School shoe woe

So it's back to school time and my 11 year old pipes up that her trainers no longer fit and her school shoes will therefore probably be too small.

It's a week today till her first day back and reality bites.  My next 'spare' day for shoe shopping will be Saturday.  Oh s**t I say (inside my head - obviously).  The last Saturday before every school in the entire country goes back for the winter term.  

I know what this means.  Queuing for an hour in a kids shoes store holding. More than likely a bit of paper with a number on it. Watching parents buy their children shoes.  At this point, I want to raise the question, why oh why do I see mothers at this point with newly toddling 1 year olds, sat in the shop taking photos and grinning whilst their child tries on their first pair of shoes?  I want to turn around and say:

'What are you doing? This is the last Saturday before term starts and this is NOT the day for you.  Please come back on Monday or if you are a WoMo come back next Saturday.  Your life and ours will be 100 times easier.'

Instead I will sit there seething and frustrated that my valuable time with my children at the weekend is taken up by shoe shopping.  The inevitable will happen, in shop 1 and they won't have the right size, style or colour and we will repeat the entire charade in shop 2 where there will be another parent buying the first pair of shoes.

It's entirely my fault, I have left it too late.  I take full responsibility.  

The uniform is washed, the sport kit is in the kit bag and yet again, I seem to have completely forgotten my children need shoes on their feet for school.  A summer of the girls in flip flops and trainers has removed my mind from return to school shoe planning.

While on the subject, I'd like to raise the subject of school stationery.  Well done to Smiggle and Tinc who have spotted the need school children have for fancy pencils.  In the last couple of years it seems school classrooms are full of kids flashing pencil cases made of zips, velvet pencils and rubbers that smell of strawberry.  Whatever happened to the blue pencil case with a red pencil in it and a rubber that smells of rubber!

Wish me luck.  I'm heading out on Saturday to brave the shoe challenge, and under pressure I know I'll end up in some over priced pencil shop buying pencils.  My girls will tell me they need them, I will they don't because we have hundreds of pencils at home, and then in a way that only children can, they will come up with reasons why these pencils are better.  

After I have parted with money for said pencils and got home carrying far too many shoes, I will say to myself 'never again'.  I think I might even diariseschool shoes 3 weeks before the Spring term starts.  Oh no, that's two weeks before Christmas!

I give up.