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Elves and and teachers don’t get paid enough.

December 3rd, 2010 · 11 Comments · Daily

Because of our brief blip in believing, The Puddings are now the proud owners of an Elf on the Shelf. (I suppose OWNER is not the best choice of words. One does not really OWN a little helping man. At the same time, we haven’t really gone through the proper channels to say that we’ve adopted him. We have a visitor! A new roommate!) Our elf’s name is Charlie, and every night he flies north to tell Santa what’s going down in our house. If the girls are being good citizens, Santa hears about it from Charlie. If the girls are going ape, you better believe that Santa’s going to hear about it.

Last night the girls were having a particularly terrible, dreadful, not-so-good, slightly abhorrent night. Lots of doors were slammed. Lots of tears were shed. Lots of drama, and no stage or playbill—and that’s unacceptable.

Me: You know, Charlie is not going to want to come back from the North Pole tonight.

Meredith: What?!

Me: Would you want to come back? He’s been sitting in that candle holder all evening thinking, “I’m not quite sure what I did to deserve this cruddy situation, but I’m outta heyah.”

(All elves and babies speak with a Jersey accent.)

Just as I predicted, this morning the girls got up and ran around the house looking for Charlie, and he wasn’t there. Oddly enough, they got ready for school with zero fighting. I didn’t have to tell them twice to brush their teeth, get dressed, use the bathroom, etc. Perfect morning.

I just went into my bedroom and found this in the closet.

Sorry, Charlie.

Apparently, Charlie did NOT stay at the North Pole last night. He returned to our house, slipped a Xanax out of my drawer, and took shelter on top of Jeff’s summer clothes. (I sort of wish I weighed less than two pounds so I could do the same thing.) Anyway, if all goes well this evening, Charlie’s activity will return to normal after tonight’s North Pole visit.

This morning I helped out in Meredith’s classroom. While I was collating book order forms, a student came over and sat next to me to work on a report. Another student sat next to the first student and said, “I don’t mean to say this in a mean or teasing way, but I think it’s really funny that you can’t hit a ball.” She then did a mocky little nyah-nyah laughing thing that really shouldn’t be done if one is over the age of three. The first student was hurt by her words.

What I WANTED to say: What the hell was that?! You don’t mean to say that in a mean or teasing way?! What way did you MEAN for that to sound? Respectful?! Responsible?!

What I DID say: That wasn’t a very nice thing to say. Ooh! You have only twenty minutes to finish your report before recess! You better focus on that if you want to go outside and play!

What I continued to say in my head: If you have an Elf on the Shelf, don’t be surprised if he’s filling out Change of Residency forms when you get home from school this afternoon…
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11 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Teri // Dec 3, 2010 at 2:22 pm

    This is why I don’t volunteer. I actually would have said, “How did you intend that to sound? There is no way to say it that isn’t mean. Who’s raising you?!” And I would have had a hurtful tight grip on her arm so that we were making eye contact. And I would have been escorted out.

  • 2 Rachel // Dec 3, 2010 at 2:39 pm

    I would have been escorted out along with Teri. I don’t think I could have helped myself from saying “I don’t mean this in a mean way or to hurt your feelings, but you’re a jerk.”

  • 3 Dawn // Dec 3, 2010 at 2:56 pm

    I would not have been as nice as you. I, most of the time, have a problem keeping my feelings to myself. I probably would have said something like “That wasn’t very nice, how would you feel if someone said that to you?…you need to apologize right now or I will make sure you don’t see recess for a very long time.” That’s probably why my child’s teacher puts me to work grading tests when I am volunteering. NO contact with the students!! lol

  • 4 Elizabeth // Dec 3, 2010 at 4:01 pm

    I have found that any time someone starts a sentence with “I don’t want to be/sound rude, mean, fill in the blank” the rest of the sentence is generally rude, mean, and ugly.

  • 5 Charisa // Dec 3, 2010 at 6:08 pm

    We have a Charlie too. It’s never occurred to me to make him not come back for a day. That’s a brilliant move, one that I will be borrowing since I can hear my kids screaming at each other right now over play money.

  • 6 Elizabeth // Dec 3, 2010 at 6:49 pm

    Both of my daughters have a Charlie that they put out each year. Charlie is never in the same place as he moves around so he can watch and see if the little ones have been good. According to the girls, he works like a charm. Their children are anxious to see where Charlie is the next day and they are usually on their best behavior (for a little while, anyway). What a wonderful idea. Wish Charlie had been around when my two were growing up. ;)

  • 7 Dooley // Dec 3, 2010 at 7:05 pm

    My Aunt Jackie was using elves back in the 50s and 60s to handle my cousins — but I believe Mick Jagger referred to them as ‘mother’s little helper,’ not Santa’s.

  • 8 Alli // Dec 5, 2010 at 9:07 am

    Welcome back! So glad you had a great time. I used to take relpax for my migraines and it worked really well. It does cause high blood pressure so get your bp checked. I hope it works for you!

  • 9 You can call me, 'Sir' // Dec 5, 2010 at 11:32 pm

    It sounds like Charlie is the world’s most convenient voyeur.

    You: I don’t mean to say this in a mean or teasing way, but I think it’s really funny that you’re about to learn a lesson.
    Kid: Huh?
    You: *KERPOW*

    You may end up in court, but the important thing is the lesson learned by the kid. Probably.

  • 10 Christy // Dec 7, 2010 at 1:28 pm

    Mrs Pudding, your are such a kind, respectful, respectable, helpful, sweet, smart, fun, and funny neighbor. Love you! Never move!

  • 11 Mocha // Dec 7, 2010 at 8:27 pm

    First, I like that you have an Elf of color.

    Second, this is why I work with middle schoolers. Because I know how horrid they can be and I can totally take it from them because I can also dish it out pretty well. You know. Nicely.