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15 Easy to Follow Elf on the Shelf Ideas

It's that season! #ElfontheShelf is back and it truly is a wonderful time to be creative for your little human. My son absolutely loves this time of year and I'm honestly ecstatic that we have a tradition of our own to look forward to.

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Our elf, Crawford, is always up to some whacky antics and I've been lucky enough to keep track over the years.  So how do you get started? First things first, purchase the Elf on the Shelf | A Christmas Tradition book set. It comes with the origin story and your very own scout elf. You have the option of purchasing a boy or girl, light or dark skinned elf. According to the book that accompanies your scout elf, this Christmas tradition runs from the day after Thanksgiving to Christmas Eve.  

The entire purpose of your elf is to "spy" for Santa to ensure your little human stays on the nice list until Santa shows up. With that being said, I never have any disciplinary issues with Jerm during this period, lol. I've compiled for you guys a few of Crawford's antics and I hope you guys are able to build off this list and create wonderful memories for you and your littles. 

1. Crawford's in a pickle.

Okay. Lemme start by saying I know NOW that Superman and Hulk/Spiderman are in different universes, lol. That aside, this one was fun to do. I try to incorporate toys and action figures Jerm already owns to keep the discovery that much more fun. No little scout elves will be sneaking around our house while the Avengers are here. This can also be done with the green Army men from the dollar store. 

2. Stealing sweets and eating treats.

This one was done over a two night span. The first night we caught #CraftyCrawford scaling our Christmas tree with a candy cane draped across his body. The next day he was enjoying the spoils of his exploits.

3. All aboard!

Crawford took every shoe out of Jerm's closet and created a Choo-choo train! Like what?! And these rides are how much?! Go home, Crawford. You're drunk, lol.

4. Hey, Auntie!

We all know how #BlackPanther took the planet by storm. I could not pass up the opportunity to incorporate Jerm's new favorite super hero. He finally felt like he had a strong, relatable character that looked like him to look up to and I wanted to capitalize on that. #WakandaForeva

5. Say cheese, guys!

This was really simple to pull off. Crawford gathered a few of Jerm's favorite plushes and had them pose for a portrait. He was definitely able to get their good side.

6. Crawford loves positive reinforcement.

Jerm's school sent home a "Caught Being Kind" award and Crawford couldn't be more excited to let Santa know! He was gifted with a coloring book for his good deed.

7. Venti, extra hot, no foam, with a touch of vanilla syrup and 3 short sprinkles of cinnamon. Got that?

I picked up these mini trees and chalkboard from Target's Dollar Spot and used my k-pod from that morning to create a cafe oasis for Crawford. For the record, a used Caprisun straw fits perfectly in the hole punctured by the Keurig.

8. I could be wrong, but I don't think that's what it means..

Crawford just be wilding out sometimes. lol

9. Get to work!

Sometimes you just need help with the touch ups around the house. Who says scout elves can't be handy men too? I think he can change lightbulbs and fix the dish washer too...

10. The Eighth Wonder of the World.

Okay. At this point I had seriously just ran out of ideas but this tickled the beJesus out of Jerm! I'm serious. Kids are so easy to please. You don't have to rack your brain and do these elaborate four part schemes every night. Children are easy. We make them hard.

11. Relax.

I'm always telling y'all that you can't pour from an empty cup. Crawford obviously knows this. At this point he just needed to sit in an oasis and gather his thoughts. He used those Target Dollar Spot Christmas trees along with some plants from around the house.

12. Taste the Rainbow.

So this one was really simple. Crawford grouped similar Skittles together and left a note to add hot water. The water causes the Skittles to bleed into a colorful rainbow on the plate! How cool is that?

13. On Belay! On Rappel!

Okay. So after over a decade in the military you had to know that there would be some Army humor in there somewhere. During basic training there is a part of training where every Soldier has to tie there own Swiss seat and rappel down a 40 foot tower. Crawford got a piece of the action with the Man of Steel himself, Superman, to lend a hand.

14. Hot tub shenanigans.

Is that my crockpot insert?! Anyway, Crawford had him a nice old bubble bath to announce his return in a previous year. Cotton balls are probably something you already have around the house so this is one of those that'll probably cost you next to nothing to recreate.

15. Keep it Super Simple.

Sometimes your Elf on the Shelf is going to be an elf on the shelf! Set him/her in the corner on a shelf or counter top and call it a night. Your brain will thank you in the morning. Sometimes he just sets up shop in a very obvious place, like the bathroom counter where Jerm brushes his teeth.


I really hope this guide was easy enough to follow and jumpstarts the hamster wheel inside you. Get started with your own traditions and create lasting memories for your family.

Spread love this holiday season.



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