Having fun with a limited entertainment budget

by Karen on February 5, 2009

Lately I’ve been struggling with my ho-hum routine. It’s not that I’m not busy. It’s just that I’m so busy, that the only way I can get everything done is to stick to a pretty strict routine. It doesn’t leave a lot of room for excitement.

On top of that, our recent (and exciting!) decision to start saving for a trip to Europe next year has given us a new reason to stay home and avoid spending money. I’m thrilled to be working toward that goal, but I’m already feeling some cabin fever.

Typically we budget $50 a month for entertainment, and that money goes to any and all extra entertainment expenses. Sometimes we catch a Sunday matinee or two. Other times we use it to go out to dinner at the end of the month. It really doesn’t go too far.

I’ve been looking for fun activities to break up my routine without breaking my budget.

My best friend and I decided to start a long distance book club. She lives 800 miles away, but we talk on the phone regularly. We’re choosing books we can borrow from the library, reading them, and discussing every week.

What about you? How do you break up your routine without spending money? I’d love to hear your ideas.

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{ 2 comments }

1 Angie February 5, 2009 at 9:55 am

We like to have friends over & play games. Usually we’ll have a few ingredients & they’ll have a few ingredients… and together we’ll have enough to feed everyone. Then we play dominoes, cards, or cranium. It’s a great way to end the week without spending any money! Since we haven’t lived here long, it’s been a good way to make friends.

2 Megan February 5, 2009 at 10:13 am

I like Angie’s idea! Board games can be so expensive to purchase sometimes, but you can almost always find some at garage sales. If there are missing pieces you can combine parts of other games (dice, money) or substitute things around the house (pawns, game pieces). Another activity I love is photography. You can take turns taking pictures of eachother, scenery, doing self-portraits, etc. My favorite frugal activity is a little out there, but great fun! Go to a dollar store and buy super glue. Take a couple of coins (quarters work best) and glue them to the ground. Then sit somewhere near by and watch, just don’t get caught staring or they will know who did it!

Also, I know your schedule is pretty busy right now, but if you could go dog walking or doing other small chores like lawn care for people in the neighborhood you would be able to get out and earn some extra money for Europe. You could also use photography in the same manner. Go to sports parks and take pictures of little kids to sell to parents.

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