Make Way for a Kinder, Gentler Elf

Elf on the Shelf has been bashed, knocked around and rebelled against by many parents.

Admittedly, the premise of Elf on the Shelf is a tad creepy.

In Theory, Here’s How it Works:  The elf comes boxed in a fancy gift box  with a storybook of how the elf came to be.  Additional elf outfits and elf pets are also available.  

The North Pole assigns an elf to a family for the purpose of watching the behavior of the children each day and the elf then reports back to the Pole that night.  

Behavior issues are flagged and noted on Santa’s Lists.  Whether a child is on the Nice or Naughty List is carefully monitored by the elf.

While in a family home, the elf can’t be touched or the elf magic will dissipate.  Without elf magic, the elf can’t fly back to the Pole.

The End.

Creepy.  Yes.  A Bit.  

For us, Behavior Issues are dealt with in the moment and we all move forward.  Being good so you get gifts at Christmas is, in my opinion, ridiculous and totally the wrong message.  I mean, really, a naughty child will be passed over by Santa?   Not on my watch. 

So Why Bother with the Elf?

Initially, I was charmed by Elf on the Shelf.  The Elf looked very much like elves of my childhood.  Then one Thanksgiving morning, when the girls were little, Elf showed up with Chocolate Advent Calendars and became part of our Family and our Holiday Traditions.

I never bought into the “Eye Spy” behavior business.  I had a hard enough time with the changing positions each morning and didn’t want to invest in the “you’d better be good, the elf is watching you” tact.  For us, Elf is a magical highlight in the whirlwind of Christmas.  Elf always brings a morning surprise during the days leading up to Christmas. 

In the busy morning rush, a moment is taken to discovery where Elf has landed.  Some mornings Elf leaves a tiny gift from the North Pole…Ear buds that are needed at school…Hot Cocoa Mugs…Pajamas.  Little necessities that perhaps can’t wait for Christmas Day.

What I didn’t envision is the great love for Elf.  Discussions in July wondering how Elf is doing and whether she’ll return at Thanksgiving.

Evidently…Sadly…Eventually Children “Age Out” of the Elf.

But For Us, This Year, Elf is back!  That’s good.  I’m glad.  The Smiles and Love bring Magic to our Hearts.  And We All Need a Dose of Magic.

Elf on the Shelf should bring Love.  Being a tool for behavior modification should never be the Elf Purpose for being.

This is Elf on the Shelf at Our Home.

And the funny part, I too, often wonder how long she’ll be visiting.

When she stops flying into our lives, I will miss her.  We All Will.

The Magic.  The Twinkle.  The Shine of Christmas.

But does Age have to be a factor?

It would be nice if the childlike wonder of Christmas stays with us all.


Maybe there is Some Elf Magic in Your Life Too. 

I’ll Remind Elf to Stop Your Way.

5 thoughts on “Make Way for a Kinder, Gentler Elf

  1. What a lovely twist on the elf. I have a four yesterday old and a one year old and the elf has always had a negative connotation for me, but I really enjoyed your positive and magical spin. I just might have to give it a try next year😉

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