Hello from London: a Vlog with Aspiring Kennedy

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On a crisp, sunny, beautiful London day last December, I wandered around Kensington Palace and gardens with Lauren Bryan Knight, otherwise known as Aspiring Kennedy. We had lunch at The Orangery at Kensington Palace and ended with tea and scones at Candella. Pretty much the perfect day. And my sister, who now lives in London, joined us at the end! 

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I first met Lauren in London a few years ago, and she's one of those people that you instantly connect with. She also happens to be really funny, a mom to three adorable kids, and wife to her great husband Tyler. Lauren also really gets travel, and she takes her kids all over Europe. She's also what I consider to be a real influencer (#overusedannoyingword), because people trust her. I work in travel and media, and know hundreds of travel journalists and agents - and while many of them are awesome, I'd take Lauren's recommendations first. (If you're going to London, use her guide! I always do. And here's my England/London guide, just in case.) 

We went on a lovely walk and talked travel tips, with and without kids. Here is the full 14-minute chat! 

Fashion, Gardens, Tea! At Kensington Palace

I can't imagine a trip to London without a visit to Kensington Palace. Sure, I harbor a small fantasy of running into KP resident Kate Middleton and Lupo on one of their walks, hitting if off, and deciding to grab a cup of tea together. Nevertheless, there are some fabulous exhibitions, like Victoria Revealed, all about Queen Victoria's life and how she lived it after losing her beloved Albert, laying out his clothes every day until the day she died (I just realized they were first cousins. Ew. But perfectly acceptable in their day).

Dress of Queen Elizabeth IIThis summer, a new exhibit opened called Fashion Rules, showing off dresses from the collections of Queen Elizabeth II, Princess Margaret (her hard-partying, gal-about-town sister), and Princess Diana. While the exhibit is small, I always enjoy seeing dresses in person and marveling at the tiny waists and fashion evolutions. Really, Diana's red dress on display can only be described as in the style of a Christmas ornament.

Dresses of Princess DianaIf you have time before or after your visit to the palace, The Orangery at Kensington Palace is one of the best places for afternoon tea in London. Built by Queen Anne, the 18th-century Orangery was the setting for royal parties and today still has a beautiful white interior and bright light.

Path to the OrangeryOrangery

Dress from the collections of HM The Queen, Princess Margaret and Diana, Princess of Wales
- See more at: http://www.hrp.org.uk/KensingtonPalace/WhatsOn/FashionRules#sthash.gWB6HGcY.dpuf
Dress from the collections of HM The Queen, Princess Margaret and Diana, Princess of Wales
- See more at: http://www.hrp.org.uk/KensingtonPalace/WhatsOn/FashionRules#sthash.gWB6HGcY.dpuf

I also love Kensington Gardens, which is adjacent to Hyde Park. I stayed at the lovely Royal Garden Hotel, which allowed me to wake up early and stroll the gardens, pretending like I lived in London. Save time to sit in the Italian Gardens, with gorgeous fountains and sculptures.

Italian GardensSerpentine River, Kensington Gardens