We love Dad.
And while we like to show that love with awesome gifts like these, sometimes it just plain isn’t in the budget.
So if you’re keeping a tight hold on the checking account at the moment, try one (or more than one!) of these thoughtful, free Father’s Day gifts.
1. Clean Up the Yard
Cleaning up the yard can be time consuming and challenging. Treat Dad by heading outside and doing the yard work for him. Tell him to enjoy his afternoon by doing something he’d like to do, such as golf! He’ll appreciate the thoughtful gesture and the alone time.
2. Personal Playlist
Create a CD or iPod playlist of songs that have meaning to your dad. They can be special songs that remind him of past vacations, birthdays, sports anthems or his youth. He will love the personalized touch. The time you spent creating it will make it special to him.
3. BBQing Like New
We all know how pricey purchasing a new grill can be, but we also know much some dads love to cook out. Put on your cleaning gloves and make his grill shine like new–and if you have some leftover cash, give him a small BBQ gift basket filled with his favorite marinades, steak rub and his favorite beverage while grill side. Celebrate his day by grilling up his favorite meal!
4. Gone Fishing
Have a local river or lake nearby? Grab the fishing poles and take dad fishing. If you like, take to the water. If you want to go above and beyond, renting canoes is relatively inexpensive and oftentimes you can get them by the hour from a local sporting goods store or park.
5. Favorite Flicks
Set up a time to watch Dad’s favorite childhood movie with him–he’ll love sharing a piece of his youth with his own kids, and it may become a tradition for you together. Pass the popcorn, please!
6. Home-Town Sports
Turn your living room into a sports stadium and throw on your favorite jersey! Top off the day by munching on game-time favorites such as pretzels, hot dogs and nachos. While you’re at it, open up the Topps Pennant application which dates baseball game data back to 1952, including individual game play-by-play, so dad can share an experience from his youth with his own kids. (Ok, fine: This one isn’t free. It costs $1.)
7. Memory Book
Create a memory book that you update every year with a new “chapter.” What’s your child’s favorite thing to do with Dad? Do they have a poem to add? The creative ideas to include each year are endless. Help them add a photo or drawing if they’re not old enough to capture it themselves.
Lisa Reynolds, RedPlum’s Mom-saver-in-chief and host of Diva Toolbox Radio: Viva la Value, is a busy working mom of two young boys who lives and breathes the value lifestyle she talks about during her radio show. Lisa’s advice? Never buy anything that’s not on sale and don’t go to the store without your coupons. She gets her love of deal hunting from her mother who she describes as “helpful Heloise” and from her grandmother who lived through the Great Depression and mailed her coupons for many years.