Christmas at the Olleys!


Bex, Charlie, Billy and dog BarneyHello all!

I hope you have enjoyed a wonderful Christmas, filled with peace and love, family and friends and, no doubt, rather too much food. If you have young children around you, you'll have enjoyed their excitement – I remember the noise levels when mine were little, Christmas through the eyes of youngsters is a wondrous but deafening thing!

With the youngest of the 14 people I fed on Christmas Day being Billy, at 16, the pace of the day was a little more sedate than a few years ago. I woke around 8am (several hours later than the alarm call of 'Santa's been!!! Can I open my presents?' used to be), took the turkey out of the fridge and took a cup of tea back to bed for an hour. Bliss!

Kathy's table on Christmas Day pre dinnerWe enjoyed our present opening in the morning – the children clubbed together to give me a Kindle – I love books and never thought electronic reading would appeal to me but I am totally converted and absolutely love it already.

Olley gave me a watch I have been coveting for a while, and also a gorgeous framed photo of Bex, Charlie and Billy with our dog Barney (see photo top left). As a professional photographer, he doesn't really take pictures of the family, so this is very special and already in pride of place on our sitting room wall.

We had time to lay the table before my Mum, Dad, Aunty Barbara (who celebrated her 89th birthday on Christmas Day) and two of my brothers with their wives (just one each…) and children arrived for lunch. I took a 'before' photo to show you (left), but I won't post the 'after' – not a good look!

Suffice to say, we had a fantastic lunch – I was pleased with my cooking, but it was the feeling of being together as a family and enjoying each other's company that made the day so special.

I hope you enjoyed a lovely day too. Sometimes it seems as though it's loads of work and then all over so quickly, and after a quiet Boxing Day I was back at work and back to normal. Next week isn't quite normal, though. We are celebrating the New Year with a full month of extended Morning Shows. Monday to Friday, we will be bringing you two hours from 9am, featuring a new competition that I know you'll love (and look out – we may even be able to raise the prize money!) and some special products and prices for you.

I'll be with Claire Sutton for the first Morning Show of the year on Monday 2nd January so I hope you can join us. I look forward to your company. Until then, have a great New Year and take care.

Kathy xxx


  1. Lorraine December 29, 2011 at 4:22 pm -  Reply

    What beautiful pictures! . You are such a lovely and genuninely wholesome person. My family is quite extended and we never get to share Christmas together in the way we would want for ourselves . It seems disrespectful to say but we have had two bereavements who were special to us in the last six months but have brought us all together again in their own special ways, if only for a short time, but not at Christmas. I am truly grateful. x

  2. martin forbes December 29, 2011 at 7:05 pm -  Reply

    happy new year kathy when it comes

  3. josephine ellis December 30, 2011 at 8:51 am -  Reply

    HAPPY NEW YWAR kathy keep up the good work and you look fab….jo

  4. Linda, Glasgow December 30, 2011 at 1:56 pm -  Reply

    Hi Kathy
    Firstly can i say thank you to Susan who in your previous blog left me a comment re my turkey. I can report back that the turkey steaming was a real success – all very delicious and moist – a real pleasure to serve to the family(i gained loads of brownie points!)!!-check out the “This Morning” website or Phil Vickery’s website for the instructions. Well Kathy your Christmas table looks a treat – i know what you mean about the aftermath(not a great sight!!)we work so hard to achieve all the pressies,food and Christmas table and it is all over too soon – leaving the aftermath to clean up!!- time for a little delegating me thinksxx I thought the framed photograph Olly gave you was so thoughtful( and made more special because it was a bit of a busmans holiday for him) isnt it funny how when a person has a talent/trade they very rarely use it in there own home i.e. the painter an decorater etc. Its so nice to see you blogging more regularly Kathy – it is so nice to leave you a commentx and i do hope you enjoy your watch(I was lucky enough to receive a Clarisonic and EMU slippers – love them and i’m getting great results using the Clairisonic(i thought my skin was clean until i started using it!!)I hope you have a lovely New Year and that 2012 is kind to us all – i wish you a load of best wishes,love and hugsxx Speak to you next year!! Love Linda,Glasgow

  5. Susan December 31, 2011 at 5:22 pm -  Reply

    Hi Kathy,
    WOW is all I can say!! What a stunning photo of 1. your gorgeous and talented daughter and 2. your amazingly beautiful house!! That table…wow!! I have to agree with everything Lorraine said, and I am so sorry for your losses Lorraine. I have to say we had a lovely family Christmas too – there were 10 of us, and then another 12 of us Boxing Day! We are doing it again tomorrow (NY Day) with another 7. It is exhausting! But SOOO much more meaningful than any present. I hope you have a lovely night tonight whatever you do – we will just be in this year but looking forward to Alan Carr!
    Happy New Year and again that photo Olley took is stunning.
    Susan x

  6. kathy January 9, 2012 at 8:36 pm -  Reply

    Hi Kathy,
    What lovely photos !! Love reading your blogs, but dont usually have time to leave any comments !… (not very fast on the computer)!! However, I have to say, what a BEAUTIFUL DOG you have .. hes like a big woolly teddy bear !!….. What breed is he?
    Kathy , x

  7. kathy February 2, 2012 at 12:40 pm -  Reply

    Hello Lorraine.
    i know what you mean about funerals. Obviously they are not happy times, but often we see far-flung family members who we just don’t meet up with as often as we would like.
    I hope 2012 brings happiness for you.
    Kathy x

  8. kathy February 2, 2012 at 12:41 pm -  Reply

    And a belated happy new year to you too, Martin and Jo. Thanks!!
    Kathy x

  9. kathy February 2, 2012 at 12:49 pm -  Reply

    Linda, hello and thank you for your lovely long comment. Christmas seems a long time ago now but I’m glad yours went so well. So pleased you like the Clarisonic – it’s done wonders for my skin. And yes – I love my Fossil watch – you may have seen me wearing on on air. We’ll have to do a diamonique version!
    Hope you’re well.
    Kathy xx

  10. Kathy T February 3, 2012 at 10:44 am -  Reply

    Hello Susan, and a rather belated happy new year to you too. I’m glad you had such a lovely if busy Christmas – just the sort that I like too! I think, as we get older, most of us become wiser as well and realise that the most important thing in life is to be with the people who mean the most to us – for many of us that means family. It is certainly worth the effort.
    I was really pleased with how our Christmas table looked to welcome our guests – I bought a piece of hardboard from Homebase and put it on a small garden table to make our kitchen table big enough for us all. When it was covered with a table cloth no one could tell. It worked a treat.
    I’ve finally written a new blog, with lots of pictures, so it should be posted soon. Talk to you again soon…
    Best wishes
    Kathy x

  11. Kathy T February 3, 2012 at 10:54 am -  Reply

    Hi Kathy
    Thanks for taking the time and trouble to post a comment – I know what you mean about having the time – that’s why my blogs are less frequent than I would like. Life seems to be a series of prioroties, and I’m not sure I always get them in the right order!
    You’re right – we agree that Barney is gorgeous. He will be 13 this July, but is still really fit and loves his walks. He’s a bearded collie – the same as Dale’s young dog – but we have his coat trimmed which has given him the teddy bear look rather than the straight droopy look that Beardies usually have. Barney loves going in the river and his skin sometimes gets sore if his undercoat is too thick or a bit matted when it’s wet, so it’s better if he has a haircut occasionally. He is such a wonderful family dog, and keeps me fit with the long walks we enjoy together. He particularly loves the woods where he runs huge circles sniffing out the squirrels and just makes me smile with the sheer pleasure he takes in being there.
    My next blog will have another picture of him, so look out for that.
    Best wishes
    Kathy x

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