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Old 11-15-2007, 05:45 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm new to this forum. I"m in a new marriage and have the hardest times with exchanges and getting correct shoes back/jackets/pants/shirts/skirts etc.
We are a blended family. I have 3 and she has 3. 3 boys 3 girls. Any suggestions on how to keep clothing straight? It's expensive and a huge problem. Outfits don't match, wrong shoes............ I need help and guidance. I have lots of other questions as well but we'll start with this.

John
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Old 11-15-2007, 06:07 PM
 
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We had this problem when we started, too. We started picking our step-daughter up and changed her when she got to our house (or sometime that morning) and set those clothes (including shoes) aside for the morning she was going back to her mom's.

We also had one or two sets of clothes that I didn't mind losing. If for some reason we ended up without "mom clothes" for the way back (if she needed long sleeves and only had short sleeves, for example), we could put her in those. AFter a while it became habit and both houses got accustomed to keeping track of which clothes needed to go back. I think it might have been easier for us because it was important to mom that she get "her" clothes back, so she made sure we got "our" clothes back.

When she was first potty-training, we would wash and return underwear, but after a while it didn't seem like it was a big deal to either house. We tried to keep track of socks, but those were also less important.

And if there is something special to me (like something that was passed down from my family or something we spent a significant amount of money on) we just don't send it to the other house.

Oh, you can also mark clothing "DAD" or whatever (we use our last name since it is different than hers and allows us to pass things down to the siblings at our house)... not only does it make it clear, but maybe makes it less appealing for the other parent to keep it.

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Old 11-15-2007, 10:48 PM
 
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Oh, you can also mark clothing "DAD" or whatever (we use our last name since it is different than hers and allows us to pass things down to the siblings at our house)... not only does it make it clear, but maybe makes it less appealing for the other parent to keep it.
We do that, too.

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Old 11-16-2007, 12:45 AM
 
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this is one of those issues in which i feel petty when we lose clothes but at the same time i like the clothes we buy for the kids and dont love the clothes she sends them in. but the kids are now at the ages where they like certain clothes and i would basically have to hide the clothes i dont want them wearing or admit to them that i dont want them wearing certain things to their moms because i know she wont send them back in the stuff weve bought. its frustrating so i just try to let it go and deal with the fact that the nice jeans they wear to her house wont come back, instead we get sweat pants. what can you do?
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Old 11-16-2007, 01:45 AM
 
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What works with my 2 (infrequent visitation, though ) is a photographic checklist taped in the front of their bag. THEY take responsibility for choosing their clothes, I take a picture, write a list, we pack the bag. Coming home, there is absolutely no reason for the clothes not to come back, and it's the boys who have to deal with the consequences, not my ex.

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Old 11-17-2007, 01:53 AM
 
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This issue is the biggest one for me. We just got back a top last week that had been gone for a year.

DSD's mom just cannot get out of the habit of keeping things (she used to keep all of the clothes before we went to 50/50, and even for a while afterwards). Once CS changed (reduced because of 50/50), she decided to "get back" at us by not sending any clothes for DSD. We wound up buying DSD an entire wardrobe in a weekend.

DF doesn't purchase the clothes (physically - monetarily it comes out of our household budget), so it doesn't bother him that much when things turn up missing. He hasn't put the time in to track down cute stuff on our limited budget. I put a lot of effort into DSD's wardrobe. I research online, pick through clearance racks and consignment stores. DSD looks really cute at our house. It is important to DF that she looks nice (He says so - often), but not important enough sometimes for him to ask her mom where our clothes are.

I would consider labeling things, but I don't know if it would help that much. I am guessing things would lose their resale value if I did that. Plus, I tend to buy socks/tights and things of that nature at Gymboree and basics at Target. So I want the socks back just as much as the t-shirts, and it is darn near impossible to label socks. That was the one piece of clothing that didn't have my name on it when I was in the army.

We used to send her back in the clothes that she came in, but I just cannot stomach sending her to school in the mismatched, ill-fitting, stained, raggedy crap her mom sends her in. She has a lot of clothing at her mom's, just not a lot of decent clothing. We are quality over quantity people, so when we are missing something, it is a big deal.

I don't even want to get started on how DSD's mom doesn't understand what "don't put it in the dryer" means. She has finally (yay!) started sending things back unwashed. Which saves energy, because when she does wash them, I just have to rewash to get the cigarette stink out.

Just writing about this makes my blood boil.

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Old 11-17-2007, 09:11 PM
 
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All of my dd's clothes are cute so I can't worry too much about what comes back right away or not. And really, my ex's wife is good about sending her clothes home.

The one thing I have a problem with is her washing them and then cooking them in the dryer. One of my favorite LL Bean dresses got shrunk a little bit as well as a little pilled form the dryer there. DD had only worn it a few times so I was a little upset. I wish she would just send the clothes home dirty.
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Old 11-18-2007, 05:12 AM
 
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the only thing we have ever "marked" is the underwear ..
Everything else is put on with the knowledge that we may or may not see that shirt or shorts ever again !!!
But it works both ways We've held a pair of shoes "hostage" until a certain pair of shorts was returned ...
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Old 11-18-2007, 11:59 AM
 
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We let go of it YEARS ago. I think a child in divorce situation has enough tension in their lives, and we decided not to make a big deal out of clothes, everything we buy always ends up "there", and oh well.. We just used to remind her to bring enough for the weekend, and now she is old enough to do things without reminding. Certain things she keeps here "just in case", but rarely wears them. Other than that - her clothes are mainly at her mom's, whether we bought it or not.

If you are doing it because it is important to you - I'd reconsider, and if the child sees it as an issue, then he/she would have to take some responsibility for bringing the things he/she likes back.

That's what I think...

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Old 11-18-2007, 03:49 PM
 
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But it works both ways We've held a pair of shoes "hostage" until a certain pair of shorts was returned ...
lol I've done that once or twice out of neccesity. It's really frustrating when it's snowing out and "our" boots are at her Mother's, one of "our" sneakers are at her Mother's her Mother sent her to our house the day before (when it wasn't snowing) in dress shoes. We "keep" the dress shoes and send her in sneakers (in the snow, which freezes her poor feet) and we'll flat out tell her we're "keeping" them until we get our stuff back because we need to make sure Katherine has something to wear at our house. Sometimes it's the only way to get something back.

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Old 11-18-2007, 04:35 PM
 
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Every other weekend I wonder if dd will come home with the clothes she left in. My philosophy with clothes too is quality over quantity but I have purchased a couple of outfits that I wouldn't go beserk over not getting back. I dress her in these outfits on the days she will be going to her father's. I learned the first year when dd would come home in a Wal-Mart outfit & her GAP clothes would disappear. :

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Old 11-19-2007, 12:07 PM
 
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We let go of it YEARS ago. I think a child in divorce situation has enough tension in their lives, and we decided not to make a big deal out of clothes, everything we buy always ends up "there", and oh well.. We just used to remind her to bring enough for the weekend, and now she is old enough to do things without reminding. Certain things she keeps here "just in case", but rarely wears them. Other than that - her clothes are mainly at her mom's, whether we bought it or not.

If you are doing it because it is important to you - I'd reconsider, and if the child sees it as an issue, then he/she would have to take some responsibility for bringing the things he/she likes back.

That's what I think...
well put, it is more for the parents to want "their" clothes back.
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Old 11-19-2007, 08:28 PM
 
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We had to just let it go.
We first had dsd bring stuff, but she would bring the wrong things (sweatpants in August or no jacket in Dec).
So we tried buying stuff for our house, but she would sneak them to her mom's b/c we actually got her things that were stylish and that fit her, instead of too small hand-me-downs and stained mismatched items. And her mom would send huge bags of stuff "to wear" at our house, that were really her goodwill bag that she didn't want to deal with.

SO we packed everything up and sent it back. If she comes with no underwear or socks (very likely) I will buy her some even though it pisses me off, because it's not really her fault that her mom doesnt.

She's old enough to take some responsibility herself now, so if she doesn't have appropriate clothing, she doesn't get to do stuff , or she has to run a load of laundry when she gets here.
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Old 11-24-2007, 01:34 AM
 
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My suggestion is to . . . .just let it go. It can become a HUGE issue if you choose. I literally buy dss a new pack of socks every two weeks. They seem to only go in one direction. When I first got married, I was always "missing" dss's stuff. His jacket was always gone when it was cold. His swimsuit gone when it was sunny. We buy 100 percent of the clothes and have primary custody, so it drove me batty until I chose to not let it. As the kids get older, they can take on more of the responsibility. If they are wearing something you will miss (nice sweater, new jacket, dress shoes) then make an effort to aske them to leave it at your house or be sure to get it when you pick up, but for the everyday jeans tshirts socks, it's not worth the STRESS.
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Old 11-24-2007, 02:02 AM
 
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hiya sargent palmer. nice to meet you.

i call the kids dad and i say "hey ian left his favorite brown carhearts at your house. could i pick em up tomorrow? or could you drop 'em off before or after work?" and he says something like "theyre in the wash. we went fishing and had such a great time but fish guts got spilled all over them. how about the day after tomorrow instead?"

in your house of course it may be a little different conversation. but generally i dont care about clothing, if ian wants to wear something he does. i know sometimes i think, he if you wear your favorite sweatshirt to your dads on sunday you might not have it back for school monday but then why should i take away his favorite clothing item?

after all his dad lvoes him as much as i do. and wants our kid to be happy as much as i do. generally ians dad works really hard to have clothes that ian likes both at my house and at his house.

(i dont mean to say you dont or anything, btw.)

maybe just try talking? and saying hey dd left fill in the blank clothing at your house could you drop it off?

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Old 11-24-2007, 02:16 AM
 
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maybe just try talking? and saying hey dd left fill in the blank clothing at your house could you drop it off?
Yup.

My dd wears glasses and she goes through periods where she loves to take them off and leave them laying around. Many days, we each (both ex and I) have called the other house asking if we could pick them up or they could drop them by. No blame, just getting to the business of making sure dd has what she needs.

I know glasses are not clothing but the same principle applies.
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Old 11-24-2007, 08:16 PM
 
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Hi friendly moderator here

Several posts have been removed from this thread for UA violations, or quoting/ referring to the removed posts. If you would like to edit, please pm me, otherwise, let's keep this discussion friendly and peaceful.
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Old 11-25-2007, 02:35 PM
 
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Kelly, thanks so much for doing that

To repeat what I said in a removed post, it's possible to label socks (and clothes) discreetly using embroidery thread, which doesn't leave irritating owie bits lying around. If you want a photo and full descriptions, please LMK and I'll post a tut somewhere.

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Old 12-10-2007, 01:53 PM
 
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My solution for when I notice alot of the clothes we have at home are the junky handmedowns from dad's is send him every weekend with the junkiest outfit we have at home and hope a nicer one comes home. I also tell DS(10) to put on more appropriate clothes Sun morn since he dresses himself and dad doesn't care.
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Old 12-10-2007, 08:33 PM
 
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I also tell DS(10) to put on more appropriate clothes Sun morn since he dresses himself and dad doesn't care.
Why wouldn't 10 yr olds dress themselves?

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Old 12-11-2007, 10:31 AM
 
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Why wouldn't 10 yr olds dress themselves?
Maybe because it is Sun morning and they go to church? I've haven't been to church in many years, but I do remember having to dress up for it as a kid. I think my mom still had veto power over church/school outfits at that age. She wanted us to wear things that were clean and matched, etc.

Hmmm. This is probably why I like the kids have cute, matching, clean clothes.

A few months back I remember explaining this issue to my mom, and how one outfit winds up at DSD's mom's house a week, which may or may not come back.

My mom, aghast: "How do you know that she will wash them right?"

Yep. This is where I get it.

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Old 12-11-2007, 12:19 PM
 
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i think the issue for me is that i also want the kids to look nice, clean and be treated well by adults at their schools. the fact is that people are judged based on their appearnaces, it may be sad but it is true, so i do feel frustrated when all dss's mom seems to be able to buy is army print fatigues from old navy, they just look baggy and messy on the kids who are at the age now where they could start dressing nicer.
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Old 12-11-2007, 04:23 PM
 
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i think the issue for me is that i also want the kids to look nice, clean and be treated well by adults at their schools. the fact is that people are judged based on their appearnaces, it may be sad but it is true,

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Old 12-11-2007, 07:53 PM
 
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I admit it has been a really long time since I was 10, but I know I dressed myself then.
I knew how to pick out nice clothes for church or other fancy get-togethers.
I didn't need help figuring out what was a nice outfit and what was a day-to-day outfit.
And I was quite the tomboy, hated dresses (still do) and preferred jeans and t-shirt.
So, I really hated dressing up nice and girly. Yet, I still was able to dress myself.

My bonus son is 10. He is home schooled, so going along with the current fashion of his school to fit in and be popular is irrelevant for him.
His mom always sends him over for the weekend in these ugly black or red sweatpants and horribly ugly t-shirts that do not match. I used to care (a couple years ago) and would suggest he change into something we bought him, something nicer like jeans or khakis. He somehow tore the crotch out of those nice khakis and ripped holes in all the knees of the jeans. So, I see why his mom puts him in cheap sweats for the weekends. I have no idea what he wears during the week. I just don't care anymore. If he doesn't care, then what does it matter? It's his body, after all, and his choice to wear what he wants.

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Old 12-12-2007, 01:24 AM
 
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I try not to care, but it is hard. It is hard for me to see dss come home in pants that are 3 inches too short. It's hard for me when my ds pickes out orange and black Halloween spider shirt and his light blue wolf-print pants (I look cool-- he announced, totally pleased with himself). I try not to care. But I kinda do. I just try not to show it.
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