Kate Middleton in blue for Emma Bridgewater Factory and Action for Children

Kate Middleton in blue for Emma Bridgewater Factory and Action for Children

Yesterday, February 18, Kate Middleton undertook two engagements, in Stoke-on-Trent and Smethwick. Kate visited the Emma Bridgewater factory and Action for Children.

Kate visited the Emma Bridgewater factory in Stoke-on-Trent in support of the collaboration between Emma Bridgewater and East Anglia Children’s Hospices (Kate’s patronage). Emma Bridgewater designed two mugs (“Insects & Flowers” and “Ladybirds”, which a royal aide insists Kate helped with, saying: “It was the Duchess’s idea to approach Emma, whom she didn’t know previously, and she helped in the design process.”), $5 of each sale will go toward EACH’s Nook appeal (which Kate launched back in November 2014). Kate toured the factory and saw how the pottery is made and decorated by hand – and even participated in making a plate and decorating pottery.

Kate viewing Emma Bridgewater charity mugs

Kate tries plate making small

Kate painting dishes 2 small

There was a ceramics painting workshop with children from a local children’s hospice.

Kate joins ceramics painting workshop 3

Kate unveiled a plaque to commemorate the visit – she didn’t say anything before unveiling the plaque, sadly.

Kate Emma Bridgewater plaque small

The Emma Bridgewater crew made a really cute arch to welcome Kate to their factory.

Kate Emma Bridgewater welcome arch

Kate ended up going home with a bag of goodies.

The EACH mugs (available for pre-order here):

Emma Bridgewater EACH mugs set of two

After viewing the factory, Kate took a helicopter ride to Smethwick to visit Action for Children’s Cape Hill Children’s Centre to learn about Action for Children’s work supporting vulnerable children and families. Kate toured the facility before doing the requisite meet and greet with the kids and parents, this time under the guise of an “arts and crafts” session. Then Kate participated in a sing-a-long where she mentioned Prince George AGAIN, saying “I should have brought George. He would have loved this… I can’t imagine George would have been so good.” We get it, Kate, George is a handful. Enough already.

Kate touring Action for Children

Kate talking to parents and kids at Action for Children 2

Kate receiving flowers at Action for Children

The Express has a story about how Kate was “moved to tears” when listening to one mother’s story at Action for Children:

    Michelle Griffiths, 33, from Smethwick, told Kate how she has “died” six times and then been brought back from the dead after suffering heart attacks. Her daughter, Chloe, 13, is her main carer and her son, Alfie, 4, has had to be taught to call 999 if she suffers a heart attack.
    “I was telling her that sometimes I feel like I have stolen my daughter’s childhood but she doesn’t see it like that,” Michelle said.
    “You’ve brought a tear to my eye,” said Kate.
    “She got choked up and I had to give her a tissue,” said Michelle.

Did anyone else get intensely pissed off at this? A 13 year old should NOT be forced to be a carer for their parent, let alone the MAIN carer. Yes, Michelle Griffiths, you HAVE stolen your daughter’s childhood, and you continue to steal it every day you force your child to be your caregiver. Parents should care for their underage children, not the other way around. Hire a nurse, girl, and let your children be children. Okay, rant over… let’s go to the fashion.

Kate went with Max Mara again for today’s visit, this time choosing a blue coat supposedly from Max Mara Sportmax FW14 collection, the Gerbera. Sportmax confirmed on Twitter that Kate was wearing one of their coats, but Kate’s coat and the photo on their website seem different. The color is different and the lapels seem different to me. Maybe Kate’s was a bespoke version or something. Price unknown, but WhatKateWore is reporting the original price was $2,490. If Kate’s was bespoke, it would have cost even more than that.

Kate recycled her Seraphine Maternity “Florrie Floral Print Dress”, Jimmy Choo “Georgia” navy pumps, LK Bennett “Frome” navy clutch, Cartier watch, and “Diana” earrings. Kate wore her hair in a half updo, which I thought looked good on her.

Not going to lie, I really like this coat. But I wish she’d have gone with the darker color the product is shown in on the website. I’m bored of this color blue she constantly chooses. She looks much better in darker, royal blues. But overall, this was a fashion win for Kate. Nice coat, maternity dress, hair out of her face. Good job, Kate.

Max Mara Sportmax Gerbera FW14 collection Seraphine Florrie Floral Print Dress

LK Bennett Frome Suede Clutch Bag Jimmy Choo Georgia Navy Suede Round Toe Pumps

Bump-y photo.

Kate's baby bump 1

Here’s a look at what the photographers do when Kate is sitting at a table and chatting to people. It must be awful to be one of the people the photographers push out of the way so they can get a photo of Kate.

Photographers crowd Kate while talking to kids

Why does Kate touch her butt like this? I’ve noticed she’s done it at a number of engagements. It’s like she’s doing a sweep of her butt to check for… something.  This photo is obviously mid-motion.  Has anyone else noticed that she does this?

Kate touches her butt as she leaves

Oh, Kate’s coat blew up a bit in the back. Sigh.  At least we didn’t see anything.

Here’s a video:

Another video:

Links: Express. Daily Mail.

Photos: Kensington Palace Instagram/Kensington Palace Twitter/Action for Children Twitter (@actnforchildren)/Sophie Jamieson Twitter (@sophiejam)/Getty

176 thoughts on “Kate Middleton in blue for Emma Bridgewater Factory and Action for Children

    1. Haha True. Especially true considering how they refuse to bring him out in public and we’ve barely seen him at all since he was born.

  1. I do that butt wipe thing when my underwear feels like it’s moving up or something. Or when I’m wearing a dress and it feels like it’s floating up.

    Kudos Kate for being busy!!

    1. What is strange, once again, is that she didn’t move to smooth down her coat or skirt when the wind lifted it. As if she doesn’t care if she’s flashing.


      She is supposed to have enough etiquette training that she doesn’t grab her crotch or ass crack during an engagement. If her maternity thong is uncomfortable, she can go commando as per usual.

        1. Are you looking at the same pictures I am? Lifted flaps and the skirt above mid-thigh. Anytime the skirt goes up because KM doesn’t weight her hems is a ding in my book.

    2. Ah. I don’t wear dresses all that often, so I don’t know if I’ve ever done that without thinking about it. Maybe.

  2. Yeah he daughter taking care of the parent is not right. Teaching them do dial emergency is one thing, but that’s way too much pressure on a child. Sad thing is I could see George being leaned on to take care of Kate if something happened.

    I don’t know about the coat, just something about it that I’m not caring for. Maybe it seems big to me. The dress was nice and it’s a repeat so that was good and I’ll give her credit for having her hair out of the way. I think it was because she was taking the helicopter.

    And I think the actual happiest she looked on the pottery visit was when she was leaving with a shopping bag. Also, I can’t see paying $69.95 for 2 mugs when only $10 goes to the charity. I realize there are costs associated, but that’s not good.

    1. Hi Lisa, as someone who had no childhood because I was taking care of a severely alcoholic mother I can testify how much it sucks, but I can also say that I am tough, and understand work like todays kids don’t. What would be helpful is if society would embrace and respect kids like I was. Her daughter’s probably going to get treated like I did-awkward because people feel like they should have done something and didn’t and judgmental because if your parent is broken you might be too. And we wonder why so many kids give into the vicious cycle. Without support or faith, there’s nothing.

      1. Sugar, I’m sorry if what I said came off wrong to you. I do think it’s a lot of pressure to put on a child and I’ll stand by that. It’s also wrong for society to judge children based on their parents. I do know what that is like.

        Unfortunately, there is a lot we don’t know about this story. We’ve read that the mother said the daughter saved her life on multiple occasions, but I’d like to know what is being done for the daughter and son to alleviate some of that pressure and give them kid time. That’s the side we didn’t hear. Does Action for Children do things to give them that much needed down time to just be kids? Are there other family members involved? If social services there is anything like the US, there is a backlog and a lot of overloaded social workers who do the best they can given the circumstances, but unfortunately, not everyone gets the attention and/or help they should.

        I’m not trying to start a war or anything, I was just expressing how I felt, as you did you. That’s the wonderful thing about this blog, we can speak about how we feel. Not trying to step on any toes, that’s just how I feel about the situation.

        1. You’re fine and no toes stepped on. I feel for her daughter, I just wanted to point out that bad things happen and people can learn, like I did, to rise above it. The part that angers me is when people are selfish- it’s like people have to be better than each other no matter what, and this little girl should be treated with a great deal of respect for holding her family together. I hope Action is helping her and giving her at least an adult mentor, even a resource she can call is helpful. I agree with you that I like the way we can all assert strong points here.

      2. I have nothing but compassion for children of alcoholic parents, as I know first hand how much they can suffer.

        This is hard for me to admit, even over the internet, but I was forced to take care of my mother, who was an alcoholic (still is), and I know what it’s like to have to call 911 in the middle of the night, to have to sit in a waiting room in the middle of the night while she has surgery, because she got drunk, fell and broke something. I know what it’s like to have to clean up blood because she got drunk and fell and cracked her head on a piece of furniture. I know what it’s like to basically give up having my own life in order to be her nurse, maid, driver, cook, etc. And all I got for my troubles was emotional abuse. Emotional abuse that was part of the reason for my severe depression.

        I am overly sensitive to this subject; I knew that when I wrote my response. Having calmed down, I can see that it does seem my experience is different from Chloe’s. Michelle Griffiths at least acknowledges she sometimes thinks she’s stealing her daughter’s childhood… my mother never even said thank you.

        I am sorry if I offended you, or any of the people who read this blog; that was never my intent. Maybe once I’ve really worked through all of my problems this subject won’t be so sore for me.

        1. You haven’t offended me, and I don’t think anyone who reads this blog. I think it’s very brave of you to share, and that I’m extending a No BS hug from the No BS club, because there’s a very private pain that goes with having to deal with this. I save my rage for people in glass houses who think they’re cute picking on or judging someone who has to live with this. God help some stupid girl who picks on Chloe for wearing ugly clothes (Mom drank the $!– in her case, Mom’s med bills took the $ and Goodwill is the best you can do). I know you’re younger than I am KMR, and that you’re talking about, providing a No BS blog, and being real in general instead of pretending that “it’s all ok” is great. That was the hardest thing for me. I had to learn that it was ok for me to share with others but I was taught to deal, and take the abuse, in silence. My mother died three years ago and never got healthy. She threw away my college opportunity and tried to hurt me in other ways. When she was drunk, she was mean. When she was sober, she was brilliant and funny and broken. The more I learn about a clean diet, I wonder if it would have helped; maybe, maybe not. But for all of us, we did our best and it is not our fault. You’ve walked through fire. It just means that you can do amazing things.

          1. When my mother is drunk, she’s mean; when she’s not drunk, she’s also mean. With regards to taking the abuse and suffering in silence, it’s hard with emotional and mental abuse. The abuser is manipulative, and abuses you but makes you think the abuse is your fault; that you deserve it, that you caused it. But she’s great with everyone else. She knows how to manipulate them into thinking she’s such a great person, but with just enough problems to draw sympathy (she hides the alcoholism of course, but the physical problems she has now due to the alcoholism she uses to draw sympathy from others). To use an example to illustrate my point: it’s like the kid who is alone in a room with another kid, hits that kid, then runs out of the room and starts talking to an adult; when the kid who was hit comes out and confronts the kid who hit him, that kid looks to the adults like he is unfairly attacking kid A, and kid A draws sympathy and kid B gets punished. My mother was (is) excellent at that type of thing. Whenever I disrespected (ie. didn’t jump to attention the second she asked for something – because I was eating or something) her in front of her friends or colleagues, it looked like I was the bad guy even though she was the abuser.

            I hope Chloe’s situation is different, and that she gets the proper support she needs and deserves. I wouldn’t wish this type of thing on any child.

          2. I always have some trouble when I read stories like yours KMR, because I could have been your mother. Thank heavens I’m not. Apparently the denial part of the conditition didn’t work too well in my case, because I’ve been sober for years, and don’t miss it. Can’t even imagine drinking actually. But I know someone who’s mother was so addicted, she chose foster care over going back home. Her mother’s never forgiven her either and, yes, she’s still drinking and doing drugs. And the daughter is walking down the same path; or was. I haven’t talked to her for a few months. I tried to help her by calling her on what she was doing, but she didn’t listen. She was drinking at work and I caught her. I told her I wouldn’t turn her in if she stopped. She could not, or would not, see the parallels and distanced herself because she knew I knew all the excuses. She’s not working right now, and I hope she’s doing OK. I give you all the props in the world for moving on with your own life.

          3. I’m really glad you were able to overcome that addiction, bluhare. I’m sure it’s not easy. From what I understand, there are psychological reasons behind addiction and those must be addressed in order to overcome the addiction. One has to be open to addressing those issues, and really want it, in order to overcome it. I truly commend those who are willing to address those issues and overcome their addiction, because my mother was, and still is, not willing to do so. Hugs. I hope that woman you mentioned can overcome her demons.

          4. I don’t think she has, KMR. This is really sad for me too. She actually reacted very well when I confronted her about the drinking. Much better that I would have I think. Told me all the right things, and she talked about her mother a lot. Then she forgot some things when she left and dumped out her water bottle. Yup, vodka. I just hope she does something before she has children.

          5. I’m surprised she reacted well when you confronted her. The only experience I have with confronting someone about their alcohol problem is with my mother, and that never ended well. In fact, it just made it worse for me, so I stopped trying.

        2. KMR,

          It is very brave of you to share this. I know this is very hard to talk about because I’ve been there myself. Taking care of my mother – shopping, cooking, cleaning, picking her up from the floor and sometimes cleaning up her shit when she couldn’t hold her bowls. She’s not a druk but a paranoid schizofrenic and emotional abuse comes with the territory and me and my sister was definitely raise never to talk about this. However, I found when I started talking about it that a lot of people were wonderfully compassionate and that many had similar horror stories.

          You’re not alone – and I hope that you have a support system because I know from experience how hard it is to grow up with stuff like this when you family and the social services don’t give a shit.

          1. Hi Art Historian,
            I hope you know that you are cared about, and I am so glad you fought through. My mom was like that too, broken and abusive and terrifying me into silence. It’s like being the passenger in a car driven by a lunatic. I really got what KMR shared about cleaning up the blood and waiting in hospitals- my mother was always in drunken brawls with my stepfather- he almost killed her once and I saved her– I was eight. She left him when I was ten and I spent the next six years paying bills, shopping and caring for my brother while she completely melted down. She went to jail for child abuse when I was sixteen and I was on my own. I was raised with faith and that saved me. Without it, I probably would be a broken, angry person. I think it always infuriated my mother that I wasn’t a mess she could control. The best revenge is living well.

          2. It is very hard to open up. One of the main problems with dealing with depression and abuse is thinking you’re alone and that no one understands, and that if you do open up people will judge you harshly. I thank all of you for being kind, and for sharing your own stories. I would never wish this sort of thing on anyone, but it does help to know I’m not alone. I’m so glad you all were/are able to deal with your past experiences; it’s inspiring.

          3. Sugar,

            “It’s like being the passenger in a car driven by a lunatic.”
            – that is such an apt metaphor. When you grow up in a home with substance abuse or mental illness, your whole experience of the world become warped.

            Extreme and insane circumstances become an odd sort of “normality” and that can be difficult for outsiders to understand and to communicate to people who have never been in a similar situation. That’s why support groups are so important – thankfully, they have become more normal and numerous.

            When I grew up, my mother attempted suicide several times – once directly after a fight with me. Despite her being a patient with a severe diagnosis and a mother of young children, the hospital simply pumped her stomach and sent her home. My father was actually scolded by her doctors when he contacted them because he was worried about her. She would sometimes leave the house and disappear and we had to have the police out looking for her. It was aliving hell – still is, but I have distanced myself. It is the only way to keep my sanity.

            Things have really changed in the last 10 years in that the family of the patient isn’t ignored and special attention is given to children of mentally ill parents now.

          4. I don’t know if you’ve ever seen the show Arrow, but in season two there was a quote about going through a crucible, and instead of coming out stronger or dying, the person in the crucible gets used to their crucible and stays because that becomes all they know. I think it’s an apt quote. When you’re in that abusive situation for too long, it becomes all you know, and it becomes even harder to break free of it.

            I’m so glad the welfare of the family is being taken into consideration now, especially the children. Whenever you hear about alcoholics, it’s always about their struggles and how they need help to overcome their problems, but you never hear about how much the alcoholic’s alcoholism affects their immediate family. When a parent suffers from addiction or mental illness, yes it is hard for them, but it is equally if not more hard on their children.

  3. Yes i noticed that she touches her butt many times even before the wedding have some photos.
    the dress was great i like this dress!

    Anyone here noticed a problem with dm yesterday because yesterday I went to see this story and the site was falling down all the time!!!

    1. I didn’t notice a problem at DM yesterday. But I have had problems with getting their videos to play on a number of occasions.

        1. Does Kate have to mention George to remind everyone, and herself, about him. When he was a tiny baby Kate was on a visit and the kids were doing “messy play” with paint. Kate said she had introduced George to messy play the day before. Really? At the age George was when she made the comment all he would have been doing was eating, sleeping and filling his nappies! I imagine she is saying this so she sounds like a hands on Mum, in reality it makes her sound like she is never near him!

        2. Sugar and Cathy: It seems to me like she takes whatever situation she is in – messy play, painting, sing along, anything else – and says that George either loves it or just started doing it. Maybe she does this not because George is actually doing any of it, and especially not with her, but because she wants to relate to whomever she is talking to. If she’s talking to a painter, then George LOVES painting. If she’s involved in a sing along, then George LOVES sing alongs. If she is talking to someone who does messy play, then George LOVES messy play. George most likely does none of the stuff she claims, but she claims it as a way to relate. Like how she and William seem to think the constant complaining about him will make the relate to parents who also know the difficulties of raising a child.

          1. The thing I don’t understand is he’s not even two years old yet. I don’t know many two-year-olds who know how to paint, unless it’s finger painting. He’s eighteen months old for heaven’s sakes. Maybe she wants people to think he’s a Middleton genius unlike the royal babies but to me, when she starts sprouting what he’s supposedly doing, she comes across as an idiot.

          2. The sing along thing fits that, too. George may like making noises (as Will and Kate keep complaining), but it’s not like he would actually be able to participate in a sing along. He wouldn’t be able to sing the words, just make random noises. At which time Kate would complain that he’s being loud.

          3. Yeah really. They don’t actually see him enough for him to complain. It’s probably like Willy’s grandfather and great-uncle, George VI and Edward. Granted their nanny was abusive, but when she “presented” them to George and May at tea time, she pinched them so they would cry, which got an immediate dismissal from their parents’ presence. This was of course in the “Children are to be seen and not heard” era. Not that I think Georgie’s nanny is abusive. Just that Katie says “Well I’ve seen him for my ten minutes today and he cried like a baby. Get him out of here so I can go shoe shopping”

          4. Okay so I have a lot of issues with Kate’s work ethic, etc. but this line of thinking seems silly. None of us know if Kate spends a lot of time with George or not. And, 18-month olds can indeed paint. It won’t be pretty, but they find it a lot of fun. It’s just like letting a toddler play with their food. They’ll get super messy and enjoy it. Same with sing-a-longs. He obviously can’t sing, but he can listen and enjoy when others sing to him. I do think Kate brings up George too much/uses him as a crux in terms of finding a topic of conversation. But also, is it so hard to imagine that she does it because like all of these other people, she is also a parent, and thus undergoes similar situations?

          5. That’s my problem with Kate right on point. She’s a shell of a human. She seems to have no real personality. Can you imagine “A Night at the Cambridges?” There would be elevator music, crickets and the occasional noise of George beating on the door to get out of lockdown. They’ve definitely gone down the sensual hedonist route, everything about physical pleasure and mental emptiness. Sad

  4. I loved the dress. It looks almost Monet-like. I would rock it and I’m not pregnant. The coat is just “meh” for me. I would love to see her in an empire waist coat. I’m glad that she is working more. I think that she should stick to a lower heel when visiting kids. Kate would totally win of she gave a speech.

    As far as the mugs, no no no. I like to give money directly to charity. If the charity does not receive at least 50% of proceeds, then I won’t buy it. The design is cute, but not for that price.

    1. Kate has put in 6 days of work in the UK in 2015. But spent 14 days in Mustique.
      No information on what she has done with the other 30 days of this year.
      There are no known future engagements. She is not working more.

    2. I like the dress as well. If they made a non-maternity, non-super expensive version I would totally buy it.

      I completely agree about the mugs. I understand they make these mugs by hand and everything, but still, only $5 seems really low. Like you said, I’d rather just give the money directly to the charity. This is the same problem I had with the ceramic poppies. Only 10% of the cost went to the actual charity. I don’t like that.

      1. There are companies set up to “raise money” for charity. I prefer to give only when I know 100% of my donation is going for the charity. Sure, some of these companies have some great ideas but I feel it’s a bit of a have when you find only 10% goes to the charity and the rest is eaten up in “admin” costs.

        1. One of the main reasons I dislike charity/charities in general is because with most charities, the majority of the money donated goes to admin costs, rather than to helping people.

          1. The Emma Bridgewater Company is going to mostly be the beneficiary of this campaign – it’s UK industry supplying jobs so there’s that to consider. Of course, we don’t know what the profit per piece is – the company is only giving a portion of it – some for EACH and some for the owners – and if the UK is like the US in tax write offs – the company will get the tax write off – and not the individual. In the US it is always better to donate directly to charity. Meanwhile Kate probably scored free Emma Bridgewater pottery for life — simply because Kate’s followers/fans will do what they can to get a hold of something Kate promotes.

  5. As someone who speaks fluent Chinese and French. It amazes me that the certain members of the royal family are only fluent in one language.

    The Queen speaks French really well, well enough to impress French speaking Canada.

    But Prince William made a speech in Chinese for Chinese New Year and I found it nothing to be impressed by but “he tried” and that’s considered a pass. He has an idea of how to speak the language. Except for the accent and pronunciation, there’s little that can go wrong with a rehearsed speech, unless he didn’t rehearse.

    I might even say that his French is worse than his Chinese mostly because Canada’s official languages include French. I understood most of what he said but it was clear that he was speaking a language not familiar to him.

    1. I too have wondered why the younger British royals don’t seem to be fluent in other languages. Other European royals are generally fluent in at least 3 different languages.

      And kudos to you for being fluent in Chinese, I’ve heard it is a very difficult language to learn. I took 4 years of French in high school ( I won’t even say how long ago that was :)) but since I’ve never had a chance to speak it since I’ve forgotten most of what I’ve learned.

    2. I won’t begrudge him too much for not being fluent in Chinese, as it is a hard language to learn and not one that would be useful to him often. Even in a rehearsed speech, getting the accent and pronunciation of a language that is foreign can be difficult. I could rehearse for hours, but I’m still not going to be able to roll my Rs the way a native Spanish speaker can. William should probably know French and/or one of the other European languages, though. He will need to communicate with Europeans at some point in his life. His education seems to be really lacking.

      1. It’s weird he doesn’t really know other languages too well. The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh both speak fluent French (apparently when they want to have a private conversation around others, they switch to French) Philip also said in an interview many years ago that he understands some phrases of Greek. The Prince of Wales and the late Diana, Princess of Wales know/knew some phrases of Welsh. Diana also knew sign language. But many of the Continental royals know many more. The Swedish royals know four or five languages as do the Dutch. But of course the continent is much closer together and much more closely knit, so it makes sense that people know several languages. Personally I have basic Spanish vocabulary and a smattering of Italian vocabulary. Language is a struggle for many people. I think if you want to learn language, you need to immerse yourself in it and live it.

        1. I think it just demonstrates that the royals are simply ornamental/symbolic and not the actual power in the government. Because, seriously, if the UK is relying on William to make decisions for the country – they are in big trouble.

        2. Learning languages after about 12 is really hard for most people. It would benefit the royals to have their children learn languages early, but of course that won’t happen.

          1. Foreign language class was introduced in school when I was about 12 as well. But I didn’t really start learning languages until later in high school and college.

          2. Language was required in my high school and since I was in Los Angeles the popular class was Spanish. Just could not get my brain to wrap around it. But the weird thing is that years later I was in Germany and actually understood it and could find my way around. Makes me want to go back to studying it now just for the heck of it.

          3. It has been said that Letizia and Maxima have had their girls in Mandarin classes for several years, along with English. I think Maxima speaks mainly Spanish with the A-team too.

        3. Learning other languages is also necessary if you belong to a small language group, like the Dutch as well as the Scandinavians. Only about 5 million people speak Danish so having at least 1 or two other languages is necessary. Most students at gymnasium (equivalent to high school) studies at least 2 foreign languages (not counting Swedish and Norwegian, which I was taught at school as well but they are so close that it was part of the Danish curriculum), some more.
          Fx I studied English, French and German, which turned out to quite helpful for my university education art history is heavily influenced by German and French art and scholarship and the teachers at universsity level want the students to read the textbooks in the original languages, especially when it comes to philosophy. School policies are changing too, children start learning english much earlier than when I went to school and some of the gymnasium schools now offer Spanish, Russian, Chinese and Japanese – it is actually pretty cool that language education has become less eurocentric and I suspect that mastering Chinese will be an asset in the future.

          People might find less of a need if they already speak one of the big languages, like English which is the lingua franca of today’s world.

          1. That’s very true. I think it’s one of the reasons most Americans don’t bother learning another language. Most people speak at least a little bit of English, so Americans don’t feel the need to learn another language. Also, America is so big and so far from other countries who use other languages. Most Americans aren’t going to come into regular contact with people they would need to know another language to interact with. Not excusing American’s ignorance, but just offering possible explanations for why they feel they can get away with that ignorance.

        4. Oof!! I studied Chinese for four years in college. Never ever would I claim fluency (even when I was studying and living there), and I’ve forgotten most of it. Still, I’m comfortable saying his pronunciation was so bad as to be nearly unrecognizable as mandarin. Like, cringeworthy, I thought he was saying other words, and wasn’t sure if he were speaking Chinese or English. Let’s not be too congratulatory for the effort, I think it’s quite embarrassing.

  6. Goody goody gumdrops, Kate is actually out making an effort. I knew she could do it. I won’t criticize since this has all the earmarks of a slight pattern.

    On a different note, and I don’t mean to bore people, but some of the wording is ‘off’ about the died 6 times, back from the dead ‘heart attack’ story.

    I am only bringing this up because it tends to confuse people who hear this story. At 33 y/o she probably does not have a cardiovascular problem with her coronary arteries being blocked, or due to spasm leading to a myocardial infarction (often referred to by lay people as a heart attack when cardiac tissue “dies”). She most likely has a physiological problem with electrical conduction which causes her to lose consciousness.

    These incorrect stories scare people and pass on bad info. Someone needs to educate the family on the medical issues and a social worker should step in to see if the 13 y/o has too much responsibility for her age.

    I have a friend in the U.K. and know a tiny bit about the system. Perhaps, the daughter is designated as her carer in order to keep that income within the family. They may have other family or friends who help with other household chores. I believe a nurse usually visits the family on a regular basis and should be aware of the medical/family dynamics.

  7. Dear KMR, I’m sorry that you were so intensely pissed at that mother whose daughter was her main caregiver. I was the main care giver for my mother from the time I was about 9 and while it’s certainly not an ideal situation, it simply was what needed to be done. I know my mother, like the mother mentioned in this article, felt very guilty about it but unfortunately for my mother as I assume for this mother there were/are no other options.

    While it can be easy to sit outside any situation and give opinions on what should be done, frequently those opinions aren’t either helpful or realistic. It would be lovely if every child had an ideal childhood, full of fun, love, food, shelter, clothing, etc. The reality is that for many children and their families these things might as well be on the far side of the moon.

    I don’t write this to censure you in any way but only to explain that sometimes a situation that on the outside looks bleak, from the inside might not be as horrible as you think.

    1. I’m going to post part of my comment to Sugar above, because it explains why I felt so strongly about the subject:

      “This is hard for me to admit, even over the internet, but I was forced to take care of my mother, who was an alcoholic (still is), and I know what it’s like to have to call 911 in the middle of the night, to have to sit in a waiting room in the middle of the night while she has surgery, because she got drunk, fell and broke something. I know what it’s like to have to clean up blood because she got drunk and fell and cracked her head on a piece of furniture. I know what it’s like to basically give up having my own life in order to be her nurse, maid, driver, cook, etc. And all I got for my troubles was emotional abuse. Emotional abuse that was part of the reason for my severe depression.

      “I am overly sensitive to this subject; I knew that when I wrote my response. Having calmed down, I can see that it does seem my experience is different from Chloe’s. Michelle Griffiths at least acknowledges she sometimes thinks she’s stealing her daughter’s childhood… my mother never even said thank you.

      “I am sorry if I offended you, or any of the people who read this blog; that was never my intent. Maybe once I’ve really worked through all of my problems this subject won’t be so sore for me.”

      My mother never felt guilty, and still doesn’t. She doesn’t think she’s done anything wrong. In fact, she thinks I’m the horrible one. And she has told me and told me and told me what a horrible person I am. Hence the depression and negative feedback loop.

      Thank you for expressing your opinion, and again I am sorry if I have offended you. That was never my intent. I know this is something I need to work through.

      1. Dear KMR,

        I am so sorry for all that you have gone through and are still going through. I sincerely hope and pray that you will be able to find healing and peace.

        I am going to stick my neck out here a bit and say on behalf of this great online community you have created “Thank You”. Thank you for creating a place where we can air our opinions freely and without censure. Thank you for creating a place where we can share some of ourselves and feel safe in doing that. You have created a place that I believe is truly unique and I hope you feel proud of yourself for this beautiful creation.

        I’m sure you probably started this blog just to talk about Kate, her fashion, etc. And while that is still the focus of the blog I’ve noticed that so many here share deeply personal things about themselves. Wither you intended to or not you have created a space where healing has begun for so many. Good going!!

        1. Thank you so much for that Lauri. And thank you Sugar and G. I’m glad that you guys feel this is a safe place to open up; that’s the only reason I was able to open up.

  8. From the Express (http://www.express.co.uk/news/royal/558894/Kate-Middleton-Duchess-Cambridge-Emma-Bridgewater-factor)
    “She got choked up and I had to give her a tissue,” said Michelle, who in February last year underwent open heart surgery to fit a defibrillator that shocks her back to life after she suffers an attack known as a fatal arrhythmia.

    She has been diagnosed with Brugada Syndrome, a rare hereditary heart condition that means she could have a heart attack at any time. Even with the defibrillator fitted, there is no guarantee that her heart will restart.”

    1. Hi Snoods, she might have actually teared up, but more due to pregnancy hormones than actual empathy. I know I cried over everything when I was pregnant, my husband thought it was so funny because I’m normally not a crier at all.

  9. Hire a nurse?
    And pay her with what? The woman is ill, can’t work. How do you expect her to pay for this magical nurse that will make everything better?
    That mum is doing the best she can in a very, very difficult situation. She doesn’t need ill informed types slagging her off from behind the safety of a keyboard.
    Shame on you.

    1. Hi JL. I’m going to quote myself from comments I made above, and hopefully that will explain things:

      “This is hard for me to admit, even over the internet, but I was forced to take care of my mother, who was an alcoholic (still is), and I know what it’s like to have to call 911 in the middle of the night, to have to sit in a waiting room in the middle of the night while she has surgery, because she got drunk, fell and broke something. I know what it’s like to have to clean up blood because she got drunk and fell and cracked her head on a piece of furniture. I know what it’s like to basically give up having my own life in order to be her nurse, maid, driver, cook, etc. And all I got for my troubles was emotional abuse. Emotional abuse that was part of the reason for my severe depression.

      “I am overly sensitive to this subject; I knew that when I wrote my response. Having calmed down, I can see that it does seem my experience is different from Chloe’s. Michelle Griffiths at least acknowledges she sometimes thinks she’s stealing her daughter’s childhood… my mother never even said thank you.

      “I am sorry if I offended you, or any of the people who read this blog; that was never my intent. Maybe once I’ve really worked through all of my problems this subject won’t be so sore for me.

      “My mother never felt guilty, and still doesn’t. She doesn’t think she’s done anything wrong. In fact, she thinks I’m the horrible one. And she has told me and told me and told me what a horrible person I am. Hence the depression and negative feedback loop.

      “Thank you for expressing your opinion, and again I am sorry if I have offended you. That was never my intent. I know this is something I need to work through.”

      1. Hi KMR – good for you for making it through those years! I hope you remember to “pat yourself on the back” for surviving those times. Well done.
        I do agree with you, a child should never have to be responsible for having to care for an adult. Let kids have a childhood!

  10. More like Kate’s handlers or the EACH directors approached Emma Bridgewater about making ceramic pieces for EACH. Any time they have to point out that Kate was the initiator of an idea its a lie.

    1. And Kate “helped” design the pottery? What does that even mean? My guess is Emma designed it and KP approved it, because of Kate’s association. So Kate gets the credit.

      1. I thought I read she helped pick the design or something like that. I don’t think she actually painted one and submitted it. 🙂

    2. lol true. I read some quotes from Emma Bridgewater herself about designing the mugs, and it seemed to me that she and her team designed the mugs and Kate wasn’t even involved. But who knows. Maybe, as Red Snapper said, Kate approved the design or something.

        1. I’m pretty sure her people said the same thing, or something similar, when she launched the appeal in November. So maybe not Jason, but someone on her team. I doubt she was really that involved.

  11. I thought Kate looked rather nice today, no big wow, but nice. I did like the coat but felt that the sleeves were a little too big and bulky. Other than that, it was nice to see her hair up and out of her face. I really think it’s time she trimmed it a good 6-8 inches, it’s way too long and doesn’t hold the curl well. The only thing that kind of ruined this outfit, in my opinion, is the hand clasping, crotch grabbing. Is the woman totally incapable of walking with her arms by her side?? I mean really who walks like this in normal life?? It makes her look rather insecure and uneasy when she does this and certainly doesn’t help her bad posture.

    1. I noticed the sleeves did look a bit big in a few photos.

      I have to agree about the hair. For a long time I didn’t agree when everyone said to cut it, because I have long hair and so I understand if she wants to have long hair because it makes her feel good or what have you. I was always saying that she could keep her long hair as long as she put it up while on engagements. But I noticed in the video message that her hair really pulls down her face, and ages her. She could take a good 6 inches off, it would still be long, but it would look much better.

  12. I though that for the most part she looked good, her hair was out of her face and she looked engaged with the people she was talking to. And not to much of the “see-how-much-I-am-listening-to-you” face.

  13. Another story where they claim Kate got choked up. I never believe these. There has never been any proof, only people saying that. But they also praise her for anything, so I take these comments with a grain of salt. Like the event last year where she first viewed the pottery, the photos of her ‘teary eyed’, did not even look to be that way. The press likes to manipulate us so that we think Kate is so caring. It is so sickening. Maybe she did tear up, however, it is sad because I never believe anything people say about her anymore since most of it is blowing wind up her skirt!

    KMR, I totally thought of you when I read yesterday that she mentioned George :). It is like her and William are told to mention him everywhere they go.

    1. They’re not told to mention George, they do it because he’s their shtick. They literally have no where else to go conversation wise. I guess they think it’s charming and relatable to talk about their child, but really it just highlights the fact that no one is ever allowed to see him. Ever. William will be in China meeting Chinese leaders and diplomats, and he’ll start telling them about George screaming in the bath and the whole world (except Kate and Carole) will judge him a lightweight. Again.

      1. “really it just highlights the fact that no one is ever allowed to see him.”

        Very true. The more they mention him, the more he is in people’s minds, the more they realize they haven’t seen candids of him in over half a year.

        1. Perhaps, W&K need to take a page from the royals in Sweden. They allow photos of their child at events and Princess Madeleine posts on social media. We have been allowed to see their children grow.

          I do not think the media has been too invasive on the royal babies/children of Sweden. It has been an amount which has allowed royal watchers to be amused by their cute antics and feel only a kind affection towards their children.

          He is a darling little boy, but I am already over Prince George. By the time they let us see him again, I will have zero interest. This is how I feel about the new baby. Hope the new one is healthy ect., but nothing more.

          1. I wholeheartedly agree. I grew up watching William and Harry on photocalls. I don’t want to show my age, but I remember when both came home from the hospital, various pictures with their parents, both staged and not. I think this is why so many people have a deep affection for them. By keeping George away from this, people will feel disconnected and only beg for tidbits when there are none.

            You are right – the Swedes are doing the absolute right thing. Madde even posted a picture of cutie pie Leonore today on her birthday. Sheer perfection. They do not have the intrusion into their children’s lives and the Swedes love them. This will satiate the public and the press and I am sure that will buy them goodwill.

            IMHO, that is why I think people are now fixated on Harry. Harry gets it. I think that he is more of an open book and people genuinely want to root for him. I think that he may be the saving grace of the British Royal Family.

          2. I love the way the Swedes handle their kids being in the public eye. Victoria brings Estelle to events, and releases periodic official photos. Maddie releases official photos and posts her own photos to Facebook. They really are great about letting the public in enough to see the kids grow up, but still give them privacy.

            @rhiannon: “I think this is why so many people have a deep affection for them.” Oddly enough, I feel an affection for Estelle and Leonore for this reason.

    2. I don’t mind that they mention him but why does it always seem to be a critical remark? Poor kid, when he grows up and sees these remarks on the internet he going to probably wonder if his parents even liked him. And when will they allow the people of Britian, George’s future subjects, to see him. I don’t understand why they hide him away so much.

    3. It really is sad that we can’t believe anything they say anymore. It’s “pictures or it didn’t happen” basically.

      Thanks for thinking of me! I feel like Will and Kate A) have nothing else to talk about, and B) are trying to seem like involved parents by talking about George a lot, but because what they say is usually on the negative side, it comes off poorly.

    1. Ugh. The dude who wrote that letter just used Pippa’s name to get attention. I’m surprised that she’s still that much of a draw that he would bother with her, but still stupid and rude no matter what.

    1. It would be nice if she does one between now and March 17 – St. Patrick’s Day – but knowing her she probably won’t. I’m with Red Snapper in thinking she’ll do the St. Patrick’s Day gig on March 17, and that will be her last appearance before she takes maternity leave.

      1. I’m not so sure she will even do St. Patrick’s Day. I guess it depends on when the baby is due. If it is early April, she will be on maternity leave by then. Unless the baby is due really late April, I don’t think she will be doing the Shamrock handing out. Last time didn’t she take about one and half months off before the baby was due? I expect her to take the same amount off this time. I do think she will have one more day though since with George the Palace announced it was her last appearance before the baby came. The Palace has not said anything yet, so I think they will announce again when it is her final time.

        1. I hate it when people use the word “maternity leave”. Leave from what? Vacationing? What “job” is she taking a break from? This is a woman who occasionally makes public appearances at other people’s places of work. What one is really saying is that Kate will not be showing up any other’s places of work any time soon.

          1. I’ve never gotten that either. I may be the royals trying to “update” their vocabulary but it just makes it sound ridiculous. What the hell does she DO anyway? What the hell is Willy doing? Charles or Anne, sure maybe it would be ‘leave’ or “we’re not doing what we usually do”. But for her it’s like… hun? Also in the UK, women get two weeks. Katie’s going to take two months, then to the christening and Trooping the Colour, then she’s AWOL for summer “vacation.” She may pop up once or twice in July or August but it’ll probably be September before she reappears to begin padding the engagement counter the last quarter of 2015. But what about Willy? This trip to Japan and China is the first we’ve seen of him since Christmas. She’s done more “work” than he has.

          2. I know, right. You have to have something to leave from in order to take maternity leave.

          3. In Canada, we get a year of paid maternity leave, but you have to put in a certain amount of hours prior to be eligible. Wouldn’t it be ironic if Kate had to qualify in the same way for that.

        2. Last time it was five weeks from her last appearance to when George was born. But if George was late, as has been claimed, then she/KP might not have realized they were taking leave five weeks before. They may have thought they were only taking four weeks depending on when her due date was. I’m guessing the new baby is due in the last half of April, so if they follow the same pattern as last time, she could still do St. Patrick’s Day and then be done.

  14. Yes, good for Kate getting out again. I thought the coat was ok, but I did not like the dress. And, where did the bump come from? A few days ago, you could barely see it? Now, she’s actually looking really pregnant. I also saw a wider heeled shoe. More appropriate for a woman with child.
    Where’s William? I know, studying! But, really, is he capable of doing anything other than sending Kate out?
    She seemed engaged with those she met at the events and I give her credit for that.
    As for the comments concerning the woman whom everyone seems to think has stolen her daughter’s childhood, I have mixed feelings. Nobody really knows that family’s story, do they?
    Perhaps, she has not parents or siblings to call upon for help. Or, maybe they are around but don’t do anything at all. Yes, I can feel sorry for the youngster, but I give her enormous credit, too. She appears to love her mother dearly. My own mom took care of both my grandparents at the end of their lives. She had to juggle work, my dad and her children as well as lovingly caring for her parents. And, none of her sibs gave her one ounce of help. We supported her and did what we could, but I will always be grateful to have come from such a caring mom. I know she was an adult and not a kid when she took on caregiving, but some people are born to love and care for others and this young girl whose mom Kate met, seems to be one of them. I wish her and her mom well. And, KMR, I truly am sorry for what you went through and are going through. I can understand why you feel the way you do. I second, third, fourth and fifth, the comments above thanking you for creating a forum that so many of us enjoy very, very much.

    1. Re the bump size. I thought the same thing initially, then I went and looked at the bump-y photo from last week’s engagement. I think it might just be a trick of the dresses. The sail boat dress was super loose around her breasts and tummy, whereas the floral dress is fitted around her breasts and the top of her tummy. This gives the illusion that she is smaller in the boat print dress and larger in the floral dress, but it could be completely possible she is the same size, and there is dress trickery going on. Her bump in the video message versus her bump in the dresses is a different story. Her bump was definitely not as big in the video – shot only a few days before the boat print dress engagement and only a week and a half before the floral print dress engagement.

      And thank you for your kind words, jenny.

      1. You’ve pointed out the posture point before and I think, here again, she’s jutting out her tummy which makes her look like she’s got the incredible shrinking-growing bump. I’m glad she’s showing and seems to be embracing some. Glad to see Jason reads the blogs. (Because she’s showing the dress under the coat too, hair up–and I don’t think that was as much grey hair as her original color and the dye is thinning out).

        1. Good point. She especially sticks her pelvis out when she is standing still. There are probably a number of weird things like that that are causing the bump to seem like it is fluctuating constantly.

      2. You are welcome, KMR.
        I hope that one day soon your mother will realize what a gem of a daughter she has and will tell you! You deserve praise for your caring ways.
        And, love your insight on different dress styles and the bump.

  15. As I read the story about the young mother I thought they were going to use the story as a launch pad for a political message of some sort — about how Britain needs more resources for young single mothers. Then when instead they just used it to illustrate what a good person Kate is … I thought that was rather tacky. And I like Mrs. Cambridge.

    1. It would have been great if they had done that. KP should really look into Kate getting involved with that sort of thing.

  16. I thought Kate looked really pretty, again. The extra weight looks good on her. Love the dress, but preferred the Seraphine blue coat, ugly pocket flaps and all. I liked it better because, being maternity wear, it actually fit her. Sizing up in non-maternity wear is not doing Kate any favors, it just makes her look sloppy.

    I’m having a hard time giving Kate much credit right now for her visits. But her recent outings just seem like such an obvious PR move. Don’t get me wrong, I really, really want to like Kate. I know Camilla is a divisive royal, but she’s someone I can really admire. And I’m holding out hope that Harry marries a smart, hard working woman, not a flighty girl.

      1. Am I the only one who doesn’t like this idea? All of the comments I’ve read regarding this rumor want it to happen. I like Emma a lot, and I want good things for her. But I don’t think they would be a good match at all, personality-wise (gong off of her interviews). And just aesthetically, she’s way prettier than him.

        1. No you’re not the only one. If you had red arrows, I’d probably get them. I think she’s probably more focused on her career than marrying into the BRF. I can’t see her giving that up. It also means giving up a ton of independence. She sets her own schedules right now. Love makes people sacrifice many things, but I don’t think it would work. When I first heard about the rumor, I just thought it felt weird.

          1. I think it’s just a fling, maybe just a fun friendship with some minor sizzle. Harry isn’t insecure or feeling relationship guilt to get married. I think he’s enjoying his life right now, would like to get married “at some time,” probably likes that Emma is intelligently involved in issues (ala his mother) but I don’t think she’s the one. I’m excited for Harry. He seems very centered. I think even greater things are coming over the horizon for him. He’s a special guy.

          2. Exactly. She has a career, independence, and is an advocate for feminism; I highly doubt she would want to give all that up to walk two steps behind a man the rest of her life (and be forced to defer to Kate, too).

    1. Harry will need a woman who truly loves him and is made of steel in order to put up with the crap she will have to endure. I truly hope he finds the perfect girl.

      1. She’s been on the global stage since she was 8 years old. She’s probably recognized by more people on the planet than Harry is, because of the worldwide phenomenon of the Harry Potter movies. She has a greater net worth ($60 million) AND she earned it all herself.

        If anyone could handle the attention of being in the BRF, it would be someone like Emma Watson. I can see why people would want this rumor to be true because of those reasons.

        1. I’m trying to reserve judgement for now. If it’s true, it could be a good match up. I think she could handle the attention and she seems like she has a good head on her shoulders. I think someone like Emma would be good for Harry (saying that as someone who doesn’t know either of them!), and I would hope that Harry would be good for Emma.

          I would just hope that she wouldn’t turn into the modern day Grace Kelly.

          1. Given her high profile – she might already be used to a certain amount of limited freedom. She wouldn’t become another Grace simply because she would not be on the throne – however I doubt a member of the royal family could also have an acting career. It depends if she is ready to live a different lifestyle – as someone pointed out – she’s been acting since she was eight and is financially set – she doesn’t need to maintain her career if she wants something different for herself in the future.

          2. She’s very, very outspoken about women’s rights, which is a good thing. But the Royal Family tries to be nonpartisan and nonpolitical as much as possible. If she became Princess Henry of Wales (or whatever title the Queen would give Harry), she would have to muzzle it. She couldn’t be a UN Goodwill Ambassador or make speeches about feminism and education in Brazil or wherever. She would be turned into Kate-lite, chatting about the weather or some such. I don’t think she could stand it and I don’t even really know why we’re discussing this so seriously. Aside from a handful of rag newspapers mentioning one “date” with a dozen of Emma’s friends, there’s little evidence to me that Harry and Emma are in a relationship, let alone in a serious thing, let alone getting engaged.
            Also look at Harry’s track record. He dated Chelsy Davy off and-on for seven years. Some people even speculated that *they* would get married before Willy and Waity. Then to have some fun, he hooked up with some random girls in Las Vegas for strip poker, while wooing Cressida Bonas. They came to some arrangement and the press coverage came on very strongly, which scared the poor thing off after eighteen months (also she looked almost as grungy as Waity). With Willy’s own ‘spare’ due in less than three months, I’m very skeptical that Harry’s going to be putting a ring on it any time soon. He’s the more charismatic, more interesting, more exciting British royal and the last single standing. As much as he moans about being single, better to be single, rich and handsome than trapped in a loveless match with a gold digging flasher and a psychopathic two-year-old Lord Fauntleroy.

          3. I do think that it is possible for royals to espouse more serious causes. CP Mary of Denmark has her own foundation that among other things focuses on domestic violence and especially helping women and children in a violent situation. She also works with the UN on issues of women’s health and violence against women. Queen Maxima is outspoken about gay rights and she also works with the UN on micro-finance.

            I think that it is possible to espouse controversial causes without becoming political by framing them as humanitarian issues.
            However, the BRF seems positivly petrified of doing anything that may be a tiny bit controversial, which I think is due to QEII’s aversity to conflict. IMO she is a weak and unimaginative monarch who is rather tone-deaf and only seem interested in the BRFs self-preservation.

          4. I find that view outrageous and contemptuous. The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh have done more to modernize the Royal Family than any monarch in centuries. She believes in traditional values and continuity. She is hardly unimaginative, she’s given far more to her country than you have. The British stiff upper lip and all that account as well as the British government. They tell the Queen to do something, she has to do it. It is the cautiousness of the British government and conservatism in the British aristocracy, not the Queen herself, that block change. Sadly the Queen is only a mouthpiece for the government of the day. The Duke of York tried to expand his role; it’s not worked out well, has it? The bicycle monarchies of Europe are different. Most people in those countries don’t even realize they have a monarchy. They have little influence or impact on any aspect of the day and they are dull and uninspiring when they do have anything to say anyway.

          5. I know you will dismiss all of this, as you do of any praise of other monarchies, but I’m doing it anyway.

            The Danish monarchy has a longer history. Other monarchies, the ones you dismiss so lightly, are encouraging their members to do good on the global stage. Davos, UN, microfinance, women’s rights, famine relief, third world development. Those are things that other monarchies promote while the BRF promotes itself. The BRF is cripplingly insular and isolationist.

            QEII was educated at home while the former Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands (now Princess Beatrix) has a law degree. The heirs of those other monarchies have degrees from Harvard, Columbia, UC Berkeley with Masters in International Relations or International Development. They all speak at least three languages. William barely has an undergrad degree in geography and speaks one language poorly.

            You are so quick to put those other monarchies down, when it turns out you are so woefully ignorant about them.

          6. Far from being “wholly ignorant,” I know far more about this subject than you. Clearly your ad hominem attacks are an attempt to disguise your lack of knowledge. How sad. Please get the facts, then get back to me. Your wholly inadequate attempt to impress is singularly anything but.

          7. Seth, I would appreciate it if you kept to the discussion, rather than maligning the other two posters in the thread. I think it could be a very good discussion, but one that won’t happen if you approach it by telling everyone how much YOU know, thereby implying they don’t have near as much of a clue as you. Maybe they don’t, but you could certainly make your point in a more pleasant manner.

          8. Bluhare, what you appreciate is your concern, not mine. When KMR delegates her moderation role to you, I will take what you say seriously. Until then, let me fight my own battles. Thank you.

          9. I’ve missed some, everyone please feel free to fill in.

            Beatrix of the Netherlands
            Undergrad in Law, sociology, and economics, University of Leiden
            Dutch, English, French, Italian, German

            King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands
            Undergrad and Masters in History, Leiden University
            Dutch, English, Spanish, German

            Queen Maxima of the Netherlands
            Undergrad in Economics, Pontifical Catholic University of Argentina
            Spanish, English, Dutch, French and can get by in Italian
            United Nations’ Special Advocate for Inclusive Finance for Development

            King Philippe of Belgium
            Studied constitutional history, Trinity College, Oxford
            Masters in Political Science, Stanford University
            French, Flemish, English

            Queen Mathilde of Belgium
            Master’s in Psychology, Catholic University of Louvain
            French, Flemish, English, Italian

            King Felipe of Spain
            Degree in law, Autonomous University of Madrid
            Master of Science in Foreign Service, Georgetown University
            Spanish, Catalan, French, English and a little Greek (from his mother)

            Queen Letizia of Spain
            Bachelor’s Degree in Information Sciences
            Master’s Degree in Audiovisual Journalism
            Spanish, English, Spanish sign

            CP Haakon of Norway
            B. A. political science, University of California, Berkeley
            Masters in Development Studies, London School of Economics
            UNDP Goodwill Ambassador since 2003
            Norwegian, Swedish, English

            Queen Margrethe of Denmark
            Sorbonne and London School of Economics
            Danish, French, Swedish, German, English

            CP Frederick of Denmark
            Undergrad and Masters, Political Science at Aarhus University (with a year at Harvard as part of undergrad)
            Danish, French, English, German

          10. Also bluhare, the British monarchy has a definitive line going back to the early 6th century. The Swedish monarchy is only documented to the early 16th century. Everything before then is Norse myth and legend. The monarchy of the Netherlands only goes back to the mid 16th century and the monarchy of Norway only goes back to the 10th century.

          11. If I want a history lesson from you, I will ask for it, Seth. What I did ask for was some pleasant conversation and discussion, not arrogant dismissal. Feel free to lecture and I will feel free to scroll by.

          12. Seth,

            I can assure you that the Scandinavian people who that they live in monarchies, and from my experiences of living both in England and Scandinavia I can tell you that on a general level the Sandinavias care a lot more about their RFs than the British do. But hey, that’s just my experience.

            The European monarchies have, IMO, been much better at performing to their symbolic value and act as national unifiers. They are also much more accessible to the general public, which is in fact important for them to retain the role and value as a national unifying symbol – because that is the role of the royals in a constitutional monarchy. They need to both stand apart yet appear relatable – and I think that the BRF is sadly lacking in that last area.

          13. Seth,

            “The bicycle monarchies of Europe are different. Most people in those countries don’t even realize they have a monarchy. They have little influence or impact on any aspect of the day and they are dull and uninspiring when they do have anything to say anyway.”

            You last comment is patently UNTRUE and only explain your own ignorance!!

            The role of royal families in constitutional monarchies is not political but symbolic. It is a not about political influence (as it should be in a modern democracy) but about public presence!

            I can assure you that the Scandinavian people who that they live in monarchies, and from my experiences of living both in England and Scandinavia I can tell you that on a general level the Sandinavias care a lot more about their RFs than the British do. In fact, most Brits that that I’ve interacted with didn’t give a toss about their monarcy. However, I mainly interacted with people from the lower middle-class and the working class. In Denmark, the emotional investment in the monarchy is much more widespread throughout the various levels of society. But hey, that’s just my experience.

            The European monarchies have, IMO, been much better at performing to their symbolic value and act as national unifiers. They are also much more accessible to the general public, which is in fact important for them to retain the role and value as a national unifying symbol – because that is the role of the royals in a constitutional monarchy. They need to both stand apart yet appear relatable – and I think that the BRF is sadly lacking in that last area

          14. Guys, all opinions are welcome, but no personal attacks. Discussion is good, but personal attacks do not further the discussion.

          15. Personal attacks are my hot button and if my comments read that way,I do apologize. Certainly not my intent at all.

            AH, it’s nice to see you here!

          16. hi bluhare,

            Denmark has a history as a unifiedand documented monarchy monarchy since the 900s. The Norwegian kingdom dates to the same time – both coinciding with the adoption of Christianity.

            Sweden became a unified monarchy in the 1300s after generations of strife between two major houses and the two kingdoms of Östra and Västra Götaland.

            All three countries has a large and rich tradition of sagas about heroic kings and heroes that can’t be confirmed but that has had a great presence in the historical tradition. Archeological finds have hinted that some of these stories may have had their origin in stories about powerful chiefs of the Bronze age. Fx, the fameous kings of Lejre mentioned in a number of medieval chronicles have been seen as purely fictitious. However, recent digs have found the remains of large wood structures as well as gold treasure. It was definitely the seat of a powerful chieftain – and oral stories and communicative memory transform itself in various ways.

        2. I like Emma a lot, for all those reasons plus her stance on feminism (at a time when most young starlets are proclaiming not to be feminists). I don’t doubt Emma could handle the challenges, but I don’t think she would want to. Why give up her career, independence, feminism in order to defer not only to her husband, but to Kate and William and everyone else ahead of Harry in line as well?

          1. I truly believe that Emma would do well to stay away from any involvement with the Royal Family, unless she wants her wings firmly clipped. Of course, I can’t get inside Emma’s head to know what she wants, but for a talented, independent, wealthy and successful woman to even consider trading that in for the stultifying and archaic constraints of life in the royal fishbowl, that would be a hardship and self-sacrifice indeed. And any future bride of Harry’s has to realize that she’ll also be constantly held up to comparison with Kate. Who wants to enter a competition with your sister-in-law at the seesaw whims of the press to be praised one day and then torn down, or vice versa? Emma, have your dalliance with Harry if you want, but then run for the hills and make a new movie!

          2. I think it would be a huge sacrifice for any independant and well-educated woman to marry into the BRF as they seem much more constricting that many other monarchies. Nothing like the hell that the Japanese Imperial Household has proven to be in the case of CP Masako. It would be sad to see another woman getting her wings clipped, unless she is like Kate, who has never tried to test her abilities and seems perfectly content to live out her life in a golden cage with clipped wings.

    1. As I’m a huge fan of reading in between the lines, did anyone else notice the one line paragraph about Carole being a frequent visitor to the house?

      Tinfoil hat, ON!

    1. 5 months of W&K – with them barely there since William has run off and Middleton lives with her mother. 5 months and two main staff walk out the door. Wonder what went down, that HM immediately offered them work. Keeping them quiet?

      1. Weren’t the Midds there for three weeks at Christmas? I wouldn’t want to be responsible for keeping W and K and Carole happy for three weeks. That sounds like hell on earth.

    2. Very interesting that they should mention Carole. Maybe they dislike Carole or she is way controlling? I don’t understand why she is there in the first place. If I get married and have a child, I don’t want my mom in my house all the time.

      1. Yeah, I noticed that subtle line about Carole. She is probably a huge a-hole to the staff.

    3. It makes me wonder if Will and Kate are bad employers. I wonder if they act all high and mighty and look down on their staff. The couple originally worked for the Queen, so maybe they preferred how they were treated there? It is all speculation, but I wish we really knew the truth and not just what the Palace wants us to think 🙂

      1. Richard Kay wrote an article about William last year that said he forces staff curtsy to Kate and show respect for her and whatnot, even though he tells people to call him “just Will”.

        1. Well he has to get the down to earth wife to become accustomed to her position by having the staff curtsy. Maybe he’s also hoping it will make her remember to curtsy to the Queen and other senior royals when she is supposed to, but then again she probably thinks they should be dropping a knee to her.

        2. Yeah but they’re staff, not “ordinary” people. Hell, I’m sure Carole makes the staff curtsy to her. Bad sign, b/c it parallels the Duke of Windsor. He forced his household staff to call Wallis “Your Royal Highness” and curtsy to her, even though King George VI had explicitly denied her the courtesy style, instead giving her the lower “Her Grace” and telling government officials to bow and curtsy to the Duke but not the Duchess.

          1. I see so many parallels between William and the Duke of Windsor. I wonder if William will meet the same fate.

        1. The first nanny quit because she was old and an already in retirement when they hired her. She was just a temp while they look for a new nanny.

          I recall when Diana got married to Charles and a lot of staff quit because they felt it was time to leave when Charles got married, not because of Diana. Though I do find it suspicious that their house staff would leave so soon.

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