August always starts with a bang for me, as the first day of the month is filled with joyous celebration for my dear Mum’s birthday! This year I flew home, but it was more to check in with how she was doing than it was to party the night away with her. She hasn’t been feeling too well, bless her.
That said, I did manage to organise a little dinner for her with only close family and her best friend Nancy (they’ve been friends since primary school). Just something low-key in a local pub by the river, as she really wasn’t up to much.
It breaks my heart when she isn’t able to be her usual self and feels under the weather, but I wanted to try and lift her spirits a little without wearing her out.
It was a quiet gathering, but it was lovely. One of my brothers and my sister were there, plus my nephews and niece as well. I even managed to get her a birthday cake with a few token candles. She had made me reassure her we wouldn’t sing Happy Birthday in front of everyone, but hey, some promises are made to be broken.
I got back about two weeks ago now and I honestly haven’t stopped since. I’ve been at work a lot, but it’s been fun. The other night saw myself and Gill Gauntlett making a spectacle of ourselves with a brilliant Today’s Special Value of five pairs of reading glasses.
They were very popular and actually when I tried them on, they seemed to be better than for reading than my own! I think a trip to the optician is overdue. I am terrible for putting off the doctor, the dentist and the optician. I don’t know if that’s just me or if it’s a man thing in general?
Yesterday I was trying to get some finishing touches done on my flat, as I’ve been moved in for about seven months now. In all that time I’ve been tripping over my pictures and paintings, so this week I decided I had had enough.
My walls are tricky, as they are plasterboard, and I had only ever hung on brick and concrete walls. I was little bit concerned, especially as some of my paintings are very large (one alone is four meters long!). So I decided to get an expert in to help me. I say help me… what I mean is I got him in to do it while I made cups of tea and added helpful suggestions like: ‘A little bit higher on the left, I think’.
Scott, the picture hanger, was very patient with me! I discovered later he studies meditation, all I can say is that’s just as well having spent a day with me. I’m guessing he is spending the entirety of today in a meditative trance!
Last night I got to host a three-hour Diamonique Spectacular with Alison O’Reily as my guest. Alison is so informative and knowledgeable, not just about jewellery either. She knows about history, fashion, royalty, culture. She is a joy to spend time with and chat to. We had some outstanding pieces in the show, not least of which were the 1ct tw gold-plated leaf band ring, 1.5ct tw sterling silver cluster stud earrings, and 0.6ct tw crystal bezel ceramic watch with gold plating.
Our show was going swimmingly until, out of the corner of my eye, I spotted some kind of commotion going on. What it was, I didn’t know, I could just sense everyone was getting excitable and a little bit twitchy.
Eventually, I looked over to where our model Deborah Anne was sitting and my Studio Manager mimed to me that there was a spider. When I looked, I could see one of the biggest alders I had seen in a long time. Fortunately, I’m not afraid of spiders, so whilst I tried to carry on speaking, off-camera I got up, walked over, and tried to pick it up.
As I did so, the poor little thing tried to flee, leaping across the table leg and onto the carpet by Deborah Anne’s feet. I managed to get hold of him as gently as I could and attempted to take him out of the studio. This was all happening while we were still on-air, and so Alison took over speaking very professionally.
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As I approached the very large – and very heavy – studio doors with my hands cupped together, I realised I couldn’t actually open them! I turned to the backstage team, but they were all running away from me! I was desperately waving my head around to persuade someone to help, and eventually they did.
As I left the studio I thought, ‘ahhhh, peace and calm is restored’. However I was mistaken as I was greeted by my lovely colleague Jill Franks and more members of studio staff – also all being very nervous and twitchy and running away from me!
I put the spider in a covered container and asked them to take him outside. I was on the 3rd floor of the building and in the middle of a live show, so I couldn’t really go wandering off.
Poor little spider. I had to take him away as I was afraid someone was going to whack him with something!
So, my apologies to all watching, for my brief disappearance during the show. It did make me laugh. It was certainly a first in my TV career!
The show went on regardless and I thoroughly enjoyed it. If you were watching, you may have noticed I was wearing my new Bulova watch from QVC’s range of watches, currently on sale on the website.
I think it is incredibly smart and stylish with a strong but soft leather strap. The chronograph detailing gives it a really contemporary, masculine feel. I’ve worn it every single day on-air since I got it. If you have a special someone in your life, I think they will love it too!
Until next time,
P.S. Be kind to any little spiders you might meet along the way!