Monday, October 31, 2011

Oh what a tangled web we weave....


Parental Warning - The following post is not suitable for young or impressionable minds.

I have often wondered what, as parents, we are thinking when we begin to introduce the likes of Santa, The Tooth Fairy, the Easter Bunny and for our family, the Pumpkin Fairy. We tell our children not to tell fibs, yet we spin this magnificent web of deceit yearly with them. Is is to carry on some sort of 'magic' or is it to buy us some good behaviour. 'Santa only comes to good girls and boys'.

I began to wonder if this was the right path when my oldest daughter began to ask questions. I dug myself deeper and deeper into a hole. She questioned the tooth fairy and I typed elaborate notes and printed them in a size 4 font, so it looked as if it was done by small hands. I gave the fairies names and signed the notes. They sent messages from the other fairies. And then the 'brilliant' idea of the Pumpkin Fairy. I heard it from someone or somewhere, you get the children to put all the crap candy they get at halloween into the magic pumpkin and the Pumpkin fairy takes it away and leaves a nice gift. So now I was exchanging the candy my children got for FREE in the neighbourhood for books that I purchased. A somewhat flawed plan I will admit.

Fast forward to us now in Italy. A country where Halloween is only beginning to sink in. No grand schemes of going door to door to collect stuff I don't even want my children to eat. But my children want to know if the Pumpkin Fairy is coming. Yikes!! What have I started.

The children really felt the need to participate in Halloween, so we went to the local market and bought some beautiful zucca to carve and light with candles. And really that is the part of Halloween I love the most. Then we bought some random mystery candy from the grocery store and performed a Halloween meets Easter sort of celebration where the children wandered around the garden collecting candy.

The candy turned out to be not fantastic, so everyone happily dumped them in the 'magic' pumpkin and I now find myself scrambling for creative gifts from the Pumpkin Fairy.

On a side note, when my oldest found out that the Tooth Fairy and Santa were me, she was devastated. She cried on and off for about a week. It was awful and I felt terrible. I tried to sell it to her that she could help carry on the magic with her younger siblings, but that didn't seem to smooth over her feelings of disappointment. And I brace myself as each child gets a bit older and will soon discover the truth.

1 comment:

  1. Honey, Elaine and I spoke of EXACTLY this last night at my house. We commiserated about your story of when Molly figured it out and was upset. As both my girls have a gluten and dairy allergy, this year the candy thing presented a quandry. In the past we had them toss all the chewy, gummy, food-dyed crap, and they could keep the true chocolate stuff. But that has dairy and gluten. So this year, a fellow playmate said "The Candy Fairy comes to our house, you should have her come to you." And the girls were sold. So there's me, the day before Hallowe'en, traipsing through the book store, toy store and health food store, trying to find not-over-the-top-but-good-enough-to-give-up-all-your-candy things, plus some 'healthier' treats to receive from this newly adopted Candy Fairy. Then on the THE BIG NIGHT, middle child doesn't want to trade, she'd rather have an upset tummy, and big brother thinks maybe he *should* trade, he knows the candy just makes hium sick. But the candy fairy wasn't expecting him, she had no gifts! She was freaking out in the kitchen, what to do? Then the two girls agreed they would trade, so when does the Fairy come? Oh shoot, WHEN DOES she come? Why look, she just came! At 9:30 on Hallowe'en night, she stopped by our back porch. No notes, no wrapping paper, just two piles in exchange for the two bags of candy I 'had just put out on the porch' (which means threw away). They were thrilled, chewed their treats and opened their playmobile sets (one of which was the 3 wise men but I swore it was meant as an addition to middle girls' egyptian set. I had one hour to shop, bear with me).

    Amidst all of this unnecessary stress and anxiety (that's me) I thought of you in your new home. Would the Candy Fairy still come, what would you get them, would they suspect the more 'italian' toys/gifts or would they be amazed at the Candy Fairy's international wizardry?

    All I know is, after years of never having to deal with any of this stuff, I now know I have many Hallowe'ens in my future where I need to be organised ahead of time. Not just with pumpkins, food, costumes, but also with notes, gifts and acceptable treats to trade. Good lord!

    Next thing you know they'll be thinking Santa is real. Then we're screwed.