Free Printables: Elf on the Shelf Goodbye Letter and Activities

by Barb on November 25, 2013

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For our Elf on the Shelf Countdown this year, I created an Elf on the Shelf Goodbye Letter and a list of activities including a North Pole Breakfast. When we did The Elf on the Shelf last year for the first time, I found myself scrambling a bit when it came to surprising the kids with new spots for our Elf each day. Occasionally, I enlisted my teen’s help since he stays up later than I do.

Resource: Elf on the Shelf Printables and Activities

Elf on the Shelf Printables: Goodbye Letter and Activities - Grab your free printables for your Elf on the Shelf fun: Elf on the Shelf Goodbye Letter and a list of activities including a North Pole Breakfast.

This year, I decided that our Elf would not do something every day. Some days, I would just move him for the kids to find him. Other days we would do something fun. Each day, the kids would get a new joke from our Elf they could share with their friends in my new Elf on the Shelf Countdown Craft.

We’re kicking off our Elf on the Shelf fun with a North Pole Breakfast. On the menu are Snow-cover donuts, Floating Glacier Hot Cocoa, the Land of Sweets and Santa Party Poppers.

Elf on the Shelf Countdown

Elf on the Shelf Countdown

I created an Elf on the Shelf countdown using square tin boxes which I found in the wedding aisle at Michael’s Craft Store. At $.66/box, 30 tin boxes for $19.99 fit my budget. In the scrapbooking section, I found rectangular labels by Martha Stewart ($) that fit the boxes perfectly. I added an Elf boot which I also found in the scrapbooking section, to each label. I’m handwrote the numbers, 1 to 24, with a gold paint pen. Inside each box is a fun Elf on the Shelf joke.

Elf on the Shelf Printables: Buddy missed the cold of the North Pole.Buddy the Elf hanging out the fridge because he missed the cold of the North Pole.


These two Elf on the Shelf printables will help you have some stress-less fun with your Elf on the Shelf. One has activities, suggestions for a North Pole Kick Off Breakfast and links to resources online. The other is a goodbye letter you can use when your Elf needs to return to the North Pole to help Santa on Christmas Eve.

Elf on the Shelf Printable: Activities

Elf on the Shelf Activities Printable (PDF)

Elf on the Shelf Printable: Goodbye Letter

Elf on the Shelf Goodby Letter (PDF)

Follow Barb Hoyer: A Life in Balance’s board { Christmas Crafts for Kids } on Pinterest.

Post card from Buddy the Elf While on Vacation

After your Elf goes back to the North Pole until next year, keep the magic alive with a postcard from him during summer vacation. You can order a postcard through

Do you do the Elf on the Shelf with Your Kids?

Meet Barb

Barb Hoyer has written 3935 posts.

After working in the fundraising world for over ten years, Barb is an avid runner, writer, photographer, parent volunteer, and lover of dictionaries and thesauruses. Wife to an engineer and mom to 5 kids, Barb lives in the suburbs of Philly. Her idea of relaxation is an afternoon on the couch with a stack of books.

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{ 20 comments… read them below or add one }

Brandi November 25, 2013 at 7:45 am

We don’t do The Elf, because he creeps my kids out. Their grandmother tried starting it with them when they were 2 & 4, but she told them he would be watching them while they slept. Instead of having a calming effect, the poor guys were afraid to go to sleep. It made for a verrrrrrrry long holiday season. ;)
Brandi recently posted..Baby Sock Snowman Ornament – 25 Days of Quick Kids’ Christmas Ornaments: Day 1


Stephanie November 25, 2013 at 8:18 am

I’m always scrambling to find a location to put our Elf.I love the idea of him not doing something every day! Thanks!
Stephanie recently posted..Create Your Own Countdown to Christmas Craft


Barb November 25, 2013 at 1:23 pm

Yes, even Elves need a mental healthy day during the holiday season. ;)


Carrie November 25, 2013 at 8:59 am

Cute! We love Elf on the Shelf, I just don’t go crazy with him because it’s too much work. No teens over here to help out. ;-) Love the goodbye letter!


Barb November 25, 2013 at 1:21 pm

Thank you!


kim @ DESIGN + LIFE + KIDS November 25, 2013 at 9:09 am

I need to step up my elf on the shelf game this year! We love ours, but I brought her out a little early to remind the girls.. and they got freaked out by her at night!
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Barb November 25, 2013 at 1:21 pm

I have to plan ahead! Plus get my teen involved. Too many nights I go to bed way too early.


Colleen (Souffle Bombay) November 25, 2013 at 2:43 pm

Love the goodbye letter Barb! We have never done the elf because for 11 years my hubs and I have been doing insane things with my suns 2 Blue Bears – (cousins). They are the ones who also get put out our front door and deliver the letter to Santa each year – OH the stories I could tell you about those two. My husband is always miffed that back then we didn’t market their shenanigans and come up with “the elf” lol!
Colleen (Souffle Bombay) recently posted..Apple Pie Moonshine


Gina B November 25, 2013 at 3:14 pm

That’s way too much work for me, LOL! Plus my kids are a little old for it, but I’m always amused by the images. I’m hoping you’ll share some of the funnier Elf incidents at your house.
Gina B recently posted..Special Needs & Autism Mama Holiday Gift Guide (and Wish List)


Barb November 26, 2013 at 4:51 am

I’ll be sharing on Instagram with the hashtag #holiday2013daily:


Lindsay November 25, 2013 at 9:43 pm

This is fun! Our Elf debuts on Black Friday. It’s a favorite tradition for us too!
Lindsay recently posted..Giveaway: Elf on the Shelf – 2 Winners! (ends 12/9/13)


Life With Munchers November 26, 2013 at 9:53 am

These are great! Can’t wait for #elftakeover time! Hope to see you joining in!
Life With Munchers recently posted..The Elf on The Shelf Takeover


Barb November 26, 2013 at 12:06 pm

Thank you!


Estelle Sobel Erasmus November 26, 2013 at 5:57 pm

I tried doing Elf on the Shelf with my preschooler and unfortunately she wasn’t too interested. Now he languishes in the closet. I guess I’ll try again this year. I respect your creativity with this concept.
Estelle Sobel Erasmus recently posted..Holiday Boots Giveaway from Country Outfitter


Chrissy December 2, 2013 at 8:48 am

Cute! Love all the Elf on the Shelf activities! Thanks so much for sharing at our Mommy Club Resources and Solution Linky party last week! Hope to see you back!
Chrissy recently posted..30 Peppermint Dessert Recipe Ideas


Barb December 2, 2013 at 9:03 am

Thank you! I checked out your Peppermint Dessert recipes – yum! I think my traditional Yule Log may get updated with something Pepperminty.


Corinne December 11, 2013 at 10:02 pm

These are great! Thanks for sharing them. Love the goodbye letter.
Corinne recently posted..Help Stop Child Abuse


Jenn December 20, 2013 at 10:55 pm

This is an absolute must. My kids have grown pretty attached to our Joey this year.
I would love for you to come join my link party at
I look forward to seeing more posts from you.
Have a great weekend and happy holidays!
Jenn @ IHeartHandsOn
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Ickle Pickle December 2, 2014 at 4:43 pm

Living in Wales, UK, it is so interesting reading about the Elf on the Shelf in America! I have my first elf, he is cuddly and cute! Mummy has adapted the idea for me – I am only two! Thank you for linking up to #ElfEscapades


Clare Nicholas December 9, 2014 at 3:52 pm

I love the letters – we had one when ours arrived.
Ii hadn’t thought of a goodbye one though. Thank you for linking up #ElfEscapades
Clare Nicholas recently posted..Free Life Cover for New Parents & a giveaway to win a new Baby starter pack worth £150


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