The Elves

ElvesEvery family has some decorations that have a history. In my family, especially between my sister and me, it is elves. When we were growing up, my mother had these ugly little green cloth elves that you push their legs up between their arms. After I left and started on my own, my mother gave me the elves. One Christmas, my sister saw that I had the elves. She was upset because she said that our mother had promised them to her. Of course I insisted that possession was 9/10ths of the law and my mother had given them to me. My mother claims that she doesn’t remember promising them to my sister.

One year back in the 80s, I was out shopping. I was looking at Christmas decorations when I came across ugly little green cloth elves. Being the nice older sister that I am, I bought a set of the elves and presented them to my sister at Christmas. But no, those elves weren’t good enough- she didn’t want those elves, she wanted the original elves. I eventually relented and gave her the elves as a trade for the replacement ones.

My sister’s son Brandon now has possession of the original elves. He claims they are his. One time when my brother was home, we were all having dinner at my sister’s house and the elves came up. Brandon brought the original ones out and they look pretty beat up. My fake elves look in pretty good shape for being about 25 years old. I am hanging onto them because I know one day when the original elves fall apart, my sister is going to say, “but you gave those elves to me.”
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2 thoughts on “The Elves

  1. I can relate to this sibling struggle, Kelly, and I must say you are a very kind and gracious sister to have gone to all the trouble you did (why didn’t she try to find some similar ones?) and then in the end give them up to her. I have had to do similar things for my brother. Even so, I think the elves you have are absolutely darling and now have their own 25-year family history with you – so they better not go anywhere but with you! You’re right – in the end, it becomes a problem that not just one thing, but another and another which then becomes fodder for the (insecure? sicker? selfish?) sibling who seems to always want more, more, more. Did you name your little elves, by the way? Where do you usually put them? Sounds like you are quite the Christmas decorator!

    • Thanks Susan. My sister is not really selfish, but the elves are one thing that always come up. She normally gives not takes. I have never given the elves a name – I guess I should do that since they have been around so long. I usually put mine on the tree. I enjoy decorating for Christmas!

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