What Are Your Favorite Holiday Traditions?

For richer or poorer, in sickness and in health - my marriage vows hinted that I would face hurdles along this path of life, but successfully navigating them can be harder than it seems. Whether it's because of illness, or the uprooting of family to move cross-country, major life transitions can put a strain on any relationship. But whatever stress or life upheaval may be going on, It doesn't have to disrupt your life once the holiday season rolls around.

Anyone with kids can tell you that having a baby changes everything. A new baby shifts the dynamic of a family. When my husband and I married, neither of us even owned one single holiday ornament. We had some items that had been passed down through family members who felt sorry for us over the years for not partaking in the decorating for the holidays. But, once we had a child, our entire outlook on the holidays changed as well.

Tomorrow is December 1st and my children are demanding a Christmas tree be put up in our home. December 1st marks the day that a certain visitor arrives in our home each year. A little friend who watches over the poppets in this home and reports back to dear, old Santa at the North Pole. I happen to have three, adorable children who still absolutely believe in the existence of Santa and our tiny, magical visitor just happens to reinforce this wonderful, childhood belief.

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The Elf on the Shelf

The Elf on the Shelf. A family tradition. Our very own tiny elf who magically arrives in our home on December 1st and remains with us until Christmas Eve. Each and every Christmas, our small pal comes to live in my home and watch over my children and report back to Santa each and every night about the behavior of my children.

Elf on the Shelf builds great excitement for the holidays in my home and keeps my children on their best behavior! Each night the Elf on a Shelf returns to the North Pole, while the children are sleeping, to report to Santa regarding their behavior. My children can't wait to run down the stairs each morning in December to search for dear little Elf.

Elf on the Shelf brings our family closer together as my husband and I attempt to think up elaborate pranks the Elf can play on my children or gigantic messes he could create to surprise the kiddos. I can say in all honesty that I already have my list planned out by each day of this month on what and where little Elf will be and what he will be doing while he is with us this December.

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My son has already informed me he is going to be the 'discover-er' of "Remus" (the name they have given to Elfie this year) tomorrow morning. I have been instructed to not set the house alarm so Remus may roam free in our house and create havoc and mayhem wherever he may go. I have decided this year I am going to chronicle Elf on the Shelf AKA: Remus' Route in our home and post a photo of his high jinks each day. My kids can't wait!

Now, I need to go in my basement and search for the bin where I hid Elfie last year . . . hope I find him before midnight!