WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama celebrated Thanksgiving quietly at the White House with his family, friends and some White House staff members after phoning 10 members of the U.S. armed services in Afghanistan.

Obama, as has been his practice during previous holidays, reached out to service members from the Army, Air Force, Marine Corps and Navy.

"The president thanked each of them for their service and sacrifice and wished them and their families a happy Thanksgiving," the White House said.

The president was joining first lady Michelle Obama and their daughters, Sasha and Malia, later Thursday for dinner, where they were to be joined by White House staff members and guests.

The Thanksgiving dinner menu included ham, oyster stuffing and macaroni and cheese along with the traditional turkey, sweet potatoes and green bean casserole. For those with a sweet tooth, half a dozen pies, including Huckleberry, were readied.

In his weekly radio and Internet address, released in connection with the holiday, Obama urged Americans to put aside partisan differences and come together as a nation.

He said the country has "just emerged from a campaign season that was passionate, noisy and vital to our democracy."

While the election required voters to make choices, Obama said that Thanksgiving offered "a chance to put it all in perspective — to remember that, despite our differences, we are and always will be Americans first and foremost."

In the Republican Party address, Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers of Washington state said the GOP is ready to work with Obama to avert impending tax increases, big spending cuts and other problems at year's end.

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  • US-POLITICS-TURKEY-PARDON

    US President Barack Obama (2nd L) gestures with his daughters Sasha (2nd R) and Malia (R) in the Rose Garden of the White House during the annual Thanksgiving turkey pardon November 21, 2012 in Washington, DC, as National Turkey Federation Chairman Steve Willardsen holds Cobbler. Obama pardoned turkeys Cobbler and Gobbler, both raised in Rockingham County, Virginia. The turkeys will then spend the rest of the holiday season on display at George Washington's Mount Vernon estate. The turkeys were raised by Craig and Nancy Miller in Rockingham County, Virginia. AFP Photo/Jim WATSON (Photo credit should read JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)

  • US-POLITICS-TURKEY-PARDON-OBAMA

    US President Barack Obama and daughters Malia and Sasha (R) arrive for the annual Thanksgiving turkey pardon November 21 , 2012 on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, DC. Obama pardoned Cobbler and its alternate Gobbler, both raised in Rockingham County, Virginia. The turkeys will then spend the rest of the holiday season on display at George Washington's Mount Vernon estate. AFP PHOTO/Mandel NGAN (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)

  • US-POLITICS-TURKEY-PARDON

    US President Barack Obama (2nd L) pets Cobbler with his daughters Sasha (2nd R) and Malia (R) in the Rose Garden of the White House during the annual Thanksgiving turkey pardon November 21, 2012 in Washington, DC, with National Turkey Federation Chairman Steve Willardsen (L). Obama pardoned turkeys Cobbler and Gobbler, both raised in Rockingham County, Virginia. The turkeys will then spend the rest of the holiday season on display at George Washington's Mount Vernon estate. The turkeys were raised by Craig and Nancy Miller in Rockingham County, Virginia. AFP Photo/Jim WATSON (Photo credit should read JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)

  • US-POLITICS-TURKEY-PARDON-OBAMA

    Sasha Obama (2nd R) pets Cobbler as US President Barack Obama (2nd L), her sister Malia (R) and National Turkey Federation Chairman Steve Willardsen (L) look on during the annual Thanksgiving turkey pardon November 21 , 2012 at the White House in Washington, DC. Obama pardoned Cobbler and its alternate Gobbler, both raised in Rockingham County, Virginia. The turkey will then spend the rest of the holiday season on display at George Washington's Mount Vernon estate. AFP PHOTO/Mandel NGAN (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)

  • US-POLITICS-TURKEY-PARDON-OBAMA

    US President Barack Obama gestures during the annual Thanksgiving turkey pardon while National Turkey Federation Chairman Steve Willardsen holds 'Cobbler' on November 21 , 2012 at the White House in Washington, DC. Obama pardoned Cobbler and its alternate Gobbler, both raised in Rockingham County, Virginia. The turkey will then spend the rest of the holiday season on display at George Washington's Mount Vernon estate. AFP PHOTO/Mandel NGAN (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)

  • US-POLITICS-TURKEY-PARDON-OBAMA

    US President Barack Obama with his daughters Sasha (2nd R) and Malia (R) take part in the annual Thanksgiving turkey pardon as on National Turkey Federation Chairman Steve Willardsen (L) watches November 21 , 2012 at the White House in Washington, DC. Obama pardoned Cobbler and Gobbler, both raised in Rockingham County, Virginia. The turkey will then spend the rest of the holiday season on display at George Washington's Mount Vernon estate. AFP PHOTO/Mandel NGAN (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)

  • US-POLITICS-TURKEY-PARDON-OBAMA

    US President Barack Obama laughs with his daughter Malia who avoided petting turkey Cobbler as National Turkey Federation Chairman Steve Willardsen (2nd L) and daugher Sasha look on during the annual Thanksgiving turkey pardon November 21 , 2012 at the White House in Washington, DC. Obama pardoned Cobbler and its alternate Gobbler, both raised in Rockingham County, Virginia. The turkey will then spend the rest of the holiday season on display at George Washington's Mount Vernon estate. AFP PHOTO/Mandel NGAN (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)