Camping is always a cheap answer for our family. We went a bunch of times last year and it's always relatively inexpensive, plus you're getting out of the house. Depending on where you go, there are different free activiites that may be going on, like events for the kids, bands performing, competitions, or theme weeks (like birthday week, or costume week). Also, a lot of town Rec. departments have summer day camps open that are inexpensive and provide all day activities for kids at various ages. OH, and one last thing, haha. There are these two books that I loved for kids I had nannied before I had my daughter: The Daring Book for Girls (it's blue) and The Dangerous Book for Boys. They have TONS of different activities and stories you can do with your kids. Probably best for kids 8 and older, but there's stuff like building forts, how to play basketball and soccer (like, official rules and stuff), morse code, and cool stuff!
at 2:19 PM on Mar. 16, 2009