Have you heard of Elf on a Shelf? Well, for those of you who haven’t, Elf on a Shelf is a a book written by mother-daughter duo Carol Aebersold and Chandra Bell. In short, every day from Thanksgiving until Christmas Eve, each family’s scout elf watches over the children and then at night, once everyone goes to bed, the elf flies back to the North Pole to report back to Santa about what activities, good and bad, took place throughout the day. Before the family wakes up each morning, the scout elf flies back from the North Pole and hides. By hiding in a new spot each morning around the house, the scout elf and the family play an on-going game of hide and seek. Families across the world use their Elf on a Shelf as a way to encourage good behavior throughout the holidays. Let’s see how Elizabeth, wonderful guest blogger, Elf owner and mama to three babies, and her family adapt to “Elfie’s” holiday presence. –Vanessa


Like many of you, we have an Elf, affectionately (and uncreatively) named Elfie.Elfie first made his appearance this year when I got the Christmas decorations out – he was ready and waiting for the kids to come down from their “rest” (what we call nap time when you aren’t in the nap stage anymore…)
The next morning, Elfie was REALLY hungry and wanted to eat breakfast with the kids!

And of course, in a Superhero-loving family, Elfie surprised the kids by showing them that he really does belong here!!!
When it was time to decorate the tree, we put on our Christmas music on and Elfie decided he wanted to sing too!Sadly, the kids had a rough few days with their interactions together (i.e. some bickering) and Elfie had to fly back to the North Pole until I felt that it was safe to bring him back again… and thus, he issued a gentle reminder by asking the kids if they were being nice this year. (They are!)

And of course, Elfie knows the true meaning of Christmas. He really wanted to be a part of it and I really wanted to make sure that the focus in our house always remains on the true meaning of Christmas – the celebration of Jesus’ birth! In the kids nativity, Baby Jesus doesn’t come out on the first day. We usually wait a week so that Mary and Joseph can walk through Bethlehem finding a place to stay. So when this picture was taken, we had just celebrated Baby Jesus being born – and not long after that, the Kings came bringing their gifts! And Elfie had to be part of the action!

Vanessa is the co-founder of Austin Moms Blog. She is also the Director of Communications for IDEA Public Schools, a nationally recognized network of K-12 public charter schools serving more than 15,000 students. She has a blast learning, loving and laughing with her four-year-old little lady, Caroline Grace.


  1. I’m new to the “elf on a shelf” game so this article is just perfect to help us begin a new family tradition! I just love Elfie hanging out in a bowl of cereal!


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