Elf on the Shelf is a fun family tradition to do at Christmas. Print this calendar and plan your elf’s visit with our list of ideas.
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Have you resisted having an Elf on the Shelf in your house? Guest blogger Amanda shares how she changed her mind and discovered that Elf on the Shelf is a lot of fun. Read her story and get a list of Elf on the Shelf ideas!
A few years ago, I was the mom who said, “I will not do the elf thing.” However, last year we unexpectedly got an Elf on the Shelf when my parents won it at a charity auction.
Why I love the Elf on the Shelf
The Elf helps me keep the house clean.
When our elf comes back, we start thinking about Christmas and all that needs doing. We try to plan little fun things to do with the elf. My plan for this year is to do one bigger activity each week. With hunting season, the craziness of working from home, and normal life activities this will probably be somewhat of a challenge.
The Elf keeps me timely.
If your house runs like mine – crazy at times – time can get lost on you. Your brain needs to start thinking about where that elf is moving and when…because you don’t want to get caught.
The Elf makes me magical
Last year we wanted to bake cookies, but with our elf, I did a really nice setup with an angel in flour on the table and he had all the stuff out all nice and picture-perfect… BUT then we needed the room to actually make the cookies.
Thinking fast on my feet, I texted Santa to see if it was cool to move our elf, Chase. Of course, Santa said it was and in Emmett’s eyes, I was magical because I was touching the elf he couldn’t. The expression “mommy magic” has never been the same since. Mommy magic is where you can see behind you and through walls, etc.
Daddies have this magic too.
Elf on the Shelf Ideas
Here’s a list of 30 ideas for you and your family.
- Elf arrives after dinner. They could bring a gift if you wanted.
- Make a gingerbread house as part of an “I’m back” party.
- Go fishing using red and green goldfish in a bowl
- In a (Barbie) car accident
- Takes a nap
- Has “mini marshmallow” snow fight with army men, Barbie, etc. behind LEGO forts
- Brings magazines/ads to “make” Santa a wish list letter
- Rides favorite truck or a dinosaur
- Packs a lunch for an indoor picnic
- Wants to make homemade Christmas cards
- Plays hide and seek with toys/stuffed animals
- Have the elf take a “marshmallow” bubble bath
- Serves breakfast with a Cheerios message
- Hosts a movie party
- Wants to bake Christmas cookies
- Plays “go fish” with Olaf the snowman or another plushie
- Builds a snowman with mini marshmallows and powdered sugar
- Wants to have a Christmas craft day
- Have the elf do a photo session with stuffed animals
- Hides in kitchen decorations
- Enjoys coloring (Bonus if you color a bit when the kids aren’t looking)
- Has a sick day
- Reads a story to their favorite group of toys
- Gets caught eating peanut butter out of the jar
- Hides 10 candy canes – Can you find them in 10 minutes?
- Uses a fire truck or dollhouse to TP the Christmas tree and cause mischief
- Hides in stockings
- Play doctor to the Paw Patrol characters or any favorite toys
- Hides in tree
- Leaves an extra pack of batteries for you and a “See you next year” note.
If you’re thinking about adding an Elf on the Shelf to your family’s holiday traditions, it can be a challenge but is definitely fun and worth the effort.
Printable Elf on the Shelf calendar
Plan our your elf’s visit with this printable calendar. It includes a month of blank squares to customize each year. Include our ideas in any order or add your own.
This prints on an 8.5×11-inch page, but can be resized to fit other paper too.
For troubleshooting tips and frequently asked questions, read the Printables FAQ Help Guide.
Pin this image to save it for later and follow Keri Houchin on Pinterest for more creative ideas.
Check out these other fun and creative ideas on One Mama’s Daily Drama: