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Taking Time to Celebrate: Savoring Time with a Staycation

By Nathan Coker
In Bayou Kidz
Feb 28th, 2023

article by Cindy G. Foust

Hello to our wonderful Bayou Life community as I write this month’s column from the comfort of my big comfy chair. In case you haven’t noticed, spring is here whether we like it not, and we didn’t even get a snow day. Bummer. Well, unless you work for Entergy, you probably would boycott my column if you knew I had performed snow dances before. Anyway, I hope this nearly end of the first quarter finds you and your family doing well; all is good on the home front here. Well, except my husband had to have his gallbladder out but other than that…we are just sitting on cruise control over here waiting on spring to sprung.

It’s beginning to get a little green in the yard, and I do in fact love this time of year; it’s almost like the season is signaling nature that it’s okay to wake up. I say we “march” on into spring together friends, and talk about something we can do together to celebrate. I love a good celebration, I really do. Well, except that one time my friends gave me a hip hop party to celebrate my 50th birthday. I swear on our friendship I didn’t drink a drop but I danced like I was JLo at the Super Bowl halftime show. Anybody that was there gonna dispute that? It’s doubtful because at one point in the night, I was doing the worm meets the dirt dance (for mental clarity, imagine when you see an earthworm trying to get back in the dirt). I didn’t say it was pretty readers, I just said someone bet me I wouldn’t do it, and well, my 50-year old self had something to prove. Really and truly, the only thing it proved was that I was so out of shape I couldn’t sit in a chair for a week. And I had to scale the wall to sit on the toilet. Can I say that in a children’s column? It’s the dang truth, though. And then at another Super Bowl celebration, I decided to actually impersonate Beyonce (hence my nickname Cindyonce) and chipped my tooth on the dismount. Oh, in front of my friends. And oh, in front of my mom. My son nearly left home to live with another family in Idaho, but we managed to get him some counseling, and he’s all good now. Yeah, it will suffice to say that I can be the life of the party, or at least think I am (huge difference in being and thinking…huge), and I love embracing the occasions when a good celebration is in order. Which brings me to this month’s column and looking ahead to all the upcoming holidays and such that afford us opportunities to celebrate.

One such time is not really a holiday, but rather a “weeklong” opportunity and that’s spring break. Now listen, I know there are people who take Disney trips, or head to the beach or maybe even the mountains for snow skiing, but the truth is, we have plenty of options for a staycation right here at home. When I was growing up, we didn’t travel much because my dad worked overseas and when he came home, he liked to stay at home! We did get the occasional Six Flags Over Texas trips; you know, the ones where we all piled in the Chevy Citation and headed to Arlington? Or the camping trips to Lake Ouachita in Arkansas really opens the memory floodgates…especially that one time my mom got 3 bicycles, 4 kids and camping gear in the hatchback of the Chevy Citation.

But where was I? Oh yeah, that you don’t have to go on an actual “trip” to create a memorable spring break week. Listen, a lot of kids just want to rest! So let that be the premise of your week. And then what? I think it would actually be fun to let your kids decide what they want to do. Movies? Skating? Picnic in the park? What about orchestrating an actual camping trip in your own backyard? A tent purchase would be a lot less expensive than a plane ticket and what a memorable time you will have from the comfort of your own backyard. The kids can actually get in on getting the tent “pitched” and working on the menu for the campout nights. Depending on the weather, it might just be worth a fire in the pit and a S’mores bar! One time my kids wanted to watch movies on our garage door so I borrowed a projector from my best friend, pulled out my popcorn machine (doesn’t everyone have one?) and hung a sheet over the garage door. We used our sleeping bags and watched a movie with friends, almost like being at the real movies…except for the mosquitoes and weird noises that made me worried Freddy Kruger was coming out of the pasture behind my house. Except my donkey would protect us so need to worry over that.

I really think, though, that a staycation for spring break has endless possibilities for memory making and family time together. I will say it again, let the kids decide their fate! Taking the time to do some of the things that “you never have time or make time to do” is a refreshing approach to the week. It can be as simple as letting them have friends over for hamburgers and a movie. Maybe even catch an area baseball or softball game!

No matter what your plans ultimately end up being, the most important thing is that you are doing it together. Family time is a valuable commodity these days…I’m speaking from experience now that my oldest son has left the coop, so savor these days readers and be intentional in spending time together. It’s true that “these are they days they will always remember,” so make them so special that will never forget.

Cindy G. Foust is a wife, mom, author and blogger. You can find her blog at the alphabetmom.com for weekly columns about home life,  parenting, small business stories and insight with a smidgen of literacy. Give her a like or follow on Facebook and Instagram.