Welcome to GraceLand

The Next Family

By: Joey Uva

As adults we tend to have many responsibilities. We have work life with its expectations and bosses telling us to do this or that. We have our financial responsibilities that we must deal with. And, we have those day-to-day tasks like cleaning, laundry, and grocery shopping that take up our time. Being a parent adds many more layers of responsibility upon us and lengthens our day-to-day task list. However, for me, parenting gives you something that nothing else can: the ability to veer off the path, to not follow the list, to lay responsibility down for two seconds and enjoy being in the wonder of your child.

Over the past few years, Grace has come up with many creative 3, 4, and 5-year-old fun times that have never been on our list and have taken us off the path. These fun times haven’t cost us anything and have laid responsibility to the side for just a few minutes, pulled us away from the daily grind and have immersed us in fun.

One of Grace’s newest things is “Hat Night”; she loves it and so do I. It all began on a Wednesday night after her bath. Grace walked into our bedroom with her Mickey Mouse ears on and brought in the Minnie Mouse ears and the Gorilla hat from the zoo. Grace had Trevor and I each put on a hat, make a funny face and take a picture. We traded hats and took more pictures. The following Wednesday Grace asked if we could do “Hat Night” again, so we did but this time we had to use my hats. I have a hat collection –fedoras, paperboy hats and some others. I took a bunch of hats off the shelf and let Grace pick the one she wanted, and then Trevor and I picked ours. We proceeded to make funny faces and take pictures while laughing and hollering “Hat Night! Hat Night!”

Now every Wednesday we have “Hat Night”. We put on one of our favorite songs and our hats, dance around, laugh, make funny faces, and take a few pictures. I guess technically it’s on our list now but it doesn’t feel that way. And soon, “Hat Night” will change into something new and different.

I have learned that when these wonderful moments happen, even if it’s dinner, then bath and time to read, it’s ok to veer off the path. It’s ok to stop for a few minutes of fun, to look responsibility and routine in the eye and say, “Welcome to Grace Land!”

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