You've Been Jingled
A Surprise Hanging on the Door Knob
A fun Holiday tradition - Jingle Your Neighbor
One evening in December you may hear someone knock at your door or ring your doorbell. If you open the door and find there is no one there you may want to investigate further. Look carefully and you may discover a package of holiday goodies and a message indicating, "You've been Jingled!" or "You've Been Elfed"
If you've been Jingled, it means you have a secret friend in your neighborhood. Enjoy your holiday treats and the fun of trying to solve the mystery of who Jingled you. This game is similar to the old tradition of leaving someone May Day flowers or the Secret Santa game, but with a twist. As the recipient of a "Jingle" or "Elf" you have also been invited to participate in the game by Jingling other neighbors who have not yet been Jingled.
If you've never been Jingled, why not start the tradition in your neighborhood? Starting a chain reaction of the "You've Been Jingled" or "You've Been Elfed" game is fun and easy. It helps to strengthen neighborhood ties and makes a great family project for adults and kids to work on together. Your "Jingle" can be as simple or as complicated as you like. Just follow the easy steps below to participate in this fun Christmas tradition.
(All photos by Vicki Green - PNW Travels unless otherwise credited)
Post the "Been Jingled" Sign for All to See
We've Been Jingled
Now what do we do?
If you've been jingled, the first thing to do is put the sign on your door or in a prominent window to let everyone know that "We've Been Jingled". Then, if you'd like to participate and continue the game, quickly put together a bag of goodies and Jingle (or Elf) two of your neighbors who have not yet been jingled!
Whether you've just been Jingled yourself, or if you want to be the one to start the game in your neighborhood, the process is the same:
1. Select 2 "victims" in your neighborhood that you will "Jingle" (either individuals or the entire family)
2. Make a list of what goodies you will include for each victim
3. Buy or make your goodies
4. Buy, make or recycle containers large enough for your jingle treats
5. Create or copy a "Jingle Poem" of your choice and a "We've Been Jingled Sign" to include in each jingle
6. Deliver your Jingle to your neighbors after dark when no one is looking! Leave your package on the doorknob or porch, ring the doorbell or knock on the door, run and hide! (This is usually the part the kids love most)
7. Watch as the "We've Been Jingled" signs multiply and appear on doors and windows through the neighborhood
It's Time to Jingle Your Neighbor!
December 1st - a great day to begin!
Normally the game is started anytime after Thanksgiving - usually December 1st or sometime in the first week of December - but any time in December is a good time to start elfing your neighbor.
Whether you've been Jingled yourself, or are starting the tradition in your neighborhood, select your "victims" and start thinking of some ideas for what you want to include as goodies. Remember that the fun of the game is mainly the element of surprise and mystery, so your treats can be simple and inexpensive.
Pick a Festive Bag for Your "Jingle"
Finding or making a bag for your goodies can be part of the fun! Involve your children by letting them paint or use crayons to decorate a plain brown paper bag or use a colored bag and glue clip art on the front. If you don't have a bag with a handle, you can use a hole punch to make holes at the top of a bag and use ribbon or string to make the handles. If you don't have the time or inclination to be creative there are some really fun bags that look like elf or Santa pants.
You've Been Elfed Gift Ideas
After selecting your bag, fill it with some things you know are particular favorites of your "victims". Here are some ideas:
Small Holiday Decorations
Hot Cocoa Packages
Wrapped Cookies and Snacks
A votive candle and votive holder in a Christmas scent
Small sample packages of hand lotion
Holiday Window Clings and Decorations
Treats for the family pets
Homemade edible goodies may not be a good idea, especially if this is a new tradition in your neighborhood. Since the idea is to keep the identity of the person or family who left the treats a secret, some people may be reluctant to eat homemade goodies from an unknown source.
Lip Balm in Festive Seasonal Packages
This Santa lip balm is another example of an inexpensive gift idea for your family gift bag.
Lip balm and Hand Lotion
Lip balm in holiday flavors and seasonal packaging or small sample-size hand lotion are some other thoughtful gifts that will be appreciated.
A Votive Candle in a Christmas Scent
Christmas Scented Votive Candles
Include a holiday scented candle in your bag of surprises
Candles have long been associated with Christmas, so a votive candle in a holiday fragrance in an inexpensive votive holder would make a great Jingle treat for a neighbor. Here is a list of some popular Christmas candle scents:
Home For Christmas
More You've Been Elfed Gift Ideas
Hot Cocoa For Cold Nights
Packages of warm beverages like this hot cocoa mix will be enjoyed by the whole family.
Jingle Treats For the Dog and Cat
Don't forget to include the family pets
It is always thoughtful to include a beloved family pet in your Jingle gifts. Heatlhy, natural treats will be appreciated.
Individual packages of warm beverages like hot cocoa or apple cider are great fillers for your gift bag that will be appreciated on cold winter nights.
Make Your Own Graphics with Clip Art
Several versions or make up your own!
There are several versions of a poem that can be used. Some say "You've been Jingled" and some say "You've been Elfed". No one seems to know who originated the game. There are several different versions of poems that can be found online or you can make-up your own poem. They all go something like this:
You've Been Jingled!
The Christmas Elf is jingling around.
Ringing the bells of the homes he has found.
Leaving some goodies for a happier season.
Continue this jingling, you have a good reason.
First, post this Elf near your front door.
Do it soon or you may get some more!
This will let the other Elves know of your visit.
Be sure to participate, you don't want to miss it!
Second, make two goodies & two copies
Deliver them to two neighbors and try to stay calm.
Jingling the doorbell, its certainly fun,
To act like an Elf and then Run, Run, Run!
You only have one day to act, so begin.
Leave it at a door where the Elf hasn't been.
Deliver when the time is just right.
Ring the doorbell and stay out of sight!
The Jingling Elf wants to bring everyone joy
Visiting the homes of every good girl and boy
This is all in good fun and we all we are trying to say,
Is have a Merry Christmas & Happy Holiday!
Start a "You've Been Elfed" Game at Work
Start Some Holiday Fun at the Office
You can also add to the holiday fun by starting a Jingle at work. The rules are the same, but instead of leaving a package on the door and ringing the doorbell, you can simply leave a holiday treat on a
co-workers desk or mail box with the jingle poem and sign. Instead of a "We've been jingled" sign, make it an "I've Been Jingled" (or Elfed) sign and depending on the situation the sign can be taped to a desk, outside of an office, attached to a cubicle or mail box.
Free "You've Been Jingled" Poems and Signs
I've included a link to a website below which features free poems and signs with nice graphics that you can print off on your computer to start your own "You've Been Elfed" game!
Website with Free You've Been Jingled Poem and Art
- You've Been Jingled - Print the Jingle Elf Poem - Christmas
This is a website where you can download and print the Jingle Elf Poem and "We've Been Jingled" sign or you can make your own with free clip art.
© 2010 Vicki Green