Rose, the Elf on the Shelf

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A few years ago, on the day after Christmas, Rose made her first appearance at the Anderson household. “One day,” says 10-year-old Makenzie Anderson, “this big box showed up, with Rose in the bottom.” “She was there just for a quick visit, to introduce herself,” said Makenzie’s mom, Kristi Anderson.

“She came with a book,” said Makenzie, so she and her 8-year-old sister Madison could learn about their new elf.

Makenzie named her Rose because it’s her own middle name and, according to Kristi, “she likes to name everything Rose.” The name seemed to fit and when the on-line adoption papers were filed by Makenzie and Madison, with a little help from mom, it became official.

Though Rose spends most of her year at the North Pole, of her annual return to the Anderson household, Makenzie informs us that “She comes back the day after Thanksgiving.”

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When Rose arrives, she brings with her an entourage including a polar bear and a snowman, with whom she spends her time exploring the Anderson household whilst keeping a close eye on the children and making mischief of her own.

According to Makenzie, “She makes good snowflakes.” “But she doesn’t pick up after herself,” added Madison. “When she made snowflakes she left glitter all over the place … just like other people in this house,” declares Kristi. “Hmmm,” says Madison tapping her chin and grinning, “I wonder who that is?”

Apparently Rose is, in general, a bit of a slob. “She made messes everywhere,” said Makenzie. One day they awoke to find a big pile of flour on the counter, the result of Rose’s attempt at making snow angels. “She got it everywhere,” said Madison, “and she was laying in it!”

“It’s bad luck to touch an elf,” says Madison, “It makes them lose their magic.” And Rose, who travels from place to place by flying, had apparently flown out to a local donut shop as evidenced by the fact that amidst the piles of flour the girls also found coffee spilled on the counter that same morning. “It was funny when she was surrounded by coffee,” added Makenzie.

“When we first got her, she wasn’t naughty,” said Makenzie, but now, “She’s crazy!”

“She brought us presents one day, and she brought us frosting for cookies on another day,” explains Madison – which the girls found endearing. However, sneaky Rose got into the cookies and frosting that night after the family was tucked into their beds and ate all the cookies that had been set aside for the mailman. “Ya,” admits Madison, “I might have helped her with that one.”

“Rose was also sick one day,” said Kristi, “just like Madison” – possibly the day after they ate all those cookies.

Rose flies from place to place every day. She can go anywhere and on one particular day was found stuck on the wall – perhaps the result of sticky, candy covered fingers.

When it comes to food, however, “pancakes are her favorite,” said Makenzie. “She likes maple syrup just like Buddy the Elf,” added Kristi and, “like Madison, Rose can sniff out chocolate anywhere in the house.”

“I’m pretty sure her favorite character is Mickey Mouse,” said Makenzie. Coincidentally, Mickey Mouse is Kristi’s favorite character as well and so it was no surprise when the girls found Rose hanging onto the family’s Mickey Mouse Christmas wreath.

“Once,” said Makenzie, “we found her sitting in our living room in our pink car with stuffies all around her.” “An another day,” said Kristi, “we found her sitting in a wine glass, next to a bottle of wine.”

Sometimes, Rose likes to accessorize and, according to Makenzie, “she wears jewelry that looks a lot like ours!”

“One day,” says Kristi, “she wrote a note to Madison” who had apparently been a bit naughty. “She reports back to Santa,” adds the girls’ dad Mike with a grin and a wink as he tussles Madison’s blond locks, “so it’s a shocker that our kids get Christmas presents at all.”

“She is a lot of fun, and a good reminder for them when they are misbehaving,” says Kristi, but Rose also rewards the girls with notes and gifts for achievements like getting good report cards. Judging by Rose’s messy penmanship, however, Madison guesses that the cat may have helped her write a particular congratulatory note to Makenzie.

“It’s a way to let the children’s – including the larger children’s – imaginations soar,” added Mike, who appears to enjoy Rose’s antics as much as his daughters.

According to Madison, “there are a gazillion elves … one for every person in the world.” There are so many, in fact, “that you can’t count them because you would get too tired,” adds her big sister.

Rose leaves with Santa on Christmas Eve to return to the North Pole or, perhaps, “to a different county where they have Christmas on a different day,” ponders Madison. “I think that on Christmas Eve all the elves go back with Santa and they eat all the cookies that kids leave out for them along the way,” adds Makenzie, most likely with dear, naughty Rose consuming more that her fair share.

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