Skip to content

Back to School Prep? Check!

Back to school preparations continued on Saturday with the dreaded back-to-school clothes shopping trip. However, thanks to Dave, it wasn’t as bad this year. You see, Dave emailed me Saturday morning to ask what I was up to for the day. I told him I had to take Hannah shopping for school clothes and he said, “Can’t you just give her $50 and drop her off at the mall?”

The $50 is a pipe dream and dropping her off at the mall isn’t very practical since it takes 30 minutes to get to the mall from my house but I was inspired to try something new based on Dave’s suggestion. I gave Hannah $100 and told her I was going to sit and knit on one of the couches in the center of the mall while she did her shopping. I gave her some basic guidelines and said if she bought anything inappropriate then it would be returned and she wouldn’t be allowed to choose a replacement but that if she chose wisely and bought good things then I would reward her.


So I sat outside Charlotte Russe and American Eagle and worked on my Monkeys. Hannah shopped long enough for me to get to the toe decreases and when she came back she had bought a pair of jeans, 3 shirts, and a bracelet. Everything was appropriate and I rewarded her by taking her back into one of the stores and buying her two more pairs of jeans.

So, where does that leave us?

Haircut? Check!
Shoes? Check!
Clothes? Check!
Monkey socks? Check!


I’d knit these again in a heart beat and now I understand the love of this pattern.


For those wondering, the yarn is Yarn Love Juliet in the colorway Belle from where else but The Loopy Ewe. It’s a great match for the pattern and I’m very pleased with these socks. They are for me, of course.


After all that back to school prep, I think I deserve a reward.

This Post Has 52 Comments

  1. Wow…you were a smart mom. I did something similar with my 16 year old this year as well, but I didn’t even think about knitting……very good!

  2. Wow… now that’s a great idea! I always enjoyed shopping with my mom (still do), but she would always tell me “you have X dollars” for my clothes and I had to work out what I wanted. 🙂

    Nice yarn….

  3. That was a very good plan indeed. Love the Monkeys — on my list too! My kids go back tomorrow, so it’s shorts!

  4. A friend of mine buys her daughter a couple of outfits appropriate for church and whatnot and some basics and then does the same genius $100 trick and has had roaring success with it. Her daughter has become an expert sale shopper and now just buys what she absolutely has to have and then saves the rest. We don’t have cold weather here until later October at the earliest, so all the fall and winter stuff will be on sale by the time she needs it and she can get more bang for her buck.

    I’m just glad Bean wears uniforms to school.

  5. You are a smart cookie! I love the picot top on your monkeys. I finally have the second one on the needles. Love the pattern.

  6. Can your daughter teach my daughter to shop? If I gave my daughter $100, she’d come back with no change and probably one outfit.

    Love the socks 🙂

  7. Very clever! My son could care less about clothes, and I found a pile of pants at the local thrift shop (he’s slim so needs the adjustable waist type). So we’re set. Except for shoes…hmmm, school starts tomorrow!

  8. FIFTY dollars? I’m cracking up here.

    LOVE the Monkeys–they’re totally swingin’ on your feet, dearie. And yes, you DO deserve a reward. I’m thinking martini…

  9. What a smart mama! It was always a challenge to outfit four kids and so hot here in August that we just made sure they had appropriate shoes and untorn shorts, and stretched out purchases over the fall as the weather changed.
    I had to get an ink cartridge and stumbled into Staples yesterday amongst a crowd of parents and kids with lists after the first day of school… guess now kids have to bring their own supplies!

  10. Brilliant! I’ll have to keep that in mind for when I have kids. Not having knitted Monkey, what exactly is the fascination? Anyone?

  11. Great idea. I’m so happy it worked out for you. I can’t wait until I can ty it but my eldest and I are still fighting the clothes wars. Right now our shopping excursions are an endless chorus of “that’s too tight” “no it’s not”.

  12. That is a great idea! You have to hand it to her, it’s pretty darn hard to get as much as she did between two stores and only $100! The socks look gorgeous!

  13. Good idea! My stepdaughter is at the age that I can drop her off at the mall (or better yet, she can drive herself). She drops $1000 in a week, but she saves her paycheck all summer to do it. YAY! (She learned right quick that both her mom and I have vastly different tastes in clothing, and if she wanted sole control of her wardrobe, within reason, we weren’t going to pay for it. [grin])

  14. Those are *gorgeous* Monkeys! I don’t generally like them in variegated yarn, but your pair still shows the patterning beautifully through the color. Very nice work! (And with your daughter too! 😉

  15. Dave had a pretty good idea there. Sounds like a perfect way to shop for back to school clothes. I remember how much fun that can be. Love your Monkeys!

  16. My mom did something similar with me when I got into my teens. It kept us from having nasty public fights over high heels. I loved feeling so independent.

  17. Shopping can be very painful! I’m glad it worked out well for you – a happy daughter AND a pair of handknit socks. What a bargain!

Comments are closed.

Back To Top