I have a love-hate relationship with Back-to-School shopping. On the one hand, it’s the moooost wonderful tiiime, of the yeaaaar:
(that may as well be me in the commercial)
But on the other hand, the commercialism and greed of it all drives me nuts! I have looked though my kids’ closets, and they don’t actually need much. My older son legitimately needs sneakers and a bigger backpack, and both boys need fall pants but honestly, if you’ve lived through September in Connecticut, you know we still have about a month of summery weather after school starts. All those cute corduroy pants and sweater outfits they advertise are great…in late October. My kids will probably wear shorts for the first few weeks, then maybe they’ll add a hoodie. Maybe.
However, I love a good bargain as much as the next mom, and if you do, too, you can use your powers of frugal shopping to do some major good in your community: Why not support a local child in need while you shop for your children?
There are so many local children who may not have the basic supplies to have a positive start to their school year: backpacks, sneakers, haircuts, pencils, socks…for more children than you may expect, these are luxury items. In my time as a teacher, I saw this first-hand. I’m not talking about kids needing to have the latest and greatest, I’m talking about kids wearing flip flops into November because sneakers just aren’t in the budget that month.
While at our local library with my own children, I saw that the town’s department of youth and social services had placed a bouquet of pencils with wishes written on tags, similar to the holiday wish trees you may see. I’d suspect the social services departments of many other towns would also welcome such support for the school-aged children they serve. Thanks to the world of online shopping, there are really affordable ways to provide kids with a big lift as they start a new school year. Here are some bargains I found! (links are from Amazon.com, but many websites, especially close-out websites, offer great deals on back-to-school items!)
So if you’re looking for an easy, fun, rewarding community service project that your kids can relate to, consider donating some back-to-school supplies to someone who may be in a rough patch this year. Consider adding one item to your shopping list to help someone’s school year start on a good note. Spread some smiles this September!