Nature goes nuts, panto fun and Mum of the Year


Setting sunAs the mild winter continues down south, strange goings-on in the Flint garden… And a whole load of entertainment to keep you amused!

– Birds behaving strangely…
– What's your pet hate? Big Brother Celeb's help those resolutions!
– Last-minute panto fun in Wimbledon and the awesome 'The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo' – film of the year?
– And a possible Mum of the Year – yes already!

First tweet on air
IPadIt was lovely to take the above pic with the Canon camera Today's special Value at the weekend. I'm always thrilled when I get gadgets to play with, and I just got two of the best! Both the camera and a new 'toy' that made us all smile – yes, there'll be lots of new online activity for your QVC presenters, ladies and gentlemen – we've all been lent iPads!

It's great news, since following the sell out Apple show before Christmas (took Dale and Lee Hohbein 20 minutes and it was all gone!) we can now focus on the iPad and use it to communicate with you directly – live on air! Facebook or Twitter, and straight away I had my first tweet – during the Kim and Co Home show – lovely to hear from you.

Debbie and LaurenKeep your comments coming through to our new QVCUK Twitter address, which is, no surprises, @qvcuk! As you may know, several of us have Twitter accounts, so search amongst @qvcuk's follows and you'll find us all! (I'm @debbieflint if you would like to follow me!).  And by the way, on Facebook, I'm gradually getting through the couple of hundred friend requests I was behind with – thanks to lovely daughter Lauren for helping me!
QVC's new Twitter pageAnyway, the aim is to reach 2000 followers ASAP, so follow us then RT (that's 'retweet'!). And watch out for the #FF's (hashtag follow friday's – where tweeters recommend their friends every Friday). I'll put a smattering of online abbreviations and terms here this week too, fyi (that's an easy one! For your info! lol) (oh – laugh out loud!). But don't forget to keep your texts and calls coming through to us on air too – it's always lovely to know you're there, imo (in my opinion!)

See below (in Snippets) for more tech stuff!

Less 'tweet', more 'clang' – birds behaving strangely!
OK so it's a weird one this. Maybe it's that we haven't really had a harsh winter down here in Surrey (so far!). Or maybe it's the full moon (more of that next week!). But for several days this week, I've gone out the back door, only to be greeted by the most unusual sight – and a strange noise – coming from inside the greenhouse.

At first I thought it was wind (ahem! I mean from the greenhouse, not me!) but then realised there was a little feathered friend doing something rather odd, over and over again…

How peculiar! The funniest thing was, it's been there every single day since – for a couple of hours a day! I'm sure it thinks the reflection in the stainless steel bin is a rival but how unusual is it that the silly bird keeps coming back and pecking the metal over and over again!

Any ideas? If so, enlighten me, or tell me if you've had anything similar ever! A pal said I should send it to 'Springwatch' but I don't know how ATM (at the moment). Maybe I should look into it… That'd be a first wouldn't it! Although I think my next 'first' might be seeing tons of films in one day – see below for why!

Pet hates – have you been watching CBB?
As we all know, January is the 'Monday' of the year. And if you've already made that 'Monday feeling' worse by breaking your New Year's resolutions, see my book recommendation in Footnotes below. But there are one or two shows on TV right now that are a definite guilty pleasure, brightening our dull evenings!

As well as 'Got To Dance' (see below), I do love the new 'Celebrity Big Brother' and have been really enjoying it so far. Natalie Cassidy ('EastEnders') is a bit of a star, and how deep is Romeo's voice and how great is Gareth's bod?!

Frankie Cocozza in Celebrity Big BrotherBut the one thing I can't help cringing at is all the smoking. Sorry to anyone who likes it, but it leaves me cold. And they're doing it sooooo much! Good job we haven't got smellivision – I'm betting it reeks in the place already! As you can tell, I'm not a fan of the ciggies.

Almost none of the QVC presenters smoke, which is really nice for us, as a team. And I'm betting the sight of poor Frankie from 'X Factor' coughing his guts up as he frantically hurries outside, bleary-eyed to drag on a fag as soon as he wakes up, is not doing his sex symbol image any favours!

Anyway, if it's helping you realise what a good idea it is to quit when you spot the 'smoky joe faces' they pull – let alone thinking of the wrinkles! lol – then see a fab book recommendation below which might help. And sincere best wishes with your efforts from me to anyone trying to give up – you know it'll be worth it in the end. Anyway there've been a lot of funny moments in the first week. Here's a little clip from the Three Little Pigs task this week! funny!

A heartwarming tale – odds-on favourite for Mum of the Year? Yes, already!
Mum of the yearOh my goodness I LOVE a happy ending and a success story, so I thought you might like this. In the papers t his week, mega-mum Emma Salisbury was praised for raising so much money for research into her 11-year-old son's rare eye condition – over £350,000 with fun runs – that she enabled scientists to find a cure. A cure!

The team at Imperial College London have now created an injection to heal damaged eye cells, and after clinical trials, her son Tommy will have the jab within two years with the aim that he won't go blind when he's a teenager, like his grandad did. Go here to find out more about her other fundraising page.

What an incredible mum, and what an amazing story. We hear a lot about fundraising for research, so how amazing is it to get the pay off of the best possible outcome to all that hard work – along with a possible nomination for Mum of the Year, as they said in the papers! Brought a tear to my eye. And well done to Emma and fingers crossed for her little boy.

Some short highlights for you! I worked six out of seven days last week, so lots of little bits rather than just lots of me out gallivanting! 😉

Dame Edna in panto– Firstly – until Saturday 14th January you can still go see one of the most brilliant panto's I've ever seen – 'Dick Whittington' at Wimbledon Theatre. Not only is Dame Edna (first foray into panto) in a class of her own, Jack (Kev Orkian) is also sheer brilliance.

It has one of the funniest slapstick sketches I've ever seen (12 days of Christmas) and some real laugh out loud moments – if you can catch it, please do! Check online for tickets. Went this week with Goody – missed last year's, but have seen the Wimbledon panto every year for nearly 20 years, so was nice to go! We attended the Q&A session onstage with Barry Humphries afterwards too, which was also enlightening!

Tiffany Style lamps and Yankee candles- A Tiffany lamp glow can rescue the room! Now all the Christmas lights are down, do get those Yankee candles going again – and the Tiffany Style lamps! Suddenly the lounge doesnt seem so dull anymore! Search 'tiffany' and there are 60 or so choices for you on our site! From £31.75 upwards – so maybe a good place to put that xmas cash you were given! 

- A fashion funny from a recent on-air session with our super stylist Glenn Campbell – I always love being on with him and he was obviously in a cheeky mood during our Centigrade show last week – here's a little snippet where he really tickled my fancy – so to speak!

- Be the first to read about some new gadgetry! As you know, I love my technology – as long as it's made simple! One of my best mates is LJ Rich, who does just that. She used to be a guest at QVC and is now a bit of a techno-guru for BBC Click.

Debbie and LJShe's sent me the link to her article on some of the latest trends, which means you can be amongst the first to be in the know! Including info on the brand new 'niche tech' tablet that comes 'jam-packed full of gourmet chefs cooking stuff'! She's been at the annual, famous CES technology show in Las Vegas  – hope Lee Hohbein says hello if he sees her there! He was planning to go last I spoke to him!

– 'Got to Dance' – guilty secrets continued! OMG, Ashley Banjo is lovely! Older brother hidden anywhere for me, Ashley? Or an uncle? Dad? Grandad, come to that? hehe! Anyway, back to the plot – Sky's dance talent show is hotting up, and here's one of the absolutely breath-taking performances, from a troupe called 'Prodijig' – so original! Well done them! And watch out for the judges' reactions!

WATCH – this week it's a biggie! The new Hollywood version of 'The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo' is AWESOME – probs the second best film I've seen in a year! Just over 9 out of ten. It's got the lot – drama, retribution, intrigue, action, sex 'n' romance, a gripping plot and blinking good characters – even a bit of humour. One of those films where it stays with you for ages afterwards. Loved it. I want to read book too now – want more. 'Specially of Daniel Craig!

There's a bit of a debate raging over whether the Swedish original with subtitles is better tho'. What do you think? (only if you've actually seen both tho', or it wouldnt be fair!). And of the book if you've read it? This was my first dipping of the toe into the Stieg Larsson water, and what a great way to do it! Highly recommended.

BTW (by the way) – next week I'll review 'The Iron Lady' – and maybe Golden Globe nominated 'The Artist' silent movie (yes really,) as well! Too many to decide! Or maybe this month I'll do a TiFFT (Try it For The First Time club – I made that one up, it's not a Twitter abbreviation! lol ), of seeing three films at the cinema in one day! Why? Just look at all the new movies also out in the next week or so! 'War Horse', 'Shame', 'Margin Call'…  Hmmmm…

CendrillonAnd, culture alert! I've booked my tickets for pal Goody and I to go to Wimbledon Odeon to see the Royal Opera House (yes you read that right!) simulcasting a performance of 'Cendrillon' or Cinderella! – on Monday 16th January (it&#3 9;s also showing on the 24th January).

It's three hours long, full-on opera and I can't wait! Gosh what an exciting prospect! Just letting you know early in case you also like going to stuff like that and you're in the vicinity! Check here for tickets. Will report back soon…

LISTEN - got a couple of CDs for Christmas, and loved them, but one was a bit curious. Anyone loving the new Amy Winehouse album? I usually put stuff on here that I like, but I was reeeaally disappointed with some of the tracks on the posthumous release! I know they weren't destined for release originally but even so, I was quite surprised they decided to include some of them. Others are fab, as ever. I love her earlier work and she's a big loss.

Dr Who weekendONLINE – fave posting of the week on Facebook – this link to the infamous BSB 'Dr Who' weekend, from pal Barry Ryan. If this doesn't make you smile, nothing will! Produced long before we were used to having immediate access to old footage of classic series, way before YouTube, it was a groundbreaking weekend of programming on our entertainment show '31 West', the old 'squariel' service (did you have one of those?).

It was so renowned, it even featured in a book on 'Dr Who' facts! It was shot in our own studios, long before the days of QVC, many years ago! Who's that ditsy blonde with the weird voice and the dodgy styling?!

Shows how much better my mate Shyama was than me back then – and she hasn't aged a bit!! Our current kitchen set is approximately where the Tardis stood, all those moons ago. (For now, anyway – the big QVC move to Chiswick fast approaches!).

How to Quit bookREAD – if you're in need of help with your New Year's resolutions, Dr Patrick Holford has come along with a suitable aid just at the right time – the quirkily titled 'How to Quit without feeling S**t' (!). I like the sound of it because it talks about how supplements can help combat withdrawal symptoms from things like giving up smoking, or sugar, or less alcohol.

Cravings are much greater when your blood sugar levels are low, so a low GL diet can help, he says. Plus alcohol promotes the release of the relaxing chemical GABA, but if you supplement the amino acid glutamine, this helps you make GABA. Fascinating stuff.

Il Divo CDQVC – "this week I are mostly been using"…. the Il Divo album 'Wicked Games' – sorry but I have! Helping fill my long journeys to and from work with a bit of culture! OMG some amazingly passionate tracks – my faves including the heartfelt track five 'Falling Slowly (Te Prometo)' – mind you, I say that – I'm assuming it's heartfelt 'cos I've got no idea what they're singing about! But when they look and sound like that does it matter? hehe!

BTW (by the way), let me know who your hearthrobs are – past or present. I'm going to tell you about a bit of 'manifesting your man' new moon fun next week!

Ileana by Ronit Zilkha Asymmetric Knit Tunic DressAlso QVC – coming up – What A Girl Wants Weekend! (well, the stuff they can show on the telly! lol). There'll be lots of your favourites, including some big Today's Special Values from Leighton Denny nails  and EMU boots. Plus after a sell-out debut, Ileana by Ronit Zilkha is back with me on Saturday 14th January, Love this asymmetric knit tunic dress!

Have a fab weekend!


  1. Louise January 12, 2012 at 10:50 pm -  Reply

    Hiya Debs.
    My first blog to you for 2012. I’m back at work – thank goodness – after being off sick. Even though you get paid, time not spent at work, for me, is soooo boring, don’t you find that? I bought my mum the Pam Ayres autobiography as one of her chrissie pressies – I think it took her 2 seconds to read it. She loved it.
    I’m approaching this year with gusto; Despite my recent medical problems, I’m feeling quite confident and positive about 2012. I hope you feel you did the right thing by returning to QVC – I certainly know you did. I’m still contemplating getting a kindle but am leaning towards a tablet, as I don’t read half as much as I ought so, financially,a machine which can be utilised for other things would be more viable for me. QVC doesn’t have any tablets coming up as a tsv does it? I really should have gone for one of your previous tsv tablets, but I can dither for England!
    Wasn’t that druzy pendant gorge? I’ve ordered the patinum on waitlist. What a great price compared with the same necklace on QVC US.
    Well, Debs, I hope your writing career really takes off in 2012; I admire you greatly for having the confidence to try and make a go of it. I know this sounds like a cliche, but I am totally like a sponge; I absolutely absorb information. I am the type of person who has to be learning constantly. I research all the time on the internet – currently it’s the american mafia. I start with one name, and end up on another topic altogether. Some people may think that’s a bit sad but, talking to a friend at work, she’s exactly the same. I get excited just talking about it. I get the impression you are like that – am I right? What is the point to life, if you don’t have a yearning to further your knowledge?
    Well, I’ve gone on for long enough. Hope the babies had a lovely christmas, probably like my two, a very spoiled one! We had a quiet festive period, just how we like it, just mum and me and Osc and Cas. Going on your blog, you and the family had a good time, too.
    I’m gonna start some sudoku now, so take care and speak soon.

  2. Susan January 13, 2012 at 7:49 pm -  Reply

    Hi Debs,
    Lovely photos of you and Lauren. I was interested in the book you mentioned. You know my background now and I’m not super into all these supplements but may have a read. Still don’t know how you manage to write sooo much in a blog!! Or have time for FB and twitter!
    Chat soon
    Susan x

  3. carole adcock January 14, 2012 at 8:28 am -  Reply

    Hello Debs, what an exciting life you lead….sounds great. The story of the mum who raised all the money for research to help find a cure for her son is amazing! Have a good week. Love Carole xx p.s. did you ever decide what the collective name for a group of QVC presenters was??!?

  4. Nigel January 14, 2012 at 6:47 pm -  Reply

    Debs – You’re right as usual, its territorial behavior(they will attack a rival to defend their territory).I’ve had a chaffinch attack the upstairs windows and a pheasant the consevatory roof.
    Enjoying the mix of celebs on CBBro this year (‘Mum’,’Dad’,’Uncle’ and plenty of kids !)Think Michael is so laid back he could fall over!Lol!
    Fav AbFab moment so far – Patsy answering the McCartney wallet “Hi Stella”. Sublime.
    Liked your setting sun tree pic – did you get your inspiration from David Hockney’s new exhibition at the Royal Academy ? (Thought the tree montage using 9 different cameras and different seasons was mesmerising – BBC Countryfile 8/1/12)
    Have a good week , Cheers Nige 🙂

  5. Susan January 16, 2012 at 12:23 pm -  Reply

    Hi Debs,
    A question for you – do you know what age you should start using a bust cream? Someone told me mid 20s onwards?
    Susan x

  6. Iris Gibson January 16, 2012 at 6:59 pm -  Reply

    Hi Debbie,
    Many thanks for my Christmas card,glad you liked Pipa.She was
    spoilt at Christmas with lots of pressies to chew.Always enjoy
    your blog,don’t know how you fit everything in ,Phew! Enjoy your
    film reviews and news of your pogs,also loved your Generation Game really took me back, never missed it.
    Happy 2012 to you and all at QVC.
    Best Wishes,
    Iris Gibson

  7. martin forbes January 17, 2012 at 5:00 pm -  Reply

    hope you are well debs martin forbes

  8. debs f January 20, 2012 at 12:39 am -  Reply

    Hello Louise – nice to hear from you! Was wondering what you and some of the other semi-regulars have been up to! Glad you’re feeling positive about 2012, and thanks so much for your comments about my writing. As you’ll know, I also love learning, like you, I even sat one Saturday night and chose to watch a BBC4 prog about the invention of electricity – Farraday, Tesla, Edison et al – and really felt enlightened afterwards! hehe!

  9. debs f January 20, 2012 at 12:43 am -  Reply

    Susan – thanks for writing! The ansa is – by not doing my novel, as I should be right now! Writers call it ‘displacement’ activity,and my friend Composer Kevin calls it ‘social-not-working’! haha! A bust cream should be from whenever you feel able to start using it, but mid 20’s would be great, you can’t really lose by doing it. Personally I began at 16 and am very very pleased it’s paid off after all these years! Good luck!
    ps the best ‘budget’ one we’ve got, I think, is Judith Williams range, do go read the reviews online. Gatineau is another classic, then there’s Lulu’s Troubleshooter (which I’m actually trialling at the mo and it’s lavendery and fab!), but I also love Decleor’s lush one – and many others. Soooo much choice! 🙂

  10. debs f January 20, 2012 at 12:47 am -  Reply

    Carole – nice to hear from you – yes I do try to pack it all in! lol. And collective name for qvc presenters? A gossip of course!! hehe! that’s my opinion anyway! xx

  11. debs f January 20, 2012 at 1:19 am -  Reply

    Nigel! Funny, your stories about being attacked by the birds etc! Am sure they don’t make any headway on your bullet-proof pile! lol. My fave moments on ab fab are too many, but one stand out was when patsy awoke having slept on the kitchen table with one massively red face and wonky hair on one side! Yes, saw the hockney stuff – love the colours – not sure about seasons, tho, probably have to be there to see it properly! If anyone else reading this wonders what it looks like, go here
    Thanks once again for a very cultured response! lol!

  12. debs f January 20, 2012 at 1:20 am -  Reply

    Martin – yes thanks!

  13. debs f January 20, 2012 at 1:23 am -  Reply

    Iris – so nice to hear from you again! yes lovely pic of little poggy Pipa on your xmas card! Glad you enjoy the film reviews – it’s a bit of a passion of mine I must admit! Years ago I had a regular film slot when I worked at Piccadilly Radio in Manchester and I have kept up with the industry ever since! As I’ve said before, ‘when I’m a grown up, I’d like to write movies and live in LA’! hehe!
    do feel free to leave me a little comment each week hon!

  14. Susan January 22, 2012 at 2:25 pm -  Reply

    Oh my Debs…from 16?! I’m waaay behind on that one then lol!! I should maybe start using a cream now!! Ta for the info. Thought you’d know. Hope you’ve had a nice weekend. Look forward to your next shows. I better go and do some work myself!!
    Susan x

  15. debs f January 24, 2012 at 3:59 am -  Reply

    Thanks Susan! Always a pleasure to hear from you! d xx

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