WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama's mother-in-law lived her entire life in Chicago, so it was only natural that her move to the White House came with some resistance. Try it for three months, her son-in-law says the family suggested.
A year later, it seems Marian Robinson is here to stay.
She spends a lot of time looking after granddaughters Malia, 11, and Sasha, 8, but has been carving out a new life for herself, too. In the words of the president, she's become ''quite the lady about town.''
The widowed Mrs. Robinson has made friends and has had friends over to the White House. She goes shopping on her own, enjoys visits to the Kennedy Center and takes Malia and Sasha to and from school just about every day -- all while enjoying a level of anonymity that has Obama and her own daughter, first lady Michelle Obama, feeling both pleased and a bit envious at the same time.
''She's quite the lady about town,'' Obama said. ''But the nice thing is that she just walks out the gate and goes.''
Mrs. Robinson has given few interviews since moving to the White House. But she has made it clear that she was cool to the idea of moving and that she only did so reluctantly. She left several siblings behind in Chicago.
''They're dragging me with them, and I'm not comfortable with that,'' Mrs. Robinson, 72, told CBS' ''Sunday Morning'' last year. ''But I'm doing exactly what you do: You do what needs to be done.''
Mrs. Obama recently said her mother seems content in her new home.
''She wasn't completely kicking and screaming, but it was clear that her preference would be to remain in her old life, and that this new White House, all this stuff, she could just hear about,'' the first lady said.
''So I'm happy that she's really settled in and feels like this is home for her, as well,'' Mrs. Obama said.