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Winter Staycation Ideas and Tips

Updated on October 9, 2011

Let's be honest. It's 7 degrees here in my neck of the woods today. There is nothing I would like more then to fly south for our vacation this winter. Far, far south. Aruba, Costa Rica south. The closer to the equator, the better.

That's not happening. Not this year. Traveling with three kids is not only difficult, it's expensive. Considering the economic uncertainty, it seems unwise to spend such a large sum of money - even if we had it to spare - on a luxurious tropical vacation.

If you're in the same boat, there are options. Plan a staycation this year. There is plenty of family fun to be had right in your own home town. You just need a plan. A well thought out plan. I would never suggest a week at home with the kids without a solid plan for survival!

Your staycation can be more than survival. It can be genuine memory making fun!

Plan a winter staycation this year!
Plan a winter staycation this year!

CNN Report About Staycations

How To Plan A Winter Staycation

Start planning early. What are your goals for your Staycation? Do you want to have relaxing family time? Fun and adventure? Do you want to learn something new or try out a new family hobby? Would you like to work on a family project that has been put on hold for a while?

Quality time is a priority for us. Having fun as a family brings us closer together. We do this at home all the time - why not just kick it up a notch?

Pick A Theme For Your Staycation


You can pick a theme for each day or for the entire week. Rent movies and visit the library for related books. Go all out with your theme! Here are some ideas to get you started.

  • Pioneer Adventure: Cook, play and dress like a pioneer. Build a fire, light candles and if you are really brave, turn off the electricity for a while and see what it would be like to live without our modern conveniences. Read Laura Ingalls Wilder's books by candlelight. Bake bread the old-fashioned way.
  • International Adventure: pick a country that you always wanted to visit and learn about it. Watch tourist guide movies about it to see the sights or go online to google earth and get a close up look at the cities you want to explore.
  • Create a Hometel: Turn your home into a hotel for a couple of days! Just relax and order takeout as much as possible!
  • Hometown Tour: Become a tourist in your own town or nearby city. Take pictures, buy souvenirs and indulge in your favorite treats just like you would if you were away.
  • Tropical Escape: Create a tropical paradise in your living room complete with food and little umbrella's in your drinks.

Remember, the point is to relax and have fun with your family. don't get too stressed out by the details. Involve your kids in the planning.They will be thrilled to share their ideas!


Create a Wildlife Staycation

If your budget allows, consider buying a few special things for your staycation, such as new sporting equipment that you can all enjoy together, new board games, or extra craft supplies.

If you can fit it in to your busy staycation plan, schedule some time for a treat for yourself! How about a trip to the spa or a romantic dinner out with your spouse? We all know that no one needs a break from the daily grind like mom and dad! 


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