Family time


Evening holiday picYesterday I got home from spending some time in Spain with my family. Although we no longer have a house in Javea, we all still love the area so we decided to rent a villa and have a family holiday. I flew out with Daniel and Sophie as Chris had a couple of gigs he needed to do before he joined us a few days later.

We arrived in Alicante early evening but by the time we had picked up the hire car and driven up the coast to Javea it was already 9pm so we just dumped our bags and headed off to one of our favourite restaurants on the beach-front called Lungo Mare.

Just before we got the bill (or should that be la cuente?) a gentleman came over to me and said, "I'm sorry to bother you but are you off the telly?" When I said "yes, QVC", he called his wife over who apparently thought it was me but wasn't 100% sure so had sent her husband over to ask! Michelle (pictured with me above) is a big QVC fan and loves Elemis in particular.

We ran into her and her husband, Derek, several times during our holiday as Javea is not a huge resort and on the final night she told me she had just had a text from her mum-in-law, who is currently recovering from a knee operation and had been really cheered up by receiving a bag of Elemis goodies that Michelle had ordered for her.

Daytime holiday picIt was lovely to spend quality time with Daniel and Sophie when none of us were rushing around. Sophie's friend, Sarah, came over for a few days too and we celebrated her birthday on the 20th at a different beach-front restaurant where the staff all came out singing 'Happy Birthday'.

Fortunately we were blessed with good weather apart from the morning where we were woken up by thunder, lightening and torrential rain! Unfortunately that was also the night we had left the washing on the line overnight to dry … oops! It had to go through the wash again but only once we got the power and water back, knocked out by the storm. Thanks to Ultrasun for keeping my sensitive skin safe in the sun but still allowing me to get a tan … great products if you haven't got your suncare for your holidays yet!

GardenWhile we were away we had the inside of the new 'gym' painted white. Originally I was going to attempt it myself but I really want to get in there and continue the good exercise habits I started on holiday so we let the professionals do it.

Once the flooring is down we will be able to set up all my gym equipment and I'll take a photo of the inside but this is the outside colour … I really love it, so thanks to Ali Young for the suggestion.




Cat in a basketThe worst thing about being away was missing the cats. We had a bit of a problem with who was going to feed them as normally Daniel does it when Chris and I are away. Wilfie could have gone into a cattery but Poppy is too old and timid. Fortunately our new neighbour, Sarah, is also a cat person so we have come to a reciprocal agreement. We will feed Jenny and Whisper if they go on holiday and she looked after Poppy and Wilfie.

We all had lots of cuddles off Wilfie when we got back and he doesn't look any worse for not having had much human contact for a few days. Chris had also found out that Sarah uses Liz Earle products so I was able to 'raid' my beauty cupboard as a thank you!

Sorry I haven't got around to answering replies from my blog two weeks ago (the one with the Pilates competition) but my excuse is that Internet access at the villa we rented was 'patchy'!!!! I'll try and get back to you over the weekend. Thanks for the wonderful response to the competition, by the way … I am going to try and run a Butler & Wilson one to celebrate his 19th anniversary on QVC in August and his 'SPECIAL' birthday. I am working with him on Tuesday as part of our July Jewellery Day so I'll have a word then.

See you all later for Fashion on Friday at 5pm. Have a great weekend.

Much love, Julia xx


  1. martin forbes bucksburn aberdeen watching via sky tv June 27, 2014 at 6:45 pm -  Reply

    hope you had agoodm holiday in alicantee with the family julia i am well.

  2. Diane gilbank June 28, 2014 at 7:36 am -  Reply

    Hi julia,lovely to read of your great family holiday time together. It is such a pleasure to spend time with our children because we want too, and equally them with us. I think one of the greatest gifts when we have our children, is that they become good friends as they mature into adulthood.
    You looked a lovely colour on Friday and don’t think Ali can complain if you used your ultrasun!! The one good thing to come out of the past 26 years of being ill, is that because my exposure to the sun has been minimal( not by choice) is I am lucky to have few wrinkles on my face. So I do understand when Ali is saying keep your face out of the sun!
    Glad your cats were well looked after and I am sure you missed them! I thought I had lost Elsa last week when she went out in the afternoon and didn’t come back for 26 hours! I was convinced she was gone for good. Martyn reckoned she had got stuck in someone’s garage overnight. I was so so pleased to see her again.
    Your gym is looking very good indeed, looking forward to seeing the inside soon.
    Great to have you back on air, sending you lots of live diane xx

  3. Jean Pugh June 28, 2014 at 8:28 am -  Reply

    Hi Julia,
    it sounds as if you had a lovely time in Spain and it must have been great to have Sophie and Daniel there as well.
    There you are you see you are so popular you cannot go anywhere without being recognised.
    Love the colour you have painted the gym, it looks to be in a lovely spot in the garden. Looking forward to your fitness video, no excuse now Julia you have the gym and the surroundings.
    Love the photo of Poppy and Wilfie together, I expect they missed you a lot but it was nice to have soemone to care for them while you were away, Wilfie has such lovely eyes.
    Looking forward to Simon’s 19th Anniversay. Are you making him one of your lovely cakes. Love the dress you had on on the fashion show, lovely colour, suited you.
    Take care.
    Love Jean XX

  4. TINA S June 28, 2014 at 4:14 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia,
    You seemed to have had a well deserved break in the sun with your family. It’s amazing what having time out can do to recharge the batteries!I’m hoping to get away for a short break soon before the schools break up.
    Just as we had sorted out one problem with our house ready to get it valued we have hit yet more problems. We have a Bay window in our front room which are notoriously problematic. Anyway to cut a long story short we have to have new joists put in and damp proofing. Hopefully it won’t be too big a job. We just have to wait for the Carpenter and Damp Proofing fella to fit us in!!
    I remember how much I missed our cat when we went away on hol’s. I had to put her into the cattery. When we went to pick her up on our return she did’nt want to come out of the heated cage. She was’nt bothered at all that we had left her there. That’s cats for you. As long as they are getting fed that’s all they care about.
    Well I’m off to make tea. It’s been one of those weeks that I’ll be glad to see the back of.
    Best wishes, Tina (S. Wales)

  5. Margaret Brazier June 28, 2014 at 7:31 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia , You are looking great after you holiday with your super duper tan.
    I wonder if you can help me with replacement foam handles for my Pilates Performer. I can only find a site in America , wonderd if you know of anywhere in the UK. I have been a pilates fan for many many years, due to your recommendation, and Marjolane(?)of course, hence the hand grips have split. Always look forward to your programes Julia, not so sure about TSV on Sunday though.Lol
    Take care, and kind regards Margaret xxxxx

  6. Susan fletcher June 29, 2014 at 12:33 pm -  Reply

    The gym looks great,glad you had a lovely holiday

  7. Beth June 29, 2014 at 6:21 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia,
    Your holiday sounds wonderful- family, relaxation and being near the sea, my kind of break!
    Like you, I love being near the sea/beach and I also love cats. I loved the photo of Poppy ignoring Wilfie which you had on your Twitter feed! I think Wilfie just looks adorable although Poppy isn’t so effusive!
    Aware this is brief but I haven’t written to you recently and just wanted to ‘check-in’ and say hi. Also, your new gym looks great, it looks very ‘New England’ to me (which is fab!) and the colours look good. I’m looking forward to seeing the inside.
    You take care and I’ll try and catch the B&W show on Tuesday with you and Simon,
    Beth XXX.

  8. Annette Roberts June 30, 2014 at 11:10 am -  Reply

    Hi Julia
    Brilliant blog as always, nice to see you back looking tanned and healthy…thought Ali K had won in the tanning stakes, but not so sure now.
    What a lovely photo of you and Daniel and so nice that you had a real family holiday together, bet it was the first in some time with all the different work schedules and commitments. We’re not going away until much later in the year and we’re taking Bobby to France via the tunnel, which will be different. The ferry crossing was no good because he would be down in the hold in the car for 5 hours and he’s too old for that!
    Your gym looks really good in that colour, it’s so nice that you can choose more colours for wood in the garden to brighten things up a bit. Looking forward to more photos in weeks to come.
    Must say, even I was disappointed with the football and I don’t normally watch, apart from the Soccer Aid match, which was a brilliant game and the enthusiasm they had to win. Take note boys, that’s how it’s done! I mean, what was it, tired and off on holiday now, at their age…Gordon Ramsey had more oomph in him, need I say more!
    Looking forward to your show with Simon, all the witty banter between you both, makes it a pleasure to watch.
    Annette x

  9. Carole cooper June 30, 2014 at 3:53 pm -  Reply

    Hello Julia I love your gym it looks great we have a room similar they are great you find your in them more than the house I find my self making a brew and going siting in there. I got my self 2 declor special values and a l’0citance tsv but very good value. I have now ordered the blade going to give that a go, just turned 50 and the weight seems to be piling on. Take care. Carole wigan

  10. michelle twist July 1, 2014 at 10:25 am -  Reply

    glad you and your family arrived home safely.nice to have meet you all, your a lovely family.looking forward to seeing you on tv take care love michelle xx

  11. Yvie G July 1, 2014 at 4:42 pm -  Reply

    Hello Julia,family holidays are so important, memories to treasure for ever. My daughter died last september, she was just thirty one years old and I miss her every second of every day. At the moment going to ‘ our favourite ‘ places on holiday is just too painful, time will tell I suppose, but we have our memories some sad some not. Tim Fargo said it all, ‘going through hell, you have to carry on’ you have no choice do you, but I think I do need to reorder Gale Hayman eye gel, it does help. Love Yvie. xx

  12. April Fenton July 1, 2014 at 9:18 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia
    Glad you had a lovely holiday with your family and your gym looks fantastic
    I’ve just watched the Butler & Wilson show with you and Simon , could you ask him if he would consider doing a name tag for a dogs collar , I am getting a new puppy soon not sure if it will be a boy or girl yet and would love to be able to put a piece of Butler & Wilson on my new puppy
    They certainly would be a posh pooch

  13. Julia roberts July 3, 2014 at 11:08 am -  Reply

    Hi Diane
    I totally agree about spending time with your children because both you and they want to. Nothing makes me happier than when Dan or Sophie suggests doing something as a family … I’m so glad we are all friends which isn’t necessarily a ‘given’ with families.
    OMG you must have been beside yourself when Elsa went missing. That happened to me many years ago with my wonderful old Dylan … I cried my eyes out for 24 hours thinking something had happened to him and he strolled in a day later having been ‘released’ from next door’s garage.
    Ali was funny suggesting that I don’t use my Ultrasun factor 50 on my face … I assure you I did although I used 20 glimmer on my body this holiday as I already had a base colour from Dubai and it wasn’t so hot either.
    Chris is laying the gym floor as I write this so hopefully pictures of the inside on this week’s blog.
    Speak soon
    Julia x

  14. Julia roberts July 3, 2014 at 11:09 am -  Reply

    Hi Martin
    We had a lovely family holiday thanks …. We flew to Alicante but we stayed in Javea, much smaller and very pretty.
    Glad to hear you are well
    Julia x

  15. Julia roberts July 3, 2014 at 11:17 am -  Reply

    Hello Jean
    The gym is almost finished – Chris is laying the floor as I write, just need the TV/DVD connected and a couple of pictures and my ‘special’ clock on the wall and it will be done. Might take a little while to get a fitness DVD out but I am actively thinking about it!
    It’s pointless making Simon a birthday cake as he won’t eat it but I will have to do something special as it’s a BIG birthday for him personally as well as e 19th anniversary.
    I love coral, that’s why I was so glad you guys chose it for my book cover last year … was it really only last year that my book came out?!? New one almost done but will have to be ‘checked’ of course before it’s published … don’t want any mistakes!
    Will put a picture of Wilfie’s girlfriend on my blog tomorrow
    Julia x

  16. Julia roberts July 3, 2014 at 11:23 am -  Reply

    Hi Tina
    I hope you enjoy your break away.
    It’s funny how all the niggling little jobs crawl out of the woodwork just when you want to sell your house – I hope you get it sorted and that it doesn’t cost too much.
    Sophie said the exact opposite about her cat Oskar last time they put him in the cattery. Apparently he wouldn’t leave her alone for a week or so afterwards constantly trying to climb onto her knee! I have a feeling Wilfie would be like that. Watch out for a picture of his new girlfriend on tomorrow’s blog.
    Hope you have had a better week
    Julia x

  17. Julia roberts July 3, 2014 at 11:28 am -  Reply

    Hi Margaret
    Can you send me a letter and I will pass it on to the importer who might be able to help you with replacement foam handles …. Good to hear you use it so much!
    Thanks for your kind comments about looking forward to my shows. I must be honest and tell you that the Vax cordless upright (Sunday’s TSV) is THE best cordless I have used and Chris says he will never buy a corded vacuum again …. It REALLY is THAT good and glowing reviews already being posted on our website.
    Hope to hear from you soon via snail mail
    Julia x

  18. Julia roberts July 3, 2014 at 12:19 pm -  Reply

    Hi Susan
    Thanks on both counts – really looking forward to trying the gym out on Saturday when I have a bit of time

  19. Julia roberts July 3, 2014 at 12:26 pm -  Reply

    Hi Beth
    There is nothing more relaxing for me than gazing at the sea. The children kept me pretty busy but I did manage to get a little bit of writing done …. hoping to finish the first draft this weekend hen I have a few days off.
    Did you catch the Butler & Wilson show? The one hour seemed to go really quickly. I think Simon is starting to feel a little nervous about his fast approaching BIG birthday!
    So pleased with the colour of the gym – will put some pictures of the inside on tomorrow’s blog
    Speak soon
    Julia x

  20. Julia roberts July 3, 2014 at 12:51 pm -  Reply

    Hi Annette
    It really was lovely to spend some time with Dan and Sophie and the Chris came out to join us. It isn’t easy co-ordinating everyone’s diary. At the moment Dan is away in Slovakia with his Crystal Palace u9’s and U10’s for a tournament and Sophie is on a girlie holiday in Ibiza having only been back in the office of her new job for a week!! Then Dan is home for a week before he goes to Burton to do the second part of his football coaching A licence! It’s all go …. can’t imagine where they get it from!
    Although England went out of the World Cup early I have still enjoyed watching some great football being played. It’s so frustrating cos half the players doing well in these other teams play in our Premier League!
    I’m really pleased with the colour of the gym. My mum was less than enthusiastic when I told her it was to be grey but I think she will approve.
    Hope you caught the show with Simon? – he was on great form
    Julia x

  21. Julia roberts July 3, 2014 at 12:57 pm -  Reply

    Hi Carole
    I think it will be a place I will be happy in. Predominantly it is my gym but Ali Young suggested I should do my writing in there so I may put a small desk in there too. We have had an aircon unit installed but even in this warm weather it doesn’t seem to get overly hot – probably sheltered by the trees.
    Give the Bodyblade a chance – it can be a bit frustrating at first as you never seem to be able to maintain the rhythm but t’s good when you get the hang of it.
    Enjoy your Decleor & L’Occitane TSV’s
    Julia x

  22. Julia roberts July 3, 2014 at 1:00 pm -  Reply

    Hi Michelle
    Hope you liked the picture ad that you and Derek enjoyed the rest of your holiday? Keeley is over for the Elemis TSV next Saturday ….. it’s another good one!
    Maybe see you in Javea next year
    Julia x

  23. Julia roberts July 3, 2014 at 1:06 pm -  Reply

    Dear Yvie
    I can only imagine the agony you have been going through for the last nine months …. it must be the worst thing in the world to lose your child. I hope time will ease the pain and that you will start to remember more of the happy times.
    I think it was Winston Churchill that Tim Fargo quoted but whoever coined it they are absolutely right – there is no point stopping in hell you have to try and move forward through it to the other side.
    Sending you a huge hug
    Julia x

  24. Julia roberts July 3, 2014 at 1:11 pm -  Reply

    Hi April
    I think that is a fantastic idea. I’m going to meet up with Simon next week as we have an event at the end of July and we need to discuss what we are doing so I will definitely mention it to him then. It wouldn’t be until next year though if he will do it as he works so far in advance.
    Hoping to ‘christen’ the gym this weekend
    Julia x

  25. Morag Winchester July 4, 2014 at 2:31 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia. Wonder if you can help with an obscure query ! Some weeks ago the lovely lady Tiffany who models on QVC was on a Ronni Nicole show and was wearing a beautiful silver cuff bracelet which looked like bands of silver going upmand down the bracelet joined together. It may be her own one but i wondered if it was possible to find out where it came from and whether it was a QVC one. You are always so kind helping out with these things so hope you dont mind me asking. You are looking fantastic after your holiday. Love Morag x

  26. michelle twist July 4, 2014 at 11:13 pm -  Reply

    hi julia just got in from our friday night indian. i am really looking forward to elemis next week, are you presenting?. yes the picture is great nice of you to print mum-in-law Brenda is on the mend and appriciated you writing about her in your blog. Derek has built a gym at the bottom of our garden its not finished yet but its looking good, enjoy yours it looks great look after yourself and your family love michelle xx

  27. michelle twist August 24, 2014 at 1:16 am -  Reply

    hi julia hope you and your family are well nice to to see you on tv love michelle and derek xx

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