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change of schools, shopping trip for clothes

August 1st, 2011 at 02:56 am

I mentioned that we will be moving our DS10 from a private school to a public school this fall. We sent our kids to this academic, Catholic school (not a parish school) after DS13 finished 3rd grade in the public school and DS10 was starting 1st grade. We did this because they have an excellent academic program and our kids needed the challenge. We had always planned on moving them to the public school once they started high school in 9th grade or middle school in 6th grade when the academic programs divided the kids according to ability. We moved DS13 last year in 7th grade to take advantage of their advanced math program. It turned out that it was not really that much more advanced than the Catholic school and the other academic subjects lagged behind the Catholic school. We are moving DS10 this year because he will need after school care since I start my full-time job on August 15th. He was severely bullied in after school care the last time we did that when I had a seasonal job. The bully and the teacher are still there. The school was about to expel the bully from daycare when this all happened in the spring of 2010. But, after the lawyer dad came in and met with the principal, suddenly my child was equally responsible for being taunted, isolated, and humiliated. The academic program there is not worth the depression and hurt that my poor child suffered during that 3-month period. Plus, he will be able to ride the bus which will help logistically with me now working. We plan on having both kids at home until we get home. Does anyone have suggestions on how to keep them busy after school? I don't want them to be playing electronic games and I don't want to have to confiscate the games, etc. every day to prevent them from doing that. They currently have a one hour per day electronic entertainment limit.

After church, I helped DS13 as he tried on all the clothes in his closet. Just as I thought, almost nothing fit. However, because we know after our 7 months living with very little in Sweden that we can live with a lot less, all he needed in the end was a pair of nice shorts or pants to wear to church and a pair of gray shorts for school plus some new underwear. He had 8 short-sleeved shirts, 3 pairs of jeans, several pairs of track pants, 3 pairs of shorts, a dozen pairs of socks, and a pair of sneakers that all fit. Plenty for school. We will be keeping up with doing laundry once per week so he will be fine. He can wear his pants/shorts more than one day before they need to be washed as he does have a gym "uniform" that he leaves at school and plenty of clothes that don't fit to use as play clothes at home.

I think DS10 is okay on clothes but I still need to go through his closet. I needed a couple of skirts and several nice tops to start my new job. I also wanted to find a white and/or cream-colored sweater to wear in the overly air-conditioned building. So we headed to the local outlet center after church to get what we needed. I sent my DH with a list and the kids while I went looking for things to match what I already had. The plan was to then go home and go to the county park wave pool for the afternoon because it is still so hot here.

I was able to get everything I needed for work at the Talbots outlet. Everything in the store was 30-50% off and I did something I never do: I opened a Talbots credit card to get an additional 15% off. I will pay off the card and then close it immediately. I have been so frugal on one income for so long that I have not bought myself new clothes or spent more than $15 on an item of everyday clothing in at least 10 years. It was actually hard for me to buy things that I would have considered too expensive. Normally, price is the number one criteria for me when I buy clothing. Well yesterday, fit, style, and price were the priorities in that order. I will end up returning some things as they did not match what I had at home but I ended up spending $400. I almost choked when she said the total. I ended up with the white and cream colored sweaters I wanted, 3 skirts, 7 tops, 3 other light layering sweaters, 3 fall/winter sweaters, a scarf, and a blazer. That adds up to costing $20 per item which is not that bad really. I will be taking back at least one skirt and 3 tops. I can wear these clothes all year round because I got the sweaters to wear over the summery tops. With the new job, I am not going to beat myself up on the total cost. I have not spent that much on myself in the last 4 years total. I will wear these clothes until they wear out.

When I met up with my family, they had just finished their shopping. DH had found his shoes and the shorts for DS13. We still need to get the underwear at a department store. Even DH had a hard time paying $55 for the pair of Timberland shoes. We are just so used to being frugal and shopping clearance sales that it is hard to buy something you "like" instead of buying it because of the price. I also think that is why my kids had 20 t-shirts each: because I got a bunch of them for $1.29 at Target during a clearance sale since they were cheap. Now we'll get things that are reasonably priced but are what we like.

After we got home, the kids went to play with the neighbor kids who just got home from vacation. So, this was the first time they'd seen them in 7 months. We will try to go to the wave pool on Monday. DS10 has his best friend coming over to play so it will depend on how long he stays. I can't watch three kids at the wave pool. It is way too dangerous. I normally stand next to DS10 and keep an eye on DS13.

3 Responses to “change of schools, shopping trip for clothes”

  1. NJDebbie Says:

    Wave pools are so cool! While in Florida a couple of weeks ago, my DS#2 and I went to Sea World's Aquatica and it has a wave pool. It was pretty neat. Good luck in your new job and good wishes for an awesome school year for your children.

  2. starfishy Says:

    I am so impressed by how much you and your family have accomplished since your return from your overseas adventure! So sorry to hear about your son being bullied and then not getting justice. I'm glad he is getting a fresh start in a new place. I'm also appalled at how messy your housesitters left your house! I used to housesit a lot and always made sure to the leave a place very clean. I would have been embarrassed to do otherwise. Good luck with your new job!

  3. frugalgirl Says:

    Thanks to you both. I am hoping my son is happy at the new school and I am pretty sure I will be happy at the new job.

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