Elf on the Shelf
Meet the Muench family's Elf on the Shelf, Colorful Cupcake. CC (for short) appears in our home about this time every year. He first came into our lives during the holiday season of 2007 [I say "he" loosely because for the life of me I can never remember if our elf is a male or a female....I'm thinking male, but we did buy a skirt for this thing one year which is causing me to pause a bit on the gender]. Believe it or not, this 6 inch plastic/felt doll (for lack of a better word) which cannot speak, keeps my two youngest children [age 7 and 9] better behaved during the holiday season than I do. Which is both pathetic and hysterical at the same time when you think about it.
The creators of this ridiculous, yet helpful, Christmas product must be millionaires at this point because over the past 5 years having your own elf has become the norm for children all over the country. Likely the world for that matter. If you are unfamiliar with this story/toy, the basic premise is this: The elf shows up in your home around December 1st, he/she travels to and from the North Pole every evening to let Santa know how your child is behaving, it then comes to rest in a new spot in your home each morning before dawn. On Christmas Eve your kid has to say goodbye to the elf until next year. Children are not allowed to touch the elf or it will "lose it's magic", however they are welcome to talk to it all day long.
I have heard there are elves who misbehave at night when the family is in bed, doing things such as emptying the kitchen garbage can all over the floor, spreading honey and feathers on the counter top, even writing messages with toothpaste on the bathroom mirror or putting make up on the kids' faces while they sleep. If you ask me, those kind of antics make absolutely no sense since the elves' job is to help ensure the good behavior of the children in the family. What kind of example are they exhibiting when they act naughty? Not to mention the fact that someone's gotta make and then [worse yet] clean up the messes they make...
Thank God our CC is basically just a boring old elf who hangs out and watches what my kids are up to. He's so boring in fact sometimes he stays in the same place for 3-4 days before he moves again because he finds such a good spot from which to catch all the action (at least that's what I tell my kids each time I forget to move him...nothing irritates me more than when I forget to move the damn elf for several days since I figure, at this point, my kids are on borrowed time for believing this insane story at all). Sometimes I get a little freaked out about the fact that they still get so excited the elf comes back each year. I keep thinking Maddux and Mia have got to be smarter than this...and yet just yesterday, when CC appeared on the mantle in the morning Mia was, once again, exuberant and joyfully jumping up and down and could not wait to tell Maddux he had arrived for the season.
For whatever reason, the Elf on the Shelf has become a holiday tradition at our house, along with St. Nick appearing on the Eve of December 5th with goodies for our stockings, advent calendars being sent from the Wisconsin grandparents, and holiday fare such as Oreo truffles and spritz cookies. As the season unfolds I hope you enjoy many a family tradition in your home as well!