By Heidi Hamm
I’ve been at this parenting gig for almost nine years. I thought I knew about all the elves and fairies and bunnies that come along with kids. Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, even that pesky Elf On The Shelf. Apparently, there is a new elf in town and he has a green side. Or maybe he is an old elf and I’ve been living under a rock for the past few years?
Regardless, St.Patrick’s Day is no longer an adult holiday. What was once a day for drinking green beer and wearing green clothes has been hijacked by yet another elfin creature.
If you are not familiar with The Naughty Leprechaun, thank your lucky charms and continue to live in blissful ignorance. I, however, heard about it from my 8-year-old daughter on a ride home from school the other day and have lost my innocence.
“Mom, why doesn’t the Naughty Leprechaun come to our house?”
Oh, Lord, I hope she didn’t accidentally Google some weird porn site.
“You know, the Naughty Leprechaun. He plays pranks, makes messes and leaves candy.”
“Huh. Never heard of him.”
“He comes on St.Patrick’s Day.”
“Oh. He must only visit naughty kids.”
“I don’t think so. He went to so and so’s house last year.”
“Anyone want to listen to some music?”
Of course, as soon as I got home I did what any other parent would do. I locked myself away and Googled the Naughty Leprechaun.
It is a thing.
Pinterest is full of suggestions for leprechaun pranks and tricks. Leaving a trail of leprechaun footprints throughout your house, turning the toilet water green, knocking over chairs, dumping silverware out of drawers. And what is the point of having a leprechaun visit if he doesn’t leave goodies? There are recipes for shamrock-shaped treats, rainbow candy, green velvet cake pops and pots of gold. My favorite Naughty Leprechaun Pinterest idea? Building traps to catch the little bugger.
The problem with this new revelation is that I am exhausted. I have barely recovered from Christmas and Valentine’s Day. I was enjoying what I thought was a long reprieve until Easter to regain my kid holiday sanity. Between back to school, Halloween, Christmas, Valentine’s Day, 100s Day, Easter, the Tooth Fairy, birthday parties and school projects, I just don’t have it in me for yet another kid capering elf. I can’t do it. To be honest, I have yet to jump on the Elf On The Shelf bandwagon and will do everything in my power not to. There is no way I am hopping on the Naughty Leprechaun train. Nope. Not happening.
I am amazed by you parents who can keep up. I see you on social media at Christmas, freezing your Elf in a jar, with Elsa posed beside it; your Elf brushing Barbie’s teeth; your Elf swinging from a chandelier. I see your amazing homemade Halloween costumes and your Valentine’s Day gift bags. I see your living room transformed into the Millennium Falcon and your backyard turned into Alice’s Wonderland. I don’t know how you do it. Where do you find the time or the energy? I admit it, I am a bit jealous and I’m sure, if my kids knew you existed, they would be jealous, too.
I do feel somewhat guilty about my elfin transgressions. I wonder if I am depriving my kids of some great traditions by not embracing these new elf members. I question if they will look back on their childhoods and wish that I had done more and made every holiday an elaborate event. I feel a twinge of excitement as I peruse page after page of Pinterest photos, thinking maybe it would be fun to introduce them to this Irish trickster fairy. I start imagining the cool traps we could make, the pranks I could pull…
But then there is the other side of me. The side that is saying enough already. The side that is thinking I am barely keeping afloat with the existing holiday/birthday/school events. The side who knows that as I run around at midnight on the eve of March 17, I am going to be cursing this Naughty Leprechaun and all of his shenanigans.
So, I’m sorry, kids. Truly I am. Unfortunately, the Naughty Leprechaun will not be making an appearance this year. Likely not next year either. In all honesty and in the spirit of full disclosure, it is extremely unlikely he will ever wreak havoc in our house. Unless, of course, I can’t get these dang Pinterest ideas out of my head and I start obsessing over St.Patrick’s Day. But really, what are the odds of that happening?
About the Author
Heidi Hamm is a writer, wife and mom of 6-year-old twin boys with the alter egos of the Hulk and Spiderman and their 8-year-old sister, who is in training to rule a small (or large) country someday. She has been published on Sammiches & Psych Meds, Scary Mommy and Mamalode. You can also find her on Facebook.