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Elf on the shelf?

(21 Posts)
katienana Fri 02-Oct-15 14:05:49

I'm thinking of doing it this year. Ds is 3 (just). Is it worth starting at this age? I'm also concerned about being committed to doing it every year!
What activities etc have worked well for this age group?

BatTeethKeith Fri 02-Oct-15 22:24:28

I didn't do too much with dd at 3, just had the elf move each day, and she had to find him each morning before she go a chocolate out of her advent calendar.

Don't peak too soon or you will have run out of ideas by the time she is five. smile

Chelazel Sun 04-Oct-15 11:08:14

I'm doing elf on the shelf-kind of- for my little ones who are 2 and 3 and I know they'll love it!! I'm changing it tho as there are lots of aspects I don't like such as the no touching rule and the focus on being good or bad. We've got an elf door which they'll (they're having one each) come through each night. The elfs will bring back letters from Santa, fun activities and do funny things!! They'll be a toy to play with the whole December before leaving with Santa Christmas Eve!!! It sounds like great fun and I reckon you can do as much or little as you fancy!!! I'm also getting different elves as the proper one is freaky!!??

tanya1312 Sun 04-Oct-15 11:37:30

This is our 3rd year, my kids are 12yrs old and 3yrs old, last couple of years have done lots of antics to keep older child entertained, but she now no longer believes sadbut still wants her elf to come back and do stuff so I'll be bringing it down to real basic stuff now with the odd fun thing,as I will run out of ideas over the years, any ideas I find I'm keeping in a notebook for future reference. We also get the elves to bring Santa visit invites, activities we do at a friends house during the school holidays xx

ziggy99 Mon 05-Oct-15 19:49:37

I think 3 is an ideal time to start with an Elf, my middle boy was 3 last Christmas and he really joined in with all the fun with his older brother. We tend to mix it up a bit sometimes I spend time putting something together for them to find like a teddys bears picnic or their favourite one from last year was 'The Elf' creating an Elf Yourself video of all the family! Sometimes though the Elf just moves and they love that as well.

I agree with you Chelazel about the offical Elf, it really is quite creepy. We already have our elf but I got an Elf Door and Journal and a few other things from this website which had some really nice Elves as well.

There is normally an Elf ideas thread on Mumsnet going on in December so keep an eye on here.

stormgold1 Mon 05-Oct-15 20:48:27

Ebay currently have a lot of deals with some elves selling for 2.99 with a long delivery though.

This is a great addition to the elf on the shelf as the elf can leave cards. Everything looks professional and high quality I would recommend getting these good way to make sure the kids behave! wink

Buttercupsandaisies Mon 05-Oct-15 20:51:50

I'd avoid tbh. I did it for years and whilst they enjoyed it at the time, it raises lots of difficult questions e.g mine thought they must be really naughty to have an elf check on them when none of their friends have it. Also it's one thing to believe in Santa but kids catch on quickly that toy elves don't come alive.

I did it, had fun too but wished at stopped it before kids started chatting in school.

katienana Mon 05-Oct-15 22:02:43

Hmm lots to think about! I agree the official elf is a bit creepy. I've got 2 years before ds starts school so plenty of time to revel in his innocence!

JeffreySadsacIsUnwell Mon 05-Oct-15 22:15:55

My 6yo suddenly said out of the blue last night, "Mummy, do you remember that last year an elf came to our house? And Father Christmas sent him? And he was sooooooo naughty, he took all of my pants out of my drawer and put them on the Christmas tree" followed by uncontrollable giggles, and then "I hope Father Christmas sends him again this year". My 3yo then said 'yes, I do want him to put MY pants on the Christmas tree! Last time he did ride my train!"

I've no idea what they think, but they are clearly not worried or afraid of the elf! And no, I do not think 3 is too young, my youngest was not quite three last Christmas and loved every minute of the elf.

However, our elf wasn't used as a punishment or threat at all. He just did naughty things which the DC were not-so-secretly rather envious of. He ate all Mummy's chocolate once. The children were totally appalled and very worried I'd be so cross with the elf I'd send him home grin.

The weird thing is that I am absolutely sure that I admitted to DC1 last year that the elf may have been a prop and I would swear that one day she even helped me arrange the elf for her brother.... maybe it's true, believe and the magic continues! DC1 knows that the hundreds of Santas are simply dressed-up assistants, the real FC is way too busy - and the 'real magic' is the stuff you don't see, anyway. I'd be happy to let her in on the elf joke (again!).

NotSoDesperateHousewife Mon 05-Oct-15 22:22:38

Jeffrey are you me? confused I had that exact conversation about a naughty elf putting pants on the tree with DS3 (now 4) today! He was just 3 last year and it was a perfect age, he loved it!

andrealondon8545 Tue 06-Oct-15 10:49:46

I have never heard of Elf on the Shelf before but it sounds great fun and am sure my kids will love it, thanks for the link Ziggy have just ordered my pack from that website and can't wait for it to arrive!

AndLeavesthatweregreenturnedto Tue 06-Oct-15 15:02:28


However do it your way.

there was no way on top of everything else I wanted Elf duties every year.

Look in line for santa letters and write your own to the dc so mine said something like "

Dear dc,

We have noticed you have not had a visit nor been a host for one of our elves yet, we and an elf ready to visit you for a few reasons. one is so our elves can spend time with families and understand the children more, adn another is so they can see what sort of presents you may like, be warned these elves are young and naughty, please be advised they could get up to mishciel, if things get too bad, report them and send them back .we hoe you enjoy your time with your elf they may or may not return, but please one thing - do not touch your elf they have a fragile magic tjat can be borken by laying on of human hands.


we did it once and SHE LOVED IT. didnt do it past two year but will bring her out again this year!!! it really was sooo much fun! shaving foam on car windscreen, green wee in loo, flour everywhere, loo roll on xmas tree...

AndLeavesthatweregreenturnedto Tue 06-Oct-15 15:03:06

^ no mention at al of being watched or anything like that.

Flossieflower01 Tue 06-Oct-15 15:09:17

We have a bigger, nicer looking female elf than the 'official' one and she doesn't report back to Father Christmas, she just does silly things each night like write on the mirror in toothpaste, watch a dvd with popcorn etc. She brings the advent calendars on 1st December and leaves the Christmas pjs on Christmas Eve when she goes back to the North Pole. Mine are 13, 13 and 9 this year so won't have long left- this is the fourth year for us and even the older ones still love it.

KERALA1 Tue 06-Oct-15 15:16:46

I told dd aged 6 that no one could touch the elf or the magic goes. She found him in the cupboard last week as we had a clear out. She got him down but had cleverly put a pair of socks over her hands to get round the no touching rule.

AndLeavesthatweregreenturnedto Tue 06-Oct-15 16:42:20

Kerala thats so sweet smile isnt it. ( heart melts)

I have to say I am not keen on pushing the good and bad watching thing just let elf come for fun and be silly, rather than monitor them.

AndLeavesthatweregreenturnedto Tue 06-Oct-15 16:43:05

Best one was when elf wrote on all our forheads!! she saw daddy first, whats that on your head, then he said well you also seem to have something dd, she screamed with delight when she saw in mirror then they ran into me to check me!

BishopBrennansArse Tue 06-Oct-15 16:47:46

Just bear in mind they can be corrupted so easily...

Trudee Tue 06-Oct-15 21:54:19

I must confess to being really boring and putting no real effort into our Elf lol. We started 2yrs ago when dc's were 3&5 and our Elf arrives with the Dec 1st hamper of books, dvd's (same every year) advent calendars, pj's and bedding (so we get a good amount of wear out of them) Every night after that he simply moves to a new location after his visit back to FC. He then brings our Xmas Eve hamper on the morning of the 24th and returns to the North Pole when FC makes his delivery that evening. Dc's love hunting him out every morning and I have caught them both talking to him when they think they are alone! I have had to shoot out of bed at stupid o'clock sometimes though as I have completely forgotten to relocate him. Perhaps this year I might throw in the odd bit of mischief to liven things up but I don't think I could cope with the added pressure of doing something every day not cos I'm lazy or anything

andrealondon8545 Fri 09-Oct-15 14:48:09

My Elf pack arrived, so happy with it and can't wait for December 1st! I have a question though, how did you first introduce your Elf, did you make it look as if they came with the post or did you leave the box out somewhere for the children to find?

GardeningWithDynamite Fri 09-Oct-15 18:07:05

Our elf "arrived" on the door mat just after we'd watched the Elf on the Shelf DVD. He had a passport and a letter of introduction with him. He also comes for birthdays and sends the occasional postcard.

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