FREE Indoor Family Fun Ideas

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free-indoor-family-fun-ideasIt's cold outside, and I've been on a search for free family fun INDOOR activities to keep my boys entertained with 30 degree weather outside.

We live in Nebraska… and I’ve been running out of activities to keep my boys entertained with 30 degree weather outside.  I decided to go on a Pinterest search of Fun Family Activities for the winter time…AKA… Inside Activities.  They needed to be FREE or CHEAP with practically NO need for planning. It’s been fun trying some of these family fun ideas out!

Indoor Family Fun Ideas

Quick Planning

  1.  Make cookies to hand out at assisted living facilities, church members, or neighbors.  Almost ANYONE loves getting homemade WARM cookies when it’s chilly outside!
  2. Maybe your family would enjoy a Game night- board games, card games, made up games
  3. Or try a Family baking night– Take turns picking out your “favorite” baking items and bake them.
  4.  Lots of dress up and costumes left over from Halloween?  Have a dress up parade!
  5. If your OK for the house to get a little messy… plan an Indoor Winter Olympics since the kids have lots of bottled up energy.  For Example:  lay out the couch pillows and see how far you can run and jump, blow up balloons for volleyball, see who can melt an ice cube the fastest, ect.
  6. Make gingerbread houses… use up all that left over Halloween and Christmas candy
  7. Since there might not be any snow outside, make paper snow flakes to decorate with “snow” on the inside!  Read a kids tutorial on how to make a basic snowflake
  8. Find all the blankets and pillows you can, gather up the couch cushions and chairs to make Indoor Forts.
  9.  Stuck inside longing for warmer weather?  Plan your summer vacation, or your DREAM summer vacation.
  10.  Look through last years photos.  Take it a step more by printing off your favorites and making a collage or book.
  11.  Close to Valentine Day?  Grab all those “conversation hearts” and play a game on who can make the longest sentence, sweetest sentence, craziest phrase, ect.
  12. Make cards… prepare for up coming holidays Christmas, Valentine Day, Birthdays, ect. so you aren’t rushing when the time comes.
  13. De-clutter… now I know this doesn’t sound like fun, but you can play all sorts of games while cleaning, read about these 8 cleaning ideas OR just finding NEW toys and crafts while cleaning out those dark corners is just as FUN!
  14.  Buy big marshmallows, split into teams, and have a “Snowball Fight“.  OR large pom poms work just as well.
  15.   Do you have Dominoes?  See who can make the longest train
  16. Make homemade popcorn.  Each person scavengers the house for the “best” treat to flavor it with.
  17. Since it’s cold outside go ahead and Knit some hats to deliver to the homeless shelter
  18. Go to the homeless shelter and serve dinner one night is a good family fun activity to teach a lesson in service too!
  19. Do you have lots of fresh snow outside?  Find the cleanest snow to bring in, then pull out all the drinks and Kool-Aid flavors you’ve got.  You will undoubtedly figure out which flavor works BEST for Snow Cones!
  20. Do you have left over glow sticks from Halloween?  Have a “Glow in the Dark Bowling” night!  Just put the glow sticks into water bottles, find a ball and have some family fun!
  21.  Find some Ice Cream and create an Ice Cream Sculpture!  OR for cheaper, grab some snow!  This will certainly bring on frozen little fingers, so make sure you hand out the gloves!
  22. Go on a “ABC Scavenger Hunt” and find objects around the house.  BETTER YET… find objects that are out of place and need to be cleaned up to put a way and make it a cleaning up game!
  23. One of our favorite family fun ideas is to put some food coloring in a water bottle and paint the snow!  Because it’s too cold to play outside, this can be inside by bringing the snow IN, or take it outside with you!
  24. Make a family time capsule… add some of these free printable and ideas to it.  Since it’s still cold outside, you’ll have to wait for the ground to thaw to bury it!
  25.  Put on a family talent show.  OR split up into 2 teams (if you have enough people), and have each team create a “Skit” on a pre-planned topic or idea.
  26. Have some family fun with a Movie night in Mom and Dads room
  27. Create your own “Family Mission Statement
  28. Because it’s too cold to build one outside, get some paper, cotton balls and glue to “Build your own Snowman
  29.  Even though it’s cold outside, bring it inside by doing some “Winter Science” activities.  Read this list of 25 Winter Science activities.
  30. Because it’s too cold to play outside with your animals, Visit the animal shelter where you can hold and play with some animals inside!

A Little bit more planning for Family Fun

  1. Plan ahead a little and set up an Indoor Scavenger Hunt.  You can look for “shape” items, specific number of items, or colors for younger kids… Older kids, try making up puzzles to solve to know what to find.
  2. Since you’re stuck inside for a while, collect toilet paper and paper towel rolls to make your own “Marble Runs” to play with for days.
  3. Make sure your kids go through “Spy Training” so they are top notch prepared for anything that comes their way!  Search “Spy Training” on Pinterest for some AMAZING ideas you can use! Read about these ideas for a birthday party.
  4. Everyone dress up nice for a “Fancy Family Dinner” night at home and TEACH your kids about etiquette (Idea from The Dating Divas).  This will certainly help with all those holiday meals with family.
  5. Need to get out of the house?  Try another scavenger hunt at the Mall.  Click HEREHERE, or HERE for some already set up!
  6. In spite of missing warmer days try to plan  your own “Island Party“!  This mom threw an “Indoor Beach Party”.
  7. Family Minute to Win it Games.  Naturally, this will get them moving and help release energy.  Click HERE for 12 games and a supply list for you to try with your family
  8. Make marshmallow shooters and have a “Marshmallow War“. This is a simple marshmallow gun tutorial for the kids simple kids one (I’ve used toilet paper tubes before).  If you want something more long term and have extra cash for Home Depot you can try THESE.  Don’t want the house to get sticky?  Use Pom Poms instead!  Of course you want to make sure the kids have plenty of room to run around and places to hid!
  9. Build your own Shadow Puppet Theater to put on a show OR practice shadow puppets with your hands.
  10. Since you have lots of boxes left over from Christmas try making a cardboard Play Dome or just a simple castle or fort works too.
  11. Finally, have an Indoor Family Camp out.  Build and sleep in forts, or set up your tent.  Make S’mores in the microwave and have a “pretend” fire to tell camp stories around.

I hope this list gives you some helpful ideas to entertain your family the rest of winter.

What are some things your family does that you can add to the list?

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Further Reading

Every Day Frugal Living Tips

Frugal Living- the basics

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This post may contain affiliate links.  Read my affiliate link disclosure here

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