I was at Wal-Mart a week or so ago and saw that they had changed out the seasonal area in the front from patriotic July the 4th stuff…to school supplies.
I have one child who will be excited for new binders and pencils and such, ready to get back to a routine that allows her to see her friends everyday. I have another child who, well, would just as soon go to work with me. The one bright spot for him is that it is time for a bigger backpack, and the camo one he wanted should arrive any day.
I don’t think my children appreciate the arduous task that is school supply shopping. Typically, it hits my radar in July, but put it off, convincing myself, “Oh, I’ve got plenty of time. School doesn’t start for a few weeks.” Fast forward to the week before school starts, and I find myself circling the school supply aisles over and over, because there is not one pack of eraser caps to be found in the entire store. Or the Office Depot across the street. Or the Fred’s up the highway. Grrr.
Not this year. I’m done. I was seriously considering ordering school supplies online. I had already comparison shopped Wal-mart and Amazon (much as I hate to say it, Wal-mart wins that battle, hands down). But finding myself free on Tuesday night, I decided to go ahead and get it over with. And wonder of wonders, I found everything on the list. Pays to shop early – trust me, your sanity is well worth it.
Going back to a column from six years ago…
Shopping for school supplies
Well, it’s that time again. It’s almost time for school to start. Parents and kids alike are caught in that in-between time of squeezing in the last bits of summer fun that they can, while at the same time anticipating the start of the new school year, and everything it brings with it – new teachers, new routines, new classes and last, but not least, new school supplies.
The “coolest” stuff is already flying off the shelves at Wal-mart. Here’s a sample of what you”ll here if you are brave enough to venture down the school supply aisle:
“But I HAVE to have the PINK fluffy notebook, NOT the purple one!”
“Mom, they don’t have anymore Hannah Montana backpacks here, can we pleeease go to Hattiesburg and look for one?”
“I will NOT carry a Superman lunchbox, that is sooo last year. It has to be Batman!”
And finally, “Just PICK something and be at the cash register in two minutes, or else you are getting left!”
My kids are still small, so we haven’t really had to deal with an “it has to be the right one” battle yet. I hear the fight over clothes is even worse.
At ages one and four, however, my kids do have basic school supply lists. I haven’t done my shopping yet, which probably means that when I do, it will probably play out much like last year. There was a huge fight on the crayon aisle over the last 8-pack of large crayons and, on a different day (since I didn’t win and had to come back after they got more in stock) a similar skirmish over Crayola washable watercolor paints. (Walked away a winner that time.) When it was all said and done, I’d made several trips to about five stores in two different cities, but i got everything on the list. You’d think I would have learned my lesson about waiting this long.
It will likely be especially challenging this year since I have two kids to shop for instead of just one. Looking at my one year-old’s list, I wasn’t surprised to see items such as baby wipes, cleaning products, ziploc bags and paper towels. I’m just not sure what my one year-old will do with crayons. Last time I checked, they aren’t good to eat. Same goes for Elmer’s glue.
Since last year was my first year to shop for school supplies, I was a little unprepared for the melee. This year, I’ve got my game face on.