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Cheap rainy day fun for you and your kids

It's a rainy day here, and when there's a rainy day anywhere, there are frustrated moms looking for ways to squelch the cries of, "I'm bored!"

But if you're like most people, your squeezing those pennies and watching where every dollar goes. So the idea of keeping your kids engaged and happy on a rainy day, without having to spend a lot, if anything, is truly appealing. Here are a few ideas…

• Pile in the car and go to the library. There is so much more at the library now than just a little old lady constantly shushing everyone. There are children's sections that are bright and colorful, and that include personal computers. There are also DVDs and audio tapes available, that you can use at the library or check out. You can get each of your children a library card, which is free, and they'll not only increase their love of reading, but it will aid in their education and teach them responsibility as well. And did we mention it's free?

• Break out those board games you haven't played in a long time. Try a new one together, or have your children use items you have around the house to make a new game.

• The library isn't the only indoor destination you can head to when it's raining. You can go bowling, indoor miniature golfing or head to an indoor pool.

• Stir up some fun in the kitchen. Have your kids help you bake something or prepare a whole meal. You can even make a treat for a neighbor or sick friend, or perhaps make treats and pile in the car and head to a nearby nursing home or children's ward at the hospital.

• Remember when you were a kid and you built forts? Well, kids still love to do this simple activity. Pull out Halloween costumes and build a character-appropriate fort. For example, if your little boy was Batman last Halloween, make your fort into a bat cave. Build an igloo, a teepee, a pirate's cave…the list goes on and on.

• And don't forget…you can always simply celebrate the fact that it's raining and just get out there and play in the rain. If it's warm, throw on your swimsuits and get out there and jump in some puddles. If it's a cooler, you can opt for raincoats and boots, then end your time in the rain with some hot cocoa. You can even use the time out in the rain as an educational tool, by looking for animals that come out when it rains, like earthworms, or measuring how much rain fell. 

Whatever you do, make it fun and do it together. They're only children for so long, and you can't put a price tag on memories.

Published Feb 16 2012, 12:04 PM by moneycoach
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