Today, Drew and I stepped into a store in town and I felt like I had stepped back in time. The Maplewood Hobby Shop. I pass the store almost everyday, yet had never stepped inside. I found out today that the store has been around for more than twenty years, but I have always driven right past it. Drew had a gift card for the shop that someone had given him that had gotten tucked away and forgotten about for awhile. While running errands with him today, we passed the shop and both of us remembered the gift card and since we finally had no schedule, (ahhh….Summer) we decided to stop in.
As soon as we entered, I knew why I hadn’t been in before. The store is a “gaming store” but not video gaming. My boys were never really into building models or strategic board games so I never thought of going in there, yet as Drew walked in, his eyes widened as he saw the train sets and all of the different models to build; ships, airplanes, cars, rockets. The models ranged in levels of difficulty, from beginner to advanced and there were so many to choose from. The store is not very large, only about four or five aisles but Drew strolled through them looking at absolutely everything trying to decide what he wanted to buy. He went back and forth holding a model car, then a rocket ship then, he perused the train sets…a really tough choice! He asked the man working for some suggestions for someone new to model building. After being guided in the right direction, Drew decided on one model plane and one model car. That was also really nice about the shop. A great range of prices! He couldn’t stop visiting the model of The Titanic. It was huge and definitely not for a beginner, and also out of his price range, but something to work towards for sure!
I think what was most fascinating to me was that this shop, which seems to have quite a following, is filled with games that encourage creativity. I did not notice any video or electronics devices at all. As I type this, Drew is sitting in the living room working on the airplane model. For a “beginners” version, it is harder than he expected. Dave loved models as a kid and when Drew was buying it, he was talking about how they would work on it together. It is nice to see him away from mindless television engaged in something that is making his brain work!
Although I understand the purpose, (and my kids will do them,) I am not a huge believer in summer assignments for school, but working the mind in other ways like this is refreshing to see. I have a feeling we will be going back again soon!