Well December is here and that means…..our Elf on the shelf is BACK. Our special little Elf means exciting, memory filled mornings as the kids wake to see what his daily antics are. They love him so. I had to come up with a great way for them to say good bye to him each Christmas until the following year. Last year a special gift appeared all wrapped under the tree on Christmas morning from our friendly little elf. It was a yearbook of his visits for the year and a goodbye message too including a message about the reason for the season.
The Elf on the Shelf tradition has been around at our house for 6 years running, and my kids look forward to it every year. As they get older they are becoming more and more attached to our Elf that they call Ralfn’. If you are familiar with the Elf on The Shelf Tradition you should check out my first post about it a couple years back. It is an amazingly fun activity to add to your list of Christmas fun!
For 25 days in December the kids can’t wait to wake up and visit Ralfn’ and they can’t get enough of him, and his story. After Christmas comes, they seem to miss him quite a bit and often talk about missing him as they fall asleep at night or wonder if he is okay. Last Christmas I came up with a plan. A way for them to enjoy the fun of their Elf on the Shelf even after he goes back to the north pole for the year.
I was talking with my little boys Kindergarten teacher last year and she mentioned that she used to make books for her children that had pictures of their favorite toys. What a great idea! That is what I needed to do with Ralfn’!!!
So I decided to create “yearbook” of our Elf’s visits for the year! Each day included a picture of where he was hiding along with a little phrase as if he were talking to the kids about where he chose to hide. Then at the end he would say his farewell and remind them about the true reason for the season too!
I bought a simple blank book from an educational store for under $3 and began creating the book on the first day of December. Each page included a photo, a description, and what day in December it was. I used scrapbook supplies like Christmas card stock, photo corners, and number stickers.
I used a calligraphy marker to disguise my handwriting a little and had to be sure to place my writing on the opposite side of the page that had card stock covering the writing on the backside (the marker bleeds through the paper a bit).
Page 10 was my favorite and is a gentle reminder to the kids that the true meaning of Christmas .
On a snow day from school our Elf joined in the fun too.
He flew atop Rudolph… and did so many things that delighted and thrilled the kids through the month!! By creating this book they can always look back and see what fun they had finding Ralphn’ and telling him about their days. The last page was a little goodbye from our Elf to the kids and another reminder of what is really important about the holiday season. It also thanked them for being good, being kind, for doing there best and helping others.
“Sadly my time with you this Christmas is over, but todays a special day for your family. Enjoy your gifts and packages too, but most of all enjoy…that you…are blessed family, friends, and love and that sweet baby Jesus above! Merry Christmas to you Kyle and Olivia – be good this year and always be kind – I will see you next Christmas. Until then keep Christmas magic in your heart while we are apart.”
The last page was the last goodbye for the year and a thank you for the memories from their Elf.
“I will miss you both but I have much to do.”
The kids hung a stocking along with their own as a gift to him and he thanked them for the gift and left a final little surprise on Christmas Morning.
“I love the stocking that you gave me. I left some kisses in it for you! After your sweet stocking gift it was the least I could do.”
The kids were so thrilled to find a gift from their Elf on Christmas morning and were so surprised and delighted by each and every page of the book. They read it over and over after Christmas Day, and it was really special for them to be able to look back on all the holiday fun any time they wanted.
When they got the book out this Christmas, it was exciting all over again! I think it will be a fond family memory for a lot of years to come!