A year ago today, the world went totally bananas over news of Prince George's birth. (Well, okay, the world plus Kate and William.) And over the course of the next 364 days, we've inhaled every little tidbit about his life. He loves butterflies and bilbies! He has Spiderman pajamas! He's maybe-kind-of walking! We've oohed over his exotic vacation to Australia and New Zealand and aahed over his two nurseries and perfect private garden. In short, we can't get enough of him.
But we've also been keeping tabs on his parents, watching how this next chapter of their real-life fairytale unfolds and seeing how they're holding up now that baby makes three. And honestly, I've got to hand it to the first-time parents: despite all the pomp and circumstance surrounding them, William and Kate seem refreshingly normal. Consider the evidence:
They (or, rather, Kate!) struggled with breastfeeding. Though St. James' Palace has declined to comment, breastfeeding didn't come easy at first for Kate, and it was widely reported that the new mom breastfed her son. Like many of us, she required a little help from the pros in the beginning. Still, she acknowledged that the decision to nurse is a personal one. A source told the DailyMirror: "She feels that it is a matter of personal choice, and that new mums should do whatever feels right for them and their baby."
They're affectionate. There's no shortage of photos of Kate holding onto George; he's practically her shadow. (My faves? Here, here, and here.) And William is just as loving. During a visit to an England homeless shelter, he recounted how he spent the morning cuddling with his then-four-month-old. "He was saying he had been holding him and his baby had been smiling into the mirror," a resident told People. Then there's this awww-worthy photo of William tenderly kissing the top of George's head.
They too were once knee-deep in drool. During their trip abroad, photogs captured Kate in a so-called "gross mom moment." The family was at Australia's Sydney's Taronga Zoo, and George, who was teething at the time, had some drool on his chin. The dutiful mom did what any of us would do: she swiped away the saliva with her hands and dried them on her dress. The wipe-off may have inflamed the haters (and left a mark on Kate's designer dress), but it scored major points with sympathetic moms worldwide.
They get down on the ground during a playgroup. While on their tour Down Under, the family went to a get-together at New Zealand's Government House. It was Prince George's first public engagement, and the tot was a big hit -- as were his parents. The future queen was photographed on her knees with the babies, in her beautiful dress, showing her son how to play with some of the toys. Ah-mazing.
They host playdates. When the queen is away, George will play -- and invite some friends over, too. Kate reportedly hosts playdates at the royal residence (with the queen's blessing, of course), including one with George's godmother, Emilia Jardine Paterson, and her toddler.
They let George be a kid. Yes, he has a lot of first names. Yes, the Queen of England is expected to attend his birthday party. But at the end of the day, George is a one-year-old boy, full of energy and curiosity and a zest for life. And his parents seem to respect that and allow for it. William, for example, recently revealed that the birthday boy is "charging around and opening doors" at the family's apartment in Kensington Palace. "I think George will be running faster than me very soon," he joked.
They're hands-on. Sure, they have enough money to hire a fleet of fancy nannies to care for their son, but Kate and William seem determined to bring up their baby on their own. Even if that means enduring lots of sleepless nights and poop diapers. A source told Us Weekly: "Kate doesn't want George to be more used to the sight of the help than to his own parents." For his part, William has taken a job as an air ambulance helicopter pilot just so he can be closer to his family.
Keep up the great work, Kate and William!
Tell us: What's your opinion of the royal couple as parents? Think they're doing a good job?
Parenting Style: Positive Parenting
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Image courtesy of Splash News/Corbis