We love Lowe's Home Improvement hands down. It's always been our "go to" for home DIY needs especially now that we're in the foreclosure house (always something new to fix here!). It's also a North Carolina company and that just makes it feel more like home.
In the spring, after reading about the successful Lowe's Build & Grow experience for Allison's son who's about 6 weeks older than Dylan, we decided maybe he was old enough and we would start going. It's been a father son thing and the boys have gone to most of the Build & Grow clinics this year starting with the Croods projects.
No secret to our family, friends and blog readers - we also love Disney. When we learned this summer there would be 6 Build & Grow Disney projects, we marked our calendars. We even warned friends ahead of time that Dylan's 4th birthday party would be at the same time as a Saturday build and to register for the Sunday one.
The Build & Grow clinics this month featured Dusty and El Chupacabra from Disney/Pixar's latest movie - Planes. For the first weekend, Trent signed Dylan up for the Sunday clinic. It would time perfectly for when I had to be a baby shower so off we all went on our way to a fun afternoon. The boys arrived just after 2pm and the line was long. Trent even texted me to say he'd never seen so many people. They patiently waited in line for 20 minutes. Anyone with a 4 year old knows what a feat this is. When they got to the front, they were told the kits were all gone. He was offered the two Toy Story kits from July that he had already done. Trent accepted as they had come all that way and Dylan wanted to build something.
|Dressed for the event and all the Dusty kits were given away.|
After I learned of the situation and came home, I commented on Instagram how we were disappointed. We know it's a free event and offered as a perk to customers. There are no guarantees. But we had also pre-registered and had learned on a previous visit speaking with an employee that there are 100 kits per day - 75 allotted to pre-registered kids and the other 25 for first come, first serve the day of the build. Often they even had leftover.
Lowes contacted me back via social media and asked me to email with details and contact information. I did. The initial email was pretty generic "sorry" and noted the store manager would be asked to contact me. He did call the next day and apologized saying that he was sorry Dylan didn't get the kit. The turnout was far higher than usual - customers came from other parts of the county because their stores filled up so fast. He offered to call other stores and even check with corporate to see if a kit could be found. Both the manager and I were skeptical one would be.
After a week and having not heard back (nor calling myself, I admit), I assumed it was lost cause. We had registered for the Saturday morning Build & Grow clinic this past weekend and arrived 20 minutes early to ensure we didn't have a repeat. We were the 5th or 6th family in line. The boy in front of us looked about the same age. He and Dylan showed off their apron patches to each other as we waited. The boy had the Dusty patch and Dylan matter of factly said, "I did not get that one." Simple as that. He remembered but didn't seem bothered.
|New signage and a completed plane at the El Chupacabra build.|
While we waited, I noticed signs stating that the Build & Grow would open promptly at 10am and only those registered would get kits until 10:15am. Trent said the signs had not been there before. At 10 the Build & Grow opened, an employee checked our forms and marked us off a list as we went in. Dylan happily got his El Chupacabra kit, built it and then we headed off to buy a few items before heading home. I thought about asking just in case a Dusty had been found, but figured if I hadn't heard back from Lowes by now, the kits were most likely all gone and to just let it be. I was pleased they had heard me out and the new signage plus list checking clearly showed changes had been implemented.
|So excited the only shot I could get of his big grin is a blur!|
We came home, had lunch and then noticed the answering machine. Imagine my shock to get a message from an employee at Lowes saying they had found Dusty kits and had been looking for us that morning! Apparently we were in and out of the Build & Grow so fast, and my failure to actually ask them, that the employees didn't find us. I called back, found out who we needed to see and Dylan & I returned to Lowes where we were apologized to again and given a BIG box with the Dusty kits. My boy was overjoyed! I was dumbfounded as I looked into the box. I honestly never thought they would find any.
Before we left, we stopped at the kids' build kits by the registers and picked up a small child's hammer to purchase. When we got home, Dylan quickly started on his Dusty plane in our garage. He and Trent later played with Dusty and El Chupacabra racing them all around the garage while I worked on my latest DIY project.
|Building Dusty and "flying" Planes in the wind of the fan|
All I can say is ... thank you, Lowes! I don't know how & where the kits were found, but we are appreciative. There really couldn't have been a happier outcome.