We do some of those fun things, but our elf helps us to focus on Jesus and serving others. Here are few things we did last year, with our elf, Tinsel.
Tinsel reading Santa's Favorite Story:
Snowman Poop (aka powdered sugar donuts). This was one of the kids' favorites. I got this idea from Tara Whitney's blog. You can read some of her other ideas here.
In case you can't read the writing, our letter read: "One of an elf's chores back at the North Pole is to clean up Snowman Poop! Many elves have reported that human children like to eat it! I think that is disgusting, but I brought some for you anyway. What are some of your chores? Is there a way you can help your mom & dad today?"
Tinsel brought the kids "peppermint seeds" that had to be planted in two cups of of brown sugar and the kids had to wait 2 days to "harvest" what came to be candy canes. This was an exercise of practicing patience.
And the last activity...making a birthday cake for Jesus.
This year, the kids have been learning about the Fruits of the Spirit and I think there will be some days focused on those virtues. I'll keep you posted.
How about you? Do you do the elf on the shelf? What are some of your kids' favorite things they have done?