Well, it's that time of year again, when your days and finances are increasingly in short supply, but the nights and to-do lists seem never-ending. Here's a top 10 list to help you escape just a little and recharge during this holiday season:
1. Guided Meditation; Technically this is less of a "getaway" in the traditional sense, but even just 20 minutes of guided meditation can give you the boost you need to feel refreshed and calm this time of year. There are tons of these available absolutely free on youtube.
2. Road Trip; Given the price of gasoline right now and the fairly mild winter we've had so far, this seems pretty doable on a tight budget. Avoid hot spots like shopping centers if you can, unless you enjoy being stuck in traffic.
3. Holiday Light Displays; Plan ahead and bring some decent winter drinks and music for the experience, then head to your city's best seasonal light displays. Try to arrive a little before nightfall for better traffic flow through the area. Falala lalala!
4. Breakfast in Bed; A well-deserved weekend treat to spend an extra hour or two in a nice warm bed in the cold of winter can really do wonders for the spirit. Add some comfort food like one of these overnight dishes and specialty winter drinks to complete the experience.
5. Travel Videos; I LOVE this one, because it's something you can do anywhere and anytime of day. What about the serenity of a Bahamian beach in Hope Town, the thrill of fiesta and siesta in sunny Spain, or watching an awe-inspiring meteor shower (and if I'm having a particularly frustrating day, trust me, I do :) Again, youtube is full of these videos, although if you missed last week's post, here's a good start.
6. Language Learning; Did you know that the average adult has 12,000 words in his or her vocabulary? No point stopping there! Try out Duolingo; it lets you practice as often or as little as you like to learn almost any language on the planet. Prefer English? You can sign up to Theasaurus.com for daily prompts to become a more eloquent speaker.
7. Reading; Anything will do when it comes to reading- that magazine you keep meaning to read, the novel you bought 4 months ago, your favorite aunt's blog. Put your feet up for some DEAR (Drop Everything And Read) time, and feel yourself escaping to a whole new world.
8. Volunteer; It's incredibly rewarding to help others, and helps to put our own troubles and worries into perspective. A quick search will reveal fabulous resources for volunteering in your own community, with some novel ideas here, such as home care for veterans, and making music for patients in local hospitals.
9. Spa Day; Whether you do this at home or a salon, this is the perfect time of year to spend on protecting your skin from the elements and taking some time out to pamper you. Try an egg, olive oil and honey hair conditioning treatment, while your feet soak in a healing essential oil bath.
10. Museum; So happy my boyfriend was up for this visit the other day (see pictures below) . This is one of the best times of year to visit museums since most families are caught up in their to-do lists to even have time for this which makes the lines and attendance much lighter than normal. Many museums have free admission on certain days or times of the month, making it doubly enjoyable. For a little inspiration, why not visit the Leprechaun Museum or take a spin through the Paris Sewer Museum? And if you're lucky, many museums have free admission on certain days or times of the month, making it even more affordable. (Larger-than-life sized bugs may not be available in all areas :)
Edited by Venetia Smith.
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