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Back to School Pt.1

By Jodie Lynn


School will start in only a few short weeks. With five kids to buy school supplies, shoes and clothes for, I am at my wit's end. Are there suggestions from other large families that could possibly work for us? The kids range in age from 6 to 15.


I have six kids to buy things for for the school year. While trying to buy good clothing, one of my neighbors suggested the resale shops. When I suggested this to my kids, they were afraid that if we bought something, it could have come from someone right in their own school and they would end up being teased for wearing seconds. And, let's face it, kids can be rather mean at almost any age. My trick is to go to at least a couple of shops that are not in our neighborhood. This way, no one else will be wearing the same clothes or be able to claim that they gave or donated any item to the shop. - P.C. in Fort Myers, FL


School starts nationwide for kids anywhere from early August all the way to mid-September, so you still have a little time to plan, shop and save. One of the best ways to save on clothes is not to forget to shop the 50-75% off summer sales at your favorite stores. Many offer additional money-saving coupons. Get things that will still work for the early fall by adding pieces to the outfit. For example, the layered look is still popular this year and getting pieces where a long sleeved shirt, blouse or sweater can either go on top of a piece of clothing or under it, will be more versatile. As far as school supplies are concerned, some of the very same stores will have deals on school supplies. There are also plenty of online stores that offer tons of back-to-school "buy one get one free" offers. Crayola® products are a must-have for quality essentials.Their markers are now "ultra-clean washable" which means it washes off not only your hands but clothes and even walls too. I love their extra large box of crayons and colored pencils. They have every color option available. Staples® are offering the new sturdy, long-lasting colored pencils for a very low price.

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My daughter will be a freshman in college beginning in mid-September. We'd like to get her a few items that are unique enough for her dorm that will show off her personality, but yet not cost us an arm and a leg. However, we would rather spend a little more on higher quality things as long as they will last a few years. What have other parents had the best luck with when it comes to purchases such as these?

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© Jodie Lynn
Jodie Lynn is an award-winning internationally syndicated family/health columnist and radio personality. Her syndicated column Parent to Parent has been successful for over 10 years and appears in newspapers, magazines, newsletters and throughout the Internet. She is a regular contributor to several sites including,,,,, and Lynn has written four books and contributed to three others, one of which was on Oprah and has appeared on NBC in a three month parenting segment. Her latest books are "Mom CEO (Chief Everything Officer) - Having, Doing and Surviving It All!" (June 2006) and "Syndication Secrets - What No One Will Tell You!" (March 2006).
Please visit for details on her new radio talk show, Inside Parenting Success.


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