There is snow in the forecast today, and after an unusually warm and temperate December, we may get a white Christmas after all. The kids will surely enjoy playing in the snow, but I don’t welcome having to feed hay instead of letting the herd graze on stalks as they have all winter. We’ll count our blessings, though, and be grateful we’ve been able to save on hay expenses and graze in the fields for so long.

We are just days away from Christmas, and if you’re like my family, you’re busy getting ready; grocery shopping for holiday meals, wrapping last-minute gifts and cleaning the house in anticipation for guests to arrive.

This week, we’ve prepped for Christmas with a fun Elf on the Shelf photo contest. We asked readers to share their best ranch-themed Elf on the Shelf ideas with us, and we’ve compiled these images in a gallery for everyone to enjoy.

View the gallery: Christmas elves get to work on the ranch

As promised, we’ve selected one photographer to receive a copy of “Courageous Cattlemen” by Robert de Baca.

Congratulations to Kathy Larson with her submission, “Bull riding.”

Kathy Larson

If your kids enjoy the Elf on the Shelf tradition, feel free to snag these ideas and pose your elf in a ranch-themed activity like one of these.

Thanks to everyone who participated in this fun contest! Stay tuned in 2018 to receive word on our next photo contest.

The opinions of Amanda Radke are not necessarily those of or Farm Progress.