Perfect Moment Monday: George

by Kathy on November 26, 2012 · 8 comments

in Abby, Bob, Family, Holidays, Perfect Moments, Sean

It’s the last Monday of the month which means its time to share our Perfect Moments from November with Lori from Write Mind Open Heart.

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After a few years of hearing about other families and their elves on their shelves, we decided to jump on the bandwagon. We introduced the idea to our kids last week, on the day after Thanksgiving.

Sean was already familiar with the concept, apparently from reading a related storyline in the Diary of a Wimpy Kid book series.

We read the book, which included the back story of the Elf on the Shelf and came with our very own elf. We also had the opportunity to name our elf. Once we named it then he received his magic, which allows him to fly back to the North Poll every night to check in with Santa and let him know how the Benson kids are behaving in the weeks leading up to Christmas, as well as relay/put in a good word for some of the items on their wish list.

When it came to naming our elf, Sean suggested Zach, Bob threw out George and Abby came up with a number of long names that didn’t make a lot of sense. Surprisingly in the moment I couldn’t come up with another name, so we discussed Zach versus George. Abby liked George and so did I, in part because my paternal grandpa use to randomly and lovingly tease me by calling me George.

Though Zach is a nice name and I felt bad that we didn’t go with Sean’s idea, we all agreed on George. From that point on the kids knew, from the story and later watching a corresponding video, that they were not to touch George or he could lose his magic, precluding him from being able to fly to/from the North Pole every night while they are sleeping. Prior to us learning that part of the elf on the shelf tradition, Sean and Abby each got a chance to hold our elf.

So we put George on top of the entertainment center, in our family room, while we watched the video called An Elf’s Story. The whole thing seemed part elaborate marketing plan to sell Elf on the Shelf products (which I clearly fell for) and part very sweet story (similar to The Polar Express) about believing in Santa Claus and the meaning of Christmas (though not really the Christian perspective).

Sean loved that one of the main characters in the movie was a nine-year old boy, just like him, who is questioning if Santa and the elf (named Chippy in their family) is real. The also boy has two younger sisters in the story, similar to Sean (though one of his isn’t living), which we also thought was a cool coincidence.

The first night we had George, Sean wrote a note to Santa ask if “George (could) really fly?”

The next morning Sean and Abby found George on the mantle of the fireplace, in our living room, with a reply from Santa that read,

Dear Sean,

Do you believe George can fly?

Love, Santa

The second night we were out-of-town and when we came home the next day Sean proclaimed that “if George is real, he will not be in the same place he was when we left, even though we didn’t sleep in our house last night.”

Sure enough when we walked in the house Sean and Abby found that George was no longer on the mantle in our living room. They found him sitting in the branches of our Christmas tree, which we had begun to decorate before we left town.

This morning when the kids woke up they found George sitting on the light fixture hanging over our kitchen table (we are due to change a light bulb there). They both seemed very pleased to find that George had moved again, helping them to continue to believe that their Elf on the Shelf is flying to and from the North Pole every night.

My perfect moment this month is enjoying this new holiday tradition with Sean and Abby. I love seeing their wonder and excitement every day when they search for and find George.

Oh, to have the faith of a child…

I look forward to continuing to see and experience this Christmas season through my children’s eyes. It brings me so much joy to believe with them.

Do you have an elf on the shelf at your house? What is his or her name?

If not, what are some of your favorite holiday traditions?
(You can also tell me about them, even if you do have an elf.)

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Lori from Write Mind Open Heart says that “Perfect Moment Monday is about noticing a perfect moment rather than creating one. Perfect moments can be momentous or ordinary or somewhere in between.” I love the idea of being mindful of and blogging about perfect moments. Over the years I have often used my blog more to write about things I am struggling with and though I know that is valid and important for me at times, I appreciate the idea of being intentional about also sharing the simple and very special moments in our lives. Many thanks to Lori for this wonderful opportunity to focus on what is right in our life, instead of what is wrong. 

Click here to read about and comment on more Perfect Moments (there are links to others’ posts at the bottom of Lori’s blog entry) and/or add a link to one of your own. Thank you for reading. I hope that you have a wonderful week and that you are aware of, as well as able to notice, many perfect moments in your own lives.

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Justine November 26, 2012 at 11:48 pm

We don’t have an elf, but I know many people who do … and I found this interesting interpretation this year: http://www.musingmomma.com/2012/11/christmas-spirit-redefining-our-elf-on.html … perhaps better for older children, but I love the idea of the “giving” elf, too. 🙂 I’m so glad that Sean is still able to believe in Christmas magic!

Baking is probably my favorite tradition. I am up to my arms in flour, and loving it. 🙂
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2 Kathy November 27, 2012 at 12:00 am

That is so awesome! Thank you for sharing the link to that post. I really like that spin and will keep it in mind for future years.

I am not surprised that baking is one of your favorite traditions! I look forward to getting started on making our Christmas cookies in the not too distant future. It is so nostalgic for me, as my maternal grandmother would come to visit for two weeks every year at Christmastime bringing loads of various kinds of homemade cookies and even hard candy. Also, kudos to you on your successful #BakeaDifference fundraiser for Sandy relief efforts!
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3 Mud Hut Mama November 27, 2012 at 3:22 am

I love this Kathy! So fun to see the magic of Christmas come alive in your children. We don’t have an elf on the shelf and I’m afraid to get one because I’m sure I’ll forget to move it and spoil the magic. A word to the wise – make sure guests know about the elf and his magic powers. We went to my brother’s house last year before Christmas and were only vaguely familiar to with the elf so my husband went up to it, picked it up and said “so this is the elf I’ve been hearing about.” My poor niece was in a state until my brother came up with a story about it only killing the magic if someone who lives in the house touches the elf. Needless to say we now know not to touch any elves!
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4 Lori Lavender Luz November 27, 2012 at 12:27 pm

My son is into Wimpy Kids books, too 🙂

Very cool new traditions with your kids. It is fun to believe in the way that kids do, isn’t it?

My sisters and I used to make our parents “win” their presents with a game show every Christmas morning. We’d do it after all the other gifts had been unwrapped. We had the 20,000 Kiss Pyramid, Name that Tune, The Kiss is Right, etc — a new one every year. One of us was the emcee and the other two were the celebrity guests, with my parents as the contestants. Usually, the gifts we’d gotten them were from Ronco, like a salad spinner or a hotdog cooker.

We need to get our kids to do the same for us — they’re the right age now!
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5 Deborah November 27, 2012 at 1:09 pm

I’ve never really understood the elf thing – it always seemed like a threat to kids, rather than something fun. But reading your description makes me see how kids can really enjoy it. And I think George is an excellent name!
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6 lostintranslation November 27, 2012 at 3:27 pm

We don’t have an elf on the shelf (or anywhere else for that matter), but I really like the idea. However since we’re Dutch the big December event involving lists or letters, good or bad kids and lots of presents is not Christmas, but St Nicholas (Dec 5th). If you think about it it’s a horribly politically incorrect story (St Nicholas, (archbishop of Myra) and his helpers, ‘black Pete’s’ live in Spain all year but take the steamer to Holland mid-November. Once he they have arrived, kids can put their shoe in front of the chimney, with a carrot for St Nicholas’ horse (Americo). In the night, one of the black petes will come down the chimney to put a little present in the shoe… This then culminates in ‘pakjesavond’ (evening of presents) on December 5th, when after a knock on the door there will be a big bag of presents for the kids (and maybe for the parents too…).

I loved this holiday as a kid even after I figured out that it was my dad knocking on the door etc… Once kids are older you add a little funny poem to the presents, and sometimes also wrap the present in an elaborate ‘surprise’.

We hadn’t really celebrated it since we left Holland, but now that our son is three we’re starting it again and it’s amazing to see how he gets into the whole thing. We even have a St Nicholas coming to the Dutch school here in our French city next Sunday (we also went last year, but then our son didn’t really know what it was all about), so that’s going to be exciting!

Sorry for the extremely long comment…!
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7 Kristin November 30, 2012 at 12:16 am

I love the Elf on a Shelf idea. It’s fabulous that your kids are embracing it with such enthusiasm.
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