Tommy and Annika, tell Pippi that they never want to grow up because adults aren’t fun and don’t know how to play. To this Pippi replies that growing up isn’t something to strive for and then she offers the children some magical pills to prevent them from ever growing up. This may just seem like a funny statement because growing up is, of course, something to desire and adults always know best. But do we really? Do we always know what is best for children or are there some …

A Summer of Free Imagination – Let the Kids Be Bored and Play

  “Mom I’m bored, can I watch something?” says my five year old like it is the most terrible thing that could have happened to her. We have just been out for a kid event and now five minutes later she is already bored. I feel highly tempted to turn on that pony show so I can get half an hour to get some stuff done. But I stand firm and say “No, it is good to be bored – now you can come up with something yourself.” She looks at me perplexed but leaves the kitchen. Sure enough, ten minutes later I hear her singing and talking while she plays with her dolls in the family room. Yet every time she catches a glimpse of me she tries to talk me into entertaining her and I have to neglect all my feelings of guilt and let go of my inner pressure to constantly stimulate her. It helps me to know that letting children be bored and play by themselves, or with other children, is …

Danish Pancakes

It seems that every country has its own version of pancakes – Denmark included. Some would say there is nothing more Danish than pancakes and that Danish pancakes are certainly a way to Danish happiness. Danish pancakes are typically an afternoon treat that often end up becoming dinner as well because the kids will eat so many that there is no room for anymore food that day. They are very similar to French crepes, topped with whatever you like but strawberry/raspberry jam and powdered sugar is the most classic version. I guess the Danes just love their red and whites! I enjoy a summer version with fresh berries and powdered sugar sprinkled on top. Banana slices and nutella works too.   Danish Pancake Recipe Ingredients: 4 eggs 8 deciliter/3 cups whole milk 400 gram/14 ounces all-purpose flour 2 tbsp sugar 1/4 tsp salt 1/4 tsp vanilla extract Butter for frying How you make them: In a medium sized bowl beat together the eggs and flour while adding the milk a little at a time. When the …