Mom Wakes Up to 7-Yr-Old Daughter Screaming—Then Rushes ‘Elf on Shelf’ to the E.R.


Whether it be a chocolate-filled Advent calendar counting down the days ’til Christmas or a magic “Elf on the Shelf” scouting out the ‘naughty’ and ‘nice,’ one thing’s for sure: Kids take their Christmas traditions pretty seriously.

So when Jenn Thelen woke up to her 7-year-old daughter, Aubrie, screaming after their dog destroyed her precious Elf on the Shelf, Sam, she knew she needed to go to drastic measures to make amends.

With some insane creativity and a dose of magic, that’s EXACTLY what this nurse manager mama did.

Read her viral Facebook post below that has since made waves across the Internet—and then watch the magic happen for yourself in her behind-the-scenes Emergency Room footage:

“Jenn Thelen woke up yesterday to the sound of her 7-year-old daughter, Aubrie, screaming. Their dog, Zoey, had gotten the family’s Elf on the Shelf, Sam. Jenn is the nurse manager for the emergency department at Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children. She told her daughter not to worry, because Arnold Palmer Hospital has the best medical team and they had ‘special doctors’ that could fix her elf’s injuries.

Jenn took Sam with her to work that morning, and after careful planning, the medical team wheeled him into the trauma bay. The team used expired medical products to work on the elf, and even used a special pair of Santa’s magic gloves. Aubrie knew that the elf could not be touched, but Jenn told her that the ‘magic gloves’ would allow the team to work on Sam.

One of our ER team members, Ashley, carefully put Sam back together again, and bandaged his injuries all up. She even sprinkled some Christmas magic (glitter) on Sam, when she was done. Sam was able to go home to Aubrie, later that evening. Jenn showed her all the videos and pictures of Sam’s day at the Arnold Palmer Hospital’s ER. The magic of Christmas and Sam the Elf continues for Aubrie. Sam is now back on his shelf—and Mom will definitely make sure that he is out of Zoey’s reach.”

Cheers to this innovative mama for her mad elf-surgery skills and for keeping the Christmas spirit alive!

Kelsey Straeter
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Kelsey is an editor at Outreach. She’s passionate about fear fighting, freedom writing, and the pursuit of excellence in the name of crucifying perfectionism. Glitter is her favorite color, 2nd only to pink, and 3rd only to pink glitter.