The “Going Out to Eat” Alternative
It’s safe to assume, you enjoy spending time with your friends or family. Then again, most people enjoy spending time with the people the love. Now, I don’t know about you, but most of the time when I see my favorite people, it usually has something to do with having a meal together. I realized this awhile ago and after thinking about it wondered if there were other options. So, over the past few months, I have been trying to come up with other options of what to do with friends/family that has nothing to do with food. Here are some of the hits.
1. Exercise Class – Let’s start with an easy one first. Take an exercise class with a friend. The upside is that you get your sweat on. The downside is that during the class you can’t really chat or catch up. This is one of my favorite things to do with friends, who I see often or talk with a lot. This way we get to see one another but then multitask by exercising, which we would of likely done anyway.
2. Crafting – Not all your friends want to exercise. I know. Crazy. But I have recently discovered how fun and frustrating crafting can be. It will certainly bring out your inner Girl Scout. Head of to a craft store and go crazy. See what inspires you and spend a couple hours or minutes actually making something. It is such a satisfying feeling to see what your hard work and creativity can do!
3. Concert/Musical/Show – Grab some tickets and see something together. Shared experiences are wonderful. Now I understand this can be expensive, but check out listings. There are great reasonable events that meet most budgets in your area if you look a little. In the DC area, there are free events at National Harbor, along the National Mall, and Old Town Alexandria. There are also great smaller concert venues. Recently, a friend and I went to 9:30 Club to see Young the Giant and the tickets were only $35 each.
4. Museum – Living so close to DC means there are world class museums at my doorstep. In many cities, there are great museums that are fun to explore and walk through. I happen to love visiting museums because of their constantly changing exhibitions. This is also a great opportunity to spend the day walking around.
5. Biking – Biking is a fun and easy way to explore large areas quickly. In Northern Virginia I am spoiled by the Mt. Vernon Trail. It is wonderful to use for both running and biking. The other weekend, my hubby and I decided to hop on our bikes and do a few fun miles on the trail. We stopped and took in some of the incredible Potomac views too. If you don’t have a bike, there are great bike-share programs and the ability to rent bikes in most cities.
6. Hiking – Great trails exist all over this area. There’s Sugarloaf Mtn, Billy Goat Trail, Mt. Vernon Trail, C&O Canal and so many more! With the Shenandoah Valley around the corner there are so many options available to those in the DC area. Hiking is a wonderful way to explore the outdoors and get some fresh air.
7. Go for a Walk – How is this different from hiking? Going for a walk involves just walking outside. Walk out the door. That’s all. I recently got a dog! Yes, I now have a dog and he loves to go outside, so it’s been a great motivator to walk more.
8. Shopping – This is obvious. Shopping with friends is just fun.
9. Closet Clean Out/Generally just helping each other out – Now this could be more family and your besties… I have helped purge closets, pack suitcases, dye hair, move furniture, and so much more. Sometimes doing things that need to be done with a friend can help with job go faster.
What do you do with your friends and family instead of going out to eat? Any suggestions? Any trail or place in the DC area you love (I’m always looking to explore new places)?