In addition to Saint Martin's Day, another holiday we celebrated for the first time this year was Saint Nicholas' Day - observed in Germany on December 6. Saint Nicholas' Day is celebrated in honor of his reputation as a bringer of gifts. On Saint Nicholas' Eve, children leave their shoes in the doorway in hope that Saint Nicholas will place coins, sweets and small gifts inside of them to enjoy in the morning.
Mario was excited to put our shoes in the doorway in the evening and was even more excited when he woke up and found small goodies in his shoes the following morning. He was so excited about this and since it was a new tradition to him, Mario honestly thought if he left his shoes in the doorway the following night - and the night after - that he would again get gifts in them in the morning. Mario quickly learned that Saint Nicholas' Day was a special day and that he would have to wait another year to get sweets in his shoes again. I am sure that next year Mario will put a bigger pair of shoes or boots in the doorway for his gifts!