Looking on the bright side


Ali's beautiful liliesIt's hard to believe it's been almost a week since I was last with you as the past six days seem to have rolled into one rather long, uncomfortable one.

As I mentioned a while ago, the beginning of this next lot of surgery began on Wednesday last week, when I was taken in for a fat transfer and scar revision of the chest area to try and alleviate the discomfort and dented appearance there.

I had been told that after the operation I would feel as though someone had stamped on me, but decided not to dwell on that side of things. Instead, I looked at the positive return from this, rather aggressive, procedure: the hope of a pain-free and smooth chest!

When I woke up after the operation, I have to say, in truth it felt more like several people had stamped on me all over…in hobnailed boots!

I was zipped into an amazingly tight corset, which goes down to my knees and up over my tummy. I have to keep this on 24/7 for the next four weeks. I think I now know how those poor Victorian women felt laced into those incredible undergarments – not surprising they chose to have a rib removed to alleviate the pressure!

I am unable to sit completely upright as it pulls my tummy – which is black and blue and purple and green. My inner thighs and the backs of my legs are like this too; I look like a kind of vivid coloured Turner painting πŸ™‚ Even sitting on the loo is problematic but I am sure, once the swelling goes down, it will be easier.

I was on a potent mix of morphine and other lovelies in the hospital, but am now on strong painkillers and paracetamol. The nights are a bit long but the painkillers get me through the day; particularly if I get a hot flush with this bloomin' corset on!

All that said, on the bright side – and there is ALWAYS a bright side πŸ™‚ – the left side of my chest is now quite smooth and plumped up. The right side is slightly lumpy, over the tumour site, but it is early days and I have high hopes it will level out and look more normal.

Best of all though, the tightness and pulling which was hurting me seems to have gone, as has the scar tissue, and I will receive the biopsy results of those in the next ten days.

Ali's lilies close-up I have to be honest though and admit that even if this doesn't take as well as it should, I really don't think I could go through this again…I can only imagine why those who choose liposuction for cosmetic reasons only ever do it once!

I am keeping this short, as I'm not really firing on all cylinders at present, but thought you might like to see how well my lilies have come on in the last week – what do you think? In with a chance of winning the coveted Thompson and Morgan prize? πŸ™‚

They are stunning, aren't they? I'm really proud that with constant watering, and of course my old friend Richard Jackson's Flower Power, they have achieved this result within the original time frame :) 

I also thought you might like to take a guess at something…Colin and I found this rather beautiful object not long after we moved. We took it to several antique shops in Windsor but none of the specialists there were able to place it.

Ali's mystery objectI have done my research though, and am now secure in the knowledge that I have the answer – but do you have any idea what it might be?

The correct answer taken from these three will receive a collection of Laura Geller Baked cosmetics for your face, eyes and lips! I've added two photos, as the end does unscrew and separate, so I hope that helps.

Here goes:

What do you think my mystery object is?



Ali's mystery object taken apartA) A Champagne swizzle stick

B) A Victorian make up brush minus the brush head!

C) An American tea drinking straw

Just leave your answer below, and we will collect all of the right ones and make the draw in a week or so's time.

Please do keep in touch though as it will be nice to read how you all are while I am getting better. I love hearing all of your news :) 

Take care, with my love always,
Ali xx


  1. Elaine sallis August 6, 2013 at 11:01 am -  Reply

    Hi ali. Sorry to hear you are in such pain after your operation. Hopefully when you are feeling better you will feel that it was all worthwhile. All ok with my lot at the moment. We are going to Paris later this month for a few days. Just waiting for poppy to arrive as I am looking after her this afternoon. I think the object is a tea drinking straw.
    Hope you feel better soon.
    Love Elaine. X

  2. Mrs Janet Jones August 6, 2013 at 11:47 am -  Reply

    My Dear Ali, I am sorry to hear you are in so much pain, but this will eventually pass and as you say the tightness and pulling has gone and when things settle down, you will feel so much more comfortable and it will have been worth it. In the mean time rest and take good care of yourself and I know Colin and Lucy will be there for you to help you through this. Take this time to plan your next holiday with Colin I know you said you would like to go back to Morocco and this will give you something to look forward to.
    My beautiful Grandson Alfie is having 2 types of drops in his eyes at the moment as the pressure has become too high at the back of his eyes, so it looks like another operation will be planned in the near future.It breaks my heart that he has to go through this and pray that he will come through this with good sight.
    Jilly glad you had a lovely time in the Lake District with your family and so pleased to hear that Annie is looking and feeling so much better, it is my favourite place on earth and we were there for a weekend after my mammogram probably the same time as you
    So Ali rest, rest and more rest, you are in my thoughts and as always still holding your hand. Take care and speak soon and let us know how you are getting on Love Janet xx

  3. belinda ward August 6, 2013 at 11:55 am -  Reply


  4. Sandra Paulina Hood August 6, 2013 at 12:04 pm -  Reply

    Ali is this a shoe horn? Please be well soon..i love that you are always so positive..you are the best..take care Sandra Hood xxxx

  5. Trish Wilby August 6, 2013 at 2:10 pm -  Reply

    You are so brave, Alison. I do hope you are feeling more comfortable now – this hot weather must be H*** in a corset!
    I think your ‘mystery object’ is an American Tea Drinking straw (just because the holes in the ‘spoon’ bit look like tea strainers). Am I right?
    Good luck for a swift recovery.
    Trish (I used to teach your young ones at LMS – it’s nice to follow their progress via your blog)

  6. Norma Williams August 6, 2013 at 2:12 pm -  Reply

    Hi Alison
    Hope you feel better soon.
    Your object is a American tea drinking straw.

  7. Debz & Ainzley August 6, 2013 at 2:43 pm -  Reply

    Oh Ali you poor soul.
    That corset thing sounds like exactly what we need for Ainzley to get him to and from the vets without incident. Do you think we could have it when you’re done or is it going to be ceremonially burned in the garden when it comes off? It does sound like quite a garment!
    Seriously though Ali, I have never known anyone with such resilience and positivity! Only you could show us your lilies (if you know what I mean!!) in the midst of all that you are going through. Yet another long and rocky road to recovery for you my lovely but I am sure the end result will be worth it and at least make you more comfortable. You have come a long way already and the faithful Ali’s Army are always with you.
    You take good care of yourself Ali, I will be thinking of you and keeping my fingers crossed that you lilies win the prize!!
    Lots of love to all in Ali’s Army and you too of course Ali!
    Lots of love and licks
    P.S. It that a Victorian make up brush by any chance?

  8. Magda Chetty August 6, 2013 at 3:24 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali
    You poor thing, reading your blog made my pain sounds like nothing at all. Sorry I have not been writing to you for a while,the last 6 weeks has been full of pain, first I had chest pain, then stomach, but after a big check up they found that I need to have my gallbladder romoved. But here in the hot summer they only do major operations, so will have an ultra sound on 26th of August then they will do the op in September. Also from the heat, my vains swell a lot, and without saying a lot, it is murder trying to go to the bathroom, so lots of painkillers and very little food. So I will be thinking of you and tell myself to just get on with it.
    Your flowers look amazing, and I hope you enjoyed the summer days you had in England before your operation.
    Here the heat is just too much, all our flowers die in July and August. That is the time when I wish i was in the UK.
    You take good care my love, and hope the pain is not too much for long. I was going to come and see you and Debbie in September, but now have wait tell I have the Op, but will keep you posted.
    Much Love.

  9. Alpa August 6, 2013 at 3:24 pm -  Reply

    Dear Ali,
    I’m sorry for not writing for so long although I have been reading your blogs. I have not forgotten you or my friends here πŸ™‚
    Just to wish you well during your surgery. I’m glad you have had some relief and hope you will be more comfortable at the end of it. I don’t know anyone else who blogs in your inimitable way and always with a sense of humour. I will write to you properly, just didn’t want to miss the chance to let you know that I am thinking of you.
    Lots of love
    Alpa xx
    PS. Love to Debz & Ainzley, Una, Helen, Magda, Marg, Sue, Shauna, Elaine and all in Ali’s Army.
    PPS. I think your mystery object may be B) An American tea drinking straw

  10. Joanna Downey August 6, 2013 at 8:26 pm -  Reply

    Dearest Ali, Second attempt at this reply because I pressed a button in error and first one went into the ether. If by a strange quirk of technology it appears I’m sorry for the duplication. Firstly I am, as always, in awe of the way you deal with all the things thrown at you. It is true that we don’t know our strength until it’s tested but you are a true inspiration. I hope that this latest procedure is successful and that you’ll be comfortable and in better shape – literally. I know that Colin will be looking after you and trust that you’ll be kind to yourself. Your lilies look sumptuous and must be in the lead, just watch out for Lily beetles, they are a glorious lacquer red but right pesky devils! I’m working through my list of holiday tasks and projects and today I finished the third one which was sanding and then sealing the hall floor. I did this a year ago and it was a disaster with the varnish peeling off whenever anyone looked at it let alone walked on it. Deliberate removal has been a HUGE task and I now have “sander’s elbow” which is very annoying and means I have to do windmill impersonations when I wake up as my arms don’t wake up with me. I’ve also completed a potager/posh veg plot at the top of the garden and painted a tatty chest of drawers in the softest buttermilk shade to match the spare room. I’ve started buying baby items and they’re being stored in a gorgeous box I found in a charity shop this morning, it’s hand painted with lots of yellow ducks and I love it. Bex is having her 20 week anomaly scan next week so we may know who they’ll be getting, I’m the only one who says girl but it’s all very exciting regardless of what the result is. Finally your mystery item is C, it’s a bombilla from South America and is used to drink yerba mate, a tea made from the leaves of a holly tree. All that came from Col who has seen them when he’s been on climbing trips. He says that if he wins he’ll share the L G goodies with me isn’t he kind? Take care. Love from Jo x

  11. Tricia Coulson-wood August 6, 2013 at 8:47 pm -  Reply

    Hello brave,brave Alison. as a retired nurse I know how painful your latest surgery is. I wish you all the strength that you can muster and a speedy recovery. I know I tell everyone that they should say “every day in every way I am getting better and better”. it does work and the body is really a wonderful machine for trying to heal itself despite it malfunctioning at times.
    My own daughter Jan I hope will prove this theory. she will be having her 4th chemotherapy session this Friday so it marks her over half way through her intensive double drug procedure to combat her post op cancer therapy.Thank you and Jilly for your supporting words of encouragement.last month she just about managed to walk the 5kl walk for race for life and raised Β£1500 alongside several girlfriends.
    I wish you all so much positive thoughts and good wishes for continued full recovery.

  12. Mary Morphy August 6, 2013 at 10:20 pm -  Reply

    Good evening Alison and firstly your operation sounds horredous and you are obviously in pain and discomfort from it so thank you so much for writing an update. You certainly sound well battered and bruised and I sincerely hope your pain decreases and your mobility increases a little each day- I remember having four wisdom teeth out in hospital and ended up with a bruise like a crucifix going from chin and across chest so I am not surprised that you are completely covered in bruises after your seemingly brutal surgery.. I am also sure you are being well cared for by your wonderful family. Now what about those lillies eh? Alison they are stunning! If you don’t win it will be a travesty of justice and I will start a petition..I want some Alison Keenan lillies growing in a pretty tub in my garden next year and so does my mum..she loved the picture.
    My foot is on the mend so much so that cricket taxi service has resumed and I am OK walking on flat surfaces but any slight twist makes me wince…after walking round legoland on Friday I had a definite ‘cankle’ situation going on, its normally swollen at the end if the day but normal service is resumed in the morning. I am off to Malvern on Thursday with daughter Chloe for a county cricket festival and return home Monday so I decided to tackle the ‘to do’ list in the garden. Firstly I attacked the ivy that grows more each year over the fences with the hedge trimmer and gave it a real severe trim then got on to the cabin roof at the end of the garden to prune a tree that doesn’t belong to us but is a nuisance. All going well and plan was not mention it to hubby as he doesn’t usually notice these things but he unusually popped home lunchtime and found me standing on the apex of the cabin roof
    , some three metres high, with the loppers in my hand surrounded by fallen branches that i had chopped..he was very cross! I was then made to promise that I would only dead head the petunias.. I hate that job as they are sticky but my mum says it encourages new flowers.
    So looking forward to my little malvern break. Chloe stays at the college with the Kent team..its a county under 13 comp and I get to stay in a nice hotel room on my own in peace. Chloe stopping with me Sunday as festival finishes then but we shall make our way home on Monday after a leisurely breakfast and look round the town. Its a journey of about 4 hours but with roadworks on M25/26 it is taking an extra hour and a half at least..Chloe reckons that we will have ample time for all three Olly Mars CDs on the journey there…I am digging out my Abba, Sting and Tina Turner CD’s to add some culture to the journey!!!
    Well please take care and I hope all is smooth soon and the pain and discomfort will be worth it. Much love Mary xx

  13. Mary Morphy August 6, 2013 at 10:21 pm -  Reply

    Oh me again..I think the object is a tea drinking straw. Maryxx

  14. sandra williamson August 6, 2013 at 10:55 pm -  Reply

    Hi Alison,
    Hope this surgery helps. Sounds so uncomfortable .Your one tough cookie and I mean that as a huge compliment. Think your lillies look great.Well done. Look forward to when we see
    You back on air. Not sure about the object in the photos but will take a guess and say an american drinking straw.
    Take care
    Love and best wishes
    Sandra x

  15. Pauline Johnson August 6, 2013 at 11:33 pm -  Reply

    Hi Alison you are so brave,hope the pain is slowly getting less,as you are such a LADY I would say your object must be a champagne swizzle stick,hope you are feeling better soon.
    Pauline xxxxx

  16. Cath Purple August 6, 2013 at 11:41 pm -  Reply

    Hi Alison,
    You’ve really been going through it haven’t you?! To look on the bright side you know that it can only get better! I don’t envy you the tight corset though!
    I wish you all the best in your recovery and hope that the biopsy results are the right ones! I have my first mammogram on Friday after my treatment for breast cancer last year. Feeling a little apprehensive, but hey life’s too short to let it get you down!
    Regarding the mystery object I think the answer is C an American tea drinking straw.
    Thinking of you

  17. Eng Winter August 6, 2013 at 11:51 pm -  Reply

    Hi Alison
    love to read your blog and such “courage! you are an amazing woman.
    please enter me into the competition because I use LG makeup everyday. I think the answer is A. A champagne swizzle stick.
    Take great care
    warmest regards

  18. Judy Bown August 7, 2013 at 12:30 am -  Reply

    C. A tea drinking straw.

  19. irenemacdonald@talk21.com August 7, 2013 at 1:05 am -  Reply

    I think I’ve seen something similar before and I’m sure it’s an American tea drinking straw.
    You sound like you are going through a very uncomfortable time, Alison. I hope it all works out just as you would like. Take care and hope to see you back on screen in the not too distant future.

  20. Lesley J Boath August 7, 2013 at 5:43 am -  Reply

    C) An American tea drinking straw
    I do hope the swelling and bruising go down swiftly Ali. I also hope one day very soon you will be free of all this terrible disease has caused. You are a wonder!
    Lesley xXx

  21. Clare August 7, 2013 at 7:33 am -  Reply

    Answer C

  22. Jackie Pritchard August 7, 2013 at 8:25 am -  Reply

    Hi Alison,
    I’ve never written to you before but follow all your blogs. You are an Inspiration and how you have managed to write this piece I don’t know.. I wish you a speedy recovery, and the lillies are lovely.
    Love Jackie..

  23. Mrs. P.Pegler August 7, 2013 at 8:27 am -  Reply

    Answer C. An American Tea Drinking Straw.

  24. Karen Willows August 7, 2013 at 8:37 am -  Reply

    American tea drinking straw

  25. Patricia Daly August 7, 2013 at 9:24 am -  Reply

    Hi Alison
    You are so brave. I could’nt cope with what your going through.
    Your also my fevourite presenter. So come back soon.
    I will guess your competition (A) Champagne swizzle stick

  26. Gwen Tugwell August 7, 2013 at 11:10 am -  Reply

    Hello Ali,
    Lovely blog and very brave of you as I am sure you do feel rather uncomfortable, but it will all be worth it in the end won’t it. Take good care of yourself and oh! by the way the lillies are looking good, it will be good fun to find out the winner, hope we hear from youi soon.
    Very best wishes,

  27. Margaret Mason August 7, 2013 at 11:49 am -  Reply

    Hi Ali. I hope that you are feeling better day by day. If you could bottle your positivity throughout this long, difficult time for you I think you could make a fortune. It has, I know, been an inspiration for the many who regularly read your blog. I hope that the right answer is an American tea drinking straw. Take care.

  28. Linda Spain August 7, 2013 at 12:21 pm -  Reply

    A) Champagne swizzle stick

  29. Anne Harper August 7, 2013 at 1:08 pm -  Reply

    The answer to your quiz is C.
    Wishing you well. X

  30. cheryl hanks August 7, 2013 at 1:49 pm -  Reply

    I think the answer is c . Kind regards cheryl hanks

  31. Jan Hall August 7, 2013 at 2:14 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali,
    You are a very brave lady to be going through all of this. Wasn’t really thinking of reconstruction myself but after reading your blog I definitely wouldn’t do it now. All sounds very painful and too distressing. I think I told you in an much earlier message that I had a bad time in hospital so any surgery unless it is vital is a no no for me lol (call me a wimp). My actual scar has almost faded now but I have a spare boob round my back and it gets in the way and restricts my movements somewhat but will put up with it lol.
    Your Lilies look lovely and very luscious. I use RJ Flower Power and it really does work. I had a birthday on Monday and my neighbour gave me flowers but unfortunately there some were lilies amongst them so have had to split them up and put the lilies in the bathroom because they are poisonous to my two little cats.
    I wish you well Ali, it seems strange not seeing you again on TV so hopefully you make a really quick and get back to what you do so well.
    Lots of Love and good wishes from Janet, Ollie and Solo xxxx

  32. susan betty August 7, 2013 at 3:34 pm -  Reply

    American tea drinking straw

  33. Suzanne August 7, 2013 at 3:54 pm -  Reply

    Hi hope your feeling a little better, and not to bored while recovering, your lillies are absolutely beautiful but then we wouldn’t expect anything else from the brilliant Flower Power. Was wondering if u just put your answer to the competition on the comments here or sent as an e-mail x

  34. Zoe August 7, 2013 at 4:05 pm -  Reply

    Dear Alison,
    I do hope you are feeling alot better very soon, you have been through so much already.
    I believe the answer to your mystery question is (c) An American tea drinking straw.

  35. SImone August 7, 2013 at 5:12 pm -  Reply

    I am sorry to hear all that you have been through Alison and hope that you make a speedy recovery. Your lilies are spectacular and definitely worthy of a prize! With regards to the object; I am guessing C) An American tea drinking straw – whatever that is!!!

  36. Judith Lennon August 7, 2013 at 5:49 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali
    I woke up this morning feeling like my mouth had been hit with a hammer! I spent time yesterday having treatment at the dentist which has left me with an extremely sore mouth and feeling very badly done to! However I decided to stop feeling sorry for myself and see what your latest news was. Oh boy – you poor thing. You sound as though you have been through another round of “punishment”. I don’t know why it always seems that the nice people in life have things so difficult to endure. You had me in fits of laughter imagining you in your corset contraption – thank heavens we don’t have to wear such creations like the bygone days!!!! I hope this period of your healing process goes by quickly for you. No pain no gain so the saying goes – who made that statement I ask myself. However on a nicer topic my husband and I spent a very enjoyable 4 days in our son’s static caravan in Northumberland. The weather was beautiful and it was so quiet just the birds singing for company. We had our grand dog with us too and walked her on one of our favourite beaches. It is about 2 miles from the caravan and deserted. The sun was shining,the sea was blue and we could have been anywhere in the world. We are so lucky to live in such a beautiful part of the UK. I’ve read with interest all the things you have been up to and have enjoyed over the past few months and hope you will continue to do more once you are back on your feet again. I’ve rambled on too much but in finishing take care rest and get well really soon. Lots of TLC for you. You are one special lady.
    Love and thoughts
    Judith xx

  37. Jilly August 7, 2013 at 7:34 pm -  Reply

    Dear Ali – oh how awful for you to go through this – I know it was expected but it is still horrid for you. I cannot imagine what it must be like to wear the corset for the next few weeks – and especially in the heat!!! just take one step at at time (might be all you can do with a corset on!!) and one day at a time – or even one morning or afternoon at a time and each day you will feel stronger and more able to move about. Take this time to have some more “me” time as you have earned it in buckets full. You are what has kept an awful lot of women going thoughout these last years and for me this last year and now we want to give you back the support and hugs and warm thoughts to keep you going over the next few weeks.
    Scar tissue is always very sore no matter where on the body it is so hopefully this part of the op will have improved it. Maybe going thought all this will be like having a baby – going through hell for the baby to get here and then worth the pain etc for the end result – hummmmm not sure if that is a good comparison but hope you understand what I mean. I am originally from Yorkshire and we tend to say it as it is there (even if it sounds silly) and you can take the girl out of Yorkshire but not the Yorkshire out of the girl – or so I am told.
    Family news here – My beautiful girl was 41 on Monday and she had a lovely day with a family dinner in the early evening. The cake I made was white and pink and had brown and pink buttons on it. I made the buttons out of icing and was quite pleased with the result – well as long as no one looked too carefully at it. Her husband told her this morning that she needed to do something with her hair – she had come out of the shower and it was sticking up all over. How great is that and how funny that she will now have to learn to brush it. She had long hair before and hardly had to do anything with it as it was thick and strong. People are so kind in saying how they really like her short hair.
    Love your lilies. You can sit or lie outside recovering, planning your book and looking at the lilies and think how well you have done to come this far once again.
    So take care Dear Ali and make sure you rest over the coming few weeks and at each step you are taking remember we are just behind you with a warm hug and I have to say once again how thrilled I am for Lucy. How good it is having daughters – even if they do give us a worry every now and again. Love Jilly xxx

  38. Loretta gardner August 7, 2013 at 7:37 pm -  Reply

    I guess it’s C, but to be honest, it looks like it could have come out of that book, fifty shades of grey!!! Much love loretta xx

  39. Angelina Harvey August 7, 2013 at 8:05 pm -  Reply

    American tea drinking straw I think, hope you feel better very soon x

  40. Paul Killick August 7, 2013 at 8:38 pm -  Reply

    An American tea drinking straw

  41. babsq x August 7, 2013 at 9:14 pm -  Reply

    Bless you Ali, You are going through tremendous pain and discomfort,” tomorrow is another day.” I’ve always remembered that from many years ago when I had a major operation which all went wrong and the staff nurse who was on night duty said to me, after she had done all her duties at the beginning of her shift she would take me to her office for a biscuit and cup of cocoa and a natter, I will never forget her and her kindness. I had all those horrible pain killers when I smashed my wrist for many weeks and my word they play havoc with ones bowels. Thank goodness you have at last had your operation, what a long wait! Sorry I haven’t blogged for a while but my life has had a big hiccup (very stressful) I’m still so down, would like to move house but as property values aren’t very good I can’t afford to. I have kept up with you on QVC and reading your blogs though, when I saw the photo of Lucy and her new man, at first glance I thought it was Colin with her. Your lilly flowers are looking good, I reckon you stand a good chance of winning, fingers crossed. I’ve started making children’s memory blankets out of the clothes they have outgrown and tee pees, not easy to make but enjoyable. I hope you are soon feeling better and you are pain free. Love and hugs to you as always xxx babsq

  42. Julie Willson August 7, 2013 at 10:23 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali,
    I think it’s C) An American tea drinking straw!
    I do hope you are feeling better very soon.
    Kind regards,
    Julie :o)

  43. Tamie & Mila August 8, 2013 at 12:28 am -  Reply

    As much as the straw is intriguing, do you really need a straw to drink tea, we’re opting for B) Victorian make up brush minus the brush head, it looks more Victorian.
    I was going to add seeing what the prize on offer is too, but then we maybe wrong!

  44. Pam Garster August 8, 2013 at 1:31 am -  Reply

    I think its an American tea drinking straw

  45. Mary Morphy August 8, 2013 at 7:29 am -  Reply

    Morning Alison. Once again apologies if two blogs appear. I did submit one two days ago but its gone into space with all the others so here goes again!
    Firstly, thank you for writing your blog at a time when you are in obvious pain and discomfort from what sounds a horrendous surgical procedure especially to cover you in a rainbow of colour courtesy of bruising. I can only imagine the discomfort; I had a crucifix type shape bruise running from neck and across chest after a relatively minor procedure of having three inpacted wisdom teeth removed so goodness knows what they did to you. I hope you are feeling a litlle less pain and a little more better each day. Hope the cooler weather at the moment is making the corset wearing more tolerable..that sounds simply awful but hope that the end result is a good one for you.
    Secondly…those lillies are amazing and I can’t wait to have some Alison Keenan Lillies in a pretty pot growing in my garden next year. They are simply magnificent and it will be a travesty of justice if you don’t win. Keeping my green fingers crossed for you.
    The weather has cooled slightly so as my foot is improving although definitely a ‘cankle’ issue at the end of the day and back to being cricket and general taxi service.. I have started to tackle the dreaded ‘to do’ list I have written for the summer holidays before going back to school. My daughters bedroom has damp in one corner which appeared rather rudely after I decorated it, rather beautifully I may add, at Easter. So I have to strip back one wall of paper and treat etc then re do. That’s a big job so decided to leave that and tackle the tree chopping and ivy trimming instead. Now when i say my foot is getting better I mean its OK ish and walking on a flat surface is fine but I do wince in pain if i turn it slightly and still can’t wear my lovely array of wedge platform shoes as , quite simply it hurts but if has only been a fortnight since I did it and it takes 6-8 weeks to mend. That said, I am off to Malvern with Chloe today until Monday for a county cricket festival so wanted to accomplish a ‘to do’ list job before I went. So we have a back alley at the end of the garden which doesn’t belong to anyone and has a laburnam tree in it which keeps growing bigger each year and has to be chopped otherwise it will damage our back fence. In front of the fence is our 3m X 3m cabin with an apex height of..nearly 3 m. So whilst Chloe held the ladder I gingerly climbed up then with my trusty loppers..ratchet ones from QVC which are brilliant… started lopping whilst standing astride on the apex of the roof. A very successfull lop achieved the tree now half its size and much less dense however hubby came home unexpectedly to collect something he needed for work and caught me red handed on the roof, loppers in hand surrounded by tree branches. He was cross…. He went back to work after me sort of promising to just dead head the petunias..hate that job as the flowers are sticky but my mum says it encourages new growth and I have at least ten cascading tubs and two hanging baskets full of them..not sure if that’s true, do you know? Anyhow I got out the hedge trimmers and had a good go at the ivy on the right hand border fences..had a proper trim..8 bags of ivy to the tip, husband would probably never notice …..he did! I am however paying for my efforts with very sore muscles in arms and legs!
    Well I am sure that you are being superbly looked after by your friends, family and gorgeous Colin and are resting. Now I must finish bits and bobs and pack for Malvern. Leaving about tenish but what should be a four hour car journey will be around six hours because of road works on m26/m25 approaching Clacketts. We have been stuck there so many times this year as it is the main route to many cricket matches. Hubby staying at home with Jack as Jack has cricket matches at the weekend so I am going to enjoy a lovely hotel room on my own as Chloe stays at malvern college..heaven.
    Well I have gone on enough and you need to rest and I have to pack. Have made the boys a blueberry and pineapple upside down cake for when I am away..tried to tweet you a pic as it does look fabulous but my tweet failed!
    Much love Mary xx

  46. Mary Morphy August 8, 2013 at 7:36 am -  Reply

    Hi Alison forgot to say I think your mystery item is an American tea drinking straw. Love Mary xxx

  47. Rhona Fenton August 8, 2013 at 8:27 am -  Reply

    Hi Alison, I do hope you are feeling better soon you poor thing you have been put through the mill, I have something to tell you which I will email you soon about as it’s for our ears only, but will wait and give you time to recover more, I do hope you get the result you hope for at the end off all this and this has been all worth it, I to will keep this short, will just add well done you your flowers look amazing love the colour, and I did reply your last blog but think you missed it but was just saying how wonderful it is for Lucy and her new guy, will go just now as don’t want to keep you, but we are sending our love to you and hope for a speedy recovery:) and my answer which is a pure guess as not a clue but after studying the picture I would say A Victorian make up Brush minus the Brush head, but going buy the picture it’s like the brush head is there minus the Bristle’s πŸ™‚ get well soon Alison lot’s of love as always Rhona, colin & Rebecca xx

  48. Angela Williams August 8, 2013 at 1:25 pm -  Reply

    It is An American tea drinking straw

  49. Julie Clark August 8, 2013 at 1:39 pm -  Reply

    American tea drinking straw

  50. Renee Arnstrong August 8, 2013 at 2:31 pm -  Reply

    C) American Tea Drinking Straw

  51. Margaret Hart August 8, 2013 at 2:55 pm -  Reply

    C) An American tea drinking straw – purely because of all the holes in the end, so as to infuse the tea.

  52. Anne Bell August 8, 2013 at 4:33 pm -  Reply

    Hi Alison is it American tea drinking straw.

  53. adele leek August 8, 2013 at 5:46 pm -  Reply

    C) An American tea drinking straw

  54. sharon jones August 8, 2013 at 7:11 pm -  Reply

    Get well soonxx the answer is c an american tea drinking straw

  55. Sandra Gregory August 8, 2013 at 7:14 pm -  Reply

    Hi Alison, sorry to hear you are In pain, poor you. I hope you feel better soon. I think it is great that you sill find the time to write on your blog. I do enjoy reading them.
    Take care, keep positive.
    Love Sandra xxx

  56. Emm August 8, 2013 at 7:55 pm -  Reply

    I think it is an American Tea Drinking Straw.

  57. Lauren August 8, 2013 at 8:54 pm -  Reply

    C. A tea drinking straw

  58. Janet Rawstron August 8, 2013 at 9:01 pm -  Reply

    This is a hard one as it could be any one of the three plausible suggestions but I am going to go for a Champagne Swizzle Stick

  59. michelle lintern August 8, 2013 at 10:06 pm -  Reply

    c) an american tea drinking straw

  60. kathycakebread August 8, 2013 at 11:25 pm -  Reply

    Answer C. An American Tea Drinking Straw.

  61. Annette Roberts August 8, 2013 at 11:33 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali
    Oh, I really do feel for you and the pain you must have been in following your operation. Hope Colin’s Nursing skills are as good as ever and he’s attending to you every need.
    I can really relate, especially being in a corset type thingy in this hot, muggy weather…most uncomfortable.
    I had my operation on 18 July to take out the 5″ metal plate and screws out of my right ankle and a screw from the inside too. Things didn’t go too well to begin with. Having done all the right things in preperation, we arrived at Day Surgery at 7.15am to book in at 7.30 as detailed in my letter, waited 1/2 hour and watched groups of people going through, leaving about three couples behind wondering whats going on…then I was called and was taken to a side room to be told there had been a mistake with admin and the operation wasn’t due until the afternoon surgery. We had the option to stay or go home and return for 12.30pm, we took the latter. I felt sick having already had a sleepless night, thinking about things.
    Like you I was told I would feel some pain…well, I woke up in the recovery room and I have never felt pain like it in my life, it was worse than when I broke the damn thing and I’d wondered if I’d done the right thing. Stands to reason really, I was full of morphine and gas and air the first time round, so didn’t feel a thing! Back on the ward, I was as sick as a dog, then, it was tea and toast, get dressed and weight bearing on crutches, as if it wasn’t painful enough.
    The weather didn’t help at night especially with bandages, cotton wool padding around and like you, those pesky tropical moments jumping in for good measure…it was so nice 12 days later when it came off. The lady consultant said she would make it ‘pretty’ and she did, well as best she could. I had an X-Ray and it’s amazing how the screw holes had already started to close up. There were 5 holes across the outside bone and the screw on the inside went up the inside of the ankle bone, so that is more or less hollow and may take longer. My only regret is not asking for the metal plate and pins afterwards, would have been insteresting to see what was in there for the last 2 1/2yrs giving me jip!
    My foot was black and blue, ankle bone purple and swollen and very painful and at one point I got Chris to check it was ok, if you know what I mean?
    Thank goodnes for SBC!! Arnica Bath Soak, with a little Collagen Shower Cream, followed by Arnica Gel, which I have just started mixing with Decleor’s Prolagene Gel…they worked wonders last time and are starting to work wonders now.
    Slowly, exercising, but have to be very careful for 6 weeks, but it feels so much better now without the metal inside. The only weird thing is the top of my toes look normal, but they feel like they are red raw to touch, so sore, hopefully this will go away, but I will mention on my next visit.
    Thinking of you Ali and hope you aren’t too uncomfortable and everything turns out how you wished. I do feel for you having to wear that corset for 4 weeks, just think of the relief when it finally comes off!
    Annette x
    BTW I think the answer is C

  62. MANDY DOHERTY August 9, 2013 at 12:55 am -  Reply

    The American Tea Drinking Straw

  63. Susan Jackson August 9, 2013 at 8:04 am -  Reply

    I believe it to be cC) An American tea drinking straw
    Get well soon

  64. Nuj August 9, 2013 at 8:49 am -  Reply

    I think it is an American tea drinking straW – JUST THE SORT OF STRANGE OBJECT THEY WOULD HAVE!

  65. Gem Kitchener August 9, 2013 at 9:01 am -  Reply

    C – American Tea Drinking Straw
    Thank you xx

  66. chrristine keyworth August 9, 2013 at 9:57 am -  Reply

    hi ali hope you are beginning to feel better you are always so positive and just watching you and reading your blog gives light to every ones day you are so bright and bubbly even if you don’t feel so well you never seem down. I think the object is the Victorian make up brush. love to you and all your lovely family and hope you win the lilly growing as you deserve to have them named after you as the beauty comes through both you and the flowers. love Christine xxxx

  67. alison keenan August 9, 2013 at 1:40 pm -  Reply

    Dear Elaine, thanks so much for writing to me -I was thrilled to bits when I turned my laptop on and saw all these lovely comments πŸ™‚ Cheered me up no end! I hope that you had a great afternoon with Poppy and have already started working out what to wear in Paris – such a romantic city! I have taken note of your reply and it will go into the drawer – thank again, love Ali xx

  68. alison keenan August 9, 2013 at 1:44 pm -  Reply

    My dear Janet, Thank you so much for your kind words of support – I have to say I feel I’ve turned a corner today, and with the last of the bruising to come through on my tummy, am hoping it will all feel far more comfortable now πŸ™‚ It puts my situation into perspective though when I read about little Alfie struggling through this problem with his eyes, and I can imagine how worried you are about it all. I too will pray that he comes through the next operation with good signt πŸ™‚ Your strength and support will mean the world to your son, and I am so glad that you are all so close. Stay strong, and keep in touch – I am hoping to be back at QVC by the end of the month, love Ali xx

  69. alison keenan August 9, 2013 at 1:45 pm -  Reply

    Hi there Sandra, and thanks for your guess! We’ll gather together as many answers as are posted and will make the draw then. Bless you for your kind words too – much appreciated πŸ™‚ Love Ali xx

  70. alison keenan August 9, 2013 at 1:48 pm -  Reply

    Trish, I can’t believe we’ve been corresponding in this way all this time, and I didn’t realise you were THE Mrs. Wilby from LMS! Lucy Sam and Jack thought that was great after all these years πŸ™‚ And yes you’re right it is H^*” wearing this corset in the hot weather, but one week down and only three to go πŸ™‚ Enjoy your summer break, and thanks for writing, Love Ali xxx

  71. alison keenan August 9, 2013 at 1:48 pm -  Reply

    Oh, and Trish I have taken note of your answer! x

  72. alison keenan August 9, 2013 at 1:48 pm -  Reply

    Dear Norma, thanks for your guess and your good wishes, love Ali xx

  73. alison keenan August 9, 2013 at 1:53 pm -  Reply

    Hello there Debz! Great to hear from you again so soon, and I will immediately speak with my breast nurse and see if there is an animal equivalent to the corset I’m wearing. Actually it’s so bloomin’ small it may well fit Ainzley anyway! πŸ™‚ Glad you liked my lilies (!) – made Colin laugh out loud when he read your reply. I think they’re doing the draw on the 18th August, but having seen Julia’s….! – there is some stiff competiton πŸ™‚ As I wrote to Janet it cheered me so much to see yours and so many other lovely messages on here this morning. Ali’s Army may not be the largest, but every one of you is worth your weight in Gold πŸ™‚ Thanks for your guess – I will add to the already growing number. Take care and enjoy the sunshine. Strokes for Ainzley, love Ali xxx

  74. alison keenan August 9, 2013 at 1:58 pm -  Reply

    Dear Magda I am so sorry to hear that you are going through more nightmarish pain and discomfort – I hope that as you have to wait until the beginning of September for your op that they have given you ample pain control as having watched my sister struggle gall bladder problems, you’ll need it. I feel very lucky as I think the worst of my discomfort is over and I’m now off the very strong painkillers and using paracetamol. Terribly hot and uncomfortable at night though, but getting there. The English summer is still beautiful and I’m glad you liked the flowers – I have just found my very first aubergine this morning from a plant that Craig gave to me! Flower Power has been administered immediately as incentive to deliver more veg πŸ™‚ You take care, and thanks so much for writing to me when you are struggling so much yourself. Love Ali xx

  75. alison keenan August 9, 2013 at 2:00 pm -  Reply

    My dear Alpa, how lucky am I have to have such an army of friends around me. I am so glad that you have continued to read the blogs as you will know that you have been in our thoughts very much over the last year. Thank you for thinking of me at this time. Take care and do keep in touch, and I’ll put your guess in the draw and keep my fingers crossed for you πŸ™‚ Wtih love, Ali xx

  76. alison keenan August 9, 2013 at 2:19 pm -  Reply

    jo always good to hear from you and thanks very much for the timely warning about the lily beetles! I’d have to look hard to find them as the lilies themselves are such a deep red colour, but I am now on guard!! Gosh you do work hard don’t you?! Sander’s Elbow is a wonderful addition to the family of Fiddler’s and Tennis, although I do wish you well from it’s very painful symptoms – the windmill excercises sound like a blast πŸ™‚ It must be so good building towards the birth of Bex’s first child… probably takes you a back a little to when you were expecting her. The box you found sounds beautiful… I wonder what had been kept in it previously? Do thank your Col for all the lovely background info on your guess…. I will let you and everyone else know if he’s correct once the draw has taken place – sadly only winner – it’d be great to give you all a prize! πŸ™‚ Take it easy and don’t spend ALL your time working – life’s too short and it’ll be September before you know it!… With love from Ali xx

  77. alison keenan August 9, 2013 at 2:28 pm -  Reply

    Dear Tricia, Thank you so much for bringing us up to speed with your daughter Jan’s progress. I am so glad she is now counting down through her treatments and sounds as though she – and you – are coping well. Please pass on my congratulations to her for having completed the Rce for Life – I remember doing at much the same point in my treatment, and it really takes some effort πŸ™‚ Yes, the body is an incredible machine, and I feel so lucky to have come through all this, and even when I take a knock (and this a particularly painful one as you say!) my body is working hard to make it better. Thank you for your positive thoughts, and for taking the time out to write to me, love Ali xx

  78. Susan August 9, 2013 at 2:31 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali,
    I am sure the last thing you want is to fish through all these comments but isn’t it lovely people care. I am so sorry you are in a lot of pain at the minute. I really hope that this op helps give you some relief. As you say though even if it doesn’t could you put yourself through it again. You can understand why some people refuse more treatment as you have to way up the pros and cons. I hope a few days on you will have a bit more relief. Take care and take your time.
    Susan x

  79. julie ratcliffe August 9, 2013 at 4:51 pm -  Reply

    hi i think the object is a champagne swizzling stick. hope you feel more comfortable soon.

  80. alison keenan August 9, 2013 at 5:00 pm -  Reply

    My dear Mary, I think yours will be the last response at this sitting, but I wanted so much to thank you for once again keeping us all up to date with your incredibly busy life, and for you staunch support of my lily growing prowess! I have already mentioned that having seen Julia’s results, I may be knocked into second place, but I am truly enjoying gazing on them in the garden. And talking of gardens, I hope your husband was cross with you for risking life and limb on the shed roof rather than you cutting back a tree that doesn’t belong to you?! πŸ™‚ I hope also that you and Chloe will have had/have a good time in Kent, and that you enjoy a little R & R. I think Ollie Murs is pretty cool too, and Tina Turner in the mix would have made it a very tuneful journey! You did make me laugh with your ‘cankle’ situation – although I hope it’s eased now – my bruises are nearly all out, and I can finally and gingerly apply arnica gel to my tummy so that should help the last of them. Will sign off now, but have a great weekend, and thanks for your guess – it will go into the draw with all the others, so keep your fingers crossed! With love, Ali xx

  81. Mark Blumire August 9, 2013 at 5:47 pm -  Reply

    C) An American tea drinking straw

  82. Debbie OHara August 9, 2013 at 6:20 pm -  Reply

    C) An american tea drinking straw

  83. Liz ferguson August 9, 2013 at 8:26 pm -  Reply

    Hope that this message finds you feeling a bit better and sipping some tea .. but, not through this American tea drinking straw .. which is what I think the mystery item might be?

  84. Bernadette Brooks August 9, 2013 at 9:42 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali, although I read your blogs regularly I have never written anything before. You are one remarkably brave lady, your cheerfulness never ceases to amaze. I hope by now you are feeling a little less pain and I look forward to seeing you back on the Q when you have recovered.
    Love Bernadette xx

  85. Paula Joy Williams August 10, 2013 at 5:15 am -  Reply

    hi Ali,
    hope you are coping with everything and the discomfort. We’ve organised loads for breast cancer charities, although I’ve had to rest due to having pulled s hamstring and anaemia problems. It’s taken ages to recover but am now in training again I started of with pilates and yoga and walking and am now jogging and have started ballet dancing for strength. Take care my lovie there are loads of us who are up in the middle of the night so go on twitter and we’ll chat. QVC is like a big family which brings comfort to people who are disabled or housebound. Sending hugs Paula J

  86. Sarah Spencer August 10, 2013 at 12:07 pm -  Reply

    C) An American tea drinking straw

  87. Jilly August 10, 2013 at 1:31 pm -  Reply

    Good Weekend Ali
    I came on today just to send a big hug and have seen all these messages wishing you well – so delighted to read that you feel you have turned that long corner and are feeling somewhat brighter in yourself. It is really good for us all to hear as it has been horrid to think that you have had to go through so much once again. Onwards and upwards and one step at a time is a must. I am sure this weekend will be so much better than last for you and each day that passes you will be feeling stronger again. You really are the inspiration for us all and more so than you could ever imagine – so thank you dear Ali from all of us women out here.
    So very sad and sorry to read Janet’s message that little Alfie has to have the drops in his little eyes. You know it is to help but if he gets upset while they are being put in it is upsetting for everyone and his parents will be watching the clock with dread and thinking it will soon be time for them again. All we want is for our family to be safe and well and warm and when they are not it hurts us so much and we feel so helpless. We have not seen little Alfie but feel we know him so well and the heart sinks when knowing he has to go through more treatment. Fancy us all being in the Lakes at the same time – we may have passed each other and never known – we could have had a cuppa and a long chat about our families Janet. Annie goes for her first mammogram at the end of the month (well second really as the first was when she found the lump – which she was told was all clear and did not need any treatment!!! so you can imagine she does not have any faith in it. Thank goodness she is now under the care of a wonderful breast surgeon) Hard to believe a year has gone by since then and all that she has been through.
    Tricia – thank you for updating us with your daughters wonderful news that she finished the walk – how good that must have made everyone feel and none more so than you. Number four already so that is good news as it will be four less to have and that is the only way to look at it. We have been thinking of you and wondering how things are so really delighted to read your message. Do tell her we are there with her (and you) and we will look forward to some really good news that she is feeling good.
    Love to you all Jilly xxx

  88. Hefina Mitchell August 10, 2013 at 3:33 pm -  Reply

    American tea drinking straw,
    Dear Alison hope you are better soon, you have been through the mill,love watching you and Julia on q v c ,take care.
    Hefina x

  89. Jo Booth August 10, 2013 at 3:52 pm -  Reply

    I think it is a tea drinking straw πŸ™‚

  90. Matthew Collins August 10, 2013 at 5:04 pm -  Reply

    hi i think the object is a champagne swizzling stick. Hope you feel better soon

  91. eileen davies August 10, 2013 at 5:44 pm -  Reply

    hi Alison hope you are feeling well again soon,i think the answeris
    c keep smiling bestwishes
    eileen davies

  92. Sue Radford August 10, 2013 at 7:53 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali,
    I was so looking forward to reading your latest blog on my return from holiday today, but was so upset to read how uncomfortable you’ve been feeling after your operation. Knowing how you can cope with such difficult things, I know it won’t be too long before you’ll get through this uncomfortable situation. As you said Ali, it will be the last big operation you’ll have to face and you can then put all this behind you and enjoy many more exciting holidays. I know how much those pesky hot flushes have been bothering you, and to have to cope with them while being ‘trussed up’ in a full-body corset must be murder! I’m sending you positive thoughts as always Ali and will be thinking of you.
    We all had a lovely holiday. But boy it was hot!! We did a sight tour on an open top bus around Barcelona – what fantastic architecture! Visited Monte Carlo and saw the changing of the guards at the Palace, and enjoyed browsing around the shopping centre and gazing at the many luxurious fabulous cars and boats. Also visited Rome and saw the Colosseum, Pantheon and the Trevi Fountain along with lots of other places. We also visited Pompei, which was unbelievable, Corsica which was so beautiful and far nicer than I imagined – we spent the day on the beach there. Gibraltar was great as we took a cable car to the top of the mountain to see the monkeys – I could have watched them all day, especially the ones carrying their little babies – so cute – our grand-children were in awe! I love cruise holidays as you get to see so much. Hope I haven’t bored you lol!
    Hope you will soon be feeling much better Ali.
    Love from Sue Radford xx

  93. Norma Smithson August 10, 2013 at 8:06 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali my love
    So wonderful to know that you are home, what a star you are, an inspiration to anyone having to undergo any operation. I fully understand you not wanting to go through anything like that again, but as you say on the positive side you have noticed some improvement on the soreness and tightness. It’s early days Ali and nobody is better placed than you to know that you have to be patient. I think your lilies look great, but have been on Julia’s blog and she seems very pleased with hers too, havn’t seen any of the others but I wouldn’t like to be the judge. Everything is going well with me and my hand, still in a splint and will have to have it on for a further fortnight and then after that another splint just for my thumb, I have to have a further operation on my thumb when everything has healed. My problems seem so minor Ali compared with what you are going through, but it has been quite trying, it’s amazing what you use your thumb for. I’m sure Colin and the family are looking after you really well, keep up that indomitable spirit of yours Ali we all love you so very much Norma xxx PS I suppose I ought to try and answer your question I’ll go for Champagne swizzle stick.

  94. Amanda Milton August 10, 2013 at 9:39 pm -  Reply

    I wish you a speedy recovery,you are an inspiration,and so pleased you are thinking positive.
    I am thinking the object is C) an American Tea Drinking Straw

  95. Rhodd August 11, 2013 at 1:01 am -  Reply

    Ali such inspiration as usual. Reading your blogs always fill me with hope and inspiration. Also your adventures prove that life is for living ( i know that things can chNfe overnight) and sitting here reading your blog has made me decide to do some fundraising for cancer research – in memory of a truly beautifulfriend and cousin who lost her life to this vile disease and also Marie Curie for whom i have nothing but admiration for – they were sooo fab to someone very special to me x. Lits of love Rhodd.

  96. hannah mayle August 11, 2013 at 9:32 am -  Reply

    C) An American tea drinking straw

  97. Caroline Black August 11, 2013 at 10:06 am -  Reply

    hope you will be felling a bit more comfortable soon
    I think the answer is victorian make up brushes

  98. Mary Whittle August 11, 2013 at 1:25 pm -  Reply

    Hope you feel better soon. Miss you when you are not on air.
    C. A tea drinking straw.

  99. Kate Leigh August 11, 2013 at 1:55 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali, hope you’re feeling a little better. My guess would be C) An American tea drinking straw.

  100. samantha schofield August 11, 2013 at 4:55 pm -  Reply

    i think it is an american drinking straw

  101. Caroline Jones August 11, 2013 at 5:32 pm -  Reply

    Wishing you well.
    An American tea drinking straw

  102. sima halimi August 11, 2013 at 6:05 pm -  Reply

    the answer is C – American Tea Drinking Straw

  103. Susan August 11, 2013 at 6:24 pm -  Reply

    C) An American tea drinking straw i think

  104. Fiona August 11, 2013 at 8:00 pm -  Reply

    I’ll deal with the ‘boring’ bit first! Answer C – American Tea Drinking Straw
    Having to wear a tight corset sounds awful in this heat, never mind being in such pain and not being able to go to the loo properly. I really hope the operation was a success and once the bruising and pain has gone, you will realise it was worth it.
    The lillies look gorgeous, I think Richard should be your gardener whilst you recover:)
    Look after yourself and enjoy being waited upon
    Fiona x

  105. helen August 11, 2013 at 8:17 pm -  Reply

    Hia Ali, just a quickie, will fill you in all of my latest family adventures again. Hope you will be ok soon, you are an inspiration to us all. Hope all the ‘Ali army girls’ are ok? How is Amica these days Ali, haven’t seen her on TV lately? Take care my lovely and we’ll catch up soon. Remember, don’t wait for the storm to pass….. learn to dance in the rain!!!
    Luv and gentle hugs
    Helen S xxx

  106. Ryan Roberts August 11, 2013 at 8:59 pm -  Reply

    Good to see your spirits are not to dented. Get well soon!
    The answer is C) An American tea drinking straw

  107. Suzanne Coyle August 11, 2013 at 10:17 pm -  Reply

    I think it is C a tea drinking straw

  108. Tracey Quinn August 11, 2013 at 10:47 pm -  Reply

    Hope your felling better.
    Answer C) An American tea drinking straw

  109. Eileen Porter August 11, 2013 at 11:15 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali, sorry to hear you have had more surgery, I hope by now you are feeling more comfortable and able to sit up. I hope you will be back with us soon. Take care, God bless.
    Love from Eileen (Manchester)

  110. gwen joyce August 12, 2013 at 9:50 am -  Reply

    answer is C) An American tea drinking straw
    I hope you feel more yourself soon

  111. Brenda Larsen August 12, 2013 at 9:52 am -  Reply

    Hi Alison
    Hope you feel in less pain and on the mend soon and it will all have been worth the discomfort, you are a very positive person and an inspiration to us all. My aunt went through chemotherapy recently but now a lot better, after sadly losing her husband 6 months before, so sometimes we have difficult times, and then life moves on and we feel better. The lily plant looks great, I had to throw my own lily plant out previously bought which succumbed to lily beetle and now have Richard jacksons flower power and plant invigorator and my pink hydrangea has never looked so good twice the size so my daughter has took a photo to put on block board for a picture.
    All good wishes for a quick recovery.
    I think the object is a Victoria tea straw.

  112. kelly brittle August 12, 2013 at 10:06 am -  Reply

    i think its c) an american tea drinking straw

  113. Tanita Dighton August 12, 2013 at 10:22 am -  Reply

    Your such a brave women! and lovely that you have been brave to write this. The answer is C) An American tea drinking straw

  114. Mary August 12, 2013 at 10:43 am -  Reply

    An American tea drinking straw

  115. lynn neal August 12, 2013 at 11:11 am -  Reply

    I think it is an American tea-drinking straw!

  116. Janine Atkin August 12, 2013 at 11:43 am -  Reply

    i think its an American tea drinking straw

  117. Christina Fish August 12, 2013 at 12:40 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali
    You are such a brave lady, and through it all you remain so cheerful and bright – you are such an inspiration to so many. You always look so chic and elegant every time I see you,no matter how you must be feeling, I take my hat off to you – you deserve a medal. Get well soon.
    Lots of love from
    Chris F
    PS I think your object is C) American Drinking Straw

  118. Samantha R August 12, 2013 at 12:41 pm -  Reply

    C) An American tea drinking straw

  119. Delyth Jones August 12, 2013 at 1:48 pm -  Reply

    Hi Alison,Get well Soon! Don’t forget the Arnica Gel.Wishing you a speedy recovery.
    C)American Tea Drinking Straw

  120. Christina Jarrett August 12, 2013 at 2:14 pm -  Reply

    I think it’s C) An American tea drinking straw!

  121. alison keenan August 12, 2013 at 3:09 pm -  Reply

    Hello there Sandra, and thank you – I take your kind words as just that πŸ™‚ Your guess has been logged and will be put in the draw with all the others. I do hope you had a great weekend, Love Ali xx

  122. alison keenan August 12, 2013 at 3:12 pm -  Reply

    Pauline, feeling a little easier each day, and thank you for asking. Loving you alluding to me being a LADY πŸ™‚ and your guess will go into the draw at the end of the week. Hope all good with you, love Ali xx

  123. alison keenan August 12, 2013 at 3:14 pm -  Reply

    Cath I’m liking your way of thinking and hope very much that your mammogram will be clear and you can tick another year off, feeling safer. Thanks for your guess too! Will put it in the draw, but hope to hear from you with positive results asap. love Ali xx

  124. lia burns August 12, 2013 at 4:20 pm -  Reply

    I think your object is an American tea drinking straw,
    i really wish you a speedy recovery and hope your pain stops soon
    best wishes x

  125. Debz August 12, 2013 at 4:28 pm -  Reply

    Hi Alpa
    Am sure Ali won’t mind me hijacking her blog to say how lovely it was to hear from you again! Have been quite worried about you, so to see your reply to Ali’s blog has made my day!
    Take care of yourself my friend and we hope to hear from you again when you can manage it.
    Ainzley sends you a very special lick and a purr!
    Lots of love and licks
    Debz and Ainzley (=^-^=) XxxxxxX

  126. scarlett brannan August 12, 2013 at 4:32 pm -  Reply

    I think the answer is C.

  127. Karen wright August 12, 2013 at 5:06 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali,
    Hope your feeling better.
    I think c) America drinking straw.

  128. helen August 12, 2013 at 5:43 pm -  Reply

    Dear Ali, Is it true what I’ve just heard about Amica? I hope not πŸ™ How are you doing my lovely?
    Luv and hugs
    Helen s xxxx

  129. Una August 12, 2013 at 5:57 pm -  Reply

    Dearest Ali
    Its been such s long time since I’ve written. Felt a bit nervous to be honest!
    So much has happened here, and don’t often have much chance to read blogs and stuff these days let alone watch QVC,! I have no idea what’s going on!
    Iknow you said you were having more surgery this year, just didnt realise it was to such an extent. I SO hope you are starting to feel a bit better and that the pain is manageable for you.
    You have been through so much already, and hopefully this is an end to all the surgery.
    I was sorry to read that Lucy went through an awful time too. Her new beau seems lovely. He better be good to her!!!!
    Everything is now completely finalised regarding our adoption of my little “monkey”. A loophole was discovered, that could have caused issues at a later date, and caused us such anguish. Was absolute hell for about 6 months, and has meant we had to move house, its cost us everything, and then some. Good thing she’s cute ! (Hence the reason I don’t watch qvc so much, no fun when you don’t have spare cash lol) She’s just adorable, and reminds me so much of her mummy. She has mannerisms and expressions just like her, and makes me smile every day. Tnere were days when I honestly thought I would never smile again.
    She goes back to nursery next week, and is so excited that she’s going to be one of the big girls this year, and will have to be a buddy for the “little” ones!
    It was so lovely to read your replies on your blog Ali, and to see that so many of Ali’s Army mentioned me, thank you for that, it was lovely to think you hadn’t forgotten me, I certainly hadn’t forgotten any of you. I just hope you understand, that sometimes I couldn’t string a sentence together, (surprising for me I know) I also was so down that I didn’t want anyone else to feel bad. I know a lot of you have been through the mill too, and you didnt need me dragging you down. My love and kind thoughts to you all.
    Well, bath time calls. Bubbles must be made, and much splashing must now occur. Told you, she keeps me on my toes lol.
    Ali, please know I think of you, and send a loving hug from me and monkey!
    Was so upset to hear of Beaulah and Amika. Such a waste. This cancer HAS to be dealt with. Thank goodness for the charities trying to stamp it out.
    Lots of love to all of Ali’s army. We just keep on marching don’t we. Takes a lot to take us down.
    Una xxxxxx
    Ali, I have some LOVELY news to tell Debbie. Tried to email her but it doesn’t seem to get there. Would you mind asking her to ,message me if she still has m,y email address? Thanks so much xx

  130. lucy vassallo August 12, 2013 at 6:00 pm -  Reply

    B) A Victorian make up brush minus the brush head!

  131. yvonne thirkell August 12, 2013 at 6:22 pm -  Reply

    C) An American tea drinking straw

  132. Sheri Darby August 12, 2013 at 6:48 pm -  Reply

    I think it is C) The American tea drinking straw

  133. Jilly August 12, 2013 at 6:56 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali
    just sending big hugs and to hope that today you are feeling a little less sore and able to get about easier than you have been doing. Another day and tomorrow is a new one and hopefully you will continue to be onwards and upwards.
    Hope your daughter has managed the weekend as well as she could do Tricia. The first few days after the chemo are always the worst but I was looking in my diary last night and noticed that we marked any small achievement as a great step forward – even a walk round the garden was celebrated as if it had been a ten mile walk and we always said as soon as the treatment had been given that that is one less to have. Do keep us updated as we are all is this together with Ali as our roll model and as someone we can look at and think time and again “WOW hasn’t she done so well” to go forward after such frightening setbacks and to help us all out here.
    I was just thinking of Lucy as I was out walking the dogs yesterday Ali and thought she will shortly be getting ready for her new school – hope everything goes so well for her. You always think you will never know all the children’s names but after a couple of weeks you remember them all. Not sure where the summer holidays are going but they seem to be going quickly. I think grandson has about three more weeks to go (he will have had nine off altogether!!!)and he will be back to a new term and the summer holidays over for this year. Lets hope this lovely weather continues for you to sit and recover in the garden and for the children to just play outside.
    Annie is feeling very good and looking ultra glam. She bought a new dress yesterday which is casual and to wear with leggins or jeans and it was lovely to see it has a low round neckline. It made me think how good things are now that even with a breast off and reconstruction women are able to wear low cut tops (it wasn’t too low of course!)but sure you understand what I mean and where I am coming from ….. Missing seeing you on TV but know you will be fighting fit before too long – just don’t over do it! Love for now Jilly xx

  134. adrian price August 12, 2013 at 7:00 pm -  Reply

    Get well soon—I think its an amercian tea drinking straw

  135. jean shaw August 12, 2013 at 8:14 pm -  Reply

    best wishes !
    i think it is an american drinking straw

  136. babsq x August 12, 2013 at 9:03 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali My guess is A A champagne swizzle stick Babsq xx

  137. Sue Jennings August 12, 2013 at 9:14 pm -  Reply

    Oh Ali I am so sorry to hear sad news about Amica…how very very sad my thoughts are with you all xx

  138. Mel Naughton August 12, 2013 at 9:31 pm -  Reply

    It’s an American tea drinking straw x I adore Laura Geller would be over the moon if I won x

  139. zoe corbin August 12, 2013 at 10:12 pm -  Reply

    American tea drinking straw

  140. Tina Watts August 12, 2013 at 10:25 pm -  Reply

    Its an American tea drinking straw.

  141. Sam B August 12, 2013 at 10:29 pm -  Reply

    Its an American Tea Drinking Straw
    I hope you are starting to feel better x

  142. Eleanor Jones August 13, 2013 at 6:54 am -  Reply

    C. A tea drinking straw.

  143. elaine stokes August 13, 2013 at 7:56 am -  Reply

    C) An American tea drinking straw

  144. Mahala August 13, 2013 at 9:14 am -  Reply


  145. Annaloa Hilmarsdottir August 13, 2013 at 10:05 am -  Reply

    This is a tough one, but I think it’s an American Tea-drinking Straw.

  146. helen cruse August 13, 2013 at 10:47 am -  Reply

    goodness, what a trouper you are. Feeling bad and keeping on with writing! What inspiration!
    I think it is an American Tea Drinking Straw… You must have received some direct hit from the caffine from that! It’s a beautiful colour.

  147. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:14 am -  Reply

    Hi there Cath, and thanks for your kind words πŸ™‚ Yes, would be happier without the corset, but onwards and upwards eh, and at least as the bruising comes out, it’s slightly less painful! I will be thinking of you on Friday, and am sure all will be well… do let me know though eh? Thanks for your guess – it will go in to our ever increasing number in the draw!! Love Ali x

  148. Jennifer Hudson August 13, 2013 at 11:15 am -  Reply

    It looks like it could be C) An American tea drinking straw.

  149. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:18 am -  Reply

    Hi there Eng, and thanks for your kind words and your guess too! Feeling a little less worse – as my dad would say – so hopefully healing a little better now. Love Ali xx

  150. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:20 am -  Reply

    Hi there Irene, I’m hoping to be back towards the end of the month, but thank you for your kind words and your guess. I’m feeling less uncomfortable now, and am getting used to wearing my corset too! will be lovely though to sleep in PJ’s again rather than this! Take care, Love Ali xx

  151. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:21 am -  Reply

    ….And Lesley, you are very kind to say so… so many have to be far braver though… I have added your guess to the others in the draw, and will keep my fingers crossed for you, love Ali xx

  152. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:22 am -  Reply

    Jackie, I am so pleased that you chose this blog to comment on, and thanks for your kind words… Am keeping my fingers crossed regarding the lilies! Judging taking place on the 18th August πŸ™‚ Do keep in touch, love Ali xx

  153. Rachel Myland August 13, 2013 at 11:32 am -  Reply

    Speedy recovery Alison, onwards and upwards and cherish each and everything in your life. You are an amazing lady.
    Answer: American drinking straw.

  154. Natasha Brown August 13, 2013 at 12:47 pm -  Reply

    Answer C.
    Hope you feel better soon.

  155. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 1:33 pm -  Reply

    Hi there Patricia, that is very kind of you to say – I’m sure though faced with the same thing you’d be just as strong πŸ™‚ I hope to be back at the end of the month, and thank you for your guess! Love Ali xx

  156. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 1:35 pm -  Reply

    Dear Gwen, we won’t have too long to wait as they are judging the lilies on the 18th – think I have some stiff competition tho!! Feeling a little less uncomfortable now, but thank you for your kindness, love Ali xx

  157. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 1:42 pm -  Reply

    Dear Margaret, definitely a case of getting better each day, and I’m lucky to have lots of positive people around which definitely helps – along with this blog! I have made a note of your answer and thank you for writing to me, love Ali xx

  158. Gail August 13, 2013 at 4:11 pm -  Reply

    My dearest Ali, trust me to write when the Blog is it’s busiest. Usually it’s not just a case of HOW ARE YOU but WHERE ARE YOU !!! But now I know you’re home and making a good recovery, I hope. I will write again when not so busy but send you lots of love xxx. Couldn’t believe you are going through such a bad time yet again. Chin up, positive thoughts and keep marching. Lots of love and hopefully by the time you read this you will be feeling much better. Blowing you a big kiss xxxxxxxx

  159. Mrs Janet Jones August 13, 2013 at 5:35 pm -  Reply

    Dear Ali, I am so sad to hear the news about Amica, last time I saw her on air she looked so well, it is such a shock.
    My thoughts are with her family.
    Love Janet xx

  160. Ms Sue Rowley August 13, 2013 at 5:42 pm -  Reply

    l think the answer is …C.

  161. Kirsty Nugent August 13, 2013 at 6:13 pm -  Reply

    Hope you feel better soon
    C) American tea drinking straw

  162. CAROLINE GLASS August 13, 2013 at 6:34 pm -  Reply

    C) An American tea drinking straw

  163. Lin Dezulian August 13, 2013 at 8:02 pm -  Reply

    You are a true inspiration Ali, hope you feel better soon love and best wishes for a speedy recovery.
    Lin xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  164. Sheila Coulson August 13, 2013 at 8:06 pm -  Reply

    An American tea drinking straw

  165. Rachel Craig August 13, 2013 at 8:10 pm -  Reply

    c) An American tea drinking straw.

  166. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 8:21 pm -  Reply

    Thanks to Cheryl, Ann and Linda, Karen and Mrs. P. Pegler – your answers will be taken added into our collection for the draw at the end of the week! Love Ali xxx

  167. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 8:22 pm -  Reply

    Gwen, I very much hope so! Glad you liked my lilies – so to speak! – and the judging will take place in our Gardening Show on the 18th! don’t miss it – I’ll be watching to πŸ˜€ Love Ali xx

  168. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 8:25 pm -  Reply

    Dear Jan, I am so sorry you went through such a tough time of it, and can completely understand why you wouldn’t want any more surgery now… Maybe one day you will feel able to to cope with the discomfort for a short while, for long term gain.. that is my plan! πŸ™‚ I had no idea that lilies were poisonous to cats! Thank heavens you separated them out so Ollie and Solo weren’t in danger – bless them! I am very much hoping to be back at the end of the month, but missing you all too! Take care, love Ali xx

  169. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 8:27 pm -  Reply

    Suzanne so sorry it’s taken me so long to reply – yes any suggestions or guesses re the competition can be entered here and will be added to the draw. So glad that you too have benefitted from using Flower Power – Richard Jackson is a genius πŸ™‚ Feel free to post your answer here whenever you can, and thank you so much for writing, love Ali x

  170. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 8:28 pm -  Reply

    Dear Zoe, thank you for your suggestion… yes it has been a bit of a long haul, but am sure it will be worth it.. short term pain for long term gain I think our American cousins would say πŸ™‚ Keep watching the blog and we will announce a winner towards the end of the week, love Ali xx

  171. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 8:29 pm -  Reply

    Simone all will be revealed next week, along with the winner’s name, so do keep checking on the blog πŸ™‚ Thank you for your kind words, and your compliments regarding my lilies – pretty spectacular eh?? Let’s hope the judges think so on the 18th love Ali xx

  172. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 8:32 pm -  Reply

    Dear Judith, so sorry to hear that you’ve been through so much at the dentist…. there is nothing quite like tooth pain – I know having been a child of the ’60’s where drill ’em and fill ’em was the rule of thumb! It sounds as though you had a wonderful time in Northumberland, and you haven’t rambled at all πŸ™‚ It’s always refreshing to read about your lives and all that you spend your time doing.. particularly when it involves the seaside and beaches… oh and dog walking! πŸ™‚ Glad you have had chance to relax. Thank you for your kind words, and do keep in touch… it cheers me no end to read through all these lovely responses, love Ali xx

  173. jackie rushton August 13, 2013 at 10:07 pm -  Reply

    C) An American tea drinking straw

  174. JAYNE DAVIES August 13, 2013 at 10:25 pm -  Reply


  175. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:11 pm -  Reply

    Hello there Zoe… getting a little out of kilter with my replies, but thank you for your kind words, and your guess too – draw will hopefully be at the end of the week! Love Ali x

  176. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:13 pm -  Reply

    So love your name Simone! And I thank you also for your kind words and for taking the time to make a guess in our competition. Glad you like the lilies too! Irrespective of whether I’m in with a chance or not of winning the coveted prize, the flowers have brought me such delight and colour to my garden, that it’s been worth it for that alone. We’ll be making our prize draw at the end of this week πŸ™‚ Love Ali xx

  177. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:18 pm -  Reply

    My dear Jilly, thanks so much for your concern, and I’m definitely taking it a step at a time – and a slow step at that! πŸ™‚ The bruising has calmed and it’s only really my tummy that is just beginning to go green and purple – the other bruises are all out. I loved your analogy about the baby… it’s what I’ve always said (over and over again according the Colin πŸ™‚ that it may be hard work, but it’s soooooo worth it in the end – I felt that about all three of mine, and they all made spectacularly different entrances into the world! I think I may have replied already to this in an earlier comment, if so apologies, but I am trying not to miss anyone out, and am getting a tad confused….. story of my life! πŸ˜€ Always good to hear about Annie, and thank you for your kind words about Lucy – it makes such a difference to see them happy, love Ali xx

  178. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:19 pm -  Reply

    Oooooh Loretta, I couldn’t possibly imagine what you are talking about!!! πŸ™‚ Will make sure your guess is taken into account… you should read Debbie Flint’s book! Knocks Fifty Shades of Grey into a tin hat πŸ™‚ Love Ali xx

  179. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:20 pm -  Reply

    Thank you Angelina and Paul – guesses duly noted. Draw being made at the end of the week, so do keep in touch πŸ™‚ Love Ali xx

  180. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:23 pm -  Reply

    Babs you poor thing… what a nightmare, but so glad that there was someone at the hospital who made a special effort to care for you.. I remember a particular nurse called Monica when I had my first mastectomy… she was a saint when I was upset πŸ™‚ I hope your wrist healed well, but am very sorry to read between the lines and guess that you are going through yet another emotional upheaval… Property values are meant to be on the rise, so i do hope that perhaps things will change for you asap… Try not to worry too much.. things happen for a reason, even when we truly can’t make sense of them, and often it’s much later on that we see why the sequence of events was as it was…. Be kind to yourself, and keep busy. I love the sound of the children’s memory blankets, and the tee pee’s are inspirational! With my love, Ali xx

  181. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:24 pm -  Reply

    Hi there Tamie and Mila – love your reasoning, and you’ll have to wait until we make the draw at the end of the week to see if you’re right! πŸ™‚ Thanks very much though for taking part. Love Ali xx

  182. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:25 pm -  Reply

    Julie, you are very kind, thank you. Not sure if everyone has googled the photo, or are just far more knowledgeable than I, but the guesses are adding up now, so we’ll have to wait for the draw πŸ™‚ Thank you, love ALi xx

  183. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:27 pm -  Reply

    Mary I did get your original entry but failed to mention how envious I was of the blueberry and pineapple upside down cake! I did an apricot and almond one once which went down a storm πŸ™‚ 8 bags of ivy!!! You must come here – we could easily fill another 8! Keep tweeting, and thanks for taking part in the competition, love Ali xx

  184. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:29 pm -  Reply

    Dear Rhona, thanks for your guess and I will keep an eye out for your e mail… do hope all is OK? Saw Lucy and Simon the other weekend and they were in good form, and she’s been to see me several times since I’ve been home which has been lovely. Liking your guess and reasoning.. you’ll have to wait for the draw at the end of the week though! Take care, love Ali x

  185. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:30 pm -  Reply

    Many thanks to Pam Garster, Angela Williams, Julie Clark, Renee Armstrong, Margaret Hart, Ann Bell and Adele Leek for your guesses. Yes, the draw is at the end of the week – Be Lucky!!! love Ali xx

  186. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:31 pm -  Reply

    Dear Sandra, bless you for your comforting words.. I do so enjoy writing my blog, mainly because of the comments that come back.. nice to feel that we all have a connection πŸ™‚ So glad you enjoy reading them, love Ali xx

  187. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:33 pm -  Reply

    Hi to Emm, Lauren, Sharon Jones, Michelle Lintern and Kathcakebread! Your guesses have been noted and we will announce the lucky winner at the end of the week. Thank you for taking part, love Ali xx

  188. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:34 pm -  Reply

    Glad it’s not too simple a guessing game Janet – that would take the fun out of it!! πŸ™‚ Have noted your answer and hope you will check in towards the end of the week to find out who’s won! Love Ali xx

  189. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:38 pm -  Reply

    My dear Annette, I have been wincing while reading through your post op trauma, and I am so sorry you had to go through so much – 12 days must have felt like eternity with all your bandages and padding! Morphine always makes me sick, and itchy too! Thank heavens though that the ‘metalwork’ you had inside your foot seems to have done the trick, and that the Arnica Gel, Prolagene and SBC Bath soak have helped… they really are amazing aren’t they! Only two more weeks of corset wearing to go for me, and then freedom! YAY! πŸ™‚ Thanks for your guess, and do check towards the end of the week when we make the draw – be lucky!!! love Ali xxx

  190. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:38 pm -  Reply

    Mandy Doherty and Susan Jackson, thank you both for your guesses… hope you’re lucky! love Ali xx

  191. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:40 pm -  Reply

    Nuj you made me laugh out loud…… I remember reading about a Boodie Buddie when I was last in the States… it is a plastic disc that you put in the toilet bowl to avoid splashing… ingenious, but very American methinks πŸ™‚ Thanks for your guess, love Ali xx

  192. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:42 pm -  Reply

    Hello there Christine, and bless you for your kind words, especially the compliment regarding my lily growing prowess!! I can’t tell you how thrilled I would be to have a flower named after me… how posh is that?! πŸ™‚ I do think there’s some stiff competition though, so will be keeping everything crossed – well fingers only as legs still too bruised! πŸ™‚ Definitely feeling less sore these days though, and hope to be back towards the end of the month, with love, Ali xx

  193. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:45 pm -  Reply

    Dear Susan, it’s actually a real pleasure for me to read through all these lovely comments, and truly appreciated that you take the time to write them! I am happy to tell you that the bruising is definitely lessening, and the swelling has gone down, so I am certainly more comfortable than I was. Only another two weeks of corset wearing, then freedom! πŸ™‚ I hope all is good with you, love Ali xx

  194. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:46 pm -  Reply

    Hi to Gem Kitchener and Julie Ratcliffe and thank you both for your guesses – winner will be announced at the end of the week, so do keep in touch! love Ali xx

  195. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:47 pm -  Reply

    Thanks also to Debbie OHara and Mark Blumire – fingers crossed for you both! Love Ali xx

  196. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:49 pm -  Reply

    Dear Bernadette, I am so pleased that you felt you wanted to write to me, and even happier to know that you’ve been enjoying the blogs for quite some time. I am feeling definitely more comfortable than I was and hope to be back at the Q towards the end of the month.. so definitely a reason to be cheerful πŸ™‚ Love Ali xx

  197. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:51 pm -  Reply

    Paula J you are an inspiration! How lovely are you, working so hard to raise money for Breast Cancer, and I very much hope that your pulled hamstring and other issues will soon be resolved and you’ll be fighting fit again. Loving the sound of the ballet dancing! Watch your ankles though, and always choose legwarmers that match your tutu! πŸ˜€ Will bear in mind Twitter in the wee small hours – so glad that you find comfort from talking to us all whatever the hour! Take good care, and thank you for writing, love Ali xx

  198. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:53 pm -  Reply

    Sarah Spencer, Jo Booth and Matthew Collins – thank you for your guesses!! Be lucky, love Ali xx

  199. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:53 pm -  Reply

    Dear Helfina, thank you for taking the time out to write, and for your kind words… It’s been a long haul, but I feel I’ve definitely turned a corner, and hope to be back at work towards the end of the month, love Ali xx

  200. alison keenan August 13, 2013 at 11:54 pm -  Reply

    Dear Eileen, I am feeling quite a lot better these days thank you, and definitely intend to keep on smiling πŸ˜€ Thanks for your guess – hope you’re lucky! love Ali xx

  201. Gai August 14, 2013 at 5:37 am -  Reply

    Morning Ali and I do mean morning; look at the time I am writing this. In fact, I’m wondering if you too are awake at this time like me. I did say on last comment that I would write when not busy; how rude did that sound. I meant when your Blog wasn’t so busy, i.e perhaps your next Blog. I better stop there before that hole gets any bigger x So sad that you’re in pain yet again and to top it all you have to wear that horrendous sounding corset. Looking on the bright side, as you so rightly said, all this is just temporary and you’ll be back to your old self in no time. All this must be so draining mentally as well as physically. I had to wear a corset when I had a back operation in 2006. Not as horrendous as the one you are wearing, but a bit of a pain none the less. Before I got out of bed I had to wrap this corset around me and pull it very, very tight. Then I would have to ‘log roll’ out of bed; very attractive hee hee. Hope this op leaves you in a much more comfortable state; then it would have been worth all the pain and uncomfort. Keep focusing on the TEMPORARY bit Ali xx
    Now, about all your travels my friend. What lovely trips you and Colin have had. I’ve read all about them on here and over the moon for you that your life seems back on track. How is the new house Ali? Is everything ‘ship shape’ yet? Your lilies are beautiful; so many flowers.
    That photo of you and the family on the previous blog is beautiful. Hope the children are okay. How is Sam?
    Fingers crossed for the biopsy xx Your emotions must be all over the place, yet again xx Thinking of you. Well, time to get up and have a nice cup of tea and feed the birds and cat. Best time of the day for me.
    Thinking of you.
    Gail xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  202. babsq x August 14, 2013 at 9:04 am -  Reply

    Hi Ali It is an American drinking straw

  203. martin forbes August 14, 2013 at 5:43 pm -  Reply

    hi alison hope you and your family are well iam not bad

  204. alison keenan August 14, 2013 at 8:07 pm -  Reply

    Sue you are so kind, and I truly appreciate you taking the time to write to me. It has been a bit of a long haul, but a small thing really in the scheme of things. I have to admit it would be a lot easier if I didn’t have the hot flushes, but I’m getting pretty used to those too! πŸ™‚ You have completely sold me and Colin on the idea of a cruise, and I so envy you Pompeii, Corsica and Gibraltar – all places I have never been! My Sam would have loved the monkeys there… Perhaps the water is going to be calling us next break! You take care, and thank you for your time, love Ali xx

  205. alison keenan August 14, 2013 at 8:13 pm -  Reply

    Hello there Norma, I was thinking about you and your hand just yesterday, and was sorry to read that you will need further surgery on your thumb… I know how frustrating this must be for you, and can only begin to guess all the things you use your thumb for when it comes to eating, writing and of course in your case, sewing! πŸ™‚ Colin, Lucy, my friends and family are definitely helping me through these weeks, although I have to admit to being totally floored by Amica’s death…. I wasn’t able to see her, and so could on only leave a message at the hospice. Times like these are so terribly hard, and leave me hollow… She was such a beautiful girl and my friend… Take care, and thank you as always for keeping in touch, love Ali xx

  206. alison keenan August 14, 2013 at 8:13 pm -  Reply

    Dear Amanda, doing my level best to remain positive, and thank you for reminding me.. πŸ™‚ Thanks for your guess.. the draw will be at the end of the week, so do check in! Love Ali xx

  207. alison keenan August 14, 2013 at 8:16 pm -  Reply

    Rhodd you have cheered me so much, and I can’t thank you enough for the invaluable help you will give to Marie Curie and Cancer Research. I am so sorry to hear that you lost your cousin, and yet to know that you are actively working to help others will I am sure, have made her proud. I have lost my friend Amica, and would give anything to have her back with us… Thank you Rhodd, love Ali xx

  208. alison keenan August 14, 2013 at 8:17 pm -  Reply

    Dear Hanna Mayle, Caroline Black, Mary Whittle, Kate Leigh and Samantha Schofield, I miss you too! Thanks so much for your guesses, and we will be announcing the winner towards the end of the week, love ALi xx

  209. alison keenan August 14, 2013 at 9:08 pm -  Reply

    Gail, how lovely to hear from you, and please don’t apologise for writing to me while I was busy! I completely understood πŸ™‚ Your corset for back pain sounds horrendous, but I think the worst bit of mine is sleeping in it! I went to have my stitches out today, and was told that after four weeks I will have to wear Slim N Lift or something similar for the next two weeks. I think after you, I have perfected the ‘log roll’ out of bed, although I am very relieved now to be able to actually sit on the loo rather than finding suitable cardboard bowls to ‘go’ in instead! We are very happy in the new house, and Colin has been putting a lot of time into the garden so it looks much better :)Jack has just returned from a break in Croatia, and really enjoyed himself and Lucy is making the best of the last few weeks of her holiday. Sam is still struggling a little, but we keep on trying πŸ™‚ Love Ali xx

  210. alison keenan August 14, 2013 at 9:14 pm -  Reply

    My dear Jilly have got somewhat confused with my replies, but wanted to wish Annie well with her mammogram at the end of the month… she like I was misdiagnosed and so understandably doesn’t have a huge amount of faith, but it is still so worth while getting yourself checked, and I have every hope all will be well πŸ™‚ Love reading your comments to Tricia and Janet, and I too join you in wishing their families well too. You take care, and thank you again for your kind words and affection, with love, Ali xx

  211. alison keenan August 14, 2013 at 9:15 pm -  Reply

    Kate Leigh and Samantha Schofield! Thank you both for your guesses – they will be added to ever increasing number of entrants for our prize draw at the end of the week. Love ALi xx

  212. alison keenan August 14, 2013 at 9:16 pm -  Reply

    Caroline Jones and Sima Halimi, bless you also for your contribution towards the prize draw – do check in to see if you’ve won, love ALi xx

  213. alison keenan August 14, 2013 at 9:18 pm -  Reply

    Dear fiona I am happy to tell you that I do indeed feel a great deal better than I did this day two weeks ago, and already it’s looking a lot better than it did! Clearly the pain may well have been worth it πŸ™‚ I would LOVE Richard Jackson to be my gardener whether I was off work or not! My garden is just grass – I inherited it borderless in December – I have great plans just no money to put them into effect at the moment! Other things need to take precedence πŸ™‚ Love to you too, Ali xx

  214. alison keenan August 14, 2013 at 9:20 pm -  Reply

    My dear Helen, it hurts me to have to be the one to tell you that Amica passed away this last Saturday afternoon…. She was an incredibly brave spirit and will be so sorely missed…. We spent a good time talking the year we were both diagnosed, and I feel quite awful that she lost her battle while I am still here.. I will hold onto your beautiful words, and have actually written them out to remind myself…. Love to you too, Ali xx

  215. alison keenan August 14, 2013 at 9:21 pm -  Reply

    To Ryan Roberts, Suzanne Coyle, Tracey Quinn and Gwen Joyce – THANKYOU! Your guesses will be taken into account when we make our draw this week, love Ali xx

  216. alison keenan August 14, 2013 at 9:22 pm -  Reply

    Eileen, I’ve either got used to the corset, or the swelling has gone down, but yes, I am able to sit up properly now -altho not for long! I am hoping to be back at work towards the end of the month. Do hope all is well with you, and thank you for writing to me, love Ali xx

  217. alison keenan August 14, 2013 at 9:25 pm -  Reply

    Dear Brenda I was so sorry to hear of your aunty losing her husband and then having to face chemo on her own. I am so glad that she is through all that and is moving forwards..Hopefully she too will be feeling better. So sorry your lily succumbed to the lily beetle! Our lily competition will be judged this Sunday the 18th, so keep your fingers crossed for me πŸ™‚ My hydrangea is looking very leafy but no flowers as yet – do you think they will produce blooms now?! love Ali x

  218. alison keenan August 14, 2013 at 9:27 pm -  Reply

    Dear Kelly, Mary, Lynn Neal, Janine Atkin, Samanth R and Christina Jarrett – bless you all for your responses.. Draw will be held towards the end of the week, so do keep checking and be lucky! Love Ali xxx

  219. alison keenan August 14, 2013 at 9:30 pm -  Reply

    Tanita, so glad you enjoyed reading the blog, and I am glad to be able to sit up for long enough to write and respond to it! Thanks for your guess – we’ll be announcing a winner at the end of the week πŸ™‚ Love Ali xx

  220. alison keenan August 14, 2013 at 9:32 pm -  Reply

    My dear Christina, there is something about the word elegant that always makes me sit up a little taller, so thank you for using it to describe me πŸ™‚ Standing is a tad more comfortable than sitting at present, but I am definitely getting better and thank you for taking the time out to write to me, love Ali xx

  221. alison keenan August 14, 2013 at 9:34 pm -  Reply

    Dear Delyth, I have only just become able to apply the arnica gel as I was too sore before, but it is working its magic and my legs look a lot better already! The draw will take place at the end of the week, so be lucky!, love Ali xx

  222. alison keenan August 14, 2013 at 9:35 pm -  Reply

    Dear Lia, just wanted to let you know that I am feeling a fair bit better than I was, so thank you for your kind words, love Ali xx ps your guess will be added into the others – thank you for it.

  223. alison keenan August 14, 2013 at 9:37 pm -  Reply

    Dear Scarlett Brannen and Karen Wright, thank you for your guesses – winner will be picked towards the end of the week! Love Ali x

  224. alison keenan August 14, 2013 at 9:38 pm -  Reply

    Helen, I so wish I could tell you otherwise, but Amica lost her fight to breast cancer on Saturday…. It was very sudden, and I sadly didn’t get the chance to see her, but she knew that I was thinking of her and sending my love… hollow sentiments in some respects, but nothing more I could do… I will miss her very much, love Ali xx

  225. alison keenan August 14, 2013 at 9:45 pm -  Reply

    My dear Una, the last year and all that has been in it fell away when I read your response. It so sooooooo good to hear from you – and I am sure I speak for many of Ali’s Army when I say that πŸ™‚ The very fact that you are able to adopt your grandaughter is to me, the system getting it completely right πŸ™‚ It’s not just you benefitting from her smiles and energy and love, but she is too, and the fact that she has so many of your dear lost daughter’s mannerisms and expressions must give you even more comfort. When I think of Amica’s girls, I know that she will live on in them with her spirit and beauty, and this is obviously what has happened with your gorgeous girl…. Please though never think that writing to us when you are feeling low would drag any of us down…. that is the wonder of this website… we are all here for each other and the major comfort for me is that we are actually all very alike – different life situations – same way of dealing with them. Lean on us Una… we are strong when united, and are here to help you πŸ™‚ I spoke to Debbie just today, and passed on your message so she will definitely be in touch… Please don’t be a stranger, we all care about you and miss you, love Ali xx

  226. alison keenan August 14, 2013 at 9:47 pm -  Reply

    Hi there Lucy Vassallo, Yvonne Thirkell and Sheri Darby – your guesses have been noted and the winner will be drawn at the end of the week! Be lucky πŸ™‚ love Ali xx

  227. Michelle August 15, 2013 at 3:06 am -  Reply

    Hello Ali
    Speedy recovery with your op. take it easy. Positive thoughts makes a speedy recovery
    Answer American straw
    From Michelle

  228. Annette Roberts August 15, 2013 at 10:27 am -  Reply

    Hi Ali
    2 more weeks of your corset wearing, I’ll be counting down the days with you, it will be such a relief for you to get it off, once and for good, not good with your tropical moments, but at least it has cooled a little over the past week!
    Spending more and more time on my foot now, but still have to put it up a couple of times to get the swelling down. I even started a few gentle exercise on my AeroPilates machine, which I never thought I’d miss, but I did temendously.
    Out of the past 2 1/2yrs I’ve really missed nice shoes, although Skechers and Birkenstocks are very nice, to wear ‘normal’ shoes, would be alot nicer, even boots were a problem with the screw on my ankle bone, so I’m so hoping that once healed I can wear boots again and hopefully my walking boots. You get so much pleasure walking and taking in all that’s around you, rather than whizzing past everything in the car.
    Thinking of you
    Annette x

  229. Annette Roberts August 15, 2013 at 10:35 am -  Reply

    Hi Ali
    Hope you don’t mind, but it’s soo nice to hear from Una again on your blog, I have very often thought about her.
    Una, hope you are reading this, there are lots of people on here who have missed you and wondered how you were and I can’t imagine for one minute the stress and pain you have gone through to get this far.
    Sending you lots of love and hugs
    Annette x

  230. Sue Radford August 15, 2013 at 10:45 am -  Reply

    Hi Ali,
    I’ve just had to write and say how sad I was to hear of Amica’s passing. I know how incredibly close you became/meant to each other, but you must remember Ali you gave each other strength and I’m sure Amica’s dealings with this cruel disease was eased a little due to your special friendship. My thoughts go out to her two young daughters and husband. Amica was extremely beautiful inside and out, and I along with lots of others will miss seeing her lovely face on screen. She along with lovely Beulah will be greatly missed. What a sad few months this has been.
    Love from Sue Radford xx

  231. Joanna Downey August 15, 2013 at 11:13 am -  Reply

    Dearest Ali, We’ve returned home after a few days away in a place without the internet and phone signal, so it was only this morning that I read the sad news about Amica. I just wanted to tell you that I’m sorry for your loss and that for all of you who loved her I hope that time will bring comfort and you will always remember that lovely girl who obviously enriched so many lives. Love from Jo.

  232. Mrs Janet Jones August 15, 2013 at 11:30 am -  Reply

    Dear Ali, I am so shocked and saddened with the passing of Amica.
    Last time I saw her on the TV she looked so well. My thoughts and prayers are with her family. I am so sorry that you have lost your friend. I like you feel totally flattened by this sad passing of lovely lady.
    Take care Ali Love and hugs Janet xx

  233. angela white August 15, 2013 at 1:52 pm -  Reply

    hi ali, you alright!? I hope you are feeling more comfortable after your recent op and things are healing as they should I am so sorry to hear about amica and Beulah my sincere sympathys to ther families when are they going to find a cure for this vile disease? a family over the road from us recently lost their daughter to cervical cancer,ali she was only 25 and a teacher she had gone for her first smear test and it was to late I cried when I heard she was a lovely girl always said hello and asked how iwas! we never knew she was poorly until it was in paper such a waste. I went for my mamagram and thank god it came back clear! its always there isn’t it that it can come back and im so lucky I haven’t had it as bad as some. we are off to polperro soon,in a cottage we stayed in before in 1991 and looking at the photos it hasn’t changed much! the caravan needs new water heater and its expensive so we decided to put it towards cottage instead, cant wait! not been away for 2years cos of having kitchen extension so we both looking forward to it Thomas (cat) will be going to his aunty sue”s up the road she takes in rescue cats and has a small cattery so he will be safe there!its lovely to hear from ali”s army and hope you are as well as you can be take care ali,love to you and family and the army,we fight on! is the answer American straw? xxxx

  234. Ann Crowther-Doyle August 15, 2013 at 2:47 pm -  Reply

    Hi Alison,
    I am sorry to hear that you have been in such pain and hope that it is less than it was. I wish you a very speedy recovery and return to your normal life.
    I think the object is some sort of warmer, possibly for socks or stockings.
    My very best wishes to you,

  235. Allison Warters August 15, 2013 at 3:46 pm -  Reply

    Hello Ali, its lovely to get your update, wishing you well and a speedy recovery. Keep your positiveness (if that is even a word!) flowing and remember all that is good about life and love during the bad moments. I love how you’ve looked on the bright side…. I must say a dozen times a day “… but on a positive!!!” Like you I can always find some light in most of lifes situations.
    Take care and sending you love and hugs.
    Alli xxx
    I’m pretty sure your gadget is an American drinking straw!!

  236. alison keenan August 15, 2013 at 9:52 pm -  Reply

    Thank you Michelle for your kind words, and for entering our competition! We will be announcing the winner at the beginning of next week – be lucky, love Ali x

  237. Debz August 16, 2013 at 8:12 am -  Reply

    Una my love how fantastic to hear from you!
    I echo Ali’s sentiments, we have all missed you so much but we do understand why you haven’t been able to keep in touch.
    You could never be a burden to us Una, we are all here for each other and you could never drag us down. We all lift each other off the floor and steady each other. We are only ever a blog away.
    Sounds like you have your hands full with your darling monkey! Life has a way of sending us what we need even if we don’t realise we need it straight away. She has to be the shining light in your life which you never thought you’d see again.
    Take care my lovely and remember we will always be herer for you and you are always in our thoughts.
    Lots of love and licks
    Debz and Ainzley (=^-^=) xxxxxxxxxxxxx

  238. Sue Radford August 16, 2013 at 10:26 am -  Reply

    Hi Una,
    I echo Debz’s words too. I have often thought about you and hoped that life is a little easier for you, and to hear that your precious granddaughter is now settled with you is just wonderful. It must be lovely to see so many resemblences of your daughter in her and that must be a huge comfort to you. Take care Una – it really was lovely to hear from you.
    My good wishes go to Alpa and all Ali’s Army, especially those who are going through difficult times at the moment.
    Love from Sue Radford xx

  239. ann August 16, 2013 at 10:28 am -  Reply

    I think it is B) a Victorian make up brush minus the brush.
    Hope you are now feeling better’

  240. Claire Pearson August 16, 2013 at 12:17 pm -  Reply

    Hi Alison,
    I think your object is C)an American tea drinking straw. πŸ™‚

  241. Alpa August 16, 2013 at 2:43 pm -  Reply

    My dear Ali,
    Thank you so much for your kind words. It is Ali’s Army who are so lucky to have you and this wonderful blog you have created. It was very comforting to know I was remembered and it made all the difference. I started to write several times over the last year and as I didn’t want to sound all doom and gloom, I did not get any further. However, seeing that you all have the courage to share what you are going through, I thought I might let you know πŸ™‚
    I spent a month in India last summer, most of that time in having treatment for M.E. I was first seen at a clinic in Mumbai, known for treating illnesses that conventional medicine can not and then treated at another clinic. It did help with the shaking and lack of sleep. However, soon after coming back in September, I started feeling as I did before.
    Since then, there has been an increase in symptoms and new weird and wonderful symptoms! Unfortunately, medical treatment for M.E. does not exist here, simply as a number of very influential psychiatrists insist that it is ‘a psychological and behavioural problem’ and not the physical illness that it is. The only treatment here is CBT – ‘cognitive restructuring’ i.e. convincing patients into believing that they do not suffer from an organic illness but from wrong illness beliefs and forcing them to ignore their symptoms and engage in a programme of incremental exercise. Although it’s been proven many times over that exercise is dangerous for M.E. patients, it is all that is available here. The consequences of this treatment made me so much worse. If I had known that now, I would never have put myself through it! I have yet to meet a medical professional here who will even acknowledge what M.E. is. Apart from that, there has been the on going ridicule and disbelief from family and friends and I’m simply not allowed to be, if that makes sense. I always thought that if I could just find a way to explain they would understand but I was very much mistaken.
    I was very sad to hear of beautiful Amica and my thoughts and prayers are with her family.
    I hope you are feeling a little better now in spite of the bruises and pain and corset. You have made such a difference Ali, with your courage, grace and hope.
    Take care,
    Lots of Love, Alpa xxx

  242. Alpa August 16, 2013 at 2:46 pm -  Reply

    Dear Debz,
    Thank you so much for writing. I think Ali is used to us hijacking her blog now πŸ™‚ I’m sorry to have worried you and it made my day to hear from you as well! Thank you for thinking of me all the times I did not write. I hope you and your lovely husband and Ainzley are well.
    Sending you a big hug and a very special stroke for Ainzley from his Auntie Alpa. The very special lick and a purr was much appreciated, thank you.
    Lots of love,
    Alpa xxx

  243. Moira Brannan August 16, 2013 at 2:52 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali
    Hope you are feeling a whole lot better.
    The object is an American Tea Drinking Straw

  244. Alpa August 16, 2013 at 2:54 pm -  Reply

    Dear Una,
    It was lovely to hear from you. We have all missed you so very much, as you can see πŸ™‚
    I can not imagine all you have endured this last year. I am glad that you have your beautiful monkey with you and that she brightens your days.
    We are always here for you, however you are feeling.
    Lots of Love,
    Alpa xxx

  245. SueW August 17, 2013 at 8:44 am -  Reply

    I do hope you feel better soon and look forward to seeing you back on screen x
    I think your mystery object is C) An American tea drinking straw – just a guess, I have no idea really!

  246. NIge August 17, 2013 at 10:56 am -  Reply

    Missing you Angel…hope to hear from you soon
    NIge xxxxx

  247. Tanya Quinn August 17, 2013 at 4:28 pm -  Reply

    Hi Alison
    All the very best to you, looking forward to seeing you on QVC very soon.
    I think your item is an american drinking straw,
    Love Tanya

  248. Jilly August 17, 2013 at 11:42 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali – hope things are improving this week. It is such a hard time for you when you were feeling so good to be having what may feel like a step backwards – but keep the end result in mind and you will get there – and make sure you are taking plenty of rest and recovery. Missing not seeing you but just sening big hugs and lots of love Jilly xx

  249. sarah acutt August 18, 2013 at 4:31 pm -  Reply

    [c] tea drinking straw

  250. alison keenan August 18, 2013 at 8:12 pm -  Reply

    My dear Alpa, I cannot begin to tell you how sorry I was to read how your life has been over the last year… I had no idea – I don’t think any of us did – just how poorly you’ve been, and how difficult things still are for you. To have travelled such a distance and mercifully been given hope and some relief was no doubt a blessing, but to come back to this country, with no further help or support, as you say, was understandably devastating. It is quite extraordinary to me that the medical profession in this country know so little about ME, and have such odd theories about its treatment. However, what has saddened me more than anything is the lack of emotional and physical support from your family and ‘friends’. Whether we always understand someones’ situation, illness, symptoms, surely kindness is the only way forward? ‘There but for the grace of God’ I always feel…. I wish I could suggest something helpful, or point you in the right direction to get the support you so clearly need, but maybe, just maybe, someone will read your comment here, and get in touch… I will pray that is the case. In the meantime though, please do try and keep in touch. As you will see from all the kind words you have friends here, and it makes me so happy to think that this blog can bring comfort and hope to you. Please look after yourself as well as you can, and don’t give up. I am sure there is a cure out there somewhere, and one day they will find it. With my love, Ali xx

  251. alison keenan August 18, 2013 at 8:13 pm -  Reply

    Hi there Ann and Claire – thanks for your guesses, they will have been taken into account, and the winner will be announced tomorrow! Ali xx

  252. alison keenan August 18, 2013 at 8:15 pm -  Reply

    Hello there Moira, thanks for your kind words, and yes, I am definitely feeling a little better each day, and even getting more used to wearing this corset! Thanks for your guess – check the next blog for the winner πŸ™‚ Love Ali xx

  253. alison keenan August 18, 2013 at 8:51 pm -  Reply

    Dear Annette, thanks for your lovely comment, and yes it will be a huge relief when I can unzip and unhook myself from this contraption! So glad to hear that your foot is healing well and you’re starting to regain the life you had before. I hadn’t realised that the surgery you’d had made it impossible for you to wear normal boots and shoes, and hope very much that with the help of your Aeropilates machine and gentle exercise that you’ll be able to get back into your walking boots soon! And you’re right, you miss so much when you travel everywhere by car – unless it’s through London in the traffic when people who walk actually make more headway than you! I haven’t been able to drive since the op because of the seat belt and how uncomfortable it is, but am hoping that by the end of the week I will be OK. It was lovely that you wrote to Una too, and I am know it will hearten her, as it did Alpa, to know we’re all thinking of her. Keep on getting stronger, and do keep in touch, love Ali xx

  254. alison keenan August 18, 2013 at 8:52 pm -  Reply

    My dear Sue, your words are a comfort to me… and you have incredible insight. I very much hope that the advice and long talks we had when going through treatment were a help, and as you say, she will be so very much missed… Love Ali xx

  255. alison keenan August 18, 2013 at 8:54 pm -  Reply

    My dear Janet, Your words echo my thoughts… the last time I worked with Amica, was I think her last day at QVC, and as you say she looked beautiful, as always. It is an image of her I will keep safe…Thank you for your kindness, love Ali xx

  256. alison keenan August 18, 2013 at 9:04 pm -  Reply

    Hey Angela Y’am alright! πŸ™‚ Definitely feeling less sore in places than I was with all the bruising now out, but stomach and back of legs very uncomfortable still… tight corset holding it all in though. Thank you for your kind words about Amica and Beulah.. I know their families would appreciate them, and I was very sorry to hear your news too.. 25 years old – that too is shocking. I am very glad though that your mammogram came back clear, and you’re right the thought it may return never really leaves you.. I hope that your holiday in Polperro (beautiful!) will be a real break for you. They say the weather is going to pick up again, and that part of this country is stunning in the sunshine eh? I hope Thomas will enjoy his stay with Aunty Sue, and watch out for the winner of the competition in my next blog! Thanks for taking part in it πŸ™‚ Love to you Angela, and thanks for keeping in touch. Ali xx

  257. alison keenan August 18, 2013 at 9:13 pm -  Reply

    Ann, thank you for your kind words, and I can happily tell you that I am definitely more comfortable now, although sitting up for any great length of time isn’t too good! Bloomin’ corset cuts into my tummy and legs, but mustn’t grumble as I’m definitely over the worst! I love your guess, and will be naming the winner of the competition in my next blog! Thank you for taking part, love Ali x

  258. alison keenan August 18, 2013 at 9:16 pm -  Reply

    Alli, not only do we have the same name, but you sound like my kind of woman! πŸ™‚ Monty Python’s “Always Look on The Bright Side of Life” is a song can make me laugh however mouldy I’m feeling, and as you say, there is always light to be found in most of life’s situations. Thank you for your guess and we will be announcing the winner tomorrow! Love Ali x

  259. Vivie Dobrucki August 18, 2013 at 10:51 pm -  Reply

    Hi Ali your such a beautiful person you lift our spirits love to you and take care x :0)

  260. Vivie Dobrucki August 18, 2013 at 10:54 pm -  Reply

    Sorry forgot to put my answer
    C American tea drinker

  261. Irene eady August 23, 2013 at 11:46 am -  Reply

    Dear Ali, have never written to you before but have always read your blogs, would just like to say what an amazing lady you are, you have been through so much and more, hope you will soon be feeling more comfortable than you are at this moment , get well soon god bless irene eady. Answer C

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