The Elf on the Shelf { A New Family Tradition }

   By FrugalityForLESS  Dec 09, 2011

Every family has their holiday traditions.  Some traditions are carried on generation after generation and some like to start new.  Since 2011 has been the year of new, I think a new tradition for Christmas fits in perfectly.  This year, my family and I are starting our new tradition, the Elf on the Shelf.

Our little one has no clue that our Elf is on its way!  I cannot wait to for the UPS truck (i.e. the Big Brown truck according to Monkey) to stop at our house with our Elf.  The night we get it, my husband and I will wait for Monkey to go to bed and then the Elf will come visit.  We are both looking forward to seeing her face light up in the morning when she makes the discovery that we have a new visitor in our house.  Each night when she goes to bed, the Elf will find a new spot to watch over her the next day.  In the morning, she will have to find out where the Elf has moved to next.  She will not be allowed to touch the Elf but she will be encouraged to talk to it since the Elf is Santa’s messenger.

Not only does Elf on the Shelf provide a game for the whole family, hopefully since the Elf is watching for Santa, this will help to keep Monkey in line (although she is a wonderful kiddo!).  Each year on Thanksgiving day, the Elf will appear and will visit throughout the New Year (I’ve heard it’s bad luck to take down your decorations prior to the New Year). I am so excited to start this tradition and many more!

If you have never heard of the Elf on the Shelf, feel free to visit Barnes and Noble to read up on it.

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clingrich by clingrich | ORLANDO, FL
Dec 22, 2011

My grandsons have one (9 & 4) the 9 yr old is right there. So when he went to spend the night with a friend, in the morning they found 3 elf of the shelfs riding paper airplanes from the chandelier. (the friends family had 2) but it had a note to my grandson that said stop touching me and that was a week ago they are all trying to figure out how that happened

jygriebel by jygriebel | Marble, PA
Dec 16, 2011

I first heard about this a few years ago and would love to try it with my 3 year old. Nobody local sells it, the Hallmark store closed along with several others.

mommyzan2 by mommyzan2 | long beach, CA
Dec 10, 2011

I love the idea, but when it comes to the doll itself, I wish when the box said you can get these choices you could. We would like the doll not w/ brown hair, blue eyes, and white. That's all target has. The smaller plush doll is cute but the idea is that you can have it blend with your family if you can find one.

hamster_mom by hamster_mom | LAS VEGAS, NV
Dec 10, 2011

If I had a child who was younger I think I would probably get an Elf and give it a try but my daughter is now 20

tenkids2dogs by tenkids2dogs | TOMS RIVER, NJ
Dec 09, 2011

Target sells a "plushie" Elf on the Shelf for $12. No book but much less creepy looking! We prefer it to the very 70s looking original Elf on the Shelf.

Mikla_queen1 by Mikla_queen1 | STERLING HTS, MI
Dec 09, 2011

I think this is such a great thing! Alot of my friends love theirs!!!

cocoabella by cocoabella | EL PASO, TX
Dec 09, 2011

sounds like a fun idea for those with young ones in the home. as to Sumahkie's comments, I kind of agree, the elf could use some 'cosmetic' upgrades. I couldn't imagine paying $35 for that doll. lol

sumahkie by sumahkie | CONROE, TX
Dec 09, 2011

this is a cut e idea. we do have one. my only complaint is the quality of the doll. it looks extremely creepy. like a bad 50s toy. and it never sits up properly. My neices are afraid of the elf they got as a gift. My kid seems weary but still has fun trying to find where he's hiding in the morning. if the doll were changed.. offered in different varieties (not just a change of plastic hair/skin/eye color) and in a higher quality, i would be happier. We paid $35 at khols for the book and elf set. I really wish we had skipped this 'tradition'.

ibahowell by ibahowell | MANSFIELD, TX
Dec 09, 2011

I am not sure who loves the Elf on the Shelf more me or my kids. I have so much fun with it. He has done all kinds of things... Best of all he took a can of silly string to all the nutcrackers... and has taken an overnight visit to grandma's (He has his own overnight bag with his name on it) I posted some photos on

sageemily2005 by sageemily2005 | BUCKSPORT, ME
Dec 09, 2011

i havent tried this yet but i would love to try this and add yet another tradition to our Christmas season

Dana0517 by Dana0517 | NAPERVILLE, IL
Dec 09, 2011

We have one and each year he comes out and brings the kids letters and different surprises from Santa. The kids talk to him and ask them to tell Santa to bring them stuff. They really enjoy it and my youngest cannot wait for him to show up.

smokley by smokley | Homestead, FL
Dec 09, 2011

I saw this once at a Cracker Barrel and loved it. I wish I could a get ahold of one.

tenkids2dogs by tenkids2dogs | TOMS RIVER, NJ
Dec 09, 2011

As I have posted on another blog about Elf on the Shelf, I cant believe how I managed to get ten kids, the youngest who is 8, through the Holidays without ever hearing of this fella! Well, we have gotten one recently and let me tell you....our Elf is providing GREAT dinner conversations, hearty, tear producing laughter and wicked updates on my blog. I only wish I had him when my kids were little. But we are sure making up for it now! Enjoy him, we sure do!

marsmom by marsmom | ABERDEEN, NJ
Dec 09, 2011

I love the elf on the shelf. It helps keep my kids in check over the holiday season. My only complaint is that my oldest daughter found out he was not real because someone posted on Amazon's website a review and wrote that you have to remember to move the elf around every night. Really did this parent think the elf would move himself.