Lifestyle » Vol. 46

Have your best staycation ever

The option of the staycation originated several years ago when gas prices soared, the economy soured, and household budgets outpaced take-home pay. With the expense of travel and hotels, as well as the inability to truly escape from work, staycations are becoming a great alternative to traditional vacations and still providing a much-needed break from the daily grind.DEANStaycation

Here are 10 ways to experience all of the rest, relaxation and rejuvenation of a vacation without travel hassles or costs.

  1. Fully disconnect from all technology for at least 24 hours. You need it, and your family and friends will benefit by actually spending time with you in conversation, enjoying great food, playing a game together or going for a walk.
  2. Take a virtual tour. There are numerous opportunities to engage in virtual visits in the U.S. and around the world at museums, beaches, exotic locations, zoos and more. The best part: no crowds!
  3. Create a home spa. What do those fancy spas that pamper you for an hour have over the spa you can create in your own home? Light scented candles, play relaxing music and step into a warm bath for a long soak.
  4. Be a local tourist. No matter how long you’ve lived in the Worcester area, there’s a lot you probably haven’t explored. Visit a new store or restaurant, take a walk somewhere you’ve never been or go on a tour of a local factory or brewery. You’ll be surprised to find out what great things are offered that are close to home.
  5. Set up a backyard campground. Why travel hours to a campground when you can pitch a tent in your backyard with family or friends, build a fire or use a grill to cook your dinner and some delicious S’mores and settle in for a night of stargazing and telling campfire stories.
  6. Revisit a hobby. Remember when you collected stamps or baseball cards, knitted scarves or painted? Take some time to rejuvenate a former enjoyable pastime. Doing so may spark renewed interest.
  7. Reconnect with an old friend. Being able to relax and spend time with someone who isn’t a coworker, member of the family or part of your regular circle can provide you with an enjoyable trip down memory lane.
  8. Enjoy a movie marathon. Now is the time to watch all of the movies you’ve wanted to see. Pick a rainy day, make some popcorn and bring Hollywood into your home.
  9. Visit “neverland.” Never flown a kite? Never played tennis? Never kayaked? Never golfed? Now is the time to try something new.
  10. Volunteer. The city offers numerous opportunities to give back to others. Not only will this enrich your life, it will help others at the same time.

Amy Dean lives in Central Massachusetts and is the author of several books, including Growing Older, Growing Better: Daily Meditations for Celebrating Aging. Learn more about her at

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