By Bridget Johnson - 12/25/09 02:56 AM EST
The president and first lady used the weekly White House address to send holiday greetings to men and women serving in the military.
President Barack Obama, joined by first lady Michelle Obama at his side, also touched on the rough economic year, "especially as we continue to recover from an extraordinary recession that still has so many Americans hurting: parents without a job who struggled to put presents under the Christmas tree; families and neighbors who’ve seen their home foreclosed; folks wondering what the new year will bring.
The president and first lady kept a strong focus, though, on gratitude toward those in the armed forces and their families, even as President Obama won a major domestic policy victory on Christmas Eve with Senate passage of healthcare reform legislation.
"If you live near a military base, you can reach out through your workplaces, your schools, your churches," Michelle Obama said. "There are so many ways to help—with child care, with errands, or by just bringing over a home-cooked meal. Even if you don’t know a military family nearby, your family can still help by donating or volunteering at organizations that support military families."
The president encouraged people to send care packages, phone cards and even just messags of thanks to the troops.
"And this holiday season—and every Holiday season—know that we are doing
everything in our power to make sure you can succeed in your missions
and come home safe to your families," President Obama said.