elf. shelf.


It's taken a lot of explaining to get Carter on board with the Elf on the Shelf tradition. I think his vocab is pretty decent, but definitely not up to snuff enough to process that the elf is watching him, leaves, talks to Santa and comes back every night. And magical? How do you explain that word? The only part he really perks up at is when Santa Claus is going to bring him more trucks. He completely accepts that he's not allowed to touch the elf, which is awesome because, for that, we've totally avoided the mega tantrums I was expecting.

For the first two days, he pointed at the elf throughout the day and exclaimed, Look! Efff! When he did that, I'd go on my tangent, Yeah! He's watching you to see if you're good ... and so on. On day three, to my surprise, he came downstairs, and the first thing he did before requesting his morning milk was look for the missing elf. I hadn't even mentioned it.

Mommy, Eff go? Mommy, Eff go?

We were behind with gearing up for Christmas, so we only have about a week of Elf hunting under our belts.


Here's my advice for Elf on the Shelf with a two year old who barely grasps the concept of Christmas:

It helps if the house area surrounding the elf is clean and clutter-free. This makes it easier to find the elf and spotlights how special he is compared to other (unseen) toys.

For the first few days, put it in spots that are unreachable while you're explaining the purpose of the elf.

There are hundreds of scenario ideas floating around on the internet. I try not to read them and come up with my own. Make it do the things your toddler can do & relate to. These are the things that make him amazing and funny.

Don't accept limitations. If you have an idea, make it happen. Use tape.

Make a special phone call just so he/she can tell Daddy what the elf is doing every day.


  1. Lol those pictures are adorable...I can't wait for my son to get old enough to grasp the concept of Christmas & "Elf on the shelf" he's only six months & is amazed by tissue lol :)

  2. Aww that's such a cute tradition, never heard of that before!
    Gorgeous pictures as usualy hun . . Hope you have a lovely Christmas x x

  3. I have never heard of this, but it's amazing!! I love it!! How magical :)

  4. I'm so glad your (hopefully) feeling better and are back to blogging! I love the pictures you take. Your also very creative and I love your decorating style. Very elegant, but yet not to the point where i'd come in your house and be afraid to touch anything or sit on the furniture.
    Weird question way off topic. Have you started potty training? My son is 3 weeks younger and has no interest whatsoever! (I've even tried bribing him with "emmie ems" (M&Ms)

  5. I literally LOL'd at the elf on the toilet - - bravo haha

  6. so cute! Love this post! Love the pics.

  7. haha, loooved the elf on the toilet! i'm planning on doing elf on a shelf next year with my kids and he will definitely be on the toilet one morning!! :D

  8. (in Canada) a few weeks ago was an "elf on the shelf" movie/ tv show.. http://youtu.be/KwV_EhT-sPY maybe that link will work :) let Carter see that and maybe it will help him to understand it all. my son(only 15 months) loves this mini movie! we're planning on doing it next christmas maybe then he will understand better(this year not so much haha)

  9. I'd never heard of Elf on the Shelf before your post, and now he's popping up everywhere. I love your creative placement of this little toy. Elf on the toilet made me go "awww!" out loud.

  10. Okay, of all the elf-traditional people I've met, you have some of the cutest ideas for where you put him! Love the potty-training one! What a great idea. :)

  11. My mother in law actually gave the elf to us this Christmas. I think she is more excited than anyone about it! lol too funny. I love the places that you put him for CArter to find. Do you let Carter touch him or is he not for touching? Just curious how everyone does it. So fun and such a great Christmas tradition!