Back-To-School with Goodwill

For back-to-school shopping (like at any time of the year), I am constantly on the lookout for deals. Whether it’s a great coupon, free shipping offer, online community purchasing deal, or some other way to keep more of our hard-earned money, I’m IN. That mindset also steers me to garage sales and thrift stores where kids’ clothes, especially, are a great find!

2014-07-30 15.08.59bGoodwill of Central Florida invited me to do some shopping for my 2nd grader with $25 in gift cards (find out how you can win yours below). As a third-generation recycler and “upcycler” (new term for old habit of re-purposing something others have lost use for), I was only happy to stop by to hunt for clothes for my fast-growing boy.

First up: Gather items WE no longer need. On the way in, 2014-07-30 13.53.17my granny (90-years-old!) pushed the cart that carried our 3 bags full of stuff that no longer fit, or were not what we wanted anymore (including a wok she bought and used one time…. It just wasn’t “right” for her, so she donated it.) There are lots of new items at thrift stores!

Next, go in with a mission: For us, we needed to find clothes for field trips, soccer class, everyday, and “formal.” (My son likes to “dress” for dinner sometimes, and can often be seen in a suit and tie “just because.”) As homeschoolers, our back-to-school list is decidedly less extensive than traditional needs, but we do have to get all the usual items, as he’s growing out of his clothes quicker than I can buy them. That is, coincidentally, one of the reasons I buy second-hand—kids grow out of clothes so fast that oftentimes you can get something practically brand new for cents on the dollar.

Goodwill shopping tripSo what did we find? For $25 we bought:

  • 2 long-sleeve dress shirts
  • 2 tee shirts
  • 2 collared everyday shirts
  • 3 pairs of shorts
  • 3 books
  • art supplies

Prices ranged from 74 cents for a collared shirt (it was the “color of the week” so it was half-off the original $1.49!) to $3.49 for shorts. The dress shirts (worn once if they were worn at all) were 2.99 apiece.

Insider tip: Look for the color of the week tags first. Then, if you don’t find what
you’re after, go back and look through the other items.

Rafflecopter logo linkAre you a budget-conscious parent looking for a great way to buy back-to-school clothes? Enter this giveaway by clicking on the Rafflecopter photo at left. Maybe you’ll win $25 in gift cards to shop for your kiddos! Good luck!

Leave a comment below for one entry, or add more by Tweeting and if YOU have a cool find, post it on Instagram (details at the Rafflecopter link). Goodwill and other thrift stores have amazing deals on furniture, housewares and adult clothing too. And YES, they even have wedding gowns. I bought my vintage 1940s gown online and consider it my very best second-hand deal! can’t wait to see what cool stuff you find or have found in the past.

$50 Gift Card Giveaway for Lake Buena Vista Factory Stores

VF Outlet Back to School 2014Although we homeschool, it just seems “wrong” to pass up on back-to-school shopping, especially during the Florida sales tax holiday August 1-3. Kids grow out of clothes (and SHOES!) faster than imagined and whether your kids go to a brick and mortar building or to co-op, kids need “stuff”. Thankfully there are lots of deals to be had in Orlando, and some of our favorite stores are all together at the Lake Buena Vista Factory Stores. (And for those who buy school uniforms… you really want to check this out!)

I like shopping at  Lake Buena Vista Factory Stores because there is a nice variety of stores (and it’s plus for me to park right in front of the stores). As a deal-seeker, I really enjoy the savings up to 75% off (and sometimes more). (On my last visit I bought an $80 dress for $12. Bam!)

So, do YOU like deals? Here’s your chance to win a $50 gift certificate to the mall, where you can select merchandise at over 50 spacious outlet shops and get great deals at the area’s only Old Navy outlet store, newcomer U.S. Polo Assn., newly renovated Nike, OshKosh B’Gosh and Tommy Hilfiger Stores, plus other well-known outlets including G by GUESS, Justice, Carter’s, Crocs, Calvin Klein, Levi’s®, Aeropostale, Converse, Famous Footwear Outlet, Fossil, Gap, Izod, Rack Room Shoes, and many more. Don’t forget to stop by and treat yourself at Lindt Chocolate, too!

Rafflecopter logo linkTo enter: Click on the Rafflecopter image, and post a comment. To gain more entries, Tweet about it, too (see link for more information).

Even if you don’t win, you can get in on the savings by downloading a coupon from the Center’s website, then bringing it to Travelpro at the Lake Buena Vista Factory Stores to receive a coupon booklet valued up to $400 in savings. Many stores offer additional savings from 20-40% off to “Friends & Family.”  Savvy discount shoppers can learn about these discounts, as well as specific stores and their hours by following the center on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest, as well as visiting www.lbvfs.com. Lake Buena Vista Factory Stores is located just one mile from Walt Disney World at 15657 S. Apopka Vineland Road (State Road 535), Orlando, FL 32821-6316, and two miles south of I-4, Exit 68. Stores are open Monday-Saturday, 10am-9pm, and 10am-7pm on Sunday.

Good luck, and happy shopping!

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