Back to school shopping has commenced.

So the annual OMG MY KIDS NEED EVERYTHING FROM SOCKS TO BACKPACKS shopathon is well under way here at our house.  We started last month, picking bits and pieces up at yard sales.  If you find even ONE good yard sale that has nice clothes for the size your kid is going into, take my advice.  BUY IT ALL.  I’m kicking myself in the arse for not taking advantage of the one and only good sale I found last month.

It was a yard sale being held by a woman who has a kiddo in Mad’s year at school.  Her daughter is one size up from Mad and they have great taste in clothes.  But I was in a hurry, had to pee and only grabbed a few things thinking, “It’s only early July..there will be plenty of other sales.”  Ha.  For every one yard sale I see with girls 10/12’s and 14/16’s…there’s approximately 300 with NOTHING. Old bodice-rippers that smell like mold?  Check.  Crusty Tupperware from the 70’s?  Check.  Girl’s clothes in the right size that don’t show too much skin/don’t smell like dog or smoke/aren’t stained, ripped or torn?  NONE.

In a fit of panic this week, I girded my loins and loaded the two girls into the car and headed to the….mall.   *gulp*  Just thinking back on it makes me break out in hives.  I am NOT a mall shopper, Cheeky Monkeys.  I hated the mall as a kid when my mother would cart us up from Castine to get back to school clothes at Porteous.  Malls to me were dark, crowded, and full of scratchy, stiff clothes that I hated anyway.  My views haven’t changed much.  But off we went, stiff upper lip, shop for England, etc.

And do you know what?  I was right, as usual.  It was as crazy as I thought it would be.  Backpacks, even cheaply made, boring ones were $30 and up.  In one store they started at $40 and went up.  Another had a plain purple one for $58.  Think about that.  For NYLON.  I quickly abandoned the search for backpacks realizing we’d never get one for less than the price of a kidney.  We did find a few pieces of clothing for each kid on clearance racks, but not much.  Sears had some cute graphic tees for the little one for less than $5 each and Deb had some super cute tops and leggings for Hallee for about the same.  I called it quits after an hour and came home to formulate a new plan of attack.

I had $10 worth of Target gift cards in my wallet.  We went online and within a few minutes both girls fell in love with the exact same back pack that was on sale for $22.49.  Sigh.  $34.98 plus tax later, they should be delivered (free shipping with my Target Red Card) today.  LL Bean did have some cute ones on sale, but they were smaller than what we needed and the larger size was a big price difference.  I hope I don’t end up regretting not just sucking it up and spending the money at Bean’s.



There is a HUGE outdoor yard sale this weekend on Union Street at Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate and I’m hanging my hopes on cleaning up there like we did last summer!  I’d like to find fall/winter coats if I can.  The sale benefits Sarah’s House.  We KILLED it there last summer, it’s the best sale of the season as far as I’m concerned.  Win-win situation!  A great non-profit gets cash, we get everything from clothes to furniture for awesome prices and SO MUCH STUFF.   If I can’t find a goodly chunk of school clothes there than I’m in the wrong business.  (That business being shopping).

So look for me if you are there on Saturday!


Allyson Sorenson

About Allyson Sorenson

Bangor mom. BDN blogger. Volvo lover. Coffee drinker.