When you can’t go out to do the things you normally like to do in a social setting, you find time to complete some tasks that you might otherwise put off or try to “squeeze in.” You can return to simple pleasures, such as spending more time together with those in your home. Here are some ideas of what you can do while you wait for the world to return back to normal….


1.Plan a trip.

Dreams and hopes sustain us. They give us something to look forward to with anticipation. Even though it can be difficult to imagine being free to go where we please in with the current state of the world, we can still dream and make those plans With the plethora of internet resources available to us, we can virtually discover new sights and attractions – and make plans for a future excursion. A study published in Applied Research in Quality of Life shows a strong correlation that trip planning makes us happy. We anticipate the trip: “Statistically, the most dramatic difference was between pre-trip happiness and post-trip happiness, indicating that there is more happiness from looking forward to a vacation rather than when you get back into the same old routine.” So get planning!

2. Get outside.

The Recreation Passport fee has been waived at Michigan state parks, so that you can get out and enjoy Michigan’s natural beauty in all of the state parks for free. This is to encourage to explore and get some fresh air in the midst of social distancing. Whether you want to go for a hike, a kayak float down a river, or go fishing, you can easily find space – and peace. If you can’t make it to a state park, then just getting outside for a walk around the block or for a game in the backyard with the family will help you get some much needed Vitamin D (which helps your body fight illness), lift your spirits, and get you away from the news.

3. Make something you’ve never made before.

With more time on your hands – and maybe a kid or two at home – you can try some new recipes in the kitchen. Test recipes you want to try at the campsite this summer. Try some kid-approved recipes such as Walking Tacos or Soft Pretzels in a Bag. Is bacon your best friend? These bacon-infused recipes might hit just the spot (bacon wrapped pork tenderloin sounds pretty tasty). If you want to mix up the breakfast menu or feel like breaking tradition and have breakfast for dinner, then give these recipes a try, especially the gourmet skillets and (for a real treat) the s’more pancakes.  If you want a taste of the tropics in these last fitful days of winter, then these spring break recipes are worth mixing up.

4. Laugh.

We all know the adage, “Laughter is the best medicine.” We all know how much better we feel inside after a good laugh, especially when shared with good friends. This anecdotal wisdom actual has a lot of merit, scientifically speaking. Data shows that laughter offers a lot of positive benefits for our physical and mental health. In the short term, laughter can increase endorphins; stimulate heart, lungs, and muscles; decrease heart rate and blood pressure; and stimulate circulation and aid muscle relaxation. Long term, laughter may improve your immune system, relieve pain, increase personal satisfaction, and improve your mood (Mayo Clinic). Basically, we feel less stressed! Perhaps one of these RV- or camping-related memes will bring a smile to your face or induce a little chuckle.

5. Clean

Spring brings about the cleaning robot M-O in all of us (Wall-E, anybody?). Spend the extra time at home by organizing those areas you can never get to any other time, those pesky closets or the attic or maybe even a third stall of a garage. Think creatively about how to better optimize the space, de-clutter, and donate unneeded items. With the days warming up, you may be able to get the RV out of storage and start preparing for the upcoming camping season. For RV organization tips, read this article. You can also refer to this article for RV cleaning tips.

6. Organize a family game night.

Instead of just being “around” one another at home, bring the whole family together intentionally for a game night. You can either organize the game night solo and make it a surprise for everyone, or you can ask everybody to bring their favorite game to play – no complaints! It’s a great chance to reconnect. Make some treats to make the evening extra festive.