She has three grown-up children and off screen she enjoys spending time with them and her partner Colin, good food, music and the odd glass of wine!
Thank you so much for an unprecedented response to my competition this week! It's been great to hear from so many of you and particularly good to hear about your 21st birthday celebrations and gifts - so many of us were given jewellery!
Also interesting, I thought, that the majority of you who took part in the competition thought the answer was the hand towel - because it was! I first saw this in a hotel in London many moons ago and have been carrying it around in my handbag for months! I thought, though, that you - like I - would enjoy the element of surprise when the water is added :) ... made me laugh anyway!
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So we've officially moved into British Summertime, which is probably why we had a frost so fierce it predictably burned all my magnolia blossom! Still, at least it had been in full bloom and all its glory for my birthday, and I'm really glad I'd shared it with you by way of the photos in last week's blog :)
Thanks as always for your delightful comments and for bringing me up to speed with all that's been happening. Of course those of you who read this blog regularly will know that Colin and I have had a week away in Morocco, which was a truly restful break. We had originally planned to return to the same hotel, but decided at the last moment to stay a little further down the coast.
I think it was Mae West who said 'You're only as old as the man you feel', and luckily Colin is two years younger than me! :) If you're wondering what relevance this quote could possibly have, I celebrated my 54th birthday last Sunday, in the garden, with my family and friends, while the sun shone and we basked in a balmy 20 degrees. I could never have predicted such a perfect day, but it did tiptoe in, close on the heels of Saturday at the O2, which was fantastic in every respect.
Hello there, I do hope you ALL had a touch of summer this last weekend, because I would hate to think the incredible warmth and clear blue sky was purely for those of us in the Southern Counties!
Thank you for all my beautiful birthday cards and messages you posted here, on Twitter and Facebook - truly appreciated! I am so sorry that we got into a muddle legally with the competition I set last time, meaning we would be unable to recreate your favourite piece of jewellery, but I think the beautifully descriptive messages you posted more than made up for it. All your lovely comments and more importantly the sweet stories about your jewellery; who gave it to you, why you bought it, who it reminded you of - quite moving a lot of them, and I thank you for them.
Thank you so much for ALL the beautiful cards you've sent to me, the comments on this blog, the Facebook messages and all those tweets on Twitter! Incredible! Both Colin and I have been overwhelmed by your kindness and caring, and it has been an absolute joy to share our good news with you all.
I went to see my mum last Friday, and to have a drive in her new car which is a beautiful shade of blue, and quite sporty! It wasn't quite Top Gear style driving, but we cornered the Bishops Waltham roundabout quite tightly! She very much approved of Colin's choice of engagement ring, which is not that dissimilar to my dad's choice for her all those years ago.
I know you will have heard me mention more than once, the hours I would spend at her dressing table watching the light create a kaleidoscope of colours from that very ring. I often talk about the memories that are created when giving and receiving jewellery, and as I begin my regular Diamonique Jewellery show this Thursday at 9pm there's something I wanted to ask you, which could become a permanent way of us sharing those memories...
There are some of you who will already know just how special Valentine's Day was for me this year, but before I go into detail, let me just thank ALL those of you who took the time to enter the competition based around our hugely successful Jewellery Day.
By the time you read this I will be on the starting blocks waiting to get back to you on Friday for Jewellery Day! I can't believe it's been a month since I was last at QVC and you know I've missed you :)
Soooooo, to celebrate the day I have the most fabulous prize up for grabs in a competition I'll be setting at the end of the blog. Handmade Bibi Bijoux jewellery from a collection designed exclusively for you, worth £159! It is beautiful! More on that later...
Firstly, I want to thank all those of you who've kept me going over the last few weeks or more with your lovely comments. I do so enjoy keeping in touch with you this way, and it's been a real boost particularly when I've been feeling a bit down, which chest infections have a nasty habit of making you feel :) Mind you, reading all about your lives and some of the incredibly difficult situations you are having to deal with makes me feel humble, and very grateful for my lot. I hope that this kind of sharing is as beneficial to you as it is to me, Ali's Army is a force to be reckoned with :)
I had a ghastly start to the day yesterday when I chewed the medication I should swallow, and swallowed the medication I am allowed to chew! Eeeuw! :/ So today, I am snuggled up in my dressing gown and slippers, have taken ALL my tablets correctly, and am looking forward to catching up with you :)
Well it's been a funny old fortnight since I last wrote, but I'm definitely on the mend now, and am very grateful to you for keeping in touch with me. It's always good to catch up, but particularly special when you're feeling a bit low. Great to hear all about your New Year celebrations, where you were, who you were with, and to know that you're all cracking on already with 2014!
Colin and I had originally planned to spend New Year together at home, as our Christmas week had been sooooo busy! We'd managed to squeeze in a visit to Lucy and Simon on Boxing Day, take Colin's mum to lunch the following day and then had friends for supper. On the 28th, lovely Mitch and Ali popped in for a cuppa and ended up staying the night, we called in on my friend Jo the next day for lunch, and Lucy, Simon and all the children came for lunch on the 29th!
Thanks so much for all your Christmas messages and cards - I loved reading through them, and hope that, for all of you, this last week has been exactly what you wanted. I hope too that for those of you like Liz, little Alfie, Mary, Susan, Helen and Alpa, your health improved so that you were able to enjoy at least some of the festivities.
Christmas seemed to start earlier in our household this year as we bought and decorated the tree on the 7th December. We found this great place last year, and so went back again, but decided this year, in our wisdom, to buy a more traditional spruce...
I have to say it's made the room smell fabulously festive, but I think my fears about the needle drop were compounded within a couple of days, but as long as no-one touches it or sneezes anywhere near it, we may just make it through until New Year's Day.
It's official!!! 12 days to go until the Big Day itself! No I can't quite believe it myself. Not just that the last month has flown by; but it's almost a year since I had my life packed away in cardboard boxes, and was on the verge of leaving the little cottage that had been my home for the previous 24 months!
Quite frankly, two years of my life have passed which I'm more than happy to put behind me, and yet I do have many fond memories of my time there :)
But this last week or more has been all about keeping up and catching up! Thanks to the vast number of you who entered the competition to win Mally's phenomenal collection of make-up, lip colours and mascara - the majority of which chose the correct answer to my question...
Having just returned from Chiswick Park after a great day with Mally, I was ravenous! So, having demolished a rather large portion of fish pie, my brain is now functioning again, and I’m ready to bring you up to speed with all that’s been happening over the last week or so, and to give you details of my new competition with a FABULOUS prize up for grabs. Before I begin though, thanks as always for your lovely comments - a delight not only for me to catch up with your lives, but for you to catch up with each other's.
Since writing to you last time, I’ve experienced a mixture of delights and disasters, and as I’m not one to major on the negatives, I’ll get that out of the way first!