Move over, Elf on The Shelf. It's Easter time, and there's a new stuffed toy to keep watch over your children (because one cottony Big Brother is apparently insufficient). This year, Peep On a Perch is the new Elf on A Shelf, and it's selling out fast.
Like it's elven counterpart, Peep On a Perch is designed to encourage good behavior in your children, according to reviews on Amazon. Because if the Elf has taught us anything, it's that children love nothing more than an imaginary supernatural surveillance state. The cool part about the Easter Peep is that not only is the toy designed to be held and played with — contrary to the Elf — he's also there to help encourage your children to do good deeds in the weeks leading up to Easter, as opposed to the elf that is always playing pranks on your family that require a veritable symphony of crap to design and then clean up.
I am envisioning Easter Peep helping my children do awesome things like clean up their room without hitting their siblings, and putting more money in the donation box at church instead of in their Robux account. It's not the biggest of dreams, but I think they're more than realistic. Personally, I'd be thrilled if the Easter Peep left them a note that read "Sometimes, Moms need a nap" or something similar.
Included in the kit is the 4-inch plush Peep that is fashioned after the popular marshmallow candy from Just Born, as well as a picture book written by Andrea Pozner-Sanchez. In the book, Pozner-Sanchez describes how the Easter Peep helps The Easter Bunny decorate eggs and fill baskets for all the children who celebrate the holiday. Word is out on whether or not the Easter Peep is also laying those chocolate eggs, and if it is, how it manages the sheer variety available in Easter baskets. Personally, I'm partial to those mini dark chocolate candy covered ones.
The good deeds portion of this story should not go overlooked. The idea is that the Easter Peep wants children to promote acts of kindness. I think you'll find that this comes more naturally to children than we assume. Children are inherently good, and if given the opportunity to create rituals around kindness and giving, they will rise to the challenge. This could potentially be a wonderful, unique space to cultivate in your children the spirit of a giving nature, and help them understand why it is so crucial for us to not just to "be nice," but instead to be genuinely kind. The interaction with the Easter Peep can act as a facilitator of this ideal that you then work to carry throughout the year, not only during the weeks of Lent.
If your family isn't religious, don't worry. This book celebrates a more secularized form of the Easter holiday that is absent of the traditional concepts of the holiday related to faith. It's all bunnies and candy with a note of goodwill. However, if you are more religious, it would be easy to time the "good deeds" around the Sundays of Lent or the meatless Fridays that children so love to lament. As they decry the lack of pepperoni on their pizza, you could re-frame that thought with one that looks to benefit others.
No matter how you choose to play the role of caregiver of the Peep On a Perch, the one thing that is certain is that your children will want one. Only time will tell if the Peep's popularity will ever rival its Christmas counterpart.