It’s always great fun to go out for dinner and a movie or spend a special weekend away and a charming B&B. But not all of your weekend activities need to cost a bundle. Why not keep things simple this weekend and fill it with free fun?
1) A pot luck pantry. Go through your cupboards and find any items that might have been pushed to the back. Then experiment and prepare dinner using only the ingredients already in your pantry and whatever else you have on hand. It makes for a “free” meal and a lot of fun!
2) Break out the board games! With technology so prominent today the trusty old board games are collecting dust. You will be surprised at how much fun they can be, invite some friends around and enjoy a few games.
3) The library. Its not only for books, most libraries also have extensive CD and DVD collections you can check out. A number of libraries also have “story time” for young children, film nights, book clubs, and other events that you might be missing out on.
4) Learn something new. The internet is full of instructional posts, videos, and podcasts on how to do any number of things! Want to learn another language? Light a fire without matches? Learn how to draw? Get googling!
5) Do a home walk through project assessment. Are there things you want to do to fix up your home? Globes that need changing? Think about things that annoy you and that you can improve on and make a list. If there are things you can tidy up or re-arrange do them!
6) Go for a walk. Not only is this free its incredibly good for you. Breathe in fresh air, listen to your surroundings and completely immerse yourself in the walk.
7) Take photos. Take your time and play with angles, light, and subject matter. You can stay home and take pictures of your favourite things and places. Or you can go for a drive and explore a new place.
8) Write a letter to a friend or relative. Its always nice to receive a letter in the mail instead of the usual bills, junk mail, and advertising.
9) Scan your old pictures. This is one of those jobs that there is never time for, but if you were to lose these precious memories your would regret not making copies. Working through your old pictures is also great fun, you can reminisce over each of the pictures.
10) Movie marathon! Grab out some of your favourite movies that you haven’t watched in ages and dedicate a day to watching them all one after the other.
11) Do some yoga or meditation. If you’ve never done it before there are some fantastic guides online. It is a great way to calm your mind and relax your body.
12) Read a book. Weather its been sitting on your bed side table waiting to be read, or you’ve picked one up from the library, make some time and get stuck into a good book.
13) Build a blanket fort! If you have kids, this is a fantastic way to spend a rainy afternoon. Use chairs, blankets, and tables to make an enormous hidden structure, then hide in there and play games and read books. If your kids are a bit older, why not build two forts (on opposite sides of the room) and have “fort wars” – toss small bean bags and pillows back and forth.
14) Make a few phone calls to friends and family you haven’t spoken to in a while. Find out what they have been doing and have a good long catch up.
15) Organise a garage sale. You wont want to hold it right away but organising what can sell and setting a date is a great start. Not only will this be free but you will make money!
16) Sell items you no longer want on ebay, there will be someone out there who wants what you have.
17) Take a nap. You work hard during the week and sometimes the extra rest is exactly what your body needs to feel revived.
18) Research your family tree. Why not do a little digging and find out where you came from? You can call family members and use online searches to get started.
19) Create a list of goals you want to achieve. Better yet, write them down and then tell someone about them.
20) Play indoor tennis. No need for equipment, all you need is a piece of paper and your hands. Screw up the piece of paper into a ball and tap it to each other.
21) Do some sudoku puzzles and crossword puzzles. These take up time and challenge your brain.
22) Volunteer. There are countless volunteer projects out there that need your time. Why not get in touch with your community and see what needs doing.
23) When in doubt, work out. You don’t have to be a member of a fancy gym to get a quality work out. Sit ups, squats, and push ups can all be done at home. For more of a challenge watch some videos for more ideas on what you can do.
24) Start a journal. Getting into the habit of recording different events is an excellent way to not only preserve memories, but to improve your writing skills.
25) Do some creative writing. Why not create a story or write a poem to pass the time, you might discover a hidden talent.
26) Great crafty and organised, hand-make some gifts ready for later in the year. If you enjoy sewing, crochet, or knitting this can be used to make some really unique gifts for friends and family.
27) Read the local newspaper. It’s always useful to stay up-to-date on what is going on in your town. There might also be some information on free events coming up.
28) Play an instrument. If you don’t know how then learn using tutorials on youtube.
29) Start a book club. You might have already found a fitting club at your local library which is great! But if you haven’t found a group who like to read what you like to read why not create your own! You can have meetings at one another’s houses or you can create an online group.
30) Play a card game! I use to love confusing people by playing this one card game that, unless you know the rules, seems to make no sense at all! Card games are timeless.
31) Read some blogs!
32) Create a blog of your own, write all about a topic you are interested in and share it with similarly interested people.
33) Go to a park and play Frisbee.
34) Finally read that pile of magazines you have stacked on your desk. Then once you have finished them pass them on to someone who would like to read them, or recycle them!
35) Attend a free workshop or information session. You can learn new things and sometimes get a few freebies!
36) Listen to digital radio and discover some new music. I’ve been loving the Pandora app because I can listen to all kinds of music with minimal ads!
37) Wait until night falls and do some stargazing. See if you can recognise any of the constellations, or make some up!
38) Go on a hike. Research some local trails and organise a day pack. You can even plan a picnic for your destination!
39) Invite some friends over instead of going out. Get everyone to bring along a plate of food to share and you’re set for an inexpensive night in.
40) Do some mending. Favourite coat lost a button? Do those pants need taking in? Sit down and mend your clothes and they’ll last a lot longer.
41) Drink more water. This improves your health and in turn prevents doctors visits. While we’re on the topic, avoid purchasing bottled water by carrying a bottle with you.
42) Give up a bad habit. It can be a small thing you want to avoid doing or it could be something more serious like quitting smoking. Do some research and quit.
43) Spend an evening by candlelight, this will save money on electricity all while being romantic.
44) Turn off the TV. Few people realise that watching TV isn’t restful for your body. You may feel that because you are sitting down you are relaxing, however your brain is being stimulated by TV, it is processing information and reacting emotionally.
45) Make some homemade bread. This is so easy you’ll wonder why you’ve never done it before.
46) Write a list of things you want to do this season.
47) Plan some ‘service’ gifts you can give to friends and family. For new parents it might be babysitting, or you could offer to care for pets or house sit while friends travel.
48) Don’t go to stores or shopping centres for entertainment. Staying clear of these money traps is the easiest way to save money.
49) Create an idea book. Whenever you think of something you’d like to do or somewhere you would like to visit, write it down to review later. You might be surprised to find some free things to do yourself.
50) Watch the sunset. How often do you take time out of your busy life to appreciate a sunset? Get a glass of wine or a cup of tea and relax while watching the world go by.