Merry Christmas!

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Ah Christmas.  We’ve made it!

Cards are sent, gifts are wrapped and waiting under the tree, the weather is attempting to give us a white Christmas, and everyone is home for the holidays (except for my parents who just left to get that “one last gift”).  Time to relax and enjoy it.

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From my family to yours – wishing you love, joy and adventure the whole year round.  Merry Christmas!

 

 

Do I really want to simplify this holiday season?

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Today we are hitting the tail end of what has been one of the most eventful weeks I have had in a very long time.  I’m not sure why things didn’t end up more spread out this month but events seemed to happen back to back to back this week.  We had birthday parties and band concerts and shopping to do and gifts to wrap and elves to supervise (tons of elf on the shelf inspiration here and here if you need it!) and I joined in on a couple of things I don’t normally do for the holidays.  Plus add in keeping up on the routine things like running kids to the orthodontist, checking homework, cleaning the house, volunteering in Tyler’s classroom, paying bills, running errands, and getting the husband to cook dinner as often as possible…

(I’ve been trying to take at least one photo a day for at least a partial attempt at December Daily so feel free to check out what I’ve been up to on my Instagram feed. )

Among all of this I keep seeing mentions of simplifying the holidays on social media and it has me wondering – do I really want to simplify my holidays this year?  Did I somehow take on too much or do it wrong this time around?

I hate feeling like I’m rushed or stressed and typically I’m pretty good at saying “no” to things that will bring too much of that into my life.  I almost always plan ahead and try to get the prep work done for big projects, parties, etc. days or weeks before they need to be done because I dislike doing anything last-minute.  My goal for Christmas is to have the majority of my gift shopping done by December 1st and here it is the 11th and I’m still missing things and in some cases I don’t even had decent gift ideas figured out.

When I pulled out my calendar Thanksgiving weekend and realized that we had committed to sooooooo many things that fell this second week of December I had a moment of panic wondering how we were going to handle it all.  I’ve been hoping daily that I won’t get sick because things would come to screeching halt if I did.  I have had to keep pretty close track of my time and priorities since then.  And there has been more than one night when my elf alarm (yes I set a nightly alarm on my phone for 30 minutes past bedtime to help me remember those elves) went off and I found myself wishing Tyler was ready to move on to being Santa’s helper along with his big sister (not that I ever want to wish my kids older or more experienced and jaded than they are – they grow up WAY too fast already).

But.

I haven’t regretted a single event or plan we made this week.  Not one.

My son had an awesome amazing birthday and a crazy chaotic joyful birthday party (birthday on Monday, party Friday night. blog post to be determined!).

My daughter shone in her band concert, more poised and confidant each time one of these comes around.

Our Bunco Christmas party was a pajama-clad, gift-stealing, fun tradition.

I got to know a lot of great people in the neighborhood and renew acquaintances with other fantastic people I haven’t seen in a long time while I spent hours helping decorating for the church party (a church I don’t actually attend).  It turned out beautifully and there is satisfaction in that along with the pleasure of watching the party itself happen.  I was busy most of the party as well, playing Santa’s helper and the interactions between Santa and the kids, teens, and even the adults were so fun to watch.  (Santa was really on his game yesterday – it was awesome).  PS – I’ll blog about the party details soon!

And for the first time since high school (I think we hit the 20 year reunion this year!) I took the opportunity to sing with a big choir at the community Christmas concert last night (a much bigger event than I knew it would be when I signed up).

So my take-away from this week?

Sometimes putting in the extra effort is totally worth it.

No matter what you are doing or what you may need to be doing in an hour, be fully in the moment and enjoy that one thing on its own.

and

Don’t be afraid to say yes.

Do I recommend filling every week to the brim?  Nope.  Do I want to take on every single thing someone asks me to do?  Nuh-uh.  Do I intend to take one day next week and spend it on the couch binge watching a show, drinking hot chocolate and forgetting everything else for an afternoon?  Absolutely.

Life isn’t about doing only the minimum or cutting out some of the hoopla simply because it’s what other people are doing.  I think we need to give ourselves things to look forward to.

You can’t do everything but you can do anything you choose.

So choose wisely but don’t be afraid to push yourself a bit.  I don’t think you’ll regret it either.

Happy December!
We are now off to the big gingerbread house decorating party with the husband’s family…

 

 

Elf Antics – 24 Days of Elf on the Shelf Fun

24-days-of-elf-antics-quick-and-easy-ideas-for-your-elf-on-the-shelf

It’s that time of year again!  Halloween is over, Thanksgiving plans are well under way and all of the stores are decked out for the holidays…bring on the Christmas prep!  For me that means lists – gift lists, shopping lists, projects lists, Christmas card lists, and lists of ideas for our Christmas elves.

Our elves always show up on the first of December and spend the month with us keeping an eye on the kiddos for Santa, as well as having a little fun themselves (sometimes too much fun!).  The kids look forward to the visit from the elves and it adds a little daily fun and magic to the season for all of us.

Our elves have been making their appearance for almost 10 years now (yes, I looked it up 😉  I started this tradition in 2007), well before the Elf on the Shelf concept took on the recognition and popularity it has today.  So our elves don’t look like all of the other elves and they don’t have quite the same rules as the official Elf on the Shelf.  In fact, our elves love to get hugs from the kids and to play with them during the day.

To keep things fresh and fun year after year I do have to put in some planning time (thank goodness for Pinterest, right?  I have tons of ideas on my Holiday Elf on the Shelf board) so I’ve been pulling together ideas and reviewing photos of our Elf Antics from years past and I thought I would share a sample year with you.

This is what our elves were up to every day in December a couple of years ago.  (My kids were ages 11 and 8 at the time)

elf-on-the-shelf-easy-ideas-for-your-elves-first-week-alaynascreations

Day 1 – Sure enough, Tinsel and Twinkle arrived at our house on schedule bringing with them Lego advent calendars for the kids.

Day 2 – found them in the storage room where they had pulled out most of Grandma’s games and toys.  Photo is courtesy of Kaitlyn, who was quick to inform me when I got back from the gym that morning and found the kids playing Jenga that she knew I liked to take photos before we moved the Elves and had made sure to do so.  (Isn’t she the greatest?!)

Day 3 – in the bathroom, where Twinkle was tangled in Kaitlyn’s headbands and Tinsel had drawn a Rudolph head on the mirror.

Day 4 – the elves had put up a “tent” using one of the pool towels so they could hide while they created Top Secret missions for the kids.
Wonder what’s in the envelope….   (printable found here.  Awesome idea)

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Day 5 was Tyler’s birthday so the elves had made an attempt to decorate with crepe paper but got distracted playing with the party games.

Day 6 – the elves we cozily reading a book together in the rocking chair

Day 7 – had decorated the photo wall in the office using dry erase markers

Day 8 – Perler bead creations

Day 9: they got into all of the treats left over from the birthday party

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Day 10:  must have been taking inspiration from my (body builder) brother.  Looks like Tinsel might benefit from a few personal trainer sessions.

Day 11:  found the sled on top of the entertainment center in the living room.  I’m told Twinkle almost met with a horrible accident when she toppled off and my brother’s pit bull picked her up.  Luckily, the husband saw it and pried her out of his mouth before any damage was done.

Day 12:  packed the kids’ lunchboxes

Day 13:  changed out the light bulb in the hallway for a pretty stained-glass one.  Tyler said it looked like they were having a dance party.

Day 14:  climbing the Christmas tree.  I’m afraid it looks like Tinsel must have taken a tumble or two.

elf-on-the-shelf-antics-a-whole-month-of-ideas-for-parents-making-december-with-your-elf-on-the-shelf-easy

Day 15: hot chocolate!  They found a special Cookies and Cream version from Stephen’s – MMMMMM

 Day 16:  crepe paper Christmas tree

Day 17:  time for a Nerf dart war

Day 18:  the elves found the tablet and had used it to take photos of themselves (by the Christmas tree, posing by the dog, random selfies, etc) then used them as the desktop background photos on the tablet.

Day 19:  Playing with Tyler’s Minecraft toys and even found a Santa Minecraft head for Steve.  (The Steve is a printable I used for Tyler’s Minecraft Party  and the Santa head is a printable found here that I just enlarged a bit before printing.  It wasn’t quite big enough for one of our elves to wear, but it worked fine for Steve)

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Day 20:  We got home late last night and the kids forgot to open their Advent treat box before bed so the Elves did it for them.  Lucky for the kids, the elves didn’t get as far as opening any of the chocolate!

Day 21:  found the elves fast asleep under the Christmas tree, using the kids’ stockings as sleeping bags.

Day 22:  the elves were having fun with the camera last night and took all kinds of photos.  (Printable photo props found here)

Day 23:  this morning they attempted to hitch a ride to school in the kids’ backpacks.  I think we are all excited for the last half-day of school before Christmas break!

Day 24: elf zip line!  And of course they also wrote up a farewell letter because Santa picks them up on Christmas Eve while he is making deliveries.

And that, my friends, is an entire month of Elf on the Shelf ideas for you.  They’re my favorite kind too – quick and easy.  Easy enough to implement at 3AM when you suddenly wake up with that feeling that you forgot to do something…  😉

What have your elves been up to?  Any great ideas you would like to share?  I would love to add a few to my list for this year!

Linking to:  Wow Me Wednesday,

Bucket Full of Summer Fun

Thanks for helping me have a great year Last Day of School Thank You Gift for Teacher AlaynasCreations

Hello Wednesday!  Has anyone checked their calendars lately?  And did you do a double-take (as I did) when you realized just how quickly the last day of school is approaching?!?  T-minus 15 (school) days and counting, according to my little guy on Monday, which translates to just over two weeks until school is out for the summer.  That’s a bit late for our typical school year and I know a lot of schools are finishing up even sooner than that.  So in the interest of being on the ball, ahead of the game, and all of those other clichés that help keep me from feeling stressed, I wanted to put together a fun little end of the year gift for the teachers – and do it now rather than later.

Bucket List Last Day of School Teacher Thank You Gift Idea AlaynasCreations

The first place I always turn for inspiration is my Pinterest Boards and it wasn’t long before I ran across this great printable Bucket List tag.  So cute – and half the work is already done for me!  So I printed it out and took a quick trip to the dollar store.

Last Day of School Bucket List Teacher Gift Idea AlaynasCreaions

Don’t you just love the dollar store?  I never leave there with just the items on my list, but I sure do have fun while I wander – and my kids or husband usually get some fun treat out of the deal.  For this project I simply let myself wander, repeating the thoughts “summer…bucket list…summer” as the kids and I wandered through the store.  In the end my collection included a fun pair of sunglasses, sunscreen, Sunny-D (catching the theme here, aren’t we?), a bag of gummy bears (Tyler’s pick for his teacher when I told him we needed a treat to add to the bucket), and some small buckets.
*the dollar store is my absolute favorite place to find inexpensive containers for gift baskets.

 

Bucket List Last Day of School Teacher Thank You Gift AlaynasCreations.jpg

It looks pretty good all put together doesn’t it?  Hopefully the teachers will like it and if not, they’ll still appreciate the sentiment.

Last Day of School Bucket of Fun for Summer gift idea for the kids AlaynasCreations

I had purchased the buckets in a set of three so I had one leftover after putting together the two teacher gifts.  I decided it would be great to use for a little Bucket of Fun for my kids on the last day of school.  I wasn’t sure what I wanted in the bucket so I took a look at what I’ve done over the past few years (I wrote a blog post about some of our traditions last year.  You can find it HERE)…then decided that wasn’t really helpful since my kids already had those items. 😛  So plan B was to just let things jump out at me and it worked great.  One day at the grocery store I ran across those Milk Magic flavoring straws – Cotton Candy flavored!  That’s something I knew my kids would love to try, so I picked them up.  Another day Tyler was with me at the store and spotted the Slushies on the shelf.  I told him we didn’t need them that day, then when he turned around I snuck them into the cart under the vegetables.  And this past Sunday the bubble wands caught my daughter’s eye while we were looking for a birthday gift for a girl in Tyler’s class.  12 years old and she still thinks bubble wands are fun – great!  So I let her grab the 5 pack, gave two to the kids to use that afternoon, put one in the birthday gift, and kept the other 2 for the bucket.  Perfect.

Last Day of School Summer Bucket Quick and inexpensive gift basket idea for the kids or teachers at the end of the school year AlaynasCreations

Bring on the last day of school because we are now ready for it!  Are you??  Maybe not, but just think of all those days we might be able to sleep in a bit instead of rushing out the door to school, and no homework and… 😉

For more Last Day of School (or teacher appreciation) gift ideas or End of School traditions with the kiddos feel free to check out:
End of the Year Teacher Gifts in a Cup (my most Pinned blog post on Pinterest for the past month!)
Super Powered Teacher Gift
Crazy Cool Teacher Gift (this one was for Valentine’s Day but I think a “stay cool” spin on this idea would be awesome)
-my Last Day of School Traditions over the past few years

 

Linking to:  R&R Wednesdays, Home Matters Linky Party,

May the 4th – Mini Care Package

May the 4th!  Happy Star Wars Day! 😉

I just realized what day it was when the husband sent me a text saying he likes the “4th notes” I sent in his last care package.  Bonus points to me for thinking ahead, but do I lose points if I forget about it in real life? (ha!)  This week has so many things packed into it, I guess this one didn’t officially make it onto my calendar.  Not a big deal either way, but my husband has started to turn the kids into Star Wars fans and I’m sure they would have loved a little something special too.  At the very least I could have save the rest of the Star Wars Fruit Snacks instead of letting the little guy tear into them right away.  Or I could pull together something before they get home from school today if I really felt like it, but currently I am in my paint clothes with a bathroom vanity half-way repainted.  So maybe next year.

But before I forget again, here’s a peak at what I included in the Star Wars Mini Care Package I sent to the husband.

May the 4th Mini Care Package Idea Star Wars Themed small care package idea May the Force Be With You AlaynasCreations

Included in the package:  Star Wars Themed Fruit Snacks, a tiny tin container filled with Q-tips (they were at the Dollar Tree for anyone that wants to grab one before they’re gone), and these adorable Star Wars note cards (intended for Project Life-type scrapbooking, I’m sure.  Printable found HERE) on which the kids and I each wrote a quick note.

There you have it – easy peasy and a great way to let the Star Wars fan in my life know I was thinking about him.  Now back to my regularly scheduled paint session.  *sigh*
And May the Force Be With You Today 😉
*Want more care package ideas?  Check out my first care package idea for this deployment, take a peek at my Care Package Pinterest Board, or check back in soon as I will be posting many more ideas as soon as I get the chance!

Deployment Care Package #1

 

I won’t say that deployment is enjoyable – in fact, you all know it is far from that.  However, in my typical optimistic get-it-done fashion (when I’m not feeling sick or tired, that is) I choose to make the best of the situation and for me that usually means creating something.  So bring on the care packages.  Sending my husband a box of goodies not only makes me feel like I’m “doing something” but helps give my energies and focus a creative outlet, while at the same time being one of the few ways in which I can send a little fun and joy to the husband overseas.

As with all my endeavors, I started out by looking for a few ideas on Pinterest to get me started (see my Care Package Pinterest Board HERE) and quickly had more than enough ideas to get me through the next few months and well beyond.  I realized I could quickly spin out of control (and spend a lot of money) if I didn’t develope a bit of a system so I am reining myself in and only sending one Flat Rate package every two weeks.  I knew I wanted to specifically include a few things like some Open When Envelopes and a Long Distance Date Night idea at least once a month (more on both of those soon) along with treats and snacks, that I wanted to make it upbeat and comical as much as possible, and that I wanted to include some involvement from the kids every time.  And as an unique signature, I am including a couple oversized Kisses in each package.  (I’m not sure if he’s noticed – he hasn’t commented on them so far)

Giant Hershey's Kiss for Care Package Deployment gift ideas AlaynasCreations

The first care package I put together was a bit random.  I had considered doing some sort of Deployment Survival Kit, but in the end we went with kind of an eclectic selection of items for the first box.  My husband’s first request was for drink mixes as they almost exclusively only have access to bottled water so I made sure to include a selection of those (and will continue to add a few to every package from here on out) as well as a couple of fun treats.

Deployment Care Package Ideas First Care Package with Open When Envelopes treats and Date Night ideas AlaynasCreations

Open When Envelopes for Deployment Care Packages and Long Distance Relationships AlaynasCreations

If you have spent even a little time online looking at care package ideas, I’m sure you’ve run across the concept of the “open when” envelopes.  I think this is a great idea and knew I wanted to include a small set of these in the first care package we sent off.  Half a dozen envelopes seemed like a good goal so I picked my top six favorite themes for the envelopes (I will post detail photos of what I put in each one soon!).
My topics included:
Open when – you’re missing me, you’re missing the kids, you’re feeling stressed, you’re feeling sick, you’re having a good day, and when you need to laugh.

Open When Envelopes for Deployment Care Package Ideas AlaynasCreations

Next up was an Open When envelope for Valentines Day, since we sent out this package around the end of January.
Open When It's Valentine's Day Open When Envelopes for Care Package Long distance Valentines gift idea AlaynasCreations
We included hand-made Valentines from the kids, a couple of printable funny Valentines cards from me, a small box of chocolates (a must for V-day), a cute little stuffed animal and a DIY Balloon Bouquet.

Care Package Idea send him or her a cuddly stuffed animal that has been spritzed with perfume or cologne for your loved one to cuddle when they miss you

Kaitlyn made the cute little tag and I made sure he was drenched in perfume 😉

Care Package Idea Balloon Bouquet for Valentines or Birthday or other special occasion Blow up balloons and write message on them then uninflate and send in envelope

For the balloon bouquet, we inflated each balloon and wrote a note or something fun on each one then let the air out so we could ship them without taking up much room.  The husband can then inflate them to read the messages.

Balloon Bouquet for Care Package is a great idea for Valentines Birthday or other special occasion

As I mentioned, it is also my intention to include some sort of “date night” once a month.  I went with an easy one for this first box – watching one of our latest TV obsessions.  We recently discovered the Arrow series on Netflix and it has been our custom to put the kids to bed, grab a treat we don’t want to share with the kids, and watch something on TV we wouldn’t necessarily want the kids to watch with us.  So I figured why not recreate that in a care package friendly form?  I know my husband has access to Netflix and Hulu, so it was a simple matter to find a few funny Arrow memes and put them in an envelope with a snack bag of popcorn and some hot chocolate mix (mint flavored since the packaging is green).

Date Night Envelope Watch the Arrow together long distance date in a box logo

In previous deployments I don’t remember spending much time on decorating the box, but it seems to be the trend right now to add some decorations to the inside of the box – and I’m always up for adding a little more cute-ness and fun, right?  So decorate the inside we did.  I used THIS TUTORIAL for attaching gift wrap to the inside of the box – which is pretty much just taking apart the box and adhering the wrapping paper, then putting the box back together.  Easy.
Care Package Ideas How to Decorate the inside of the box AlaynasCreations

Obviously my wrapping skills need a tiny bit more practice, but I thought message in the bottom of the box is a nice touch, don’t you?

Care Package Idea for Deployment or Long Distance Relationship Get the kids involved AlaynasCreations

And there is the final product.  It felt a bit like playing Tetris but I was able to fit everything inside the box, perfectly.  Not bad for a first attempt.  I’m sure there will many more to come in the next few months.  Any guesses on what my next theme will be?

Crazy Cool Valentine

Crazy Kool Valentines  Cool gift ideas for classmates and teachers

Don’t you just love it when you get inspired and then things fall together quickly, easily, and well ahead of schedule?!  After more than a month of scrambling to stay on top of things or just going with the flow and “playing” practically non-stop I have to admit that a part of me has been very happy to settle into our more regular routine this week and even better, I’ve found myself with some time to not only catch up but get ahead of a lot of things.  In the past few days I have worked on a lot of gifts, which I can’t share here (yet) but I can show off the Valentines I put together for the kids’ teachers and classmates.  A whole month before they are needed – that’s like a blogger timeline, which I am almost never ahead of the curve enough to follow 😉

With my oldest is in middle school, I only needed one set of classroom Valentines which is great because my son has a rather large class of 27 this year and that felt like plenty.  For classmate gifts, I often try to do something a little unique and with the added bonus of using something lower in sugar if possible (not that I’m one of those moms – and no offense if you are.  I just have a lot of other priorities and worrying if my kids get a little too much sugar now and then isn’t one of them).  So I was doing my usual pre-hoilday browsing through my Pinterest boards and ran across this great printable (found here) and knew that was what I wanted to do this year.  I’m all for quick and easy projects, and if someone has done the adorable prep work ahead of time, I’m all for it.

I think you're crazy kool Valentine Great non-sugar Valentines gift idea for classmates with silly straw and individual packets of Kool-Aid

It was a pretty simple matter to add the “love, Tyler” sentiment (in Paint) and print the tags out, 9 to a page. I cut a couple of slits in the tag to slide the straw through and stapled the Kool-aid packets to the back of the tag.  The whole process took under 30 minutes, most of which was done while watching Arrow with the husband (our new Go To show when we have the chance to watch TV together.  Gotta love Netflix).

Great non candy Valentine idea for classmates A silly straw and Kool-aid I think you're crazy kool Valentine

With the classmate Valentines complete, I figured I would eventually run across a great idea for the teachers – and I did!  I was in TJ Maxx the other day checking out the kitchen section since my daughter has requested some divided containers for her lunchbox.  In the past I have put together quite a few great teacher gifts using cups, mugs, or water bottles (see those fun ideas here and here and here), but having just done something like that for the current set of teachers for Christmas (see this idea) I hit the container aisle before the glass/bottle aisle and discovered these fantastic lunchbox containers with the ice packs in their lids.  And it hit me – these are quite literally “cool” and fit in perfectly with the theme I already had going on with the classmate Valentines – how perfect is that?!  Not only could I use the same tags, but I felt like the lunchbox containers were something the teachers would actually have a use for and not something they would typically be given as a gift.  So I grabbed a set and split it in half for the two teachers.

Lunchbox containers with ice pack in the lid are a great gift idea for teachers I think you're crazy cool Valentine

Again, a quick change to the tags I already had – changing the “kool” to “cool”  (the font is called Jokerman, in case you are wondering) and tied them together with ribbon.  Easy peasy!  And totally adorable, right?

Lunchbox containers with ice pack in the lid are a great gift idea for teachers I think you're crazy cool Valentine

I can now sit back and wait for Valentine’s Day without worrying about scrambling for an idea at the last minute – and you can too!  I’d love to hear about it (and see photos!) if you use this idea, or if you have a great idea I can use for next year 😉

Next up on the list of things to plan and create – my very first care package for this deployment.  Oh boy…
Linking to: Tip Me Tuesday, Made By You Monday, Lou Lou Girls, Home Matters Party, Pretty Pintastic Party, BFF Open House,

Elf Antics 2015 – Week 3

Yay!  We’ve almost made it to the big day!  I’m almost as excited as the kids – though probably for different reasons.  After all this preparation and planning, now that I have everything all set to go I’m anxious to get the party started!  And I must admit that I’m a little exhausted by the need to keep staying on top of things day after day, especially when it comes to those silly elves (#elfontheshelf).  The husband has been in Texas for military training all month and while I’m mostly excited to see him because we missed him, part of me would be relieved to turn over the nightly Elf Duties to him for a couple of days.
Here is what our elves have been up to lately:
*I have been sharing all the Elf Antics daily on my Instagram feed – be sure to check that out!

IMG_20151215_180507Day 15:  The elves found the DIY Lego Advent I started (and gave up on).  Tyler thought the designs were pretty cool.  Maybe between all of them they will get finished.
Day 16:  I think the elves must have heard about Kaitlyn’s field trip to the Discovery Space Center.  We found them busily painting balls of newspaper and making a sign that read “Our Solar System”

20151216_210036Day 17:  Guess who else is excited for the new Star Wars movie!  Glow stick light sabers and all – though Tyler was quick to inform Twinkle that “Storm Troopers carry guns not light sabers.” (Printable masks found HERE)
Day 18:  The elves wanted the kids to have something special in their lunchboxes for the last day of school before Christmas break so they dressed up pudding cups to look like reindeer.

20151219_075507Day 19:  6 day’s til Christmas!  First day of Christmas Vacation!
Day 20:  the kids have had a few days of extra good behavior and the elves wanted them to know how happy they were about that.  The elves brought fun new Glow in the Dark markers with a note that said “Write on!  Your good behavior is not overlooked.”
Day 21:  Found the elves “sledding” down the stairs, using my shoes as sleds.

20151222_072246Day 22:  We’ve had non-stop snow for a few days in a row and this morning we found the elves having some indoor “snow” fun of their own building snow forts and igloos out of cotton balls.
Day 23:  The husband has been out of town all month but finally made it back last night.  The elves were nice enough to make him a giant “Welcome Home” banner.

Day 24: As usual, on Christmas Eve the elves will be waiting for the kids with a Goodbye Letter until next year.

Wow.  It just really hit me that we are finally here at the Eve of Christmas Eve.  All the planning and prep for the holidays is done (or if it isn’t, it won’t be) and for the next couple of days we just settle in to enjoy the holiday and the time together.  Sounds great, doesn’t it?

*For more Elf Antics and great Elf on the Shelf Ideas check out this year’s Week 1 and Week 2 on the blog.  Or follow my Instagram feed for daily updates.  There are also tons of great ideas on my Pinterest Board.

Elf Antics 2015 – Week 2

Here we are finishing up another week with those crazy elves.  This is what they’ve been up to lately.

Elf on the Shelf Ideas Do You Want to Build a Snowman toilet paper Olaf printable

Day 8:  found the elves in the bathroom where Twinkle had build a “snowman” out of toilet paper (printable Olaf found HERE) and Tinsel was trapped in the basket where we keep the extra TP.
Day 9:  the elves brought a candy cane bouquet for the kids
Day 10:  Elf Antics in the pantry.  I guess the elves were disappointed with our lack of Christmas cereal as they decided to create some Elf Breakfast Cereal of their own
Elf on the Shelf Elf Christmas Cereal
Day 11:  Twinkle tried her hand at barrel racing using one of the Barbie horses while Tinsel cheered her on from the “stands” with the rest of the Barbie and Skylander audience.
Day 12:  we actually got some snow yesterday (strange it waited this long to stick) and the elves were excited.  We found them all bundled up in the kids’ winter clothing ready to go out and have a snowball fight
Day 13:  pretending they were at the beach suntanning and snorkeling
Day 14:  The elves decorated the washer and dryer to look like snowmen.  How did they know it would snow on laundry day?

Elf on the Shelf decorating the washer and dryer to look like snowmen

Want more Elf inspiration?  Check out what our elves were up to last week HERE.  I am sharing their antics daily on my Instagram feed.  Or check out my Pinterest Board for even more great ideas.