Michelle Obama and military mothers had high tea like the British on Thursday.
The afternoon White House affair, hosted by the first lady and Jill Biden, wife of Vice President Joe Biden, was to recognize the women for Mother's Day.
Britain's Prince Harry, who is on a weeklong visit to the U.S. devoted to the wounded victims of war, stopped by to salute them too.
Mrs. Obama thanked the mothers for their persistence.
"You all never complain, never complain, you just keep moving it along, getting it done, and I hope that you know how much this country appreciates you," she said.
She also called her mother, Marian Robinson, "my rock" and thanked her for teaching her patience.
"My mom has taught me most to be a good listener, to be patient, to use common sense," Mrs. Obama said. "She's taught me to be open minded."
Children accompanying their moms slipped into the State Dining Room to gather tulip and rose bouquets, baked vegetable chips and edible dough jewelry to present to their mothers.
The families dined in the East Room on light fare, including smoked salmon sandwiches, vegetable spring wraps, corn madeleines, mini cupcakes, bonbons and chamomile tea.