A woman found a 4-yr-old's fairy house—then spent 9 months making incredible magic for her

At a time when we could all use an uplift, a story of unexpected friendship and honest-to-goodness magic is warming people's hearts. And it's one of those stories that just gets better and better.

A woman named Kelly Victoria shared the story on Twitter. "At the beginning of the pandemic I went through some painful personal stuff," she wrote, "and would often go out at night for long walks because no one was around and I couldn't sleep anyway. One night I was walking down my street and noticed that someone had set up a few little objects in a tree planter, and upon closer inspection, I realized it was a fairy garden with a little note about the 4-year-old girl who felt lonely in quarantine and wanted to spread some cheer."

The fairy garden was set up by a tree, and a note on the tree read:

"Our 4 year old made this to brighten your day

Please add to the magic, but don't take away

These days can be hard, but we're in this together

So enjoy our fairy garden and some nicer weather."

The next day, Kelly wrote a note to the little girl, pretending to be a fairy named Sapphire that "had come to live in the tree because she had set it up so nicely." She left the note on the tree during her walk that night.

In her note, Sapphire said she would leave some lucky dice for the girl if she did these things:


- Say 5 nice things to people you love

- Do 3 helpful things for someone in need

- Promise to always be kind and brave, and to show love to those in need.

- Draw a picture of your favorite animal so I can show the other fairies!

Kelly wasn't sure if she'd even see it, but the next night, she found a note from the girl, Eliana, telling her how she had completed the requests. She included two drawings of "piggies," her favorite animal. Kelly says she "immediately burst into tears."

She did leave a bunch of resin die that she had made with a note for Eliana (and one for her parents with her real name and phone number, so they'd know she wasn't some kind of creeper).

And the next night, there was another note from Eliana, thanking Sapphire for the die and for the gnome magnets she had left. She explained what she was doing with the die, and then wrote, "Please stay safe from the sickness. I love you."

She also got a note from Eliana's parents, thanking her for being "a much needed bright spot in our quarantine season" and explaining that they'd been playing a modified version of D & D (Dungeons & Dragons) with Elaina, so the die were a perfect gift.

And so began a nine-month long magical friendship. "Doing this every night gave me purpose in a horribly painful and lonely time," wrote Kelly. "I looked forward to my days again and I started ordering art supplies and little trinkets to leave her."

Kelly texted with Elaina's mom to get personalized ideas for gifts. She even sent a photo of herself dressed as an elf, photoshopped to look like she was tiny.

Elaina responded by asking totally 4-year-old questions, like "What do you and you friends feel like? I mean like your skin feeling?" and sharing some totally 4-year-old artwork. Adorable.

Then came some news. Eliana's family was moving to a new house and would have to leave the fairy garden behind. Elaina was having a tough time with the idea of moving, so Sapphire wrote her a long note. "Getting to know you has made me less afraid of humans," she said. She told Eliana that she would be having to leave the tree soon so they could go through the moving transition together.

Eliana's mom said it helped her so much and they wanted to try to get together in person before they moved.

That's tricky in a pandemic, of course. And also tricky when you're supposed to be a teeny-tiny fairy, not a full-grown person. So Sapphire told Eliana that when fairies move houses, they grow to the size of humans for just one day to move all of their belongings. Brilliant.

She said she had one more gift, and that she hoped Eliana wouldn't catch her leaving it. But, of course, she did.

They got to sit and talk for about an hour, and Eliana asked "a million questions about what life is like as a fairy."

"It was incredible and one of the most important and impactful afternoons of my life thus far," wrote Kelly. "I hope one day when she's older she can understand that I truly needed her as much as she needed me these past few months."

Eliana wrote Sapphire a story in the form of a tiny book, and the two plan to keep in touch from time to time.

"She's changed me forever," Kelly wrote, "and the things her mom has said about how her self-confidence, her kindness towards others and her creativity have skyrocketed since meeting me make me feel like I made an impact too."

Childhood is naturally magical in many ways, but to have a person help spur on a child's imagination and creativity, especially at a time when we all need a break from reality, is truly heartwarming to see. This is magic as it should be. What a beautiful gift these two have given each other—and to the rest of us as well.

Connections Academy

Wylee Mitchell is a senior at Nevada Connections Academy who started a t-shirt company to raise awareness for mental health.

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Teens of today live in a totally different world than the one their parents grew up in. Not only do young people have access to technologies that previous generations barely dreamed of, but they're also constantly bombarded with information from the news and media.

Today’s youth are also living through a pandemic that has created an extra layer of difficulty to an already challenging age—and it has taken a toll on their mental health.

According to Mental Health America, nearly 14% of youths ages 12 to 17 experienced a major depressive episode in the past year. In a September 2020 survey of high schoolers by Active Minds, nearly 75% of respondents reported an increase in stress, anxiety, sadness and isolation during the first six months of the pandemic. And in a Pearson and Connections Academy survey of US parents, 66% said their child felt anxious or depressed during the pandemic.

However, the pandemic has only exacerbated youth mental health issues that were already happening before COVID-19.

“Many people associate our current mental health crisis with the pandemic,” says Morgan Champion, the head of counseling services for Connections Academy Schools. “In fact, the youth mental health crisis was alarming and on the rise before the pandemic. Today, the alarm continues.”

Mental Health America reports that most people who take the organization’s online mental health screening test are under 18. According to the American Psychiatric Association, about 50% of cases of mental illness begin by age 14, and the tendency to develop depression and bipolar disorder nearly doubles from age 13 to age 18.

Such statistics demand attention and action, which is why experts say destigmatizing mental health and talking about it is so important.

“Today we see more people talking about mental health openly—in a way that is more akin to physical health,” says Champion. She adds that mental health support for young people is being more widely promoted, and kids and teens have greater access to resources, from their school counselors to support organizations.

Parents are encouraging this support too. More than two-thirds of American parents believe children should be introduced to wellness and mental health awareness in primary or middle school, according to a new Global Learner Survey from Pearson. Since early intervention is key to helping young people manage their mental health, these changes are positive developments.

In addition, more and more people in the public eye are sharing their personal mental health experiences as well, which can help inspire young people to open up and seek out the help they need.

“Many celebrities and influencers have come forward with their mental health stories, which can normalize the conversation, and is helpful for younger generations to understand that they are not alone,” says Champion.

That’s one reason Connections Academy is hosting a series of virtual Emotional Fitness talks with Olympic athletes who are alums of the virtual school during Mental Health Awareness Month. These talks are free, open to the public and include relatable topics such as success and failure, leadership, empowerment and authenticity. For instance, on May 18, Olympic women’s ice hockey player Lyndsey Fry will speak on finding your own style of confidence, and on May 25, Olympic figure skater Karen Chen will share advice for keeping calm under pressure.

Family support plays a huge role as well. While the pandemic has been challenging in and of itself, it has actually helped families identify mental health struggles as they’ve spent more time together.

“Parents gained greater insight into their child’s behavior and moods, how they interact with peers and teachers,” says Champion. “For many parents this was eye-opening and revealed the need to focus on mental health.”

It’s not always easy to tell if a teen is dealing with normal emotional ups and downs or if they need extra help, but there are some warning signs caregivers can watch for.

“Being attuned to your child’s mood, affect, school performance, and relationships with friends or significant others can help you gauge whether you are dealing with teenage normalcy or something bigger,” Champion says. Depending on a child’s age, parents should be looking for the following signs, which may be co-occurring:

  • Perpetual depressed mood
  • Rocky friend relationships
  • Spending a lot of time alone and refusing to participate in daily activities
  • Too much or not enough sleep
  • Not eating a regular diet
  • Intense fear or anxiety
  • Drug or alcohol use
  • Suicidal ideation (talking about being a burden or giving away possessions) or plans

“You know your child best. If you are unsure if your child is having a rough time or if there is something more serious going on, it is best to reach out to a counselor or doctor to be sure,” says Champion. “Always err on the side of caution.”

If it appears a student does need help, what next? Talking to a school counselor can be a good first step, since they are easily accessible and free to visit.

“Just getting students to talk about their struggles with a trusted adult is huge,” says Champion. “When I meet with students and/or their families, I work with them to help identify the issues they are facing. I listen and recommend next steps, such as referring families to mental health resources in their local areas.”

Just as parents would take their child to a doctor for a sprained ankle, they shouldn’t be afraid to ask for help if a child is struggling mentally or emotionally. Parents also need to realize that they may not be able to help them on their own, no matter how much love and support they have to offer.

“That is a hard concept to accept when parents can feel solely responsible for their child’s welfare and well-being,” says Champion. “The adage still stands—it takes a village to raise a child. Be sure you are surrounding yourself and your child with a great support system to help tackle life’s many challenges.”

That village can include everyone from close family to local community members to public figures. Helping young people learn to manage their mental health is a gift we can all contribute to, one that will serve them for a lifetime.

Join athletes, Connections Academy and Upworthy for candid discussions on mental health during Mental Health Awareness Month. Learn more and find resources here.

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Of course, wrecks aside, buying a used car might end up costing more in the long run after needing repairs, breaking down and just a general slew of unexpected surprises. But hey, at least we can all look back and laugh.

My first car, for example, was a hand-me-down Toyota of some sort from my mother. I don’t recall the specific model, but I definitely remember getting into a fender bender within the first week of having it. She had forgotten to get the brakes fixed … isn’t that a fun story?

Jimmy Fallon recently asked his “Tonight Show” audience on Twitter to share their own worst car experiences. Some of them make my brake fiasco look like cakewalk (or cakedrive, in this case). Either way, these responses might make us all feel a little less alone. Or at the very least, give us a chuckle.

Here are 22 responses with the most horsepower:

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But soon, reality sets in and if they have more kids, they'll probably be raised with a lot less attention. As a result, first-born kids turn out a bit differently than their younger siblings.

"Rules are a bit more rigid, attention and validation is directed and somewhat excessive," Niro Feliciano, LCSW, a psychotherapist and anxiety specialist, told Parents. "As a result, firstborns tend to be leaders, high achievers, people-pleasing, rule-following and conscientious, several of the qualities that tend to predict success."

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