See a handful of fun and easy Elf on the Shelf ideas for 2023 that your kids will fall in love with!
I have a love/hate relationship with our Elf on the shelf. I love seeing my kids excitement and joy when they finally find him. I DON’T love waking up in the middle of the night to the realization that we forgot to move him (it happens more than I want to admit). That being said, having a list of ideas of what to do with the Elf is a life saver for those nights when you wake up in a panic. I can’t wait to share some of the easiest Elf on the Shelf ideas I’ve found.
Elf on the Shelf has become a beloved holiday tradition for many families. The idea of a magical elf who reports back to Santa each night has captured the hearts of children and parents alike. However, coming up with new and creative Elf on the Shelf ideas each year can be a challenge.
Luckily, there are countless ideas and inspiration available online. From simple setups to elaborate scenes, there is no shortage of ways to keep the Elf on the Shelf tradition exciting and engaging. Whether you prefer to plan out each day in advance or come up with ideas on the fly, there are plenty of resources available to help make your elf’s stay a memorable one.
Don’t leave without checking out out other Elf on the Shelf posts too. These are great resources especially if you need help with props, idea kits and creating more ideas around these silly little elves.
Table of Contents
Related Elf on the Shelf posts
Basics of Elf on the Shelf
History and Tradition
Elf on the Shelf is a popular Christmas tradition that started in 2005 with the publication of a children’s book by Carol Aebersold and Chanda Bell. The book tells the story of Santa’s scout elves who watch over children during the day and report back to Santa at night. The elves return to a different spot in the house each morning, creating a fun hide-and-seek game for kids.
The tradition has become a beloved Christmas tradition in many households, with families creating their own unique Elf on the Shelf ideas each year. The elves can be found doing everything from creating silly messes to leaving sweet notes for children.
Rules and Guidelines
While Elf on the Shelf is a fun tradition, there are some rules and guidelines that families should follow to ensure a positive experience for everyone involved. Here are a few key rules to keep in mind:
- The elf should be moved each night while children are sleeping.
- Children should not touch the elf, as it may lose its magic.
- The elf should not be used to threaten or scare children into good behavior.
- The elf should not be moved to inappropriate or dangerous locations.
The idea behind it is simple: parents place a small elf doll in different locations around the house each night, and their children wake up to find the elf in a new spot each morning. Here are some creative Elf on the Shelf ideas to make the tradition even more exciting for your family.
Elf on the Shelf for Different Ages
Ideas for Toddlers
Toddlers are curious and love exploring new things, so Elf on the Shelf can be a fun and exciting activity for them. Here are some ideas for Elf on the Shelf for toddlers:
- Elf playing with toys: Place the Elf on the Shelf next to your toddler’s favorite toys, like blocks, stuffed animals, or cars, and have the Elf play with them.
- Elf reading a book: Sit the Elf on the Shelf next to a book and have it “read” to your toddler.
- Elf hiding in a stocking: Hide the Elf on the Shelf in a stocking and have your toddler find it.
Ideas for School-Age Kids
School-age kids are more aware of the world around them and can appreciate more complex Elf on the Shelf ideas. Here are some ideas for Elf on the Shelf for school-age kids:
- Elf leaving notes: Have the Elf on the Shelf leave notes for your child, like “Good job on your homework!” or “Remember to brush your teeth!”
- Elf playing pranks: Set up the Elf on the Shelf in a silly or unexpected way, like hanging upside down from the ceiling or putting on a funny hat.
- Elf having a snowball fight: Use cotton balls as “snowballs” and set up a scene where the Elf on the Shelf is having a snowball fight with other toys.
Ideas for Teens
Teens might think they’re too cool for Elf on the Shelf, but with the right ideas, they can still have fun with it. Here are some ideas for Elf on the Shelf for teens:
- Elf leaving inspirational quotes: Have the Elf on the Shelf leave inspirational quotes or messages for your teen, like “Believe in yourself!” or “You can do anything you set your mind to!”
- Elf taking selfies: Set up the Elf on the Shelf with a phone or camera and have it take silly selfies.
- Elf playing video games: Set up the Elf on the Shelf playing video games with other toys or action figures.
Remember to always keep safety in mind when setting up Elf on the Shelf ideas, and never put the Elf in a dangerous or inappropriate situation.
Let’s get back to it with some real Elf on the Shelf visuals…
Easy Elf on the Shelf ideas
This is one of my favorite Pins on Pinterest. Apparently everyone loves a good play on words, especially when the Elf on the Shelf is included.
I found a similar Elf on the Shelf image below with a few more fun sayings.
I want to share a few Elf on the Shelf ideas that my kids loved.
What is it with kids and poop these days? My daughter rolled on the floor laughing with this one for a long time!
Side note; she insisted on getting that fake poop at Dollar General a few months ago. With all the toys she has and she wanted that!
Oh, and by the way; our Elf’s name is Toot (courtesy of my son when he was 2).
This is our Halloween candy bucket. Apparently our Elf on the shelf likes Chocolate as much as I do!
This Elf on the Shelf idea is hilarious! That being said, it might mean more to kids who could read.
This Elf on the Shelf idea is always cute!
This was our Elf on the Shelf’s first appearance. He apparently got into our Cheerios!
I think our Elf is ready for Christmas, what do you think? I created this Christmas countdown clock on my other website.
Looks like the Elf on the Shelf is enjoying himself! Or should I say he’s enJOYing himself, LOL!
There are soo many possibilities that you can do with toilet paper and elf on the shelf!
Move over Ken, here comes The Elf!
Ready to see some more Elf on the Shelf ideas from other creators?… or should I say creative parents and caregivers!
Thanks for stopping by friends