It is officially spring! That means flowers and trees are blooming, the weather is getting warmer, butterflies and bees are flying about, and baby animals are showing up everywhere. It’s the season of rebirth and new life and it’s a happy time.
Unless you live in north Texas like me, and suffer from even the most average of seasonal allergies, which are at their absolute worst here. Or, you’re like my friends in the north and the UK, and are getting a second winter and tons of snow.
Because, you know, seasons are “more what you’d call ‘guidelines’ than actual rules.”
1. Spring Cleaning!
Whether it’s still snowing outside or the sun is shining, spring is always the best time to clean house. During winter, we keep everything closed off and bundled up and things get dusty and stuffy. If you’re lucky enough to be able to open your windows, do it. Even if it’s cold out, try to crack them a little bit and let the old, stale air out and new, fresh, cool air in. If you need to bundle up while you’re cleaning, that’s fine. The more you move around, the warmer you’ll get anyway. I will suggest getting a face mask for all the dust particles you’ll inevitably kick up (and the allergens that could possibly come in), and wear gloves for any harsh chemicals you’re using.
Take this time to clean out spaces you’ve not cleaned in awhile (behind the bed and dressers, under the couch, etc) and get it in to tip-top shape. You’ll feel refreshed, even if it doesn’t feel refreshing outside, and a clean home does wonders for anxiety and stress… or so I’ve heard.
2. Rearrange Your Rooms
This isn’t exactly spring cleaning, but if you’re up for it, maybe try rearranging the layout of some of the rooms in your home. If you’re feeling bored of your home or you need a change of scenery but can’t afford a vacation, trying rearranging the furniture. It freshens up a space and tricks your brain into thinking you’re somewhere new.
Plus, if you’re in an apartment like I am, the way your home is setup is usually the same way you set it up when you first moved in, and depending how long you’ve been there, that can get old after a bit. If you’re not able to rearrange your furniture, or the setup is for a particular reason, try changing the wall décor or switching out pillows and accessories. There are so many ways you can refresh your rooms without having to do much at all.
3. Take your own “Spring Break”
One of the few good things about spring semester in school was spring break. Fall semester gave you plenty of holidays and breaks, but all we really got after MLK Day was the one glorious week separating the start of the semester from the end. Sadly, as adults, that’s not a thing. At least, not in the sense that it’s scheduled into everyone’s calendars. But how nice would that be?
Anyway, if you’re fortunate enough to get paid vacation time, try taking a week off for your own spring break. If you can’t afford a whole week, try taking a long weekend. You could go somewhere “spring break worthy” like the beach or Disney World, or you could just stay local. Try being a tourist in your own hometown. Chances are, if you live close to a big city, you’ve probably not done the touristy things or seen the attractions that people come for. If you want to, maybe stay in a hotel and really feel like a tourist.
You could also use the time as just a mental break from work life and maybe that’s when you do your spring cleaning. Whatever you do, give yourself some kind of “spring break”.
4. Buy Fresh Plants
Fresh flowers are hard because they upset allergies, but even if you buy cute little succulents or a generic houseplant you found at the front of Aldi when you were picking a few things up, fresh plants are great for livening up a space, and some are even good for cleaning the air. Pro Tip: If you’re worried about remembering to water them when they need to be watered, set a reminder on your phone, or put a checklist on your fridge (or somewhere you’ll see it everyday).
Just be careful, if you have pets, that your plants aren’t toxic to them. Here’s a great list I found of non-toxic houseplants. Dogs are easier to keep from eating your green friends, but cats get into everything, and can jump and climb and the last thing you need while trying to keep your plants alive is to be worried about keeping your furbabies alive, too.
5. Update Your Wardrobe
Spring is the perfect time to go through your closet and purge it. Take out all the fall and winter stuff you didn’t wear this year and donate it or sell it (use my code: CUPCAKERISING on Poshmark and get a $5 credit). Everything you want to keep, store it away and get out all your spring and summer outfits. It’s so nice to see your bright pretty colors, and it feels like you bought a whole new wardrobe when you invite clothes in that you haven’t seen for six months.
It’s kind of the same principle a lot of parents use with their kids: give them half their toys and store the other half away. Then, when they’re tired or bored of the current ones, swap them out and it’s like having new toys. It also goes to show you we can all fall for the same mind games as children. We’re all susceptible to it. Even you.
These next five are things to do/things going on in and around the Dallas area; local to me.
6. Go to a Sporting Event
The nice thing about spring is the crazy number of sports that are still going on, or just starting.
Baseball season is starting, which is fun to go to even if you’re not into the sport. Whether you splurge and go see the Rangers in Arlington (first home game is March 29) or you make day of hanging out in Frisco and seeing the RoughRiders (first home game is April 5), they’re both nice while it’s still cool out.
You can catch the tail-end of hockey season at an Allen Americans game (regular season ends on April 7) or a Dallas Stars game (last home game is March 31) and maybe even get a chance to see either (or both?) teams in their playoff prime.
For football, there’s the Texas Revolution or the Dallas Marshals. Or if the other kind of football is your jam, FC Dallas plays up in Frisco at Toyota Stadium right across the street from the adorable downtown area.
7. “Are you going to Scarborough Fair“
Celebrating its 38th anniversary this year, Scarborough Renaissance Festival (aka Scarb or RenFest) is one of my favorite things to do. There’s so much to see, so much food to eat, and so many cool things to look at and buy. The grounds are absolutely beautiful and there are always shows to sit and watch or special themed weekends. I don’t know many people that don’t love Scarb, and best part is, it’s family-friendly.
I always feel like I’m around my “people” when I go because honestly, we’re all a little bit weird in the absolute best way. Plus, Scarb will always have a special place in my heart as somewhere I went with my family every year growing up, and then somewhere I went with just my mom in recent years past. In fact, we used a selfie she took of herself at Scarb as the picture on her memorial service order of service.
8. Art. So much art.
One of my favorite things about equinox events is the art festivals. There are so many in the north Texas area, so bear with me as I go through the list (and forgive me if I miss any).
March 24-25: Arts in the Square – Frisco, TX
April 6-8: Deep Ellum Arts Festival – Dallas, TX
April 13-15: Arts in Bloom – Downtown McKinney, TX
April 19-22: Main Street Arts Festival – Ft. Worth, TX
April 27-29: Art in the Square – Southlake, TX
April 27-29: Denton Arts and Jazz Festival – Denton, TX
May 5-6: Cottonwood Art Festival – Richardson, TX
May 11-13: Allen Arts Festival – Allen, TX
I can only speak for Cottonwood Art Festival, because I’ve been going since I was 10, but it only gets better every year. It really doesn’t feel like spring if I don’t go.
9. Animals Abound
Between the Dallas and Fort Worth zoos and the Dallas World and Sea Life Grapevine Aquariums, there is no shortage of ways to get up close and personal with exotic animals. You might even get lucky and see some babies roaming around.
All of the institutions are rooted in wanting to help educate people and conserve wildlife and are dedicated to giving back to nature in some way. Plus, it’s a great way to interact with and learn more about the great creatures with whom we share the planet.
For a less animal-centric, but still natural experience, the Dallas Arboretum and Fort Worth Botanic Gardens are breathtaking and educational ways to immerse yourself in nature and all its beauty in the heart of the city.
Okay, so maybe outdoors isn’t your thing. Let’s face it; the wasps and fire ants are out in full force already, and the pollen is making it hard to walk from my apartemnt to my car without my eyes itching. Museums are still a fun way to get out and explore what this great area has to offer.
I would list them like I did with the art festivals, bu this post would get exponentially longer if I did. Instead, I’ll give you this link to the Wikipedia list of museums in North Texas painstakingly put together by some beautiful soul.
Explore it and find what speaks to your heart. It’s worth it.
There were some other activities that didn’t quite make the list, but deserve honorable mention. They are: Six Flags Over Texas, going to see a concert at Starplex Pavilion (before it gets too hot), exploring any (or all) the cute historic downtown areas, camping, and I’m sure so many more because this is the DFW Metroplex; the fourth largest metropolitan area in the country (in population) behind only New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago and is larger, in area, than Rhode Island and Connecticut combined. For scale, the DFW airport is larger, in area, than the island of Manhattan. So yeah, I’d say there are some things to do around here.
I hope this helps, y’all. I really do. And if you don’t happen to live in this area, I hope this list inspires you to find things going on this spring in your neck of the woods.
I’ll be attending some of these events and visiting some of the cool places and probably blogging about it. You can always follow what I’m doing on Snapchat and Instagram, so come say hi.