Saint Nicholas and Santa

My Dad was raised in Germany and always celebrated St. Nicholas Day on December 6th.

I made him this card, back when we had a German Shepherd named Thumper, and before I fell in love with Border Collies.

StNicholasw-shepherd_web

The European tradition he grew up with is for children to put out their shoes on the night of December 5th and for St Nicholas to leave a small gift in them overnight.

As children my sister and I did not put our own shoes out, but we would put a gift into one of our daddy’s big shoes.

He loved candy, so it was easy to please him. KitKat Bars were his favorites.

StNicholas:web

But my sister and I believed in Santa Claus: the belly, the beard, the boots and the red hat.fakebeard:web

In 1986, I visited China. In a street stall in Beijing I bought a red satin hat trimmed with sequins and rabbit fur.  It looked just like Santa’s hat, only exotic.

pumpkingreatwall:web

Here is how it appeared in a postcard I painted while still in China.

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Nowadays I keep it safely stored for most of the year, but bring it out at Christmastime and wear it pretty much non-stop for a few weeks, especially to paint in.

Kalusbustin hat

Today a bronze bust of Klaus as a child is wearing the hat.

Happy St. Nicholas Day, Klaus!

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Thanks.

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8 thoughts on “Saint Nicholas and Santa

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