The Infamous “Staycation”

By | 2014-04-04T07:00:28+00:00 April 4, 2014|Elementary|

I think I liked last year’s Spring Break better.

Last year the temperature was 27 Celsius, the weather was sunny, and our family had an amazing week-long trip to Palm Springs, visiting the surreal landscape of Joshua Tree National Park and sunning ourselves poolside. This year, the temperature barely broke into double digits, the weather was rainy, and our family intended to have a, “staycation.”

Staycation? According to Merriam-Webster’s online dictionary, a staycation is, “a vacation spent at home or nearby.” That sounds kind of lame to me, but maybe I’m old fashioned in my view of vacations.  Vacations to me mean getting away by flying or driving, and spending the entire time far away from home. When I hear that I have two weeks to “staycate” at home, I simply can’t get into a rhythm of relaxation.

I’m the kind of guy who has a difficult time being completely relaxed during a break. I feel a need to be doing something. Even if I’m sitting poolside in Palm Springs, my mind starts going through a checklist of all the things I could or should be doing. When I knew (a while ago), that I was not going anywhere for Spring Break, my mind went into overdrive thinking of all the possible tasks that I could accomplish over two weeks—despite the fact that my family and I were to be intentional with a “staycation”…

Here’s a look inside my head at this year’s checklist (including attempts at relaxation).

TASK/ACTIVITY (W=work, R=relax)


W – Replace bathroom cabinet and counter top Almost, back splash not finished
W – Paint for family Partially, weather and equipment limitations
R – Visit friends in Oak Harbor For the most part, some friends at work
R – Go to a Whitecaps game Yes!  Great family time!
W – Update portfolio for Master’s program Made progress, graduation in May!
W – Yard work Not close, mowed once, didn’t compost beds.
W – Write blog, Newsletter, curriculum for school Getting closer with each sentence.
R – Read books, on my own and with my kids Barely, only read “Bugsy and Friends” 25 times…

As you can see, the “break” experienced mild success. However, the best times during the whole break – whether I was doing a ‘W’ or an ‘R’ activity—were when I remembered God’s call in Psalm 46 to, “Be still, and know that I am God.” My perspective about making the most of our staycation by creating lovely memories for the family or by completing as much work as possible changed. Yes, work and relaxation have their place, but it’s more important for me to remember to honor and worship God whatever I am doing. Was I successful with “being still” this Spring Break? No, not really. As always, it continues to be a work in progress, yet I am grateful that I can “be still” in that process, too!


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I took a staycation — ended up pushing way too hard on the to-do list. Still haven’t recovered.

Trent DeJong

I totally know what you mean by the rhythm of relaxation. And I am finding that it takes longer to find than it used to. Need to be deliberate about “be still.” Thanks for the post.