how my family is having fun for free this summer

This summer we are intentionally doing things to fill our leisure time in the most financially responsible ways.  Free is king, y’all! Hope this sparks ideas or suggestions!

Running – I am getting reacquainted with running around the neighbourhood more regularly, as is my husband.  For me, my 10k goal is my motivation.  I’m not registering for a race; I just want to be able to run continuously for 10k.  Strap on shoes, stretch, run, stretch, shower. That’s all.  I’ll save the organized race idea for my year-40 bucket list, perhaps.

12-sport challenge – the five of us have challenged ourselves to play at least 12 sports this summer. For fun.  No more paid organized leagues for us.  We are playing sports with the gear we’ve already got. Among those already checked off our list: basketball, baseball, soccer, badminton, (not-so-Ultimate-yet) Frisbee.  It sounds like we’re heading to the track down the street at some point for a relay race.  The trash-talking is well under way.

Festival-mania – there are a lot of events going on in the city this summer and we are planning to take advantage of all the awesome freebies that go along with them.  The Pan Am Games have sparked daily music events and fireworks shows (here too) and there’s a jazz festival going on at The Beaches right now, so those are at the top of my list for us to do in the coming days.  Parking downtown and treats should be the bulk of our expense.

Camping – last summer we spent two glorious weeks in Seattle and Vancouver.  We’re travelling light this year, with two camping trips.  The first year you go camping is tough because you have to buy all your equipment but we’re all geared up now, so aside from our grub and replenishing a few things, we are good to go.

Library - drop this one under the next-to-nothing column.  I paid $2 in fines this week.  But in contrast, my son has read at least five books, the girls are getting a head start on their 2015-16 English reading list, and I've eaten up (or in the process of devouring) about half a dozen books so far.  Oh, and I savoured another view of Man of Steel on Blu-Ray.  I can't tell you just how the world stops turning when we get the automated "the book you had on hold is now available" calls.  Simple pleasures.

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What awesomely frugal activities does your family have lined up this summer?