Royal Family Reveals Christmas Card And Kate Middleton's New Year Plans

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have revealed the royal family's Christmas card photo this year, and it is one that is a little unexpected, with a Canadian touch. Vanity Fair reports that the big reveal of the royal family's Christmas card is a family photo taken during the summer visit to Canada, at an afternoon tea party that was accompanied by a balloon artist. The family photo embodies not only Princess Charlotte's smitten joy with the art of balloon animals, but also the royal family's dedication to each other as a tight family unit as the royal children grow up before our very eyes.

In addition to revealing the royal family's Christmas card photo, the family has also recently announced what changes lie ahead for them in 2017, reports the Daily Mail. Those changes are accompanied by a contract change for Prince William's pilot life and a new school for Prince George.

To accommodate the change, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will move the royal family from their secluded life at Anmer Hall, the country home leased to them by Queen Elizabeth. It is speculated by the Daily Mail that the relocation is not a welcome move for Kate Middleton, who is reportedly a little "broody" over the change as she prefers a quiet country life.

Even so, Kate Middleton is putting her family first, and these are the reasons for the move outside of the secluded Anmer Hall grounds. The royal family Christmas card photo is one from a series of photos taken at an afternoon tea party in Canada, an event that the royal family attended together and enjoyed some time together.

The royal family Christmas card and photo was signed by all four members of the royal family, including little Princess Charlotte who scrawled "C" on the card, reports Vanity Fair. The event was "most notable" for the awe Princess Charlotte displayed when shown the art of balloon animals.

Royal Family Christmas Card Photo Collection
[Image by Sam Hussein/WireImage/AP Images]

As the royal family heads into 2017, there are many changes that lie ahead. Kate Middleton will turn 35 this year and is working hard as a devoted mother. The first big change for the royal family will be the move from their 10-bedroom home known as Anmer Hall that is currently located on Queen Elizabeth's Sandringham estate in the countryside, reports the Daily Mail.

It is a home that Queen Elizabeth shared for four years with Prince Philip while raising Prince Charles and Princess Anne in their early years just prior to Queen Elizabeth being thrust into the crown with the sudden death of King George VI.

Anmer Hall
[Image by Indigo/Getty Images]

Prince William is reportedly on contract with the East Anglian Air Ambulance Service as a pilot contracted for £40,000 pounds per year. According to currency exchange service XE, that is approximately $49,000 USD annually. Prince William's contract is set to expire in March of this year, and whether he will extend it or not this year remains to be seen.

What is certain for the family this year is the move to city life in London where they will reside at Apartment 1A in the heavily guarded Kensington Palace. This apartment was the former home of Princess Margaret, reports the Daily Mail. The palace itself was also the former home of the late Princess Diana.

It is a heavily gated residence with its own staff and stables and runs very much on an old school tenet. The lawns of the palace grounds, for example, are still mowed down by a pair of horses pulling a tractor.

Kensington Palace
[Image by Chris J Ratcliffe/Getty Images]

The move is said to accommodate the changing school needs for Prince George. As the Inquisitr previously reported, Prince George is currently attending a Montessori nursery in Norfolk three days a week. But the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have reportedly enrolled Prince George, who is now four-years-old, in the Wetherby Pre-Prep School in Kensington, West London.

It is a school that both Prince William and Prince Harry attended, and is approximately £19,620 or $24,107 USD annually, reports the Daily Mail. The school has been well attended in Notting Hill by many celebrities, not just royals, including actor Hugh Grant and Elle McPherson's son Cy, according to the Wetherby School website.

The school in Notting Hill will be more accessible to Prince George with a permanent move to Kensington Palace. The Duke and Duchess are not unfamiliar with Kensington Palace and have lived there on and off over the years. They frequently use the Palace when staying in London for family or official events.

But the travels from Anmer Hall to Kensington Palace by helicopter are approximately £5,000 or $6,143 USD per trip, a cost that has garnered much criticism by the taxpayers that are covering it. The Daily Mail reports that the move in its entirety is something that is leaving Kate Middleton with some regret and making her even a little "broody" as she enjoys the private country life.

The Daily Mail is going so far as to speculate that Kate Middleton may even be yearning for a third child. But having already produced the "heir and the spare" for the royal family and about to enter the age of 35, that remains more unlikely by the day.

Whether Kate Middleton will be pregnant again this year remains to be seen. While Kate Middleton may be broody about giving up her country life for the time being, the royal family Christmas card photo makes it clear that tending to family life is a job that Kate Middleton enjoys immensely.

[Featured Image by Samir Hussein/Getty Images]