Finally!!! I’m back to work after an elongated break of two weeks. Only twice before have I had a gap of two weeks or more when I was working for QVC – once was a Christmas and New Year break in the early years and once was when I went to Beijing to work for QVC for three weeks in 2014. Anyway, even though I had to not use my hand much, and keep it dry (thank goodness for dry shampoo!) I managed to get up to some stuff whilst I was off… See below.
First though, your chance to win this super Elemis prize, a four-piece his and hers skincare collection worth around £150! Featuring Pro-Collagen Cleansing Balm and Pro-Collagen Marine Cream plus Time for Him Daily Moisture Boost and Deep Cleanse Facial Wash. All you have to do to enter is to leave a comment below and if you like, tell me your favourite product and why. The winner will be randomly chosen after comp closes on Thursday 30th November at midday, full T&Cs here.
Black Friday bonanza
Ok so I’m back just in time for the biggest weekend of the year online – they call it Black Friday and we have a whole weekend, including Monday, of fabulous deals ahead of us. Go here to see the selections already online.
And watch out for this weekend’s Today’s Special Value offers too
Friday’s LAB Life + Beauty device for anti-ageing with an additional attachment specially for the eyes and lips.
Saturday’s amazing best ever Bose Wave Music System IV on Easy Pay, but here’s the Early Bird order link to buy it now.
…and Sunday’s biggest ever TV – a 65” whopper from Samsung including 4k and Easy Pay
Then finally, join me at midnight on Sunday to launch Monday’s fabulous RAC Today’s Special Value offer. It’s a set of two dash cams with additional 8GB storage cards. The RAC dash cam, the latest offer to help keep you guarded on the roads. I have found mine very reassuring, especially on these long journeys to and from Devon every week. This one has a proper lens, really good quality, and is relatively small so easy to fit in the windscreen – or rear window. If you’ve got one already, consider a second, so you’ve always got a record of what’s behind you as well as in front. Happily I haven’t had to use mine yet, but the footage is always there should I need to prove what actually happened. Join me Sunday midnight to find out more.
Next week’s deals are previewed below! What an amazing seven days ahead… And the last seven weren’t bad either – well, the last 17 days, if I’m being accurate…
Girls Road Trip
Whilst I was laid up, I managed to do a couple of interesting things I’d never done before. For one of them I can’t recall the last time I did something like it – taking a road trip with a mate driving! Well, I couldn’t so Sheena kindly did! We had a super time and attended a fascinating talk at Leeds Castle about the latest Medical Detection Dogs developments, including detecting a specific bacteria on a swab – so clever what these canine detection dogs can do. Obviously diabetes alert dogs were in evidence all over – it was great to get some puppy love and catch up with pals. Met the Mayor and Lady Mayoress of the area too – and a lovely time was had by all. Got some super videos which explain all about what happened – seeing the detection in action was amazing.
Then Sheena and I went to my sister’s spa for some pampering – I had nails and a back treatment, and Sheena had an Elemis facial – she’d never had one before, ever, so was suitably impressed. Now I know what to get her for Christmas! I’ll have to buy her a set. See here for all our deals currently on offer – some great kits!) After that, I got my hair done at my old hairdressers in Dorking, since I hadn’t been able to wash it due to not being able to get my hand wet. That evening we went to a super Gala dinner at the Burford Bridge Hotel and had a delightful stay in the Running Horses in Mickleham nearby – it even had a claw-footed bath and it was bliss. I had three baths in the time I was there! On the way home the next day we stopped off to see my daughter Lolly for a speedy lunch in Farnham and then saw some pretty sights on the journey back to Devon. You can find out more about it on my Debbie’s Diary blog on my website, and you can see loads of pics on my Facebook post of the event too.
Don’t forget to ‘like’ the Facebook page (link below) too – that way you’ll get the vlogs and updates automatically!
I still had time to do some vlog updates whilst I was off – including an interesting conundrum about something weird in my garden – see the snippet below. Thanks to everyone who comments and says how much they appreciate these types of video, it’s my pleasure to have a little chit chat every now and then, and get you out and about if you’re one of the viewers who’s often stuck indoors. Mind you, the weather has turned ‘orrible lately so perhaps you’re in the best place! See what I mean on my vlog of the week clip on my website.
It’s a mug’s game…
One of the other things I did whilst I was recuperating was a mug-making workshop. This was single-handed – literally, and that’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it, as the reason why they are somewhat… ahem… rubbish! But I hope to see them transferred into actual mugs at some stage soon – maybe if it’s not too bad I’ll give a wedding one to Lauren! But I don’t think I’ll be giving up my day job any time soon… Or the weekday job!
Final hand pic – the big reveal
Since several of you informed me you’re a bit squeamish, I’m putting the final pic of the hand op, after the stitches came out, on my Debbie’s Diary blog on my website, instead of on here! But suffice it to say, it was a welcome finale to a fortnight-long, self-imposed sabbatical and thank goodness it’s over. I already have no pins and needles any more, and can type again. The little finger is not quite as strong as it was, I can’t grip it with my thumb very strongly yet, but that will come. I will just have to exercise it eh! So glad to be back though! And looking forward to the week ahead. And apologies if the ‘after’ pic on my Diary blog is still a bit yuk! Am sure with a bit of TLC it will improve.
Jonny P came to tea
Was thrilled to catch up with my old mate from QVC, Jonny P, this week, when he came to stay along with some lovely writer guests. Wendy cooked an amazing dinner of home-made lamb burgers, falafel and I did wilted tahini kale! You know when you have a mate you don’t see for ages (ahem, two years, JP?) but can just pick up like it was yesterday? Well he is one of those. He used to be a whizz-kid director at QVC when I was here the first time (for those who don’t know I was here for six years, went away for nine, then returned to QVC eight years ago.) We have kept in touch all those years and seen our kids grow up, go to uni and leave home. And both got divorced and Jonny got remarried! Somewhat parallel lives – and he’s found his soul mate in his second marriage so maybe there’s hope for me to do so too!
Ancient Devon Custom – goodness gracious great barrels of fire!
Wow this is an unusual one! This was the unbelievable sight in a nearby town whilst I was off and it dates back centuries. Apparently to ward off ancient spirits, every year the good people of nearby Hatherleigh ‘roll’ burning tar barrels ceremoniously down the main streets in the town on carnival day – they are really barrels and they are really on fire! Not something you see every day that’s for sure! Here’s the video – scary!
Afterwards everyone headed down to the main car park to either watch the kids go on the fairground rides or eat a very soggy candy floss – at least rain did not stop play! Thanks to Wendy and Graham for another interesting ‘first’!
Paddington 1 & 2
Whilst I was off I did a fair amount of TV-watching, apart from the usual stuff like This Week and Andrew Marr etc, being a bit of a politics geek (well I did go to university at the LSE – full title the ‘London School of Economics and Political Science!’). Anyway in preparation for my cinema trip this week, I watched Paddington on Amazon, and was then ready for Paddington 2 at the cinema with my pal Caitlin. Incidentally watch out for the Amazon bargains coming up soon including some amazing Amazon offers this weekend e.g. the Echo Show. I have to say I thoroughly enjoyed the first Paddington, but the sequel was spectacular. It’s so well done, so funny and well-crafted. The plot is superb with lots of little plot-seeds sown earlier on and reaped later, tying it all together… plus the acting was great too. Putting aside the couple of tiny blips (where I found myself thinking, ‘that wouldn’t happen in real life’ then remembering that a bear can’t actually talk) it was one of the most enjoyable films I’ve seen in ages – I even cried at the end! Idiot! A great 8.5/10 from me – very high!
Looking forward to seeing ‘A Woman of No Importance’ in the cinema next week, and ‘Labour of Love’ for a second time in the theatre, this time with son Brad.
Marie Francoise’s Monkey Business
Loving this pic which our Kipling guest Marie Francoise posted on Facebook this week – very cute! I love Kipling bags – have been really enjoying using the deeper Ortoli design lately – my iPad and my almond milk fit inside! Some are on the Black Friday offer list, here http://www.qvcuk.com/content/events/black-friday/deals/handbags.html so do check out all of our Kipling offers here.
Book of the Week
This week I am over the moon with my favourite ex-military cop Jack Reacher’s latest from Lee Child. The hardback is out at same time as audiobook so I devoured it. I just love the way Lee Child writes, and loved the new more caring feel he’s included in this one. ‘The Midnight Line’ did not let me down, a slightly less formulaic, less predictable, slightly more dark and thought-provoking read. More via my Debbie’s Diary blog.
Look at this – what’s this coming out of my fern?! It looks a bit like an olive plant, but it’s got bits of fern coming off the leaves too – no one seems to know much about it – must ask Richard Jackson next time I see him. Spent a fair bit of time in the garden whilst I was off, tidying, weeding, reclaiming all the begonia corms etc. And pondering what on earth this thing could be! Any ideas how it would happen? There’s a Facebook post with the video so you can see it in full here.
Still did my two stints in the Sheepwash Community Shop though, where I volunteer on a Tuesday afternoon. I didn’t get much exercise done in the first week, but by week two, I definitely needed some yoga – so I took the opportunity during a quiet moment in the shop, to do a bit of stretching behind the counter! Fortunately no one came in! Happily I did a class this week, just had to take it easy on the old hand – it’ll be a few weeks before I can lean on it, no doubt!
Talking of the shop, this is what I got myself from the Sheepwash collection of festive designs – the baaa humbug Christmas card – how funny!
This week on QVC
See above for this weekend’s TSV highlights too.
Saturday night – my turn to host the big Saturday night show – this time with my old mucker and Dyson guest Steve Mcdonald, who has been a stand-up comedian in his time – so that will be fun! Then at 10pm, a two-hour Christmas special from Lola Rose with me and lovely Nikki – fab fashion jewellery in semi-precious stones. Get in early by looking at the recent Lola Rose arrivals on our website here.
Tuesday – Centigrade’s down-fill coat with removable faux fur hood – just in time for the forthcoming freeze!
Wednesday – Nails Inc’s six-piece Chrome Collection, and it’s on an early bird order link from around Monday?
Thursday – Clarks boots are back and this time they’re wide! An E-fit is on offer for the Enfield River suede buckle ankle boot – yay!
And Friday is the suave and sophisticated Frank Usher ‘raining crystals’ knitted poncho.
Also watch out in the next seven days for the new Bareminerals Make a Statement Christmas Collection, going on sale from Thursday or Friday.
Looking forward to seeing ‘A Woman of No Importance’ in the cinema, and ‘Labour of Love’ for a second time in the theatre, this time with son Brad – our little Xmas treat. And of course, being back at worrrrrk! Yahooo!
P.s. if you didn’t guess it in last week’s question, in my old school photo, which one was I? The one in the second row, looking away from the camera! Well done those of you who guessed it!