The Ugly Truth about the Elf on the Shelf
I'm just going to admit that I have a lot of elf anger. Are there elf anger management classes? Because I could use one. It all began when I somehow got sucked into the elf marketing madness and bought the famous Elf on a Shelf. I heard it was this super cute way to get your kids to finally listen to you for the entire month of December. That still leaves 11 months of me pretty much talking to myself but it's a start.
The elf sits in your house and watches your children. (Important Note: You are not allowed to use the elf for childcare.) Then each night the elf flies away to the North Pole and reports to Santa on whether your children have been naughty or nice. Then the elf returns and perches his little red self in a different part of your home. Each morning your children scamper out of bed to try to find where the elf is now hanging out.
Unless of course the parents forgot to move the elf before they went to bed. Now they must try to explain why the elf hasn't moved. Why isn't the elf flying back to the North Pole to report their exemplary behavior to the big guy, your children want to know. Their future Power Wheels Barbie Jammin Jeep depends on it! (Okay, my children have never used the word "exemplary" but I'm sure there are high level children who must.) Anyway, moms must then resort to tactics like wrapping the elf in a baby blanket and sticking a tissue in his hand and explaining to the kids that the elf was simply too sick to fly back. And the web of lies continues from there.
Some parents have the elf bringing gifts. WHAT?!!! Like the complete excess of the holiday season isn't enough. We need to find more reasons to give kids stuff that they don't really need, we don't have any room for and that end up in landfills anyway. (I told you I needed elf anger management.)
And of course, there's the moment in June when your kid finds your Elf on a Shelf hiding away in some Christmas box. Wait, I thought the elf lived in the North Pole, they'll ask. Why is he suffocating in some box? My daughters found our elf last summer. I guess it had something to do with me screaming, "Go to the attic and find something to do. Just play! Like kids did in the 70s." So much for my fantastic idea because suddenly I was explaining that yes, the elf did live in our attic year round but when we put him out in December, the Christmas magic makes him come alive. At this point, I can't keep track of the elf lies.
I also have enough trouble getting my kids to go to bed without them imagining this creepy elf with his devilish grin whizzing around our house every night. I have to keep reminding myself he isn't real so I can sleep.
And poor poor Santa. Isn't he the real victim here? Remember when it was his job to watch over children and determine whether they were naughty or nice? Remember when he was the only guy bringing the gifts? Sure, he's still got ownership of the 25th but until then it's all elf elf elf. I don't understand why we must make the Christmas holiday bigger and bigger. This year, I started receiving holiday cards in November and people are now Christmas shopping on Thanksgiving. The magic of Santa suddenly isn't enough. Now we are all elf dependent.
Here's what we need to do. Let's move that elf to to the most depressing, boring month on the calendar.... January. We'll call him January Johnny the Elf. He can watch over our kids all month and report back to the North Pole. Now of course, Santa is on holiday in Hawaii come January but Johnny the Elf can file his reports with Santa's fill in guy, his cousin Marty. And at the end of the month, if your children have been good, they get a small gift of chocolate or other treat from Santa's cousin Marty.
So are we all on board?!! Just give me the elf salute if it's yes. (Note: I have no idea if there is an elf salute but obviously I'm suffering from holiday delirium at this point so just do your best.)