Every year Pete Souza, Chief White House photographer, goes through the thousands of pictures he and other White House photographers have snapped on the job, and selects his favorites. Then, he shares them with us all.
"Yes, there are some historic moments included but mostly I was looking for behind-the-scenes moments that give people a more personal look at the President and First Lady.
"And I’ve included a few that I thought were just cool photos," Souza wrote on Medium.
"I hope you enjoy this final Year in Photographs of the Obama administration. It’s been the honor of a lifetime to be a witness to history these past eight years."
The pictures range from President Barack Obama prepping for meetings, attending global summits and golfing with staff, to Joe Biden chasing children around with a Super Soaker. There are also plenty of Michelle Obama, and the Obama's two teen daughters Malia and Sasha.
There are too many to choose one favorite. So we chose…17.
The Commander-in-Chief bracket:
Barack and Michelle Obama hosted numerous state dinners over the years, like this one in March in honor of Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
Reason for official Top 17 selection: Those incredible ball gowns, plus bonus Trudeau in background.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Obama have a strong bond, she being one of the few world leaders who has been around for the whole of his presidency.
Reason for official Top 17 selection: The look of pure joy on Merkel's face proves world leaders just want to have fun, too.
This year has not been a great one for U.S.—Russia relations, and this picture of Russian President Vladimir Putin bending the President's ear is fascinating because I really want to know what they're talking about.
Reason for official Top 17 selection: The endless caption comp opportunities.
Putin: "Barack, what was your mother's maiden name?"
Obama: "Really, Vlad—it's public record, so…not my iTunes security question."
Putin: "Ok, yes…What did you say was the first street you lived on?"
Obama: "No, Vlad."
The day after the presidential election, Obama gathered the communications staff in the Oval Office to discuss how to talk about the result.
Reason for official Top 17 selection: This is a leader, with a staff who need reassurance—and it looks like they're getting it.
This picture could have been very different. It could have been the first black president of the United States chatting with the first female president-elect of the United States. It isn't.
Reason for official Top 17 selection: I really feel the President is showing a lot of restraint. For this reason alone, he gets points. Plus you know, history.
The goofing-off bracket:
One of the best things about the past eight years has been watching the genuine fun the Obamas inject into their day-to-day. These pictures are just the tip of a very fun iceberg.
Like this one, of Michelle Obama and Ellen…shopping?
Reason for official Top 17 selection: Michelle Obama is pushing Ellen DeGeneres around in a trolley at CVS. Do you need more? Do you?
Ever wonder who invented fun? It was Joe Biden with the Super Soaker on the lawn.
Reason for official Top 17 selection: Joe Biden. Oh sorry, did you need more? Joe Biden with a Super Soaker chasing kids around. The prosecution rests, Your Honor.
Barack Obama has moves. He can dance, and he likes to dance. Sometimes, he likes to dance with his staff in the middle of the afternoon. I am on board.
Reason for official Top 17 selection: The President of the United States gave his staffer dance lessons for her wedding. NO. YOU'RE CRYING.
Put the lime in the coconut and try not to spill it all over your shirt, you're the President of the United States for goodness' sakes.
Reason for official Top 17 selection: Sunglasses, coconut, Obama.
If you are the President of the United States and you like playing basketball, why not invite George Clooney to play with you. Michelle and Amal can finally get some real work done without those guys hassling them.
Reason for official Top 17 selection: If you can't tell why I picked this picture, I am sorry. I cannot help you.
The Boss met the Big Boss, and it is really hard to tell which one is the bigger fan.
Reason for official Top 17 selection: Because I like to imagine that sometimes Biden and Obama prank call Trump in the middle of the night, and when he answers it's just 'Born in the USA' playing.
The children-doing-adorable-things bracket:
How could this not be a category? Obama's love of goofing off with kids is well-documented, and these pictures show the love is mutual.
Like this one of Superman and the President, consulting on important world-saving things, I assume.
Reason for official Top 17 selection: Do you have a heart?
Michelle Obama is not about to let Barack have all the fun, mind you.
Reason for official Top 17 selection: FOMO.
One of the legacies of the Obama years will be the example Obama set as a role model, for Black children who aspire to be the President one day, or just even all the children who aspire to be tall.
Reason for official Top 17 selection: This kid probably doesn't even know who Obama is, but he is mesmerized and it is adorable. Also there is some serious craft at work in this picture—the anticipation of the shot, getting it, and that perfect framing—just gorgeous.
Sometimes kids will decide it's time for them to be in charge. So they will simply step into the Vice Presidency without being asked. Or you know, climb into the Vice President's chair, because toddlers don't respect people calling dibs on chairs.
Reason for official Top 17 selection: Everything. The composition, the moment between them, the look on her teeny tiny face.
Children can care passionately about issues, and it's refreshing when adults respect that and take them seriously. Obama was so impressed by this New York boy, he invited him to the White House.
Reason for official Top 17 selection: Respecting the opinions and passions of children who can't vote for you is a sign you are a thoughtful and classy person.
The Dad-in-Chief bracket:
I just have one more to add to this curation of a curation. This adorable photo of Malia and Barack Obama, talking to a chef in Cuba. The Obama years have been filled with gorgeous family moments, and this is just one more.
Reason for official Top 17 selection: In the caption, Souza says Obama tells him he loves every photo with one or both of his daughters in it. Which is just peak dad and makes my heart burst.
You can see every single one of Souza's year in review pictures right here.