Last year my Mom gave my family an Elf on the Shelf. The girls were sooo excited. They named him Buddy and eagerly looked for him each morning. My husband, luckily, was great at moving him each night before bed. It really added to the fun of the Holiday season.
This year we started out great! A few days after Thanksgiving Buddy made his debut.
He surprised the girls with a breakfast - he went into my Christmas things and brought out some holiday plates and mugs. He left them hot cocoa,marshmallows and pastries. The girls were out-of-their-minds thrilled.
But Hubby and I had a little trouble this time around. It was a busy year for us.
A few nights after being with us, we stuck Buddy on a metal wall hanging in the living room. We tucked his legs behind it to leave it secure. The next night we forgot to move him. After the girls discovered him in the same place they panicked. Buddy was stuck in the metal tree! He couldn't move his legs! Did he break them? That night they anxiously said good night to him and wished him luck getting unstuck.
Another day he fell from the tv stand. What to do? If we moved him he would lose his magic from our touch. But if we left him there he would surely meet his demise through the teeth of our dog. So using just two fingers, I delicately moved him back into his spot. That was a close call!
He was a lot of fun though. I enjoyed listening to the girls talk to him. Ratting out each other for wrongs done. Long explanations of why they did some of the naughty things they did.
And then there was the fun Hubby had with him. Putting him in some precarious and questionable situations just for the fun of it.
Her name certainly isn't Chastity....
Buddy just loves snacking on bananas... What? You thought he was holding onto something else? Perv.
But I have to admit, I was kind of relieved to hide him back in the trunk in the basement on Christmas eve. One less thing to have to remember to do each night!
Fast forward to this week. D1 has a new friend over for a play date. After about the third "no, you can't do that" I agreed to let them into the basement to look at hubby's matchbox car collection. Five minutes later three very upset little girls come up stairs. D1 is holding Buddy out in her arms. "We found Buddy in your Christmas stuff!"
What I proceeded to act out was Oscar worthy. Amazing. Best Mommy of the year award stuff.
I told them to put him down. He'll lose his magic! We discussed that he must have accidentally got stuck in there. I said that I bet Santa was very worried about him. I told them that while they shouldn't have been poking around in that stuff, it was a good thing they saved him! My D2 seemed to go with it. She fully believed. D1's friend also seemed convinced. I asked her if she had an elf on the shelf. She said yes, but that hers definitely went back to the North Pole. He definitely wasn't in their basement because their basement was full of mold. Hmmmm... file that under "kids say the darndest things!". Hee Hee.
But D1 seemed a little leary. I could tell she was really thinking and analyzing the situation. Then I heard her whisper to her friend "maybe Buddy really isn't magic. Maybe our parents move him around every night"
I needed to step things up.
I asked them to show me the trunk they found Buddy in. They took me downstairs and pointed it out. I got a look of worry on my face. "oh no! that's where I keep Santa's mug for milk! I went down here Christmas eve to get it, Buddy must have followed me! Then I let my eyes tear up just a little as I quietly said "oh no, do you think I hurt Buddy?" Their eyes all got big as I said this. They started discussing the possibilities, talking over how hurt he was. It was working!
We went back upstairs and discussed what to do with Buddy now. We decided to delicately move him onto one of my few remaining Christmas decorations. A small decorated tree in the foyer. I instructed them to begin singing Christmas carols as I carefully moved him. Then we said a prayer to the spirits to protect him and make him well.
After D1's friend left (and I won't even go into the awkward conversation with the other Mom... ummmm surrey but I may have ruined your child's belief in Santa and Elves... surrey about that)we spent the rest of the evening watching Christmas cartoons to help infuse Buddy with the magic of the Christmas spirit.
After they went to bed, Hubby drafted the most brilliant of letters to the girls. It was from Flick, the head elf. It thanked the girls for finding Buddy. It explained that he was in the elf hospital, in tough shape but he would survive. The girls were thrilled, and convinced. Thank God.
And Buddy is currently spending his vacation at Hubby's office. Till next year.