Monday, July 12, 2010

Summer Vacation and Back to School already!!

Wow...just walking around the shopping malls or big box stores makes you feel like going back to school again.

Even though it is still Summer vacation, you can see all the stores completely stocked with backpacks, pencils, erasers, crayons, paper, calculators etc etc..the list goes on and on. Kids just walking by, do a double take and scream...'I want that!'

What do you do as a parent? School supplies are not cheap and they add up with every single addition.

Some advice:

Before leaving your home with the school supply list:

1. Check and see if the old backpack can still be used. You don't HAVE to run out and buy a new bag just because it is something you have always done. If your child wants a new bag and you would rather use the old one...go to the Michaels Art and Craft store and pick up some fabric paints, or iron ons (for cloth bags). You can re-design the old bag..for the fraction of the price of a new one.

2. Collect all pencils, paper, rulers and colouring materials from around the house and put them all in one place. Make a list of what you have already. If you still have a dozen pencils from last year, buy one box less this year. Rulers, working calculators and markers can be used again.

3. Buy things in bulk only if you KNOW that it will be used. I saw a Lady picking up at least 10 huge packs of paper for her two kids in elementary school. You don't need that much!!! I picked up three packs last year for two kids and we still have a whole pack left. So this year, I'm buying just one more pack.

4. The best advice: Shop without the kids! Go to the store by yourself......with kids, you will be picking up the pink, sparkly Hannah Montana $30 pencil case, when you could have just picked up the $2/- one that does the same job!!

5. Have a place at home for all your homework supplies. If your kids have seperate study desks, divide the supplies so that they are reponsible for what is theirs. If you have a common area, like a kitchen table, put all the supplies in a drawer set or shelves with everything in seperate containers. It makes things easier to find. I have all our supplies (will post a picture) in a roller set of drawers from Walmart. Cheap and does the job!

6. School lists tend to have more than you really use. You know your kids best! Look at prices in different stores or check online before you leave home. Crayons might be cheaper at one store, but have more expensive pencils. You have six more weeks to shop......and the chance of you going to the different stores at least once is write down the prices and compare.

Happy Shopping!

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