For parents who live with messy kids in the house, the struggle is real.
With three people living in her “tiny” house and using the same “tiny” bathroom every day, Xep Campbell has learned to turn a blind eye to plenty of small messes.
But when her 10-year-old daughter Kestrel left a dirty sock on the bathroom floor on Thanksgiving night, Xep decided not to pick it up and throw it in the hamper as she’d done many times before. Instead, she thought she would conduct “sort of a sociological experiment” to see how long it would take Kestrel to toss the sock in the laundry herself.
As many parents know, this was a risky move! Sometimes it seems like kids don’t even see the same things adults do when they look around the house. Sure enough, a week later, the sock was still on the floor.
“So I decided it must be intentional and deserved recognition as such,” Xep wrote on Facebook. “I made this little label hoping it would motivate her to pick it up.”
Pretending “The Forgotten Sock” was her daughter’s attempt at making art, Xep created the sort of plaque you would find in a museum. The prank worked… sort of.
Thanks to the museum listing, Kestrel finally noticed the sock, but instead of taking the hint and picking it up, she doubled down!
“She sent me a text message asking if I had done it,” Xep explained. “When I got home she said, ‘I made a pedestal for it!’ She gamed my shame.”
Once they both started goofing around with “The Forgotten Sock,” it was game on! Not only did the sock remain in the bathroom on its little pedestal, but they also started adding to the exhibit every chance they got.
First came the animals, then there was a monolith — and eventually a whole nativity scene!
“I figured as long as it was on display, it deserved an audience so the barnyard animals arrived,” Xep wrote. “They find it very fascinating.”
After the creative mom shared the saga of “The Forgotten Sock” on Facebook, it went viral! She was soon flooded with messages and advice from strangers all over the world.
“My daughter and I have a wonderful, communicative relationship,” she added. “We are very silly together and understand the importance of being ridiculous and absurd. I honestly did not except this post to go viral — it was just another silly thing we did.”
Xep decided that the best use of her internet stardom was to channel some of that good energy toward a charity she supports.
If this moved you or made you giggle in a way that felt really good and that you want to give something back, a donation to this amazing organization called Jumping Mouse Children’s Center would mean a lot to me. They do play-based therapy that changes the lives of children who have experienced trauma. They rely partially on community donations to keep therapy accessible to children in need.
Thanks to “The Forgotten Sock,” the charity has received over $10,000 in donations! And it all started because Kestrel forgot to pick up her sock. See, parents? Sometimes turning a blind eye really is the best method!
Share this story with a mom or dad who has been there, done that.
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