Meghan Markle’s mother was spotted over the weekend visiting Oprah Winfrey at her home in California, just three weeks ahead of the royal wedding.
Doria Ragland made a visit to Winfrey’s $88million ‘Promised Land’ mansion in Santa Barbara on Saturday as expectations mount for her daughter’s wedding to Prince Harry in London.
The purpose of the visit is still unclear but Ragland emerged after six hours bearing gifts including a gift basket that contained some of Winfrey’s favorite items.
But a source told DailyMail.com: ‘No one knows how to schmooze better than Oprah. It’s very much her MO to win people over by showering them with her personal attention – and gifts – to get what she’s after.
‘In this case whether it’s a pre- or post-wedding interview with the mother of the princess bride for her magazine or OWN network, Oprah definitely wants the inside track.
‘And this is probably not the first conversation she’s had with Doria – or the last,’ the insider added.
Ragland is no doubt looking forward to seeing her daughter, 36, marry fiance Prince Harry, 33, at St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle, next month.
Meghan’s mother, who is a yoga instructor, is expected to arrive in London ‘well before’ her daughter ties the knot ‘so she can be part of all the fun and festivities and see that dress’.
An estimated billion people are set to watch Prince Harry’s nuptials to Meghan on May 19.
A Kensington Palace announcement at the beginning of March stated that the 2,600 people invited onto the castle’s ground on the couple’s wedding day will include 1,200 members of the public from around the United Kingdom, nominated by nine regional Lord Lieutenant offices.
Some 600 guests will attend their wedding service at St George’s Chapel before they all make their way to a lunchtime reception at St George’s Hall, which is being given by the Queen.
They will then embark on a carriage procession around the Berkshire town, cheered by residents and visitors, before a reception at St George’s Hall.
Later that evening, 200 guests are invited to the private reception at Frogmore House given by Charles, the Prince of Wales.
The royal family are paying for the wedding, including the church service, the music, the flowers and the reception. But the security costs for the high-profile event are falling to British taxpayers.
Prince William and Kate’s children, Prince George and Princess Charlotte, are likely to take on the roles of pageboy and bridesmaid.
Palace aides have said that the prince and Meghan’s wedding will ‘reflect their characters and personalities’ and be a moment of ‘fun and joy’.
The Queen will be there, as will the rest of the royal family, along with Meghan’s mother and father, Thomas Markle.
Meghan has been criticized for not inviting close relatives to her wedding.
Last week, Meghan’s uncle accused the Royal bride-to-be of deepening an undignified family rift by leaving them off the guest list.
Retired US diplomat Michael Markle said he was hurt by the snub and the ‘indifference’ shown by Meghan, adding: ‘It’s uncalled for.’
Michael, the brother of Meghan’s father Thomas, said he felt particularly upset as he had helped his niece get her first job.
His other brother Fred, a bishop, has also been left off the guest list, as has Joseph Johnson, Meghan’s uncle on her mother’s side.
None of Meghan’s half-siblings, aunts or cousins have been invited either, emphasizing the growing family divide.
But Meghan’s niece did come to her aunt’s defense.
Noel Rasmussen, 19, said sniping at the bride-to-be is ‘ripping the family apart’.
She called for the Markles to have a truce and support the Suits actress on her big day.
Rasmussen’s mother, Samantha, is Meghan’s half-sister and recently accused the actress and Prince Harry of ‘inviting complete strangers’ to the Royal wedding over ‘her own family’.
Her mother, Samantha, who shares a father with Meghan, said the actress should have invited several family members ‘out of respect’.
SOURCE: Daily Mail – Valerie Edwards