I’m creative, I could totally get into the club of these crazy Elf on a Shelf parents doing fun things every night with their elves. Dying milk different colors, fishing in the sink, taking ornaments off the tree and framing that creepy little doll for it.
But, I’m not. Multiplied by a thousand.
Before you think it, I’m not a Scrooge of the Ebenezer variety, nor McDuck. I love pretty much everything about the holidays. They are a pretty big deal around these parts, but still, I have a beef with that menacing little midget.
I want my kids to behave, period. Not because of an elf or the threat of Santa, but because it’s the right thing to do. Even that two year old knows when she’s doing something she probably shouldn’t. While my kids are boundary testing, Dave or I are the ones who are supposed to remind and teach them, that’s our job. And yes, yes, there are LOTS of ways to get that end result. Quirky little thing, that parenthood, what works for one, just might not work for another. I just personally, don’t want them to think that they should behave because an imaginary elf is watching over them. I even feel a little weird about lying to them about Santa quite honestly, but to the best of our ability, we don’t use Santa as a threat for good behavior either.
That’s not all.
The ELF is also adding one. more. thing. to the holiday season. It’s tough enough parenting right now, let’s face facts. Your kids are inundated with want, they are sugared up with cookies, they’re tired, and overwhelmed and sometimes cranky. You have to make decisions that are a good fit for them, for you. More family, more friends, more giving to others, more down-time, YES. More obligation, overspending, stress, time I’d rather spend doing something else, or the worry of remembering to move the Elf every night, uh NO. Nope. Not even a little bit.
Plus, it totally reminds me of Chuckie. That thing just might come after you with a kitchen knife or change your Facebook status to ‘It’s Complicated’ while you sleep.
I know you legions of Elf-ers, if my Pinterest feed is any indication, are all outraged at me right now and that’s ok. I feel like I should tell you that it doesn’t remotely bother me if you use it in your house, lots of friends have it, including my friend Erin who let me steal her photos of Phineus. She’s waiting for the day when her kids are like 15 and she can have ol’ Phineus dancing on a stripper pole or engaged in other completely inappropriate behaviors.
I am not telling you to ditch yours or that you shouldn’t have one. That would be as assinine as me telling you to ditch any of your other holiday traditions.
I hear your cries of, It’s fun! They love it! It gets them excited for Christmas! It’s not meant to be taken seriously! If that works for you and yours, go right ahead. I’ll laugh along with you at the hilarious pictures of Inappropriate Elf and marvel that you have the time and creativity to come up with these great ideas in the midst of an already crazy holiday season.
We’ll just be Elf-less over here.
Fess up. Is there an Elf on your Shelf?