It's that wonderful time of year again, when we send our wee and not-so-wee ones back to the hallowed halls of schools around the country. Back-to-School is a time full of both excitement and anxiety for kids and parents. It's also a time of shopping. Paper and pencils (or is that tablets and styluses?), new outfits and new shoes. That in itself can get pretty stressful as parents and kids negotiate styles, and needs versus wants.
My Little Boo may only be going into first grade, but he definitely has opinions already on what he prefers to wear. I have already given up shopping for footwear and tops without him. (Jeans and shorts are still easy, thank goodness.) So I was really happy that we both agreed on these New Balance sneakers for the fall.
This is a new line of infants and kids running shoes from New Balance, released this July - the 689 Kids Collection. They come in different colour combinations, have a non-marking sole, and use the Abzorb cushioning material for a comfortable fit all day. The uppers are a mix of leather and mesh, which seems to breathe well on LB's feet. The closure is an elastic strap with velcro, making these super easy to get on and off. MSRP ranges from $39.95 for infant/pre-school children (sizes 2-5 and 5.5-10) to $54.95 for youth (sizes 7-10.5). And they are also available in width sizes!
We found these to fit very true to size. They are a sturdy, well-constructed shoe, so at first Little Boo said he found them a little stiff to pull on. He had some trouble with getting his heel in. But after a few wearings they were worked in and he slips them on and off now like a pro. This shoe gives great support to his feet and ankles, and he loves how comfortable they are. Plus they are quite lightweight because of the mesh construction. We did give them a pretty good workout while we were on vacation, and I have to say I didn't once hear him complain about his feet being tired, which I have found to be a common refrain this summer in other sneakers.
Overall, Little Boo has given these two thumbs up, and they have overshadowed all other footwear. Plus, I approve of the support and cushioning for his growing feet. These would be great sneakers for gym class, or for regular all-day wear.
Here's a bonus this month - for the third year in a row, New Balance have partnered with Mabel's Labels for an August promotion to offer a free Mabel's Labels gift pack with purchase at participating retailers, while quantities last. You know how much I love Mabel's Labels, so I think this is a great partnership - with all the new supplies, footwear and clothes you have to buy, you know you'll need your labels handy!
You can keep up to date with New Balance on Facebook and Twitter. Mabel's Labels can be found at Mabel.ca.
Disclosure: I received product to facilitate this review. No other compensation was received. All opinions on this blog remain my own.