WFMW: Saving Money on School Supplies
Now that my kids are older, we don't have to buy as many school supplies, but the ones we do have to get are expensive! This year we have to buy two graphing calculators that range in price from $100 to $200 each. Joy oh joy! But the kids need them for math. They don't provide them in school and they have to have them for homework as well.
Now, one thing I've learned over the years is that items like graphing calculators are only used for a year or two, and then are tossed into a drawer when the kids go off to college. So I use Freecycle right after graduation to find the items I know they're going to need. For free! It took me a couple of months, but I found two of them and saved myself several hundred dollars.
For smaller items, like gluesticks (what do kids DO with all those gluesticks?) and writing implements I am like a vulture all year long. When I see a sale on school supplies, no matter when in the school calendar we are, I buy what I know they'll need. I keep a paper bag under my desk filled with supplies I've gotten, and when the kids need them, they just go into the paper bag.
All year long I add to the bag, and even in the middle of summer, these are just some of the items I've pulled out of the bag.
We'll have to buy new binders and some spiral notebooks, but that's pretty much all I'll need to get come Sept when school starts here. Instead of shelling out a huge amount of money each fall, I end up spending less than half what I would, and we always have plenty of supplies on hand.
One more thing: backpacks. I have found over many years that it is worth it to spend money on a really good backpack instead of buying a new one every year. My son has been carrying his LLBean backpack for 3 years now, and it's going to see him through his senior year as well. If you have never bought an LLBean backpack, they TOTALLY rock. We've tried many different brands over the years, and none of them have stood up like the LLBean.
My daughter also has one, but she's way too cool these days to carry a backpack. No way! She carries a series big fancy purses and totes, each matching her outfits. Because nothing says "girly" like a huge silver lame bag.
Stocking up on school supplies all year round really works for me! Stumble It! JBlog Me