Amongst Brits, our family was a fairly early adopter of the AmericanElf on the Shelf phenomenon. I discovered it back in 2014. It was getting close to Christmas, so by the time our scout elf arrived, he didn’t get the chance to perform as many antics as he did in later years.
I’m not going to go into how the ‘system’ works on this post as you can visit the official website or millions of other pages on the Internet.
The one thing I will say, is that as I’ve noticed more and more families taking part, particularly with ‘unofficial’ elves, the ‘official rules’ are beginning to dilute. For example, I have seen photos and videos of children touching and cuddling their elves days before the ‘final goodbye’ of the season, clearly unaware of the ‘no touching’ rule. (Elves can only be touched and cuddled on 24th December, before they fly back to Santa at the North Pole). Now, the consequences of this should be quite severe – an elf should become ill and have to stay in bed for a few days, but I don’t always see this reflected in the next day’s antic. Of course, time-poor parents who are stuck for ideas may wish to use this ploy so that an elf is put out of action and therefore doesn’t need to be relocated, usually late at night when they have forgotten to plan something! (This oversight runs along the same lines as going upstairs to bed and realising you still need to make up the bed because you stripped the bedding that morning!) It is at this point that they feverishly trawl the Internet to find an antic which can be set up in minutes with scant resource! We had a few of those along the way!
My younger son Charlie, named his elf, Sam. He flew away for good on 24th December 2019 (his sixth Christmas with us) because he was being reallocated to a new, younger child in 2020. My son was aged ten at that point and by the next Christmas he would have already started secondary school – it probably isn’t too cool to have an elf when you’re eleven! If older children have younger siblings, they can probably start to come up with elf antic ideas themselves, but proceed with caution, eleven-year-olds can be quite macabre!
Photos and a few videos of the antics were posted contemporaneously on our Instagram feed, but I have added them here too, with their captions. I hope you enjoy them and if you have come here looking for ideas, I hope they help you out.
Well I’m sad to say “that’s it folks!”. I’ve had a great six years of creating these antics for the children, and I’m glad to have been able to share them with you.
If you managed to make it to this point, please comment “So much elfing fun!” in the comments below! Thanks for reading.
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