The Best Decision I Ever Made About Our Elf

My family and I were early adopters of the Elf on the Shelf. We had a hard time finding an elf because they were so new and being snatched up faster than that year’s “it” Christmas toy. My husband and I high five’d when we found one at a local book store and got ready to be tied to a questionable tradition for years to come introduce “Jolly” to our family!

The Best Decision I Ever Made About Our Elf | Houston Moms Blog

Luckily, Jolly is pretty laid back. He’s not into mischief or merry-mess making because momma ain’t got time to clean up after one more creature. He tends to hide in the fridge and hang from the light fixtures or sneak into our stockings. The first time Jolly didn’t “move”, I took one for the team and fessed up to touching him by accident thus preventing his nightly magical return to the North Pole and reappearance in a new location. The kids gave me a strong side-eye but let it go, just long enough for me to set {another} alarm on my phone to remind me to “spread the holiday cheer” every night at 11pm. UGH.

The Best Decision I Ever Made About Our Elf | Houston Moms Blog

Jolly is the king of the side-eye.

This year, my children are 13, 10 and 8. I tasked my husband with bringing sexy Jolly back on December 1st and when I saw that he had wrapped Jolly around a bottle of two-buck chuck on the counter for his annual return, I knew I had a problem.

The Best Decision I Ever Made About Our Elf | Houston Moms Blog

Really Jolly? That’s where you’re showing up this year? What are you trying to say?!!

Luckily, a solution was just over the horizon, or on the other side of the counter as it were :: my 13-year-old son. He tentatively admitted that he knew the truth about Jolly and had started figuring things out once he noticed the manufacturer’s tag we had neglected to remove. Oops.  

The Best Decision I Ever Made About Our Elf | Houston Moms Blog

Can’t sneak anything by this new teenager!

On the night of December 1st, my son said words that were like choirs of angels from heaven above :: “Can I move Jolly tonight?” Then and there, not two days into Elf season, I made the best decision about our elf and said YES, yes, a thousand times yes!

The Best Decision I Ever Made About Our Elf | Houston Moms Blog

Jolly may have lost his sparkle for me and my husband, but he’s taken on new magic for my son! Every night, he conspires where to place Jolly, carefully considering the balance in locations throughout the house, the challenge level, and overall fa-la-la for his younger brother and sister who both still believe! He moves Jolly then calls for me to come see, all with a sly grin and a twinkle in his eye. He loves participating in our Elf tradition, on the other side of the magic!

The Best Decision I Ever Made About Our Elf | Houston Moms Blog

It would be enough to simply be relieved of my holiday elf duties – that alone makes my decision worthwhile. But the icing on the sugar cookie comes every night during prayers with my teen. He gives thanks for being able to help with Jolly and then prays that his brother and sister will hang onto the magic and wonder of Christmas for as long as possible. Every night, y’all. My teen takes delight in surprising his siblings and helping them to believe. 

The Best Decision I Ever Made About Our Elf | Houston Moms Blog

When I’m regretting getting that dastardly elf, I think about my prayers for my children :: that they would grow up and stay close and connected to me, that they would take care of each other, that they would be friends and support one another, that they would pray for each other and then put some action behind those prayers. Who could have guessed that the Elf on the Shelf would end up being an answer to my prayers?


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The Best Decision I Ever Made About Our Elf | Houston Moms Blog

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