By Mary DeTurris Poust
Happy Feast of St. Nicholas! This day has become a favorite at our house, ever since I began the tradition years ago of leaving little gifts in the kids' shoes the night before. This morning when they came downstairs, they didn't even remember it was St. Nicholas Day until they saw the chocolates and little items lined up in shoes by the front door. I loved seeing the smiles on their faces as they came down for school one by one. And, let me tell you, getting a smile out of the almost-15-year-old is not an easy feat.
It's not too late to celebrate this feast day, which has come to mark a deepening of the Advent season for me. I'm not one of those early shoppers or early decorators. I like to wait -- longer than my family likes to wait. But I have to admit that this feast usually puts me in the mood to start making the physical preparations for Christmas.
If you want to know more about St. Nicholas or would like some activities to share with children of all ages, check out the St. Nicholas Center, an awesome website chock full of resources, stories, coloring pages, games, history, and more.
So how did the real story of St. Nicholas and the story of Santa Claus become so intertwined and confused? For the answer, click HERE to read the OSV story "The Real St. Nicholas."
And if you didn't get to put a little something in the kids' shoes this morning, leave a little chocolate, an orange or some small gift item for them to find when they come home this afternoon. If your house is anything like my house, there's no shortage of shoes lying around just waiting to be filled.