What Is There To Do? Help For Having A Thrifty (and fun) School Vacation

Make a Thrifty To-do list for School Vacations

Make a Thrifty To-do list for School Vacations

School Spring vacation is coming up here in New Hampshire. It signals the end of our long hard winters and the beginning of weather nice enough so that we can finally get outside.

No sooner does the vacation seem to start however, when the invariable “what is there to dos?” start coming out of the kids mouths as sure as those red breasted robins come to our lawns. Kids need something to do to replace the structure of their days at school

Many families choose this time to take travel vacations. Invariably my kids will come home with a long list of their friends who are going to Disney World or some other exciting spot. But with the cost of 6 kids, that’s just not an option for my husband and me.

For me, the challenge as a mom is always to create a vacation that is exciting enough so that the kids will be happy but without me spending a lot of money. Just how do you make a stay at home vacation fun and exciting when you have kids?

What I did last year to head this problem off before it even started was I took a neon piece of poster paper and taped it to a wall in the living room the week before vacation. Above it I wrote,

Write down what you want to do for vacation
(As long as it’s free or does not cost a lot)

I started by writing down:
• Have mom read out loud
• Picnic at the park
• Go to an airport to watch the planes

Soon, there started to be additions in various levels of handwriting:
• Watch a movie
• Play a pirate game
• Do scrapbooking
• Go to the Dollar Store
• Bake Cookies
• Bake a chocolate cake
• Sunbath
• Go to the playground
• Drop everything and read for 2 minutes
• Walk around the block
• Play a family game
• Make cotton-candy cupcakes
• Watch a DVD of The Office
• Go to another town
• Make Fairy tea
• Try a new flavor of ice cream

We ended up having enough suggestions to do 2 or 3 things each day of vacation. What could have been a week of “what is there to do” became 7 days of “what are we going to do today?!”

Now before every school vacation, the poster board goes up for ideas. This Spring, we are going to try birding with the goal of identifying at least 15 different birds. We are going to be brave and try Blood Oranges and among other things, we are going to pack hot chocolate and muffins, go to the highest spot in our town and watch the sun rise.


Send your Simple Thrift Ideas tips and ideas to wendy@simplethrift.com

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Filed under School Vacations, Simple Thrift Tips

2 responses to “What Is There To Do? Help For Having A Thrifty (and fun) School Vacation

  1. Re: “Go to an airport to watch the planes”
    We used to enjoy bringing a blanket and some food and parking out by the foot of the Nashua airport runway in that run down parking lot just outside the airport property. If the planes are landing east to west (their usual pattern), they come pretty close over your head and the pilots sometimes wave at you.

  2. Great tips. I have a huge glass jar for the kids to draw slips of paper out of during the summer months and they just love it!

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