You don't have to be a kid to benefit from the dramatic loss leaders that populate most back-to-school sales. I take advantage of them every year to stock up on my own office supplies. Fine line colored markers, for example, are always handy to have around and you can't beat a buck or so for a set of Crayola's that are normally $2-3 the rest of the year.
Here are some other tips on getting the most out of back to school sales:
- Holiday and birthday gifts. The artists in your lives, young or old, will enjoy receiving new markers, drawing pencils, sharpeners, and so on, all of which can be had for pennies this time of year. Go ahead, make up an arts supply basket even.
- Stocking stuffers. Load up those 25 cent boxes of crayola crayons and dollar marker sets now--loved ones will enjoy finding them in their stockings.
- Birthday party favors. I discovered this one years ago, as both my kids have birthdays in August, prime back-to- school deal time. School supplies, most of which can be had for pocket change this time of year, make great birthday party favors. Even if your kid's birthday is in February, pick up a baker's dozen of crayolas, pencils and mini-compositions books now, tuck them away (remember where you put them though) and you'll be all set to fill those goody bag with fun, useful items with party time rolls around. Besides, parents will thank you for sparing them the clutter of another noisemaker or cheap plastic yo-yo. (P.S. Keep an eye out for five for a dollar pencil cases, and you can even substitute them for the party bags themselves.)
(By StephanieV, who blogs at Wordamour)