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If the economy has brought your vacation plans to a screeching halt, there are some fun alternatives in your future. The alternative vacation plans might be even more enjoyable than a real trip, especially knowing that they're not costing you a fortune.
Then, create a menu to make the island's mouth water. Stock up on fruit, and save all of the rinds for the serving dishes. Watermelon rinds create larger serving bowls, cored pineapples hold berries, as well as cantaloupes and other melons. Fix pineapple pizzas for the kids, and roast pork for the adults. Check out a cookbook from the library for some Polynesian recipes.
Add some music and activities that bring the islands to your home, and keep everyone involved with the activities. Afterwards, turn the living room into a sleeping bag sea to serve as your makeshift "hotel."
The idea doesn't have to revolve around Hawaii. Cater the event to the vacation that fills your dreams.
Why go away at all? Make a weekend plan to stay at home with your family and do exciting things together. After all, that's what makes a vacation so special.
Book a campsite in your backyard, and pitch a tent or two. Set up a fire pit campfire, break out the marshmallows, and have some backyard fun. Abandon the house with the exception of using the "bath house." Campgrounds charge $30 a night for a space; your yard is free.
If Hollywood interesta you but you can't afford the trip to California or New York to see the shows or stars, bring the stars to you. Set up an in-home theater with a large supply of popcorn and snacks and a stack of movies. Hang indoor Christmas lights around the living and dining room, and use these for lights rather than your typical lamps. Play show tunes or soundtracks as you play celeb games such as Scene It. Create your own games by adding a new rule to Scrabble that says every word has to revolve around the entertainment industry. Set out the starlets' biographies for afternoon reads by the kiddie pool on the patio, and eat in candlelight. It isn't a trip to the West coast, but it will be fun.