When your children are picked to participate in school sports, ask if there is a payment plan on their sports uniforms. So rather than having to come up with the big lump sum all at one time, stretch the payment out so it's convenient for you and your budget.
My friend's daughter went out for the basketball team, a few months ago. Upon getting accepted, they were having to scramble for some unexpected cash to pay for the basketball uniform, & just before Christmas, too! The uniform payment plan, was a lifesaver!