December 22nd, 2012
08:56 AM ET

Letters to the President #1433: 'As Christmas closes in'

Reporter's Note: Each day of the year, I write to President Obama. I have no idea if he appreciates it.

Dear Mr. President,

For all the events that have roiled the nation over the past few months, including your own re-election, I must say that I am more than happy to put aside my thoughts of the news and try to think about Christmas for the next few days. Well, perhaps it is a bit much to say I am “happy” about that. I am so far behind in my holiday preparations that I know the next few days will involve some pretty Herculean maneuvers that may well leave me gasping for a day at the office. Still, I love the Christmas season and I will do my best to make the time enjoyable.

One of the things I most enjoy is a remarkably small and easy production.

Many years ago my mother found a simple recipe. I assume it was on the back of a Jello or Graham Cracker box, since it involves both. I mean Jello and Graham Crackers…not the boxes.

Anyway, it consists of basically mixing red and green Jello into applesauce to create different colors which are then alternated between cracker layers, coated all over with whipped cream, decorated with sprinkles…well, I guess you get the picture. It is ridiculously simple, but after the applesauce has softened the crackers a bit in the refrigerator, you cut through and these wonderful little layers of green and red appear as if by magic.

I’m sure it sounds like nothing, but I loved it when I was a little kid. And when I made it with my younger daughter some years back, it became a favorite part of her Christmas too. Now, every year at some point she and I will retreat to the kitchen to whip one of these concoctions up. It’s not delicious, but it is tasty enough. We don’t even have a name for it. It’s just “that thing we make,” and to be honest the “making” is what it’s all about.

I hope you have some traditions like that to enjoy with your daughters amid your busy schedule. If you need the recipe, with more specific instructions, give a shout and I’ll send it your way.


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