DECEMBER 24, 1938
WASHINGTON, Friday—I arrived this morning on the midnight train from New York City. As soon as I had breakfast, I went upstairs to see the one grandchild who is already in the house. He was having his bath and looked as contented and cheerful as a baby should look. I picked him up and even then he did not complain, which, considering the fact that I had metal buttons on my dress that must have been cold and uncomfortable, showed a pretty good disposition.
The first thing my husband said to me was: "Franklin, III, is the grandest baby I ever saw," so it is plain to see that this youngster has already made a place for himself.
The other children arrive today, Sara and Kate from New York City, Diana Hopkins coming over from her own home, and all the parents. We will just be a family party for Jimmy's birthday dinner tonight, and afterwards there are some groups coming to sing Christmas carols under the portico. I love this custom of going around the two evenings before Christmas and I believe we will have more singing groups tomorrow night. I only wish that instead of rain which seems to be threatening, we will have snow. That would be the last touch for the Christmas season.
I also hope very much that we will be able to dress our own family tree on the second floor tonight. My husband is going to begin this afternoon reading the Dicken's Christmas Carol to the children, but he informed me this morning that he has a cold in the head and if he does not feel he is a safe companion, he will have to wait another day.
In yesterday's paper I saw that Mayor LaGuardia of New York City had expressed concern and pity for the man who attacked him on the steps of the City Hall the other day. That was very characteristic of someone with real understanding. These poor unfortunates who lose their WPA jobs and can find no others, and even those who are on WPA at this season, are to be pitied when they feel that the rest of the world is celebrating and they have to return to a cheerless home and to sad and disappointed children.
I am glad to notice that everywhere people are trying to think of these underpriviledged children. I am especially proud of the voluntary work which has been done by some of our young NYA people who have worked many unpaid hours reconditioning toys and helping people with municipal celebrations which can be enjoyed by all.
As I drove to the station last night in New York City, I thought again how lovely our modern electric lighting can make Christmas in the city. There were trees in front of both churches on Tenth and Eleventh Streets and at the entrance to Washington Square. Many individual houses had small lighted trees or candles in the windows. It made the city seem a friendlier place, as it should at Christmas time.
This is my last chance to say to all my readers: May your Christmas be a merry one and bring you and yours peace and joy!