Yesterday, the boys began fencing. Even though I knew this day was coming, I was ill prepared and only remembered Wednesday night that they had no athletic pants to wear.
I had already decided that I was going to buy children's pants from Sears, and Sears alone, so I could take advantage of their free KidVantage Club with its Wear Out Warranty (pants on boys last an average of one month before acquiring holes in my house). Sears opened at 10 am, fencing was at 11 am. It was tight, but doable.
We got there early and, as soon as the doors were opened, raced for the boys' section. I grabbed what pants I could find in the approximate right sizes and had the boys try them on. Out of 5 or 6 different pairs of pants, we managed to find 1 to fit Fritz and 2 to fit Billy (one of his was a pair of jeans). That's all I had time for.
Total cost: $46 and change.
After fencing, I dragged the kids to a thrift store that has 50% clothes and shoes on Thursdays (thank you, Denise, for that timely suggestion). I bought 6 shirts, 5 pants, 1 winter coat, 2 pretty Christmas-y dresses, and one pair of size 3 pink tennis shoes that will fit Mary for about one month.
Total cost: $25.38.
Thrift store shopping is a process. I didn't find everything I needed, but there will be more next week, and some things, like a few more winter coats, aren't desperately needed yet. Other things, like size 10 slim boys pants with no holes in the knee or church-going shoes in just the right sizes, aren't likely to ever appear, and I'll have to buy them new. But as long as the kids don't mind, and the selection is good, I see no reason to go retail.