The No Money Weekend Part 2
The No Money Weekend is a challenge suggested by Trent Hamm at thesimpledollar.com. Spend no money at all: use food from your pantry, items you already own, free events and services, the company of other people, and your own ingenuity.
Today I'm posting another 20 ideas for this challenge. Not all of these activities will be interesting or available to you, but I hope that some of them will inspire you.
16. Host a film festival.
Invite some friends over and ask them to bring a favorite DVD and a favorite snack (whatever they have at home). You provide the same. Enjoy a lazy afternoon or evening just watching movies together.
17. Beautify the neighborhood.
Wear disposable gloves, carry two trash bags, and walk through your neighborhood or the local park picking up litter and recyclable cans and bottles.
18. Rearrange furniture.
It's amazing how you can refresh a room simply by rearranging furniture. Put the couch or bed on a different wall and move the entertainment center or dresser. Swap a chair in the living room for a chair in the bedroom, find a different spot for your desk, or swap wall art and throw pillows. You'll see familiar furnishings in a different context, have a chance to do some thorough cleaning, and get a good workout as well.
19. Attend a preview.
Some community or college performance groups have dress rehearsals that are free to the public. It's a great way to enjoy the theater, ballet, or symphony at no cost. Call the box office or check the newspaper.
20. Read a book.
Borrow the latest bestseller from the library or reread an old favorite. If you have kids, choose a book to read aloud, such as Charlotte's Web or The Indian in the Cupboard (for many more suggestions, check out my book The Magic of Words: Help Your Child Be a Reader for Life).
21. Digitize photos.
If you have a digital scanner, why not scan your old photos? If you don't have a scanner, try taking pictures of them with your phone (just make sure there's ample natural light). Add them to a rotating screensaver on your computer or attach them to personal emails.
22. Talk with your partner about your goals.
Ask your partner what he wants out of life and what you can do to support him, and then share your own desires. It's exciting to talk about how you can work together for your future.
23. Do some puzzles.
I love hard crossword puzzles. My son-in-law enjoys sudoku. They're a great way to relax yet stretch your mind.
24. Trim monthly expenses.
Shop around for a better auto insurance rate. Ask for a credit card rate reduction or consider transferring to a card with 0% APR on balance transfers (try out this useful calculator). Think about bills you can eliminate (excess cable or streaming services, magazine or other subscriptions, gym memberships, etc.), then take action to cancel them. If you can trim even $25 a month, you'll save $300 this year with a few hours of effort.
25. Check your community calendar.
Visit your town's website or the website for your area arts council. Look for free art shows, concerts, parades, or other events.
A lot of worthwhile organizations would be grateful for your time and know-how. You can do work for a cause that matters to you and meet other people who share the same convictions.
27. Sort through your collection of DVDs or CDs.
Determine which ones you're likely to watch or listen to again and donate the rest to the library. You may find an old favorite movie to watch that evening, or pop in a CD and have a spontaneous dance party.
28. Host a pantry potluck.
Invite family or friends to make a dish out of what they've got in their pantry or refrigerator, and come together for a meal. Challenge everyone to get creative, and have fun using food that may have languished in the cupboard or freezer.
29. Take some photos.
Use your phone or digital camera and take pictures of anything you find interesting. If there are some woods or undeveloped land, a public fountain or garden, a district of historic homes, or even an old cemetery nearby, so much the better. Take lots of pictures; you can go through them when you get home and see if any are beautiful or compelling. These can be used for desktop wallpaper, homemade greeting cards, and other crafts.
30. Share your photos.
You can post photos on Facebook or Instagram, but you can also share your images with millions of people around the world by contributing to Unsplash. When you allow your images to be used freely, your work will be enjoyed by many more people.
31. Play in the dirt.
Do some research about trees, flowers, or vegetables that can be successfully grown in your area, and plan a garden. Creating and working in a garden is good exercise, reduces stress, improves the air and soil, beautifies your yard, and produces shade or bouquets or healthy food.
32. Exchange massages with your partner.
A trained massage therapist uses multiple techniques to increase flexibility, reduce pain, improve circulation, remove toxins, and promote healing. But even without special knowledge, a foot, neck, shoulder, or back massage can be relaxing and comforting.
33. Cook some meals in advance.
If you've already got the ingredients on hand, spend time preparing meals which you can freeze for later use. This will give you a supply of convenient food that is healthier and cheaper than any other option. Work together with a friend or family member and enjoy some social time too.
34. Take a hike.
Research local hiking trails and get into nature! Take your time, carry water, and pack lunch for a picnic.
35. Attend a religious service.
Even if you're not a believer, attending a religious service can be a worthwhile experience, especially if you explore different styles of worship. And if you pay attention, you'll probably gain some food for thought as well as some inspiration for the week ahead.
Photo by Juliane Liebermann on Unsplash