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Wednesday, August 10, 2011

School Supplies Coming Outta My Nose

If you've read me before, you know back to school shopping is a special time for our family. While it may be a special time, it is also a huge pain in my rear end. That pain is mostly called supplies and pants that fit Joe.

Today I'd like to share with you our little outing Monday to find a simple list of back to school supplies my boys needed. We don't add the supplies to our one on one outings because I would need to be committed after that. Our one on one shopping trips are clothes only. Make that part of the fine print if you try our method this year.


I heard or read somewhere at some point in the not so far past that the second week in Aug is the best week to buy school supplies. It's supposed to be the best sales and the shelves are still in pretty good shape.

Did I research this "fact"? No. The farthest I went into verifying this info is the following-

1. Saturday I went to Target to scope out shelf conditions

2. Bought the Sunday paper and only looked at Targets ad.

Prepared I am not.

What I learned Saturday on my scoping trip, was the shelves looked as though they were attacked by gremlins. Which I'm sure they were. So I thought my plan to go on a Monday would be great. Everyone else would come and get their stuff on the weekend and Target would restock and organize their shelves just for us on Monday!

So we are ready. I have my coupons, boys have their lists and we are freshly fed from lunch. Lets do this! First things first -

Me- Boys, do you have to potty?
Boys- No.
Me- Are you sure? I'm not walking all the way back there and be half way done then you have to go potty.
Boys- No mom. We're fine.
Me- Alright, I don't want to hear it then.

We follow the maze of reconstruction that is Target to the far back corner for supplies.

What do I find?


This is MY shopping day, they were supposed to be here Saturday and Sunday!

Whatever. We are getting this done if it kills me.

I decided this year, I'm going to cheat on the supply list as much as I felt I could. I understand to an extent that uniform supplies are needed because they all go in a class stash and used as needed. But who cares if my child's art journal is black. It's his. No one else will use it. It doesn't go in a free for all bin. So we didn't buy 8 black marble compositions books this year. We rocked out the compositions books!


The boys school requires certain colored folders. These we did not cheat on by the way because each color represents a different topic. Say green is math, yellow science, you get the idea. They highly recommend getting the plastic pocket folders because they are sturdier. I get that, who wants to handle a mushy, unidentifiable folder in Feb? What I don't get is their apparent hatred towards clasp folders. I felt Joe's list was yelling at me.

This is not a quote because I don't have the list in front of me, but this is my memory which is funnier.

1 each plastic POCKET folder of the following colors (red, blue, pink, purple, orange, yellow, black, white, rainbow, gray, teal, sepia, and neon of all previously stated) POCKET REQUIRED DO NOT SEND IN CLASP FOLDERS. If your child needed clasp folders, we would ask for clasps. POCKET ONLY PLASTIC FOLDERS OF IMPOSSIBLE COLORS!

Any buyers for local stores out there really should read the supply lists they have provided and notice we are not allowed clasps! Stop overstocking on them!

Every year there is a color folder that is a HUGE pain in my rear to find. This year, Orange. Have you ever seen an orange folder? Much less an orange POCKET ONLY plastic folder. Who cares if there are clasps in it, pretend you don't see them or cut them out.

I hate climbing out from the depths of the shelves, seriously I get in them, with the victory folder triumphantly in my hand, waiving it the face of other diggers and realizing it has clasps.

SON OF A...!

By this point I have been in the shelves for at least 45 min looking for the proper colored POCKET ONLY plastic folders and guess who has to go potty.


I must salute my boys for not lecturing me all the way across the store that I should have gone when we got there.

I begged the front desk not to restock my cart. I think she was slightly afraid of me since I had supplies stuck in my hair.

On our way back to the far corner of Target, you know its a prime spot, move it a little closer, we stopped in office supplies to search for the horrid orange folder.

I was a heart beat away from buying a gray folder and writing orange on it. You may think I'm joking, but I literally had it in my hands and was wondering what kind of sense of humor Joe's teacher has.

BUT! What do I spot out of the corner of my orange folder. It was glowing, well it could have been the sweat dripping into my eyes that was causing the glow. Also, it's more of a sherbet color and is not plastic but I don't care! It's either a soon to be mush folder or gray with ORANGE written on it!

Orange is done now both boys need red. Easy. The closest I could find was pink. This is my conversation with Jake-

Me- Here's red!
Jake- Uh, wred? Awre you shore dis is wred?
Me- Yes. Put it in the cart. No! I didn't say move the cart, I said Put. It. In. The. Cart.
Jake- but it's pink.
Me- I said it's red
Jake- but
Me- I DIDN'T THINK SO, PUT IT IN THE CART. Where did Joe go with the cart?!

Yeah, awesome family fun.

You'd think that would be it for that hard stuff right?

pencils- check
spiral note book- check
pencil box- check
marker, crayons, dry erase get the idea.
All checks until...

2 packs of wide ruled paper.

Target, apparently, has stock in college ruled paper. They are wide ruled haters. Case upon case of college ruled. I figure, well it must be the same thing, it must be a potato/poetatoe. I must have said this out loud because a women emerged from a case of note cards and informed me, in great detail, the difference in line sizes.

So I haul my children back up to office supplies where we buy the last of the wide ruled paper. They didn't even have extra on their shelves! Back in the day, that's all I needed so why is this so strange and hard to find?!

The WHOLE time I'm crawling across shelves and into cases this is Joe (seriously)-

Paper? Why would I need paper? What's the paper for? Jake can you believe I need paper? I never needed paper before. Mom why are we getting paper?

He was rattling this paper chant for a solid 20 min.

And really, I can't blame the kid. We just cheated on 4 rockin' compostion notebooks for him, how much writing are you going to do in a year?

The other thing I wonder is this-

If all of my POCKET ONLY PLASTIC FOLDERS, don't have clasps, what are you going to do with all of these sheets of paper?

Our school does offer an easy way out by purchasing pre-packaged supplies. But back to school wouldn't feel as back to school to me if I didn't have the urge to chuck the supplies threw the front door on the first day of school.


  1. I couldn't stop laughing while I read this...for me it was the dreaded PURPLE plastic folder. I found all the other colors, including orange. So, we ended up with fushia, and I told Joshua to deal with it! But, I can't beleive you didn't rant about the Dixon Ticonderoga pencils or the size LARGE glue sticks! I understand the pencils..they do sharpen the best! As a teacher, I get so aggravated when the kids say "Mrs. pencil won't sharpen." Then, I go look at it, and it is a piece of cheap Dollar Store crap! But, LARGE glue sticks? And 8 of them none the less..are you serious???

  2. Oh yea! I was like, I don't know who this Ticon guy is, but I'm buying these other pencils. I always take it as-
    please don't buy Hello Kitty or Spider-man pencils because they are going in a box for everyone to pick from.
    Oh man! And the glue, they only had packs of 3. I needed to buy a pack of 3 for 1 stick because of the total between the 2 boys. They are doing some glue filled crafts for Christmas this year!