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My year with the First Ladies
Washington, DC area
Psychologist; history lover, worked for the White House
Recent Activity
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Part Three – An Outdoor Space Worthy of Historic Events When Jacqueline Kennedy lived in the White House in the years 1961 to 1963 not only did she successfully lead efforts to preserve the buildings and the historic character of the neighborhood surrounding the White House, but she also revitalized... Continue reading
Posted Apr 5, 2017 at My year with the First Ladies
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Part Two – Preserving the White House Neighborhood First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy’s (1961-63) contributions to make Washington DC beautiful again were closer to home during the time she resided in the White House. When redevelopment threatened the historic character of the neighborhood in Lafayette Square, across from the White House,... Continue reading
Posted Mar 26, 2017 at My year with the First Ladies
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Part One – Cherry Blossom Time As the cherry blossoms along the Tidal Basin in Washington, DC burst forth in their annual displays of flowering beauty (somewhat diminished this year due to earlier snow and ice) they stand as a testament to the efforts of First Lady Helen Taft to... Continue reading
Posted Mar 20, 2017 at My year with the First Ladies
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Donald and Melania Trump are not the only presidential couple to want to stay in their golden tower in New York. Long before Donald Trump came on the scene another president did his best to escape the White House. In 1886, 49 year old President Grover Cleveland married 21 year... Continue reading
Posted Mar 13, 2017 at My year with the First Ladies
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The President of the United States is a full time job with pay. How about the job of First Lady? First Lady Pat Nixon said: "Being First Lady is the hardest unpaid job in the world." More than 60 years ago, President Harry Truman offered his opinion: "I hope some... Continue reading
Posted Mar 7, 2017 at My year with the First Ladies
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Most of us would be forgiven for not knowing much about the sixth U.S. President, John Quincy Adams, if only because his presidency was long before our time. However, John Quincy Adams accomplished a lot in his 80 years, before collapsing on the floor of Congress two days before his... Continue reading
Posted Feb 23, 2017 at My year with the First Ladies
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The pie created to commemorate the birthday of first president of the United States George Washington is actually a cake and here is the recipe: https://hudsonvalleyone.com/2017/02/16/celebrate-presidents-day-with-washington-cake-or-washington-pie/ Continue reading
Posted Feb 21, 2017 at My year with the First Ladies
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Who ranks first among U.S. Presidents? This week presidential historians announced their 2017 rankings and the results are listed here. https://www.c-span.org/presidentsurvey2017/?page=overall. Before you view the results, care to guess which president is at the top of the list: George Washington? Abraham Lincoln? Thomas Jefferson? Franklin Roosevelt? Take a look. Continue reading
Posted Feb 18, 2017 at My year with the First Ladies
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Don’t worry if you did not make it to Washington, DC to attend a presidential inaugural ball last month. If and when you do visit the nation’s capital you can see many of the inaugural gowns worn by First Ladies of the United States on display at the Smithsonian American... Continue reading
Posted Feb 15, 2017 at My year with the First Ladies
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President Trump may not be considered a traditionalist, but when it came to wardrobe choices for his inauguration, he wore a shirt and overcoat from the clothier, Brooks Brothers. How are those traditional choices? Presidents all the way back to Lincoln have worn this American brand including Presidents Grant, Arthur,... Continue reading
Posted Jan 31, 2017 at My year with the First Ladies
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January 20, 2017 marked a presidential transition at the White House. Many of the followers of My Year with The First Ladies have followed this blog since it began in 2010 during the time I was working for the Obama White House and was introduced to its history and traditions... Continue reading
Posted Jan 21, 2017 at My year with the First Ladies
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Today, January 17, 2017, as Michelle Obama celebrates her 53rd birthday it is a reminder that it will be the last one she observes as First Lady of the United States. Related articles Michelle Obama Final remarks as first lady : "Hope i have made you Proud" 10 Times Michelle... Continue reading
Posted Jan 17, 2017 at My year with the First Ladies
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Inaugurations for President of the United States did not always take place on January 20. Most "regular" presidential inaugurations from 1793 until 1937 happened on March 4. The very first one, however, took place on April 30, 1789 after George Washington traveled (unaccompanied by his wife, Martha) from his Mount... Continue reading
Posted Jan 12, 2017 at My year with the First Ladies
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Forty of the 44U.S. Presidents were fathers and a number of presidents had large families. As Father's Day approaches here is a look at some of them: 32nd President Franklin Roosevelt with wife Eleanor and children: 38th President Gerald Ford, wife Betty and children 41st President George H.W.Bush, wife Barbara... Continue reading
Posted Jun 18, 2016 at My year with the First Ladies
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Jacqueline Kennedy's garden, or, as it is sometimes called, the First Lady's Garden is located on the north side of the East Colonnade of the White House not too distant from where the First Lady's office is located. The garden is in the style of a traditional 18th century American... Continue reading
Reblogged May 24, 2016 at My year with the First Ladies
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The East Wing or Children's Garden was created and presented to the White House by President and Mrs. Johnson. The garden is located in a wooded area near the White House tennis courts. The garden has a goldfish pond and an apple tree just right for kids to climb on.... Continue reading
Reblogged May 23, 2016 at My year with the First Ladies
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Hurry, hurry if you plan to view the cherry blossoms along the Tidal Basin in Washington, DC. The bloom timetable has accelerated and now the U.S. Park Service estimates that the peak bloom period is March 18-24, 2016, a full two weeks earlier than predicted. More than 100 years ago,... Continue reading
Posted Mar 9, 2016 at My year with the First Ladies
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George Washington’s china service was never used at the White House. The dishes did grace President Washington’s table in presidential residences in New York and Philadelphia before the District of Columbia became the nation’s permanent capita, after Washington left office. Washington really like the blue and white Chinese porcelain popular... Continue reading
Posted Feb 19, 2016 at My year with the First Ladies
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The Red Room at the White House is one of four reception rooms on the state (main/public floor) of the mansion. The room is furnished in the Empire style dating from 1810-1830. The fabric on the walls is red twill satin and all the fabrics in the room were made... Continue reading
Posted Feb 3, 2016 at My year with the First Ladies
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Continuing the series on Setting the President's Table, the next several posts highlight several of the controversies involving specific presidential china services within the White House collection. Not every administration has created its own service, but it is often necessary to augment previous collections for a number of reasons including,... Continue reading
Posted Jan 28, 2016 at My year with the First Ladies
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Setting the President's table has always been an important aspect of entertaining at the White House. From the earliest days of the presidency there were funds provided to purchase china for celebrations and state occasions. As various pieces of china became damaged, they could be sold at auction, given away... Continue reading
Posted Jan 13, 2016 at My year with the First Ladies
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Many people may be under the impression that First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy was the first to take an interest in restoring the White House with historical accuracy. A number of first ladies before her actually pursued efforts in that direction. One of them was Lou Hoover, who died on this... Continue reading
Posted Jan 7, 2016 at My year with the First Ladies
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Although Washington, DC is experiencing one of the warmest Decembers in recent memory, there is one place that has snow. A profusion of "snow people" (representing all 56 U.S. states and territories) abound in Jackie Kennedy's garden at the White House. Hand cut paper snowflakes, made by local schoolkids hang... Continue reading
Posted Dec 13, 2015 at My year with the First Ladies
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An 18-ft Fraser fir from Pennsylvania arrived at the White House today. First Lady Michelle Obama was on hand, along with First Dogs Bo and Sunny, to receive the Christmas tree which will grace the White House Blue Room, a tradition started by First Lady Caroline Harrison in 1889. View... Continue reading
Posted Nov 27, 2015 at My year with the First Ladies
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Where are the Watergate steps? Ask anyone and they would probably reply that the Steps are located at the Watergate complex, the site of the burglary that took down a presidency. Not so. The Watergate Steps (40 in all) comprise a graceful, 230-foot wide staircase ascending from the the Potomac... Continue reading
Posted Nov 9, 2015 at My year with the First Ladies