DECEMBER 27, 1956
NEW YORK—Christmas Day, for which there were so many preparations and which took up so much of our thinking in the last few weeks, is over and we are back in a workaday world again. To be sure, the Christmas spirit will persist until after New Year's Day and it should go on until Twelfth Night, but I am sure by that time all of us will have come down to earth again—even the children!
We were fortunate at Hyde Park on Christmas Day to have had 11 young people with us, ranging from the two really young ones—Johnny's daughter, Joanie, and Franklin's daughter, Nancy—up to an 18-year-old grandson, who is Franklin Jr.'s older son.
It was a wonderful Christmas. And even though I think everyone this year could not help but have an undertone of anxiety below the surface of his own personal well-being, still we had a deep thankfulness for being together, family and friends.
The dearest friends I have were there with my family. I know of nothing for which one can be more truly grateful than the love of a close family relationship and of friends who through the years have grown dearer and dearer.
The whole country must have enjoyed the photograph of President Eisenhower with his year-old granddaughter, Mary Jean Eisenhower. He looked at her with such pride and joy, and she looked a little astonished at the photographers but completely assured as she sat on his arm.
I am disturbed by the large number of deaths in traffic accidents over the holiday weekend.
It is true that the weather was bad and fog made driving even more difficult than snow would have done, but on a road near us at Hyde Park, which brings these accidents very close, two small children were hit and one was killed and the other seriously injured and taken to the hospital.
The injured boy did get back to his grieving family for Christmas but, I was told, had to return to the hospital. What a sad Christmas for that family!
The road was just a country highway, leading from one highway 9G to another highway Route 9, and I think children ordinarily are thought to be pretty safe walking along it. But you can never be sure of how children will behave. They may have darted out after some toy or something they saw in the road. One never can tell, and this tragedy was the result.
Driving down from Hyde Park to New York City Wednesday morning, I found the roads fairly clear of traffic and, to my delight, there was no ice.
But we still have the New Year weekend to contend with, and I am afraid those days may be even more dangerous than the past ones. So I want to remind everyone to drive carefully and prevent accidents.