Eating out


Julia's gardenAlthough enjoyable, I'm not talking about going out to eat in restaurants but rather dining al fresco every evening this week because the weather has been so warm. It's the first garden we've ever had where we are not overlooked at all, even though our neighbours are quite close by, so it has been bliss, particularly with my Lemon and Lavender Yankee Candle burning, which you can smell halfway down the garden!

We have been staying out quite late and Sophie remarked that it was a little on the dark side, so she and her dad strung up some solar fairy lights around one of our big trees for extra illumination. They look very Mediterranean and I'm thinking of buying some more lights to decorate the silver birches and the trellis. We will be all lit up like a Christmas tree – quite appropriate as it has been Christmas in July these last two days on QVC!

Julia's bed Julia's moving boxesThe other reason we have been eating outside is because, as I mentioned on last week's blog, the inside of our house is crammed with furniture. Daniel moves out on Tuesday so will be taking quite a lot of stuff with him but at the moment this double bed and two televisions are occupying a corner of our open plan living space … not ideal. That, combined with the boxes stacked up that he never unpacked when we moved into our house in January, which have been partially blocking our landing, will be a thing of the past from Tuesday.

Incidentally, his cook's essentials pans arrived and are already unpacked and ready for him to cook his first meal. Today we ordered a washer/dryer and a fridge/freezer so he is just about all set up.

Julia's catI'm wondering how Wilfie and Milo will react being separated again after after only just being reunited. Milo will have Poppy for company but, as an old girl, she doesn't really play chase and boxing much. I expect Wilfie will miss his girlfriend, Jenny, too. So today there is no Fashion on Friday. As I mentioned previously, it is Christmas in July. I am on at 4pm with Santa's Toy Shop, 5pm Bethlehem Lights and then 7pm with Price's Candles.


Liz Earle TSVThen tomorrow night I am launching the Liz Earle TSV – the Radiant Face and Body Collection. It's packed with full-size products, including the multi award-winning Cleanse & Polish, and I love the Orange Flower Botanical Body Wash for showering in this hot weather. I hope you will stay up late and join Caroline and I.

I have a busy week ahead with the Dan's move and work, plus an exciting Butler & Wilson event, which I shall tell you about on next week's blog.

Have a great weekend

Love, Julia xx


  1. Jenny Cockayne July 25, 2014 at 6:17 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia
    Thank you for taking the time to reply.
    I have the signed version of your book from QVC, I am a bit old school and still like a proper book.
    The northern beaches in Guernsey are Pembroke Bay, Ladies Bay, Grand Harve and maybe the one you were thinking of was either Les Amarreurs (with its little pier) or L’ancresse Bay (big wide and sandy).
    Luv Jenny

  2. Jean Pugh July 26, 2014 at 4:03 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia,
    The picture of your garden looks so relaxing, with the lights and the candles, Lemon and Lavender my favourite.It is nice to sit out in the evenings as it is so warm .
    Goodness your house does look full up, when Daniel moves you should be back to normal, not that you want him to go, but it will be nice for him to have his own place. I expect it is nice to have Sophie home with you.
    Hope gorgeous Wilfie settles, I am sure they will miss each other, but I find Cats are more independent than Dogs. Lovely photo of them lying in the sun.
    Looking forward to the Liz Earle TSV, lovely selection of her products, all my favourites. And will watch out for the Butler and Wilson event.
    Take Care and hope Dan’s move goes well.
    Love Jean XX

  3. Kathryn Sheehan July 27, 2014 at 10:34 am -  Reply

    Hi Julia,
    I did write on your competition page, couldn’t see a reply any where, no worries it was only that we were in Moraira, as friends have bought a villa there, think we were there towards the end of your week.It’s a nice area i expect you have visited the area too. What wonderful weather we have been having, we to have been eating Al Fresco!! food always seems better eaten outside with the lights twinkling from lamps inside and on trees etc. Nice picture of your gym, looks a bit full though.! I’m off to Cyprus on wednesday wonder if i;ll get any browner. lol. Looking forward to a good old gossip with the girl’s,we are not party animals but all love the beach and Coral Bay has a lovely beach, and the hotel has a Decleor Spa.! Will tell you all about it. Let’s hope the next blog will have you in remission. Take care .
    Kathy x

  4. Pauline Johnson July 27, 2014 at 11:02 am -  Reply

    Hi Julia not relevant to your blog,but had to tell you turned over for TSV (Liz Earle) first thing David said was there’s my girlfriend when he saw you touched me that he could remember you after all this time the last time he saw you was at your book launch.your garden looks lovely.
    Speak soon Pauline xxx

  5. Diane gilbank July 27, 2014 at 11:44 am -  Reply

    Hi julia, what a packed house you have got!! Life is never still is it, always moving like water. Which is good so we never get bored….
    Hope the move goes smoothly for both of the children and that the change of cat will not be too traumatic for all of them and you. Your garden looks so lovely and a real bonus that it is so private, ths lights and candles look very sweet. It has been such a beautiful week and makes for such a difference in General well being if think. I have been lucky to enjoy most of my daily rests outside and can lay there imagining I could be anywhere in the world.
    I bought a few Xmas things in readiness, which feels good. It’s storing them now!!!
    Hugs and love diane xxx

  6. Joanna Downey July 27, 2014 at 4:35 pm -  Reply

    Hello Julia, I think I must need some solar lights because I was a tad dim in my reply to your last blog. I should have written that my favourite candles are called Joy and they are from St. Eval Candle Company. All parents of adult children will recognise the boxes in every corner scenario and I am always amazed by the amount of stuff we acquire. This time last year our spare room was full of all things baby. Twelve months on that expected baby is a bundle of love called Tallulah who brings most of the items back with her when the family comes to stay and our home once more resembles a Mothercare warehouse. You looked lovely in the Liz Earle TSV launch show – your hair was glorious. Love from Jo x

  7. TINA S July 27, 2014 at 5:06 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia,
    We certainly have had some scorching weather for dining al fresco! I was supposed to have gone out for supper with some old friends from my nursing days on Thursday but it was so hot I rang and cancelled. I know I should’nt moan, but it has been too hot on times for me,(especially when you get your own tropical moments.) It is lovely to go out in the garden when its cooler. The smell of my Honeysuckle is gorgeous in the evening and my Azalias have done really well this year. Its the most they have ever flowered. It must be all that rain we had. We have been in our present home for about 13 years and its the most we’ve seen
    our shrubs flowering. I love the heady scent of the Honeysuckle.I wish the rest of our house was as good as our garden!!
    I found that sitting with my feet in a bowl of cold water is good to cool you down.My poor husband has had to put up with the fan by my side of the bed now for 8 years, in the winter as well as the summer. I think we could do with a bit of rain now as the grass is looking really parched now.
    Well , hope you get your house back to normal soon. Its no fun moving. We had boxes left unpacked for months and months after our last move.
    Best wishes, Tina (South wales, where it is still baking hot!!)

  8. Annette Roberts July 28, 2014 at 4:51 pm -  Reply

    Hi Julia
    What a busy couple of weeks you’ve had there, with all the comings and goings…Mum and Dad’s are so good though, lost count of the times I moved back home over the years.
    God luck with Daniel and Wilfie’s move, hope they will be very happy in their new home and it must be nice having Sophie back home again.
    I’ve not been near the Aero Pilates for a couple of weeks, the bedroom is so hot even with the windows open (when we can, which is another story). I was going to ask if you had put air conditioning in your gym, but you’ve beat me to it, bet you’re glad you did…I can remember how hot it was when my machine used to be in the garage!
    Been an awful couple of weeks, firstly there’s been a tummy bug going round, not very nice. Then since early this year there has been an noxious intermittent smell in the air at all times of the day, meaning you have to run (hobble in my case lol!) and shut all windows before it gets in the house. Definitely not nice going to bed with the windows open, only to wake up in the middle of the night to your bedroom minging! Now we’ve lived in the country for years and it’s not the normal smell you get…the council has been involved thanks to lots of people writing on the local village blog and ringing them up and they have got to the bottom of it, pardon the pun, a combination of slurry and tea waste being mixed together, giving off a sulphurous smell, so hopefully it will get better over the coming weeks, thank goodness because it’s been stifling in this heat. The other thing is we have not been able to sit or eat out in the garden, something we love to do also.
    Lastly I mentioned about 3yrs ago about a lovely lady who went to sleep leaving behind her little Westie, Katie (Bobby’s girlfriend), whom our dog groomer found a new home for. We had an email at the weekend saying that she had been very poorly and had gone to sleep. It really upset us both, because Bobby has been looking his age lately, I suppose it’s brought home the fact that he won’t be here forever! At least she had a happy loving home and I think it was a combination of old age and they had also just lost another Westie, Sophie, Katie’s companion…maybe she had fretted after her.
    Although I’ve not written much lately I do read your blog often and think your gym and garden look lovely, all the hard work has and still is paying off!
    Annette x

  9. Julia roberts July 31, 2014 at 12:35 pm -  Reply

    Hi Jenny
    I’m glad you have the hardback version …. I think the picture section is nicer in an actual book – maybe I’m old school too!
    I think the bay I am thinking of is L’Ancresse …. sort of starts with an A! I will have to visit to refresh my memory plus I met a lovely lady who is working for the charity End Polio Now so maybe I could drop in on her.
    Enjoy the rest of the book
    Julia x

  10. Julia roberts July 31, 2014 at 12:44 pm -  Reply

    Hi Jean
    Dan’s move went very smoothly …. exhausting though! Wilfie was very good on the drive over (about 45 minutes), he never miaowed once! He was a bit quiet at first but then curiosity took over. Dan says he’s is settling in well although he did destroy a whole kitchen roll on his first night! Not as bad as Milo who has chewed through my mobile phone charger!
    Did you get the Liz Earle TSV? It was very popular – I think it’s good to stock up on favourites in full sizes.
    I will put pictures from the B & W event on this week’s blog and watch out for a fab competition on next week’s blog!
    Speak soon
    Julia x

  11. Julia roberts July 31, 2014 at 12:53 pm -  Reply

    Hi Kathy
    Sorry I didn’t reply to you on the Pilates competition blog – I was away on hols and there were so many replies that I just haven’t found the time to reply to everyone …. I did read them all though of course.
    I like Moraira, we did look at a couple of villas there, but Javea just nudges it for me.
    Hope you have a lovely holiday in Cyprus
    Julia x

  12. Julia roberts July 31, 2014 at 12:56 pm -  Reply

    Hi Pauline
    I too am touched that David remembered me … hope you don’t mind him referring to me as his girlfriend. Give him a hug from me
    Julia x

  13. Julia roberts July 31, 2014 at 1:04 pm -  Reply

    Hi Diane
    The move went very well on Tuesday – Chris went over to Daniel’s new place to wait for the Sky man (he as to have Sky Sports for his job) while Daniel and I eloped load the lorry ad then drove over with Wilfie who was an angel. Sophie joined us after work for dinner ad it wasn’t until we got home at about 11pm and Milo was searching for Wilfie that I got upset! Had to happen I suppose.
    I’m glad you’ve been able to get out in the garden …. I do that too when the sun is on my face, imagine where in the world I would like to be. BTW I got the multi-coloured cafe lights …. just need to find time to put them up now! Poor old Chris is totally shattered after the to’ing and fro’ing this week!
    Speak soon
    Julia x

  14. Julia roberts August 1, 2014 at 9:41 am -  Reply

    Hi Jo
    Thanks for the clarification re the candles. Funny thing is I asked the Price’s guest if she had heard of Joy candles!! No wonder she said no.
    Our house is now resembling a house again …. it’s bigger than I thought it was. We won’t have the issue of baby clothes for years as neither of ours is showing any sign of ‘settling down’ with a life partner yet! Hope you are enjoying being a grandma …. must be nice to have the fun and then hand them back at the end of the day.
    Julia x

  15. Julia roberts August 1, 2014 at 9:52 am -  Reply

    Hi Tina
    Yes it has been a wonderful summer for shrubs, as you say it must be all the rain followed by so much sunshine. I’ve also noticed that the fruit trees look absolutely laden apart from the apple tree in our garden which is sporting just one green apple! In fairness it had been overshadowed by hedging and trees until we had them trimmed back.
    The downstairs of our house is more or less back to normal now after Daniel’s move but the attic room is jam-paced with Sophie’s things and our surplus stuff which I’m hoping to sort through and donate to charity.
    We have had some rain this week but t still hasn’t cooled the temperatures or freshened the air much.
    Speak soon
    Julia x

  16. Julia roberts August 1, 2014 at 10:08 am -  Reply

    Hello Annette,
    I’m sorry to hear of Katie’s passing …. I do remember you telling me about her on here. Don’t fret too much about Bobby and enjoy him while you have him. I often look at Poppy and think she seems to be slowing up a bit or moving gingerly, to be expected at 19 I guess, and then the next minute she is chasing round after catnip toys and jumping up onto the back of the sofas.
    When you said you weren’t able to have windows open I thought you meant you had a similar problem to us. We still have the original single glazed windows and some of the locks weren’t working adequately so Chris has had to screw them shut for security. Eventually we will look to replace them with something in a similar style but it has been uncomfortably hot at times. Thank goodness one of the ones in our bedroom opens!
    Hope they get the nasty whiff sorted soon.
    Daniel’s move went very smoothly but it does feel strange to know he is not coming home here again and of course it was a wrench losing Wilfie too but Daniel needs him for company more than me.
    It is good to have Sophie home for a while …. we really are friends as well as mother and daughter.
    Speak soon
    Julia x

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