My mother is a convert and second generation American Dutch. As a new Catholic and young mother she was thrilled to learn about the strong Dutch tradition of celebrating St. Nicholas' Feast Day. Consequently she passed that love on to her children and we celebrate St. Nicholas in our homes with her grandchildren. On the vigil, the children put out their shoes to be filled with treats by the good bishop during a nighttime visit. And when you are strong Dutch you put out wooden clogs. :) (Grandma helped collect those clogs from thrift stores over the years.)
Our children each get a new book and chocolate coins. No pictures of the filled shoes this year, busy morning.
Apparently the historic Saint Nicholas was not quite the jolly saint of legend. We kind of like the tough guy.
Though the jolly St. Nick is still great fun!