For the majority of families across the United States, the holiday season is filled with family, food, and fun!
And for the country's first family, this time of year is no different. In the December/January 2014 issue of Ladies’ Home Journal, First Lady Michelle Obama shares her favorite family traditions, as well as ones started in the White House.
“Christmas has always been a special time in my household,” shares Obama. “Growing up, we lived in a little-bitty apartment, but my mom put her heart and soul into decorating that house. She would take cardboard and make a chimney over our radiator because she wanted us to feel like we had something for Santa Claus to come down.”
The first lady also has a large extended family, which made buying presents for everyone difficult. But her aunts found a fun and affordable solution. “[They] would go out and purchase small gifts. They would put them in a basket and in order to get a gift you had to perform. You could tell a joke, read a poem, do a backflip – anything counted. It’s a tradition that we’ve carried on today,” she says.
Obama claims to have hula-hooped, read poems, and done dog tricks with first dog Bo to earn a present. She shares that the President typically performs a song to get his gift. So what legacy does the first lady hope to leave when it comes to holidays at the White House?
“I hope that it’s a legacy of inclusion,” she tells the mag. “Congress comes and important famous people come. But I’m also thinking about a little kid from Kansas who is able to make the trip to see the house. We have a reception almost twice a day, every day, until December 21. That means hors d’oeuvres and eggnog and cookies for every guest who comes through. The house smells incredible for an entire month.”
But aside from entertaining thousands of visitors, the Obamas also make time for an activity that is just for the four of them: decorating the family tree. “Usually it’s the tree in the Yellow Oval room. We’ll have hot chocolate, light a fire, no matter what the weather is, get out a basket of decorations and then I’ll put on the first holiday music of the season,” Obama shares.
Sounds like a perfect evening to us! Do you have any special holiday traditions with your family? Share in the comments below or tweet them to us @closerweekly!
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