The baby’s been sick. High fever. It hadn’t really occurred to me to do anything in particular to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day outside of the typical corned beef and cabbage dinner and some pesto eggs and sodabread. Kindergarten, on the other hand had made their leprechaun traps last week and when Zuzu came home Friday she zoomed through the house excitedly chattering about the naughty leprechauns who had messed up their classroom each and every time they had left it. It crossed my mind that childhood disappointment was looming judging by her eager story and my lack of pinteresting. After all we have TJ the Elf on the Shelf that lives in our world during the winter season- why wouldn’t a mischievous leprechaun have made his way to our home in the spring? It’s not something we had thought of before this year, but clearly others had. We had managed to procure some little green hat clips during grocery shopping earlier in the week but they suddenly didn’t seem adequate.
The baby woke us frequently and angrily many times on Saturday though. Her fever had dissipated earlier in the day, but since she had spent most of it napping rather than eating I’m fairly certain she wasn’t up for yet one more long sleep. And by two in the morning her constitution and my lack of spirit were weighing heavily on me. So I started pinteresting and found an easy how-to for leaving leprechaun feet around. With some green food coloring, a cup of kefir, green cookie sprinkles and leftover Christmas gold coins we were in business. With the luck of the Irish behind us, we all managed to get a few hours rest after that.
Come 8 am, I heard a little 4 year old surprisingly chant “money” outside of the bedroom door, followed by the happy pitch of our practical six year old commenting that a leprechaun was trying to trick her with chocolate coins rather than gold as she followed the trail outside of their room to the kitchen. When I got up for my coffee she explained to me how the leprechaun had painted his feet green, gotten into our cookie sprinkles and left us each a green hat to wear so we wouldn’t get pinched on St. Patricks. Hmm.
Zuzu’s always had a funny little mix of winding practical into her play and this was no exception. Years ago when we were playing at a friends, the other little girl was into being a Disney princess as Zuzu trailed her dolls one by one to sit on the potty. Her willingness to believe in leprechauns delights me and her ability to ferret out that those weren’t their natural footprints but the paint from her painting the day before leaves me chuckling. Six years old is indeed a funny blend of practical magic.
I did realize I missed a golden opportunity though. She was expecting the naughty leprechaun to have messed something up. And while I wasn’t willing to go the way of one of the uber-mommies and completely take apart a room soley for 30 seconds of my children’s delight, I’m fairly certain next year he will have rampaged through her candy bag we keep on a high shelf and all that will be left is a few wrappers. If only I hadn’t been so tired the night before.