Month: October 2019

28/10/2019

35 Fabulous things to do on a No Spend Weekend

Have you ever had a no spend weekend?

I have to admit, the whole idea of a no spend weekend makes me want to vomit. I mean, who, in their right minds would want to focus on NOT SPENDING for a minute, let alone a weekend. I know that there are people out there who love the whole idea of frugality and can go for weeks, months or even YEARS without spending any money.

I’m not one of them.

Let’s cut right to the chase here: I really, really enjoy spending money.

I also believe that the more you focus on NOT doing something, the more you want to do it. It’s basic human nature.

Okay, it’s basically my nature, but I suspect I’m not the only one.

So, I had to go about this in a different way: instead of focusing on NOT spending, I put my energy into finding really interesting and fun things to do that were FREE. 

Although I like spending money, I also like getting stuff for free.

In fact, I’d go so far as to say I feel quite smug when I get something for free.

Fabulously Free Fun Days

While I’m going to keep the title of this post No Spend Weekend because it has quite a nice ring to it, as far as I’m concerned, this is really Fabulously Free Fun Days.

This is a brilliant reminder that you can actually have a lot of fun without spending a fortune. Remember those childhood days spent wandering in the woods or building cubby houses in the neighbours garden? 

The big bonus of this is that a No Spend Weekend can have a huge positive impact on your finances.

Huge.

So, here are my favourite ideas to kick start you, but put on your own thinking cap to see what ideas you can come up with for new activities.

35 things to do on a No Spend Weekend

1. Play board games

My family love board games but we rarely seem to play them. Mainly because we have several ultra-competitive children who don’t like losing! However, a no spend weekend is the perfect time to put a game night in the diary.

2. Have a home spa day

There are lots of frugal homemade beauty treatments you can make using ingredients you already have at home. Or just have a nice long soak in the bath with some candles lit, music playing and your favourite drink. 

3. Watch a TED talk

TEDTalks are among some of the most inspiring and educational videos available and it’s completely free.

4. Visit your local botanic gardens

Most Australian towns have a local botanic gardens. Find out about the local flora, bush tucker and the non-native trees and plants in the area.

5. Try out your local bike trail

More and more of these are cropping up around the country. They mainly follow the old railways lines, so the trails are fairly flat and easy to cycle. Many of them go through beautiful countryside and national parks, too. 

6. Get creative in the kitchen

Try your own version of Ready Steady Cook and invent a new dish with whatever you’ve got in the cupboards. Buying extra ingredients is cheating!

7. Go to the library

I’m a huge reader but for some reason I rarely go to the library any more. Till recently. Our local library not only has the most amazing range of books, they also have regular free special events such as craft workshops, writers workshops, children’s storytelling, and school holiday activities.

8. Give yourself a reflexology session

This is a lovely thing to do and it’s a great skill to learn. Reflexology can not only help you relax but it’s amazingly beneficial for your overall health & wellbeing. There are heaps of free how-to videos on YouTube.

9. Invite some friends round for a Fire Pit & BBQ

Dig a small pit in the backyard and have a little bonfire. Get everyone to bring some marshmallows and toast them as you chat. 

10. Go for a bushwalk

Out in the countryside if you can, or just explore a new part of town. Maybe try to find a new park or new favourite neighbourhood in your city,

11. Have a sleepover

Why should it only be kids who do this? Invite some friends round and have a sleepover. Play games, give each other massages & facials, eat popcorn and watch movies.

12. Start a blog!

Blogging is fun, creative and could even make you money further down the line!

There are lots of free sites that will help you get your very own website up and running in a day.

Whether you want to blog for money or just find a platform to express yourself and share your knowledge of a hobby, blogging is a top activity that you can start with no money.

13. Go to a museum

Visiting a museum or art gallery is definitely one of the best things to do with no money. While some of the bigger museums may charge entry fees, there are heaps of smaller & local museums and historic villages that are either free or entry by donation.

We’re just so lucky to have free museum entry so make the most of it

14. Have a doona day

It’s so much fun to stay in bed all day every now and then. Not to mention cheap! Watch Netflix, read a book, take lots of naps. Wear your cosiest pyjamas and try one of those homemade face masks I mentioned above.

If you’re usually a very busy person, giving yourself permission to stay in bed can be one of the nicest and thriftiest forms of self care.

15. Start learning a language

Try a free app like Duolingo.

16. Plan your dream holiday

It’s fun to have a dream trip planned, even if you can’t afford it right now. It might even motivate you to start that side hustle and save up for it!

17. Do a free yoga video on YouTube

A good channel is Yoga With Adriene. Her videos are very accessible for beginners. You don’t need a yoga mat or fancy yoga clothes – just dive in!

18. Call someone for a chat

I bet you have a relative or friend who would love to hear from you.

19. Attend a free local event

There are always events happening somewhere close for most of us. Check the local paper or online to find out what’s happening.

20. Write a letter to a friend who lives far away

Who doesn’t love getting a letter in the post?

21. Make a vision board

This is really motivational, especially if you’re working on a side project (or two or three…) like me. Write down your goals, then make make a dream board on Pinterest, or the old fashioned way, cutting pictures out of magazines to hang over your desk! You get to spend a quiet weekend daydreaming and then the next few months making your dream reality

PINTEREST

22. Go for a picnic or a BBQ

If it’s raining, have it on the floor at home. Don’t buy anything though – you’ll have to use what you’ve got at home!

23. People watch

Find a nice bench somewhere busy and watch the world go by.

24. Visit an elderly relative or neighbour

They’ll be happy, you’ll be happy, and you might even get a free meal out of it

PINTEREST

25. Learn to meditate

Scientists are clear about the benefits of meditation for our health, mood and relationships. A no-spend challenge is the perfect time to learn – especially if you’re looking for things to do on your own on the weekend.

Again, YouTube to the rescue with plenty of guided mediation videos for beginners. There are also free apps like Insight Timer that have ambient sounds to help you focus.

26. Bake a cake

If you already have some basic ingredients in, simple cakes are really cheap to make.

27. Volunteer

This might take some organising, but it’ll be worth it. See if there’s a local one-off event that needs some help, or maybe there’s an animal shelter near you that needs dog walkers?

28. Film night at home

Pop your own popcorn – it’s super cheap!

29. Do some photography

Go down to your local park and get some close ups of the flowers and plants or go round the city and take some interesting shots of the local buildings. You’ll find plenty of ideas for photos on the internet.

30. Clear out your wardrobe, a cupboard or a room

It feels fantastic to clear things out and tidy them up. I’m a huge fan of decluttering, and it’s one of the reasons I enjoy moving house so often: it’s the perfect opportunity to declutter.

You can even sell what you decide to get rid of to earn some extra cash!

31. Have a garage sale

Once you’ve got that wardrobe/cupboard/room tidy, hold a garage sale to earn some cash from your castoffs.

32. Home karaoke

You don’t need fancy mics or software, just have a good old singsong at home! There are loads of karaoke videos on YouTube or you can get the old Sing Star out and warble along to that.

33. Make some artwork

This could be a good group activity with your family or friends.

34. Listen to podcasts

I’ve only started getting into podcasts recently, but they are great for staying entertained and/or educating while doing less fun things (housework/driving).

35. Learn some constellations, then go out and stargaze

Go out at night and see what you can spot. There are some great apps that show you what to look for or you could borrow a book from the library!

How about you? Do you have any favourite free things to do? Can you recommend any activities to do with no money? Let me know in the comments!

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22/10/2019

10 THINGS TO DO AT THE START OF EACH MONTH TO BE SUPER FOCUSED AND CLEAR

 I read a book recently – Unleash Your Inner Money Babe: How to Manifest $1,000 on 30 Days by Katherine Zenkina – and as I was reading through it, I realised that I knew all this stuff already.

All of it.

I just didn’t put it into practise.

So, I put it into practise. And guess what? 21 days later, $1,000 landed in my bank account. Out of the blue, totally unexpected. It was from someone who’s been promising to pay me the money since last December. I’ve chased them up a few times, and there were half-hearted promises, the last one several months ago, but I didn’t expect to actually see the money.

But against all my expectation, once I put the practises from the book into place, BAM! There was the money.

Isn’t that interesting?

I got to wondering what other practises are there that I know about and that could be helping me to get my life moving in the direction that I want it to move, when I saw this pin: 10 Things To Do At The Beginning Of Every Month To Be Super Organised.

What a fabulous list to write! What a helpful tool to have!

With acknowledgement to Laura at thosepositivethoughts.com for the original idea, I rewrote the list based on the things that I do and find important. So, here you go:

10 THINGS TO DO AT THE START OF EACH MONTH TO BE SUPER FOCUSED AND CLEAR

1.  REVIEW THE PREVIOUS MONTH

The beginning of the month is the perfect time to reflect on how the previous month went as well as planning for the upcoming month.

Over the last few years, I’ve realised how powerful journaling is in both keeping me on track and helping me to let go of the things that are holding me back.

Sit down and spend half an hour or so looking back over the previous month. Go through all the areas of your life, e.g. family, relationships, work/career, money, health, etc. to see how you fared against your goals for that area

2. SET YOUR GOALS FOR THE COMING MONTH

Using your list of the areas of your life and your goals & outcomes for each one, create a list of actions that you want to take this coming month. 

3. MAKE PLANS WITH FRIENDS & FAMILY

The problem with being busy is that we tend to get to the end of the month and realise that all we’ve done is our daily grind. We haven’t spent any time doing things that we enjoy doing, or things that energise us and make us feel good.

Take a little time at the start of each month to plan some socialising time. Schedule in dinner with your family, a date night with your partner, a movie night with your bestie, a Sunday afternoon barbecue or picnic for your extended family & friends.

Make it a priority to organise this kind of thing.

4.  SCHEDULE YOUR CALENDAR

This is one of THE most important things you can do to make sure you’re focused for the entire month.

Once you’ve completed the three things above, grab hold of any appointment cards, notes from school, your action list, relevant emails and letters and start scheduling them in.

Remember, if it isn’t in your calendar, you’re likely to forget it.

And if it IS in your calendar, you don’t have to worry about it till the reminder comes up.

Schedule EVERYTHING in. All your appointments, all your action items, all your socialising, self care, school events, meetings, gym visits, everything. Put reminders on them all and then simply check your calendar for the next day before you go to bed. You’ll feel super organised and productive!

5. BUDGET FOR THE MONTH

The beginning of the month is a great time to budget for the month ahead. Once you’ve figured out what’s happening in the upcoming month, you can figure out how much you need to spend.

6. ORGANISE YOUR DESK/OFFICE SPACE

Your work space should inspire you, motivate you, and bring out the best in you. Personally, I find it impossible to work if there’s a mess around me. But I have to admit that that doesn’t mean that I’m super organised in my workspace; it just means that I shove everything in cupboards (tidily) so that it’s not in my face!

The start of the month is the perfect time to get that filing done, clean your desk (get the cleaning gear out!) and make the whole area feel inviting, clear & inspiring.

You can add a few photos, candles or inspiring quotes, and if you can, treat yourself to some new stationery or pens.

7. CLEAN OUT YOUR FRIDGE & PANTRY

Sometimes, I cringe when I open my fridge. Milk spills in the door, wilted bits of lettuce in the bottom of the veggie box, dried up bits of cheese floating at the back of the shelf and those inevitable empty jars that have been placed in the fridge by the friendly household ghost.

It has to be a ghost that’s responsible because no one in the family ever owns up to putting empty jars & packets back in the fridge and pantry, yet there they all are.

At the start of every month, give your pantry and fridge a good clean out. Throw out all the empty packets, jars, the half-eaten containers of food that are now out of date and wipe everything down. Doing this has the added bonus of giving you a good idea of what items need replacing and what you’re running short on.

8. TIDY YOUR LAUNDRY & CLOSET

Let’s be honest, most of our time is spent in a rush and putting away the laundry isn’t high on our list of priorities. Unlike some of my friends (I’m not going to mention any names, but you know who you are!), I’m pretty good at clearing out my laundry and putting away the clean clothes, but I do tend to just chuck socks and undies in the general direction of the drawer and hope for the best.

Spend a little time getting on top of your laundry and getting everything organised. Put the clothes away where they’re supposed to go, maybe even in colour order! Tidy your undies drawer. Go through your clothes, throw away things that are worn out and put together a bag of unused clothes to give to your local charity.

9. CLEAR OUT YOUR WALLET / PURSE / BAG

I’m a mother of four. I know exactly what my wallet and my bag can look like after a few weeks of neglect and it’s not pretty.

At the start of each month, take the time to clear all the receipts from your wallet/purse.

Organise your money so the notes in your wallet go from the largest at the front, to the smallest. This one minor detail can make you feel more wealthy because when you look at your money, you’re looking at a larger amount, not the smallest one. It’s a bit of psychology there, but it works!

Clear that mass of detritus that collects in the bottom of your handbag / purse. The random tissues, hair ties, sweet wrappers, notes from school, bus tickets and all the other junk that you just chuck in your bag so it’s out of the way. Get rid of it.

 

10. CHOOSE A BOOK TO READ

I love a good book (or ten) and I generally get through a book a week. I usually alternate between a good fiction book (I’m partial to a bit of Marian Keyes and Danielle Hawkins, an amazing NZ writer) and some kind of personal development/money book.

Give yourself a bit of a boost and read a couple of books – one for pleasure and one to move your life forward – every month if you can.

I hope this list helps you to get the most out of your month!

K xxx

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