‘Be My Love’

89

Julia's mum and dadI don't know if I have mentioned before that my lovely Dad used to be a semi-professional singer in his younger days. He had a fabulous voice and was tall, dark and handsome… a shame really that he was never 'discovered'!

I had been thinking of him a lot in the last few weeks as we approached the third anniversary of his death. I still find it difficult to believe that my Mum can't just hand over the phone to him for a quick chat after Mum and I finish our lengthy conversations. I hadn't really been able to visualise him much until I had a very vivid dream of him a couple of weeks ago.

On the night that Russell Watson was at QVC, I was talking to Claire Sutton about my dream – she lost her Dad many years ago so I knew she would be able to relate to my experience. We had just finished our conversation and I turned the sound up on the television just as Russell began to sing. I couldn't believe my ears.


He was singing Mario Lanza's 'Be My Love', a song that my Dad used to sing when I was a young girl growing up. It was almost as though he was trying to let me know that he was still looking out for me, and you know I like to believe that he is.

This year I have been able to cope better with the anniversary and focus my attention on happy times when he was alive. The photo with my Mum was taken 5 years ago when he was the ripe old age of 85!! I had invited them out to Spain to see the 'old wreck' we had bought and he made me laugh when he asked 'IF' they needed a passport! I suppose because we're all in the EU now he wasn't sure.

Last week was also Daniel's birthday, so lots of cake baking went on with that and the Christmas cake. Also delighted to report that Crystal Palace managed to win at the weekend, so an extra pressie for Danny.

Speaking of football, my Fantasy Team is doing a little better, although I still seem to have the ability of transferring in players who instantly get injured. My latest two examples, the Blackpool Goalie and Fulham's Andy Johnson… do me a favour and don't tell them!!

Speak soon,
Julia x

89 Comments

  1. Liz de Young November 30, 2010 at 5:54 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia, i too have been thinking of my lovely dad alot as this is the first Christmas without him. I must admit its going to be very difficult so i have invited mum and all the family over so a houseful will keep me busy. I also feel he is looking over my shoulder and keeping an eye out for me and always find it a comfort.
    I wish you a very happy christmas and hope you get to put your feet up!!!
    Liz x

  2. Steven November 30, 2010 at 6:23 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia
    I’m sure your Dad would have been very proud of his daughter. It’s goot that you can remember him so fondly. Funny story about the passport too! I think my Grandad would be the same. Think he’ll just have to settle for Snowy Scotland! Its baltic here!!
    Glad Palace won for Danny’s bday. It was really a must win game as Doncaster are probably considered one of the weaker teams in the Championship although have made a decent start to the season. Who do Palce play next?
    I bet you only picked AJ in your fantasy Football team because of his Palace days!
    Hope the snow doesnt hit London as hard as it has up here! Bbbrrrrrrrrrr! I’m away for a hot cup of coffee I think
    Take care xxxxxxx

  3. Hilarypatt@hotmail.com November 30, 2010 at 6:44 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia, It is hard when you loose a parent my dad died when I was 24 so I feel as if I missed out, he was not there when I got married to give me away and he was not able to see my two sons who he would have adored, it is 35 yrs since he died and the other day I Believe came on radio by the batchelors the tears flowed I liked that record and he bought me it before he died, I also lost my mum 5 years ago (yesterday 29th November) it really is still raw when I see cards in the shops for christmas, mothers day I just fill up, the other day I heard someone in a store saying I suppose I had better get a card for my mum for christmas I just could not help myself but said to her quietly you should be grateful you have a mum to buy a card for I wish I had and all she said was ‘I suppose’ we know the inevitable happens and she was 86 when she died but she was always at the shops with me we always have a laugh and now I just feel so lost, so make the most of your mum while she is there as I am sure you are parents are priceless and irriplaceable
    Love Hilary x

  4. Pauline Johnson November 30, 2010 at 7:19 pm -  Reply

    Oh Julia I know exactly how you feel my dad died 15 years ago my mum 3 years later and to this day I still dream about them both thank god they are all good dreams now, they had a villa in Spain which I took over and for a few months after they died every time we stayed there I drempt about them, then one night they said to me they were happy and would see me one day, I know it sounds silly but it was a great comfort to me and helped me accept there going,my thoughts are with you at this time.
    Love Pauline.XXX

  5. Maria Nunn November 30, 2010 at 7:39 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia,
    I know how you feel, I lost my Mum just before Christmas last year so we have just had the first anniversary, I still miss talking to her on the phone about things that only mothers and daughters can do, they had just had their 60th Wedding Anniversary before Mum died as you can imagine being with someone for so long has hit Dad hard but when he is at his lowest like you a song will come on the radio as if she is telling him that she is there in spirit, as I believe your Dad was doing to same for you, its not easy when a parent dies.
    I wish you and your family a Happy Christmas and all the best for the new year.
    Best wishes
    Maria x

  6. Julie November 30, 2010 at 8:30 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia
    I know exactly what you mean and are going through. I lost my Father when I was only 6 he died very suddenly from a Brain Haemhorrage leaving my Mum to bring up 3 children alone. I lost my Mum to Pancreatic Cancer 11 years ago. In my eyes not enough is mentioned about this type of Cancer.
    I haven’t written on your blog for a while Julia as I’ve had so much to contend with this year but I’m pleased to tell you I became a proud Grandmother 2 wks ago-Lily’s absolutely gorgeous-9lbs 2ozs!!!(and has my Mums name as her middle name)
    I wonder if she’ll support Cardiff like we’ve previously mentioned a few months ago-not rubbing things in you understand-lol!!
    Take care
    Julie xx

  7. Morag November 30, 2010 at 10:16 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia
    I could really identify with your feelings approaching the anniversary of your dad’s passing. My beloved mum passed away in 1992, only a few days before Christmas, so this time of year is always especially poignant as she loved Christmas so much. I am an only child raised by her on her own, which was unusual when I was a child. Bing Crosby singing White Christmas still brings tears even now but you are right – the memories tend to have more of a happy focus with all the smiles and good times becoming more of a focus. I hope that you and your family have a great festive season, and wish you a healthy and prosperous New Year. Love from Morag xx

  8. Irene December 1, 2010 at 1:13 am -  Reply

    Dear Julia
    Have just read your story about your lovely dad who you lost 3 years ago and what a nice picture of your parents and you say that you had a dream about your dad and that Russell Watson was singing his favourite song,the anniversary of my sons death Is at the beginning of January and I have had dreams and familiar songs that I associate with my son that you don’t normally hear then suddenly they play around the anniversary time.I believe they do send you messages to let you know they around and are thinking about you
    My thoughts are with you as i know exactly how you are feeling at this time
    Love
    Irene x

  9. pauline December 1, 2010 at 8:07 am -  Reply

    What a lovely story, I lost my dad 23 years ago 2 days after my 34th birthday and like you I know he’s always watching me and he knows how much I miss him but remembering all the lovely things we did helps. Love to you and your family
    xxxxx
    Pauline.

  10. Shauna December 1, 2010 at 8:23 am -  Reply

    Oh Julia I lost my dad 19th December last year and this week I have started to struggle with my emotions and funnily enough
    Mario Lanza was a favourite in our house when I was growing up.
    Sadly, not long after Dad died my mum became ill. Actually she was ill while she was caring for Dad, but we didn’t know it.
    She is now at the age of 86 attending hospital three times a week for dialysis and another visit for chemo.
    How things can change in a year.
    My thoughts and prayers will be with you and your family.
    Much love
    Shauna

  11. gemma grierson December 1, 2010 at 10:44 am -  Reply

    Hi Julia What a lovely picture of your parents, they looked so happy together. I haven’t experienced that kind of loss yet but i can wholly understand what a wrench it can be on your life. I wanted to thank you for asking my question to Simon Wilson on the sunday show even tho i was disappointed to hear that he doesn’t make them. It was funny at that time of the evening my partner decided to sit down and watch QVC with me and i was worried that he would recognise the story that you were telling so i had to quickly switch over, all i can say is than heavens for V+ because i recorded the show aswell! Good luck with the footie! Portsmouth seem to be faring a bit better aswell so things are looking up!
    Am eagerly awaiting the Elemis TSV! Got a free sample of the wash off cleanser and it is marvellous! Are you doing any shows on Sunday
    Kisses Gemmaxx

  12. Liz Vickress December 1, 2010 at 11:08 am -  Reply

    Hi Julia – I can’t really remember my Dad as he passed away Christmas Eve 1975 ~ I don’t think my Mum ever really got over it, and Christmas for us was always very difficult. Since I’ve become a parent I try really hard to make Christmas fun!!! Sadly though, my Mum passed away New Years Day 2006 ~ I remember feeling awful and why was it always me ~ thankfully my lovely children and hubby got me through quite a difficult few weeks and now I can look back on what was quite a difficult year and think “I did it” Having moved earlier in the year I also had to look through some boxes of Mum’s bits and I felt that it was the right time to let them go! We all deal with death in many ways, I always think I’m slightly hardened to it because of my experience as a child losing Dad at 5,
    Happy memories to you & yours for Christmas x

  13. Una December 1, 2010 at 12:00 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia
    Im sure your Dad is around you all the time. Im convinced they dont ever leave us, and leave us little signs, we just have to figure out what they are.
    The photo of your mum and dad is just lovely. He looks like a real dad should be, one who you could just have a laugh with, and a nice cuddle when you need it.
    Ive read all the comments which have been left, and send all of you good wishes for the coming season. I have had a horrible year, lost 5 people who were very dear to me. Christmas is going to be tough, but I am lucky to have a very close group of friends and my lovely family around me.
    Its made me appreciate again, just how lucky I am to still have both my parents.
    All my love
    Una xxxx

  14. Lorraine December 1, 2010 at 12:14 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia, please may I ask if the black ankle zip trousers/leggings you wear are from QVC? If so do you have the item number and may I ask what size you wear please? Everytime I see them on you I want them.
    Hope you and your family have a happy and healthy christmas
    Love Lorraine xx

  15. Susan December 1, 2010 at 1:01 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia,
    I just want to say to everyone that I too, like many others, know how hard Christmas and New Year can be and it is nice to know that we are all thinking about each other. Christmas should be a happy time but I think we all have our years when we struggle with it. Love to all,
    Susan x

  16. Kathleen Donnelly December 1, 2010 at 3:01 pm -  Reply

    Hello Julia,
    Lovely photo of your parents, Your Dad actually resembles my Dad who passed away in 1998, Tall slim and handsome – I often dream of both of them – I actually saw my Dad – I was sleeping and I was woken up by a smell of cig smoke and when I opened my eyes he was standing by the bed he said ‘ everything is alright’..
    ( he was 90 when he died) anyway I was so shocked I was looking at him in his old cardigan wrongly buttoned up and was thinking ‘why can’t he fasten that right- ha !’ well I thought it was a dream.. maybe it was I shall never know, but it felt very real at the time.. I think these things do happen and your Dad was indirectly talking to you.. or singing to you… Lots of love to you and your family x Kathleen x

  17. steve December 1, 2010 at 6:45 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia
    It is lovely to hear nice stories about your dad Julia, nice pic too, a very handsome couple, he must of been so proud of you! I hope your mum is coping ok here in nottm with all the snow and keeping warm.
    It’s a great time for my plumbing business, boiler break downs and burst pipe, it has been difficult to get around, but managed some time out sledding at wollaton park today!
    I really like your dads song, very romantic!!!
    Keep warm Juila and stay safe, SteveX

  18. Sheila Law December 1, 2010 at 8:30 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia
    I know how you feel with regards to your Dad. I lost mine 10 years ago, he just saw in the Millenium and I really feel he is still looking out for me.Mum died the year after (from a broken heart) and I am so grateful that they never had the worry of my Breast cancer, although I am sure they have given me lots of hope and courage.
    I hope you have lots of happy family Christmases with your Mum.
    Sheila xxx

  19. carol rickard December 1, 2010 at 8:50 pm -  Reply

    julia i lost my dad christmas day 1997 we got to the hospital just to late but like you we have our memories and as long as i live i will never forget the good times.

  20. Jess December 2, 2010 at 11:23 am -  Reply

    Hi Julia,
    I lost my lovely Dad 3 years ago today so I know exactly how you are feeling.
    Take care
    Love Jess xx

  21. Irene Burrows December 2, 2010 at 11:59 am -  Reply

    Hi Julia,
    I still have my beloved Dad but lost my Mum 11yrs ago on 30th Nov, I can relate to everything that you are saying but do you know I have never looked forward to Christmas until this year. I actually feel good about it, I got my first grandchild last year and he celebrated his 1st birthday in October she would have loved him he such a wee boy. I am a foster carer in the process of adopting a child myself he is 4 and has additional support needs,we have had him since he was 4 months old, he has had his problems but we have helped him overcome them, but do you know I think it’s him and my grandson who have brought Christmas back for me and the other foster child here she is a wee treasure 20 month going on 5 and very chatty and ever so girly!! Hope this helps you get through your day, it never goes away but time does make it a bit easier each year.
    Irene Burrows
    xxx

  22. julia roberts December 2, 2010 at 4:38 pm -  Reply

    Hello Liz
    My heart goes out to you – the first Christmas is definitely the worst, trying to be and do everything so that no-one will ‘notice’ the gaping hole. I hope your family will support you and that you will be there for your Mum – she’ll need you.
    I have a few days off over Christmas this year so looking forward to a bit of ‘feet up’ time.
    much love
    Julia x

  23. julia roberts December 2, 2010 at 4:44 pm -  Reply

    Hi Steven
    The snow most definitely has hit us and how!! Can’t get in to QVC today – we currently have 32cms and it’s still snowing on and off!! Mind you, made a snowman today with Danny ( to cheer Sophie up as she’s not well ) and that was great fun.
    We have Leeds away Saturday IF the game is on.
    Of course I picked AJ cos of his Palace connection – he was a great lad and even rang Danny on his 18th birthday just to make his day!Did I mention I also have Charlie Adam in my team?? – touch wood he is OK at the moment, but just heard Fabregas is injured again!
    speak soon
    Julia x

  24. laura December 2, 2010 at 4:45 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia,
    Love the picture of your parents, what a lovely couple. You do look like your dad when you smile, did you know that? It’s nice to have beautiful memories of him.
    Like Lorraine, I also wanted to ask about your zip jeggings and toe post sandals that you wear frequently on air, if you don’t mind please… Where did you get them from? They both look very comfy and stylish at the same time. Lovely choice!
    You are my favourite presenter, by the way and I really enjoy your shows. Especially B&W shows! Loved the portraits that you and Simon received at the last show. The portraits were very good representation of both of you, but a slightly younger versions I thought. How lovely of the lady that sent them!
    Love,
    Laura

  25. julia roberts December 2, 2010 at 4:52 pm -  Reply

    Hello Hilary
    I share your sentiments entirely about parents and would have done the same as you in the card shop.
    My Mum rang me on Tuesday to see how ‘WE’ were coping with the weather!! I am so proud of the way she has restructured her life since losing my Dad – she is an amazingly resilient 84 year old and even having been struck down with shingles since July she manages to keep going.
    I am so hoping she will be able to come to us for Christmas – not sure yet if she will be able to travel.
    much love
    Julia x

  26. julia roberts December 2, 2010 at 4:57 pm -  Reply

    Hello Pauline
    Thanks for your words of comfort. As I said this is the first year I have been able to start remembering happy times but I am still haunted by those final few hours in the hospital ….. I am just so grateful I was there.
    much love
    Julia x

  27. julia roberts December 2, 2010 at 5:01 pm -  Reply

    Hello Maria
    I am sorry for your loss and hope your Dad is coping OK? I’m sure my Dad communicates with me in other ways too – robins in the garden and white feathers are just two.
    I hope your family will be able to enjoy this Christmas a little more than last
    much love
    Julia x

  28. julia roberts December 2, 2010 at 5:06 pm -  Reply

    Hello Julie
    Congratulations on becoming a Grandmother – hope Lily is doing well? Sounds like you needed a lift after a not so great year. Daniel weighed in at 9lbs 1 and a half and Sophie even heavier at 9lbs 5 and a half ……….. just as well I stopped there!!!!
    Cardiff are doing well at the moment BUT it’s a long old season!
    much love and hope things continue to improve
    Julia x

  29. julia roberts December 2, 2010 at 5:11 pm -  Reply

    Hello Morag
    It must have been especially hard for you to lose your Mum as she was like both your parents rolled into one.
    We lost my Dad 5 days before Danny’s 21st birthday and in truth his birthday has never been quite the same since – maybe in years to come it will.
    Seems we might actually get a ‘white’ Christmas this year!
    much love
    Julia x

  30. julia roberts December 2, 2010 at 5:20 pm -  Reply

    Hello Irene
    Thanks for your kind words – I know this is approaching a difficult time for you too and of course my thoughts are with you.
    I really love that picture of Mum and Dad. I was so amazed that at their age they had wanted to fly out to Spain and even though the house was pretty ‘basic’ then I always remember them saying on arrival ” This is paradise” – another happy memory.
    much love
    Julia x

  31. julia roberts December 2, 2010 at 5:24 pm -  Reply

    Hi Pauline
    You are right – remembering all the good times does help – it also makes me realise how lucky we were to have had so many good times.
    much love
    Julia x

  32. julia roberts December 2, 2010 at 5:32 pm -  Reply

    Hello Shauna
    What a terrible time you have been having – I do so hope that your Mum will respond to the treatments she is receiving. As you say how things can change in a year. It does make us realise that time is precious and finite doesn’t it??
    Sending you and especially your Mum lots of love
    Julia x

  33. julia roberts December 2, 2010 at 5:38 pm -  Reply

    Hello Gemma
    My Mum and Dad were very happy together ( married 58 years ) although it would be true to say never a cross word. I am always dubious when people claim that. Chris and I have ‘cross words’ but we always make up, and I think it makes a relationship stronger.
    Sorry the news wasn’t better about the arm bracelet – hope you manage to find one.
    Yes I’m on with Keeley on Sunday, late afternoon and early evening ……………. weather permitting of course!
    much love
    Julia x

  34. julia roberts December 2, 2010 at 5:44 pm -  Reply

    Hello Liz
    That must have been so hard for your Mum and understandable that Christmas was always a difficult time for her. Also very difficult for a 5 year old to comprehend.
    I know what you mean also about looking through things – although certain things still bring a tear to my eye or a lump to my throat, I no longer find it so utterly devastating.
    I wish you and your family a happy time this Christmas
    Julia x

  35. julia roberts December 2, 2010 at 5:48 pm -  Reply

    Hello Una
    You are so right about all the comforting words – people can be so kind and thoughtful and it is much appreciated.
    I knew you hadn’t had a great year but didn’t realise it was quite so dreadful – thank goodness you have the wedding to look forward to and so many kind friends.
    speak soon
    Julia x

  36. julia roberts December 2, 2010 at 5:52 pm -  Reply

    Hello Lorraine
    No the ankle zip jeans are not from QVC. They were from Karen Millen and they are a size 10. Unfortunately, since mentioning this previously on my blog, I couldn’t get a second pair – they have sold out!!! ( should have kept it a secret! )
    Merry Christmas to you and yours
    Julia x

  37. julia roberts December 2, 2010 at 5:55 pm -  Reply

    Hi Susan
    I have been overwhelmed by the kindness shown in all these replies. If only everyone in the world could show this level of compassion it would be a much better place, don’t you agree?
    love
    Julia x

  38. julia roberts December 2, 2010 at 6:04 pm -  Reply

    Hi Kathleen
    It is a lovely photo isn’t it? My ‘dream’ of my Dad was SO vivid it was almost a shock to wake up and the realisation dawn that he was ‘gone’.
    Just a few days ago I found a white feather on the windscreen of my car – a symbol I believe in.
    Wishing you and your family a happy Christmas
    love
    Julia x

  39. julia roberts December 2, 2010 at 6:11 pm -  Reply

    Hello Steve
    Sledding in Wollaton Park egh? – you are obviously feeling a lot better? Danny and I made a huge snowman today to cheer Sophie up who is not feeling so good. I will post a picture of him on here tomorrow. He has icicles for arms!!! Danny and I were also throwing icicle ‘javelins’ in the garden …… great fun!
    Fortunately Mum got out on Monday for some supplies before she got snowed in – she’s a good cook so I guess she will be doing plenty of baking if the weather doesn’t improve.
    Hope you don’t have too many burst pipes to deal with as that would mean a lot of unlucky people!
    love
    Julia x

  40. julia roberts December 2, 2010 at 6:16 pm -  Reply

    Hello Sheila
    Obviously I am so sorry for your double loss but as you say at least they didn’t have to cope with the trauma of your Breast Cancer even though they would undoubtedly have been there to support you. I hope any treatments you are currently undergoing are helping??
    I hope you will be surrounded by friends and family this Christmas
    love
    Julia x

  41. julia roberts December 2, 2010 at 6:24 pm -  Reply

    Hello Carol
    I am so sorry that you didn’t make it to the hospital in time. I had been in Spain when my brother rang to tell me that my Dad had had a fall and was in hospital. I changed my flight from Gatwick to East Midlands and was at the hospital around 4. When my Dad saw my brother and I coming towards him he said, ” Ju, what are you doing here, you shouldn’t have bothered”. I am so glad I did – 5 hours later he died. I replay his last few hours over and over but at least now I am starting to focus more on happy times, which as you say, I will never forget.
    much love
    Julia x

  42. Klara December 2, 2010 at 6:24 pm -  Reply

    What a lovely post – all the best to you and your family this Xmas, Julia.
    I agree with Lorraine: your zipped jeans really show off your youthful figure! If only I could get into a pair (I might JUST be able to get into the sandals, though!).
    Take care,
    Klara xxx

  43. margaret December 3, 2010 at 12:26 am -  Reply

    Dear Julia, I know just how you feel lost my Dad just before christmas 1980 Mum died 5 months before him and we think he died of a broken heart,as a family we just loved getting together with all the in laws too and now we still do it in Mum and Dads honour they loved family gatherings and its special to us,they are never very far away, take comfort in knowing he will be with you just out of sight, enjoy your Christmas with your family ,best wishes Margaretxx

  44. Kathryn sheehan December 3, 2010 at 10:34 am -  Reply

    Hi Julia, love the picture of the snowman, we have had a lot of snow in Dorset and as i live at the bottom of a hill in a side road( that hasn’t been gritted) it’s nearly impossible to get to the top, in my car, so a brisk walk was nessessary to do the Euro millions. Did me good, had very rosey cheeks when i got back.
    I also have a pair of Karen Millen jeans in a size 10, i got mine on line at the store, have you tried looking there.I got a grey pair aswell. Give it a go you might be lucky and get the size you want.I also got a lovely top in the sale.
    Keep warm
    Kathy x

  45. Una December 3, 2010 at 11:04 am -  Reply

    Hi Julia
    Ive just read more of the responses to your blog.
    How right you are. Such compassion and understanding from people we have never met. I dont know about you, but I feel better for reading it.
    We had quite a tough time last year, and managed to get to August this year, relatively unscathed. It all started to fall apart after that unfortunately, but as you say, we have the wedding to look forward to. Its given everyone such a boost.
    Once again, my love and thoughts are with all of you, my fellow bloggers and Julia appreciation society people LOL!!
    Hope you Mum is doing well Julia, maybe if she leaves now, she will get to yours in time for xmas!
    How are you doing Annette and Steve?
    Lots of love
    Una xx

  46. Steven December 3, 2010 at 6:31 pm -  Reply

    We cant even get out our street at the minute Julia and all the SPL games are off – rightly so. Today was a miracle – it actually didnt snow – first time for about a week! Not sure if Palace game will be on at time of writing! I sound like a professional now!! but if it goes ahead fingers crossed. AJ seems like a good guy. He seems to be struggling a little on his return from injury but fingers crossed he regains form. Charlie boy?! I never knew that. At Rangers he was such a frustrating player. Looked like he could shine but never really showed it and more often than not would dwell on the ball too long or try a superstar pass that never came off. Having said that he is doing well down there. Fingers crossed your team keeps impoving and I mean that for both your fantasy team and Palce
    Keep warm
    bbbbbbrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!! xxx

  47. Kathryn sheehan December 4, 2010 at 4:43 pm -  Reply

    Hi sorry made a mistake, my Karen Millen jeans are black with zips similar to yours, and washed denim “not grey”. silly me. But try the on line store, black 10 were in stock when i looked just now, because i just ordered another pair.(They have bags of stretch don’t they.)
    Kathy x

  48. Annette Roberts December 4, 2010 at 9:35 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia
    Like yourself I miss my Dad too, it would have been his 88th birthday on 8 December. As soon as I wake up I wish him a ‘Happy Birthday’, he’s always here with me. Even more so now that my bed is in the dining room, both my parents are watching over me in their wedding photo!
    I don’t believe it, but I love Mario Lanza’s ‘Be My Love’ and have one of his CD’s with it on. How nice that your Dad used to sing it… what a lovely memory!
    I also associate Robins, not only with my Dad but also his brother, they were very similar looking and although his name was Robert he was known as ‘Robin’. He was my favourite uncle and used to tease me terribly when I was little by calling me ‘Susie’ instead of Annette. I have had many vivid dreams with both Mum and Dad in and on occasion have been crying in my sleep only to wake up not crying at all, very strange!
    I’ve been back to the physio and whilst the broken leg is mended, the foot dislocation has caused a lot of trauma to the tendons, ligaments etc and will take quite a while to get sorted. The ankle is very stiff and I’ve got exercises to do and for the first time since it happened, I felt really down today and had a good old weep. I think it’s not being able to get out and do things when I want to do them, drive the car etc. It must have built up and I felt much better afterwards…. better out than in eh!
    I’ve ordered and returned that many pairs of shoes to different places because my right foot is very swollen and nothing fits, apart from one of my many pairs of Birkis (Nias), which are fine but not suitable for this weather, so I’ll be hobbling about the shoe shops tomorrow!
    Take care and speak soon
    love
    Annette x
    Hi Una, thanks for asking, been a bit low today, but feeling much better now. x

  49. catriona brown December 5, 2010 at 9:02 am -  Reply

    Hi Julia,
    I know exactly how your feeling about the loss of your beloved Dad. It was twenty four years ago that i lost my mum i was just twenty one and expecting my second child , she died very suddenly in her sleep at the age of 55 , it was devastating for all the family especialy my poor Dad so much so that he never got over it and died of a broken heart exactly 6 weeks later.
    I have always felt a bit of an orphan espcialy at this time of the year, i get very emotional at certain songs that they loved.
    But the daughter i was expecting when they died gave birth to my beautiful daughter on the 13th oct and has given us the best Christmas gift i could ever wish for.
    And i know both my parents are watching over us i think of them as my special angels
    Much Love
    Cat

  50. sylv December 5, 2010 at 9:39 am -  Reply

    just thought you might like to look at a memorial to nettie,it’s beautiful,www.nettie.muchloved.com

  51. AGUSTINA RAINE December 5, 2010 at 5:34 pm -  Reply

    DEAR JULIA, I FEEL VERY CLOSE TO YOU SOME TIMES WHEN YOU ARE TALKING ABOUT YOUR FAMILY. MY BIRTHDAY IS ON THE 10TH OF JUNE MY SON IS CALLED DANIEL,HIS WIFE IS SOPHIE MY OTHER HALF IS CHRISTOPHER MY DAUGHTER IS ADELE AND HER HUSBAND IS SIMON SO YOU CAN SEE HOW WHEN YOU TALK ABOUT YOUR CHILDREN OR YOUR BIRTHDAY I RELATE TOU YOU. I JOINED QVC ABOUT EIGHT YEARS AGO AND FRON DAY ONE YOU HAVE ALLWAYS BEEN MY FAVORITE. BEST WISHES TINA

  52. julia roberts December 6, 2010 at 12:53 am -  Reply

    Hello Jess
    I hope like me you are beginning to enjoy the memories of your Dad without them bringing a tear to your eye?
    much love
    Julia x

  53. julia roberts December 6, 2010 at 12:57 am -  Reply

    Hi Klara
    Thanks for your kind words and compliment. Trust me, you wouldn’t want to get into my sandals ….. I really must start looking for a new pair that are equally as comfortable!
    Hope you and your family have a great Christmas
    love
    Julia x

  54. julia roberts December 6, 2010 at 1:03 am -  Reply

    Hello Irene
    So pleased to hear that you are looking forward to Christmas this year – I think you are right, young children and their innocence and wonderment at all things Christmassy make it all seem worthwhile.
    I am looking forward to a time in the future when we will share Christmas with little ones again ……… I have such fabulous memories os Christmas’s with my two when they were young.
    Good luck with the adoption – sounds like a very lucky young man to have found someone like you
    love
    Julia x

  55. julia roberts December 6, 2010 at 1:09 am -  Reply

    Hello Margaret
    It’s good to hear that you have carried on the tradition of a big family Christmas that your parents clearly enjoyed – hope you have a great time this year.
    I know my Dad is ‘around’ me, helping to guide me in this learning experience called ‘life’.
    much love
    Julia x

  56. julia roberts December 6, 2010 at 1:16 am -  Reply

    Hi Kathy
    Was the walk to do the Euromillions worth it??? – in terms of were you lucky, obviously the exercise was good for you!
    I don’t shop on line much cos I’m not great with computers but it’s a good idea, I’ll have a look!
    I popped into my local Karen Millen a couple of weeks ago and picked up a pair of denim jeans, great fit, and also a couple of dresses – in fact I wore one of the dresses ‘on air’ for the Kipling and Elemis shows I did earlier ( or should that read yesterday – i just noticed the time! )
    must get to bed
    love
    Julia x

  57. julia roberts December 6, 2010 at 1:18 am -  Reply

    Una you are such a sweetie – really hoping 2011 will be kinder to you
    love
    Julia x

  58. Barbara Cowen December 6, 2010 at 11:38 am -  Reply

    Hi Julia
    I was shedding a tear as I read your blog. My dad 3 years ago and my mum died 18 months later on Boxing day, so it will be the second anniversary this year. I became ill with Polymyalga this year and my husband was made redundant 5 months ago, all in all a terrible time, but my son who is in the Army and back from Afghanistan is getting married on Jan 15 so maybe 2011 will be a happier time. The photo of your parents is lovely. lol

  59. julia roberts December 8, 2010 at 2:28 pm -  Reply

    Hi Steven
    Unfortunately the win against Doncaster was a bit of a false dawn – we lost to Leeds on Saturday after going 1 – 0 up. Daniel was on the Palace website yesterday and says it looks as though we are going to lose our right back Nathaniel Kline in the January transfer window as he won’t sign his new contract – great!!!
    Sophie has banned me from chosing any of her players for my Fantasy team who weren’t great again last weekend, although I had Andy Carroll as my captain so he got me a few points.
    Hope the snow is easing off?
    speak soon
    Julia x

  60. julia roberts December 8, 2010 at 2:32 pm -  Reply

    Hi Kathy
    I had a look on the Karen Millen website as you suggested but the size 10 were out of stock at the moment ….. maybe you got the last pair! They have some lovely things don’t they
    love
    Julia x

  61. julia roberts December 8, 2010 at 4:38 pm -  Reply

    Hi Annette
    So sorry to hear that you were having a bad day when you last wrote – sometimes it does us good to have a good cry and get it out of our system. You’ve been very brave throughout and although it’s a long haul for the recuperation you’ll get there in the end.
    Thinking of you especially today on what would have been your Dad’s birthday
    love and hugs
    Julia x

  62. julia roberts December 8, 2010 at 4:44 pm -  Reply

    Hello Cat
    What a tragedy for you and your family – 55 is no age really ( my age next birthday ) and then to lose your Dad as well.
    Congratulations on the arrival of your grandaughter and I’m sure she will make this a very special Christmas for you all.
    much love
    Julia x

  63. julia roberts December 8, 2010 at 4:48 pm -  Reply

    Hello Tina
    What a lot of coincidences. I’m guessing your Daniel is probably a similar age to mine? – he turned 24 just over a week ago ( I can hardly believe it! )
    Thanks for your kind words
    love
    Julia x

  64. julia roberts December 8, 2010 at 4:53 pm -  Reply

    Hello Barbara
    What a dreadful few years you’ve been having – you must be wondering when it is ever going to stop? I’m so relieved for you that your son is home safe and sound from Afghanistan. The wedding is something happy to focus on and I truly hope it is the start of a much better phase in your life.
    It is a lovely photo of Mum and Dad isn’t it?
    sending you lots of love
    Julia x

  65. julia roberts December 8, 2010 at 5:01 pm -  Reply

    Hello Sylv
    What a lovely way to remember Nettie ……… I’m sure all the kind words have given you and your family a great deal of comfort.
    love
    Julia x

  66. Kate Stewart December 8, 2010 at 5:09 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia
    I know how you feel – its 6 yrs since I lost my mum and 5 since my dad left me. I hate christmas as I always spent it with them and now there is this void as I am on my own – apart from the crazy doggies that are my “children”.
    I dont think that you ever get over the death of a parent, you just get “used” to it. I have dreams frequently about my dad in particular, as I was really close to him
    Here in the frozen North we are trapped by snow and ice and I am just so grateful that my dad doesnt have to go through it and worry about heating, food etc etc.
    You are an inspiration to us all, keep it up, its like watching a good friend on telly!!
    Katexxx

  67. Steven December 8, 2010 at 6:48 pm -  Reply

    I noticed Palace were winning against Leeds Julia. Not a big fan of Leeds so was hoping you guys would hold on.
    It is gradually getting better snow wise – just 20 cm instead of 40! I’m going back to the gym tomorrow though. Been off it for 2 weeks so want to get back into the swing now before I start to put all the weight back on!. Hows yours going?
    Rangers were playing the last of their Champions League games last night – we drew 1-1 in Turkey which wasnt bad and meant we finished with a respectable 6 points in the group. The Europa League draw is next Friday. I’m hoping for a big glamour game – give me the likes of Man C or liverpool!
    Hope the weather isnt too bad down you’re way and palace get back to winning ways again at the weekend if the game is on. We are meant to be at Inverness and there is supposed to be a thaw so fingers crossed
    Take care xx

  68. julia roberts December 9, 2010 at 7:44 pm -  Reply

    Hello kate
    You have made me realise how lucky I am to still have my Mum. I am truly fortunate to have my partner and children to share Christmas with and I hope your ‘doggies’ will at least keep you company. What are they? or are they ‘heinz variety’? I am more of a cat person because they are easier to look after if you’re out a lot, but as a child we had a Wire Fox Terrier called Paddy and he was completely adorable.
    I hope the snow lets up soon
    love
    Julia x

  69. julia roberts December 9, 2010 at 7:54 pm -  Reply

    Hi Steven
    Sorry the boys couldn’t manage to hold on against Leeds – I hear Chris Houghton is now available????? I thought he was doing a pretty decent job at Newcastle. Perhaps he would fancy a trip down south?
    Good that your weather is improving …… albeit slowly, although they have warned of another cold snap next week.
    The benefit of having gym equipment at home is that you don’t have to go anywhere. I was on the treadmill in the conservatory looking out at all the snow. Also means there are no excuses not to keep fit!!
    Good luck with the draw and hope your game is on at Inverness
    speak soon
    Julia x

  70. Susan December 10, 2010 at 12:50 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia,
    I just want to take the opportunity to say to Kate I symathise with you Kate & I know how you feel. Unfortunately it’s not a fun and happy sociable time for lots and that’s sometimes forgotten. Take care of yourself and I hope 2011 will be happier.
    Susan x

  71. Steven December 10, 2010 at 9:34 pm -  Reply

    Hi again Julia
    We are finally getting a thaw so there are still a couple of games off. Celtics is off so we have a chance of a 5 point lead although we have a tough trip to Inverness tomorrow.
    You must work out a lot Julia because you certainly look fabby. Saw one of your shows the other night and all I can say is wow! Hope you are blushing here ha ! I have got an exercise bike so I am on that at least twice a week as well as going to the gym. you get to the stage where you almost enjoy it!
    Have a great weekend. Keep warm and I hope Palace win whoever they play
    Much Love x

  72. Annette Roberts December 11, 2010 at 3:46 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia
    Thank you for thinking of me on my Dad’s Birthday, you’re such a lovely person for replying to sooo many posts on your blog, with such thought and understanding, a real ‘STAR’!
    Did you manage to get the Heston’s Christmas Pud? He was on Loose Women and said that they had sold out completely and they couldn’t make anymore in time for Christmas because it took 2 months to candy the oranges that go inside the pud… amazing! Afraid, Chris was too late for Dehlia’s Christmas Cake pack, so it will be a bought one this year, never mind.
    The Physio put me though my paces this week (no pun intended!), walking between parallel bars, standing on a ‘rocker board’ and finally walking with just one crutch, which was very painful, but it must be getting better because I have been upstairs a couple of times this week using one crutch and the bannister, but came down on my ‘btm’ until last night when I went down as I went up… it felt sooo good!
    Couldn’t find any shoes and had to cut into a brand new pair of Skechers I bought in the sales last year. The Biker slip on style with elastic laces, I cut the material underneath the laces and made a slit down the front so they could expand more to put on, yet keep the elasticity with the laces. The Physio thought it was a brilliant idea! Not just a pretty face… I wish!! LOL
    love
    Annette x

  73. Christine Jones December 11, 2010 at 9:50 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia
    Ihad to write as I was so moved by your story of your dad and your mum too.. This year I lost my mother i law who had dementia for 5 years and couldnt communicate with us except when I sang to her she would look into my eyes and close hers and nod knowingly.. The song I sang to her was hers and dads favourite.. Be my Love… it was if she understood the feeling from the song and that built a bridge between us as when our baby girl died at 8 days old she found it very hard and grief sadly divided us for many years.. I loved to sing that song to her and at her funeral it was played.. a great healing took place I know.. My dad died at Christmas when I was 16 and he left me and mum, I promised him then I would look after mum (who is now 88) but she is an amazing inspiration to me totally unselfish and although ahe has been seriously ill lately she still lives alone.. I stayed with her for a few weeks but she made me go home and is like your lovely mum, selfless and strong and amazing (please tell her I said so x) They are of a generation that we can learn so much from with so much wisdom, mum told everyone in hospital that her generation will soon be no more and we need to clean this world up for the little ones future.. all the nurses and drs were in tears.! They hold such wisdom We miss dad, I remember wrapping his present up and him asking what Id bought him, I said hed have to wait and see.. He never saw it and i remember opening a bottle of Houbigant Chantilly perfume on that first Christmas Day from him, that was hard.. I was 16.. I still have the empty bottle.. Christmas wrapping still is a hard thing for me.. Still we have the most precious lasting gift of all, the love and guidance of wonderful parents.. Priceless. Lots of love Julia to all Your family and especially your mum.. Have a blessed Christmas.. Celebrating Jesus birthday!! Christine xx

  74. Steven December 12, 2010 at 9:19 am -  Reply

    Frustrating day for both our teams on Saturday Julia. Both drew. Palace should have won and other results didnt help much. Still very tight at the bottom. Theres arguably about 7-8 teams involved. We missed a penalty and a hatful of chances. Just one of those days. Got some more of my Christmas shopping done yesterday though. Just about there now I think
    Hope you had a lovely weekend x

  75. VIOLET SCHOFIELD December 14, 2010 at 11:18 pm -  Reply

    HI JULIA,
    I TOO AM THINKING OF MY MUM WHO DIED JUST LAST THURSDAY THE 9TH DECEMBER AGED 91
    AND LIKE YOU AND EVERYONE ELSE WHO HAS WRITTEN…EVERY CHRISTMAS FROM NOW ON A PANG OF SADNESS WILL OVERWHELM ME.
    I MISS HER DREADFULLY AND KNOW TIME IS A GREAT HEALER
    AND ALTHOUGH JUST 60 I IMAGINED MUM WOULD LIVE FOREVER..AS A CHILD WOULD THINK…OF COURSE I KNOW THAT IS A RIDICULOUS CHILDISH DREAM.
    FRIENDS SAY IT WILL GET BETTER AND I KNOW IT WILL, AS YOU HAVE ALL MANAGED TO COPE AND FEEL A STRONG SENSE OF BEING WITH THEM..
    AFTER THE FUNERAL THIS COMING WEEK..THE REALITY WILL SET IN THAT SHE IS NO LONGER AROUND…AND I HOPE I BECOME STRONG AND LEARN TO COPE AS YOU ALL HAVE DONE..THANK YOU IT HELPED TO WRITE REGARDS AND MERRY CHRISTMAS VIOLET

  76. lynda mitchell December 15, 2010 at 3:51 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia, you are looking FAB how have you lost the weight?

  77. julia roberts December 15, 2010 at 4:13 pm -  Reply

    Hi Steven
    Sorry I didn’t get round to replying to your previous post – not been a great week and I wasn’t well enough to go into work on Saturday. Palace were unlucky against Hull – missed the strike power of Darren Ambrose. It was James Vaughans last game of his loan spell.
    I was blushing at the compliments – I know what you mean about exercise becoming almost pleasurable. I think it’s the satisfaction when I’ve finished that makes me want to do it again.
    Have sent both my ‘Scottish’ boxes of Christmas presents off – one to FairIsle and the other to Wigtownshire – I’m hoping the snow holds off until after they’ve arrived!
    speak soon
    Julia x

  78. julia roberts December 15, 2010 at 4:20 pm -  Reply

    Hi Annette
    I’m so glad that you have got your first session with the physio over – at least you must feel as though you are ‘doing’ something now to help with the recovery. Brilliant idea with the Skechers ………… must be a Roberts trait LOL!!!!!!
    No I didn’t manage to get the Heston Christmas pud – I am in the bad books as the family think I should have bought one earlier. Not sure why it’s my fault – they all know where Waitrose is!!
    Sorry you missed out on Delia’s Christmas cake – at least I got those made nice and early this year.
    Keep up with your exercises and well done so far, it can only get better and better
    love
    Julia x

  79. julia roberts December 15, 2010 at 4:34 pm -  Reply

    Hello Christine
    You are so right about the wisdom of the older generation – in other cultures older people are revered, here we seem to consider them in some way inferior just because their body’s are failing them. Your Mum and mine sound very similar in their determination to carry on and still to be a useful member of society. I will pass your message on to her and hope you and your Mum will be able to enjoy Christmas together.
    Reading about you losing your Dad at the tender age of 16 was heart wrenching – such a difficult time in a young girls life anyway with all those hormones running riot – you and your Mum must have been a great support for each other.
    Take good care of her, each day is precious
    much love
    Julia x

  80. julia roberts December 15, 2010 at 4:42 pm -  Reply

    Oh Violet I am so dreadfully sorry that you have lost your Mum particularly so close to Christmas. It doesn’t matter what age they are, my Dad was 87, it is still overwhemingly sad when you realise that the only place you will be able to see them from now on is in your head, and that you will no longer be able to physically hug them.
    I hope you will get through the funeral ok and that amongst the tears you will be able to celebrate the life that she had.
    My heart goes out to you Violet
    much love
    Julia x

  81. Lin craddy December 16, 2010 at 12:22 am -  Reply

    Hi Julia. I lost my lovely Dad 9 years ago and on sunday (19th) it will be the second anniversary of my lovely Mums death. I miss them every day of my life and at Christmas it is especially hard as they made each and every Christmas so special. But, I believe that they watch over us and give us little signs (like songs) to let us know. I wish you a peaceful and fun filled Christmas, love and light x

  82. julia roberts December 17, 2010 at 10:47 am -  Reply

    Hello Lynda
    Thanks for the compliment! Just good old fashioned diet and exercise is the answer.
    I kicked off with Diet Chef in March for a month and then did it less strictly for another couple of months, and restarted exercising 3 or 4 times a week ( mainly Pilates and treadmill walking ). Gradually I have lost just under 2 stone and now am not dieting at all, just watching portion size and exercising 2 or 3 times a week.
    So diet and exercise – it really does work.
    love
    Julia x

  83. julia roberts December 17, 2010 at 10:59 am -  Reply

    Hello Lin
    My thoughts will be with you on Sunday – I can’t bear to think about when that inevitability happens to me, but as I think we all agree they are never far from our thoughts and always in our hearts.
    Mum is coming to us for Christmas, weather permitting, so we will definitely be pampering her.
    I hope you are able to enjoy your Christmas
    love
    Julia x

  84. ann cain December 18, 2010 at 4:21 pm -  Reply

    I lost my dad 30yrs ago he left me on 4th july,Imiss him so much,I also lost my brother 7rs ago, life can be so crule.

  85. julia roberts December 24, 2010 at 2:18 am -  Reply

    Hello Ann
    I am so sorry for your losses – 30 years is a long time but when you love someone they are never forgotten. I hope you will be able to enjoy your Christmas with friends or other family members
    love
    Julia x

  86. Sharon January 1, 2011 at 5:41 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia,
    I must tel you a story Just after my step dad passed away we had two visits from birds, One just appeared on the garden fence a beautiful Jay bird, never seen one in my garden before, then a few months later a lovely blackbird was heard pecking at my patio door he was proudly sat on the handle and very persistant.
    On Chrsitmas Day he came back sat on the same handle was there for quite a while and today New Years Day he returned I am sure that’s my step dad coming by to let me know he is around.
    I also hear at certain times ‘moonriver’ by Frank Sinatra we played that at his funeral and at certain times out of the blue that song comes on. So i really do believe we have these visits in some way or another. And that gives me such comfort.
    x

  87. Linda Chatfield January 5, 2011 at 8:09 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia
    How nice that you reply to your messages! I have recently logged on to twitter, and sent two messages to (fairly) well-known people, but no reply. But perhaps they don’t ‘do’ that sort of thing! All the QVC presenters seem really friendly, and – following on from the query about losing weight – if it is not too personal, how have you managed to keep your arms so fit-looking?! Floppy bits seem to suddenly appear overnight when you reach a certain age!
    Take care
    Linda

  88. julia roberts January 14, 2011 at 1:13 am -  Reply

    Hello Sharon
    It is amazing how much comfort these small and unexplained things bring us isn’t it. Moon River was also a favourite in our household but I am more familiar with the Andy Williams version.
    I hope your Christmas and New Year was as good as it could be and that you can look forward to some happy times in 2011
    love
    Julia x

  89. julia roberts January 14, 2011 at 1:28 am -  Reply

    Hello Linda
    Only just spotted this post. I always try to reply to messages because people have taken the time and trouble to write to me.
    Re my arms – I am lucky that I have always had reasonably firm arms – years of ballet and good genes I think. These days I swim in the summer months and do Pilates and wear wrist weights when I’m on the treadmeill.
    Hope this helps
    love
    Julia x

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