Family Fun Night Ideas - The $5,000 Money Saving Mama Challenge

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Family Fun Night Ideas - Frugal Ways to Save on Entertainment

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Family fun night ideas can get expensive, but this list of frugal ways to save money on entertainment for stay at home moms can help your budget. Learn all about fun cheap things to do with the whole family without sacrificing tightwad living.

In addition to this page on family fun night ideas, there is an entire page on fun cheap things to do during the day with your family found here. One of the best ways to bring the family together is to set up a family fun night once a week or once every other week.

Turn off the TV, set the cell phones to vibrate, and spend some time getting to know one another again. With our hectic lives, it's way too easy to get caught up in our own schedules and miss out on the day-to-day goings on of our kids and spouse.

Having a family night doesn't have to be expensive. These family fun night ideas are all low on cost, but high on fun.

Are you new here? This cheap birthday ideas page is part of the $5,000 Money Saving Mama Challenge. We'd love for you to join us!

Simply click the link for more information on how you can participate, and save some money this year.


Movie Night
Rent a Redbox.com movie. You can find Redbox movie rentals at grocery stores, convenience stations, and many other businesses in your local community. Go to the website and find locations near you, order your $1 movie rentals online, then go find the bright red centers to pick up your movies.

Many McDonald's restaurants have Redbox kiosks. We often pick up Hot Fudge Sundaes while we're there.

Game Night
Stay in and enjoy games with the family. Look for board games at yard sales and thrift stores to gradually build the collection. You could even play sports together on the Wii if you have one. When I was growing up, my parents used to play games with us and our friends almost on a nightly basis.

I think some of my friends liked my parents more than they liked me! We'd play a card game called Pounce which was basically a group version of solitaire. We'd have competitions and everyone really got into it. But I will caution you to make sure your games remain friendly, and not overly competitive. My favorite memory of playing board games with my family was when my best friend said to me as he was leaving my home one evening, "Tell your mom I'll return her knife once I get it out of my back." We were playing Risk.

Puzzles Too
Another of the family fun night ideas is a jigsaw puzzle night with your family. The only expense is what you put into the games, but they are very cheap today, or you can trade with another local mom once you've completed a puzzle. My grandfather used to spend weeks putting together those awesome 3D puzzles.

Arts and Crafts
Take family photos or allow children to rip pictures out of old magazines. They can then artfully glue their favorite photos into a collage and hang it on the wall. This costs nothing since you have everything needed already in the home.

Keep in Touch
Create a newsletter and send it out to everyone in your extended family. You can get as creative as you want here. Allow each child to create their own column. Put in photos. Include everything from current events from your world to poetry or short stories. Send through email and you don't even have the expense of printing it out or buying stamps.

Go Find It
Create a scavenger hunt around your home or perhaps throughout the neighborhood with all the kids you can round up. Give them a list of items to be found, such as something hard, something orange, or something plastic. This costs nothing but a bit of imagination and sense of adventure.

The Family that Cooks Together
Find a frugal yet interesting recipe and cook it together as a family. Cooking is one of the cheap fun things to do with your family that can be enjoyed as often as you like. You always have to eat, right? This can be as inexpensive as a couple bucks per person if you choose the recipe right.

Cookie Care
Teach your children how to bake cookies or other treats from scratch and then deliver them as a family to charity. You may deliver them to the children's wing of a hospital, an elderly neighbor who rarely receives visitors, or a nursing home. The cost is limited to the supplies for baking and your time.

Explore Your Surroundings
Family fun night ideas: Take a nature walk around a local park or your community. Collect flowers then take them home and dry them out. You can then use the dried flowers to decorate rooms or for craft projects that cost nothing.

Catch a Show
Check out the theater scene in your area. Many theaters will offer free shows or shows at drastically reduced prices. The only cost may be parking or refreshments if you need them.

Pizza Place
Making pizza is cheaper than ordering out, so gather the family and toss the dough together. My kids love this! We come up with some really fun toppings and then grill (yes GRILL!) our pizzas outside.

Here's how: prebake your pizza dough to get it firm. Next, brush the top with olive oil and grill it, top side down, for 15 mins on medium heat. Brush the bottom with olive oil and grill for 5 mins or so, just to get the olive oil soaked up. Next, add your toppings and grill until they are done. Yummy!


Frugal Discounts

There are more cheap fun things to do with your family and family fun night ideas, but this should help you get your own ideas going. You can save money on entertainment no matter what your budget may be! If you'd like to do something a little more mainstream, check out the discount vouchers in your local area. This can be a great way to see things in your town you may have never heard of, or have been wanting to go to for a while, at half-price (or less). Most areas throughout the country have at least some of the following:

Sneak Peak at Next Week

Like this section on frugal entertainment? Next week we'll talk about saving money by paying your kids an allowance. We'll go over different types of allowances for different ages, and help you find the solution that best meets your needs.

Not part of our $5,000 Money Saving Mama challenge? Sign up for updates below so you don't miss even a single money-saving week.


How Much Will These Frugal Entertainment Ideas Save You?

I'd love to hear how you are coming with your frugal and free challenge.

What does your family do to save money on entertainment?

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