Cold Outside? Stay Inside – A Fun, Frugal Idea for Entertaining Your Kids

The brisk cold winter days have approached. In fact, some states have already had their first dump of the white flaky stuff. Which would be great, because children love to play in the snow. However, not all of us are lucky enough to get the great snowfall this early, so children tend to avoid being outside in the bitter cold. So what do you do with them?

Sure, you can take them to movies, the arcade, bowling, skating, etc. But all of that costs money. How do you entertain children inside all winter long on a budget? It’s not as difficult as you think. I have five children and have to find ways to entertain five separate personalities! Imagine!

I am beginning a week long series on entertaining children indoors on a budget. The first idea I have is:

Treasure Hunt/Scavenger Hunt

This is honestly the best game. My children all love it and we have modified it to make several different versions of the game.

There are at least two ways to play this, but I’m sure like us you can come up with new ideas.

First, you can have one child take a bunch of items and hide them all over the entire house. With five children we usually do about fifty items or more just to make it a bit more fun and last a little longer! Use things like wrapped pieces of candy (be specific on brand), money (like pennies, dimes, nickels, etc.), hair clips, jewelry, stickers, etc. We use our computer and printer to make four copies of the master list so that the other four can begin looking for the treasures.

A second version of this game we turned into a “cleaning” project. Mom or Dad create a master list of items that need to be “cleaned up”. For instance, the list might say – a stray sock. Or – a piece of paper on the floor, or – a surface that needs to be dusted. In order for them to “win” the game, they have to do as many of the items on the list as they can. We’ve even modified this version to a garage sale, by requesting each child find, – a baby item, – a stuffed animal, – a barbie doll, – a puzzle, – three books, etc. They each brought the items they’d like to see go and sell in the garage sale. The only rule to that version is that they cannot get rid of something that actually belongs and is still used by someone else.

Visit the frugal blog each day this week to get more ideas for family time and indoor things to do!

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