Posted in Lifestyle

A Home Holiday

So the way things are going, it seems unlikely that any of us will be going abroad for a summer holiday. If that makes you as sad as it does me, then today’s post is all about how you can have your home holiday – a summer holiday in your garden!

I first got thinking about this earlier in the year – think January/February time – when there were still weddings in May and August, and a graduation in October, plus thoughts of taking myself off somewhere for a holiday over my birthday if my leave allowed it. But now it seems that the idea of going abroad at all just isn’t happening, here’s how I plan on having a home holiday this summer.

 

Preparing for a Home Holiday

Preparing for a home holiday takes as much or as little preparation as you would put in for your normal holiday, just without the worry of finding the passports and weighing your cases and the likes. I started preparing for my home holiday by making sure I had enough sun cream, after sun, head spray (I swear by this stuff), summer clothes, and all the personal grooming that comes alongside a holiday – just minus the salon side of things.

 Four different sunscreen bottles in a row on decking, still needed for a home holiday

If you don’t want to go out to the shops, then why not order these online for delivery? I had some left over from our holiday to Cyprus last May, so have been using them instead of buying new. And where a lot of people would be going to the salon to get waxed or manicures and pedicures, or even a spray tan (I don’t quite get that one but who am I to comment on other people?), there are so many ways you can do this at home! Being guilty of letting the legs get beyond an “okay” stage, I always use a hair removal cream before any holiday, and then catch any bits I miss using a regular razor. Again, I avoid the salons and do my own nails because I’ve built up a collection of polishes that I class as holiday colours, so it’s easy enough to have a DIY job. If you prefer your gel nails, then why not look online for a gel nail kit if you don’t already have one? As I say, how much prep you do for your home holiday is entirely up to you – it can be as much or as little as you like!

 Home holiday nails - a diy manicure of pastel blue and mint green finger nails

Now that you’re prepared yourself, why not have a laugh and “pack” for your home holiday? If the weather is due to be good for a single day and that’s all you’re taking as your holiday, then you mightn’t do this. However if you’re lucky enough to have reliably good weather for at least a week, why not clear a drawer or part of your wardrobe and “unpack” your home holiday clothes into this area? In fact, why not go a step further and change your bedding to that similar of a hotel or apartment, or just move a few things around? It’s your home holiday, not mine, so this is entirely up to you. I have white bedding on my bed the majority of the time, so just use a white sheet with the white pillow cases to give that holiday effect.

 White bedding with laptop in centre of double bed - creating a home holiday feel

While you’re “On Holiday”

So what do you do when you’re on holiday? For simplicity, let’s say we’ve gone on a self catering holiday. Do you need to buy in your holiday food? When we go self catering, we tend to just have fresh bread, yoghurts, or fruit for breakfast – we don’t like milk when we’re away so avoid cereal unless we can mix it with yoghurt. 

 

A typical day on holiday abroad for me would be to get up around 8am, have a quick wash at the sink, and apply SPF, all before throwing on a swimsuit under a sundress, and heading to the eating area for breakfast, taking our pool bag with us. After breakfast, we would normally head out to the sun loungers and set up for the day – books, music, puzzle books, anything that we need to occupy ourselves. After lounging in the sun for a while, maybe taking a morning swim, we would normally have a coffee in the shade around 10:30/11ish and be sure to top up our sun creams. Then it’s back to lie by the pool until lunch – normally just a sandwich or salad followed by some fruit. Again, the afternoon is spent by the pool or in the pool, and around 5ish we would move over to the pool bar for a drink. Then it’s time to shower, have a drink or two before dinner, dinner, then cards and drinks and music or whatever that evening’s entertainment happens to be.  Allow me to suggest how I might replicate this for my home holiday…

 

Up out of bed at 8am, as on holiday, and follow my usual pre-breakfast routine. I’d pack my pool bag with my bottle of water, a book, some headphones, a hairbrush, all my SPF stuff, my sunglasses, and my beach towel. Breakfast in the house would be yoghurt and fruit, a cup of tea or coffee, and a glass of fresh orange juice or ice cold water. Okay I’d have to do a quick round of dishes, but then it’s out to the sun lounger in the garden – so far matching up quite nicely with on holiday! 

Sun loungers in a back garden set up for a home holiday
I’d then decide if I was reading or listening to my music or audiobook, and continue with that until about 10 o’clock. Now I tend to drink either black coffee or a cappuccino, depending on what mood I’m in when away, so a nice cup of coffee would be very welcome at 10:30 in the shade, where I can also top up my sun cream. It’s around this time I suggest you make any phone calls you may have to, or take the opportunity to top up that water bottle!
Back to “beside the pool”, and instead of taking part in any water aerobics or yoga classes, why not do one on YouTube? Or if that’s not your style, take a dance class or exercise class that has been posted online during the lockdown? It could be a good laugh! Or you can stick to your books and earphones – I mean, it’s your home holiday, do what you want.


A light lunch is required around 12:30/1 o’clock to allow you out of the heat of the day, and to refuel from your relaxing morning. A ham or cheese sandwich would be my standard, washed down with another bottle/glass of water. Normally at this point on holiday we would either watch some of the news or top up the sun cream and have a nap inside to let it dry in properly. 

I tend to go back out to the sun any time after 2:30 so the real heat of the day is through. At this point, I rotate to get sun on whichever side hasn’t been in the sun in the morning, and again I’d be reading or listening, or going for a swim (we’ll look at alternatives for this in a few minutes!). This is where I plan on staying now, apart from maybe moving to get some more water, or a soft drink, until about 4:30ish. Then it’s over to the “pool bar” (our patio) for a beer or a sangria. Again, if you would like a cocktail at this stage of the day, why not have a look at some easy ones online that you can try out at home? After everyone gets their drink, we tend to play a hand of cards just to soak up the last of the sun and enjoy the drinks over a bit of chat. Then we gradually move inside for our showers.

4 cocktails at a poolside bar to try and replicate for a home holiday

For my home holiday, I would be using the same sort of toiletries I use when on holiday – my shampoo and conditioner bars from Lush, a lemon or grapefruit shower gel, and the ever needed after sun! I actually found one in Boots a few years ago that had a tan prolonging element to it, or an enhancing… I can’t quite remember which now… So yes, I’d have my holiday shower, and get the music blasting on my speakers while I dress and do my hair for dinner! Now on holiday we’d either have drinks in the hotel room or the apartment before going for dinner, so back to the patio to sit for a drink with some music and chat, and who can have home holiday pre-dinner drinks without Lays crisps? And since Lays are just Walkers under a different name (I don’t know this, I just assume they are), they’re easy enough to get your hands on! 

 

Since most of us will go out for dinner each night on a self catering holiday, and (at time of writing) that isn’t possible here in the UK, why not order a takeaway? Do you have a Greek or Turkish restaurant nearby and able to deliver? Or maybe you’ve decided your home holiday is pretend Italy and you want pizza? Or maybe you’re just heading to the Chinese restaurant near your home holiday resort? That’s entirely up to you what you order, or of course you can cook in if you’re prepared to! For my home holiday I would either be having a Chinese takeaway or a pizza delivery, just for simplicity. Not what we would usually eat on holiday, but if it means no dishes then I’m all for it!  After dinner, move either back out to catch the last of the sun, or move to the comfy seats in the house for some music, after dinner drinks, and maybe even a quiz or game of bingo if we aren’t all fed up with them by then! 

 An after dinner mojito to drink on your home holiday

So there you have it!

That would be my typical home holiday day if I was able to do it. I know there’s a lot more to a holiday though than just lying by the pool. So if you’re the kind of person who likes to explore the area, or visit the local markets, keep reading below to find out how you can do these as part of your home holiday.

 

Home Holiday Substitutions

The main issue for a lot of us is the lack of a swimming pool. However if you have a hot tub or a paddling pool, why not have these set up so you can take a dip every now and again? We have neither, so I would probably end up filling a basin with some lukewarm water and just soaking my feet – pretend I’m sitting with my legs dangling into the pool while I read and admire the view.

If it’s possible, you could take a trip to the nearby beach. As I said earlier, at time of writing this isn’t currently allowed in the UK, so we wouldn’t be doing it. But throw on your flip flops and take a walk through the neighbourhood the way you would explore the streets around you on holiday – you might find a beauty spot you never knew existed! 

One thing I love about being on holiday is exploring the market stalls that appear every now and again. While you can’t physically explore homemade market stalls from your back garden, you can explore Etsy, Amazon Handmade, and any other sites you can think of in which to support small/home businesses! I remember reading a while back that Etsy was causing a few issues for small businesses, and creators were jumping ship to another similar site, but I can’t remember the name of it. So if you know, please let us know in the comments so we can have a look!

 A view out the window of a plane, looking out at the white fluffy clouds and the plane’s wing

Home Holiday Summary

So there you have it. Yes I know it’s not the same as the excitement of the airport. It’s not the same as walking out the doors of the airplane and getting that blast of heat before being bussed to the terminal where you scramble for your case before rushing out for a bus or taxi. But it might be the closest a lot of us get to a summer holiday this year. Let me know below if I missed out anything you’d do to have a home holiday, or if you plan on having one having read this! And remember, stay safe everyone.

Author:

Hey :) I'm 24, from Northern Ireland and no longer new to blogging. I love all things TV, books, food, music and film as well as going out with friends. This is hopefully somewhere you'll be able to come if you feel you need a laugh or even just to stay in touch. Life can be hard and confusing, so

17 thoughts on “A Home Holiday

  1. Awh I love this idea of an at-home holiday! I’m absolutely gutted about the summer as I have booked a trip to Nice with one of my best friends, but I fear that that might be cancelled… So I love how you are looking at it in a positive light and still “going on holiday” to your back garden!

  2. Such a great post, and definitely about making the most of a difficult situation.

    We’ve recently been discussing the benefit of an at home holiday. We were due to go away at Easter, instead we had a week at home. We really saw the benefit of having a ‘holiday’ at home.

    We went and walked each day, played games, art activities etc but when we all got a bit fed up of each other, my step daughters had all their toys they could play with, my son had his computer or we had technology to occupy them which we don’t normally have when camping. Or we could put a film on. Plus we spent less on food than we normally would.

    It had a real holiday feel but with the home comforts we would normally miss x

  3. Katie, this is absolute genius! And do you know what, even though we don’t have a pool or access to the sea, I think the idea of sun loungers and a patio bar is inspired. Flora would LOVE to do something like this, we could make a real day of it. You’re right, when we are abroad we tend to take a much more chilled and laid back approach to things. And there’s absolutely no reason at all why we can’t do the same again. I feel a few games of Snap coming on… brilliant, thank you so much for this! Lisa xx

  4. This is a great way to make the best of the situation. We were SUPER bummed out that we’ve now missed out on 2 camping trips that we had planned (we start in April). So, last weekend, we set up the tent in the back yard and had a backyard camp out with the pups.

  5. I absolutely love this concept. I’ve never really thought about using my lockdown as a ‘home holiday’. I am going to implement this on Sunday and do exactly that!

  6. Yay! I’m glad you like it 😊 I did it last week, but our weather hasn’t been good enough to do it again yet 😥 thanks for stopping by and commenting! xx

  7. It’s probably daft – there are so many things there that you could do at any time, but for some reason we make ourselves feel guilty for taking the time to do any of the things listed! Hope you have a good Home Holiday 🙂

  8. I enjoyed reading this post – it’s such a good idea to have a home holiday! Especially if the weather stays as lovely as it has been. I may very well try it!

  9. That means
    eat, drink, read, swim(if you have the facility), play, garden and something more. Yeah that’s good. Add to it some video chatting because we won’t have much friends around….perhaps. Thanks a lot.

  10. This post is so relatable. None of us would be able to spend holidays as we wished. Home holidays is such a fun thing to do. At least you would feel as if you have done something fun in quarantine. Thank you for sharing?

  11. Home holiday seems like such a fun thing to do. None of us will be able to spend vacations as we planned. But this will give us a satisfaction that we have done something fun in quarantine. Thank you for sharing!

  12. This is a really great idea! It’s the mindset of a vacation that makes it enjoyable 🙂 I too would love to hop on a plane somewhere but home vacations will suffice for now!

  13. I love this idea, especially as it is appropriate for the reality we’re living in right now. For our “staycation” we have gotten our garden together and have been grilling more and just enjoying being out in the garden more. I have even given myself some summer reading and will leisurely do that off and on throughout the day—which is far from normal for me. Thanks for helping deal with life as it is but still enjoy it as if we were somehow away.

  14. Aw I’m so glad you’re getting to make the most out of the situation we’re in! It’s funny how we all want grilled food or less to eat in the heat. I hope you get to enjoy a good book!

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