Friday, December 6, 2013

Why I'm Not a Fan of 'Elf on a Shelf'

The holidays are here and you know what that means....Elf on the Shelf. Here is the websites info on Elf on the Shelf if you aren't familiar with him. He is basically a little Elf that watches and listens to kids behavior then reports back to Santa. He moves to a different spot every night while kids are in dreamland and when the kiddos wake up, they go on the hunt to see where the Elf is.

The website states nothing about this creepy little Elf doing tricks, messing up the house, and all other types of crazy shenanigans that I see (mostly posted on Facebook). That is one part I am not a fan of. I have seen pictures of the Elf making "flour angels" in the kitchen, unrolling toilet paper rolls, and even playing with tampons!
Photo taken from a blog (ideas if you want them!)

Why, oh, why is the Elf doing these things? I get the humor of it. Ha, ha. Very funny, Elf. But now I have to clean up after you. A mess I made. And now I have to make another mess. I can barely keep my house clean as it is, let alone want to clean up after this guy's tomfoolery. 

Another reason this guy isn't allowed in my house is I don't like that idea of him "watching" you at night. Another creep point for you, Elf. I would have nightmares; I don't know how kids are still sleeping with him in their house. I swear, there is going to be a movie about this one day. 

Need another reason? So, this Elf is supposed to be a behavior management mechanism. You tell your kids, "You better not to (fill in the blank)...Mr. Elf is watching you! He's going to report back to Santa. You'll be on the naughty list. You won't get presents, etc, etc, etc. Isn't this false threats? You know damn well they are still getting presents. It may be a temporary fix to solve behavior issues, yes. But what when Elf leaves, Christmas is over, and they got all the things on their list? Who do you threaten them with now, the Easter Bunny? 

Look, I'm not saying Elf is a totally horrible idea and that all parents doing this tradition are bad. Trust me, I am NOT. Get that through your head before you go cussing me out or trying to defend your Elf. To each their own. I don't like people giving parenting advice to me, so I am most certainly not doing it to you. These are just my opinions and why I don't want to participate.

With that said, I do, however, like this alternative. I stumbled upon this website and thought it was so cute! How thoughtful and adorable is this...
Picture taken from website
Take a look at her other ideas, too. Super creative and fun.

I like this different take on Elf on the Shelf because it teaches thoughtfulness. It creates activities to do with your kids. It is not just them finding an Elf; it is doing something once the Elf/Elves are found. There may be some messes when you bake cookies for a friend, but that is a mess I am willing to clean. It teaches value, kindness, gratefulness, and most And that's why I am not a fan of Elf on the Shelf, but am totally on board with "Kindness Elves".

Monday, December 2, 2013

Holiday Traditions

Now that Nate is 1 and Christmas is just a few short weeks away, I have started to think about holiday traditions. I want Nate to have traditions to remember holidays by and to pass them on to his future family.

There are so many options! I'm talking about Christmas traditions specifically in this post, but other holidays are in the back of my mind, too.

My mom always let me open one present on Christmas Eve. Jason is super anti pre-Christmas opening of any sort, so that's not happening in this house. So what traditions are we going to do with Nate?

Ideas I'm thinking of:
1. Christmas pajamas
2. 1 new Christmas book to read (more from the library to read)

3. Baking cookies for Santa. Leaving a note and some carrots (can't forget the reindeer!)
4. Watch Christmas movies on Christmas Eve

5. Make a gingerbread house
6. Find houses with the best lights
7. Nate writes a letter to Santa with 1 thing he wants and 1 thing he needs
8. Nate donates some toys and clothes to a charity
9. Make an ornament
10. Decorate the tree while listening to Christmas songs.

Those are just a couple ideas I think would be fun to do as a family. One thing I do NOT want to do is Elf on a Shelf. That thing is creepy, in my opinion. Many have a great time deciding what the little elf will do on a nightly basis, but for some reason I can't get into him. To each their own.

Another aspect of Christmas I have been pondering is Santa. Does he leave presents unopened or does he wrap them? Is he responsible for filling stockings? Does he give a certain number of gifts or just one big gift?

Even though Nate won't remember this year, I still want to get them in plan and plan ahead.

What are your favorite holiday traditions?

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Happy December!

December is upon us and boy did it sneak up, huh? Seriously, every year goes by faster and faster.

The last month of the year. People are Christmas shopping (or Hanukkah or Kwanzaa shopping), decorating, eating leftovers from Thanksgiving, wrapping presents, visiting family, and many more. What's one more thing people start to think of in this very last month of the year? New Years resolutions.

You start to think of the new year, but did you even accomplish your goal in the present year? Jason and I did year resolutions and then we picked 2 to do for each month. We did about half of them. The first part of the year went well. Read here for all of our resolutions for 2013. After re-reading them, at the end of the year we will have completed half. 12 out of 24 mini-resolutions. We could have done better. We should have done better. Why is changing/doing something so hard to do!? After reading the list, I am feeling a little disappointed in myself. UGH! I guess 2014 will be my year!

I found these simple tips to help you keep track of progress.

Good thing we have Facebook to tell the world about our resolutions! And who doesn't like rewards? Count me in if I get a prize! Now I just need to think of next years resolution.

Any fun ideas?