Tales from the Trail

Obama family trip cancelled over budget deadlock

Add another victim to a looming federal government shutdown – a surprise Obama family outing to Williamsburg in Virginia, which was  postponed on Friday after budget negotiations failed to break their deadlock.

OBAMA/The weekend get-away to the historically preserved 18th century colonial town had been kept under wraps, but was almost immediately in doubt after word of the trip trickled out.

Republicans and Democrats made little headway in budget talks, despite successive summons to the White House by President Barack Obama to move things along, and by Friday afternoon a shutdown looked increasingly unavoidable.

“The President will remain in Washington, D.C. this weekend as he continues to work with congressional leaders to reach an agreement on the budget,” said White House spokesman Josh Earnest. “The First Family’s trip to Williamsburg has been postponed.”

Photo credit: Reuters/Jason Reed (Obama and family at White House)

Obama girls get their own presidential lecture on fiscal responsibility

Just because they live in the White House doesn’t mean they can’t earn a little pocket money.

President Barack Obama says his daughters get an allowance and are nearing an age when they can earn some working capital by babystitting. OBAMA/

(We’re thinking the client’s child would be among the most protected on the planet because the babysitters come with their own bodyguards).

Obama Hawaiian Vacation: Beach Day

If it’s Sunday in Hawaii, it must be beach day. Actually if it’s any day in Hawaii, it’s beach day.

OBAMA/But for President Barack Obama Sunday was the first day for a real  beach outing since he arrived in Kailua for the presidential Christmas break last Thursday.

Obama and family ventured out to Pyramid Rock Beach on a nearby Marine Corps base where the president stopped briefly yesterday we imagine to scope out the waves considering that Obama is known to locals as a more than adequate bodysurfer.

Just say “Bo” – Obama White House unveils first dog

USA/The Obama White House on Sunday unveiled the first family’s new pet, a 6-month-old male Portuguese Water Dog named Bo.
The black-and-white, curly-haired Bo was a gift to Obama daughters Sasha, 7, and Malia, 10, from Senator Ted Kennedy and will take up residence at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave on Tuesday.
President Barack Obama had promised his daughters a new puppy during his campaign for the White House. In January, he told reporters the front-runner breeds were a Portuguese Water Dog and a Labradoodle.
The Web site of Dog Breed Info Center describes the Portuguese Water Dog as a hardy, muscular, medium-sized dog that grows to about 20-22 inches (51-56 cm) tall and is “lively but sensible, and loyal.”
“Bear in mind that this extremely intelligent dog will take liberties if it feels it is stronger-minded than its owners,” the center said. “This breed may out-think its owner!”
Online advertisements by U.S. and Canadian breeders quote prices for Portuguese Water Dogs at between $2000 and $2900.
The water-loving breed gets its name from its long history of helping Portuguese fisherman herd and catch fish, retrieve tackle, and carry messages between ships.

For more Reuters political news, click here.

Photo credit: Reuters/Pete Souza-The White House/Handout – Bo, a 6-month-old male Portuguese Water Dog, is seen in this White House photograph released April 12, 2009.

Did you break something at the White House?

Somebody did. And Michelle Obama knows who you are.

Talking in a television interview about how her family is adjusting to life in the White House, the first lady said her young daughters Sasha and Malia had been behaving well in the grand house filled with antiques and historic artifacts.

“We’ve had some guests who’ve broken some things but not the kids,” she said with a laugh in the interview on ABC’s “Good Morning America”.  “And they know who they are.”

Obama said her daughters have “done their popping” in to see their dad at work in the Oval Office and have generally adjusted well to their new life in Washington.OBAMA/