Unprecedented invite insures family unity
I know it's a bit early to ask, but, what are you doing for Christmas?
I only enquire because the Sun is reporting that Mike and Carole Middleton are going to be gathered round the festive table with the Queen, after being invited to her country estate at Sandringham for Crimbo.
"This year's celebrations are set to be extra special after Prince George's arrival," a royal source told The Sun.
"What better way to mark such a magical year than by having the whole family present?. Kate is very close to her family. Any child's first Christmas is one no grandparent would want to miss."
The cult British parenting website has the answers to all the questions every parent has ever asked, and quite a few most of us haven't as well.
The parenting website Mumsnet (think Reddit for Moms) saw a discussion thread go viral this week after a poster asked whether any other users of the website had a "penis beaker"—a beaker of water by the bed that her husband could dunk his member in after having sex (the bathroom was all tied up—by her).
“We have a dedicated post-sex cleanup area on the bedside table,” the poster, using the name SaraCrewe, wrote. “A box of tissues, a small bin, and a beaker of clean water for temporary cleaning/dunking while the bathroom is occupied by me. Apparently our penis beaker is strange and not the done thing. Does everyone else just lay there in a post-coital glow until morning? Really?”
After some users questioned whether she was just trolling and asked detailed practical questions (Is the water warm? Does it overflow? How does one avoid mixing up the "spermy" water with nighttime drinking water?), SaraCrewe added, “I have only ever slept with my husband and we've always done this! Might have started when we were teens and couldn't make a dash to the bathroom in our parents’ houses. Luckily my drinking water is in a sports bottle.”
So what are some of the other classic Mumsnet discussion threads? We rounded up some of the best...
Queen says there is no substitute for books
The Queen probably won't be buying Prince George an iPad or a Kindle.
She told a writer today that she thinks there is no substitute for books.
Pool Photo by Philip Toscano/Reuters
She spoke of her fears over e-books and tablets as she presented Chocolat author Joanne Harris with an MBE for services to literature at Buckingham Palace.
William and Kate continue to break with tradition and do things their way
Prince William and Kate continue with their determination to do things their way, with news today that baby George will be christened without the usual compliment of senior royal uncles and aunts.
The Queen's daughter Anne, the Princess Royal, will be in Canada for a series of engagements in and around Toronto, while the Countess of Wessex will spend the day carrying out official duties in Somerset, Devon and Bristol, according to a an exclusive report in today's Daily Mail by Rebecca English.
The paper adds:
The incredible fund-raising ability of the ginger Prince revealed!
Nice work, Harry.
Prince Harry's one-night stopover in Dubai on Sunday night on his way back from Australia raised over $1m for his African HIV charity Sentebale, his spokespeople said today.
Chris Jackson / Getty Images
Prince Harry spoke Arabic at the fundraising dinner which raised the money to help build Sentebale's Mamohato Children's Centre of Excellence in the African kingdom of Lesotho.
Irish singer Sinead O'Connor keeps controversy alive by penning new open letter seeking apology fom Miley
I thought we had reached the limit of 'the open letter' (especially as Miley Cyrus is probably like, 'What's a letter?') but Sinead O'Connor is not giving up.
Al Powers/Powers Imagery/Invision /AP; PicSol/Retna Ltd/Corbis
For the feisty Irish singer has now penned a fourth open letter to the teen popster, demanding (once again) that she apologizes to both her and Amanda Bynes (despite the fact that Ms Bynes has not made any such demand herself) for mocking their mental health problems.
The fresh letter comes after Miley’s appearance on Matt Lauer’s show, in which she said, of O'Connor, "I think she's an incredible artist, I think she's an awesome songwriter, and I was really inspired by her for my 'Wrecking Ball' video, which was what started the whole thing. I don't know how someone can start a fight with somebody who said, ‘Hey, I really respect you. And I really love what you what you did.' That was kind of crazy. But as I said, I'm a big fan of hers, so it doesn't really matter."
Another day, another Instagram user not clear on how the service works...
There's nothing a British aristocrat loves like a jolly day spent blasting pheasants out of the sky, yet there is still a certain amount of surprise that any of Pippa's friends could have been so stupid as to Instagram pictures of Pippa grinning broadly in front of a heap of dead birds after a shoot this weekend - on an open account.
Still, at least she is wearing Dubarry boots in the picture. Wellie-snobbery is terrible but growing vice among the British upper classes. Wearing the wrong sort of wellies is a crime at least as serious as not understanding the privacy settings on your account before uploading snaps.
Prince William today hosted the first ever game of football to be played at Buckingham Palace
Prince William - president of the British Football Association - today hosted the first ever football match to be held at Buckingham Palace, telling the teams before kick-off, “One warning, though: if anyone breaks a window, you can answer to my grandmother.”
The Queen is still in Scotland, prompting William to add, “The one small silver lining to Her Majesty not being present today is that there shouldn’t be any corgis running on to the pitch!”
Prince William presented medals to the 150 football volunteers before kick-off.
More chatter suggests that Harry and Cressida could be preparing to get married next year. Tom Sykes reports
The Royalist was reporting all last week that there seemed to be fresh impetus on the part of Camp Harry to move towards an engagement with his girlfriend Cressida Bonas, and this weekend the British royal gossips were abuzz with further speculation on the matter, after the Sunday Telegraph reported that Cressida’s friends were confidently expecting a 2014 wedding.
“Cressie is going to marry Harry,” one of her friends told The Telegraph. “Harry never stops talking about marriage and children, and she has now got used to the idea. The wedding is likely to take place next year.”
Harry (29) has made little secret of the fact that he is actively wife-hunting, going so far as to explicitly bemoan the difficulty of finding someone to fill the “role” of royal wife in interviews, and this, understandably, ‘freaked Cressida out’ according to one of the Royalist’s sources.
Friends of the young royals have previously told the Royalist that the romance with Cressida (24) represented Harry’s most serious relationship since the Chelsy Davy days, but with Harry’s and Cressida’s friends now allowing themselves to believe that the still-rowdy royal and his blue-blooded girlfriend could actually tie the knot next year, it’s clear the relationship is moving up a gear. Cressida has been unwilling to commit, and also to give up on her dreams of a showbiz career (she is a dance graduate).
Lock Up Your Daughters, Australia! Harry's In Town
“Lock up your daughters Tony Abbott, Prince Harry is heading down under to party,” said Melbourne’s Herald Sun ahead of the young royal's visit to Australia, which is now well and truly under way.
But Mr Abbott - who described himself during the recent election campaign as “the guy with the not bad looking daughters” - today ignored that advice to introduce his wife Margie, and two of their three daughters, Frances and Bridget, to Harry.
Another newspaper reported the Prince's visit today by saying, “Ladies, Prince Harry is in town… but you probably already know that. Thus begins a frenzied 24-hour blitz by the broads to somehow, anyhow, get the attention of the most desirable ginger in the cosmos.”
Pippa has written a new travel piece for The Telegraph. Tom Sykes attempts to decode the secret messages hidden within it
Pippa Middleton is turning into the world’s hardest working freelancer, and today she has another work in The Telegraph, a travel piece from the Austrian town of Kitzbühel, for which she has somehow been persuaded to dress up in traditional Tyrolean dress.
The Telegraph has wisely decided to make the most of the no-doubt towering fee it has shelled out to hire Pippa by also running a gallery of Pippa in the bust-enhancing peasant wear.
However I am more intrigued by the writing – as I increasingly think there is a kind of secret code to Pippa’s journalism.
So the Royalist proudly presents, “Pippa’s latest piece, the text and the sub-text”.
O’Connor tells Cyrus ‘to take five minutes between g-string changes’ to delete tweets mocking O’Connor’s past mental-health problems.
The bizarre showbiz feud between Miley Cyrus and Irish singer Sinead O’Connor kicked up a gear Friday morning, with O’Connor threatening to call in the lawyers after Cyrus posted a series of tweets that O’Connor wrote when she was having a nervous breakdown. Cyrus mocked O’Connor’s mental-health difficulties by comparing her to Amanda Bynes.
Miley and Sinead: not really very similar. (Fred Tanneau/AFP/Getty; Ethan Miller/Getty)
The row began when O'Connor wrote a “loving” and “motherly” open letter to the young star Thursday warning Cyrus that being “naked and licking sledgehammers” in her videos would end up destroying her career and that she was being “prostituted” by her record label.
Friends of the young royals say Harry and Cressida are getting more relaxed about going public
One of the defining characteristics of the relationship of Prince Harry and Cressida Bonas has been the extraordinary lengths the couple have gone to in order to avoid being photographed together.
Splash News and Pictures
However, over the last few days the young royal and his girlfriend have been out and about together in full public view in London, making the most of their last few days together before Harry heads off to Australia on official duties, representing his grandmother at the Aussie equivalent of Fleet Week.
The couple were pictured together leaving the Prince of Wales Theatre in London's West End after watching the musical 'The Book of Mormon.'
The Irish singer Sinead O'Connor has written a ‘loving’ 1,000-word open letter to Miley, warning her not to ‘prostitute’ herself for the benefit of record execs, reports Tom Sykes.
The story goes that when the Irish singer Sinead O’Connor was a young girl looking for a recording contract, a record executive told her that, on the basis of her lovely long hair, she was a good commercial proposition, and therefore he would sign her.
Miley and Sinead, not really the same. We think you’ll agree. (Al Powers/Powers Imagery/Invision /AP; PicSol/Retna Ltd/Corbis)
Outraged, the feisty Sinead promptly went out and shaved her head—and became one of the biggest-selling and most outspoken female artists of her generation.
Prince Harry’s girlfriend is the opposite of Kate Middleton in every way. Tom Sykes examines the evidence: a pair of Doc Martens, some dungarees, and that infamous scrunchie.