By Hollie Bethany
November 1, 2002
It's almost Saint Nicholas Tag,
so dust off your wooden shoes and set them by the door.
Virginia, Santa does things a little differently in Europe. Over
there, kids don’t wait by the chimney on Christmas Eve, but
by the door on December 6th, Saint Nicholas’ Feast day. Because
our son Hunter was born in Germany, and because our family chooses
to separate the religious aspects of Christmas from the legend of
Saint Nicholas, we celebrate his arrival on December 6th with the
Wooden shoes left by the door and filled with treats.
Catholic saints, a feast day is held on the day of the saint’s
death. But because Hunter is only three-years-old, we refer to the
6th of December as “Saint Nicholas’ Birthday.”
We bring a cupcake to the Santa at our local mall, and give to a
local charity when the volunteer visits with the children at Hunter’s
daycare, or at our home. On Christmas, the gifts we share are from
Baby Jesus or us.
are many that would like to banish the jolly old elf in an attempt
to de-commercialize Christmas. I say, no way! The legends of Saint
Nicholas can be great learning lessons for small children; better
to give him back his day than get rid of him. Last year was a very
troubling time for adults, and children could not help but feel
the stress from us. In one story of Saint Nicholas, he asks that
the lives of two travelers from a warring nation be spared since
they were not a party to the fighting. When our Charity Santa came
by, I shared this story with him and the children. The moral is
that just because someone is different from us, it’s no reason
to blame him or her for the actions of others.
world has taken an awful lot of blows lately, and as Auntie Mame
would say, “We need a little Christmas right this very minute.”
If you want to invoke the true meaning of Christmas, think about
celebrating the legend of Saint Nicholas on December 6th. There
are some great web sites containing many of the stories of Saint
Nicholas’ kindness and generosity; make the day a learning
experience as well one to love each other.
and I will be bringing our mall Santa a chocolate Monster’s
Inc cupcake, then delivering some food to the local animal shelter.
Try doing something special for someone on December 6th; you’ll
never think of Santa the same way again.
~ Happy Playing! ~
Name: Hollie Bethany AKA The ToyDirectory MOM
Education: MBA International Economics and Marketing, Augusta
Toy Industry Experience: Ty Europe, GyGy Inc., Aquatat.com,
Child: Hunter, age 2 ½, thinks he is a stunt man.
About my column: A sometimes humorous toy industry/business
issues perspective as tainted by the eyes of a mother.
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