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This summer, I'm sure most folks are like me: absolutely itching to get out of the house and explore the world again. I'm planning a vacation around seeing live music in Austin, Texas this September, but I'd be lying if I said I didn't need a break, however humble, before that.

If you don't have the funds, the transportation or the time to get out of town, that doesn't mean you can't have a vacation. Staycations have been getting more and more popular over the years, and they are an affordable way to take a break from the daily routine.

As a person who has pets I care about very deeply, staycations appeal to me because I don't have to board my animals or hire a pet-sitter. There are really a million reasons that a staycation makes sense.

If you're looking for a staycation that includes a pool and/or hot tub, you can go the standard hotel route. But if you're looking for something a little more private, or cozy, or unique, then one of these local Airbnb stays may be perfect for you.

And while you're booking your staycation, let me suggest some ways to make it extra special and extra relaxing:

  • Bring a book you know you'll tear through, a favorite feel-good movie, or an awesome jigsaw puzzle.
  • Make it a "spa-day" with a comfy robe, a face mask and a mani-pedi.
  • Have plenty of vacation snacks and drinks to graze on all day. I like to have fresh fruit, sparkling water and almonds.
  • Ditch the phone, the internet and anything else that may cause you stress. The last time I did a staycation, I left the TV on Turner Classic Movies. No news there!

Wherever you spend your vacation, I hope you get the recharge we all so desperately need after being cooped up for so long.

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