Whether parents are ready or not, spring break is right around the corner for many families. Of course, that means the kids are out of school and itching to get their minds off all things school related.
But consider that pretty much every TV show and movie will remind you that spring break is the most amazing time to sneak away to sandy beaches, sunny skies and intense carelessness. But realistically speaking, that isn’t always the reality for many families. I mean, with work, extracurricular commitments, house chores or that extra tight budget, formal spring break plans don’t usually make the cut. Not to mention kids usually aren’t much for the nightlife.
But the kids are still looking to you for some entertainment. Here’s the great news: we compiled a list of seven ways you can experience the excitement of a spring break without spending a fortune or having to leave the state. Heck, some of these ideas are SO cool that we think your kids may love them even more (and remember them much longer!) than any pricey vacay.
Completely Ditch Your Daily Routine
Staying home and bringing spring break to you is all about making the usually “ordinary routines” seem extraordinary. The first step is to ditch your everyday routine so that the week seems special and more like a vacation, even if that vacation comes without leaving the house.
Okay, how? Stay up late, turn off your alarm clock, take a new route to the grocery store, invite friends over, play a game, do a movie night… do anything you can to make this week feel different. Don’t even know what your routine is? Literally just write down what you do during a day and those things become off limits. Mixing things up is a crucial first step step to vacay at home!
Be A Tourist In Your Own City
So many of us live near beautiful cities, but we rarely make time to visit the places that attract so many tourists. We hear people in Chicago all the time who say they haven’t seen some of the most basic things! Get on Groupon, get on Meetup.com and check your Facebook events; Spring break is a great excuse to check out these tourist attractions and learn a little bit more about the gorgeous city you call home!
And hey, don’t live in a city? There isn’t a person among us who has visited literally every single place in their hometown. No excuses – get out there!
Move Your Lunch Outside (or at least your morning coffee)
When you take a vacation, one of the best parts is enjoying a super slow-paced morning. Usually, vacation rentals come with a cozy spot outside to enjoy a meal (or at least your morning coffee) outside, so you can really enjoy the gorgeous weather.
Okay, so your outdoor spot may not have the same views as that gorgeous vacation home on the beach. But you can still slow down the pace and enjoy dining al fresco! Slow the morning down and set up chairs outside to drink your morning coffee and enjoy breakfast. Take it from us: this small change will definitely feel different and a lot more spring-like.
Skip Out On All Your Chores (And Seriously Don’t Feel Guilty About It)
Spring break means you’re on vacation. So what if you’re at home? Chores can wait! We want you (and your kids) to take a break from the hustle and bustle of everyday life and allow the chores to wait their turns until next week. This mini “break” will help you relax… as long as you don’t feel guilty about taking a little “you” time. If anyone deserves it, you do!
Backyard Camping Is Super Fun!
Yes, this means ditching that cozy bed because… if you can’t get away to camp in a National Park this spring break, why not bring the camping experience to you? This is a quite an experience that kids love, and they may even remember it more fondly than an “actual” camping trip. Plus, we love testing this experience out (way more) close to home so the kids (and parents!) are prepared when they eventually do find themselves far away from the comforts of home sweet home.
Finally Splurge on Something You Love
Staying home for spring break most likely saved you and your family quite a bit of money, so why not take a small fraction of that money you saved and treat yourself? New dining room table? A new TV? Heck, even a new book! Whatever you decide, we want to give you permission to splurge on something you typically wouldn’t, just because.
Let the Kids Plan the Day!
Easy for us to say since we’re not parents, but we think this would be the ultimate day for kids. From meals to excursions to bedtime… what an epic way to make memories and prove that your kids have the best parents on the planet! Okay, you may want to make a few guidelines, but after that, have fun!
Plus, planning the “perfect day” may take the kids a few days, which is a creative and positive way for them to problem solve and keep themselves busy and engaged during their week off from school.
So what do you say? Are you ready for spring break? Trust us, you don’t have to go to Cancun to get a ton out of your free time.