Two cakes and a dinner…

33

Julia's birthday dinner at an Italian restaurantJust as the dust was settling after moving house and work within the space of a week, my birthday arrived. I know it's the same date every year but this one seems to have come around very quickly… is that a sign of getting older?

I'd been on the L'Occitane TSV launch the night before (isn't the almond shower oil divine!) so was quite late getting up, and then I had a relaxed day only interrupted by a trip to the garden centre to get a few plants.

I know I have left it late this year but I have had a lot going on, and besides the weather hasn't exactly been conducive for gardening. I wish I had ordered from QVC as the ones I bought were a bit ropey, and they had no busy lizzies at all!


Julia's birthday cakeDaniel had been at an FA training course all day so arrived home at five, and when Sophie and Gilly arrived an hour later, I opened cards and pressies before heading out to an Italian restaurant for my birthday dinner.

I'd made the traditional chocolate birthday cake, complete with 'smartie' decorations and the girls had also made me a cake – first time someone else has baked me a birthday cake since I was a little girl and my Mum used to do it!

The cake they made was called a 'slutty brownie' and consisted of a base layer of crushed chocolate chip cookies, followed by a layer of oreo cookies and topped with chocolate brownie … you could almost taste the calories!!!

Julia's second birthday cakeWe had a lovely evening together and once again I was treated to concert tickets, this time to see Michael MacIntyre – very excited!!!

I also had some beautiful flowers, the second bouquet in a week, and a new hairdryer amongst other things. All in all a lovely birthday.

Thanks to those of you who sent cards. If you gave me your address, I will write to thank you and thanks also for the messages on here and on Twitter – it was very thoughtful of you.

Hope you are starting to get used to our new studios? I know one or two of you expressed doubts but I think it will grow on us. I have a couple of requests for photos so here is one for now of the dressing room I share with Anna Cookson.

Julia and Anna's dressing roomIt's looking quite tidy at the moment, and I'm determined to keep it that way now that I have someone else to consider!

Happy Father's Day this coming Sunday to all the Dads out there and to those of us who have lost ours, let's celebrate their memory.

Much love, Julia xxxx

33 Comments

  1. Debby Slauenwhite June 16, 2012 at 7:01 pm -  Reply

    Hi julia.
    Watched your last broadcast with Ralph and thought you held it well [ considering]. Glad you had a good birhtday. I’ve just spent my birthday having a salmon lunch [ with part of the family] next week-end with the other half [ all due to exams].
    I didn’t get my piece Morganite as I was hoping for—but did get a beautiful multi gem ring [ 604 241] I fell in love with at the gem event. I was so surprised and feel very lucky. I agree with some viewers, not too sure about the new scenery—but it’ll be the norm: soon.
    All the best for all new shows coming.
    Love. Debby

  2. Mrs Susan Wright June 16, 2012 at 9:15 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia – so glad you enjoyed your birthday – I celebrated my 60th on 3rd June In Florida. I was interested in your comment about the Busy Lizzies (or lack of them). I was told a while ago that a disease from Holland had affected them and that we would not be able to get them this year. It seems to be true as i have searched all the garden centres in Nottingham to no avail. I don’t know if you’ll remember me telling you about buying a lottery ticket the next time your are in Nottingham as we are apparently the luckiest city in the UK- well, my neighbour has just won £1m on the Euro Millions Raffle!
    Did your mum get to see the Queen, William and Kate on their visit to Nottm last week? It was a wonderful day and everyone seemed to get a terrific view of all the royals they seemed genuinely happy to be here. Hope you’re enjoying football as much as i am, i don’t know what I’ll do when the competition ends, i look forward to watching two matches every night! I suppose there’s always QVC! Have a good week.
    Sue

  3. Steven June 16, 2012 at 10:33 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia
    You are a lucky Lady. You deserve it though. I love Michael McIntyre – not in that way!!! – so I am jealous you were there.
    I am liking the new studios. Is it just me or do we get to see more of you guys now(the presenters?)
    Hope you had fun with Alexis when you were on the L’occitane show. She is one of my fave’s apart from yourself obviously! I think her hubby is a Rangers man too which helps considerably!!
    Have you been watching the Euros? The England game was a cracking game as a neutral the other night!!! No but seriously you guys did well to come back after going 2-1 down. Ukraine have not been that great so I think you guys should be safely through to the quarters. Things have been quiet in terms of people saying England could win it. That could work in England’s favour because their is less expectation than the usual hype.
    Take care
    Steven xxxxxx

  4. Jean Pugh June 18, 2012 at 3:46 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia,
    Sounds as if you had a lovely birthday, all those treats. That is what it is all about isnt it. The cakes look and sound delicious, chocolate cake is my favourite, but it has to be a good one, nice and chocolaty and not dry. I think the new studio looks really nice, I expect it will take some getting use to.Lovely smart kitchen.
    Love Jean X

  5. Alana June 20, 2012 at 1:15 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia
    Your cake’s look yummy and it looks like you had a lovely time out for your birthday meal. It’s always nice to celebrate the occassion in some way.
    I have to say I watched your last presentation at Marco Polo with Ralph and I was almost in tears at the end!! You did a great job! I also got the Honora TSV in pink, it looks great on. I am liking the new studio and am also pleased to see we can now access QVC on android phones, can’t wait to down load my app.
    You guessed right in your reply to my other post as I did buy the B&W TSV – just couldn’t resist!!!
    Hope you’ve had a nice few days break, have you managed to get any further with your book while away?
    Ooh I also have to mention the Euros, I assume you’ve been watching too. Rooney did great last night and John Terry, here’s hoping we win on Sunday!
    ax

  6. Annette Roberts June 21, 2012 at 8:36 am -  Reply

    Hi Julia
    Sounds like you had a fantastic birthday, love the photo…you do look very ‘diddy’ sat in the middle of the table, not the table literally of course lol!
    As for two birthday cakes, I particularly like the ‘slutty brownie’ one, sounds very naughty indeed! Well done girls, the cake looks lovely and it’s so nice to have one made for you. No wonder you’ve done 100 lengths of the pool Julia! How’s the book coming along?
    Hope you have had a nice break, watching the footie in the sunshine with loads of SPF’s on of course. It’s absolutely ‘chuckin’ it down here at the moment and I’m hoping all this rain doesn’t destroy my strawberries!
    Looking forward to seeing you on air later.
    love
    Annette x

  7. Hefina Mitchell June 22, 2012 at 11:08 am -  Reply

    Hi Julia, loved the Mally show but why dont we see the models before makeup, we see the before and after, but it would be better to see makeup going on to bare skin live on air, like M. B. F. used to do,miss her on qvc ,remember you done it once,you are a beautifull lady, but what a difference make up does to us ladies out there.
    take care
    Hefinaxx

  8. julia roberts June 22, 2012 at 12:45 pm -  Reply

    Hi Debby
    Hope you enjoyed both your birthday celebrations – a bit like the queen really, with her real birthday and her official birthday! Glad you were treated to a lovely piece of QVC jewellery too!
    I’m sure the new ‘sets’ will grow on us
    love
    Julia x

  9. julia roberts June 22, 2012 at 12:51 pm -  Reply

    Hi Sue
    Happy belated 60th birthday for the 3rd and how fab to celebrate it in Florida. I mentioned about the busy lizzies on air last night after your comment and RJ confirmed what you had heard. Apparently it may affect next year too – what a shame as I love busy lizzies!
    Unfortunately my Mum can’t get out much as she still has so many aches and pains, we think as a result of her shingles, so she didn’t see ‘The Royals’ in person – I’m sure she will have watched it on the local news though.
    I think England are doing pretty well in the Euros – maybe because the ‘expectation’ isn’t there? Roy and Ray seem to have them well motivated and it probably helps having Gary Neville involved too. I would definitely play Carroll – good old fashioned centre forward!
    Come on England!!!
    love
    Julia x

  10. julia roberts June 22, 2012 at 12:57 pm -  Reply

    Hi Steven
    I haven’t actually been to see Michael McIntyre yet – the tickets are for his arena tour in November, so something to look forward to.
    I also like Alexis and with a surname like Murdoch I am sure you are right that her hubby supports one of the Scottish teams – it was actually my Mum’s stepfather’s surname!
    Soooooo you finally mention England in the Euros. I think we are doing OK – nothing electrifying yet, but Roy seems to have the boys well organised and playing with heart ………. and Hart of course, which could actually help us to go all the way in this tournament. I am so pleased we have avoided Spain in the quarters.
    speak soon
    Julia x

  11. julia roberts June 22, 2012 at 1:00 pm -  Reply

    Hi Jean
    I know what you mean about chocolate cake being chocolatey. I hate it when it looks lovely and dark and tastes of nothing! Has to be moist too – nothing worse than dry cake!
    Glad you are warming to the new studios
    love
    Julia x

  12. julia roberts June 22, 2012 at 1:07 pm -  Reply

    Hi Alana
    I thought you would go for the B & W TSV and also pleased that you got the final TSV from Marco Polo House – sentimental value and all that. I thought Ralph was brilliant.
    I did manage to do a bit of writing in Spain – I have had to add a chapter unexpectedly so have been working on that ….. all will be explained soon. Not far away now I promise but circumstances have held me up a bit this year …..again all reveal all soon.
    Re the Euros – Hart, Cole, Parker, Gerrard, in fact ALL the team playing with a spirit and belief we haven’t seen in years. Good to have an Englishman as manager – I think it makes a difference!
    Let’s hope for a sharper performance from Rooney on Sunday to see us through to the semi’s
    love
    Julia x

  13. julia roberts June 22, 2012 at 1:11 pm -  Reply

    Hi Annette
    Your comment about sitting in the middle of the table made me smile!!!
    It was good to get back in the pool. Forty lengths on day 1, fifty on day 2, seventy on day 3 and finally a hundred on the last day.
    I did do a bit of writing too as I mentioned to Alana. I have had to add a chapter, hence the delay, but it will still be called A Hundred Lengths of the Pool – out soon I promise.
    Hope your strawberries survive the rain
    love
    Julia x

  14. Steven June 22, 2012 at 7:37 pm -  Reply

    Definitely something to look forward too.
    Yes I thought I better mention England since you guys are still in it!. It hasnt exactly been scintilating stuff but the comeback against Sweden was good. France losing was a big bonus for England. I genuinely think Italy England is 50/50. I’ll miss the Spain France game because my wee cousin is a maid of honour in a Gala Day so I’m off to that on Saturday and we have a party at night. I’ll be surfaced by the time the England game starts on Sunday hopefully!!
    Off to watch the Germans. They have been impressive so far. Ominous for the rest I would day. I might have jinxed them now!
    Take care and have a great weekend
    I nearly put good luck to England there but that would be taking it tooooooooo far :D
    xoxo

  15. Kathryn Sheehan June 22, 2012 at 7:38 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia,
    Just a quickie, i did the Race for Life on sunday,(17th) what a fantastic atmosphere hundred’s of people taking part and we had a very warm sunny day as well.My friends and i did the morning run can’t remember my time but we all finished that’s the main thing, as my friends mum took part and she is in her 70’s.
    I raised £200 for Cancer Research and celebrated with an ice cream on the beach… lovely.
    Good luck with finishing your book.
    Kathy x

  16. martin forbes bucksburn aberdeen June 23, 2012 at 12:57 pm -  Reply

    hi julia hope you enjoyed your birthday and hope you and daniel are well just came back last night friday from alzzy 2weeks holiday from tenerife.had afew barbecues at my uncles and his daughter .and went to the local pub as well.the new look studios are not bad i hjave your last 2hours fromk marco polo house with ralph on sky plus as i now have one i will be keeping it forever ,at least you got to switxh off the lights and power

  17. Annette Roberts June 23, 2012 at 1:24 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia
    Glad I made you smile, unfotunately I made my Dr cry yesterday…
    not in a bad way though.
    Chris found out that she had handed her notice in at the surgery on my birthday, but didn’t tell me until the next day. I had to go and see her yesterday, because the head pain is back with a vengence, so whilst I thought the tablets weren’t working they obviously must have been, so I’m back on them again. Also on antibiotics, because my leg flared up last week, very red and swollen along the metalwork and painful to walk…she said I had got an infection in it…just when I thought everything was OK, lost 7lbs on DC again and upped the fitness…10 steps forward and 20 steps back eh?
    I asked her if the rumours were true and she said sadly they were and I said “who’s going to look after me now” and she struggled to hold it together, much like yourself on the last day at QVC Towers. Anyway, I do have to see her again and she’s there until the end of July.
    She is a brilliant Dr and very popular and it is so sad to see her go, I will miss her…ooops, I’m off now blubbin!!
    Must go and do the dusting now, we have a viewing tomorrow so want to get everything done today…could do with your selling skills, any tips? lol!
    love
    Annette x
    p.s. glad to hear you worked up to your 100 lengths of the pool gradually and added another chapter to your book. You could call 101 lengths instead. We do have something else in common though…I can’t run either now, but I can’t swim also, so I’ll stick to pilates lol!!

  18. Annette Roberts June 23, 2012 at 3:31 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia
    Oh no, it’s me again!
    Sorry, but I just had to share this with you, I think the NatWest gremlins have struck QVC’s reviews!
    I have done 2 reviews this week on beauty products. I then received an email saying that they had been refused, so I re-reviewed both, then received another email saying they had been refused. I then re-re-reviewed (if that’s a word?) again and have received another email saying refused.
    Not really knowing what I’d done wrong, I hadn’t written anything offensive, I decided to read the other reviews only to find that my refused reviews are now on the items…very strange, or what?! Other customers may think I’ve gone MAD in writing 2-3 reviews on each item, which I nearly did lol!!!
    love
    Annette x

  19. Marian Bolton June 24, 2012 at 10:53 am -  Reply

    Hi Julia
    There’s only one thing better than a birthday cake …… and that’s two birthday cakes …… lucky you!
    I’m happy to report that Mum’s doing ok. We’re backwards and forwards to the hospital and GPs at the minute for tests and more tests but, other than that, she’s coping well.
    I can see you’re bringing us lots to enjoy (and tempt us with!) today on The Q. The Beauty Award nominations (just voted ….. for mostly Elemis of course where it was an option) and Pilates. I was disappointed not to see the new eye serum in the award nominations but I think that’s probably because it hasn’t been sold alone yet so we haven’t had chance to review it. Hope to see it there for next year cos it would be a well deserved winner. I can’t wait to try the ‘face’ version coming out in September!!
    Enjoy Pilates. There’s another show I’d love to do! Please keep me in mind if ever The Q want to do a show with customers. I’ve had my machine about four years now and there’s not many a day passes when I’m not on it. My body is so much more flexible and stronger for it. Do you work on a certain level consistently Julia or do you mix it up a bit? I alternate between level 3 and the cardio workout.
    Till next time
    Love
    Marian
    x
    PS. Hurry up with that book please. Having finished the Twilight Saga, I’ve now had to resort to Fifty Shades of Grey!!!!! Say no more on that one then!!!!!!!!!

  20. Marian Bolton June 24, 2012 at 11:15 am -  Reply

    Me again Julia.
    Can’t believe I forgot the punchline. Senior moments, eh! ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ …. I only got it cos I thought it was about Dale Franklin! Oh my ………. best not go there!!! Also forgot to say, you looked gorrrrrrrrrrrrrrrgeous on the Mally show on Thursday night. x

  21. steve June 24, 2012 at 2:15 pm -  Reply

    Hello Julia,
    So how big is this pool! lol, i would go on time rather than distance!….just saying!
    Keep it up enjoy the weather!!! Steve

  22. martin forbes bucksburn aberdeen June 24, 2012 at 7:40 pm -  Reply

    hi julia hope you are well just came back from 2weeks lazy holiday from tenerife on friday .hope the move to chiswick went well . ihave the last 2hours of marco polo house of tour 2hoursd with ralph which i have on skyb plus permanently as i now jave sky plus whioch is handy .good to you got to switch off theb power na dlights that was good of sophie and daniel to presnt you with flowers .give them my regards.

  23. GINNY BOOKER June 25, 2012 at 9:43 pm -  Reply

    OH JULIA!! SO GLAD YOU HAD A LOVELY BIRTHDAY! YUMMY CAKES!!! AND LOTS OF GORGOIS PREZZIES!!!! LUV BIRTHDAYS AS SO MANY NIC TREATS COME YOUR WAY AND YOU GET A BIT SPOILED UP!!!! LOOKING FORWARD TO MINE IN A WEEK OR SO AND MAKING MY FAVORITE NUTMEG CAKE. MADE WITH BUTTERMILK AND SOOO MOORISH & NAUGHTY!!! I AM GLAD YOU HAVE MADE IT THROUGH BOTH MOVES AND ARE STILL SANE!!!! LIKE YOU I DO NOT KNOW HOW EITHER OF US GET THROUGH ALL THESE HOOPS!!! WONDER IF THIS IS THE LAST!!!! HAVING SAID THAT PROBABLY ONE MORE FOR US AS NAPLES!, FLORIDA WILL BE NEXT THIS FALL. HAVE OUR EYE ON A LOVELY PLACE WHEN WE GET FIVE MINS TO HOP ON A PLANE TO PHYSICALLY SEE IT!!! MY DEAR FRIEND WHO IS OUR REALTOR AS BEEN GOING THROUGH BREAST CANCER ALL THIS PAST YEAR AND STILL HAS ISSUES SO I AM PRAYING SHE WILL BE WELL AND GET THROUGH THIS YET ANOTHER ORDEAL LIKE SWEET ALLIE!!!! OH BLESS THEM!!
    YES, VERMONT AND ALL OF NEW ENGLAND ARE VERY BEAUTIFUL IN THE FALL! THIS SUMMER ON THE LAKE HOME IT IS EQUALLY SO WITH ALL THE LOONS, DUCKS, AND MONKEY FACE, CHEEKY CHIPMUNCKS!!!! OMG THEY ARE SOOO NAUGHTY AND CUTE!!! THIS SPRING WHEN THE WEATHER WAS GETTING REALLY NICE ( ANNETTE YIU WILL LUV THIS TOO ) I DAWNED MY BRAND NEW NEVER WORN MARKON BOOTS BOTH IN OLIVE GREEN AND TAN AND SOOOOO LUVED THEM!!! I COULD NEVER GET THE BLACK ONES AS MY SIZE 4 WAS NEVER ABOUT!!! THEY WERE THE FIRST ONES AND THE BEST ONES!!!!! I KNOW YOU LIVE IN YOUR BLACK ONES AND I KNOW WHY!!! WHAT COMFORT FOR HIGH ARCHES, CHEERLEADER LEGS!!! NEVER THOUGHT I WOULD LIKE THE OLIVE GREEN!!! BUT I DOOOOO!! I MISS QVC UK, BUT I DO WATCH LISA NOW AND AGAIN WHEN I HAVE FIVE!!!,, LUV TO YOU !!,

  24. julia roberts June 26, 2012 at 1:34 pm -  Reply

    Hi Steven
    What a poor performance by England on Sunday night! To be honest I didn’t think the Italians were much better but if we had won on penalties it would have been a travesty. Maybe you should have wished us luck!!! I know everyone is backing the Germans but I still think Spain have their best to come. I think that will probs be the final on Sunday.
    Hope your cousin enjoyed her ‘Gala Day’
    love
    Julia x

  25. julia roberts June 26, 2012 at 1:37 pm -  Reply

    Hi Kathy
    Congratulations on completing your Race For Life and well done on the money you raised. You were very fortunate to have a decent day this June!!!!
    Will keep you posted on the book
    love
    Julia x

  26. julia roberts June 26, 2012 at 1:40 pm -  Reply

    Hi Martin
    Hope you enjoyed your holiday in Tenerife – I bet it was hot out there? Daniel is in Spain at the moment with his cousin as it is the closed season for football ( apart from the European Championships that is ).
    I am pleased that I was the last person on air at Marco Polo – full circle, as I was the first.
    speak soon
    Julia x

  27. julia roberts June 26, 2012 at 1:49 pm -  Reply

    Hi Annette
    I am so sorry to hear your headaches are back. I know taking tablets is never fun but if they work ……. Hope the antibiotics bring the inflammation in your ankle down too.
    I know exactly what you mean about having a good doctor. I absolutely adore mine, and believe it or not he is called Dr. Wright – I promise I am not joking!!!!!
    Hope the house viewing went well? My main tip is honesty. If something is not quite right, draw attention to it and then offer a potential solution.
    Re posting reviews – the moderator of the blog comments is looking into it for you, so hopefully she should have some answers soon.
    Hope you are feeling a bit better by the time you read this
    love
    Julia x

  28. julia roberts June 26, 2012 at 1:59 pm -  Reply

    Hi Marian
    Although it may be a chore, all the hospital and doctor’s visits, at least they are trying to be certain they know what the problem is – again give your Mum my love!
    Fancy you voting for Elemis in the QVC Customer Beauty Awards 2012 – I wouldn’t have expected anything else!
    I will bear in mind what you said about guesting on the Pilates show although I don’t think there are any plans for viewer/models at the moment.
    Everyone seems to be reading ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ at the moment, although your reasons are different from most! Sophie was talking about it the other day, and then our Presenter scheduler tweeted that QVC ‘gets a mention’!!!!
    Sorry the book has taken longer than predicted but the added chapter was totally unforeseen – you will understand when you eventually get to read it.
    speak soon
    Julia x

  29. julia roberts June 26, 2012 at 2:05 pm -  Reply

    Hi Steve
    I take your point, but then I could just be a REALLY slow swimmer!LOL
    My pool is twelve metres and it usually takes me 39 minutes ( or so ) to do a hundred lengths, which is why it is Chapter 39 in my book. I think that means that I swim at a fairly average pace but then I am no Olympian! Speaking of which I’m looking forward to the Olympics now that the footie is over for us!
    speak soon
    Julia x

  30. julia roberts June 26, 2012 at 2:15 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ginny
    I take it you are a Mally fan then, with your ‘gorgois’ comment! I really need to do a bit of baking, the birthday cake is the only thing I have baked in the month since we moved! I had to laugh when you said about me STILL being sane – me sane? I don’t think so!!
    Your lifestyle in the States sounds so different from over here but you are clearly enjoying it, I’m not even sure I know what a ‘loon’ is? I thought they were a type of trousers in the seventies! If you get the place in Naples too that will be fantastic.
    I wish all good things for your friend with breast cancer and for all cancer sufferers.
    I can’t believe you have only just started wearing your Markon boots – we haven’t sold the brand for about three years or so. You are so right about the original fit being the best for those of us with high arches and ‘developed calves’!!
    speak again soon, and do watch us online
    love
    Julia x

  31. Steven June 26, 2012 at 9:22 pm -  Reply

    I agree about your Final prediction Julia but don’t want the Germans to wind – that would just rub salt into England wounds!
    Yes Gala Day was great thanks. My Mum is one of six so as you can imagine we have quite a big family and we dont all get together too often so it was really nice to be there with everyone. The odd beveridge was consumed too.
    Thanks for your reply as always xx

  32. martin forbes bucksburn aberdeen July 29, 2012 at 10:20 am -  Reply

    hi julia have not seen you on screen lately are you on holidays abroad hope you are well.any update on mens fashion at all can you give me the new address for qvc for sending on your xmas cardthis year.

  33. Ren McClean September 16, 2012 at 9:06 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia
    Please could you let me know which dress you was wearing at the Italian Restaurant on your birthday. I just love the print, it reminds me of the orange multi dresses that I have got (yes, dresses, 3 of them, two short style and one maxi with chain straps) from the Nina Leonard collection. The blue and pink print looks fab and wondered if Lenny had done something in this print or if was from another designer. Love Ren x

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