Looking for last minute Elf on the Shelf Ideas? Tired of coming up with creative ideas for your Christmas Elf? Check out our list of 100 Elf on the Shelf Ideas! We are also sharing a fun and festive Elf on the Shelf Printable Kit! Great printable to enhance the fun of your Elf on the Shelf!
ELF ON THE SHELF
I am pretty sure that everyone has heard of the Elf on the Shelf by now…right? You might even have one in your home during the holiday season! Some of you may even have pretty strong feelings one way or another about the Elf on the Shelf.
At our house, we like to do the Elf on the Shelf but tend to keep it pretty easy and low key. Our elf tends be on the tame and less mischevious side! And that is just the way this momma likes her to be. With 5 kids, a business to run and a pretty busy schedule, I don’t need a lot of extra work in my life, so we tend to keep it super simple and fun.
I swore I would never own an Elf on the Shelf, but my kids were dying to have one after hearing all the fun things their friends elves were doing. So I caved…but have actually found myself enjoying our new family tradition.
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WHAT IS ELF ON THE SHELF?
What exactly is an Elf on the Shelf? For those of you who might be living under a rock…or are new to the whole idea, let me give you a quick run down. “Elf on the Shelf: A Christmas Tradition” that was released in 2005. It is a rhyming book that explains how Santa’s ‘scout elves’ hide in people’s homes to watch over events. When everyone is in bed, the elf flies back to the North Pole to tell Santa about the good and bad activities that have happened that day.
When the family wakes in the morning, the elf has flown back and is hiding in a new place to be found by the family. In the book, the elf’s magic will disappear if he is touched, although you are allowed to talk to him and tell him your Christmas wishes so he can report back to Santa. The elves usually arrive the day after Thanksgiving, but you can have them arrive any time that is right for your own family.
The following is the official and original Elf on the Shelf. You can commonly find him in various stores or on amazon here. There are a lot of versions of the Elf on the Shelf now like these dark skinned versions with brown eyes, or the light skin versions with blue eyes. Feel free to get whatever version works best for your family!
When do I have to start the Elf on the Shelf?
Start anytime that feels right for your family. Many start the day after the US Thanksgiving Holiday. Many begin on the first day of December. Start when it is right for your family!
I don’t like the idea of the elf spying on my children and telling Santa if they’ve been naughty or nice.
Cater your elf to your own family’s beliefs. If you don’t like the idea of an elf spying on your children’s activities, you can tell your children that the elf is there to help them make good choices and to love and help others around them.
Don’t want to clean up after a mischievous and naughty elf who leaves a big mess overnight? Have the elf do acts of service for someone like I share in this post here. Or just do simple things so that the elf is not an extra stress in your life. The elf doesn’t have to do a grand adventure every night. It should be something that adds joy to your holiday instead of anxiety and stress!
What if I forget?
Let’s face it, your elf might forget to move during the night. Act like it’s part of the magic; say you’ve heard elves can do this and it might mean he has something exciting up his sleeve. Maybe he can have assumed a new position when you get home from school, or when your child wakes up from an afternoon nap.
What if he gets touched?
If he gets touched by little hands you can make up some process so he can get his magic back. Pick him up with tongs and use the blow dryer to bring back his magic. Or have him rest in the same spot for 24 hours until his magic can return.
What if he actually falls from where he was perched?
It is okay if mom or dad (or a responsible adult) picks him up with a pair of clean kitchen tongs and blows him off with a blow dryer and returns him to where he is supposed to be.
How should my elf say goodbye?
I like to let the kids know how long the elf will be staying with us when the elf arrives so they aren’t surprised when he/she has to go home. In the arrival letter with our elf, it says that he will return home with Santa when Santa comes to drop off their Santa gift. You can have your elf leave when it is best for your family. Have him leave a goodbye letter like the one I have provided, or have him leave a little message somewhere for the kids to find!
ELF ON THE SHELF IDEAS
The hardest part of the Elf on the Shelf is definitely remembering to move the Elf every night! If you are like me, at the end of the day, I am exhausted and ready to climb into bed. So it can be tough to add one more thing to do at the end of a long day. I like to set a timer and have everything planned out for the whole month so I know EXACTLY what I am doing. But in the real world, that doesn’t always happen.
So I created a list of 100 Elf on the Shelf ideas that are super easy and literally take just a few minutes to throw together. When you need an idea quick with items you have on hand, simply use one of the ideas from this list.
To grab the list, click on the link here or the red button below. You will be asked for your email so we can send you your own copy to easily reference when you need it. I will keep your email confidential and I promise not to sell it to others.
ELF ON THE SHELF PRINTABLES
And because I love to create pretty printables, I made some fun Elf on the Shelf Printables that you can use to enhance the Elf on the Shelf experience in your home. These printables are a fun way to add some “authenticity” to your North Pole elf!
All the work has been done for you…all you have to do is print them out and then use them in the way that is best for your family!
What is included in our Elf on the Shelf Printable Kit?
- Beginner’s Guide Intro and Common Questions and Answers
- List of 100 Easy Last Minute Elf on the Shelf Ideas
- Elf on the Shelf Printable December Calendar
- Daily Planner
- Elf on the Shelf Arrival Letter
- Printable Elf on the Shelf Surveillance Certificates
- Elf on the Shelf Note Cards
- Elf on the Shelf Goodbye Letter
If you are interested in grabbing the Elf on the Shelf Printable Kit click on the link here or on the red button below!
I hope you enjoy these Elf on the Shelf printables! The Elf on the Shelf tradition can be fun for the whole family without adding a lot of extra stress to your life.
You can find even more Elf on the Shelf ideas here.
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