Saturday, December 21, 2013


So.  The Elf on the Shelf.

I don't get it.

I'm not going to go on some tirade about spoiling children and how parents don't need to stage these elaborate scenes because hello do you remember Peanut's birthday parties?   And forget lecturing about commercialism and the true meaning of Christmas because I LOVE Christmas.  All of it.  The good, the bad and the cheesy.  The kid has a his own house decorated for Christmas for goodness sakes..

I'm not even dead set against The Elf.  I imagined picking up Peanut from preschool one day, sniffling as he came to the door, looking up to me with big, sad eyes and asking, "Mommy, why don't we have an elf on the shelf?" To which I would reply, "Oh honey, our elf is coming tomorrow!"  It wouldn't be the first late night run to Target and hopefully it won't be the last.  (Does anyone else love that quiet, childless stroll through Target after all the normal shoppers have left?)

My plan until that moment is not to talk about The Elf at all, in hopes that when he does hear it mentioned at school, he'll have no idea what they are talking about.  We shall not name that thing.

I'm watching you.

The first thing I don't understand about the-thing-that-must-not-be-named, and this is very important, is that it's Creepy.  With a capital C.  With all the technology we have today, how was it not possible to make a remotely cute and endearing elf?   

The eyes.  

It's all in the eyes.

That thing is freaking me the heck out.  And I'm not the only one.

This is pretty accurate as to how I feel about this thing running around and wreaking havoc at night while we are all sleeping.

P.S.  This photographer is hilarious, genius and terrifying.  I especially like her Facebook page because it has the perfect mixture of classic family, boudoir and couples photography mixed with some truly disturbing creepy elf photos.  I love a lady with balance.

The second thing I don't understand is the every day part of the deal.  Parenting is so full of every single day tasks.  Feed the kids everyday.  Bathe the kids every day.  Brush their teeth every day.  Change their diapers every day.  You know?  So I'm resistant to an every day situation.  Although I have done a Christmas book a day in lieu of an advent calendar (and yes I start Thanksgiving because I have that many books) but let me give you a little background on how that is going.

Clearly this is not our pile (all of the pictures on this post are from Pinterest)

Year 1:  Every day after bath there is a nicely wrapped book sitting under the tree.  Well not everyday because he was too little to know that we were repeating books.  At the end of this year I wrapped all the books before putting them away in storage for the following year.

Year 2:  Every day there is a nicely wrapped book sitting under the tree.  At the end of this year I threw all of these books along with all our Christmas movies into a big container that was nearly impossible to carry into the attic crawl space.

Year 3:  Nearly kill the family trying to pass said container down the ladder.  Wrap 6 books and run out of tape, mentally add tape to the list of things to buy.  After 6 days of a nicely wrapped book sitting under the tree we forget, on a nightly basis, that we are supposed to have another book under the tree.  When Peanut gets out of the bath we shove a book in a gift bag with a piece of tissue paper.  Until the tissue paper disappears.  Instead of finding more tissue paper we stuff plastic grocery bags in as filler.  He doesn't seem to mind.  The gift bag has since ripped on one side.  He still doesn't mind.

Is it me or is that one angry looking powder angel?
And don't even get me started on the cop picture.

So yes, we have all these normal parenting daily things to do and then the holidays hit and we go from life is busy type of crazy to Holy Shit the holidays type of crazy. And then we have the nightly staging of the Thing.  Maybe I'll get into it next year but right now, I'm too tired to think that's realistic.

There is an undeniable perk to the-thing-that-must-not-be-named.
He's Santa's snitch.  I'm all for having something around to keep the kid in line for a few weeks.  But this leads me to my next question.

Why is that creepy little thing always getting into terrible trouble in the night?  Aren't we trying scare our kids into submission by threatening coal and the full wrath of the naughty list?  

So let me get this straight.  Every day the kids wake-up to find that the-thing-that-must-not-be-named made snow angels in the powdered sugar, tied-up his toy friends, ate all the cookies, wrote on the mirrors and had an all night strip poker party with Barbie.

All in order to get our kids to behave.

I'm so confused.

So, we spend a month giving the kids examples of things they shouldn't do and then tell them to toe the line or Santa's sleigh is skipping this house on Christmas Eve.

I mean, wouldn't this theory make more sense if It was prompting the kids to do nice things.  Like if everyday the-thing-that-must-not-be-named had a sign that said,
 "If you wake your mommy up today, you can say goodbye to any hopes of getting that Teenage Mutant Ninja Princess Rainbow Loom Sword Set."
  Or whatever. 

Don't play with fire kids!

I'm not saying It has to be holding a different scripture passage every day because let's face it, Elves, and Santa for that matter, have little to do with the religious holiday.
I don't remember hearing about any elves lurking around at the birth of Christ.  Maybe they were at that one nativity with the lobsters.

There was more than one lobster present at the birth of Jesus?

I will say that there are quite a few very cute ideas that I really do like.  Even if the Thing is creepy.

Besides if you want to get all religious you could replace the-thing with this instead.  But that's not at all the same, now is it?   I mean, there are alternatives like these two and these peeps and of course Etsy has this girl (can someone make this for me pretty please, she's too precious).  Of course there is Montgomery, the mouse that is not at all less creepy than the Elf.

I don't know.  I'm still waiting to feel inspired by some of this.

So if you can clarify any of these things, I'd greatly appreciate it.  Otherwise, we can laugh and cry together next year when you notice me pinning elaborate ideas on how to turn my living room into the North Pole by morning so that I set the right stage for the-thing-that-must-not-be-named.


  1. I don't get it either! I don't have time to make that elf do something every night- I can hardly get my kids in bed. I am also terrified of my kids being the only one who doesn't have it, however, I am hoping this fad will be long gone by then!

  2. Hello, dear friend.
    I have a few wishes for you.
    May 2014 bring you much joy.
    May we all have peace in our homes,
    laughter by our firesides,
    time spent with family,
    and contentment in our hearts.
    Be well, my friend.

  3. I don't get it either. I feel like it encourages bad behavior. I'm not one to jump on bandwagons like that either. I'm hoping Piglet doesn't know about these things, and that we create our own fun traditions. We'll be doing the Christmas book each day. We started his collection this year, and then checked out a bunch at the library. I want him to stay excited about books!

  4. Unsure where I stand on EOTS topic.. lol. Mixed feelings :) I DO have to say, I knew this before.. that Peanut has it made and all.. with such great parenting. But looking at your previous post - there is no doubt in my mind. LOVE that li'l house! And he is such a handsome fella! -T

  5. I am missing you here, girlfriend. I was just popping in hoping to swee what you've been up to.


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