In this house we don’t do Elf on the Shelf. We don’t make anything about Christmas conditional on behaviour and we don’t report back to Santa. We don’t add additional pressure to make the festive period more magical but look for other ways to make everyone feel included.
- Fun putting up the tree! Putting up the tree is a big thing in our house and everyone joins is. Putting up the tree and decorations marks the start of Christmas for us and everyone being involved makes the changes more bearable for us all too when we are struggling with all that goes on at Christmas!
- Advent Calendars with no rules! Does it matter if they eat or open all the doors at once? Not really, once it’s gone it’s gone and you don’t open anything that isn’t yours but everyone can choose how and when they open their calendars. This additional control can help a lot!
- Festive clothes! Hats, t-shirts, jumpers, tights….we like our Christmas clothes. We wear them all year round but we make an effort to wear them at Christmas. We choose new pyjamas as well
- Make new decorations! Every year we make at least one new decoration each for the Christmas tree – from hand-print baubles to paper snowflakes or Lego Christmas scenes!
- Making new traditions together! Every family has different needs to balance across the house and Christmas can knock this balance. By working together and listening to each of our needs we have built traditions which work for our family, and we will continue to grow them and change them.
What works for your family? Do you do Elf on the Shelf or do you also have other traditions?