JANUARY 5, 1940
WASHINGTON, Thursday—Going up to Congress yesterday crowded two things out of "My Day" which I still want to speak about. On Tuesday afternoon, at the musicale, Mr. John Carter sang delightfully and Miss Anne Simpson proved to be one of the most charming dancers we have ever had at the White House. Her costumes were simply bewitching. Everyone greatly enjoyed both artists.
My mother-in-law and I attended the concert given by the Philadelphia Orchestra that same evening in Constitution Hall. We enjoyed the marvelous orchestra, which is now conducted by Eugene Ormandy, and the additional pleasure of having Yehudi Menuhin, the violinist, play the Brahms Concerto in D with the Orchestra. We had to come home before the end, because the day had been rather a long one and there was still work to be done, but both of us felt we had spent a delightful evening.
Yesterday evening I succeeded in doing some work which I had been trying to do all through the holidays, but what with gaieties and duties and sudden unexpected occurrences, I just never got around to doing it.
The Postmaster-General, Mr. Farley, dropped in for dinner last night and was, as usual, a cheerful and delightful guest. We went into the President's study after dinner and I was struck by the fact that the President still has many of his Christmas presents spread around where he can look at them. I thought that he needed a screen for his cottage, so I had one painted in New York City for him by Mrs. Helen M. Parson MacDonald. She came up to Hyde Park last summer to look at the room where it was to go, and then studied old Hudson River prints so that it would be suitable for the President's cottage, set high up on a hill overlooking the Hudson. Mrs. MacDonald's colors are lovely and I think it is one of the most successful screens I have ever seen. I am glad to say that the President seems to like it as much as I do, for he has it set up in his study so he can look at it while he waits to have it taken to Hyde Park.
My young people were augmented this morning when Mrs. Robert Baker arrived with her son Bobby, on her way from Fall River, Mass., to Urbana, Illinois. Bobby and Buzzie were thrilled to be invited by Captain Jones to lunch on the "Potomac" this noon.
At three o'clock, Sistie and the boys went with me to the christening of one of the new airplanes which inaugurates a new service by the Pennsylvania Airlines out of Washington. The children were very much interested in going over the ship after the brief ceremonies. I was interested in one or two improvements, such as the double windows which will minimize noise and keep one's vision clearer in frosty weather; the chimes instead of the buzzer to call the hostess, and the color scheme of gray and red which is really very attractive. The safety record is most impressive. They have been flying fourteen years and have had no casualities to passengers or crews.