Disguising Gifts of Cash

Maybe I'm a pooper, but I hate to give teens an envelope of cash for holidays.  I know it makes them happy, but I love the look of disappointment when they see a box to open when they asked for money. This year, I disguised cash in a couple different ways.

Above, I made a tube from card stock and placed it into a jar with cash inside. Then, I filled up the jar around the tube with candy and screwed on the lid.  Heh, heh, the poor kid thought he was getting a jar of candy for his 16th birthday! Hilarious.

For his second gift, I removed candy from a box of chocolates and filled the spaces with folded up cash and candy coins:

Happy gifting!


The Last 8 Days of Elf Ideas!

My kids are older (12, 13, and 16) but the youngest still gets a kick out of searching for The Elf every morning.  His humor is a little more sophisticated than a small child so I can get a little more imaginative. 

3+ years into this, sometimes I feel like I've done it all with that darn Elf!  I know there is a whole movement to stop The Elf because it's a pain and causes parents stress, blah, blah, blah...

Um, we're parents, stress is where we live, people! If I can do something that takes me 5 minutes per day to make my kids smile I'm going to keep on doing it.  Their happiness is my crack.  Not even a bit sorry about that one.

In the home stretch before Christmas, I needed a bit of inspiration and found it at my local craft store.  I bought a few things that will carry The Elf through the rest of the month.  So here you go for the final 8 days:

1.   In the cake decorating section, they have little sugar cake embellishments that look a lot like cookies. I picked some that resembled gingerbread men.  I cut out a tiny apron from felt (no sewing!) and will set The Elf up with a tiny cookie sheet (cardboard covered with foil) near the oven.

2.  I found a tiny 16"  burlap tree and tiny ornaments he will decorate over night.

3.   At my local Dollar Tree I found little ceramic houses that The Elf will set up as a little Christmas town one night while we're all asleep.

4.  There are tiny ball ornaments with kids' names at Michael's Craft store and tiny gift boxes in their dollar section that will appear under the tiny tree one night.

5.  Also in the Michael's dollar section, there are teeny tiny ceramic mugs.  I got a snowman one that I will fill with hot chocolate and set him up near the tea pot.  I added 3 snowman mugs for the boys with hot chocolate mix in them.

6.  I have a nutcracker display waaay up on a shelf so I lined The Elf with the nutcracker soldiers and will sit back and laugh at how long it takes him to find it!

7.  I trapped The Elf under a drinking glass with a sign reading "HELP!"

8.  I found a tiny fireplace and glued tiny stockings to it with my boys' names on them.

Need more ideas?  Check it out from past years:

Elf on the Shelf Ideas

Elf on the Shelf Linky Party

Good Luck and have fun with it!  You are creating memories and there are only a few days left - go out strong!


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