Keeping an eye on your budget during your time off from work can be a challenge, particularly during a sluggish economy. It used to be that families traveled on vacation, spending money on airfare, hotels, and restaurants while away from home, but more and more people are keeping it low-key. You might find that the answer for you is to look into a staycation this year instead of a vacation.
You might actually enjoy the process of renovating your home, preferring to do improvements instead of hiring professionals. Since you’ve got a week off from work, why not take one room and work on changing it into something bold and new. There are so many options to explore, including painting it a vibrant color with accent trim, shining up light fixtures and fans, and moving furniture around.
Set off on a cultural journey by heading to the museum, local art venues, and your town’s library. Get in touch with the history of the area in which you live, and find out the back story of your town or state. For example, New Jersey is called the “Garden State” and Missouri is the “Show me State.” Find out why at a bookstore you love, and not only will you get some culture, you’ll learn something new as well.
Since you’re the one who sets the schedule during your week off, think about having a full day of “you time”. Go to the day spa, get a manicure and pedicure, and don’t forget the massage. This is a great opportunity to totally revamp your look with a dramatic new hairstyle. Get frivolous by adding highlights and maybe even getting a henna tattoo.
Each night of the week of your vacation can have a theme, such as “picture day.” This could be a day for you to see a film at the theater, then rent a movie for later on at home. Get out your camera and take a picture of the sunset, nature, or some other beautiful scene to complete this themed day. Another theme could be “animal day,” and, on that day, you can take your family to the zoo, then watch “Animal Planet” at home later on. “Sports day” could involve going to a local sports game, and then renting “Rocky” later on that night.
Get outdoors and get active, weather permitting. Hiking is a great way to soak in beautiful scenery while also getting a nice workout. Camping out with friends under the stars can make you feel connected to nature for an old-fashioned and low-tech adventure. See if your group can do it without any of the usual luxuries that have become necessities, such as cell phones, PDAs, and portable games. Try to connect with each other and the wild at the same time.
So don’t let a lack of funds stop you from having a great time during your vacation. There’s always a way to find interesting and exciting places in your town without spending a fortune. With a little bit of ingenuity and a willing spirit, you can find fun wherever you go, and enjoy a staycation instead.