Are you guys familiar with The Elf on the Shelf phenomenon? If not, I HIGHLY suggest you get familiar fast and jump on the bandwagon while there’s still time. Here’s how it works, in a nutshell:
- The first year your elf joins the family via a special delivery from Santa, each year after that he reappears on a certain date – in our family it’s the day after Thanksgiving.
- When the elf arrives, he belongs especially to your family and your littles get the distinct honor of naming him or her and welcoming them to your brood.
- The elf’s sole lot in life is to keep an eye on the going-ons of your children during the day and to report back to Santa at night. He is such a motivator for good behavior that I often wish he hung around all year. (But don’t use him as threat – that’s no fun!!)
- Although the elf takes his duties very seriously, he also has a bit of a mischievous side. You see, each night when the children go to bed the elf goes to the North Pole to make his report. And when he returns the next day, he’s never in the same place as when he left. So your kids get to start each day on an often hilarious hunt for the elf’s new hiding spot.
Get the gist? Good – now go get your elf! I promise you, your little ones will LOVE this new tradition (my 2 and 4 year old totally remember our elf, “Merkel”, from last year and have been asking when he’ll return for at least a month already).
The elves are a lot of fun for mom and dad too. See there’s this kind of competition that goes on across the internet to see whose elf ends up in the most precarious predicaments. Last year, MPMK contributor Allison did an awesome little series on what her family’s elf, “Melvin”, got up to (that’s him pictured above).
Go check it out for some inspiration, then let me know in the comments if your family has an elf and what kind of whacky stuff he gets up to.