Royal reasons to be cheerful

We all need a reason to be cheerful every now and again and after what's seemed an up and down kind of few months for royals everywhere, here's a regal reason to smile. Yes, this picture is real and it's rather lovely. And there's more to come. Make hot chocolate, add marshmallows, let's put the angst and the agitation aside for a moment and just get mellow with Mary, Fred and the kids.

This rather lovely modern take on royal portraiture has been released by the Danish Royal Household as it gets ready to celebrate Crown Prince Frederik's 50th birthday. Next May. They clearly like a big build up. It's one of a series of images shared by the Royal Household and created, in part, by Franne Voigt.

The reason we're being treated to such an array of loveliness is the release of a new book linked to the half century of the king in waiting. ''Under Bjaelken. Et portraet af Kronprins Frederik'' by Jens Andersen comes out on Wednesday and the Danish royals released the pics (some of them from the tome) as the book's star himself, Fred, got his hands on the first copy. Presumably it's too late for rewrites if he does change his mind.

Amongst the photos shared is a rather romantic one of Fred and Mary as well as a youthful one from the archives of the man who will be king driving a car without a shirt on. Not exactly your typical royal portrait but then the party prince turned family man needs to get the whole story in there. Frederik Andre Henrik Christian, Crown Prince of Denmark and Count of Monpezat, was born on May 26th 1968 in Copenhagen, the first son of the future Queen Margrethe II and her husband, Prince Henrik. He has been heir to the Danish throne since his mother's accession as monarch on January 14th 1972 and several events, including a massive run, are planned as part of the celebrations. Never mind the sweat, let's just enjoy the smiles. After a dramatic summer for Denmark's royals, let's enjoy a very regal reason to be cheerful.