A Royal Family After Philip

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When I first started writing here in January 2017 I was a little mad at myself for not having started sooner. The year felt so random at first, coming on the heels of the relatively quiet 2016 and well after the births of Prince George and Princess Charlotte. In retrospect, that year was the beginning of a new royal era – William and Kate moving back to London, William beginning as a full-time royal, the introduction and then engagement of Meghan, and, of course, The Duke of Edinburgh’s retirement.

His final engagement that summer was one of the more moving I’ve covered here and the images captured during it (such as the one above) were incredible. Philip retiring from public life was in and of itself historical – as has been captured in countless headlines and articles covering his life and death over the last few weeks, he was the longest-serving consort in British history. For the three years after his retirement he remained primarily at Wood Farm, a smaller residence on the Sandringham estate in Norfolk, while the Queen split her time between Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle. Last March, so as to ensure safety during quarantine, Philip joined his wife at Windsor.

His presence has thus been behind-the-scenes, of late. Very much a part of the family, but not necessarily the institution. Decisions and machinations that will drive how the Royal Family functions going forward have fallen to the Queen and The Prince of Wales – we saw this with how the two handled The Duke of York and The Duke of Sussex, the latter situation also roping in The Duke of Cambridge. Philip’s death, therefore, feels even more so like a family’s private loss. He took his leave of us, the public, a few years ago now.

With that, let’s turn to the funeral and what’s come out of it.

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All Green Everything

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Shall we pick up where left off? Let’s. February feels like a billion years ago now that we’re in the midst of a global pandemic, but at the same time, writing about this winter is nearly long enough to be nostalgic, so let’s go with that. On February 26, the Duchess of Cambridge attended a SportsAid event in London where she joined a foot race and tried her hand a taekwondo.

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William & Kate Attend Theatre On Behalf of The Royal Foundation

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On February 25, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge attended a showing of “Dear Evan Hansen” on behalf of The Royal Foundation at the Noël Coward Theatre in Covent Garden. The musical raises the topic of mental health and Kensington Palace noted in its social media posts that it’s been credited with encouraging parents and teenagers to better communicate.

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Kate’s Big Interview

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Well, this was a surprise! On Feb. 15, a new interview aired after the Duchess of Cambridge sat down with Giovanna Fletcher of the Happy Mum Happy Baby podcast. Their conversation covered Kate’s national survey and her “Early Years” work, but it also marked a rather significant milestone in the Duchess’s career since it was her first in-depth solo interview. Hitherto, Kate has always been joined by William, and she’s tended to let her husband take the lead in answering questions. This particular endeavor was focused on Kate’s own work, and she was the only spokesperson for it.

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The Kate Cambridge Brand

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The royal history buff in me sometimes can’t help but think about what moments and images from the day-to-day church of engagements will permeate the biographies a few decades from now. Realistically speaking, very few ever will. The major “firsts” will, of course, but when you consider a royal career as a whole, it becomes less about the daily/weekly work, and more about the scandals, the dynastic moments, and major state occasions.

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A Slightly Different Fab Four

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February 11 was a big day for the Windsors, relatively speaking. Actually, as I type that and consider what else has already happened in 2020 for the Royal Family I guess it was pretty small potatoes, BUT it was a solid royal day for those missing some of the more traditional aspects of royal watching, so let’s enjoy it. The Prince of Wales, the Duchess of Cornwall, and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge joined forces to visit the Defence Medical Rehabilitation Centre in Nottinghamshire, bringing quite a bit of star power to highlight an organization focused on providing medical care for members of the Armed Forces.

And in case that wasn’t enough excitement, before the engagement began, Kensington Palace announced that William and Kate would be undertaking a mini-tour of Ireland in early March.

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The Cambridges Visit Mumbles & Port Talbot

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Hello again! It’s late March now, but I’m going to tick through the last six weeks and catch up on all things royal. I’m going to back date posts covering specific engagements, but TBD on how I handle the more conversational/opinion posts (i.e. all things Sussex). With that, let’s get to it. On February 4, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge spent an away date in Mumbles and Port Talbot in South Wales.

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William & Kate Attend the 2020 BAFTAs

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The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge once again attended the BAFTA awards on Sunday night. William has long served as the BAFTA president, and while he has attended the annual ceremony here and there over the years, it wasn’t until 2017 that it became a mainstay on the couple’s calendar. As such, it’s a fun event where we know we’re going to get a black tie ensemble, and the royal pair always hit the red carpet last, taking their seats in the theatre just before the show begins.

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Kate Visits Nursery School For National Survey

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On Wednesday morning the Duchess of Cambridge turned up at the London Early Years Foundation (LEYF) Stockwell Gardens Nursery School in support of her recently launched national survey on child development. Visiting around breakfast time, Kate met with kitchen staff about the importance of nutrition as they prepped a meal, as well as parents, educators, and students about the questions posed in her survey.

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Should the DoC Be Wearing D&G?

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On Tuesday the Duchess of Cambridge carried out a solo engagement at Evelina London Children’s Hospital, a pretty straightforward outing if ever there was one. She was there to participate in an arts and craft session with children in her capacity as both the hospital’s patron and the National Portrait Gallery’s, which runs creative workshops for young patients throughout London.

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