Monday, August 4, 2014

It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Yes folks, it's almost that time of year.....


Oh yes, I still love this commercial. lolz

But seriously, it's back-to-school shopping time.

Every year it rolls around when you have children and I bet every year most American parents overspend.
It's a big shopping opportunity time and all those retailers are hoping to separate you from your money.

I've always tried to be frugal at this time of year when procuring the BTS necessaries for my kids.

*  We always use a list.  Keeps the kids from throwing "wants" into the cart when I have a record of the "needs".

*  We "shop at home" first.  Take your list and see what you already have in your home.  If last year's backpack is still usable, why do you need to buy another one?....other than your kids beg you to??

*  I shop for regularly needed BTS items all year long.  When I can find something I KNOW they will need(notebooks, loose leaf paper, pens, etc.)during my travels all year long for cheap, I pick it up.  The best time for picking up BTS supplies is actually the month after school starts in your area.  That's when all the leftovers go on clearance so the store doesn't have to store all those excess items since most stores have little stockroom space.  It's cheaper for them to unload it all, no matter how little they sell it for and restock next year before school season.

*  Unless you live far from retailers, make an effort to pick up those BTS "come on" deals stores run when you are out running errands.  You know, the 1¢ or 5¢ items they use to lure you into the store so that you'll spend for the big ticket items in their store because it would be convenient, even if the deals on those other items are weak or nonexistent.  Just remember not to run around for those deals and use tons of gas and time.....pick them up if the stores running them are along your route.

These are just a few tips for BTS season for those from pre-school to high school senior aged.
Once you have a teen ready to leave home for college, the shopping doesn't go away.
Oh no!
It merely ramps up another notch.

Now not only are you having to shop for pens and paper, but if they are leaving home to live away at school, you have a whole other level of needs.....the dorm room needs.

Folks that's just a whole other circle of shopping hell!

And from the stories and real life cases I've seen, what most parents/students drag to their first dorm room, they end up dragging about half of it home because they have waaaaaay overbought! lol

My college needs staging area with our stuff ready to go. 

Except for some of the food, all his clothing and shoes, his pillows, his laptop and his musical paraphernalia, this is the bulk of what will be accompanying #2Son to college.
It sure doesn't look nearly as large as the mountain of stuff many parents haul to college for their kids!

I used a Master List of Things to Buy/Find which was a combination of the school's "Room Essentials" List they supplied and the Supplies List my friend Sonya Ann compiled 4 years ago, which you can find HERE.   Between those two and a few additions that were unique to us, my List has served us well!

I am down to the last 3 items I need to procure before #2Son leaves for school.....3 items I don't have in the house already and/or can't make or make do without.  I'll make a quick run to the store on my errand day Tuesday and we are D.O.N.E.


Then I'll sit down later this week and tally up what this all cost and what was on our list.
I am sure it will be more than I thought it all cost but a lot less than most parents spend who are outfitting a teen for college.

How is your back to school shopping going?
Are you finished yet or not even started at this point?
Do you have  BTS budget?




  1. That is the best title EVER!
    I'm done with collecting/gathering for DJ. All that I have to do is double check everything and then pack the van for the lovely 5 hour drive.
    We are so close, SO CLOSE!
    Thank you for the linky love.

    1. Our drive is only 2.5 hours....but we have done 4 hour and 5+ hour drives with the other two. I think I am liking this school better. lolz

      3 items and it is done, except for the hauling.

      I think we need to drink to this.....

  2. I just spent $50 at the Dollar Tree buying BTS stuff for my grand nieces and nephews. Their parents are strapped for cash and get this....every year you have to register your kids for school here and there's like a $25 fee per kid plus a laptop rental fee of like $80 plus school supplies and cleaning supplies for the teacher. All required. It's crazy!!

    1. I have heard of school districts where you have to buy classroom supplies least the teacher isn't paying OOP from their salary for Kleenex and paper towels. Laptops for students? That's just ridiculous! I swear schools figure out more ways to spend tax money that doesn't actually improve the quality of the education and then they suck MORE $ outta the poor parents!

      I think most people would be better off yanking their kids out of public school and going with an online would surely cut down on the bullying stuff too.

    2. Guess what? No online schools in Alabama. No charter schools either.Glad I waited for my daughter to graduate before relocating.

    3. Looks like parents in AL can homeschool....sort of.
      What a backwards state with a very strong Education/Teacher's Union! Bet it's easier over in FL....

  3. I am so D.O.N.E. with school :) :) Howev's my dearest dumpling has applied to teacher's college so maybe I'm not so done after all!! But she's almost 24 so she can pack for herself! Well, I might help a little. If she's nice to me...

  4. You could avoid buying so much stuff by having them live at home during college. Nahhhh. Moving away is much better.


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