Wet and Wild Summer Fun

Splurging on a summer pass to the community pool may not be an affordable option for some families.  Fortunately, there are a number of ways to keep cool when the mercury soars without breaking the bank. The following simple projects prove that splashtastic fun can be had by kids of all ages with a simple garden hose and a few inexpensive household items: Water Balloon Piñata Materials: Package of water balloons String Garden hose Small plastic funnel Plastic baseball bat Directions: Fill up the water balloons using the funnel and hose.  Keep in mind that the more water you add … Continue reading

Beach Fun at Home

There’s nothing like a beach vacation to celebrate summer. Enjoying the sun, sand and surf is a rite of passage for many families, but like all good things, seasonal trips to the shore don’t last forever. If you struggle with vacation withdrawal, consider the following fun projects designed to battle the summer blues.  You will be amazed at how cheap and easy it is to turn all that extra sand you dragged home from the beach into amazing vacation souvenirs: Beach Candles Materials: Solid colored pillar candle Rubber cement Sand Shells Newspaper Directions: Dump some sand on newspaper that has … Continue reading

High-Flying Fun

If you are looking for an easy and affordable way to keep your kids busy this summer, grab a kite and head outdoors.  Kite-flying is a breeze when you’ve got the entire family working together to bring your colorful flying machine to life.  Getting a kite to take flight also lends itself to a slew of educational opportunities.  Kids can get hands-on lessons in math, science, history and geography all while having fun.  What’s more, there’s something to be said about the sense of pride a child feels when she gets a kite to dance across the summer sky. Fortunately, … Continue reading

Fourth of July Fun for Less

Celebrating America’s birthday doesn’t have to send you to the poorhouse.  By opting to party at your own home this holiday, you can save money and still have fun.  To cut down on food and beverage costs, consider having a potluck and asking each guest to bring along a favorite dish to pass. Edible American Eagles Ingredients: One package of Oreos 1/2 cup white chocolate One dozen large marshmallows One cup of finely shredded coconut 12 cashews Black icing Directions: Melt the white chocolate in a bowl in the microwave. Spread the shredded coconut in an even layer on wax … Continue reading

Make a Splash Without Spending a Ton of Cash

There’s no better way to cool off this Memorial Day weekend than hanging poolside with your friends and family.  Fortunately, you don’t have to drain your wallet to keep your clan entertained in the water.  If you are tight on cash, skip the fancy pool toys and try these splashtastic games instead: Fish, Fish, Whale:  This simple yet fun game puts a spin on the classic “Duck, Duck, Goose.”  To play, have kids stand in a circle in the shallow end of the pool.  Select one person to be “it.”  That player then goes around the circle and taps each … Continue reading

Fun Summer Ideas for Kids

Boredom doesn’t have to be busted by spending a lot of money. Try one of the following fun summer ideas for kids that are creative and frugal. No more “Mommy, I’m bored” this summer. Pick Blueberries  …Or raspberries, or strawberries. Find a local pick-your-own farm nearby and enjoy the sunshine. Picking berries is a fun and frugal activity for kids, and you get to take the sweet fruit home with you. Make Baggie Ice Cream Forget the expensive ice cream maker. Instead, grab two inexpensive plastic bags for a cool homemade treat. You’ll need a set for each child. Ingredients: … Continue reading

Make Recycling Fun

Ah, Earth Day. One of the few things in life that’s older than me. Thank goodness for Earth Day. No longer an occasion celebrated solely by tree huggers, hippies and flower power people; Earth Day is now a mainstream event commemorated around the world with the hope of raising awareness about our planet’s needs and promoting the modern environmental movement. Translation:  Use the day to show your kids how recycling can be fun. Let’s face it; most of our homes are filled with junk. And by junk I mean items that sit around collecting dust until you can figure out … Continue reading

Affordable Snow Day Fun

  With yet another wicked winter storm readying to slam into several states from New Mexico to Illinois, millions of parents are gearing up for a snow day.  For kids, having a day off from school is a dream come true, but for many moms and dads the unexpected break is a true nightmare, especially if said children turn restless and cabin fever strikes. To preserve your sanity as Old Man Winter blasts into your neck of the woods, consider the following fun and affordable projects and games designed to keep your kids busy and out of trouble: DIY Decorative … Continue reading

The First Signs of Spring

Yesterday, I saw my first sure sign of spring:  Wal-Mart, Target and Walgreens replaced their Valentine’s Day merchandise with all things Easter. I don’t know about you, but I sure could use a bit of spring-like weather.  Today’s high is 16 degrees.  That’s not the wind chill; that’s the actual air temperature. And no, I don’t live in Antarctica. Even if Mother Nature is not cooperating in your neck of the woods, you can spring into the first season of the year by gathering the family for a fun day of spring-themed crafting.  You don’t need a ton of money … Continue reading

Gearing Up for the Big Game

The biggest sporting event of the year is little over a week away. The countdown to Super Bowl XLVII between the Baltimore Ravens and the San Francisco 49ers is on. Watching the game can be a fun event for the entire family.  In fact, millions of clans around the world gather together to cheer on their favorite team at huge Super Bowl parties, though hosting one can be quite challenging and expensive if you are not careful. One way to reduce the cost of hosting a viewing party is to make simple and affordable snacks.  Not only will the following … Continue reading