An elf has come to live at 154 Hidden Court.

He's not just any elf, he's one of the infamous elves from The Elf on the Shelf.And I'm pretty sure he's out to get  us.

See, it's supposed to be this fun Christmas tradition for your kids, complete with storybook, Elf magic, and intrigue.  Instead, at the J house, it's become a source of constant stress for all of us.

Here's how it's supposed to work.  You get your delightful little elf and read your kids the story about how naming him gives him his magic, and how he goes home to visit Santa at the North Pole every night to let Santa know if you've been naughty or nice, then each morning, your elf is magically waiting for you in a different spot than he was when you went to bed the night before.

Sounds pretty fun, right?


Even I thought it sounds like fun, and normally I choose not to participate in holiday festivities of any kind.  I thought to myself, "Self - surely you can manage to read a picture book to your kid and move a stuffed elf around the house a few times.  Even YOU can do that, self."

And I've failed miserably.

Here's what happened.

I sat down with zj to read the story.  He was very interested and paid close attention.  At the end of the story, we decided on a name for elf - Ironman - started talking about how Ironman would lose his magic if he was touched.

At this point, it started going to the South Pole in a handbasket.

Zj grabbed Ironman and held on to him as tightly as possible.

"He's not going to tell Santa I've been naughty.  He's NOT!!!"


So much for the magic.  I was still determined to make this work somehow.  I pried cajoled Ironman out of zj's tightly clenched fists and convinced zj that Ironman would want to stick around the first night, you know, just to get the lay of the land.

When I went back into zj's room after he was asleep, guess what?  No Ironman the Elf to be found.

Since then, zj has taken great delight at hiding Ironman the Elf from me, and I have spend most of my waking hours trying to find the damn thing delightful critter.  It's become a competition of sorts, and it's one I am losing.


So much for my first and last attempt at a festive holiday tradition.

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