{Fair Warning: There will be blood.}

On Thanksgiving Day, we discovered Ali’s first loose tooth.

This was a crucially important family moment, because her nearly two-year-old brother has developmental milestones on a daily basis.  But at the age of nearly six, Ali is at somewhat of a developmental plateau, and mightily jealous about her status.

So I was beyond elated about this happening, because it gave me the opportunity to make a ridiculously big deal out of her.

She, too, was pretty thrilled.

Two weeks later, the tooth had taken on a Leaning Tower of Pisa stance, and was clearly hanging on by a single thread of nerve.

Having never pulled a tooth, I wasn’t sure where to begin.  So I did what I always do: I searched Amazon for the proper tool.

Tooth Pulling Pliers…surely someone has come up with the perfect gripping yanker.

But no.  Amazon had nothing of the sort.

We have Naked Baby Cake Moulds available to us, but Children have had teeth falling out for thousands of years and no one can invent a single tool to help the process out??

(If one of you could hurry up and invent one, it will be more popular than Elf on a Shelf.  And WAY more useful.)

So I moved on to Plan B: ask y’all on Facebook.

Plan B never fails.

The immediate consensus was that a napkin provided the best solid grip.  I looked up from my phone – there was a napkin, sitting innocently on the coffee table in front of us, as if it already knew of it’s appointment with destiny.

This was my chance.

I asked Ali if she was ready.


“But it would be more comfortable…it wouldn’t hurt to eat anymore…”


“Just give me one shot today.”

“Okay…one shot.”

Shocked at her sudden burst of bravery, I quickly grabbed the napkin, reached in, and popped it out.

No wonder there’s no tool – it’s that easy.

But Ali was not as impressed with my dental skills.


Was it cruel to take a photo in the midst of her pain and angst?

Possibly, but I come from a long line of cruel photographers.

Like Mother Like Daughter Tooth

…and she comes from a long line of ugly criers.

But she perked up quickly, forgave me a few minutes later, and was ultimately thrilled with her loss.


So, of course, we had to make the rounds of FaceTimes and Skypes to show off her new smile.

When she called Chris, he showed a due amount of Fatherly excitement, then asked,

“So what did Mommy bribe you with?”

“What does bribe mean?”

“Didn’t Mommy promise to give you something if you’d let her pull your tooth?”

“Um, no….”

Later, I thanked him for his confidence in my Motherly Persuasion Skills.

And then there was the matter of The Tooth Fairy.

She still refused to believe that the Tooth Fairy existed.

And despite my own misgivings about lying to my child, I had an inexplicable and seemingly innate need to get her to believe – even if just for a moment.

So I suggested that she put her tooth under her pillow – you know, just in case.  An experiment, some might call it.  For the good of humanity.

She got excited about being a Fairy Scientist and asked if she could immediately take a nap to see if she would come.

“No, sorry – the Tooth Fairy only works the night shift.”

And then she started bargaining about other facets of the upcoming exchange.  She wanted to keep her tooth in one of her many boxes of miscellaneous treasures, where I was confident that it would get lost beneath a piece of cardboard she found on the floor at Target and a “pretty” rock.

So I suggested another idea.

“How about this: why don’t you write the tooth fairy a letter and ask her if you can keep your tooth.  But instead of putting it in one of your treasure boxes, we can put it in Daddy’s Body Part Box.”

“Daddy has a Body Part Box?!?”

“Oh yes, your Father has a collection of all of our body parts.  He has my foot bone, your’s AND Noah’s rotten withered belly button stumps, hair from your first haircuts, and he even tried to keep my Gall Stones, but the doctor forgot to save them.”

“Oh.  Well that sounds like a PERFECT place for my tooth!”

And so, during her afternoon quiet time, she penned this work of literature:


I bet the Tooth Fairy has never gotten a note quite like that.

After Ali’s bedtime, I spent the evening scouring Pinterest and strategizing about my brand new Fairy Role.  After giving up the idea of writing a tiny letter and somehow crafting a tiny stamp (thanks, Pinterest, for the inferiority complex,) I finally decided that I would leave her a full-sized note (and money) in response.


Oh yes – The Tooth Fairy did make a typo.  On her very first tooth excursion.

When I woke up the next morning, I went in to check on Ali’s belief system.

The note was unfolded and laying on her bed.

“It’s from the Tooth Fairy, but I can’t read it – I think it’s in cursive.”

So I read it to her.  Then asked, “What do you think this sparkly stuff is at the end?  Do you think it’s pixie dust?”

“No, it’s just Glitter Glue.”

But I could tell – she was storing all of these things in her heart.

And she might just believe – at least for a minute.

33 thoughts on “I’ve Always Cried Ugly.

  1. Love the new smile! I unearthed the baby teeth collection last Christmas and put them in my kid’s stockings. If you save them, mark the baggies with the kid’s name. I think it would make it more personal when they’re teens. Our fairy was an airhead.

  2. Just so you have it on hand for next time when it’s a molar or tooth no so grabbable, dental floos works like a charm. I extracted all my kids loose teeth with it.

  3. Jackson is so jealous of all the kids his age that have lost a tooth. Unfortunately for him, he seems to have inherited my teeth, and is destined for a trip to the dentist to have EVERY tooth pulled because the roots won’t come loose. (Yes, that happened to me!) I never lost a tooth that wasn’t pulled out under the supervision of my favorite dentist.

    Love her new smile!!!

  4. Beege believes wholeheartedly in the tooth fairy. (And any other magical being that would like to give her things, come to think of it.) Our fairy likes to leave toothbrushes and floss, instead of the $5 bills some of her friends get. She says it makes much more sense to get a toothbrush, and maybe the fairy ran out, so left the money so that they could buy their own. I’ve got each tooth (three so far) in their own envelopes, marked with her name and the date. I don’t know why – do you think they’re ever going to want their teeth back?

    I just went back and read the post about your foot bone. Ew. Sorry you had to deal with that. And Ew.

  5. I don’t pull teeth. Or help with anything that involves blood. I sit on the couch, cradle their head in my lap, hold their hand, look away, and let my husband use dental floss to pull their teeth out. He makes a little loop, uses a toothpick to push it down around the base of the tooth, tightens the loop and yanks. Most of the time it works perfectly. Happy pulling – sounds like you could have lots to come! And good for you that you can handle a little blood – I’m hopeless in that department.

  6. This weekend while vacuuming my 12 year old’s room I thought I vacuumed up a rock or a large ear ring. I stopped the vacuum to take a look. It was huge molar. Lesson Learned: The tooth fairy should never retire from lost tooth removal becuase vacuuming up a tooth is creepy.

    1. I thought so, but then again, Ali couldn’t read it, so I’m considering having the Tooth Fairy change her font next time. At any rate, it’s called “KG Ways to Say Goodbye.”

  7. Jack refuses to have anything to do with a tooth fairy belief. The un-bribability of my kid continues…but the tooth fairy could bring you something…NO NO FAIRY! *sigh*

  8. “…it would get lost beneath a piece of cardboard she found on the floor at Target and a “pretty” rock.”

    This cracked me up! River also has a similar treasure box :) Congrats to Ali on the milestone!

  9. I so wholeheartedly believed in the Tooth Fairy when I was little that when I lost a tooth while eating a candy bar and presumably swallowed said tooth, I cried and cried because the Tooth Fairy wouldn’t come if there was no tooth under my pillow. My mom, bless her, told me if I wrote the tooth fairy a note, surely she would understand and I’d still get my dollar! Imagine my excitement when the Tooth Fairy wrote back!

    Though I did find it suspicious that her reply was in my mom’s handwriting…

  10. How completely precious. I will have to show Ali my tooth collection when she is down sometime. Laugh at that, I still have mine.

  11. I once subbed for a kindergarten class where there had been a hot competition going between the morning and afternoon sections over who was “winning” on the lost tooth chart. This group of kids was so particularly competitive that mothers had had to approach the teacher the week before my subbing duty to request her to remove the tooth chart as children were knocking out their teeth that weren’t even loose yet! When I was a kid my teeth would dangle by a thread for days and weeks on end…

    I loved the comparison photos of you and your daughter!

    After all the angst and drama we went through for Eli to grow his teeth I hope he keeps them for a long time. I’m not ready for the tooth loosing stage anytime even in the remote future. I’m just happy he has a mouthful and won’t be teething anymore!

    1. I think you’ve got a while before the teeth start falling out!

      And those kindergarteners – wow. I hope they all end up being professional poker players or something.

  12. Ugh that picture made me shudder (love the side by side though) b/c I know we have many bloody mouthed-tooth holes in our near future! K has had four loose teeth for months now and doesn’t seem to be in any hurry to lose them.

  13. cute! firstly, i don’t think anyone is a pretty cry-er – if they’re really crying. second, i couldn’t even find your typo. crap.

  14. What a cute new smile!! And seriously, so brave. There’s not a chance Eden will go for the “just give me one shot!”
    No joke about the inferiority complex with Pinterest. You can’t go to that website unless you’re having a very confident self-esteem day! :)

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