First Lady Michelle Obama welcomed military families to the White House to view the Christmas decorations on Nov. 28, 2012. The theme of this year’s White House holiday decorations is “Joy to All.” The event opens the holiday season of tours and festivities at the White House in Washington D.C..
The military families were treated to a special tour of the holiday decorations in recognition of their sacrifices. The military families at the White House included Blue Star and Gold Star children and spouses. Mrs. Obama recognized the sacrifices that military families make in service to the country, noting frequent relocation and other challenges faced in supporting the Armed Services of the United States.
The support of military families has been the Joining Forces initiative focused on by Mrs. Obama and Dr. Jill Biden, the wife of Vice-President Joe Biden. The special White House tour is part of Mrs. Obama’s recognition of, and respect for, military families.
The festive holiday decorations at the White House include a decorated Frasier fir tree that is nearly 19 feet tall. The tall tree is decorated with ornaments made by children living at military bases throughout the world. Mrs. Obama stated, “And we are also honoring our military families with some very special decorations on the official White House Christmas tree that’s in the Blue Room. It’s the biggest tree in the house. It’s huge — stands close to 19 feet tall. It is one of my favorite trees. This very special Joining Forces tree is covered with hand-decorated ornaments made by military children living in U.S. bases around the world.”
Mrs. Obama continued to give a brief explanation of the holiday decorations, saying, “In addition to these unique tributes to our military families, we also have many of the traditional holiday favorites built around our central theme. And as a little bit of a history lesson, the custom of selecting an official holiday theme began in the 1960s when First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy created a nutcracker-themed Christmas for her daughter Caroline. And this year’s theme is “Joy to All.” It celebrates the many joys of the holiday seasons: the joy of giving and service to others; the joy of sharing our blessings with one another; and, of course, the joy of welcoming our friends and families as guests into our homes over these next several weeks.”
There are a total of 54 decorated Christmas trees, festoons of garlands, a nearly 300 pound gingerbread house, a stained glass window and wreaths. A replica of the Obama family dog, Bo the Portuguese Water Spaniel and a replica of the White House kitchen garden stand next to the gingerbread model of White House. Bo, the Obama’s dog, attended the event along with the First Lady. Bo the Obama family dog attends White House Christmas events
Four of the beautiful trees are trimmed with ornaments paying tribute to the holiday legacies of former First Ladies dating back to Jacqueline Kennedy. A slideshow of pictures of the White House holiday decorations is attached.
The special tour of the White House for military families opens the season of holiday tours of the White House. Mrs. Obama stated that about 90,000 people will tour the White House to view the Christmas decorations over the holiday season.
All star Christmas in Washington hosted by Conan O’Brien on TNT
Obama family lights National Christmas Tree in Washington D.C. – pictures