Life Lessons from UNO {What Our Son Has Learned and Taught Us}


We’ve been playing oodles of Uno lately.

It’s the first “semi-grown up” game we taught our 7-year-old and he LOVES to play it.

Each and every time we play Uno, I learn more and more lessons from his little mind and his perspective on the game and well, life actually.


Since we have mastered numbers and colors, it just seemed natural to teach him Uno (one of my favorite games), and we went with the simple first edition (who knew there were so many variations now?).

We carefully had one adult sitting next to him to teach him to sort his cards and hold them and anticipate the next move. We showed him how to draw cards and dispose of them and make a choice as to what card he wanted to play next.

Then we cut him loose and let him manage his own hand and make his own decisions.

Isn’t that what we do as moms? Teach them the rules, show them the best way to hold the cards and then are there for them when they make their own decisions?

The game gets interesting when they play their own hand. I can’t help but laugh at the things that come out of his mouth when he plays – real-life lessons from the game of Uno.

When dealing him his cards to start the game, he oohs and ahhs as he picks up every card and declares to all playing that he got some “special” cards that sure will make this game interesting.

As he places a special card that skips or reverses (that he KNOWS will cause his opponent some grief), he smiles and states, “Don’t mind if I do.”

He smiles when he is about to play a +4 or +2 card, knowing the next player will have to draw cards and add more to their pile of cards and says, “Just wanted to show some friendship.” In a very passive-aggressive way, he is being nice, right?

He has a power trip when we ask him does he have a green 5 or another color 5, and he exclaims that he hasn’t decided yet and wants to “Keep you guessing!”

Our Uno deck has a feature that you can swap hands with someone if you possess the card and choose a color. He loves this feature and calls it sharing some of the love, as he swaps his 30 cards for his opponent’s four.

I’m not sure how he does it, but he wins far more games than he loses and no, we do not LET him win. Every single time he wins, he smiles his big toothless grin and screams, “And that’s how you do it!”

I think we have done a good job of equipping him for his life.

If he oohs and ahhs at the special things in life, he will show appreciation.

If he looks for opportunities to advance himself and do his best, I’d say that is a win.

If he shows friendship by giving to others, I call that generous.

If he likes to keep people guessing with his next decision, I’d say that is spontaneous.

If he shows love by doing things for others and taking their hand and giving them his, that is a great love language.

If he figures out a way to do something and do it well, then that is perseverance.

Overall, if Uno has taught us to be appreciative, an opportunity-seeker, generous, spontaneous, loving and teaches us to persevere, then I call that some good lessons.

Deal me in.

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Hey local mommas! I grew up in Centerville, but I now live in Wilmington with my husband Tony. Together we have 6 kids, Joe, and his wife Allison, Austin, and his wife Hannah, Sydney and her husband Hayden, Andrew and his wife Lauren and our littles, Max and Eli. Did I mention we are a little nuts starting over with this parenting thing when we are 45+? We are officially adding new titles to our names in 2022- Tiki and Jeep (our version of Grandma and Grandpa). My husband and I are both ministers, and we get to work together in a local church. We were both married before and brought our families together in 2010. After a few years of marriage we felt God's leading for us to adopt. We added Max to our family in 2014 and Eli joined us in 2017, our quiver is officially full! Blending our family has been an adventure! Add some ex-spouses and two birth mommas and we have ourselves a crazy crew! Coffee is my love language. The beach is my happy place and I long to have my toes in the sand. I love being part of the team at Dayton Mom Collective.