By Jake Howard

With school shut down, events canceled and the future uncertain, these aren’t easy times to be a grom. But through a positive spirit, optimistic outlook, a little creativity and some understanding, we’re going to get through all of this.

That’s why, for this week, my Grom of the Week is my beautiful daughter Sophia.

A sixth-grader at Bernice Ayer Middle School, Sophia has been home with me all week, and until things clear up, we’re going to be hanging at the pad together for a while longer.

After graduating from Las Palmas last year, her Spanish skills are epic. When we take family trips down to Mexico, she does all the talking for me, and it’s always a hoot to watch the reaction when she starts conversing with a local with a perfect accent.

Sophia didn’t have much of a choice when it came to diving into the surf life. When she was 3 months old, I dragged her to the U.S. Open of Surfing in Huntington Beach—where, as a desperate dad, I plugged her bottle warmer in the event’s P.A. system. She’s been my right-hand girl on trips to Europe, Central America and the Maldives, but more than all of the exotic travel, she loves a good day at Doheny.

Hopefully, all of the groms and parents are getting along as well as we are these days. All that’s happening in the world right now is plenty disruptive, but with a kid such as Sophia, hanging around home’s been pretty dang rewarding. Thanks, Soph!

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