Thursday, June 26, 2014

The school supply list

Ahhh. Sweet summer...Relaxing evenings. Lazy days. Fire pit nights. No responsibility. Not a care in the world.

Wait. Back up. Did I say no responsibility? Not a care in the world? Not quite. The responsibility started on the last day of school when Maddie arrived home with a MASSIVE school supply list for next year. Oh, and Aidan got one too.

Both lists are quite extensive. Now, most people would barely glance at the list and tuck it aside and deal with it on August 31st. But, I don't operate that way. Nope. Let me tell you my strategy.

First, I sat down and studied the list. I really studied it and absorbed what both kids actually needed. Then, I emptied Maddie's book bag and made piles. You would be shocked at what was in her bag. I had piles of erasers, pencils, hair ties, and glue sticks. I also had a random sharpie, highlighter, and a few pens. Then, I started to go through our junk drawer in our kitchen. From that drawer, I had another pile of pencils, erasers, and sharpies. Right away, I could cross off pencils, erasers, and glue sticks off my list. I literally took all the pencils and re-sharpened them, and put them in baggies. Both kids need 2 dozen. Done. I had all of those pencils just from recycling what I had. Oh - and yes - the request was for "Dixon Ticonderoga Wood." I just kind of overlooked that part of it. Each kid will have a mixture of pencils. Some of them are Ticonderoga Wood, and some are not.Oh well. Shoot me for not following instructions.

Other items that I was able to cross of my list just because I had them already were dry-erase markers, highlighters, scissors, glue sticks, and a binder.

So, now that was done. I recycled what I had. All of those items are placed nicely in each child's "Back to School Box" which I keep in our basement. Now it was time to move on to the other items. Let's talk about tissues. Maddie needs 4 boxes of tissues for the classroom. Oh, and she needs a box for Art. Aidan needs 3 boxes of tissues. Grrrrr. That's a whole lot of tissues. So, where do I get them? Aldi. Cheap, cheap tissues in the large boxes. I picked some up on a recent shopping trip. Done. They are now placed nicely in the "Back to School Box." Check.

Other items that are more costly include Clorox wipes, and regular hand wipes. Aidan needs 6 of each. Maddie needs 3. Yikes. Seriously?  There must be a whole lot of wiping going on in kindergarten and grade 4! I haven't bought them yet. But when I do, I will be buying them at Aldi on a shopping trip.

See - that's the key.

 I tackle each of these items on shopping trips. So - it just kind of rolls into the grocery budget, and it doesn't seem like I am spending a lot all at one time.

Then, of course, I have other items like the composition books, and folders. I will be studying the sales flyers in the coming weeks and getting those items when they go on sale. I will also pick up some extras to have on hand throughout the year. We all know that folders don't make it through the year. So it's good to have back-ups.

And that's my strategy. So - instead of tucking that list away and waiting until the last minute, I tuck both lists in my purse. Then I have them on hand at all time. And that's how it gets done in my house.

Happy school supply shopping!

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