I am so happy this year to be joining Just a Girl and her home tour and if you are stopping by from her blog and if this is your first time visiting…..
…..nice to meet you.
The farmhouse and I are super excited you are here.
Happy because the halls are decked.
Happy because the floors are swept and the dishes are put away and the empty Christmas tree boxes are back in the attic.
But happy most of all because I spent an hour shopping the dollar aisle at Target just to get ready for your visit.
Have you ever heard of the elf on the shelf?
We’ve had an elf that has showed up at our house every Christmas since I can’t even remember when.
His name is Jingle.
He is cute and sweet and red-capped and super-smiley…..
….and a lot of pressure.
Every night he leaps to a different place in the house and in the morning the children rush in and wander around the rooms staring at the ceilings and the floors and everywhere in between trying to find him.
And everything was great in elf land until my children got reports from school about all the crazy things their friends’ elves were doing like getting into the butter and leaving footprints and running away with the toothbrushes and climbing onto the roof and ending up on the weather vane. And they promptly came home and asked me why all our elf ever did was sit on the bookshelves.
Super duper high-drama elf pressure.
So you can understand it was with a little sadness and a whole lot of relief that I announced this week that this was the year Jingle the elf was going into retirement.
I made a little speech and explained that since we were in middle school now, we were starting new traditions and Jingle had things he needed to attend to at the North Pole and he might stop back by one day, but for now it was curtains.
I thought no one would care.
No one would even notice.
At most I expected a shoulder shrug or an eye roll.
I never expected weeping and gnashing of teeth.
I never expected people explaining to me in great detail that the elf was a tradition and how could I do this and that they liked finding the elf and just because they were teenagers now I was going to take away the joy of getting up in the morning and hunting for the elf.
I had to pause to let that amazing fact sink in.
They actually wanted to look for the elf?
I held firm.
You won’t have time to look for him in the morning, I said. You are fixing your hair and picking out the perfect outfit and texting your friends to see if they have the perfect outfit to wear to school, too.
You won’t even notice the elf isn’t there, I told them.
They sighed and went upstairs to discuss and later that night I got this text.
I almost cried.
My heart sunk a little.
Maybe one more year? Maybe we had stopped too soon?
Maybe we could call Jingle out of retirement?
And so it was that early the next morning, two not-so-grown-up teenagers with perfect hair wearing the perfect middle school outfits came down to breakfast to find this elf-scrawled note:
Can you find me?
I’m back to visit a little longer.
Just because you believed.
Jingle and his red-capped smiley face taught me a lesson this week.
One I briefly forgot.
You are never too old for Christmas.
You are never too old to rock around the tree or add extra marshmallows to your hot chocolate or wear a sweater that sings.
It is a time for celebrations and traditions and realizing there is so still much joy and good in this world….
…..if only you believe.
And now for the next stop on the tour…..
….be sure and stop by Whimsy Girl for some more Christmas decorating and inspiration.