Expatica news

Royal parents thank nation for best wishes

5 February 2004

AMSTERDAM — Crown Prince Willem Alexander and Princess Maxima publicly thanked the nation on Wednesday night for the presents, letters and best wishes following the birth of their daughter Princess Amalia last year.

During a special appearance on public television station Nederland 2, the popular royal couple said the Netherlands’ future queen is doing extremely well, reported Dutch public news service NOS.

“She is perfectly healthy. She doesn’t cry much, only if she is hungry. If she eats, she eats a lot. She is increasingly alert and looks with huge curious eyes at the world,” proud mother Princess Maxima said.

The Argentinean-born Maxima also said the royal couple’s carefree times were behind it: “We are now 100 percent responsible for someone’s life, but it is a very happy period.”

Maxima also admitted that Prince Willem-Alexander is more practical than herself, joking that she is “little bit Latin” in that respect.

The royal couple were filmed in their Wassenaar mansion Villa Eikenhorst and the royal place Paleis Noordeinde, the royal family’s working palace, in The Hague. Footage showed Willem, Maxima and Amalia looking at the large number of presents lining her nursery.

They also admitted being incredilby impressed by the amount of presents as Prince Willem-Alexander showed his daughter gum boots, a swiming life jacket and Friesian iceskates. “You must learn to skate in Friesland,” he told her. “Just like your father,” Maxima added.

During the broadcast, called Voor Amalia (For Amalia), the crown prince’s words also conveyed the feeling that both he and his wife regretted the fact that Prince Claus — the father of Prince Willem-Alexander — did not live long enough to have experienced the birth of his granddaughter.

Prince Claus died in October 2002 after a long battle with illness, but was still alive when his first grandchild Eloise was born. Princess Laurentien, the wife of Claus’ youngest son Prince Constantijn, gave birth to Eloise in June 2002.
The broadcast also revealed that Princess Amalia sleeps in a cradle that Queen Wilhelmina received in 1909 for the birth of Princess Juliana, the mother of the present Dutch monarch, Queen Beatrix. Both Prince Willem-Alexander and Queen Beatrix slept in the same cradle.
Meanwhile, the official website of the royal family (www.koninklijkhuis.nl) has also published a letter thanking the Dutch nation.

Much of the letter is written as though Amalia herself is speaking, describing her appearance in the arms of her father in front of the nation’s media just four hours after her birth. Then press conference was held in the Bronovo Hospital in The Hague, were Amalia was born on 7 December.

It has also been announced that all Dutch municipal authorities will be able to plant an “Amalia tree” in the Spring. The national forestry service, Staatsbosbeheer, and the national tree holiday foundation, Stichting Nationale Boomfeestdag, will make 5m trees available to the nation’s municipal councils.

The only conditon is that the trees must be planted by children on national tree day on 24 March.

[Copyright Expatica News 2004]

Subject: Dutch news + royal family