Photo by: Melissa Deakin

The second the calendar page flips to August, every shop in town shows off its newest back-to-school merch that you are no where ready to look at. You take the kids to a Target and they all either moping at the thought of getting back into the grind or get excited because there are few things beat new school supplies when you’re a kid. When you’re a parent, all you can look forward to is the long nap you are going to take after the kids get dropped off at school and then you dread forking over cash for school supplies. Here are a few things to keep in mind before you head to the mall:

1. Gather supplies you already have. You will probably find a few packages of lined paper, a notebook or two, unused pencils and pens, and maybe even a pack of markets. Whatever it may be, compile it and let the kids call dibs on it.
2. Wait for the first day. The kids can go a day without a stack of paper or a handful of multi-colored pens. Teachers often require specific types of binders and notebooks and no parent likes waiting in that horrendous back-to-school line twice.
3. Stick to the list. There is no need for your 8-year-old to have a 10-pound trapper keeper if it is not on the required list. Keep it simple!
4. Axe sales tax. Save your shopping for Tax Free Weekend and save yourself 6-7.5 percent of money by not spending it on taxes! The dates have not been announced yet, but do a little digging before you go shopping.
5. Watch for special events. Department stores tend to feature sales around holidays during the year. Hold off on purchasing all back-to-school till Labor Day when the clothing might be discounted!

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