St. Nicholas Day

December is only 9 days away now which means the festive season is coming closer and closer. Would you believe it actually snowed in Ireland yesterday and there is snow on the highest mountains. I have a feeling that we might actually get a proper Christmas this year with snow and a proper cold winter. As I don’t remember the last time it snowed in November.

1st December is the first day the kids (or even you) open the first door on the advent calendar. I still haven’t got the things for the one we hang up every year because I am so busy sorting out all the Christmas presents at the moment that I want to have everything done and wrapped and don’t need to worry about it any more.

If you have read my post from last year, then you might remember this and know about it already. But I wanted to write a bit more detailed about it in case some parents out there want to introduce this to their own children in the future.

6th December is a very special day for the small children, in Germany anyway. When I was a child I was always looking really forward to this day. The evening beforehand I was busy cleaning my shoes (Boots are obviously the handiest for this) and put them outside the front door. I lived with my mum and grandparents, my grandparents lived on the first floor and we lived on the ground floor so there was a hall way and that’s where I generally put them out, so not the actual front door. Next morning every child was so excited to see what would be in their shoes. If they were good they received gingerbread, chocolate, mandarines, nuts or even a small little present. If the child was naughty though, they only received a rod from St. Nicholas.

Sometimes you can even see St. Nicholas. Similar to Santa Clause he wears a long white beard, a red and white coat and a red hat. St. Nicholas is Santa Claus’s companion. He is there to help Santa Claus carry his big heavy bag. He asks the children directly if they were naughty or nice and gives them their small presents then. We had St. Nicholas at school/kindergarden parties.When I was smaller, I was actually scared of him.
2015-11-21 20.50.09Can you blame me looking at a scary mask like that?

2015-11-21 20.55.28

Around 1700 years ago there was actually a real bishop called Nicolas.The 6th December is in memory of him and that’s why people think of him on this day. He mainly helped poor people and children. There are many legends out there, one is saying that he secretly gave gold and gifts to other people.
From the legend it developed into the tradition of children hoping for a filled shoe in the morning.

Have you ever heard of this tradition and would it be something you would introduce?

11 thoughts on “St. Nicholas Day

  1. I have heard of the Bishop Nicholas, it’s amazing to see how old legends turn into our own modern day traditions! I’m so excited for Christmas this year… Trying to hold out till the first to get the decs out!! Xxx
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  2. I have never heard of the tradition before but it makes sense after all if Nicholas was a man who gave to the poor then the shoes would symbolize humility and working your way up from the bottom to reach the top. Certainly an interesting tradition.
    Ana De- Jesus recently posted…Drowning In The WildMy Profile

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