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Pencil Pushing....

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Monday, August 1, 2011

Pencil Pushing....

Tid Bit is starting kindergarten this year.

And with real school, comes a real school supplies list.  Pencils, markers, crayons, folders, and more. 

Towards the end of this previous school year, we received an option to purchase the school supplies in a pre-assembled package for a fee... that was of course fairly more than if we just went out ourselves and bought them.  My thought..."Why on earth should I pay more for pencils, paper, and folders when it's such a cinch to go to Walmart or Target and buy them myself?!"

Last week I thought we'd head out early one morning to Walmart and get a jump-start on the acquisition of school supplies.  We'd go before everyone else and their brother went, and we'd for sure go before the tax free weekend which will drive the masses in search of the same things on my list and leave me coming up void.  Aren't I clever?  "Preparation is the key to victory," right?  (I saw that clever quote engraved on a gun in a movie we watched about hitmen last night...Jason Statham at his finest.)

Anyhow...turns out I was totally wrong.  When I'd first glanced at the school supplies list it seemed simple enough, but when I got down to purchasing everything, I not only realized that some of the things were brand specific,  they were item number specific.  WHAT?!

Did I mention that my child is starting KINDERGARTEN?!?!

I wandered around Walmart like a lost puppy... with 2 kids who were sick and tired of school supplies shopping and beginning to whine and tire of the whole ordeal....right there with you kids....I'm right there with you!

The school supplies section didn't have all of the school supplies that were on my list...and making sure that I had navy blue (the specified color for some of the items) was proving to be a pain in the tookis too.  I grabbed a package of pencils and tossed them in the cart only to realize that the list specified "black pencil and black eraser Ticonderoga pencils, 4-6pks.)  I searched all over and finally found a man in a suit with a Wal-mart nametag stating "general manager" (so sue me if I sound rude, but they're about the only ones in the whole store who can answer any question I have without taking me on a tour of the entire facility in search of something seemingly basic like a pencil.)  He took me to a whole other section of the store and we found a 10 pk of Ticonderoga black I bought 3 packages of 10 to make sure I had at least 24 since 4x6=24 and that was how many I was suppossed to have in the end.  Surely this would work, right?

I found what I could at Walmart, save the "green tipped Crayola No-Drip glue", and the "Smead legal sized expandable poly folder in navy blue" which I apparently could only find at least there was a SKU number for this item.  So we paid for our 8 pks of Crayola crayons, and 8 pks of Crayola colored pencils, and standard Crayola water colors, and 1 inch navy blue plastic binder, and other super-specific items, and of course our black erasered Ticonderoga pencils...and we headed for Staples to get the one ultra-specific item for a whopping $16.99, and hopefully find the other things that Walmart didn't have.

I immediately found a manager upon entering Staples and asked about the Smead navy blue legal sized expandable poly folder and the Crayola no-drip green lidded glue.  Her reply, "Staples does not even carry the Smead brand, and I've never even seen that type of glue here."


I found a folder that I thought would work for $8.99, and then asked about the black Ticonderoga pencils 6pks.  The manager then surveys my 5 year old and 18 month old in the cart and says "Now what grade is this list for again?  Kindergarten?!"


I found more black erasered a 6pk.  These are larger and more triangular in shape and apparently claim to be "The World's most comfortable pencil," and they darn well better be since they were $4.50 for ONE 6 pack.  Our list specifies 4-6pks.

I'm thinking after all of this school supply shopping and $25 dollars worth of PENCILS, that my 5 year old will probably be writing in perfect cursive and complete grammatically correct sentences by the end of K5.  

And if not, then next year I'm buying the pre-assembled package of school supplies for twice the price.

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At August 1, 2011 at 3:56 PM , Anonymous Kim D said...

Buy the pre-assembled-I'd rather go to the dentist (a few times) than shop for school supplies! Ok, so we're starting Kindergarten and HIGH SCHOOL at the same time (not sure I like what that says about age) but...we may need coffee that morning! (:

At August 1, 2011 at 9:13 PM , Blogger Amber said...

Are you joking me?? What happened to fun bright colored pencils and fun Lisa Frank folders and notebooks! That list sounds wonder they make a pre-packaged supply.


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