Sunshine, sorting things out and a new short story feature!

I’m feeling rather smug this evening having managed to put together a really rather tasty meal with two pork chops, a can of fruit cider, one eating apple, fresh thyme, cauliflower, leeks, rice, a chicken stock cube (I didn’t have pork) cheese, cornflour and milk – oh, and that oh so important ingredient balsamic vinegar! An absolute saviour in my opinion not just for salad dressings but for adding punch and flavor to pretty much any sauce or gravy. Basically, these ingredients were all we had left having not been shopping for nearly a fortnight. I’ve really enjoyed seeing a resurgence of the old Recipe Exchange recently, so I’ll give you the recipe at the end of the blog if you like. 🙂 Both Colin and I are trying very hard to adhere to the Stay Home, Stay Safe legislation, although obviously I am travelling to the Q twice or three times a week. I know from your comments here and on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, that I am extremely lucky not just to still have a job still, but to feel safe while I’m working. Also, to have space around me at home so that I can get out for my daily walk – if not in the garden, but also in the fields close by.

However, I have had a couple of days just recently where I’ve woken up in the middle of the night, not knowing what day of the week it is, or what I’m supposed to be doing in the morning. The worst bit is accepting that as each day passes I’m currently no closer to seeing or holding my children, my grandchildren, my family or my closer friends… I’m finding that really hard. My granddaughter Honey sent Colin and I this beautiful card last week, and just the other day I received a hand-made postcard. I thought it would make you smile, although in truth it brought a tear to my eye…

We did have a family quiz at the weekend – a mix of general knowledge, music and film – in which most of the children took part, and where they managed to annihilate both Colin and I! 🙂 It was lovely to see them all on our TV screen – yes I’ve actually managed to get the hang of mirroring Zoom onto my Samsung Smart TV- (I bought it when it was a Today’s Special Value) – so we can chat as though we were all in the same room. But I know that I’m lucky and that you may well not have this facility and need to rely on a phone call or a letter. And it’s not just the older members of our family who are in this situation and so I’ve been sending ‘surprises’ to them. My Aunty Edna loved her Gower Cottage Chocolate Brownies, and Debs loved her Chunk of Devon beef pasties (which are incidentally Todays Special Value too). My sister’s pots are looking all the finer for her Richard Jackson’s Flower Power, and my son Jack really appreciated his Joe and Seph’s set of Three Caramel Sauces. My mum’s partner Joe will shortly receive his Original Cake Company six piece Loaf Cake chocolate collection and a close friend of mine who is trying to make a garden out on her balcony will soon have the Thompson and Morgan Gerbera Today’s Special Value from this weekend. It’s good to be able to share the love.

Talking of which, thank you so much for contributing to our National Emergencies Trust collection. We have surpassed our initial target and are now heading towards the impressive sum of £200,000. I cannot thank you enough for supporting those who are truly struggling at this time, and whose lives have been forever altered by Covid-19 and its consequences. Just in case you weren’t aware for every £1 you give, QVC will give £2 and together we can make a big difference. Click here for the link on our webpage.

Being at work is something of a saving grace for me. It’s not that Colin and I don’t enjoy each other’s company, it’s just that like many of us, we’re not used to spending so much time together, although we rub along together very well. Silly things like not putting a mug in the dishwasher or forgetting to put a new loo roll out though begin to rankle, when normally they wouldn’t… Me going into work a couple of times a week is good for both of us, and I think makes us grateful for the little things. Of course, Chiswick Park and QVC have had to change to fit in with the new rules and guidelines, and you’ve no doubt noticed that many of our guests are no longer coming into the studio but choose to FaceTime or connect with us via Skype or Zoom. It’s very different from both sides, although I have to say I particularly enjoyed my recent hour with Paul Percival from Percy & Reed and the last couple of shows I’ve shared with Anna Green – our special guest for the Lola Rose hours. Thank you SO much for your interaction on social media during these hours and outside of them too. It’s unbelievably good to know that we are keeping you company and making you smile, and that you’re staying in touch with us because that is ‘normal’ for you.

Since the outbreak of this dreadful virus a great many people have been leaning on the phrase ‘a new normal’ – not just in the press, but on radio and TV and in general conversation. Ironically I’ve seen an increase in sales and reviews of my book entitled “A New Kind of Normal” too. I’m guessing this is because sometimes we need to know how other people cope when facing something unknown and scary. I’m humbled to admit that I now have 88 five star reviews on Amazon – all of them extremely moving and heartfelt – and so I thank you for them. Nothing speaks louder than the words of those who have felt compelled to take the time to let me know what my book meant to them. What that means to me? There aren’t words…. Maybe you know someone who is currently going through treatment or has just come out the other side? Please do have a look at this book as it just may help.

Having hinted in my previous blog that I was hoping to set up a special feature for you, I’m delighted to tell you that as from this week you’ll be able to join me for “Story Time with Ali” on Instagram and Facebook.  I’m planning to read a short story each week on a Saturday evening from authors such as JoJo Moyes and Maeve Binchy, but would love any suggestions you may have too.   I do hope you’ll be able to join me, and that it’ll be something we can enjoy together.  A chance to escape the world for just a short while.😊

Having spent most of the weekend in the garden – me sorting out my pots while Colin pulled apart our rat infested shed – I will be back with you on Monday and Tuesday this week. QVC are working really hard to bring you products that will make a difference to your life right now – whether as a treat or something really practical and useful.

Our Today’s Special Value on Tuesday is from the LAB Pro girls: it’s their Platinum Teeth Whitening System that comes with a Whitening Pen.  It’s a new and improved system that can help whiten and brighten the look of your teeth with just one 16 minute treatment!   Everything you’ll need is included for our price of £64.98 – an LED mouthpiece, the LAB activator spray and timer, and the all-important LAB whitening gel which contains no peroxide.  One complete treatment cycle consists of three of the 16 minute treatments, and we’d recommend you do this maybe in the evening over a five hour period.  A few years back I went the alternative route – hugely expensive moulds made by the dentist, and then hypersensitive treatment.  Personally if I’d have had this option I would have gone for it!

Then on Wednesday Dr. Max Gowland, the founder of the brand Prime Fifty, will be bringing to you a four month supply of his Fighting Fatigue Supplements – the first product he developed as a direct result of research into the number one complaint from those of us 50 years old and above…. “I’m tired all the time!” If that’s you, make sure you join Dr. Max and myself so that he can explain why a healthy diet isn’t enough to keep us feeling energized and able to face whatever the day may bring. At under £19 for a four month supply, it’s a great opportunity to try and comes with a 120-day money back guarantee.

Also popping up during the week are fashion hours featuring MarlaWynne, Cuddl Duds and Moda in Pelle, and rather than our dedicated Diamonique Show on Tuesday at 8pm, we have Diamonique Day on Thursday the 30th April with an exceptional line-up of jewellery including a Today’s Special Value from the Escape by Melissa Obadash range – a fabulous droplet necklace. Charlie Brook will be launching that with Lee Clark at 9pm on Wednesday and again at midnight. Sadly I’m not in on that day, but will be back with our regular show at 8pm on Tuesday the 5th May – one day before my granddaughter Honey’s fifth birthday…

Oops, nearly forgot to give you my recipe. Basically, cut the pork chops into thin strips and sauté in oil with the fresh thyme and chopped apple. Add a quarter of the can of cider and the chicken (or pork) veg cube and simmer gently. Slice the leeks and sauté in butter. Steam the cauliflower and make cheese sauce with the milk, cornflour, more butter and grated cheese. Boil the rice. Finally add the balsamic vinegar to the pork mix – reduce and season to taste. Enjoy – we did 🙂

I wish life was easier, and that everything was a little closer to normal, but maybe if we keep looking forwards and hoping against hope, things will start to change for the better. Please do keep in touch and let me know how you are? Stay home, stay safe, but stay with us – QVC – we’re always with you.

With my love,

Ali xxxx

42 Responses

  1. Hi Ali so lovely to hear from you. I loved seeing the pictures from Honey,a very talented young lady. I know what you mean about missing your family especially the grandchildren, I miss mine so much it’s like a physical pain! One of them sent me a a picture of a butterfly she had made, it has pride of place in the kitchen,where I seem to spend much of my time! Have also spent quite some time in my garden,some of the plants I have ordered from Qvc have arrived,more still to come but a good start.😊Me and my husband are only going to the supermarket once a fortnight and we have a great little corner shop that’s doing a Stirling job for milk etc. You are lucky to have a job etc that you mentioned but you were also unlucky to suffer from this awful virus,so I think you deserve your “good luck “! You are a very generous person to be sending all these gifts to family and friends,we can all learn from you. Unfortunately i’m not on social media so won’t be able to hear you reading but it’s a lovely idea. Thanks for the blog and take care. Love Debbie Xx

    1. Dear Debbie, lovely to hear from you although I understand exactly how you feel it comes to missing the grandchildren. He was on his fifth birthday just yesterday and it felt alien not to be with her. I’m glad that you and your husband are coping and you have a local shop that fulfils most of your needs. We managed to go 16 days without going to the supermarket although some of the meals I made in the last few days were peculiar as I mentioned! It looks as though things may change this weekend so I am keeping everything crossed. Stay safe and keep in touch love Ali xxXX

  2. Hi Ali,
    Me and mum and grandma love to see you on qvc. We never miss diamonique and love to listen to your stories and thoughts. We think you are such a wonderful and special lady. You always light up the studio. You are such a beautiful lady inside and out ! And we just love you ! All of our love to you Ali ! Stay safe, keep well, keep that lovely smile shining xxx
    Elise, mum and grandma xxx

    1. Dear Elise, how very sweet of you to write, and With such lovely comment, they mean a lot. I am glad you enjoythe Diamonique shows. I very much enjoy presenting them, and as I always say it is my very favourite range of jewellery that we sell. I am glad that you, your mum and your grandma are staying safe and well through these difficult times, and it makes me happy to keep you company. Take good care of each other, love Ali Xx

  3. Nice blog ali u been keeping busy, it’s hard not seeing the grandchildren and family but hopefully the lockdowns will ease a bit in a few wks, weather has changed now typical English weather, but hay ho, will be watching qvc ordering things u take care x

    1. Hi there Eileen, sorry it’s taken me awhile to respond, but at least the weather has changed back to sunny and warm! I hope you are keeping busy and that as you say, things may well change this weekend for the better. Let’s keep everything crossed. Thank you for keeping in touch, Love Ali XX

  4. Interesting blog as usual Alison. I am a fan of Jojo Moyes and Maeve Binchy novels, and also I have really enjoyed the ones written by Santa Montefiore (nee Palmer-Tomkinson). I read and enjoyed all of her novels in date written order (listed on the internet) starting with Meet Me under the Ombu Tree which is set in Argentina and England. Her latest The Secret Hours was published in 2019. Her own website gives you interesting information into her personal and author life. Try the books if you have not already.
    Looking forward to listening to the book reading on Saturdays.
    Take care and stay safe.
    Hazel

    1. Dear Hazel, thank you so very much for the recommendation. There is nothing nicer than reading a book that someone has enjoyed and I will certainly look this also out. I am a huge fan of audible books, and have finished listening to Jackie Kabler‘s latest thriller, The Perfect Couple. I don’t normally listen to this kind of book, but very much wanted to support her and I can highly recommend it! She is a very good writer and it’s And incredibly well thought out plot. Hope you’re coping in these strange times, love Ali XX

  5. Hi Alison might try your recipe sounds good Les made a cake and some scones the other day I don’t mind cooking meals but not came maker I’m afraid. The mud kitchen you asked about that Willa had from us has stainless steel pots and pans with it and a removable sink so it can be washed out it’s a wooden structure I would imagine Honey would have heard of it apparently quite popular they collect leaves fir cones or whatever they want and pretend to make stuff . Anyway glad your not feeling to bad with this lockdown I’m trying to keep positive with all that’s going on but have to admit to feeling a bit down sometimes seems to be a lot more people around that don’t seem to be doing what they are told and a lot of non essential people working Les and I have been out walking and noticed a lot more more traffic and work vans it’s so confusing. Oh well sorry for the rant at least we are all keeping well so far and for that we are grateful thank you for listening and keep well love Loraine xx

    1. Dear Lorraine, as always, it’s good to hear from you and I’m glad that you and Les are bearing up. I agree with you, these are very confusing times and I have definitely noticed more traffic on the roads, and generally relaxing of the rooms. We’ll have to wait and see what he suggested this weekend, but let us pray that we are through the worst. I hope you both stay safe and well, and Dear Lorraine, as always, it’s good to hear from you and I’m glad that you and Les are bearing up. I agree with you, these are very confusing times and I have definitely noticed more traffic on the roads, and generally relaxing of the rooms. We’ll have to wait and see what he suggested this weekend, but let us pray that we are through the worst. I hope you both stay safe and well, and Les keeps on baking! Love Ali xx

  6. Thank you Alison for another lovely blog. The cards Honey sent are beautiful and I can imagine not seeing her is horrid. My best friend looks after her 2 grandsons twice a week and is missing them so much.
    Thank goodness the weather has been good. I’ve been busy in the garden when I am not doing school work or decorating and receivedmy 15 summer bedding plants from QVC two days ago, an amazing bargain at under £2 a plant and have put them all in pots..I filled 4 medium pots and 2 small potential with them and they are looking good. My peony bare roots that I also purchased are poking through the soil nicely and finally, my dual miniature plum tree looks fabulous although its positioned next to a chair on my decking and I caught Olly the dog nibbling the leaves this morning!
    I am working through my decorating to do list bit keep adding to it!! I glossed the windowsill in our front bay window yesterday and painted the curved radiator that runs under it I left the window open to assist with drying only to find this morning a few dead flies stuck..body parts were removed with tweezers🤣.
    As time goes on family life get a little more strained. Chloe still working but tempers fray easily and small things seem to grate me..John has daily chats with his pub group to keep in touch but I know it’s hard for him..it is out 4th Anniversary on 2nd May. We will have to have the celebration later on although I fear small pubs will be the last to open. Hopefully golf courses will re open and Jack can get back to work.
    Mum is still unwell and there have been Covid19 deaths in her care home so it’s really worrying.
    It’s my sister’s 50th on Friday..my twin sister and I have bought her a Lulu Guiness bag and Jack and Chloe have bought her a matching purse. Me and chloe are going to go round at 5am and decorate her house while hopefully she is still in bed! She doesn’t really want to celebrate bit I feel I have a duty to decorate outside her house.
    Keep safe and thank you for the good work on Q. Love Mary x

    1. Dear Mary,

      I’m so sorry I didn’t get back to you sooner and I very much hope that firstly your mum is improving, and secondly your sisters 50th birthday celebrations went well. Did you make a cake? I bet she loved the house decorations – well done you and ChloeI’m guessing you’re going to have to hold off with a proper party until things are more settled, but then it’s something to look forward to. Yes I am missing honey and all the children but we are managing a once weekly quiz on Zoom which is fun. Reading back over understand totally how the small things stress everyone out. It’s not easy when you are not used to being in the house together for this length of time. I do hope that this weekend we may see something of a change and it will make life easier. I also hope that John’s micro pub will open as I know that must be stressing him and you very much. Thank you as always for keeping in touch, and it’s nice to know you’re there and on the other side of the camera. Take care, love Ali XX

  7. Just to say I met Maeve Binchy in Dalkey near Dublin where she lived – a kind and loving lady / so pleased you have mentioned her books ! Love your blog and my heart too longs to see and have my little grand babies in our house – it’s too long and unbearable The normality of live shows on QVC am sure makes us all feel that at least something in this strange world is stable ; if only an end was in sight .

    1. Dear Mose, I am so sorry that you two are struggling and missing your family particularly the grandchildren. It does seem to have been going on for such an interminably long time but I have every hope that things are due to change. You live in a very beautiful part of Ireland, and my ex sister-in-law lived not far from there too. How wonderful to have met Maeve Binchy- so many things I would like to have said to her had I have been lucky enough. Her books were such a source of comfort to me through some difficult years and her writing is always such a joy. Please take care, and thank you for your kind comments. Love Ali XX

  8. Thank you for your lovely comments I am keeping pottering and like you have been doing my pots and baskets and keeping up with watering during this lovely weather. Honeys pictures look great my dad called our masterpieces and might be worth something later how optimistic so please pass that to Honey s mum when she runs out of space for them.Please stay safe and keep on pottering xx🚸

    1. Dear Suzi, i’m glad you’re getting enjoyment from pottering about in the garden and keeping your pots and borders looking good! Yes the weather has been beautiful, and I had another day outdoors today. I love what your dad used to say about your pictures – I still have a great many of the paintings and drawings Lucy Sam and Jack did, as I cannot bring myself to part with them. You stay safe too, love Ali xx

  9. Hi Alison, I do love your area where you go walking it’s so beautiful and I would imagine very therapeutic. The views are stunning. It must be lovely living somewhere where you get lovely walks like that. I love walking and although live in a fairly built up area we can find some beautiful walks. Good for the mental health too I think getting out for a good walk. You could even put some favourite music on as you go. Stay safe. Love your blogs
    Love Karen xx

    1. Karen, it sounds as though your thought process is much the same as mine. Getting outside even if it’s just for walk around the block is very therapeutic. I tend to listen to stories rather than music when I walk, but when I used to run I always had music playing. I’m glad you’re coping in these difficult times and thank you for getting in touch. Stay safe, love Ali XX

  10. Hi Ali, I love your notes from Honey x. So hard being away from family but we just have to keep hoping it will soon end. Your book is fabulous and must have helped so many people. Take care love Elaine x

    1. Dear Elaine, lovely to hear from you, and I think your sentiment is echoed by all of us. I’m sure it will change and very soon, and we just have to be grateful for the care that has been shown to those who are struggling nice. I’m so glad you enjoyed my book, and I do feel very humbled by the number of people it appears to have helped. Take care and stay safe, love Ali XX

  11. Hi Ali lovely blog as ever. Its been lovely seeing you able to get in for your shows. Looking forward to diamonique day although sad to hear you wont be in on that day. Cant believe adorable honey will be 5! Wow how time flies – i can remember you excited saying that she had just been born. Bless her. The card she made is so you and really lovely. Tell her she really is a clever girl. Bless her. Am enjoying having QVC for company in these strange days we have now. Apart from all thats going on we sadly lost my mother in law, not from the virus, she had two bad falls and then sadly passed away. Was all very unexpected and like so many families the funeral had to be a very small affair. Very sad. Glad you are ok Ali. Take care. Lots of love xx

    1. Dear Karen,

      I was so sorry to know that you have lost your mother-in-law, and how desperately difficult it must be for all of you especially as it was something of a shock. A blessing though that you were able to have a funeral, albeit without many of those no doubt he would like to have attended. Some strange times we are living in, but I am hoping against hope that things will start to change for the better. Thank you for your sweet words about honey – yes it is very difficult for me to believe it’s been five years since I announced her birth. She’s such a little poppet, and I miss her and all my children very much. Thank heavens for technology enabling us to keep in touch though. Take care, and stay safe and well. Love Ali XX

  12. Hi Ali,
    I thought I’d reply to your last comment on here as I don’t know if you would get it on the last blog. I find this new system not very user friendly still. Much nicer to click on all your faces and not forget anyone. Bigger problems out there though!
    So yes I agree, I watch the news once. They’re all doing a great job and I get fed up with people berating the news. That’s their job!
    I can imagine it would have been too much for your mum as you say. As you asked, I can’t say all is well no but too public here. But thank you and all I can say is it’s not dissimilar in many ways. It’s horrendous having family members in hospital and in care homes. It’s also horrendous having family abroad, having not seen them for a long time and not knowing when see them again. You just have to get up and go to work and do your best.
    I am sure you are worried about Sam, jack and Lucy as well. As I said before as much as I enjoy qvc I just can’t face it when people are dying, losing jobs, homes etc. I think going forward if products could be cheaper it would be much better. Shoes and clothes can be very pricey. Equally hand products could be needed for a long time and honestly they’re just too expensive when you would in healthcare and need to wash so much so would use so much. Maybe sbc could rise to the occasion! Right, you keep well and at least you’ll be able to see your brood when this is done. Keep safe x

    1. Hi Susan, and thank you for getting in touch. I agree, having changed our blog page to stories has made it a little less straightforward to find us, but in time hopefully it will become easier. I’m looking to change my photograph as I can’t member how far back the one on the page was taken! Thank you for your comments about the products we have been bringing to you – it’s not been easy trying to find things that will be of most use to folk, but I hope you were able to buy the recent SBC collection? They are extremely good value and also large sizes. Fingers crossed you are staying safe in your job working in healthcare, and let us all hope that the situation will change in the not too distant. Ali x

  13. Hello Ali, I’m very impressed with your creativity; I’ve always said that my mum could make a meal from an empty cupboard & like her you’re obviously a good cook to be able to do it. Lovely pictures from Honey, she’s put you in some marvellous shoes & the eyelashes & robin are delightful, I assume the person with you is Colin – my, what long arms he’s got! I’ve always described my mental health as robust, however, I’m now really struggling with this situation & what has shocked me most is how angry I am; the glorious weather & being in the garden has been my salvation, sadly that’s now come to an end. Like you I’ve always held onto hope, even giving it to Ellie for her second name, but it’s slipped away from me this week & I’m not sure I’ll ever find it again. Love from Jo x

    1. My dear Jo, firstly I can only apologise for being so tardy in responding and secondly how I really hope that the return of the sunshine has lifted your spirits. It is unusual to hear you being anything other than positive, but I know that the last two months have been incredibly difficult for so many of us. I am sure though even in your most despairing moments you were able to cling onto a glimmer of hope and that now you are feeling stronger? Do let me know how you are aren’t you? Sending you a hug and my love, Ali xx

  14. Hi Ali.
    I know what you mean when you say you don’t know what day of the week it is of late. I think we all feel that way when our normal routines have changed so much. I have to take quite a few tablets twice a day so have one of those tablet boxes for each day of the week. I have to really think hard as to what day it is! It is so hard at these difficult times when it seems that we are no nearer getting back to normality. I have always tried to be positive in that it can’t go on forever but there have been quite a few days when I have felt in total despair. Watching the news hasn’t helped. It just fills you with even more dread. I know I should be grateful that we are not one of those poor people lying in hospital and I am trying to count my blessings. My sister-in-law called to see us a few days ago as she was passing our house. She phoned me to say she was outside in her car. So we had a quick catch up outside, maintaining social distancing of course. It was so nice to see her. I found it very emotional as we haven’t seen anybody over the weeks. It is at times like this that can make us closer to each other even though we are apart. We just have to keep strong and believe that these thing will pass.
    I’m still in much need of a hair cut and have resisted( so far) using the clippers on it. That’s the trouble with having very short hair. It needs cutting every 6 weeks or so and I can’t do much with it. Anyway things could be worse.
    Here’s hoping it won’t be much longer until we can meet up with our loved ones and hug each other again. What a day that will be!!
    Take care and keep on being safe.
    Love and best wishes, Tina S. xx

    1. Dear Tina, I can completely empathise with your feeling out of sorts and confused as to which day of the week it is, and I know it’s not just you and I. So many are struggling as the lockdown continues, and I know it’s the loneliness as much as anything else that makes it difficult.. How kind of your sister-in-law to call round to see you. It’s great to actually see someone even if you can’t physically hug them. Keeping strong and believing that it won’t be too much longer before we can all be together is the only way I find to deal with it. I hope you can hold off using the clippers on your hair! I had to cut my fringe just the other day, but had luckily had a very short cut just before my hair salon closed. I hope you can continue to count your blessings and as you say, things could be worse! Let’s just hand to believing it will all soon be much better, love Ali xx

    1. Hi there Dee, yes the blue flowers are called borage. They grow wild, but grow equally well in a garden. Very prickly leaves and stems but you can use the flowers, leaves and the young stems and they apparently taste just like cucumber! Ali x

  15. Hi Joanna/Jo,
    Hope you don’t mind me butting in. I think most of us feel at some point that we’ve lost hope in this unbelievable situation but you will get it back! Life has to return at some point. Maybe not quite as we knew it but it will slowly come back and we will be ok. We’re adaptable and while I really worry for us all on the frontline we have to get on and get through. Keep your Hope somewhere and feel angry if you need to coz it’s normal. Life is so unfair to some people. Look after yourself x

    1. Susan, I’m glad you’ve written this to Jo, as I know you comment regularly and were probably concerned as I was – not like Jo at all! I hope you’re keeping everything together and staying safe and well. Ali x

  16. Hi Ali, I just wanted to say I read your book last September after finishing chemotherapy and before starting radiotherapy. I found the whole experience absolutely gruelling and it has broken me emotionally. Your book was a comfort. I still live in fear every day and now made worse by this awful virus. I do love your positivity. Big hugs to everyone going through illness or loss at this time. Take care, XXX

    1. My dear Sandra, I am so sorry that you’ve been through such a tough and emotional time, but please just give it time, and it will start to feel easier. It’s perfectly normal to be frightened of the future… I think many of us are for a myriad of different reasons. I believe hanging onto the fact that the treatment both you and I have received has given us our best chance for a healthy future is the only way, but I appreciate some days that’s hard to do. The current situation we’re all living in will pass, and then you will have less to contend with. Please do keep in touch with us here – it’s a fabulous and caring network – and offers great support. Sending my love, Ali xx

  17. Hello Ali
    Well I don’t know where this week has gone. I must admit I’m glad that today is going to be a day of Doing nothing. I have been able to keep myself busy over the lockdown with various household “to do jobs” spending time in the garden and my sewing. I’ve spent hours on my sewing machine making the items that previously I hadn’t time to do. This week I’ve concentrated of making the scrub bags for our NHS which was exhausting but so fulfilling. The lady in our area has collected up to Monday this week over 6000 bags from various volunteers. Just goes to show people are pulling together for each other and not just for themselves. Looking at your pictures from Honey brought a lump to my throat. Millions of us are longing to hug and hold our families and friends. Better days have to be ahead. Hope you and yours are keeping well and safe and it’s nice to have you back on QVC. Take care and as always love and hugs to you. Judith xx

    1. Wow Judith! That is no mean feat – many congratulations to you for putting so much time and effort into making those scrub bags. And you should feel fulfilled and proud. I think it’s wonderful, and I hope that you enjoyed your well deserved day of doing nothing. Yes, Honey’s cards are still out on the side, and it was even tougher not being with her on her birthday, but Lucy is great at keeping us all in touch with FaceTime and I know there will be better times ahead. You take care and stay safe and well, love Ali xx

  18. Hi Ali I hope you are well. I am running out of things to do, just hope we can go out and about but I don’t think so. Hubby got is biopsy results everything ok. Then I had cataract op in February month later I have double vision now because of HP. But the doctor said it will settle down. We will have be patient.
    Take Care x

    1. Dear Christine, I am so glad that your husband’s biopsy results have come back clear, that must be a relief. Although I am sorry that the cataract operation you had in February has left you with double vision. I do hope the doctor is right, but it’s hard to take your mind off the worry when as you say, you have almost run out of things to do. Reading etc. can’t be an option for you at the moment, but patience is the key. I’m keeping everything crossed that there will be a positive change ahead. Take care, love Ali x

  19. Hi Ali, glad you’re safe and well, we are all good here so far ,I’m missing Simon and crew sooo much, as everyone is missing their grandchildren ,like you are missing yours, but we have to be extra careful with Harry just been diagnosed as type 1diabetes ,but he is able to work at home and Ellie is doing school work via the internet, they do get a little bored at times but Simon has a ploy ,while he works at home he gets them to take Charlie for his walk ,they are only about 5 minutes from a very large park ,so they get their daily exercise, Michelle still has to work because she is a pharmacist assistant ,it so made me smile the video of Honey entertaining herself in the bathroom ,don’t you just love them when they make a lovely mess 🤔good job it was nothing that would harm her ,John finished painting the shed, and yesterday he spent about 3 hours sat in the greenhouse potting out his marigolds and sweet pea plants into bigger pots, there isn’t an empty pot or space in the greenhouse don’t know where he’s going to put them all ,and no garden centres open to buy anymore containers when they are ready for coming out ,I’m sure we will find something 😂😂,take care my friend and stay safe lots of love Linda F xxx

  20. Hi Linda, lovely to hear from you, and to know that Simon an his crew are well, and managing to keep Ellie occupied and Charlie walked too! It’s great they are close to a park – I think getting out into the open is definitely the answer to feeling less anxious. I’m glad you liked the little film of Honey getting herself into a mess in the bathroom! Lucy keeps all the cleaning things in a locked cupboard downstairs, so she was safe 🙂 Glad to know that John is keeping busy with his greenhouse – I love planting things out, but I tend to do it straight in to the pots! Maybe he can gift some of his plants! Hang onto that lovely thought of being with Harry, Ellie and Simon and I’m sure it won’t be much longer now. Love Ali x

  21. Hi Ali it is lovely to read your blog – any company is most welcome if only virtual! Reading other replies makes you realise that yes we are all more alike than not. We all have the same worries and ups and downs more so at the moment and I think at some point or other there have been tears along the way too. But it certainly has focused the mind on what is important to us our family and friends. I seem to have done lots and nothing at the same time! Unfortunately one of my daughter’s father in law died two weeks ago -not the virus but it meant he was on his own and I think that has been the most upsetting for them.
    I miss my grandchildren very much especially Ivy who is 3 and lives in London. I have just taken a video of me reading a story to her and I will post her the book. My voice sounds terrible but I think she will like it! .We did manage a zoom meeting for my grandson’s 15th Birthday we all sang to him. I have ordered treats from QVC a lovely recliner chair for the garden it is so comfy sage colour & came in 3 days!! I had major surgery myself & came home a week before this happened. I had to go back for a scan and the hospital was eerily quiet the porter who wheeled me to the dept said he should have moved house on that day.
    We got together with neighbours to commemorate VE Day. We all stayed in our own drives speaking over the wall and just had a drink & nibbles and a toast to the heroes of WW11.
    Take care of yourself and stay safe everyone lots of love Julia xxx

  22. Hi Ali, love reading your blogs about family, events etc. They bring a smile to my face & a titter to brighten the day. Was looking forward to seeing you on diamonique day, didn’t seem right to have a day of diamonique & you not there to share it with us viewers. I was talking to me Mum on the day about some of the shows & that you where missing, which sparked us both realising we had not seen our second diamonique Ali (Alison O’Reilly) for some time either. Does she not do the shows anymore ? We both love Lee, you have a good giggle with him. Both of us have too many diamonique items to mention. I like yourself have brought many gifts of diamonique for family & friends over the years. Hope you & your family stay safe & well during these unknown times, best wishes Tracey

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