In Praise of a Winter Staycation

It was the first week of January, and I took stock of my family tribe. We all sat in the living room, and it was clear that after a month of celebrating Christmas, we were exhausted. We had a blast traveling, visiting family and at holiday parties with friends, but we had reached our energy limit. After the kids went to bed, I told my hubby, “We don’t have any plans so far this weekend. I think we should plan to do nothing and get some rest. We need it before we go back to a full week of work and school next week.” He looked very happy at this prospect.

The next day was Friday and after school, I told our boys, “Tonight we’re going to order pizza and watch a movie. And tomorrow we should all stay in our pajamas until noon. You can play with your toys or build or read, but I’m not going to make any plans or go anywhere at all until tomorrow afternoon.” At this formal announcement, my husband’s eyes twinkled. My boys stared at me with joyful disbelief. I explained to the boys that we were having a mini staycation that involved doing nothing but our favorite things at home. 

I know this can happen any lazy weekend, but with our kids the ages they are, it rarely does. And if it ever does, it’s usually accidental and not necessarily relaxing. Every day of the week, including the weekends, the calendar fills up. Our family enjoys and looks forward to lots of these fun activities, but after Christmas, we just have to stop. We have to intentionally, completely stop as a group and recharge. 

And this became a true New Year’s gift to our family. In the morning, I baked cinnamon rolls, then we all read the books were got for Christmas. I looked around the living room again. This time our family looked rested, content, and settled. Of course our five year old enjoyed breaking the mood occasionally by doing gymnastic feats across the floor, but that’s half the fun.

This reminded me that although we LOVE all the Christmas traditions and celebrations in December, we have to have some dedicated time to ourselves in January. My personal goal became to finish the 400 page murder mystery I got for Christmas. These times with my boys and family are just as precious as the celebration times, and a mini winter staycation may become a new tradition! 

Stephanie grew up with her family in Kirkwood, Missouri. She earned a degree in Elementary and Early Childhood Education from Furman University in Greenville, South Carolina, and then a Montessori degree in Atlanta, Georgia.  She also lived in Oklahoma for several years, and now calls Baton Rouge home. She taught PreK and Elementary school part time, full time, and had some stay-at home mom time when her babies were little. She teaches PreK four at Episcopal School of Baton Rouge, and she loves being a teacher mom. In her free time, she enjoys going to Barre class, cooking, traveling, singing, girls' nights, trips to the beach, and spending time with friends and family. She and her husband have two adventurous, adorable boys, ages seven and thirteen, who keep life exciting and hilarious. 


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