We’re a few months deep into social distancing. Money is tight, most places aren’t open, and father’s day is right around the corner. So how can you make the day extra special for your guy at home without breaking the bank? Let’s discuss five free, creative Father’s Day ideas to make this year his most memorable celebration yet! Whether your man is a foodie, sports fanatic, or sentimental family man, this list has something for everyone.
But first, my FREE gifts for you!
5 Budget-Friendly & Out-of-the-Box Father’s Day Ideas to Celebrate at Home
#1: Recreate his favorite restaurant meal with a copycat recipe
Sure, his #1 restaurant may be open for takeout. However, chances are you’ve already dined out there during quarantine or have avoided doing so to save money. So why not make a homemade copycat recipe of his favorite restaurant dish at home? This kind of homemade father’s day idea really shows thoughtful planning. Plus, we all know the key to most men’s heart is through his stomach. 🙂
He may be embarrassed to admit this publically, but my hubby loves Olive Garden’s “Zuppa Toscana” soup. I remember when he discovered there were pages of copycat recipes online he became obsessed with the idea of trying our own version at home. Here’s the one we loved the most!
#2 Setup a surprise virtual double date or guys night
If your guy is like mine, he isn’t keen on having to make plans himself (even the virtual kind). However, if someone else sets the stage he’s all in! We’re all missing our old high school friends, college roommates, coworkers, and heck, even our fellow mom and dad friends down the street. Reach out a buddy or two and schedule a surprise double date night or guys night on Zoom or Google Hangouts after the kids go to bed.
Worried your virtual gathering could fall flat? Prepare a game to spark some competition and laughs! Here’s a fun list of 10 games that can be played virtually to spice things up. We recently played trivia with 4 other couples from college, all with kids under the age of 3, and wondered why we haven’t been holding virtual post-bedtime gatherings all along!
#3 Make good old-fashioned coupons (social distancing edition!)
Some of the best gifts for dad cannot be bought online. Think of all of the things your guy loves and hates doing at home and voila! You have your ideas for some genuinely meaningful and personal homemade coupons. Have your kids take part in coloring some small pieces of paper (post-it notes or index cards will get the job done). Write down some special things you are willing to do for him when he decides the time is right. Here are a few ideas that may be particularly special while social distancing:
- 1 hour of alone time
- Dad’s “in charge of the remote” day
- Dad’s favorite dessert night
- Get out of yardwork-free card
- 10-minute back massage
#4 Create a “We Love Dad” slideshow
Did you know you can make a super professional-looking slideshow straight from your iPhone in a matter of seconds? If you didn’t check out this simple tutorial from Business Insider. Create a sentimental montage of all of your family photos taken this year to celebrate dad. Don’t forget to add some music with a quick click of a button! When my family discovered how to do this for my son’s first birthday we were all fighting back tears. Apple really found a way to tug at some parent heartstrings! Bonus, your kids are going to love and be entertained by watching this one too. 🙂
#5 Host a “Game Day” & stream classic sports footage
If your man is big into sports, social distancing is likely hitting him really hard right now. The New York Post has put together a comprehensive list of where you can stream classic games during this sports hiatus (most of which are free!). Go all out by making dad’s favorite tailgate food and having the whole family dress in his team’s colors. He won’t see this one coming… football in June?? This might have to become an annual tradition!
The last thing you need to know about Father’s Day ideas at home
Now that we are in the thick of social distancing, many of us have shifted perspectives when it comes to holidays and celebrations. Family time has become our biggest asset in all of this. Chances are, dad isn’t expecting much this year other than some quality time with the people he loves most. His expectations for anything else are likely pretty low. If money is tight, there is no need to break the bank this year. A little bit of thoughtfulness from you and the kids will go a long way for Father’s Day. I hope you enjoy and make the most of every moment with your sweet family. You got this, mama!