Royal Round Up: CP Victoria, Princess Sofia, and Queens Maxima, Mathilde, Letizia, Rania, Elizabeth

Royal Round Up: CP Victoria, Princess Sofia, and Queens Maxima, Mathilde, Letizia, Rania, Elizabeth

You guys said you liked the Swedish royals, so you get MOAR Swedes! Crown Princess Victoria and Princess Sofia were both out and about showing off their pregnancy bellies. Queen Maxima and Queen Mathilde met up for a concert. Queen Letizia did some business-y things. Queen Rania attended the World Economic Forum as well as a female entrepreneur round table discussion. And Queen Elizabeth II visited the Women’s Institute.

Victoria Royal Clocks

Crown Princess Victoria joined King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia to open the exhibit: “In Time – Royal Clocks for 400 years”. Princess Christina was also there, you can see her on the far left in the above photo.

The King gave a speech about the exhibit:

    “Through the centuries, clocks have played an important role here at the castle. Both to keep track of time, and as decoration. A really nice clock is not only technically perfect, but it is also beautiful to look at. And sometimes also hear. It is a fascinating listening experience at the castle all the clocks strike twelve exactly the same time. That, I thought as a child. So it is perhaps not surprising that clocks and horology has become a great personal interest to me.”

The exhibition features over 50 royal clocks from the 1500s to the present day. The exhibition is organized as a prelude to the King’s 70th birthday on April 30, 2016.

Victoria was out and about on Thursday, January 21, as well, in Tumba to visit Futebol dá Força. Victoria was there on behalf of the Crown Princess Foundation (which was founded after Victoria married Daniel in 2010).

Futebol dá Força Sweden was founded in 2013 and “educate[s] young female leaders as football coaches, [as well as] in value-based leadership, … practical knowledge about sexual and reproductive health, human rights and how to prevent domestic and sexual violence and abuse. … [In order to] create a free and open space where young girls unconditionally can have fun, have a safe meeting place, get stronger self-confidence and self-esteem.”

Victoria also visited the Young Music at the Castle festival earlier in the day.

Victoria wore a white button down under a black jacket with black pants and black boots from Yves Saint Laurent. Victoria wore pearl earrings from Kreuger Jewellery which cost 14500 SEK or about $1,700.

Victoria football 2

I love that Victoria sat on the floor with the girls even though she’s pregnant.

Victoria football 1 Victoria football 3

Princess Sofia attended the Sophiahemmet graduation ceremony at Stockholm City Hall on Thursday, January 21, and handed out the traditional brooches to the graduates.

Sophiahemmet is a private hospital in Stockholm with a royal connection going back to 1884. The Hospital is associated with the Sophiahemmet University College where students can get an degree in nursing. The College was founded in 1884 by Queen Sofia (wife of Oscar II).

Sofia is Honorary President of the hospital since January 1, 2016. She succeeded Princess Christina who was honorary president of Sophiahemmet since in 1972.

Sofia Sophiahemmet graduation 1

Sofia is wearing a black lace maternity dress from H&M (was $34.99, currently on sale for $17.99) under a MaxMara jacket she previously wore to her marriage banns in May 2015.

Sofia Sophiahemmet graduation 2

King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima attended the opening concert for the Dutch presidency of the European Union council on Friday, January 22. King Philippe and Queen Mathilde joined them for the concert.

Netherlands will hold the presidency of the European Union council for the first half of 2016 and will focus on key issues such as migration, combating terrorism, and promoting growth and jobs.

Queen Letizia opened the 36th edition of the International Tourism Fair (FITUR) on Wednesday, January 20. Then on Friday, January 22, Letizia attended a meeting of the Spanish Association Against Cancer (AECC).

Leti wore a navy Hugo Boss suit to the Tourism Fair and a grey coat over a black turtleneck to the AECC meeting.

Queen Rania attended the World Economic Forum this week. She participated in the “The Humanitarian Imperative: A Global, Regional and Industry Response” session on January 20. Rania discussed the Syrian refugee crisis and talked about the pressure housing refugees puts on Jordan’s economy – you can read more here.

On January 17, Rania met with a group of twelve Jordanian female entrepreneurs who own small and medium-sized enterprises in a number of fields including: information and communication technology, healthcare, clean technologies, creative industries, and social media.

The women shared their success stories, early beginnings, business challenges, and future goals, and showcased their business models and the various services they provide, including events’ scheduling and ticketing, direct marketing, cooking tutorials, and audio books.

Queen Elizabeth II attended a Sandringham Women’s Institute meeting at West Newton Village Hall on January 21. HM wore the Nizam of Hyderabad Rose Brooch.

Apparently there was a rumor that Duchess Kate would attend, but she didn’t. Back in May 2015, the president of Anmer WI said she sent Kate a invitation to join their ranks and said she received a letter from Rebecca Deacon saying that Kate was “interested”. Who knows if Kate actually joined or not.

113 thoughts on “Royal Round Up: CP Victoria, Princess Sofia, and Queens Maxima, Mathilde, Letizia, Rania, Elizabeth

  1. Yah! More Swedes!
    Nice to see these ladies getting out there and doing things, and not just talking about it..BTW, does anyone know Victoria’s due date?

      1. She was due in March with Estelle, too, but ended up having her in late February–maybe it’ll be the same thing this time around.

        1. I was wondering at Victoria’s due date as the bump seems to be moving downwards, a sign that baby is thinking about getting ready for birth?

          1. The royal court said Victoria would work up until she gave birth, but they still don’t have any engagements scheduled for her past Feb 10 (they have others scheduled for late-Feb). So maybe the baby will be born mid-Feb?

          2. ABKM is correct – Estelle came before her announced due date. I think we will have ourselves a mid-late February heir. Hooray! Thanks for the SRF coverage, KMR!

  2. I wonder if Letizia ever took ballet classes?Her posture is a ballerina’s posture.
    Are Princess Sofia and Princess William on the same Royal rank?

  3. Candice, I have wondered that myself about Letizia but I’m not sure about it. She’s certainly a posture guru as we believe here. And she can rock a good working wardrobe with her suits and her coats – love her grey one.

    The pregnant Swedish ladies look lovely, Sofia is sticking out now too, although not as much as Victoria. I wish Victoria let her hair down more often, I wonder if she thinks she looks better with her usual bun.

    I would really love to visit the royal clocks’ exhibition, they look so beautiful.

    I can’t believe if Kate hasn’t joined the Anmer WI yet, especially after it was known that Norfolk is their permanent residence. IMO, this was one engagement Kate should have done! Isn’t this one more sign she’s vacationing right now?

    1. The WI event was the Queen’s engagement; there was no reason to think Kate would be there. I don’t know how that rumor got started – other than reporters/photographers jumping to conclusions given the Anmer WI president saying what she said last year.

      I think all of the other female British royals are members of the WI, so it would make sense for Kate to join, but at the same time I don’t think it’s a necessity. It would be nice for Kate to join an organization about supporting women, but Kate doesn’t seem to care about women’s issues. Or other women in general. Kate seems to get along better with men (not that there is anything wrong with that).

      1. Sadly, as we have noticed before, Kate is not ‘keen’ to support any serious causes, for that matter. Look at all these other royal women being involved, Queen Rania was even in WEF discussing refugee crisis for goodness sakes, what is more important than that right now, and yet Kate declares ‘keen’ or ‘interested’. Pick a serious cause woman, and stick to it, that’s all we’re saying. It’s really frustrating beyond words.

      2. You sound like Jerry Seinfeld. “Not that there’s anything wrong with that.” You made me laugh.

        I agree that it would be nice to have Kate join an organization that supports women, but I guess she is not interested in doing so at this point in time.

  4. Always nice to see the swedes out and about! They are such a pleasant bunch (except KG him I don’t like). Letizia is amazing! I would love to see more of her!

      1. I myself wouldn’t go as far as calling him skeevy. He is, however, not a particularly clever man who don’t know when to kep his mouth closed in public.

        I don’t think he is a bad person but I do think that he has a weak character (especially considering the rumours of his infidelities). He was quite a playboy before he married. He strikes me as a not very clever person who is self-indulgent and perhaps not a very good judge of character (considering the rumours of him associating with some unsavoury characters – but they are only rumours, which ought to be kept in mind).

        I have the impression that he lacked a firm hand during his upbringing, which sadly isn’t surprising since both his parents died in a plane crash in Copenhagen in 1947 when he was 9 months old. He was raised in his grandfather’s court.

          1. Princess Sibylla died of cancer in 1972.Her father-in-law was still alive & so her son Carl Gustav was not yet king. He became king in 1973. His infidelities really hurt Queen Silvia. It was thought that he should abdicate in favour of Victoria. I seem to hear the same cases of infidelities from ex King Albert of Belgium & ex King Juan Carlos of Spain.

          2. My bad:

            I’ve always felt incredibly sorry for his grandfather. First, he lost his wife, Margaret of Connaught, from an earinfection turned septic when she was 8 months pregnant. Then he lost his son and heir.

            The late Queen Ingrid was very young when her mother died and she has spoken about how that loss shaped her character in a very decisive way.

          3. As I understand it, he doesn’t enjoy a lot of popularity so it would probably be a good idea for him to abdicate – especially since Victoria appear to very popular. However, that’ll never happen.

          1. Agh, it goes with the crown I suppose (for men that is). I hear Juan Carlos was so notorious in cheating that Queen Sophia was absolutely fed up with him. Goodness, what a life for these women…

          2. Ugh, Juan Carlos apparent racked up a number in the hundreds.

            I don’t think that cheating necessarily comes with the crown, rather as a combination of entitlement and weak character – especially since most royal marriages aren’t arranged anymore.

  5. I don’t “like” the Swedish royals. I LOVE them. It’s always a pleasure to me hear about them. How Queen Silvia lived in Brazil I have a special link to them. But I like the others royals too. Queen Max and Queen Leti are always afantastic in their engagements. I see them and feel sincerity and security. How Kate doesn’t look at them as hole models of Royals I think she is either stupid or she really doesn’t care about being a good Royal.

  6. Reading about these ladies working is always a breath of fresh air.

    Victoria is going to make a wonderful Queen and I think she’s setting a great example for Estelle. I like that Sofia isn’t breaking the bank with her maternity wardrobe. However I do wish she’d go back the the side part she wore when she first debuted the new haircut. It’s softer and looks better than the severe center part she likes.

    I think Leti may have taken ballet lessons as well, her posture is immaculate and she seems very light on her feet which sometimes isn’t easy to do in the heels that she wears. A lot of people clunk along in them.

    I always love to see Max and Mathilde together. They seem like such good friends. I can’t remember if I’ve ever seen Max, Mary and Mathilde together but whenever either of them is with Max they look like they are having a really good time. Would be interesting to see them all in one space.

    Rania really seems to support the women in her country very well. I really like that about her.

    HM is wonderful. I have nothing but respect for the work she does. As for Kate not joining the women’s group I think it’s her loss. Personally it’s something I’d join in a heartbeat. I also think it was incredibly rude to reply at such a late date and to do it in such a vague way. She’s probably scared senseless at the thought of attempting to have a conversation with any of these ladies.

    Have you noticed that the women of the European royal families nearly all have a cause that is related to something on a world wide scale (finances, women’s rights, etc.) and in the BRF only Sophie fills that role (Women’s Hedge Fund taken over from Kate). It’s a pity Kate comes off so ditsy (for lack of a better word). As a future Queen Consort she should be in contact with these wonderful women and learning the ropes. But then again, even if she could pull it off, William probably would put the kibosh on it. Can’t have his wife flying around the world showing him up.

    Well, it’s always good to know that we have the other royal families to fall back on when there is so very little coming out of the BRF.

    1. +1 Lisa!

      I’ve been loving the Swedes lately and the women in that family have all been wonderful.

      Letzia could give Kate lessons on posture! Lord know she needs it! And (most of the time) her clothing is spot on and appropriate for the occasion.

      Maxima is so warm and cheerful and friendly. Her inner beauty makes her radiate on the outside!

      Rania does a wonderful job looking classy but strong and doesn’t allow her clothes or hair distract her (and others) from her work.

      HM simply rocks and I wish Kate would look to either the other women in the BRF (Anne, Sophie and HM) or the royal women throughout Europe and try to follow their lead. It irks me so much that Kate has the world at her feet, plus this amazing platform where she could change a lot of lives, and she really doesn’t do anything of substance or meaningful.

      I’d love to be able to use my voice and rock the world but, I’m just one person who is using social media to try and change public perception on issues that are important to me.

      1. I am so fed up with this – I’ve been saying since I joined this blog that Kate should look to the other marry in crown princesses and queens for help and advice. It is just so mind blowingly obvious!!!Max and Mary are also far from home and family and have had to learn new languages. Honestly Kate has a group of potential friends just there waiting for her. So what if they are a little older they are also a whole lot wiser. She could trust their confidences too as I am sure they have all had their own struggles to fit in and be accepted.

        1. Not to mention that Maxima by all accounts is a warm and caring person that has been know to reach out with a helping hand to her royal peers. There are stories that she reached out to Charlene when she was new to the role and she has been a great personal support to the Japanese Crown Princess Masako in her long illness. It has been publicly acknowledged by the Japanese Imperial Household that Maxima’s friendship has helped Masako. If Kate reached out to Maxima, whom she has now met in person, I’m sure Maxima would help her.

          1. I remember seeing pictures of Princess Aiko holding hands with Princess Amalia from when they were itty bitty things and it was adorable. I hope the girls are still close and will continue to be so as they grow up. It would be wonderful to see the next generation still be great friends.

            Unfortunately, I’m not sure how much of a friendship she has in William anymore. I just don’t really see a connection in those two and that must make Kate feel incredibly alone and isolated but I try to remind myself that she wanted this life.

          2. Kimothy I want to say if Kate is lonely she has got herself in that position and has the opportunity to help herself. It just sounds terribly mean and I wouldn’t wish anyone to be unhappy. But I don’t think anyone will have success reaching out to her until she accepts in her own mind that she needs support away from the Middletons.

          3. Please don’t think I’m intentionally being mean. That’s definitely not the message I was trying to convey hence why I added that she pursued this life.

            Agreed, if she wants more out of life (as a royal or in general) she’s going to have to cut the proverbial umbilical cord.

          4. I think we agree Kimothy! It’s just soooo frustrating because while Ma Middleton obviously wants to help she is not Royal and really can’t advise in the same way as the women who have married into royal families and understand the pressure , lack of privacy, weigh of expectation etc. I want to shout at her ( but won’t use capitals KMR!!) just ask for some help……

          5. Ladies, I don’t want to be mean either but I turn to a cynic. More so because we’ve talked about this before. Ma Carole’s smothering & control, lack of communication between BRF and European royals, W&K’s isolation and not reaching for outside or professional help and so on. Really, what is the point of going through this again? I admit I’ve become agitated and I think KMR has said this before, that in dry BRF & Cambridges’ periods, we’re not ourselves anymore here (me at least). Sorry for that.

          6. It’s quite simple really. Kate you are royal so if you want to play hard which you can afford to do, just work hard as well!! Enjoy the lavish holidays and the clothes and the sports events etc just really make a difference with the grittier issues as well. The Queen has always had an extended summer and Xmas break. No one minds because she works so amazingly hard in between times. And of course as Head of State she works every day in reality on her red boxes.

  7. Victoria just keeps on keeping on. I can’t imagine it was especially easy for her to get up off the floor, and I wouldn’t have faulted her for sitting on a chair, but well done on her part for getting down there in spite of all that. Sofia is showing herself to be no nonsense about work during pregnancy, also, so thumbs up all around.

    I haven’t seen nearly enough Maxima lately, so I’m glad to see her make an appearance! She really has one of those smiles that lights up a room.

    Speaking of people who just soldier on, it’s hard to believe that QEII is nearly ninety with the way she keeps going. I don’t know how a person can look at her work ethic, as a member of the royal family, and not feel compelled to step it up.

  8. We have talked about Mathilde’s style before – that she often looks a bit dowdy in unflattering shapes, colours too laoud and too much lace/frills, etc. So I’d just like to say how much I like her outfit here – the fuschia is a beautiful strong colour but it is kept in check by the charcoal grey of the skirt. She is also wearing a silhouette that really flatters her figure.

    The simplicity of the cut and the use of a strong colour as a counterpoint to a neutral is a great combination for her. It looks elegant, it doesn’t overwhelm her and really allows her beauty to shine.

    1. I think this is one of Queen Mathilde’s better looks. She is a real beauty, but being a little pear shaped, she sometimes wears things that do not flatter her figure. I guess it proves that someone as stunning as Mathilde can still have one tiny physical flaw.

  9. Great post KMR!!! I love that you concentrate on the other royal families when things are slow with Kate.

    Victoria looks so radiant but I bet she can’t wait to give birth, as I recall the last few months of pregnancy you just want to be done with it. How nice that Sofia took over one of Princess Christina’s charities. I agree with Lisa, the side part was so much more flattering on Sofia but I do like the shorter length of her hair.

    How great to see the dynamic duo of Max and Mathilde together again! I love it when they are together, the fashion possibilities are endless. With that in mind, I’ve noticed that when they are together Mathilde tends to dress in colors and styles that Max might wear and frankly I don’t think they suit her very well. As we’ve discussed here before Mathilde has a cool, classic beauty similar to Grace Kelly while Max has a warm, earthy beauty and can pull off the bright colors, big hats and loud jewelry but when Mathilde tries to emulate that, like today, it falls rather short.

    I curtsy to my Posture Guru!!! It looks like Letiza is growing her hair longer 🙁 I liked it shorter, it framed her face so nicely. While I think she does the business suit well, I like seeing her in separates the best.

    QEII looks so pretty in that blue dress! And I just love her smile! I would love to have a chance to peek into her jewelry vault, the brooches, the necklaces, earrings and such that she wears almost daily have such a great history to them as well as being stunning.

    It’s a shame that Kate hasn’t joined the WI yet. I have read in the past that Kate is really bad about rsvping to invitations and even when she does accept it doesn’t always mean she’ll show up. I think that behavior is beyond rude and you’d think with the staff she has that sort of thing would no longer be an issue. Well, I don’t think it’s a loss for the women of the WI but it certainly is a loss for Kate.

  10. The Queen always looks so delighted on her WI days, obviously something she very much looks forward to and enjoys. Now, was it a WI meeting last year, where Anne and Sophie were with her and cutting a cake? They all looked like they were having such a good time, it was nice to see. This might sound bad, but let Elizabeth have her WI, and when she’s gone Kate can step in. It would change the dynamic of the day for her. Best way I can put it, is when my daughter comes with me to my workout classes. I don’t mind when she comes, but there’s a different camaraderie when it’s the regs gettin down and doing their thing 🙂 I guess I think that might be precious “me” time for her, who knows!

    Max, lovely as always. And Rania, in that pussybow blouse and butterscotch wide leg trousers…that was the grand slam for me. Loved it, and no pink!

  11. I have a serious question and please KMR if you feel it is inappropriate please delete. It seems unusual or unheard of for a Muslim monarch’s wife to take such a high profile international role. I cannot think of any of the Saudi princesses etc being allowed to do this. Is this historical for the queens of Jordan, and if not what has happened to allow Rania to operate solo on the world stage? I think it is fantastic that she does, but just don’t quite see how it fits with the usual approach . I do hope I am not offending anyone by asking the question.

    1. Queen Noor (Rania’s step MiL)also had a huge role, internationally, and she was American born. For the Jordanians, this seems to be the norm. The royal women are expected to be highly educated and involved, in a high profile humanitarian capacity.

  12. Thanks Ray I had forgotten Noor was an American.

    And why can’t I spell Muslim ! Brain freeze sorry if my spelling has offended anyone.

  13. I can’t +1 this post enough. Today has been a busy day. I ran my 2nd 5k of the year (5th race since October). I took a hot bath and got on my tablet and saw this. Insert sheer happiness.

    I am in SWF heaven. I would love to see the clock exhibit. I am fascinated by them as well. To me, they mark consistency and continuity. Vic is just amazing. Her charities have impact and purpose. She looks beautiful as does Sofia.

    Leti. I just want her posture and closet. She looks like a beautiful and impeccably styledo business woman. And that posture is perfection. I also liked her bob a bit shorter. Rainia is also amazing and wore much better suited clothes.

    My future BFF, Max, is the sun. I gravitate to her style and personality. I’m not sure if you all knew it, but her parents weren’t at her wedding. Her father was banned due to past activities and her mother stayed with him. She still soldiered on. Her support of to her families is admirable and shows her supportive side.

    Mathilde looked nice. I am neutral about her. HM is an institution. I cannot imagine a world without her.

    Wonderful and warm post, KMR.

    1. Well done Rhiannon. I am in the midst of trying to ‘swim the English Channel ‘ in the pool for charity. It takes a lot of time but I’m getting fitter and hopefully will fit into a slim dress for your wedding.
      Let’s all go to the clock exhibition it looks absolutely fascinating.

      1. That is so cool, Birdy. I don’t know how to swin and that’s on my bucket list for the year. My goal is to run one race a month. This is my second for the month. I love 5ks and obstacles races.

        I’m in for a KMR field trip!

      2. Oh, Birdy and Rhiannon, good for you both. I cannot swim to save my life. And, running is not on my list of can do activities either. I’m impressed, ladies. And, I agree we should all go to the clock exhibition. Group trip!

    2. Congrats on your race Rhiannon!! You and Harry are going to be brilliant together!! Aren’t these Royal Roundups wonderful!! I am so grateful that KMR has continued with them as I imagine it takes quite of bit of research and time. I’m trying very hard not to compare Kate to any of these wonderful women but gosh it’s hard to see how little she does after reading about all the serious issues these women are willing to tackle. After getting to know Victoria, Max, Leti, Mary and the others a bit better I don’t know why I ever thought Kate was a good role model.

      1. You were not the only one, Lauri. I too started as a fun of our dear Kate. BTW I loved that scene you described downthread and loved all Lord of the Rings movies. Can’t forget Aragon & Legolas!

    3. Congrats on your 5K Rhiannon!! That’s awesome!!

      I look lazy when, all I’ve done this year, is cut caffeinated soda out of my diet. The last Cherry Coke Zero I had was January 6th!!

      What motivated you to start running? How did you get started? What keeps you going on days you don’t want to drag yourself out the door?

      1. I led a sedentary life. I am a natural introvert, but wanted to start to enjoy things. I figured that I could stand to get in shape. I started to workout and chose a Spartan as a motivation. I just kept running after that. My motivation is to be healthy and get out of my own head for a little bit.

        1. I’m an introvert too and looked up Spartan. Dang girl! Major props to you!! I need to figure out a way to get off my duff and get rid of my Prednisone Buddha belly for good (though cutting out caffeinated soda has helped).

          Way to go!! 😀

          1. Prednisone Buddha belly?

            Oh dear, it sounds like you and I have the same problem Kimothy. I was put on Prednisone for asthma and also after an accident where the doctors thought I had rheumatoid arthritis (luckily I don’t). I reacted really badly to the Prednisone and put on a huge amount of weight in a very short time. And it’s just not budging! Please let me know if you come up with any solutions as diet/ exercise aren’t doing it 🙁

          2. Prednisone horror stories abound! A doctor gave my fiancé prednisone for a very minor complaint, and he ended up in the emergency room a few days later with chest pains. He’s fine now but wary of the drug.

          3. @ABKM
            I don’t blame him. My Asthma specialist at the hospital has put it on my records that I shouldn’t be given prednisone! (could have hugged him for doing that, if it wasn’t inappropriate!)

          4. Prednisone is a drug for life for me due to my transplant but I’ve figured out what works for me to help. Also, the dosage you’re on does play a role in your weight and eating habits. Thankfully, I’m on the lowest amount (5 mg daily).

            At one point, I weighed 144 lbs and at 4’9″ (on a good day) that’s overweight, bordering on obese. I now weigh between 115-119, depending on what mood my body and I are in. I had to work hard to lose that weight and I’m back to trying to lose a few more pounds just by tweaking my eating habits (though, thanks to the cold snap, I went bonkers this weekend. Grrrrr).

            -I try to bring my lunch from home instead of buying it from the cafeteria across the street. Not only do I know exactly what I’m putting into my body, I’m saving a bit of money too. I don’t bring anything fancy, just a sandwich and yogurt or something like that.

            -Like I said, I stopped drinking caffeinated soda earlier this month and, to me, it has made a huge difference already. My belly doesn’t feel as bloated, I’m not yawning as much during the day, I seem to nap less on the weekends (though, when I do nap, they’re longer haha!), etc. I still drink things like diet ginger ale but only because of my super sensitive tummy.

            -Right now, I’m battling a nasty infection on both feet but, before that, I’d try to walk to and from work daily (25-30 minutes daily). I also like to dance around like a goon to music from my iPod. I try to turn little bursts of energy into exercise-able moments!

            -I’ve been using the LoseIt app since January 1, 2012 as my online food journal and that has helped me be more accountable. A lot of people like to use MyFitnessPal but whatever works for you, use it and try to use it daily. I didn’t think I’d ever get used to a food tracker but I’ve been using it for over 4 years and its helped me tremendously.

            In conclusion, it’s just old fashioned hard work that helped me shed some of the weight. It’s still a daily battle but I try not to beat myself over it. I just to take it day by day (or even meal by meal) and pat myself on the back for the things I did right instead of kick myself over the things I screwed up on.

          5. Good luck Kimothy and the rest of you guys trying to be healthy. I’ve started walking back from work as well (40 min). As you said Kimothy, we go day by day on this 🙂

          6. Kimothy you had better have a front row seat at Rhiannon and Harry’s wedding so you can see everything! I am 5’7″ and feel tiny because my husband and sons are all well over 6 foot. I don’t have health issues but like most middle aged + women I have to work to stay slim and keep healthy. I work the 80/20 rule – 80% of the time I am careful with my choices, 20% I have what I want and have a lazy day. Dog walking means that even a lazy day involves some fresh air and exercise. Good luck to you in keeping your weight down and your health up.

          7. Ha ha Birdy, now that I think of it, we must do the seating arrangements ASAP. I’m not as petite, but can I have a place in the front row as well? 🙂

          8. Prednisone is such a difficult med to take. I had ITP when I was a teen and was put on high doses of the drug for nearly three months. More than the weight gain, which was horrible, was the fact that I was up 24-7. Could not sleep and just was busy all day and night. My mom used to find me washing windows at 2am. No lie!
            Also, I cleaned out so many drawers and closets around the house, that my mom wanted to keep me on the stuff. (Just joking)! It really is a nasty medicine. Made me very depressed, too.

            Kimothy, I don’t mean to pry, but you mentioned a transplant. I am sure you are blessed to have been able to have an organ transplant and I wish you the very best. I collect hand knit blankets for the Organ Donor Network in NY. The blankets are given to patients on life-support, as a comfort. Then, presented to loved ones when the person comes off of life support. I have knit a few, but my skills are not great in that arena. I’m better at recruiting people to do so. I wish you well!

            Cathy, as for losing weight, I guess it’s all about lots of fruits and veggies, limiting sweets, and exercising. I know you said dieting does not seem to but are you eating the right kinds of foods? Does your doctor give you any advice? It takes a while for Prednisone to get out of your system. I remember my doctor telling me that. Have you been off of it for long? Asthma is tough. Did you have it as a child, or develop it later, if I may ask? Some people outgrow it. I hope you do.

          9. jenny~I received a heart/double lung transplant in June of 1996, at the age of 16, at St. Louis Children’s Hospital. Unfortunately, I know very little about the child who saved my life and though I’ve tried, attempts at contacting my donor family have been futile.

            I’ve been very active within the transplant community for many years and I’m at a stage in my life where I’m more than willing to talk. (I wouldn’t have felt this comfortable 15-20 years ago. 😉 )

            I have a soft spot for Prince Daniel because of the fact that he’s also an organ recipient. The World Transplant Games were in Sweden in 2011 and while I didn’t attend, quite a few friends of mine did. I saw their pictures and he was there, at the opening ceremony and track & field! 🙂

          10. @Kimothy
            Wow – heart and lung? I have a friend who had a lung transplant last year and it has made such a difference to her, it’s like she has dropped 20 years! It’s great that you are reaching out to others who are going through the same thing and giving support. Thanks for the hints too re that darn Buddha belly, I’m feeling more kinder to mine by calling it that instead of what I usually do!
            Thanks for the hints. I am very careful with my diet and only eat fresh fruit and veges with a little red meat and mostly fish. I can’t remember the last time I drank alcohol and I dream of eating fish and chips only. (Though who would eat fish and chips in the heat we are having here at the moment). I have to say that I did eat fish and chips for my birthday dinner last year, that was in July so does it count? As for chocolate? I did have a piece at Christmas and felt sick afterwards 🙁
            My doctor thinks having had to take prednisone for so long that it has sent my adrenal glands and possibly my thyroid out of whack. I’m going to see him in 2 weeks to see what he is suggesting to get everything right.
            I’m trying to get in at least one half hour walk per day, it would be nice to get running again though. I feel the need to start channelling Rhiannon (who is channelling her inner Spartan). While channelling my posture guru Lauri!
            Please keep any hints coming ladies and thanks to those who are giving me inspiration 🙂

          11. Kimothy, good for you. A heart and lung transplant so many years ago! I wish you continued good health. What a blessing to be offered a new lease on life. Even if you have not been able to reach the loved ones of your donor, I so hope you realize that by them donating the organs of their loved one, they were sincerely offering a new life to you in his/her name. What a gift! And, I am sure they must know you are most grateful.

            The lady for whom I collect blankets for the organization she began for donor recipients and their loved ones, wanted to do something in her son’s memory besides donating his organs. She was provided major comfort by receiving a handmade blanket when her son passed away and she wanted to offer the same love and comfort to other families. She is constantly working on behalf of the Organ Donor Network in our area.
            Perhaps, someday, you will be able to meet or learn who your donor(s) were/was and even if you don’t know, I know you send thanks out as often as you can from the depths of your being. How wonderful that you were given this new chance with life.

            Cathy, years before my pregnancy, I suffered major stress and due to that, insomnia. I was given an adrenal gland optimizer from the health food store and it helped me greatly. Not only dealing with stress, but dropping weight. Obviously, I think a doctor’s take on this for you would be necessary. But, maybe you can ask about such herbs when you see your doctor. Mine was called Adrenal Optimizer, I believe. It really helped with the insomnia and a bit with weight issues.

          12. @Jenny
            Thanks Jenny for the advice re Adrenal Optimizer. I’ve looked online and will discuss with my doctor next week. I would prefer to use a herbal supplement so this is a really good hint.

            I’ve also started yoga again which helps – I couldn’t do much for years after having an accident where I broke multiple bones in my left hand and ripped ligaments and tendons up too, it was only the skin holding it together at one stage!

            This is one reason I love this blog – thanks for the helpful advice! Can you suggest a name brand which worked for you and I can see if it’s available in NZ or I can buy it from Amazon?

          1. Oh I can so see that Lauri sitting up straight head held high with Kate hunched, looking miserable because she realises how much Rhiannon has to offer, and crotch clutching whenever standing.

    4. “Vic is just amazing. Her charities have impact and purpose”
      Rhiannon – I think you have described Victoria perfectly!

      And well done on completing your marathon, it’s 28degrees Celsius here (83 degrees Fahrenheit) and I can’t even think about going any faster than a walk at the moment – unless there is a pool (or the sea?) to jump into then I’m sure to run!

    5. Rhiannon,

      If you ever visit Vienna, you should go visit Kunsthistorisches Museum. They have a special section with all kinds of curiosa, like clocks, automatic figures made from gold and goblets made from Nautilus shells and ostrich eggs. It is great fun. They also have one of the most amazing collections og both Italian and Northern European renaissance and baroque art.

    6. Awesome Rhiannon on the 5K! I have been toying with the idea myself. I go to the gym regularly but I get pangs here and there to try something different.

  14. Today it took me 51 minutes. It was 26 degrees, but it felt like 16. On a really good day, I can pull out a 11-12 minute mile. Today was a 16 minute mile.

    1. Wow, kudos to you for even making it out your front door in those temperatures!! I used to run track when I was in high school and sure enjoyed it but my dream was to run long distance runs but now my knees are having none of that 🙂 I always thought that being able to run long distances would feel like the most freeing experience ever, being able to run over hill and dale powered simply by your legs (and willpower). I recall watching one of the Lord of the Rings movies (the second one I believe) and Aragon, Legolas and the dwarf are running to catch up with their kidnapped friends, that scene still fills me with such a sense of longing to be able to run and run, to have the freedom to go as far as I could without restraint.

      1. The element of flying and freedom is amazing. I did a 5k last weekend in Piedmont Park in Atlanta. It was absolutely beautiful. You are in tune with your body and even with nature. I’m slow and have horrible form, but I love it.

    2. Wow well done Rhiannon you go girl. Gosh I wish it was 26 degrees here. I would go to Mustique with Kate if she invited me. And quite agree Lauri , Kate needs to step up to the plate now. Fed up with excuses and promises.

    3. Well done rhiannon, you won’t have any problems fitting to your wedding dress and we’ll be there, feeling proud of you. Ah, if only it would be true…
      In the meantime guys, we can dream about Mustique, and jewelleries and tiaras and thank lovely KMR for the posts. Can’t wait for that state visit in March and the Swedish royal babies!

      1. I am apologizing in advance for the all of the comparisons I will be making between Letiza’s posture and Kate’s. Lol, just typing her name makes my shoulders drift back and my back straighten.

        1. Please don’t stop the posture comments Lauri!
          I’m using them to remind me to sit up straight, and I take you with me (in my head) when I go for a walk to remind me to “Stand up straight” too!

        2. Someone posted that Leti takes yoga classes hence the excellent posture. I thought Kate does yoga too — so what’s her excuse?

          1. Oh that is so simple to answer Yorkie -when your instructor reminds you to keep you shoulders down, your abs in and ensure your back is not doing all the work you have to listen and try, and then think about it in between sessions and practise!! Kate doesn’t need to listen because she already knows it all…..

  15. ArtHistorian, you mentioned that King Carl Gustav will never abdicate. Why is this so? About his grandfather, King Gustav Adolph who married twice, which wife was his favourite: Margaret or Louise? I can’t seem to find any article about this. I only found out that Queen Ingrid could not get along with her step-mother, Queen Louise but their relationship became better after she married King Frederick. I always get misty-eyed when I read about these royal ladies who died tragically: in an accident, Queen Astrid of Belgium & Princess Grace of Monaco,who never became queen, Princess Margaret of Sweden( died in childbirth), Princess Martha (Astrid’s sister) of norway who died of cancer & princess Sibylla of Sweden whose husband, the crown prince died early & she died 25 years later of cancer. They’re surrounded by wealth & power & yet they suffer the same tragedies as the rest of us. The late King Baudouin of Belgium suffered the trauma of losing his mother.queen Astrid at a young age but became a great & beloved king( partly due to his wife queen Fabiola). King Carl Gustav also grew up without a father but I think he was spoilt by his grand father, mother & 4 older sisters. I think nurturing & influence play important roles in shaping character besides a good education.

    1. I think Garl Gustaf will never abdicate for several reasons. 1) There isn’t a tradition for it and 2) the reason he was so opposed to Victoria inheriting the throne instead of Daniel was because he felt that the “job” would be harder on a woman than a man. It is a fairly antiquated attitude and it has certainly turned out that Victoria is much more suited (and probably much smarter) than her younger brother.

      1. I can’t imagine what CG’s feelings did to Victoria. She could have been hurt of her father’s lack of confidence towards her abilities. Luckily Victoria doesn’t seem damaged in any way, so I suppose she got over it. Good for her!

      2. Thanks for the reply, ArtHistorian. So who do you think is King Gustav’s favourite wife: Margaret or Louise?

        1. I haven’t read enough to make an informed guess on this subject. Love comes in many forms and you can love different people in different ways. I think that both marriages were arranged – and perhaps love took some time to develop (if it did). He lost Margaret in such a horrible traumatic way when they were both fairly young. He grew old with Louise and shared his duties with her. All in all, I won’t speculate as to who was the favorite and if he had a favorite.

          I have a biography on Queen Ingrid waiting on my shelf and I’m really looking forward to reading it.

          1. Thanks again for the reply, ArtHistorian. The late King Gustav looks like a charismatic king. I’m so intrigued that he could love 2 women with such different personalities!

  16. It is lovely to see the Queen smiling. The WI is a link for all almost all of the BRF.
    I am in awe of Victoria. Not only that posture when standing in a bright dress coat, but engaging with the chidren, and moving about so it will obviously help when when the baby comes. I like how Victoria is bridging the gap between the senior royals and the kids. Maxima radiants. I like how Maxima dresses in a brown so as not outshine her husband. I have contacted the WI, near me. I work nights though and introverted. I like being in social situations though I need a little time to myself sometimes. Though I am ‘keen’, to hit the ground running when I can.:-)

  17. Thanks, KMR, for providing a link for Futebol da Forca – it sounds like a terrific organization for girls. I’m glad Victoria is supporting it and raising its profile. In more trivial news, I was amused to see that King Carl Gustaf and I will be turning 70 on the same day. I suspect his celebration may be more elaborate 🙂

  18. Goodness me Constance! May you have the happiest birthday on the 30th April! It’s good to know we have things in common with the royals, hey? 🙂

  19. Great post, thanks KMR! I love CP Victoria! She is so warm and down to earth. Kate made pregnancy seem like a disease and CP Victoria is showing that women can be active and work during pregnancy. For being supposedly so sporty and athletic, Kate really didn’t act fit while she was pregnant and gave the impression that her body made her embarrassed/uncomfortable and she milked the pregnant invalid story for all it was worth. I’ve never had babies myself and can’t, thanks to ovarian cancer, but my sisters all have kids and my best friend has two. All of my sisters had to work through their pregnancies and they were all very active, including my sister with diabetes. My best friend was a dancer too and she took class up until the day before she gave birth. I had to help her search heaven and hell to find a leotard that would work, since they don’t currently make maternity leotards. I’ve just known a lot of incredible women who have gone through pregnancies and worked and stayed active the whole time. Obviously, some women do have extremely difficult pregnancies, but I don’t buy for a second that Kate was one of them. Her appearances at sports events, looking hale and hearty, while she used her pregnancy to get out of charity visits was a huge tip off. Sorry if I went off on a tangent there! I get worked up about that topic. Anyway, CP Victoria looks radiant and this was a great appearance for her.

    I’m not surprised that Kate was a no show. If I were in her situation, I’d probably avoid being around accomplished, successful, business women too!

    Queen Rania is so beautiful and I love the way she’s focused on women’s issues, as that is a huge problem in the Middle East. I’ve always been a fan of the Jordanian Royal family.

    1. I read somewhere that Kate hates being pregnant which, if true, accounts for the attitude you’ve picked up. I suspect she just likes being super thin.

  20. Bets, after I read your post, after I saw what Kimothy was saying about her transplants and also the stories of the rest and the struggles you and us -all with our own share- have to endure and yet keep going, go forward in life and carry on, I feel so infuriated with Kate and the people of the like.

    You’re so right about her. Kate and people like her seem so spoiled and mollycoddled that they can’t appreciate at all their own lives. As you said, she’s young, healthy, sporty and strong and yet she has such a weak character and distorted view of life that she’s acting as invalid and disabled.

    The truth is, dear Bets, that she hasn’t got a clue. She became a mother but really knows nothing about life because she doesn’t know anything about sickness, need, poverty and every day struggle.
    So to you, and all the rest KMRers I wish you have the courage to deal with everything life’s bringing and the spirit of hope and achievement. God knows if Kate will ever understand that.

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