Seize the day or hit snooze?

Seize the day! I am definitely a morning person.


What motivates you in the morning?

Getting to my first cup of tea.


What would your dream weekend involve?

 A cabane by the sea, good white wine, fresh oysters and my husband.


What outfit are you most looking forward to wearing after lockdown, and where will you wear it?

One of the best things about living at Althorp is hosting weekends with friends, so I am very much looking forward to gathering people here and wearing a silly amount of sequins. 


What do you think is your finest quality?



With the Dalai Lama for While Child International in 2010
Image: Instagram @KarenSpencer


What was the greatest day of your life?

The day my first daughter was born.


What one item could you not live without?

My eye mask, for sleeping


Coffee, tea or cabernet?

Tea, always.


What was the last thing that made you laugh?

Bill Maher, he always makes me laugh.


And the last thing that made you cry?

The announcement that schools weren’t going back after Christmas…


What is your greatest achievement?

A happy marriage.


With husband Charles, 9th Earl of Spencer
Image: Instagram @KarenSpencer


What’s the most useful thing your mother taught you?

That people can only treat you as badly as you let them.


What embarrassing memory would you most like to forget?

All the years between 14 and 19.


What is the greatest life lesson you’d like to pass on?

That the road to success is full of failure.


What song will always make you move?

Anything by my fellow Canadian, Sarah McLachlan.


And what book will always move you?

I’ve just finished reading the book my husband is writing about his childhood. It’s very moving.


What is your most burning ambition?

That’s too long a list to put here!


In El Salvador with Whole Child in June 2016
Image: Scott Chamberlin / Whole Child International


What one thing do you avoid at all costs?

Filling in forms. Everyone in my office knows I have a serious case of what I have called formafitus.


What is love?

I believe that love starts with yourself – in really accepting who you are, warts and all. The more you are able to do that, the more you can really show up to love someone else.


How would you most like to be remembered?

As someone who made a positive impact, in my family and community. I’ve noticed that many of the people I admire who really made a positive impact in the world weren’t able to show up for their family and, equally, sometimes people who really did family well didn’t actually contribute much in the world. Ideally, I’d like to be remembered as someone who managed to do both.


For more information about Whole Child International, visit the website here

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