So it's Nikolaus today. We almost, just almost did a BIG mistake and forgot to put out the boots. At 11pm I remembered, woke 4 year old up and got her to put out her boot (letting her off the cleaning bit which is part of the tradition, but I thought it would be a bit cruel to make her clean the boot when I had forgotten to remind her to put it outside the front door).
Tonight, incidentally, she couldn't remember having put out her boot.
Nevermind, the big eyes when she saw it filled with chocolate were priceless. Because, you know, she'd been doubtful. What with the Nikolaus being German and not quite knowing his way around Scotland/Glasgow. Would he find her? Well, she wasn't all that sure he would. And how would he travel? Isn't it Santa who's got the sledge and rendeer, so surely Nikolaus has to travel some other way? The only thing she didn't question was the fact that the storm door had been locked all night...
Thanks to the Kinderclub (German playgroup in Glasgow), there was even some Nikolaus crafting on the 5th, Nikolaus eve, and we ended the day by watching Mausspuren im Schnee, which is all winter themed and features the Nikolaus heavily. Considering none of this was particularly planned, I'm totally stressed workwise, it was pretty magic and couldn't have been any better. To round it all off, the Nikolaus is coming to the Kinderclub on Saturday.
And if ever there was a doubt if it was all worth it, this upholding of German tradition and the effort it takes, the doubt was crushed by the proud announcement of 4 year old: "I'm German". This is the first time ever she's said that. And it came without prompting, was said with conviction, and instantly followed by "and English too" (we're still working on the "Scottish" bit, because as far as we can trace our family tree, she's definitely not English).
Thank you Nikolaus, you rock.