One very cool perk of living in the White House is having any food item you could ever wish for at your disposal. That is, except for one specific item. If you are a wine connoisseur, then you might be disappointed to find out that imported wines are off limits in the White House. The cooks go great distances to assure that all of the food and beverages served in house are from the US.
Imported wines were removed from the White House menus during Ford’s administration. It has since become a tradition to keep only wines made in the USA in the White House. Most of the wines make their way from Virginia, Idaho and, of course, California.
The White House Easter Egg Roll
The White House Easter Egg Roll has been a tradition since 1878 although it started during the presidency of James Madison in 1814. Dolley Madison, the wife of President James Madison began the event. Hundreds of children showed up with their decorated eggs to join in on the festivities. The event was subsequently canceled. At the request of many children, then President Rutherford B. Hayes and his wife Lucy brought the event back, this time to the White House lawns. The Easter Egg Roll tradition invites children to roll Easter eggs with a spoon in a race across the lawn of the White House.
The event is held every year on Easter Sunday. The event was called off only during wartime and when the White House underwent major construction. After leaving the event, participants receive a wooden Easter egg, a tradition that First Lady Nancy Reagan started. On 13 April 2009, the Obamas hosted their first White House Easter egg roll. The theme “Let’s go play” was intended to motivate young people to start leading healthier, more active lives.
Food at the White House
You would think that the president of the United States might get everything for free while they are in the White House, but that's actually very far from the truth. Contrary to popular belief, they aren't living off of tax payer's money. Instead, they are paying for their own food, toiletries, dry cleaning, and a slew of other personal items and services just like next fella. Laura Bush shared her experiences of dealing with the costs of living in the White House. "There were some costs that I was not prepared for," Bush wrote. "I was amazed by the sheer number of designer clothes that I was expected to buy, like the women before me, to meet the expectations for a first lady."
As the saying goes, there’s no such things as a free lunch. If you are interested in checking out what's cooking in the White House kitchen, the kitchen staff have an official Instagram page. It's definitely interesting to see what the staff and the First Family are chowing down on! Chef Walter Scheib explains that every first family wants something different. He found that preferences weren't party-specific as much as they were gender-specific. “The guys would have been just as happy if we opened a TGI Friday’s in the basement. They kind of dined on the concept it was good, if you melted cheese on it, it was even better.” Some past presidents have requested some pretty unique foods over the years. George H.W. Bush loved pork rinds in Tabasco sauce. After mentioning pork rinds throughout his campaign, he made the fried pigskin snack so popular that Rudolph Foods Company, a pork rind manufacturer, asked all their employees to work overtime to keep up with sales. Other weird food requests from past presidents include Lyndon B. Johnson's request for cottage cheese with ketchup, Bill Clinton's request for coca-cola flavored jelly, and most recently, Trump's request for the kitchen to make McDonald's fried apple pies.
The president has an overwhelming amount of power, but, they aren't able to declare war on another country. The constitution gives that power to Congress only. Article I, Section 8, of the U.S. Constitution states “The Congress shall have the power… To declare war…” Meanwhile, Article II, section 2, states “The President shall be commander in chief of the Army and Navy of the United States…”
The last time war was declared on another country was during World War II. Congress has officially declared war on other countries a total of 11 times. The first declaration of war occurred in 1812 against Great Britain. The United States is currently in conflict with a number of countries but has yet to declare war on any of them.
Convertibles Are No Longer Allowed
There are many rules which surround driving. The president is forbidden from driving on public roads. There are also certain cars that the president isn't allowed to ride in. Although in the past you could see the president riding around in a convertible, that is definitely no longer the case.
Since President John F. Kennedy's assassination happened when he was in the back seat of a convertible, they have tightened the reigns on the rules. Kennedy reportedly loved riding with the top down. He did it all his adult life, sometimes even in the rain, and when he became president, he saw no reason to end his love affair with the convertible. As president, he believed that security and comfort should take a back seat to the political value of being seen by the people. Convertibles are now highly off limits for any sitting president. Keep reading to see what other rules the first family and the president must adhere to.