It's The Most Wonderful Time of The Year

You can picture it, too, can't you? Andy Williams' joyful tenor, while a dad dances down the aisles of Staples. The kids, of course, are moping down the aisle.

In two weeks, my boys go back to school. Are we ready? Mentally, most definitely. Physically, yes and no.

This year, I relaxed bedtime. Chef is 10, Game Teen is 13, so we opted to let them stay up past the 9pm bedtime. Some nights, they were up till midnight. Now we've got to rein them in within 15 days. It may be rougher on GameTeen, because he has a 5am wake up time. Tonight, it was 9:30, but of course, Chef is out here as I type this, snuggling with Daddy and watching Food Network.

With the boys wearing uniforms to school and shorts almost year round, other than a few shirts for Game Teen, we're not buying clothes right now. Mainly because we can't afford to do so. They both got sneakers at the beginning of the summer and the Crocs while on vacation. That should do.

School supplies. Those are a major budget buster, except for one thing. I have a huge rubbermaid container that for years, has been the source of our supplies. Throughout the year, when I find a really good deal on something we'll use, a few get purchased and dumped in the tote. One time, it was 2 dozen wide rule spiral notebooks for 5 cents each. Another, Crayola crayons at Target for .07 a box on clearance. Last year, Staples had a crazy .01 sale and I got my allocated quantities of the sale stuff. Into the tote they went.

Yes, Chef needs a new backpack, because the current one is long in the tooth. Other than that, I think that a trip to the dollar store for a bunch of packs of loose leaf paper and we'll be set.

If you've got the space, and the inclination, using a 33 or 66 gallon storage tote and doing the same will save tons in the long run.

Come August 24th, I'll be singing that Tony Bennett song as the kids head off to school, I head to a class of my own and my bank account isn't crying from the efforts.


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