Saint Nicholas is the saint who would be Santa Claus.
He's a link with the gift of charity - love - that is Christmas.
A special St. Nicholas Day cookie, called speculaas, is eaten and shared by all in
Belgium and the Netherlands this day.
These customs, like so many, merit preservation and passing on to families everywhere.
Today is the day, December 6th, parents often put a gift into their children's shoes, recalling why all those presents are purchased these twenty-three days before Christmas, December 25, a time and season called Advent.
Advent is an adventure anticipating, preparing to celebrate the birth of Jesus the Christ in Bethleham.
And, St. Nick's was brought to this land by German and Dutch immigrants, among others. He traded in his pointed hat - a miter a bishop wears - and a shepherd's staff - a crosier - for a cap and white, fur-trimmed dashing red suit.
The practice began in Germany and the Netherlands where youngsters hoped to be declared nice, not naughty by this churchly-dressed, "Sinterklaas."
Nicholas, santa's name, combines the Greek words for, "people" and "victory."
Legends loom large about good ole Saint Nick who makes many happy this day.