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Ball games have taken over my free time! (And how to save a little money going to the games!)

Sorry about the lack of posts lately! My kids' ball games have taken over my free time. What I have left over has gone to my garden and my house. I know, I know...I let it happen, but my kids love to play ball!

Consequently, June is our most expensive month even beating out December. I have some ways to save money while going to all the games in the summer. Some may surprise and some may not!

1. Buy an activity pass for the year. By the time softball rolls around, the activity pass for the high school sports have paid for themselves. I know it seems like a big cost upfront, but you save a lot of money by the end of the school year. This is something my kids' grandparents have chosen to gift us with, saving me even more money and it is a gift that pays itself year round!

2. Bring your own drinks and snacks. I buy an eight pack of sports drink for $4.00 a pack. These sports drinks can easily cost $2.00 a bottle at the concession stand. The same thing goes for water. A 24-pack of bottled water costs $3.00 on sale. A bottle of water at the concession stand costs at least $1.00 a bottle. Even better is to fill a reusable water bottle at home and bring it to the game. I also try to keep sandwiches, apples, bananas, and granola bars in a cooler to have on hand for the kids and myself. Most of our games are over the supper hour so this helps with the empty stomachs that we always seem to have!

Yes, we do still support the concession stand as many nights it supplies our supper. I do believe in supporting them as they benefit many of our schools' organizations. On the nights we can eat supper at home at a reasonable time (by 8:00), we do this...

3. Put supper in the crock pot. I haven't been good about doing this year, but I am going to be starting this week. We put supper in the crock pot at noon or in the morning and set the delay. When we get home at 7:30-8:00 we have a good meal awaiting us. Using the crock pot is beneficial because they do not heat up the house in the summer and are low-cost appliances. I use pretty simple recipes that do not take a lot of ingredients. My girls will be putting the meals in the crock pot this summer so they can get experience using the crock pot.

4. Choose the closest game to save money on gas. I have four kids playing ball at three different levels. We have two games in two different locations most nights. I usually split the games with their grandparents so that everyone has someone to watch them play. I like to choose the closest game to save money on gas and to save money (if possible) on admission to the games.

5. Set clear limits with your kids about how much you will be spending that night. And stick to it! I often tell my kids, "I only have $10 with me tonight" or "I don't have any money with me tonight". This lets them know that we only have a certain amount of money to spend and I will not be spending any more after it is gone. This also lets them know that we need to be making wise choices about what we spend our money on at the concession stand. The kids are free to spend their own money if they choose to, but rarely does that happen.

I hope this helps you this summer on your spending costs at the concession stand! If you have any tips or ideas, please let everyone know by posting them in the comments!

Thanks for reading! Have a great day!



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