Frugal Father's Day Gift Ideas
He faithfully trudges off to work; tackles the yard work; and battles leaky faucets. He is Dad?the super hero of all super heroes?the guy you can always count on.

So, when Father?s Day rolls around, there can be little question that Dad deserves something special?something to let him know that all his hard work has not gone unnoticed. But what present is special enough to convey this message. Is it a tie? A greeting card? Perhaps a new travel mug?

These gifts, while nice, just aren?t special enough for a guy like Dad. No, a guy like Dad deserves the kind of present that can only be dreamed up by those who love him most. And the best news? A present of this sort doesn?t have to cost a lot. In fact, it may not have to cost anything at all.

Here are some ideas to get you started:

Control of the remote- If cartoons and other children?s shows seem to dominate the T.V. in your house, consider giving Dad free reign of the remote for a day. To make it official, present Dad with a homemade gift certificate first thing in the morning. Then, it?s hands off for the next 24 hours.

Get ?mow?tivated- Does Dad seem to spend the better part of his weekends working out in the yard? If so, it?s time to give Dad a break from all the yard work. Get the family in gear, and get to mowing. Dad will love this unexpected break.

A Day Off- Show Dad that you appreciate all his hard work, by giving him a coupon for a day off. Let him spend a day golfing, hanging out with his buds or even just lounging in his favorite chair. On Dad?s Day Off he calls the shots.

Indoor fishing- Introduce Dad to the world of indoor fishing. Have you kids cut out a bunch of fish shapes from construction paper, and then write a reward for Dad on each one. For example, one fish might offer to take out the trash, while another might offer a free back rub.

Once every fish has an enticing reward, slide a paper clip onto the end of each one; and fashion a simple fishing pole by tying a string onto the end of a stick, and affixing a magnet to the bottom of the string.

Then, scatter the fish on the floor, and invite Dad to go fishing. To make things interesting, tell Dad that he only wins the rewards listed on the first three fish that he catches.

Log your appreciation- You may appreciate all the things that Dad does for the family, but does he know it? Start a Dad Appreciation Journal to be sure he does. Have everyone in the family fill a page with reasons they appreciate Dad; then present the journal to him on Father?s Day.

Once the journal has been started, be sure to add new entries each year. By the time the children are grown, Dad will have a whole book of entries to read through and enjoy.

This year, take the time to create a special Father?s Day gift for Dad. He?s sure to love it more than any present you could purchase in a store.

-Erin Huffstetler

Erin Huffstetler is a freelance writer specializing in frugal living tips and tricks. Her work has appeared in numerous print and electronic publications including Family Circle, Guideposts For Kids and Pregnancy. As the stay-at-home mom of two young kids, Erin is always looking for new ways to live better for less. For fun decorating and craft project ideas check out Erin's "Trash to Treasures" and "Bead Making Basics" courses at