14 December 2011

Santa's Scout in Miss Kat's Preschool Class

So today while my class was outside on the playground with my assistants I stayed inside to hide our Elf on the Shelf (who is named Ralphie, by the way). He decided to perch himself in one of the kids' stockings hung on our "fireplace."

When we came inside the kids were busy hanging up their coats when one little boy named Ethan called my attention to the elf. "What do you mean? What elf?" I said.

"That one over there!" he pointed to the fireplace with our stockings and in less than a minute the word had spread and all the kids rushed over to the dramatic play center.

Isabel was most excited of all because she has an elf at her house. She quickly explained that we couldn't touch him because he'd lose his magic.

As the children ate their lunch I read the letter from Santa addressed to our class and the Elf on the Shelf story. They all sat in silence, wide-eyed. The rest of the afternoon they would occasionally remind a friend that "Ralphie the elf is watching us...he's going to tell Santa everything we do. We better be good."

They can't wait to see where he winds up tomorrow morning!

(I wish I could share photos I took of the kids first discovering the elf but for the children's protection it's best that I don't.)

13 December 2011

The Elf on the Shelf

Last week at school a little girl on the playground tugged on my sleeve and told me she had a secret to share. She pulled my face down to her and whispered into my ear, "Santa is coming to my house!"

"Really?!" I responded. She just looked up at me with the biggest grin. Of course I promised not to give away her secret.

This sweet moment reminded me how magical Christmas is for children. Believing in something magical makes the holidays all the more special and exciting. I remember when I believed in Santa Clause. In fact, I was afraid of him. I was so worried that he would find me awake on Christmas Eve (too excited to fall asleep, of course) that he wouldn't leave me any gifts. (I was also nervous about a strange magical old man coming into my house at night.) When I shared this story with my class one child said, "But Miss Kat, you don't have to be scared. Santa's nice." This reassuring response warmed my heart.

Many of my students also believe in Santa's elves. Several have The Elf on the Shelf at home and come in to school with stories of how they found their elves hiding in silly places. You see, the elf is one of Santa's helpers sent to children's homes to keep an eye out to see who's "naughty or nice." He moves around at night and can be found in a new place each morning. But you can't touch him or he loses his magic and has to return to the North Pole. So with all the excitement about the Elf on the Shelf I decided to adopt an elf for our classroom!

Tomorrow my kiddos will be surprised to find our very own Elf perched somewhere in our classroom. I'm so excited to see their reaction!

It's common that as people grow older they stop believing in magic. One of the best parts of working with children everyday is seeing that the magic still exists for them. Sometimes it's fun to just believe.

11 December 2011

Oh, Audrey.

These are quite possibly the sweetest, most romantic photos ever.

Is it weird that I want to recreate these with Trevor and I? I'm certain that I'm small enough to fit inside his coat...

06 December 2011

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas...

I realize that I haven't shared any photos from Thanksgiving yet, which was a beautiful warm day at Trevor's moms'. Those will come. But I couldn't resist posting a few photos of our festive holiday decorations. Christmas this year is especially exciting because it's the first one that I live in my own apartment, in a new town with a job and a car...like a real grown-up :)

Our first tree! I thought it looked pretty cute atop the Forester :)

Home with our tree

Pesto was trying to help me make the tree skirt.

Trev got into the spirit and decorated his guitars.

I made stockings for everyone in our "family". Plaid flannel was the obvious theme and each of us have a personalized applique.

Stockings hung with care :)

Our tree!

Pesto LOVES the tree!

So that's the beginning of our holiday cheer. I'll be going home to celebrate Christmas with my family in Florida but we'll have our own little celebration here before then. There's been talk of a holiday cocktail party at our place...I love the holiday season!