Summer is quickly coming to an end. Sometimes it feels like we just started summer, while other times it feels like summer has gone on forever! I think most parents with kids are starting to feel that way. The kids are getting restless and are ready to go back to school. If you’re like me, you’ve been busy all summer long and haven’t really had a chance to go on a vacation. Don’t fret! One of our most memorable summer vacations was when we did a Summer Staycation! Here are some tips on how to have the best Summer Staycation ever!

Getting Started

Sit down as a family and make a list of all the fun ideas you have for your summer staycation. Not only will a list allow you to evenly pick and choose things that everyone would be interested in, but it also gives you the opportunity to shop around for the best deal on the activities you are looking forward to doing. For example, if you enjoy bowling, consider checking to see if your bowling alley participates in a “Kids Bowl Free” program. Looking for deals and incentives can really help to save you a lot of money during your staycation.

Enjoy the Outdoors

When was the last time you got outside and had a little fun? It seems, as an adult, any outdoor time is spent cheering our kids on at their sporting events or doing yard work. Take a moment during your summer staycation and plan some outdoor fun! Go to a local park and have a picnic! Take along a couple frisbees, a bucket of water balloons or, if you are doing the picnic in the evening, take a couple glass jars to catch lightening bugs in! Have some old fashion fun!

If eating outside is not your thing, and there is nothing wrong with that, look up some nature trails in your area. If the trails allow it, take your bikes along! If you would much rather walk, play a little Pokemon Go or check out geocaching! Be sure to bring a few little trinkets along with you for the geocaching. The Dollar Store is a great place to get your little trinkets!

Food, Food, Food!

The nice thing about a staycation is that you do not have to eat out all of your meals. That saves you a ton of money! To make this portion of your staycation extra special, have theme nights. If Mexican food is a family favorite, then you absolutely have to have “Taco Tuesday”! Allow each person to pick a favorite cuisine!

Sometimes, when on vacation, eating out and enjoying the various restaurants can be fun! Especially if they have restaurants that you’ve never been to. For your summer staycation, pick one or two restaurants in your town that you have never eaten at and enjoy a meal there. Be sure to check out their website to learn a little bit about the restaurant like when kids eat free, drink specials, etc.

Fun in the Sun

Summer is all about being outside and enjoying the sun! Plan a fun family day at the beach! Pack your sand toys, lunch and lots of sunscreen and challenge each other to a sand castle building contest! You don’t need to be in Florida to enjoy a day at the beach (well, unless you actually live in Florida!). Don’t have any local beaches near you? That’s OK! There are plenty of fun things you can do in the sun that don’t involve the beach! Have a pool in your backyard? How about a sprinkler or a Slip ‘n’ Slide? Host a pool or backyard water works party for your friends and family!

Lights, Camera, ACTION!

Got a drive-in you’ve been dying to try? Then do it! Most drive-in theaters offer a two for one movie deal. Not only is the value good, but you can take your own food! It really is a money-saving night out! Don’t forget to pack chairs, sweatshirts and bug spray. Sit back and enjoy the movies under the stars!

Watching a movie outside with the bugs not your thing? No worries! The summer is always filled with great movie releases! Plan a day filled with popcorn and slushies at your local movie theater! If you can, pick a theater with reclining seats...it is your staycation after all, might as well really relax!

The best part of a summer staycation is that you really can’t go wrong with anything you do! Stay in and do everything at home or go out and explore your town. Whatever you choose to do, you are doing it with with the people you care about most and you are bound to have a good time. Staycations potentially allow you to do more because you don’t have the added expense of hotels and meals out. So plan that end of the summer staycation and enjoy those last few weeks of summer!

What is your Summer Staycation tip?