Thursday, July 11, 2013

Let the Shopping Begin!

Does the sight of a penny sale for back to school supplies make you just a bit giddy?  You're not alone. Staples and Office Max have started offering the first little teasers to get us in the mood.  I gathered up my daughter (first year teacher) and my teaching partner and we set off on the first of our back to school shopping adventures.

A few days ago my daughter and I went to Staples and tried to plead our case about reinstating the old teacher supply limits.  Sadly, our pleas fell on deaf ears.  Still, I walked out of there with 2 reams of paper, 2 packs of index cards, 2 packs of erasers, and 4 index card holders.  Total cost (after rewards) was $2.06 plus tax.  Not bad, but not happy.  Then we heard that a different manager at that same store had a whole different set of rules governing teacher limits so we went back yesterday.  Same store, different manager, MUCH different story.  I walked out of there with 80 two pocket folders, 25 packs of index cards,  and 20 pairs of scissors for $10.20.

Today, we hit another two Staples stores that graciously 'upped' our teacher limits and priced matched the Office Max flyer and coupons we had in hand.  Plus, I used my 15% savings card. At one of the stores, my total was almost $70 BEFORE applying the sales price, the price matched discounts, and my 15% savings card.  I walked out with a $10.05 receipt in my hand.  Not bad.

Just some of the deals I got at Staples!

The end result of my 3 day Staples shopping adventure:

160 two pocket folders (a penny each: price match from Office Max)
50 packs of index cards (a penny each and, I know, who needs THAT many index cards?  But I promise to share them with my colleagues!)
12 packs of erasers (a penny each)
20 pairs of scissors (50 cents each)
16 packs of Expo markers (4 count)  $1.00 each with an Office Max coupon
4 boxes of fine line Sharpies (12 count) $1.00 each with another Office Max coupon
7 index card holders (50 cents each)
2 reams of paper (a whopping 2 cents after rewards)
....and a few other odds and ends that weren't on sale

My total cost for 4 trips to Staples was less than $40.

Earlier this month, my friend Pam passed away.  Pam was the absolute, undisputed Queen of Back to School Shopping.  I have a feeling that she was up there somewhere, smiling down on us today.

I know that a lot of folks have met with a hard line about store policy on limits for teachers, but I'll leave you with this . . . it never hurts to ask.

Go forth and SHOP!


  1. WOW! I wanna go shopping with you!! :) I know where I'm heading tomorrow. Thanks for sharing!!


    1. I'd suggest asking to see the manager. Tell him/her that you know that there are Staples stores that have "upped" the limits (not the same as letting you purchase above the limits and then giving you 100% back on your rewards card as a reward member which is what they are likely to tell you). If nothing else, I think all Staples stores have the policy of price matching so pull up the ads for Office Max on your phone for the penny pocket folders and check online for the Office Max $1 coupons for the Expo markers and the Sharpies.

  2. Wait, what? How do I not know about this penny thing? I've been under a rock again I suppose.
    Rockin' and Lovin' Learnin'

  3. Hi Lori! I nominated you for the Liebster Award! Visit my blog to find out more about it!

  4. Hi Lori! So excited to find another 5th grade teacher from Northern California. Can't wait to follow you throughout the school year! :)

    - Jo Anne
    Teaching in Cardigans

    1. Jo Anne,
      Thanks for stopping by! After reading your post about your Liebster Award, I realized that we must be neighbors!


  5. That's dedication! I popped into WalMart this evening and saw the supplies going up. I felt a sort of gravitational pull, but resisted (the family was waiting in the car). When I got back to the car, I told my husband and kids that the school displays were up and my daughter said "The air is heavy with school around the corner." LOL-she insists she can feel it coming!

    The 85 Mile Commute

  6. Sweet deals! I totally forgot about the penny sales, but I will be looking for them now. I'm hosting (my very first linky party) Back-to-School Bargains on my blog ( I would love for you to link up with this or any other bargains you may find.

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