Saturday, 22 December 2012

William & Kate Will Spend Christmas With the Middletons, Gina Foster Millinery Sample Sale + About That Christmas Pudding...

St James's Palace officially confirmed this morning that the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will spend Christmas with the Middleton family at their home in Bucklebury, Berkshire. Speculation has been rife for days regarding the couple's plans and the decision has been reached with the approval of the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh. The media have been asked to respect the privacy of the Middletons and the residents of Bucklebury.

From the Telegraph Story:

'The Duchess is understood to be continuing to recover, but is believed to have wished to spend her final Christmas before motherhood with her own family. A royal source said the couple plan to attend Sandringham at some point in the Christmas period'.

The Queen and Prince Philip arrived at Kings Lynn railway station on Thursday to begin their annual Christmas holiday in Sandringham. It is quite a break with tradition which is why the Palace made the point of saying the Queen approves.

It had been thought following Kate's appearance at SPOTY and the Queen's pre-Christmas lunch that the Cambridges would join the Queen at Sandringham but it has been reported the decision was made before the pregnancy announcement. It was made clear before the royal wedding that they did not intend to spend every Christmas with the Royal family.

British Royals Twitter

It was reported the Queen invited the Middleton to Sandringham for Boxing Day, perhaps they will accompany the Cambridges when they visit? I hope William and Kate have a wonderful time and enjoy the festivities with the Middletons :)


I was delighted to receive an email from Gina Foster Millinery about their upcoming sample sale. The London-based hat maker specialises in ladies occasion wear, making bespoke hats, headdresses and fascinators as well as selling her stylish ready-to-wear designs from her London hat shop. The sale is taking place from 2nd - 9th February at Gina Foster Millinery, 5 Kensington Church Walk, London W8 4NB.

If any of you are in London during the time of the sale it is well worth a look and there will be up to 70% off hats and fascinators. A look at three pieces from the Autumn/Winter 2012 Collection which will be included in the sale.

Gina Foster Millinery

Kate wore the 'Launceston Place' hat by Gina Foster for the wedding of Zara Philips and Mike Tindall.

The SS13 Seed Collection is described as:

'Burning bright amongst the sporting stars of London 2012 was Thomas Heatherwick's  Olympic cauldron. For Spring/Summer 2013 Gina Foster has drawn inspiration from Heatherwick Studio's innovative use of engineering and materials in everyday objects, sculptures, monuments and buildings'.

A preview of the exciting collection. Looking forward to seeing more.

Gina Foster Millinery


Now for something rather off topic. In our last post we discussed William and Kate's office party at Bumpkin in Notting Hill where the couple enjoyed a traditional Christmas lunch with pudding for dessert. A number of readers from the US asked for more information and a recipe for the popular festive treat. Christmas pudding is generally served after Christmas dinner (hot with freshly whipped cream in my household).

It is also known as 'plum pudding' and its association with Christmas goes back to a custom in medieval England that the "pudding should be made on the 25th Sunday after Trinity, that it be prepared with 13 ingredients to represent Christ and the 12 apostles". In 1714 King George requested that plum pudding be served as part of his royal feast; he would later become known as the 'pudding king' because of this. 

Essential Ingredient

There are many different recipes for Christmas pudding; often family recipes are handed down from generation to generation, but for those attempting it for the first time I think Nigella Lawson's Ultimate Christmas Pudding is a great one to start with. The recipe is detailed, easy to follow, and as with all of Nigella's recipes, one can expect delicious results. One thing I will say about Christmas pudding is you'll either love it or hate it. It certainly isn't to everyone's tastes but if you enjoy it, it's a satisfying addition to your Christmas menu. Ideally it should be made well in advance.

From Nigella Lawson's recipe:


  • 150 gram(s) currants
  • 150 gram(s) sultanas
  • 150 gram(s) prunes (scissored into pieces)
  • 175 ml sherry (pedro ximenez)
  • 100 gram(s) plain flour
  • 125 gram(s) white breadcrumbs
  • 150 gram(s) suet
  • 150 gram(s) dark muscovado sugar
  • 1 teaspoon(s) ground cinnamon
  • ¼ ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon(s) baking powder
  • 1 lemon(s) (zest and juice)
  • 3 medium egg(s)
  • 1 medium cooking apple(s) (peeled and grated)
  • 2 tablespoon(s) honey
  • 125 ml vodka

  1.  Although I stipulate a capacious 1.7 litre/3 pint basin, and cannot extol the utter gloriousness of this pud too much, I know that you’re unlikely to getthrough most of it, even half of it, at one sitting. But I like the grand, pride instilling size of this, plus it’s wonderful on following days, microwaved in portionsafter or between meals, with leftover Eggnog Cream, or fried in butter and eaten with vanilla ice cream for completely off-the-chart, midnight-munchyfeasts. But it wouldn’t be out of the question – and it would certainly be in the spirit of the season – to make up the entire quantity of mixture, and share between smaller basins – a 2 pint one for you, a 1 pint one to give away. Three hours’ steaming both first and second time around should do it; just keep theone pudding for yourself, and give the other to a friend, after it’s had its first steaming, and is cool, with the steaming instructions for Christmas Day.
  2. Put the currants, sultanas and scissored prunes into a bowl with the Pedro Ximénez, swill the bowl a bit, then cover with clingfilm and leave to steep overnight or for up to 1 week.
  3. When the fruits have had their steeping time, put a large pan of water on to boil, or heat some water in a conventional steamer, and butter your heatproof plastic pudding basin (or basins), remembering to grease the lid, too.
  4. In a large mixing bowl, combine all the remaining pudding ingredients, either in the traditional manner or just any old how; your chosen method of stirring, and who does it, probably won’t affect the outcome of your wishes or your Christmas.
  5. Add the steeped fruits, scraping in every last drop of liquor with a rubber spatula, and mix to combine thoroughly, then fold in cola-cleaned coins or heirloom charms. If you are at all frightened about choking-induced fatalities at the table, do leave out the hardware.
  6. Scrape and press the mixture into the prepared pudding basin, squish it down and put on the lid. Then wrap with a layer of foil (probably not necessary, but I do it as I once had a lid-popping and water-entering experience when steaming a pudding) so that the basin is watertight, then either put the basin in the pan of boiling water (to come halfway up the basin) or in the top of a lidded steamer (this size of basin happens to fit perfectly in the top of my all-purpose pot) and steam for 5 hours, checking every now and again that the water hasn’t bubbled away.
  7. When it’s had its 5 hours, remove gingerly (you don’t want to burn yourself) and, when manageable, unwrap the foil, and put the pudding in its basin somewhere out of the way in the kitchen or, if you’re lucky enough, a larder, until Christmas Day.
  8. On the big day, rewrap the pudding (still in its basin) in foil and steam again, this time for 3 hours. Eight hours combined cooking time might seem a faff, but it’s not as if you need to do anything to it in that time.
  9. To serve, remove from the pan or steamer, take off the lid, put a plate on top, turn it upside down and give the plastic basin a little squeeze to help unmould the pudding. Then remove the basin – and voilà, the Massively Matriarchal Mono Mammary is revealed. (Did I forget to mention the Freudian lure of the pudding beyond its pagan and Christian heritage?)
  10. Put the sprig of holly on top of the dark, mutely gleaming pudding, then heat the vodka in a small pan (I use my diddy copper butter-melting pan) and the minute it’s hot, but before it boils – you don’t want the alcohol to burn off before you attempt to flambé it – turn off the heat, strike a match, stand back and light the pan of vodka, then pour the flaming vodka over the pudding and take it as fast as you safely can to your guests. If it feels less dangerous to you (I am a liability and you might well be wiser not to follow my devil-may-care instructions), pour the hot vodka over the pudding and then light the pudding. In either case, don’t worry if the holly catches alight; I have never known it to be anything but singed.

The pudding can made well in advance and you can freeze it for a year. It should serve roughly 8 people. As I said before one can serve it with cream (Nigella has a simple recipe for eggnog cream here) or custard. Once you've done finished, all that's left to do is enjoy :)

For those of you who enjoy cookery books Nigella Christmas is absolutely excellent. Let me know if you try the recipe and your thoughts on the results. Oh, and two quick apologies firstly for any dress sizes gained over the holidays :) and secondly for the inclusion of a very off topic segment. I really should set up a personal blog for pieces such as this. Anyhow, as it's Christmas I hope you enjoy!


  1. My take on the situation (and this is purely speculative, of course) is that there may have been a delay in hearing about where William and Kate would spend Christmas (as reported by Charlotte) as William, Kate and the Middletons conferred and made a decision.

    I think that it's likely that the Queen issued an invitation for the Middletons to have Christmas at Sandringham, but also in the invitation I think she likely made it clear that she would understand if the Middletons decided to stay in Bucklebury for Christmas.

    I think this is because if the Queen had just issued an invitation to the Middletons (with no sort of '..we will understand if you choose not to attend...' it might have sounded as if it were almost a command. The Queen has a complete mastery of what is and what isn't diplomatic, so if the invitation was worded in this manner, the Middletons would feel free to politely turn down the invitation.

    If this is so - and I do emphasize this is all speculation on my part - I do think that William and Kate (and the Middletons) made the right choice. As much as I will be personally disappointed not to see William and Kate at Christmas in alternate years, I do think it's best that William and Kate bring up their child(ren) knowing both of their families.

    William and Harry didn't have this really (growing up and spending time with both the Windsors and the Spencers) and it hasn't been to William and Harry's benefit at all.

    1. Very interesting thoughts!

      Apparently there is no way the Middletons were invited for Christmas Day because it's strictly family only but I do agree they were invited for Boxing Day and will very likely go with William and Kate when they do visit Sandringham.

      I think it's wonderful for both of them and they will no doubt have a splendid time. It is a huge break in tradition though, The Queen is obviously very supportive of them.

    2. I certainly agree with what you say Charlotte, because I don't think that the Middletons would have been invited for Christmas Day, but rather for Christmas. I think it would've been more that it may have been suggested that the Middleton family could move their Christmas to Sandringham and then William and Kate would have been quite able to split their time between the families.

      I could see the BRF thinking that might be a compromise. But I could also see that the Middletons would decide that it might be as important to spend Christmas at their house in Bucklebury.

    3. Kristin, San Francisco22 December 2012 at 15:02

      I absolutely agree with you!!!

    4. William and Kate are starting a nice tradition, and as you said Mariby, It's a compromise. It would been awfully sad for the Middleton family to lose their daughter every Christmas.

    5. I don't think William would ever allow the Middletons not to be able to spend Christmas with his Duchess. I like the idea of every other year. And William IMO will make sure it happens.

    6. Hi Pauline,
      I am not English mother tongue, what does "William IMO" mean?
      Thank you!

    7. It means In MY Opinion.

    8. IMO = in my opinion

  2. Susan
    Wonderful post. We serve plum pudding in my family with hard sauce made from butter, icing sugar and brandy. We do what is called a flaming plum pudding- before serving you pour brandy over it, light it and bring it in flaming. It is great.
    Also, I wonder if you have heard of the line 'Carven'. Although it is French it would be a perfect choice for the Duchess: gorgeous tailoring; simple designs that are a bit edgy and a price point that the Duchess can well afford. It's about the same price or a bit higher than Smythe which runs about $595 for a blazer.
    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

    1. Hi Tara, I believe you are addressing the lovely Susan from What Kate Wore? :) :)

    2. Yes! Oops but I do love your posts as well.
      Best wishes.
      Also, I read some of the posts about W&K's choices. I don't think it's a problem at this stage and I think they are together trying to build a strong foundation for their marriage, much the way the Queen did in her early years in Malta. Times ahead will be hard as their life becomes increasingly public.

      I think it will be good for William to see how the rest of us spend Christmas and I think it is really part of his ongoing education. Being in a close knit caring family as the Middletons seem to be won't do him any harm.

  3. love that duchess have supportive families system and umlike diana she has supportive husband i guess

  4. Sarah from Calif.22 December 2012 at 14:50

    Thank you Charlotte for the Christmas pudding recipe. My goodness that is a very involved recipe. I'm so sorry to have gotten off topic. I tend to do that a lot and will try to refrain, but thank you for your work on that.

    I am relieved to hear Kate and William will be at the Middleton's. It will obviously be a more relaxed setting. Kate will probably lounge around a bit longer in her robe. I'm sure the Queen, Philip, Charles ect. are all a little disappointed. I know my mom is when the grandchildren can't make it. I will be checking out hats today even though we don't wear them as much as you do in England. I think a lot of us wish we did.

    1. Nothing in the world to apologise for, I thoroughly enjoyed it :)

  5. Ana B. from Brazil22 December 2012 at 15:05

    It is very good to see William and Catherine could choose to spend Christmas in Bucklebury. I hope she can get all the rest that she needs!
    I love the hat Catherine wore to Zara's wedding last year... It is one of my all time favourites!
    The pudding recipe is very interesting! In Brazil, our main tradition is to have turkey and lots, lots of fruits on the table! Pineapples, cherries, plums, watermelons, grapes... Actually, grapes are almost mandatory, especially on New Year's Eve!
    I'm very excited! This is my favourite time of the year!
    I wish you all a very Merry Christmas!
    Hugs from a rainy São Paulo!

  6. Looks like that pudding is amazing - but I have no idea what half of those ingredients are haha! Thank you for another amazing year of Kate watching... We appreciate all you do! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, USA

  7. Another great post from you Charlotte. I am very happy that William & his Duchess are going to spend Christmas with her family. I beleive this is William's way of saying to the Queen (in a nice way) that the Duchess's family is just as important as the royal family. William is setting his own family ways. I can see them splitting their time in the years to come with both families. It is not far that the Middleton family can not see their grand baby at Christmas. I know how it was when my boys were little. We had to be at both families on Christmas Day. The boys never got to play with their toys on that day.

    The receipe for the Plum Pudding is very interesting. I am not a cook but I am going to pass it on to my cousin who is a chef. I have ties to England as my grandmother and brother in law were both born in the UK.

    I want to wish all of my Duchess friends & Charlotte a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. I am off today to spend the next week with my son & his family. That means I get to see my grandson who is 4yrs. Can't wait.

  8. Thanks for a great post, Charlotte. Thanks, too, for the Christmas pudding recipe. (I won't be making it--it's too hard!--but next year I may try to order one!) I think your worries about being "off-topic" with the pudding talk are completely unfounded. After all, it was the office party of the Duke and Duchess that prompted your first mention of the pudding. Kate must surely be pleased that through the vehicle of your post she and William are eliciting an interest in all things British! Charlotte, you, too, serve as a worthy ambassador for your country.

  9. I have to say: I am blown away that they would choose to do this. The Royal family is not like other families, and Pauline, the Middleton family is definitely NOT as important as the Windsors. For one, they are not funded by the land of the British people. I am absolutely astounded that they chose the second year of their marriage to make a stand like this. In theory there is nothing wrong with wanting to divide Christmases like other couples. Except that the Royals fund William and the British people fund the Royals.
    Maybe this is William's way of slowly withdrawing from the Royals.
    I hope that William knows what he's doing. I suspect that when it's his time he will be instrumental in starting the process that will ultimately lead to the dismantling of the monarchy.

    1. Anon, I agree with you. I think this is quite strange. A few days ago, they were going to decide at the last minute depending on how Kate felt, and now they're going? I'm going to have to take off my tinfoil hat, because methinks something is afoot!

    2. What on earth is so odd about William and Kate spending Christmas with her family? In their engagement interview, William was very kind to the Middleton family and it was clear that he would see to it that HIS wife did feel cut off and suffer as his mother did in some ways. And with Kate being pregnant and not having the easiest time of it, it will do her a world of good to be in a much more relaxed setting. I honestly believe this decision was made with the full support and understanding of the royal family.

    3. "dismantling of the monarchy" because they choose to take turns at Christmas? Good heavens. Now I've heard it all. Nothing "is afoot" except a young man who wants to create a family. William is abundantly clear in his allegience to the queen, the country, and his wife. Rubbish.

    4. This is one of those rare instances when I don't agree with the steps taken by HRH's William and Catherine. Monarchy is all about tradition and Xmas at Sandringham is a particularly momentous and yet innocuous one as well, one for which I don't see why they could not abide by (in contrast to, say, the more momentous and appropriate change of the traditional male primogeniture succession). I agree that as future heads of the nation they should be at Sandringham, period. They are not exclusively private people on this day, and Xmas does officially and symoblically stand for something in England.

      Yes, family is important, but so is duty to the nation. The Duchess's family could be with the Royal Family during Xmas, albeit not as part of the public walk, of course. I will confess that I am disappointed and find this an unnecessary break in tradition. Silvia

    5. Royalfan and Beth I so extremely agree with both of you!!!!!!!!! I also add that just because the British people fund the Royals doesn't mean they can dictate where the Royals spend Christmas. Families make their own traditions during the Christmas season(including the Royals). The Middleton Family IS just important to William(who he has grown to love) as his own family and now is a good time to experience the Middleton's traditions before he becomes more involved in his royal duties. Christmas is about family, love and COMPROMISE.
      Lets all keep in mind that Prince Harry will be spending Christmas in Afghanistan and pray for his safety.

    6. I think what gets my tinfoil hat quivering is all the mixed messages that have been put out about this. It was said they were going to decide at the last minute -- which implies that they could be going -- yet Charlotte's article said it was decided before the pregnancy announcement. Then, after making the last minute decision statement, it's announced on the 22nd. That's why I said what I said.

      PS If the baby is a girl, I think Charlotte would be a lovely Christian name. :)

  10. Charlotte, I am curious - do you think that this action won't have any repercussions in the Royal family ? It is completely unprecedented. I cannot imagine that *anyone* in that family is happy to read this announcement. What is your opinion, if you do not mind sharing?

    1. Hello! Of course I don't mind sharing.

      It is certainly unprecedented. Before the wedding it was said William made it clear they would not spend every Christmas at Sandringham but I'm not sure any of us saw that idea coming to fruition because it is such a break in tradition.

      William is incredibly close with The Queen and this decision has been reached with her approval, perhaps some time ago. William is determined to do things his way and when the time comes I think he will be a very different King. The determination stems, in my opinion from everything that happened with Diana. He simply won't allow Kate to have the same experiences with royal life.

      I think it means a lot to both of them to spend Christmas with the Middletons this year. Following Kate's illness and the release of the topless photos from France, I think they want to relax and enjoy a private family Christmas.

      I don't think there will be repercussions but we are seeing a change in the monarchy and old traditions broken. What will be interesting will be seeing if others follow suit.

    2. Oh, and I wanted to add - I don't think that this decision was arrived at long ago. Then they would have announced it long ago. I think that there was a lot of conflict and negotiating going on behind the scenes. Hence the delay in announcing plans, and also the endless rumors about the plans.

    3. I agree with you that this was a negotiated agreement. I do think it shows she is feeling better because if she was still very ill there would be no doubt she would have had to go to her parents to be closer to medical care. I know she is ill but it really would help her image if instead of just going to a few parties and a sports award if she briefly also went to a charity or religious event for the holidays. I know we do not know all she does but rarely in this day and age is one just a wife. A wife and mother is busy but a wife who's husband works long hours has time to do a little charity work. She should hire a stylist to shop for her (the fun stuff) and she should use her time to pay it forward to her devoted countrymen.
      Her husband is a very patient person but some times patience wears thin over time. He does events works full time so he shoulders his responsibilities well but he will eventually need a spouse at his side who can do more that smile and dress well.
      I hope once she becomes a mother she learns to multi-task or if she is just a "beautiful wife" and stays home with the kids the Royal family will have to elevate Beatrice and Eugenie to do the charity work the Royal wives in the past have done.

    4. Charlotte, I totally agree with you. I just posted a similar remark before I read yours! :)

      And I don't think this was a "last minute" decision simply because it was announced at this time. Had they announced it earlier, it would have allowed that much more time for speculation.

    5. Look it this way, K&W probably wouldn't be much fun. There will be a lot gooey baby talk and morning sickness. Maybe the Queen and Prince Philip realized that it would be a nuisance. Besides the Middleton masnion isn't exactly slumming it.

  11. Nicole from CA, USA-
    You can purchase an award winning British Sticky Toffee Pudding from Williams Sonoma & from Norm Thompson. The latter I served at my girlfriends' annual party. Many asked for ordering info to serve to family on Christmas. Delicious!!

  12. Thank you Charlotte. As usual, you do such an amazing job. I really appreciate that you answered my question and since I was not the only one, went to the trouble of putting up a recipe too. :) I have to believe that someone on her staff or Kate herself has seen your blog. If it were me, I would have to be so delighted to have someone so thoughtful and through representing me, even if unofficially. You have a lot of class. Merry, Merry Christmas!

    1. Thank you so much Jennifer. Such lovely and kind words which are deeply appreciated!

      Wishing you and your family a wonderful Christmas x

  13. Happy Christmas Charlotte!!! Thank you for all your.posts this year!!!!!

    1. Thank you and Seasons Greetings to you! I will do a post tomorrow about William and Kate's Christmas in case we don't see anything over the next few days.

  14. Merry Christmas Charlotte!

  15. I am disappointed that William and Catherine are breaking with tradition. I guess I am a traditionalist. But really -- what are they thinking? This is the Queen's Diamond Jubilee year. Only one other British Monarch has her record of reigning that long. There are so many reasons, in my opinion, for them to put their own self-interests aside and be there for the Queen. I am surprised at their lack of sensitivity. When Catherine decided to marry William she must have known what she was getting into. They were together for 8 years before they married! I was hoping that Catherine followed in the Queen's footsteps with her sense of "duty" to the country, but I don't think she does. I cannot see the British Monarchy holding together with their current attitudes. Now, if the reason is solely because of Catherine's health issues, then that's another story. I really hope that is the case. I don't particularly care for the Middletons. They seem like opportunists to me, but I realize we do not have all the facts. Just the ones the media wants us to have. In any case, I feel sorry for the Queen. I really think she deserves more from William and Catherine -- especially this year.

    1. The Queen herself altered the so-called tradition and for many years the
      the Christmas gathering was at Windsor, but was again altered a few years ago when her cousins were omitted and the gathering moved back to Sandringham. I suspect the Queen agrees that a quieter Christmas is what Catherine needs at present.
      Maybe I'm stupid, but I cannot see how where Christmas day is spent can possibly have anything to do with duty. We would all have liked to see Catherine on Christmas morning, but surely her health comes first and perhaps we should all remember how very much we worried with our first child, so why should we expect any difference from William and Catherine.
      Happy Christmas everyone

    2. IMO William and Kate have done plenty to support the Queen during her Diamond Jubilee. I would even go so far as to suggest that they put off trying to have a baby so they wouldn't overshadow HM.

      Kate knew exactly what she was getting into and she has proven all along that she has what it takes to be a supportive royal spouse. As a matter of fact, quite often she was criticized for being to willing to do whatever William's lifestyle required.

      So now, to suggest that she has no sense of duty and that they are disappointing the Queen is a bit over the top IMO. Maybe, just maybe it's William's way of stepping up and being supporitve of his wife and recognizing the sacrifices she has made for him and the royal family. Maybe he's sticking to his word that the Middleton family would remain just as important to him and Kate as before they got married. And, maybe it's simply the common sense thing to do while Kate deals with the tricky stages of her pregnancy.

    3. Sarah from Calif.23 December 2012 at 17:53

      Jean I totally agree with you . You have written my thoughts exactly and helped me to put them in words.
      Have a Merry Christmas!

    4. I totally agree with Royalfan. And I don't think that Her Majesty is disappointed at all! William and Kate did a wonderful job at her service this year. And they will go to Sandringham anyway. There is nothing dramatic here.

      Hugs to you Charlotte! I really love your blog!

      And Merry Christmas and happy holidays to you all!

    5. I'm inclined to agree with Anonymous and was very surprised to read that Catherine would be spending Christmas with her family. 'Duty' does come into play here. It sounds very insensitive to say but the Middletons are not as important as the Windsors, and William and Catherine should subconsciously know that.

      Having said that, I have not gone through what William went through regarding his mother. So my opinion is objective.

  16. Thank You Charlotte for making 2012 such an awesome year with your wonderful posts!!Im so looking forward to what you have in store for all your followers in 2013!! Thank you for sharing the plum pudding recipe, I will experiment with that some day :)Im glad in a way that WIll and Kate are spending Christmas with the Middletons,,,it will be a joyous private celebration for them.Merry Christmas to you and your family, Charlotte!!

  17. Nice!!! Now we know kate is the one who wears the pants, good for her.

  18. happy holidays to you charlotte will try our pudding on christmas eve...

  19. Hi,

    A very Happy Christmas to all, wherever you may be. I think it's wonderful you included the recipe, Charlotte, and you don't need a separate site for such things. Since Kate's appearances are sporadic and likely to be that way for quite a while now with a baby coming, it's nice to fill in with information of interest to your very international readership.

    1. Alyssa from PA USA26 December 2012 at 17:57

      I thought this too!

  20. I am so happy to hear that William and Kate will spend Christmas with her family and that the Queen approves. I think the Royal family is going out of their way to include the Middletons and to try to not repeat the same mistakes made with Diana. It is great to see. I wonder if William and Kate will swap back and forth each year between the families for Christmas. I admire William for standing up for Kate's family and doing things his own way. This shows that he really loves Kate and her family.
    I love the Queen's coat, too. She always looks radiant.

  21. Thank you for the post, Charlotte, for the pudding recipe, and for quoting my tweet above. I'm tickled and humbled.

    I am personally delighted that William & Kate have chosen to spend their second Christmas as husband and wife with the Middletons. Few articles last year suspected they would, but no one took it that seriously as it's never done before. A break in tradition, yes, but one that I think was made with much thought, love and care. You have to give it to William for sticking to his promise of keeping Kate's family close and making sure they their daughter continues to be part of their lives. Once again, lessons from the past. Have we not heard Diana & Fergie lament on never having their children for Christmas after their divorce? It's delightful that the Queen has also given her blessing. It will be interesting if other royals follow suit in the future.

    Hope the Cambridges and the Middletons enjoy a "blissfully calm" Christmas, as Pippa said. I'm sure it will be very special.

    Merry Christmas to everyone reading this blog as well. It's been a fantastic year! And 2013 is looking to be just as glorious...

  22. Good for them, every young couple needs to have strong boundaries between them and any possibly overbearing family. The more they break with tradition and do exactly what feels right to them the better for them.

  23. Good for them! William and Chatherine need the rest and quiet before the baby comes. They are going to be wonderful parents! The Queen and the Duchess parents must be over the moon with joy....!


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