Tuesday, 10 February 2015

UPDATED: The Cambridges Return to London, Kate's Private Hospital Visit & Latest Updates

Good evening, dear readers,

We're back again with news of Mustique departure photos which emerged a little earlier this evening. Several of you commented they usually come out a few days after the Cambridges have returned to the UK and we see that trend continuing this year.

Mail Online Twitter Feed

The family were photographed boarding a British Airways flight at St Lucia's airport last Friday following a two-week break on the Caribbean island of Mustique with the Middleton family. There's a selection of snaps available at the Mail Online and PopSugar; unfortunately we only get a glimpse of Kate carrying George. Speaking of the little Prince, below we see him looking very sleepy in stripy pyjamas.

PopSugar Twutter Feed

The Duchess looked relaxed and casual in a black cardigan/top, jeans and wore her hair tied back in a scrunchie.

While Kate carried their son, William was busy carrying bags, ID's for the bag include the Cath Kidston Folk Flowers Busy Travel Bag. There's a variety of bags of different types and sizes available including the Folk Flowers Foldaway Overnight Bag and the Travel Bag (reduced from $120 to $80).

Cath Kidston

Other items available in the striking print are the Folk Flowers Mini Satchel reduced from $61 to $40 and the Zip Wallet.

Cath Kidston

Another very likely suggestion is the Jules Bluposy Stopover Womens Overnight Bag (with thanks to Helena) If I had to guess I would say this is the correct ID. It was reduced from £75 to £10 before selling out online.

Joules

As for Prince George's pyjamas, the experts at Prince George Pieces believe he may have been wearing the $38.50 Polarn O. Pyret Baby Boys Best Basic Baby Eco Pyjamas. They are currently available at Amazon.


Amazon

I'm sure the family had a wonderful trip and will be returning next January with Prince George and his little brother or sister!

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News has just come in confirming the Duchess paid a private visit to the Bethlem and Maudsley Hospital School today (Feb 10) which cares for children with mental problems. Kate spent around ninety minutes meeting youngsters and was there in her role as patron of Place 2 Be.

PA Royal Reporters Twitter Feed

More from Kensington Palace:

'The Duchess of Cambridge this afternoon visited the Bethlem and Maudsley Hospital School, Beckenham.
This visit was arranged through Place2Be, of which HRH is Royal Patron, after learning about their work during the Place 2 Reflect conference last year to further develop her knowledge of the sector.'

As the visit was private we don't expect to see pictures.

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As many of you may have heard, Kensington Palace announced the Duchess will visit Stoke-on-Trent and Smethwick on 18 February. Kate's first engagement will see her visit the Emma Bridgewater factory. The factory will be used in the production of a range of mugs in support of East Anglia's Children's Hospices, which Kate had a hand in designing.


Afterwards, Her Royal Highness will join families from the Donna Louise Children's Hospice in a ceramic painting workshop, before unveiling a plaque to commemorate the visit in front of assembled staff in the factory courtyard.

Next, Kate will visit Action for Children's Cape Hill Children's Centre.

Action for Children

More from the official press release:

'Her Royal Highness will get an introduction to the charity and its work in providing early support for vulnerable families across the UK from staff and volunteers. The Duchess of Cambridge will then attend a private roundtable discussion with families who have accessed Action for Children services including the organisation's Sandwell Family Partners programme, which is based at the children’s centre.
 Her Royal Highness will then watch a play session and meet the children and parents who use Cape Hill Children’s Centre.'

Kate works particularly well with children and her support of this organisation will be most welcome. The area's local authority is the 12th most deprived in England and any attention and interest the visit will bring will be important.

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We know how many of you are fond of Kate's Aquatalia Rhumba Boots.

Nordstrom

We're sure many fans of the stylish black suede boots will be pleased to see they are currently on sale at Nordstrom significantly discounted from £505 to £313. Colours include black, charcoal and espresso. Made in Italy, the weatherproof stretch boot comes with a fitted slip-resistant rubber sole.


Do many of you own the boots? If so, please let us know your thoughts on them.

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Finally, it's always nice to see new photos of Kate from her pre-engagement days. Friend Richard Dennen shared this snap of Kate.

Richard Dennen Instagram

We'll see Kate on Thursday for her engagement with the 1851 Trust. If you're just joining us, scroll down for a new 'Kate Loves' post :)

81 comments:

  1. Looking forward to the next engagement. And I I adore the lady bug pattern! It's so cheerful. :))

    And I wonder what prompted this friend to share the photograph? It's cute, but why now?

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    1. As its just the one photograph, perhaps he didn't realize he even had it until flipping through old photos from years ago and came across it.

      It's very cute, thanks for sharing Charlotte!

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    2. I agree, Stephanie, it's very cute! I love seeing pre-engagement photos of Kate. She used to look so carefree and naturally beautiful. (Not to say she's not beautiful now, but in a different way...)

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  2. Aaahhhh, I'm having so much Londonlust right now over here in Canada! I love Cath Kidston and Emma Bridgewater! I own a duffel-style bag in that same print/color, and I was recently telling my husband how I cannot wait to go back to buy more Emma Bridgewater pieces.

    Thanks for a great post :-)

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  3. George is the cutest! He's going to be a handsome little boy.

    When I saw the rumba boots for a split second I thought (more like hoped) that they were being raffled off...then realized they're still $500. Major let down.

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  4. Are these photos for sure recent? Could they actually be from when they holidayed in Balmoral... I have never been pregnant, so I don't know - can a 7-month pregnant woman carry a 30-pound toddler over her bump (not on her hip), without even holding onto the rails for support up stairs?

    Anyways I am so excited for the 12th!

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    1. I'm 5 months and you do what you have to do. Since she's in a line and taking it step by step and not rushing it's literally one foot wait the other foot wait. I do wonder where the nanny is. The muscles on the man in front of Will make me think he's a po.

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    2. Yes Stephaine a pregnant mom can carry a 30lbs baby.And they are from this holiday. I don't believe they fly Bristish Airways to Balmoral. And one more thing, when they were at Balmoral Kate was not that big.

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    3. Erika from Massachusetts10 February 2015 at 17:58

      Yes, she can certainly carry a toddler unless there are some heavy lifting restrictions which we know she doesn't have because she had an ok to travel. Besides, her bump isnt huge yet, so no problem holding her son in that position.

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    4. You can buy Jules bags in many places in Canada - and they are not that different (and it looks like that is the brand of the bag William is carrying, actually). I actually prefer Jules' style to the other (many) alternatives out there - seems more authentic British country side. You can check the on WKW site too for specifics on them (likely more than you will need...).

      The Rhumba boots are very narrow - on the foot and the calf. Even for regular-sized feet / legs they are not comfortable. I am not convinced Kate's aren't customized, she was (still is) a swimmer and whilst she has very nice legs, you can tell they are strong too (good formation of the muscles - on her calfs) - therefore (in my opinion - after having trying them more than once) she would not fit in the "regular" off the shelf model.

      Generally speaking though, Aquaitalia boots are comfortable. Booties fit a wider array of builds, and I am surprised to read that some of you felt the heel is not as firm. It may have to do with the way each person walks. Often we put pressure in various - and different - parts of our feet (with a podiatrist dad, I can tell you there's thousands and thousands of "footprints" - which means each of us walks a little different).

      Enough... enjoy our boots if you have them, if you want to order online, think twice to avoid the hassle of returning...

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  5. Sarah from Calif.10 February 2015 at 02:18

    Haha, love William with the Flower travel bag. My husband dies when I ask him to carry my purse.... :) George is growing! and his hair has gotten longer. He is adorable :)
    Well hope they are all relaxed and ready for their need venues !

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  6. Thanks Charlotte! Once again, a lovely post. I am looking forward to purchasing something of Ms. Bridgewater's towards the charity. I hope they mail overseas, as I will be very disappointed. Happy that the Cambridge's are safely back from their vacation. It is always great to be on vacation but it is always a relieve to get back home!

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    1. A heads up. It's only 2 mugs that give £5 to charity, not the rest of the set.

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    2. I don't know where you are, but there are definitely Emma Bridgewater sources in North America, and some provide free shipping. Just google. But whether they will handle the patterns for charity that Kate helped design, I don't know. It seems you can also order direct from England.

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    3. I Googled and found sources for Emma Bridgewater in the US, but I don't see this pattern anywhere (including the UK). Has it been released yet...?

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    4. I am in North America and will look into all your suggestions. I am really interested in purchasing the set designed specifically for the charity though with a view to making a contribution to the charity and I am good with just the mugs. I think the release date is in March 2015 as I think in the post Charlotte did on Kate's last visit the release date was included. Anyway, thank you all for the information; you are all so very kind.

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  7. I have had a similar flowered duffel bag for quite a few years. It was made by Vera Bradley. At first glance I thought William was carrying its twin, though the background of mine is black and the flowers are smaller. I don't like the current Vera Bradley fabrics as much as their older ones, though they still make a great variety of bags.

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    1. I've got a Vera Bradley duffel too that I received as a gift. I thought that's what William had at first. It's interesting that there's so many designers with the same type of bag and fabric patterns. I love my Vera Bradley - it's perfect for overnights, and is quite sturdy for a fabric bag. Not something I'd ever use as checked luggage though - just as a carry-on. Nice to know I have the same taste in bags as the royals LOL!

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    2. I use my Vera Bradley duffel only for car travel. I need wheels in airports - they do have a wheeled duffel but mine isn't. I have a couple of smaller Vera Bradley bags that work for short trips, seat bags on long plane trips, needlework, etc. Great bags, very sturdy. I wonder whether William is carrying Kate's duffel or a Prince George necessity. And what was in all those bags Mr. Middleton pushed through an airport on the way to Mustique?

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  8. Tried on either Rhumba or similar but too narrow in calf, wish they came in wide, I love my Aquatalia Sweetie Boots.

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  9. Love the tea mugs!!

    I have the Rhumba boots... I wear them everyday for work during the winter. They are very comfortable and absolutely waterproof. I have slender calves so these fit wonderfully. Not sure I will purchase another color now that they are on sale. I only wish they were taller!

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    1. If you dont mind sharing - what is the circumfrence of your calves? Mine are 14"... just wanna know before I order cause they sound narrow?

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    2. Mine are closer to 13 inches - around 13.5 to be generous. They may fit you when they stretch.

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    3. Stephanie my calf is just under 14 inches. I want to clarify I wish the boot shaft was taller not the height of the heel :-)

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  10. I also found the Rumba a little narrow in the calf when I tried it on, and I would confidently say I have small to average size calfs. That's the main reason I decided against purchasing--I couldn't see spending that kind of money if the fit wasn't spot on. The boot is terribly lovely in every other way, though.

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  11. i just love them just like an ordinary family used to do william carrying the duchess bag is so sweet my beau always do that too but sometimes when me and friends partying our expected beau sit say we are so dumb with you nanny maria on other hand i think she helps but most part the duchess do her parts being mother to george its that normal walking and carrying your baby when heavily pregnant

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  12. I reckon baby George is gonna be the first male royal with long flowing hair over his shoulders.

    Our Kate is gonna change the monarchy a little bit sorta. Probably send boy George to a nursery in the Caribbean.

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    1. In the vacation pictures, Prince George appeared to be a curly top like the Queen and Princess Anne when they were young. If he is, I hope they start letting his curls be natural. But I'm afraid the young Monagasque men have beat him to the long and flowing bit.

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  13. Does anyone know where the picture of Kate in the red dress and black coat is from? (the one on the left in the Aquatalia Rumba section). I don't recall seeing her in this outfit before or the event it was from. If someone better informed than me could shed some light would be great!

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    Replies
    1. This picture was taken on the 25th February 2011, in London. Following the earthquake that struck Christchurch, New-Zealand, Kate went to sign a condolence book with William&Harry.

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  14. Brooke in South Carolina10 February 2015 at 14:00

    She is wearing a SCRUNCHIE! In public, outside of her home, where other people could see it...Yikes.

    George looks adorable though.

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    1. Haha! I was thinking the same thing!

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    2. Amy, Detroit Michigan10 February 2015 at 22:14

      Right?!?!?!? A scrunchie??????

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    3. All I could think of was that episode of Sex and the City where Carrie gets into an argument with her writer boyfriend that chic NY women would never be caught dead in public in a scrunchie!

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    4. Love it Shari! I thought of that episode too!!

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    5. Haha, I had the same thought too ladies! I won't be relpli-Kating that one. Only the Duchess can pull off a scrunchue!

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    6. Scrunchie and ponytail don't bother me when she's off on vacation. What I don't think is appropriate at a public appearance is the ponytail that is centered at the back of her head. It's far too swingy and school-girly. I didn't even like the one she wore on tour in NZ/Aus, with the blue coat. I especially disliked the messy ponytail she wore at the Mandela film opening. She would look much more polished if she wore her hair pulled together low at the nape of her neck, perhaps with an elegant clasp/barrette. (Sorry ladies, I never saw a single episode of Sex & the City, getting too old for that... maybe you can enlighten me?)

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    7. According to German InStyle magazine scrunchies are "back on track" as stars and starlets have been seen wearing them in public. SatC is so 90ies ;-) Love it anyway.
      Have a nice day! Greetings from Germany, Anja

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    8. Hahaha omg I'm dying laughing at all the scrunchie comments.
      Lets not forget that Harry's ex gf Cressida was seen out multiple times wearing a scrunchie. Maybe some of her style tips rubbed off on Kate.
      God I hope not!!!!

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    9. Scrunchies are much less damaging to the hair, especially long, heavy hair like Kate's. I hate regular hair bands too, they pull my hair around the hair line and they are never big enough. If worn for long enough, they do break the hair. If you wear them and do not think so, stop wearing them for a while and you will see a difference in the shedding, breakage, etc. The cloth around the scrunchie is much more gentle and comfortable for a long ride home on that plane.

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    10. eelady-
      The story behind the SATC comments comes from an episode where one of the characters on the show named Carrie who is a writer is dating another writer named Jack Berger. He wrote a book and the main character in the book is supposed to be a trendy New York woman who is running around town in a scrunchie. Carrie reads the book and tells him that trendy NY women wouldn't be caught dead in public with a scrunchie and only wear one when they're at home. He gets angry at her and tells her that she's wrong and they go out to dinner and proceed to encounter a woman who's wearing one. Jack tells Carrie that they are in NY and in a trendy restaurant and there was a woman wearing one. She tells him that the woman isn't from NY, so they ask her and sure enough she is indeed visiting from another state. Basically proving her theory right that trendy women do not wear scrunchies.

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    11. Blair - thanks for the scrunchie explanation! I guess Kate can be forgiven then since she's not from NY :)

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  15. I too tried on the Rumba boot (just for funzies, they're not in a grad student's budget!) and found that it was rather narrow in the calf. I have average to slightly large calves/ankles, but usually I fit into regular boots just fine.

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  16. I have the Olive ankle boot by Acquatalia and I attest to the narrowness of this style as well. It is beautifully made and a dream to walk in. I have had my eyes on the Rhumba for several years now. One winter Nordstrom discounted the black one to $350 but they did not have my size. I am not sure whether I am ready to spring for the $450, but if they discount it a bit more and I get my size (which unfortunately is very popular) I will definitely buy it. I have narrow calves and this brand is one of the few that fit perfectly.

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  17. Melanie from California10 February 2015 at 17:06

    I never could talk myself into spending more than $700 on a pair of shoes.... but now that the Rhumba boots have gone on sale, I have purchased them. :) I own the Ruby Dry/Royal in leather and they are really comfortable and fit well. I'm a little concerned that the Rhumba calf will be a bit narrow, but I hope breaking them in will stretch the fabric enough and do the trick. I'm so happy that these shoes went on sale--I never thought they would.

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  18. Erika from Massachusetts10 February 2015 at 18:02

    I wish we could see what earrings she is wearing. At first I thought they were the Zoraida double leaf but that's just a shadow on her face.

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  19. Duchess of Cambridge made a private visit to the Bethlem and Maudsley Hospital School which cares for children with mental health problems

    https://twitter.com/BBCPeterHunt/status/565222734566002688

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    1. What exactly is the point of a. the private visit and b. publicizing after the fact? I don't get what she is trying to do. Can someone please enlighten me - honest question, not trying to be snarky.

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    2. I don't know exactly why, but I have wondered the same thing. I feel like they keep it private so she doesn't have to worry about photos (yet this is how the charity gets people's interests). But then they announce the visit after the fact so that either it helps the charity (but I don't think it would without photos) or they announce it because the Palace knows people think Kate doesn't do any work. I honestly think they only announce the engagement after the fact so that it looks like Kate does more 'work'. Who really knows though. That is my opinion.

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    3. It may be that they really did want it to be private in respect to the privacy and comfort of the patients but wanted to announce for general awareness and to cut off gossip when the inevitable information that she had been there got out. No idea really just a guess. If I was the parent of a child with mental health issues I would not want the press camped outside my child's hospital.

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    4. Private is not the same as secret. Announcing it after the event gives profile to the cause whilst affording privacy to those people at the meeting.

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    5. According to a statement from Kensington Palace, she went to broaden her knowledge of a subject in which she is deeply interested..
      I for one admire her efforts to learn.

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    6. They make it public otherwise there wouldn't be any promotional effect.
      They do so afterwards to keep things more manageable-without media-less security hazards, and possibly to show Kate also works under the radar.

      Camilla

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    7. The charity still receives publicity when her visit is announced. But without all the fanfare, it may enable her to spend some private quality time there vs. the typical visit with cameras everywhere.

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    8. As Jean said she was there to learn about the Hospital and it's work, not necessarily to promote it at this time. An example of how she prepares for future work with Place2Be behind the scenes.

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    9. Every member of the BRF has meetings/briefings/reports etc regarding the work of their charities and (for senior royals) meetings with ministers etc. Mainly they take place in their offices. These meetings are reported in the Court Circular. All standard practice.

      Occasionally these meetings take place elsewhere - like today for Catherine. There is nothing unusual taking place here. It is in the Court Circular and KP let people have some background info to it.

      I think the real issue is that she has done these in the past and has never got credit for it, whereas other royals always report them. I think the new PR man at KP is getting it right and ensuring she is getting the credit she deserves.

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    10. If secret, unannounced visits were what she was mostly doing, I would agree that there seems little point. Her job is to promote her patronages and represent the nation.

      However, by announcing her work (sans photos) there is still PR integrity for the agency. As well, it is certainly lovely to learn that she is making efforts to learn more about these agencies. She even stayed longer than she usually does. :)

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    11. I think there is a misunderstanding about this school. The Bethlem and Maudsley Hospitals are NHS hospitals not charities and the school is for in-patients in the hospital, Arriving in a glare of publicity followed by train of photographers would not be appropriate.

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    12. I think in this instance it was a wise and sensitive decision to keep the visit private since it deals with mentally ill children! Yet reporting it in the Court Circular after will give it apt attention. Good move. Glad Kate is doing it.

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    13. If they tell you about it - Kate is not working under the radar. They purposely wanted you to know. She went and learned about The Famous Grouse too. She has a wide variety of interests.

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    14. Moxie The public was notified after the fact. Why can't you understand that Kate and many othe royals do thing under the radar. These were childrenb with mental health problems. It is not correct to have cameras and a bunch of people in the hospitals taking photos.
      Kate was there to learn about what they did not to be in front of the media so they can have her photo all over the newspapers.

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  20. British Royals is recording that Catherine made a private visit to the Bethlem and Maudsley Hospital School. Beckenham today and talked to children and staff,

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  21. Hello everyone!

    The post has been updated with details of Kate's private hospital visit today.

    Many thanks for the feedback on the Aquatalia Rhumba Boots. It's very interesting to hear reviews on them.

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  22. I wish we could see what shoes she is wearing. Kate wears heels so much that I like to see when she is 'off-duty' what type of shoe she picks :). Hopefully a flat

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  23. The pre-engagement photo looks to be taken at an airport (gate sign in the background), with lots of strangers around her. What she would give for that kind of anonymity today.

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  24. I bought the boots and wanted to love them. They are an investment that I was hopeful would be comfortable. The heel is not as sturdy as appears in the photos - it's much thinner and a bit dangerous if one is in a hurry. These boots also quickly show wear on the suede. I was so hopeful that they'd be a winner, but I was really disappointed.

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    1. The heel is extremely sturdy. How much of a heel-walker are you ? I wear heels at work all day long and I assure you that Acquatalia makes among the best heels that there are. Great support and arch is perfect. If you found them thin and dangerous the issue could just be that you are not accustomed to heels ?
      About suede wear : all suede looks different when not brushed. You have to be careful to brush each time before going out - then it looks perfect. But suede is easy to maintain and does not look old until decades later.
      The Rhumba along with other Acquatalia shoes is a really wonderful pair of shoes. Just look at the online ratings. Five stars everywhere.

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    2. I agree with anonymous above! I have had these boots for toe years and have worn them for work very winter day for two seasons. They show no wear to the suede and the heels feel very sturdy to me. They were completely worth the investment.

      They are fashionable and functionable--a truly elusive combo for shoes/boots!

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    3. Based on the looks and measurements they sound and look like perfect boots to me. I wear super skinny heels and these look very big to me and easy to walk in, and I am over 50. :)

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  25. Tammy From California11 February 2015 at 03:06

    I can't believe how big (or how much hair!) the little prince is getting! He still appears to be a spirited little boy and I bet he gives and will give his parents a run for their money! I LOVE watching him grow up!

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  26. well i think the duchess works definitely i don't think the a private meeting should been announced before her private meeting i think the palace they try not media knows when he visiting her charity not by minute they have to tell media what goin pm i love boots of her looking forward to her next enagement

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  27. Last night the Queen gave a receptiion for the Earl and Countess of Wessex and their charities. How awesome she is, seriously. Sophie has just passed her 50, the Queen must be really fond of her family. She is really a huge value.

    While Kate going undercover:-) I think she maybe wanted to get to know the charity better without cameras. Honestly, I was wating for comments like: see how much she works in the background stuff.:-)

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    Replies
    1. Did anyone notice the dress that Sophie wore at the reception? She looked fabulous, but the dress was simple, black, & unadorned, except for a sparkly silver embroidered detail on the left shoulder. Highly reminiscent of the black dress with fern that Kate wore in NZ
      I really admire Sophie. She is hardworking, beautiful, smart, and a great asset to the firm.

      Delete
  28. Another private engagement for Kate:

    'The Duchess has attended a reception as patron of #royalfoundation to discuss its support of palliative care hospices for children.'

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  29. A private meeting is just that -- a way to get to know more about the organization and for the organization to get to know what she can do for them. Meetings are recorded in the Court Circular. With Catherine's engagement numbers so low in 2014, it is a PR move because it's easy to make an "appointment" with an organization versus attending a last minute event which you weren't invited to, if you get my meaning. With a new PR guy on board, I'm sure he wants to ensure Catherine's image is "more positive" by the end of the year because certainly the past 3 years have not been positive (e.g. skirts flying up, making mistakes when reading a speech, rolling of the eyes, work shy).

    And if I'm not mistaken, it was also the same day the Queen held a special reception for Edward and Sophie for their hard work by inviting hundreds of their charities together and also to celebrate a belated birthday for Sophie. Catherine's camp wasn't going to upstage that announcement. Not when the Queen was sending a subtle message to all.

    Well, that's my impression when I read both Royal news. However, I'm glad that Catherine's camp got her out and about sooner than later because we know that Catherine will take her maternity leave soon.

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  30. The private visits could be also for confidentiality of patients and this one mentioned mental health. Those patients are probably especially sensitive to cameras etc.. there is a lot to consider not always obvious to people.

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  31. Love the new photo. My mom has a nack for taking unflattering pics while people are putting a bite in there mouth...needless to say i had a good laugh when i saw the pic of kate doing the same thing .

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