Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Making Summer Fun Without Emptying the Bank Account

Once the school year ends, children will be seeking constant entertainment. Parents may go to great lengths to avoid hearing, “I’m bored!” Television, video games, camps, theme parks, and other activities will assume the role of expensive babysitters. Parents should keep dollars in their wallets this summer by thinking outside the box and planning when creating summer entertainment for children. The entire family will have a great time without parents worrying about how to afford school clothing and supplies for next year.

Summer vacations to the beach or mountains are guaranteed fun but they are also expensive. Enjoy summer closer to home by camping in the backyard or at a local campground. Teach children responsibility by letting them pack their own belongings. Let them see how much food costs by giving each one a shopping list for the trip and letting them suggest cost-cutting alternatives such as buying in bulk or exchanging high-priced prepackaged meals for those prepared at the campsite.

When kids are at home, turn off the television and take a hike at a local park. Learn about the local flora and fauna by taking a nature book. Visit the local zoo to learn more about the animal kingdom. Older children can even volunteer to work at zoo camps during the summer. Kids who prefer to play will enjoy spending time at a public pool with their friends. This is just as fun and much less expensive than a day trip to the beach.

Scan the Internet and newspapers for free or inexpensive local activities such as concerts, community movie nights, and sporting events. Different neighborhoods hold parties throughout the summer so organize one for your community. Keep expenses low by arranging a potluck picnic or a barbecue where attendees take their own meat. If a large space is needed, rent a pavilion at a local park or campground and set up an obstacle course or water balloon races for the children.

Show older children how to earn money over the summer with a business. Dog walking, gardening, and beverage stands are several popular ideas. Children will learn how to manage their time and money and parents get some breathing room without worrying about what the kids are doing. Helping children to create a budget and track savings for a desired toy, game, or electronic makes work more fun.

Summer is the perfect season to institute family game or activity night. Spend time playing cards or board games, reading, cooking, or just talking. Children will cherish these memories for a lifetime so make them count. Ask kids which low-cost family activities they would enjoy and incorporate these into the schedule.

All of this focus on family should not cause parents to neglect themselves. Summer is the perfect time to start a part-time work at home business to earn money for a winter vacation. Things may be slow at the day job but with the right knowledge and resources, everyone can earn more money by becoming their own bosses.

No comments: