Do you have an elf on your shelf?

Do you have an Elf on the Shelf in your house? In case you haven’t heard of the Elf, he visits from Thanksgiving to Christmas Eve, sits in your house watching and listening during the day, and then flies to the North Pole every night to report back to Santa. Then, he comes back to your house before the kids wake up the next morning, but he lands in a different spot. No one can touch him; he will lose his magic powers if touched by a human. A week ago at Liam’s parent-teacher conference, I learned that our family was the only family in his class of 23 kids who did not have an elf in their house. I was flabbergasted: How could Santa forget our house when the rest of the town is apparently overrun by an elf population?

Lo and behold, this morning we woke up to a letter written in North Pole red ink. The letter was from an elf. He explained that Santa had sent him to England to find Will and Liam over Thanksgiving, but after days of looking, he reported back to Santa that he couldn’t find the Malcolms. Santa explained that we LIVED near Boston and were only visiting England. (Perhaps the fact that our names weren’t on a permanent title or lease in England added to the confusion.)

In the letter, the elf explained that Santa had directed him to stop in Reykjavik on the way to our house. The elf needed to check on some reindeer for Santa. A couple reindeer from the North Pole went to Iceland in November to visit cousins, and two of the cousins wanted to move to the North Pole. Before Santa would allow them to immigrate, he wanted to see if they were naughty or nice, so he had our elf watch them and report back to Santa. Fortunately, the reindeer made the cut, so our elf helped them move to the North Pole -- which is why he was delayed getting to our house.

After reading the letter, Liam soon spotted the elf tucked on a narrow ledge above the stove.

Smiling slyly, Liam told me that very, very, very rarely elves might make a mess. A buddy of his at school woke up one morning to a sugar spill on the counter. “They make messes?!?” I exclaimed, perhaps over-reacting a bit. “Not very often at all, Mom.” In addition to the normal route of picking up boys’ clothes from the bedroom floor and boys’ towels from the bathroom floor and boys’ breakfast dishes from the counter, will I now have elf mess for the next 13 days?

By the way, behind Liam’s little face – which was lit up in awe as he spotted the elf – I saw through the kitchen window moments of big fluffy snowflakes falling out of this rainy Nor'easter sky. I do believe the elf has brought a little magic to our house.

(P.S.  Did you read about the drone that landed in my hair? Yes, really. My writing is based on factual events... really. Here's Happy Day After Thanksgiving!)