What a glorious week it’s been!


Alison and Colin wearing sombreros I couldn't believe the sunshine over the weekend, and have even managed to top up the tan a tad whilst on a 6-mile walk with my friend Diane around a huge quarry near her home. Blissful :) 

That said it's certainly got a little colder at night, so I would highly recommend snuggling down on the sofa wrapped in something warm.
Any Mexican recipes?

Well, I had a night off from cooking when Colin and I went out with Sam and Becks for a Mexican meal. I introduced them to the delights of the Mojito cocktail, which I had quaffed on a beach in Ibiza, but they weren't all that smitten. So not wishing to appear ungrateful, I drank theirs too! 

The sombreros and ponchos weren't standard dress code but I think they looked pretty good, don't you?! A cracking night was had by all, and I'm now introducing enchiladas and fajitas to our weekly menu. Actually, if you know of any variations on the theme, or an alternative to chicken, I'd be really grateful, and then I could always create and blog the results!!  

'Julie and Julia'

I've had another lovely night out recently to see the film 'Julie and Julia' with Lucy and Jack. To be fair, it really wasn't Jack's first choice but being a true gent he graced us with his presence and motored through a huge bag of popcorn while Lucy and I sat enthralled. 

The film is based on a true story of how in 2005 Julie Powell set herself the challenge to cook 524 recipes in 365 days. All the dishes were created by the American chef Julia Child, whose cookery book was published in the '50s. The story moves constantly between decades and from Paris to America and back again. 

The story of how Julia came to put the book together in itself is really entertaining, but she went on to become a TV chef – one of the first on American TV - and looked a bit like our very own Fanny Craddock, if you can remember that far back! Also, a little reminiscent of the sadly departed Keith Floyd… although not sure if alcohol was her poison.

Not only is there the TV element, but Julie chooses to write in detail about what she's cooked every night in a blog, and, of course, over time it's not just the food but every aspect of her life and relationship that is included. It's a fantastic idea for a film, and I truly think Meryl Streep deserves an Oscar nomination for this one… she's long overdue her third in my opinion :) 

I was still talking about it a couple of days later when a little parcel arrived for me, and my very thoughtful girl had bought me the book of the film, so I can become word perfect! Do let me know if you've seen it, and what you thought of it. For me I'd give it five stars in our review system :)  
Have a great weekend.

Love Ali x


  1. Magda Chetty October 3, 2009 at 9:46 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali
    Glad you all had a great weather this week, it is about time. Here in Mallorca we had a really bad week, so much rain that is never seen here before, floods all over the island, power cuts, storms and all sorts, still I think we are paying for the very hot summer we had.
    I love Mexican food, Fajitas are great with King Prowns.
    Glad you enjoyed the film too, this is one thing I miss a lot here, going to the movies, we do get some films in English but only the big box office once.
    I miss England so much of late, I dont know why? I have been talking my husband into selling here and moving back, WHAT DO YOU THINK?
    Have a great week and hope the weather remain good.

  2. alison keenan October 5, 2009 at 11:18 am -  Reply

    Magda, COME HOME TO US!! :) You are sweet. To be honest you’re probably missing home because the weather in Majorca has been so much more reminiscent of what we generally have here methinks! Seriously though, it sounds dreadful and I hope for all of you on the island, the worst is over. It is a shame about the cinema though. If you’ve got a DVD player it’d be worth looking on line to buy a few movies, so you can sit in and munch on your prawn fajitis – love the idea although my kids are so fussy they’d get the shudders just thinking about prawns let alone putting one near their mouths! You take care and keep in touch, and I’ll try the prawns and let you know. Love Ali x

  3. Rhona Fenton October 7, 2009 at 9:14 am -  Reply

    Hi Alison, what a lovely picture of you and Colin and can I just say how nice it is to see you so happy Colin must be just the right tonic for you:) well have to tell you if you come back up to Glamis now you won’t need your sombreros and ponchos try a thick coat, can you believe this I was out saying buy to my Colin this morning 6.30am and we had frost its just october are you having a laugh, I did think am I still half asleep and seeing things but no there it was on my patio table, either that or Dawn Bibby had been up with her glitter and got a bit carried away:) well thought about you at the weekend when I was out shopping as the shops are filling up now with all there christmas things, but am ok Alison as I know Colin has all ready got my Suzi b for under the tree or is it for our anniversary he likes to keep me guessing, either way the tree will be up:) hope your christmas preps are going well, have started my christmas food cupboard already and some present buying too, thank you QVC, hope you are all well love to Colin and all the family, enjoy the rest of the week and have a lovely weekend love Rhona xx

  4. alison keenan October 7, 2009 at 11:30 am -  Reply

    Rhona it’s lovely to get a snapshot of your life here, and always makes me smile to think of our Colins!! We haven’t quite managed frost here, but had such incredibly high winds the other night that the beautiful trees on the village green are all but bare! Busy week this week and I’m just about to head off to work with my evening dress and my speech for Breast Cancer Care. They have their fashion show tonight, and then Dale and I will be presenting the 3 hour Be Aware Show you Care fundraiser next thursday on QVC. I’ll try and take lots of photos as the girls who take part are so brave and beautiful. Have to fly as nails need doing but I’ll write again later in the week. Take care, Love Ali xx

  5. Marg October 8, 2009 at 12:21 am -  Reply

    HI Allison, how funny is this, I was reading your review of the Meryl Streep film about the TV cook, Next morning my husband called me into the house,I had been clearing up leaves,its really cold up here just now so I wanted it done before the cold really settles in,I missed the clip he wanted me to see,it was (his words) your friend Ally from qvc with the television cook on This Morning. I cant remember her name but she was really scatty.Joe said your hair was mid brown,that I dont remember,I thought you always had fair coloured hair.I wonder if you caught it,for what it may be worth my husband thinks you have improved with time, I think I would be likley to agree,whatever it is you are doing you should bottle it.My favourite film is ‘The Bridges of Madison County’,I have a good little bubble every time I watch it,
    I rarely get emotional over films but that one gets me every time,mad as it seems I hope the ending will change each time I watch it,
    Keep smiling,

  6. alison keenan October 8, 2009 at 10:58 am -  Reply

    Marg, how lovely to hear from you! And yes your husband was right, that was me too many years back to remember, when This Morning was filmed at The Dock in Liverpool. My hair is naturally mousy brown but I changed it around that time and have stayed blonde ever since :) I do truly appreciate Joe’s kind comments though and yours too! We must be soul sisters as The Bridges of Madison County is one of the two films that completely crease me… As you say, I always want the ending to change..(but it brings to mind something my mum used to say which was it better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all)…. I tell you what though, if you think that’s sad, try watching The English Patient…the bit in the desert is heartbreaking.. So for something happier I would really recommend the Julie and Julia film. Hope you have the sunshine today and fewer leaves to shift. Love Ali x

  7. Rhona Fenton October 8, 2009 at 2:49 pm -  Reply

    I am just going to butt in to what you and Marg are saying about films I was watching falling in love last week with Meryl Streep and Robert DeNiro as Meryl Streep is one of the best she is a fantastic actor and I just love the start of that film how its christmas eve in a Bookstore in New York just love it, not seen her new film yet Alison but dare say I will as she is just fab, I also love River wild the two best actors in my mind together Meryl Streep and Kevin Bacon does it get any better than that Ha Ha :) hope all went well last night? and I will be there with you next thursday night, have a lovely weekend you and your colin:) love Rhona xx

  8. Marg October 8, 2009 at 8:53 pm -  Reply

    Before I leave the film subject, I must tell you my real weepy and my best laugh come from a common source, the original Affair to Remember, makes me shed a ridiculous tear every time,then Sleepless in Seattle with my big crush Tom Hanks, it comes into a scene where his sister is telling Tom and her husband about Deb Kerr lying with her shriviled little legs on the couch, the two men broke in and started to act out how broken up they were over some sport match and end up crying on each others shoulder,they really press all my giggle buttons,it does it for me every time,sorry to go on I just thought you two would understand. Thankyou for replying Allison and great to make a contact with another qvc custumer Rhona, keep well,

  9. Rhona Fenton October 10, 2009 at 4:12 pm -  Reply

    Hi Alison, Don’t you agree with what Marg say’s? Hi Marg, I know where shes coming from about the films and yeah Tom Hanks is yet another great great actor, who also stared with my heart throb Kevin Bacon in Apollo 13 I cry at the end of that film everytime no mater how many times I watch it, have you two girls seen that one? now Alison am still trying to decide out off which two dresses you should wear next thursday :) see you next thursday love Rhona xx

  10. alison keenan October 11, 2009 at 8:53 pm -  Reply

    Oh Marg you’ve really made me go back a few years, and I wondered if you’d ever seen Brief Encounter or Mrs Miniver? Very old black and white films but so beautifully made and so poignant…and the original Alfie with Michael Caine or Look Back in Anger with Richard Burton! I wish there was a channel that showed all those films. Glad you and Rhona have now made contact – long may it last! And yes, that bit in Sleepless in Seattle was a corker…I loved Tom Hanks too in that, and Big, and Forest Gump :) Make sure you join us on Thursday night won’t you Marg – it should be a packed 3 hours. Love Alix

  11. alison keenan October 11, 2009 at 8:58 pm -  Reply

    Have to ask you Rhona if you’ve ever seen Meryl in Sophie’s Choice? You’ll need a strong heart to watch it and plenty of tissues, but her performance is stunning. That may have been one of her Oscar winners. Out of Africa was another amazing epic. I could talk films all night, but there’s one about to start on TV that I plan to watch with Colin, so must fly. You take care and keep in touch. Call in on Thursday during our BCC fundrasier and we can actually talk then :) Love Ali x

  12. Rhona Fenton October 13, 2009 at 8:46 am -  Reply

    Hi Alison so good to hear from you, to answer you as much as I love love love Meryl I can’t watch Sophie’s choice have seen a bit of it once and lost it at the bit where she had to choose between her Son or Daughter lost it at that point and cant bring myself to watch it am a mum what can I say my hearts not strong enough for that one plus I would need a factory of tissues:) Meryl did win an oscar for that no wonder and her other oscar win was for Kramer vs Kramer yet another classic, hope you and colin enjoyed your film, I can try to come through thursday but you can’t always get through if its busy and some how I think it will be:) but I will be with you, and we will talk sometime that will be so great:) put my dress choice through twice Alison but it’s not come up, it was A or C as you look stunning and amazing in both, thanks for keeping in touch see you thursday for a FAB night:) talk soon love Rhona xx

  13. alison keenan October 14, 2009 at 2:32 pm -  Reply

    Oh Rhona, so knew you would have had trouble with sophie’s choice. I watched it years before I ever had children, which is why now I can’t bear to. And then of course ironically, Kramer vs Kramer equally sad once I was divorced….Saw that one with my mum! Apollo 13 I also saw, and yes a few tears shed at the end of that one, but of course we all knew the ending.. Only film I had to stop watching was Schindlers List.. all too much for me. But, on a happier note, yes I did get your suggestions re the dress for Thursday, and they have been added to the total – so watch tomorrow and you’ll find out which one won! Love Ali x

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