The White House's delicious Christmas preparations, by the numbers

The White House Christmas tree stands in the Blue Room
(Image credit: Alex Wong/Getty Images)

As soon as the last of the Thanksgiving stuffing and pumpkin pie is gobbled up, the White House begins preparation for the December holiday season in earnest.

With all the party hosting — not to mention all the cooking and baking — to be done in the three weeks leading up to Christmas, it makes sense that this would be a month-long endeavor for the White House staff. And according to The New York Times, holiday season at the White House is quite the scene:

Navy men are pitting dates in the White House driveway. Coast Guard personnel, their arm tattoos peeking out from culinary whites, mash sweet potatoes in the East Wing's basement kitchen. Thousands of latkes deep fry in canola oil under a tent not far from the North Portico. Upstairs in the pastry shop, which is about the size of a galley kitchen in a small Manhattan apartment, bakers are preparing more than 500 pounds of dough for 25,000 holiday cookies, including some that look like Bo and Sunny, the Obamas' dogs. [The New York Times]

Below, a look at the crazy numbers behind the White House's holiday season:

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20

Holiday parties hosted by the White House

45

Turkeys brined

62

Trees decorated

400

Hours spent making ornament replicas of the White House dogs, Bo and Sunny

500

Pounds of gingerbread-and-chocolate needed to make a replica of the White House

500

Pounds of cookie dough used to bake cookies

1,200

Pounds of sweet potatoes used for sweet potato soufflés

1,600

Pounds of baby lamb chops needed for dinners

4,000

Bells used to adorn the garlands

25,000

Holiday cookies to be baked, in total

70,000

Ornaments that adorn the White House grounds

Read a full rundown of the White House's holiday prep over at The New York Times.

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