Quick Tips for Back to School Shopping
My daughters are heading into kindergarten and 3rd grade next month and I just opened their classroom supply list – WOW, it’s a long one! I don’t even remember having a backpack in kindergarten, yet she will be showing up with 24 “Ticonderoga Wood-Cased #2 yellow pencils” (because any old #2 pencils just won’t do), 2 boxes of 16 large washable crayons, 2 boxes of 24 small crayons, 4 pink erasers, 4 large glue sticks, 1 box of Kleenex, 2 containers of disinfectant wipes, 1 spiral notebook, 1 pair of blunt scissors, 1 nap mat, 1 blanket, 1 change of clothes, 1 box of sight words, and a partridge in a pear tree…oh wait, no partridge, got a little carried away, but you get the idea. And that’s just for the kindergartener! I’ll spare you the 3rd grade list, as it’s even longer. Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate our school and have a great love for our teachers, but it’s time to tackle the list and ensure the best possible deals!
I’m a frugal momma, and that’s just supplies, so let’s get started
Don’t leave home, Amazon Prime day might be long gone but the competition isn’t
Economists have stated that Amazon Prime day actually surpassed 2016’s Black Friday and Cyber Monday, which is forcing many stores like Staples, Office Max, and Office Depot to offer deeper discounts and free shipping when you spend over a certain amount to remain competitive. This year I picked up spiral notebooks from Staples online for as low as 19 cents and boxes of crayons for 50 cents – for that price you might want to add a few extras and save for next year by keeping a bin with a small inventory of school supplies. I sat at the computer and tackled both class lists in under 30 minutes with Staples.com. Save time, save money, avoid the impulse spending and the stress of finding a parking spot – online shopping for the win!
Avoid the trendy gear
Disney’s Descendants has been running rampant through our house this summer, but I just wouldn’t give in to the Evie and Mal matching backpack and lunch box. Once the next best thing comes along, my girls will be begging for an upgrade, which will only result in wasted cash. Amazon has some great deals on backpacks with many options to choose from. Once again, why leave home!
Old Navy and Kohl’s have become my go-to stores for back to school clothes of solid quality and price. Great coupons and sales are readily available whether your kiddos are in uniforms or create their own look. And if you see an item you bought in the last 14 days on sale later, you can get the difference refunded with a receipt only. Kohl’s offers a very generous return policy.
Plan your lunches based on weekly grocery circulars
Check your weekly grocery circulars for the best prices on veggies and produce. Even organic options can be found on sale.
The Container Store offers lunch-time essentials containers for as low as $5.99 (Colorful Klip-It Lunch Cube-to-Go – https://www.containerstore.com/s/kitchen/colorful-klip-it-lunch-cube-to-go/1d?productId=10025083) that can be reused all year long. At that price, you may want to pick up two sets per kid to avoid the stress of washing them nightly.
On to another school year we go moms, we’re almost there – hang in there as you get through these last weeks of summer!