Saturday, January 28, 2012

Free Family Fun -- Part One

We are broke. There, I said it. No mincing words. Nothing left to the imagination.


So what's a mama to do when her chickadees need to be entertained? Here are a few ideas that I have gleaned from the WWW and from my own imagination.

Hold onto your pony tails. It's gonna be a bumpy fun ride . . .

* Seeking Silly Stuff. Now, I could have gone all conventional and said a "Scavenger Hunt," but usually this brings to mind a lot of preparation, so it often geets nixed right away. Or is that just me? At any rate, I take the easy way out. We go to a park we haven't visited for awhile and I make up clues as we go along.

"Find me something bumpy." They scamper off and look for a bumpy object.

"Bring me something that crawls."  My son once asked a mom if he could "borrow" her baby for the game.  Her reaction and mine for that matter are for another post . . .

"Look for an object that has at least three colors on it."

It's funny some of the things they come up with and how they justify some of their finds (i.e. stranger's baby). My ten year old is too old for this game *sigh* But he joins in anyway and he is the funniest when he tries to justify the silliest of objects to satisfy the quest.

* Doodle Painting  I originally saw this idea on Pinterest.  It then lead me to  Delaware County Moms.  And I love it.  Even my ten year old gets into this kind of thing.  And all of the ingredients, you probably have at home already.  Bonus -- and also the point of this post!

German Spotlight.  I have mentioned this a time or two, I know.  Probably because it brings back such memories from my childhood.  Wait 'til dusk.  Break out the flashlights with fresh batteries (trust me, stopping in the middle of the game to fiddle with batteries = no fun).  Establish your boundaries and "home base" for safety and play hide-n-seek.  Yes, in the dark.  You get hit by a light, you are out.

This is a great game to play in fall or spring when it gets dark sooner, but it's still not too cold to deter the fun.

* Family Photo Phun Fun  Throw up (that may be a poor choice of words) an old sheet to use as a background or find a great tree for a twist on locale and let the kids take silly pictures.  Yes, let THEM use the camera.  Dress up in silly clothes or make mustaches out of construction paper and snap away.  Don't forget, parents have to participate too!  Have fun looking through the photos on the LCD screen or on the tv after the shoot is over.

Which naturally leads us to the next activity that can be done the same day or saved for another day . . .

* Attack of the Archivers  Preserve those memories and silly pictures -- don't let them just sit on your SD card!  Slide those printed out photo shoot pictures into a small photo brag book.  But only after you dress them up a little.  Mount them on colored paper, add a sticker or two and write a silly caption that makes you laugh.  Slide in the little album or post on the fridge.  For those of you who loathe scrap booking, STOP HYPERVENTILATING:  THIS IS NOT SCRAP BOOKING.  Just keep telling yourself that and it will go much easier.  No need to get fancy. Just do it.  For the kids.

* Dinner Danger  Okay, okay this really isn't a dangerous activity, but your kids will enjoy the sense of danger or intrigue the name implies.  Unwrap the labels from a few (preselected) cans before you get the kids involved.  Gather around the table with said cans and a can opener.  Each child gets to pick a can to open and "serve" for dinner.  The family members who are not serving must wear blindfolds and let the server feed them a bite or two of whatever is in the can.  Once they have sampled the mystery food, let them take off the blindfold to enjoy the reactions of the others. 

You can choose to heat and eat or just dig right into the can.  Depending on how adventurous you are.  If you don't eat what's in the can, you don't get to serve.  Simple as that.  Or you can make up your own rules to fit your family.

Whatev's have fun with it!

Hope these few ideas sparks your imagination and fun in your family.  I'll be back later with more fun free family activities.  Enjoy!

Counting it all joy,

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