By now, your family has been cooped up together for a few days. People are getting whiny and so are the kids. You are broke from the gift giving and planning to put an extra $500/year into your 401(k) (see blog from 2 weeks ago), so you need some cheap entertainment and quickly.
Here are a few fun bargain ideas to chase away the winter fidgets.
- Find a teenager who needs driving hours to get his/her license. Have them drive you around the ritzy areas of town looking at Christmas lights. BYO hot chocolate in a thermos. Yours with an adult mixer because, hey, you’re not driving for a change!
- Take your cookie sheets to a nearby snowy hill for a little speedy cold fun. It’s okay if you get them dented up. You’re on a New Year’s resolution diet starting next week, anyway, so you won’t be using them for baking.
- Text all your neighbors at the last minute and ask them to bring whatever they have to share in the house (open bottle of wine and half-eaten plate of crackers and cheese? Bring it!) for an impromptu gathering. Even if only 3 out of 10 show up, it will be an unexpected treat for you and them.
- Text your friend’s parents and invite them to meet at the local Dollar Movie theater. In Denver, ours is the Elvis chain. Let the kids go to their movie choice and moms and dads either duck out for a hot toddy or pick a movie of your own to see.
- Now that you’ve got all this new holiday loot, challenge everyone in your family to find 5 clothing items and 5 toys/household objects to donate. Take a little trip to Goodwill to drop off your unneeded wares (I’ll bet people will come up with more than the 5) and celebrate with a stop at the first ice cream store you pass.