So, with the end of the summer comes the inevitable back-to-school shopping. Summer’s easy livin’ shorts, tanks and flip-flops are substituted with school clothes one size up from a year ago as the kids have grown by a lot under the summer sun. Feet are crammed into new tennis shoes since the children look longingly at their flip flops, dirty and ragged from a summer of adventures.
The School Supplies In Bulk You know my frustration, don’t you Mamas (and Daddies)? To school Lists which manage to grow each year. Searching high and low for that one item that this teacher was very specific about (brand, type, color) and likely to several different stores before -eureka!- you locate it! Dragging your kids along to enable them to buy the things that suit them best, but finding yourself frustrated 1 minute in to the several hour shopping trip because nobody wants to be there (including you). Feeling like you might be scrounging out every last penny to make sure that they have got everything they need.
This year I found myself nearly in tears because i shopped with my three kids. We were in Target (ironically, my happy place) and were hoping to get a lot of the supplies for my three children in just one trip. Each child experienced a list which had been an entire page long. The institution supply aisles were filled with children and parents, several of whom were screaming at said children. I had been trying my best to ensure that the kids were obtaining the right supplies and that they were able to pick out colors and such, when they could. I needed this as a FUN experience, just a little boost so they can get back into the swing of school. However, we had been all just flustered. After an hour or so and a half and tears from 2 of my three children, we determined that we had everything that we needed minus the items which we will need to create a special visit to another store for.
The cart filled until it had been literally heaping and things kept falling from the top and toppling towards the floor. I dreaded pushing the cart to checkout. Just looking at the amount of supplies within the cart made my checkbook tremble. But, we pushed our heaping cart (ever so carefully, while occasionally picking up the boxes of crayons that kept sliding to the floor) to the take a look at and, as expected, I had been a little shell-shocked on the amount. The exact amount was approximately what our family would buy about 3 weeks of groceries. I handed over my debit card using a grimace and can feel my kids watching my reaction because i did so. This had not been the fun back-to-school outing that I had hoped for.
We packed up our bags and walked out to the automobile. When I was loading the many bags into my trunk, I noticed the household in the car close to ours. There is a Mom and her son engaging in a rusted, older model car. She held onto one, single bag that seemed to be packed with school supplies and then he proudly paraded to the car bearing his new backpack on his little back. I could lbtlvz a snippet of their conversation. She was saying that they could buy only a few supplies each week until that they had all of them and trying to reassure him that it was okay if they didn’t have them all on the first day – everything is acceptable out. They made their way into their car (which took several attempts to start) and drove with their small bag of school supplies in tow. We sat, humbled, within our car which had been full to the brim with the supplies of my three kiddos.