Billy’s 18th!


Kathy's favourite photo of Billy as a childI'm writing this with my mind in the past. Eighteen years ago, to be exact. It was the evening of the 14th September and I had managed to get Bex and Charlie into bed in good time before Olley and I settled down to enjoy the very first episode of a new sports quiz show on TV called 'They Think It's All Over'. It wasn't long before I realised that, in fact, it was all just beginning. I'm talking about the birth of Billy, the child who would complete our family and is on the cusp of becoming an adult ( which makes me feel very old!!)

Bex with Billy as a newbornI couldn't settle and watched the programme, which featured Nick Hancock as the quiz master with Gary Lineker and David Gower as team captains, standing up in the doorway – I realised that Billy was on his way (although at the time we didn't know whether we were expecting a girl or a boy). Rory McGrath and Rory Bremner were on the teams and made me laugh so much I'm sure they hastened Billy's progress into the world – we almost called him Rory in honour of the part they played in his birth! In fact, we only just made the hospital in time. The friend who was on call to babysit our older two children couldn't get to us for a couple of hours and Billy was in a rush. He was almost born in the car but luckily I managed to hold on and within a few minutes of getting into a labour room he arrived – half past midnight on the 15th September. Now, 18 years later, he is over six feet tall, full of charm and kindness and about to make me the mum of three young adults!

Billy and his brother CharlieChildren give so much without knowing as you guide and support them into adulthood – I have such happy memories of all three as they were growing up, although it's easy to wear rose coloured spectacles – there were some tough times too!! I've included a few of my favourite photos here. Hard to believe the one of Rebecca holding her new born baby brother was taken so long ago. And that such a little scrap would be enjoying his first (legal!) beer with his older brother in what feels like no time at all.


They say that time increases pace as you get older and I think it's true. We've enjoyed a long summer which at times has, delightfully, seemed almost endless – but it's still a shock to suddenly find ourselves in the middle of September with evenings drawing in and the mornings dark when I leave for work. One bonus is that it's cool enough for me to dig out my favourite boots to wear again – for me the opportunity to wear more clothes is one of the best things about autumn! (Don't forget to join me on Morning Style on Wednesdays at 9am for lots of autumn fashion ideas…).

Bex, Billy and CharlieIn fact, I've always rather enjoyed our seasons. Although an eternal summer seems appealing, the thought of it reminds me of an inscription carved into a wooden beam above the front door of a cottage I used to run past when I was a teenager – 'Life has many shadows, but the sunshine makes them all.' Expecting permanent sunshine or, more philosophically, constant good fortune is unrealistic – the important thing is to make the most of it when you have it. So, as my youngest comes of age and embarks on adulthood, with all the opportunity, uncertainty, excitement and responsibility that may bring him, I will wholeheartedly celebrate with him!

I hope this finds you happy, healthy and hopeful.

Take care.

Kathy x


  1. martin forbes September 17, 2013 at 6:20 pm -  Reply

    hi kathy how are you i am well how did you get on with the late les dawson when you did blankety blank

  2. susanne fitzpatrick September 17, 2013 at 9:19 pm -  Reply

    I’m sure there are many people who read your blog and wish they had such a lovely, kind and caring Mum. Sadly, mine was a different kettle of fish (how I turned out so well is a miracle of nature!!) so it gladdens my heart to read that your children had such a lovely, happy childhood because those memories do stay with you and have a profound effect on your ability to grow as a person as you grow in age.
    If any of your children bring you a fraction of the love you and your husband have given them, you will indeed be one very lucky Mum.

  3. sylvie September 18, 2013 at 10:23 am -  Reply

    Hi kathy what lovely pictures of your kids through the years and yes very true my kids have given me so much happiness and 4 beautiful grandchildren which is even better you have that to come the best thing in the world is being a grandmother

  4. susan September 19, 2013 at 7:41 pm -  Reply

    Hi Kathy, what a wonderful and beautiful blog. You write so well. And your photos and children are just stunning! Thank you for sharing. They are wonderful words you have written and im sure Billy will be thankful for them. Gosh he arrived quickly didn’t he!! Poor you! Enjoy him x

  5. kathy t September 26, 2013 at 5:28 pm -  Reply

    Hi Martin
    Good to hear from you.
    Les Dawson was brilliant on Blankety Blank – we spent the whole day laughing!
    i hope you’re well
    Best wishes
    Kathy x

  6. kathy t September 26, 2013 at 5:42 pm -  Reply

    Hello Susanne
    I am certainly a very lucky mum. My children are normal in that they are not perfect, but they definitely bring Olley and me lots of pleasure. Likewise, I’ve not been a perfect parent, but you make the best decisions you can at any moment – looking back there are some things I would do differently, but all three children seem to have turned out ok so far! I’m also lucky in that my parents were good role models for me to learn from, and are still with us to enjoy being grandparents to Bex, Charlie and Billy.
    I’m sorry your childhood wasn’t so good – hopefully you have found happiness as an adult. You certainly sound very generous in spirit – I’m sure you spread love to those who are important to you.
    Thanks for writing to me.
    With very best wishes
    Kathy x

  7. kathy t September 26, 2013 at 5:45 pm -  Reply

    Hi Sylvie
    Thanks for your comments, it’s good to hear from you. I’m sure being a Grandmother is a wonderful thing – I hope it will still be a little while before any of my three give me that pleasure but when the time comes I know I will absolutely love it!!
    Take care
    Kathy x

  8. kathy t September 26, 2013 at 5:48 pm -  Reply

    Hi Susan. Good to hear from you! Yes – Billy does like appearing on my blog, although he wasn’t too sure about the baby pictures! He arrived in a rush, but has been pretty laid back and rarely in a rush ever since!
    Hope things are good for you
    Best wishes
    Kathy x

  9. Diane gilbank September 27, 2013 at 10:35 am -  Reply

    What a lovely testament to your family! It shows just how much you love and care for them and that’s pretty special.
    You have grown I feel as a presenter recently and I am sure that’s down to your fab fab fashion show on a Wednesday, I really enjoy it and make sure I never miss it, recording if not possible to catch it live. Your enthusiasm comes across so strongly and you always make the guests and models feel appreciated.
    I would like to say how very pleased I was to see a petite model at last and how the clothes fitted on her. Whilst I love the regular tall girls, it is good to have the comparison for us shorties out here.
    Hope that may continue in more of the regular fashion shows too.
    Meanwhile keep up the great work you do.
    Love Diane xx

  10. susan September 27, 2013 at 6:07 pm -  Reply

    Hope your lovely debs g is ok. Sad QVC didn’t do send off x

  11. Elizabeth Morton October 4, 2013 at 10:29 am -  Reply

    Hi Kathy,
    I just wanted to say what a wise and kind person you are. You always come across really well on-screen (genuine and honest) and your family are very lucky to have you!
    All the best,
    Beth XX.

  12. Summer Wynne November 14, 2013 at 10:07 am -  Reply

    Dear Kathy
    Every time I find out something about your life I cannot believe some similarities with mine!! I only have 2 children but I think they are close to yours in age. Amber is 22, and was born on 27th August and has just finished a pharmacy degree. I think your own daughter is doing medicine? I got married on 5th September, I think that is also your wedding anniversary. Most scary of all , my youngest daughter turned 18 in September and I swear I had the same experience watching They think Its all over. I had to go into hospital to give birth during the show( I was also laughing between contractions)
    Hope you find this as interesting as I do!!
    Love Summer

  13. suzanne anderson December 5, 2013 at 6:24 pm -  Reply

    Hi Kathy,
    What beautiful pictures of your children.
    l know what you mean about feeling old when you realise that so many years have come and gone. l have six grandchildren, my eldest just celebrated her 17th birthday, now that really makes me feel very old. l remember the day she was born so clearly as l watched my daughter go through the pain of labour, as the hours passed l became more and more nervous. ln the end l bailed out on her, l missed seeing little Hannah coming into the world. l’ve lost count of the times my daughter has reminded me of it, l think she has forgiven me now.
    Suzanne xxx

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