This is a new family tradition for us for 2012! I love finding something new that will be fun for our family and this has certainly been a hoot! 

The Elf on The Shelf is a story book and a little character doll that comes to your house at Christmas. You really could use any cute little elf character {I did search and search for one that was cute but didn’t find one and ended up going the ‘popular’ one. It really doesn’t matter because you create the magic!!

The story goes that the elf is visiting to tell Santa whether the kiddos in your household have been naughty or nice, and will report back to him throughout his stay at your home. For us in our family we don’t put a lot of emphasis on the naughty and nice thing, or the Santa always watching. 
So the storybook hasn’t been read in our house and I won’t be using it with our elf, instead I told our children that they had been such wonderful kiddos through the year and Santa thought we might like to have one of his elf friends come to stay with us.
Our elf came from book depository – I would suggest to you to wait a little while if you’re going to get one for next year, ours was bought in september and it was cheaper than they are currently selling for. You might even find a super cute alternative in the meantime :o}

I ordered a personalised pouch for him  from Stuck On You {since we weren’t using the book + box it comes in}.
The kids were surprised by the pouch and letter outside our front door. They were jumping up and down with excitement. Noah was a little skeptical after we took the elf out {he says because it looks like a toy}. I told him that I wasn’t sure if it was a toy or not as I’d never seen one before, and that perhaps the magic of him only happens when we aren’t looking. 

We read the little letter that he came with, that just said the kids had been so wonderful so Santa has sent an elf to have a stay at our house. The letter also shared that the elf might get up to mischief while at our house while the kids are in bed! And in the mornings the children would have to find him to see what he’s been up to. I used a few lines I did like from the book and added a few of my own.

Here is a little bit of what Peppermint has been up to since arriving at our house!

hanging out in the fridge | climbing to the top of the Christmas tree | letting us know how many days til Christmas
watching a movie with his friends and making a mess with popcorn | hanging out in Noah’s latest wooden contraption 

Peppermint went off to the North Pole with his sleigh to deliver Santa letters and came home with a reindeer!
He also got cheeky in the bathroom with liquid chalk markers | made a big mess reading lots of books
climbed around on our Christmas garland | hung upside down from our family room light | forgot how many days until Christmas!

and last night we had a convoy of cars as Peppermint went for a nice evening ride in the convertible. 

Some nights he makes a mess, others he just finds a new place to hide. I figure he will get cheekier as Christmas gets closer and closer! I had planned to use the lovely Larissa from My Pigeon Pair’s Elf Planner but I haven’t been that organised yet! Do check out her blog though for some awesome Elfy ideas! 

Every morning my kiddos run out and tell me where they’ve found the cheeky elf. I love how excited they are about him and the magic he is bringing into our home this year. Such a fun and gorgeous new tradition that I am happy we added :o}