Meet Holly. She keeps my kids in line and me in Chardonnay.

This was Alfie, our representative elf while we lived in Wales. He was a bit of a troublemaker, which translates to a whopping headache in the creativity department.


I say “was”, because Alfie suffered an unfortunate decapitation incident while in transport from the UK to Chicago last December.  My dad performed emergency “surgery”, but despite the use of super glue and a support stick, he became headless once again in my suitcase traveling home from my parents’ house.  I’ve glued his head on *again* but the trauma of the kids waking up to a headless elf was more than I wanted to have to explain.

All this necessitated the arrival (purchase) of a new elf. For shits and giggles, and ease of explanation, we had a girl elf this time.  Some might say she will be better behaved, but I’m thinking if elf hormones are like human hormones, well….Merry Christmas and pass the chardonnay.


The Hubs may deride Facebook, but once again, it saved my backside. Upon reading a post in which a fellow mom shared her relief at  remembering to put out their elf, I ran for the guest room where the girl elf was hidden.

My OCD side was quite displeased to discover that she didn’t actually have much (other than the earrings) that distinguished her from the male of her species, so I ran to my craft stash for tulle and, grabbing the pony tale tie from my head (because I’m classy like that) I quickly made a tutu.

I’m still disturbed by the utter lack of feet, but that’s another thing entirely.

And the bit that gets me most riled? The bloody book that came with the elf, which we had gotten by well enough so far, well, it explains that if you tell the elf what you want, SHE will tell Santa. *blinks*

Upon reading that little tidbit, my 7-year-old announced “great, Mom –  I don’t actually have to write a list this year! I can just tell Holly!”

Well, dang. That just won’t do!

In the manner in which we, erm, lie to our children, I said “well, that’s all and good but we don’t know her that well, what if she is absentminded or confused? Maybe you should write Santa this week, just in case.”

Yes, I dissed the elf on her first day.

I will admit, I have a lot of fun with the elf for the first week or so, and then I get forgetful. And then the lies just continue “Oh, she didn’t move today because you guys were so naughty that she didn’t want to go to Santa, so she’s giving you a chance to be good”.

Alternately, “She really likes that spot RIGHT THERE.”

And I have a bit of a hard time keeping the elf from being too naughty. (Note the first photo……)

Thankfully, my kids have wild imaginations, so they can make up good reasons on their own as to why the elf hasn’t moved. By the time Christmas arrives, I’m alternately grateful for the conscience nudge provided by the elf, and nursing a headache earned from banging my head against the wall, either trying to outdo myself or irritated because I forgot, again.


She doesn’t look that dangerous, does she?

Keep following for updates on our Christmas adventures. Do you have any fun ideas I can borrow/steal? Well, c’mon – share in the comment section below, for goodness sake, and do a mom a favor….

In the meantime – hand me a corkscrew, would you please?


  1. Hhhmmm, I have never done the elf on the shelf deal so I am of no help, but she is super cute and I can’t wait to hear of her adventures! Good luck!!

  2. Thom Higgins says:

    Lies to the children Jen? I feel for you. It is kind of like when we say the tooth fairy must have been really busy & will probably come by tomorrow night.

    • It starts with a little white lie, doesn’t it, and then it all builds up to some whoppers.
      Thankfully, my kids have good imaginations themselves, so hopefully they’ll appreciate it when they learn differently!

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