Fall is here… it’s definitely here. The temperatures have dropped, it’s dark out when we wake up in the morning and it feels like it’s time to get creative when it comes to keeping the kidlets engaged and entertained on these shorter, cooler days.
When it’s pouring rain all winter long in Vancouver, I am constantly looking for ways of entertaining the kids. While we love to hit up local attractions such as Science World and the Aquarium, these activities can get pricey. As some fun alternatives, here are 5 free (or nearly free) activities that are great for kids of all ages to help save money!
We are spoiled in Vancouver with an abundance of incredible walking/hiking trails suitable for kids and adults alike. Hiking is a great way of getting outdoors, getting active and spending some quality time with your children!
Story times at the public library
For those parents who still have teenier ones, hitting up the public library nearest you for their story times is a great free activity to do with your kids! Make sure you pop online to check out what your library has on offer! For the older kids, trips to the library are also a great way to spend an hour in the day. I know how excited I get seeing the selection of titles available! (#bookworm)
Yes, there is cost involved in the ingredients required to make any given baked treat, but grab a simple muffin recipe (like this one!) and you’ll maybe even have everything you need on hand already! The kids get to help and it’s a great way of introducing kitchen safety and hygiene in the kitchen. Not to mention how fun it is to lick the spoon 😉
Feeding the ducks
Grab some birdseed from your local pet store and find your nearest duck pond. This is something that my girls LOVE to do and it’s a great way to grab even 20 minutes of fresh air, rain or shine.
Both my girls have recently taken an interest in taking pictures and videos on an old iPod we had kicking around. Portia (6 years old) really loves it and friend told me about how they create little photography assignments/challenges for their kids. This could be a great activity for any time of year. You can modify the photography assignment to be an indoor activity or an outdoor activity, depending on the forecast.
Saving money is always on my mind. It’s our reality and I think it’s most people’s reality! When I find great ways of making my kids happy that don’t cost a dime, I’m elated. When I find out about ways of receiving money to put toward my girls’ futures… I’m ECSTATIC!
On that note… did you know that the Government of Canada issues grants to families across Canada to help us plan for our childrens’ futures? The British Columbia Training and Education Savings Grant is something parents can apply for once they have an RESP open for their kids. It’s a grant worth $1200 and you are eligible if:
- your child was born in 2006 or later
- you and your child are residents of BC
- your child has an RESP in their name (which can easily be started, at no cost- see below!)
Check out this How To Start page where SmartSAVER.org will tell you how to open an RESP for FREE to get the ball rolling for you! You can find out everything you need to know about the Canada Learning Bond here, as well! Some great ways of planning ahead for your kids. It will take you so little time! I’ll be doing it as soon as I finish telling you all about it, as excitedly as I am!
SmartSAVER is giving one lucky North Shore Mama reader a $50 President’s Choice GC!
Use the Rafflecopter form below for your chance to win! Winner will be drawn on October 15th. Good luck and happy saving!
Photo credit: Rob Ellis