Birkebeiner ski race

Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Prince Frederik will both be skiing the Birkebeiner race this Saturday – so of course the newspaper have titled it the duel of the Crown Princes.

The Birkebeiner ski race is 54 km long, and goes from Rena to Lillehammer. It commemorates the rescue in 1206 of the young Håkon Håkonsson – the heir to the Norwegian throne, according to the Birkebeiner faction. The rescue went on skis from Lillehammer to Østerdalen, as two warriors carried the young prince on his way to safety. To further symbolise the event, all the skiers will carry a backpack weighing 3.5 kgs, about the same as someone the age of the prince would have weighed.

Book review Mary and Frederik 10 years

ItemImage.aspxI picked this up in October when I was in Denmark.

It’s a nice book filled with lots of nice pictures.

It details how they met, their wedding, the children, and their work over the past ten years.

If you have followed them for the past ten years, there is next to little new.

If you haven’t, or am new to royal watching, the book gives a nice overview.

Another review comments on how the book tries to show their everyday life. The down-to-earth of making breakfast for the children, and picking them up at daycare, but gloss over the details that doesn’t necessarily show the family off as the down-to-earth Danes that just happen to live in multiple palaces – such as the nannies.

Overall, the writing gets a bit sugar-sweet, but as an overview it is a decent enough book.

 

Happy 3rd birthday to Prince Vincent and Princess Josephine

The twins are growing up. Prince Vincent and Princess Josephine turned three years to day.

Prins Vincent og Prinsesse Josephine
The Danish court released these pictures for the occasion. This lovely photo, with both of them, is probably my favorite. It feels a lot less airbrushed and more spontaneous than what we might normally see from the Danish court.

Continue reading “Happy 3rd birthday to Prince Vincent and Princess Josephine”

Crown Prince Frederik to participate in the Ironman Copenhagen

He was originally listed as participant Knud Momme, but after a press release from the court it was revealed that Crown Prince Frederik will participate in the KMD Ironman Copenhagen competition tomorrow.

The Ironman competition will be 3800 meter swimming, 180 km biking and 42,195 km running.

Politiken lists that if he completes, he will be the first royal Ironman.

He will be participating as number 45. (There are live time possibilities at the website to track his, and other participants’, progress.)

Baptism of the twins

The royal Danish twins will be christened in Holmens kirke on April 14.

This is the church where Crown Prince Frederik was christened, where Queen Margrethe was christened and where Margrethe and Prince Henrik were married. Due to the fact that the family had ties to the church, it was also believed that Christian would be christened there, but the parents chose the Palace church at Christiansborg instead then.

It will be interesting to see which names they have chosen.

Christian and Isabella’s daycare

After the family’s recent move to Frederik VIII’s Palace at Amalienborg, Billedbladet revealed in this week’s number (2/2011) that Christian and Isabella have switched daycares. They were previously attending Dronning Louises børnehus (Queen Louise’s Children’s House) in Fredensborg.

It seems that a decision was made that their transport to and from Fredensborg daily would be too much in the winter semester, and so they started at Garnison Sogns Menigheds Børnehave on January 4th. In the letter detailing the new children in the daycare, Christian and Isabella are referred to simply by their first names, without Prince or Princess in front.

Their new daycare is located a 3-5 minute walk from Amalienborg palace.

Note: I have used the word daycare in the English, as I find that Kindergarten can be rather loaded word when it comes to English speakers, as this institution in Denmark is not a part of the general school system, as it may be other places.

Welcome to the twins

With the arrival of the twins in Denmark last Saturday, and their departure from hospital today falling together with the arrival of my replacement computer this week, I am looking forward to the return to blogging.

Having an enforced break from most things royal have been nice, but I’ve also missed participating.

I’ve seen Young Victoria, (as well as Wild Target, and both are recommended) and here is a question: Is it just me or do Kate Middleton and Emily Blunt look fairly similar?

Guessing Danish names…

It seems from the royal calendar that Crown Princess Mary has gone on maternity leave – or as good as, anyway. With the birth getting closer by the day, here is a small speculation on what the twins might end up being called.

Feel free to chime in with interesting names for royal twins in the comment section.

Continue reading “Guessing Danish names…”

Crown Princess Mary’s visit to Afghanistan

Following in the footsteps of her husband, who visited Afghanistan and the Danish soldiers there last autumn, Crown Princess Mary was on a secret two-day visit to the country. She landed back in Denmark this morning, after visiting the Danish camps in Afghanistan. She was accompanied by the Danish minister of Defence, Søren Gade, as well as the chair of the Danish parliament, Thor Pedersen.

They arrived in the Danish Camp Armadillo on Sunday, and moved on to Camp Price where they spent the night. The Crown Princess was shown how the Danish soldiers operate and live, and she met with the mayor from the local town, Gereshk. The group relocated to Camp Bastion on Monday, where briefings on the situation in Afghanistan were given, and a tour of the facilities was given.

The trip ended in Kandahar, with a visit to the American field hospital and meeting the Danish personnel serving there.

According to the Danish Ministry of Defence, about 750 Danish soldiers are serving in Afghanistan.

Julemærket or the Christmas stamp

Today Crown Princess Mary of Denmark will be present at the release of this year’s Julemærke, or Christmas stamp as the English translation would be. The Crown Princess is the patron of the Christmas stamp.

The world’s first Christmas stamp was Danish, the motive was Queen Louise of Denmark, and was released in 1904. Since then, many other countries have also taken up the idea of festive stamps on letters for Christmas.

The proceeds originally went to children who suffered from tuberculosis, but today they go to the Julemærkehjem – the Christmas Stamp Homes. These homes, which have trained adult personnel,  are welcoming children who are experiencing problems in their environment, such as bullying, or suffer from nervous diseases sometimes resulting in obesity.

Each year 700 Danish kids are admitted to the 4 homes, and roughly 500 kids are on the waiting list. They pay nothing for the experience – everything is funded by the sale of the Christmas stamps, or extra donations from the public.

Queen Margrethe has been the artist behind the Christmas stamp on several occasions, the first time in 1970, the last (so far) in 2003.

The Scandinavian Heirs to go to Greenland

Last year, the three heirs to the Scandinavian thrones, Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark, Crown Prince Haakon of Norway and Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden, travelled to Svalbard on the occasion of the International Polar Year.

They apparently enjoyed the experience so much, that they’ll be repeating it this year, in another location.

From May 27 to June 1, they will follow up last year’s trip, with a trip around Greenland.

They will travel on the ship H.D.M.S. Ejnar Mikkelsen along with scientist researching the environment.

Visits to Qeqaertarsauaq to examine sustainable energy alternatives, to the University of Copenhagen’s research station, as well as the iceberg town of Ilulissat.

Later in June, Crown Prince Frederik will return to join in the 30 anniversary celebrations of Greenlandic Home Rule, with the Queen, Prince Henrik and Crown Princess Mary.

The Danish Home Guard

With Crown Princess Mary in training for the Danish Home Guard: Army, Billed Bladet has pulled out pictures from the time her mother-in-law, Queen Margrethe II, went through the training for the Airforce branch of the Home Guard.

 

The Home Guard stands strong among the Danish female royals: the Queen’s sister, Princess Benedikte is a member of the Navy branch of the organization. 

 

The Danish Home Guard is a part of the Danish military. It has around 50,000 volunteers, and 650 full-time employees. It was formed in 1945, by former resistance fighters, who wanted to ensure that Denmark had a wide network of people who knew how to fight, if Denmark was to be invaded again. Today, the organization deals with education of military forces sent out for deployment, and with more civilian matters inside Denmark, such as handling environmental or other emergencies where the government is in need of extra hands.

Frederik: Kronprins af Danmark

Frederik“Frederik: Kronprins af Danmark” is the newest biography about the Danish royals. Where the unofficial biography about Marie Cavallier came before the wedding – just in time for the Danes to get to know their new princess (and the publisher to make quick money on it, if we’re being cynical about it…) – this latest endeavour was published on the occasion of Crown Prince Frederik’s 40th birthday. It is written by Karin Palshøj og Gitte Redder, the same two journalists who wrote the biography of Crown Princess Mary.

The fact that this is an official biography is shown by the fact that not only is Crown Prince Frederik talking to the authors, his brother, his close friends, his head of security, his former colleagues, and so on, are also doing it – and they’re doing it by name. A few notables are missing – the Queen, the Prince Consort, some royal cousins… but that’s just nitpicking.

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