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45 Activities with Kids on the Cheap

Okay, so you know that I am waiting to hear back officially from the Big Brother Big Sister program.  I’ve also been returning to super inexpensive fun on my own since we are being cheap for the next few months.  So today’s post is pretty simple.  Here is the list of activities with kids that I’ve come up with that can be done even with a tiny budget:

Activities with Kids on the Cheap

  1. Take photos to make annual scrap book.
  2. Make/paint/go on shopping trip to find a piggy bank/bank for budget.  I was thinking of making a budget of less than $20 a week and we can save the extra for more expensive outings.
  3. Pottery painting.
  4. Kids Eat Free days at different restaurants around the city.
  5. Zoo – Free first Tuesdays after 2pm from Sept through May at the Houston Zoo.
  6. Feed the ducks.
  7. Picnic
  8. Hike/Walk
  9. Petsmart/pet store events.  We can play with cute dogs for free and even volunteer our time.
  10. Library
  11. Volunteer.  The Big Brother Big Sister program will even let us know when there are openings at things they hear about.
  12. Children’s Museum – Free Thursdays from 5-8pm at the Houston one.
  13. Dollar Movie Theater – there is a $1.50 one about 10 minutes away from my house.
  14. Build-a-Bear – Can save up for a really nice one.
  15. Board games
  16. Miller Outdoor Theater (any city’s outdoor theater)
  17. Menil Collection (art museums)
  18. Swimming
  19. Garage sales
  20. Thrift stores
  21. Errands (they actually say that other people’s kids like this…)
  22. Cooking
  23. Bingo (you can get 9 cards for multiple games for a total of $4-$6 per person)
  24. Pajama party
  25. Movie night
  26. Disc golf
  27. Fly a kite
  28. Go to the beach/lake/etc.
  29. Parks
  30. Sports events.  Highschool football games are cheap and sometimes free for kids.
  31. Auctions
  32. Brazos Bend State Park (any state park)
  33. Drive-In Movie Theater
  34. Ghost stories
  35. Gardening
  36. Make our own art.
  37. Look at crafts available at Hobby Lobby.
  38. Sea Monkeys
  39. Farmer’s market
  40. Fruit picking
  41. Puzzles
  42. Geocaching
  43. Mini-Golf
  44. Weenie and s’more roast – yummy
  45. Home Depot Learn to Build classes – look up their schedule online.


FYI:  I worked at a dead end cubicle job from 2005-2011 for about $30,000 a year.  I went self-employed in July 2011 and make between $80,000-$100,000 through blogging, a rental home, and professional pet sitting.  If you’d like to start your own site (link to my free step-by-step guide), I highly suggest checking out Bluehost (my referral link with a nice discount for you).  I even have all of my favorite tools on a resource page - I hope they help you too. This all gives me the time to be with my aging family members, the flexibility to stay close with my friends and family, and it should help if we finally get pregnant too!  Please contact me any time at budgetingfunstuff*at*gmail*dot*com with questions or just to brainstorm! I’d love to help!
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6 thoughts on “45 Activities with Kids on the Cheap

  1. Great list. You know when I see frugal ideas to have fun with kids, it’s usually 2 or 3 things with a long drawn out description. I love you you added so many ideas and kept it short and sweet! My dad used to take me garage sale hopping all the time as a kid. It was pretty fun finding good deals and negotiating price on deals that weren’t so good. Thanks for the great tips!

  2. OMG, Crystal, my kids would love to come see you! These are great activities! But, just in case you might need another idea or two . . . In Phoenix, we have a great children’s theater that puts on live plays — and all the actors are children! So cool. Also, city libraries have activities for young people. And then there’s always baking . . .kids love to help in the kitchen, just not with the dishes.

  3. Good list. I try the hike/walk thing every now and then, but getting our son to go on a walk with us is like pulling teeth. One thing that he actually looks forward to is volunteering at the local Family Giving Tree charity.

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