VIDEO: Broaching The “A” Word With Kids! ($200 Giveaway)

CONTESTS | | September 7, 2012 at 6:18 pm


Congratulations Jacob, Mary, Kelli, Soha

So when Women & Co approached me to talk finance my insides felt queasy. Finance and saving is not my strong point. Just ask my husband. Or don’t! That may open up the discussion and I would rather not as it really is my Achilles heel. So I actually considered saying no. Then I remembered that one of my missions (missions? phew that sounds a little rigid right?) with writing this blog was to grow myself. So I said yes. The theme was back to school savings but I felt I needed something larger or bolder than the regular bargain shopping. For the record I will use a coupon but am a huge proponent of quality trumps price any day. Also I like investing in stores that have a deeper relationship with customers, community and environment.

I shop with my girls as hubby and I have learned (though dad took a little longer to relent) that having their thoughts on the purchase helped make sure it gets usage. Just ask hubby about that expensive Geoxx shoes that he thought were perfect for the kiddo since she was having balance issues thanks to her Sensory Processing Disorder and paid close to $50 for it (yeah, he is a sucker when it comes to his girls), and the fact that she NEVER used it. Lesson learned!

 Women & Co. and, (online home of Parenting and Babytalk magazines) released results from their 2012 Back-to-School Spending Report, and I found them interesting. Here is a summary of the report:

So my girls are used to me saying clearly “I have only so much money” or “We can’t afford that.” so I wanted to expand thee conversation. So I thought about how kids are extra careful when things belong to them, like sharing that yummy coconut ice-cream etc. I wondered if they needed to have their own money! So I thought, is it time to broach the “A” word? Not that one, I mean “allowance”?

I had never had an allowance in my life while attending school!

Ok, so maybe that may have had something to do with the fact that money was tight growing up (understatement of the decade) or the fact that things are done differently in South Africa than here in the USA.  The thing is I thought maybe it was a time to broach the subject. I turned to my Facebook page and asked about allowance and thoughts on it. I am uncomfortable about doling out money to my kids because I worry that they may start to take things for granted (in fact I already worry about that) and not appreciate earning things. One reader mentioned doing chores in her homes earns the allowance. I thought perfect!

So no to actually get them to do chores. Cleaning up their toys drives me crazy and apparently it drives them crazy to be told to clean up. As any mama who has stepped on a Lego will tell you, that is a painful subject. Anyway I felt they SHOULD be cleaning up their toys and not be paid for it. Then I remembered how much they enjoyed helping me, you know how we always want to do what the other person does? Well kids, it seems, are not immune to that attraction and find adult “chores” fun. The moment I declared a chore of “emptying” the recycling daily to my 7 year old, I could hear my 5 year old in pure parrot fashion yell “what about me?”.

Giving her a chore would be futile, I knew. She is the one least likely to clean or stay focused on it. She writes and draws all. day. long! I know, I know, I should be proud that for a 5 year old she reads and writes so well but seriously the girl will not listen. But, I did not want to enter the battle of “it’s not fair” so she got the job of putting the shoes on the shoe-rack (we don’t use shoes in my home).  So day 1 went swell as they executed their chores with enthusiasm galore. Of course I expected that enthusiasm to wane and I was not wrong in expecting so. By day 3 the 5 year old gave up and honestly I knew it was a losing battle so I did too. The 7 year old, who could whine up a storm, started losing interest by day 4 and 5 and but still continued, especially as I reminded her that payday was not so far away.

Payday had arrived!

The look of pride on my girl as she kept the dollar for 7 days of being in charge to carry the recycle out and empty it was priceless. To keep things in perspective, we recycle a lot. Our town promotes it and every single home in my neighborhood has huge barrels just for recycling. Our family aim is to reduce “trash” and increase the recycle pile. The urge to spend it was there but she knew she needed more money. She wanted more chores but we felt a week or so more of showing she could follow through was first in order. Week 2 came and flew by and another dollar was earned.

So I headed to JC Penney to get them a haircut and my daughter decided that $2 should be able to buy her something, in spite of my coaxing to save it. I did not want to break it to her that $2 does not buy much these days. So as we looked at clothing and accessories the reality of her small sum dawned on her. Eventually when I went to ring up my items at the cashier, she ran up to ask the lady in charge:

“Excuse me, what can I buy for $2?”

My heart swelled with pride for her manners yet felt sad for the answer I knew she would receive. I decided to give her more chores and to have a few one-time chores, that had been nagging me, added to her list. The potential to earn grew. She watched her friends play outside, yet she made sure her chores were done before she could do the same. I thought these were responsible traits that would help her in life (I totally know several members of my own family who could have learned this lesson too). All this time the 5 year old did not seem phased at all by all of this, that was until she heard her sister say:

“Mom, can I buy that?”

My response to her as she held a pretty bracelet with pink studs was clear “It is your money, if you can afford it and are ready to spend it, that is your choice”. She dabbled about getting something smaller so she could get 2, one for her sister and one for her (bless her heart for even thinking it) but in the end decided she wanted the bracelet. She looked at the purse and knew a big chunk of her savings would be gone on that bracelet. Anticipating the storm to follow I bought 2 little activity books with my own money. As she got ready to spend her money, the doubts set in, and she asked the young girl behind the counter:

“Is this a good quality bracelet? I mean will the gems fall off?”

Bless my sweetheart for her practical side and making sure she got value for money. Even the girl was amazed (and thankfully did not dismiss her like most customer service people do) and replied that that was a very good question and that she honestly did not know. So lesson “question your purchase” was quickly followed by lesson “understand and take risk with responsibility”. So she made her purchase. I signaled to hubby to hasten to the car as I knew the storm was about to start as I watched the range of emotions on my 5 year old’s face. The questions started “Did you buy a bracelet for me!” and my first reply “Sorry honey, she bought that with the money she earned!” No sooner had I said it the trembling of the lips gave way to a full blown breakdown. I am usually hardcore about being fair, to the level of I ignore the board games when they say “youngest goes first” since that is not fair and would always make the youngest assume she deserved to go first (even when she is 40 years old – I know).  The screams of “It’s not fair” coupled with a squirmy body made it a challenge to get into the car. She cried and cried. The activity book I mentioned seemed to mock her rather than soothe her.

If I bought her the bracelet it would be mocking the hard work of her sister, and I was not ready to do that. I would wait it out. It took a long time and honestly felt like forever, but she did eventually calm down. She grew sad but slowly got over it. Well that was until the next day and the chores began, then she asked for a chore again. I wondered about her short attention span and wondered whether this would die down again but in my book I always give you a chance if you want it. She stuck with it. The dangling carrot of being paid got several chores done. Oh course I got the ridiculous question:

“Can I get paid to take a shower?”

Err, let me think about that! No! No! No! You don’t get paid for things you should have been doing. Simple! They both chuckled, thinking it was at least worth a shot to ask. So this is my tale of how we tackle the “a” word in my home and next stop savings account at the bank. I could see my girl’s eyes get all twinkly when I discussed the interest you earn on saving money in the bank.


Now it is YOUR turn!

Would you like to win a gift card valued at $50 to help with Back To School? There will be 4 winners! $200 total prize worth!

To win tell me what is your best Back To School tip Winner chose by Giveaways open to  US residents only 21+ only. Winner must reply within 48 hours or new winner will be drawn. 

Please note the Rules and Regulations of contests at Entering this contest means you have read and wish to comply with those rules.

Please DO NOT leave your email address within the comment!!! Contest closes on September  15th 2012.

Don’t forget to visit out other fabulous giveaways on
Disclosure: Women & Co compensated me for my time, and were kind enough to provide me with the gift cards for this giveaway.


  1. 1
    Kenny F. says:

    shop early to save money

  2. 2
    Mami2jcn says:

    Check out the clearance racks or shop for clothes off-season!

  3. 3
    Margaret Smith says:

    I look through all the sales flyers and purchase items as they are on sale.

  4. 4
    Emily says:

    Stock up on supplies while they are on sale for later in the year.

  5. 5
    pamk says:

    Start shopping clearance racks after the holidays for next year

  6. 6
    Amsdaily says:

    Become a member of the XCEL in Boston to save a lot on school supplies not just for back to school needs in September but throughout the year! There is one in Dorchester.

  7. 7
    Richard Morris says:

    i start getting them on the school schedule a week or two prior so they get used to it

  8. 8
    Kathleen says:

    I have a few…shop clearance racks the year before for childrens clothing as you can get great deals. Shop back to school sales and use coupons. Get the kids on the back to school schedule 2 weeks in advance before school starts so it’s not such a shock when the first day comes

    kport207 at gmail dot com

  9. 9
    Kellie Rose Wilson says:

    Pack lunches the night before, saves time in the mornings! :)

  10. 10
    debp says:

    Shop clearance for whatever you will need, whether it is school supplies to clothes.
    This is a pre- back to school tip. If you have a very nervous child, call the school ahead of time to get approval, but about a week or so before school starts take your child to school and find where the classroom, lunchroom, bathrooms, gym, that kind of thing. It really helps them to know where things are, and not be so nervous.

  11. 11
    Ann F says:

    My back to school shopping tip is to make a list of everything we need and set a dollar limit before beginning to shopping. Then stick to it.

  12. 12
    T. Lawson says:

    Make sure you/your kids pack up their book bag each night before going to bed so that they can just grab and go in the morning.

  13. 13
    Kelly R. says:

    Start with a list and try to stick only to that.

  14. 14
    Michelle H. says:

    I try to buy extra supplies when they’re on sale and then put them away for when my daughter runs out during the year.

  15. 15
    EMMA L HORTON says:


  16. 16
    April V. says:

    Don’t buy it all at once! Buy all year round, when you see a sale on something, get it then and put it away. For clothes, buy one or two outfits at the start and then keep looking throughout the school year so they always have new things, not just on the first days.

  17. 17
    Tiffany Hearn says:

    I buy clothes on sale throughout the year and put them aside. I also use coupons to get the best deals. Thanks for the awesome giveaway!

  18. 18
    robyn paris says:

    I like to keep all school items in one centrally located place so we never run around like chickens with out our heads at the last minute

  19. 19
    Elena says:

    shop on sales for back to school items and use coupons

  20. 20
    Susan King says:

    My best Back To School tip to have Grandma take them shopping and pay for the purchases. It is fun for Grandma and the kids. It saves money because she only buys what on the list.

  21. 21
    Yona says:

    Awe – i really enjoyed reading this post. My Back to School tip is start stockpiling school supplies early and snatch up deals out of season. My Mom has this bucket of supplies – it may look massive, but it will dwindle down over the year…but lots of the stuff was 25 cents on super sale.

  22. 22
    Stephanie says:

    i look for sales!!

  23. 23
    Suzanne K says:

    I shop sales year round and stock up. And, about 2 weeks before school starts, I start adjusting out schedules gradually so that we are getting up in time for school by the first day

  24. 24
    Vickie Couturier says:

    my best back to school tip is to prepare everything the night before,clothes laid out,shoes,backpacks,lunches ,so when morning comes its just up an get ready to go no hunting an running around,,its all done the night before

  25. 25
    Patty Evans says:

    A few months before school starts – begin looking at all the sales in the Sunday paper – start buying everything you need only when it is on sale. Don’t wait until the last minute and pay full price.

  26. 26
    Lisa Brown says:

    Start early and look for sales in store and online.

  27. 27
    Jeralyn Knight says:

    buy school supplies during tax free weekend!

  28. 28
    Sarah Hirsch says:

    my best back to school tip is to buy required supplies for the following school year at the end of sept, when school supplies go on clearance

  29. 29
    Amanda Sakovitz says:

    My best back to school tip is to prepare lunches the night before if you have time & leave encouraging notes from time to time.

  30. 30
    Barbara Montag says:

    We have a dress rehearsal the night before – a lot of fun!
    Thank you.

  31. 31
    Amanda says:

    Talk to your kids about school starting and what needs to happen to be ready and productive.

  32. 32
    laurie nemeth says:

    Just be prepared and have back up plans

  33. 33
    Mary Beth Elderton says:

    Shopping for back to school clothes first take stock of what you already have–that cute dress from last year that is too short now might be great with leggings; new accessories might make an outfit from last Spring look new for Fall. Also, living in the south I know that there is no rush to stock up on warm Fall/Winter clothes!

  34. 34
    DJ says:

    Clearance shelves and racks are your best friends!

  35. 35
    clarissa says:

    go to garage sales all summer and start building a nice back to school wardrobe for the children

  36. 36
    kathy says:

    I shop early to get supplies and then set up routines and places to keep things such as shoes coats, bookbags and homework

  37. 37
    Sandra says:

    Don’t fear the sales rack!

  38. 38
    Kim Henrichs says:

    Shop for supplies early when they go on sale, and check clearance racks for the stuff they are already putting on sale clothes wise. Lots of it carries through those first couple of months.

  39. 39
    Susan F says:

    I try to shop over the summer for back to school to spread out the cost.

  40. 40
    linda lansford says:

    keep on a schedule

  41. 41
    carol irwin says:

    shop sales,clearances and have a stock pile ahead ,its always going to be used and needed

  42. 42
    Chrystal D says:

    Do most of the shopping on Tax-Free weekend!

  43. 43
    Sandy Cain says:

    Make a list, and stick to it. Avoid “impulse buys” – no matter how cheap something is, it’s too expensive if you’re not going to get good use out it.

  44. 44
    Elizabeth says:

    Write out a list of what you need and stick to it, so you don’t get tempted by impulse buys.

  45. 45
    Nicole Vosburgh says:

    Check online or the sales and any coupons before heading out to do your school shopping.

  46. 46

    Be sure the kids and you have a working alarm clock!

  47. 47
    Thomas Murphy says:

    Have a schedule on the fridge so everyone can see the day’s events.

  48. 48
    Jimmy says:

    Check the clearance sales and use coupons

  49. 49
    patricia skinner says:

    Best Tip: shop sales, clearance racks and use coupon codes.

  50. 50
    christine says:

    Pack lunches the night before

  51. 51
    soha molina says:

    Don’t buy anything until the first day of school and a supply list.

  52. 52
    Michelle C says:

    I shop all year round, to help ensure that I find the best deals. When I find a great deal, I stock up!

  53. 53
    Diana Stanhope says:

    I shop for supplies all year and save a bundle getting things on sale. For last minute things that are on the list I don’t have, I wait for tax free sales.

    I also started getting the kids ready for waking up early about a month early so they are used to the routine before school starts.

  54. 54
    Mary Calabrese says:

    Pick up school supplies for next year when they go on clearance this year.

  55. 55
    Patrice says:

    Check out all the store ads and clip or print coupons to further reduce the prices.

  56. 56
    Tammy S says:

    I buy my school supplies when the go on clearance after school has started. Then I just save them for the following year. This way I am ready when the new year rolls around.

  57. 57
    Amber says:

    My best back-to-school tip is to pick out what you’re going to wear the night before to save time looking for items and arguing in the morning!

  58. 58
    C.j. says:

    I start at dollar stores than hit up clearance racks

  59. 59
    Jessie C. says:

    Always check the clearance racks esp shoes, clothes for saving.

  60. 60
    jose benavides says:

    stock up on sales throughout the year

  61. 61
    lestergg says:

    I’m ready…..Make my day, Please

  62. 62
    kjasus says:

    a lot of school supplies i purchased on clearance, with a coupon, making them very cheap!

  63. 63
    Jessica Carnaggio says:

    Get everything done early.

  64. 64
    Adrienne gordon says:

    organize their clothes the night before

  65. 65
    DeeAnn S says:

    Coupons, sales, and thrift shops for clothing. Dollar stores for school supplies. Thanks.

  66. 66
    Deanna G. says:

    Shop stores like TJ Maxx & Marshall’s for clothing. They have great prices all year round.

  67. 67
    Rhonda F. says:

    I never buy new clothes before school starts. The girls were their summer clothes for the first few weeks, anyway. As the weather turns cooler, we go through all their fall/winter clothes and carefully assess what they truly need. By then, we are able to add to their fall/winter wardrobe with mid season/end of season sales.

  68. 68
    brandy says:

    Shop at stores like Dollar General for school supplies and shop at Ross’s and Cato’s for school clothes. They have great stuff for less.

  69. 69
    Theresa Jenkins says:

    I shop late to get the clearance prices…the kids start school in their summer best and then start shopping for winter when the sales start popping up

  70. 70
    Casey Everidge says:

    watch different stores for the best deals on school supplies. and stock up when everythings on sale at the beginning of the year

  71. 71
    Kyl Neusch says:

    get clothes ready the night before

  72. 72
    LOIS PAYTON says:

    I shop right after christmas sales for the next christmas, GOD BLESS AND KEEP YA’LL SAFE IN HIS LOVING ARMS.

  73. 73

    My tip is to buy a lunch ticket in case you don’t have time to make a lunch for your child.
    smchester at gmail dot com

  74. 74

    Oh no! I forgot and left my email address and can’t remove it. Will you remove it for me if you can? Sorry!

  75. 75
    Sarah S says:

    Stock up at all the great pre- season sales.

  76. 76
    ky2here says:

    Have extra cash ready for that first day of school ‘emergency’ (everyone else has this and I’ll just die if I don’t have it as well).

    ky2here at msn dot com

  77. 77
    Crystal F says:

    Shop the sales papers. You can find tons of deals in the Staples and Office Depot papers for school supplies. Look online for department store coupons. I can almost always find % off coupons for them and then I shop the clearance racks to save a ton. thank you!

  78. 78
    Sylvie W says:

    Dollar stores are great for basic school supplies.

  79. 79
    Jessica says:

    get prepared the night before so you aren’t rushed in the morning

  80. 80
    Kelly D says:

    My best tip is to help your kids pick their clothes at the store & their outfit the night before school so their are no struggles/delays in the morning.

  81. 81
    Jannie Bryant says:

    Shop sales, use coupons, go on tax free weekend.

  82. 82
    chris z says:

    check out clearance

  83. 83
    Kathlyne says:

    Shop sales and use coupons. And always check ebay, you can get some great clothes at great prices (just remember to include shipping cost as part of the price).

  84. 84
    joni says:

    I get some supplies at the Dollar Stores. I also use for books—can’t beat them!

  85. 85
    Katie Rose says:

    Stock up on school supplies when everything is on sale now because this will probably be the best sale of the year—but then make sure you store it where the kids can’t get into it and wreck havoc on it before it is needed!!

  86. 86
    Angela H says:

    Shop for clearance at the end of seasons for the next year. A great way to get tons of school clothes cheap.

    thisisme79 @ gmail dot com

  87. 87
    Kristy T says:

    definitely start going to bed a little earlier before school starts!

  88. 88
    Linda says:

    My tip is to watch for sales and coupons for back to school buying

  89. 89
    Hoa Le says:

    My tip is to buy your basic supplies in bulk.

  90. 90
    Jacob LaFountaine says:

    Don’t stress about it. Let it happen

  91. 91
    Holly B says:

    It won’t help for this year, but wait until supplies go on sale, then stock up for next year.

  92. 92

    Stock up on supplies while they are on sale for later in the year.

  93. 93
    Ellie W says:

    I always shop for basic supplies at after season clearance sales, for the following school year. Same with school clothes in a size or 2 larger.

  94. 94
    Amy Z says:

    Take advantage of back to school rebate offers. They may be a little time consuming, but you can save some serious cash that way!

    amyzak11 (at) gmail (dot) com

  95. 95
    MelissaO says:

    Buy back to school clothes online and use coupons and promo codes.

    wolverina401 at gmail dot com

  96. 96
    gina says:

    My best tip is to start early, so you are prepared & not rushed & stressed.

  97. 97
    JoAnn F. says:

    I do alot of my shopping for school supplies at the dollar stores!

  98. 98
    Cody Anderson says:

    Tip: Choose a backpack with wide, padded shoulder straps and a padded back.

  99. 99
    Paula Tavernie says:

    Pack Lunches and get clothes ready the night before!
    ptavernie at yahoo dot com

  100. 100
    Kelly H. says:

    Packing everything the night before and having one spot to keep it all.

  101. 101
    Nataly Carbonell says:

    Always take ADVANTAGES of special deals,discounts and coupons!
    I always search the internet for deals before heading to shop :)

  102. 102
    Ashley Hatten says:

    Shop for clothes and supplies on clearance racks, use coupons and stock up when they go on sale!

  103. 103
    Heather Zeh says:

    Get as much ready the night before….every night!

  104. 104
    sheila k says:

    i always check the clearnce racks and shelves first

  105. 105
    Jamie Herda says:

    I sit down with my daughter and show her the set amount of money that is available for BTS shopping. It makes her feel involved and she will, often that not, ask me for my opinion (and that is where I can give her my clearance racks, sale days, online specials,etc. speech) It works out well for us:)

  106. 106
    Cynthia R says:

    i shop at goodwills and yard sales for some of the back to school clothes and enter giveaways for school supplies and gift cards

  107. 107
    stony says:

    We do thrift and consignment for clothes shopping, watch for sales and use coupons when I can

  108. 108
    kathy says:

    have a clothes swap with friends! it is amazing what didn’t get worn by one child and is loved by another. saves money, and is a fun way to get together!

  109. 109

    I actually like to order the more expensive stuff in the summer, so I don’t get a huge amount of stuff to buy all at once.
    I ordered their backpacks early, and put them away in the closet, got their sneakers on sale and put those away too..
    It’s easier to split up the cost (especially with 3 kids) throughout the summer since you never know what school cost are going to be! School fees alone are over $150 for all 3 of my kiddos!

  110. 110
    Brandi Perkins says:

    I shop clearance racks in the fall for summer clothes & in the spring for winter coats!!!

  111. 111
    Brad says:

    Make a list of what you Need, and shop the back to school sales.

  112. 112
    jeni lutz says:

    get clothes and lunches packed the night before

  113. 113
    Theresa D says:

    Here in CT we have a tax free week, so we try to do our major shopping for back to school cloths and supplies that week.

  114. 114
    Kirby McCauley says:

    Pick clothes & pack lunches the night before. Get supplies shopping done early but save clothes shopping till tax free weekend.

  115. 115
    Holly C. says:

    make a list and check out stores online for specials and promo codes is ordering online.

  116. 116
    Daniel M says:

    look for sales and % off coupons

  117. 117
    Karen says:

    Before school while looking for supplies, compare fliers to find the best deals. After school begins make sure that you have everything prepared the night before so it is up, breakfast, bathroom and out the door.

  118. 118
    Nicole Larsen says:

    I go back to school shopping right after school begins and everything gets marked down to clearance. That way I’m prepared for the next year already!

  119. 119

    I like to shop around, and buy a lot online!

  120. 120
    Jill Myrick says:

    I purchase items that we will need more of throughout the year (notebooks , pencils, etc) in bulk while they are at their lowest back to school price.

  121. 121
    Theresa says:

    Save every store coupon that you get. I don’t know how many times I threw out a department store coupon only to find out we did indeed go there for our bts shopping needs!

  122. 122
    Leslie S. says:

    If it is a great sale(esp on supplies),then stock up.I home school my 4 and the regular rices for pencils and paper are outrageous.I also shop off season and buy bigger sizes of shoes and clothing as well as yard sales and thrift stores.

  123. 123
    Sonya says:

    I shop all summer long, stocking up on killer sales (Crayola crayons for $0.25!)

  124. 124
    Claire says:

    Clearance racks are your best friend, especially if you live in an area where the climate doesn’t change much between seasons – and even if it does, you’ll be able to find cheap layering clothing!

  125. 125
    Jackie says:

    My best tip would be to shop sales.. You can get great brand name supplies if you purchase during the hottest sales and with coupons

  126. 126
    Jacqueline says:

    Hand me downs helps cut the cost of clothes down… Of course each child deserves at least one new outfit and shoes for school. But theres nothing wrng with handing down clothes to younger siblings

  127. 127
    Jill L says:

    I start shopping early. I have found if I wait, the selection is poor.

  128. 128
    addrienne mertens says:

    i prefer to shop at consignment stores and second hand. the clothes are practically new and cost 90% less
    get things out before gong to bed. no fuss in the morning!

  129. 129
    Erica C. says:

    My best tip is to do a lot of planning on the weekends so your week isn’t as hectic.

  130. 130
    Anna says:

    Shop all year! When I find something for school that is on sale during the year I buy it and put it away

  131. 131
    Valerie Taylor Mabrey says:

    we lay clothes and such out the night before
    vmkids3 at msn dot com

  132. 132
    Jennifer Williams says:

    We have a weekly family planning meeting – mom and dad included. It helps give the kids an overview of what to expect for their school week as well as how everyone in the family fits together to make things work.

  133. 133
    Jennifer says:

    we get to bed earlier, lay our clothes out the night before, and pack lunches the night before too!

  134. 134
    McKim says:

    We start getting the kids adjusted to early to bed, early to rise at least a week before school starts.

  135. 135
    Susan Smith says:

    I pack backpacks and lunches the night before and also set out their clothes which saves time in the morning,

  136. 136
    Valeen N says:

    We will stock up on back to school supplies whenever we see a sale! The kids always need paper, notebooks, folders, etc. So it’s nice to have them on hand.

  137. 137
    Amanda K. says:

    Stock up during the year before school starts. That way, you only need to get a few items (depending on what’s on the school list.)

  138. 138
    Marcia Goss says:

    Our school has supply lists on their website early in the summer. That gives us time to watch for sales and have everything we need for the first day of school.

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    Amy Carlson says:

    Shop off season to save.

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    sarah says:

    My tip is that you start your routine a few days before school actually starts to make it less “painful”.

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    Atlanta Mom says:

    Use Gymbucks only for sale items and shop clearance racks at the end of seasons to buy for the following year for your kids. Also, consign and buy consignment clothes for everyday and only buy new for photos and special occasions.

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    Gaye M says:

    Put some money aside over the summer so you can take advantage of back-to-school special offers.

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    Diane Baum says:

    My best tip is to have a clothes exchange with your friends, to find clothes often in near perfect shape that their children or your children might have out grown. Us moms do this too and we have a blast

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    K Quinn says:

    I loved this! I’ve warred with the allowance and decided not to at this point since at 7 she is still happy helping mommy.
    My best tip is get organized early. I buy clothes on the off season when they are at their cheapest. I bought her school clothes at the end of last winter. We started going to bed early a month before. We started collecting supplies and stuff, with a checklist, a month before. This has been the best year as far as being prepared.

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    Denise Donaldson says:

    My best tip, is always buy your supplies at the beginning of the year. They are super cheap!

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    Claire McKeon says:

    We try to get back into school habits weeks before school starts, picking out outfits for the next day, eating at scheduled times, going to bed early and getting up early so the first day of school is not a total shock!

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    Brittney House says:

    We go shopping when the sales are happening to get the best deals.

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    Lisa L says:

    Hang a big family calendar in the kitchen to keep everyone organized

  149. 149
    DanV says:

    My tip is to stock up on early sales

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    trixx says:

    I buy a lot of back to school clothes on eBay to save money

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    Marie Howard says:

    we home school so we trade books with other fams. for the stuff we need for projects and experiments, use coupons and shop early!

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    Lucy Schwartz says:

    Before we shopped for clothes , I brought out all of last year clothes and had the children try them on. Then we would make a list of what was needed.

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    K Dev says:

    Learn how to make big batches of freezable breakfast recipe.

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    Kristin says:

    Shop sales for supplies and clothes…and shop all summer so it doesn’t take a huge chunk out of your wallet all at once (plus you beat the crowds!).

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    Richard Hicks says:

    my best tip is to get the kids on a schedule and stick with it. WIll be easier on everyone in the long run!

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    dani marie says:

    shop early, esp for school supplies. you have no idea how hard it is to find a mini stapler the first week of school..

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    joseph gersch jr says:

    always get kids lunches ready the day before

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    richard twark says:

    make sure your kids know htere schedule ahead of time

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    Sue C. says:

    Take advantage of all the sales this time of year and buy enough to last the year, especially school supplies and clothes. Thanks for the giveaway!

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    jeanne conner says:

    I always have lunches, clothes, and backpacks ready the night before..

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    Beverly M. says:

    Watch for sales and stock up when the price is right.

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    alisa says:

    Try to be as prepared as possible the night before.

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    Melinda says:

    My best back to school tip is to organize now instead of later!

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