HONOLULU — President Barack Obama blended his roles as a father and commander-in-chief this Christmas, exchanging presents and singing carols with his family, then greeting U.S. service members stationed at a Marine base in Hawaii.
The president and his family woke up early Sunday to open gifts, the White House said, then had breakfast and sang Christmas carols at the multimillion-dollar house they rent in Kailua Beach, near Honolulu.
Obama made two trips on Christmas to nearby Marine Corps Base Hawaii, first to attend church services at the base chapel. The president dressed casually in dark khaki pants and a short-sleeve blue shirt, and his wife and daughters donned sundresses for Christmas services on a bright, breezy day on the island of Oahu.
After spending a few hours at their rental home, the president and Michelle Obama returned to the base to visit with several hundred service members and their families, as they have done in past years.
The Obamas posed for posed for photos, signed autographs and stopped to chat with the military families gathered in the dining hall, where roast beef, salad and apple pie were on the Christmas Day menu.
Eight-month-old Cooper Wall Wagner, son of Capt. Greg Wagner, got up close and personal with the president, grabbing his face, then sticking his fingers in Obama's mouth.
An amused Obama said he thought the baby just liked his "big nose" — a comment that drew laughter from several of the Marines.