Barbra Streisand, Escapology, CBD Oil and Red Copper Chef


Many moons ago, I was fortunate enough to have been taken, as a surprise for my birthday, to see Shirley Bassey perform live on stage. She was, in a word, legendary. I remember at the time having a conversation with friends about what other legends we would like to see perform. I said that the other legendary diva I would love to see live was Barbra Streisand – I doubted it would ever happen as she doesn’t tour much and when she does it normally requires a bank heist, a train robbery and a little negotiation with a loan shark to have enough money to afford a ticket!

So, a few months ago when I saw she was going to be performing at Hyde Park and that the some of the tickets weren’t horrendously exorbitant, I immediately got tickets.

The day arrived just last week and I was finally going to be in the presence of the lady herself. To think she is still performing at 77 years of age gives me some hope for my future!

Out she came on stage in a blaze of pink, wearing a dress designed and made for her by British designer Zandra Rhodes. Opening with a rendition of As If We Never Said Goodbye, from ‘Sunset Boulevard’, Barbra took the liberty of altering the words to make it fit the occasion singing about Hyde Park, Meghan Markle, clotted cream, her love of London and much more. We laughed, we applauded and we lapped it all up.

Barbra famously performed a concert in Central Park in 1967, called A Happening In Central Park, to a crowd of 135,000 people, and the performance was recorded and released as an album under the same name. It was a very special concert and a major turning point in her career as a performer and artist. Barbra told us that she was, unofficially, calling this evenings performance ‘A Happening In Hyde Park’, the inference being, that even though we were only a crowd of a mere 65,000, this was an equally special concert for her. She was reeling us into her performance and we went willingly, she had hooked us and we were happy to be caught.

The rest of the evening continued more or less in the same vein, with her giving us exactly what we wanted with some of her old favourites and some special guests including Kris Kristoferrson and Lionel Richie.

Despite the large clouds rolling across the skies, the weather held up and we all felt blessed to be there. It was a fun and magical evening.

I was even lucky enough to bump into some QVC viewers and fans who came and said hello, which I loved, and I was even asked to settle an argument between a couple as there was some debate as to whether or not I was actually that Irish guy from QVC. Also, not only did I meet some of you who were there, I also met some of our guest presenters like Tracey Krueger, who is the guest and Brand Ambassador for Homedics – apparently it was Tarcey’s fifth time seeing Barbra! (Btw, Tracey tells me she has some great new products coming up from the range in August, so watch this space).

Barbra wasn’t my only outing recently. Our very own Eilidh was performing in a play that she and some friends of hers had devised called ‘Escapology’. It was on at the Old Red Lion pub in Islington, a really famous and respected fringe venue in London, and it was excellent. It was a one-hour show and only had the three actors. I had no idea what to expect and I’ve never seen Eilidh act before but it was thoroughly enjoyable and our Eilidh played a blinder. I was enthralled by it and laughed so much. (I don’t want to tell you any more details in case it comes back again and you want to go and see it!).

A group of us went from QVC. Myself, Craig, Ali K and Claire all met up for a bit to eat, a cheeky cocktail and then went to see the show together.

The cheeky girls!

It’s always so nice when we get together outside of work – it doesn’t happen nearly enough, but is always such a lovely time.

Whilst all of that has been lovely, the not so lovely, and very much dreaded, insomnia has returned recently. I have very disturbed sleep these days anyway, which I have put down to my heart medications, as I was always, historically, a great sleeper. Apart from the odd evening when I watched too much TV or sat in front of the computer too late, or had left too many things undone on my ‘To Do’ list. The insomnia thing has become more of a regular occurrence, which I think may be due to the fact that I also now have arthralgia (pains in my bones and joints) too. I’ve had it for about 7 months now. It means that I have pains, stiffness and the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis all through the day, at night in bed and particularly first thing in the mornings, that’s when it is at its worst. My feet and hands don’t work so well and are extremely painful for a few hours at the start of the day. No more bounding out of bed for me in the mornings, not that I particularly did, but I was always good spirited in the morning and fairly upbeat. Now I struggle to pick up and hold my phone or even to hold the kettle to fill it up. Whether this causes the poor quality sleep and insomnia or the insomnia is simply exacerbated by it, I’m not sure.

Insomnia strikes again. Me after managing just 20 mins sleep in a whole night. Not a pretty sight!

I mentioned on Instagram just a couple of days ago about my insomnia and some of you mentioned that maybe I should try CBD oil. Only then did I remember that we have just started selling it on QVC. It’s brought to us by YourZooki, the brand that also brings us the tasty Omega 3 Oil supplements, which I am a huge fan of. Their CBD oil is 10% concentration, which is considerably higher than many of the other examples out there on the high street, it is also third party tested and very pure. If that wasn’t enough, it also has a pleasant mint taste too so I think I am going to order some and try it and see what it can do for me. (Please always check with your doctor, as I will be doing, before taking any health supplements).

With everything that’s been going on with me health-wise recently, it’s been really hard to keep on top of my fitness so I been trying to focus on my nutrition as best I can, but with so little time in the day that isn’t always easy either. To help, I’ve been using the Red Copper 5 minuet chef. It comes from the makers of Red Copper Cookware and its coming up as a TSV and it’s so quick, easy and convenient (807836). It helps you cook meals, snacks and desserts in minutes. I’ve been using it for breakfast, lunch and dinner – whether it’s omelettes, hash browns, roasted vegetables or I’ve even tried Brownie mix baked in it. With its dual cooking surfaces that are wipe clean, there’s no dirty pans to wash and put away. Even better! Watch out for it coming up on Wednesday 17th July (launching at the new TSV launch time of 9pm on Tuesday 16th July.

Until next time,

Miceal. Xxx


  1. Antoinette Browne July 15, 2019 at 4:27 pm -  Reply

    Hello lovely Miceal, what a lovely a person you are. I always enjoy reading your blogs. I wish you good health, good luck and all the happiness in the world. Despite your health and lack of sleep you are always so cheerful. God bless you richly. Antoinette

  2. Liz Mccallum July 15, 2019 at 8:01 pm -  Reply

    Hello Miceal, you have been through so much in the last year haven’t you. I would just like to offer a small piece of friendly advice. I too have a heart condition (57 years of age) and have had stents fitted 2 years ago and it’s all under control thank goodness. I also have Rheumatoid Arthritis but the great thing is nowadays is that the technology is so advanced. Perhaps you will visit your GP and they can test you for it. There are so many options to choose from. I remember when I had the awful pain first thing in the morning but now im on what they call Biologics and it’s so much better. There is hope so please don’t continue to suffer. You project such positivity and have cheered me on many an occasion. Please take this as a one off, I would not presume usually to interfere, but you and I have had similar serious health issues at the same age and you are such a vibrant, caring person and I do know that when you have multiple health things going on it can at times seem very difficult. I just want the best for you as I would anyone. Best wishes, Liz. 😊

  3. lorraine t July 15, 2019 at 10:03 pm -  Reply

    Hi great blog-bet Barbra Streisand was amazing! sorry to hear about your insomnia and your joint issues. I am a great believer in Louise Hay affirmations-you must get her book-#youcanhealyoulife# this lady made Hay House-and her belief was to focus on your body being healed by telling yourself her affirmations-she has sadly passed by book sold by the millions-what have you got to lose? x

  4. HELEN July 16, 2019 at 8:06 am -  Reply

    Cheers mate sorry to hear your health issues avid watcher and purchaser on QvC LOVE IT

  5. Elizabeth McCarrison July 16, 2019 at 11:20 pm -  Reply

    Oh Micael love and prayers dear friend hope you feel better

  6. sue July 17, 2019 at 8:33 pm -  Reply

    Hi Miceal ,
    Sorry to hear you are having more health issues .The only remedy I can recommend is lavender oil for insomnia [put on pillow]
    and turmeric for the arthritis [have a good curry regular ]
    Hope it helps

  7. Bev July 17, 2019 at 9:09 pm -  Reply

    Hi Miceal sorry to hear you’re not your usual bubbly self…hope the insomnia improves. I suffer with it myself so know how you feel. Keep your chin up! X

  8. Julia Johnson July 20, 2019 at 7:21 pm -  Reply

    Hi Miceal,i hope you feel better soon x

  9. Jacqueline Collins July 20, 2019 at 11:29 pm -  Reply

    Hello lovely guy. I also can’t sleep was driving me bonkers. I have started to take Magnesium tablets, advised by a Nutritionist Seem to be doing the job at the moment Good luck x

  10. Marilyn July 28, 2019 at 2:03 pm -  Reply

    Hi Miceal. I think you write the most articulate, informative and entertaining blogs. Sorry to hear about the insomnia. Have you tried 4,7, 8 breathing? I realise you would want to check with your doctor. You can read about it online. It is not specifically an insomnia aid, but many people, including myself, think it helps.

  11. Jill July 31, 2019 at 3:18 pm -  Reply

    Hi Miceal, I’m so sorry o hear that your health is not as good as it should be especially after your heart problems from last year, you were making such a good recovery then your joints are causing you a problem. Keep fighting and keep positive, you’re much missed off the Q.,

  12. Maria August 30, 2019 at 2:13 am -  Reply

    Hi Miceal, please BEWARE, magnesium is NOT good for people with heart problems. I have FM, and with that comes, amongst other things, insomnia/very bad sleep. A nutritionist mentioned it as a sleep aid to me also, but after checking with my GP first, was told a categorical NO – I had a cardiac arrest, 9 years ago, this October, and she told me that magnesium is Not good for people that have heart issues. Wishing you all the very best. Xx

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