I'm lucky in that we get a LOT of hand-me-downs for Petunia and some for Thing One as well. My MIL also buys a lot of clothes for the kids at Target and Costco, so I really don't have to go shopping for them often. When they need something specific--pajamas, a pair of shoes, a coat--I go buy it while they're at school. Easy peasy. Except when it doesn't fit, as I discovered today.
Thing One lives most of his life in either sweatpants/tracksuit pants, athletic shorts, or elastic-waisted khakis. Unfortunately, he is now of a size and age where he needs 'nice' pants, which generally do not have elastic waists, much to his chagrin. When I tried to guess his size for button-waisted dress pants, I guessed wrong. Rather than guessing incorrectly a second time, I brought the kid with me to the store today and we were able to quickly make an appropriate exchange. Sadly, then we spent the next hour and a half looking at every.single.hooded.sweatshirt.in.three.stores trying to find exactly the *right* one for him (acceptable color, correct size, no strings at the neck) since he wanted a new sweatshirt and now has opinions about these things, heaven help me. We finished off with another half an hour of looking at neon-colored T-shirts and shorts before we found a few he liked.
Since this was an eleven year-old BOY, I imagine I will be absolutely tearing my hair out once I start having to shop with my daughter. Wonder how old a kid has to be before you can just give them money and drop them off at the mall??