Creative Family Fun Ideas on a Shoestring Budget

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Creative family fun, dinner party

If it’s getting more difficult to have once-a-week date nights, you likely have one or several children. It’s natural for married couples with children to stay home more often. In addition to finding a sitter (and paying for child care) it can be tough to afford a night on the town. Groceries, diapers, homes, vehicles and other assets (Yes, diapers are assets! lol) cost money. Creative family fun ideas may get harder to come by if you start to feel weighed down by daily responsibilities.

It’s important to remember that it’s okay to be tight on money. The reality is that most couples raising families encounter financial challenges at some point. It may have been easier to “live it up” when you were dating. Now, you have a mortgage, perhaps, college loans and other priority expenses. The good news is that it doesn’t necessarily have to mean the end of your family time fun.

Creative family fun need not be expensive

Remember when you and your spouse used to lie around for hours, talking about your dreams? Those dreams might have included getting married and having a family. While managing finances can be tricky, there are still lots of things you can do as a family that provide social opportunities without breaking the bank. The following list includes ideas you might like to try:

  • Start a family supper club: My family did this and we enjoyed our supper club for several years. The idea is to get 3-6 families to commit to regularly monthly gatherings. Every month, a different family hosts the event. When it’s your turn to host, you provide the main meal and cutlery supplies and the others bring side-dishes and desserts. The host family also provides a family craft that everyone can enjoy doing together after supper. You can also have a few games in mind. Taking a walk as a group is fun, and each event should end with group prayer time. Your group can brainstorm to customize these events to your own preference. We made so many wonderful memories and still have a lovely wall-hanging in our living room that was a family craft at one of the parties. Since you’re making food and drinks at home, it’s not nearly as expensive as going out to eat. You do have to pay for gas money to get to the host home when it’s not your turn. A supper club is an inexpensive way to have creative family fun.
  • Host a foreign country night: It takes a few weeks of planning but this creative family fun idea is sure to please the crowd! Each family chooses a country. At the main event, every family sets up a table with display posters (like kids use for science or geography fairs). In addition to the poster, families give a short presentation on their chosen country. They also bring food to share that is common to the culture. You can get as extravagant as you like or keep things simple. Some families like to put on a play or wear native dress. After the presentations are given, everyone can enjoy a sampling of the various foods, listen to music from the presented countries and have fun looking at the displays.
  • Have a dance party: A barn, garage or living room area with furniture removed all make great locations for a dance party. Creative family fun ideas should always include activities for all ages. Who doesn’t love to dance? Okay, some people really hate it but perhaps they can agree to serve refreshments or be the DJs instead! Why wait for a wedding or business affair to have a dance party? This is a great way to get some exercise and liven things up on a weekend.
  • Family sleepovers are fun: Sleepovers aren’t just for kids! You can have adult fun too. Invite a few families to put up tents or bring campers to your yard. If you don’t have a lot of outdoor space, perhaps sleeping bags in a basemen will do — or every family can take a different room in your house. You can have a campfire or use an indoor s’more maker if needed. Enjoy a scavenger hunt or other challenge games. Watch a movie, play board games or just sit around, enjoying each others’ company. Everyone can pitch in for food or each family can provide supplies for a separate meal.
  • Family talent night: Another creative family fun idea is to host a talent night, coffee shop or open mic night. Whatever you want to call it, the idea is to invite guests to share a talent. They can sing or play a musical instrument. Someone might tell jokes or perform a skit. Another guest might read poetry, or share artwork. Everyone can contribute snacks and drinks.

Creative family fun keeps the spark in a marriage

It’s nice to have alone time with your spouse. However, making memories as a family is just as important. Creative family fun ideas can help you unplug once in a while. Summer is almost here. Why not give one or more of these ideas a try? If you do, we’d love to hear about it. And, if you have other ideas to share, tell us about them in the comments!

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