An Elf on the Shelf has a very important job. They keep a close eye on your home to make sure your children stay "nice" so they can report back to Santa. But parents have an even more important (and exhausting) job — they have to disguise and place the elf all around their house in new and creative ways every day until Christmas. Needless to say, it can get tiring and add on some extra stress to the already busy holidays. This is enough for some parents to not partake in the tradition and this mom "retired" her family's Elf on the Shelf because of just that. But her escape plan is all sorts of genius.
Elf on the Shelf is a super cute holiday tradition; not only is it something for kids to look forward to every day leading up to Christmas, it encourages them to be on their best behavior. And what parent doesn't want that? But it can be hard for parents to keep track of and be super creative all the time, especially when the holiday season reaches its incredibly stressful peak.
Parents who started the tradition but are looking for an easy out, should follow in the footsteps of Illinois mom of three, Christy Heins, who detailed her plans for cutting her Elf on the Shelf's career short on Facebook. "I forgot to move him more times than I can even count, and I cut it close a few times trying to sneakily move him after the kids were already awake," Heins wrote in her post. "I was also never good about using the elf as a way to improve my kids' behavior so he really didn't have an effect on their behavior whatsoever."
But instead of ruining the magic for her kids and ending the tradition altogether, Heins told them that their elf, George, was retiring through a letter straight from the North Pole.
Heins explained her reasoning behind writing a letter from Santa in her Facebook post. "I crafted this letter keeping in mind that I wanted to keep the Christmas magic alive, and also keeping in mind that many of my kids' friends will be talking about their elves still hiding and doing funny things," Heins wrote.
The letter she posted to her Facebook page successfully does that, explaining why Santa would let "George Elf" bend some of the rules. The entire letter should be read in full, but this snippet does an amazing job at detailing why George Elf would go into retirement. Heins wrote, as Santa:
Some scout elves LOVE their job and want to keep flying back and forth each night. But just like people, each elf is different. George Elf wanted more than anything to be played with like a real toy. He saw the excitement and happiness in your eyes and wanted you to be able to touch him and play with him just like your other toys. He asked me if I could make this wish come true for him this Christmas and I said YES! I love making Christmas wishes come true.
Not only is she reducing the pressure associated with positioning the elf, she is still keeping the elf and that Christmas magic alive in the house — just not in the intended way. And on top of that, she is teaching her kids about the importance of retiring early — smart lady. The comments on her Facebook post are in a general consensus that Heins' idea is pretty great. "This is amazing!" one commented. "And if it makes you feel any better, we don't elf either. It's wonderful for some families, but it wasn't a good fit for ours."
The amazing thing is that Heins' kids, according to ABC News, seem to have taken the news incredibly well. Heins told the outlet:
They think it's so special that George wants to be part of our family. He definitely got the royal treatment including his own bed and 52 bedtime stories.
The best thing about holiday traditions is that they're different and unique to every family. By retiring their elf and making him a part of their own family, Heins is just creating a new holiday tradition of her own and avoiding the stress associated with keeping up with elf on the shelf in the process. Her solution is so simple yet so special to her family.
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