Saturday, August 21, 2010

A New Tradition: Back to School Shopping

Lately I have been trying to find ways to spend time with my kids individually.  I remember as a kid, loving any time I had alone with one of my parents.  Now that I am a parent, I realize how difficult that time is to carve out with each child.  A friend of mine mentioned that one thing she does is try to take each child out all by his or herself and do some school shopping and have lunch.  I thought that sounded like a great tradition.  I decided I would try it.  I don't buy a lot of school clothes before school starts because it is still usually so hot that my kids are still wearing summer stuff, but I do try to make sure that they get to pick out one thing to wear new for the first day of school and we always buy one new pair of shoes.  I took my son first since his school starts first.  We went last Saturday, so my husband could stay home with the girls.  We decided to go to breakfast and drive to the outlets in Park City.  We had a great time.  My son hates to shop, but was excited to pick out his things.  He is very to the point when it comes to choosing things.  He does not waste time and I actually had to convince him to look at a couple of stores before he made his final decision.  We had a great time and were able to spend some time on the drive talking, which is much more difficult to do with the younger girls around.

My 3 year old, Paige immediately started begging for her turn.  So Tuesday afternoon I got a babysitter and headed out with Paige.  I had taken a survey this spring that earned me a $20 gift certificate to the Grand America, so I took her downtown for one of their "teaparties".  She was thrilled.  We had a great time and kept taking about how we were just like "Fancy Nancy".  I was a bit of a nervous wreck as we sat drinking our fancy hot chocolate in china cups and saucers, but amazingly, she didn't spill a drop and nothing got broken.  She didn't love the finger sandwiches, but the tiny french pastries and strawberries with real whipped cream, were a huge hit.  The best part was, including the cost for a tip and parking, I paid less than $10.  After, we went to the mall to do our shopping. Paige takes her shopping seriously, she knows what she likes and it tends to be the loudest, and fanciest thing she can find.  Already, I find we butt heads frequently when it comes to fashion.  We had quite the stand-off from the outset because she was insistent that she needed the new swimming cover-up that she found.  Let me just say, trying to explain seasons to a 3 year old is not easy.  After multiple attempts and several hours of searching to find shoes that we both agreed on that they had in the right size, we gave up and headed to Target for the inevitable glitter sparkle shoes that I knew would satisfy Paige, but I could count on only setting me back $12.99.  Now when you come to my house and it is covered in silver glitter you will know why and realize that the compromise was hard won!
Overall, I am excited to start our new school shopping tradition.  I had a great time with both kids and am excited to continue next year (although next year I will make sure that Paige's shopping comes after a long nap, not during her normal nap time).

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