I hate to shop. Most of my shopping is done online. However, GB will be 8 in 5 weeks. This year, she decided she wanted to have her party at M*chaels A*ts and Cr*fts. And she decided that she was going to have a mixed party- I was thinking boys and girls, she was thinking ASD and non ASD (her words). Part of having the party at the craft shop is going to pick out the craft to be done at the party. This is what we did today.
GB had already decided that making chef hats was the best project. Unfortunately, the craft store didn’t have any. The young woman from the store, who had been directed to help us, started by showing us several finished projects from other parties. GB wasn’t looking at the projects or listening to the woman. She had caught sight of a large rack of thick, sparkly paper and that was all she could focus on. I took the opportunity to tell the store employee that GB had special needs and this was going to take a while. I let GB admire the paper and identify all the beautiful colors it came in. Our guide managed to point out the jewelry making stuff on the next aisle, and GB darted over to look. I pointed out that some of the boys might not enjoy making jewelry and that it might to difficult for some of the other kids to handle the small jewelry fittings. She agreed and reluctantly left the sparkling jewels behind.
The guide started talking about making jeweled treasure boxes. GB excitedly followed her and I thought maybe this wouldn’t be so hard after all. Not so. She hadn’t even reached the wood treasure boxes when a number of three legged stools, one already decorated, caught her attention. She was sure they were perfect; I had to tell her at $15 a piece, they were out of budget. It took a couple of minutes, but she did accept it.
We went through mugs, bird houses, picture frames, soap making, bulletin boards, shirts, safari helmets, and butterflies. At that point, we had been at it over an hour. I spied a large bag of craft bling! and showed it to GB. She fell in love with it! I told her if she could find a project that could use the bling!, we would buy it. In less than 10 minutes, she had found medium size canvas bags, in various colors. To add to the bling!, we bought 5 colors of puffy paint and a bottle of silver glitter paint.
We took everything up to the cash register to pay. GB was happy and chattering and our guide was boxing our stuff as she rang it up. She was about half done when GB noticed the young women was crying. GB does not have an inside voice, so when she told me, she announced it to the whole store. The manager came out, helped finish up our order, and then took his employee into his office. I hustled GB out and spent the ride home explaining to her, that since I didn’t know our guide, I didn’t know why she was crying, and at any rate it was none of our business. I paused to see how far I got and GB took the opportunity to inform me that her teacher said she was kind and compassionate and that was a good thing. Trying to explain boundaries to a child with GB’s deficits is not easy. She is asleep. I may try again tomorrow.