From: The White House Gardener Mysteries by Dorothy St. James
Every four years it happens. Since this is my first year here, it's the first time I witnessed it first-hand. What was it?
The craziness of election season.
I'm glad it's over. (Aren't we all?) For weeks both the President and the First Lady have been traveling from state to state. Anything that needed to get approved by the East Wing was put on hold.
That's all well and good for some things. But plants and planting seasons wait for no one. Thankfully, with the return of the First Family, life is slowly returning to normal for the White House staff. And we're all glad of it. November starts a busy time of year for everyone!
In a few weeks, the day after Thanksgiving, volunteers from all around the country come to the White House to help decorate for Christmas. What a chaotic, but wonderful, time that's going to be!
In 1973, the Nixon administration opened the doors of the White House to volunteers to help decorate for the Christmas season. It's a tradition that has continued every year, including this year. While it's too late to volunteer to help decorate this year's Christmas display, it's not too early to inquire about next year.
Want to try it? Write to the First Lady and explain to her why you'd be a good choice for helping decorate. You can include pictures of past Christmas decorations that you've helped to create, suggestions for creative decoration ideas (like the paper trees and Bo pictured below). In August, the East Wing goes through the letters and invite a select group to submit formal applications. Good luck!