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100+ Easy Elf on the Shelf Ideas For 2023

100 Easy Elf on The Shelf Ideas that are so much fun for the whole family. These quick ideas include last-minute elf shenanigans perfect for busy parents!

collage of simple elf on the shelf ideas

What is Elf on The Shelf?

The Elf on the Shelf: A Christmas Tradition is a picture book that was created by Carol Aebersold and her daughter Chanda Bell. It tells a Christmas-themed story, written in rhyme, that explains how Santa Claus knows who is naughty and nice. As the book explains, Santa uses scout elves to visit little girls and little boys around the world. While visiting, they leave a fun surprise for kids each night leading up to Christmas Eve when they head back to the North Pole to report back to Santa.

How to Get Started with Elf on The Shelf

If you are just getting started with your elf fun, you’ll first need your very own elves. You can get the Elf on The Shelf Starter Kit here (you can get a girl or boy – or both).

You will then begin your elf season beginning December 1st (when the elf returns) and ending on December 24th (Christmas Eve) when the Elves go back to The North Pole.

From there, you’ll want to start out with simple ideas. It can be overwhelming your first year to remember to move the elf every single night. So, my recommendation is to start with minimal effort and work your way up to more extravagant Elf on the Shelf ideas.

The most important thing is to remember to move the elf to a new spot so the next day when little kids awake, they find a little surprise from their little elf. It’s worst when kids wake up the next morning and you realize, you forgot to move the elf!

Some things you may want to consider is also grabbing props for your elf. Amazon sells an Elf on The Shelf kit that contains 24 ideas and props.

However, if you want an inexpensive route, check out my favorite Dollar Tree Elf on The Shelf Props.

elf on the shelf with dollar tree props

Best Elf on The Shelf Ideas of 2023

The elves are back and are ready for more fun and mischief! And if you’re looking for new ideas or perhaps ideas to get the Elf on The Shelf Christmas tradition started, you’ve come to the right place!

I’ve gathered tons of fun ideas that will keep your elf busy all holiday season long and are a great way to bring the elf magic into your home!

Related: See 25 Quick Elf on The Shelf Ideas That Can Be Done in 10 Minutes or less!

100+ Simple Elf on The Shelf Ideas

Elf reading a tiny book.

Elf swinging from a candy cane.

Elf hiding in a tissue box.

Elf having a snowball fight with other toys.

Elf making “lemonade” (use fake lemonade or water colored with food coloring).

elf making lemonade

Elf making a marshmallow snow angel using mini marshmallows on the counter or table.

Elf fishing for Goldfish crackers in a bowl.

Elf taking a nap in a tissue hammock.

Elf riding a toy dinosaur.

Elf writing a note to Santa.

Elf zip-lining across the room.

Elf devouring Christmas cookies.

elves eating christmas cookies

Elf roasting marshmallows over a candle.

Elf riding a toy train.

Elf playing hide and seek with other toys.

Elf brushing their teeth with mini toothpaste.

Elf playing a tiny board game.

Elf having a picnic with mini snacks.

Elf making a paper snowflake.

Elf wrapping a small gift.

Elf stuck inside the TV (use this static YouTube video to make it appear they are stuck inside).

elf stuck inside tv

Elf doing yoga with other toys.

Elf having a bubble bath in a cup.

Elf skiing down a slope made of tissues.

Elf building a tower with building blocks.

Elf having a tea party with stuffed animals.

Elf making a mess with cereal.

elves making a mess with cereal

Elf rock climbing on the wall.

Elf zip-tying the refrigerator shut.

Elf pretending to be a doctor with mini medical tools.

Elf hanging out in a tissue box hot tub.

Elf writing “I’m back!” on the mirror with toothpaste.

Elf playing tic-tac-toe with candy.

Elf riding a toy rocket.

Elf building a snowman out of marshmallows.

Elf taking a ride in a toy car.

Elf spelling your child’s name out in toy cars.

elves spelling out child's name in toy cars

Elf playing a mini piano.

Elf having a dance party with other toys.

Elf making a trail of footprints with flour.

Elf hanging from the ceiling fan.

Elf doing a jigsaw puzzle.

Elf playing with toy soldiers.

Elf having a wrestling match with action figures.

Elf making a snow angel with flour.

Elf parachuting from a string.

Elf drawing with shaving cream on shower wall.

elves drew in shaving cream on bathroom wall

Elf pretending to be a superhero.

Elf climbing a mini ladder.

Elf zip-tying the TV remote.

Elf using a mini laptop.

Elf making a hammock out of dental floss.

Elf having a spa day with Barbie dolls.

Elf swinging on a ribbon.

Elf doing a science experiment with baking soda and vinegar.

Elf riding a toy horse.

Elf taking a ride on a toy rocket.

Elf setting up a toy campfire.

Elf playing a mini violin.

Elf hiding in the Christmas tree.

Elf zip-tying the bathroom doorknob.

Elf playing a tiny guitar.

elf playing guitar

Elf making a zip line with string.

Elf having a puppet show with finger puppets.

Elf painting with watercolors.

Elf making mess with laundry.

elf on the shelf making mess with laundry

Elf building a fort with pillows and blankets.

Elf having a tea party with dolls.

Elf doing a magic trick with a deck of cards.

Elf hanging out in a shoebox bed.

Elf making a maze with building blocks.

Elf playing with toy animals.

Elf zip-tying the bedroom doorknob.

Elf playing mini basketball.

Elf duct tape another elf to the fridge.

elf duct taped another elf to the fridge

Elf having a picnic in a dollhouse.

Elf riding a toy scooter.

Elf playing with toy cars.

Elf making a zip line with dental floss.

Elf having a bubble bath in a cup.

Elf playing with toy dinosaurs.

Elf zip-tying the kitchen cabinet handles.

Elf playing with toy trucks.

Elf playing with the Kitchen-Aid mixer.

elf stuck inside kitchenaid mixer

Elf making a snowman out of cotton balls.

Elf having a disco party with action figures.

Elf playing mini golf.

Elf zip-tying the front door handle.

Elf having a fashion show with dolls.

Elf playing with toy planes.

Elf making a zip line with yarn.

Elf rolling down the stairs with a roll of toilet paper (you can use a toilet paper roll for so many ideas).

elves rolling down the stairs with toilet paper rolls

Elf playing with toy boats.

Elf having a movie night with mini popcorn.

Elf playing mini soccer.

Elf zip-tying the light switch.

Elf playing with toy robots.

Elf playing with Play-Doh.

elf playing with playdoh

Elf having a spa day with toy animals.

Elf playing mini volleyball.

Elf zip-tying the computer mouse.

Elf decorating the house or tree with Christmas decorations.

Elf playing mini golf – can use mini candy canes and gum drops.

Elf playing with toy construction vehicles.

Elf having a pajama party with stuffed animals.

Elf playing mini tennis.

Elf tied up with floss.

elf tied up with dental floss

Elf zip-tying the pantry door.

Elf playing with toy tools.

Elf having a pizza party with action figures.

Elf playing mini basketball.

Elf zip-tying the refrigerator door.

Elf playing with toy musical instruments.

Elf playing with Legos.

elf playing with legos

Now that you are armed and ready with the very best elf ideas that are simple and fun, you can get started on your mischievous elf adventures.

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