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Affordable Entertainment for Families

Ahhhh, the gift-buying crunch is over for most and with time and money at a premium now, we are challenged to find some family entertainment that we can swing.. 

This is a tough month to do that (at least it is for me). So, today I wanted to introduce a friend of mine who has not only published a variety of adult fiction on Amazon, but who also has an interest in encouraging families to spend time together affordably, and by using one of my favorite places!

Take it away Frank…

Hi. My name is Frank Zubek. I’m a local writer and have several short stories published as well as two novellas. Amber invited me to share my ideas on helping families not only stretch their entertainment dollars, but also discover an important asset in their own backyard…

The Library!

Both Mom and Dad these days have full schedule. And, of course kids have their own schedules (both social and academic). And yet it’s still important to try to carve out at least an hour per day to relax, and if that’s not possible, some family time on the weekend should be priority. The problem is that our free time may already be tied up with a variety of other distractions that, while feel like they might be entertaining, aren’t fully stimulating, or worse, are eating up what little entertainment dollars we have. I’m sure that on a Saturday night a quick trip to Redbox fills the need, but I think I can show you how to add more for less.

Since we’re on the subject, let’s begin with movies:

By using the library’s FREE catalog of DVDs, a family within an hour, have enough videos to last them for a month.
This saves not the *$4.00, but it also saves you the time and gas it takes to rent and return each of the DVDs to the Redbox (oh, and in some cases, the discomfort of standing outside in the cold waiting in line).

*  Not enough time within the planned month to watch all four films? You can renew them online until you do manage to watch them. Can’t do that with Redbox.

*  Also, many popular books get made into films. By watching an adapted book with the kids, it opens up discussions about the topic and real life sometimes. (Or, like Amber likes to do, she encourages the kids to see the comparison between what the book includes and what the movies might omit. Eventually kids come to understand all the extras they get with reading the book over just watching the movie-helpful when assisting kids with required reading for school.)

Now that we are on the topic of Books-Of course the Library is FULL of them:

ALL FREE! All renewable.

LESS ON THE ELECTRIC BILL: Reading a book uses up the power of just a single lamp instead of a 32 inch TV, or a Playstation or DVD player. I’m sure that if a reading habit kicks in, with even just one member of the family, you’ll see marked difference in the electric bill.

*  In addition to saving money on electricity, reading should be encouraged. It’s a skill that they will not only carry with them into adult hood but more then likely, they will pass it on to their own children. (In the long term of course. No need to rush things.)

Audio books? They aren’t ‘just’ for the blind. An audio book can be running in the background while you handle the monthly bills or while doing the dreaded inevitability of the weekly laundry loads.

*  Of course, the library is a tool that you pay for. You should use it as such.
By dropping the kids off at the library they have access to endless homework material as well as free computers and printers. Even if the kids spend a few evenings at the library doing their homework instead of at home, it would add to the savings on that electric bill.

There’s more….
In addition to the benefits listed above, there are many programs provided by the library. They offer free classes, children’s story hours, holiday celebrations, authors come and give talks, you can get a passport there, they offer assistance with job searches as well as information boards that feature flyers about local events, programs and many other family oriented activities that will help you not only fill time with the family but entertain, educate and in some cases, help you stretch that family budget.

I want to thank Amber for allowing me to present my thoughts here on her blog. If anyone has comments, they can feel free to email me at:

Frank Zubek Author of:
A Strange Life A Novella
Chalk Story

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