"Stockings by the Fireplace"
December weather perceptions include cold weather and this recent batch of warmth will change Monday. A Christmas tradition was recognized Thursday, marking the Feast of St. Nicholas; celebrated since the fifth century. Nicholas, was the bishop of Myra - modern-day Turkey and aided needy people by throwing bags of gold in their windows. As noted in a previous column, The Little Blue Book - Advent and Christmas Seasons mentions that the bags landed in stockings drying near the fireplace. His generosity encouraged others to give gifts during Candlemas. English reformers replaced Nicolas with Father Christmas, believing his relationship was too close to the Catholic Church. Later the name became Santa Claus and Clement Moore gave him a sleigh, reindeer, pipe, bag and a chimney in "The Night Before Christmas