September is a strange time of year for mums - you sigh with relief, thinking that your kids will soon be back at school instead of hanging around the house, telling you they're bored and asking what's for dinner because they're hungry, but you also dread suddenly having to go into a mad rush to get all the "Back to School" essentials, like school uniforms, lunch boxes, PE kit, swimbags, plimsolls ... the list is endless.
And however many times you ask if anything else needs replacing, it's always after the first day back that your kids will suddenly gaily inform you that their pencil sharpener doesn't work any more or they don't actually own any non-chewed pencils or their felt tip pens from last year have all dried out. And because everyone is running around the same shops, trying to lay their hands on the same items (and with the credit crunch, at the cheapest prices possible), you'll be in for a Saturday afternoon of absolute hell trailing around all the stationery shops in the town centre along with 99% of the population.
And that's where those lovely people at Ryman's are an absolute Godsend because they have carefully selected all the classic "back to school/college/university" essentials and put them all together in one value pack. You name it, it's probably in there ! Exercise books, pens - red, blue AND black (OK, we could have done with a green one in there for good measure, but maybe my kids' teachers are just extra awkward !!), pencils, rubber, pencil sharpener, ruler, highlighters, a pencil case to stash it all in, A4 lined paper ... they've thought of everything !!
There's even a calculator. It's only a basic model - the Texet SL8 -with no frills and none of the complicated sine/cosine/tangent buttons you need for doing trigonometry and other things I can only vaguely remember from my own school days, but it's good enough for doing basic maths.
Not only will it save you a hellish couple of hours traipsing around the shops - you can buy it online from the comfort of your own living room ! - it's also a bargain bundle, with the whole pack retailing at under a tenner. Admittedly, it's £9.99 but it's still a great price !
I'm very tempted to buy a couple of extra packs now and put them away for next year - or, more likely, for replacing everything during this school year as it invariably gets lost, broken or worn-out !
star rating : 4,5/5