Gwen, thank you! And we all feel your pleasure… and pain.
Twas 30 days before Christmas
And over at my house
I was hunched over the computer
Clicking away on my mouse.
Photo cards on order, Cyber Monday went well
I had even used the code for the 20% off sale!
My children were nestled, not quite in their beds
Passed out on the couch, in front of Disney channel instead.
I chose to ignore the mess what a sight!
And thought I just might turn in for the night.
When what appeared before my weary self
Right there in front of me ELF ON A SHELF!
“Oh no!!” I whispered (it was kind of a hiss)
“I just can’t add another TO DO to my list!”
His little face widened, tears filled his eyes
And I realized my reaction was quite a surprise
“It’s not you!” I hastened, “You’re such a delight!”
“It’s just I can’t play with you night after night.”
I had seen the pictures, I knew what was in store
This little guy could quickly become quite a chore.
“That’s not it” he said softly, “You’ve got it all wrong”
“I’m here for the children YOU just play along!
I hang out in your house and add Christmas cheer
And at night I got back to Santa and the reindeer
I report on your progress and behavior, you see!
And your children will behave, all because of me!”
“Our progress,” I thought, “that’s the last thing I want.”
Another measure of what we ARE and we AREN’T.
I tried another time “Elf, you don’t understand!
If only you knew all that I have planned!
Tomorrow, after work, I have more cash to spend,
I am going to buy wineglasses for a friend.
And Wednesday there’s dance class, then piano till 8
Prep for Christmas performances, so we might be there late!
I have to drop off dry cleaning, and when I get back
I was planning to paint my nails with Shellac!
The work that’s involved with you staying here
I won’t be able to do it I fear!
You swing and you dance and you hang from up high
All the photos on Facebook I could just cry!
You fish, ride on trains, dress up as a clown,
And don’t mention Pinterest because I’ll completely break down!”
He mulled all this over, and spoke up once again,
“You need me here, my dear friend.
It doesn’t matter what I do, or where I spend the night
There’s not a rule for how to do all this right.
Christmas is for peace, love and joy
Not about perfection or another silly toy
I’ll hang out right here, and help you to remember
Why you look forward each year to December
Instead of moving me from one spot to another,
Try to enjoy your role as a mother
There will be a moment, it will come very quick
When the children won’t be so into St. Nick
It’s perfectly okay to be still and be lazy
Instead of running around like you’re crazy
We’ll hang out together, each in our special places
And enjoy the magic, the smiles on your kids’ faces
Then I’ll go home, and hope you never forget
The Christmas you enjoyed was the best Christmas yet.”
If you (unlike my children) want to hear more from me, you can follow me
on Twitter @kvanogtrop.