It’s been a bit quiet on the blog for the last few weeks as I’ve been preoccupied thinking about both Christmas and my daughter’s 5th birthday. The birthday is now out of the way so I’m in full on Christmas mode! I thought I would do a series of posts telling you about some of the Christmas traditions that we have in our house, and it won’t surprise you to know that they don’t cost a fortune.
Many people these days do the elf on a shelf thing, which looks a lot of fun. And I’ve heard of others who do a book advent calendar. Well, we’ve combined the two, and we have our very own elf who comes each day and brings books!
My daughter’s birthday is on 3rd December, so our elf is very considerate and waits until the birthday rush is over before making his appearance in our house. On 4th December he arrives, bringing with him a letter explaining that Father Christmas has asked him to come and report back to the North Pole on the children’s behaviour. If he thinks their behaviour has been good enough, then each day while we are eating our dinner, he will come into the house and hide himself somewhere, holding his signature blue gift bag containing a Christmas book. The children then rush to find him after their tea and read the book as their bedtime story.
Twenty-one days of elf visits means twenty-one books, which sounds a lot and could be expensive. But not the way I do it… I started this tradition a few years ago when I realised how many Christmas books we already had, both from gifts and some from my own childhood. Since then I have been keeping an eye out for Christmas books in charity shops and facebook sites and have accumulated a grand total of 35 Christmas themed books!! Some of them are still a bit old for my kids so I’m saving them for future years, and I have sorted the others out to a book or two for each day.
I didn’t buy the elf specially for this either – he was a Christmas decoration that I bought pre-children who has now been put to good use!
Some days the elf might bring other Christmas goodies too, like Christmas socks, PJ’s or puzzles.
Once all the books have been read and the Christmas period is coming to an end, we have to find a way to get the books put back away for the next year, as I don’t want a house full of Christmas books all year! (It’s bad enough that my 3 year old seems to be obsessed with reading Easter egg books in December!) So on New Year’s Eve, we hunt around the house, gather together all the Christmas books and leave them on the front door mat. The elf then comes during the night and takes them all back to Father Christmas, ready to use again the following year.
So now you’ve heard all about our Christmas elf tradition…I’d love to hear about what everyone else’s elves get up to!