Easy & Frugal Star Wars-Themed Party Ideas

Easy & Frugal Star Wars Party Ideas | The Coupon Project

In the spring, I shared with you how I threw a Frugal Star Wars-themed birthday for my son. A couple weeks ago, my good pal Susan also opted for Star Wars! As this is such a popular theme, I asked if she would share some of the fun and inexpensive things she came up with. Here’s her post:

*****

When my 3-year-old old son, Kolton, told me he wanted a Star Wars birthday party this year, I was excited to start planning. There are so many great resources for birthday party ideas out there! I also had a few ideas of my own as far as how I wanted everything to flow. We ended up with seventeen 3-, 4- and 5-year-olds at the party. It could have been a disaster of kids running around crazy for two hours! But, with a little preparation and organization, the party ended up going smoothly. All of the children had an opportunity to participate in the activities and left with smiles on their faces.

DSCN2566

For the invitations, I used Print Workshop to type up something quickly and print onto cardstock.

Read more

Frugal Things To Do in Seattle (HUGE LIST!)

Huge List of Cheap and Free Things to do in Seattle | The Coupon Project

Reader Patrona recently sent me this email:

My husband and I live in Idaho and have thought for some time we would like to visit Seattle. We decided to go this year for our anniversary in October. I was just wondering if you would be able to share a list of interesting things to do or tips for our stay.  We are low-key people and really just enjoy being together and sightseeing in a relaxed and frugal way. We don’t really do theaters or high priced tours, etc.

We have a daughter that is 5 months old, So doing things that would allow us to easily meet her needs, as well, is a must!

I thought her question would make a nice topic for a post. Additionally, I reached out to the folks at The Coupon Project Facebook page to see if they had additional ideas, too.

Here are some of the ideas that stood out to me. For the purposes of this post, I’m sticking to just what you’d find in Seattle – so leaving off day trip recommendations like Mt. Rainier and Leavenworth (though that could well be another post).

Free Points of Interest in Seattle

Let’s start with some great places you can tour that won’t cost you a dime. Some of these are definitely tourist attractions and others are just places I find interesting.

Gas Works Park

 (Image: Gas Works Park; Credit: Analaxia -Flickr)

Pike Place Market. Ask anyone where to visit in Seattle, and they’ll tell you Pike Place Market. It’s a great indoor market with lots of local vendors that sell produce, artisan crafts, snacks, and more. The fishmongers at the fish market are also not to be missed! For a quirky experience, enter through the gum wall in Post Alley – it’s another classic Seattle spot. Word to the wise: it’s Pike Place Market, not Pike’s Place Market. Say “Pike’s Place” and we’ll know you’re a tourist. It’s also fun to get a picture in front of the Starbucks right across from the Market – it’s the first Starbucks store!

Gas Works Park. When I went to school in Seattle, this was one of my favorite places to visit. This park provides great views of the Seattle skyline and a favorite spot by many for picture taking or fireworks watching (for the 4th of July or New Years). What makes the park unique is that it used to be a plant that turned coal into gas. While that operation was shut down decades ago, the machinery has been left behind as play and picnic areas. It always feels a bit like I’m in a Pink Floyd video when I’m there.

University of Washington Arboretum. I don’t hear many people talk about the arboretum at the University of Washington, but it’s free to visit and beautiful! I like going in the spring when the blossoms are out, but I bet fall would be lovely with all the foliage, too. The arboretum is 230 acre of park-like, secluded gardens containing plants found nowhere else. Lovely place for a stroll or picnic or picture taking. While not free, you can rent a canoe from the waterfront activities center at UW if you’d prefer a water tour around the arboretum area. Cost is $12 per hour for the general public.

Discovery Park. This HUGE 534-acre park feels more like some sort of natural reserve than true “park.” I’ve not been in years, but I remember it as a spectacular place and one I’d be likely to take a tourist to that’s never seen Seattle. Here’s a brief description from the website: “The site is one of breathtaking majesty. Situated on Magnolia Bluff overlooking Puget Sound, Discovery Park offers spectacular view of both the Cascade and the Olympic Mountain ranges. The secluded site includes two miles of protected tidal beaches as well as open meadow lands, dramatic sea cliffs, forest groves, active sand dunes, thickets and streams.”

Fremont. Fremont is a neighborhood in Seattle that has a number of little cafes, shops, and restaurants. There’s great walking to be had around Fremont too – and it’s close to many other Seattle points of interest including Gas Works park, the University of Washington, Ballard Locks, and the Seattle Zoo. Many tourists enjoy seeing the Fremont Troll – it’s another quirky photo spot.  Reader Corinne vouched for Theo’s Chocolate Factory in Fremont, which offers up fun tours for $10 per person.

Ballard Locks. So fun fact about me: my husband and my first date (13 years ago now!) was at the Ballard Locks! We picked up Gyros from the University of Washington and headed here. Of course, I have to mention it then! The Locks are one of Seattle’s most popular tourist attractions and even better, it’s FREE. You won’t pay to walk around the park-like setting, check out the locks, or the amazing fish ladder. There is also a beach area. One thing you’ll find about most of the places I’m mentioning is that there are LOTS of walking/biking trails around too. Many of my Facebook pals vouch that you stop here.

Read more

How to Can Pineapple

Canning is a little like painting a room. You’re initially excited about the process and you may even start with gusto, but at some point you realize there’s a bit of monotony involved. But at the end you stand back …

Read more

How I Canned My Garden Tomatoes

This year I’ve done some experimenting with canning and I’ve been pleasantly surprised by how easy it truly is! There’s also something strangely satisifying about learning a time-honored tradition like canning, isn’t there? My aptly-named “Early Girl” tomato plant has been putting …

Read more

How to Make Soup Mix in a Jar

Soup mix in a jar is an easy and extremely frugal gift – here are some ideas for putting it together yourself! This month I’m running a series called Love: in a Jar – it’s a fun exploration of all …

Read more