Reasons Why The Elf Didn’t Move

Elf On The Shelf Shocked Elf
Image Credit: Elf on the Shelf

You’ve just realised that your elf didn’t move last night. Don’t worry; it happens to the best of us! Some nights our elfish scenes are so good we contemplate phoning the Academy about an Oscar. Some nights we have a total parent fail!


You’ve got this. Just follow the four simple steps below and your elf adventure will be back on track! We’ve even created a child-friendly page of reasons ready for you to show the kids.

(Oh, and if you’re reading this on a Hollywood night, firstly congrats and secondly, before you get too smug, bookmark this page in case you need it tomorrow!)

You’ve woken to ashen-faced children. You start listing off the reasons – relatives in hospital, lost pets, biblical flooding outside. No, it’s worse than that apparently – the elf didn’t move!

Four Steps To Regaining Control!

  1. Take a breath! Everyone you love is okay and nothing is damaged. So, even if the kids are imploding, don’t forget to keep your own grown-up perspective on the situation!
Elf on the Shelf In a Christmas Tree

  1. Buy yourself time! You cannot be expected to know off-the-cuff why one of Santa’s Elves has behaved this way – they have a mind of their own of course, and are answering to a different boss. Tell the kids you’re not sure but you know someone will have the answer and you’ll investigate.
  1. Find the reason! We’ve got a whole host of reasons that could explain your elf’s unusual behaviour. But, as we all know, the kids are going to ask to see the list for themselves. So, click the button below to step through to the child-friendly version of this page and let us do the work for you!
  1. Set an alarm! You can get away with this a few times. But, before you end up in the hospital yourself with a stress-related illness, or the kids start smelling a rat or panicking that Elfie must be going senile (we’ll beat the elf to that one for sure!!), get that repeat evening reminder set up on your phone! (For other elf adventure tips, check out our post.)
Elf On The Shelf in tissue box bed
Image Credit: Silly Playing School

Now grab a cuppa (laced if you think it’ll help 😉 ) and get on with googling Steven Spielberg’s number – we’re sure you’ll be back on form tonight.

What excuses have you used in the past when your elf didn’t move? Need a little something sweet to stop you shaking after your zero-to-one-hundred wake-up? Check out our sweet treat recipe ideas!

Share With Your Festive Friends!

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