Stuff I Dig :: Free Fun

During my time off from work this summer, I’ve had lots of extra time with the kids.  Now that it’s the end of summer, our wallets are lighter and our time is shorter.  We’ve challenged ourselves to find our fun in free and low-cost places.  So here’s my list of fun free things we’ve done in the past few weeks.

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Build Stuff

Peanut enjoys building things.  Pumpkin enjoys knocking them down.  It’s a win-win.

Peanut's mini foam block city

 

Pumpkin, the mini city destroyer

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Climb Stuff

Whether it’s a garden wall or a 100-year-old Mulberry tree, I learned that my kids will entertain themselves for a good 30 minutes in, on, and around a climbing scape.  That’s 30 minutes of sitting and relaxing for yours truly, which in Mommy Time is like a week!

 

Climbing is best done with friends!

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Imaginative Play

You may remember that imaginative play is not my strong suit.  However, we have had fun playing dress up or role play games like restaurant.

Clearly, there's no danger of the princess phase passing. Sigh.

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Free Community Events

Our local library does a great children’s story time several times a week.  The story time we attended was a whirlwind of dancing, singing, reading, and ended with a crowd-pleasing bubble party.  Good times.

The library also recently invited the Ululating Mummies to come give a free show and we couldn’t resist.  As my neighbor said, “we weren’t sure if it was going to be ethnic or ‘American stupid’ but we had to check it out.”

You be the judge.

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In all fairness, it was a fun show.  The band was talented, eccentric, and totally good natured.  Added bonus: it’s not often you get to hear a saxophone and an accordion on the same stage.

The rockin' processional.

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The kids had a ball, too.  There was free face painting, balloon animals, and hill rolling.

That's right...rolling down a hill is FREE! And hours of entertainment!

 

Pumpkin soon realized that "sidewalk rolling" is not as fun or effective.

 

Me getting in the spirit of things despite a very shy Peanut.

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Leverage Your Memberships

Our family belongs to several clubs and organizations but we don’t always take full advantage of our memberships.  While I was off of work, the kids got to play at our gym (while I did yoga).  For free.

We went to our community pool several times and brought guests.  For free.

We went to our local children’s museum and spent a whole morning re-discovering its awesomeness.  For free.

She couldn't get on this herself a month ago. It was a whole new museum to her!

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Phone A Friend

We don’t have a membership to the fabulous Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens.  Luckily my friend, Brittany, does.  She graciously offered to use her guest passes for us to join them in the gardens.  The kids had a ball running through the conservatory and children’s garden.  And Brittany and I actually got a chance to relax and chat.

From the tree house we could see pond life and even spotted a blue heron.

 

A toothy grin while resting from our nature walk.

 

All's well that ends in water play.

 

There’s a lot more free fun to be had.  Sadly, I think our summer will run out before our list of activities does.  But then we can think about my favorite season of crinkly leaves and brisk breezes….FALL!