November 28th, 2012
09:09 PM ET
Washington (CNN) – First lady Michelle Obama welcomed the holiday season at the White House Wednesday with a viewing of decorations throughout the house.
She celebrated her fourth Christmas in Washington with military families, including Gold Star and Blue Star parents, spouses and children.
"The very special joining forces tree is covered with hand decorated ornaments made by military children living in U.S. bases around the world," Obama told the group gathered in the East Room.
The first lady said 90,000 individuals will come through the White House during the holiday season to view the extensive preparations.
Fifty-four Christmas trees are located along the visitors route and more than 175 pounds of gingerbread made up the White House Gingerbread House, according to the White House. Each room along the tour was altered to reflect this year's theme, "Joy to All."
"It celebrates the many joys of the holiday seasons: the joy of giving and service to others; the joy of sharing our blessings with one another; and, of course, the joy of welcoming our friends and families as guests into our homes over these next several weeks," Obama said.