One of the things that continues to amaze me about America is how it can differ so much regionally based on cultural influence.
This morning Erik was devastated that St. Nick did not put anything in his stocking last night, and while waiting in line at school he began to get the wiggly lip that leads to tears listening to his classmates share what St. Nick left for them.
While I have heard of St. Nick I had no clue that there was an actual holiday where he leaves treats, ooops!
One of the parents at the school filled me in a bit and said that it is traditional on December 5th that St. Nickolas who is apparently Santa's brother (?) visits and leaves a small toy or treat in children's stockings. This is all news to me....so as soon as I got home I decided to do some research. Celebrating Christmas is a relatively new tradition for my family but I thought I had the traditions down.
I found that St. Nick's day is today December 6th and it is celebrated in mostly Northern Europe and in (drumroll please)......Wisconsin! Who knew? Certainly not this New England girl. It makes sense with so much of Wisconsin's heritage coming from German and Northern European influences that there would be similar traditions to those home countries. It just surprised me that I had never even heard of this particular holiday.
I found this article about St. Nick's day in Wisconsin. It's a few years old but it gives a good idea of just how big a deal it is here.
So now that we have decided to make Wisconsin home I guess we had better start making its traditions ours as well.
St. Nick will be visiting our house while the boys are at school today, his white horse (thank you internet for the info) hurt his hoof last night, he is feeling much better now but was running late. St. Nick did not want to arrive this morning and be spotted by anyone so he waited until we had left to go to school and then came in and left some treats in the boys stockings, along with an apology note for being late.
Whew, embellished fairy tale created and now I know for next year the night of December 5th St. Nick will be making a visit!