Weekends are the worst for spending more money than you intended, especially if you have a family with some young kids to entertain. The best way to avoid draining your savings on weekend activities is to implement a no-spend weekend. While this might seem daunting at first, it’s actually not so difficult if you already have a bunch of ideas lined up to stave off boredom. Here are some worthwhile activities to consider so you can still enjoy some quality time with your family on the weekends without breaking the bank.
Pretty much every neighborhood and town has a small body of water to swim in for free. Public lakes, community centers with in-ground pools, and state parks with public ponds — these are all great places to take a free dip in on the weekends. This is a relaxing activity to do with your family, especially if your kids don’t know how to swim yet. You could be spending a few weekends teaching them the basics and acquainting them with proper water safety.
Pay the local library a visit
Library cards are completely free, but they’re the key that unlocks thousands upon thousands of books, movies, TV shows, and programs that you would otherwise have to pay for somewhere else. You can rent out some books to start a family book club or a bunch of DVDs to plan a movie night. There are also plenty of activities to attend at a local library such as concerts, children’s storytime events, workshops, lectures, and author readings — all available for free when you sign up for a library card.
Join a community sports team
Every town has its own hub for community sports teams that you can participate in on the weekends for free. If your family isn’t athletic, then it’s still worth it to stop by, watch a few games, and engage with your community.
Have a board game weekend
Forget game nights, why not have an entire weekend dedicated to playing board games? If you don’t already have some old ones to dust off from the shelf, then you can ask your family, friends, or neighbors if they have any board games that you can either borrow or take from their hands.
Talk to your neighbors
Head over to your neighbors to have a nice chat with them over a cup of coffee or introduce yourself to them if you aren’t already familiar yet. Not only are they potential new friends to hang out with, but they can also be incredibly helpful if you or anyone in your family require some assistance with something. Likewise, you could also be helping them out if need be.
Cook a meal with things in your cupboard
Look through your cupboard and try to find things that you can cook an entire meal out of. This is a great way to save money on groceries while also stretching your creative culinary muscles. You might just end up discovering your family’s new favorite dish.
Print out free activity and coloring pages
There are plenty of free activity and coloring pages available on the internet for you to print out. Some of them may even be great for adults, like crossword puzzles and Sudoku puzzles. You and your children are bound to be entertained for hours.
Assemble a time capsule
Time capsules are a special way to immortalize memories that you’ll treasure forever. This is a great gift to give your children or yourself in the future. Whatever it is you and your family want to commemorate, it can go into the time capsule — the sky’s the limit. All you need is a container to store the items in, the belongings you want to include, and a place to hide the time capsule in.
Construct a blanket fort
There’s nothing more enjoyable for kids than building a huge blanket fort to play in. The only materials you’ll need to gather are chairs, tablets, and of course, a large blanket or two. Things to do inside the fort include watching movies, eat some delicious snacks, and even take a nap.
Plan your meals for the week
Meal planning can dramatically cut down the costs of your grocery bills, help your family eat healthier, reduces your food waste, and give you more time to spend on more worthwhile things. The best thing about this activity is that it’s completely free to do. You just need to sit down with your family, think about what you want to eat for the week, and make a list of things to buy on your next trip to the grocery.
There’s no shortage of free things to do on a no-spend weekend. Rather than blowing your savings or your paycheck on things to do with your family, you can spend it doing any of the fun and free activities mentioned above.