mellicious: pink manicure (WoW - morning elf)
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I don't have kids, so I didn't know Elf on the Shelf existed until a year or two ago, and I didn't know what the deal was with it (that is, moving it around in the house, etc.) until this year, when I finally saw somebody's pictures. It's sort of simultaneously creepy and cute - but I bet kids get a kick out of it. They must, right? or it wouldn't have stuck around this long. I notice it comes in various ethnicities and genders, which is nice of them. Although I guess that's pretty standard for toys nowadays, isn't it? The whole thing is very commercial, but eh. I think if your kids like it, it's fine. I do think it may depend a great deal on how parents present it - if you use it to hit your kids over the head metaphorically, in a sort of Big Brother is watching you kind of way, that's not so fine. But if you're the kind of parent who goes overboard with that kind of thing, the elf may be the least of your kids' problems. (I am now tempted to google and see if there's anything about kids being totally freaked out by Elf on the Shelf, but I think I'm in danger of way overthinking this question.)

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Date: 2013-12-18 04:25 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
I think it really depends on how the parents present it. If it is used as a better-behavior-motivator/fear, then yeah, it's super creepy. We have chosen to do Santa but there is no "you have to be good" expectation along with it, because a) good behavior is expected all the time, not just before Christmas, and b) she would get presents regardless of behavior. I thought about doing EotS, but our nanny is doing it instead. She is just having the elf move around and do silly things, and the kids get a huge kick out of it. There is no spying, Big Brother, or anything like that - just silly places the elf ends, mild mischief she gets into, etc.

Date: 2013-12-18 04:26 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] anjea.livejournal.com
The anon comment was me. :)

Date: 2013-12-19 12:14 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] mellificent.livejournal.com
Hi you! :) (I would have unscreened the comment, even without knowing who it was - I pretty much unscreen anything that's not spam or an obvious troll - but it's nice to know!! And nice to hear from you!)

Date: 2013-12-18 04:46 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] profrobert.livejournal.com
Never heard of this, but this may be a function of growing up Jewish and not believing in Santa Claus. Which, by the way, I always want to rant about. To me, it's very important for children to understand the difference between real and pretend -- it's fine, as my son does, to value them equally, but you have to know the difference. I cannot imagine what a complete breach of trust it must be for a kid whose parents tell him/her Santa is real only to find out that it's a Big Lie. How does that kid ever trust anything the parents say again? If you're going to lie about Santa, you'd lie about anything, wouldn't you?

Date: 2013-12-19 12:10 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] mellificent.livejournal.com
I do think it's all kind of weird, the Santa thing. But then I'm a natural-born skeptic, apparently, and quit believing the whole thing very early on. It's so ingrained in everybody who was brought up with it that it would seem weird NOT to teach your kids about Santa. (We would have had to wrestle with this if we'd had children, of course, especially since neither one of us are really religious, but since we didn't we have the luxury of sitting back and watching everybody else!)

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