As I drew up in the drive after an afternoon of pastoral visiting, I knew what had happened. Rebekah was dancing around at the top of the drive. It could mean only one thing. That wobbly tooth had gone. At last she had lost her first baby tooth. The tooth fairy would be swooping into action tonight.

Not that she had the tooth. It had disappeared somewhere between school and the shoe shop. Somehow the wingèd dispenser of monetary compensation for missing molars would need to receive this urgent message.

Of more concern was the level of financial recompense for that first tooth. We had been led to believe that the current exchange rate was one pound per tooth. However, that was before Tanyel’s mum had run out of change.

Tanyel is one of Rebekah’s classmates. When she lost her first tooth, Mum was out of coins. She only had paper money. Thus it came to pass that Tanyel received five – yes, five – of our finest British pounds for her milk tooth. And the good news had spread all around the class. Yea verily the golden coins tumbled out of my wallet into the envelope Debbie had decorated, accompanied by some text she had found on a website.

So make what you will of this story. How natural it is for children to share good news quickly. Or how dumb and soft we were as parents. Take your pick.


  1. £5!!!!! Have you counted how many teeth are going to be lost over the next few years. Tanyel’s mum has a lot to answer for.

    Around here the tooth fairy is not so reliable, we think she gets caught in traffic or something. So it can take a couple of nights for her to turn up. Particularly if Mum and Dad are particularly tired and forgetful 🙂


  2. In mitigation, we have made it clear this is a special amount for the first tooth only! It doesn’t exactly help us in credit crunch times, though.


  3. i too have to admit that the tooth fairy did give Liam £5 for one of his teeth….but she was feeling very sorry for him as he had a nasty abcess and had to have an extraction!! aaaghhh…..like you we made it clear that this was a special amount because he had been so brave…..the usual rate is £1 in our house…i remember getting 10 pence !!


  4. Not being a parent, I only remember what the tooth-fairy brought when I was a child.

    One penny for the first tooth, two for the second, etc. A chocolate bar cost 10 cents in those days, so a penny didn’t really buy anything. I reckon I could get something for £5! 😉


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