Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Frugal Fun w/Kids: Tips from Ben Affleck & Jennifer Garner: 15 Low-Cost Ideas

It doesn't cost a thing to swing. That's the fiscal lesson from this playground shot of Ben Affleck, Jennifer Garner and their toddler, which recently ran in People Magazine.

"Proud parents Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner get into the swing of things with 1-year-old daughter Violet at a Vancouver playground on Sunday. Garner is currently in the British Columbia province filming the dramedy Juno. "--People

Sure it's fun to take the kids to some of those big-ticket indoor playgrounds for toddlers and teens. But the Afffleck-Garner celebrity example of Frugal Fun reminds me that you don't need a lot of bells and whistles to make kids happy. Likewise, their stellar example prompted me to put together my own list of free or low-cost activities for parents and kids.
15 Fun & Cheap Activities with Kids

1. Go for a walk.
2. Play tag.
3. Make cards together.
4. Play board games. Here's a link to family game nights and here's another link on the topic.
5. Cook together: My children love to bake, mix and blend with us.
6. Browse through a Farmer's Market (a Simple Dollar Tip).
7. Draw, Color and sketch.
8. Watch a TV or movie together. Here's what happened when I watched Hannah Montana with my daughter.
9. Write letters.
10. Dance: We love to put on music and just dance. It's fun.
11. Work out with an exercise tape: We have worked out with Tae-Bo and Yoga with our kids. (We purchased our tapes from discount bins and we borrowed other exercise tapes from the library.)
12. Read together. My daughter and I have girl-time, reading-time.
13. Clean up! I get so tired of the Mommy Maid routine. Teach them to tidy up.
14. Homework. Trying to "help" with math homework has been humbling for me and very entertaining for my kids.
15. Call friends and relatives. I love having conference calls or pass-the-phone chit-chats with Aunts and Grandparents. Hey M&D ( sibs)!

Here are other fun activities from There are excellent crafts and exercises on this website. and

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