Mama OWL Blog: Starting School

Starting School

Tuesday, 6 May 2014

I know it's a total cliché, but time just goes by so quickly I honestly don't know where the days go. Just over a year ago I was thinking about E starting preschool and going for her induction day, and now here we are, having been fortunate enough to secure a place at our first (and only) choice primary school, buying her first uniform and thinking about her first day this September. It'll be here before we know it!

I often catch myself sitting and looking at the kids and wondering just when they got so grown up. A & J in particular have changed SO much in the last few years. A is almost unrecognisable from year seven, and J is getting so tall he'll soon be overtaking me (and I'm 5'10!). As E is my youngest, and last, child, this stage seems to have come around all too quickly. It's bittersweet.

As soon as we had confirmation of E's school place (I didn't sleep for two days fretting over that, waiting for the letter to arrive) I bought her very first uniform. Using my saved clubcard vouchers and a promo code I managed to get it all for a bargain price, and now all I need to buy is her shoes, and a logo sweatshirt & cardi which I'll pick up some time in August, when I buy H's new uniform for the school year. H grows at a rate of knots so I'm not buying his until the last minute, but E is very dainty so the things I have bought her have some growing room and will last a good while.

I'll also be replacing J's uniform and buying a whole new set for L as he is starting senior school this September, but again I'm waiting to do that because they grow so ridiculously fast I daren't buy it yet! A has received her (conditional) Sixth Form place offer, & so we have subsidised her wardrobe.

Buying new uniform and equipment for starting school can be costly, so I have been buying things over the past year (keeping a look out for items that were on offer) and putting them to one side. We reviewed this gorgeous Stephen Joseph Owl backpack from Zulily UK last year which I thought was perfect for school, and so we kept it to one side and I purchased matching lunch accessories to go with it. It's now sitting in her wardrobe next to her uniform all ready to be packed with her first school lunch!

Knowing how tough kids can be on their uniform I have made sure to buy plenty of it - for the price that I got it at, it made sense to! E has:
  • 2 pinafore dresses
  • 4 polo shirts
  • 6 pairs of tights (in 2 different school colours)
  • 7 pairs of socks
  • 1 skirt
  • 2 pairs of trousers
  • a plain cardigan
  • 2 gingham summer dresses in the next size up, for next year
Her PE kit consists of:
  • 2 plain t-shirts
  • 2 pairs of cycling shorts
  • a pair of joggers
  • plimsolls.
In total, her uniform came to £51, at the time the supermarket were running a £10 off a £50 spend which brought it down to £41, and I had £31 in clubcard vouchers which made it a grand total of £10. I also clicked through my topcashback account when I bought it and earned £2.09 cashback on my purchase - so all in all I paid £7.91!

I bought her school coat from Zulily UK when it was on offer last year, it's by Pluie Pluie and is waterproof with a lovely warm fleece lining so it is ideal for wearing to school in the Autumn.

I'm saving my clubcard points again for the end of the Summer holidays (when hopefully I can 'boost' them too) to help pay towards the boys' new kit, & after that I'll then start saving them up again to use at Christmas.

I'll be sad to see my "baby" going off to big school, but excited for all of the new adventures she will have, and friends she will make along the way.

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