Lilies in the garden

Everything in the garden is rosy

22

I’ve just come across the screen shot I took of the long distance weather forecast last month.  It’s ‘Michael Fish-like’ in its misguided predictions, and leads me to believe that perhaps the only accurate way to forecast the weather is to look out of the window!  Greetings! : )  Now let’s not get bogged down with the weather – it’s a bit like stating the obvious – although the delightful Glen Campell with whom I shared an hour of Isaac Mizrahi Live! Fashion, reliably informed me that it was stonkingly hot in Cornwall!  Perhaps we should have all headed down there.

Weather forecast

Suffice to say you’ve brought more than a little sunshine into my life with your lovely comments on the blog, and the enormous number of entries for the competition.  So many of you came up with the correct answer which was UVA rays, although I fully appreciate as some of you pointed out, UVB rays also penetrate the atmosphere and can cause premature skin ageing too. Definitely better to be safe than sorry, and so I am delighted to tell you that Christina Cook will be receiving the £103 worth of Ultrasun products to protect your skin. Congratulations! Hopefully I’ll have another competition for you soon.

With my Ultrasun back in my beach bag, I’ve been relying on Decleor’s Gradual Glow to maintain my tan, but I have to tell you of the fantastic results I’ve had from James Read‘s new product the Coconut Melting Tanning Balm! It’s currently on our website and comes with the Sleep Mask Tan Face which I’ve been using for ages now. The coconut balm is made from 100% coconut oil and is just delicious to use and gives a really moisturised glow to the skin and an even tan which lasts ages! You will need to stir the product before using it, so just make sure you don’t spill any of the oil on anything you can’t wash as it really does work well at creating a colour! Luckily I can cover my Magniflex mattress with a sheet!

We had a lovely weekend with my sister Jenny and her partner Linda, culminating in a visit on Sunday to Henley-on-Thames.  Although we only live about 10 miles from there, Colin and I had never been, and so we booked lunch at The Angel on The Bridge, and having stuffed ourselves full of a fab roast dinner, we had a mooch around the town. It’s such a pretty place, and there are a huge number of interesting shops, a few art galleries and a rare book emporium!

We didn’t buy much, but it was fun just exploring. I was equally impressed when I visited Shere in Surrey on Friday. I’d not been there for over thirty years, but had a great day out with my friend Jo which included lunch in the pub opposite the church. It’s the same pub that featured in that marvellous romantic movie “The Holiday” with Cameron Diaz, Kate Winslett, Jude Law and Jack Black. Sadly no celebrities were sighted, but I spent some time in the stocks for dropping an anchovy into Jo’s handbag! : )

In the stocks

I know I wasn’t going to mention the weather again, but there are benefits to come from all this rain, most noticeably in the garden! I’m a staunch supporter of Richard Jackson’s Flower Power, and along with Root Booster which I added to most of my pots way back in March, these are my Calla Lilies! They stand almost four feet high, and I couldn’t resist picking a few to have on display indoors.

Lilies

It’s not just flowers that I’ve grown this year but fruit and veg too, and I had a fair few strawberries this year along with a bumper crop of potatoes! I actually gave a few of my potato plants to Lucy and Honey and we had great fun digging them up : ) I have two shows with Richard Jackson towards the end of August which is when I believe he’s bringing us another Today’s Special Value offer! Have you tried his new Liquid Flower Power yet? Not sure what the TSV is yet, but that may be a clue… watch this space.

HoneyWe’re still trying to get enough days in the diary to film the new promotional film for my regular Tuesday Diamonique show, but having missed last week because of Christmas in July, I do hope you were able to join me and Alison O’Reilly for the Finale of our Festival of Diamonique on Sunday night. Isn’t the new packaging beautiful?  I was really pleased to see that we’d gone all out on the branding, and I think it adds kudos to this stunning range of jewellery when you can gift it to someone and present it in such a wonderful way.  If you missed seeing it, I’ll make sure I have a few boxes on set to show you on Tuesday at 8pm.

Diamonique

I have all my children with me this Monday and little Honey too, so am planning to cook a roast turkey.  A bit like Christmas dinner with all the trimmings. It always cheers me to see them together, and it’s good for them to spend time together. Their lives and jobs mean they don’t always manage to catch up, so this will be lovely for all of us.

I think that’s pretty much all my news for now, but thanks as always for continually supporting the blog and for keeping me in touch with your lives. I’m hoping Debz, that all’s okay with you and also Una? I’ll see you on Tuesday night at 8pm, and if you want to drop me a line, I’ll always reply.

With my love,

Ali xx

22 Comments

  1. Joanna Downey August 1, 2017 at 3:16 pm -  Reply

    Hello Ali, What a lovely time you’ve had recently & a number of lovely lunches too! I love The Holiday & being reminded of it, & that you’ve planned a turkey dinner, has really got me in the mood to watch a ‘seasonal’ film which is something I like to do in the summer in the way I like to plan holiday activities in the depth of the winter. It started raining here within minutes of the window cleaning men driving away & just as I’d put out the washing… Archie, the bunny, is in his run but is sheltered by a large jasmine so he doesn’t look too bothered & I’m in the kitchen painting a table, well I was but the second coat needs to dry & so I’ve treated myself to an online pause. Colin is away on his first climb of the holiday & I’ve got a designated activity for each day because this week Ellie & Dave, plus the majority of our neighbours, are on holiday & Bex has just returned to work two days a week. Consequently, I’ve gone from being surrounded by more than a thousand adults & children every day to only having Sox & the aforementioned Archie for company & I realised that if I didn’t plan my week there would be days when I probably wouldn’t talk to anyone & I don’t think the postman is allowed to call in for a cuppa. I did watch the ceremonies from Ypres commemorating 100 years since that horrendous battle started; I found the two broadcasts moving beyond words & we have a personal connection because my paternal grandfather fought at Passchendaele & survived, he never spoke of his experiences, not even to my granny. They got married a week before he went & they both look so unhappy in their wedding photos, it truly was another world. Your calla lillies look stunning, I can’t have them because they’re toxic for cats & rabbits but I have some very good pretend ones that live on the landing table, before I return to my paint pot I’ll just say how GORGEOUS Honey looks, she’s so pretty & her obvious joy of life shines out of her. Love from Jo x

    • Alison Keenan August 11, 2017 at 4:07 pm -  Reply

      Hi there Jo, good to hear from you, and I hope that you finished painting your table, and have now got a house full again. I hope also that your Colin enjoyed his climb, and that you have seen a little of the sunshine over these last few days? Sadly I missed the broadcasts commemorating 100 years since the battle of Ypres. My grandfather also fought both there and at Passchendaele… He only ever spoke of it once to my grandmother, but was gassed and shellshocked. The only work he was able to take on once he returned was polishing brass door knobs for a penny a time… as you say a very different time and another world. So glad you liked the photos. I didn’t realise Calla lillies were toxic to rabbits! We had some wild ones in our garden earlier this year.. do hope they weren’t affected by the flowers. Little Honey has been to stay with Lucy again, and we had a picnic today before the weather changed. New blog next week, but thanks as always for taking the time to comment. Take care, and enjoy the rest of your holiday. Love Ali xx

  2. Susan August 4, 2017 at 9:24 am -  Reply

    Hi Ali,
    Lovely chatty blog. Firstly that’s so nice all the kids are able to get together this week. I hope it all went well in the kitchen. You’re a fabulous cook so it must have! It sounds like you’ve had a lovely couple of trips out recently and I’m jealous of your pub trip to the holiday pub! Hope you enjoy your weekend x

    • Alison Keenan August 11, 2017 at 4:10 pm -  Reply

      Hello Susan, and thanks for getting back to me. Yes it was a real treat having them all together and Sam fixed my lawn mower, and Jack sorted out the remote for my Tibo sound plinth! In return I made a roast Turkey and it was devoured in record time 🙂 I hope you’ve managed to enjoy maybe a few days out? Keep in touch, love Ali xx

  3. Kylie gottsche August 5, 2017 at 11:10 am -  Reply

    Hi Alison I’m so jealous of your beautiful Lillies. They look spectacular!! I am a HUGE fan of diamonque I have lost count of how much I love the new packaging it adds that certain “Je sais qui”. I love watching you with your regular show on Tuesday night. Your granddaughter honey is such a cutie. Have a lovely weekend.
    x kylie

    • Alison Keenan August 12, 2017 at 11:09 am -  Reply

      Dear Kylie, so glad you enjoy the blog and the photos! The lilies are really easy to grow, and last so well once cut and indoors! Mine still look as they did in the photo! Nice to know you’re an avid Diamonique fan too – I’ve lost count of the number of pieces of jewellery I’ve bought over the last 16 or so years. I’ll give you a wave on Tuesday. Love Ali xx

  4. Kylie gottsche August 5, 2017 at 11:11 am -  Reply

    Hi Alison I’m so jealous of your beautiful Lillies. They look spectacular!! I am a HUGE fan of diamonque I have lost count of how any pieces I have.
    I love the new packaging it adds that certain “Je sais qui”. I really enjoy watching you with your regular show on Tuesday night. Your granddaughter honey is such a cutie. Have a lovely weekend.
    x kylie

  5. Susan August 5, 2017 at 5:05 pm -  Reply

    Hey Ali,
    I just wondered if you know if Anne is ok? I haven’t seen her but then I don’t watch in the day. Just know she had her fall and she also has her brother to look after x

    • Alison Keenan August 12, 2017 at 11:10 am -  Reply

      Hi there Susan, that’s sweet of you to ask. Yes, Anne is recovering well, and should be back on our screens in a wee while. I will let her know you were asking after her. Ali x

  6. Christine August 5, 2017 at 7:48 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali you look as if your enjoying your days out. The weather in Cumbria where we stay it never stops raining. Never mind. Honey is getting big. When is your book out? Sorry for keep asking you.

    Take Care X

    • Alison Keenan August 12, 2017 at 11:20 am -  Reply

      Dear Christine, It’s been pretty wet here too, but luckily we’ve seen some sunshine over the last few days – I hope you have too. I can’t believe Honey is over two years old now. Her speech is coming along beautifully, and she’s great company and very chatty 🙂 I promise I will let you know about the book as soon as I do… it’s still in the discussion stage with the publisher! Hopefully I’ll know soon. Thank you though for asking, love Ali x

  7. Betty Smith August 5, 2017 at 8:02 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali what a wonderful blog you seem to pack so much in what a wonderful busy life you lead as well as working (bet it doesntfeel like work) at qvc . The photo of you in the stocks reminded me of the village I was brought up in it had stocks in the village square but they were just for the feet. It brought back happy memories we used to stand on the steps leading up to the stocks waiting to be taken into the pictures if it was an A film Ahh! childhood days xx

    • Alison Keenan August 12, 2017 at 11:22 am -  Reply

      Dear Betty, Lovely to hear from you and I am very glad that you enjoyed the blog. It’s nice when something sparks a memory for you, and I find that I’m better with things that happened many years ago, than I am remembering more recent moments! Have a good week, love Ali x

  8. Judith Lennon August 6, 2017 at 8:17 am -  Reply

    Hello Ali
    Hope you are well and recovered from your time in the stocks!!!!
    What did you do to be put in there lol… days out like these make you smile and remember the fun times. I had a day out shopping with my daughter and granddaughter on .Friday and it was so nice having quality time with them. We came home armed with material for sun dresses. Guess what I’ve been busy doing????
    My room I use for my crafts is too small for us all to get in together so my dining room was converted instead. John came in to find the whole room a complete and utter mess and we didn’t hear him enter the room for our chatter and laughter. Great days!!!! Today I am spending more quietly- I wonder how long it will last. The weather up north has been awful. I have sat in my garden for a couple hours only the whole summer but at least we have found a holiday. We are going back to Cyprus in September so at least we will get some lovely sunshine. Your garden looks lovely and you had a good crop of veggies too. Hope your time with your family went well and you enjoyed each other’s company. Until next time take care and love and hugs as always. Judith xx

    • Alison Keenan August 12, 2017 at 11:28 am -  Reply

      Hi Judith, lovely to hear from you, and to catch up on your news. It sounds as though you’ve been busy, and enjoying some special times with your girls! I’m sure the sun dresses are fabulous. I bought material and a pattern to make a little dress for Honey, but I quite honestly don’t know where to start! It’s been years since I made anything like that, and my mum helped me before – perhaps I should take it all to her and ask her to help? 🙂 Delighted to know that you will be heading off to Cyprus in September. I’m sorry it’s been grotty for most of the summer – I think we were lucky in June and the beginning of July, but it’s been dire since then! We had a lovely time when the children came for lunch – sadly I didn’t take any photos, but I have some great memories. Your take care too, and thanks for keeping in touch. Love Ali xx

  9. Gwen August 6, 2017 at 10:30 am -  Reply

    Hello Dear Ali,

    So lovely to hear from you again. I could’nt answer your last blog as by the time I read it you had received so many replies that literally I could not scroll through to the end!

    I am really pleased that you and Colin enjoyed Malta and Gozo, I really think it is a definite love it or hate it destination, I have always loved it. Your pictures brought back so many wonderful memories for me particularly the Blue Lagoon, and of course the Maltese people always make you very welcome don’t they?

    Love your pictures of dear little Honey, she grows more like you every day I think.

    I have just ordered Laura Geller todays special value, I am a great fan of hers and really love the ease of application and the results given.

    Take care Ali, stay well and keep sharing your lovely exploits with us.

    Love Gwen.

    • Alison Keenan August 16, 2017 at 10:31 am -  Reply

      Hello there Gwen, lovely to hear from you, and so glad that the photographs of Gozo have brought back happy memories. The Blue Lagoon is just stunning, and I’d love to visit it at night too, although I doubt the boats would bring you over once it’s dark! I will pass your kind comments on to Lucy and Honey – delighted to think she looks like me! I know many of us use the Laura Geller balance and brighten – I’m sure having the giant size as our Product of the Month in June added many new fans to the range 🙂 Thank you for keeping in touch, and I’ll have another new blog very soon. Love Ali xx

  10. Christine Auchterlonie August 6, 2017 at 11:17 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali…. Love the Calla Lilies I’m not successful with these they look good in your vase …I smiled at the photos of Honey she looks so cute and the potato harvest ….I was impressed ….I have a miniature apple tree and for the first time I have a about twelve apples on it ….maybe enough for a small pie 😂Once again the weather here has been hit and miss and hasn’t been much of a summer but I see in Europe it has been incredibly hot over 100 they are getting our share I think….too hot for me…but Fiona has been in Tynemouth this week with the Safe Swim Scheme teaching kids to swim in the sea and warning them of the dangers and how to stay safe…Simon and the girls left for Canada this morning for three weeks they have a full itinerary with loads of activities planned …I’ll miss them ..but he has taken his photography gear and hopefully we can have a night when they return with some supper and look at the things they have done whilst away …My friend and I had an early meal out last night and then on to a jazz session at a local pub some real old jazz favourites … Great…I always enjoy reading your blog and getting up to date with your news…hope to see you on Tuesday night until then take care of you and yours with love Chris x

  11. Denise August 7, 2017 at 7:23 pm -  Reply

    Hi Alison, your lilies are so beautiful and an amazing colour.
    I didn’t get chance to reply to your last blog but I was thrilled to read about your trip to Malta and so pleased that it lived up to expectations. I chuckled to myself hearing about the fireworks – it brought back memories of when we were there. One evening we went to a local fiesta. It was a fun evening but I don’t think health & safety is taken quite as seriously there as they seemed to be going off all over the place!! As I said though it was a fun evening and great to join in with the locals. I’m glad you got to visit Mdina and the Azure window in fact you packed a lot in.
    How lovely that you have your children visiting and having a turkey lunch. Any excuse for a turkey lunch is fine in my book! I do hope you had a lovely time together.
    I’ve had a busy few weeks (again!) spending time with baby,helping a friend celebrate a big birthday with a bbq and surprise party and I also had a couple of shopping trips including one that wasn’t planned. My hubby had a meeting in London and trains booked when the meeting got cancelled so I stepped in and enjoyed an impromptu day out to save the tickets going to waste.
    I’m still trying to plan a short break for my Birthday later in the year. As my son,daughter in law and baby will be joining us we have to take that into consideration. We are thinking of possibly Whitby which isn’t too far from us but not an area I’ve visited a lot. Our other option is London as there are many things I’ve not visited or done so we shall see but need to decide quickly as things are getting booked up.
    Well I think that’s all my news.
    Take care
    Love Denise xx

  12. Mary Morphy August 11, 2017 at 3:18 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali and Happy Friday..not my usual blog time as its just gone 3pm but i am just showered and getting ready for my friends twilight wedding at 6pm which is at a beautiful abbey 10 minutes walk away so it means a drink or two. A couple of friends are coming to me first so we can hit the prosecco!! The weather has certainly brought the garden on and my tomatoes, having been fed Richard Jacksons flower power are fab..very tall and full of juicy vibes of fruit..need the sun out to ripen. Your turkey dinner for the family made me smile..Jack has requested a xmas dinner with all the trimmings the day before he goes to Ghana in October..he is off to Edinburgh on Monday for three days of ‘getting to know you’ although it seems from the itinerary that most of it will be done in the pub!! Chloe has her driving test on Wednesday and i have prepared the lounge diner ready to start decorating tomorrow evening..we have tree cutting to do beforehand, my sister is going to help with that as she has a battery powered chopper!!!
    Well must start sorting myself out..have a lovely weekend oh and i hope your check up went well lotsa love. Maryxx

  13. Susan August 15, 2017 at 8:29 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali,
    Thanks, I’d love Anne to know I was asking after her. She’s such a wonderful fun lady and she copes with a lot too. Hope you’re well yourself x

  14. Linda Finch,, August 15, 2017 at 9:55 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali ,sorry I didn’t write on your last blog but with hospital appointments for John and lots of other stuff going on the time seems to just run away, well it is good news regarding John’s knee he has finished all his physio they were very pleased with his progress, also he doesn’t have another appointment regarding his ankle for 6 months ,so all good there,just thinking we were getting on top of everything I go and tear the ligaments in my knee so that’s me laid up now ,oh iam so depressed because we had just desided to take the caravan and go to Somerset for a short holiday but that is on hold now .maybe later in the year we will make it who knows, Simon and family are in Cornwall with their caravan up to now the weather has not been bad, they have just had 1 day of rain so fingers crossed it stays that way, hope I have better news for you next time, I hope everything went well with your check up, I must say that you are looking really well. Love for now Linda F xxx💖💖

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