The royal family is arguable
one of the most photographed families in the world. Every time Queen Elizabeth or pretty much any other member of her brood step out the door, they need to be prepared to smile for the camera. You can’t really blame them for getting tired of it all. But there is one constant exception: whenever a royal mom is photographed with her baby, the masks come down and the real, genuine smiles come out. It’s a joy to see.
Before Queen Elizabeth became the Monarch, she was Princess Elizabeth. Oldest daughter of King George VI, married to Prince Philip. And mom to two little children,
Prince Charles and Princess Anne, both of whom she delivered at home in her royal residence. While she would go on to become a very young queen and get incredibly accustomed to putting on a stiff upper lip for photos, those early years were different. She, like other royal moms after her, always had a different sort of smile when photographed with her babies. More natural, more relaxed.
It’s enough to make a person gush.
Her Baby Boy Joy Bettmann/Corbis Historical/Getty Images
Queen Elizabeth only had eyes for Prince Charles on his first birthday in 1949.
The Royal Women
Queen Elizabeth looked down at her baby girl Princess Anne at her baptism in 1950, as did her mother Queen Elizabeth and grandmother Queen Mary.
Her Happiest Days PA Images/PA Images/Getty Images
When Queen Elizabeth was a mom of two, she looked gloriously happy to be sitting on a picnic blanket at Clarence House, cuddling Prince Charles and smiling at Princess Anne.
A Queen Becomes A Mom Hulton Deutsch/Corbis Historical/Getty Images
When Prince Andrew was born in 1960, Queen Elizabeth was Her Royal Majesty. But she was all about her son during a visit to Balmoral when he was still just a baby in his pram.
Portrait Of A Mother
This photo of Queen Elizabeth and Prince Edward is not just beautiful, it’s also a real window into her joy as a mom.
Her Last Baby Keystone-France/Gamma-Keystone/Getty Images
Look at the way Queen Elizabeth watches her final baby, Prince Edward, play with big brother Prince Andrew at Windsor Castle in 1964. That’s the look of a mom who plans to enjoy her last baby years.
Her First Christmas As A Mom Fox Photos/Hulton Royals Collection/Getty Images
Princess Diana was clearly over the moon to be spending her first Christmas with Prince William in 1982. She truly has eyes for him and him alone.
Her New Best Friend Tim Graham/Tim Graham Photo Library/Getty Images
Princess Diana was at her most relaxed when getting photographed with her babies, and this image from 1983 at Kensington Palace is iconic. Look at the way she swings him above her head and the two of them are laughing like there’s no one else in the room. They’re obviously already best friends.
Proud Of Her Prince Princess Diana Archive/Hulton Royals Collection/Getty Images
Princess Diana could not look any prouder than she did gazing at her 10-month-old son Prince William during a visit to Australia in 1983.
She’s Wild About Harry Anwar Hussein/Getty Images News/Getty Images
Prince Harry was brought home from the hospital by his mom in 1984, and she looked euphoric gazing down at him.
Shelter In The Storm Princess Diana Archive/Hulton Royals Collection/Getty Images
Princess Diana protected baby boy Prince Harry from the rain in 1985 on the way to Balmoral Castle, but the bad weather clearly didn’t get her down one bit.
Shouldering The Weight Tim Graham/Tim Graham Photo Library/Getty Images
Prince Harry went for a ride on his mom’s shoulders in 1986 at Highgrove Estate. She clearly loved it.
Her Two Kings Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
Kate Middleton was all smiles when she welcomed Prince George in 2013 at St. Mary’s Hospital in London, and Prince William looked pretty excited too.
She Gets A Kick Out Of Him Samir Hussein/WireImage/Getty Images
Kate Middleton looks to be pretty entertained by Prince George at the Australia Zoo in 2014.
Her Girl WPA Pool/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
Kate Middleton enjoyed a quiet moment to gaze at her daughter Princess Charlotte at her baptism in 2015.
The Best Show On The Balcony Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
Kate Middleton was entertained by both Princess Charlotte and Prince George on the balcony of Buckingham Palace for the Trooping The Colours in 2016.
Sweet Baby Louis DOMINIC LIPINSKI/AFP/Getty Images
Kate Middleton couldn’t help but smile at sweet baby Prince Louis at his baptism in 2018.
Her Little Clown Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
Prince Louis knew how to make his mom laugh in July 2019; just wear her sunglasses and make a silly face.
All Eyes On Archie Pool/Samir Hussein/WireImage/Getty Images
Meghan Markle kept a close watch on Archie during a visit with Archbishop Desmond Tutu in 2019.
History Repeats Itself Meghan Markle’s first official photo with daughter Lilibet in 2021 hearkened back to a photo of Princess Diana with Prince William in 1983. What goes around comes back around, and a mother’s love is simply timeless. What Parents Are Talking About — Delivered Straight To Your Inbox