Many bloggers are already in the Christmas spirit but here in Belgium (and in the Netherlands as well as in Northern France) we are first celebrating Saint Nicolas or Sinterklaas on December 6.
Last weekend, the Sint was meeting the young children to inquire about their wishes.
Every year, the Sint arrives on a steamboat from Spain with his helpers. He goes from house to house on his white horse to deliver the presents to the children, but only if they have been good this past year. On the night of December 5, the children put a shoe in front of the fireplace. A carrot, a sugar cube, an apple etc. is put in the shoe as a treat for Sinterklaas' horse. The next morning the carrot is gone and the children find candy or presents in their shoes. Drawings made by the children are put into the shoes as a present to Sinterklaas.