Great winter break and holiday activities that won't break your bank

12 December 2016 Written by   Published in Peaks Financial Fitness

We are planning our winter break, which starts next week! Here are a few of our ideas that I hope will help you enjoy your break from school or work without breaking your financial plan.

Give gifts that will provide experiences

For the past few years we have gone sledding on New Year’s Day. We gave our kids new sleds or tubes for Christmas. This has been so much fun. We also have given memberships to children’s museums, dinosaur museums, state parks, and national parks that we can use all year long but especially over the break. This year, we are giving them a membership to a local aquarium.

Give gifts that develop talents or hobbies

If you have readers, a large book is a great gift for the winter break. My daughter likes making bracelets, so one year we bought her a loom to use to make her bracelets.

Give a trip and items that go with it

One year, we gave our kids a staycation to Midway, and we gave them swimsuits with a certificate to swim in the Homestead Crater. Cameras, dvds, snacks, and clothes could also be given with a trip. I know a family that plans to go to Disneyland, so they could buy Disney themed gifts to use on the trip.

Visit museums and other local events

We went to a really neat free aerospace museum over the break. We’ve also gone to special art exhibits. A few years ago, we decided that we don’t need to go far away to go on vacations.

Visit family and friends

My kids love to play with friends, but life is so busy that they don’t get to play as often as they would like. So, a simple playdate is one of their favorite activities to do over the break. Oftentimes their cousins will visit, and they love sledding or playing with them. One year they made snow cones with real snow. Another time we had hot chocolate and donuts after sledding. This is a great memory. The winter break often gives time to be with family and friends.

Cook meals that you don’t normally have time to cook

I remember cooking a lot over the holiday break. My mom used to make pull apart bread. Ty’s mom’s specialty is cinnamon rolls. Cooking with the family can provide a lot of memories.

See the lights

Many cities have light displays within an hour of where we live. We love to meet up with friends and see the lights. One year a friend took us to one that we could drive through. Since we had a baby, that was a great one to avoid the cold. We have great memories seeing the lights.

We hope that you have an memorable winter break and holiday and you make memories with your families and friends! What other activities do you like to do over the break?

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About Nat Craven

  • Natalie “Nat” Craven is a financial blogger, mom, and wife. She loves budgeting, eating cheesecake, and exploring Utah with her handsome husband and four active kids. 

    Nat studied Family Finance at Utah State University. She earned her Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Accounting from Weber State University where she was awarded a scholarship to research taxation. She became a Certified Public Account (CPA). Nat is no longer intimidated by the tax code—even though it is a complicated foreign language. After working in public accounting for a couple of years, she left the industry to raise money-smart children, but kept up her license and education by doing online coursework. 

    She volunteered and worked for Cornerstone Financial Education, becoming a Certified Personal Financial Counselor (CPFC). There she helped teach personal finance classes and started a financial fitness blog.

    Through the years, she found her passion for budgeting as she realized that no one needs a CPA license or a Master’s degree in finance to manage their money well. Budgeting is a super simple principle to understand, but is challenging to apply. Her blog posts focus on the how we can “USE” our budget to reach our goals. Almost everyone has made a budget, but using it is powerful. Follow Nat on Twitter at @cravennat.

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