Wednesday, December 2, 2009

The Elf on the Shelf

It's that time of year again. Jason, our Elf on the Shelf, made his first appearance of 2009 on Saturday night. (Don't ask - Clare named him something unmemorable two years ago, when she was four, and then named him Jason last year. I'm not sure if this was indicative of her having a crush on our carpool pal Jason or if it was simply the first name that came to mind. I do know that it's sort of creepy to say, "Remember, Jason is watching you!")

This is the third year we've had Jason, but it's really Danny's first year with the elf, as he clearly didn't remember him from last year. And now that Danny pays a little more attention to Jason's existence, Clare also seems more interested. As soon as she is dressed for school, she comes out of her room looking for him and wants to make sure Danny doesn't find him before she gets a chance to search.

Aside from a cute holiday tradition - and behavior modification tool - Jason provides yet another glimpse of the differences between Clare and Danny. For example, yesterday Clare received some candy after Irish dance class, which she proceeded to share liberally with Danny, even though I explained to him that it was her candy and she didn't have to share. (Trust me, he had his share of treats by way of samples at Trader Joe's and Publix while we waited for her class to be over.) Later in the evening she was racing around to help me anytime she overheard me mention if I was looking for something, or getting ready to do something. Not quite Eddie Haskell, but a tad obvious.

Danny isn't quite going that route. On the contrary, when he did something that frustrated Tim and I the other night, I mentioned that Jason would likely report the offense to Santa. Danny looked crestfallen, and at bedtime whispered to me that he was going to hide from Santa. Poor kid. I have since dialed back the rhetoric...but I'm still keeping it my back pocket, just in case.

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