Monday, October 7, 2013

Family: fun & cheap activities

One of my goals for October is to be more active as a family and to stick to our budget. We are cutting costs which means cutting out the expensive family outings  That doesn't mean cutting out the fun though. I want my kids to have lasting memories. They won't remember whether we spent a bunch of money on a fancy trip but they will remember the time we went bike riding with our matching tie dye shirts and shouted "Team Awesome!" when we took off on our adventure. And you know what, those shirts and bike ride cost us about $20 for the first time and FREE after that. 
So I've been trying to find new and exciting things to keep everyone occupied without breaking the bank. Here are some thoughts I have ...

  • Geocaching {price of gas and you'll need a GPS, just use your phone}
  • Letterboxing {price of gas and an ink pad}
  • Bike rides {bike maintenance}
  • Hiking {price of gas to get to your location}
  • Movie night {$1.20 from Redbox or $1 theater just make sure you eat beforehand}
  • Crafty things around the house {cost of paper, paint or whatever else you use}
  • Make a meal together {cost of food supplies, it's more fun if you try to use what you have on hand a-la-Chopped}
  • Visit the library and let every take turns pick books and movies that the whole family would enjoy {FREE!}
  • Explore your city, I bet there are tons of things in your city that you've never done before look for the ones that are FREE!
  • Visit a pumpkin patch and carve your pumpkins together {price of pumpkins and gas}
  • Rearrange your house - my girls are obsessed with moving things around their rooms. By using what you already have you can give any room a new look and feel without any money. Maybe the kids have a better idea about where the book shelf should go so let them plan too. {FREE}
  • Picnic inside, make whatever you want, spread out a blanket on the floor and eat!
  • Go fishing {if you already own a pole then this is FREE!}
  • Visit nearby family - a good way to take a mini vacation is to visit relatives out of your home town but within driving distance or go spend the day with Great Grandma you know she'd love some company. {price of gas}
  • Indoor mini-golf or bowling, when it's cold this is a fun option if you have something available to you {price of admission}
  • Order take-out and serve it "fancy" style at home, if you order an entree or two from a nice restaurant and pair it with sides you made yourself you can have the kids set the table and everyone can drink from wine glasses. You'll be surprised how well behaved the kids act when they get the grown-up cups :) {cost of food}
I'm sure there are many, many, many other ideas but these are the ones I could come up with easily. Spending time together doesn't have to cost a lot of money. 

What does your family do to stay active and have fun together on the cheap?

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