Jingleflower, our resident elf, is set to return in just a few short days. While I keep things simple by purchasing an Elf Kit, I also treasure turning the Elf on the Shelf’s return into a memorable event for my children. Not only do I get inventive with reasons our elf may have stayed put, but I also relish the tradition of the Elf on the Shelf return letter!
Surprisingly, there’s a world of innovative Elf on the Shelf return letter ideas out there. Many creative parents have crafted free printable Elf on the Shelf return letters promoting the Christmas spirit and acts of kindness. Many of the letters even hint at the coveted “nice list” as Christmas Eve approaches!
Keep in mind that your Elf might want to arrive with a small gift or some candy canes to get everyone in the Christmas mood!
10 Super Fun Ideas for your Elf on the Shelf Return Letter
Ready to make Christmas Day even more magical? Discover 10 of my favorite ideas for your Elf on the Shelf returns letter below!
I’ve created my own letter and rounded up my favorite examples from around the internet so you don’t have to create your own. Cross one more thing off your holiday to-do list and pick your favorite Elf on the Shelf letter from the ones below.
Use My Free Printable!
After years of downloading other Elf on the Shelf Return letters to use, this year I decided to create my own that looks like it’s straight from the North Pole! It is a Canva Template so you can easily customize the letter.
East Coast Mommy Stationary
East Coast Mommy not only offers adorable Elf on the Shelf ideas but she designed her own stationery too. You can download her stationary for free and she provides the text she uses in her letter each year. There’s nothing better than having all the work done for you!
Printables4Mom Customizable Letter
This is an amazing thing! The people over at Printables4Mom have created a format where you can make customizable letters from your elf to your children. Just visit Printables4Mom, plug in your info, and print! They even offer an email option if you don’t have access to Word to edit your letter.
Shop Elf on the Shelf Favorites!
If you are not very crafty (like me) Etsy has some adorable options that you can order. Simply input your child’s name, the elf’s name, and VOILA you will receive a customized Elf on the Shelf return letter to print out.
A Letter Plus Elf Notes!
Yummy Mummy Kitchen created the cutest rhyming letter and has elf notes to match. I love that not only can you borrow her free printable letter, but she includes little notes for you to use all season long.
Give Back with this Elf on the Shelf Return Letter
One of the biggest lessons I like to teach my kids is about giving back. This sweet Elf on the Shelf Return Letter helps encourage your little one to pack up a bag of their old toys for donation.
It’s a great way to have your child pack up some old toys they no longer play with, encourage them to give back, plus clear out some space for the influx of toys that are about to arrive.
Take it from the Experts
The Elf on the Shelf creators themselves have a website full of ideas. There are free printable letters and even dog cookie recipes. Your elf can even return on a red carpet as the kids read their letter from the elf experts. The possibilities are endless!
A Letter and Breakfast plans
Jen, the super creative mom behind The Suburban Mom, not only has an adorable printable that you can use but she also shares her elf breakfast ideas. Pair the two together and your elf’s return will be an occasion you’ll all remember. Print Jen’s letter and see her breakfast plans here.
Another Cute Elf on the Shelf return breakfast is an adorable pancake breakfast. You can check out their full list of return ideas here.
A Christmas Contract
The genius blogger behind A Little Moore created a Christmas contract for your kids to fill out when their elf arrives. So much better than just saying “Santa is watching!” 350 times a day!
No matter what letter you choose, have fun with your elf’s return this year. I know not everyone loves moving that stinker every night. Some might even be planning on faking a broken elf leg to keep him in one spot. But your children will remember this Christmas tradition and it will all be worth it!
No need to stress! Put in the effort you can for your elf’s return. As long as he’s back, your kids will cherish another magical year!
About the Author
Frequently Asked Questions
What day does Elf on the Shelf return?
Your elf should arrive sometime between the last week of November and the 1st of December. This is the most popular scout elf return week!
Does the elf leave a goodbye letter?
Yes, Elf on the Shelf typically brings a letter on arrival reminding your family about the tradition and leaves a goodbye letter on his way out talking about all the memories you’ve made throughout the holiday season.
Does elf on a shelf leave notes?
Your Elf on the Shelf can leave occasional notes reminding your little ones to behave or do a good deed. They might also leave a note about their mischief!
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