Prince George turned one month this week, and the cozy microcosm of his mother’s arms has evolved into a world rich with sounds, colours, smells and textures of all kinds…
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Off to Wales we go… Mum and babe have left the heather-blanketed plains and woodlands of the peaceful Bucklebury countryside, with its sheep, deer, and monarch butterflies… and made the 270-mile long journey to join Daddy on the picturesque island of Anglesey, with its blue-flag beaches, majestic cliffs, and the fresh smells of balsam poplars, pines and delicate wild flowers.
Safely nestled between his mother and his grandmother in the back seat of the car, little George spends the trip kicking his newly discovered limbs, and popping his tiny fists – which he can now open – into his even tinier mouth. Catherine has learnt a thing or two about little mouths during her baby book reading frenzy. Georgie squirms to be held, and Catherine expertly calms him by stimulating his tender gums with a gentle finger, getting him used to having his pearly whites brushed down the road. Hiccups now punctuate his playtime, along with a gurgling tummy and explosive nappies as his digestive system begins to mature. Daddy was right… The little rascal takes much pleasure in watching the grown-ups march to his drum as he screams to be changed. Nappy rashes have also begun to plague the little monkey…
All the merry conversation between little George and the two ladies in his life does wonders to stimulate the growing neuro-pathways of his brain, setting up the complex control centre from which the future monarch’s brilliant ideas will one day come. His blue grey eyes track movement now, and his field of vision expands to 18 inches… just enough to catch mummy’s loving smile in the sunlight.
Sitting for such a long stretch of time takes its toll on Catherine’s postpartum backache as relaxed ligaments continue to plead for attention that William will soon be most gracious to administer. Mrs Middleton suggests a little snooze to compensate for the relentless sleep interruptions Catherine’s nighttime duty entails… The heat waves of pregnancy continue… Is this what menopause feels like? Having her devoted mother along to set up the nest gives Catherine the knowledgeable solicitude that only a mother can give.
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Home, sweet home number three As the tired travelers arrive at their destination, Lupo is only too eager to stretch his legs, and Antonella takes him for a walk. Though asleep, the little Prince receives his first tour of the cottage from the football hold of Daddy’s arms. All the windows are opened, and the gentle breeze pulls him from his short slumber, as shrill cries now fill the air… Pangs of hunger hail Mummy who, by now, is only too eager to oblige. A devoted Prince William quickly settles her with a pillow and a foot stool as he gets her something to eat… “You feed Georgie, and I will feed you.”
Over the next few days, Carole Middleton busies herself with the task of making the place a suitable one for her demanding grandson. From installing the little mobile he loves so much over the bassinet, to unpacking baby clothing, sheets, and supplies, to livening up the place with flowers, Mrs Middleton is a soothing balm over Catherine’s weary nerves. Her short stay leaves a familiar imprint on the cottage, as she reassuringly nudges the young lovebirds into the world of parenting.
At the Palace… At the Palace, the well-wishes of fans and citizens continue to pour in, filling the hallways of the Royal Household Office. A special correspondence officer joins the tight-knit royal staff on a temporary basis as every effort is made to respond to each and every letter.
On the first pictures front, hoping to assuage the world into waiting just a little longer for more official photographs at Balmoral with the four generations, or at the christening in October, the Duke and Duchess’s intention to share a more personal glimpse of their newfound joy gets sourly mistaken for the release of official photographs. William attempts to shield his wife from the naysayers who criticize her father’s pictures. The Royal Household staff make a note to leave nothing to interpretation when it comes to the press.
On a good note, the Duchess’s elegant yet sensible sense of style has wowed again: The lovely fuchsia knot-front Seraphine dress worn in her father’s snaps flies off the shelves, as Catherine’s closet is made accessible to fans of all walks of life.
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Africa follows wherever we go… You win some, you lose some… But for now, Prince William can’t resist giving his son a preview of his royal nursery… If Catherine’s designer instincts have prevailed in the beautiful Beatrix Potter mini-kingdom, Daddy’s African creatures have already become faithful travel companions… Today, a baby elephant and a baby rhino join Sophie the giraffe and Charles Stephens the Harrods’ teddy bear in the service of HRH Prince George of Cambridge.
The reunited young family settles briefly only to pack up for their next destination, Balmoral Castle, as Anmer Hall and Kensington Palace await…