Your very own Christmas Elf

I am sure that many of you are familiar with the Christmas "Elf on the Shelf" idea.  But for those of you who are not, let me share with you for a moment.  The idea is that a little elf directly from the North Pole comes to your house to act as a spy for Santa.  When he is in your home, he is watching all the children to make sure they are nice, and if he/she leaves, it's to tell Santa they are being naughty. 
This has been one of the best behavior regulators for my two crazy kids and I wish we could make it work all year long. 
Anyway, there is a whole book and stuff you can buy to share the story with your kids and I think it comes with it's own Elf for your shelf.  I just went to the local craft store with coupon in hand and purchased my own elf who sits anywhere but on the shelf.

Harris has found the perfect look-out sitting on the dining room light.

The elf that visits us each year is named "Harris".  He is a sneaky one making sure to place himself in sight of the children at all times.  You see, I have him move around occasionally through the day as if he is actually tracking their whereabouts.  My daughter will frequently ask me "how does he move around without us seeing him?" and I tell her that he moves like the toys on toy story.  When we are looking, they freeze, when we aren't watching he plays and moves around.

We find him everyday in the craziest places and playing pranks on the kids.  Yesterday in the bath, he sprinkled fake snow over the curtain on top of their heads.

He watches them as they come in the front door to make sure they don't just drop their coats and bags on the floor, and today, my son found that he had left footprints on the table as he skipped to his next hiding place.  (the footprints were made with flour.)

As silly as this may all sound, it is so great for the kids to feel like Santa is really sending someone to watch.  Like I said, it has been the best behavior thing at our house. Perhaps you too could invite one of Santa's elves to visit your home for the holidays.  The more he moves and the more little "pranks" he can play, the more real he becomes.

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