Peter's House

Introducing Ralph. The world, Ralph. Ralph, the world.

You’ve seen this sock monkey grace this blog, Facebook, and he now has a board on Pinterest.

I came across this little guy in the grocery store here in Minnesota a few years ago, at a particularly difficult time in life. I rounded the corner, saw the display of these locally-made keychain sock monkeys in blue, green, and yellow, and I laughed.

But I knew I shouldn’t spend the money to get one, and I had all sorts of real life problems to attend to, so I kept walking toward the milk aisle.

And then I realized: that was the first time I’d laughed in quite a while. It was foreign–a release—and it felt good. I rounded back to the display, chose the only green monkey left, and went on my way.

Since then, Ralph—long story to the name—has been all over the U.S., around Europe, and even to the Middle East. He’s usually clipped to my bag, my purse, or to my belt loop. And everywhere he goes, weirdly enough, strangers want their picture taken with him. From those first moments when he cheered me up at the grocery store to the [no kidding] scores of pictures of smiling people holding him, this little sock monkey has had quite an impact.

I’d like to say that I bought him and never looked back. But the truth is much better than that: I remember that moment, often, and what it taught me:

Don’t second-guess joy.

Invite it in.


My book, Upside Down Kingdom, is on Amazon.