I recently occurred to me that the old standby of the school picture isn’t really so necessary these days. We have digital cameras and social networks. By the time our kids are seven there are more pictures of them than there ever were of us by the time we were in our twenties.
Yet there I was, filling out the yearly forms and fees and just blindly writing whatever checks needed writing. The standard picture day envelope came into the shuffle, and as I tried to decide which package was best for my family, I also began wondering why I shell out $30 a child every year for a picture that usually doesn’t capture a real, telling image of my child’s personality anyway.
Back at home I sifted through some desk drawers until I found what I had been looking for. There were years worth of school pictures, still in their envelopes, sitting hidden and useless. I hadn’t mailed them to family members. Why would I when I could just scan the picture and email it or put it on Facebook? The kids hadn’t given out their wallet sizes to anyone at school.
So, what was the point, right? Why not just stop paying for these pictures and make it a point to just take one of my own to be their school photo? I know that the school has photos taken of the kids who didn’t order pictures so they can be in the yearbook, so that was covered.
But I just couldn’t not have my kids’ pictures taken. Looking at their school photos brought back that pang of delight. Each year when those photos would come home I recall laughing at the plastered down hair and forced grin. There was a certain ceremony and tradition to the process.
What I decided to do was to go forward with the school photo, but to only order one 8X10 for $8.00. This saved me a lot of money and still gave me that one picture to scan then frame and put on the wall with the others.
What are some of your schooltime money saving tips?