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The royal mom of two is celebrating her 56th birthday

By Stephanie Petit
January 20, 2021 10:23 AM
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Queen Elizabeth II and Sophie, Countess of Wessex
Queen Elizabeth and Sophie, Countess of Wessex
| Credit: Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty

Happy birthday to Sophie, Countess of Wessex!

The royal, who is married to Queen Elizabeth's youngest son, Prince Edward, turned 56 on Wednesday, and her mother-in-law, the Queen, marked the occasion with a sweet social media post.

"Wishing The Countess of Wessex a very happy birthday today!" the Royal Family's official Instagram account wrote alongside a lovely photo of Sophie wearing white. The post was completed with two emojis perfect for the celebration: a red balloon and a birthday cake.

On Tuesday, Sophie joined a London School of Economics webinar titled "Warfare and Peacemaking in the 21st Century: Who's Taking Responsibility to Protect and Promote Peace," hosted by the university's Centre for Women, Peace and Security. Since pledging her commitment to supporting women peacemakers and preventing sexual violence on International Women's Day in 2019, the royal mom has continued to champion these efforts around the world.

"I started to listen. I started to learn," Sophie said during the webinar of getting involved with the organization. "I spent a long time in the early days discussing with people and talking with people who have been working in this agenda for a very long time to try and understand whether I could actually play some small part, and whether it was something I felt I could take on. The more I listened, and the more people I met — it just drew me in."

Sophie recalled listening to the stories of survivors of sexual violence in conflict and the personal impact they had on her.

"To hear their stories, when you have tears dripping off your chin - you can't help but weep with them," she said. "I've gone to some very dark places internally, but I am not living it."

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Back in November, Sophie celebrated her age by participating in Girlguiding and BBC Children in Need's Act Your Age challenge, which asked people to use their age and turn it into a fundraiser. She baked 55 scones (as of Wednesday, she would have had to make one more!), and the treats were then delivered to The Hope Hub Camberley, a charity supporting the homeless in Surrey.

Queen Elizabeth's daughter-in-law gave fans a glimpse inside her kitchen, likely inside the Bagshot Park home she shares with husband Prince Edward and their two children, while baking cheese and bacon scones. Sophie sported an apron over a floral dress in a video that she shot herself.