This time of year, it seems everyone is packing up the family and hitting the road. If a vacation isn’t in the cards for you, don’t let your budget (or lack thereof) hamper your sense of adventure! There are plenty of fun things to do without leaving town. A little creativity and setting some ground rules will help inspire a memorable staycation right in your own backyard!
Let Your Budget Be Your Guide
Set a reasonable budget and see how far it takes you. For example, if you’ve got $100 to spend, you may be able to secure a local hotel room via Priceline as well as go out to eat on a Groupon voucher. Deal hunting is the name of the game! Having older kids help with the planning is a great exercise in budgeting, and a wonderful way to help teach them about the high cost of living.
The “Unplugged” Weekend
Vacation is truly a state of mind and sometimes all it takes to create that kind of atmosphere is saying “no” to the demands of email, phones and computers. Have your kids “unplug” by collecting their iPods, video games, and other gadgets. While this may be met with resistance, you’ll find that enjoying activities like board games, outdoor activities, books and old-fashioned fun will help you grow closer as a family.
Bring the Location to You
If you could go anywhere in the world, where would it be? The beaches of Mexico? The mountains of Austria? Don’t let geography get in your way! Pick your own location and do what you can to re-create it at home. Cook foods from that country, download music that’s popular there, and read to the kiddos about its history and culture. While it’s not quite the same as being there, it will cost much less!
The New Experiences Weekend
No matter how small your town is, chances are there are places and things you have not yet explored. Set some ground rules for this experience. Choose a restaurant you’ve never been to, visit a museum that’s new to you or take a walk in an unfamiliar neighborhood. At home, rent a movie in a new genre and try out a recipe for a food you’ve never eaten before. The point is to branch out and step outside of your comfort zone.
For more staycation ideas, visit the Mommysavers Discussion Forum.
Kimberly Danger is a sponsored Playdate Place contributor.