Elf on the shelf (off-topic!) Ideas, because it’s nearly Christmas!

Hi friends! This is not a watercolor related post in the least, but I thought it’d be fun to share. I’m always seeing blog posts about ideas for Elf on the Shelf and I wanted to add my own. Most of these ideas require a pose-able elf, so if you haven’t modified yours yet, some thick bendy wire is great for sticking in each arm and leg – it really opens up the possibilities! Hopefully it will help spark some ideas for those of you partaking in this elfish tradition. Here we go…

1. Have your elf sitting by the Christmas tree, enjoying some hot chocolate with friends. Use things around the house (other toys – here he is wearing a Barbie jacket and sitting on a pin cushion shaped like a couch.


2. Go fishing! If you have a fish tank in the house set up your elf to do a little recreational fishing. This set up requires a straw, some string and a paper clip. Playdoh bucket and tiny toy dog optional.


3. Hide your elf in an empty stocking. This one is pretty straightforward. Save it for a night where you don’t feel like exerting too much energy.


4. Giddy-up! Here our elf is wearing a Woody (Toy Story) hat and riding a toy tractor. We have a lot of farm animal type toys, so this made sense for us!


5. Create a swing for your elf friend! We used some string and a piece of cardboard to create this swing. It’s actually hanging from a ceiling fan, just out of little one’s reach.


6. For this setup we used some regular blocks and some Little People toys to create a “runway” for our Elf’s plane to land on. We included a note that said he flew up to the North Pole the previous night and thanking our son for letting him use the plane. Elf passport optional.


7. This was one of my favorites. I was cracking up the entire time I set it up. Your kids will get a kick out of a zip-lining Elf! Tie a long string from the tree to some other fixture (we used a chandelier in the next room), then hook an ornament along the string and pose your elf! Use a non-breakable ornament for this set-up, in case your Elf decides to take a dive overnight.


8. Playing piano! We had some old Christmas carol piano books and obviously, for this one you need a piano. But if you have another instrument you could use that instead.


9. So this setup is great for very impatient little ones, who just want Christmas to come already! We had our Elf make up a paper chain with a count-down of the days remaining till Christmas, and a note telling our son to cut one off at the end of each day. We hung it on a doorknob for easy access, after our Elf left his spot of course :)


10. Have your Elf be in charge of story time! Set up a few stuffed animals or other toys and face them all towards your elf, in circle-time fashion. Use any book, but I think a holiday book pulls everything together.


11. One night our Elf stayed up to make paper snowflakes. To really make this authentic pose your elf with the scissors and leave the scraps of paper on the floor below.


12. Rock climbing Elf on the Shelf – have your Elf scale any surface in your house. You need some rope for him to hang onto, and I twirled a bit around his arm to make it more authentic. We chose to have him climb the fireplace since it’s “bumpy” like a mountain. We also happened to have a mini backpack keychain that we used for the rest of his “supplies”.


13. Last but not least, set up a “snowball” fight! Use mini marshmallows, set up a couple of forts using items from around the house and some of your child’s other toys. Toss some marshmallows around for the full effect!


So that’s that! These are from 2 years ago. I did more last year, and if I ever manage to find the photos I’ll update this post with even more fun ideas! Thanks for humoring me on this non-watercolor or design related post! Hope you enjoyed!

Happy Holidays!