Biggest scam EVER

I have done it. I have successfully pulled off the biggest scam any parent has worked since Santa Clause was born.

So my son wants to play the piano. Harrison is six, and he’s so serious about this that for the past four months he’s been adding to his nightly prayers this phrase: “And please help me be a really good piano player.”

(For the record, every mother hopes that her children will utter prayers like this at some point.)

Piano lessons wouldn’t be a problem if Dave Ramsey hadn’t invaded our life and budget so completely that, sitting here, there’s not a penny left to my coin purse until Friday. It’s a difficult predicament, this whole cut back on everything. It’s especially difficult when cutting back affects our kids.

And the thing is, learning the piano is critical to a persons educational happiness, and catching this kid right now, when he’s begging for it, is even more important. And I am not without options.

(Just between us, I actually do know how to play the piano, just not publicly. I would be happy to stand in front of thousands and belt out “Tomorrow!”, just don’t ask me to play the piano in primary. Because it terrifies me.)

Unfortunately, as all parents know, teaching your own kid piano is next to impossible. Oh, it might start out okay, but before long they realize it’s just another place for you to boss them around, and in too many cases it ends up being an argumentative headache that isn’t worth the effort.

Enter Miss Peabody.

Miss Peabody is Harrison’s new piano teacher. She came over last night after his brother and sister were asleep. I hear that Harrison was rather astonished when he opened the door and finally met her face to face (he had heard so much about her). Apparently, she talks “really funny”, and as his father put him to bed he said, “I kind of think Miss Peabody is my mom, but I’m not sure.”

When he saw me this morning he was even more confused because I obviously had such a strong alibi for my wherabouts last night. And come on, it’s not like I’d ever lie to him or anything. Cause parents don’t do that kind of stuff.

And I spoke to Miss Peabody. She said he was extremely well-behaved and enthusiastic, and she thinks he’s without a doubt the most brilliant student she’s ever taught.

Go figure.


  1. I love this. Wish I had come up with something like this for my own kids because we did try the mom teaching thing, and it really didn’t work!

  2. My mom taught all her kids the basics—probly for about six months and then sent us off to another teacher. I think it was the way to go—especially now that I’m starting to teach. It’s easier for me to start beginners who know the basics rather than starting from square one:) Miss Peabody sounds pretty awesome—maybe she can give me some tips?

  3. Love how Harrison prayed for his lessons!! Miss Peabody should have no problems with this student.

  4. Brilliant!!!!!

  5. I’m sure Mrs. Peabody is amazing and awesome.

  6. That is so stinkin’ hilarious! I may have to do this when my kiddos get old enough to want to play piano….of course, then I would have to buy a piano.

  7. My brother has a “drill-sargeant” that comes to inspect the kids’ rooms twice each week. Unannounced, and while they are at school.
    You people that think of these things are brilliant!! The have him named and everything. Have even used email to correspond.

    • I got a piano for free with the hopes of getting lessons for my sons. I do not play. I am in need of a Ms. Peabody….if I could play this just might work….
      Brilliant idea!!!

  8. Annie, dang it, Bree shared your story on Facebook and I thought they made you my friend. I made a fool of myself, which is very easy for me to do. Could you be my friend so I can have some edge of credibility? Susan Wellman Lazenby

  9. You’re a genius. Just so you know.

  10. Hahaha. I’m imagining a Mrs. Doubtfire-esque costume. Please say there was a ruffly dress involved.

  11. so funny! cute. Maybe this will work at our house (as long as I stay 1 lesson ahead of him, right?).

  12. HA! I think this is hilarious! Wish I had thought of it. Dave Ramsey has taken over our life too. It took quite a while to budget in piano lessons.

  13. You are BRILLIANT! I teach piano, but I think I will totally adopt this with my own kids…until the catch on.

  14. I have to overcome the obstacle of not having a piano and then I’ll figure out how to pull off Miss Peabody. I think you win the award for creative budget solutions.

  15. Holy snap you are a genius!!! How did I not think of this?!?!?!

  16. YOU DIDN’T!!!!!! Oh my gosh! That is brilliant 🙂

  17. I’m still in shock that you managed to keep such a secret from your last ward . . . . . . in my next ward I think I’ll keep the same secret!!!

    And Miss Peabody . . . . . now THAT is priceless! I can just imagine it!!

  18. That is AWESOME! I’m storing that idea in my pocket. Except..wait…crap…I can’t play the piano. Darn!

  19. That is so cute! You are a great Mama!!!

  20. What an amazing mom you are. I love that idea. If only I could play, or had a piano… Ha. Congrats on the success of your scam.

  21. I love your children. I’ll buy them from you any day.

  22. You are the coolest person I know!

  23. muwahahahaha!!!! That was brilliant!

  24. Wow. I don’t know if I could pull that off! I am dying of laughter here, having once tried to teach my child piano!

  25. Jodi Clayton says:

    We definitely need a photo of Mrs. Peabody!!! This is so hilarious!!!

  26. I’m with Jodi. I want a pic of Mrs. Peabody!!

  27. I absolutely love this. It is great love the parenting stuff.