Last week the Tooth Fairy forgot to come to our house – again. She's such a forgetful soul, it's amazing she still has a job.
She's very busy, I told my seven-year old son. She's doing the best she can.
With three children, and a forgetful nature, we've had a lot of forgotten tooth moments over the years in our house. I know I'm not the only one though. Some of my parent friends report not only forgetting, but doing it over and over again for up to a week.
I've come up with some pretty great excuses on the spot that I'm quite proud of, and I've also sourced some of my favourites from other parents to create something you might find handy: a list of excuses to use when the Tooth Fairy forgets to come.
1. If the tooth has been lost in the late afternoon or evening, you can tell your kids the Tooth Fairy has a cut-off time for that night's work. There's still admin in Fairyland, and procedures need to be followed for everything to run smoothly.
2. Unlike Santa, fairies don't travel with a list, so they can be a little bit forgetful and flaky. They flit about from house to house, so errors are sure to happen occasionally.
3. If it's been raining, everyone knows fairies can't fly in wet weather. The rain drops weigh down their wings and force them to walk, and it would take way too long to get to everyone's tooth on the same night.
4. Fairies can't find teeth in messy bedrooms. If the fairy didn't show up, try cleaning your room so she can find her way to your tooth. Fairies have occupational health and safety guidelines to follow and if it looks like they could get hurt, lost or ill coming into your room, they'll probably play it safe and leave until it's tidy. (Extra genius points for this one because it also gets some cleaning done.)
5. Sometimes the money gets "stuck" behind the mattress, and when a parent lifts it up (with a coin hidden in their fist), the money sometimes magically falls out. This hidden money trick can also be used if you suggest the coin may have been left somewhere in an untidy room, and that your child should try cleaning up and seeing if it's there. Simply throw the coin in from the door while they're not looking.
6. Tell your child they woke up too early. The Tooth Fairy generally comes just before you wake up, but if you're up before 7am (or whatever time suits you), she won't come. Then lie back and enjoy a sleep in the following day!
7. The tooth wasn't clean enough. The Tooth Fairy only likes teeth that are brushed well twice a day. She doesn't pay for dirty teeth, but if you do a great job brushing the ones you've got left, she may come back.
8. The Tooth Fairy runs on a regular plan, like rubbish trucks. So you have to leave the tooth out until it's your neighbourhood's tooth day again.
9. If the tooth is lost during Easter or Christmas, the Tooth Fairy doesn't work on the same nights as the Bunny or Santa – someone has to be back at headquarters to answer the phones and feed the elves. And if you have an Elf on the Shelf during December, the Tooth Fairy is terrified of him – she'll steer clear until he's gone.
10. The Tooth Fairy is scared of dogs (or cats, guinea pigs or goldfish), so she may not want to come inside. The best thing to do in this situation is to wrap up the tooth and leave it on the windowsill in the kitchen (or somewhere else parents are likely to see it after the kids have gone to bed), and try again the next night.
11. The Fairy only comes to the homes of very well behaved children, who do as they're told and go to bed early.
12. Some nights are global "Toothapalooza" nights, where so many children lose their teeth all at once, that the Tooth Fairy can't keep up with them all. It's well known that it's good luck to lose a tooth on a Toothapalooza night because the Tooth Fairy pays interest every night that she hasn't made it to your house. So each night you wait you are earning more money for the same tooth. (The extra money is optional, but it sure does sweeten the deal.)