Thursday, October 29, 2015

How our Family of Seven Saves Money(but still has fun!)

My husband and I often laugh about how our kids are going to give us such a hard time when they grow up and they realize all the things we did to save money on things.

I mean, seriously though, when it easily costs 30 dollars to go to a fast food restaurant, you learn to get creative.

We do Bookit! and Read to Succeed in order to get free six flags tickets every summer.

We love our local library.

We belong to a homeschool co-op that allows us to get discounted tickets to events and cheaper classes at the Y.

I make a lot of food from scratch, and we buy most of our groceries at Aldi.

We've dressed our kids(and ourselves) up as cows for free food at chik-fil-a.

We've taken advantage of happy hour at Sonic many times, and when they run their special for 59 cent corn dogs, we are. so. there.

But, really, that's just the tip of the iceberg of the things we'll do to save some money but still have fun together.

One of the funniest things we did was this past summer. Some friends of ours had invited us to a local water park that their parents' church had rented out. At the last minute, however, our friends weren't able to make it. But did that stop us from going to a free night at the water park? Even though we weren't going to know anyone else there?

Not even a little bit. ;)

Honestly though, some of our favorite things to do as a family is to pack a picnic and head to a local park or go on some local bike trails. 

On the rare occasions that we all do go out to eat, our kids know that they are usually going to have to get water, and that happy meals are reserved for special occasions(grandparents in town, birthday, etc.)

But even though going out as a family can be a lot of fun, there's also plenty of fun things you can do together at home. 

With the cooler weather coming on, we love to pop some popcorn, drink hot chocolate or cider and have movie nights as a family(we just put a sheet down so we don't make a huge mess everywhere.) Since some of my kids are so young, we don't play board games too much yet, but I definitely foresee our family having many game nights in the years to come.

Sunday nights are a favorite among our kids because we usually eat a big batch of pancakes for dinner. And then, because pancakes are clearly not a special enough treat(ahem), my husband instituted the idea of having a special desert on Sunday nights. We try not to give the kids a ton of sweets throughout the week, but I'm pretty sure we make up for that on Sundays.:)

Then after we've had desert(and gotten the kids hyped up on sugar...) we go into the living room and the kids have a dance competition. Sunday nights used to be the only time we'd let the kids play video games, so we used to have the kids have a dance off, and whoever won(which a lot of times we'd just say everyone wins) would get to take an extra turn playing the game. Sadly our xbox broke last month, so we haven't been able to continue this tradition, but hopefully we'll replace it one day.

There are so many ways go out and give your kids fun memories without having to break the bank to do it.

What are some of your favorite ways to have fun on a budget?

This post was inspired by the people of personal capital. They offer some great, free wealth management tools if you're looking to track your finances.

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