President Barack Obama is enjoying his annual holiday break in Oahu, Hawaii, and spending it in a very on-brand way: playing golf, hugging babies and making some parents’ dreams come true.
On Sunday, Obama got to meet a little one named Levi at Mid-Pacific Country Club in Lanikai. HuffPost spoke with Levi’s mom, Krystle Ilar, about the experience by email on Monday, after she put the 2-month-old down for a nap.
Ilar, who was born and raised in Oahu, said she and some friends were at the country club when they got word that Obama was on the 18th hole. They trekked to his location, and after the president finished his round of golf, he walked over to greet onlookers and sign autographs. He also asked to hold and say hi to Levi.
“As I watched him hold my son, my heart overflowed. He was so genuine and so gentle with my son, Levi,” Ilar told HuffPost. In a video of Levi and the president, you can see him say hello and shake little Levi’s hand, while holding him.
“The best part of meeting him was to see how much aloha he had to share,” she added.
Ilar said her family and friends are all “filled with excitement and joy” after seeing the sweet interaction and are just as excited as she is.
“It’s an amazing experience and one that we’ll all cherish for a lifetime!” Ilar said.
Not only will it be a moment that Ilar and those close to her will remember forever, but it will also be something Levi can one day appreciate.
“When Levi gets older, my husband and I will share with him about how he got to be held and loved on by the 44th president,” she shared.
“It’ll be a lesson to him on how no matter who you are in this world, it’s always important to stay true to your heart, remain humble, and always show Aloha to everyone,” she added. “And omg, a former president carried you! WOW!!!”
After the experience, Ilar told HuffPost that she wants to extend a “big mahalo” (thank you) to Obama “for being so genuine and showing so much aloha to not just my son and I, but to everyone else who was there.”
“I’ve never seen a president before and wasn’t sure what to expect, but Mr. Obama exceeded any expectations and meeting him was truly an amazing experience,” she added.
Last week, the president greeted another baby, 3-month-old Riley, while golfing at the Kaneohe Klipper Golf Course at the Marine Corps Base Hawaii. A member of Riley’s family captured the sweet moment on camera, showing Obama walking toward the family and saying, “Who is this cutie pie?”
He later gives Riley a little cuddle and kisses her on the forehead before handing her back to her awestruck parents.
The president’s trip isn’t over yet, so we can likely expect more baby content to come (or at least see him and the family check out his favorite shaved ice spots).