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What I Don’t Miss When We Spend Christmas in Africa. And One Thing I Do.

Quick link: 8 Christmas Traditions We’re Skipping This Year

There are somethings I don’t miss about spending Christmas in Africa, away from my home culture. And there is one big thing that I do miss.

Ten of my last 12 Christmases have been spent in a small Muslim country called Djibouti in the Horn of Africa. While there are some pretty obvious downsides to spending the holiday in Djibouti (especially being so far away from family), if I’m being totally honest, there are some upsides, too.

Mainly, it’s the perfect excuse to skip some out on some of the seasonal stuff that I’ve always found a little annoying. For example, tinsel. I’m not sure who invented tinsel but I can’t think of one good thing about it. It’s just a giant mess. It gets in the way of enjoying a Christmas tree, it gets stuck on pets and in hair, and it ends up in blobs either on the tree or clogging the vacuum cleaner.

Here are some more holiday traditions that I’m okay with skipping this year:


Click here to read about Christmas sweaters, Elf on a Shelf, Mistletoe, and more: 8 Christmas Traditions We’re Skipping This Year

Transportable Expatriate Christmas Traditions, on Velvet Ashes

Quick link: Portable Expatriate Holiday Traditions

Today I’m writing at Velvet Ashes about rejoicing and the importance of Christmas traditions that are easily transportable for expatriate families. The rejoicing part mainly comes in when I share one of our favorite traditions. It might not look like rejoicing. It might look a lot more like wrestling or even like crying some years. But I promise, it is rejoicing. A hint? It involves a foam WWF wrestling belt.

wrestling belt

If Christmas has to be a certain, hard to find food or a major location-based event or includes a massive and heavy object, that Christmas tradition is going to be pretty hard to pack on an airplane to bring to a new country. Or to celebrate during the years you are traveling over Christmas.

Most of our Christmas decorations are small and our traditions are mostly transportable. Of course not all, but some of our favorites and some that have built memories over the years.

Click here to read Portable Expatriate Holiday Traditions

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