I’ve started thinking of my summer weekends as staycations. Hold on, hear me out.
My usual routine, when the weekend rolls in, is to laze around on my couch until guilt kicks in, then scramble to fit in a workout, run errands, and heave my many loads of laundry to the laundromat down the street. All good and worthwhile things to do, of course.
But I find that when I think of Friday evening as the kick-off to a mini two-day vacation, rather than as a weekend that’s always too short, the next fifty-four hours feel more relaxing and almost longer—and I feel like I’ve gotten a real break come Sunday night. (Laundry can wait until a weeknight.)
This way, starting the minute I close my laptop on Friday, I’m making the most of my time off: exploring my neighborhood like a visitor might, checking out a new restaurant one night, dipping into bookstores the next morning, bringing coffee and breakfast to the park on Sunday. I stock the fridge and freezer with little summertime treats (watermelon, berries, ice cream) and when I’m ready for a break I retire to my hotel—ahem, apartment—for an afternoon siesta. It feels like a real vacation without the hassle of booking flights, renting cars, battling the traffic, or—my least favorite—packing.
How do you turn a stay-at-home weekend—or a few days off with nothing planned—into a staycation? In lieu of spending money on hotels and travel, you invest in a few things to make your weekend feel like a vacation—even if you’re going nowhere.
For exploring via bicycle
Pedaling around your neighborhood is a good way to see it in a new light—and catch a bit of a breeze. Kit out your bike (or a rental) with this Rattan Bike Basket to carry fruit from the farmer’s market, a bunch of roadside wildflowers, and other treasures you might find along the way. (It’s also big enough to tote a picnic, for a summer lunch on the grass.)
Swap your shorts and sneakers (or your wet bathing suit) for one of these luxe Linen Robes for instant vacation, put-your-feet-up vibes.
For keeping lemonade at the ready
Fill a Liter Glass Carafe with lemonade or homemade iced tea and keep it in the fridge door for hot-weather refreshments all weekend long.
For DIY ice cream treats
I’m a firm believer in eating ice cream every day during a summer staycation. Bonus points for flagging down the ice cream truck, or getting a scoop after dinner at your neighborhood stand, but this Rectangular Ice Cream Sandwich Maker will ensure you have some nostalgic treats ready in the freezer, too.