If you enjoy royal watching and are a fan of The Great British Baking Show, then I hope you caught last night’s Christmas special with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Mary Berry. I only watched snippets of it, but it was full of family tidbits, festiveness, and of course, baking.
The highlight, in my opinion, was the bake-off in which William and Kate participated, because it’s always fun watching these two compete. While we see this on display with some regularity during sporting engagements, we’re usually left to glean the details through photos and the odd remark captured by royal reporters. It was illuminating to watch it play out in “real time,” and as always, I’m left impressed by how strong their relationship is. Seriously, when you consider that not only have they been married for eight years with three children, but that they also frequently work together, it’s a pleasure to see that they’re not only still very much in love, but they’re clearly one another’s friends.
Berry said as much when interviewed about the special, calling them a “pigeon couple.” That’s a new one for me, but the point was that she noted they were both playful and tactile throughout her time with them.
Kate has shared before that she cooks with Prince George and Princess Charlotte, but she offered up more detail last night. Apparently they help out with pizza making and baking, and frequently rely on Berry’s recipes. She also shared that Prince Louis would recognize Berry if he met her because he toddles around the kitchen, and Kate’s shelf of cookbooks is eye-level for him. According to his mother, Louis is particularly fascinated by Berry’s pictures.
Naturally, all of this was for a good cause, and the crew helped prepare a meal for the Cambridges’ charities, sparking a more serious conversation between William and Berry about parenting and his mother, the late Diana, Princess of Wales. He talked about her impact on him and his work, and how he’s begun sharing some of that with George and Charlotte. Specifically, he noted that he’s begun exposing them in age-appropriate ways to how the less fortunate live (in this case, the conversation was about homelessness) to ensure that they aren’t isolated in a royal bubble. That’s certainly one of Diana’s legacies – when William and his brother were growing up, she brought them along to various charities so they were exposed to how “the other half live,” so to speak. That experience sparked William’s work with Centrepoint, a homeless charity with which he’s been involved since adolescence.
For most of the program, Kate wore a new red dress by Alessandra Rich, the same label that designed the polka-dot dress she wore earlier this year to visit Bletchley Park. You know how I feel about those bows, but it was perfectly on-theme, so I’ll leave it at that.
All in all, this was a big win for the Cambridges, and frankly a nice palate cleanser after all the negative press swirling around the Royal Family for the last several months. And not for nothing, it was a great example of how to work with the media and do something different without stirring up controversy. Thank God.
Later this week, we should see the Royal Family convene at Buckingham Palace for the Queen’s Christmas luncheon. I feel like those usually happen on Wednesdays, so it’s entirely possible tomorrow is the big day, but regardless, I’ll certainly cover the event here. On that note, there’s been new headlines about how Harry and Meghan will miss this event, and once again I’m mystified by what the mystery is. It’s been made abundantly clear that they’re laying low through the end of the year and as such, there’s little reason to believe they’re going to surprise us with an appearance. So, fingers crossed for some Christmas cards in the next couple of days.
Last but not least, The Sun is reporting that George and Charlotte will make their debut on the Christmas Day walkabout at Sandringham. I’m surprised in the sense I thought William and Kate would wait another year, but given that it will help cover the cracks of Harry and Meghan’s absence, I can follow the logic. TBD, but I think it’s a pretty good bet.