We typically take advantage of every single school vacation for travel, including the week between Christmas and New Year’s. Since it’s usually so expensive to fly during that time, we always drive to a nearby location, like Lake George or Portland, Maine. However, one of the cons to that plan is that weather is always a potential factor. While I’m willing to brave cold temperatures during one of these short family vacations, I’m not willing to brave frigid temperatures. So, when our post-Christmas forecast featured temps with highs in the low teens, we decided to cancel our plans. Instead, we chose to stay home, and do a staycation. I enjoy staycations, but it’s easy to let them get away from you. About ten seconds after making the decision, my daughter had already made plans to go out with friends. Our solution, making a staycation bucket list, is a great way to make sure that you accomplish everything you want to do.
Making a Staycation Bucket List
Once we decided to stay home, we sat down and looked at the number of days that we had. We also looked at the weather forecast. Because my daughter had wanted to spend some time with friends, we blocked off one day that we would all go off on our own and do separate things.
Then, we started adding to the list. There were several movies that were new in theaters, so we wanted to see at least one. All of us had received gift cards for Christmas, and we definitely wanted to use them. I also wanted to do a small compromise from our usual vacation, and do a day trip to Maine. That trip could be combined with the outlet shopping that we wanted to do for new sneakers and pajamas for the kids. Once we had those basics, we added a few things, like a nice lunch/dinner out (we ended up going to the Chocolate Bar at the Langham Hotel in Boston), and a family game night with some of the games that they got for Christmas.
Sticking to the plan is important, especially when you’ve got older kids who tend to go in different directions during days off from school. I didn’t want to trap them at home, but I did want to make sure we spent some quality time together. That’s why having one completely free day was important. It’s also important that you try to avoid getting caught up in home projects. If you do have one or two to do, make sure you plan for them so you don’t end up missing some of your plan.
So, did we accomplish everything on staycation bucket list? No – we never ended up going to the movies. That was because of lack of planning though – every time we thought about going, the theater was sold out. That was something we needed to reserve well in advance. Otherwise, we accomplished everything, and felt that we had a nice, long, rewarding break.
Have you ever put together a staycation bucket list? How did it work out for you?
Get Our 7 Travel Tips
Subscribe to get 7 essential family travel tips and our weekly newsletter filled with tips, tricks, and info for family travelers.