About a month ago I was telling you about the saga with the new wardrobes for our bedroom. At the time I also mentioned that we had bought an old cast iron fireplace that Chris was going to install. It all sounded fairly straightforward except that the fireplace in our bedroom was not central to the chimney breast and would have looked a little odd.
So, over the last couple of weeks, Chris chipped out some bricks from one side of the opening and filled in with brick on the other side to centralise it. In the meantime we ordered a slate hearth stone for the fireplace to stand on and this is the finished look! I’m really pleased with it, especially with my latest Tiffany style lighting addition and my beautiful Peony phalenopsis orchid to complete the picture. Wilfie seems to love it too. Now we just have to sort out a new mattress, bedding and a chest of drawers, possibly a new carpet and a lick of paint and it will be finished, but loving it so far.
Talking of before and after shots, I thought I would share these pictures of my tree fern. When we moved into our house 18 months ago the tree fern was looking very sorry for itself and I almost had it dug up. I’m so glad I didn’t. Having cut back all the fronds to over-winter, just look at it now. It almost looks like a palm tree and gives the garden a Mediterranean feel particularly as we have olive trees too. I have been feeding everything regularly this year with Richard Jackson’s Flower Power and it’s all looking very healthy.
I visited another beautiful garden yesterday – no, not Hampton Court Palace, I popped in to Simon Wilson’s to meet Bella, his cat. Due to off-air commitments yesterday I wasn’t able to do the Butler & Wilson show with Simon at 5pm but he very kindly allowed me to share his taxi back to Chelsea, where I was heading. I was a little early so I popped in for a glass of white wine and to meet Bella. She is jet black, like Wilfie, but is slightly smaller in stature. She was very fussy with me, even allowing me to pick her up, much to Simon’s amazement!
His garden is quite small but immaculate and so tranquil considering it is in the heart of Chelsea. He has clematis, hydrangeas and jasmine trained around the handrails of the steps down from his lounge – the only thing missing is a tree fern! He was regaling us with funny stories about calling Bella in in the middle of the night dressed only in a tatty old dressing gown … do we believe Simon is ever anything but perfectly dressed?! I’m really looking forward to his August anniversary shows – we will be running a competition on here, nearer the date, to celebrate 20 years of Butler & Wilson on QVC.
I left Simon, Nikky and two friends to enjoy their dinner in peace and headed to Daunt bookshop, on the Fulham Road, for another book launch party – my third this year! The first was Jemma Forte’s, mine last week and this one was Anna Cookson’s boyfriend, Ed Davey’s. I haven’t read his book yet but it is called Foretold by Thunder if you want to have a look at it online. Ed works as a journalist for the BBC and some of his newsroom colleagues were there including Riz Lateef who presents the television news for the south-east. I recognised her immediately and I could see a flicker of recognition in her eyes before Ed introduced us to each other. She watches QVC, particularly beauty shows, and we spent a good fifteen minutes chatting about Liz Earle, Decleor and L’Occitane.
Whilst we are on the subject of books I have another couple of radio interviews coming up next week – on Monday morning at 11am with Anne Diamond on BBC Radio Berkshire and the BBC Radio Sussex interview I recorded last week with Allison Ferns (back to ferns) is going out on Tuesday afternoon at 3.40pm. If you want any more information about ‘Life’s a Beach and Then…’ interviews etc. please check out my Julia Roberts TV Facebook page which has links to previous interviews if you fancy a listen.
On the subject of Facebook, thanks for being so gentle with me on Debbie Flint’s Back To You Facebook chat on Monday night. I’m still not sure if I did it properly but it was so nice to be able to interact with you on there.
You may not be aware that today is Alison Young’s birthday. I couldn’t possibly divulge which one!!! I have now known Ali for over twenty years and consider her a friend as much as a work colleague. She’s probably mucking out horses as I write but I hope she will give herself a bit of time to ‘READ’ my birthday present to her… if you get my drift!
I keep forgetting to mention that my very thoughtful family bought me another pair of Skechers for my birthday (seems ages ago) – sooo comfy if you’ve never tried them and Sophie says the colour is more appropriate for my age than my bright coral ones … Really?
Well I won’t be with you on air for a couple of weeks after today – no, not another holiday, looking after a family member, post op – but I will be blogging.
Have a great weekend.