Sometimes fairy-tale creatures run late

December 17, 2007

by Jennifer Gallus

It is important for parents of small children to realize that when dawn breaks without the arrival of a much anticipated visit from a fairy-tale creature, there is still hope in those early morning hours.

What am I trying to say? Well, let’s say, for example, that the tooth fairy was supposed to do her thing during the midnight hours, but for some reason, didn’t.

Then the horrified child runs into the parent’s room, wakes up the parent, and says in distress that the tooth fairy didn’t come. The parent’s heart falls and panic sets in.

However, all the parent needs to do is to take a deep breath and reassure the child that the tooth fairy is probably just running behind because a lot of kids lost teeth the day before.

Tell the child to go brush their teeth or maybe go eat some breakfast and check again later to see if she snuck in quick. She always sneaks in successfully without being noticed. Works like a charm.

Has this happened at my house? Yes, a couple of times.

Last week, during the night that Saint Nick was due to leave candy in children’s shoes for them to discover in the morning, I came down with what I refer to as “The Kiss of Death” stomach flu.

I’m pretty sure Saint Nick didn’t want to enter the house while I was spending quality time bonding with our toilet every 20 minutes throughout the night.

I was so dizzy the next morning I couldn’t even bring my boys to school. We all stayed home that day.

However, I awoke to two horrified faces standing over me. Now I knew I looked bad, but the horrified looks were not because of my pale face, rather because of the fact that Saint Nick hadn’t come.

I quickly told the boys that I was sure he was just running behind and didn’t want to disturb me because I was sick. I told the boys to hang out in my room so he could sneak in the house without them seeing him, while I let the dog out for her morning business.

I dragged myself out of bed, shut the bedroom door behind me, and by golly, by the time our dog came back in I spotted candy in the boys’ shoes!

I hobbled back to my bedroom and said, “What are you guys talking about? There’s candy in your shoes!” They were so excited and they were amazed that Saint Nick managed to sneak by all of us!

So, just remember that it’s never too late for the fairy tale night-shift workers to fulfill their duty.


I strung some red Christmas lights in my boys’ bedroom to give their room some holiday cheer. My 8-year-old saw it and said it looked very nice, then my 6-year-old came in, his face lit up, and he said excitedly, “Oh, it looks like blood all over the walls – cool!”

This is when my face scrunched up, I became very disturbed, and made a mental note to string white or blue lights in there next year.