Spontaneity is something I view as a way to make life more exciting. Growing up, my Grandmother taught me to live life in the moment and that being spontaneous creates some of the best memories. For me, living life in the moment – the day, hour, minute, second is something I work at and am mindful of every day. This is something I want to teach my daughter as she grows.
Practicing spontaneity (something we do often), we planned our New York City trip 18 hours before landing in the Big Apple. I gave my daughter a few options on what to do for the weekend. She chose to go see the Rockettes. Giving my child the power to decide what she wants to do gives her a sense of independence and power. Decision making for my child is an invaluable trait that I feel will last a lifetime.
Packing was easy given it was going to be 58 degrees in the City. This gave us the ability to travel especially light (suitcase is Calpak.) I chose to dress myself and my daughter in layers. I brought outfits that were comfortable enough for the plane ride and could transition from comfortable to chic from top to bottom.
I wore my favorite pink beanie and sweater from Madewell. Layered it with a long sleeve tee by Treasure & Bond and a comfortable semi-heavy weight blush pink jacket made by JCrew. I bought this specific coat a few years ago and unfortunately it’s no long being sold in this color but you can find a similiar one here. I love buying my coats and jackets from JCrew because they offer sizes in tall. The one I am wearing in this photo is a 6T. My jeans are by Frame denim, ace sneakers and soho cross body bag by Gucci.
First on the agenda – Rainbow Bagels from The Bagel Store in Brooklyn. Following the Bagel Store on Instagram for years I would occasionally show my daughter rainbow bagels for years when we arrived at LaGuardia we headed straight to Brooklyn to grab some bagels and took them to Top of the Rock to enjoy our breakfast with a view of the New York City skyline.
Next, we went to check out the American Girl store and see a show at Radio City Music Hall. We were able to get tickets to see The Christmas Spectacular featuring the Rockettes and it was indeed spectacular. The show kept my 4 year old daughter’s attention from the moment it started until the moment the lights went out. Keeping an overly active 4 year old’s attention for 90 minutes is not an easy task but this show did it! The overall experience was unforgettable. It really kicked the Christmas season into gear. Finally, to top off an exciting and eventful day we ended our night at Serendipity 3 enjoying frozen hot chocolate milkshakes!
Letting my child decide what she wanted to do minute by minute, activity to activity was fun and exciting for her and for us. I did make suggestions and only gave her a handful of options but, it really gave her the power to be the decision maker. Hour to hour, we really didn’t know where we would end up and that’s what made our trip so much fun!
24 hours prior we were coloring on the floor of my daughter’s playroom and at the same time the next day we were at Top of the Rock eating Bagels taking in the beauty of the New York City skyline.
According to Jim Taylor, PHD, on “Parenting: Decision Making” from Phycology Today, “decision making is one of the most important skills your children need to develop to become healthy and mature adults. Decision making is crucial because the decisions your children make dictate the path that their lives take. They can gain the greatest amount of satisfaction and fulfillment because they chose it.”
I challenge any one that has a child to let them decide from a few options on what to do for a whole day. In my experience with my child, it expands on her decision making skills and empowers her to make decisions at a young age. It also opens the door for us as parents to teach good decisions vs. not so good ones and, it also helps navigate her reach.
An instant, spontaneous, incredibly fun trip to New York “planned” by a 4 year old all in a New York City minute!