Please note that all opinions expressed in this post are my own. I am in no way affiliated with any brands/stores mentioned in the following.
Walking into my local Walmart for a quick errand, I was greeted with Back-to-School displays. Sheesh, I guess it is coming quicker than I thought! Naturally, this made me feel a small sense of panic. And nervousness. And worry (as a mother). Part of me was also a little excited–but not at the thought of shopping. Truthfully, I do not like to shop. I wish I could be a woman that enjoys going to the mall and browsing beautiful (yet painful) shoes or handbags that will inevitably be too large or too small. Alas, I am not. I will wear the same pairs of shoes until they are well-worn and almost passed their expiration date. I have blouses that are at least 10 years old, although in wonderful condition. I will take such good care of the clothes that I have so that I can put off buying new ones for as long as possible.
On the other hand, I DO love to shop for other people. I like to pick things out for others that I think they will like or enjoy or find useful. By this logic I should be OK with shopping for Little Guy. Maybe a part of me was dreading this because I do not want to come to terms with the fact that he is growing up. I know I will cry on that first day of school. I will feel a sense of loss as I watch him walk into the building wearing his little backpack filled with all the tools needed to begin his journey into learning. No longer will he be the baby I gave birth to five years before. He will be (and in a lot of ways already is) on the road to complete independence. Gone will be the days where I hear, “Mommy, how do I….?” or “Mommy, can you help me…?”. Soon, he won’t need me to help him get dressed in the mornings. He won’t need me to help him write his name or show him how to draw a robot on his paper.
There are days where I miss waking up early in the morning to nurse him or give him a bottle. Every time he runs to the “potty”, I wonder where the time went because I can swear I was just changing his diaper the day before. Don’t get me wrong, I love seeing him figure out how to play a new game or listening to the little songs he makes up while he plays with his Lego creations (and he thinks I don’t hear him). It’s that just when you think you’ve gotten a handle on your child being a baby, they’re a toddler. Then, when you’re used to the toddler stage, they’re ready for school and so on. Watching your child grow and learn is one of the most beautiful experiences in life. But it moves so quickly that you just hope you can hold on to all those little things that put a smile on your face.
I better stop there, I’m starting to get a little teary-eyed.
Meanwhile, at Walmart…
While they had stacks of glue bottles, pencils, crayons, tissues and Minion bandages, I could not find a school supply list for Little Guy’s school. So there went my idea of getting ahead.
Or so I thought.
While I was walking around I noticed a display in the children’s clothing section that had huge Mylar balloons. If you’ve ever been to a Walmart, you probably know which ones I’m talking about. The sort of mustard-y yellow ones with big letters spelling “Clearance”.
While I dislike shopping, I like scoring a good deal. So I wander over to the display and take a look. They had some boy’s clothes marked down as low as $2. I decided to get Little Guy some shirts and put them aside for his school wardrobe.
I also managed to score some shorts for Little Guy. They were also marked down to about $2 and I snagged a pair of jeans for $1. I know the Garanimals brand isn’t “expensive” to begin with, but that the clothes were marked down around 60% made it an awesome deal to me. This is considering that he will probably come home (as he has done in the past) with holes in the knees of the pants or stains on the shirts. If neither of the problems can be remedied by either mending or a good wash, then I can comfortably add them to my scrap pile to use for little projects.
My only disappointment was with the clearance/discounted shoes. They had a pretty decent assortment of kids shoes: slip-ons, high-tops, light-ups…etc. They just didn’t have any in the size Little Guy wears. Perhaps, just as well. I’m really hoping to get him a couple of pairs of his favorite sneakers with memory foam. He’s a jumper and a runner. I like that the shoes he prefers are both light and comfortable while providing the support he needs. Keeping my fingers crossed that they will have his size when the times comes to take a trip to the shoe store.
Speaking of shoes with memory foam, I did find two pairs in my size. Definitely a nice little bonus for me. Both pair were $3.50 after being marked down over 70%. Super comfortable and absolutely a steal!
If I had paid full price for all of the items, it would have cost $64.86 (with tax). With the discounts, I only spent $23.82. That’s a savings of $41.04!!
This is just the beginning as one of the employees mentioned that they will be marking down even more of their clothing items this coming week. I will be going back for sure. Usually, I like to “shop ahead”. For example, when the Winter clothing goes on clearance, I will buy items in a size or two bigger than what Little Guy wears now so that when Winter rolls around again, he’s got what he needs. I think this is a win-win. I save money and when the weather finally turns he has what he needs. I would hate to wake up on the first chilly morning of the season and think, “Oh no! His jackets and sweaters are too short!”. So when I go back, I won’t just be shopping for school clothes for this upcoming year, but also finding some summer clothes (swimming gear, tank tops…etc.) for next year.
Parents, have you started your Back-to-School shopping already? If so, how’s it going? Does anybody have any other Back-to-School money saving tips? Please feel free to comment, I’d love to hear from y’all! 🙂