Sunday, October 19, 2008

My Son: "Let's Go Pack!"

I've been thinking for awhile that I should let my sons pack their own clothes whenever we go on short weekend trips. Allowing them to fill their own suitcases would give them some independence while also freeing me up to do other things.

When we took our most recent trip to my son's beloved state of Ohio (our relatives live there) my son with ASD surprised me quite a bit. I told them about our trip on our way home from school the day before we were to leave.

"Come on, let's go pack" he told his brother when we arrived home that afternoon. I reminded them that they shared a suitcase. Neither one objected. They pulled one suitcase out of the closet. Instead of fighting over the limited space of the suitcase, they were partners. I didn't hear a word of argument while they were packing.

I had told the oldest that he needed to put two of everything (shirts, jeans, pajamas, etc.), but realized that he probably wouldn't quite get it right without a visual prompt such as a list. Again I was surprised, but not by the fact that he followed my instructions. He didn't and neither did his little brother. The surprise was in the extra stuff that was packed.

Amongst the jumble of jeans, t-shirts, and underwear was a Scooby Doo, a white stuffed cat, a tiny black and white stuffed cat, one small stuffed frog and two big stuffed ones. The suitcase wouldn't close. The stuffies had to go, although each boy was later allowed to toss their choice of toys into the van as stowaways.

As for clothes, they pretty much packed what they needed along with lots of extra underwear. Go figure. Still I had to revise by throwing in a pair of jeans here and a pajama top there. I also sorted out the jumbled suitcase by separating the ten year old's clothes from the five year old's stuff. The end result was being packed a day earlier than normal. Yay for the boys. Yay for being ahead of schedule!


Anonymous said...

That is great! Too funny about the stuffed animals. Whenever we go anywhere M wants to take the strangest things.

Casdok said...

Working together! Very impressive and they did really well!