WASHINGTON – President George W. Bush is spending Christmas at Camp David, the 12th time he and his family have celebrated the Yuletide holiday at the Maryland presidential retreat.
Bush's parents, former President George H.W. Bush and his wife, Barbara, along with the president's siblings and their families also were marking the occasion at Camp David, as were the president's twin daughters, Barbara and Jenna, and Jenna's husband, Henry Hager, the White House said Wednesday.
Bush and his wife, Laura, now have spent a dozen Christmases at Camp David — every year during Bush's eight-year presidency and four times during his father's time in the Oval Office from 1989-93.
Their Christmas Day menu is traditional: roast turkey with cornbread dressing, green beans, sweet potatoes and mashed potatoes with giblet gravy, spinach salad, cranberry sauce, rolls, and pumpkin pie and pecan pie for dessert.
Bush spent part of Christmas Eve morning phoning U.S. troops stationed around the world. The president called nine members of the armed forces to wish them a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, and to thank them for their service, White House press secretary Dana Perino said.
Perino said the president asked each one to pass holiday wishes from him and Mrs. Bush to other troops serving with them. He thanked the members for their "continued sacrifices that they are making in serving our country overseas, and away from family." He especially congratulated Spc. Marcus T. Brown, now stationed in Baghdad, for being awarded the Bronze Star during combat operations in Iraq.