If you’re lucky, you and your family are going to [insert exotic beach of your choosing] this year for spring break.
If you’re like most of us, formal spring breaks ended with your last year of college, and this year you’ll be at work while kids frolic in the spring sun. (Working mom’s, you’re the real MVP this week.)
However, we’re refusing to let adulthood take away our right to relax.
Here are 14 simple and affordable ways to pretend you’re on spring break this week—all while staying home!
1. Avoid technology.
Obviously, texting, emailing, and calling can’t really disappear—especially if you’re working this week. But, you’d be surprised at how much time we spend on our computers doing non-work things. Endless browsing, Netflix, social media…
And although it’s a great way to relax (we’ll never diss streaming TV), the key to feeling like you’re on vacation is to do things out of your normal schedule. So, instead of going home after work and shopping online, get straight to the pool! Take a walk around the park, catch up on a craft—anything other than the normal screen-gazing will make you feel like you’re getting extra time off.
2. Makeover your home.
If you can’t get to a hotel this week, bring the hotel home. Set out flowers, bake extra treats to set out, light candles, buy a new piece of decor, or redesign according to good feng shui.
Take a moment to make your home a private sanctuary. And don’t hold back! Make it everything you could possibly want in a living space. This way, when you come home, it’ll feel like walking into a luxury vacation home, designed to your specific desires and maximized for your relaxation.
3. Choose your playlist wisely.
Whatever your normal music is, play the opposite. Dream of a French cafe? Make breakfast to the whimsical tunes of Benjamin Biolay. Want evening cocktails on the beach? Play Jamaican reggae. Wish you were in Nordic mountains? Read your book to soothing Icelandic artist Ásgeir.
Switching up your background music can transport you to a new place, so let it!
4. Eat (really really) good food.
Treat yourself! Channel your inner chef, eat out, order in, do it all. And we don’t just mean weekday dinners. When was the last time you had a really delicious breakfast on a Tuesday? A divine lunch date on a Thursday?
Additionally, try something new and exotic. Don’t stick with your usual restaurants and recipes. Try that Ethiopian restaurant down the street, the exciting brunch recipe on your favorite blog. Or—why not?—drive an hour to the delicious Italian place you’ve been meaning to go to. Take the time to make quality culinary choices. You won’t regret it.
This one’s simple. If possible, sleep in. Who are we kidding? It’s the stuff vacation is made of.
6. Read—anything & everything.
Nothing says vacation more than a good book and a beach. You might not be able to get to the ocean but find a pool, a book you’ve been wanting to read for years and settle in. If you’re like us, you also have a stack of magazines you’ve been meaning to get through, so read those too. Need suggestions? Check out ours here!
Reading slows downtime. And slower time = more time = more time to relax and pretend you’re on vacation.
7. Play games.
Families, this one’s for you. Board games, hand games, mind games, drinking games (after the little ones go to bed, obviously). Games are things usually played only when you have extra time on your hands. The key to relaxing is making your time surplus time, so play away.
Spending time with family is one of our favorite aspects of a true vacation. So if you err on the workaholic side, games are a great way to easily connect with family and loved ones!
8. Make spa day every day.
Whether it’s at home or the real deal, a spa session is the ultimate way to unwind. Add the spa feel to your everyday. Dim the lights, light scented candles, apply face masks, take a relaxing bath with salts, and play soothing ambient music. You’ll feel like you’re on vacation within minutes.
9. Channel your inner artist.
We’ve all heard the storyline—young artist goes to Italy for creative inspiration and finds love with charming local. So why not pretend you’re vacationing by accessing your inner artist? Paint outdoors, play the guitar, dance on the beach. Art is meant to make people happy, so whether you’re creative or not, take the pressure off and channel your artsy self. You’ll be tapping into a whole new world!
10. Enjoy the great outdoors.
Nothing screams spring break more than time outside. Take advantage of the longer sunlit hours (thanks to daylight savings), and get outdoors. Plant a garden, hike a mountain, go to the pool. If you’re in the city, stroll in a park—no matter how much concrete there is, you’ll find that outdoor glow.
The sun makes people happy. So once that clock tolls 5, and you’re released from work, start drinking up vitamin D and enjoying the great outdoors. Wherever you are—whether you have a mountain or a beach or a sidewalk handy—spending time outside is an utter delight.
11. Drink like a tourist.
Nothing says vacation quite like a delicious, exciting drink, so it follows that you should fake vacation by drinking like a tourist. In other words, switch it up! Make your own unique cocktails (see our collection here) or tour a local winery/brewery. Sometimes, it’s a simple as finding a new bar to visit.
12. Dinner-party with friends.
Hosting dinner parties with friends on a nice, spring night—preferably outside—is a great way to staycation. Good company, good decor, and good food transform your back porch into a unique oasis where time stalls and contentment lasts.
13. Find new things in old haunts.
Stay-cation means you’re right where you always are. The smaller your town, the more challenging this task will be, but we dare you to find something you haven’t done yet in your local town. (Urbanites, you’re in luck.) Try that one restaurant you’ve never gotten to, attend the local concert venue, or find a new boutique store.
Finding new treasures is one of life’s joys. Surely, there’s something you haven’t done yet in your city, and experiencing something new will take your staycation to a whole new level!
14. Overnight trip.
We promise this is the ultimate way to pretend you’re on vacation—even if the hotel is just 10 minutes from your home. If you’re feeling like splurging, this is the way to go! Take the family, hire a babysitter, or go solo. Find a luxury hotel or camp outdoors. The options are endless, and you’ll wrap up your spring break with a bang!
We’ll be enjoying our faux spring breaks by growing. Gardening is the sunlit activity that produces endless fun and loads of fresh eats—and there’s nothing more spring break than that.