Quick link: Santa’s Goats and Christmas Legends

I know you all think that Santa uses reindeer but I know better. He uses goats. Or not. You also might think that Santa only comes to America, I know the story goes that he visits the entire world but does he go to Muslim countries? Does he visit homes without chimneys or snow-covered roofs? I am writing here today to tell you that, indeed, he does. And sometimes when he does visit these other less visually “christmas” places, things don’t go well. His goats get skinned. Sorry.

On the upside, this makes for great story-telling, great family legend-building. And though I’m anti the skinning of Santa’s goats, I’m all for family legend-building.

christmas in djibouti

Today at Brain Child, I’m sharing one of my favorite family Christmas stories.

Christmas in Djibouti came with swirling dust storms, mosquitoes, the Islamic call to prayer, and 90-degree temperatures. It felt almost cold after the 120-degrees of summer. It was 2004, our first Christmas in Djibouti, second in Africa. We had a one-foot high Christmas tree to share with another American family and a handful of miniature ornaments. Near the tree were small packages wrapped in birthday wrapping paper or colorful t-shirts, doubling as paper for the day. White athletic socks hung along the air conditioner like stockings over the fireplace.

Our kids, four-and-a-half years old, made popcorn strings and paper chains from computer paper that they colored with green and red crayons. My husband is a master snowflake cutter and paper snowflakes hung from the ceiling. We had one CD of Christmas music and one borrowed Christmas movie, Elf. We did not have fast enough internet to watch something online or to listen to music or purchase new music from iTunes. We ordered Chinese food for lunch. That first year in Djibouti, the best Christmas item belonged to our American friends. A Santa Claus costume.

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