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Every year, at the school our kids attend, we get a long list of supplies we need to buy before school starts.  I used to print the list and take each girl to the store, scouring the aisles for fine-tipped dry erase markers and the exact amount of primary color crayons and odd dimensioned pencil boxes and folders and pencils and all of the things, because bonding. But we always ended up getting frustrated with each other, not finding everything at one store, and just hating the whole thing.  This did not include shopping for shoes and clothes, because that was a whole other inefficient and emotionally exhausting trip.  Shopping with my girls is a demanding experience.

I’m changing how I do things this year.  Most other moms probably already do a lot of these things, but I can be a little slow on the uptake.  This year, for the school supplies,  I’m printing out that list, sitting down with a seltzer, and Amazon Priming the heck out of things.  We will not go to the store unless Amazon cannot magically deliver something to my doorstep.

For school clothes, we’re also doing things differently.  I am going to be going through their clothes (and there are many-particularly for the youngest two).  Thanks to some sweet blessings, our oldest has a pretty streamlined wardrobe and lots of great neutral things.  The others, though…their closets are a mishmash of hand-me-downs, thrift store finds, and the occasional new thing here and there.  This is where the biggest changes will happen.  We have tubs of clothes saved in the basement for different sizes.  These will be sorted through and much will be donated.  Because this year, I am doing capsule wardrobes for the kids.  It sounds very chi-chi but it’s actually a cheap way of making sure your kids have what they need and also cutting down on the insane amount of laundry that I have to do.  I am very excited about this.

I’ll do a one-on-one trip with each girl to choose the items we need to fill in their clothes, and pick out their backpack and lunchbox.  Last year I tried to have awesome coordinated containers for their lunch boxes but they kept forgetting them or losing them so we’re back to using empty lunchmeat containers this year.  You can pin that if you want to.

Also, I am fully aware that I am my best school-mom self in September and October.  Once Thanksgiving break hits, I am counting down to the end of the year.  Did I mention that I was runner up in high school for biggest case of senioritis?  Yes sir and yes ma’am.  Not proud, just honest.

What are your back-to-school plans?  It will be here before we know it, and I’d love to hear from other parents on this!