Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Gratituesday: Hand-me-Down Clothes

Yesterday, late morning, I was pulling up to a friend's house and walking around to their back porch.  Sitting there on their table was a huge trash bag and Rubbermaid full of clothes her kids had outgrown.  Sweatshirts, pajamas, shorts, t-shirts, pants, bathing suits.  As I looked through the clothes finding the right sizes and the styles that I knew our boys would want to wear I was overwhelmed with gratitude for my friend that she would offer these clothes to us to go through.  I didn't take everything.  Pajama pants the littles already have about three pairs each of, so we're good there.  Not everything was a style that the kids would like.  And, there were other people, too, who I know could be blessed by getting some free clothes.  But, I did come home with a nice, big bag of clothes for the kids.  And, every article of clothing I brought home yesterday represents one less thing I have to buy for the boys in the store.  Over and over again I could tell you stories of how our amazing friends have blessed us when it comes to the kids.  Today, though, I am grateful for the friend who offered me clothes and helped me lower our clothing expenses this fall.

But, I'm not done yet!  This story is two-fold.  I am beyond thankful that we are blessed with children who understand the limitations of our budget.  They know we simply cannot afford to buy them the nicest most expensive clothes.  They're okay with wearing hand-me-downs and clothes from other people. They're okay wearing shorts from Wal-Mart.  I know that some kids might not be okay with that.  I am eternally grateful that ours are.  Now, that's not to say that our kids are poorly dressed.  Not to toot my own horn (well, okay, maybe just a little toot), but our kids are dressed pretty darn nice.  Our oldest, who a few years ago graduated out of the kid's sized clothing and has moved on to adult sizes has all name brand t-shirts purchased from PacSun.  But you know what?  No shirt he wears cost me more than five dollars.  I shop when the clearance shelves go on sale.  Seriously.  I find it's harder to find as good of deals for him as I can for the littles, but such is the nature of life.  Adult clothes are simply more expensive.  For the littles, they get new stuff, too.  Old Navy has been one of my favorites for their clothes.  Their kids clearance rack has been a life saver.  One thing that I'm adamant about is that my kids wear good, name brand tennis shoes.  A) I think they are a better quality and will support their feet better and last longer, as I like to pass them down from kid to kid if they are not too worn out.  B) We are an Adidas family.  It's just the way it is.  I blame my husband.  However, this weekend I was able to buy the littles each a new pair of Adidas tennis shoes for $15 each.  That's what happens when you head to the outlets and utilize the clearance section and buy-one-get-one-fifty-percent-off.

Well, this post has taken an unexpected turn.  What started off as a simple Gratituesday post has turned into a bit of an explanation of how I clothe my kids in a mix of hand-me-downs and clearance rack finds.  So, to recap: I am thankful for friends and family who generously share their clothes with us to keep our clothing budget for three growing boys under control. I am also thankful for clearance and sales on clearance and being able to dress my kids fashionably, but on a budget.

Head over to Heavenly Homemakers for more Gratituesday!

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