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Our kids have a special group of people in their lives through their center-based autism therapy. Over the years, I’ve seen them volunteer in multiple community programs outside of work hours, put in long days helping children, and do it all with smiles on their faces and love in their eyes. They don’t just work with special needs children; they have a deep devotion to helping kids succeed. I look for ways to show my appreciation in small ways throughout the year. A few simple words and a nice gesture can mean everything. At Walmart, I purchased American Greetings greeting cards, gift bags, bows and some materials to create a therapist appreciation rustic frame gift.
I created this gift with my children’s senior therapist in mind. When we first walked into the autism therapy center, I was unsure what life had in store for our family. It’s terrifying to put your three-year-old in therapy with strangers for 35 hours per week. She was there for our family then and she is there for us today. She has the ability to reach my child, and now both of my children, when I cannot. She teaches me how to connect with them in the moments I feel incapable. She lifts them up, challenges them, celebrates with them, and has seen all of us through our weakest moments. She’s made home visits. She attended his preschool graduation. She learned how to tube-feed him. Our children’s senior therapist is a remarkable person with a genuine love for the children she serves.
The part of my life that is most humbling is the realization that there are people who I can never repay. Their role in my children’s lives is so great, and my gratitude is so deep, that all I can do is thank them and hope they understand just how important they are.
Start your creation by taking a hammer to the picture frame to distress it (don’t forget to remove any glass first!). This step is also excellent for stress relief! Next, use white spray paint as the first layer for your frame. Once the white paint is dry, apply petroleum jelly to edges, corners and some of the impressions made by your hammer. After you spray paint your next color – I used teal – and allow it to dry, you will be able to wipe off the petroleum jelly with a cloth and your frame will look distressed! I used a sanding block to even it all out before applying a clear coat to seal the frame, but that step is optional.
While waiting for your coats of paint to dry, use a hot glue gun to apply puzzle pieces to a matte. To provide more texture, I layered some puzzle pieces on top of one another. When the hot glue is dry, turn over the matte and attach your printable. “It takes a big heart to shape little minds.” The author of this quote is unknown, but the words are true. You may use this free printable by clicking here.
When your frame is dry, place your matte and printable into the frame and you’re ready to gift it to your child’s therapist! American Greetings has a large selection of greeting cards to choose from at Walmart, so you’re sure to find the perfect one. Purchase any American Greetings® Card at Walmart and earn $1 on Ibotta with this offer!
I also purchased two cards to surprise friends with on the International Day of Friendship on July 30th! Throughout the year, there are reasons big and small to give “random acts of cardness!”
Who do you want to thank with this appreciation gift?