I’m frugal, employed full-time, and still unpacking all the junk left over from our wedding celebration, but I’m trying not to let stuff like that distract me from the real spice of life: hobbies!
October was a great month in for Chedda World hobbies. My favorite hobbies all meet my three paramount qualifications for hobby fun-ness—they’re inexpensive, make me feel happy, and can be done from bed (I do have some rare non-bed hobbies as well).
1. Staying in Fancy Hawaiian Resorts
Bet you didn’t see that one coming! For a couple blissful weeks in October Mr. Chedda and I were on vacation in Kauai and Maui. I know that doesn’t sound cheap or do-from-bed-able, but hear me out.
We covered all of the cost of hotel rooms for two weeks by snagging credit card bonuses and we did spend a lot of time in super comfy hotel beds while we were there. We spent a lot of time in Hawaiian hotel rooms doing normal at-home hobbies like reading, composing music, and knitting.
We also tried some new activities in our hotel rooms, like chasing unbelievably loud roosters off our balcony at the break of dawn and using a remote control toilet/bidet, pictured at right.
Not as frugal but still notable and definitely worth it was the time we spent taking a doors-off helicopter tour of Kauai and snorkeling WITH A WILD POD OF DOLPHINS in Maui.
October, the month of Halloween, was the perfect month to knit a monster. I have a ridiculously cool pattern book called “The Big Book of Knitted Monsters” and I chose to knit the mama and baby monsters as my first project. I’m still working on the second baby, but so far I’m extremely pleased with how they’re turning out.
Knitting is really a pretty frugal hobby if you buy yarn in bulk and knit as slowly as I do!
I spent about $10 on all of the ingredients for my monsters (yarn, stuffing, eyes, and the attributable share of the cost of needles and knick-knacks), and have enough left over to make several more.
And since this set of monsters will probably turn out to be a gift for my baby niece/nephew who is pending (bun isn’t in the oven yet, but the parents are definitely starting to preheat), my hobby spending does double duty by replacing what I would have spent on a store bought gift for baby.
You know what’s a great cutthroat parlor game?* Canasta! It has become one of the best frugal get togethers in my portfolio.
Some friends asked you to go out to a restaurant? Offer to host a canasta night with some gin and tonics and a jar of pistachios or some homemade pizza at your place instead!
Our background music of choice is a Pandora station based on Eve 6, but you can use your own discretion on that front. Once you’ve trained your friends, they’ll love it so much that they’ll invite you over next time and the dividends of your hospitality will continue to accrue as the game becomes increasingly strategic and the share of the time that you have to supply the wine decreases.
A drunk canasta evening has always gone over swimmingly in my experience, and this past month was no exception. October featured not one but two wonderfully intoxicating evenings of canasta with good friends.
Bonus tip: buy a cheap inflatable crown that is kept in the possession of the current champion and handed off each time you play! It adds immensely to the goofiness of the evening.
*A crotchety old lady acquaintance once described Canasta that way to me and the phrase makes me grin every time I think about it.
What frugal hobbies have you enjoyed lately? Any suggestions?