‘Gaves from the Heart’ is Biden White House’s Christmas theme

Monday, November 29, 2021
AP

WASHINGTON (AP) – “Gifts from the heart” is the theme of President Joe Biden’s first Christmas in the White House.

First Lady Jill Biden was to unveil decorations on Monday that matched the theme, which is said to be inspired by people the couple met when they traveled the country this year.

“The things we hold sacred unite and transcend distance, time, and even the limitations of a pandemic: faith, family, and friendship; a love of art, learning, and nature; gratitude, service, and community; unity and peace,” Bidens writes. in an anniversary guide from the White House from 2021. “These are the gifts that bind the strings of our lives together. These are the gifts from the heart.”

The decor features a giant White House of gingerbread recognizing frontline workers who endured the coronavirus pandemic, while the official Christmas tree – an 18-foot (5.5-meter-high) Frasergran – celebrates the gifts of peace and unity, the White House said.

As Bidens spent Thanksgiving week in Nantucket, Massachusetts, more than 100 volunteers set about decorating the executive mansion – including the oval office – with 41 Christmas trees, about 6,000-foot (2,000-yard) ribbons and more than 10,000 ornaments.

Twenty-five wreaths adorn the north and south sides of the building, and nearly 79,000 candles illuminate Christmas trees, garlands, wreaths and other holiday exhibits.

Jill Biden has invited another class from Malcolm Elementary School in Waldorf, Maryland, to help her unveil the decorations, the White House said. PBS KIDS characters Martin and Chris Kratt from the program “Wild Kratts” will also be present.

Before a PBS puppet show for school children, the First Lady will read her 2012 children’s book, “Do Not Forget It, God Bless Our Troops,” and make remarks thanking the team of volunteer decorators.

She also invited a local National Guard family to highlight the role the Guard has played in the U.S. response to COVID-19, as well as military families spending the holidays away from their loved ones.

Journalists will tour the decorated White House before the formal unveiling.

“As we celebrate our first holiday season in the White House, we are inspired by the Americans we have met across the country, and time and time again remind ourselves that our differences are precious and our similarities endless,” Bidens wrote. “We wish you a happy, healthy and joyful holiday season. As we look forward to a new year full of opportunities, gifts from the heart must light our way forward.”

The official Christmas tree in the White House, always set up in the Blue Room, is decorated with peace doves bearing a banner embossed with the names of the 50 states and US territories.

The Gingerbread White House, which weighs hundreds of pounds, includes eight detailed replicas of community buildings representing frontline workers.

The White House may see less pedestrian traffic this holiday season, as public tours remain suspended due to COVID-19, but videos, photos and details of the Christmas decorations must be made available for viewing at WhiteHouse.gov/Holidays.

Still during the holiday season, various interactive viewing experiences are to be made available on Instagram, Google Maps Street View, Snapchat and other platforms, the White House said.

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