Monday, November 25, 2013

Toodles the Elf, Arriving Soon!

I don't know about all of you, but my kids have been asking for WEEKS when our Elf on the Shelf {named Toodles} will be arriving. We always have Toodles arrive on Thanksgiving night, but because the holiday is a little late this year, I have been tempted MANY times to tell him to show up a little early. 

But now that Thanksgiving week is upon us, I am so glad I waited. Our tradition has always been to have Toodles arrive in his box, all wrapped up on our front porch, some time after our guests leave on Thanksgiving night. He brings the kids a little gift {last year it was Christmas jams} and then he stays with us until Christmas eve!

When Toodles first started arriving at our house, people weren't going Bat-shit-Pinterest-Crazy yet. He simply hopped around from shelf to shelf and occasionally the kids would find him hanging from the ceiling fan or riding in the Barbie car. But now parents are spending HOURS planning these elaborate poses for their Elf on a Shelf to do and although some of them are incredibly creative, I ain't got time for that. Last year, I was lucky if Toodles moved to a new location each morning. I think Toodles is just a little tired :) 

But do you know what did work for us last year? Including Toodles in many of our other holiday traditions. Like I said earlier, Toodles was the one who brought the kids their new Christmas jams, he was there to leave them "Christmas Lights Express" tickets on their beds, he cooked them special breakfasts a few mornings, he left them books at night and this year…he is going to fill their advent calendar. I am sure Toodles will still find himself in some silly situations this Christmas but other than that, our Elf will just be chillin :-)

I know this sounds terrible, but I think my favorite part about having Toodles around is taking advantage of his ability to instantly alter my kid's behavior. I can shout things like, 

"Don't punch your sister…the elf is watching!"
"Don't feed Howie trail mix…the elf is watching!"
"Don't say potty words…the elf is watching…I mean listening!"

I'd be lying if I didn't say that I considered letting Toodles stay with us all year :-) And the kids take it very seriously. They do NOT want the elf to know when they are in trouble and sometimes, they will even run to where Toodles is and tell on each other. Not as effective, but it is sweet when they share or do something nice and want to brag about that too. So this year, I thought it might be fun to print up some little cards that can be from Toodles. He can use them to write little notes, leave reminders when the kids are being naughty, acknowledge their good behavior, etc.

Toodles also wrote notes to the kids last year when he arrived and when he left on Christmas eve, but I didn't have any cute themed paper! I think it will be a lot more fun for Toodles to have his own stationary this year :-)

You can download both of these files from our shop here.

So…when is everyone else's Elf arriving??!!! I can't wait to start seeing all the pics!!

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