We've All Done It

32 Holidays Lies Parents Admit They’ve Told Their Kids

“Dad is allergic to elf glitter, so Santa can’t send an Elf on the Shelf.”

Originally Published: 
Ariela Basson/Scary Mommy; Cody Foster Co., Bergdorf Goodman
Hilarity Of The Holidays

Sometimes you need an explanation for why you’re the only house on the block that doesn’t have an Elf on the Shelf. Or why Santa brings loads of gifts to other houses and only one to your kid. Or why it’s just not possible to watch the same holiday movie on repeat.

If you’ve ever told your kid a white lie just to get through the holidays, you’re not the only one. We asked our Scary Mommy readers on Facebook to share their go-to holiday lies, and they didn’t disappoint. From “Santa has a budget” to “Toys ‘R’ Us is closed during December,” they really thought of everything.

Keep reading for some of the most entertaining responses.

There’s actually a very good reason we don’t have an Elf on the Shelf.

“The Elf on the Shelf didn't get our change of address yet. Maybe they'll receive it by next December. (When we aren't in the middle of a move with a new baby.)” — Lisa Summers

“I told my kids we weren’t allowed to have an elf since we celebrate both Hanukkah and Christmas.” — Hollis Bowen Bakke

“I told my daughter that Santa didn’t need to send an elf to keep an eye on her because he knew she was so well-behaved.” — Erin Nelson Henderson

“Dad is allergic to elf glitter, so Santa can’t send an Elf on the Shelf to our house.” — Nicole Crawford Cooper

“The Elf on the Shelf is allergic to cats, so that is why we don't have one.” — Melissa Green

“We don't have the Elf on the Shelf because we have a fairy garden. Fairies and elves don't get along.” — Valerie Lavin

“I have a direct line to Santa, so he doesn’t need to send us an elf.” — Carrie Dorgan

The Elf on the Shelf wasn’t able to move ... again.

“The Elf on the Shelf was feeling a little under the weather, so he asked not to be moved so he could rest up.” — Stacy Greene Pearce

“I told the kids the elf didn't move because of COVID. The elf can’t go to the North Pole for five days.” — Amanda M Rizzo

“Buddy, our elf, doesn’t move on Saturday night due to their new union contract!” — Sarah Meyer May

“The elf didn’t move because you must not believe enough. Believing gives him his powers.” — Kasee Kirkpatrick

Santa has rules about the gifts he brings.

“Santa doesn't bring big things or live pets because they are unsafe for the sleigh.” — Nikki Snell

“Santa sends a bill to us for the Christmas presents he brings.” — Jennifer Williams Povtak

“We have a contract with Santa. Every family’s contract is different … that helps account for why the kids only get one gift from Santa when others get more. Our contract isn’t due for renewal for another 50 years.” — Kelly Carniol

“My kids are only allowed to ask Santa for three things because Santa is old and can't carry more than that for all those kids.” — Sarah Josephine Stanislawski

“Santa won’t deliver presents when toys are scattered all over the floor.” — Sherry Blamer

“We buy the wrapping paper and stocking stuffers because Santa has a budget!” — Barbara Hiemstra Ticich

Santa is always watching you.

“Santa can see you through our internet.” — Wynona Grandi

“We bought a fake security camera that has motion detection from 5-below and had it delivered from Santa, so we have a Santa cam all year.” — Amber N. Jasinski

“Our dogs are our elves, and they report to Santa year-round.” — Rachel Lee

“Any tower with a light on it (cell phone towers, airport lights, lights on wind turbines, etc.) is a ‘Santa Tower’ and is continually broadcasting behavior reports to Santa about the kids in the area.” — Nicole Cooper Pacl

Every parent has Santa on speed dial.

“I told my son that the hospital gives all new parents the phone numbers of Santa (and the Tooth Fairy and Easter Bunny), so I can call and text them any time I need to!” — Jennifer Moreno

“We changed our friend’s name to Santa in my phone and he changed his picture, so we phoned him for a very convincing chat about behavior.” — Katie O'Connor

Santa wants us to get more sleep.

“Santa doesn’t visit until 7:00 a.m.” — Bethany Bagbey

“Santa is running late and needs all the kids to sleep in an extra hour.” — Sally Stobbe

“The longer you sleep in on Christmas morning, the more presents Santa will have time to put in your Santa sack.” — Julia Alexandrovna

Other very necessary holiday lies

“This mug contains hot chocolate (and not, in fact, a pint of Baileys).” — Fran Whinge Wine

“I told my daughter that Toys ‘R’ Us is closed during December because sometimes the elves need to go shopping there if they don't have time to make all the toys.” — Adrienne Fristachi Abele

“It's great when the whole family gets together for the holidays.” — Jennifer Davis Sekorky

“Every time you stomp your feet in anger, a reindeer dies.” — Linda DeRemer

“The Christmas movies on the streaming networks don’t work until after Thanksgiving.” — Emily Began Pinkerton

“The out-of-stock-because-we-waited-too-late-to-buy-it Barbie Dream House fell off the sleigh, so it had to go back to The North Pole to be repaired by the elves.” — Ginger Amalong

Responses have been lightly edited for clarity.

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