DECEMBER 23, 1953
NEW YORK, Tuesday—On Friday night I attended a wonderful party for which Mr. and Mrs. Walter White kindly donated the use of their house. In fact, everything at the party was practically donated, so that those who attended felt the entire contributions went to the committee working against discrimination in housing. Mr. Algernon Black looked so pleased to have such a crowd attend and I was happy, too, that he could leave on his sabbatical year feeling reassured in his mind about current expenses for the committee which he really carries along.
Unlike most meetings to raise money for charity, everyone was having a good time as well as doing a good deed. The music was excellent and what speeches there were were very brief.
Bright and early Saturday morning we went to Hyde Park and there I found my granddaughter and her two children flourishing and my grandson up for the weekend. It is wonderful for this brother and sister to have a chance to be together over the weekends since Mrs. Seagraves has been in Paris for two years and Curtis has been here at work in New York.
I put as many people as I could use to work on all the different phases of Christmas preparation but I found that already a good deal had been done for me. The little tree in my living room was up and decorated. My granddaughter said that being helped by a four-year-old and a baby just over a year meant that a good many things on the lower branches were pulled off instead of put on, but the effect was good nevertheless. It was so good that even the babies were proud of their work!
We did up packages madly for nearby people, since all but one or two little gifts going to California had gone off weeks ago. I can't say that I did much except get ready for Christmas and with the exception of going to church on Sunday morning I hardly went out of the house in spite of the fact that it was nice weather and my dogs looked longingly at me.
I thought the story on Sunday in one of our newspapers of the two little children and their mother who arrived too late at the airport to confide their Christmas presents, for one of our officers working on the peace group in Korea, to Admiral Radford and an aide who were going out to Korea for Christmas, was very sweet.
When the children burst into tears, the Christmas spirit was too much for one of the kindly airport officials and he sent a truck out on the runway to get the packages on board the plane.
It is good to know that the Christmas spirit worked so efficiently and that a father will not be without Christmas presents from his family even though he is so far away.