Friday, September 28, 2018

Lagom And The Perils Of Feeling Smug


Lagom (pronounced [²lɑːɡɔm]) is a Swedish word meaning "just the right amount". The Lexin Swedish-English dictionary defines lagom as "enough, sufficient, adequate, just right". Lagom is also widely translated as "in moderation", "in balance", "perfect-simple", and "suitable" (in matter of amounts).


After living alone for three and half years, all the while working hard to create a new life for myself after the loss of my husband, I looked around my home and felt a great sense of satisfaction, maybe a bit smug even. 

Many things still need to be done, but I smiled to myself and congratulated myself on what I had accomplished. So happy there was no need to spend any more money. So happy that everything was just Lagom, just right, just enough. 

Then my vacuum cleaner broke down completely. I knew it was all wrong for the fur my dogs shed (Samson's white fur balls mixed with Faith's black) and the sand Samson drags in on his furry paw pads. It took me a month to decide what to buy. I knew it had to have power, but still be light. I finally settled on this pretty thing: 

It arrived just in time. My smoke alarm started yelling "FIRE, FIRE" scaring the dogs and making me crazy. I bought one of those expensive, 10-year battery deals, just to avoid scaring the dogs. When I called the manufacturer, the first thing the guy asked was, "when did you last vacuum it?" Hmmm, never and I've had it for over a year. It helped.

Then the Land's End catalog arrived, with this inside:

Suddenly Lagom didn't seem quite enough. 

Last winter, I noticed that both Christina and Joyce had very nice well-fitting down vests. Hmm, Errol and I bought twin vests, not down, at Fedco (remember them?) in 1989 before we went to Washington state on vacation. I still wear them, almost 30 years later, and it really doesn't matter here. But still, Land's End has good clothes and 40% off would make it very reasonable. So I bought the vest and the top below in the blue colors. 

As I'm also downsizing my wardrobe, giving a lot to thrift stores in town, I've decided to just keep to mostly blues and browns. Both colors look good on me and since I only wear jeans, it will all work. 

Once again, I sat back and congratulated myself on things being just right. Lagom, a Swedish lifestyle concept as it was explained just below the the Wikipedia translation. Americans seem to be interested in the lifestyles of the Nordic nations. Last it was Hygge from Denmark, now Lagom from Sweden. Maybe next we'll get into Saunas from Finland.

So a few days went by then my computer stopped working. This is why you haven't heard from me for a while. Greg, the computer guy in town, came. After some checking he determined the computer was running at 100%, which may sound good, but is very bad. 

Norton security was the culprit. It had a mass of tests it wanted to run, but was unable to, they were all stacked up like a massive traffic jam. Since my computer was old and there were other issues, I decided to pick Greg's brain while we were waiting for the traffic jam to clear up. He recommended getting a refurbished computer. So with his help, I found one on Amazon for so much less than a new one would have cost. Plus he told me what I needed in terms of bytes and all those mysterious things.

It arrived Monday and Greg came back today to set it up for me. It fits on my desk and I think I will be really happy with it. 

Now, maybe, I will have just the right amount of everything. I know I have the Lagom gene -- having just enough is very appealing to me.


  1. Your header photo, beautiful. and your word " Lagom" is so right for us down here. Our new home does not need to be fancy or too big, just enough will be OK, and I am hoping to view one tomorrow. I, for the first time since we sold ,am feeling relieved, positive, and happy. Your new vest and top, gorgeous colours, I wear navy and dark blue so much. And,like you, we have given away so much to friends and our local Op Shop, and have been happy to do it. Your vest will be wonderful as the colder days begin up North. Hugs.XXX and, there is the Blue cleaner, colours to match your vest and top!!

  2. Hi Inger - what a lovely perfected 'lagom' post ... love the photos and the 'gossip' about things needed to be sorted out ... I've been having car problems - nothing I haven't been able to sort ... but not the kind of thing I expect to happen! Also thank you for reminding me about Lakeland. I can't quite decide what I need here - life is not normal ... so that doesn't help. Still - it's great you're feeling easier with life ... clearing out as you go - and decluttering ... that vacuum is a brilliant colour and I bet works wonders - oh yes cleaning the smoke alarm for dust ... the cars need that too. Life .... still we potter on - great to see the post - cheers Hilary

  3. Good luck with your new computer!!

  4. What would we do without our computer techs? Our tech said that his business just hated Norton. It was always giving their customers a hard time. The vest and top are such a pretty shade of blue! I bet you look so cute in them. A very clever post, linking these things together with this word. I had never herd of it, so I learned something new!

  5. Wonderful post! I love the idea of "just enough". Seems to me we are a culture of bigger is better (homes, cars, etc), we can never have enough, and flaunt your wealth (if you have it). Just enough seems like a much more enlightened approach!! May be it appeals to my Swedish ancestry on my father's side!

  6. I like the word Lagom, a new one for me, and I love the blue tones in your new clothes. I am a widow too and it is a whole new way of living, making each decision on our own, instead of as a partner. I continue to de-clutter, it seems a big task.

  7. You are doing a good job of getting Lagom. Just what you need!

  8. I love that concept. That’s how I try to live too

  9. ah! me as well. my best friend the last year in high school was Margareta … our Swedish exchange student.
    I was into Thoreau at the time and she and I used to have many talks of Lagom and Thoreau and Emerson! it was great. and I think it is what formed my whole approach to life at an early age. so glad your tech problem is resolved!

  10. It's nice seeing a post from you and I'm glad things are well with you and that you are feeling that you have Lagom in your house now... That's what I'm trying to do with mine. I've been decluttering and it's taking a while to get rid of years of accumulation so I'm keeping at it. I'm still not posting as I've been busy with preserving the harvest.

    Hugs, Julia

  11. I like that word. It is what we all hope for. Did not know you had to vacuum smoke detectors. Maybe that is why mine goes off if I make toast.
    Good luck with your new computer. Learning the new system can be stressful.

  12. That is a good word. : )
    I like Lands End. They have quality clothes. Expensive but good. Good to take advantage of the sales.

  13. What a wonderful post. Thank you.
    It seems you also have just enough new-ness in your world . . (for a while . . hm???)
    love & love,


Thanks for leaving a comment.. ~~ Inger


Related Posts with Thumbnails