Beach Fun on a Budget


April is almost over.  Time is marching on.  Soon, your spring flowers will be a distant memory as the dog days of summer hit and all you care about is watering yourself rather than your blossoms.

Summer fun means picnics, barbeques and visits to the beach, but those good times can add up quickly if you aren’t careful.  To avoid busting your budget on trips featuring the sun, sand and surf, consider these money-saving ideas:

DIY Beach Towel

Large decorative beach towels don’t come cheap.  If you have a large family, buying a new towel for each member can put a huge dent in your budget.  Save some cash by making your own summer-themed towel to take to the beach or pool.  Look for plain towels on sale at a discount store or purchase bundled towel sets at your favorite wholesale club.  Next, let your kids decorate the bargain towels with bright fabric paint.  Simply spread the towels on the lawn or a picnic table, and then let your kids decorate them with pictures of the sun, sea and palm trees.  They can even add their names to further personalize the towel.  Not only will the project keep them busy for a while, it will also yield customized beach towels that you can’t put a price tag on.

Homemade Lip Balm

Keeping your lips soft and subtle after a long day at the beach is a breeze if you have some lip balm.  Of course, buying enough of the lip moisturizer to get you through the entire summer can add up fast.  Fortunately, you can save some dough by making lip balm at home.  To make chocolate-flavored lip balm all you need is 3 tablespoons of cocoa butter, 4 chocolate chips, one vitamin E capsule and 1/4 teaspoon of almond extract.  To start, melt the cocoa butter in the microwave, and then add in the chocolate chips.  Gently stir the mixture until all of the ingredients are combined.  If the mixture is too stiff microwave it for a few additional seconds.  Next, add the inner contents of the vitamin E capsule and stir in the almond extract.  Finally, pour the mixture into the container of your choice and allow it to cool completely before using.

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Michele Cheplic

About Michele Cheplic

Michele Cheplic was born and raised in Hilo, Hawaii, but now lives in Wisconsin. Michele graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a degree in Journalism. She spent the next ten years as a television anchor and reporter at various stations throughout the country (from the CBS affiliate in Honolulu to the NBC affiliate in Green Bay). She has won numerous honors including an Emmy Award and multiple Edward R. Murrow awards honoring outstanding achievements in broadcast journalism. In addition, she has received awards from the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association for her reports on air travel and the Wisconsin Education Association Council for her stories on education. Michele has since left television to concentrate on being a mom and freelance writer.