‘Tis the season for giving gifts and I’ve found a few lists that may help.
First up is a list from Love that Max that lists gifts that benefit both kids and adults with special needs. Another one I’d add is the Centerville Pie Company. After Oprah named their chicken pies as one of her favorite things, their production needs significantly increased. They partnered with another Cape Cod organization Cape Abilities and now employ over 30 differently-abled individuals at their bakery. I’m thinking the buffalo chicken pie would be the perfect gift for my husband. New Year’s Day football treat anyone?
The next list is a list of gift ideas for kids who have special needs. Again, it is from Love that Max, but is actually a compiled list of suggestions from her blog readers, Twitter followers and Facebook fans…most of whom have children with special needs. Many times, it’s hard to choose toys and games because things that are supposed to be age appropriate actually are not. Nor do toy packages identify if they are good for fine motor skills or for improving motor planning for example. This list does that for you. Having parents who know how important play is to not only help a child feel joy and simply have fun, but reinforce the skills he has been working so hard on is kind of priceless. That Laugh and Learn Fisher Price Piggy Bank was a huge hit with Max for years because play kind of evolved as his skills grew and changed. Once he figured out how to cheat we knew it was time to move on. However, just a few weeks ago, I caught him playing with my niece’s piggy bank, which she received for her birthday.
And honestly, if you have a family with a special needs child in your life, give them the gift of babysitting. If they are anything like us, they are hesitant to leave their child with anyone who is not family. Behavior issues or self care issues may hold them back from hiring a babysitter. Maybe they don’t have family near them but would truly benefit from a night out. Drop off a bottle of wine and a coupon for a few hours of babysitting. Let them know you’re comfortable with their child and any issues that may arise and kick them out the door. That is the gift that keeps on giving.