Michelle Obama on sheltering at home: We’re just trying to keep a routine

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Ellen DeGeneres is spending the duration of California’s shelter-in-place order at her home in Santa Barbara with Portia, Portia’s family, and her mom. She’s been passing the time having Portia take video of her while she calls some of her famous friends (and also works on a LEGO model of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum). Ellen has chatted with celebs including Jennifer Aniston, James Corden, and Kevin Hart. In the latest video, she talked with a former first lady whom I desperately miss having in the White House, Michelle Obama. Ellen asked Michelle how she, President Obama, Malia, and Sasha were keeping busy. Michelle said, “We’re just trying to, ya know, just keep a routine going. But we also got a little Netflix and chilling happening.” Here’s more of their conversation:

[Ellen said], “It’s an interesting time and you know, a time for all of us to reflect on what’s important and try to be creative.”

Michelle agreed, taking note that “this is like no other time in history — particularly for our kids who are so used to being occupied and stimulated all of the time.”

“I feel for all the folks who are going to suffer because of what’s going to happen to the economy and we have to be mindful about what we’re going to do to support those folks when this quarantine are over and people are looking at what’s left of their businesses and their lives,” she said. “And that is a negative but on the positive side, I know for us, it’s forced us to continue to sit down with each other, have real conversations, really ask questions and figure out how to keep ourselves occupied without just TV or computers.”

She added that the quarantine is “a good exercise in reminding us that we just don’t need a lot of the stuff that we have.”

“When times are bad, having each other, having your health, we can do with a lot less. And I think that’s an important lesson I want my kids to understand as they get out there in the world. Be grateful for what you have and be ready to share it when the time comes.”

[From People]

Ellen also told Michelle that she was almost ready to challenge Michelle to do a plank. Michelle jokingly told Ellen that she was “gonna let you sit on that, because you always seem pretty overly confident in your ability to best me in these physical matches.” Portia said that Ellen has been working out lately. Ellen said that they could do it for charity and people could bet on whom they think will win.

I have really missed Michelle and Barack’s pragmatism and their calm demeanor in the face of uncertainty, fear, and chaos. Michelle told Ellen at the start of their conversation that she had just gotten off a conference call and that she didn’t know where Barack was, but that he had also been on a conference call. I have no idea what those calls were about, but if nothing else, I am sure that they were thoughtful conversations about moving ahead with some project. They weren’t incoherent rantings of someone with a bruised ego who is ignoring advice from medical experts about when shutdowns should be ended and businesses should reopen. I’d love for the living former presidents and first ladies to come together on some sort of initiative to help fight the spread of this virus. I was telling a friend yesterday that the current awful situation is exacerbated because we have a gigantic man-baby in the Oval Office, and most of the country doesn’t feel like we have a thoughtful leader who is trying to do their best to help the country navigate this crisis. The former presidents no longer have the authority of that office, but I think, if nothing else, they could do a world of good by boosting morale and giving people something useful to focus on, and by offering, where possible, realistic hope.

Here’s that video!

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Photos credit: Getty

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28 Responses to “Michelle Obama on sheltering at home: We’re just trying to keep a routine”

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  1. What a wonderful post Quimby. Like you, I miss the calm steady voice and pragmatism of both the Obamas. I’m glad they are staying positive and are together as a family. Team Obama always. 💪🏾

  2. Joanna says:

    Obama has such a calming effect. You listen to him and you feel calm and like he will handle any problem. I love listening to him speak, he is an excellent speaker. Miss him so much

    • Mac says:

      Everyday I imagine what it would be like if Obama was stepping up to the mic instead of the orange buffoon.

  3. Insomniac says:

    My money is on Michelle in a planking contest.

    • Esmom says:

      Absolutely! Lol.

      I look at the Obamas’ faces and read their words and their warmth and intelligence just washes over me. It’s crazy to think about how much hate their existence stirred up…our country and much of humanity is just so very broken.

  4. Mina_Esq says:

    Mrs. Obama is such a wonderful, caring, articulate woman. I wonder if she low key thinks Ellen is an as*hole.

    • Esmom says:

      She might but she is way too gracious and aware of how their combined platforms can reach so many people that I’m sure she’d never let on.

    • Mac says:

      I think she naturally sees the good in people.

  5. Yoyo says:

    A guy on a Twitter was raising money for the Food Bank, by asking people to tweet their run ins with Ellen being mean to them.
    It is claimed behind the scenes, Ellen is not sugar and spice.

    • whatWHAT? says:

      After hearing from SO MANY folks on here about how Ellen isn’t as nice as she seems, I did some reading, including that Twitter thread.

      she is NOT NICE. stopped following her on both Facebook and Insta.

    • Mumbles says:

      Yeah, going forward, if I were a decent person, like I think the Obamas are, I would maintain my distance from a person like Ellen, so at the very least you weren’t contributing to this phony myth that she is creating. Those stories were horrible.

      • WriterMarie says:

        I feel like Ellen could be the Harvey Weinstein of the female celebrities. Not with the raping aspect (I’d hope not anyways), but with the power trip. Eventually she will have her day, one by one people will start to see how truly nasty of a person she is. Karma is a B**ch so Ellen will have it coming to her.

    • lucy2 says:

      I read that too. People have been talking about her for years, but seeing it all out there like that was pretty amazing.
      I’m guessing she’s super nice to celebrities, so they probably don’t see it. But everyone else around her, ugh, must be miserable.

      • whatWHAT? says:

        “I’m guessing she’s super nice to celebrities, so they probably don’t see it.”

        and as the saying goes, “a person who is nice to you but mean to the waiter (or salesperson, or janitor) is not a nice person”.

      • Mumbles says:

        …and that’s what a lot of stories were about. Waiters who were abused because Ellen didn’t like their nail polish or who had accidentally brought her the wrong meal. She’s garbage. Good people should back away from her. She’s using nice people like the Obamas to create and perpetuate a lie.

    • SomeChick says:

      Even if it isn’t all true, I’ve always thought her jumping out and scaring people (and then laughing at them) shows a mean streak.

      Ellen is a pioneer. She has been a huge asset to the LGBTQ+ community. The “puppy episode” took guts.

      Maybe Portia is right and it’s just time to retire. Surely she can afford all of the white sneakers she will ever need.

      I bet you she didn’t jump out at MObama!

  6. MellyMel says:

    I miss them so much, especially now!

  7. BUBS says:

    Love, love, love Michelle Obama. That woman is as steady as a rock!!!

  8. Busyann says:

    I miss the Obama’s so much. Does anyone remember the meme that came out just after cheeto was sworn in? The one where the woman is going full rambo and holding a weapon and is scared, meanwhile obama is blissed out on a boat vacationing? I feel like I’ve aged 15 years during the past 2 months.


    She mentioned TVs and computers – can you imagine what would happen if no one had internet right now? I think learning social distance is excellent for the greater good and also personal development (I’m an extrovert and this has been rough) but I think the vast majority of people aren’t reading but are binging TV. There’s nothing wrong with that, but I think we’re hyper-reliant on it.

  10. Tiffany says:

    So this is another confirmation that Barry and Joe have been discussing VP choices, right???


    • Busyann says:

      Yep! I heard Joe told Georgia voters he needs someone that could be president at any moment given his age. My guess is Stacey Abrams is out, but a short list would include Kamala, Klobuchar or the governor of Michigan…what’s her name? Gretchen Whitmer.

  11. Meg says:

    Doesn’t Netflix and chill mean Netflix and sex or am i wrong? Lol

  12. WriterMarie says:

    I loved Michelle’s instagram post the other day (03/22), “A few ways to show up for your Community in these Tough Times”. She lists 9 different things to do for others in this crazy time. She is really a special lady. Miss having her and Barack in office 🙁

  13. adastraperaspera says:

    Lovely, sane conversation.

  14. Kathy Kack says:

    I LOVE Obama but I am quite disappointed I bim for not being more vocal about Covid19 but just in general. He needs to confront trump and this administration’s antics.

    • Angie says:

      Why is that his job? Hasn’t he done enough for those 8 years? Don’t you think it would just devolve into trump piling on him? Haven’t you seen trump blame Obama for the pandemic in like every “press conference” he gives? Why do people think black people owe them always? What is George W Bush’s role in this? How about Clinton??

    • BeanieBean says:

      I think as much as they may want to, former presidents specifically don’t do that because it would be harmful to our democracy over all.