Whether you’re starting a new semester at college or your children are going back to school after a summer break, you always want to make the most out of those last few days away from school. No matter how long your vacation lasts, it never seems enough and by the end of it you always wish you had couple of extra days. The panic of the vacation coming to an end usually rolls in about a week before; that’s when you start stressing out and frantically trying to finish all the plans you had for the summer. But that can leave you with nothing but anxiety and a headache. We know there’s no magic wand that can turn the last 7 days of your summer break into 7 weeks, but here are some helpful tips to make each day full of fun relaxation.
Option 1: Staying In
Going back to school often means spending most of your time away from home, that’s why turning into a home body for a few days seems like a smart idea. If you do so, you can not only enjoy time with the kids, but also finish all the little things around the house you’ve meant to fix for months. Get your DIY on and paint a wall in your living room, move the couch, organize a bookshelf, or finish putting together that scrap book you started three years ago.
If you enjoy cooking, this is the perfect time to make a delicious homemade meal for a romantic night in with your spouse or for the whole family. Open up that dusty cookbook of yours that’s been sitting on top of your bookshelf since time immemorial and create an amazing dinner that will fill your loved one’s stomachs and hearts with joy. While you’re at it, you could get some cooking done in advance and pop some quick and easy to heat-up meals in the freezer. You’ll thank yourself once school starts.
Option 2: Go shopping
If you’re a shopaholic or simply enjoy shopping every now and then, vacation is the perfect time for this guilty pleasure. Take your best friend and go to your favorite mall. You can finally make it a day trip with no rush or pressure. Just take your time and enjoy. By the way, the end of summer is a sale season which makes it another great excuse to buy yourself a little gift, renew your wardrobe, buy home appliances, or new get gear for your hobbies.
Option 3: Pamper yourself
Wasn’t shopping part of pampering yourself? Well, it was and it wasn’t. When we say pampering we MEAN pampering and that includes treating yourself to a massage, taking your time at a nail or hair salon, doing a beauty treatment you’ve always wanted but couldn’t find time for or simply spending the whole day relaxing at the beach.
Or, if you see getting a haircut as a chore why not try some more adventurous things. Go explore a bar you’ve always wanted to try, go fishing, or try a new sport. With that said, just go ahead and do whatever makes you happy, even if it’s just another day in reading a good book. The whole point of pampering is to doing what you enjoy guilt-free!
Option 4: Enjoy time outside
Before you or your kids are surrounded by school walls once again, make sure to enjoy the warm weather to its fullest! Moving any activity you would normally do at home outside is a great way to start. Go out to do your morning exercise instead of staying in, grab a blanket and eat your lunch at a local park, or finish your day with an evening run in the neighborhood.
For those more adventurous, we suggest spending a day at an amusement park, going for a hike in the forest or mountains, or even camping. If you prefer less active leisure, plan a weekend getaway and explore the nearest town. Fresh air and lots of positive emotions will make you forget about everyday problems and help appreciate every second of the last days of your vacation.
Option 5: Don’t mind being practical
This tip has nothing to do with fun but trust me, you will thank yourself for it later. It won’t take much of your effort, but can become a real lifesaver during hectic times at school. It’s simple. Next time you go food shopping, make sure to grab as much of your favorite ready-made food as possible and stock up your freezer. It will come especially in handy on those rainy days when you don’t feel like going out, or need to finish your paper and eating out is not an option.
You can also get a head start on packing school snacks. Pack carrots and celery for a mid-day pick-me-up. Try your hand at homemade granola, or make a meal plan for the next few weeks. You should also take a minute to get everyone’s school bags ready, and maybe even plan out first-day outfits. Nothing is worse than realizing that must-have item to complete your look is in desperate need of a wash! Have faith, being practical will pay off!
Option 6: Spend time with loved ones
Whatever you do, the most important thing is spending some quality time with those you love! Finding time for this simple pleasure might be difficult when your kids are back to school or you’ve started a new semester. So, whether it’s your friends or family you want to be with, get as much time in with them as possible during the last few days of your vacation. Once school starts, you just won’t be sure when you’ll be able to do it all again!
Image #1 by Ian Burt
Image #2 by Izabela Pawlicka
Image #3 by Visit St. Pete/Clearwater