JUNE 22, 1938
HYDE PARK, Tuesday—At about 5:00 o'clock yesterday afternoon, we had a swimming party at the cottage for all the people who willy-nilly have to follow the President and live in Poughkeepsie while he is here. The Nelson House always seems to me a rather warm spot on a summer day, and so I hope that those who went in swimming and played with the archery set and paddled the canoe around our little pond had a pleasant time.
I know that Eleanor and Curtis had the time of their lives watching all the grown-ups. The rough-housing the children gave their Uncle Franklin left that usually exuberant gentleman somewhat tired out. No children should miss the joy of young uncles and aunts. I can remember so well what it meant to me when any of mine played hide-and-seek with me around the old house at Tivoli.
In the summer, if they were at home, there was an hour after my supper when I could usually induce them to devote themselves to my entertainment. It was probably a little hard on them, but as I had no children of my own age to play with, it meant a great deal to me. When I watch my grandchildren, I realize that, while "Father and Mother" may be the mainstays as far as companionship goes, a little additional variety provided by young and enthusiastic uncles and aunts can add enormously to the joy of life.
Children do not forget, either, as fast as one would expect them to. Eleanor and Curtis have been away for a year and a half and yet, when we reached Boston the other day, and their Uncle Johnny talked to them on the telephone, Eleanor said to me with pride, "I talked to Uncle Johnny and I knew his voice right away." Any trouble we elders take for children is so richly rewarded by the spontaneous affection which they give in return.
Everybody forgot the time so successfully at our party yesterday afternoon, that Miss LeHand finally telephoned to ask if anyone was coming for supper, as the President was hungry. So, at 7:30, the family bundled into the waiting cars and went home to the big house.
The President is having, as usual, a good many visitors. One of them will be welcomed with great pleasure by all the family, but I think he may also receive a certain amount of teasing. It seems inevitable that an ambassador to any foreign country should be suspected of acquiring some customs and mannerisms as a result of his temporary residence abroad. I imagine that Mr. Joseph Kennedy will always remain himself under all circumstances, but he will be teased nevertheless!