Just around now, malls are typically flooded with back-to-school shoppers, and we parents are overrun in our inboxes and our mailboxes. This year more than ever – despite how green we aspire to be – I feel like I have received more catalogs than I care to mention, with pleas of the discounts and bargains that I can expect to receive.….
And even though (or perhaps because) we pulled back on our personal spending long ago, almost 2 in 3 of us say staying “within budget” is a challenge (according to a not-so-recent study we conducted for Personal Shopper – though our blog post from three weeks ago gives a sense of how the recession is affecting back-to-school spending, nowadays).
So this yearly ritual is not always the parent-child "love-in" that I thought it would be when my kids were infants. And I am not alone. More than 6 in 10 parents feel heavy stress about back-to-school shopping, and about 2 in 10 of us “dread” it. In fact, many parents, who plan to back to school shop, hate it more than:
- Sitting in traffic (21%)
- Doing laundry (20%)
- Visiting in-laws (12%)
- Cleaning the house (12%)
Here's an anecdote so you can guess where I fall on the spectrum: this year, my once-princess-aspirational daughter decided (or some in the dressing room next to us might say whined) that she would wear NOTHING in the dress or skirt family, and NOTHING with any pink or purple or flowers or hearts or stars or rainbows.
And so the Internet has come to be my shopping nirvana.
How did you make out on your back-to-school shopping? Do you prefer the actual or the virtual mall – and why?