Last year the kids made a leprechaun trap. They failed to catch a leprechaun, but they got some candy for their trouble. They were determined to do even better in 2015.
This year’s leprechaun trap was made from a Build-A-Bear box. The box was part of the present that Livia had gotten from her cousins, Colby and Quinn. They started the trap with Quinn’s help, using gift ribbon to suspend a Lindt truffle inside the box and tissue paper to decorate the outside.
A couple of days before St. Patrick’s Day, the kids put on the finishing touches. They taped a bunch of coins to the box as additional bait. They also taped on one of their musical bells as an alarm to let them know when they’d caught a leprechaun.
Last but not least, they taped a note to the outside. It said, “Come get the candy, Leprechaun.” That note was a labor of love. Marshall had painstakingly worked on several drafts. He finally got one right but decided to add the word “Leprechaun” at the last minute and botched it. He was sad and frustrated, so I wrote a new note that he could trace over with marker. That’s why it looks like it does, but it was really his work, not mine.
The trap worked, mostly. The bell fell out of the box during the night. It wasn’t loud enough to wake the kids. It must have startled the leprechaun though, because he left something behind: his little green hat!
Livia got up first and found the hat. She was thrilled at the time, but later she examined it more closely and discovered that there was glue inside. “This hat has glue in it!” she exclaimed. “It’s fake!” I thought for sure that she was going to accuse us, but then she said, “The leprechaun is trying to trick us!” Whew!
Marshall also noticed the glue, but he had a different idea about how it got there. He told his Daddy to go upstairs and make sure the glue gun was still in his office. He thought the leprechaun must have stolen it to make the hat! But we explained that many people (and leprechauns, too, maybe) have hot glue guns. Amazingly, both he and his sister soon forgot about the glue and any skepticism they might have had. They were too excited about setting a new trap.
On St. Patrick’s Day night, the kids wanted to sleep downstairs to have a better chance of seeing the leprechaun. I didn’t really want them downstairs, so I told them they could leave a trail of money up the stairs so that the leprechaun might go to their room. They carefully placed one coin per step and continued the trail into their room. It led to a big pile of coins in the middle of the floor.
But all that happened was that the money disappeared from the stairs. Apparently the leprechaun was too tired to do more. Their Daddy and I knew that they’d be upset, so we were going to tell them that perhaps it was because they hadn’t left a note for the leprechaun. Before we could try that story out, they came to the same conclusion themselves. Convenient!
So that night, they made another coin trail. They taped a note to the door. It said, “Go inside.” We also suggested there was something else they might use as bait, something the leprechaun might want back. They figured out what we meant and placed the leprechaun hat on top of the pile of money.
When they awoke in the morning, here is what they found.
They were very excited when they found the candy in the morning. We could hear them talking about it and planning how to get more candy out of the leprechaun next year (greedy little things!). Livia had already eaten a piece of candy by the time we read the note to her, and she was very disappointed to find out that she couldn’t have another until the following day. But they have heeded the words of the leprechaun and eaten only one piece per day, even though it’s sitting right there in their room, tempting them. They’re learning self-control, thanks to Leppy the Leprechaun.
Marshall told me later, “I think Leppy is a nice leprechaun. He loves us.” I’m pretty sure he was right.