Twas the doodle before Christmas and all through the 'net, Google's elves were a-stirring to get us all set.
As gift-givers shift from shopping to wrapping, the holiday turkey begins to thaw, and advent calendars are down to their last unopened window, Sunday's Google Doodle shows us the man of the hour getting ready for his annual mission around the world. The lightly animated Holidays 2018 doodle has a trio of elves flinging presents into Santa's sleigh as the reindeer await clearance for takeoff.
That image is reaching many countries in both the northern and southern hemispheres. Greeting folks in the UK, Italy and sub-Saharan Africa is a static, non-Santa illustration, filled with items including tree branches and flowers, cook pot and teakettle, a lone reindeer and a brace of birds (apparently not turtle doves, though).
These likely won't be the last doodles for this year's Christmas holiday. Google's doodle homepage also shows a day 2 illustration ready to go for Christmas Eve, with Santa Claus dropping gifts down a chimney in a snowy suburban landscape.
Google has been decorating its homepage with near-daily doodles for 20 years, a tradition that started with a simple line drawing to mark an outing to the Burning Man festival by Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin. Since then, the whimsical and sometimes interactive illustrations have celebrated everything from poets to Pac-Man and from Halloween to Bastille Day.
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