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My problem with the Elf

I have a problem with the Elf.

You know who I'm talking about.  If you don't it means you aren't ever on the internet, and if you are never on the internet, you wouldn't be here.

I'm not alone, I know.  Others have expressed their distaste for or frustration with the elf.  But the chief complaint I hear from other mothers is that the elf makes them feel like an inferior mother.  I say get over it.  We need to stop letting ourselves, as both mothers and women, feel like we need to do EVERYTHING in order to be acceptable mothers.  No one can do everything.  I can promise you that those moms who remember to move their elves every day are lacking in some other area of their lives, and they probably feel inferior about THAT.  But we all need to stop it.  As I say all the time, YOU CAN ONLY DO WHAT YOU CAN DO.  Let it rest with that, and refuse to fall into the guilt about the things you can't or even choose not to do.

I don't feel the least bit inferior because I don't own an elf, and not owning one is not an oversight.  I have other reasons I don't like the Elf.

It's a matter of more than a little bit of contention in my (extended) family that we don't do Santa.  You see, I have this rule about not lying to my kids- and color it how you like, call it "magic" or say "let kids be kids," but there is no way around the fact that telling your children that Santa is real is a lie.  It's not for me to say whether that is right or wrong for your family, but I can't lie to my kids.  I can promise you that I am NOT the mother from Miracle on 34th Street, and my children miss out on none of the magic of Christmas.  I don't ban any Santa related talk or music or shows or other things.  There are only two major difference between the way my kids celebrate Christmas and the way Santa believing kids celebrate- my kids don't get their picture taken with Santa (and frankly, if they did believe in Santa they would never get their picture taken with him, because they're both scared of strangers and people in suits, so Santa would be a no-go irregardless), and all of their presents on Christmas morning come from family.

So my primary reason for not getting an Elf is because I'm not going to lie about that, either.

I also think he's really scary looking.  I may have mentioned in the past that my sole fear is of the dark- that was a lie, I'm also scared of most dolls.

But another reason I have avoided him is because, while I am not the most gung-ho Christian I know, Christmas is about the birth of Jesus.  Most of the other elements of Christmas are related- we give each other gifts to remember the gift of God's son and the gifts brought by the wise men.  The lights signify the light of Christ.  The evergreen tree and the wreath represent eternal life.  These things make the holidays festive and remind us why we are celebrating.  In my opinion (and yes, I know, this is where I start to sound all crazy fanatic, but I'm not, I promise) things like Santa and the Elf are distractions.  There is only a tenuous link between Santa and Christmas via St. Nicholas, (and we do celebrate the feast of St. Nicholas on December 6th and talk about why he is important... and watch the really well done Veggie Tales movie), but the Elf is something that a company created purely to take your money.  Sorry, but this fish ain't biting.

I promise, my kids don't miss him (in fact, I'm pretty sure they would say he's creepy too).

They still have a magical Christmas. 
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