I’ve talked to so many people who are feeling low this Christmas. Most can’t explain why they feel it. I mentioned last week that I needed to get it together for my kids. They won’t be little forever.
We have a tree. It’s in the stand and is the most gorgeous tree we’ve ever had. I’m happy to just have a tree at all, really. I wish it had lights on it, but that’s gravy at this point.
The boxes of ornaments sit there, waiting to go on the tree.
My daughter hung the stockings. Bless her little heart.
My son is trying not to care so much, as a 10-year-old does, about his nutcracker collection, but they’re all unpacked.
The elf moves. Sometimes. I’ve said before that we don’t have one of those elves who brings presents and does crazy things. Elfie doesn’t have the time or energy for all that. I’ve thought about getting rid of Elfie altogether. I agree with all of you who say Elf on the Shelf is silly and extra. It shouldn’t be used as a behavior tool. It’s creepy, really. The Easter Bunny doesn’t come to our house. The Tooth Fairy does, but it’s because The Girl loves all things fairy. Santa comes, but he doesn’t bring piles of loot. He’s only a part of the Christmas experience.
With the chaos of these past weeks, Elfie has gotten lazy. Aren’t familiar with Elf on the Shelf? Here’s a primer. The Elf comes to your house on Thanksgiving or so, and every night he/she travels back to the North Pole to help Santa manage his naughty and nice lists. If you’re like me, you just bill it as a magical elf who hangs with us in the weeks leading up to Christmas. If you’re like those Pinterest people, he brings gifts and dumps Costco size bags of marshmallows all over the kitchen. I don’t know about you, but I cannot afford to do an entirely different and separate Christmas just because some elf says so. Not only that, but I have a hard enough time keeping my house clean as it is. Why would I let some elf come in and make it worse?
The elf forgot to move the other night. The Girl made him a shoebox house, complete with a flat screen television and windows that open and close. She left a note for Elfie, explaining how she built the house just for him and signed it with lots of hearts and stars. He didn’t even see it. He just sat there, like an idiot, up in the undecorated Christmas tree. She was understandably sad the next day. I told her it was too heavy for him to carry anywhere else. She bought it.
This morning, The Kids got up in a post dress rehearsal haze, toasting bagels and searching for clean socks. I’d already seen Elfie’s new landing spot, and, oh, it was a good one.
The Girl spotted him. She gasped. Elfie was up in the recessed can light in the kitchen ceiling, hanging upside down. “Oh my gosh!” she exclaimed. The Boy even took the bait. “How did he get UP there?”
In the sweetest little girl voice, all incredulously breathy, she said “It’s magic.”
And that, my friends, is the story of how Elfie saved Christmas. Mock if you must, but that tiny moment was all I needed to get there. I’m leaving a little treat out for him tonight. I hear he likes a medium bodied Pinot Noir.
Here’s to hoping y’all find your holiday magic, too. Cheers!