So 100 posts on and I’ve finally sorted myself out a swanky new layout! I’ve had a pretty rough weekend and so it was nice to focus on something creative, taking my mind off other things (which I won’t get into!). However now that’s done, I’m really hoping to get on with some posts – I have a list as long as my arm of ones I’ve been wanting to do for weeks.
Today’s post is a life update I suppose. Things have been fairly hectic the last week or so and so I’m forcing myself to find time to sit down and document some of it.
A week last Thursday, was my first day back at work. It was hard going back to working having had 7 weeks off, but it was especially hard because I went back a week before the kids did. For five days I had to pass them from pillar to post, finding someone different to babysit them every day. As I’ve only been working since June, its a tough transition from being there all the time for them, to having to accept other people’s help. I miss them terribly when we’re apart but its somehow easier to bear on the days their at school anyway.
The day before I went back to work, we had our Baking Day. However because payday wasn’t until the Friday, we still had all the kids school shopping to do. Megan, who is my oldest, had pretty much grown out of all bottoms and dresses. She also seemed to have lost all her cardigans. We were looking at pretty much a whole new school wardrobe for her (especially once you added PE kit). Lily on the other hand, had most things – however she was in need of some trousers and was wanting a new lunchbox. On top of that we had to buy a pair of school shoes each.
Now I’m not really a labels snob, or even one for labels at all really, but the one thing I do insist on at the beginning of the school year is a pair of shoes from Clarks. All their other clothes can be from Tesco and Asda, I have no problem with that. Tops get paint on them and trousers get frayed bottoms, so the cheaper they are the better. However in my experience (thats one child at school for 4 years and another for 1) one good pair of shoes lasts for the whole school year, whereas cheap shoes only tend to last a few months.
So on the Saturday before school started, we headed into Lincoln to get all our shopping done. Our first stop was to Clarks. Although Brantano is easier to get to (not in the centre of town), I’d once been told that although they stocked Clarks shoes, they weren’t really the best place to get shoes from (something to do with the way they measure feet). As such I’ve always gone directly to Clarks. The shop was absolutely rammed, but I had expected that – being the last weekend before school started. We were told there was a queue of about 7 people before us, but that 8 people were serving and so it wouldn’t be too long. We waited probably only 5 minutes before we were seen to.
Lily went first and then Megan after. They are both very easy to please and just happy with a couple of choices in the right size. We never tend to look what’s on the shelves first as I don’t like the idea of them being disappointed when the shoe they like isn’t available. Instead I usually ask the person serving us to just bring a few choices and we take it from there. The sizing is done so easily these days, with the kids just standing on a machine that tells you the correct size and width fitting. The lady who served us was called Ellie and she was lovely. Though Lily’s fitting took a little more time and effort, both the girls were fitted and sorted fairly quickly. All in all the shoes came out at £30 for Lily’s and £36 for Megan (again I never even look at the prices as we’re choosing, as they’re all around that sort of price). Its quite a sting to the wallet in one go, but at the same time I know those shoes will last them right around till July before I have to think about it again.
We finished off the shoe shopping with a much needed coffee break at Cafe Nero. The girls shared a mint milkshake while I had a latte (and Chris, who had taken a break from work to meet us, had a mocha). After the rest we headed to Asda Living, then Tesco, then the other Asda and finally we had pretty much everything we needed. All in all I think I probably set myself back around £200. Shopping for school is so expensive. However the nice thing about having two girls is that majority of the clothing will get passed down and so usually I’m only shopping for one of them each year.
Is there one particular must have when you’re shopping?
Are you a labels snob or cheap and cheerful all the way?