Don't forget to enter to win a copy of Francis Chan's book "Crazy Love".
Here is a very, very practical moolah tip that I always take advantage of (at least in part because I'm not all that concerned with fashion...)
I mentioned that I'd postponed some clothes shopping for my kids in a previous post. That included my son's school uniforms. At the beginning of the school year we bought 7-10 pairs of shorts and 7-10 short-sleeved shirts. When I bought them I saw the pants and long-sleeved shirts but figured I'd buy them later.
Later never came. Well, it came for the pants but I never bought long-sleeved shrits. To be fair the weather was fairly warm this year and he didn't need them, really. On really cold days they wouldn't go outside and I always sent him with a warm coat so he was fine. But his friends had long-sleeved shirts and...you know...
I went to buy them once and found they were nearly $30 each. Just so you know - I don't spend that much on my own clothes most of the time let alone something for a 5 year old. (Is that bad?). Anyway, I decided the jacket was a much better solution.
Fast forward to March and I believe we are out of the woods regarding the need for long-sleeved shirts. That being said, he did need a few more pairs of pants because 2 pairs have dissapeared, 2 pairs have holes in the knees, and one pair has some sort of bleach stain. That leaves one "good pair" and since his friends are still wearing pants and he doesn't have long-sleeved shirts to pair with shorts to keep him warmer on the early spring days, I decided to buy him more pants. When I went shopping I was lucky to find the short-sleeved shirts on sale that day for $8 and I bought a couple, which were desperately needed to lack of stain management - or overwear. The pants weren't on sale but I managed to find just a couple pairs to get us through to the end of the cooler weather when, no doubt, his friends will be wearing shorts again.
Anywho - I always browse the sales racks and guess what I found - long sleeve uniform shirts for $7. That's right, $23 dollars off the regular price. I also found a ton of jeans, long pants, and long-sleeved shirts for him that I could have purchased if I'd wanted to, and usually I do. The other day I also picked up beanies for my girls for 23 cents. They were new at Target.
That is my advice to you. If you can, set aside some budget money for the next couple weeks and purchase what you can for NEXT winter. Buy the next larger size than your child wears now if they're in a phase where they are growing relatively quickly. If you're a foster parent and you don't know WHO you might have in your home come next winter weather season, go ahead and stock up for sizes you think you might need. I've found that it's better to do that and take the risk that you won't need it than to wait until full-price next season. The prices you can pay are usually so low that come next season you could sell it, probably for a profit, or you could simply give it away or keep it for future kids.
In case you are wondering or are in need of decent quality uniform shirts (long-sleeved) - the prices I saw were at JCPenney this past weekend. Get to it quickly though - they won't last long at that price.