Random Royal Rotogravure

Little Prince Harald, three-year-old son of Crown Princess Martha of Norway, is pictured above playing in the sand of his new home on Cape Cod, the estate of Frederic Schaefer, wealthy Pittsburgh socialite. His mother, Crown Princess Martha and his sisters, Princesses Astrid, seven, and Ragnhild, nine, are also there. September 10, 1940.

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This photo was taken while the Norwegian Royal Family was living in the US during WWII. Do you have any favorite photos of the Norwegian royals as kids? Share them below!

Britain · Greece · Norway

Bitty Bits and Bobs

Yes, it’s Bits and Bobs, back again in a little bitty fashion. This temporary name also fits our love of cheesy alliteration around here. There still isn’t a great deal of exciting royal news, but let’s soldier on with what we have.

The Week in Getty Images

Two of the Benelux royals represent in orange, one in crazy pants, the Spains were out everywhere, and the Chelsea Garden Show went on in a virtual fashion. See it all here.

Other Voices Other Blogs

  • The Royal Hats blog has continued valiantly on in the face of an Ascot free year. I have to thank her for showing me the way to the Milliner’s Guild Instagram Challenge, where people are re-creating their favorite Ascot looks. Also, here is a great look back, suggested by ardent royalist Mitten Mary.
  • Mary From the Start is up to 2012. They featured Margrethe’s 40th Jubilee celebrations and I have no memory of this gold lame jacket.

Two Weddings that Weren’t

I can’t tell you how depressing it was to type out that header. Both of these weddings would have been barn burners for royal watching. It seems the couples have come to terms with the situation, and I hope they are planning something spectacular for royal watchers in the future.

Theodora Greece promises a celebration in Greece once it’s safe. We’ve talked about the enormous social capital of the Greek royals, and how they are close to everyone. You know that when this wedding does come off, it will be a bonanza of royal sightings.

Princess Beatrice had already planned a smaller, more intimate wedding, but I am sure there would have been plenty to talk about between tiaras and dress designers and immediate family guests. Oh, well, next year will be big.

Happy Birthday

Jetsun Pema celebrated her 30th birthday and, generous as she is, gave us a present. Look at the gorgeous photos of the new family configuration, including the bébé. The name will be made public in the next few days.

The Brits Being Veddy British

I am quite relieved to see that the coronavirus isolation hasn’t taken any of the zip out of HerMaj. Here she is with her favorite animals, doing her favorite activity.

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Charles loved his grandmother. This is very sweet.

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“We decided each movement should reflect an important aspect of her character. The smile, the love and the sense of duty which remained deep right to the very end.” . 🎧 The Prince speaks of the special piano concerto that he commissioned in memory of his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother. . ⬅️ The piece will be played in full this evening during the second of two special programmes on @ClassicFM. Tonight’s programme will be presented solely by The Prince of Wales, who will highlight the great importance of classical music, particularly during this difficult time. His Royal Highness will add to last night’s programme with more of his favourite classical pieces, of which two were recorded by The Duchess of Cornwall’s musical patronages, @nyo_gb and @lcoorchestra. . 📻 Tune in to Classic FM from 8pm or follow the link in our bio.

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Let’s End with a Classic Princess

Isn’t this a lovely photo of a lovely young girl? Behold Princess Astrid at the time of her re-unification with her family, post World War II.

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21. mai var det 75 år siden Prinsesse Astrid og Prinsesse Ragnhild møtte sin bestefar, Kong Haakon, igjen etter fem års fravær. – Det ble et hjertelig møte med bestefar. Han synes nok vi var blitt store, for vi var jo bare småpiker da vi måtte forlate far og ham i 1940, forteller Prinsesse Astrid, fru Ferner. Prinsessene reiste fra USA med fly til Skottland, og deretter med tog til London. – Mens vi ventet i Skottland, torde vi ikke å spørre om annet enn et glass vann. Vi hadde hørt at det var knapt med mat i Storbritannia – så da ville ikke vi spørre om mat, forteller Prinsessen. Prins Harald kom med neste fly. På stasjonen i London ble prinsessene møtt av Kong Haakons sjåfør og kjørt rett til stedet der Kong Haakon og Kronprinsesse Märtha oppholdt seg. Kronprins Olav hadde allerede reist hjem til Norge. Prinsesse Astrid forteller at Prins Harald og Kong Haakon raskt fant tonen. – De to første dagene snakket de engelsk med hverandre. Harald skjønte forståelig nok ikke hva bestefar sa. Han snakket jo avslepent dansk. Kronprinsesse Märtha og barna bodde sammen med Kong Haakon i påvente av at alle fem skulle reise sammen hjem til et fritt Norge den 7. juni 1945. Foto 1946: A. B. Wilse / @dekongeligesamlinger #kongehuset #prinsesseastrid #frigjøring #hjemkomst #dekongeligesamlinger

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What did I miss?

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Norway’s National Day

Welcome to a joint post! Thank you to LiL, who has written the portion about Norway’s new way National Day celebrations, and to our guest author, Ween, who provided the information on the luncheon and translates (and demonstrates) the recipe for Harald’s lomper.

National Day the New Way (LiL)

Gratulerer med dagen! Sunday was Norway’s National Day and as was expected, the usual festivities were canceled due to the pandemic. But never let it be said that if there’s a will, there won’t be a way! Norway encouraged people to decorate their balconies and celebrate with their neighbors by singing the national anthem and toasting the day. Many of the usual wreath laying ceremonies, folk dances, and concerts were also held, but they were unscheduled “pop up” events so large crowds would be unable to gather in advance. And of course these events were also live streamed for people to watch in their homes.

Not wanting to be left out, the royal family took to the streets, becoming the paraders instead of the paradees. Haakon and family walked down the path to the gate outside of Skaugum, and met with representatives of various groups from Asker. Then they all, including King Harald and Queen Sonja, hopped in classic vintage cars and made surprise visits to people around the area. The Crown Prince family visited a housing and care center in Solgården, a community and activity center in Borgenbråten, and housing cooperative in Borgen, while the king and queen visited care homes at Kampen Omsorg, the Sofienberg home at Grünerløkka, and the pediatric ward at Ullevål hospital. ⁣After they finished it was off to the palace balcony, where a very socially distanced Gardens Music Corps, The Norwegian Soloist Choir, The Silver Boys and The Norwegian Girl Choir performed.

And while Märtha Louise and her girls might not have been riding around town with the others, she shared a picture that made me sad. Only TWO of them in bunad? My heart is broken.

Luncheon and Lomper (Ween)

Celebrations across the world have been impacted by the COVID-19 epidemic, and this includes Norway’s National Day. Typically, King Harald and Queen Sonja host a luncheon at the palace for family members and government ministers following the traditional Children’s Parade. This year, the decision was made to only have other members of the royal family present during the luncheon, and to move it from the palace to Bygdøy Royal Estate, Harald and Sonja’s official summer residence.

Courtesy of Nyheter

Harald and Sonja invited the Norwegian media, represented by TV2, to the estate to show Norway how their celebrations were being modified. This included a tour of the dining room where the luncheon would take place, and a meeting with head royal chef Nicolai Lundsgaard and his apprentice, Anna Brimi, to discuss the menu for the celebration. The menu consists of traditional Norwegian cuisine, including multiple types of gravlaks, fresh asparagus and other vegetables grown at the estate, kransenkake, and ice cream.

One key component of Norwegian cuisine is lomper, or potato flatbreads. During the tour, Sonja revealed that Harald’s favorite part of the feast is sausages wrapped in lomper, a common and very popular dish in Norway. Lomper can be stuffed with other things, such as sauteed onions. The royal chefs were generous enough to share their recipe, and as the chief Norway fangirl, I’ve translated it to share with all of you.

Lomper Recipe (Ween)

All photos courtesy of Ween.

To make Harald’s Favorite Lomper, you will need:

  • 750 grams of cooked, mashed potatoes (either russet or yukon gold)
  • 40 grams of clarified butter
  • 45 grams of rye flour
  • 90 grams of wheat flour
  • 10 grams of salt
Author’s Note: Yes, I cheated and used all purpose. It was the only bag available in the store. If the royal chefs have a problem, they can ship me some of theirs. I also adjusted the recipe according to the amount of ingredients I have.

Step 1: Peel and boil the potatoes until tender (aka you can easily pierce it with a fork). Once the potatoes are boiled, drain, mash, and leave to cool.

Step 2: While the potato is cooling, clarify the butter. To clarify butter, melt butter over very low heat in a saucepan, then skim off the white solids, aka milk solids, as they rise to the top. You can also pour the butter through a sieve with a few layers of cheesecloth.

Step 3: Mix the flour, salt, and butter into the cooled potato. 

Step 4: Work the dough until it comes together. Be very careful about adding in any more flour – too much, and the lomper will be hard. The dough should remain sticky. 

Step 5: You can shape the lomper in two separate ways: roll out the dough to about ¼ inch/½ cm thick and cut out your desired size (recommended by the palace chefs), or shape the dough into balls and roll them out individually until ¼ inch/½ cm thick (recommended by other bloggers). I chose to do the latter. Make sure you flour your surface and rolling pin well so the dough doesn’t stick!

Step 6: Brush off the excess flour and fry the both sides of the lomper on a dry griddle until golden brown (I used a regular pan). The lomper should puff up when fried.

Step 7: Cool the lomper on a cooling rack and enjoy

Comments Below

What was your favorite part about National Day 2020, and what is your favorite part about Norway’s National Days in general? Let us know below!

Britain · Norway

Random Royaling – Royals Honor Nurses and Look! Baby Photo!

Queen Sonja released a video in support of the Norwegian Nurses Association. Sonja had planned to attend a symposium marking the 200th anniversary of the birth of Florence Nightingale, but the event was cancelled due to the pandemic.

In Britain, practically the whole fam damily got involved to honor nurses! Roll call on the various Zooom calls (although if they one day want to all get on one call that would be be awesome): Prince Charles, Duchess of Cornwall, Duchess of Cambridge, Duke of Cambridge, Princess Anne, Countess of Wessex, and Princess Alexandra. They spoke with healthcare professionals working in Australia, India, Malawi, Sierra Leone, Bahamas, Cyprus, Tanzania, and the UK.

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I miss the regular random royaling, but I am beginning to get used to seeing faces in Zoom screens. OH, wait, there was late breaking news….

That should make your day!

Belgium · Britain · Norway

Random Royaling – 75th Anniversary of VE Day

Across Europe, the monarchs and the population at large paused to remember the 75th anniversary of VE Day, in various moving ways.


Queen Elizabeth, who bore witness to this event, addressed the nation and the Commonwealth from Windsor Castle.

Today it may seem hard that we cannot mark this special anniversary as we would wish. Instead we remember from our homes and our doorsteps. But our streets are not empty; they are filled with the love and the care that we have for each other. And when I look at our country today, and see what we are willing to do to protect and support one another, I say with pride that we are still a nation those brave soldiers, sailors and airmen would recognize and admire.

Queen Elizabeth II

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Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall took part in a 2 minute silence to mark the event at the Balmoral War Memorial.

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The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge took part in a virtual VE Anniversary party with veterans. I enjoy seeing this, because I feel that seniors are often underserved by royalty.


Queen Mathilde and King Philippe attended a ceremony the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier monument in Brussels.

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King Harald, Queen Sonja, Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit appeared at Akershus Fortress to commemorate the event.

75 years have passed since one of the happiest days in our country’s history: Finally we could celebrate the liberation after five dark years of war.

King Harald