Tuesday, May 31, 2016

All the Tips You Need for Your Frugal Staycation 2016

We live in a great city. I hear from people who live nearby that it is a great vacation destination, and I believe it! Last year, we had an extraordinary staycation that I planned for the first Full Week of Summer. It was a celebration of Molly finishing First Grade, and it was an event! It certainly was not easy, and it took a lot of planning and a bit of elbow grease, but it was worth it. This year, I wanted to do it again, and we had two things to celebrate: Molly finishing Second Grade, and Frances finishing Pre-K.

In addition to keeping them busy and wanting to celebrate, one of my goals was to get the kids outdoors. We all want to get our kids outdoors, but how? I think the best plan is to have a plan ... right?! Right!!!! ;-) To have a wonderfully perfect Staycation, we need to post the plan somewhere, and talk it up with the kids each morning and night.

Memorial Day picnic 2016

Here's what we decided on for Monday Thru Friday. And if you have kids, take a look at what we did.

M. Riding Scooters across the bridge + a Picnic in the park
T.  Going to a Playground+ Going "Out" for Fro-Yo
W.  Fun at the Coolidge Park Splash Pad + Bring-your-own-snack
Th. Visiting the Nature Center + Going "Out" for Nachos as a Snack
F.  Playing in a Creek at a Park + Chik-fil-A

This year, we wanted to save more money just in general. I think if we made it *too* much fun it would defeat one of our purposes, the living-frugally aspect.  We omitted the Creative Discovery Museum this time, as our membership has run out, and we replaced it with a playground. Instead of eating out everyday as many do on vacation, we are either getting snacks and then eating a bigger lunch at home, or having a picnic. Also, while the purpose of the Staycation is to avoid going to the places we frequent in our "usual routine," the fact that going to a nearby playground lined up with our last day- when we would be going to an exciting restaurant (for the kids!), Chik-fil-a, made it still feel special. I'm hoping to replace paying for a museum with another fun excursion sometime in the near future. ;-)

Interested in planning your own Frugal Staycation? Here are some special tips to get you through your special Staycation week! So, without further ado:

5 Tips ... For Your Frugal Staycation 2016

1. Pack a bag the night before each special day, and remember: all you need for tomorrow is what you need for tomorrow. You're not packing for an extended stay somewhere. You don't have to think through every day a week ahead of time! Amirite?! ;)

Don't forget:

~Snacks~ oreo cookies, wheat-thins, puffed corn snacks (something with sugar/carbs, rite?!)
~Hot tea in a thermos for you, Mama
~Water bottles
~Something with protein for you and the kids (yogurt, freeze-dried yogurt, cheezits, puffed cheese snacks) to keep mood and blood sugar crashes at bay
~Something healthy and good for digestion: carrots, raw broccoli, cherry tomatoes or bite-size pieces of your favorite chopped vegetable
~Water bottles and (there I said it) sandwich stuff if you go for picnics and you don't have allergies to sandwiches ;)
~Diapers, wipes, and Pull-Ups
~Swim diapers
~Extra change of clothes/shoes (bring multi-purpose t-shirt and shorts that will fit more than one child; the event that all of your kids need to change is very minuscule in comparison to the event that one person messes up their clothing)
~ Cash & Change if needed for parking
~Kindle or a book for those stolen moments of freedom, Mama. ;-)

2. Tip #2 Clean out the car before your staycation.

Even though it isn't a real vacation, you'll still be spending  a little bit of time in your car going from here to there. Empty it of clutter and put a trash bag somewhere to collect your rancid apple cores.

3. When it comes to having fun, if you're going to take the time, take the time! ;-)

If you want to take pictures to remember your staycation, charge your iPhone and pack any cords you might need for the day. You might want to lay out your kids' clothes and hair accessories the night before.  Get your purse organized and empty it of trash and receipts. Be prepared for accidents and things going wrong, people getting messy, apples rolling under seats or getting stepped on (because sometimes, they do!!!)

4. Be frugal, get wet, and have some fun!

In honor of frugal living, get out the necessary cash you need for the week in advance of the week itself. Make sure to go places where the kids can kick back, relax, and wade in a creek ~ or splash one another! It's hot- don't try to go to the playground in the middle of the day, or it will sap you of energy. Go early, make memories, and take lots of pictures! You'll enjoy yourself more... and, well, we know you want to! ;-)

Pictures from last year's Staycation (A stroll down memory lane! ;)
Picnic in the park!

Splash pad!

Creek Time!

Chik-fil-a, Staycation 2015

5. Just like last year, finish it off with a Big Bang! 

The purpose of your Staycation is to make memories in celebration of finishing school.  Ergo, make it truly a blast. Don't just go for lunch. On your last day, only, make it a big hurrah and take the time go into the restaurant, play at the playground there, and order some ice-cream after everyone finishes lunch! I suppose you could also wait and do a fancy dinner out somewhere as an entire family! You deserve it, and with the frugal choices you have made to make this happen, you can afford to do something really special with your kids! ;-)

For fun, if you do end up having a (special, planned) Staycation, I want to here about it. You don't have to start a blog! If you do blog, link to your post about your own staycation in the comments section, or (if you don't) tell me about your hashtags on instagram or twitter in the comments, as well. I suppose you could also hashtag it on Facebook! ha

Find us @tacywb under this hashtag:


(and feel free to play along and use this one yourself, just make sure to tell me what your hashtag is in the comments !) ;-)

Happy Staycationing everyone! And if you're in the mood, my new e-book Beautiful Souls: Holiness in the Home is still on sale on Amazon for only 1.99! Go grab yourself a copy and don't wait to snag it! ;)
Linking up with Tuesday Talk


Ginny said...

Fun! I love the idea about packing a bag. That wouldn't have occurred to me otherwise.

Tacy said...

Right?! Isn't it so much easier And more fun when we think ahead the night before? ;)