So, I mentioned on Facebook recently that I was thinking about doing the whole “Elf on the Shelf” thing this year in an attempt to scare my children into behaving better. Everyone who has used it have varying degrees of effectiveness, and as long as no one said, “IT MADE MY CHILD MORE EVIL!” then I was on board.
I decided to set it up last Friday so that I could talk to the kids about it before the babysitter came over for Donnie and I to grab some dinner. Nikki was IN AWE. She listened to the story and immediately started talking to Fifi (that’s what they named him) and being on her BEST behavior.
Wes was not so inspired.
He kept trying to touch the Elf which – as you may or may not know – causes him to lose his magic so he can’t get back to Santa. Luckily, I had placed the Elf inside a cup so I could just move the cup without touching the Fifi. I moved him to a higher shelf as Nikki watched – TERRIFIED I was going to slip and touch the thing.
Well, Donnie and I went to dinner and the babysitter was asked to read the story about the Elf OVER and OVER again. HOWEVER, while I explained to her about the Elf before I left, I didn’t tell her about how I skipped over the line about the kids needing to “Say your prayers” in the book. You know, because I knew Nikki would be like, “WHAT?!” and immediately freak out because she doesn’t say prayers.
Lauren, our sitter, read that part and Nikki did exactly what I though she would. She freaked, dropped to her knees and immediately started “praying”. How many other kids has Santa inspired to be religious?
Anyway, no big deal, my daughter prays. How or for what? Eh. I’m not concerned. We talk about religion all the time so she knows how I feel and she knows I don’t pray but don’t have a problem with people who do. ESPECIALLY IF SANTA WANTS THEM TO!
Little did I know this would not be the greatest drama to come out of the damn Elf.
We got home and I immediately went to take Lauren home. I called Donnie after she told me the Nikki Praying story and I could immediately hearing Nikki crying in the background.
What’s going on?
WHY DIDN’T YOU TELL ME THE STUPID RULES FOR THIS STUPID ELF?
Huh? What happened?
I TOUCHED IT AND NIKKI IS FREAKING OUT AND CRYING BECAUSE SHE THINKS I BROKE HIS MAGIC! I tried to explain it doesn’t count for adults but she doesn’t believe me because YOU evidently acted like it COUNTED. She said you wouldn’t touch it so it would have REALLY BEEN NICE if you had told me this before I SCARRED HER FOR LIFE!
Let me talk to her.
I basically told her that I didn’t know if the Elf’s magic was gone or not. “Daddy said he didn’t feel a shock or anything when he touched him…so maybe the magic is still there?” Sure, that sounds right. I assured her that that Santa was understanding and probably knows that Daddy didn’t know the rules yet. I told her I really hoped he did but that we would know for sure when we woke up in the morning because if the Elf had moved? It meant his magic was still intact.
And if he didn’t? It meant that Mommy forgot to move him.
I woke her up as she asked at 5am before I went to go run and told her, “He moved!” and then she went back to sleep, peacefully at last.
Donnie, on the other hand, has been in a catatonic state for five days now. The trauma of almost ruining the magic of Santa has he mumbling in the corner and flinching at the sound of Christmas music.