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Kate's 2016: The "Best of" List

Saturday, December 31, 2016

I look forward to this post every year. I love the opportunity to review all the wonderful events and milestones Kate has marked, to remember and enjoy again the beautiful clothes and sparkling jewels, and to see the year from the 10,000 foot view. It is always a big job, but this year the task feels more daunting than any of the preceding years. Kate had an absolutely packed 2016, with two full overseas tours and multiple new designers and baubles. At the same time, I felt the year flew by at warp speed and I am excited to slow down and remember all that happened. Keep in mind, this is not a classic year in review, this is my "Best Of" list and as such it only highlights...the highlights. So what are the rules? I make them up every year, but this time I am limiting myself to three "best" slots per month with wiggle room provided by honorable mentions. Kate had two tours this year, and I was at a bit of a loss as to how to deal with them, but I have decided that each tour takes a slot, and there will be subcategory awards within each tour. I always skip reading the rules before games, I assume I'll figure it out as I go along, and so I imagine most of you are already glazing over. You'll figure it out as we go along. Let's jump in!   


January usually starts on the slow and quiet side, but 2016 had an early pop of activity as the Cambridges announced they had enrolled George at Westacre Montessori School near their Anmer Hall home. They released pictures of the little tyke all kitted out to meet the other kids. 2016 was off to a great start and we weren't even a week in!

On January 9th, Kate celebrated her 34th birthday. Surrounded by her family at Anmer Hall, she celebrated privately, but I noted here on the blog that that birthday marked a decade in the spotlight for the one-time Kate Middleton. You can read that post here. With the family gathered at Sandringham and Anmer, though, we still got to see Kate the day after her birthday. On January 10th, the Middletons and the Cambridges joined the Queen at St. Mary Magdalene's

[Updated] George & Charlotte Make Christmas Church Debut

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Today, for the first time in 30 years, the Queen was not well enough to travel to church at Sandringham. According to the Palace, Her Majesty has a heavy cold that has demanded the energetic monarch take it a little easier this year. Over a hundred miles away, in the country village of Bucklebury, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge arrived in a motorcade of Range Rovers at St. Mark's (with Kate's family) for Christmas morning services. They brought two very special little royals who were ready for a very big first Christmas in front of the cameras. 

There was a lot of disappointment among fans when the Cambridges announced they would forego a Sandringham Christmas, not because we begrudged them family time with the Middletons (indeed for many, this was an exciting change of pace) but because of the worry we would lose our Christmas morning treat--our annual photo set of Kate decked out for Christmas! Instead, I think the couple calculated their Middleton

Zara Tindall Has Suffered a Miscarriage

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Christmas Eve is not off to a good start. News broke today that Zara Tindall suffered a miscarriage. The Queen's granddaughter was pregnant with her second child and had only announced the happy news a month ago.

At the same time the "news" broke that neither William nor Harry turned up for the annual soccer game at Castle Rising. According to The Express, disappointed villagers dispersed after

Christmas Gifts for Princess Charlotte & Prince George

Thursday, December 22, 2016

The Christmas presents are piling up for George and Charlotte. Wills and Kate are taking the little royals to celebrate the holiday with their maternal grandparents in Bucklebury and as anyone who has celebrated Christmas away from home with little ones knows, there are lots of things to organize before heading out the door.

Kate has reportedly ordered special Christmas sacks from Selfridges to make Christmas extra special for her little ones. The customized burlap bags are by Harrow & Green.

[Updated] Kate & William Bring the Kids to BP For Christmas Lunch

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Today extended members of the royal family gathered at Buckingham Palace for the Queen's annual Christmas luncheon. This tradition stemmed from the Queen decision to celebrate the actual holiday at Sandringham with only her immediate family. It is a lovely way to gather the broader family to mark the season despite the more intimate Christmas day arrangements. No photos have ever been released from the party, of course, but we almost always get snaps through the car windows as the royals arrive and leave.

Today, there was a bit of a crisis in the whole "through the window" system, because Kate sat in the back seat! This isn't entirely unusual for the duchess to do and in general is a normal arrangement for mothers. She is in the back with her kiddos, both George and Charlotte accompanied their

Christmas Party at The Mix

Monday, December 19, 2016

It has been a while since William, Kate, and Harry did a joint engagement together, so there was an extra splash of festive excitement today as the Royal Trio reunited to attend the Heads Together Christmas party at The Mix in London. In case you are new to the block, Heads Together is a mental health initiative the trio launched earlier this year. It brings together a number of partner charities under one umbrella to fight the stigma against mental health issues. The majority of the events that Will, Kate, and Harry have done together this year have been for Heads Together.

The Mix is a mental health support help-line. They field phone-calls and connect young people to the support they need in those down times. The Cambridges and Prince Harry toured the offices and met with volunteers and staff members to learn about the

Kate Takes The Kids To Thursford

Saturday, December 17, 2016

Thursford has become a relative staple in the Cambridges' Christmas schedule. Just this week, it was revealed that Kate took George and Charlotte to the holiday display to see the fantastic fantasy world that has been created in Thursford, Norfolk.  For royal watchers, Thursford's Christmas Spectacular holds a special place because it was the first public event that Kate attended with William after the couple announced their engagement. On December 18, 2010, Prince William brought his new fiancée Kate Middleton to the Christmas show which was raising money for a Norfolk charity that night. 

Kate dazzled in a mini-dress from Temperley London with her then signature black stockings and suede heels that showed off her stunning legs. With a blazer

Cambridges will Spend Christmas in Bucklebury

Friday, December 16, 2016

Christmas is just around the corner and royal fans are getting excited for the annual walk to St. Mary Magdalene on Christmas day. It is a generally guaranteed royal outing, but there are whispers that we might be disappointed this year. The Telegraph, a very reputable source, is claiming that the Cambridges have decided to spend this Christmas in Bucklebury with the Middletons.

Kate first joined the royals at Christmas in 2011, the year she married William. The couple spent the next Christmas in Bucklebury as Kate recovered from an absolutely crippling bout of hyperemesis gravidarum while pregnant with George. At the time,

Cub Kate Celebrates Cub Scout's 100th Birthday

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Last night the Duchess of Cambridge arrived at the Scout and Guide Hut in North Wootton for a Cub Scout Pack Meeting celebrating the Cub Scouts' 100th birthday. Kate has been involved with scouting for years and The Scouting Association is listed under her patronages and activities on the Royal Family's website.

It was a crisp night in Norfolk and as Kate arrived to flashing cameras, it was evident she chose a relaxed ensemble for her evening out, mixing some recycled pieces with a new top. You know how when people are in love (or, I guess when you just spend quite a bit of time together) they can pick up the same physical gestures? In this arrival video from Simon Perry of People, Kate kind of raises and drops her arms in a manner that screams

William Wears Breeches to Buckingham Palace

Friday, December 9, 2016

I thought I'd switch up the headline today. ;) Last night, the Queen hosted the Diplomatic Reception at Buckingham Palace. This is an annual event that is usually kept quite private. The date is not released to the public with much advance notice at all and the royals don't release photos from the very formal evening at which the ladies always wear tiaras. We usually get arrival photos taken as the cars arrive at Buckingham Palace. This year for the first time since I began paying attention to the Diplomatic Reception, and possibly for the first time ever, the Palace released a photo of the royals from inside the exclusive event.

As I think most remember, there was exclusive video of the 2015 Diplomatic Reception in the documentary Our Queen at 90, which was the way we got a full-length peek of Kate's absolutely stunning

Kate Wears red Preen at Private Royal Foundation Fundraiser

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Good morning all! Yesterday a very fun Instagram post surfaced that showed Prince Harry and the Duchess of Cambridge at a private fundraiser for the Royal Foundation. 
@navi_ananth Instagram

In this photoset, Kate and Harry are hugging and congratulating Sai Kadirrajah, a Young Minds activists. Young Minds is a charity promoting mental health awareness for young people. Young Minds is one of a number of partner charities working under the

Kate Adds New Event on December 14th

Monday, December 5, 2016

No sooner did Harry's tour wrap up than the Duchess of Cambridge put a new event on her calendar. I told you Harry needed to come home. Our favorite duchess is going to be joining cub scouts in King's Lynn to celebrate 100 years of the scouting program on December 14th. The Scout Association is listed under Kate's charities and she has been volunteering with them for years. 

It has been a while since we have seen Kate at an official scout event. She made a surprise visit to a Beaver troop in December of 2014. The visit included

Kate in Kiki: Christmas Guide to Royal Worthy Jewelry

Thursday, December 1, 2016

On February 24, 2011, blustery winds were buffeting the eastern coast of Wales, and a small, protruding island on the most western coat was covered by grey skies and scuttling clouds. Despite the weather, thousands of excited locals were filling the streets by Trearddur Bay to greet Prince William of Wales and his fiancée Kate Middleton.  It was an historic event. This was the first time that Kate undertook a public engagement, greeting the cheering crowds, working the line of fans on a brief walkabout, and christening the RNLI lifeboat. These were all activities that would soon staples of her life, but on that first cold morning in Anglesey, everything was new and unknown. The beautiful brunette arrived wearing a re-tailored Katherine Hooker coat, snug stockings, cozy Aquatalia booties, a Vivien Sheriff fascinator...and dangling from her ears, glinting in gold and yellow, were citrine drop earrings from Kiki McDonough, 

In terms of the number of wears, these are Kate's most worn earrings. She has sported them at some of the most important milestones of her life, (including presenting her first born on the steps of the Lindo Wing and George's christening) as well as the more mundane moments, like a Sunday morning ride to church and countless