Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Wal Mart Meltdown

Might as well start with the bad stuff...
I've been pretty lucky in the past taking all three kiddos to stores, but it's been increasingly difficult in stores with toy sections. I can rationalize with Ronin to a point, but when Nikko fixates on a toy, he becomes RELENTLESS. That's what happened today at Wal-Mart. After breezing through the grocery section, I wanted to *quickly* find birthday presents for two parties this weekend. Audrey was in the shopping cart seat while her brothers orbited around us. Nikko saw a $17 circular car slide that I wasn't planning on getting but would consider it at the end. But then he saw that green RC car from Toy Story 3 and when I glanced at the price tag it was $69.99! HELL NO. Nikko fixated on it, dragged and carried it, and wouldn't let it go. I tried to pry it from him and put it back. I put it at the bottom of the shopping cart so he could access it while I walked around. Nikko just wanted that box opened to play with the car. I'm lucky he didn't tear it open himself. Then, Ronin saw a Lightning McQueen Radiator Springs edition car that was similar to the one we had at home except this one's eyes moved. Ronin wanted it. Of course I said no. He started to cry and wail. I couldn't believe it! I dragged us to the party favor section and tried to see if I could make out with the Toy Story 3 plates and cups, but Nikko's cries were getting so loud and he screamed when I tried to shove the RC car onto a shelf. I thought about leaving my cart of groceries and dragging us all out of the store so we wouldn't have to wait in any line, but I couldn't drag Nikko with one hand, hold Audrey in my other arm, and what to do with crying Ronin? I was screwed. I put Ronin in the cart with the groceries and let Nikko follow me to a checkout lane. Bless the check-out guy, who didn't grimace when I stood in his line and gave me a reassuring laugh at the situation instead. I told him upfront that we weren't going to buy the RC car, so right at the end he motioned for me to grab the box from Nikko and give it to him. I did, then quickly scooped up a screaming, red, teary, squirming Nikko and put him on the handlebar of the shopping cart. I tried not to scrunch Audrey but still had to push the cart with Ronin screaming in the basket. We had to run the gauntlet to the exit so I put on my sunglasses and my mental blinders while readjusting my grip on Nikko. Everyone was looking our way. How could they not see the spectacle? I tried not to look at any one individual but I stole a glance at a cashier who stared at us making so much noise. I tried not to bump into any elderly people on their motorized scooters, and the bunch of teens in front of us parted like the Red Sea trying not to get run over by my cart. The kids cried while I buckled them in and put Handy Manny on the TV. Ronin, still upset over the car, decided to throw up into his lap and onto the car seat. I mopped him up with wipes the best I could, then took off with my angry brood. I didn't cry, and that was surprising. But I did vow to never take the kids to a store that has a toy section ever again. Or at least until they are old enough to behave. I revisited Wal Mart again tonight to finish shopping for the items I couldn't get earlier, and had a chat with Atz about child psychology. She suggested, and I concur, that perhaps during this time when the kids are still young and learning how to behave, I should just do my grocery shopping at night. And avoid the stores that cause trouble for me (Target, Meijer, Wal Mart). So depressing! I've been trying to make the trip teachable by exposing them to other people, social situations and also to stretch their legs in public, but seeing coveted toys is causing so many problems, especially with Nikko. Nikko was using NO words to express anything, just grunts and tons of whining. I don't even think taking Tianna along with us would have made things easier because Nikko would still be relentless about the RC car and Ronin would still need to be talked out of getting that Lightning McQueen. I want to go to Costco tomorrow to check out a phone on sale, but wonder if the kids will behave. Tianna isn't coming tomorrow because she has a scheduling conflict. So, I would have to go to Costco alone with the three kiddos. I think Nikko might remember the silly Scooby-Doo DVD that he wanted to carry around the last time, but I put it back out of reach and he got really mad at me. I'll have to load up on lollipops before we leave the house.

One good thing that happened today was after ABA with Jenna. Nikko came upstairs and asked me for Cheese Puffs. I was still talking to Jenna so I was moving rather slowly to get his snack. We watched Nikko empty his blue bowl of Cheerios into Audrey's bowl, in preparation of receiving Cheese Puffs in the blue bowl. What was even funnier was that Nikko took a napkin, seemed to wipe down the empty surface area, and then throw the napkin away under the skin. I had to reward him for his great behavior!

Finally, I took Nikko to Camp Class this morning while Denis stayed with Ronin and Audrey. Nikko went straight to the sand table and peeked over once to look for me. I waited for Melisa to arrive, about 6-7 minutes late. She and I walked back to Nikko, I crouched down and said, "Bye Nikko, see you later, have fun!" He let me hug him and he kissed me, then turned back to the sand table, busy. I got up and left and heard no crying at all. When we came to pick him up later, Melisa mentioned that she was confused by what the NWSRA told her, that her job was to look after ALL the kids there. That confuses me, too, because I thought that Nikko got an aide for his Camp Class that would be 1:1 with him, because he needs her help. The other kids in that class don't need Melisa's help, even if they are starved for attention from the teachers. Hmmmmm. I wonder if Maria should talk to Melisa about this.


  1. Melisa's job is to include Nikko in the classroom activites that are lead by the teachers (by giving him prompts, helping with transitions, preparing him for the next activity, repeating directions, giving reminders, helping him with words/lanugage to use during socialization, being his advocate). Her job is to the support Nikko, not the entire classroom. However, Melisa should interact with all children so that the children think she is another classroom teacher, but never pulling her attention away from Nikko. The children should not see or feel that Nikko gets special attention or think that he is "special or different"...although I think Nikko is a special and cool kid. :) If she's able to get Niiko and anotehr peer to play together, awesome. She should not be leading groups or responsible for all the kids. Hope this helps.

  2. Many thanks for the clarification! I figured that Nikko was priority, and I think she knows it too. She had the NWSRA's training, but didn't know what to expect on her first day. Now we all know.