What the ELF?

The lies must STOP.

I’m not grinchy. Or scroogey. But I’m very fucking cranky about this whole “Elf on the Shelf” phenomenon.

He looks sweet, but he's pissing me off.

Eventually one of my children will see this elf in your home. And they will want one for OUR home. And that shit aint happening. Because we do not allow tattling. That Elf is nothing but a big ol’ tattle tale. I’m not having it. Not even a little.

I’m already lying to my kids and going out of my way to perpetuate a story about a fat dude squeezing down the chimney we don’t have, watching my children’s every move. It takes everything I’ve got to keep the Santa Claus myth going. My kids don’t even BLINK when I tell them to be good because Santa is watching. They just don’t care…or maybe they don’t believe that they won’t get presents (which is totally true. I would never withhold gifts on Christmas because of a temper tantrum, or painting with toothpaste. Drug use? Maybe. But it will be years before that really becomes likely.)

We talk and talk and talk about telling the truth. We work on being good for the sake of being good, that there are no rewards except for knowing that you have done good deeds and seeing the smile on people’s faces. They seem to get this concept as much as little tiny people can.

Until November, at which point everything changes.

Not only will you get PRESENTS when you are good, but there are threats of NO PRESENTS if you are bad. This goes against every parenting bone in my body. He already knows everything you do. The song says so.

“He sees you when you’re sleeping. He knows when you’re awake. He’s really fucking creepy.” Oh, the song doesn’t say that exactly? I’ve always kind of made up my own words to songs…

Back to the Elf. Supposedly, this elf watches you all day, and goes to report to Santa at night. The parents are responsible for getting the elf into mischief prior to the children waking up. When they find the elf, everyone laughs and shakes their head and wonders WHAT he was thinking.

Let me get this straight. First the elf tattles on you (totally not allowed). THEN he does bad things that my children would get in trouble for (double standard…Elves aren’t supposed to be good, too?) That’s a bunch of bullshit, if you ask me. Talk about mixed messages.

I can’t lie to my kids like that. I even tried to come clean about Santa in October, and they just wouldn’t believe me.

“Only some people believe in Santa Claus. How would you feel if he wasn’t real?”
“Mom, you are wrong. Santa lives in the North Pole with the elves. How else would we get those presents? If people don’t believe then he hates them and they don’t get presents anymore.”

She’s seemed to go it all worked out…so I pussied out and told her she was right. Plus, if they actually knew the truth, they would tell their friends. I would be responsible for the death of Christmas for 30 3 and 4 year olds. I can’t have that. It’s hard enough to make parent friends. Ruining Christmas for their toddlers certainly wouldn’t help.

But I’m still not into the elf. Because once you tell a lie, you have to keep embellishing the details to make it seem real. I know a guy that actually put his foot in SOOT and tracked it from the fireplace to the tree so his 7 year old would believe for 1 more year. This woman has a pretty amazing rant about not wanting to go crazy with naughty elf “fun”, and I totally totally feel her…which is why I plan on staying as far away from the elf as possible.

This is madness.

I can’t even bring myself to eat the cookies we leave out for Santa.

Call me lazy, call me a bad parent. Call me whatever you want. There will be no elves here. If you tell my child about the damn elf, I will just let them know that we don’t need no stinking elf. We have a direct line to Santa. He and I have a very close personal relationship and I’LL let him know when you’ve been naughty or nice.

So be good for goodness sake.


About dirtdonthurtmom

Beauty and Simplicity inspire me. Lack of clarity annoys me. Selfish people really piss me off. I have a filter, but ignore it, mostly.
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4 Responses to What the ELF?

  1. Totally agreed here, though I’m pretty sure we’re not doing Santa…but we have at least one more year to figure that out. Just like NurtureShock says, our kids learn how to be bad and mean by watching other kids and by what they read in book and see on TV – it is NOT in our nature to be bad. So a misbehaving elf will FO SHIZZLE teach bad behavior.

  2. Genesee says:


    It just feels gross to be telling them that they are being watched. And I love what you said about taking away presents (for drug use, yes, HA).

    As much as I wish we didn’t ever introduce the idea of Santa bringing presents for good kids, I wish that life could be so magical for adults too. I miss Christmas as a kid.

  3. I’m way late to this party, but…

    Your kids won’t find that crummy elf in our house, so your secret is safe here.

    Seems to me our jobs are to create magic in their lives, not fear and creepiness. I can totally see why people tell their kids about Santa…the belief is magic. We’re the buzzkill types who taught out kids early that Santa is an old story about someone who gives to people who are in need, and that the magic of giving makes December a fun, light-filled exciting month. Our son never told friends that Santa isn’t real because we told him, just like religion and rules, different families believe different things. Our family knows Santa is a story and we delight in seeing all the reminders of him through the month. Other families tell their kids he’s real, so don’t ruin their fun.

    But that elf? That’s just wrong. I want our children to tell us what they want to, and to ask us whatever they want to without fear of reprisal or dismissal. People talk to each other about what happens in their day. Stuffed dolls do no talk, and do not violate the safety of being able to say whatever you want at home.

    If feels terrifying to think that the walls have eyes and ears. And I hate the marketers who created and sold this jackass elf and all the families who use it to manipulate their kids.

    A pox on their elves.

  4. Brittany says:

    Well I think elf on a shelf is a great way to teach children to follow rules and it’s fun for them. The elf comes with rules and consequences. It is also a blast for the kids to get up and look for their elf every morning. If you teach your kids about God then they know they are being watched all the time anyway. This is just a fun Christmas tradition. Maybe it isn’t for you but to totally act as if it is just horrible is a bit dramatic.

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