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'Get Out of the Palace' and Other Advice for New Mom Kate

Posted: 07/22/2013 2:46 pm

Kate Middleton Pregnant

Two and a half years ago, I watched with a mixture of excitement and annoyance as Prince William and Kate Middleton announced their engagement. I may have once wanted to marry Wills myself (what Canadian girl growing up in the '80s didn't?), but I was thrilled at the promise of a royal wedding to rival Di and Charles' for my generation.

I myself was in the middle of planning my own wedding, and therein lay the (admittedly entirely self-aborbed) annoyance -- what if those two got married the same day as me, and overshadowed my nuptials? But as it turned out, they wed three weeks after me, so instead of gritting my teeth, I got to wake up at 4 a.m. on April 29 and happily watch as their stunning wedding took place.

Now, our paths have crossed again, as Kate (who I feel I can call that because I kind of consider her a pal) becomes a mom. My own bundle of joy/spit up arrived just over four months ago, and while I didn't have to bear with the scrutiny of the world through every step of my pregnancy, our milestones happened closely enough that I feel qualified to offer some advice. It's a compendium of things I've learned on my own and things other, wiser parents, have passed along that I've found useful. Because no matter how much fame or money you have, there are certain truths of motherhood that are simply unavoidable.

#1: There's no such thing as too much help. There's a tendency for new moms to want to do everything themselves, and you're going to have plenty of offers of assistance -- so take them up on it. Babies love hanging out with their parents (and vice versa), but there will be lots of times when you'll wish for another set of hands, so if they're available, use them. In particular, make sure the grandparents, aunts and uncles get in quality time from the get go. While my dad may not be heir to any thrones, it's pretty funny to see him play peek-a-boo, so you can bet Charles will be good for a laugh or two there.

#2: Dad is awesome at stuff too. Wills is not only a bonafide life saver, but a guy who has expressed his excitement at being a dad many times. Let him get involved right away, whether it's changing diapers or washing bottles. Oh, who I am kidding? Just be sure to let him do things his own way with the kid, even if your mom instincts are screaming "but that's wrong!" He'll figure it out eventually, and will feel more confident because of it.

#3: Get out of the house. Whether you're staying at the palace, your parents' house, or your little "shack", you and the baby will benefit from getting out into the world as much as possible. I appreciate this will be more difficult for you than the average mom, given the swarms of fans that await, but take advantage of a royal garden or two and give the kid some air. It's easy to feel happy sticking to where all the clothes, comfortable feeding areas and extra hands are, but you'll both enjoy leaving the walls behind and feeling a semblance of normality (if that even exists in your world) by taking a walk.

#4: Don't be too cool to sing. It's a rare twenty minutes that passes by in my house without a song being made up about anything from how fun it is to fold laundry to washing off my kid's face. Initially, I felt a little foolish rhyming every two sentences and belting out every song from "Grease", but music is magic for babies. The combination of your voice and a melody is often the solution to most anything.

#5: Take videos, as well as pictures. True, this little tot will possibly be the most photographed child in the world, but those professional snaps will hardly be in the albums you'll be embarrassing him/her with down the line. Videos, on the other hand, capture the sweet sounds and movements of babyhood in a way stills just can't, and as a bonus, you can edit a whole bunch together for a -- let's face it -- more interesting take on their life.

#6: Don't feel badly about forgetting things. You've heard all the jokes about "baby brain" already, and while some women experience changes in intellect, all women experience changes in memory. The fact is, you have to make room for caring about a whole other person and all of their various needs and wants, and sometimes, things like the word for that cold soup made with tomatoes (gazpacho, I'm finally able to remember) go out the window. And guess what? It's forgiveable, at least for the first few months.

#7: You can never have enough hair ties. You might have some of the most gorgeous hair in the world, but that baby won't hesitate to grab a clump of it for him/herself at every possible opportunity. Learn to love the ponytail.

#8: It's OK to resent your kid a little. Not all the time, and not even a lot, but since you've always seemed like a pretty down-to-earth person, Kate, you'll appreciate this piece of advice. You obviously wanted this baby (if not the hoopla surrounding his or her birth), and there will be so many moments of joy and happiness and even euphoria. But there will also be moments when you miss being able to be selfish and have your own life, and that is completely normal. In fact, marrying into the royal family might just have prepared you for this better than anything else.

#9: No one crawls down the wedding aisle. As months go by and the baby is meant to hit various milestones, you'll find yourself worrying that perhaps they aren't happening soon enough, or that the baby is depending too much on, say, a pacifier to get to sleep. It's tough to believe when staring into the eyes of an infant, but apparently babies do grow up and learn as adults -- so just remember to have perspective on any particular challenge and know it won't last forever.

#10: A happy mommy means a happy baby. As I mentioned before, even the most famous of moms isn't immune from everything, and one thing you may feel right away is an unassailable guilt. Whether it's because the baby cries all the time, or the diaper leaks whenever you put it on, or your milk hasn't come in, you will feel like you're doing something wrong for the first little while, and you'll feel awful about it. But the truth is, your kid is going to pick up on how you're feeling way quicker than he/she will care that their clothes aren't buttoned properly, and that will make all the difference. If you're comfortable, the kid is far more comfortable.

Loading Slideshow...
  • Britain's Catherine Duchess of Cambridge waves as she rides back to Buckingham Palace following the Queen's Birthday parade, 'Trooping the Colour,' in central London on June 15, 2013.

  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge laughs on the balcony of Buckingham Palace during the annual Trooping the Colour Ceremony on June 15, 2013 in London, England.

  • Britain's Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge arrives for a ceremony to officially name Princess Cruises's new ship 'Royal Princess' in Southampton, southern England on June 13, 2013.

  • Britain's Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge (R) attends a ceremony to officially name Princess Cruises's new ship 'Royal Princess' in Southampton, southern England on June 13, 2013.

  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge attends the Princess Cruises ship naming ceremony at Ocean Terminal on June 13, 2013 in Southampton, England.

  • Britain's Prince William his wife Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, and Prince Harry arrive at Westminster Abbey in London, on June 4, 2013 for a service to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Coronation Service.

  • Britain's Prince William and Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, arrive for a service to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the coronation of Britain's Queen Elizabeth II at Westminster Abbey in London on Tuesday, June 4, 2013.

  • Prince William, Duke of Cambridge and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge arrive for a service of celebration to mark the 60th anniversary of the Coronation Queen Elizabeth II at Westminster Abbey on June 4, 2013 in London, England.

  • Prince William, Duke of Cambridge and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge arrive for a service of celebration to mark the 60th anniversary of the Coronation Queen Elizabeth II at Westminster Abbey on June 4, 2013 in London, England.

  • Britain's Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge attends a garden party at Buckingham Palace in London May 22, 2013.

  • Camilla, The Duchess of Cornwall (L) and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge attend a garden party at Buckingham Palace in London May 22, 2013.

  • Queen Elizabeth II Hosts A Garden Party At Buckingham Palace

    LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 22: Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge (detail) attends a Garden Party in the grounds of Buckingham Palace hosted by Queen Elizabeth II on May 22, 2013. (Photo by John Stillwell - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

  • Prince Charles, the Prince of Wales (L), Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall (C) and Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge attend a garden party in the grounds of Buckingham Palace on May 22, 2013.

  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge talks to guests as she attends a garden party in the grounds of Buckingham Palace on May 22, 2013.

  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge meets children and staff during a visit to Naomi House Children's Hospice on April 29, 2013 near Winchester, Hampshire, England.

  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge Visits Naomi House on April 29, 2013 in Hampshire, England.

  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge arrives at the Inauguration Of Warner Bros. Studios Leavesden on April 26, 2013 in London, England.

  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge arrives at the Inauguration Of Warner Bros. Studios Leavesden on April 26, 2013 in London, England.

  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge attends an evening reception to celebrate the work of The Art Room charity at The National Portrait Gallery on April 24, 2013 in London, England.

  • Britain's Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge attends an evening reception to celebrate the work of The Art Room charity at The National Portrait Gallery in London on April 24, 2013.

  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge arrives to visit The Willows Primary School on April 23, 2013 in Manchester, England.

  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge arrives to visit The Willows Primary School on April 23, 2013 in Manchester, England.

  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge attends the National Review of Queen's Scouts at Windsor Castle on April 21, 2013 in Windsor, England.

  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge attends the National Review of Queen's Scouts at Windsor Castle on April 21, 2013.

  • Catherine, Countess of Strathearn during a visit to Dumfries House on April 5, 2013 in Ayrshire, Scotland.

  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge visits Dumfries House in Ayrshire, Scotland, on April 5, 2013.

  • Catherine, Countess of Strathearn visits the Donald Dewar Leisure Centre to launch a new project for their foundation on April 4, 2013 in Glasgow, Scotland.

  • Catherine, Countess of Strathearn visits the Donald Dewar Leisure Centre to launch a new project for their foundation on April 4, 2013 in Glasgow, Scotland.

  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge visits the Baker Street tube station with Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh in London on March 20, 2013 to mark the 150th anniversary of the London underground.

  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge makes an official visit to the Baker Street tube station on March 20, 2013 in London, England.

  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge leaves following a visit to the offices of Child Bereavement UK in Saunderton, Buckinghamshire on March 19, 2013.

  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge receive a teddy bear during a visit to the offices of Child Bereavement UK in Saunderton, Buckinghamshire on March 19, 2013.

  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge visits the offices of Child Bereavement UK in Saunderton, Buckinghamshire on March 19, 2013.

  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge and her husband, Prince William, attend the St. Patrick's Day Parade at Mons Barracks in Aldershot, England on March 17, 2013.

  • Prince William, Duke of Cambridge and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge attend a St. Patrick's Day parade by the 1st Battalion Irish Guards as they visit Aldershot Barracks on St Patrick's Day on March 17, 2013 in Aldershot, England.

  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge and Prince William, Duke of Cambridge watch the races on Gold Cup Day at Cheltenham Racecourse on March 15, 2013 in Cheltenham, England.

  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge attends day four of the Cheltenham Festival at Cheltenham Racecourse on March 15, 2013 in Cheltenham, England.

  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge visits Humberside Fire and Rescue Peaks Lane Fire Station on March 5, 2013 in Grimsby, England.

  • Catherine, The Duchess of Cambridge arrives to visit the National Fishing Heritage Centre on March 5, 2013 in Grimsby, England.

  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge visits Hope House Residential Centre on February 19, 2013 in London, England.

  • This picture taken on February 19, 2013 shows the 'baby bump' of Britain's Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge as she arrives at the Hope House charity in south London.

  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge is seen after viewing artist Paul Emsley's new portrait of herself during a private viewing at the National Portrait Gallery on January 11, 2013 in London, England.

  • Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge and Prince William, Duke of Cambridge meet artist Paul Emsley after viewing his new portrait of the Duchess during a private viewing at the National Portrait Gallery on January 11, 2013 in London, England.

  • The Duchess of Cambridge, Catherine Middleton and Prince William, Duke of Cambridge leave the King Edward VII Hospital where she has been treated for hyperemesis gravidarum, extreme morning sickness, on December 6, 2012 in London, England.

  • Prince William, Duke of Cambridge arrives at the King Edward VII Hospital in central London on December 6, 2012, where Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge was admitted for severe morning sickness.

  • MORE: Potential Baby Names For Will And Kate

  • Elizabeth

    <strong>FAMILY TREE:</strong> Queen Elizabeth II, Queen of the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth and Prince William's grandmother. <strong>MEANING:</strong> <a href="http://www.thinkbabynames.com/meaning/0/Elizabeth#qwA1pvxW5c1iTKTx.99"><em>Elizabeth is of Hebrew origin and means God's promise or God is my oath.</em></a> <strong>WHY WE LIKE IT: </strong> Why wouldn't you want to be named after one of the most powerful women in the United Kingdom? Even though sources report that the couple has decided to use <a href="http://hollywoodlife.com/2012/06/11/prince-william-kate-middleton-baby-plans-name-princess-diana/">Elizabeth as one of two middle names</a>, Elizabeth not only honours the baby's great grandmother, but Kate Middleton's middle name is Elizabeth as well.

  • George VI

    <strong>FAMILY TREE:</strong> King George VI was King of the United Kingdom from 1936 to 1952. <strong>MEANING:</strong> <a href="http://www.thinkbabynames.com/meaning/1/George#zuPdDDIpXvFRlxtj.99">Originally of Greek origin, the meaning of George is "farmer". Also there is the story of Saint George, a knight who became the patron saint of England and achieved legendary status after his struggle with a fire-breathing dragon.</a> <strong>WHY WE LIKE IT: </strong> Besides being a dragon slayer, the name George <a href="http://www.britroyals.com/royaltree.htm">goes back to the Royal family's history books since 1660</a>. George VI was also the last male figure in power — this title currently belongs to Queen Elizabeth II.

  • Diana

    <strong>FAMILY TREE:</strong> Princess Diana, The Princess of Wales and Prince William's mother. <strong>MEANING:</strong> <em><a href="http://babynamesworld.parentsconnect.com/meaning_of_Diana.html">Diana is derived from either an Indo-European root meaning 'divine' or from the Latin word 'diviana.'</a></em> <strong>WHY WE LIKE IT: </strong> After Princess Diana's tragic car crash in 1997, Diana would be a wonderful tribute to remember Lady Di. Again, sources say the couple plan on using Diana as a middle name, but we would love to see Diana used as the first name.

  • William Jr.

    <strong>FAMILY TREE:</strong> Prince William, Duke of Cambridge and father. <strong>MEANING:</strong><em> <a href="http://www.thinkbabynames.com/meaning/1/William#kRsY6f1d4xSc9wCW.99">William is of Old German origin and means protection.</a></em> <strong>WHY WE LIKE IT: </strong> Maybe a reason to follow in his father's footsteps, William Jr. may be a suitable name if the couple had a baby boy. Prince William has always been known for his <a href="http://www.biography.com/people/prince-william-9542068">good grades, his love for sports and being a philanthropist.</a>

  • Margaret Rose

    <strong>FAMILY TREE:</strong> Princess Margaret, Countess of Snowdon, was Queen Elizabeth's sister. <strong>MEANING:</strong> <a href="http://www.thinkbabynames.com/meaning/0/Margaret#TXLuZUx8EPt4sFuw.99"><em> Margaret is of Greek origin and means pearl.</em></a> <strong>WHY WE LIKE IT: </strong> Keeping it in the family, we like that fact that Princess Margaret was the Queen's youngest and only sibling. Margaret lived a life of controversy when it came to her love life and divorce, but <a href="http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/obituaries/1384429/H-R-H-The-Princess-Margaret.html">she was remembered for her affection and love for her family</a>, according to The Telegraph. Plus, so many good nickname possibilities!


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Speculation over the royal couple's choice of name has run wild in the time since the Duchess of Cambridge's pregnancy was announced, with Brits betting on front-runners with and without strong historical precedents.

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By choosing a polka-dotted dress for her hospital departure, Kate has inadvertently opened the flood gates to another wave of comparison to a woman she has never even met.

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Sin City has officially extended an offer for the royal baby to visit once he's of age. Do you think baby George's uncle, Prince Harry, will come along?

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Your sex life will never be the same. In my day. What, not breast-feeding?

From diet tips to "little baby, little problems," sleep-deprived and super-stressed new parents have heard it all. And they want you to stop it.

As Britain's Prince William and his wife, Kate, move along on their parenting journey, it seems even the queen has had a what-not-to-say moment. According to a special edition of Us magazine on raising royals, she exclaimed soon after William's birth: "Thank goodness he hasn't ears like his father!"

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All of a sudden, there's a lot more interest in Carole Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge's 58-year-old mom and the only biological grandmother of the littlest future king of England.

With Kate and her mom extremely close, and the new parents both eager to live somewhat of a normal life, you can be sure Grannie Middleton will want to be very hands-on in her new royal role. Here's what you need to know about Carole.

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...as told by GIFs. See them here.

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The Telegraph reports that the couple hasn't yet finished decorating a nursery because they are waiting for the completion of their new apartment within Kensington Palace. According to E! Online, this 20-room space, also known as Apartment 1A, will be ready for the growing family in August. Prior to the renovations, this vacant area was serving as an office and storage space.

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The royal baby is here! Now that we've seen him and his parents have said some sweet words about the birth, we're left wondering... what is his official title?

Until Will and Kate choose a first name, the royal baby will officially be titled as "HRH Prince of Cambridge." It makes sense, given that his father is titled "Prince William, Duke of Cambridge" and Kate is titled "Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge." In fact, the royal baby's title will be the first time "Prince of Cambridge" has been used in 194 years! Find out more about his royal title here.

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Kate Middleton gave birth to a son on Monday afternoon, but the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have not yet made their baby name choice public -- and if precedent is any indication, it could be a week or even a month before their selection is announced.

On leaving the hospital with his wife and newborn on Tuesday, Prince William said the couple are "still working on a name," assuring an eager public, "We'll have that as soon as we can."

In the meantime, the baby name frenzy, that's been brewing since Kate's pregnancy was announced, is at its peak. Find out which royal name is the favorite!

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Baby nailed that wave. on Twitpic

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Preliminary thoughts upon “meeting” the Royal Baby for the first time:

He waves! Our first Royal wave.

Kate didn't fall down the steps while holding her son. I held my breath just in case. After all, she was wearing heels.

Kate made absolutely no attempt to appear like anything other than a woman who has just given birth. Okay, her hair looked better than most new mothers, but

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Kate Middleton and Prince William left St Mary's Hospital at 7:14 pm BST on July 23 with the royal baby boy in tow.

The duchess arrived at the hospital early in the morning on July 22 through a secret entrance. She gave birth to the 8-pound, 6-ounce baby at 4:24 p.m that day, more than a week after his rumored due date.

"I'll remind him of his tardiness when he's a bit older," Prince William joked to the press waiting outside the hospital. Kate stood beside Will holding her newborn son while wearing a bespoke blue dress by British designer, Jenny Packham. See photos here.

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Though he may never escape the glare of the limelight, we hope the newborn son of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will be comforted by his many blessings: a beautiful home, famous friends, thousands of adoring fans and… oh yes, a hefty billion dollar inheritance. Read more about it here.

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Miss Piggy and Kermit the Frog just became the latest heavyweights to congratulate Prince William and Kate Middleton on the birth of the royal baby.

Walt Disney Studios posted a video on Tuesday of Kermit and Miss Piggy on the set of the upcoming Muppets movie, "Muppets Most Wanted." Watch it here.

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When asked about the royal baby, the first-time grandmother said he's "absolutely beautiful."

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The majority of British residents would be comfortable if Prince William and the Duchess of Cambridge's firstborn child grew up to be gay, according to a new survey.

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Kate's mother and father, first-time grandparents, arrived at the Lindo Wing shortly after 3 pm on Tuesday.

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Within Will and Kate's first day as parents, revelers celebrate at Buckingham Palace, Westminster Abbey tolls bells and royal artilleries launch gun salutes. Australia has already dedicated a building to the royal baby.

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middletons

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Queen Elizabeth's imminent vacation may speed an announcement along.

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Royal tots in Belgium, Tokyo and beyond just got a new playmate to join their exceptionally exclusive kids' club.

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Protection officers were spotted dropping off not one, but two pizza pies at the rear entrance of St Mary's Lindo Wing.

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The bells will ring from 2:00 pm - 5:00 pm in London. Watch and listen here.

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