Having finally managed to get around to mowing the lawn for the first time this year, I no longer feel as though I’m looking out onto a meadow! I’ve got the first (in fact, my only) tulips in bloom, although my daffs didn’t do at all well; any suggestions as to why I only have leaves and no flowers this year?!
Actually there’s something else I’m hoping you may be able to help me with – prior to my seeing Richard Jackson – and that is, to identify this rather beautiful tree I bought from a passing nurseryman?
He told us it was a cloudberry, and I even wrote to the delightful Tova Borgnine to tell her as she uses the fragrance from the flowers in her perfume! However, upon realising that it probably needs re-potting, I decided to check out what sort of soil it needed and immediately knew that the images of the Cloudberry trees don’t match mine! Pretty though isn’t it? Any ideas, please jot them down below.
Talking of images, I also wanted to share with you my photos of the most beautiful bluebell wood I visited with Roz while visiting her just the other day. Always reminds me of the fabulous film ‘Ryan’s Daughter’ with Sarah Miles..!
Have you been anywhere interesting in the warmer weather? Seen any cowslips at all? I do love them and there used to be masses of them when we lived in Bedfordshire, but very few here in Berkshire!
By the way, many thanks for your lovely comments on the last blog. It’s always great to catch up and find out how you’re getting on. I’ve been doing a fair bit of catching up over this last weekend too, having spent it in the company of my girlfriends from the village I used to live in. You may remember from previous blogs that we try to get away a couple of times a year, as we all now live in different places and would see precious little of each other otherwise.
Our chosen destination this Easter was the beautiful Cotswold village of Clanfield, very close to Bampton where they filmed a fair few episodes of Downtown Abbey. The first time I remember staying here was just on five years ago – three days before I started my first chemotherapy treatment. A lot of water under the bridge since then, and so many changes for the better .
There are some beautiful walks close by and, having eaten my entire body weight in spaghetti bolognese the night before, I felt I would benefit from a bit of exercise! During a break in the rainy showers, I headed out in the sporadic sunshine where I spotted these stunning blooms in a ditch! It was my sister who identified them as marsh marigolds, and they are like giant buttercups – just beautiful.
By the time I got back to the house, the girls had galvanised themselves and so we headed off to explore Witney, where we had a wonderful wander round. It was my turn to cook that night, so I made Jamie Oliver’s prawn, pea and basil risotto. Weighed down by all that rice, we didn’t move far, and so we decided that face painting would be a fun thing to do. Fuelled by a fair few glasses of vino, these were the results of our labours! Great times and great memories.
Being away meant that I missed my regular Diamonique show last Thursday and so, to make up for that, I have a whole three hours this Thursday 14th April.
Dale and I will be with you from 9pm to midnight for the finale of Diamonique Day!
After months and months of preparation, our buyers have brought together the most incredible collection from my favourite jewellery range, including some brand new simulated gemstones. Benitoite is incredibly rare, and boasts the most mesmeric shade of purple.
We have this beautiful asscher-cut ring featuring in our finale, which will be a first! Plus, knowing how popular the halo ring design has been over the last 12 months, we are also introducing a marquise-cut ring for less than £20.
Well, just feast your eyes on this – our first pave-set faced watch! At under £50 we have four colour options, including a dramatic gunmetal finish that I know you will love. I do hope you’ll be able to take time out to be with us for the end of what I know is going to be a very exciting day.
I was delighted to be back with Sinead Howard today for a full hour of Philip Kingsley, I know that my hair is currently very healthy and that’s down to their brilliant Body Building shampoo and conditioner. I find it makes my colour last longer too!
Talking of colour, there are a number of options in our Today’s Special Value from Kim Mendleson today and her range Kim & Co. Her soft linen-look cardigan is one that I will definitely be taking with me when I head off with Colin to find the sun. It’ll be our first holiday since our honeymoon last year, and I think I’m ready for a few warm rays.
So much to look forward to when we return though, not least Honey Beatrice’s first birthday! Here she is enjoying some ‘messy play’ – which she loved, although she wasn’t too keen on the taste of the paint!
I’m seeing Lucy, Honey and Sam tomorrow before Colin and I leave, so I will also be getting the final details for the cake I’m going to be making. It features Disney’s Ariel from ‘The Little Mermaid’ (as she is Honey’s best friend) and will require a sea themed cake… Hopefully I will get inspired on the coast of the Canary Islands!
Let me know what you enjoyed most about Diamonique Day, won’t you? Oh, and any suggestions as to the name of my tree would be gratefully received. I promise I will have the link to Colin’s beautiful song ‘I Know She’s Mine’ in the next blog – it got to number 20 in the Country Music Chart – very proud!
Have a great week, and I’ll have lots of photos to share with you on my return.
With love, Ali xxxx