It’s a big day in the life of one little boy — Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor just turned 1.
Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, celebrated the happy occasion Wednesday, and they invited fans and royal watchers to celebrate with them as they released a new video filmed by Harry that shows Meghan reading to their son.
"'Duck! Rabbit!' read by Meghan, The Duchess of Sussex (with Harry, The Duke of Sussex behind the camera) to their son Archie for his 1st Birthday. Happy Birthday, Archie!" the caption says, before further detailing the cause the family is taking part in — a US and UK campaign to help children who have been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic, which is why the video was shared to Save the Children Instagram accounts.
"THIRTY MILLION CHILDREN rely on school for food. Responding to the needs of kids during these school closures @savethechildren and @nokidhungry have a new fund @SAVEWITHSTORIES to support food banks, and mobile meal trucks, and community feeding programs with funds to do what they do best—and also—with educational toys, books, and worksheets to make sure brains are full, as well as bellies."
In the video, Meghan prompts her son with a "ready?!" before reading the book, which Archie eagerly grabs and opens before letting out a cute giggle.
"Look, Arch," Meghan says a few pages into the book as Archie continues to help turning the pages.
Dad Harry can be heard in the background making duck sounds and laughing while he films his wife and son.
Toward the end of the clip, Archie is so eager to continue reading he reaches for another book!
"Let's finish this book. Then we'll have that book," Meghan says while pulling her son back on to her lap and Harry can be heard laughing as Archie manages to toss another book on the floor.
"Yay, the end!" Harry says when Meghan finishes reading.
"Good job!" Meghan says to Archie before giving him a kiss and Archie babbles what sounds like "duck, duck, duck" over and over.
Archie, unlike his cousins — including Prince Louis and Princess Charlotte, who recently celebrated birthdays of their own — doesn’t hold a royal title, and that distinction is just one of many headline-grabbing landmarks from his young life.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex welcomed Archie to the world May 6, 2019, at London’s Portland Hospital, but it was two days later before the first-time parents revealed his name and gave the public its first glimpse at their bundle of joy.
That unconventional delay, as well as Archie’s lack of title, were early signs that the privacy-loving Sussexes would blaze their own trail for their little one — and for themselves, as well.
“It’s magic. It’s pretty amazing,” Archie’s American-born mother said as Prince Harry cradled their then-newborn at St. George’s Hall at Windsor Castle. “I have the two best guys in the world, so I’m really happy.”
And it wasn’t long before Harry and Meghan shared their joy with the world.
Archie was just 4 months old when he joined his parents on their royal tour of Africa, during which the infant had the chance to meet Archbishop Desmond Tutu in South Africa — and he even got a kiss from the iconic 88-year-old Anglican cleric, too.
Three months later, Archie made another memorable appearance, front and center on his family’s Christmas e-card.
Though it was the baby’s first Christmas as part of the British royal family, he and his parents spent it in Canada, which is where the family was residing when the duke and duchess revealed that, after months of clashes with tabloid media, they were stepping down as senior members of the royal family.
Despite Harry and Meghan’s decision, and their eventual move to Los Angeles, Archie remains in the line of succession to the British throne, alongside Queen Elizabeth’s other heirs. Archie is currently seventh in line, just one position behind his father.
The birthday boy and the duke and duchess remain in America as they spend their quarantine time together amid the coronavirus pandemic — an unfortunate necessity which Harry admits has certain perks for parents.
"There’s a hell of a lot of positives that are happening at the same time and being able to have family time — so much family time — that you almost think, ‘Do I feel guilty for having so much family time?'" Harry said during a video call with fellow parents, as well as the CEO of the British charity WellChild. "You’ve got to celebrate those moments where you are just on the floor rolling around in hysterics.”
And today, of course, he and his wife are celebrating even more.