The Cambridges ‘quietly donate’ the gifts sent to them for George & Charlotte

Hampton Classic Horseshow

This Us Weekly cover made me realize why the Cambridges were keen to use such a nothingburger white backdrop for their cold, efficient Christmas image. The white backdrop was like a greenscreen, and now you can put the Keens in any setting! Us Weekly superimposed the family in front of a Christmas-y backdrop for their cover. We can recycle this image for Valentine’s Day using a red-hearts backdrop. Anyway, Us Weekly does have some “news” in their cover story, and since Us Weekly invokes the word “keen,” I believe all of it!!

On his second day in Finland, Prince William scheduled a meeting with a key VIP. Winding through the streets of Helsinki during the late November trip, the future king approached Santa Claus with a crucial delivery: a list from 4-year-old son Prince George. Explaining the tiny heir was “extremely keen” to see him, William noted that the tot’s sole ask was for a police car to play with. “He hasn’t written down many requests, so I think one is probably OK,” said the royal, adding his eldest has “been a good boy.” Just as Mum and Dad raised him. With the holidays approaching, William and wife Duchess Kate, both 35, have taken pains to ensure George and his 2-year-old sister Princess Charlotte — third and fourth in line for the British throne respectively — aren’t royally spoiled.

“They’re both extremely careful,” a Middleton family friend says in the new issue of Us Weekly. “While they will get some toys — a dollhouse is “a strong contender” for Charlotte, says the friend, while George “is obsessed with anything on wheels, BMX bikes, skateboards and toy cars” — many of the presents sent in from fans around the world are quietly donated to toy banks and other children’s organizations, says the family friend. “Receiving that many gifts wouldn’t have a good effect on the kids,” explains the friend, who notes William and Kate stress that the children not be overindulged. “It’s their worst nightmare.”

Rather, their dream Christmas focuses on family playtime and having fun together, says the friend: “I think William and Kate love Christmas just as much as George and Charlotte. For them, it’s about coming together and enjoying the holiday.”

In the Cambridge household, Christmas arrives early, in the first week of December. That’s when a fresh fir is delivered to Kensington Palace’s Apartment 1A. Together as a family, they trim the tree using ornaments “that have belonged to both sides of the family for many years,” says the family friend. “Kate loves a traditional tree. It looks rather special by the time it’s finished.”

After making the 115-mile trip north to Anmer Hall in mid-December, the foursome repeat the process. At their 10-bedroom estate “the kids help with decorations,” says a royal insider. And with Charlotte growing older — the palace announced December 18 that she will start lessons at Wilcocks Nursery School near Kensington Palace in January — says the insider, “she’s been able to get a lot more involved.”

Also in on the process: the kids’ beloved nanny Maria Borrallo. The pro “prepares cookies and baked treats with Kate and the children,” says a source. After all, there’s a special guest to prep for this year. On Christmas Eve, Uncle Harry and his bride-to-be, Meghan Markle will arrive at the 18th-century Georgian manor for a three-day stay.

“It will be the first time Meghan has stayed with them,” says the family friend, “and everyone is rather looking forward to it. It’s going to be a bigger Christmas than usual.”

[From Us Weekly]

I do find several things interesting – one, there’s been zero talk of the extended Middleton family decamping to Anmer Hall this year. In previous years, when the Cambridges did the “Windsor Christmas” thing at Sandringham, Kate’s family came and stayed and the Cambridges split their time between both sides of family. With Meghan Markle’s arrival, there’s been no talk of that. Which is interesting, right? Suddenly Kate wants to look more… self-sufficient. That being said, I bet Carole would love to get a closer look at Meghan, so now I can’t stop thinking about Carole literally crashing the gates for a “surprise” visit on Christmas Eve.

As for Will & Kate “quietly donating” the toys that they’re sent for George and Charlotte… well, I get that. But I also know that designers and jewelers funnel clothes and jewelry to Kate through her family, and she keeps all of that stuff. Why does Kate get to keep all of those gifts and her children don’t get to keep theirs? Using Keen Logic, shouldn’t we worry about Will and Kate getting too spoiled? TOO LATE!

Hampton Classic Horseshow

Cover courtesy of Us Weekly, photo courtesy of Kensington Palace.

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54 Responses to “The Cambridges ‘quietly donate’ the gifts sent to them for George & Charlotte”

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  1. Squidgy says:

    Yes, like Barbie and Ken family! Just put any background and they are good to go – snow peaks, beaches and palm trees, the palace, whatever!

    • delphi says:

      I want someone, somewhere, to add in that multicolor laser background that almost all US kids had as a school picture backdrop behind them. That would make my whole year.

    • homeslice says:

      Where is her arm?????????

      • Tourmaline says:

        Good point that looks strange!

        I love the US Weekly team looking at that Christmas portrait background, saying “this is lame” and making it more festive.
        Double kudos fir the use of “keen” and that line about their tree looking “rather special”.

      • AnnaKist says:

        Homeslice, I asked my friend the same thing when looking at the photo while waiting to see the doctor. She said Katie had her arm behind Will’s back, but it still looks very strange. That gap between their bodies now looks like a chasm to me.

    • Nicole says:

      I really want this to be a meme now. Paste the family into a variety of backgrounds!

  2. Digital Unicorn (aka Betti) says:

    I wonder if there will be a Middleton shadow court boxing day pap stroll to the church like last year – at the same time as the main RF one. Probably not as Meghan will be at that one and they won’t be that stupid to compete with the press attention her attendance will get.

    • SoulSPA says:

      It’ll be interesting to see. No way the Midds will avoid blending in. That’s not their MO. Low key and no pics very likely. But I bet they’ll be in the picture, just that we won’t see them. If we will, I am up for a big laugh. Very keen, even.

    • FLORC says:

      I read “Middleton shadow boxing” and I spit out my coffee.

    • Imqrious2 says:

      Eh, I think that like every family, they alternate years. Last year was with the Mids, this year the Windsors. And also now add to the mix the Matthews. I’m sure Pips has to split her time with her new family, too. So Ma and Pa Mids will now have another place to be over the holidays.

      • SoulSPA says:

        Good points. But I’m wondering where James will be.

      • Carrie1 says:

        Yeah I was thinking pressure from Carol is off Kate big time now that Pippa married and into a fun partying family of wealth.

      • FLORC says:

        There’s been no altering. If there was a photo op W&K were there, but promptly returned to the Midds. Either at Anmer or the Midds estate.

  3. Mia4s says:

    I have no time for either of them but at least the designers get free publicity for their “gifts”. It’s a mutually beneficial relationship. Hearing about the sad people (fans!? Of two children who don’t do anything?) who actually send presents to two of the most privileged children in the world is far more disturbing. I’ve never understood people who send gifts to celebrities. A letter or some handmade art? OK. But actually buying gifts? That’s just so sad.

    • magnoliarose says:

      Agree. It is weird.

    • Nic919 says:

      I agree. They are some of the richest kids in the world (living on taxpayer money) so no one should be sending them toys since they will get what they want anyway. Those people should be donating toys to children who live in shelters or hospitals and who won’t be spending a day in luxury. Messed up priorities.

    • Nicole says:

      Its weird and I’ve always found it odd that designers gift things to celebs who can afford it.
      I believe Scott Disick roasted Kim K over it once and its a meme

      • Dixiebells says:

        It was a free yoga membership or something. Scott roasting all the Ks was pretty much my fave part of that show. And it’s not like he’s the voice of reason in his life, but man it was funny when he pointed out the ridiculousness of it all. There’s also a meme of him looking horrified while Kim and Kris Humphries are making out. I laugh every time I see it.

      • Princessk says:

        Nothing weird, its called advertising. Nobody cares or wants to copy what Joe Bloggs wears or does.

      • Marianne says:

        But its publicity for the designer. Cause a fan of that celebrity might then go out and buy themselevs that same scarf or whatever.

    • fubar says:

      Never understood this either. Do these people think that the celebrity ever sees their gifts or letters or pictures. What a waste of money

  4. FLORC says:

    Maybe because the gifts are sent directly to the kids. Not like sending to pippa to gift to them.
    Anyone else remember when Kate had George. All the baby items she was sent. Donating out the least desirable products. The others she either kept or had destroyed.

    I like how this was so quietly done we get all the details.

  5. Rosalee says:

    Each year we have a toy drive for kids. It’s a massive job, I am surrounded by teddy bears and little dolls. A surplus of toys for the ages between 5 – 8 But gifts for teens are always lacking so I end up driving to discount stores and spend a small fortune. So, it warms my heart knowing they donate their children’s toys to organizations to give to children who may not receive a gift otherwise. But, please when donating think of a gift for a teen girl or boy. Thank you

    • homeslice says:

      I agree and I always select the teenager off the Angel Tree!!

    • notasugarhere says:

      Yes, this. For me it is the local foster care organization. You fill a shoe-or-boot box with as many little gifts you can find that a teen might like. And a $25 gift card for them to spend on themselves.

    • AnnaKist says:

      Aw, Rosalee, you’re an angel – thank you for your good heart and hard work. Teenagers are very hard to buy for. I was watching a news program covering a story about our large stores’ wishing trees. Many people are now buying gift cards when they select a teen’s tag. A couple of the stores even provide a lovely box to package the card in. A child psychologist said it’s a great idea, as it likely makes the recipients feel they are like other teens, able to go out and buy exactly what they want. I’ve already given two gifts, but love this idea, so am going out tomorrow (today here) to add two gift cards for a couple of teens.

  6. KP says:

    Seriously? PUH-LEEEEZ. I’m an adult. I can have what I want. I don’t let my child have anything they want. This is not a controversial stance.

    Also, families do different things every year. I don’t find it weird that the Middleton’s wouldn’t be involved when the Windsors obviously have more going on this year.

  7. Pumpkin (formally soup, pie) says:

    Doll houses for girls, cliché and passé. Not that we know for a fact what gifts they receive.

    • Tourmaline says:

      Maybe that’s what she wants? Many kids love doll houses. My little boy loved his Fisher Price Little People one. Because it’s stereotypically associated with girls only it must be shunned as cliche and passé?

      • Barbcat says:

        I was a “tomboy” but loved my custom built by my mom and dad dollhouse. I loved making matchbox furniture for it. My dad was a hunter and I skinned a deer ear and tried to tan it for a rug. It was stiff as cardboard but I was so proud.

        Actually clever idea about the neutral background. Didn’t think about that until I read this post.

    • Peanut Gallery says:

      Or maybe it’s what Charlotte loves and wants? It’s not cliche and passe! Ugh.

    • Jessica says:

      I was not girly and loved mine. I loved decorating it. My Star Wars figures loved living there.

  8. Rachel says:

    C’mom, there’s no way Kate isn’t getting tons of random crap from fans that gets donated or quietly binned. Totally different from designer PR freebies.

    • AnnaKist says:

      You’re right, Rachel, and all royal babies have had gifts sent or given to them by random people. I remember reading about the many, many lovely gifts William and Harry received. Their mother, if I recall correctly, sometimes let them keep a gift, but also “quietly donated” the rest. As stated upthread, it’s sad that fans go out of their way to buy and send gifts to already-very rich and privileged children. Sad and weird. And, to be fair, they can’t keep everything they’re ever given. At least – hopefully – these gifts are distributed to the less-fortunate.

  9. Yup, Me says:

    It’s winter time and it’s cold. We need to start a petition to let George have some pants.

    They look great in their picture, though I did just notice that everyone seems to be looking at the camera with the exception of Kate who seems to be looking just past it.

  10. Redgrl says:

    You know, it’s disheartening that with all their $$ and free time they’re too lazy to get a damn proper Christmas photo done and basically said “yeah, this old pic will do for the masses!” Ugh.

    • Citresse says:

      Yes it would be nice if they were seated around a Christmas tree but I think they reuse the photo for other correspondence with heads of govt and others throughout 2018 so the ongoing Christmas theme wouldn’t fit.

  11. SoulSPA says:

    Yup. And now they “quietly” donate toys. Says a “Middleton family friend”, Again, the Midds and charitable “endeavours”. Shady AF.

    • notasugarhere says:

      Timing is questionable. Reads a lot like a DM-editor or Jason-inspired story to me. People angry about the silly 6-month old photo, Meghan and Harry getting attention? Quick, make them look charitable.

      • Polly says:

        Or maybe KP put this story out there to try and distract from the negative reaction to Meagan’s $70,000 frock ;)

      • notasugarhere says:

        Timing would be off for that. A dress bought at deep discount by a private citizen last year, which she then chooses to wear for photos? I’m not seeing the big deal on that. She might have bought it for an awards show, and since that is not longer an option, repurposed it because she and her fiance like it.

  12. Meow says:

    Can someone gift Kate some manners, and perhaps some blush-application lessons?!

  13. Shannon says:

    It’s nice that they donate the toys. I’m sure Kate can get a lot more use out of the clothes (and the designers get publicity) than the kids can get from 47 random fire trucks or dolls or whatever people send. What I took from this is basically: how weird is it that someone would go out and shop for already-rich kids they don’t even know? That just seems kind of sad & creepy.

  14. Starlight says:

    A very kind gesture good for them ….. the PR trying to deflect the fifty shades of ginger article by Sarah Vine in the Daily Mail possibly

  15. hmmm says:

    Wow. Naked PR tales of Cambridge ‘generosity’ in the time of Meghan (and Harry). What were the chances?

  16. Seraphina says:

    I’d like to see a lot of backdrops to this sterile pic. And all the comments are so funny. Keep it up ladies.

  17. Tessy says:

    Why does he never touch her? It just seems so weird and cold.

  18. Miasys says:

    Usually Kate is irritating AF to me, however, this photo of her looks pretty good. She’s finally dialed back the eyeliner.

    • FLORC says:

      Photo edits dial back her makeup. Smooths natural blemishes and any flyaway strands of hair. And fixes liquid eyeliner. Which, to this day! I cannot figure out why people use it on the lower lid water line. It’s for eye liner wing effects. Not lower lid mid to quarter line effects.

  19. Miasys says:

    @Florc- well dang. I thought her holiday present to the masses was ratcheting down the Tammy Faye Bakker eye makeup. Photo edits would explain her sudden resemblance to Blake Lively.