For example, at Lowe's twice a month they have a Build and Grow Clinic. The kids are given a kit and tools to build a little project to take home. Today the project was a treasure chest. I feel these projects are good practice with a real hammer in a safe environment. It is also good for the older kids for practice in following directions.
Home Depot also holds Kids Workshops that we have enjoyed.
We pick and choose projects that are items that we could actually use and not feed the clutter monster in our home. For Father's Day they made a very nice box with dividers in it for nails and screws.
Once they complete these projects, they get a certificate and a patch or a pin. The certificates go into their portfolios with a picture of them holding their finished project.
Note: I recommend reserving your spot at Lowe's. Often times, they do not have extras so if you just show up, they may not have a kit for you.
On to the next freebie of the day -
We had coupons for free Roastburgers at Arby's. My two youngest don't like this sort of thing, so my oldest daughter and I each got a lunch that filled us for about $3.50 total! The sandwiches were free, but we had to buy a drink.
After that, we stopped by 7-11. They were giving away free Slurpees. They were only 7oz each, but that's really all a kids needs so far as sugar and calories go. They were completely happy with this.
My final freebie for the day was a deal at CVS for cereal. I was able to combine coupons and a $4 ECB to get 3 boxes of Trail Mix Crunch for free. I walked out with my cereal and a new ECB worth $5.
So for all of this, I spent a grand total of $3.50 for the day.