The Summer Staycation

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Over the past few days, my husband and I have been talking about our summer plans. Summer is our favorite time of year to travel (yours too probably!) Right now, we have a couple of out-of-town trips on the calendar, but with a rambunctious 2½ year old, we are planning a few staycations as well. This is new for us, so I did some research on just how to make the most of a staycation. Here’s what I found:

Set a Schedule

Just as you would carve out time for a traditional vacation, you should also schedule your staycation. Start with a beginning and ending date. Then, make a list of activities you’d like to do like a balloon ride, the zoo, a bicycle tour or restaurants you’ve always wanted to try. Then, schedule them on your staycation days. Doing this, will help you stay on track, plus keep you from scheduling too much in one day.

Balloon Pic

Set a Budget

Budgeting your staycation will ultimately make your “time away” more relaxing. When you set aside money for hotel, food and activities (and don’t overspend!) you can truly enjoy your time off. The best time to start saving is now! It’s amazing how much you can sock away when you forego that daily latte. Check out Travel Muse’s Yaycations calculator. You’ll see, it adds up fast!

Unplug, Unplug, Unplug!

Even though you may be relaxing in your home or a hotel down the street, treat your staycation as though you are halfway around the world. Unplug your phone and your computer, or at least set a time limit for all of your electronics. There are a number of studies that show unplugging is good for your sanity. According to an article in The Week, technology may be the next “substance addiction.” So giving yourself a break will only do your mind and body good.

No Chores or Errands

I can do this with no problem, but for many moms, this will be one of the hardest parts of your staycation. You may have the urge to pick up toys or do the dishes. Well, make the vow now that you will not lift a finger. If you aren’t careful, you will fritter your staycation time cleaning out closets, mopping the floors or running to the grocery store instead of spending quality time with your family. If you really think you are going to have a problem with these rules, clean your house and run your errands before your staycation begins.

Document the Fun

Don’t forget to take photos and videos. You could also keep a travel journal of the things you see and any new people you meet. Or, send a “wish you were here” postcard to friends and family. My sister told me about Touchnote, an app that costs $1.49. I think it was a hint. Anyway, it looks cool and I plan on using it and asking my family to save what we send them so that one day my little boy can look back on his fantastic summer staycation.

 Do you have any summer staycation plans in the works? 

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The last few years have brought big changes for Emily. After spending years in high-stress, deadline-driven TV jobs in East Coast metros, family circumstances brought her and her husband Joel to the Arizona desert. Now this former news junkie is a stay-at-home mom to Miles, a fast-talking toddler with energy to spare. She spends her days teaching him about faith, letters, numbers and manners. Whenever he’s asleep she boots up the laptop to write for North Phoenix Moms Blog and other freelance gigs. Whatever spare time she has left is spent on a hike with her family or a rare date night with Joel, at the gym, coffee and dinner with friends, or in her craft room creating simple, beautiful jewelry for her online boutique, Hazel & May, and giving too many treats to her pups, Pepper and Gizmo.

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