From Single Parent Central
1)Go to the library - Most libraries have story times for children once a week. Take advantage of their free events like concerts, art and crafts classes and science shows. Most libraries also have computers available so the kids can try out different software. Call your local library for a list of events.
2)Walk, Walk, Walk - Load the babies in the stroller, put the little kids on the bikes , get the teenagers off the couch and go out and walk. Not only will you and your children be getting exercise but also it is a good way for the kids to relax and talk to you about what's going on in their lives. A great stress reliever.
3)Check out the local Community Center- Community centers offer a wide variety of classes from swimming to karate, from dance to calligraphy. Community centers offer classes at an already low price but most have "scholarships" for families and students which will reduce or eliminate class fees.
4)Picnic in the Park- Pack a picnic lunch and head for a park with a playground. The smaller kids will keep busy on the swings and ladders while the older kids can bring a Frisbee or soccer ball to play with. Plop down a blanket for the kids, bring a lawn chair and book for yourself, and let the kids wear themselves out.
5)Community events- Zoos and children's museums usually have reduced and/or free days for children. Plays and symphonies often have free performances during dress rehearsals. Pick up a free parenting "throw away" paper usually found at libraries, community centers and schools. These papers are a good source of free events in your community.
6)Movie night - Rent a couple of movies or, better yet, most libraries will let you check out videos for free. Have everyone put on their pajamas, pop popcorn and bring out the blankets to cozy up with.
7)Game night - Turn off the TV, turn on the radio and bring out the games from the closet. Play a different game each week. Check out a card game book at the library and learn to play different card games.
8)Go to church- Find a church that fits your philosophy and beliefs. When you find a good match for your family look into the events that they have. Some of the larger churches have support groups, camps for the kids (often offering scholarships), picnics and other events. A nice tradition to start in your family.
9)Garden - From the littlest to the teenagers everyone can help with the garden. Have the kids decide on their own flowers and vegetables to plant. Easy to grow plants include sunflowers and geraniums. If you don't have room for a garden grow container plants on your deck or start an herb garden on your windowsill. Have the kids water and fertilize their plants regularly. Not only will this teach them responsibility but they'll take pride in watching their plant grow from seed to flower.
10)Volunteer- Check out your local nonprofits to see what would be a good fit for you and your family. Neighborhood clean-up projects are good for all ages to participate in. Delivering meals to seniors is another good project for all age groups The benefits of volunteering are immense for families. Giving back to the community will be installed in your kids at a young age while giving your family a nice tradition.
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