Ahh, November: a time for apple cider, good cheer, tummies full o' food...and awkward family encounters. Nothing is more nerve-wracking than the first time lovebirds intersect their respective flocks, except maybe when introducing your family to your royal future in-laws!
Welcome to Kate Middleton's world. Though the Middleton family has met Prince William's clan before, it's only the second time in their 8-year relationship that they've been on royal turf overnight. This time, the Middletons are bunking with Prince William at Balmoral, the queen's private estate in Scotland. And, sparking talk of an imminent engagement, the royal family seems to be rolling out the welcome mat: Prince Charles has even set up the family in Birkhall, his own portion of the estate, which is a grand gesture, especially if you consider the not-so-cordial past between the two families.
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High and mighty members of the royal entourage have long viewed the Middletons' decidedly ''middle-class'' former occupations in the airline industry as gauche, while mom Carol has had a tough time living down the time she decided to chew nicotine gum during Prince William's passing out parade.
As the Daily Mail puts it, ''For them to be invited to Birkhall - lovingly redecorated for Charles by the Duchess of Cornwall – says everything about their daughter’s long haul towards becoming Princess of Wales.'' Prince William To Marry Kate Middleton in 2012!
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So will this visit bridge the gap between the two broods, or will one of the Middletons commit another social sin? Surely Kate has her fingers (especially the ring finger!) crossed that it will be the former.
Photo Credit: INF