Iowa Artist Chosen for White House Christmas Card - ABC5 News Des Moines, IA

Iowa Artist Chosen for White House Christmas Card

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By Lisa Martone

DES MOINES-- Out of many choices, First Lady Michelle Obama picked an Iowa artist's painting to be on the front of their White House Christmas card.

"My husband and I, we have been pondering, what do you wear to this?...What should we expect? Who is going to be there?" asked Larassa Kabel, a Des Moines artist.

Valid questions for a couple who is off to the White House. Larassa Kabel and her husband Chris Snethen have been invited for a Christmas party, An event she never thought she would ever attend.

"My mom was telling people at the grocery store that she doesn't even know," Kabel said. "She is having a great time."

A mom's bragging... well deserved. Larassa's rendition of Bo, the Obama's dog, prancing on the front lawn of the White House will be on the cover of their Christmas card.

"All the sudden I get this phone call while I'm fixing dinner and it is the social secretary letting me know that Michele Obama has picked my art work…and I was like 'Well, that's amazing' and laughed!" Kabel said. Then I was like, 'Well do I get a card?' He was like, 'Yes, yes you definitely get a card.'"

Her stroke of luck was fostered by Iowa's political connections. A Des Moines business' woman's daughter who works with the social secretary's office told Larassa about the contest. She submitted her work and after months of waiting she was chosen. It's a reality that still, months later, is hard to grasp.

"I never thought about the White House sending out a card before doing this," she said. "Then I was like, 'Oh my goodness, it is going out all over the world.'"

Larassa is hoping the queen of England gets a glimpse of the card.

"She's a dog lover!" she said.

Her artwork is on display at the White House, and if you want to see some of her other work locally, you can visit Moberg Gallery on Ingersoll Avenue in Des Moines.

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