Monday, 9 December 2013

St. Nicholas Day

On the sixth day of Christmas,
we celebrated St. Nicholas' Day, which to the Swiss, is more important than Christmas Day itself.

We had a simple dinner of cheese sausages and pizzas for the kids, and Chinese cabbage rice for the adults.  Keefe had the grattimaa beside him because he insisted it's for St. Nicholas.  On this day, each child in the international school receives a grattimaa, which is basically the Swiss version of the gingerbread man!

Dinner wouldn't be complete without dessert, which consisted of winter ice cream (Advent star ~ banana flavour, St. Nicholas ~ strawberry & vanilla flavour, and a Christmas tree ~ almond flavour).

In Switzerland, parents book St. Nicholas (months in advance!) to come to their houses to personally give the presents.  On the evening of December 5th, Swiss kids leave their shoes/boots in front of the chimney with a carrot (for St. Nicholas' donkey!) so that St. Nicholas can put small presents in the shoes/boots.  I told the kids that St. Nicholas already came the night before and had placed their presents in their Christmas stockings.  Excitement grew as they run to their stockings to find presents supposedly left by St. Nicholas. :)  The kids had a late night from playing with their presents...

...and a little boy who couldn't get enough of his St. Nicholas chocolate.


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