Presenters Christmas lunchAlthough I've not blogged since before Christmas itself, I hope you've found my replies to all your lovely comments?! It was wonderful to read all about your adventures over the last few weeks, and now, as promised, I can fill you in on mine!

Firstly, I thought you might like to see one of the loveliest photographs I've ever had taken of Kathy, Deb and myself at the presenter's Christmas lunch! Dale spent time working out how to get the best shot with lighting etc (!) but we all thought his patience paid off.

Colin about to put the star on the treeLuckily my lack of shower and toothbrush had been rectified as I had both at work, and here we are all spruced up before feeding our faces on the most delicious Christmas grub! 

Talking of spruces, here's my Christmas tree! I know the last photo I posted was a rather bleak one, so wanted you to see how much better it looked with all the decorations and lights on it.

Colin snipped the top off so that I could put the star on – I'll leave it to you to guess what he was saying when I took this picture..!! 🙂

As all the children were heading off to various families and friends, we decided to have our Christmas turkey on Christmas Eve and Lucy very kindly spent most of the morning making mince pies and gingerbread – delicious!

The tree, finally Lucy baking mince pies

You may remember me saying that I'd ordered the Christmas meat hamper from QVC – Turkey/Beef/Gammon/Sausages/Bacon/Sausage meat – and luckily it arrived days before we moved, otherwise I doubt I would have remembered to let our Despatch team in Liverpool know that I'd changed address! 

I cannot praise highly enough the quality of the meat, and the whole meal was a huge success. We had some old friends for dinner on the 28th too – a cracking night! – and I cooked the beef as per instructions and that was perfect too! Happy days.

Lucy, Sam and Jack on Christmas DayConsidering how badly organised I had been buying presents, it was a miracle I had them wrapped and ready by the 24th, but everyone seemed happy with their gifts, and I was spoiled rotten!

Colin got me tickets to see Michael Buble on the 3rd July (five rows from the front!!), I had a Blu Ray Player from Sam, duck egg blue kitchen scales from Jack (to match the kitchen when I repaint it!) and a beautiful verse, framed and presented to me by Lucy which read " You are the Mummy everyone wishes they had"… aaaaaw… had to pretend I had something in my eye.. 🙂

Colin's children came to us on Boxing Day which was great fun and they all luckily had excellent appetites so the mountain of food we had bought was devoured with very little left overs. I did bring a turkey salad to work though on the 27th December – would have been rude not to!

Ali and her sister Jenny sporting their Ken Paves clip in up do's!I worked on the 28th, but then on the 29th my sister Jenny and her partner Linda came to stay. All our married lives we have lived pretty much at opposite ends of the country, but now are amazingly just one hour away from each other!

I had bought an additional Ken Paves Clip In Up Do, and so coiffured Jenny's hair for her – looks good eh?! We rolled about laughing at Victoria Wood's Christmas offering on the TV and even managed a short game of Trivial Pursuit – short because it's like a sleeping draught to me! Within 10 minutes I'm unconscious! 🙂

On the 30th Colin's mum came over with his son and daughter, and my stepdaughter Becky, her husband Mark and Ethan joined us too. I baked a huge gammon which went down well and left sufficient enough for me to make parcels for everyone to take home 🙂 It was so good to have a house full of family and friends over the week, and now I've got used to cooking on the vast range thing that's here, I'm hoping for many more gatherings!

New Year's Eve was spent with my friend Jo and her man Simon. They came to us and very kindly brought all the accoutrements required for a fondue! I don't have a pot or skewers, but I supplied most of the bits to go into it! It's Jo's birthday on New Year's Day, so having cheered the New Year in we raised our glasses again as she opened her presents.

I'd got her tickets to the Harry Potter experience and she was really pleased 🙂 They stayed over and we had a massive fry up for breakfast which was very welcome after all the fizz, and then they headed off…

I unpacked the last of the boxes yesterday, and Colin has begun to cut back the rather large laurel hedge which is impeding his ascent to the roof! Why go there I hear you cry?! Well, along with no heating and a lack of hot water in the bedroom/ensuite, we now have a rather large damp patch on the ceiling! Hopefully all will be revealed and rectifiable before we get more rain and colder temperatures! Thank heavens for Northern Nights brushed cotton sheets and a warm man!! 🙂

I hope very much that you will have had a wonderful time over Christmas and that the New Year will bring you nothing but joy, good health and happiness. And if you fancy a giggle do join Debbie Flint and myself at 8pm tomorrow for a brand new show called 'Anything Goes'..!!! Should be fun 🙂

Have a great week, and I look forward to hearing from you. With love as always, Ali xx


  1. Susan January 4, 2013 at 5:27 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali,
    Happy New Year! So pleased you had such a lovely Christmas. My you deserved it! I thought your new home looked stunning in the photo with the tree and the kids. Talking of which, Lucy was a knockout in that red dress! I really hope the big damp patch is something not too costly to rectify for you. That’s something you don’t need! Your New Year also sounded great but then I wouldn’t expect anything less than a sociable night from you Ali! Happy Birthday to Jo for NY Day. Hope you have a lovely weekend and if I’m in I’ll watch ‘Anything Goes’! My my what the heck will you and Debs get up to?!
    Take care
    Susan x

  2. martin forbes bucksburn aberdeen January 4, 2013 at 6:45 pm -  Reply

    hope you are well alison martin forbes

  3. Julie January 4, 2013 at 7:06 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali
    What an eventful christmas you had. I can’t believe how much you’ve done in such a short time. I bought us tickets to see War Horse-June 2014!!!! I was also spoilt I must admit and enjoyed myself babysitting. Lily was as good as gold-I didn’t want her to go to bed!!!
    Think the photo of you, Kathy and Debbie is lovely.
    Did you get my message??
    Speak soon
    Julie xx Lily xxxxx

  4. Joanna Downey January 4, 2013 at 11:21 pm -  Reply

    Happy New Year Ali, Firstly I agree that the photo of the three of you is lovely – all warm and happy and shows the strength of your friendship. Your Christmas sounded wonderful; full of family, friends AND food which is how it should be and how fantastic to have tickets to see and hear the gorgeous MB… I love Christmas and even though I thought that this one would feel odd without Ellie living with us it turned out to be just as special as it always has been. Both the girls and their men were with us for Christmas Eve and Bex and Ant stayed until Boxing Day morning when we went our separate ways and Ellie entertained us – their first “proper” visitors. I’m really proud of the way they’ve made their home so cosy and during their holiday they’ve even decorated three rooms, I’m pleased that I’ve tidied my sewing tin and done some basic gardening during my time away from school! 2012 was generally a positive year for me; I loved Sicily and have developed a passion for lemon granita and, following a change of career, I’m delighted to see my super husband relishing his new role. I still miss our beautiful cat Kizzy and I’m getting used to the two of us rattling around in a house built for a family but that’s normal progression so I’m not going to keep sounding sorry for myself. After a good year I’m a tad apprehensive about expecting too much from the next one but I truly hope that 2013 brings all those we love and who love us contentment, fun and good health and some sunshine would be nice too! Love from Jo x

  5. mary January 5, 2013 at 8:51 am -  Reply

    Happy new year Alison and I am so glad that your Christmas and New Year were spent with family and friend and that you were thoroughly spoilt with pressies. I am typing this blog on my new prestigious tablet tgat was a pressie from my husband and I love it. You need top be patient when setting up but the TMTI phone line is superb and I am thrilled with it . I have downloades scrabble and other games that I can play with my friends, am now addicted to angry birds and haven’t used my laptop since I have had it. Its so quick to get on line’ QVC at my fingertips plus email and a fabulous app called Akinator Genie who guesses characters that you answer questions too. A great buy. Christmas day was spent at my sisters, we ate at 4 then those of us that could walk after a big dinner went off for a stroll….tradition is we walk to find the worst, tackiest Xmas lights and we found plenty! We were all well on Xmas day but a migraine in boxing day meant I didn’t visit my husbsnds family which was a shame. Very quiet in between Xmas and new year but enjoyed walking on the beach everyday with the dogs and smelling the sea and sand..and in occasions the sewage works! I am not a fan of new years eve but we saw some lovely fireworks in Broad stairs then came back to watch the TV and London fireworks…breathtaking… My 15 year old son went to a party! Watched some fab TV over Xmas…cried buckets at the last Wild at Heart and tge snowman and his dog. Got to finish now..dog walking time. Happy new year again to you and your family love Mary x

  6. mary January 5, 2013 at 3:51 pm -  Reply

    Hi, may again..forgot to mention that I loved the photos you put on the blog ..Dale did very well. I have put my name down for the Beauty Bash tickets so I hope I get lucky. Also, me and my sisters took the kids..well an 18, 17, 15 and nearly 13 year old to see Nativity 2 on Xmas eve. It was hilarious and well worth watching. Its about a bonkers teaching assistant in an infant school go is totally mad. Well worth watching. Have a good weekend…beach was wet and drizzly this morning and my sisters dog got the hump and refused to wslk past the cafe until we’d gone in for coffee so we did..she trotted home beautifully after that. Have a great weekend. Mary x

  7. Judith Lennon January 5, 2013 at 4:54 pm -  Reply

    Happy New Year Ali
    What a busy girl you’ve been! Hope you are settling in to your new home and that you had a good time with you family and friends. The photos look as though you did. I spent Christmas lunch with my daughter and husband and my little grand daughter who is 6. She was a joy to be with and soooo excited. Still thats what Christmas is all about. I’m looking forward now to seeing my son home with his wife from South Africa where they spent Christmas with her mum. Nice weather for them!!!!! Hope you are keeping well and that 2013 will be a great year for you.
    love and hugs

  8. Elaine sallis January 5, 2013 at 5:46 pm -  Reply

    Hi ali
    Happy new year to you and your family. What a lovely Christmas you had. Don’t. Be too daunted by the work you have to do to your new home. We bought a very run down Victorian house, in fact, when our offer was accepted I cried buckets because I hated it. My husband kept telling me to look beyond what I could see to what it could be. I found this very difficult because what I could see was the sky through a big hole in the roof! the day we moved in water poured through the bedroom ceiling and we watched the car slowly sinking on the drive which had not been put in properly. My first cup of tea had a big piece of lead in it and we then discovered that when next door were running water we did not have any as we had a shared water supply. But sixteen years on I love my house and would not want to live anywhere else. So my husband was right but we won’t tell him!
    Lots of love. Elaine

  9. Jill Foster January 5, 2013 at 8:19 pm -  Reply

    Fab, Fab and more Fab – thank you so much for the wonderful update Ali – how good it is to catch up with you and what has been happening in your new home – the entertainment sounds as if it has been just perfect and I am delighted for you and your family that you have had such a super time. Love the Ken Paver hair do’s also!! Great to hear that the boxes are empty but I bet you are still wondering where things are.
    It is uplifting to hear what you have been up to.
    Love Jillyxx

  10. Jill Foster January 5, 2013 at 8:21 pm -  Reply

    I am back – just checking out you and Debbie on the new show – you both look the bee’s knees – well done girls!
    Love (again) Jillyxx

  11. Sue Radford January 6, 2013 at 6:53 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali,
    Glad you had a great Christmas – your photographs says it all. I had a lovely Christmas too, but it went by so quickly didn’t it? Loved all your other photographs. It looks as if you’ve settled in your new house already. Also, well done to Dale – he’s captured a lovely photo of you, Deb and Kathy.
    Have you made any New Year’s resolutions? I’m determined to spend more time with my daughter and grandchildren, and not to worry too much about things that are out of my control – easier said than done though lol!
    Your hair has grown at an incredible rate. It looks great with your Ken Paves piece – a really really good match to your own hair. I had to send for one from America to match my colour (Champagne Blonde). I find it essential to take with me whenever I go on holiday, as my hair is totally unmanageable while abroad – it drives me mad – guess it’s the humidity that causes it to go haywire. Looking to go on holiday towards the end of this month or the beginning of February, but can’t decide where yet, are you planning a holiday?
    Hope 2013 will be a very healthy and happy one. Your children are lovely – your youngest son is the spitting image of you isn’t he? Your sister is so much like you too, and you look even more alike with your Ken Paves hairstyles – really lovely.
    Take care Ali,
    Love from Sue Radford.

  12. Gail January 7, 2013 at 12:38 am -  Reply

    Dear Ali, first of all Happy New Year to yourself and Colin. I still don’t know how you did it – moving, Christmas and working all at the same time (I’ll have a pint of what you’re on) x Your new house looks lovely; I just love double aspect rooms, they let so much light in. I assume your journey to work is much easier now, I hope! I know a lot of the Presenters live over that way or at least in Surrey due to the easy access to the Motorway, which makes a lot of sense. You were obviously very busy over the Christmas period with so many people coming and going. I’m so glad the children spent Christmas Day with you; they all look great. Hope everyone in a good place at this time.
    My last year has been particularly bad. I have only been kept mobile and out of pain due to Steroids. Unfortunately the drugs I started just didn’t work for me. I could never reach a dose high enough to suppress my immune system enough to make a difference due to my liver struggling. I’m at the hospital twice a week. Mine is a chronic disease; there is no cure. I must admit to entering this new year frightened. I am waiting for my Health Service to approve funding for a relative new treatment which isn’t without severe risks so, yes, I am very frightened, but I also know that there is no way of avoiding ones destiny. Perhaps, as one lovely Nurse said, this year is going to be my year !!
    Lots of love to all the girls in Ali’s Army; I’m sure they’re all out there somewhere. Happy New Year to you all and a healthy, happy New year xx
    I’m sure both yourself and Colin are very excited about the future in your new home. I love the way you find it so easy to move forward. I wanted to move home last year but with so much going on health wise, I just couldn’t do it. Anyway, every happiness wished for you both in your new home xx
    Forgot to mention all the lovely presents you received, you lucky lady you. The best present I gave this year was the one I had made for my Husband. I had a big black and white canvas done of my Husband and one of our deceased dogs. It turned out absolutely wonderful. I first of all tried a collage type of all our past pets but it didn’t look so striking, so decided to do one at a time (future pressies in the pipeline). We lost our dog and cat this year, so not a good year all round. Our dog, Dandy, was 20 and our cat, Frisky, was 22. The missing is awlful but I know they had the most wonderful life possible, even if I say so myself.
    Anyway, will say night night now. You’re looking great by the way.
    Lots of love,
    Gail xx

  13. Susan January 7, 2013 at 12:33 pm -  Reply

    Hi Gail,
    I am so sorry 2012 was an awful year for you. I have to say chronic illness is the worst type in my opinion. It is never ending and I don’t think some people quite ‘get’ that unless they know someone or suffer themselves. It’s the mental as much as the physical strain. You just look after youself and I am glad your husband is so supportive. Some don’t even have that. Take care Gail and good thoughts to you for 2013.
    Love SUsan x

  14. martin forbes bucksburn aberdeen January 7, 2013 at 6:11 pm -  Reply

    enjoyed the new show on saturday alison with you and debbie anything goes .

  15. Denise January 7, 2013 at 7:56 pm -  Reply

    Hi Alison,
    Lovely blog as always – thank you for sharing. Your Christmas sounds fab just how it should be. Michael Buble tickets you lucky lady I’m well jel! I often drop hints for tickets coming up to Christmas but fall on deaf ears sadly! Ah one day perhaps!
    Our Christmas was quietish. For once we had done the round of visiting the rellies before Christmas but I think I prefer to do it around the big day as then the days seemed to stretch endlessly with no visiting to do.
    Well Alison I do hope 2013 will be a wonderful one for you,
    Happy New Year
    Love Denise

  16. Carol MB January 7, 2013 at 9:33 pm -  Reply

    Happy new year Ali I hope 2013 will be a happy and healthy one for you and your family ! I’ve been reading back some of your blogs and as a fellow breast cancer lady , I understand your fears, concerns and worries. I have lots of aches and pains to and feel very old (I’m 51) but feel like 80 sometimes. But….. Onwards and upwards, like you try to get out with friends having weekends away lots of girly times as well as with my lovely family. I has a delayed reconstruction and now it’s time to move on and look to the future, it’s now time for you to do that – enjoy your new house, creating lots of lovely memories, with much love, take care. Carol MB xx

  17. mary January 7, 2013 at 9:40 pm -  Reply

    Hi Alison..Mary again…apologies for all the typing errors..not used to a virtual keyboard like the one on my tablet..I must admit to preferring to hitting the keys on a keyboard. First day back at school today..its like the holidays never happened! Mary x

  18. Edna Munro January 8, 2013 at 7:14 pm -  Reply

    Happy new year to you,Ali,Colin,and all the family.Good to see you had days of great family get-togethers.Nothing in this world can beat them!The photo of you,Kathy and Debs is great.One to treasure.Glad the move went well and you can now look forward to a settled,happy and exciting future.All the very,very best for 2013.

  19. Norma Smithson January 8, 2013 at 9:05 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali
    Smashing blog, good idea to put them altogether and make a diary, what a read it would be over the last two years. So pleased that everything went well over the holiday period, you did good as you hadn’t been in the house to long, having the all the family over the holiday week was rewarding for you and Colin, I had my daughter Julie and family with us for the first time for fifteen years (they usually go skiing) it was really special, with my other daughter Diane and family it meant we had eleven for both christmas eve and christmas day, but it all went great. What lovely presents you got, like the idea of being very close to MB next July, and it sounds as if your kitchen will be eventually the same colour as mine, duck egg blue, have had it now ten years and I never tire of it, such a calming but uplifting colour. Loving your uphair do’s Ali so chic and it makes you have quite a ‘cheeky face ‘but then you always have a smile on your face which means we always have plenty of fun when your presenting. Does Colin ever perform with the band up north, let me know if he does it would be good to go and see him. One of Ali’s army mentioned applying for tickets to go to the beauty bash, how do you apply for those Ali, it would be good to know. Hope you both, together with all your family have a smashing 2013, stay well Ali
    Much Love Norma xx

  20. Gail January 9, 2013 at 8:55 am -  Reply

    Hi Susan,
    It was so lovely of you to leave me a message. You are ‘spot on’ in what you say. People don’t realise what chronic diseases entail. They do indeed try you mentally as well as physically. I’m clinging to the hope though that this year IS going to be my year; hope is one thing this disease hasn’t taken, yet! Anyway, lovely of you to think of me and I sincerely hope you have a wonderful 2013. Keep in touch.
    Gail xx

  21. Magda Chetty January 10, 2013 at 12:11 pm -  Reply

    Happy new year Ali
    Sorry for not writing for a while,but had to go to Egypt late November as my sister adopted a little girl, and we went to the christening there. Had a ggod family time, but could not go out much because of the trouble there.
    Then home on 13th December with a mad rush to get ready for Christmas, had a great day with good friends which I cooked for.
    New year Eve we went out with friends to nice restaurant for dinner and dance which was great.
    But on January 2nd, I torn a ligement in my arm and been in bed till today, can not move it, thank God it is my left arm, so I can use the computer but not for long. You do not know how hard it is with doing most thing with one arm till you hurt yourself.Love the photo of you and Debbie and Kathy, tell Dale he did a great job.
    Hope 2013 will be a great happy and healthy year for you and all your family.
    Much love.

  22. alison keenan January 10, 2013 at 11:21 pm -  Reply

    Gail, somewhat late in the day, but I am very sorry not to have even had chance to look at all these lovely comments until now! The week has run away with me… I am SO sorry that you have been struggling so badly with your illness. I hope very much that the nurse at your hospital was right when she said that this year things will be easier for you, and that the new treatment will make the difference for you… Your husband sounds a sweetheart – I’m very glad he is there for you. It sounds as though last year was a difficult one, particuarly losing your pets too… they are like family I know… especially when they’ve been in your life for so many years. I am keeping everything crossed that 2013 will be a better time for you and your family, and that you will enjoy better health and happy times 🙂 Sending you my love, and thank you so much for keeping in touch with me, Ali xx

  23. alison keenan January 11, 2013 at 6:56 pm -  Reply

    Dear Susan, Thanks so much for your lovely comment and Happy New Year to you too! I spoke to Lucy today and passed on your compliment and she was also very chuffed 🙂 Damp patch can be rectified, but involves Colin and some steeplejack like antics, so I need to be there to hold the ladder!! Hope you enjoyed Anything Goes. Love to you and yours, Ali xx

  24. alison keenan January 11, 2013 at 6:56 pm -  Reply

    Hello there Martin, I am good thank you, and hope that you are feeling in fine spirits too, Ali x

  25. alison keenan January 11, 2013 at 6:58 pm -  Reply

    Hi there Julie and Lily, and so pleased to hear that you were spoiled and that little lady Lily was good for you! Debs and I are going to get a copy of the photo, so I’ll get one for Kathy too! Hope that you are enjoying the beginning of the year and it’s not too parky where you are!, love Ali xx

  26. alison keenan January 11, 2013 at 7:01 pm -  Reply

    Dear Jo as always, good to hear from you, and I am was delighted to hear that you too had a Christmas full of good times with the family. You must be very proud of your girls, although I am sure you miss Ellie…That’s great news about your husband’s job and I hope that he continues to enjoy it 🙂 Try not to worry too much about the year ahead – last year was good, so no reason to think this one won’t be even better for you 🙂 I do hope so. Sending you sunshine and love, Ali xx

  27. alison keenan January 11, 2013 at 7:03 pm -  Reply

    Dear Mary your prestigious tablet typing made me smile – always tricky getting used to a new keyboard eh?! 🙂 I’m glad your Christmas day was fun with your sisters, but sorry that you had a migrane on Boxing Day – I am sure though that the walk along the beach with that fabulous salt sea air will have helped, and I envy you the fireworks at Broadstairs! I too saw the Snowman and his dog and it made us ALL cry! Happy new year and love to you and your family too, Ali xx

  28. alison keenan January 11, 2013 at 7:05 pm -  Reply

    Mary I shall keep everything crossed that you get tickets the Beauty Bash but think that I have already been scheduled to work on air those days so wouldn’t get to see you! Next time you pass the cafe, have a coffee for me – would love a glimpse of the sea 🙂 Love to you, Ali xx

  29. alison keenan January 11, 2013 at 7:06 pm -  Reply

    Hello there Judith, Glad to hear that you were able to spend Christmas with your daughter and grandaughter… I always think it’s the little ones who make Christmas really 🙂 I hope that your son is now home safe from South Africa, where I am certain it was a great deal warmer than here! I wish you every happiness in 2013 and thank you for keeping in touch, love Ali xx

  30. alison keenan January 11, 2013 at 7:13 pm -  Reply

    Hi there Elaine, and a Happy new year to you and your family too! Thank you for your wise words about the house… it does all seem as though we’ve bitten off more than we can chew at the moment, but as you say it will get easier over time, and these teething problems will become a dim and distant memory – fingers crossed! 🙂 So glad you are happy in your home and every good wish to you and your husband this New Year, love Ali xx

  31. alison keenan January 11, 2013 at 7:15 pm -  Reply

    Dear Jilly, You are more than welcome for the update, and yes I’m happy to report that all the boxes are empty and I haven’t lost sight of too many things 🙂 Happy new year to you and yours, and thanks for keeping in touch, love Ali xx

  32. alison keenan January 11, 2013 at 7:16 pm -  Reply

    Jilly, just told Debbie Flint what you said about Anything Goes and she was pleased 🙂 She’s made a feature of it on her blog if you want to have a look, love Ali xx

  33. alison keenan January 11, 2013 at 7:20 pm -  Reply

    Dear Sue, Happy New Year to you! Thanks so much for your lovely comments.. I think the pic of Deb Kathy and I has been a great success – we’re going to get a print of it made up for each of us! I’m glad you liked the pics of the children too, and yes, Jack is probably most like me to look at, although Lucy looks a lot like I did when I was younger 🙂 Aren’t the Ken Paves up do’s fab! I am going to have to have my hair highlighted again soon, and think I shall take it with me to get a few streaks of blonde put in! I hope you find the holiday you would like and can dream of jetting off to the sun in the not too distant. Thanks as always for keeping in touch Sue, love Ali xx

  34. alison keenan January 11, 2013 at 7:22 pm -  Reply

    Hi there Martin, and I’m glad you managed to tune in for Anything Goes! And better still that you enjoyed it. I think I have another one in February with Craig so will look forward to that, Ali xx

  35. alison keenan January 11, 2013 at 7:25 pm -  Reply

    Dear Denise, Yes I feel very spoiled to have my Michael Buble concert to look forward to, and Colin is looking forward to our trip to Nashville for the Country Music Festival! It should be great fun for us both 🙂 I completely understand about visiting the rellies on Christmas Eve…. When the children left on Christmas Day morning it would have been a long day if we hadn’t have surprised Jenny and Mum! So much easier now we live closer. I hope very much that 2013 will be a good one for you and yours too Denise, love Ali xx

  36. alison keenan January 11, 2013 at 7:27 pm -  Reply

    Carol, Wishing you a very happy new year, and the very best of luck with your reconstruction. I hope it will make you feel complete again and that you can then move on and look to the future as you say. I think I have at least two more ops to go before I look even close to what I did before, but it’s all there to do… I hope 2013 will be a healthy one for you – stay strong, love Ali xx

  37. alison keenan January 11, 2013 at 7:28 pm -  Reply

    Mary, Lucy said pretty much the same thing to me tonight when we spoke! First week back sounds exhausting. Looks like you’ve got the hang of your virtual keyboard – I keep missing the space bar on mine! Some very strange sentences have been produced! Take care, love Ali xx

  38. alison keenan January 11, 2013 at 7:29 pm -  Reply

    Dear Edna, thank you for taking the time as always to write to me and I hope very much that your Christmas was also filled with family and friendship. All the very best to you too in 2013, Love Ali x

  39. alison keenan January 11, 2013 at 7:33 pm -  Reply

    Norma thank you for your suggestion! I will speak with my editor and see if it’s possible to print out a hard copy of the last two years’ blogs! I think I’d enjoy reading over them again…. How lovely for you to have Julie with you this year after 15 years absence at Christmas! I’m sure Diane was happy to see her too, and I’m very glad that it all went so well. Yes duck egg blue is definitely the colour I will go for as I like you, will never tire of it. I think you would need to call our Customer Services to find out about the Beauty Bash – sorry I can’t be of more help! Wishing you and yours a truly happy 2013, love Ali xx

  40. Rhona Fenton January 11, 2013 at 8:10 pm -  Reply

    Happy New Year to you all, what lovely pictures of your busy holiday time looks like a good time had by all:) as for what your colin is saying putting up the tree, well my colin said us foresters would say something a little stronger Ha Ha!! but well done colin you did an amazing job:) glad to see you have moved into your new hoose and it’s coming together well, hope you will all be very happy there! like yourself we too had a full house this holiday’s, 7 christmas day, and to which our cooker packed in good job we got the christmas dinner done in the nick of time, 14 boxing day and a further 7 new years day but as you say love having all the family over, so now it’s back to normal, might take colin to St Andrews tomorrow since he had the first week back to work blues, do you and colin remember when you were there? did the boy’s not go off to play Golf? will think off you both when we are there:) hope this finds you all well? love to you all from us all up here Rhona xx

  41. Gail January 14, 2013 at 8:43 am -  Reply

    Dear Ali, thank you so much for those kind words. Not late in the day at all; I can imagine how busy you are with the new house and work. Knowing how busy you are makes it more special that you found to time to reply. I can’t deny this last year has been an absolute nightmare for me; if it weren’t for the support of the nurses I really don’t know what I would have done. Their support, ones inner strength, sense of humour and good old steroids have been my saviour. Anyway, enough doom and gloom. 2013 WILL be my year and for everyone who is struggling, I hope it will be their year too x Does the new home feel like home yet Ali? The kitchen looks amazing. Hope you are feeling as well as you look and long may it continue. Lots of love to you and I will keep in touch.
    Gail xxx

  42. Gail January 14, 2013 at 8:50 am -  Reply

    Oops, mustn’t forget to mention my good old friends, THE PAINKILLERS. Don’t know what I would do without them either.
    LOL Gail xx

  43. Jean Woods January 14, 2013 at 9:42 am -  Reply

    Ali, have you ever tried Manual Lymph Drainage please?

  44. Susan January 14, 2013 at 5:04 pm -  Reply

    Hi Gail,
    It was my pleasure to send you a little message. I can sympathise and I’m sure there are many others can but sometimes we just don’t know the people who understand..if you know what I mean. I wish the same for you..a good 2013.
    Keep in touch as you say,
    Love Susan x

  45. Susan January 14, 2013 at 5:09 pm -  Reply

    Hehe oh Ali you’ll have to get a photo of Sir Colin and his steeplejack antics!! I am glad Lucy was chuffed but I did think she looked really lovely. I didn’t get to see Anything Goes in the end but hope fun was had!?
    Have a good week
    Susan x

  46. Alison Keenan January 15, 2013 at 11:21 am -  Reply

    Dear Magda, so sorry to hear about your arm! Nightmare! At least Christmas and new year were celebrated and it sounds as tho you more than rallied and had a wonderful time with friends and family. How wonderful for your sister to have adopted a little girl – it must have been a particularly special Christmas this year for them too 🙂 yes we are very settled here now, and had Kathy, Claire, Miceal and Debbie G here for lunch on Sunday and they all said they loved the house. Happy New Year Magda and I hope you are feeling far more comfortable now! With love, Ali xxx

  47. Alison Keenan January 15, 2013 at 11:44 am -  Reply

    Reading your message Rhona reminded me of last years Christmas when we had to use my landlords oven as mine was too small for the turkey ! Glad that you had such a corking time tho – very busy and I am certain you and Colin are perfect hosts 🙂 yes the house feels very much like home now and everything from the old house fits in perfectly which is good. Happy new year to you and yours and enjoy Burns Night won’t you?! 🙂 xx love Ali x

  48. Alison Keenan January 15, 2013 at 11:46 am -  Reply

    Gail take whatever they offer you and stay positive! 🙂 Clearly you are doing just that and I feel very much that 2013 will def be your year! Yes, we are feeling much more at home now and the shorter journey into work is a blessing. Lots of work to do still, but all good. Take care and do keep in touch, love Ali xx

  49. Alison Keenan January 15, 2013 at 11:50 am -  Reply

    Hello there Jean I have indeed tried Manual Lymph drainage and it did alleviate the swelling in my arm quite well. There are exercises and gentle massage you can do for yourself and of course wearing the sleeve helps too. I hope you’re not struggling too much with yours? Mine has become a nuisance again with the move and lots of packing unpacking etc but I have found a new lymph drainage nurse here and am seeing her tomorrow. Good luck in your search and the MLD forum on line may be able to help you find someone close to where you love, your GP could refer you too. Love Ali xx

  50. Alison Keenan January 15, 2013 at 11:57 am -  Reply

    Hi Susan yes fun was definitely had on Anything Goes and Anne, Deb and Dale joined in with it all last Saturday too! I will make sure I have my camera out and one hand free to photograph colin on the roof – the other one will be holding the ladder! :). I hope you’re not snowed in and aren’t too chilly! With love to you and yours, Ali xx

  51. Sue Jennings January 15, 2013 at 7:50 pm -  Reply

    Happy New Year Ali….glad you had a good Christmas….lovely to see the pics…Have you made any New Years Resolutions ?.. Ive promised myself to eat healthy in 2013 …I’ve been buying since my last message….I got the Yankee Candles TSV and the 3 large jars very tropical…I’m loving the anything goes show too…..Have you had any snow where you live yet? I couldn’t open my car door this morning it was solid .. How is Amica…haven’t seen her on the shows of late…hope she is ok ….take very good care Ali…sending much love
    Sue Jennings

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