With 17 days of freedom, what should you do with all that time?
By Tara Higgins and Madeleine Kriech
I’ve always called spring break “the winter break in the middle of the second semester.” Just like winter break, students have 17 days off from school to do whatever they please: take a vacation, sleep till 3 p.m., watch TV and movies until your eyes cease to function, or sit at your computer and stare at all the homework you should–but don’t–do. Beginning on March 18, there are endless possibilities. Here are just a few.
Take a long trip. Far, far away.
Two weeks is plenty of time to travel the country, or world, and try to soak up as much sunshine as possible light years away from the unpredictable blizzards of Colorado. I could think of nothing more appealing than spending all of my time in a foreign world, forgetting everything I would typically face back home. Go to Disney World, fly to Europe, or take a cruise…anything that truly exemplifies the meaning of a spring vacation.
Or, stay at home.
Believe me, traveling the world can’t compare with staying at home, locked up in your room, with nothing to keep you company but yourself and all the things you love and miss while you’re in school. Still, the lure of catching up on the latest shows and movie releases in the comfort of your own living room does have its benefits. If you do choose to stay indoors for the duration of your spring break, you will probably find yourself enjoying all the little parts of freedom from school two weeks could possibly offer.
Try a new recipe.
We all know that your Pinterest is full of recipes you have been wanting to try, so why not try them over the break? Put on your apron and get to cooking. A new season of fruit has arrived and this is the perfect opportunity so use them. Make a new smoothie, or your own fruit popsicle. Make dinner for your family and friends. If you are feeling extra giving, bake some cupcakes for your neighbors. Whether you find a new passion for cooking, or just learn how to use a blender, spring break is the time to try new things, so why can’t cooking be one of them?
Get out in the community and volunteer your time.
I’m sure all you fellow NHS members could use a few community service hours, and spring break is the perfect time to catch up on all you’ve been missing. Whether you need to fulfill some requirement, or you just love helping out as much as you possibly can, find time to give back and dedicate yourself to working with others. Help out at the local animal shelter, rec center, Parker Task Force, or Denver Rescue Mission. There are infinite opportunities this time of year, and if the weather holds up, you could have a lot of fun in the process.
Read a book.
Spring break is the perfect time to curl up on your bed and dive into the latest novel or whatever it is you’ve been craving to read. It’s a great time to really forget your troubles and get caught up in some whirlwind romance or thrilling mystery. And, reading for pleasure rather than school means you don’t have to annotate, making the whole experience overall more enjoyable.
Spring is officially here, which means it’s time to clean. The cliché of “spring cleaning” may be overused, but the idea is washing out the old and letting in the new never dies. We all know you have those old sweaters in your closet that don’t fit, so give them away. That old bathing suit? Are you really going to wear it again? No. Give away old clothes, books, sports equipment–nothing is spared. Spring is a time for new beginnings, new life. Get rid of the old you, and bring in the new you, a new you ready for warm weather and the last few months of school.
Hang out with friends.
School schedules are always busy, with sports and extracurriculars filling up our planners every day of the week. With time off of school, you can spend the day outside, or (my personal favorite), go shopping at the mall. Prom is less than two months away, so it’s the perfect time to buy your dress cheap before the prices skyrocket, and basically plan out your entire evening with all your friends. You could take a day trip to the mountains or go visit a museum, but there’s nothing like having fun with your besties outside the crowded halls of school.
After cleaning everything out, it might be time to completely start anew. Head over to your local home improvement store and buy some paint and a brush; now clear out that room and start painting. However, if painting is too much an ordeal for you to handle, just rearrange some furniture. Try facing your bed a new way or moving your desk to a new wall. Small changes could make a big difference. If you’re me, and not sure where to start, look up feng shui. This Chinese system of spatial arrangement may be just what you are looking for. Whatever you decide to do, changing up the look of your room will refresh your mind before heading back to school.
Of course, you could just do your homework. Really.
I’ve always envied my friends who take two weeks off without a care in the world and no due dates chasing them into an eternal abyss. But for many of us, AP exams and ACT tests are looming, and spring break is the only real time we have to buckle down and get to work. With two weeks off, there is plenty of time to get things done, but also more time to lose in class: time we could really use to study for those two most intensive weeks May has in store for us. This break always brings up the differences between students who do all their work their first Friday off, getting it all out of the way, to those who spread it out thin over the whole two weeks, to those who lock themselves into their fate at 11:30 p.m. Sunday night–or more like early Monday morning the first day back at school. No matter how you do it, take advantage of the time you do have to cram as much information as you can conjure up from way back in August that you should probably remember sometime soon. Remember, when you get back from break, you’ll have one month until AP testing! 🙁
However you choose to spend your time, spring break is still the longest vacation second semester will ever hold. It comes at a decent time of year too, so you’re bound to have a few really great days to get outside and soak up whatever the day holds. And, there will always be time to just sit at home and relax (and of course, eat as much good food as possible). No matter what you do, the break from school will do wonders for your sanity, whether you’re trying to maintain it or simply regain it.