Unlike last Thanksgiving when some of them were gobbling up each other, the Reagans this year will be gobbling up the turkey at the president's Santa Barbara ranch.
Only Maureen Reagan and her husband Dennis Revell will be absent. They'll be at the White House for Christmas, however.
"Every year there's been someone missing but part of the group's been there," an aide to Nancy Reagan said yesterday. "Last year, everyone but Michael and Colleen was there. This year, it's everyone but Maureen and Dennis."
"Everyone" is the president's brother Neil and his wife Bess; Michael and Colleen and their children Cameron and Ashley; Ron and his wife Doria, and Patti Davis and her husband Paul Grilley.
Last year "everyone" did not include Michael and his family because he and Nancy Reagan were feuding. Things got so bad, you'll recall, that President Reagan finally called his son to reprimand him for responding publicly to remarks by Nancy about her three-year estrangement from her stepson.
To everyone's relief, including the American public's, they all kissed and made up a couple of days after Christmas. That's the first time the president got to see his granddaughter Ashley, then 20 months old.
This time if anybody is feuding besides Michael and Maureen (rumored to be on the outs from time to time), nobody is talking about it.
On the Reagans' Thanksgiving menu will be turkey, cornbread stuffing, green beans with almonds, mashed potatoes, cranberries, monkey bread, salad, pumpkin pie and whipped cream.
Only the Reagans' housekeeper/cook, Anne Allman, will be staying overnight. As chief cook and bottle washer, she gets the little guest house.
Nancy Reagan joins 5,000 elementary school children in Oakland today at a Just Say No (to drug abuse) rally led by "Punky Brewster" star Soleil Moon Frye. Tonight, also in Oakland, Mrs. Reagan joins a crowd of 1,500 at a dinner sponsored by a group of professional athletes against drug abuse called "Pros for Kids."
When Nancy Reagan unveils the White House Christmas tree at a press preview Dec. 9 and shows it off later in the day to children of the diplomatic corps, one particular ornament is intended to outshine all others. It's the 1985 edition of the White House Historical Association's series based on themes about American presidents.
This year, the gold-plated ornament, which WHHA sells for $9.75, postage included, shows James and Dolley Madison in early silhouettes done long before their paths crossed. Madison was a 30-year-old congressman from Virginia at the time, and Dolley Payne was a young Philadelphia matron.
Last year's ornament, a reproduction of the Jefferson peace medal of 1801, sold 30,000 copies; in addition, 5,000 copies of earlier ornaments were sold last year. Proceeds go toward publication of the association's guidebooks and to purchase art objects and furnishings for the Executive Mansion.
In a repeat performance of their own Christmases past, the Reagans will spend that holiday at the White House. A couple of days later, they'll head west to join their California friends at the New Year's Eve get-together Walter and Lee Annenberg will give at their Rancho Mirage estate.
Before the Reagans ever get out of town, there will be a full schedule of White House Christmas parties, including two on consecutive nights -- Dec. 11 and 12 -- for the press. After the mob scenes at last year's press parties, somebody must have taken a second look at the guest list. From the sound of things, the Reagans aren't just trimming Christmas trees this year.
"We're hoping to make it a little more manageable by cutting down the numbers," said Elaine Crispen, Mrs. Reagan's press secretary.
If Nancy Reagan's thank-you note for tea, dinner and gifts in Geneva isn't yet in the mail to her new pen pal in Moscow, Raisa Gorbachev, it should be sometime today, says Crispen.
"It's pretty standard by now after a visit that she writes to the spouse knowing that the president will be writing his own letter to the leader," Crispen said yesterday.
"It was just a family-type party," Citicorp's Walter B. Wriston said of last night's gathering to help celebrate Secretary of State George Shultz's 65th birthday. Some family. Besides Shultz's wife Helena and their children, there were about 150 other guests at the dinner-dance at San Francisco's Bohemian Club.
And it would have been a surprise too, if Marvin Kalb hadn't spilled the beans to Shultz and the entire nation Sunday on "Meet the Press."
Ignore those rumors about Nancy Reagan's full-time return to show biz. It's true that after her Broadway performance in the tribute to Mary Martin last month, the Theatre Guild sent her a blank contract. The guild invited her to fill in not only the role she wanted to play but also what she wanted to be paid. She wrote the guild a (no) thank you, but kept the contract.
"She tucked it away," Crispen said. "You never know what the future will bring."