Wednesday, 17 January 2018

Tennis & Hugs: Sporty Kate's Engagement With Wimbledon Junior Tennis Initiative

Following her engagement with Great Ormond Street Hospital this morning, the Duchess of Cambridge carried out her second appearance of the day, visiting Bond Primary School in Mitcham to see the work of the Wimbledon Junior Tennis Initiative (WJTI).


Pupils excitedly waved flags as the car arrived...


A very warm welcome for the Duchess.


The WJTI is the All England Club’s community tennis programme, promotes the benefits of physical activity for children and young people within the boroughs of Merton and Wandsworth. The AELTC coaching team visit approximately 65 local primary schools each year to offer a free session of tennis coaching, and since it began in 2001, the WJTI has introduced more than 195,000 local children to tennis through its visits. 5000 of these children have been invited to become members of the programme, and receive free weekly tennis coaching.


The programme aims to offer more children the opportunity to experience tennis, as well as showing how participation in sport can develop the life skills and values which tennis encourages, such as teamwork, discipline and fairness. The Wimbledon Junior Tennis Initiative also helps to equip teachers with the knowledge and skills to deliver exciting and productive school sports lessons, supporting pupils to live healthy and active lifestyles.


Although the pupils were supposed to greet Kate with a handshake, they couldn't resist a hug.


I just love these photos! Someday in the future when Kate is Queen and these children are all grown up, they'll look back on the day she came to their primary school.


The Duchess joined groups of children in the school hall as they took part in a range of tennis-related sessions, including activities to improve hand-eye coordination and footwork. Kate heard from the children and teachers about the impact of the programme, and met a number of the coaches involved in engaging children with tennis in the local community.


Next, it was time to get stuck into tennis exercises.


High-Five.


A video from Victoria Murphy.


The AELTC is a perfect patronage for Kate. She adores tennis and loves nothing more than getting into the swing of activities during visits to schools and workshops. George and Charlotte are said to be learning the game, I'm sure many an afternoon is spent enjoying a set or two with them :)


Kate revealed she's less sporty, now she has "lots of babies".


An example of the impact the initiative can have: Jenna Fontanilla was just five when the AELTC coaching team visited her school, St Teresa’s in Merton, and invited her to join the WJTI. Three years on, Jenna continues to take part in two hours of training a week and is fast-becoming a talented and skilful tennis player. Jenna’s parents say the WJTI has also helped her to overcome shyness, become more independent and able to work better individually at school. “The WJTI has had a clear impact on Jenna's life. It is so much more than a tennis master class," said Liza Fontanilla. "The support, constructive feedback and guidance that Jenna receives from the coaches have greatly improved her confidence. "You can clearly see this by comparing Jenna when she started school to the faster, stronger, more confident Jenna we see today.”


This has got to be a contender for one of the best royal videos ever :)


The Duchess was sporty in the Clarice Jacket by British tennis clothing brand PlayBrave (with thanks to Laura, Ashley and Sara for their work on the ID). The piece is described as "A premium quality track jacket, for active use in all kinds of conditions". It's currently reduced from £119 to £109.


Kate wore the Clarice Jacket in black last October for an engagement with the Lawn Tennis Association.


Kate wore her $345 slim-fit Monreal London Tuxedo pants. They have inbuilt shorts for lift, support and to add layer of opacity. Concealed pockets and side panels are flattering and leg-lengthening, while the elasticated waistband and invisible ankle zips add comfort. They’re made from high-flex luxury performance jersey and feature monochrome panels with a contrast neon yellow waistband.

Monreal London

Kate wore her Nike Women's Air Vapormax Flyknit Running Shoes. They are available in several colours at Nordstrom and Six02.


Kate accessorised with her Annoushka pearls and Kiki hoops from this morning.


If you're just joining us, click here to view our earlier post covering Kate's visit to Great Ormond Street Hospital. Kate, wearing the Boden Lena coat, officially opened the Mittal Children's Medical Centre, met families and patients and said a few words after the unveiling.


A very enjoyable day of events!

78 comments:

  1. Rebecca - Sweden17 January 2018 at 14:13

    Yay! Sporty clothes means active engagements! Those are always so fun, especially with kids! She has really come into her own lately and these kind of "engaged engagements" are a part of her winning formula!

    (Also, she has the engagement ring on again so it was probably hygiene reasons not to have any rings with stones on at the hospital.)

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  2. Jeez, she does not look 6 months pregnant! I wonder when she's actually due. Maybe it's closer to May.

    The engagement ring is back!

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    1. She does look tiny here. Funny thing, because last month she looked like she was comparably bigger than when pregnant with Charlotte. It will be another guessing game for certain.

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    2. If you can find some photos of her from the side, she looks very pregnant and definitely further along than she was with Charlotte at this time. Her top is barely fitting her. They are out there on Instagram.

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    3. There's a side view photo tweeted by the Mirror's Johnny Goldsmith where you can clearly see her bump. And it looks pretty big! I hope this link works -> https://twitter.com/MirrorJohnny/status/953661018546298881

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    4. How funny, I just a picture on twitter from the side in this white jacket, and there she looks rather due in march. I think it must be the angle of the picture :)

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    5. There is on victoria arbiter twitter account a picture under a tweet from her where you can see a picture of kate and she looks really pregnant

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    6. Agree it seems to be the angle of the shots and shape of jacket. From the side very pregnant looking.

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    7. I think you mean Victoria Murphy, anon 16:56 :) Tamara's photo works for me.

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    8. Maggie - Minneapolis18 January 2018 at 21:00

      Friendly reminder that with most women, they get much bigger much faster in later pregnancies, since those abdominal muscles are already stretched out from previous pregnancy(ies). I've heard that it becomes esp true/noticeable for many women on their third pregnancy, even more so than it did for their second. Obviously there are exceptions to everything and so much about what we say about pregnancy is based in non-scientific assumptions, but just thought I'd throw it out there that for a lot of women, it wouldn't make sense to base an opinion that they're further along than during the last pregnancy at this time of yr just bc of the bump looking bigger this time around. I will agree though, that for the most part she does look bigger, while having gotten quite good at camouflaging the bump too haha.

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    9. Maggie - Minneapolis18 January 2018 at 21:14

      Speaking of non-scientific assumptions :P, this whole time I've been thinking she's going to have another girl, but lately I've been leaning towards another boy. Lol all my med school teachers would away my graduation if they heard me talk like this, but she doesn't seem to be carrying the same way she did with Charlotte - looks more like the first pregnancy maybe :P

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    10. Agree about the camouflaging :) she is doong perefct job! but i cannot blame her, i was actually also not feeling very comfortable with everyone staring at my belly. And i recognize many of my tricks to make it look less prominent.
      And it has nothing to do with not feeling comfortable with pregnancy, but simply with the fact that your body is still private.

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    11. Completely agree with your last statement, 13:46.

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  3. A change of outfit! Looks like she's ready for some action! Happy and raring to go. And look! Her engagement ring is back! :)

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  4. I love those videos! The spontaneous hug from the kids brightened my day. I like how she gets down to their level and makes herself accessible to the pint-sized cuties.

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    1. Speaking of hugs, KP just tweeted a video of more kiddie hugs! They all went for it! You are right Charlotte, definitely one of the sweetest royal videos in a while.

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    2. I have had two pregnancies. Of course, I'm much bigger than Kate, but has anyone thought that perhaps she got a larger size in these pants for the pregnancy. I cannot imagine her being able to wear the same pants unless they do go below the bump and that would be possible, I guess. I had a pair of dress pants that were low so that the stomach went over it.

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    3. I wondered it they were able to sit below the biggest part of her bump also.

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  5. Funny! The tennis engagement pictures always look the same. I've commented on these sport pants before so won't do it again. That said, tennis programs like this are always a big hit with kids and the perfect way to expose them to the sport. The benefits of being proficient in any sport are numerable, so glad to see her supporting this programne.

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  6. Another terrific engagement! She’s wonderful with children and it shows; loved their sweet, spontaneous hugs ❤️

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    1. It’s these kinds of engaments where she really shines!

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  7. This looks like fun! She does sporty well, and those sneakers must be a relief after the heels! I love that she looks equally engaged at the school as she did at the hospital. Children really bring out the best in her.

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    1. She absolutely does. I think she truly is a wonderful mother. Not only can she be fun around kids, she's also gentle and caring. In private, possibly also quite the disciplinarian in the family!

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    2. Tamara, I agree but it also helps to have a Nanny to help with that side of parenting. She is very good with children.

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  8. The young mother of England! These children will remember her
    fondly when she is Queen. :)

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    Replies
    1. What a nice thought! cc

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    2. The day I hugged the Queen. Or the day the Queen ran after my stray tennis balls. Sweet!

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    3. What a lovely thought Florida Girl.

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    4. Cindy,,that was sweet,,the day I hugged the Queen :-)

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    5. I was thinking the same thing, Florida Girl! Only you said it better!:)

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    6. Sweet thought. I'm sure they will.....

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    7. I wonder if the boys hugged her too? :) Too bad the video ended before they came through!

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    8. Florida Girl, such a nice sentiment. I have great respect and admiration for Queen Elizabeth and yet, I've never seen her hugging anyone…not even one of her own children, grandchildren or great grandchildren. Kate has such warmth, the kids just felt it was appropriate to give her a hug. I think Her Majesty must be pealed, even though it has never been her style.

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    9. Oops…under Laura…it should say Her Majesty must be PLEASED

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  9. Nice engagement, and she sort of looks less pregnant than she did a month ago? Odd. I think it's because the style of clothing she favors for maternity wear (very short dresses and bulky coats) accentuate the bump.

    Anyway ... this is one curious thing ... anyone know why Kate never wears socks with her sneakers? She appears to be wearing pantyhose under her stretch pants and with her sneakers. I know she loves her nude hose but with sneakers and track pants?

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    1. Had not noticed with other athletic events, but this time probably just a matter of convenience to slip them over her pantyhose rather than completely changing from one event to another. IDK just a thought. cc

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    2. American Army Wife17 January 2018 at 20:21

      She appears to be wearing the short, no-show sports socks. When she is moving athletically they often show although barely.

      Also, these track pants say in the product description that they are constructed with interior shorts for modesty, support and lift, which would change the way her body looks versus in a dress without that.

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  10. I don’t like this look at all lol. I don’t mind the jacket but I don’t like the huge stripe on the pants. I didn’t like them from before either. They remind me of the addidas ones that were so popular in the 90s. Not a fan lol. Although dressed fine for what the event is today haha :)

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  11. Hoping she grows her hair long again. Just cant get on board with this length/look. Otherwise, beautiful as always!

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  12. I think I can see white trainer liners peeping out around the edges. They're what I wear when I run, because you need something to keep the trainers fresh (well, fresher than they'd be with nothing) but I find full socks tend to slip and shift on the foot and especially the ankle, and slipping socks means blisters.

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  13. Oh,what a lovely and funny day with Duchess Kate.She made a big work -perfect looks,great speech and especially her playing with children.She is so warmly and engaged.

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    1. Yes. She is a motivator and SUCH a role model! Love her! XOXOXOXOXOXO

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  14. I really wish she would do something with her hair. I think the middle parting, scraped behind her ears is really ageing. She's got beautiful hair so I don't understand why she is doing this.

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    1. It's not really a center part, and it looks fine for tennis! Some of the curl from the morning is gone, and the extension is missing. Sportingly simple and practical.

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  15. I really don't like her hair either. It's very ageing.

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  16. This day was a big winner for me. The contrast between the hospital visit and the sports themed school visit are remarkable. The vibrant coat and the sensible sports attire are proper outfits for the occasions. But best of all, I love her interaction with the children. I love when she said "she's had so many babies." I want to pinch myself because it only seemed like yesterday when she was a newlywed. Children are such blessings.

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  17. Oh my goodness how adorable is that video of Kate hugging all those kids!? That has to be my new favorite video. Kids are spontaneous and do as they feel, so I find that super sweet.

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  18. When Prince George met Prime Minister Trudeau, he did not appear to know how to high five. One would guess he does now, given Kate's enjoyment of high fiveing with these kids.

    I am surprised by the criticism of Kate's hair and tennis clothing. She looks very nice for a tennis afternoon with children..

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    1. I'm sure he does now! Children pick up very quickly. I imagine Kate's kids are very active and will turn out to be quite athletic when they're older. They have very athletic parents after all. And following the Middleton tradition, they will all play tennis :)

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  19. This has to be one of my all time favorite "Kate Day"! First the wonderful engaging visit & Wonderful Heartfelt Speech at GOSH & then this Sweet Sporty Event! Loooove her doing the tennis drills with the kids & then the "Hugging Line" was Toooo Adorable! I agree that they will Never Forger Hugging The Future Queen! :) lol xoxo

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  20. What a great day of activities for Kate. She just shone. The video of her hugging the young girls is incredible, and I echo the chorus of how it will be remembered in the years to come. Just perfect in every way today. Her wonderful, off the cuff remarks at GOSH, her interaction with the young patients and staff. And, then the visit at the Bond Primary School. A+++

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    1. I echo this comment 100% I've been catching up on both blog posts after a long day at work and have been smiling nonstop. A brilliant day all around. Kate just shines. No doubt she brought sunshine to all those kids today.

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  21. Two excellent outings today...a successful week so far. Love the connection with all of the people that she met. People to people is so much more important than the clothing and the jewelry. She is always well turned out but it is her personality that makes her brilliant and stunning in her own right. The "shake and hug" line was absolutely adorable! Her engagement with children in all of her outings is so heartfelt. This generation of Young Royals is such a blessing and I wish them continued success in all their endeavors.

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  22. Hmm what a great day for duchess i love see being sporty at the time hmm i love the wondefull heartfelt speech and gosh and the duchess intraction with the kids is too adorbs

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  23. THAT video is the best Royal video to date, I agree.
    A multitude of hugs and sweetness. 🌸

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    1. I must say I love this video to bits, too! So natural both for the kids and Kate.

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  24. What a fun exciting day for the Duchess of Cambridge. I enjoyed Tennis in college and I would enjoy hitting a few balls now, even tho I’m much older😊. The young children really responded well to the Duchess of Cambridge; hugs are special. Thanks, Charlotte; another great post.

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  25. What a great day for Kate we saw her at her best and so very genuine at both engagements. She has grown in confidence so much over these last few months.
    I would think Kate may well have felt a little emotional after visiting those sick children at GOSH so the visit involving the tennis will have lightened her feelings. I thought her short speech at GOSH came from the heart and was well delivered the more she does that the more confident she will become and a few words rather than some written words in a programme mean so much more.
    The interaction from the children when she came to leave with their hugs showed just how good she is with kids.
    It was good seeing her picture on the front pages of several papers this morning nice to see she is still receiving press coverage of some of her events.
    I see that we will see her again next week on engagements connected with maternal mental health and then in Feb. she is launching a new initiative with three charities connected with Heads Together. She is really upping her game I wonder what input CQ has had with it. I noticed that CQ was not at GHOS the mystery young lady was there. I was unable to spot anyone in the photographs from the tennis. Both of them are so professional compared to RD who to my mind was always determined to be seen and at times undermined Kate.
    Finally Charlotte thank you for the wonderful research you do on the various engagements Kate has I have learnt a great deal about so many organisations and places by reading your blogs

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    1. I am looking forward to Kate's next events! She's really shining these days. Are you sure the Heads Together launch event is in February? I thought maybe KP just made a mistake in their tweet and actually meant January 23. The Heads Together Twitter account said so!

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  26. So that I stay on topic for this blog....Duchess Kate's husband has a new hair-do!! ❤❤❤

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    1. I just saw that! What do you make of it? I think it looks good. I'd love to finally see William embrace the clean shaven look.

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    2. I think that is his worst hair cut or shave ever!!!

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    3. I really like the haircut, actually. A cleaner shave would even be better. It may take time to get used to, but William could rock that look. Better than a prominent bald.

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    4. I saw it too. I was wondering when he was going to just do it. We'll all get used to it. =) He had to take the plunge eventually---doing it at a military engagement was a great way to do it. =)

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    5. Rebecca - Sweden19 January 2018 at 17:44

      I like it, I think. I mean, it's preferable to "Munk-style" or comb-over. Better to bite the bullet and shave it off :P

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    6. If you can't have a head full of hair then shave off what you DO have (or cut it very closely). He brought sexy back for this girl.... ;) ❤

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    7. And, I bet his children, and maybe wife, are having fun rubbing it! Lol. It does feel funny at first.

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    8. I like it! Embrace the baldness, I say ;)

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    9. "He brought back sexy for this girl"

      Love it!

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  27. Charlotte, can you please verify if the Heads Together initiative launch will be in January or February 23? KP tweeted February.

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    1. Hello Diane,

      I double checked and the official press release says January 23. KP accidentally wrote February in their tweet.

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  28. Maggie - Minneapolis18 January 2018 at 20:55

    Finally caught up on Kate's engagements lately. I enjoyed looking at pictures from this one since as people have mentioned - she's really obviously most comfortable and enjoying herself when at events combining sports and children. I really, really do hope she starts becoming patron of organizations that promote sports that are more accessible to the general population. Tennis and sailing are both very white, elitist sports, and while charities can temporarily provide some access to children of color and/or from less wealthy families, charities cannot really help sustainably provide enough access for those children to participate in those sports long-term, except for a select few of them. On a more shallow note, her hair at this event looks....meh to me. I'm not sure how to describe it....it's almost like her hair seems kind of oily for this event, with the very flat top part and then really don't know how to explain it but the rest of it looks oily too. Or something. Today, or at least this event, seems ideal for a ponytail.
    As for the morning hospital visit, I was very pleased to see her speak relatively fluidly without looking at memorized remarks. Huge improvement from before. This isn't criticism, bc I genuinely do think she has improved and am happy to see it, just a thought that the next thing to work on imo would be sounding a little less monotone, or like she doesn't care about what she's saying/is bored by it (something I also felt happened when talking about the new engagement). But really, it's nice to see the improvement. It's happened almost rather suddenly after I feel like her public speaking plateaued at not very good for the first 5-6 years of her marriage, so I wonder what's caused the change.
    As for the hospital event clothes - I'm sorry, but while I like the bright color (and that Kate isn't wearing black or pastels as usual), the ruffles kill it for me. If I saw a picture of just the coat, without someone actually wearing it, I don't think I would ever possibly consider that it would be meant for girls above the age of 8 or 10 lol. But it's also such a typical Kate coat lol - the only thing that would have made it epitomize Kate's style more would be if it was light baby blue or ice blue in color :P But clearly Kate likes her ruffles and all the things in fashion that I consider childlike, and I suppose I just have to accept it lol. But anyways, nice day of engagements for her, and it's good to see she won't be disappearing from now until the tour.

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  29. Happy to see new engagements in the diary added! I am glad Kate's forging through with the mental health initiative with Heads Together, and I can see her visiting more schools and hospitals, which are a mainstay for royals.

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  30. Maggie, I am just talking off the cuff but tennis may be more available in the UK? One of the reasons US public schools do not have tennis programs is because it is not popular, even most private schools have dropped the tennis program. Kids in the US seem to go after football, baseball, softball, basketball, soccer. Minneapolis of course has ice hockey but many parts of the US can not support Ice Hockey in the public schools. Golf is also a difficult sport as it just takes so much land. Sailing also because so many communities do not have easy access to a lake, river or ocean. What I am saying is I think the ability to participate in a sport for all income levels depends, at least in the US on what the public schools provide. I also know that for much of the US, the kids that excel in sports are taking year round very expensive lessons and participating in leagues etc that are pricey to be in, i.e. lots of travel. I actually think tennis is a relatively inexpensive sport to get involved in. As I said, I have not thought this out, so you may have tons of data I do not:):).

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  31. she looks fantastic! i love her in workout wear wish i looked have as good!

    thanks for the great post Charlotte happy weekend!

    Mellie

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  32. Sarah from Calif.20 January 2018 at 01:18

    Well done Kate!
    Charlotte, as always, your the BEST!

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