HOBBIES ETC. - Poll: How Do You and Family Members Spend Your Free Time?

Updated on July 09, 2012
R.M. asks from Fulton, CA
15 answers

I believe my son is addicted to gaming, and as I woke up in the middle of the night with my knee hurting, I was pondering what people actually do with their free time, and whether gaming is any worse than anything else a person might do with their free time. I think women are generally more well-rounded than males often are, and have a more diverse variety of hobbies and activities.

So, two questions: What do you do with your free time? And, what do your husband or s/o and sons do with theirs?


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answers from Anchorage on

I love to do many things! I love to do arts and crafts (painting, drawing, decopage, etc.) I like to bike, hike, play badminton and volleyball, go bowling, board and card games, cooking, fishing, dancing, karaoke, taking my daughter to the park, going to the pool, movies, gardening, photography, so many many things! haha

but here's what my husband likes to do: video games, tv, movies, board and card games. that's about it! haha it kinda depends on the personality too I think....I like to CREATE something or to laugh and have fun. my husband is really into technology (and I am not) but video games? I don't understand why they're so appealing! I get bored to fast! (maybe that's a girl thing?)

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answers from Spokane on

I love to read and write...I'm getting into gardening (slowly), sewing and working out more - now that my youngest can "go play" with her sisters :) I also love to bake with my girls.

My husband is a classic geek - comics, movies, video games, computer. BUT he only does those things when the girls are asleep or very occupied. He works hard during the week and deserves to unwind however he likes.....plus, it's MUCH better than going out drinking every weekend like some people!! lol

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answers from Los Angeles on

I used to do video games until I discovered video games were running my life.

How do I spend my time now? I garden. I love making my wife happy and seeing her smile. I grow roses in my garden so she can have fresh flowers all the time. I raise produce and fruit in my garden. (Until you raise a home grown tomato, you don't know how bad storebought tomatoes are when compared to home grown.) I invest in the stock market. My wife and I go to plays and operas and operettas when ever we can. We are both active in our church. I grow boysenberries and blackberries and we use them in cobblers, pies, tarts and home made ice cream. Our home made boysenberry ice cream would make even B. and Jerry jealous.

Am I well rounded? Yes, but I'm on a diet so I hope to change that.

Good luck to you and yours.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Santa Fe on

We somehow slowly became sporty in life....my husband and I love to ride bikes, hike, climb mountains, and rock climb (and ski in the winter). Our kids do all these things as well (ok, the 2 year old is still learning, but she wants to). My husband also has a hobby of growing succulents. He loves doing triathalons and trail races. We both take care of our veggie gardens. I paint and make tiles and tile murals that I sell in a local gallery. I also LOVE yoga and go twice a week (I wish it were every day). Our son loves to go to the skatepark and ride his bmx bike. He also loves mountain biking, hiking, and rock climbing with us. That said he is also totally addicted to video games. Ugh, I hate it. But I figure at least he does a lot of physical things as well. I set time limits which he is always trying to get me to change.

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answers from San Francisco on

Well my husband and son both spend HOURS playing video games. It used to bother me but then I thought, who am I to dictate how they choose to have fun? I'm sure they find all the time I spend on mampedia and pinterest pointless and boring!
Our other hobbies:
Me-cooking, reading, crafting, gardening, music, flea/antique shopping
Hubby-video games, golf, basketball, coral reef aquarium (takes a LOT of upkeep)
Son-video games, hiking/running, photography/film
Daughter (16)-music, fashion/shopping, travel, hanging with friends
Daughter (13)-video games (mostly Sims) art/crafting/sewing, cooking, music/dancing
We all like movies and we all work out, so those are things we often do together.
I don't think the men in our family are any less rounded than the women. I think we just have very different ideas of what is FUN!

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answers from Chicago on

Well, we are a family of "gamers" so, we play video games often. Actually, we do not have cable and feel that we play video games the same amt as an average person spends watching tv with simmilar schedules. We do have shows on Hulu or Netflix, but it is either spent playing or watching. Now, we are also musicians so I go to choir and have local area performances (mostly for nursing homes), and he is activly looking for a new band and our son, well he is 5 so his hobby is being 5!

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answers from Las Vegas on


Well, we do like to work a big puzzle.. Not only for the challenge, but for us, it helps to keep us focused. My son who is only ten will spend a hour or so working on it and during that time, that is all we think about.. In other words, I find the puzzle working to be a way to meditate and get your focus on as it were :) Also, we take a lot of walks/hikes.. Additionally, my son is learning to swim so that has kept us busy. Oh we do like our cooking shows too :) and will watch those but my son will also draw on his easel and he LOVES maps.. so he is always coming up with some new road or bus route.. When he was age 6 to 7, he was more into games, and now, he has since passed that stage.. He seldom ever plays videos. I think that's because we do get out of the house a lot and he just lost interest. Although, he does have many friends who plays videos every single day. As for my husband, he joins us on hikes/walks.. He also enjoys business t.v. and working around the house. He NEVER plays videos or even watches sports.

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answers from Bellingham on

My sons play with each other, watch television, play on the ipad and hang out with their parents. I watch television, read, surf the net, chat with my husband, hang out with my children. We set some time aside each week to do ther stuff like swimming, music,surfing.

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answers from Davenport on

Ok - what free time? LOL! But seriously, I love to crochet, as well as read books and online, and listen to music, and also to work with my Polymer Clay, making little sculptures, Nativity Scenes, Christmas Ornaments, and other decorations/knick knacks. I just don't get much time to do these things, but when I do, I enjoy it.

My husband Hunts, deer and turkeys, as well as participating in a trapshooting league. He would like to do more of both, and he used to, but when you have little kids, your world shifts a bit, and he is fine with that, it will pick bakc up when they are bigger and can go with him! He also enjoys fishing sometimes.

Together we raise a garden, and can/preserve our own food - I see this more as helping the food budget, but it is still fun together time, DH sees it more as a challenge/hobby!

My kids are still little, a 3 year old boy and a 5 year old girl, but they both enjoy doing crafty stuff with me - coloring, painting, playdough, beading, they also enjoy playing in water in any possible way. My daughter especially enjoys making gifts for others, and she has recently started writing her won stories ( by dictation to me) and then illustrating them!

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answers from St. Louis on

By 'hobbies' I am taking this to mean in my OWN free time (not time spent as a family)....

I like to read, scrapbook, watch tv, chat on the phone with friends and cook/bake.

Hubby works on his car, the yard (not sure this is a hobby though), work on computers and he's definitely a gamer (PC only). Most of his time spent on the computer is after the kids go to bed and sometimes right when I get home (he's with them 3 days during the week while I work so he needs decompression time!).

My daughter (almost 5) loves cartoons, playing on her computer or my Kindle. She and her almost 3 year old brother just started playing a game on the PS3 (which we bought as a DVD player and gaming device but hardly use it for games) I definitely think my kids will be gamers, too! They do have their own computer in hubby's 'man cave' after all!!

And I don't mind it as long as they are well rounded in other areas, too. She loves to color, paint, read books, play pretend, swim and takes gymnastics during the year. I am going to look into getting her into Brownies/Girl Scouts.

My son isn't so big into games yet but he's not even 3. He's getting better at manipulating the mouse and keyboard and loves Tangram games on my kindle, which I think are great educational things!! He likes cartoons, too, but would much rather be outside running, driving his 'Jeep', digging in the dirt, etc. He's definitely all boy - no sitting around coloring, doing puzzles, etc. Instead he'll take apart a flashlight in no time!!

I think, with everything, it's about balance. I don't put a specific 'time' on how long my kids can be in front of the tv/computer but I try to keep it where they aren't doing the same thing all day long. Some days (sick kiddo, stormy weather, etc - we spend more time as a family watching cartoons, playing on the computer or watching funny videos on youtube) where as other nice days we'll be outside most of the day and they won't turn on a tv or computer.

We also read to our children every night. They get to pick at least 1 book each (sometimes more if we aren't at their bedtime yet) and we do read to them during the day too!!

Great question!!

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answers from Houston on

My free time. I play zuma, scramble and other pointless facebook games. I swim with my kids, build things out of wood.

My husband watches tv

My son plays video games - he is 9

My daughter plays with her toys

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Minneapolis on

We don't do any gaming in our household. I don't think gaming is all bad, but it seems to easily become all-encompassing. I don't enjoy it. I spend a lot of time on a computer for school, and a little too much on this site and others!

My daughter (10) and I both love to read, she enjoys craft projects like making costumes (we just made a swimmable mermaid tail by watching a "how-to" youtube video, she went to a stilt making/walking class). And we are very active - we live by a lake and swim, ride bike, go to playgrounds. We both have been training in karate for 5 years, I run.

She does watch some TV, I don't. We will watch an occasional movie together. She is just starting to discover YouTube videos and other kid's online sites. She likes to go to science and art museums and plays, and has taken several acting classes. She takes piano and band lessons.

I guess we have plenty to do!

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Boston on

Well I spend too much time here ;-). But I decorate cakes, cook for fun, play piano, draw, run, bike, swim, go to the gym, garden (flowers and veggies), and read.

My husband plays hockey, plays cards with friends, fishes, takes care of his aquarium, spends time on-line (mostly watching you tube videos about whatever his newest interest is) and learns how to do things like smoke pork on a charcoal grill for 10 hours or make a clambake in a turkey fryer. Adventures in backyard cooking, we call it.

My SD (14) does kickboxing and boxing 3 times a week year round, hangs with friends and texts, sleeps, draws, and airbrush paints .

My son (14) plays hockey 4-6 days a week for 8 months a year and hangs with friends, runs, lifts, bikes around the neighborhood, plays video games and draws.

My little guys (8 & 6) play hockey, soccer, swim, and play video games, watch TV, play outside, draw, play with Legos etc.

I do think that my boys all play too many video games and that my little boys watch too much TV. It is their default activity if they don't have anything else to do. I do have to go and literally shut off the TV or games and tell them to go to something else. I wish we were a house where we had set up the expectation that TV and video games are allowed only when asked, but on weekends, the kids get up before we do so that's what they do until we get up.

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answers from New York on

Being addicted to anything is not good.
In my free time, I like to read, cook, cross stitch, watch Food Network shows
My husband likes to garden, ski, do woodworking, bake
My son (13) likes to do wood carving and outdoor projects.
My daughter spends time reading, volunteering, doing origami, painting and ceramics, cycling (she is 17)

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answers from San Francisco on

Family of gamers here too. I've been playing games since my father bought me an 8bit NES to help me survive having pneumonia. It was supposed to be a Christmas present but they gave it to me early to ease my suffering. And boy, did it start a legacy.

My husband was also raised with video games. He was lucky and grew up with a Commodore 64, Sega AND NES. We met when we were both 15 and our first "date" was hanging out at his place playing video games.

He was in the game industry for years doing what he loved, helping to develop games, until the economy went sour and the industry began to shed jobs like a dog sheds fur in the summer. It's still not really back on its feet and so we're doing our best to get by.

I have lots of interests, but for family together time, we play games. Some games are too hard for our five year old to participate in but she loves to watch us play things like Mario Galaxy or the like, platformers that require a lot of hand eye coordination in order to finish successfully, and she participates by letting us know which way to go and if we've missed picking up any items or coins.

Just the other day she managed to complete a level in a difficult game and she hollered with glee. We all had to drop what we were doing to come see her trophy spinning and glittering on the screen. My heart swelled and I was very proud of her.

There are story based games in our library that she's eager to play but they have so much dialog and contain textual menu based game play, that in order to succeed, she needs to learn to read.

We have seven bookshelves filled with books in this house, as I am an avid reader, and we read to her every day... but it's the thought of being able to play those dialog based games that has my kid eager and excited to read. She is desperate for the information and this will be a boon to help motivate her in school.

There is a game we play together where she controls the character and I read all the text that pops up on the screen so she knows what to do next and what options to select. (Occasionally she'll pass the controller to me so I can help her with a particularly difficult wall jump or something, but other than that, it's all her.) That is the only one though. All other heavily text based games she must be able to read on her own and she knows it. She has so much fun playing that I'm sure when this game is finally over she'll be reading in no-time-flat, just so she can dive into the many worlds that await her on our game shelf.

I lump video games into the same category as reading or watching TV. It's an escape into someone else's imagination. One thing my father used to say all the time while I was growing up would be, "Find something better to do with your time! Draw! Paint! CREATE SOMETHING!" And then he would plop down in his favorite recliner with another new book and read for hours.


1 mom found this helpful
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