January 22nd, 2009
03:15 PM ET
8 months ago

Gibbs: Obama enjoys 'living above the company store'

A senior aide to the president credited the family routine set up by the first lady for easing the Obamas' transition into White House life.
A senior aide to the president credited the family routine set up by the first lady for easing the Obamas' transition into White House life.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – The Obamas are settling into the new home just fine, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said Thursday.

The new president “enjoys – to use a phrase - living above the company store,” said Gibbs. Yesterday, between two events, Obama went upstairs to have dinner with the first lady and the couple’s two daughters. “That obviously means a lot to him as a father,” said Gibbs.

The Obamas’ ability to adjust to all of the changes in their lives, including three moves in the past few weeks, “is a monumental testament to Michelle,” Gibbs told reporters.

“The girls have always had a very strong routine that’s kept them away from all of this,” Gibbs said as he gestured toward the White House press corps that was overcrowding the briefing room.

“They’re very much the same four people that I met five years ago when I went to work for him,” said Gibbs.

But the adjustment to life in the White House has not been completely flawless; the 44th president has had to learn his way around the historic residence.

“It’s a pretty big house,” Gibbs also said Thursday. “At the end of the first night, he had to ask somebody where he was supposed to go next.”


Filed under: Obama family
soundoff (61 Responses)
  1. EC

    I'm so glad the President and his family are together at last in the White House. It could NOT have been easy the last two years on the campaign for his daughters and the First Lady.

    At least NOW, whenever he gets some "free" time he can spend it with his wife and daughter. There won't be a lot of free time, but every minute counts and his girls will help kept President Obama grounded when the pressure of the White House get to be too much at times.

    God Bless them..

    January 22, 2009 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  2. Retired Army in San Antonio

    "Living above the company store"........that's a good one!

    Having a short commute (one flight of stairs) can definately have it's advantages........

    January 22, 2009 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
  3. Texas Straight Talker

    President Obama – gotta love it!

    January 22, 2009 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  4. Gerry in Va. for Obama.

    They will be a beautiful addition to this elegant home. I'm sure First Lady Obama has made this whole thing a real adventure for those two little ladies. Hopefully the love that is shown in that house and family will gush over into every home in America. We once again have a REAL first family in the White House..

    January 22, 2009 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  5. Jon in CA

    Secretary Gibbs states:

    Obama went upstairs to have dinner with the first lady and the couple’s two daughters. “That obviously means a lot to him as a father.”

    Funny, his smoking doesn't seem to bother him as a father. Yeah, who cares if little obama-babies reek of 2nd hand smoke and inhale carcinogens... daddy showed up for dinner!!

    January 22, 2009 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  6. lr

    yes, it is a big change. Especially for the girls....I am glad they care for the girls so well.
    I kept always routine and balance for my daughters – it was worth it. They are polite, great, smart, fun to be with, to work with, ....one went to Stanford, other has PhD., and the third one is learning the responsibilities and caring for the world.

    January 22, 2009 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  7. Average Joe

    Awsome

    January 22, 2009 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  8. JL

    PLEASE, one thing President Obama is that is he and his family are BLACK. We (Black people) can survive anything and history has proven that time and time again. They will be just fine and in fact they will bring a BETTER twist to the W.H.

    January 22, 2009 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  9. Paris

    Are you kidding me?
    Now even moving and settling in is monumental?

    What is next, they eat and breathe and that is noble and extraordinary?

    January 22, 2009 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  10. laura

    AAAwwwww how cute!

    my favorite part is this

    ' But the adjustment to life in the White House has not been completely flawless; the 44th president has had to learn his way around the historic residence.

    “It’s a pretty big house,” Gibbs also said Thursday. “At the end of the first night, he had to ask somebody where he was supposed to go next.”

    LOL! ... good times!

    January 22, 2009 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  11. hisapuppet

    WHOS THE PUPPETEER?

    January 22, 2009 05:04 pm at 5:04 pm |
  12. Veronica

    God bless our First Family.

    January 22, 2009 05:04 pm at 5:04 pm |
  13. Change

    He will change America for better or for worse, proabably worse.

    January 22, 2009 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  14. Joe, Chicago IL

    What did he eat? What did Michelle wear?!?

    That is so not fair. You left me hanging.

    I am glad to see that CNN is reporting the hard stuff. Not the soft stuff or fluff reported by the other media outlets!

    January 22, 2009 05:09 pm at 5:09 pm |
  15. KB from Texas

    I am still on cloud 9 watching this wonderful family in the White House. God bless them!!!

    January 22, 2009 05:10 pm at 5:10 pm |
  16. KB from Texas

    To Change –
    God bless you too.

    January 22, 2009 05:10 pm at 5:10 pm |
  17. Ken Sawyer

    You can't beat the deal you get with government housing.

    January 22, 2009 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  18. KampBell_BrOwn SUx

    Just wanted to say that the people working on the air on CNN are the worst reporters of the world even Faux news is better.

    January 22, 2009 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  19. At Last

    This week, each morning has been better than the morning before as the bad dream of the last 8 years recedes. Soak it in and let it strengthen you.

    January 22, 2009 05:16 pm at 5:16 pm |
  20. Michele Webb

    I really appreciate the coverage CNN has been providing about President Obama and his family. It is wonderful to be able to see a man in his position live daily his family values. Irregardless as to what his position is on controversial issues like same-sex marriage and abortion, it can not be denied that the American family comes first in his list of priorities...his family comes first.

    January 22, 2009 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  21. Beverly

    "Living above the company store" is a very good phrase for this time in our history. That's the way many Americans long to live again. President Obama always seems to be so in touch with how Americans are feeling especially in the manner in which he speaks. I hope President Obama never lose that quality of sensitivtivity, in his words and actions, for the people who elected him to lead the United States of America.

    God bless America and President Barack Obama.

    January 22, 2009 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  22. April

    OKAY SINCE HE IS OUR PRESIDENT NOW, I WILL SAY THIS:

    THAT IS VERY GOOD. NOW THERE IS NO EXCUSE NOT TO BE THERE FOR THE FAMILY, RIGHT? JUST MAKE SURE YOU DRESS PROPERLY AND IMMACULATELY WITH SHIRT, JACKET AND TIE EACH DAY BECAUSE THE WORLD IS WATCHING AND YOU DO NOT WANT OUR ENEMIES TO THINK WE CANNOT AFFORD SUITS FOR EVERYDAY OCCASIONS FOR OUR PRESIDENT, WOULD YOU? PERFECTION AND SENSE OF HUMOR IS THE KEY HERE.

    GOOD LUCK. WE WILL GIVE YOU A CHANCE. GOD BLESS YOU AND FAMILY.

    January 22, 2009 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  23. bsmith171

    anything for free, REZKO.

    January 22, 2009 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  24. sbkilb Ct

    Things may be bad aka the economy,wars, etc. but whenOBAMA was sworn in I cried tears of joy and relief!!! "WE THE PEOPLE" have our country back!!!! The first family is a breath of fresh air, a true sign of hope and change. May God bless them and the USA!!!
    p.s. It has been a long 2 yr. campaign Barack,I stood by you , and you have my total confidence and support. THANK YOU!!!

    January 22, 2009 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  25. OKIE

    Now there is a woman that needs to have someone dress her! She does not have good taste at all!

    January 22, 2009 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
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