We are experiencing a very abnormal cold front in Dallas this week. Today the high was maybe 89? It was chilly on my way in to work in the A.M., I lunched on a patio and I drove home with my sunroof open.
Well, as much bliss as you can have between emails, phone calls, pagers going off (I work in health care and yes, we still use pagers) and screaming kids. A quick glance at my phone lock screen shows a photo of my husband and son running into the ocean this past Spring Break and immediately calms me down.
In March, we were able to vacation in beautiful Seaside, FL
but the stars did not align to repeat that trip this summer. While there, I jotted down a few ideas of how I could have the ‘vacation feel’ at home. If you are only able to stay-cation this summer, I hope these tips will help you.
1. Get unplugged. When you are on vacation, you are focused on enjoying the weather, the sights, your family, food, fun and more. Being tied to technology takes a back seat to pure enjoyment on vacation, so why can’t it be like that at home on the weekends and after five? I have actually been trying this for some time. During the weekends I turn off the access to my work email, if there is an emergency, the important people know how to reach me via the phone. Replace your technology time with evening bike rides or swims, one-on-one dates with your children – or better yet, your spouse. Enjoy your time away from the office and live in the moment.
2. Clear your clutter. The home we stayed at in Seaside was a picturesque beach house. In fact, I was sure I had recognized the laundry room from a magazine. Turns out, I had pinned a photo of it several months ago. Besides the beautiful furnishings and finishes, what I really noticed in the house was the lack of clutter. Sure, no one lives there most of the year, but when the home owners or their guests are there, everything has a place. This past week I have been focusing on clearing out our clutter. It’s one thing to have stuffed everything in a closet so no one can see but it’s another to actually have a place for all your belongings. Sell or donate duplicates, shred once important but no longer needed documents and organize the rest.
3. Prioritize your commitments. The summer is a great time to re-focus on what’s really important to you and your family. With school out, it seems the family commitments begin to slow down. Re-evaluate how much of yourself you can give to your schools, church, women’s auxiliary, etc. If you are a perfectionist or an over-achiever, this can be hard. For the last two years, I have held very heavy volunteer positions with the Junior League of Dallas, I was beginning to get burned out and it made volunteering no longer fun. This year, I have scaled back and am already loving my new placement. I know my focus in the coming school year needs to be on my job and my son. Remember, no one is taking this time away from you. You are giving it to them. Choose wisely.
4. Use white linens. Back at that beautiful Seaside house I noticed all of the linens were white. At my favorite hotels, the linens are white. There’s something about the freshness of white linens. Not only are they super easy to clean (throw in some bleach and they are like new) but the crispness of the white makes any room look sharp and put together. We’re about to begin a bathroom remodel and I’m already planning on clean, white towels and floor mats.
These simple ideas are just a few ways to help quiet your chaos and help you enjoy your summer. What are your favorite ways to enjoy summer vacation at home?