The Elf on the Shelf is a relatively new but still timeless tradition in our household. My kids love and look forward to seeing what kind of mayhem this little elf will come up with next, and so am I! After years of doing the Elf on the Shelf, it doesn’t take long before we start to run out of ideas. If you are beginning to run low on ideas too, don’t worry! I’ve got a ton of great Elf on the Shelf ideas that you can use to change things up and make a fun experience for your kids!

20 Elf on the Shelf ideas

  1. Elf on the Shelf Letter
  2. Elf on the Shelf Toilet Paper Snowman
  3. Candy Cane Jail
  4. Feeding the Dog
  5. Elf on the Shelf Shortcuts
  6. Elf on the Shelf Slime
  7. Why The Elf Forgot to Move Excuses
  8. Snack Break Elf on the Shelf
  9. Elf on the Shelf Hiding Spots
  10. Pancake Elf on the Shelf
  11. Star Wars Elf on the Shelf
  12. A Shelf to Hold Your Elf
  13. Elf on the Shelf Cooking Ideas
  14. Elf on the Shelf at the Beach
  15. Dollar Store Elf on the Shelf Ideas
  16. Workout Elf
  17. Mad Scientist Elf on the Shelf
  18. Elf on the Shelf Coloring
  19. Easy Elf on the Shelf Ideas
  20. Elf Photo Booth


DO you have an elf that visits your home? This has been a tradition we have started with our kids when they were young. Our elf, twinkle, usually visits us on the Saturday after Thanksgiving but because of traveling this year she will be coming on December 2, I am not too worried as its one less day of creative ideas.

When you don’t move the elf

As much as I try to prepare ahead of time there are some times when I forget to move my elf on the shelf. Here are ways I have recovered in my moment of panic.

  • He got scared and didn’t want to get caught. If Elf hears any movement, like getting out of bed early, she won’t move.
  • She was touched
  • Your elf is tired
  • It’s too warm, she isn’t used to it.
  • Its too cold and she is frozen
  • Saving her energy for a BIG surprise tomorrow
  • She fell asleep waiting for you to fall asleep, go to bed earlier tonight!
  • Special blackout dates
  • Dog or cat kept moving so she had to stay still
  • He left and came back to the exact same spot
  • Bad Weather, not safe for your elf to fly
  • She’s waiting to go until he has something good to report, do something good today!
  • Fell Asleep after working so hard
  • Ate too many Christmas cookies
  • Worked from home and sent an email into Santa instead
  • This is her favorite spot!
  • She was so busy at the North Pole she didn’t have time to find a new spot.
  • Let’s look to see if she will move during the day instead.
  • She can see the TV really well from here, she likes tv just like you.
  • Once it gets closer to Christmas the Elves only go back every other night
  • There’s not enough Christmas Spirit around, try singing loud for all to hear!
  • Stayed up late making toys and is really tired.
  • He just likes our house SO much he hates leaving

I hope this list with help you get out of trouble if you forget to move your elf one night.

DO you have a great elf on the shelf idea your kids love? I would love to hear about it in the comments below.