If you were around last year about this lovely time, you may have read about Charley. Last year when we started the Elf on the Shelf deal, my kids were obsessed with the Charley Bit Me video on Youtube. What did this mean... This meant our elf was doomed to end up with the name Charley.
And Charley it was.
Charley had plenty of exciting adventures during his time with us. A few I got from other blogs, but for the most part, my imagination started to run a little ramped.
This was made painfully obvious when we got this...
Yeah. Charley breakdances for change.... Jealous?!?
Yes, that is change in his hat on the ground beside him... I told you. My mind. It just goes haywire. Do my kids even get this kind of stuff???? Heck no! I do this for my own selfish enjoyment! And they think it's funny and cool and all that jazz. Blah Blah Blah.
I like seeing what I can come up with. The elf is a challenge wrapped up in a creepy little elf package. It taunts me. Come up with something better it calls from it's little hiding spot every night. This happens to everyone with an elf right? No? Just me? Well, I never said I was normal.
A few days later we got this...
Lion Tamer Charley. Not my proudest Charley set-up, but mine none the less. I believe the proudest will be reserved for Breakdancing Charley. Will I top him eventually? I hope so. The idea is still simmering somewhere in my overworked, insane mind.
So far this year we have had our special Wecome Back Breakfast. Charley brought Christmas pjs, an advent calendar, and a new ornament for each of the boys along with a new plate and mug for Santa's milk and cookies, and yummy sweets for breakfast.
He sat atop our garland in the dining room with his "I'm Back You Better Be Good For Santa" poem in hand...
The poem, for anyone interested, reads...
Mason, Brady, and Ethan,
It's time! I'm back! I'm here to stay!
Until we reach Christmas Day
Now here are calendars to count the days
and bright new festive pjs
and yummy snacks to fill your tummies
Yummy things that are oh so yummy
A plate and cup for Santa's treats
You know he loves things that are sweet
Now let's get started we must be quick
Be sweet and kind for old St. Nick
I'll keep an eye and write it down
That you three are the sweetest boys in town.
That is what you get at 11 pm when you are trying to finish up so you can go your tired, mom butt to bed. If I had more time I would have used pretty paper, but an almost empty roll of toilet paper from the bathroom is Charley's preference, thank you very much.
Now, so far we have had the breakfast (as seen above)...
Charley's Game Night (All bendable figures welcome) complete with homemade tiny Twister mat and board. (Yes I made it... I never claimed to be sane.)
And Snow Bunny Charley, Sledding down his powdered sugar slopes like a bolt of red, creepy smiling lightning.
Charley was SUPPOSED to be skiing down this slope, but seeing as he is a difficult little turd and the lovely folks over at the elf making factory didn't take into consideration crazy moms such as myself who would want to get all into this elf posing like some insane person with doll posing OCD. A little note to the folks over at Elf on the Shelf... Line these little things with wire! This thing would be so much easier to deal with if it had wire inside.
Lessons I have learned...
1. This little fellow is WORK. I am not big on copying other folks. I did it a little bit last year and this year I am trying to stay clear of it. Coming up with ideas and setting all this mess up takes some serious time and effort.
2. Double sided foam tape. LOTS. I went through a whole roll last year and I am well on my way to going through an entire roll this year.
3. Don't trust your kids not to touch him. Set the stage for trust issues early (Totally kidding.... Somewhat). I set him up out of reach every time. They can see what he is doing, but unless they stack stuff and Cat in the Hat their way up there, they can't get him.
4. Plan ahead. I made a list weeks ago of what I was going to do with him. Even included the toys I would need from the boys room and other props to make sure that I had them on hand for the night of.
5. Lose your mind. Only a crazy person would take this on and put the work into it that I do.
6. Think to yourself, "One day the boys will look back and tell their kids of their elf when they were younger and then I will continue to set him up for my grand kids for when they come to my house." This will all help you justify the crazy amount of time and effort you are putting into it. Then immediately regret thinking that because now you are sad that one day your hellions are going to grow up and leave. (Is it too late to lock them away? Is that weird?). Then immediately realize all the fun stuff you will get to do when they are gone. Peeing without interruption? Yes please. Grocery shopping without a kid biting broccoli while it is on the shelf in the veggie section? I'll take it.
7. Don't sleep. Who needs it. Staying up late to set up this guy is almost a full time job. Add this full time job to my regular full time job, my photography on the weekends, and my online boutique.... And well, wonder "why am I not making more money than I am???"
8. Shun the ridicule from your spouse as they tell you that you are insane/ use some of the ideas from last year/you're going to run out of ideas/the kids are not going to know the difference. The first step is admitting you have a problem. I just so happen to have one and not mind it.
9. Did I mention you need to be insane?
10. Enjoy it. I know I do. As crazy as putting all of this time and effort into this thing is... I enjoy this. I enjoy the boys looking in amazement and giggling at the scenes. So I am nuts? Who isn't. Mine just so happens to be centered around posing a small doll 25 days out of a year....