Tea Rooms Taste Testing and Free Short Story!


You know one of those jobs where you’re supposed to secretly go round various places and test their wares? Well Wendy and I went spying… I mean ‘mystery shopping’ in some local tea rooms this week – first stop, Chagford. There are several there, from tiny to slightly bigger and what we were looking for were hints and tips on how to run our own tea rooms – which will start on the weekend of February 17th/18th/19th in Sheepwash – so time is of the essence!

Having collected several cakes, we went to actually eat at The Old Forge – where we found a fascinating guy called Dr Richard. WELL! Doctor Richard WAS actually a doctor, then a psychiatrist, but has gone back to his first love running a café/coffee shop in a historic part of the ancient town in Devon, about an hour from where I live half the week when I’m not at QVC.

tea rooms

He served a ‘savoury cream tea’ – with cheese scones and cream cheese – and chutney – probably a great option to introduce at our tea rooms, for people who don’t like sweet stuff. He has said I can go back there and pick his brains in general – so I will do, and will keep you informed.


When we got home, we laid out the different cakes, from banana carrot cake to polenta lemon cake to iced almond drizzle etc – and most of them tasted amaaaaazing! We will have our work cut out to get practising making some amazing tasting cakes to sell at our first inaugural pop up vintage tea rooms the weekend after Valentine’s Day. EX21 5NE – Retreats For You – Do come down if you are nearby!


Free Short Story on my Website – Talking of all things romance, I’ve posted another of my short stories on my new website blog this week – do go read ‘Follow the Joy’. Also on the new post, updates from my week off being ill (cough) and a couple of super videos you can watch too. One is of Daisy dog thinking no one can see her, out in the yard in Devon, trying to steal food from a high up plate! Go here to read the story and see the vids! Spin to the bottom for the short story.

Book of the Week And of course my new Read it Write it Sell it blog featuring the latest book from lovely Victoria Cornwell. Set in the 1700s and featuring smugglers! Do check it out here.

Lolly Lunch Well it was off to another wedding dress shop with my lovely bride-to-be daughter Lauren last week – she is just so booootiful, am very proud! Had a nice lunch in Farnham afterwards, although I wasn’t very well and had to stop myself coughing!


Cough Discovery One of the things that helped me feel better enough within a week to go back to work, I swear, was a thing called a salt pipe, where you breathe through it and there’s salt inside it. Weird! But it felt very effective. That and a ginger/lemon/cayenne pepper/manuka honey hot drink, green drinks, laying with my throat lower than my chest during the night and a bit of tipping and beating (postural drainage) all helped. Thank god that’s over tho’ – I hate being ill and it really got to me! The first time I’ve ever had to call in sick – thank goodness it was only two days last weekend, then I was off anyway and gradually got better over the week at the Retreat. Thanks to everyone who sent me lovely messages. I’m sure they helped! Lol.

Retreat fun One of the best things about helping to run the retreats down in Devon is getting to know other ladies. Here’s a moment when one of this week’s guests, the amazing Anjana got up and did a farewell ‘rap’! to Deborah Dooley who has now handed running RetreatsForYou over to me and Wendy! Squeeee! If you’d like to come join us, it’s just £80 per person per night full board so do ask for details of what’s coming up and say when you’d roughly like to come – four nights usually, Mon to Fri. Feb 6th is bodybladers so if you want to relax and keep fit, do just email us info@retreatsforyou.co.uk Anjana has her book out with Cinnamon Press soon too – well done that girl! Some of the other ladies did scriptwriting, one was writing her hubby’s autobiography – a top police chief – and it was a great group this week. Enjoyed it very much and even got to make some of my own bread from scratch for the first time. Also took the girls on some lovely walks…

Retreat fun

River Walk And as I got better this week, it was lovely that the sun came out on most days – is it just me or does the sun shine more in Devon?!


Take Part in Davina’s Programme Look at this! They are looking for people with a dream to take part in her year-long transformation show – more info here!


Jackie and Ruth Langsford Look at Jackie’s blog this week – something’s afoot with the lovely Ruth Langsford – watch this space as Jackie says!


Dog cartoon Facebook Funny hahahaaaa! And very relevant to this week’s escapades!


Watch – OK after two weeks of La La Land, I nearly went to see it again this week – I definitely will at some point soon using my Limitless card once I get back to London, but for now, let me just say how much I’ve been enjoying keeping up with Big Brother – what?! It’s a human behaviour experiment – see it on catch up. Also this is doing the rounds online and it’s soooooo funny! The ‘BadLipReading’ version of the inauguration – so clever how they make up the words that really look like they fit! I love the Hilary bit and the ‘repeat after me’ bit in the middle. Wanting to see ‘Jackie’ at the cinema soon – more news next week!

This week on QVC

  • Amazon Echo – early bird order link is here – do get it before it launches midnight tonight, Friday 27th, and hopefully I get to be on with Lee if there’s any left at 10pm! (NB remember to check out the QVC page on my website debbieflint.com for new Early Bird links)


  • Sunday sees the return of one of the most successful series of Today’s Special Values ever – the Dyson cordless vac, this time the V8


  • And here are sneaky peeks at next week’s Today’s Special Values from Vionics, the Adley multi-knit mesh Trainer in wider fit; the Magniflex 3 in 1 all seasons merino wool and bio cotton mattress; Wed sees Alison cork return with an exciting new launch of her bedding, with the Pintuck Velvet and Linen bedcover; Thursday’s a pilgrim watch and Friday’s Niod’s skin heroes collection.


Next week – a massive undertaking – and doing my own plastering?!! Join me next time.
KEEP IN TOUCH – come join Facebook groups and Twitter, links here; follow my official QVC Facebook page here and subscribe to my weekly newsletter here.

MY NOVELS, SHORT STORIES AND WEIGHT LOSS BOOKS – just go to my website for all the info on my writer page – it’s here.

My paperbacks – all online


Don’t forget that my new TTFLs book is now out– go here to see it! And stand by for lots of inspirational messages on my Facebook groups too!



  1. Susan January 27, 2017 at 10:44 am -  Reply

    Hey Debbie, glad you’re feeling better. Just had to let you know I saw la la land. I did enjoy it. I was a little bit underwhelmed but I do think as others have said it’s just coz it’s so hyped up. Have a nice weekend x

  2. Judy Austin January 27, 2017 at 6:41 pm -  Reply

    Hi Debbie glad you’re on the mend. Wishing your every success with the opening of the tea rooms. Always enjoy your blog:-and seeing you on QVC.

  3. Rosie cole January 27, 2017 at 10:07 pm -  Reply

    can’t wait to hear about the pop up tea rooms as only live a couple of miles down the road so will definitely join you. X

  4. Jill DowdingWalker January 27, 2017 at 11:16 pm -  Reply

    Any clue of Vionics price?

  5. martin forbes January 28, 2017 at 12:11 pm -  Reply

    happy new year debbie

  6. Eileen almond January 28, 2017 at 3:29 pm -  Reply

    Hi Debbie so glad you are feeling better it’s a nasty bug that’s going round this year. I wish you all success at Sheeowash I do hope that you aren’t leaving qvc you are my favourite. Xx

  7. Maggie Nickle January 28, 2017 at 9:28 pm -  Reply

    Hiya Debbie
    Glad your feeling better, l have just got rid of my over xmas lurgies but have a
    cough still, have invested in a salt pipe, read your blog and was just wondering how on earth do
    You lie with your throat lower than your chest lol!! Willing to try anything to get rid of this pesky cough!

  8. Yvie G January 29, 2017 at 5:07 pm -  Reply

    Hi Debbie, last year we stayed at a B&B at George Nympton, not too far from Sheepwash, and said we loved it there and would go back this year, so we may come and visit your teashop. Just love the savoury scones!! I had a similar scone at a small National Trust place in Devon a couple of years ago but haven’t seen it anyware since, so I hope you will be doing them, yum! !! I have a great chocolate cake recipe (made with mayonnaise ) that everyone loves,so I will send it to you. Good luck with your new venture.

  9. jean walsh January 29, 2017 at 7:14 pm -  Reply

    I do enjoy your blogs

  10. debs f January 30, 2017 at 11:26 pm -  Reply

    Susan –
    omg it’s one of my top five films ever! I think i’m going to see it a third time soon! lol x

  11. debs f January 30, 2017 at 11:26 pm -  Reply

    Judy –
    aw thanks so much hon – I enjoy writing them too!

  12. debs f January 30, 2017 at 11:28 pm -  Reply

    Rosie – do email me info@debbieflint.com to not miss any of the announcements, and if you can, subscribe to the newsletter on my website if you’re not on the list already – i’ll be announcing it soon! Would love to meet you – do make sure you come up and say hi! x

  13. debs f January 30, 2017 at 11:28 pm -  Reply

    jill – sorry hon! missed this question – you know social media is better! lol.

    Martin – you too! 🙂

  14. debs f January 30, 2017 at 11:30 pm -  Reply

    Eileen –
    aw bless you , thanks so much! I hope not – no plans to leave that’s for sure! lol x

  15. debs f January 30, 2017 at 11:32 pm -  Reply

    Maggie – good question! I just prop up the middle part of my body with a big cushion under my body , part of an old sofa! And lots of cushions to make it into a wedge shape !good luck hon – hopefully it’ll help if you try it! Horrible illness that’s for sure x

  16. debs f January 30, 2017 at 11:33 pm -  Reply

    Yvie –
    yes please, recipe sounds very interesting. Oh and do make sure you let me know if you are coming so i can make sure it’s when i’m there? Glad you like the area and for certain we’ll be having savoury scones! yay! x

  17. debs f January 30, 2017 at 11:34 pm -  Reply

    Jean –
    thanks hon – so glad you like them! They take long enough! lol x

  18. Leah A January 31, 2017 at 9:41 am -  Reply

    Cakes look great in your photos, what a lovely man Dr. Richard is to share his lovely goodies !!! Good luck with your new venture it sounds a beautiful place to be. Glad your feeling better. I’ve had this horrid bug since beginning of December ! Will try your cough remedy & laying with throat lower than chest a gr8 idea will definitely give this a try. Great weekly blog as always, I love reading it X

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