Thursday, March 29, 2012

Spring Break Activities that Won't Break Your Budget

Spring break is just around the corner.  While some families may be heading off for a week at the beach or a few days at an amusement park, many families are choosing to do a "stay-cation", staying at home and finding relaxing things to do.  While my favorite thing about spring break is throwing the alarm clock into the closet, my kids seem to want to do more exciting things.

Here are a few fun family activities that won't break the family budget.

Banana Split Sprinkles Caramel Sauce April 17, 20111
From stevendepolo's photos on
  • Gather the neighbors, have everyone bring a dish to share and have a backyard cookout.  Or, dust off your homemade ice cream machine and host an ice cream social.  (Make sure you have lots of cherries and sprinkles for the sundaes!)
  • Visit the grandparents.  
  • Go to the park for a family game of Wiffle ball or a bike ride.
  • Who says sugar cookies are only for Christmas?  Make a batch and let the kids cut and decorate in spring shapes.
  • Check your local theater for discounted matinees or morning kids' movies.  Or, grab a movie from your local library or Redbox machine, pop a big ole' bowl of popcorn and settle in for a family movie night.
  • Invite friends over for a game night.  Even the youngest kids can play charades!
  • Wildflower walk.  When I was growing up, my parents loved to hunt for rare wildflowers on our hikes.  We carried books with us to identify them and then would take pictures.  It's sort of like a Mother Nature scavenger hunt.  You could hunt for wildflowers, rocks or birds.
  • Grab all the pillows in the house and throw them in the living room floor.  Then flop, roll or have a good old fashioned pillow fight.
  • Find a museum that hosts free admission.  We took our boys to the Atlanta Federal Reserve for a tour last summer.
  • Volunteer.  Get your family involved in helping others.  Does an elderly neighbor need her lawn mowed or flowers planted?  Maybe you and your kids could deliver some of those homemade cookies to a lonely friend or to your local fire department.
  • Take a hike.  Look around your area and find a hike that is family friendly.  Give the kids a disposable camera and then take a look at the hike from their viewpoint.
Our hike up Stone Mountain last fall.
We made it!

What are you doing for Spring Break this year?  Any activities to add to our list?


  1. Over here in hte UK most schools have sports or other activities that don't cost that much.

    Kids can play with their friends and take a packed lunch so parents can rest too - or in our case just get on with the mountain of work to do!

    But it is important to do something as a family.

    1. Interesting! A few planned, organized activities would be fabulous. Do your kids have a summer break or are the schools in the UK on a year round system?

  2. That's a great list. Spring break is past here in CenTex, but the activities can still be done! And our wildflowers this year are amazing.

    1. I can still identify a few native NC and GA wildflowers so the lesson have stuck in the ole brain!

  3. My mom is suppossed to be taking our daughter to Astoria for a day or two. Other than that, we just plan to hang around the house---since we only have 1 car. :-)

    1. Sounds better than our Spring break so far. A nasty, cold virus has invaded our house. I am the only one who hasn't come down with it yet. Maybe I should set up the backyard tent and move outside for a few days!