Thursday, March 26, 2009

The Tooth Fairy Must be Stopped

The whole Tooth Fairy routine around here has gotten way out of hand, and I'm not sure how to return to simpler times. By the time all four kids lose their baby teeth, I the Tooth Fairy, will have lost my her mind.

Things started out easily enough. When Ella lost her first tooth, she got a special silver dollar and four quarters. But then her friend M lost her first tooth, and the Tooth Fairy left a note and fairy dust. So when Ella lost her next tooth, she left a note for the Tooth Fairy asking for a note back and for a picture. So I the Tooth Fairy wrote a note back in very swirly writing and drew a picture of what one might assume was a fairy. Ella was thrilled and still has the note and picture.

Things went along normally from there until Ella lost a tooth at a slumber party. The hostess mom told the girls that if Ella left out a jar of water, the Tooth Fairy would dip her wings in the water and turn it a special color. Ella came home with a baby food jar filled with pink water that is now on display, for all perpetuity, on her bookshelf.

Of course, the next time Ella lost a tooth at home, she just had to leave out a jar of water for the Tooth Fairy to dip her wings in. There's now a second jar of colored water on display.

When Lily lost her first tooth, she left a note for the Tooth Fairy, and of course she got a note back, along with a special silver dollar and four quarters.

But things are getting more complicated now. Ella lost a tooth this past weekend while on a camping trip with B. And since I the Tooth Fairy wasn't on the trip, she didn't get her usual dollar. Ella set out her tooth the night she got home, but I the Tooth Fairy fell asleep before taking the tooth and leaving quarters. When I got Ella up the next morning for school, she started crying, saying, "It can't be time to get up! The Tooth Fairy didn't come yet!" Boy did I the Tooth Fairy feel awful.

The next night Ella left a note for the Tooth Fairy asking all sorts of questions like, "What do you do with the teeth?" and "Is there just one Tooth Fairy, or are there lots of you?" Before she went to sleep, Ella asked me whether the Tooth Fairy was really me. I paused a second and then asked, "What do you think?" She said she thought there really was a Tooth Fairy. She is believing as hard as she possibly can.

I The Tooth Fairy left a note saying that she used the teeth to build castles and that there were lots of Tooth Fairies who took turns visiting kids. Big mistake.

Ella brought the note in the car to school and showed it to her friends M and L. M said that she always had the same Tooth Fairy because her Tooth Fairy always writes notes in the same backwards handwriting. And that her Tooth Fairy draws really cool pictures of herself. M's mother Tooth Fairy is an artist, so of course she can draw cool pictures. B*tch.

Then Ella and M started talking about how their friend O also has the same Tooth Fairy every time, which led Ella to ask me why she has different Tooth Fairies.

That's when I fell apart. I started ranting about how when I was a kid I didn't leave notes for the Tooth Fairy or get notes from her or jars full of water. I just put my tooth out and got a quarter in return. That's when L, a boy in the car pool, said, "You didn't get five dollars?" I started shouting, "Who gets five dollars for a tooth? That's ridiculous!" All the kids just laughed at me.

Later in the day I called M's mom Tooth Fairy and told her it was all her fault that I couldn't keep up with Tooth Fairy shenanigans. She in turn blamed another mom Tooth Fairy who started elaborate traditions for her daughter.

So parents Tooth Fairies, I'm putting out a call to stop the insanity before I lose my mind. Let's return to a simpler time of the simple exchange - one tooth, one dollar - without notes or jars full of colored water or fairy dust scattered around the room.



calicobebop said...

Holy COW! I never imagined that the Tooth Fairy tradition had evolved to such gigantic proportions! Colored water? Fairy dust? Notes?

I, like you, received a quarter. Never even thought of asking for more. Koo Koo Nutty.

Ann in NJ said...

Yeah, we have tooth fairy issues too. Our oldest child started out recieving a small present or a book for each tooth - that quickly became a problem, because what if the tooth fairy forgets to stock up? Then we went to quarters or silver dollars, which worked on the second child. The third, well, I have several blog posts up about his relationship with the tooth fairy. This one is my favorite.

Unknown said...

i only got a dime!!!!

EvlMom said...

OMG! You totally nailed the whole tooth fairy (crazy mom) phenomenon! Our tooth fairy started out by giving $5 a tooth, PLUS some kind of international currency from our travels in the before kids era. We quickly adopted the multiple-tooth-fairy concept as well, because the foreign money ran out pretty quickly, since the travel (at least the international kind) has pretty much disappeared. We're currently waiting for my youngest to lose his final two baby teeth so the braces can go on. I think there are at least 4 teeth rotting away beneath his pillow - still waiting for the delinquent fairy to pay up!

Jungle Pete said...

Now what happens if the kid looses a tooth on Christmas Eve? Imagine if Santa and the TF got the notes mixed up? the winged-imp would pork out on cookies and milk and chubby would dip his beard in the colored water. That might be a fun experiment. Can someone test this out in a few months?

Jungle Pete said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
The Kretzings said...

Hilarious post!

We aren't even close to Tooth Fairy times at our house, but when the time comes, I know the transaction will be the old school tradition of one quarter per tooth, no notes, etc. I may go as far as buying or making one of those cute tooth fairy pillows (more for me than for the kids), but that's it.

Anonymous said...

Huh. I had no idea. Our "deprived" kids get a dollar of some sort, either gold coins if we have them on hand, or paper dollars if we don't. They frequently don't arrive the night the tooth is lost, because our tooth fairy is a flake. I like it that way.

Do you want the Tooth Fairy from Maryland to write one final note saying she's been reassigned to TX from MD and is now on the case, and all she does is leave $1? 'Cause I know her pretty well, and I know she'd do it.

Cheryl Prater said...

H: your kid needs new friends. Older ones who are done losing teeth, maybe getting 12 year molars or wisdom teeth. Or dentures. Girl moms are the worst. Colored water? Get a job, ok?

Our twins liked to tag team us with the tooth thing. One morning Mark and I were strewn across the bed like a couple of career drunks when Reese came in balling that the Toof Fawie forgot him!

I shot Mark the hairy eyeball b/c of course it's his fault I drank too much wine and fell into bed but I'm thinking quick:

"Reese, did you look INSIDE your pillow case?" Bewildered he shakes his head forlornly.

I race to my purse while he retrieves the pillow. Here's what I find: a tampon, a Chanel lipstick and a $20 bill. Yeah, it was a tough call but I slipped that $20 into the pillowcase like David Copperfield - totally tricked that six year old.

But six year olds can count and understand the concept of a precedent....

We had to barrow against our 401k to finance the other 67 teeth they lost over the subsequent years.

Anonymous said...

We have a very simple, quiet routine, and have steadfastly resisted the temptation to keep up with the Joneses. We had a talk with Emily about it once, after a "What did you get?" chat she'd had with a buddy, and I told her that just like every family has a different set of Christmas traditions, and the Easter Bunny does different things at different houses, so too does the Tooth Fairy vary. (Perhaps, "Each family has its own special fairy"?)

And I forget at least 50% of the time - usually I'm able to sneak it in in the wee hours before Emily wakes or checks, but I've definitely missed... that's when I had to write a "Sorry this is late - I got caught up with a family of sharks, and they lose a LOT of teeth" note.

Heather said...

I actually like the colored water, no money thing. I rarely have cash anymore, and even scrounging up some quarters will be difficult. I hope that we have a year or so to sort it all out. I didn't start losing my teeth until I was in third grade (lost the last one as a senior in H.S.), so I missed out on most of the tooth fairy cash. Bummer.

the mama bird diaries said...

Holy crap. I hope my kids never loose their baby tooth. I can't keep up!

Anonymous said...

This post had me laughing so hard my youngest asked me "What's funny, Mommy?"

Escalation. It's everywhere.

We're in the one-tooth-one-dollar camp. Although maybe not if we're camping :) I think the tooth fairy might need an actual *address*...

Having four definitely complicates things. I'm hoping to make it through 2 with my sanity intact.

Agent P or MamaJan said...

Oh, I'm so with you.

Our tooth fairy leaves $3. (First tooth garnered more, like $5.) One of my son's friends gets something like $20 or $50, I can't even remember at those prices. Of course her parents actually work for a living.

The colored water thing would be worse for me, we'd have to move to a bigger home so there was space to save all the jars.

We have a Christmas escalation problem. All I wanted was a little Advent calendar with little toys or ornaments, the same each year, to count down the days. But instead my MIL got us this elaborate (and delicate) chalet with 24 doors that we must screw into the wall (and unscrew, but that gets done sometime around July).

So my son was like 2 when this began so I couldn't exactly fill the whole thing at once and expect him to only open one day at a time, could I? Husbands and their wacky ideas... The flippin boxes behind the doors are too small to fit anything after it's WRAPPED so the kid would see everything all at once because the novelty of 24 doors to open is irresistible.

So. The Christmas Elf appeared on the scene and leaves something each night, something very small because s/he scours gumballs machines and dollar stores ALL YEAR LONG for items. (S/he knows that 18 and 20 can accommodate slightly bigger items.)

Sometimes s/he gets tired and leaves money. Small nice bits like silver dollars and the occasional $2 bill. These don't go over very well, but too bad.

S/he also (now that my son is 6) leaves several nice notes about charitable donations that have been made related to issues near and dear to my son's heart. But frankly, s/he's exhausted.

And another thing -- The Elf has very distinctive handwriting; I had to come up with something DIFFERENT for the TF's notes? Where's the chapter in the parenting books about THAT? At least Santa and the Easter Bunny always type their notes.

Trisha said...

Love this Heather!!
Derek got 5 bucks, but that is only becuase shark boy's teeth were growing in behind his permanent teeth so he had two yanked by the dentist at once. I thought that derserved something extra like a five dollar bill. Now that I see the great lentghs some moms go to I am realizing my 5 was not so special in comparison. Oh and he wrote a note asking the fairy to please leave his teeth so he could show his friends at school. She left them, but not with a note! :)

MadMad said...

OK. You are so right. This tooth fairy b*tch is way worse than the Bunny. That's all just CRAZY.

Kelli said...

My son's tooth fairy left a dollar for his first tooth. I too thought this was quite extravagant based on the quarter I used to get. When my son found the dollar he had a very disappointed look on his face. When I asked him what was wrong he told me "This is only a dollar, you can't buy anything with a dollar!"

Eddie Storms said...

Yeah, the tooth fairy fantasy can go out of hand sometimes. A neighbor of ours here in Atlanta just advised us that we shouldn't mention the tooth fairy inside a dental clinic because our child might think that the dentist is the tooth fairy. That happened when my neighbor used the fantasy to calm her kid down so that the sedation dentist could examine the child's teeth. I hope that doesn't happen to my children.