5 Cheap & Easy Ways to Get Ready for Summer

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Planning a great summer doesn’t take a lot of money. Consider these ideas for frugal summer fun.

5 Cheap and Easy Ways to Get Ready for a Great Summer - Planning a great summer doesn't take a lot of money. Consider these ideas for frugal summer fun.

Summer is just around the bend. For us that means a lighter school load. We still do math and literature through the summer, but we go a little more relaxed about it. For other families, kids are home from school and the daily routine has changed.

I am always kinda taken aback when I hear parents complain about having their kids home for the summer. If this is you, help me understand. My mom never did that. Summer was a time when we went to the library, mooched swim invitations from friends and neighbors with pools, and made lots of lemonade. It was a fun time, that lasted way too short.

And yes, I know that’s improper grammar, but that’s how summer goes down in my memory.;)

I say plan to have fun this summer. You’ll have a great time with your kids, and you’ll be crying when it’s time for school to get back in gear.

5 Cheap and Easy Ways to Get Ready for a Great Summer - Planning a great summer doesn't take a lot of money. Consider these ideas for frugal summer fun.

1. Plan a staycation.

Vacation can be a lot cheaper if you do it at home. Plan fun things and play the tourist in your own town for a great staycation.

2. Host a Camp Wannalaffalotta.

Plan a regular weekly playday with friends and neighbors. It’s like summer camp, only cheaper. We’ve got lots of tips and ideas in the archives, or you can buy the Summer Survival Guide to keep you set for the summer.

3. Get reading.

Find the free reading programs in your community and sign your kids up. Make sure your library card is readily available and start a list of books to read. We have lots of favorite books to read.

5 Cheap and Easy Ways to Get Ready for a Great Summer - Planning a great summer doesn't take a lot of money. Consider these ideas for frugal summer fun.

4. Plan for summer learning.

If your kids have expressed an interest in something — I have one who wants to cook all the live long day — find ways that they can learn that thing or get more practice at it. The library, YouTube, and your local rec center can be great sources to help you do this economically. Learning a new skill will keep your kids from being bored and make good use of their time off.

5. Catch a free or cheap movie.

There are lots of ways to watch movies cheaply or even free. Check out what your library has in their database. Regal Entertainment is offering $1 showings. Check out this list of Classic Disney films and where to find them and well as our favorite films for families.

5 Cheap and Easy Ways to Get Ready for a Great Summer - Planning a great summer doesn't take a lot of money. Consider these ideas for frugal summer fun.

This is Frugal Friday. In an effort to make these weekly financial discussions more interactive, I’m no longer posting a link-up. Feel free to leave a link in the comments. But better yet, chat with us on today’s topic.

What’s cheap summer fun for your family?

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  1. I, too, used to love when my kids were home during the summer. I am so glad you recognize to take the opportunity to enjoy your children…they grow up in the blink on an eye. Our youngest child just got married last week. We had one week to plan, prepare and host the wedding that was pretty frugal as far as weddings go. You can read all about it at http://adayinthelifeonthefarm.blogspot.com/2014/05/how-to-plan-prepare-and-host-wedding-in.html. Happy Memorial Day everyone. May God bless and keep all those who have fought and are fighting to keep us safe.

    1. Wow! That’s a pretty amazing feat! I scrolled through your post. It looks just as beautiful as one that took months to plan. I’ll bet it was less stress than those long planned ones, too! You condensed it into such a short space. I’d call that a win!

  2. We do a Christmas in July every summer where we blast Christmas music, watch our favorite Christmas movies, make a batch of Christmas cut outs, then we take a trip to Goodwill to let them pick either a book or an article of clothing (I have teen girls into that) as a gift. Its a fun tradition we look forward to every year.

  3. I’m not sure parents dislike kids being home for the summer, but for households like mine that have two working parents, summer break (all the breaks) can be challenging. Finding a safe place for kids to be while we are at work is tough and expensive! $286/wk to be precise! My parents worked too but we had the Y for camp and they did not pay for it. When my normal daycare gave me the price I freaked. Then I did research and they were very inexpensive compared to other area camps and they run on normal hours. Any other camps I found were 9-3. I work 8-4:30.
    Summer (especially here in GA) is my least favorite season, so this first real school year I chose to use my vacation time during other breaks, but I may rethink that next year. It also didn’t help that we lost 8 vacation days to bad weather and school closings either! I really wish school would run year round and have breaks each quarter. I much rather be with my kids in fall and spring, where we can take a breath without burning our lungs !

    1. Great points, all. I think I’ve only heard the complaints from stay at home moms. That’s the part I didn’t get. It wasn’t a childcare issue. It was a crowd control issue. Since I have mine 24/7, maybe I just don’t know any different. Ha!

  4. I can totally understand why parents stress over the kids being home for the Summer because of daycare issues. I work overnight so it isn’t bad for me. I did get upset with a few coworkers and my MIL because they made those comments like ” Aren’t you dreading being home all Summer with the kids?” or ” Counting my last hours till I have to be with the kids”. I love love my kids being home for the Summer, yes I like a break from them when I need to get stuff done but I have always enjoyed them being home. I plan activities and they enjoy it too.

  5. I love summer, too. The only thing I miss is the lack of structure. We homeschool, and we will do some review and electives during the summer. I don’t want to give it too much structure, because the kids enjoy the lazy days. And I enjoy being able to have the flexibility to change plans at the last minute. But I need some structure, so I try to find a balance. 🙂