Until then we celebrate at home.
Our "version" is to have Dutch Christmas on the first Sunday of December. This all started when Kyler was little. I had gotten him and his dad a chocolate letter. I believe it was our first Christmas in Toronto (2007). I had forgotten to put everything out the night before. So before we left for church I was all ready with the shoes. I put out K's and Arnold's and headed off to church. It was a busy morning and totally forgot to put out the gift so I bolted in the house before Arnold and the boys and made sure that Sinterklaas had arrived. Sure enough he had, and thus our tradition began.
Every year we have had a "Dutch Christmas" in our house, the same time, first Sunday of December. For one thing it's easier for me to remember so that's a big reason for it.
This year we are a bit early, but that's alright. The boys are excited to use Kyler's wooden shoes and place them by the Christmas Tree before heading off to church.
For your enjoyment I have been check out this person blog about Sinterklaas. It's just so funny to read. Here is a copy of the blog and a link. Enjoy:
Invading Holland Blog
The arrival of Sinterklaas can be a very confusing time for expats in Holland. It’s a tradition that raises a lot of questions for those who are unfamiliar with it. Who is Sinterklaas and why does he give out presents on December 5th? Why does Sinterklaas live in Spain? Who are his helpers the Zwarte Pieten?
However, over the years I have come to realize that there are certain questions that it is simply best not to ask when old Sinterklaas comes to town. The Dutch don’t always respond well to such questions and sometimes they simply pity your stupidity.
“Do you think the pope knows his hat is missing?”
“If I pledge allegiance to Sinterklaas do I still get gifts from Santa?”
“How many hours do you think Sinterklaas spends grooming his beard every morning? He’s very metro for an old man.”
“Who do you think would win in a fight? Sinterklaas or Santa?”
“Do you think it’s like this all year around in Spain?”
“Do you think Sinterklaas works on pakjesavond so he can have Christmas off? Or do you think Santa works on Christmas so he can have pakjesavond off?… or both?”
“Do you think the Pieten get confused whenever anyone calls out their name? Do they all answer?”
“If I’m on Santa’s naughty list am I automatically on Sinterklaas’ naughty list as well? Because if so I’m in trouble.”
“Do you think Sinterklaas realizes that owning a steam boat is not very good for his carbon footprint?”
“Can you OD on pepernoten? Because I might need an ambulance.”
And the number one question that you must never ever ask a Dutch person:
“Why is Santa riding a horse?”