10 Ways to Trim Your “Fun” Budget During the Holidays.

During the holiday season, extra cash can be hard to find, but you don’t have to sacrifice having FUN!  Here are 10 ways to have fun this weekend without spending a single dime.

  1. Declutter and make money – Sort through your cluttered areas, basement, attic and garage to see if there are any items that are still in good shape, but you no longer use. Post these items on local social media swap/sell pages or popular web pages such as craigslist.com. Take the cash you make from selling the items and build emergency savings account for unforeseen expenses in the future.
  2. Get your blood pumping with Winter exercise – Dust off the snowshoes, cross-country skis and hit the trails! Central Maine has many great trail systems that are open to the public. Be sure to bring plenty of water and healthy snacks with you.
  3. Host a board game tournament – Invite friends over and ask them to each bring a board game. Pair up in twos or fours to play games and rotate around the room to play all the games or create a bracket chart (similar to college basketball tournaments) to declare a winner! Make a trophy out of unwanted household items.
  4. Take in the sights of the season – Pack some warm cocoa and take a ride to view all the festive holiday light displays in your area. Have the family rate all the decorated houses along the way, too.
  5. Become a bookworm – How long has it been since you have explored your local library? Brew your favorite warm beverage in a thermos and get lost in the library for a couple hours. Check out a book or two to learn a new craft or skill. Be a kid again and read a choose your own adventure book.
  6. Make a difference – Volunteer at a local soup kitchen, food pantry, homeless shelter or humane society. Lending a hand to brighten someone’s day is always a good thing.
  7. Set goals – Create a 2018 vision board for the goals you want to accomplish. Seeing the goals every day may push you to actually get them done! Remember to set realistic financial goals, too.
  8. Channel your inner DIY decorator – Redecorate a room in your home by using items you already have. If you have paint and sandpaper on hand, give an old item a new look.
  9. Spread cheer – Organize a neighborhood Christmas caroling event. Gather your friends, print off lyrics to popular Christmas carols and fa la la la la around your neighborhood spreading good cheer!
  10. Get cozy by the fire – Organize an outdoor bonfire and snowman building contest with family and friends. You provide the cocoa and the venue and ask friends to bring items to decorate snowmen. Perhaps you could bake cookies to share as well.

Gather your friends and family to brainstorm and contribute ideas for other fun things to do. You’ll be surprised how much fun you can have with the people you love–and without spending a lot of money. The best part…you’ll create priceless memories that you will cherish for the rest of your lives.