I I am obviously not telling you to skip entertaining your children. Everyone needs some type of entertainment in their life, especially children. My point is that children need very little to keep them satisfied. From my experience with my own two children you can easily find simple things around the house to keep they busy for hours.
Simple things such as a cardboard box can be turned into a princess castle with fancy windows, crayon colored flowers and baby doll filled rooms. Or do a little cutting and it can just as easily be turned into a race car or big wheel truck. If your children are more of the artistic type find some old newspapers and magazines and let them cut out their favorite foods, toys and games. Paste them onto a big piece of construction board to hang in their room. To us it may sound silly but to a child it will light up their faces and save you cash.
I think parents of get caught up in what they think their kids will enjoy. I remember once my wife planning a fun filled night out of town. We would stay the night in a hotel and get up early the next day and spend the day at the zoo. We spent roughly $100 in gas, $100 in hotel charges, $50 in zoo tickets and even more money in food.
We walked into the gates of the zoo and our 5 year old wanted to know where the rides were. After explaining that we were there just to walk around and look at animals she was very disappointed. Our 2 year old fell asleep about 1.5 hours into the adventure. We walked around for about another hour and everyone was ready to go home.
We did learn that our family wasn’t zoo people but we also learned that we could have saved or hundreds of dollars, stayed in town at our house, went somewhere fun to eat and played family games at home. We would have had much more fun and saved hundreds of dollars.