Elf on the Shelf's creepy cousin has arrived—but do we really need a doll to be there for every one of life's moments?

By Lisa Milbrand
October 13, 2016
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my best tooth fairy friend
Credit: Amazon.com

The Tooth Fairy is kind of a creepy idea if you think about it: This lady sneaks into your room at night to steal your discarded body parts and leave loot in its place. But now the ante has been upped on the whole thing by creating a new way to profit on childhood: For $34.99, you can get the "My Best Tooth Fairy Friend," a stuffed toy with an accompanying book and stickers that you can leave for your kiddo in lieu of cash. This fairy friend is supposed to appear as soon as a tooth is loose, and sit vigil until the tooth finally pops out.

I know that my oldest wouldn't have stood for it—we had to spill the beans on the Tooth Fairy when she was 5, after she freaked out for nearly two hours when we told her the Tooth Fairy would be stopping by for her tooth. And even though she knew it was us, she still left her lost teeth out in the hallway. She just doesn't like people sneaking into her room while she's asleep.

But honestly, do we need to keep making so much work for ourselves? I was thrilled every time the Tooth Fairy left me a quarter—and my kids seem just as thrilled with their (adjusted for inflation) dollar, without all this fuss and fanfare. It's often hard enough to remember to swap out the tooth for the treasure—and there were more than a few days when each of my girls awoke to find that the fairy hadn't arrived. Oops! So now we'd have to remember to do the tooth-treasure swap and find a place to squirrel away the stuffed fairy until the next time a tooth starts to wiggle? No thanks.

We survived several magical Christmases without an Elf on the Shelf—and I only succumbed because my youngest begged at a particularly weak moment. I've definitely cursed that day many times since, as I have to add elf movement and activities to an already jampacked holiday schedule. (Fortunately, I've bought two elves, to ensure I can torture each child with having to do this for their own families someday.)

I think we need to agree that it's getting a little beyond ridiculous here, and we need to stop this crazy Pinterest-fueled war of wonderment. We don't need Sleep-Through-the-Night Nymphs or Potty-Training Pixies or Stalker Elves on Shelves to make every milestone and holiday special—these events are memorable and special enough on their own. No additional pixie dust required.

Though hey, if someone comes up with a Finished-All-the-Laundry Leprechaun or a Survived-the-Holiday-Season Sprite who leaves wine and cookies for moms, I might be willing to spring for one of those.

Lisa Milbrand is Parents.com's In Name Only blogger and a mom of two.