Thursday, June 25, 2015

We are off to Buckingham Palace! Finally!

In July we will be heading to London. My husband and I have been there twice but this will be a first time for our children. While we are there we will see Westminster Abbey and plan to go to the Tower of London, Harrods, Hamleys Toy store and Hatchards, a very old bookstore in Piccadilly which is supposed to have a royal biographies section that is second to none. We might also check out the Harry Potter studios and have afternoon tea somewhere child friendly. I would love to go to Clarence House but I doubt we will have time.

One part of the trip that I am looking forward to is finally going to see Buckingham Palace. As I mentioned, I have been to London twice and both times I missed out on it. The first time was in August 2003 when my boyfriend (now husband) surprised me with a trip to London and Paris to propose to me. We had three days and chose to make the pilgrimage to Althorp to see the Diana exhibit instead. I'm happy we went because it was beautifully done and I wouldn't have wanted to miss out on it.

The second time was for William and Kate's wedding in April 2011. Yes, I went to London just for the royal wedding! Did not get to see the royal couple or Buckingham Palace as both were previously occupied at the time. I went to Windsor Castle instead and enjoyed it immensely.

This time round I was just going to sign up for the State Rooms but instead decided to make a 'Royal Day' of it and do the Queen's Gallery and Royal Mews too. I've read that Buckingham Palace is in need of repairs and the Queen might need to relocate. Let's hope this happens after our visit. Don't want to miss out on Buckingham Palace again!

© Marilyn Braun 2015

Thank you for enjoying this article. If you use the information for research purposes, a link to credit the work I've put into writing it would be appreciated.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Swedish Royal Wedding: Princess Sofia and the magical royal wedding ring

When Prince Carl Philip of Sweden marries Sofia Hellqvist tomorrow, you will see a transformation worthy of a direct to DVD movie.

His bride-to-be, Sofia Hellqvist has taken a lot of flack for her background. I won't go into it, but suffice to say bikinis and strategically placed boa constrictors are not the stuff of fairy tales. No, fairy tales involve perfection, of someone toiling away until a prince/princess raises them from an obscurity we need to approve of. If we don't approve of it, well then it is open season until the royal wedding ring goes on the finger.

Royal wedding rings have magical properties. They can turn a partying single mother into the Crown Princess of Norway, make people forget the Queen of Spain was previously married or that Prince Daniel of Sweden was once a *gasp* personal trainer! These rings can even turn Camilla Parker Bowles into a respectable member of the royal family. That's how powerful they are!


And just like magic, Sofia Hellqvist's ring will make her Princess Sofia of Sweden. We will ooohhh and awww over the wedding dress, how beautiful and regal she looks. How romantic everything is. We may even blog about the wonderful royal wedding when only days before we were sniping about her unsuitable background. Eventually, as all new princesses do, she will become a style icon and make it to Vanity Fair's International Best dressed list. In time, if given the chance, instead of diminishing the monarchy, she may even become a credit to it.

Pay attention when the ring goes on Sofia's finger. You won't believe your eyes!

© Marilyn Braun 2015

Thank you for enjoying this article. If you use the information for research purposes, a link to credit the work I've put into writing it would be appreciated.

Friday, June 05, 2015

St. Mary Magdalene, Sandringham - A few quick royal facts

It was announced today that Princess Charlotte of Cambridge, the newborn daughter of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge would be christened at St. Mary Magdalene, the parish church on the Sandringham estate. The present church has a history dating back to the sixteenth century and over the years it has been rebuilt and restored. It has been the scene of various royal events since the estate was purchased in 1862 for the then Albert Edward, Prince of Wales (future King Edward VII) and his bride, Princess Alexandra of Denmark.

Although most articles focus on the christening of Princess Eugenie of York in 1990, many royal events have taken place on this site and it is regularly used by the royal family for worship when they are in residence at Sandringham.


Prince Albert Frederick Arthur George (future King George VI) on February 17, 1896

Princess Victoria Alexandra Alice Mary (Princess Mary) Princess Royal and Countess of Harewood on June 7, 1897

Prince Alexander Edward Christian Frederick, later King Olav of Norway on August 11, 1903

Her Princess Mary's youngest brother, Prince John Charles Francis on August 3, 1905

Diana Francis, Princess of Wales on August 30, 1961

Princess Eugenie Victoria Helena of York on December 23, 1990. She is the first royal baby to have a public christening.

Funerals and interments

Prince Alexander John of Wales, youngest son of the future King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra, died within hours of his birth in 1871 and is buried in the grounds of the church.

King George VI died in the familiar surroundings of Sandringham and his coffin lay for two days in the church before his funeral at St. George's Chapel, Windsor.

King George VI's brother, Prince John's funeral took place on January 21, 1919. He is buried in the grounds of the church.

Several members of Diana, Princess of Wales' family are buried in the grounds of the church. These include her maternal grandfather, grandmother and older brother, John, who died within hours of his birth in January 1960.

© Marilyn Braun 2015

Thank you for enjoying this article. If you use the information for research purposes, a link to credit the work I've put into writing it would be appreciated.