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Making a Summer Bucket List On a Budget

School’s out, weather’s nice (or oppressively hot, depending on where you’re living), and it’s the time of years when parents are searching for things to do Here are our low-cost must-dos for these sweet sunny days.

—Local museums. You know what we’re talking about—most towns have that one tiny local museum. Maybe it’s about farm equipment or local history—whatever it is, embrace it and teach your toddler to be proud of the things that make your area unique!

—Take the indoors outside. Duplos on the lawn, picnic at the park, moving the dollhouse to the backyard—moving indoor activities outside makes mundane things fun and exciting.

—Factory tours. This may take a little digging, but often, small companies will have child-friendly tours. Our go-to is the local chocolate factory, which offers them for free. Bring your baby carrier along to give toddlers a better view!

—Library programs. Doggie storytime, sensory play, meet-the-animals, pj parties—libraries have really amazing programming, with lots of it aimed towards babies and toddlers—and usually air-conditioned!

—Make foods fun. Take advantage of the long days and do some fun food activities you don’t usually have the time for. It doesn’t have to be something complicated—it can be as simple as getting one of every apple at the grocery store and inviting toddler friends over for a apple taste testing (my kids’ favorite part of visiting their auntie)!

—Something extra. Take a day where you say ‘Yes” to that one thing you always say “No” to. Feeding the giraffe at the zoo? YES. Draw on the windows? YES. Make puffy chalk paint and squirt it all over the sidewalk? YES. Summer zooms by and before you know it, we’ll be wishing for the sun—so let’s take advantage of it and have some fun!

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