President Barack Obama's favorite movie this year was "Avatar," and his personal goal for 2010 is "resisting pie." His wife Michelle enjoyed the film "An Education," and she's into the music of New Orleans R&B singer Ledisi.
These details are among those the First Couple revealed in a wide-ranging new interview with People magazine, due to hit newsstands this Friday, where they touched on topics ranging from terrorism to Tiger Woods.
Asked what his proudest moments have been so far, the president cites two: the passage of healthcare reform bills in the House and Senate, and "every single night when I have dinner with my girls, and I see how well they've adjusted." As for his toughest, he cites time spent with the military families who had lost loved ones.
Outside the beltway, however, he acknowledges that past year has dealt a blow to the national optimism which followed his January
inauguration. Americans, he says, have "every right" to feel "anxious" and "deflated" in the face of economic struggle, but he emphasized that the economy is growing again, and "we're on the rebound."
The Obamas expressed awe at how well daughters Sasha, 8, and Malia,11, have adapted to life in the spotlight: Michelle notes how calm and poised they were when meeting Pope Benedict XVI this summer.
She also stresses that the family works hard to keep their private lives "normal." Like many parents, the Obamas set rules for what the girls can watch on TV: "Nickelodeon and the Disney Channel only." Unless, says the president, "they want to watch football with me, which they're always welcome [to do]. But somehow they haven't been drawn to that yet."
As for their own TV habits, the Obamas said they watch ESPN's Sports Center in the mornings during their daily 5:30 a.m. workouts, and the president joked that Michelle's knowledge of sports "is important in our marriage."
He also admits he hasn't had time to program any new music into his i-pod, although he could always ask [personal assistant] Reggie Love, but "then all I get is [hip-hop star] Jay Z, and I love Jay-Z, but once in a while I might want some [classical cellist] Yo-Yo Ma."
Set among the text are photos of the Obamas picked as their favorites from the thousands taken of them in the past year, all of which include one or both of their daughters.
Asked about the oft-cited "loneliness" of the presidency, Obama says he doesn't mind it, adding that it's "what I signed up for, and I
actually think I'm pretty good at it."
Obama recently gave himself a grade of "B+" for his first year in office, but he admits in the interview that he "hasn't been able ...
to bring the country together" this year, and that the "whole sense of changing how Washington works" has been "lost."
"We all have common values and care about our kids ... returning to those themes is going to be really important."