View Full Version : compiling list of free activities

12-2-11, 9:12am
I was inspired by The Simple Dollar's list of free activities and would like to make it longer so I have a reference when I am feeling uninspired. He recommended the following as free things to do when you have spare time:
Read a book
Clean a room
Plan great meals with what's in your pantry
Make homemade gifts with what you already have
Learn about a new topic that interests you
Can you add some more?

12-2-11, 9:23am
-go for a walk
-play with the grandkids
-do a puzzle
-play a game
-get books and videos from the library
-spend time talking to the seniors in your family
-document any family history the seniors might have told you
-learn a new skill in the kitchen such as baking bread
-just sit and be still

12-2-11, 10:04am
Nature jouraling
Digital photography
Writing stories or journal entries
Crafts with my kids from recyclables
Cleaning and reorganizing or rearranging furniture
Taking a cup of coffee over to the lake and watching the sun rise/set on the dock
Snow fort building
Tea parties with the kids
Invite a friend over for coffee
Take a warm bath
Play a card or board game
Listening to audiobooks with DH or the kids
Live music at the coffee shop at the park on Saturdays
Como Park Zoo or Conservatory (Minneapolis/St Paul specific)
Go to a park
Dig for fossils at a park near St Paul (again MSP specific)
Tour the State Capitol
St Paul Winter Carnival Medallion Hunt (MSP specific)
Go to a parade
Have a family/neighborhood scavenger hunt or adventure race
Host a neighborhood olympics for the kids
Play tennis
Play basketball
Play volleyball
Volunteer on the neighborhood garden committee (because then the plants are free)
Attend a lecture at the University (many of these are free)
Attend a free seminar on some interesting topic like gardening, backyard chickens, etc.
Kitchen science experiments
Nature walk and "ask the Naturalist" aka my old boss our daily nature question
The Raptor Center (MSP Specific)
Walk with a Naturalist (monthly at our park)
Monthly free art get-together at the park
Knitting group
Book clubs using library's Book Club in a Bag
Storytime at the library
Homeschool board game club at the library
Free writing workshops at the library
Swimming in the pool in the summer

12-2-11, 10:28am
Good thread that can include many views - simply recreational or life-changing or giving joy and satisfaction

Treat time as a precious gift and choose carefully how you spend it so that it represents your values, priorities and energy.
Phone family and friends regularly if local.
Drawing pictures using directions from a library book.
Writing letters to the editor and send via email.
Talk/phone/write to your local and other councillors or political reps about important issues.
Develop a bucket list of what you want to do with your life in all its aspects - physical, mental, emotional and spiritual.
Develop a financial budget or menu plan with what you have on hand and implement. Evaluate.

iris lily
12-2-11, 10:50am
One that I haven't done in a while is to drive to a different neighborhood here in my city, park, and walk for 30 minutes. We have fabulous, interesting architecture here and it differs among neighborhoods.

12-2-11, 12:30pm
Whoa.......party at Stella's house!!! :D Awesome everybody.

Write in my journal
Brush the dogs and take them for a walk
Call a friend on Skype
Dream up a new small business to start (very small!)
Write on my gratitudes board
Make a batch of soup with what I have on hand

12-2-11, 1:24pm
Play the 5 ingredient game:
Assume you have water, salt, pepper, and oil/fat.
Choose 5 balanced seasonal/pantry ingredients and brainstorm what you can make.
Once you choose an ingredient it can be in any form for your brainstorming. For example corn: on the cob, corn husks, as flour, popcorn, corn syrup, etc.

Goal is to to see how many different things the group can come up with.

An easy one to start with is corn, beans, tomatoes, peppers, and chicken.

12-2-11, 1:41pm
LOL. You're welcome anytime Puglogic!

For kids or kids at heart:

Learn yo-yo tricks (DD is doing this as I type)
Pillow fight
Make and play with playdough
Snow paint with spray bottles, water and food colouring
Have a snow sculpture contest
Ice bowling (Make pins with water and milk cartons
Snow ice cream
-Two kinds, one is ice cream made from snow (snow+sweetened condensed milk)
-Second kind is made in a duct taped coffee can and rolled repeatedly down a snowy hill
Make salt dough sculptures
Put together a nature table
Have "Naughty Dinner" once in a while and eat dessert first. Or only dessert. Apple pie once in a while won't hurt anything.
Concerts in the park in the summer
Squirt gun fight
Make and sail paper boats
Make pretzels or bread in fun shapes.
Pancake art. Fill sueeze bottles with coloured pancake dough. We like making pancake "burgers".
Get pickle buckets from a deli and make boats out of them. Real ones that you can float on.
Make a fort from sheets
Write secret messages in milk or lemon juice. Heat them up to reveal the message.
Learn morse code
Make shadow puppets
Make a play
Learn some card tricks or magic tricks
Make ice lanterns. Freeze water in a milk carton with a can in the center. Add stuff to make it pretty like pinecones or flowers. Freeze. Take off milk carton, remove can. Insert candle.
Leaf rubbings
Grave rubbings
Learn to tie different kind of knots
Double dutch jumproping
Build a sandcastle
Make mudpies
Catch minnows
Make a waterscope with a paper cup, plastic wrap and a rubber band
Make tin can stilts
Make a tin can telephone
Paint a pet rock

12-2-11, 2:56pm
Cheyenne wants to add Make a Snow Castle to the list.

A few more:

Get neighbors together for an old fashioned potluck picnic. Play old fashioned picnic games. Three legged man race, egg and spoon race, etc.
Go Christmas caroling
Make corn husk dolls
Make collages from magazines
Have a family or neighborhood poetry reading
Make friendship bracelets
Trade lessons with friends. For example, one friend teaches a cooking lesson, another teaches French.
Go mushroom hunting for easily identified mushrooms like morels and chanterelles
Write to your grandmother with pen and paper
Add dish soap to paint and paint on your windows
Make a duct tape wallet
Identify animal tracks in the snow
Make a marble run or matchbox car run with toilet paper tubes
Make a geoboard with scrapwood and nails
Rake and jump in leaves
Make a snow angel
Host a Film Festival or Film Marathon. Star Trek movies, British Period Dramas, Christmas movies, etc.
Play practical jokes
Make paper snowflakes
Press flowers
Make sock puppets
Explore local bike trails

Sorry, I'm getting carried away. I like seeing how much I can do for free. It makes me wonder why I spend money on so many things.

12-2-11, 8:06pm
Wow, Stella, you are good at this!!

12-2-11, 10:24pm
I'm gonna print the list! :)

12-2-11, 10:36pm
Find your lover and have some fun. ;~)