No-Cost Ways to Have Holiday Fun as a Family

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Make some memories this holiday season -- without spending a dime! Marriage and Family Therapist, Kelly Hoffman, stopped by with fun, no-cost ideas for spending quality time as a family.

7 No-Cost Ways to Have a TON of Fun as a Family over the Holidays:

Especially around the Holidays, we get caught up thinking of what to get, what we want, what others want, and ALL of the answers to “what do I/he/she/they want are fueled by what we see as ultimate gifts for this time of year.

Gifts are GREAT!! I love giving and receiving wonderful gifts, AND there is nothing I treasure more than the times I laugh with those I love.

These ideas will get you spending MORE DELIBERATE time together as a family, which in turn will translate into more opportunities for laughter, more opportunities for making memories.

All of these can be done for NO Cost, with just a little planning ahead.

1. Movie Marathon Day —- Classics from when you were a kid or family favorites. Use what you have or rent them from the Library.

MAKE IT FUN: Come in costume, quote the best lines, eat food from the show

2. Have a Yummy Party: Tea / Coffee Party / Soda / Chocolate


  • Set the table fun/pretty/weird
  • No hands dinner night

3. Make Your Own Picture Show —— Set your photos up on the computer and watch together, MAKE IT FUN: pop corn, drink herbal tea

4. Game Night -

  • Just for fun games - In the Manner of the Adverb, Charades, Sardines, Hide and Seek
  • Traditional Board Games
  • Minute to win - it Kids/Teens/Adults

5. Service Project / Adventure

  • Hour of Driving Around - Doing good
  • Bake / Write something & deliver it.
  • Ask for people to buy sleeping bags and pass them out
  • Twelve days of Christmas / Hanukkah - Just a note with a kind word, an ornament for the tree
  • Family service gift, pick another family you know and have everyone think of some way they can contribute to a family service gift… make coupons they can “redeem” for specific services, like baby sitting or cooking, or cleaning a bathroom, or vacuuming a car…

6. Storytelling Night

  • Storytelling Games - Start a story and each person add on, one person tell and the other act out
  • Campfire stories - blankets and sleeping bags, Holiday stories,
  • Stories about when your children were little, about things you did together as a family

7. Treasure hunt

  • Around the House/neighborhood/town
  • Clues to notes and little prizes

The idea behind all of this is to have time together to make memories, share laughter, and enjoy one another’s company.