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Deployed Indianapolis dad gets ‘elf on the shelf’ visits overseas

Kid-ing with Kayla: While some parents dread the “Elf on the Shelf” tradition, Indianapolis mom Bridget, her deployed husband in the military, and their two daughters love it! That’s because it’s connecting them from far away during the holidays.

Their elf is named Candy Cane and at night she travels from their house in Indy to their father’s top secret U.S. military location. The kids wake up to pictures of the elf’s visits to their father.

Traditionally, the Elf on the Shelf is said to be Santa’s helper and the elf’s job is to monitor the behavior of children and report it to Santa so he can put them on the naughty or nice list. Most are said to fly to the North Pole at night but Candy Cane makes an extra stop to their dad overseas in the military. This was a relief to Bridget because she knows how much the whole family enjoys this tradition every year. This is the family’s first Christmas away from her husband.

“We thought that he was going to miss out on elf on the shelf but it turns out that she was able to make it to him in the evenings while they were sleeping and in the morning they get to see the shenanigans she did with their dad,” said Bridget.

Both children love seeing what Candy Cane was up to and it helps them feel a little closer to their father this time of year.

Their oldest daughter, Mel is known to ask, “Are you serious?” when she sees a picture of Candy Cane with her dad. Their younger daughter Amelia tells everyone she knows, “Candy Cane was in my daddy’s fridge, Candy Cane was in my dad’s laundry!”

“Amelia carries her daddy doll everywhere she goes so, anything that lets her connect to her dad is huge in her eyes,” said Bridget.

Candy Cane has been in the front of their dad’s patrol car, his backpack at work, drinking his energy drinks, doing his laundry and hopping on his bike.

“We don’t get to talk to him every day but when they do, it’s about Candy Cane now,” said Bridget. “I never thought it would be this hard but I now realize what single motherhood is like.”

She said there was a lot she didn’t feel prepared for when it comes to her husband being deployed overseas for the holidays.

“I didn’t think about these moments of him not seeing her Christmas program or helping me wrap gifts or helping us put the Christmas tree up,” explained Bridget.

She’s so thankful the Elf on the Shelf tradition was one they all could enjoy together. It has also helped keep the kids in line for the month. They really wanted to sleep with their mom while their dad was gone but Bridget said the elf required them to sleep in their own beds in order to visit.

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