Princess Charlene of Monaco has spent several "trying" months in South Africa after a "painful" surgery addressing complications from an earlier procedure

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Princess Charlene
Credit: HSH Princess Charlene/Instagram

Princess Charlene of Monaco remains physically separated from her children, Princess Gabriella and Prince Jacques, as she recuperates from a painful surgery in late June — but she is finding small ways to maintain as much emotional closeness as possible and to show the twins her love and affection.

Charlene, 43, shared a series of photos on Instagram Friday that she captioned, "Spending time with Jacqui and Bella[;] making blankets for the crèche next door. Wish me luck 😂🙏"

In the photos, the royal chats on FaceTime with her 6 year olds and blows each of them a kiss. The photos also show the South African-raised former Olympic swimmer sporting a shorter hairstyle than we last saw, standing proudly next to a sewing machine she is using for a service project and standing in a selfie pose in front of conservation posters that say "SAVE OUR ELEPHANTS" and "SAVE THE RHINO!" as she holds up the phone, presumably showing the posters off to Jacques and Isabella.

On Wednesday, South African News Channel24 reported that Charlene had told them that last few months have "been a trying time for me. I miss my husband and children dearly."

She continue, "Albert is my rock and strength and without his love and support I would not have been able to get through this painful time."

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Indeed, Charlene shared a statement with PEOPLE on June 25 that she was sad she would not be able to travel back to Monaco to celebrate her 10th wedding anniversary with Albert, 63, on July 1.

"My daily conversations with Albert and my children help me keep my spirits up a lot, but I miss their presence very much," she acknowledged in the statement. "I can't wait for us to be together."

The Princess has been absent from Monaco since early May when she left to engage in activities in support of her South Africa Foundation and the promotion of wildlife protection. 

The palace previously confirmed to PEOPLE that there are plans for Prince Albert and the couple's twins to travel to South Africa soon.