It’s almost that time of the year – the return of the Christmas Elf.
It seems his/her arrival varies a bit. Some show up around Thanksgiving. Our Elf waits until December 1st. Regardless what your Elf’s particular schedule is, here is a round up of 50 easy ideas that will keep him/her active all season long …
- On the mantle
- Delivering “snowman” donuts
- Working on a toy laptop
- Playing with the wooden train set
- Hiding in the Christmas Tree
- High up on a cabinet in the kitchen
- Bringing “Elf Kisses” (i.e., Hershey’s Kisses)
- Visiting the nativity – this is a great opportunity to remind kids the reason behind the season too!
- Note left on the chalkboard
- Build a snowman from toilet paper rolls
- Leave hot chocolate – mug, pack of hot chocolate and a candy cane to stir with
- Hanging out in the Barbie Dreamhouse
- Wearing Mickey Mouse ears hat
- In a stocking
- Fishing for Goldfish crackers
- Dress up as a Ninja Turtle (see idea #8)
- Building with Legos
- Posing with his/her “snow” creation in a window (cut paper snowflakes or string cotton balls)
- Hanging from a curtain rod
- Hanging from the light fixture over the kitchen table
- Having a paper bag race with other toys
- Looking at a toy catalog (plan this one early in the month so you don’t encourage extra “wants” too close to Christmas!)
- Peeking into the aquarium or terrarium or hamster cage or hermit crab habitat … you get the idea 😉
- Feeding the family pet
- Checking his/her height against the family growth chart (or a ruler)
- “Lifting” mini marshmallow weights
- Standing by the cookie jar with a note: “buy more cookies”
- Cooking in the kids’ play kitchen
- Riding a dinosaur (or other larger toy)
- Reading books
- Encouraging good deeds
- Bowling with a mini bowling set
- Leaving a note on the fridge in magnets
- Taking photos & posing with props in a mini photo booth
- Brings a new holiday book to share
- Making snowflake(s) from Q-tips
- Hiding the fridge and wrapped in a washcloth (hey, it’s cold in there even for an elf!)
- Leaves a package of break and bake style holiday cookies in the fridge to make
- Leaves a note & treat commending good behavior
- Gifts holiday pajamas to the kids
- Playing mini golf with a candy cane & mini marshmallow
- Holding the video game controller – ready to play! (Take it a step further with this fun Minecraft “Creeper” head idea including free printable.)
- Puts on a SpiderMan mask and hangs from a his webbing (i.e., string)
- Brings a gift card or tickets to a special holiday event (show, movie, or even a family night out for dessert)
- Hides candy canes around the house with a note stating how many to find. (Definitely a weekend idea so you don’t have crazed kids running late for school.)
- Another weekend idea … brings a new DVD and snacks for a family movie night
- Drawing on the Doodle Board or Etch-A-Sketch
- On top of the world! Or, at least, a pretend one – i.e., hanging out on top of a globe. Maybe he’s helping Santa plan his route for Christmas Eve?
- Making a “Happy Birthday, Jesus” card with extra supplies for your child(ren) to make their own
Did you notice a theme here? All the ideas are good behavior based. No tricks or messes. Our Elf each year has stuck to this sort of theme which I appreciate. From my perspective as a parent, if the Elf can be naughty, why can’t the kid? So our Elf helps us model and encourage fun, well behaved ideas.
What’s your Elf’s favorite thing to do or place to surprise your kids?
And, to make this even easier, download this list as a free PDF here. Complete with check boxes so, if you’re like me and tend to forget mid-month, you can X off each idea as you go. Enjoy!
If you want even more “good behavior” ideas, follow my board on Pinterest – The Well Behaved Elf.