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Now that we’re back in Texas I was able to take advantage of Tax Free Weekend (TFW) again.  This year it was Aug 7-9.  Here are some tips on how we accomplished all of our back to school and supply shopping for two kids (ages 11 & almost 7) in 1.75 hours!!!

Before the TFW go scope out the stores you want to buy clothes from.  Try the clothes on.  This helps reduce your “day of” frustration.  Sure you wind up going out twice but if you wait until TFW you’ll also be waiting in long dressing room lines and with kids that just sucks.  So, on August 4th I took both boys to Target, Old Navy, Academy, and Crazy 8.  I picked a location of town that had all stores reasonably close to each other.  They picked out what they liked and tried on clothes.  If they liked them and fit I wrote the store name, style of clothing, and size for each kid.  I used the notes app on my phone for convenience.

Day of TFW.  I originally decided on getting supplies on Friday then taking the kids and hubbs out on Saturday.  Well I got to thinking why not just get it all done in one day.  The kids do a good job at keeping up with my pace and the hubbs tends to lag so why not!  I asked him if he minded and he was like……ummmm do it all!!

That morning I got up early and made a good filling breakfast.  Biscuits (actually made them the night before for a quick reheat), sausage, eggs, and a sugar free red bull for myself.  Full bellies mean you won’t be stopping for lunch early or unnecessary snacks.  I also took a screen shot of the boys school supply lists.  The photos app opens a lot faster than dropbox and safari.  Taking a pic of the lists made it easy since I was able to swipe left/right for each kid. I made sure I had my notes app (for the clothes list I made) and the photos app open and we were off!  We left the house 20 min earlier than I had planned too (9:20am!)!

First we hit Walmart for school supplies (don’t forget to use the savings catcher app!!).  We got almost everything I needed there.  I seriously was missing 4 folders and a large pack of glue.  Target was our next stop.  First we grabbed the 5 school supplies we needed.  Then we were off to the clothing section.  Grabbed socks and shorts.  That was it.  Next up Academy.  Grabbed the 2 pair of shorts and backpack I needed there and we were off to Old Navy.  We spent most of our time at Old Navy.  They have so many shirts and picking the “right” ones are always a tuff decision for the boys.  Got what we needed there and went to our last destination.  We needed 2 pair of shorts, 2 jeans, and 2 shirts at Crazy 8.  And of course I wound up buying 2 additional shirts at the register cause….well Star Wars shirts.  The boys were so great that I let them pick lunch and they chose Schlotskzy’s, probably cause this location has TCBY and I’m a sucker for their white chocolate mousse and getting mommy to say no to that was gonna be hard.

That was it.  Some people say you don’t save much and it’s not worth it but you really do.  You just have to plan.  Lots of stores will put items on sale so it makes the savings better.  I’m not one to buy an entire lot of clothes for school at once.  I’d rather the kids go to school and if they see a style they want we can buy then or wait until they need more clothes which is usually around Christmas time.  Target also suckers us into buying shirts for the boys year round.  In all for school supplies for two kids (1 elementary and 1 middle schooler), 1 backpack, 9 shorts, 18 shirts, 4 jeans, 4 pkgs of socks, 1 pk of undies I spent $446.72.  My savings from sales and tax alone bought their school supplies.  We’ll get jackets in September when there are more choices in stores.  We’re in Texas, it’s 100° and will be for a little longer, not all stores have all their winter wear out.

I hope my tips help you out!