A certain global event has affected the lives of every single person on the planet! Yep, we all know what we’re referring to. It has halted many of the things we hold dear. But there’s one thing that hasn’t changed:
“Hold on!” You might say. “Our vacation plans were derailed!” Yes, they probably were. Multiple times, at that. But there’s a nifty little idea that might make you think differently about vacations in the near future…
If the “staycation” sounds like the brainchild of a witty writer, it’s probably because it is, at least in part. But it’s actually a very powerful concept. It will change the way you look at your home. It will take all that flexibility you’ve honed over these difficult months, and put it to excellent use.
As we said, many things have changed, but many have not. Work is still exhausting. The weekends still don’t feel long enough! The family needs to do something, together. And everyone could use an escape once in a while.
With a little imagination and a DIY spirit, a fun, relaxing, and even memorable staycation is within reach! So, get excited, because you’re going on a journey!
Planning A Staycation
You might equate vacations with a carefree abandon of all plans. That’s definitely part of the appeal. But staycations are a little different. The challenge here is breaking out of your everyday routine to make it feel like an actual vacation.
Without a plan, you’ll feel yourself gravitate back towards all those things you want to escape. “I’ll just answer one work email, and that’s it.” Or, “My kitchen could use a deep clean, and the garage needs some work, too.” Before you know it, you’ll be back to your routine, and the staycation won’t even have started!
So, start with a plan, no matter how rudimentary or broad. Give yourself the time you think you’ll need, and then some more. Plan fun activities (more on that below!) and try to stick with them. Plus, by committing your staycation to paper, you’ll find it easier to defend your relaxation time from intrusions.
Bring the Spa to your Staycation
What’s the first word that comes to mind when you think of a spa? Probably “relaxation”. And if relaxation is what you’re after, creating a spa-like experience in your own bathroom will get you there.
But you don’t have to redecorate your whole bathroom. Start small: try fluffing up your towels, or getting some newer, softer towels. You can also set up a little amenity tray for yourself, complete with your favorite soaps and lotions. Or try a new scent you’ve never used before. Smells have the incredible power to take your mind on journeys, and it’s through scents that you can create the vibe you’re looking for. Coconut scents might remind you of tropical islands and beaches. Pine scents–a camping trip. Lavender–a saunter through the fields of Provence.
Splurge on a Staycation “Souvenir”
No vacation is complete without a souvenir. And even if you’re not traveling to a new place, you might want to get yourself a little token of remembrance. Think of it as a reward for setting time aside for your staycation!
Try splurging a little on yourself. Are there some shoes that you absolutely don’t need but can’t get off your mind? Is there a gadget that would make your life a whole lot (or a little) easier? Maybe you just want one of those touristy fridge magnets to remind you of the beauty of your hometown. Whatever seems like a treat to you, go for it!
Plan Cultural staycation Activities
Just like real vacations, your staycation can be eye-opening and informative. In fact, you could even discover a new culture or a new place every night! That’s one advantage a staycation has over your typical vacation.
Pick out a few places or cultures that are interesting to you. Then look for creative ways you can transport yourself there. Go on a virtual museum tour, or take a virtual cooking class. Infuse your morning playlist with some “local” sounds. Learn something new with an informative documentary. Or look for recipes or traditional crafts that you can replicate at home.
A Culinary Staycation
If delicious food is something you miss from past vacations, you have options! There’s no need to miss out on a palette-widening culinary experience. You can either order take-out from one of your local restaurants, or recreate an authentic recipe in your kitchen.
Replicate the carefree enjoyment of a vacation by ordering from your local restaurant. You know what take-out means: no prep, no dishes, and pure delicacy. Plus, you can feel good knowing that you’re supporting local businesses during this difficult time. Be adventurous: try ordering from a new place, or order something new from your favorite restaurant.
You can also discover new recipes in your own kitchen for a fun staycation activity. Gather inspiration from cooking books, blogs, videos, or the Artisan Shop Kitchen section. Try a fancy recipe while you have the luxury of time, or opt for feel-good favorites that are sure to satisfy the whole family. If baking is more your style, try recreating an artisanal loaf or pastry in your kitchen.
Make a Drink (or two)
What would a tropical vacation be without a Mai Tai, or a trip to Florence without a local Chianti? The same can be said about your staycation!
Pick up some classy glassware, a cocktail shaker, or your favorite bottle of wine. Take your bottle out in a wide caddy to the backyard or patio, and enjoy it outdoors like you would at a beach. Or sip inside by the fireplace for home-style après-ski vibes. Get creative and try learning a new cocktail, or if you’re feeling adventurous, create your own!
Deep Sleep on your Staycation
One of the best things about a vacation is sleeping in. Your staycation doesn’t have to be any different! By letting yourself catch up on any sleep you’ve lost, you’ll come out of your staycation feeling refreshed and rejuvenated.
If quality sleep eludes you, there are a few simple changes you can make to get the rest you need. If your environment is noisy, try sleeping with earplugs. If your room is too bright, opt for a sleep mask or try installing some black out curtains. Sometimes white noise helps relax us, and there are many apps for your phone that will generate soothing sounds to help you sink into a deep sleep.
In general, you’ll want to find some sort of bedtime routine that works for you. Once you’ve found it, stick to it for the duration of your staycation. Your routine might include reading a book, meditating, applying a soothing lotion, or taking a bath.
A Staycation your way
The beautiful thing about staycations is that they force us to get creative. They’re not like typical vacations: they’re like a less glamorous, slightly awkward cousin. You might find yourself doing something totally new or totally strange. You might not enjoy some things, or you might fall in love with a new hobby. But because of its challenges, a staycation will help you discover something new about your home and yourself.
And that can be said about life in general in a post-pandemic world. It takes some will, some creativity, and a little imagination to make things work. But when we do overcome those challenges, the reward is that much sweeter.