The very year that Anna dropped, another mischievous creature came into our lives as well. Thankfully, this creature, Krewfie,
was only with us for about four weeks a year. Yes, in 2005, the “Elf on the
Shelf: A Christmas Tradition” was thrust upon the public and the merchants
rejoiced. I have nothing against traditions, I have nothing against books as we
have many Christmas/winter themed books and I have nothing against elves.
Hermey the elf in “Rudolph” remains one of my favorites. However, with this
book come great responsibilities, responsibilities that are often just too much
to take over the holiday season. The gleeful day your progeny receive said elf,
the must name it, and vow never to touch it. EVER! If the elf is touched in any
manner by the children, his (I have yet to see a girl elf) powers will be
zapped and once again, Christmas will be ruined, but not by a drunk family
As the story of the elf unfolds, your children will go from being pie-eyed and enthralled with its magic to realizing that Jimmy the Snitch has just moved in for the season. Yes, the elf is Santa’s top informant. The elf returns to the North Pole each night to talk to the Big Guy about the kids’ behavior, so you better be good for goodness sake! Not only are the kids now worried about Santa seeing them when they are sleeping they have to worry about this little troll too. It’s the NSA of the North Pole. I think many parents secretly hope that their elf will make the kids Santa’s bitch and they will do whatever it takes to please the big guy. At least that’s what they hope. Our elf, “Krewfie” (rhymes with roofie) worked for a bit, but as faithful readers will recall, the whole plan backfired and we ended up scrapping the elf for the sake of sanity.
And in the time since that first post about the elf, Pinterest came around which begat the posts on Facebook and other social media showcasing how you could create an entire month of magic (!) a sense of Christmas wonder (!) special family memories (!) and deplete your time, wallet, and energy (!) with these precious/precocious elf set ups. Yes, questionably sane parents will create an entire month’s worth of scenarios to set up after their kids go to bed each night and even post pics of their elaborately decorated calendars to prove it. These ideas range in complexity from super simple: put the elf on the tree to what-the-fuck-were-you-thinking: stage snowball fights between your kids’ toys and the elf using powdered sugar and marshmallows on the table for a funny holiday surprise! The surprise will be that you’ll be late for work that day because the cat will get on the table at night and roll in the powdered sugar like David Lee Roth at a hotel room party circa 1983 and you’ll be stuck chasing it and your sugar-fueled children around the house while you attempt to clean up the mess and head out the door to be on time for school and work.
To quote Sweet Brown, “ain’t nobody got time for that!”
Seriously, the holiday season is stressful enough without one more goddamned thing to worry about. I remember waking up in a panic one night as I couldn’t remember Tod moving the elf to show that he had gone to see Santa that night. Each night before we secured our CPAPS, we’d ask, “did you move the elf?” No wonder my blood pressure is high. So we are going to have “the talk” with the kids this year and tell them that due to layoffs in the North Pole, Krewfie is going to sit this year out and just hang out in Jackson this season (thanks Obama!). We’ll bring him out and place him with the myriad of other holiday decorations and just let him be. Anna is very close to the age where disbelief sets in, and I am okay with that. Eli is still infatuated with Ho Ho so we may have a few more years with him that is if Anna keeps quiet. It will be interesting to see how this holiday season goes. We’ll continue with our other holiday traditions such as visiting Marshall, MI for their annual Holiday event, going to the D for carriage rides around the city, Nite Lights at the fairgrounds, visiting our families, and staying close to home on Christmas Eve and day.
Sanity is a gift, a gift which is often overlooked at Christmas.