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It is that wonderful time of the year of SCHOOL SHOPPING. Are you on a budget and trying to saving money during school shopping. If you are on a budget and need help with saving money on school shopping let me offer you 10 school shopping tips on how to save money on back to school shopping.
How to Save Money on School Supplies
- Shop early. The biggest mistake we make during back to school shopping is waiting to the last minute to buy school supplies. That is a big mistake. One reason it most of the times school items at the low-price stores are sold out or picked over. Then you have you to settle with a higher brand product or must wait for another shipment to come in. Another reason shopping at the last minute is not good because it will cause you to buy school supplies at a higher end store when you could have gotten the item cheaper. I feel that some higher end stores prey on last minute shoppers because they know we are desperate and we want to make sure that our children have their school items. To avoid this, shop a month early for school supplies. This will help you stay on budget for school supplies and stock up on additional supplies to have throughout the school year.
- 2) Buy in bulk. This must be one of my favorite saving tips. Buying in bulk is a great way to have extra school supplies at home as needed throughout the school year. Plus, it offers you a way to save money than buying individual items. For example, my son needed dry erase markers for school. The dry erase markers at Wal-Mart was $7.00 for a pack of 12 for a generic -brand. Whereas a pack of 16 dry erase markers at Amazon was $6.00 for a name brand.
Best Time to Buy Back to School Clothes
- When shopping for school clothes shop clearance items. Shopping clearance items is another great way to be a smart shopper and save money. My local Wal-Mart currently have their summer clothes for 50% to 70%. Which is great because I can stock up on summer clothes now. Great back to school saving tip I learn is the best time to buy school clothes is off season. For example, now is the perfect time to buy back to school clothes. With summer ending this is a good time to stock up on spring and summer clothes for next year. Where I live in Georgia it does not start getting cool until mid-November. When is start getting cooler I would have purchase light jacket and sweater during November and December because most stores or moving out their fall clothes out to make room for their winter clothes.
- Check out thrift store. Goodwill has been lifesaver for me. When shopping on a budget thrift stores is a great place to shop for school items. I have bought my kids school clothes and school supplies from my local thrift store. One year I even bought my daughter a brand new bookbag from the thrift store. My local thrift sometimes has clothes they get from our local retailer that still have tags on them. Don’t sleep on your thrift stores you can save a lot money shopping there.
- Online Consignment Stores. Online Consignment stores has help me with budget. One of my favorite online consignment store is Swap.Com. With an online consignment store I am able to stack up basic school clothes items such as basic t-shirts and pants. Some online consignment stores give back to their local community or local school. One online consignment store that gives back is Schoola . My children school is sign up with Schoola to get a percentage of items that I purchase from them. Plus, Schoola offer some great name-brand clothes for a budget conscious family.
Smart Back to School Shopping Tips
- Set a budget. Every year me and my husband set a budget on how much money we are going to spend on school supplies and clothes. We make sure that we are not overspending, and we are saving money in every possible way. Setting a budget is a way to hold yourself accountable on not overspending. Plus, it also makes sure that you are getting the best deal for your money.
- Make a List. Write out everything your children need for school. Having a list of things, your children need for school is a great way to keep track of spending. I print out the school supply list from our children local school and mark off all the supplies that I purchase.
- Shop at home. When I buy school supplies or clothes it usually carries me over for another year. To save money on school shopping start shopping in your home for school items. For me, I start looking at my children previous school clothes in July just to see if they can get any other use out of them for the next school year. I also look at my children school supplies when school lets out for the summer to see what can be save for next school year. Back to school saving tip shopping at home allows you to stay within your budget when shopping. If your child has a book bag that is in good condition, then pass it on to another sibling or let the child use it for the next school year to help save money.
Other Back to School Shopping Savings.
- Use saving apps or rewards program. I cannot tell you how the Cartwheel app has saved me money on my school shopping. With my Cartwheel app I can use my Target coupon at the store or online. Target have help me save money on school supplies because they have coupon on name brand product on their Cartwheel app that I can use at checkout online. With the reward program with Ebates the money I spend at different stores allows me to get cash back. Which is good when school shopping on a budget. The money I accumulate throughout the year on Ebates is used toward my children Christmas shopping.
- Shop the dollar store. Some people will disagree with about shopping at the dollar store, but this is great way to save money when you are on a budget. One back to school saving tip I recommend about shopping at the dollar store is buy school supplies for home. There is always some type of project that my children need: crayon, markers, or construction paper. I have a school supply bag that I use to store all the extra school supplies I got from the dollar store. The dollar is also a good place to buy paper product for school. My children school require paper towels, Kleenex, and paper plates. By me shopping at the dollar store I am save money and but a larger quantity for a low price.
I hope some of these backs to school shopping tips will help you save money. Let me know what you do to save money on back to school shopping I would like to hear back from you.
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Yay, so you decide to take the plunge and be a WAHM (work at home mom). Somehow you are asking yourself why do I have WOHM (work outside home mom) issues. Well join the club because that is something that all WAHM go through. I know, I know you were told the glamorous story of being a WAHM. How you will be able to spend more time at home with your kids, or no child care expenses or my favorite you don’t have to worry about what to wear to work. I am going to share why you should not be a WAHM.
Well I hate to be the barrel of bad news but all of that is semi a lie. Hey, hey, hey don’t shoot the messenger. I just want you to have the pretty and the ugly side of being a WAHM. Don’t get me wrong I do LOVE working from home. Still there is some perks and yes some disadvantages. There are some days I wish I can go to an office building. Then there are some days I wonder how some mom do the office environment. Before you jump in head first in to the WAHM let me give you brief low down of what you should and should not expect being a WAHM.
- NO COMUTE (Hey that alone is the best part)
- Yes, that is a great not have to worry about dealing with the morning or afternoon traffic plus you save a lot of money in gas and maintenance on your vehicle
- You can work from the comfort of your own home.
- Being around familiar surroundings and not worrying about clicks in the office but it is you and your fuzzy slippers.
- Depending the job you are able to set your own schedule.
- There is a reason I say that. If you are starting your own business and working with a company that allow you flexible schedule that statement is true. But some virtual call center company has set schedule that you must adhere to.
- No company dress code.
- If you like to have casual day at the office everyday then you can because you are a WAHM.
- Don’t have to go out to eat for lunch. This has to be one of my favorite reasons from working from home. Lunch every week was costing me about $40. That is a lot of money so to have the pleasure of walking into my kitchen and fix my lunch at home is so awesome.
Not So Happy Perks
- Depending on the job you still may have to put your kids in daycare. The reason I say that because if you work in a virtual call center, then your office has to be quiet and free from distraction. That is really hard to do with small children in the house. So there will be some cost at being a WAHM such as daycare. Now if the company you work for has a 24 hours virtual call center then you can work the late shift while your beautiful angels are asleep.
- Some jobs (such virtual customer service) are not very flexible with schedule.Some virtual call centers have a strict policy on attendance. One job that I had in a virtual call center required that I follow my schedule very strictly. If for any reason if I was late then that was an automatic write up
- Distraction from family.As much I hate to say this but there will be distraction from your family. Your child will want some water as some as you start working. Or your husband can’t find the remote control to the television. It will happen so you have been warned.
- Working alone (especially an issue if you are not an introvert)Being a WAHM is not for the social butterfly. You will be alone many, many days. I learn how to cope with it but don’t get me wrong I do have my moments when I get tired of looking at these white walls and I have to get far, far away from this house. But if you really want to do this then you can definitely make it work but if you know you need the interaction with co-works around you then WAHM is not for you
- Self-motivation. It takes a lot of self-motivation to be a WAHM. When working a 9 to 5 you all already know what is required from you because your employer has given you the rules of the company and someone is there watching you to make sure you are doing your job. Being a WAHM does allow you the freedom of not having your boss breathing down your neck but you have to be motivated enough to go to work every day to earn a living.
I hope this encourage your decision of being a WAHM or stay being a WOHM. Whatever you decide enjoy doing it.
Summer is here and the three dreaded word that every parent hate to hear their children say, “Mom, I am bored”. If you are like me you are trying to save money and not spend a whole lot of time and energy on finding activities for your kids to do. I am here to give you tips and ideas on how to find frugal but fun summer activities for kids.
Frugal Summer Activities For Kids
1. Check Your Local Library
The library is the perfect source to have fun activities for your kids. I know at my local library they have reading program throughout the summer. This is great because it ensure that my kids keep reading while school is out. At some library they have different activities throughout the week and weekend. Guess what it is absolutely free.
2. Local Community Activities
Check your local newspaper or city Facebook can offer free summer activities for kids. My local city have movie on the lawn one Friday a month and it’s free. We bring our lawn chair and blanket and pack a dinner and watch movie on the lawn. Sign up for your city Facebook page to get free family activities. Some city Facebook will announce different organization that are having free or inexpensive family activities.
3. Arts and Craft
Doing arts and craft is one of my favorite activities. I am always on Pinterest finding ways to make slime or homemade bubbles. I have a craft bag that my kids can go in to make their own craft project. These simple products can be bought at our local dollar store or bough in bulk online at Amazon. Some of the amazing craft my kids enjoy making is:
Slime: Check out Sugar, Spice and Glitter homemade fluffy slime recipe here
Homemade Bubbles: Check out Artful Parent homemade bubbles recipe here
Homemade Moon Sand: Check out Lesson Learnt Journal moon sand recipe here
This is some just a few art and craft I do with my kids.
During the summer months my local movie theater offer discount movies. The movies are in the afternoon and they are previous movies that came out in the past. The cost is usually about $6.00 and it include the movie, popcorn and drink. This is a great way to have family time and staying cool at the same time.
5. Water Day
This is one of my kids favorite. Water Day consist of inexpensive pool or sprinkler and my kids go to town. It get really hot in Georgia and this is a great way for my kids to school off. Plus this wear them out. I got my pool from Wal-Mart and we is been in good use year after year.
I love the summer months it is a great way to spend time with you kids. If you are budget savvy it is easy to find frugal ways to have great summer activities with your kids.