Claire, Ali and Alison at the Lulu concert

What a start to Wednesday!


Having spent most of yesterday refreshing my emails constantly, searching in Junk and even Trash (just incase I had mistakenly deleted “IT” ) – finally, not by email at all but by good old-fashioned letter (Sellotaped on the back for extra privacy don’t you know) ”IT” came…the fantastically good news that our appeal for Maddie’s secondary school had been successful and that they had awarded her a place.

I read it, Dan read it, I re-read it and it sunk in, we had won. Tom’s transport fight had seemed endless, but we won and now this. After the stressful preparation and the emotion of the appeal meeting a couple of weeks ago I am cock a hoop!! whoop de whoop! and all other manner of whoops you could possibly think!

I was so very grateful for the support I received with the provision of evidence from various people so flowers and thanks have been delivered and it seemed fitting to let you all know too that we did it, as many of you along the way have sent me luck and love through my blog and Twitter and have bolstered me from afar so THANK YOU ever so much to each and every one of you.

To celebrate, I’ve just had a huge lovely walk with Gus and our friends Tania and Buzby and Dan is coming home for lunch with me (for a landscaper in the midst of silly season – that’s huge!).
I finally feel now I can breathe.

As we race toward the end of the school term I spent a few hours this week feeling terrifically nostalgic. I was looking back through a box of old photos searching fruitlessly for some of Maddie for the Year Book that school produce, full of lovely memories for the children who are leaving primary school.

The problem is I cannot locate a huge envelope of random, special ones that I know are somewhere here in the house but what I did find in the box were all the early years and all the birth pictures – oh my goodness it spiralled me into such a nostalgic mood.

How come the years then seemed so carefree, so happy? I know, I know that when I look back at these years captured in moments I shall feel exactly the same, so why is it that ‘then’ seems so much lovelier than ‘now’. Why oh why can’t we truly live in THIS minute? I feel I really try but am I succeeding?

That said, Tom’s 14th birthday was a joy and his utter delight when he opened his present to find tickets for Olly Murs was just spectacular to see – watch the video below. The concert was fabulous, Olly a star and as luck would have it Dan, Joe and Maddie’s film finished ahead of the concert, so we had door to door pick up – a bonus for sure as the O2 can be a pickle to get away from at the end of a night.



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The pleasure I had from Tom’s four school friends joining us on the Friday ahead of his birthday was immense. To see them with him and realise their natural acceptance of him and also the thoughtful presents they had bought for him made me super happy… not quite so happy when one broke his wrist after a slip on my floor.

Saturday was spent with two amazing families whom I adore. To see all our special boys reach the ’14’ milestone and see them and all their siblings (minus two) enjoying each others company was truly special.

Kids at lunch

So look, here I am, living in and appreciating the moments right here and now after all…how very lucky I am.

Aside from birthdays I have had a weekend of fun. I spent an entire day having lunch with the amazing G Force girlies. We were all in the dance group from the Gladiators show on ITV – remember that super Saturday night family entertainment show?

Girlie lunch

Well we and our pom poms entertained the nation back then and we entertained the restaurant on Saturday that’s for sure, though we did get a little telling off from the manager at one point. Our waiter Mo I think loved the experience, he was our chief photographer you see, I think he got a little more than he bargained for!

The birthday girlThe flexibility of our birthday girl was evident and the girls all posed with legs up, all except yours truly, in fact this picture was after Mo said “Ok girls all ready except for…..” and proceeded to point to me – I was the only one in a dress! Plenty of champagne was consumed and we all had the best time catching up, a truly fabulous day.

More fun on the Sunday as Dan and I joined Jacqui and her husband, Ali and Colin, Alison and Simon, Craig, Michael, Sara, Debbie and Julia at Lulu’s London gig. She was seriously dynamite and it really was so lovely to hang out together for an evening, believe me a real rarity – we were wondering quite who was on air with you that night!!

At the Lulu concert

The alarm on Monday morning was quite a ruuuuuude awakening… but somehow once you’re up and moving things don’t seem quite so bad!

Before I scoot I absolutely must tell you about a new skincare regime I have been lucky enough to have been trialing. I have been completely impressed – really, really impressed. In fact Alison Young and I managed to discuss Radical – STILL talking “shop” even on Sunday at the gig (well in-between her Tweeting pics of my husband and his “mesmerising or was it magnetic baby blues” I quote!!)

Anyway, Radical is the range, it really has over-delivered. I’ve used nothing aside from the Radical regime for four weeks (pretty much our 30 day money-back guarantee) and my skin has loved it. The Hydrating Cleanser is super and easy (soft skin afterwards).

At night I followed with the Age-Defying Exfoliating Pads – a quick swipe over the face means the dead skin cells are removed to hurry up the new cells and also allow better absorption for all the next stage of goodies… the luxury of the serums – they are wicked!

I have used two together as when Emma (who met up with me to educate me about the brand) described one as “opening the gateway (the Youth Infusion Serum) to allow all the phenomenal anti-ageing properties of the Advanced Peptide Antioxidant serum in” I was rather hooked.

Eye Revive Creme, Firming Neck Gel and the beautiful Anti Ageing Restorative Moisturiser completed my Radical Regime. I am completely smitten and as I’ve written this I have looked at the reviews on the website and it seems I am not alone. I will be continuing using Radical – I love it and can really recommend it and Alison Young is in agreement too!

The Radical sisters will be back with us in QVC in August – I really hope I’m on air with them, but the website is of course where you can head before then if you simply can’t wait !

Ok, so now time to scoot, there’s a glass of celebratory bubbles being offered – hey why not? Wednesday is a GOOD day!

With lots of love,

Claire – “Cheers!” xx


  1. Isabel May 21, 2015 at 7:02 pm -  Reply

    Happy for you and your family.

  2. Mary Morphye May 22, 2015 at 8:19 am -  Reply have been busy! I sympathise completely with the schooling issue and so pleased you got the result you wanted. In Kent where i live…and work in a secondary academey that is closing at the end if the year..we have the 11 + test selection is on many tiers..Grammar school for those that pass and a selective secondary school system where schools cream off the best of the rest and we get those that no one wants..those from deprived areas, those that are not academic coupled with learning social and behaviour issues. I am a believer that if a child wants to learn they will but the schools parents want for their kids are those which naturally have good reports and results and unfortunately some schools suffer, like ours, so intake is liw and school is ni longer a viable business. We are being taken over and wont kniw if we have a job until 1st Sept!! I am sure Maddie will excel. My daughter loved Olly Murs too..she bought a trilby…prized possession. We had an earthquake here at 3am Westgate wzs on the news! A great start to the weekend!!! Have a good one. Mary xx

  3. mary howarth May 24, 2015 at 4:32 am -  Reply

    Delighted to hear that you have now won your battles – well done, you have worked your socks off
    to get the best for your children. I hope they will be happy and successful in their new surroundings. I bet Tom was over the moon at the Olly concert – I would have loved to see his little
    excited face. I will tell you a funny story about my step-son – many years ago we took him to see a James Bond film and he was full of ideas of what items Bond used and he would like some of them!! Imagine our horror when a couple of weeks later he sent us a letter (he was away at boarding school) and inside was his brand new watch in pieces. He had tried to configure a way to achieve a James Bond watch – oh my goodness very strong fatherly words were forthcoming but accompanied with understanding so as not to dampen his interest in working things out. If only he hadn’t done his experiment on his rather expensive new watch. He is now a 53 year old 6ft policeman – he gets plenty of working things out nowadays. I send much love to you and yours and again WELL DONE – enjoy your champers!!!

  4. Claire sutton May 26, 2015 at 11:53 am -  Reply

    Thankyou so much !
    Claire x

  5. Claire sutton May 26, 2015 at 12:10 pm -  Reply

    Hello Mary,
    I so know what you mean regarding the system and sometimes when people are looking at results etc they are unaware of all the nuances that effect those results….
    How awful for you not knowing what on earth your position will be come September…I really feel for you.
    I hope all is let me know .
    Oh and hope you battened down the hatches…earthquakes…crikey!!!!
    Off to do some filming..much love Claire x

  6. TWINKLE May 26, 2015 at 11:29 pm -  Reply

    hi lovely

    Im so so proud of u ❤ U worked so hard and never gave up fighting for your gorgeous Tom u are an AMAZING mummy. So pleased that Tom had a fab birthday bless him he certainly deserves it 🙂
    Love the pic of you and the Ali’s 🙂 beautiful ladies xxx glad u and the qvc team had a fab time seeing Lulu xxx

    thank u for being the amazing ray of sparklin sunshine that u are xxxx

  7. fiona carne June 2, 2015 at 11:10 pm -  Reply

    Dear Claire glad to hear that your school problems worked out, I find it very sad when you have to fight to get what is right. In response to Marys comment on her school shutting down, blaming children from poorer areas, stating they all have social problems. This is a wrong comment and should not have been printed by qvc she states in her next comment that her step son goes to boarding school,you cannot compare the two education systems. Maybe the school shut down because of her spelling…

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