Bad Elf


Two years ago I bought into the whole Elf on the Shelf phenom.  It seemed like every family I knew suddenly had one, and not wanting to be the bad mom and cheat my kids, I succumbed.  At first blush, it seemed like a fun tradition to start, and the bonus would be motivating my kids to toe the line – at least during the holiday season, right?  Santa’s little narc, right here in our very own home.

Well, the experience didn’t go so well.  My kids were terrified of the thing (come walk down Memory Lane with me, won’t you?).  Plus, I quickly realized that “tradition” translates to “giant pain in the ass.”  Mom’s ass, to be specific, because it ain’t Dad thinking up creative places to place the Elf, and remembering to do it every damn night.

(Really, this is just another sadistic twist in the competitive game of Motherhood, isn’t it?  The good moms not only remember to move the Elf, and find super fun things for the Elf to do in order to amuse their kids and keep the holiday magic alive, but they take photos of their Elves and post them to Facebook so that we slacker moms can feel like the losers we are.)

Well, after that scarring experience two years ago, I said “no more!” and stuffed the blasted Elf into a drawer where it’s remained, forgotten about, all this time.

Forgotten about until a couple of days ago, that is.  Suddenly Annabelle (the child who was most terrified of it a couple years ago) got it in her head that the Elf must return, post haste! “Call Santa, Mommy, and tell him to send the Elf back!  I’m not afraid anymore!”  She said.  “Mommy, did you call Santa yet?”  “No.”  “Mommy, will you call Santa tonight and tell him to send the Elf back to our house?”  “Mommy, did you call Santa?”  “Mommy, when will you call Santa?!?!”

Great balls of fire!

So, against my better judgment, I dug the Elf out last night and put him up on the top of the mirror in our dining room.  The kids were thrilled to see him up there this morning.

Now, let me just stop for a second and wonder aloud how it is that Joey, age 10, no longer believes in the Halloween Ghost (an apparition who appears on Halloween night after the kids have gone to sleep and exchanges most of their candy haul for a toy or book; I made this up when Kevin was a tyke in order to convince him to willingly part with most of the crap he got trick-or-treating), but does still believe not only in Santa, but that this stupid, fake-looking Elf doll is a real elf.  Go figure.

Then the questions start:

“Mommy, when did he get here?”

“Did you see him come in?”

“How did he get in the house?”

“Does he fly?”

“Does he talk?”

“Why does he look like a doll?”

“Will he talk to you while we’re at school?”

“Will he still be here when we get home from school?”

My favorite: “Mommy, I saw a bunch of boxes at Target that said ‘The Elf on the Shelf’ on them.  What are those for?”

And leave it to Annabelle to climb up onto a chair to get a closer look.  “Mommy, why does it look like he’s taped to the wall?  I can see tape behind him.  How come there’s tape on him?”

Listen, kid.  If you keep up with the questions, your pal the Elf is going to take a header into the nearest garbage can.

I’m just not good at making up lies on the spot.  I need time to weave my lies to make them more believable, so if my kids are expecting wise, magical answers from me, I’m sure they’re sorely disappointed.  I give my standard answer to all of their questions pertaining to the Elf: “I.  Don’t.  Know.”

In any event, it does seem that our Elf is quite the rascal.

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There he is, up on the dining room mirror (pretend you don’t see the dust up there).  Oh my goodness, what in the world . . . ??

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Well, I never!

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Hey!  That’s my vodka!!

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Elf, you dawg!  You da man!

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Oh look!  He shits mini chocolate chips!  Isn’t it precious?

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Happy freakin’ holidays!

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16 Comments on “Bad Elf”

  1. Carolyn Gabriel
    December 4, 2012 at 6:37 am #

    Your post brought a smile to my face and the pictures are really cute. Have your children seen the antics of this elf? They must roll in the floor laughing. Our Grandson is 11. About five years ago he had a period of unbelief. Then at Santa Land in E. Tennessee, we walked into a building and there sat Santa on the couch! He seems to believe now as it is in his best interest.

    We got our Grandson a new suit for Christmas so he could attend a Gala celebration of the ARC’s 50th year here. He soaked it all in, ate very little of the $50 a plate meal. My husband Gene was given a silver Dove award and initiated into the ARC Hall of Fame, presented with a silver bowl. I later looked at the bowl and it was inscribed “To the Gabriel Family” and I appreciated that. I got Chris and my husband black turtlenecks to wear under their jackets, thought it would be a formal look, kidded that they would look likfe Tom Cruise and Rainman in Las Vegas. I actually attended myself and, having MS, I don’t go anywhere. Look under Carolyn Gene Gabriel in Facebook and you will see us. Chris is a seasoned public speaker and very poised in public-definitely a leader. He wedged in behind the podium, got a hug, and then came to stand with us.

    I must say that Chris’ having DS has given us an expanded dimension of love. His life has been a catalyst for him and many others to have the good life at ARC’s Dove Industries. He works with other gray haired people that he graduated high school with-lovely friends. There is a small house on the campus used by teachers from the local college. Chris gets to participate in learning units about the environment, etc. He clams up when I am around, I wonder if he is depending on me to do his talking, as I just ‘jump right in’ if people don’t know what he is saying.

    “Bloom” was mentioned and a book given away. There were little ‘favors’ at each place setting, turned out they were seeds so we could all create ‘blooming where we are planted’. I thought they might have Kelle Hampton come and speak as she lives in Florida also. I thought it was fairy dust, will be grass or some kind of flowers. It was the most exciting event I have attended since our wedding 53 years ago-probably because Chris is being healthy and our daughter and grandson went.

    I missed you, thought “with 7 children she is very busy right now”. What do you do about X-boxes and Wii’s? Would not want that bill! Santa is not rich enough to get 7 of them.

    Does Finn use the computer? If not, he will be exposed to that soon. How do you limit their computer time?

    Sincere Best Wishes,
    Happy Elf To You

    What if it had been three Wise Women instead of three Wise Men? Something to think about………….

    Thankss for listening, again.
    V

  2. Angie
    December 4, 2012 at 7:30 am #

    bahahahaha….. love it Lisa!! especially the part about the parents posting photos of the Elf in different position (like who has time for that?!)

    the Elf on the Shelf does not exist here is Oz (phew!) hehehehe

  3. Megan
    December 4, 2012 at 10:25 am #

    In a third grade class I work with, I was fairly certain kids would be coming to blows over Santa last week. The one kid who said “there’s NOT Santa” was being shunned. He looked to me for help and I kept my mouth SHUT and told him to do his math work.

  4. Erin
    December 4, 2012 at 12:07 pm #

    This is hilarious!!!

  5. Melissa B
    December 4, 2012 at 2:55 pm #

    OMG You crack me up – thank you for this!

  6. Holly F.
    December 4, 2012 at 3:39 pm #

    Lawdy woman, I LOVE YOU! I literally LOLed.

    I haven’t bought the elf yet. I won’t until the kids ask me to. Hopefully never.

    (PS, I mentioned you in a blog post recently.)

  7. Becca
    December 4, 2012 at 4:01 pm #

    Bwahahahahaha!!!! Omg, crying tears of hysteria over here… LOL, too funny – loved the Barbie conquest the best…

  8. Asha
    December 4, 2012 at 9:26 pm #

    ROFL!!! You are hilarious!!!! I also love the Barbie one. Like how he grabs the boob!
    Funny, I never succumbed to the pressure ( the kids never knew about it) but since we moved they have asked. Somebody’s classmates must have it. I was contemplating buying one… Now I wonder…

  9. Pauline White
    December 5, 2012 at 3:09 am #

    Mom (Sue Dedrick) has told me about ur blog and shared this with me today. Loved it! Wishing you well …… 🙂

    • Lisa
      December 5, 2012 at 3:26 am #

      Wow! A blast from the past! How are you, Pauline?

  10. bethBeth
    December 5, 2012 at 6:20 pm #

    LOL!! That Elf of yours is a handful!

  11. Samantha
    December 7, 2012 at 4:02 pm #

    OMG! I’ve been reading your blog for awhile now and may I just say, I LOVE it! My favourite blog by far. You are so real compared to other people who pretend that everything is perfect. Thank you Lisa.

    • Lisa
      December 7, 2012 at 4:05 pm #

      Thank you, Samantha!

  12. Kirsten Dhillon
    December 7, 2012 at 9:20 pm #

    Too funny. I am totally with you. I have almost as many kids as you do and appreciate the perspective.

  13. alex
    December 16, 2012 at 11:34 am #

    Hi! I’m a new reader to your blog, found it as I’m battling the insomnia. I have to say, this post brought a chuckle to my face for the first time all weekend. I love naughty Elf! (for the record, I think he’s super creepy and my kids also think the same – less work for me!)

    I think, for the rest of my weekend, whenever I need a smile, i’ll just think about your elf pooping out chocolate chips. That was just pure awesomeness. 🙂

  14. Kit
    December 16, 2012 at 12:16 pm #

    LOL, so funny!! Vodka and Barbie, love it!

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