The White House is aglow with the spirit of Christmas once again, as First Lady Jill Biden unveils this year's extravagant decorations. In a change from previous years, the iconic stockings have been replaced with White House decorations, sparking speculation about a new addition to the first family.
The decision to exclude the stockings has raised questions about the inclusion of Navy, the five-year-old daughter of Hunter Biden. The White House spokesperson explained that the Bidens plan to spend the holiday at Camp David, where the stockings will be hung. However, it remains unclear if the Navy will have a stocking at Camp David.
Monday's unveiling showcases the transformation of the White House into a winter wonderland. Featuring 98 Christmas trees, roughly 34,000 ornaments, and 142,000 twinkling lights, the executive mansion radiates the joy of the holiday season.
The theme of this year's White House Christmas is "Magic, Wonder, and Joy," which the Bidens say is inspired by children's experience of the festive season. As children, they embody the essence of the holidays, completely immersed in the beauty and bounty around them. The decorations, ornaments, and lights all aim to reflect this childlike wonder and joy.
Clement Clarke Moore's classic poem, "The Night Before Christmas," is also a prominent feature in the White House decor. As the poem celebrates its 200th anniversary, the White House pays homage to the beloved holiday tale with various elements throughout the mansion.
One of the highlights of the decorations is the official White House Menorah, resting in the Cross Hall between the East Room and State Dining Room. It is a symbol of unity and inclusivity, acknowledging the holiday celebrations of all faiths.
The first family's beloved pets, Commander and Willow, are also honored in the decor. A gingerbread White House, which took roughly 40 sheets of cookie dough, 90 pounds of pastillage, and 50 pounds of royal icing to create, showcases the first pets' likenesses. The gingerbread house is a popular attraction among visitors during the holiday season.
The Cross Hall also hosts a sculpture of the German shepherd Commander, who was recently relocated from the White House after displaying aggression. Alongside Commander stands a statue of the first cat Willow, adding to the festive atmosphere.
In a statement, the Bidens expressed their hope that people would embrace their inner child and enjoy the holidays with their loved ones. With more than 350 candles, 22,100 bells, and 72 wreaths adorning the north and south facades of the White House, there is no shortage of the magic, wonder, and joy of Christmas.
The Bidens' return to the White House from Thanksgiving in Nantucket, Massachusetts, was a momentous occasion. Six of the first grandchildren also joined the celebrations, making the occasion even more special.
As the Christmas season approaches, the White House is ready to welcome visitors to experience the enchantment and festivities of the holidays. With the first family's personal touch, the decor radiates magic and joy, reminding us all of the true meaning of the holidays – spending time with loved ones and embracing the wonder of the season.