I was reading Parent Hacks today, and found a great post on how to keep your kids entertained this winter without spending money. The idea presented was to make your own bowling set.
Here’s how: take empty juice or water bottles, and fill them partially full with uncooked beans (ultra cheap!). Just fill them up to about 1/3 full, enough to weight down the bottom. Use any decent-sized ball (such as a foam Nerf soccer ball) to knock over the pins.
We have one of those toy bowling sets at home, with 10 colorful pins and 2 black plastic bowling balls. It probably cost $20 at Toys’R’Us. I don’t really remember. But come on … how hard is it to take a bunch of empty water bottles and partially fill it with beans (or rice, or rocks, or sand). Parent Hacks says to tape the lids on. I say GLUE the lids on so your kids don’t pour out beans on your carpet.
Now you have a toy that is cheap and reliable. Kids LOVE playing with these types of homemade toys, and they really don’t notice that it didn’t come from a store.