July 19, 2017

The 5 Best Staycations Ever

Summer equals relaxation and vacation; but, since we can’t (always) live like our favorite Instagram muse we’ve mastered the art of the perfect staycation. We’ve put our five favorites together on this list, along with everything you need to have an amazing summer vacation—right in your own home.

(Super) Simple Spa

The perfect home spa experience doesn’t have to be complicated—and it’s a great way to sneak in a mini-staycation if you can devote a full day or week to one. First, block off at least two hours two be interrupted. A staycation should still be a welcome retreat from everyday life–even though they usually occur where everyday life takes place. Take yourself completely out of your usual routine, the longer the better.

Treat yourself—try something new and decadent. A sweet sentiment sent by you, to you is a great way to add a fun (and delicious) touch to your spa-cation. We suggest our melt-in-your mouth, silky truffles. In White Chocolate and Lemon, Chocolate Brownie, Chocolate and Toffee, and Chocolate Peanut Butter our truffles are a delightfully indulgent treat. (Or try them all.)

Cookies By Design's melt in your mouth truffles. Try one today!

Try savoring a box during a luxurious soak (right before a well-deserved nap in your favorite pajamas). What’s our preferred Soak-Away-The-Day combo?

We like to add one cup of Epson Salts, a half cup of Olive oil, (take care not to slip!), and a handful of dried lavender to a full bath. Not only does the Epson salt and Olive oil leave skin silky smooth, lavender is proven to relax your body and reduce stress! We stick to around 20 minutes with our favorite music playing in the background. (Burn a scented candle for bonus stress-relief points. We suggest something with vanilla or pine scent.)

Pure bliss!

Foodie Frolic

Speaking of bliss, one the best things about vacations are the food, especially dessert! We understand the allure: new foods, in new places, without the work—or any of the clean-up. (Not to mention the Instagram-worthy food photography.) What’s not to love? You can still try something new (and yummy) without ever leaving home.

Our moist, flavorful and #instaready cupcakes are just a click or phone call away in ten flavors: Cookies and Cream, Red Velvet (our personal favorite), Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough (so yummy!), Vanilla Bean, Chocolate Coconut, Chocolate Divine, Salted Caramel, Birthday Cake, Snickerdoodle Toffee, and Peanut Butter Paradise.

Cookies by Design's delicious, fresh-baked Birthday Cake Cupcake.

Enjoy your favorite flavor while finally catching up on the book or Netflix series you’ve been dying to finish. Or try one of each and post your thoughts and great food pics online. Your family, friends, and followers will appreciate the information and your palate will appreciate the new flavor experiences. Even better: You can share the fun with the people closest to you–or not. (We won’t judge.)

Memory Maldives

We can take vacations that treat us to new experiences, foods, desperately needed “me time,” or all of the above; but, we often forget the vacations that treat us to old experiences, too—like our happiest memories. When is the last time you’ve brought out your old album, or finally put away all those pictures begging for a cute scrapbook to call home. Perhaps you have hundreds of photos that deserve an album on Facebook, or a safe file space in The Cloud? (We certainly do!)

Block off some time and clear off a  quiet space (on the floor or on a table—whatever works best for you) and gather all your pictures digital and other wise that need to be organized, as well as albums of happy memories from yesteryear. Brew up your favorite cup of coffee or tea, or pour a glass of your favorite adult beverage (Moscato, anyone?) and grab a yummy snack—you’ll need those carbs for your trip down memory lane, from past to present.

We love our sweet spots for our “smile sojourn.” Start with your oldest pictures—taken in every detail. Try finding something you hadn’t noticed before. Let the picture bring back to mind something from that moment for each of your senses—sounds, smells, textures—anything you can recall. Be present as you remember the old times, and then add your new happy memories. Before you know it, you’ll feel like a time traveler!

Cookies by Design rich and soft Sweet Spots! Try one (or some) today!

And you’ll have a renewed sense of all of the unique #littlethings that make the (continuing) story of your life great!

DIY Downtime

If you have a creative streak, than this staycation is for you! There are so many OMG-I’ve-Gotta-Make-That DIYs online and so little time. Here’s your opportunity to make at least one of those macramé wall-hangings or shabby-chic quilt Pinterest pins a reality. Gather everything you need, and retreat to a place to work where you know you won’t be disturbed.

Consider making something for a friend, and telling them before you begin. Wanting to make them smile will help you stay on task, giving your mind a chance to wander and reset as you make something beautiful for a loved one. (And it helps ensure you complete this project before moving onto the next.)

Pair your lovely creation with a sweet treat for the lucky recipient. Our soft, rich mini-bites are perfectly portioned versions of our chewy Gourmet Cookies. They add a thoughtful touch to any gift.

Cookies by Design's delicious mini-bites.

Social Sabbatical

While we love sharing our lives and lattes on our favorite social media platforms as much as the next person, studies are now confirming—breaks from social media are not only good for you, they are almost mandatory for maintaining a healthy sense of self, optimism, and gratitude. These three things are vital for keeping stress, depression, and exhaustion at bay in our busy online and offline lives.

How do you take a social sabbatical? It’s deceptively simple: Sign off your social media account for at least 24 hours. (Sounds intense, right?) The first thing we noticed is how much more time this added back to our day—which can make the sudden lack of constant updates seem agonizing. No worries!

We found leaving an update that you’re going to take a break, before signing off, helps lessen tagging or messages while you’re trying to re-focus. Also, having plan for this extra time (like one of the other staycations above) puts it to beneficial use.

A break from social media helps us re-learn how to be fully present in each moment and enjoy everything about it—whether it’s slipping into a sublime, hot bath or savoring every scrumptious bite of a perfectly frosted cupcake or buttery Cookie Favor.

Cookies by Design yummy cookie favors!

How will you staycation this summer?

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