A NEW ‘Elf On The Shelf’ Tradition You Will Actually Love

Elf on the Shelf Letter TML logo

By Vicki Little

Stop groaning — I am not going to load a bunch of mommy-guilt on you about the latest fun little capers the “cool” elves have been up to. The Elf On The Shelf is likely at your house anyway, so you may as well get something out of it. Think fewer toys underfoot, party goodies that finally disappear, maybe even a chocolate or two to enjoy after the kids go to bed — if you can get the elf to share. An added benefit is that there just may be a reason why little Elfie didn’t move last night.

Everyone knows that elves are Santa’s little helpers. They make, collect, and wrap the toys. The special Scout Elves get to hang out with our families and make sure we are all being good. Then, he or she can report back to Santa that we get to skip the coal this year. But what, until recently, few people know is that the elves don’t actually make all of the toys (I mean seriously, the population has grown MUCH bigger than when we were kids).

Some toys are taken back to the workshop to be fixed up and then Santa brings them to sweet little boys and girls who don’t have many toys of their own. Santa loves to see little kids sharing toys — it may even score a few extra points and keep kids on the nice list! The elves can’t just take the old toys, though, because that would be stealing of course!

Instead, good little boys and girls around the world share their gently used toys so another child can get just as much love from those toys as they did. Kids leave their small toys (nothing too heavy because it is a long flight) for the Scout Elf to take back to Santa. If it is easier for children to only give toys once a week, I am sure you can include a letter asking for this arrangement. It might make things easier on your elf because there will be less flying!

The Scout Elf (and Santa) absolutely love win-win situations and life lessons. This new tradition teaches children to let go of things and give to others who aren’t as fortunate. It saves a glass of wine from being guzzled in the tug-o-war that is getting a child to get rid of toys they no longer play with, and it helps Santa make some less-fortunate child’s life a little brighter this season.

If your Scout Elf is participating in this tradition, we would love to see a picture! Join the fun by posting your picture on Instagram and tag us @TheMotherList and we might throw a little something your elf’s way!


Vicki Little is a work-at-home mom with two young kids. A Colorado native, she is the Publisher and Editor of Macaroni Kid Aurora and Downtown Denver. In her free time, she enjoys volunteering, reading, camping, or enjoying a bottle of wine with friends.


Want more great content from The Mother List? Sign up here!