24 Elf on the Shelf ideas

I have to admit I am one of those moms who will have every intention of hiding our elf and after a few days am either out of ideas or in a hurry to wake up before the kids to move  “Owen” before the kids are out of bed. For fellow parents who run out of elf ideas after a few days or just need some fresh inspiration, here is my list of 24 Elf on the shelf ideas

 

  1. Put some flour on the kitchen counter and have the elf make “snow” angels
  2.  Attach a piece of string from the wall to the tree and have the elf “zipline” using a candy cane
  3. Add a towel around the elf’s head and waist and hide him in the shower
  4.  Wrap the elf in a dishcloth like it is wearing a blanket and set it on a shelf in the refrigerator
  5. Put the elf in a toy car and leave it in the hallway. Bonus points if you can add a Barbie to the passenger seat
  6. Have the elf waiting with mini pancakes for the morning
  7. Unwrap a few candies and leave them around the elf like he ate them overnight
  8. Set the elf and a few small toys up in a circle with playing cards like they had a poker night
  9. Set the elf on the couch with the remote and a small bowl of popcorn, even elves need a movie night sometimes
  10. Pour a few goldfish in the bathroom sink and have the elf fish for them
  11. Have the elf arrive in a rocket ship
  12. The elf can leave notes for your kids written in mini marshmallows
  13. Let the elf ride on a toy horse or dinosaur
  14. Have the elf leave the kids a note on the bathroom mirror
  15.  Wrap school age kids lunches with wrapping paper and include a note from the elf in their lunchboxes
  16. If kids aren’t behaving have the lef go on strike until they listen to their parents
  17. Have the elf TP the tree
  18. Set the elf up with a bunch of cotton balls and a note inviting the kids to a snowball fight
  19. Let the elf get tangled in lights on the tree
  20. Make paper snowflakes and have the elf cutting out a new one
  21. Let the kids find the elf using a coloring book
  22. Set the elf up so he is building with Legos
  23. Elf outhouse 
  24. Time for the elf to go back to the North Pole until next year, have him leave streamers on the kids bedroom doors they can run through in the morning

 

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5 Decluttering Tips To Get Your Home Ready For Holiday Visitors

 

The holidays. It’s a time for celebration, a time for good food and good cheer, and – for many homeowners – a time for out-of-town visitors. And while gathering your loved ones from all corners of the globe to celebrate with you and your family undoubtedly brings holiday joy, it can also bring more than a bit of holiday anxiety.

If you’re like most homeowners, you’ve probably accumulated quite a bit of clutter since spring cleaning. And with piles of toys and clothes and all manners of STUFF spilling out of every drawer, closet, and cabinet, the thought of hosting guests can quickly have you singing the holiday blues.

But don’t worry! It’s not too late to get your home in order and your clutter under control. Here are 5 decluttering tips to get your home ready for holiday visitors:

1. Prep Your Kitchen For Maximum Efficiency.
A large part of any holiday gathering is the meal, and if you’re the one playing host, you’ll likely be the one responsible for getting that meal on the table. The last thing you want is to spend your entire celebration stuck in the kitchen, rifling through cabinets looking for that casserole dish you haven’t seen since Mother’s Day. Organizing, getting rid of unnecessary utensils and tools, and prepping everything you’ll need to get your meals cooked, plated, and served is key. The right preparation saves you a ton of time, energy, and frustration, leaving you free to spend the holiday enjoying the company of your family and friends.

Go through your kitchen and remove any tools you won’t be using for your holiday meals, like your frozen yogurt machine or Halloween cake molds. Organize your pots and pans by size and function so you can easily locate them as you’re preparing your dishes. Clear everything off the counters so you have plenty of space to work on and aren’t wasting time trying to find room as you go along.

Not only will prepping your kitchen help you prepare and serve your meal more efficiently, but it’ll also save you time on your cleanup… which means more time to enjoy those delicious holiday desserts.

2. Get Your Kids Into The Spirit of Giving.
If you have children, clutter is par for the course. Between clothes, shoes, sporting gear, and toys, it seems like their clutter multiplies overnight. Factor in that your children are just going to be getting MORE clutter from your holiday guests in the form of presents, and things can quickly get out of hand.

But the holidays are all about giving, and they actually present the perfect opportunity to help your kids downsize, declutter, and give back to people in need.

Find a local charity that’s accepting holiday donations, and talk to your children about the importance of sharing the holiday spirit with other children who are less fortunate than they are. Help them work through their clutter and identify toys and clothes they’ve outgrown to give to charity.

Not only does this help to declutter your home, it also helps teach your children an important lesson about the spirit of giving, and your children will feel good knowing that their things are going to give someone else a wonderful holiday season.

3. Keep The Holiday Decorations To A Minimum.
While holiday decorations can add a nice ambiance to your home for the holidays, overdoing it can cause more clutter and overwhelm your visitors. Take stock of your holiday decorations, and be honest with yourself about which will add to the space and get your guests in the holiday spirit and which will just take up space and make them feel like they’re in the holiday aisle of the local Target.

To keep holiday decoration clutter to a minimum, think of them as an accent, NOT a focal point. Instead of displaying your entire collection of snowglobes, choose 1 or 2 that have a sentimental meaning and display them on your mantle. Hang up one Thanksgiving art project that your child made at school, not every project from the past 5 years.

Taking the less is more approach to holiday decorations will make your home feel more spacious and less cluttered while still creating that special holiday experience for your guests.

4. Rearrange Your Furniture.
While your current furniture setup likely works perfectly for you and your family, it might not be the most functional as you add more people for the holidays. Too much furniture + too many people = serious clutter.

Take stock of your current furniture arrangements and see how you can maximize each space. Rearrange the couches in your living room to form a circle around the middle of the room so everyone can face each other. Take any unnecessary tables or shelves that are taking up space without adding functionality and move them to the garage. Move, remove, and rearrange your furniture to create a space that feels more open and inviting.

5. Make Room For Your Guests’ Clutter.
No matter how well you declutter before the arrival of your holiday guests, the truth of the matter is they’ll be bringing clutter with them. And if you don’t have a place for them to put their clothes, suitcases, and other things, your home will feel just as cluttered as it felt pre-holidays within 10 minutes of their arrival.

Clear out space in a closet or garage for each guest to store their suitcase. If possible, give them space in a closet or drawer to put away their clothes. Make room in the bathroom for things like extra curling irons and electric shavers.

By being prepared and having a plan of action for your guests’ clutter, you can stop it from re-cluttering your space.

With these 5 decluttering tips, your home will feel organized, spacious, and ready to host your out-of-town holiday visitors.