One of the fondest memories I have of growing up is of the German traditions that were kept in my household during Advent and Christmas. They were not many, and perhaps arguably not specifically German since they are seen in other German speaking countries. But besides advent calendars, advent wreaths, Christmas trees, Stille Nacht, and O Tannenbaum, there was, on December 6th St. Nicholas.
Of course the tradition with St. Nicholas is that the eve before his feast you take your shoe and stick it outside the door with a carrot or something as a reward for the good Saint's horse. In the morning the shoe would be fully of various little goodies.
When I arrived at Notre Dame and December 5 rolled around I was delighted to find that Notre Dame encouraged this tradition. And so it is that my shoe is sitting outside my dorm door (lacking a carrot) in hopes that St. Nicholas (or my RA) will slip a candy cane or some little treat inside for me to find in the morning.