How do I say Thank You enough?

OK, so I know some of you have finished term already and most of you are probably more organised than I could ever hope to be, but I’ve spent the last few days agonising over what to get Oscar’s preschool Keyworker and Teaching Assistant as end of term thank you presents. These women have been working with him since he started in January 2015. They have bared the brunt of his frustration, dealing daily with his temper when he can’t express himself. And yet they are also the ones who have worked with him every session to ensure he can verbalise his wants and needs and to help him understand the very basis of communication, the back and forth, the my turn, your turn, without which he wouldn’t be able to manage communication at all, in any form. Yeah these ladies are owed big time.

But really, nothing is going to be enough. Nothing is going to express how thankful we are for their patience with him, or how grateful for the time they have taken with all the extra paperwork that comes with a child on the spectrum (and believe me it’s loads!). I’ve always been cautious of buying teacher gifts. I am loathe to buy any kind of trinket, anything without a practical purpose, because (and correct me if I’m wrong teachers), if everyone in the class did that you’d be left with 30 trinkets to find a home for. Every year! So I made a decision at the end of summer term last year, to always buy something consumable. The appreciation can be felt, but won’t take up room in their homes. Well that’s my theory anyway.

So back to this year. I don’t really know them well enough to buy them alcohol (also is alcohol appropriate for a preschool teacher?). Previously we’ve gone for posh coffee (for one) and posh tea (for the other) or vouchers for a coffee shop so they don’t have to make their own. But this year we wanted something that made a little bit more of a statement.

Which is why we we’ve gone for a box of Harry Specters chocolates each. A box of chocs might sound boring and unambitious, but bare with me. Harry Specters is a very special chocolate company, based in Cambridge. Their mission states:

At Harry Specter’s young people with autism are involved in all aspects of creating our award winning chocolates from production to packaging, sales, photography, graphic design and web design. In our safe and supportive environment they are free to use their strengths to grow, develop and build confidence.

In a country where 85% of adults with Autism are unemployed, Harry Specters are looking beyond the myths and media portrayal of Autism and have built an entire business model around utilising the strengths of an individual. As it should be! That they are also winning award after award for their chocolates just shows how this model is working. It just took one woman to look at things a little differently, to have faith in these people (and yes she is an Autismmama too)!

Box of chocolates

These are the chocolates we have chosen. Image courtesy of Harry Specters.

Don’t they look beautiful? Yes I want them to take them home and eat them, preferably away from any children and perhaps with a glass of something chilled. But while they do I want them to know how important they were in Oscar’s, and our, lives and how very grateful we are for their energy and how much O will miss them . Even if he doesn’t say it! Yes he’s ready to move on in his academic career, but he wouldn’t be had it not been for them.

It just takes one person to believe.

Toddler boy in buggy

Ready for his first day – Jan 2015

Maybe I’ll just put this post in with the chocolates. I’m not sure I’ll be able to convey all this in person. Well not without crying anyway!

 

 

Comments

  1. What a gorgeous gift! We gave coffee shop vouchers – it’s what I’d like as a gift. I totally know what you mean about preschool teachers and not being able to say thank you enough – they really are the extra parent.

    • mrssavageangel says:

      Thank you Naomi! We gave them Costa vouchers last year, which I know they appreciated. I love getting coffee shop vouchers too!

  2. What a fantastic idea. I’m sure these will go down a treat with those that have looked out for your son. #MarvMondays

  3. What a lovely, well thought out present…and they look so yummy.

  4. alisonlonghurst says:

    Your little boy has been so lucky with good teachers – it makes literally the world of difference and the chocs look gorgeous. It did make me chuckle, though, your comment about pre-school teachers and is alcohol appropriate. It reminded me of my sister telling me about the class night out where the nursery teachers went – she said they went wild – dancing on the table and all sorts. She attributed it to the fact that they normally had to be so well behaved 🙂 Alison x #DreamTeam

  5. What a spot on present! I choked up a bit reading it. Good teachers who can see and nurture potential are truly to be treasured.

    We did well with the teacher presents this year as one of the organised mums sorted it out for us all (a spa day + personalised necklace) and we just had to send in some money. The kids also wrote a little message each that is going to be made into a keepsake. #DreamTeam

    • mrssavageangel says:

      They really are. It’s not been the easiest ride with his preschool, but his actual teachers have been wonderful with him. Never underestimating him!

  6. It’s so great that they work so hard with your son. My son is also on the spectrum and I struggled with what to get. I wanted it to show how much I appreciated his teacher and assistants but nothing can really ever show that. Your chocs are a great idea and what a fabulous company and idea! Thanks for sharing #dreamteam

    • mrssavageangel says:

      It is hard isn’t it? Especially when, like his TA, they devote all their time in the session to him! But I hope they get why I’ve chosen what I have!

  7. This is gorgeous, I haven’t had to face these dilemmas yet but I am sure they will truly appreciate these special chocolates. What an amazing company with an incredible ethos. I definitely think you should show them the post as it is so lovely! #ablogginggoodtime

  8. What a lovely post and unbelievably echoes exactly what I wrote to my boys assistant. How on earth do you say thank you to someone who makes such a massive difference in your child’s life? I had to write it in a card as I couldn’t say it without tears too. We are so alike!!! Thanks for sharing this touching post with us at #ablogginggoodtime ❤️

    • mrssavageangel says:

      Its just to big to say out loud I think. I’m sure the teachers would be happier to get it written down. Its to big to take in in the moment!

  9. lovely chocolates. Such a fantastic idea xx
    #picknmix

  10. Those sound liek the perfect gift for Oscars teachers. I love the sound of the company and their philosophy. Im sure his teachers will love them too. I always prefer consumables over trinkets too 😉 Thanks for sharing this on #MarvMondays. Emily

  11. What a lovely present – you are so thoughtful. I totally understand what you mean about not being able to express how thankful you are for everything they have done, maybe one day they’ll come across this post! Hope you have a lovely summer x #picknmix

    • mrssavageangel says:

      Thank you so much my love! I did indeed print the post and include it in with their cards. It really explained things better than I could!

  12. What a lovely present, with such meaning. I think them receiving this post would have made their day too! There are just some things you can’t say with gifts! For the record, my sister is a teacher and loves gifts of wine!! Thanks for linking up with #TwinklyTuesday

  13. Those chocolates look so pretty (I have a thing about packaging!). I don’t think any gift will ever be enough to show how much teachers and childcare lovelies mean to us and our little ones. Of course anything scrumptious is a step in the right direction though 😉 Thank you for linking up to the #DreamTeam xx

    • mrssavageangel says:

      I love good packaging too! And these boxes were beautiful – study enough to be keepsake boxes afterwards!

  14. Harry Specters sounds amazing to me, what a fantastic company. You’ve almost made my eyes a bit leaky reading this, when your child has additional needs and you are at the pre-school or school more you do get to know the teachers and helpers so much better than most and it makes it a lot more emotional when they leave.

    Stevie x

    • mrssavageangel says:

      Oh I’m so sorry. I didn’t mean to make you cry 😉 It was emotional, but the Keyworker and the TA LOVED the chocs, partly because they were chocolates (!) but mostly because of the company they came from. I’m so glad we got them!

  15. The chocolates look lovely. As a teacher I’ve had some really nice letters from parents or they have pulled me to one side to say thanks and that has always meant a lot. Thanks for linking to #picknmix

    • mrssavageangel says:

      Aww that’s lovely to hear. His Keyworker certainly looked touched by the gift and post that I slipped in the card.

  16. Gorgeous gift and wonderful company! Lovely post x #MarvMondays

  17. Those sound like an amazing gift and so thoughtful and appropriate. I’m sure they will love them!
    I always buy teachers a book I’ve enjoyed, except I got my daughter’s y4 teacher a Pandora bead, which was very extravagant. She loved my daughter to bits and had taught her in both y2 and y4, so I wanted to express how brilliant she had been.
    Popping over from SS Amazing Achievements.

  18. What a fantastic gift to give and being an autism mum they really do mean so much. I’m going to bookmark their page for next year. I must admit we didn’t give gifts but Ethan will be in the same class next year. I know how much the amazing staff mean to you. I really hope he has the same support in the next stage of his journey too

    Thanks for linking up with Small Steps Amazing Achievements :0)
    x

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