Family fun this christmas. Come and learn what it takes to be a Christmas Elf – fun, challenges and Christmas spirit for the whole family….
Interactive, Festive Family Fun….
Santa’s Elves need your help! Pumpaa, Sprout and their team of Elves have been sent on a special mission by Santa himself, to share some of their secrets with carefully selected children and their families.
You are invited to come on The Elf Adventure Challenge; take part in Elf tasks and games. Join in with the music, fun and story and when you complete your challenges successfully you will earn a certificate and the title of ‘Honorary Elf’….and who knows, you may be called on to help Santa in his duties…….
An interactive, indoor experience full of fun, festive activities and action for children and adults to enjoy together where you will feel jolly, merry and full of Christmas spirit!
Challenges include learning how to build the toys, load the sleigh, play Elf games and do the Elf March!
This is a 1 hour experience, including time for photographs with the Elfs at the end and is suitable for 2-10 year olds and their grown ups! Younger children may need some help with some of the activities. This is fully participative for adults and children alike to have fun and complete the activities together. So come and bring alive the spirit of Christmas with your family!
All children will receive a free copy of the colour illustrated storybook which the event is based on so they can continue their Elf fun at home!
There are multiple dates and time-slots available at different locations across the North West. For location details click here.
Single tickets start from £10 per person and family tickets are available providing a discounted ticket price when purchasing 4 or more tickets. For full ticket and venues information or to purchase tickets CLICK HERE
Please note both adults and children must purchase a ticket as this is a family experience.
If you start to blast out Christmas songs in November, invariably you get someone within minutes telling you ‘it’s too early’ and ‘you shouldn’t even be thinking about Christmas until December” and other varying phrases at different levels on the grumpy “don’t say the ‘C’ word yet!
But for us, as soon as the last sparkler goes out on Bonfire night, then it’s time for Mulled Wine, mince pies, Christmas music and movies!! And why not? Especially if you have kids.
I worked out that for each child, if you assume they are into the full on Christmas magic for 10 years (which obviously might be more or less depending on the child). And discounting the first year as they obviously would rather rip up a cardboard box and likely cling to you and howl if you try and get them to meet the Big Man; that means you have on average 9 Christmas’s to really feel the magic with your child. To put it bluntly. If you don’t start getting excited with your nippers until December, then you only have a total of 27 weeks of singing Christmas songs, or put another way; just 189 days of festive magic with your under 10!!!
Of course my wish if for my kids to continue to watch Nativity, Elf and listen to Slade with me until we can then do the same with their children!! But being realistic about it, once they turn into teenagers, you can’t always do exactly the same magical stuff you can do when they are little.
Of course if you have more than one child and depending on how spread out they are, you may have many more days than this. I am lucky to have 9 years between my eldest and youngest and so I double the numbers here in terms of magical Christmas days!
But that’s why I want to double them again!! Ultimately what’s the harm in the excitement starting in November? I don’t put our tree up until Dec 1st, mainly because it would be thread bear and looking very sorry for itself by Dec 25th! But there is nothing wrong with a good Christmas movie, sing song or Christmas story in November.
And to those Scrooges who mutter about commercialism and companies being greedy and all that jazz; they clearly fail to see the benefits to the economy that a bit of Christmas excitement brings to the country. If a company is doing well selling products or magical Christmas experiences, food or drink, then they in turn plough that back into the economy, which provides jobs and income, resulting in money being spent all year round and ultimately families therefore being able to have a happier Christmas!
So, for me; Christmas has many far reaching benefits; doing magical experiences together with our family has far reaching benefits for the community and ultimately and fundamentally magical time with our kids has far reaching benefits for our family. So we want to make the most of that!!
So come on get the Christmas songs on the speaker, make some mince pies and enjoy some quality time together. Life is short and childhood is ever more fleeting so let’s relish in the magic while we can. Let’s also reclaim some of the magic of our past and see how good it is for our soul! I know singing loudly to ‘Feed the World’ reminds me of what is important and nourishes my soul!!
Here are 5 great Christmas activities to do with the kids in November:
1/Make mince meat. Unless you are one of those super organised types who does it in January (do they exist?!) chances are you won’t have done this. And if you have never made your own mince pies before preferring to fall back on shop bought ones; but believe me they are so much nicer. And making mince-meat is so easy and non-accurate that it’s a brilliant cooking activity that the kids can get really involved in – and who doesn’t love a good old mix?!!
2/ Plan the Christmas dinner together– still on food (let’s face it, it’s one of the best things about Christmas!) getting the kids involved in planning the Christmas feast is something that they love and also is a lot of fun, plus it actually is helpful to get ahead! As we all know once December starts its such mayhem, time for planning is few and far between. So actually some time leafing through glossy Christmas magazines and recipes and getting the kids to cut out and make a montage of their favourite pictures and tastiest ideas if a great way to get them on board with food education and appreciation too!
3/ Santa letters! Everyone knows that Santa appreciates being given some time! After all he can’t make everyone’s toys in one month! So the earlier the kids do their letters the easier it makes it for the Big Man!
4/ Christmas movies!! You can’t beat an Autumn Sunday afternoon snuggled on the sofa with a movie and hot chocolate. And if you leave it until December, chances are all your weekends will be jammed packed and you’ll realise you haven’t watched any of the Christmas movies that you wanted to. So why not start now! Let’s be honest you can’t beat a good Christmas movie so make the most of them from now! Our favourites for watching in November are Nativity (and any of the sequels!), Home Alone and Elf!
5/ Christmas stories!! There are so many great Christmas books and stories if you wait until December to start reading them all you don’t get enough time to read them all! So start reading the Christmas stories with the kids in November and they will love it (as will you!)
To organise an amazing family festive activity with Elves from the North Pole find out about The Elf Adventure Challenge
It’s October; its blustery; the leaves are leaving the trees and Autumn is definitely here. Time to be starting to bring our thoughts to Christmas…
Pumpaa, Sprout and their Elves are always thinking Christmas of course and finaly it’s the time of year when they like to share with you their roundup of their favourite toys for 2018…. So if you are looking for some inspiration here are their top picks for toys for Christmas 2018 ……
- Fingerlings Untamed Dinos, £16.99
WowWee Toys’ have been producing the popular Fingerlings in all kinds of animals and are all about dinosaurs (or unicorns, if you fancy something a little less roar-y). The Raptors have 4 to choose from and our Elf ears have been whispered to that there may be a T-Rex that will be roaring into the shops before Christmas too! So watch this space….as we Elves love Dinosaurs we are sure to tell you when we get our first batch of them!!!
The dinos are slightly bigger than their monkey predecessors, and interact, wrap around your finger, learn to talk and roar and respond to motion and sound just like other Fingerlings. Expect lots of cute growls and roars!!
There is also a Fingerlings Dino cage, which will cost £39.99 and Argos have predicted this will be one of their top toys for the year, so you can keep your Dino Fingerlings at your fingertips!
2. Ricky the Trick-Lovin Pet, £134.99
From Dinosaurs to more furry, less roar-y pets – the cute Furreal Friends pup Ricky has more than 100 sound and motion combinations – from balancing a biscuit on his nose to giving you a paw-shake! He’s cuddly, soft and will no doubt soon become your child’s new best friend!
If you are being badgered into getting a real pet but you’re not quite sure yet then Ricky is purrrrfect!!!
3. Chow Crown Game, £17.99
We Elves love a game (as does Santa, but shhh don’t tell anyone!!) and this is a crazy fun one for the whole family! The hat plays music, and while the beats are going, the crown spins round and the wearer has to eat as many of the attached food items as possible.
Of course – you can choose whatever snacks you fancy, from marshmallows to strawberries to crisps or anything else you have around.
Perfect to involve granny in just after she’s had her post-Christmas dinner sherry!!!
4. LOL Surprise Under Wraps, £14.99
The LOL surprise toys have been a remarkable toy sensation and the latest for this year is the Surprise Under Wraps which is almost like a cylinder, and has a total of 15 layers to unwrap.
‘Under Wraps’ is notably more expensive than a LOL Surprise Ball but WAY less expensive than the LOL Surprise Big Surprise that dominated Christmas wish lists in 2017.
We love a puppet set – you can’t beat the magic of playing creatively and low tech with the kids (see our blog here on Imaginative play ideas with your children) and especially when you combine play with timeless stories you have a winner in Elf terms! These puppets are themed around Roald Dahl’s chocolatey-adventure book classic. You get one Willy Wonka hand puppet and then finger puppets of the 5 golden-ticket winners Charlie Bucket, Veruca Salt, Violet Beauregarde, Augustus Gloop, and Mike Teavee.
They are well made and a joy to play with for both kids and adults!!
- LEGO DUPLO Cargo Train, £99.99
No Christmas toys round up would be complete without something from Lego on it (and we have 2 on here of course!)
This lovely play set has all your child needs for some super-fun train action. It includes a harbour, boat, café, loading station, 2 cranes, 3 DUPLO figures plus an animal figure and lots of cool track pieces included in this set.
- VTech Fantasy Unicorn, £49.99
Unicorns are this year’s rage! And the Fantasy Unicorn from Vtech is great and bit a different from a lot of the other unicorns you see in the shops; it has an animatronic wand, which lets your little one alter the toy’s colours. The wand also lets little ones digitally apply make-up.
If your child likes playing with dolls heads or pretend make up they will love this…
We posted in previous years about Pie Face – one of the Elves favourite games! Last year they came back with Pie Face sky high, the free standing ‘fairground’ style version of the popular game. And now for 2018 those clever Elves have created Pie Face Cannon. The cannon fires a pie EVERY time and it’s up to the target to make sure they use the red hand in time to stop themselves from getting truly, madly pied!! Oh the Elves loved testing this one!!
9. LEGO Creator Winter Holiday Train, £74.99
Lego item number two, we had to include as it is the winter train – and you know us Elves love a train around the Christmas tree!!
This is a gorgeous Christmas-themed Lego set, which is not just a cool Lego kit but is also a working train set, with 16 curved pieces of track. There’s a brilliant steam engine and 5 mini-figures plus a rotating Christmas tree and gifts. Would be great to go under your Christmas tree, if you child lets you get your hands on it….
10. Little Tikes Princess Horse & Carriage Cozy Coupe, £109.99
This magical toddler ride-on comes complete with clip-clop sounds and blue-maned horse. You can take the reins and pull the carriage along or let your child hold the reins, while you push it along using the handle on the roof.
You can also remove the carriage floor if your toddler fancies pushing the carriage along by themselves. A glamorous alternative to the popular Little Tikes cars!
Who doesn’t love slime (check out our great homemade slime how to video by the amazing daisy’s Days here)
This kit provide a one stop, messy but planned-out fun box! Comes with protective googles and gloves, plus the tools, ingredients and step-by-step instructions to make an invisible monster, slimy snakes, sludgy goo, slime balls and, of course, slimy bogies. Science at its most gooey!!
12. Toilet Trouble, £17.99
What child (and adult?!) doesn’t love some toilet humour?! Who’s going to get gushed by the flush? A fun – and funny – family suspense game where you take turns to spin the loo roll to see how many times you have to flush the temperamental (water-filled) toy toilet that may – or may not – spray you with (just a little) water. For 2 players or more; needs 2 AA batteries (included).
13. i-Top £14.99
This electronic spinner counts the number of rotations and allows kids to compete against their friends for the highest number. A good competitive one for siblings on Christmas day!
- Treasure X3 Pack Chest £29.99
If you love a treasure hunt, then this toy is for you! Set to be a leader in the collectible craze, this toy will keep your kids entertained for hours. You have to open a map which tells you what you’re going to discover and then you chip away at the block to get components to build a figure. 1 in every 50 has a piece of real gold or a real diamond hidden inside…
So there you have it. Our pick of the best toys for Christmas 2018! Please post and tell us what you are excited about and any others you recommend!! Us Elves always love toy testing – life is about fun, fun, fun!!!
You won’t be surprised to learn that Elves LOVE snow! It’s their usual environment in the North Pole so when they are able to have snow fun on there travels around their world they are super happy!
Check out their snow fun from the various venues with snow from this weekend!
But as much as real Elves love snow they understand that us Honorary Elves do get a bit cold! So when you visit the Elf Adventure Challenge you can learn your Elf skills and complete your games and challenges in the warm and dry!
We have some limited time-slots available still so if you and your family want to train to be honorary Elves check out availability and BOOK NOW HERE
Released on December 1st. pre-order now and help the Elves get a Christmas number 1….!
The first real wave of Santa letters are being received this week so I am so excited I could burst my Elf pants!!
Of course we have been receiving some letters for months from some super duper keen Elflet children and now the main lot have started rushing through.
So in case you are still chewing on your pencil and wondering what to write I thought I’d let you in on a few secrets of how the whole letter thing works…and also what we Elves like in a letter, not to mention Santa himself!!
So first of all, how do your letters get to us? Well do you know you can post them in the post box, leave them on your mantel piece or post them in one of the special Santa letter boxes that are in many places; rest assured the Elves receive your letters and read every one!
This is because there is a special wind that floats all around us, all over the world. You can’t see it; it’s magic and it’s the same magic wind that allows Santa to know things about you that you might not have told him. Just like you cannot see oxygen, but you know it is there because it means you can breathe, this magic Northern wind is all around us, all year round. And it also recognises any letter addressed to Santa Claus and brings it to us at the North Pole. So it doesn’t matter where you leave your letter, you can leave it indoors, outdoors or even pop it in the postbox, as long as it is addressed to Santa it will find its way to us at the North Pole.
So more importantly what do we Elves like in a letter? Well there are three things that we really love –
1/ Good manners – Santa loves it when children ask how he is, thank him for his time and use your best manners – he is very traditional and believes that good manners are very important, so the more polite you are to him (remember your please’s and thank you’s!) the happier he is!
2/ Gratitude – being grateful for last year’s gifts and for all the good things that have happened this year. We Elves work very, very hard and to have our hard work acknowledge by you children makes us jump for joy and feel full of goodness!!
3/ Colour, pictures, care and attention with your letters- Christmas is about cheerful colour so we love to see lots of colourful pictures in your letters and all the hard word you have given to creating a beautiful letter for us. It makes us soooooooo happy!!! So get creative, draw us some pictures and get your coloured pens out (Sprout especially is a sucker for sparkles!!)
So if you haven’t written your letter to Santa, get cracking. And my final tip to you festive Elflets is that it is best to limit your letter to a few things that you really want. As Santa usually gives a few extra bonus bits too that he thinks you will like too. So just let him know what you really, really would like above all things.
Looking forward to receiving your fabulous letters. And if you want you can even bring them along to The Elf Adventure Challenge and post them in our special postbox. Our Elf challenge masters love to see your letters as they are not working in the North Pole this year. So bring them along, show them and post them in our post box for Santa!
See you soon Elflets…
Well of course we have a party! Elves don’t need to be encouraged to have a good time! One of the reason we Elves love Halloween is because we get to be really creative and that’s what Elves love best! Making costumes, making fun food and having a good time!
Santa loves to carve pumpkins do you know? Well of course he would as he is the world’s oldest and best toy maker! Look at this amazing carved pumpkin…..
Halloween brings out our creativity and we always have the day off, dedicating time to making fantastic costumes, food and frolics!
And tomorrow the hard work really starts so Halloween is a good opportunity to have a day off and some fun before Seasons Greetings! Look at our fabulous Halloween tree decoration……..
The highlight of the Halloween Party is my brother Kasper Elf who is even older than I am and has so many stories and tales to tell and his ghost stories are infamous! So we are excited to hear what ghost story he will tell us tonight. Last year he told us this scary Halloween story about three cats – prepared to be spooked….and to chuckle a bit, I like this one because its funny too and us Elves don’t like to be serious!
Kasper Elves Spooky Ghost Story for the Elves:
An old man was out for a walk. When a storm came up, he looked for a place to take shelter. Soon he came to an old house. He ran up on the porch and knocked on the door, but nobody answered. By now rain was pouring down, thunder was booming, and lighting was flashing. So he tried the door. When He found it was unlocked, he went inside.
Except for a pile of wooden boxes, the house was empty. He broke up some of the boxes and made fire with them. Then he sat down if front of the fire and dried himself. It was warm and cozy that he fell asleep.
When he woke up a black cat was sitting near the fire. It stared at him for a while. Then it purred. “That’s a nice cat,” he thought, and he dozed off again. When he opened his eyes, there was a second cat in the room. But this one was as big as a wolf. It looked at him vary closely, and it asked, “Shall we do it now?” “No,” said the other cat. “Let’s wait till Martin comes.” I must be dreaming,” thought the old man. He closed his eyes again. Then he took another look. But now there was a third cat in the room, and this one was as big as a tiger. It looked the old man over, and it asked, “Shall we do it now?” “No,” said the others. “Let’s wait till Martin comes.”
The old man jumped up, jumped out the window and started running. “when Martin comes, tell him I couldn’t wait,” he called.
We’ve had a very exciting time this week at The North Pole because Santa himself led his annual team building session with all the Elves! Aside from the month of Seasons Greetings in December, Santa’s team building session is one of our Elves favourite things to do in the year!
Because all Elves have to do their Elf Adventure Challenge test before they can go from Elflets to fully fledged Elves, these team building sessions remind them of their Adventure Challenge activities which are always such fun, for Elflets and Elves of all ages!!
The activities that Elflets do in their Elf Adventure Challenge training are created and developed by Santa himself!
Santa loves team building with the Elves as working together as a happy, helpful and considerate team is essential to living and working in The Elf Village!
We do reindeer races, snowball relays, snowman building, cookie decorating and at the end of the day we have our favourite hot chocolate and gingerbread cookies!
You can read more about the Elflets and how they take their own Elf Adventure Challenge in order to become fully fledged Elves in my new book about Sprout Elf’s Adventure Challenge.
It will be available to buy next month so look out for it! And if you want to come along and join in the Challenges for yourself come to The Elf Adventure Challenge with your family this Christmas. If you complete the challenges and earn yourself title of honorary Elf then Santa may even call on you for help in the future…….
Yeeehah Elfets – I’m jumping for joy to be back at The Ice Cream Farm (as you know Elves do so LOVE ice Cream and Cheshire Ice Cream Farm have my favourite flavour; chocolate ripple cookie dough!)
And the other exciting news is that I have a newly qualified Elf trainer, Sprout Elf who has helped me to bring the Elf Adventure Challenge Christmas fun and games to you all this year.
And we have a whole team of other amazing Elves working with us this year too to enable us to provide family Christmas fun for you in some different locations, making it easier for you to come and take part in your own Elf Adventure Challenge, become qualified as an honorary Elf and learn about what it means to be a real Christmas Elf!
To see the story of how Sprout the Elf came to join me on the Elf Adventure Challenge and went from Elfet to fully fledged Elf, with a few lessons on Christmas spirit along the way, see my Christmas storybook. I am very excited to be able to give all the children who come to the Elf Adventure Challenge a copy of my special Christmas storybook so they can carry on their Elf fun at home!
My book will be available for those who cannot visit the Elf Adventure Challenge, so feel free to share it with anyone who you think would love a new Christmas story to read with their children this year!
And so remember to sign up for updates, like our social media pages and check back in and you will find out more about the book as it is released. I’ll also be giving you some insights into life as an Elf at The North Pole during the next few months leading up to Christmas. Ooh I love this time of year; the anticipation, the excitement and the joy. Come and share it with us…….
One of the questions we get asked lots is “what do we do when it’s not Christmas”?……..
Other than enjoy lots and lots of ice cream? (Elves LOVE ice cream, especially the special Ice cream from Cheshire Farm Ice Cream Farm) One of the questions we get asked lots is “what do we do when it’s not Christmas”?……
Everyone expects that we only work at Christmas time, which is of course not true. During the rest of the year we have important jobs to do such as maintenance work on our machines and making sure everything is in tip top condition ready for the busy festive period. We also come up with new designs for toys to make and we test out new toys.
One of the really exciting things that Santa does for us every summer is run a design contest, where any Elf from any department can submit a design for a new toy. All designs are judged by Santa himself. The top 5 are then created and tested and a winner is awarded. The winning entry goes into production for that Christmas and the Elf who designed that toy gets to put the final present into the sleigh on Christmas Eve, so it really is an honour and one attracts a lot of entries from eager Elves! I myself have won the contest 5 times!
This year my good friend Hálben won but you’ll have to wait to see what his winning design was; it will be announced in a few weeks!
RECOMMENDED TOYS FOR 2017
Did you know that Santa’s Elves have special relationships with toy manufacturers around the world, so that they can make toys on their behalf? And the Elves love making up new toy designs! We always have our own little competition at The North Pole for what we tink will be the children’s most popular requests and favourite toys! So you get a sneak peak into our predictions for the favourite toys this year:
This is an interactive learning robot for preschoolers that spins 360 degrees and can make over 60 different facial expressions. Movi has been designed to combine critical thinking skills with active play. He has 3 game modes and 6 games to choose from: The Elves favourite at the moment is ‘Red Light, Green Light’ – fun!
Flix has facial recognition, so will know your child when she talks to him, which the Elves love to test out as you can imagine! He’ll also repeat words and phrases back to you and you can change his eyes and skin colour. Another great feature is he takes secret photos and videos. You can take him anywhere as he detaches from his tripod.
All the Elves will want to be your guest with this gorgeous tea set, featuring a talking Mrs Potts, 4 cups and saucers and tray. It looks so jolly and everyone knows how much us Elves love hot chocolate and cookies, this would be a perfect set to serve us from!
The Elves love the Pie Face game and now there is a new way to play; a freestanding ‘fairground’ style version where you hit the hammer and see how far up you can get the pie to splat your opponent. Of course anything with this level of mess and fun the Elves (and children!) love! So this one is definitely a winner for this year!
There has also been a recent resurgence of the popular board game ‘Game of Life’ I remember first making this 57 years ago! It has changed a lot since then of course to fit with modern life. But I still love to play it as much now as I did then! Mainly because I can pretend to be a human which is such fun! As we don’t have things like cars and life insurance in the North Pole!
So welcome in Autumn, go and collect some conkers, enjoy the season changes in your wonderful world and next week I might tell you about our Elf Olympics which we held this year……