Do: Free Activities for January


January is a bleak month, I find myself cold, penniless and feeling a little sorry for myself, so as well as planning what I’d like to make, bake and where I’d like to visit for the year ahead I’ve been thinking of ideas for low cost activities that I can do right now. Activities that don’t cost the earth but still allow me to still spend time with friends and be a little creative.

Here follows my list of free things to do when you’re tight on cash:

Board Games

We are big fans of board games here at Make Do and Spend towers, favourites include:

  • Articulate
  • Monopoly
  • Trivial Pursuits
  • Giant Jenga-  indoors (this just happens to be Truffle’s favourite too!)

Though C and I only own Monopoly and Giant Jenga we have friends that own other board games so we take it in turns to host dinner and games nights, perfect weekend winter warmers

giant jenga

Visit Free Museums and Art Galleries

This is a great way to take in some culture and get inspired by other artist’s work, we’re lucky enough to have the brilliant New Walk Museum and Art Gallery in Leicester so I’m planning a visit next weekend, try to find free museums and galleries local to you.

Start a Sketchbook/Scrapbook/journal

This is a great way to document memories and bookmark ideas whilst out and about. B gave me a beautiful 5 year journal for Christmas and I really like the format of Keel’s simple diary as a different format for recording what sort of day you’ve had.

I’m also planning a little bit of sewing as I have a stash of fabric to play with


Pack Lunches

This is one of my all time favourite ways to save money, it’s simple, cheap, creative and a great way to use up leftovers

Store cupboard Baking Days

Again a great way to get creative and use up ingredients that have been hanging out in the cupboard for a few months. Last year I hosted a pizza making day for some friends who wanted to learn about making bread, it was a great way to spend time quietly catching up with friends without breaking the bank.


Free film viewings

Visit and to find free film viewings and pre-views near you

Recycle, swap, and get paid to shop

If you’re a little bored of your film collection or, god forbid, looking to trade in any unwanted Christmas presents try  and for online swap shop communities, I’m also planning to sign up for where you can be paid for secret shopping trips in exchange for feedback on your shopping experience

Wrap up warm and get outdoors

Yes, it’s cold out but there are still adventures to be had and walking and cycling are free. On a recent bike ride I discovered that Leicester has a city farm open 365 days a year, who knew!

How are you saving your pennies this January?

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4 thoughts on “Do: Free Activities for January

  1. Laura says:

    Nottingham also has a city farm! Love your list – i am planning a few more board game nights soon too. Charity shops are often a good source of fun board games! Our faves include Pointless, Family Fortunes (its very dated!) and Taboo.x

    • makedospend says:

      That’s a brilliant idea, i’m definitely going to browse round a few charity shops to see if I can build on our collection! x

  2. Janet says:

    Board game nights are such a fun and cheap way to hang out with friends, I definitely want to have more of them this year.

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