Planning a Staycation

by heather

So, I’m going on a Staycation tomorrow. That’s right; we’re taking time off to…stay at home.

Why?

Well, there are several reasons.

First, staying at home is much, MUCH more affordable than going away somewhere. You save on travel expenses, lodging, eating out, and those other costs that invariably pop up out of nowhere.

Second, staying at home is also really relaxing. You’re not in a rush to see and do everything. There’s no hassle. You can sleep in, play games, lounge on the porch and really chill.

Another great benefit is that when you stay at home, you’re supporting your local economy.

And the best part? Staycations mean less impact on the environment. When you skip the plane trip, and all the driving around in your “new city”, you’re saving resources.

The Downside…

The downside of staycations is that they can be, well, boring. After all, home is where you know best. It’s tempting to do chores, or put-off projects to “catch up”.

But how fun is that? Not very.

So while researching things to do (and not to do) on my own staycation I thought I’d write a post just in case you’re thinking of taking one yourself.

First, though, some rules…

1. No Chores

Do you do chores while you’re on vacation?

No way.

So, don’t do them on your staycation. Resist the urge to clean out the garage and scrub the floors “while you have time”. Do that and you know what’ll happen? You’ll finish up your vacation feeling just as tired and worn out as when you started it.

The point of a vacation is to relax.

So, try to get your chores and errands done before your first “staycation” day. Clean the house, hit the grocery store, go to the bank…get it all done so you can relax while you’re “gone”.

2. No Internet

Since I work at home, I put this rule in here for myself. There will be no Internet while I’m gone. Because you know what will happen? I’ll get emails from clients, or something will come up, and before I know what’s happened I’ll be right here at my desk. Working.

So, it’s a digital vacation for me!

But this goes for you too. Technology can be stressful, and it’s bliss to unplug for awhile. So turn off your iPhone and hide your Blackberry. It’s really liberating.

3. Create a Plan

If you don’t map out what you’re going to do on your staycation, then you’re going to end up stuck in your same old routine. So create a plan just as you would if you were going away. Research things to see and do while you’re off.

Things to Do On Your Staycation

Now comes the fun part! And boy, did I find a lot of good ideas for families, as well as “adult only” events…

1. Go to a local museum

2. Go on a picnic

3. Bake something you never have time to bake

4. Take your kids to the local pool or water park

5. Have a “Track and Field Day” in your backyard, with potato sack races and other fun challenges

6. Go see a Minor League Baseball Team

7. Have a campfire

8. Visit your local Nature Center

9. Go bowling

10. See a play at your local Community Theater

11. Go on a wine tour of your area

12. Go out dancing

13. Go to a concert

14. Take a historic home tour

15. Visit your closest state or national park to go hiking

16. Eat lots of dessert

17. Have a game night

18. Visit the zoo

19. Wander through the woods

20. Wade in a creek

21. Set up a treasure hunt

22. Visit a local “You Pick” farm and pick your area’s in-season fruits

23.  Try canning!

24. Eat at a new restaurant

25. Visit another town you’ve never been to

26. Go relax at your local lake or beach

27. Go to the movies

28. Go browse the bookstore and find a luscious book to read during your time off (I just finished reading Little Heathens: Hard Times and High Spirits on an Iowa Farm During the Great Depression and it was wonderful).

29. Tick something off your Life List…you know, something you’ve always wanted to try but haven’t “found the time”

30. Go roller-skating

31. Pretend like it’s 100 years ago: make an old-time recipe and eat it by kerosene lamp. Follow up with a bonfire.

32. Build a tree house with your kids

33. Play catch-the-flag with a big group of neighborhood kids. At night.

34. Go eat at a mom and pop diner; make sure you get the peach cobbler.

35. Put up a tree swing

You see how this could just go on and on. With a sense of fun and a little imagination, your staycation can be an incredibly relaxing and rewarding experience.

What We’re Doing…

So, what are we doing to be doing on our little vacation?

Lots of relaxing things.

1. Go to the local playground to swing and seesaw (one of my favorite things to do!)

2. Go on a picnic

3. Go to see the Lansing Lugnuts play (our local Minor League team)

4. Read in the hammock on the front porch

5. Sleep in

6. Have a campfire in the backyard to make S’Mores

7. Go dancing

And really, that’s about it. I’ll be heading off to see family on Monday, so I’ll see you all again next Wednesday!

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