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An Errant Knight via Wikimedia Commons // CC BY-SA 4.0
An Errant Knight via Wikimedia Commons // CC BY-SA 4.0

34 Creative Ideas for Your Elf On The Shelf

An Errant Knight via Wikimedia Commons // CC BY-SA 4.0
An Errant Knight via Wikimedia Commons // CC BY-SA 4.0

He sees you when you're sleeping; he knows when you're awake. We're talking about Elf On The Shelf, of course, the little guy (or girl) who plays Santa's proxy in the days leading up to Christmas to make sure kids are being good. The problem is, Elf On The Shelf is supposed to move around the house every single day. That's 24 days of original and creative poses. Before you give up and just start sticking Elfie in different spots on your tree every day, here are 34 ideas to try.

1. ELF ON THE SHELF ENCOUNTERS ELSA.

2. ELF ON THE SHELF MESSES WITH THE COPIER AT WORK.

3. ELF ON THE SHELF TAKES A BATH.

4. ELF ON THE SHELF CELEBRATES THE FORCE AWAKENS ...

Dexter made some Star Wars paper snowflakes!

A photo posted by Mara Smith (@maramagdalena) on Dec 10, 2015 at 6:55am PST

5. ... BUT DARTH DOESN'T APPRECIATE IT.

6. ELF ON THE SHELF GOES FISHING.

7. ELF ON THE SHELF GOES BOW HUNTING. (OH, DEER.)

#goodkill #elfonashelf

A photo posted by dropkickdave (@deltaecho77) on Dec 10, 2015 at 3:49am PST

8. ELF ON THE SHELF PULLS A CHRIS PRATT.

#Buddy is in trouble now. . #NaughtyElfOnAShelf #ElfOnAShelf

A photo posted by #MVILPHOTOGRAPHY (@amy_alamo) on Dec 10, 2015 at 3:46am PST

9. ELF ON THE SHELF GETS INTO A SNOWBALL FIGHT.

Tonight our #elfonashelf decided to challenge Mr. Potato Head to a #snowballfight #lovingthis #xmas

A photo posted by Sam Hamilton (@samanthah210) on Dec 9, 2015 at 7:14pm PST

10. ELF ON THE SHELF MESSES WITH THE BABY.

This elf....🎄 #unibrow #elfonashelf

A photo posted by Monika Marie (@monimarie79) on Dec 9, 2015 at 6:54pm PST

11. ELF ON THE SHELF WORKS ON HIS FITNESS.

#doyouevenliftbro #gettingpumpedforchristmas #elfonashelf

A photo posted by @irishrugger_22 on Dec 9, 2015 at 6:22pm PST

12. ELF ON THE SHELF IS IN A BAND.

13. ELF ON A SHELF GIVES THE FRUIT BOWL SOME PERSONALITY.

#elfonashelf #bobbystocking #freakyfruit #feelingfruity #gogglyeyes

A photo posted by @jrookey on Dec 9, 2015 at 1:43pm PST

14. ELF ON THE SHELF NEEDS CAFFEINE.

Someone is in BIG trouble. Ya don't mess with the coffee pot around here. #daisydidit #elfonashelf #christmas2015🎄

A photo posted by Darla 'Carrington' Callaway (@darlamarmie) on Dec 9, 2015 at 8:29am PST

15. ELF ON THE SHELF MAKES CHOCOLATE CHIP ANGELS ...

Mornin IG!!! #425 #cannamom #kids #love #family #elfonashelf #naughty #elf #christmastime #spirit⛄❄

A photo posted by Mofunna (@iamvintage23) on Dec 9, 2015 at 7:12am PST

16. ... AND RAINBOW SPRINKLE ANGELS ...

Frosty is making sprinkle Angels tonight #elfontheshelf #elfonashelf #frostytheelf

A photo posted by flyingblupig (@flyingblupig) on Dec 9, 2015 at 7:04am PST

17. ... AND FLOUR ANGELS.

Our #elfonashelf think he funny tho.

A photo posted by Mo' Bounce (@radiomobounce) on Dec 9, 2015 at 5:19am PST

18. ELF ON THE SHELF... UM... MAKES COOKIES.

19. ELF ON THE SHELF GETS ON SPIDEY’S BAD SIDE.

20. ELF ON THE SHELF CHANNELS ELF.

Buddy and Jovi eating a NASTY breakfast of noodles, candy and syrup. #elfonashelf #buddytheelf

A photo posted by Shannan Cunniffe (@merciblahblah) on Dec 9, 2015 at 5:57am PST

21. ELF ON THE SHELF HAS SEEN TOO MANY HORROR MOVIES.

22. ELF ON THE SHELF IS THAT JERK WHO EATS STRAIGHT OUT OF THE PEANUT BUTTER JAR.

23. ELF ON THE SHELF HAS A SIDE GIG AS A MECHANIC.

24. ELF ON A SHELF TOILET PAPERS THE TREE.

Jingle is up to no good. #Jingle #elfontheshelf #elfonashelf

A photo posted by Elizabeth (@lizzie.larose) on Dec 8, 2015 at 6:43pm PST

25. ELF ON A SHELF FINDS HIS INNER JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE.

26. ELF ON THE SHELF CREEPS ON BARBIE.

Day 8 Kissing booth 💋 #elfonashelf #Christmas #tradition #elf #hesgotgame

A photo posted by Melissa (@mellie16_85) on Dec 7, 2015 at 10:02pm PST

27. ELF ON THE SHELF IS THAT GUY AT THE PARTY WITH A GUITAR.

Stealing hearts since 2015. #fizzletheelf #elfonashelf

A photo posted by Melanie Ridge (@melanie_arielle) on Dec 7, 2015 at 9:47pm PST

28. ELF ON THE SHELF EATS THE LEFTOVERS YOU WERE PLANNING ON HAVING FOR LUNCH TODAY.

Oh no , first night after we adopted our new elf "Sam-wise elfinshelf" he got into the left over pizza! Lol #elfonashelf

A photo posted by Asheton Silvers (@ashetonsilvers) on Dec 7, 2015 at 9:31pm PST

29. ELF ON THE SHELF STEALS FROM KIDS.

Night 9! BAD ELF!! I'm sure he's going to something nice with it though ;) #cane #christmas2015 #elfonashelf

A photo posted by Heather Allen (@haallen1025) on Dec 7, 2015 at 8:11pm PST

30. ELF ON THE SHELF DOES NETFLIX AND CHILL.

Late night moves ❤️👫

A photo posted by Melissa M.💋🇵🇷 (@thebeautycarnival) on Dec 7, 2015 at 10:28pm PST

31. ELF ON THE SHELF IS GETTING UP IN YOUR CEREAL.

32. ELF ON THE SHELF MESSED WITH THE WRONG GUY.

#batman and #elfontheshelf

A photo posted by Jean Gomez (@jean_gomez_cosplay) on Dec 7, 2015 at 8:55am PST

33. ELF ON THE SHELF BROKE HIS LEG, AND THAT’S WHY HE HASN’T MOVED IN TWO WEEKS.

#Lmfaooo #elfontheshelf #solvingthepuzzle

A photo posted by just DM me (@solvingthepuzzle) on Dec 10, 2015 at 9:51am PST

34. ELF ON THE SHELF IS AN OVERACHIEVER.

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Yes, You Can Put Your Christmas Decorations Up Now—and Should, According to Psychologists
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We all know at least one of those people who's already placing an angel on top of his or her Christmas tree while everyone else on the block still has paper ghosts stuck to their windows and a rotting pumpkin on the stoop. Maybe it’s your neighbor; maybe it’s you. Jolliness aside, these early decorators tend to get a bad rap. For some people, the holidays provide more stress than splendor, so the sight of that first plastic reindeer on a neighbor's roof isn't exactly a welcome one.

But according to two psychoanalysts, these eager decorators aren’t eccentric—they’re simply happier. Psychoanalyst Steve McKeown told UNILAD:

“Although there could be a number of symptomatic reasons why someone would want to obsessively put up decorations early, most commonly for nostalgic reasons either to relive the magic or to compensate for past neglect.

In a world full of stress and anxiety people like to associate to things that make them happy and Christmas decorations evoke those strong feelings of the childhood.

Decorations are simply an anchor or pathway to those old childhood magical emotions of excitement. So putting up those Christmas decorations early extend the excitement!”

Amy Morin, another psychoanalyst, linked Christmas decorations with the pleasures of childhood, telling the site: “The holiday season stirs up a sense of nostalgia. Nostalgia helps link people to their personal past and it helps people understand their identity. For many, putting up Christmas decorations early is a way for them to reconnect with their childhoods.”

She also explained that these nostalgic memories can help remind people of spending the holidays with loved ones who have since passed away. As Morin remarked, “Decorating early may help them feel more connected with that individual.”

And that neighbor of yours who has already been decorated since Halloween? Well, according to a study in the Journal of Environmental Psychology, homes that have been warmly decorated for the holidays make the residents appear more “friendly and cohesive” compared to non-decorated homes when observed by strangers. Basically, a little wreath can go a long way.

So if you want to hang those stockings before you’ve digested your Thanksgiving dinner, go ahead. You might just find yourself happier for it.

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11 Posters Worth Gifting This Holiday Season
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A good poster can make all the difference when it comes to decor. Posters are a cost-effective and fun way to add color, tie together a room, and show off the owner’s personality. If you want to help a loved one track down a poster that doesn’t look like it’s straight out of a college dorm room, here are 11 prints we suggest gifting:

1. 100 ESSENTIAL FILMS SCRATCH-OFF CHART; $35


Pop Chart Lab

Pop Chart Lab’s scratch-off prints are a fun way to put a personal touch on a room. The Essential Films edition serves as a ready-made must-watch list, with 100 incredible films—new and old. As your loved one watches, they can scratch off the gray squares of the poster to reveal the illustrations below. Once they're done, they’ve got a checkerboard visualization of great movies from Casablanca to Mad Max: Fury Road.

Find It: Pop Chart Lab

2. RETRO PATENTS; $33 AND UP

A framed patent of the Nintendo Game Boy sits against a wall.
Retro Patents

Gadget-lovers will swoon over these patent illustration posters, which feature the original patent drawings submitted for now-familiar technology like handheld cameras, record players, Tamagotchi, Game Boys, and more. The black-and-white drawings are accompanied by the name of the inventor and the date of the patent. Many of them are limited editions, so make sure to grab ‘em before they’re gone.

Find It: Retro Patents

3. DINOSAURIA; $37


Pop Chart Lab

Your favorite paleontology fan will love diving into this encyclopedic poster of dinosaur types, which catalogs more than 100 types of dinos in hand-drawn illustrations. Painstakingly researched, the work classifies 700 genera of prehistoric creatures into a taxonomy that’s sure to make your beloved science nerd’s heart beat faster.

Find It: Pop Chart Lab

4. REALLY BIG COLORING POSTER; $40

Two children lay on a giant coloring-book-style map of America
Great2bColorful, Amazon

Coloring books make great gifts for all ages, but coloring posters make even better ones. This giant, 5-foot-by-3-foot poster will keep your favorite young artist busy for hours filling in notable icons of all 50 states, from the Hollywood sign to the Statue of Liberty. And once they’re done, they have a colorful mural to put up in their room.

Find It: Amazon

5. SPACE GRAND TOUR; $22

Eight vintage-style travel posters advertising space destinations
JPL/NASA

Get excited for the future. NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory designed these out-of-this-world prints, creating futuristic tourism posters for celestial destinations that, for the most part, humans have yet to reach.They’re part science geekery, part vintage travel homage, and the poster versions are the perfect gift for any future astronaut. Of course, they’re so pretty that even the least physics-inclined people on your gift list will still appreciate them.

Find It: Amazon

6. BETWEEN THE WORDS; $63

A spiral of punctuation on a poster that reads ‘Moby Dick; Or, The Whale.’
Nicholas Rougeux

Nicholas Rougeux’s Between the Words posters are minimalist takes on visualizing classic literature. Instead of trying to encapsulate the story, he focuses on what’s between the words: the punctuation. Each poster depicts every punctuation mark—in order—used in well-known books like Moby Dick, Jane Eyre, and The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. Separated only by chapter markers, the punctuation marks spiral around a central illustration. Sticklers for good grammar will love exploring the dense punctuation patterns of books like A Tale of Two Cities and Ulysses, designs that provide a whole new insight into the writing techniques of famous authors.

Find It: Zazzle

7. “I LOVE” CITY MAPS; $21 AND UP


Jordan Sondler

Help your favorite urbanite show their city pride with New York-based illustrator Jordan Sondler’s whimsical maps of places like Boston, Chicago, and Seattle. Available in several different base colors, they divide major American metropolises into neighborhoods dotted with illustrated versions of iconic local architecture.

Find It: Minted

8. SKIES ABOVE CUSTOM STAR CHART; $130

A framed poster that reads 'Natalie and Morgan' with a star chart above in dark blue
Asterism Labs, Etsy

Baltimore-based data designer and former astrophysicist Katie Peek specializes in custom star charts that put a unique spin on a special day. They can highlight what the night sky looked like on the day of a wedding, a birthday, or during the last solar eclipse, customized to where the event took place. You can also ask her to commemorate the celestial view from any other time and place using her custom algorithms.

Find It: Etsy

9. PLEATINGS PRINT; $53

A graphic print shows gray shapes with lines running through them
Dry Studios

These abstract posters from the Stockholm-based Dry Studios are designed to create art using natural light in your house. The folded paper casts shadows when the sunlight hits them, turning the poster into changing graphic scenes throughout the day. They come in two different color schemes, one warm and one cold, to mimic the color change between day and night.

Find It: Dry Studios

10. LAW & MOORE MOVIE POSTERS; $12 AND UP

Three framed posters sitting on a table
Law & Moore, Etsy

The designers at Law & More specialize in pop culture posters that put a unique spin on beloved movies and TV shows from all genres, from Rocky to Stranger Things to Mary Poppins. Designed like vintage book covers, each features a minimalist illustration of the film along with the name of its creators. Whether you’re shopping for a James Bond aficionado or a Game of Thrones fan, you’ll be able to find a classy poster to show off their entertainment tastes.

Find It: Etsy

11. CONSTITUTIONS OF CLASSIC COCKTAILS; $37

A beige poster features a circular visualization of cocktail ingredients
Pop Chart Lab

Perfect for in the kitchen or near the bar cart, this infographic is a cheat sheet for becoming a mixology master. It illustrates how to throw together 60 different classic cocktails, organizing them by the type of liquor used to make them. Your favorite cocktail party host can use it to learn how to make a proper Rob Roy or Old Fashioned, or to help guests decide what they want to drink: just pick a base alcohol and go from there.

Find It: Pop Chart Lab

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