I spent quite a lot of time down in Devon earlier this week after a big weekend event I was organising. So having taken a last minute extra day’s leave down there because I need to relax and get some repairs done to the house and roof, my lovely friend Caitlin and I decided to go to see The Duke at the cinema in Okehampton. See below for the full film review but it was great. We came out feeling very happy, it was such an uplifting movie.
So we went across the road to Wetherspoons to have some supper. I hadn’t seen her for awhile so we ended up staying for two hours just talking and talking. 🙂 It’s always nice to catch up with old friends.
I’d done a lot of that already on the Saturday evening when the event I organised for my local Association went off swimmingly in the picturesque Tavistock town hall. Lots of my lovely regulars turned up and we had a good catch up. My wonderful friend and mentor, Marion – who will be the president next year- , did the flowers. Debo, Susan, and Caroline, the raffle; a couple of the young lads, the door; and other officers printed out table plans et cetera, making my night a lot easier.
Two excellent VIP guests did speeches and took Q & A’s, and the venue was fantastic – proper Hogwarts! I took the pressure off myself by not nominating myself to do any of the speeches or thank yous officially, although I took the mic a couple of times for housekeeping announcements, and that suited me just fine! It’s weird because it feels like I have to go out of one part of my brain into another part of my brain to become the person that does a speech, or introduces a guest. So, I realised after the Christmas one that I’d rather stay in organiser mode when I’m doing a big event like this! You learn as you go along, don’t you?!
Taylors of Tavistock put up with my constant last minute requests and insistence that we mustn’t have even the slightest hint of spice or heat in the mild chilli option! (I can’t do chilli! The other option was hot though!) The food on the night was absolutely incredible and a good time was had by all. My lovely friend Alix came as well, as did about 120 other people including lots of youngsters, so it was a mission accomplished for me and my gang. And phew, was I pleased when it was all over! I do love organising though, as regulars will know. 🙂
Anyway, happy and contented, I went home and really enjoyed my stay in my empty Devon house. I don’t do it enough really, it’s just a shame it’s so far away. Hence putting it on the market this year. I found out that the lady who I bought it from in 2017 sadly passed away recently, as her husband had done just before I bought it. So sad for the family. What with that and everything else that’s going on in the world, silly little disputes about minor things at committee meetings, like I had last week in Surrey, really pale into insignificance, right?
I won’t be doing another big one until November time now, giving myself a break, especially through the summer when it’s my big 60th birthday. It’s been a tough, stressful year so far, what with family illness et cetera, and I really need to finish my book, so I’ve blocked out some time in July/August when I will be taking myself away for an extended retreat to get stuff done as a treat for my 60th!
After the stress of the big event, I went and had a really relaxing Sunday including Sunday dinner at my lovely friend Sheena and Alan’s, and their super old dog Riley. Thought I’d mention him briefly since he was sitting in front of this lovely shot, with the wood burner and LED candles blazing so I thought I’d join him. He is 14 now, and still loves lots of attention, even though he has cataracts in both eyes.
I felt his pain.
My left eye is very blurred now, I can see close up but not far away, and it’s getting a cataract after my detached retina op last September (in case you hadn’t read about it before). It’s a side effect of the gas bubble used in the repair. Anyway, I have my operation for my eye on the 14th April, and my lump removal on the 22nd March for my finger and my foot. So as I approach my 60th, I won’t say the words ‘becoming a wreck’, so don’t you either! In fact, don’t even think them! LOL.
We had some beautifully bright sunny days, albeit absolutely freezing, and I got to grips with the damage caused by the storm – check a couple of weeks ago when I posted a picture of my friends thatched house where the ridge had completely blown off, and I realised I got away quite lightly! Although lots of things had to be done so I spent a couple of hours a day sorting out the big stuff that goes with running a house like this, and felt very satisfied by the end of it! It was nice to spend the evenings in front of my Samsung telly with my feet on the Revitive, though, I must say. Even if I had my woolly hat and throw over me because it was pretty cold and I didn’t want to turn up the heating too much, given how much everything costs nowadays ! Even I’ve started turning all the electric lights off everywhere and that’s saying something!
Dinner with Alix
Got invited to supper again on Tuesday night with my lovely friend Alix and put the world to rights like we used to in the old days when we used to go to the George pub on a Tuesday lunchtime and talk politics” She made an amazing fish pie and told me how to recreate it. I might do it next week for my guests on the next retreat in Devon!
New Elemis cleanser
This is what I thought of the new Elemis cleansing balm! The fragrance is really amazing and not overpowering at all, quite unisex and quite green! And you can do other things with it too, look…
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Watch – The Duke, Outlander and The Ipcress File
Went to the cinema with my lovely friend as above, and had a fab film experience. If you want a truly uplifting film based on a true life tale of an unlikely working-class ordinary man with high moral, from Newcastle played by Jim Broadbent, make sure you see this in the cinema! Really, really good. Will probably see it again if only for the courtroom scenes, which are priceless. And watch out for the little snippets of Doctor No towards the end, which relates to the subject of the film – how revolving around a campaign for free TV for OAPs, long-suffering wife, and a ‘borrowed’ piece of artwork from a London Gallery… 8.5 out of ten. Fab.
Outlander – what can I say? Jamie Fraser is back for season six with wife Claire, and their unlikely, mainly Scottish clan setting up a community on Frasers Ridge, in the 1770s, in Carolina, America. Set in the backdrop of the run-up to the American Civil War, and very much based around conflicts between characters, family dramas, and the trials and tribulations of every day life, except that Claire comes from the 1960s… Based on the books from Diana Gabaldon, one of my favourite long-running series of audiobooks where the longest one was 55 hours long! For one credit! I love them and the TV adaptations are almost as good as the books! Start with season one and you’ve got hours and hours and hours of wonderful drama and entertainment!
Also I haven’t watched it yet but am going too soon – Our House, starring Martin Compton (Line of Duty). Another wonderful ITV drama. And Ozark… although I might wait until the second half of the final season is out and binge watch it all in one go!
Finally, The Ipcress File, with some fabulous 60s period detail, although Joe Cole is no Michael Caine (star of the original film version). In fact, Joe looks more like Joe 90 (showing my age, okay!). But Tom Hollander acts the others off the screen as brilliantly as ever, and it’s compelling enough to keep watching more episodes. So I will!
This week, Will paid tribute to Tova Borgnine on the podcast. Next week, he speaks to our very own Julia Roberts! You can listen to all the podcasts here.
We were lucky with the weather on at least a couple of the days down in Devon – this is what happened on one of them! A little look around my back garden!
Book of the week
I’ve been listening to The Disappeared by Joy Ellis, continuing the adventures of Jackman and Marie, detectives from the Fens. This is possibly the sixth book in the series, and once again it takes us into yet more new territory so I get to learn stuff along the way – this time about urban explorers or ‘Urb-Ex’ers.’ Good accents and good narration. Really enjoying it. After this there’s only one more in the series so far! Any recommendations?
And I’m dipping in and out of that, alternating with Watermelon, when I want to spend time with Marian Keyes’s charming Irish characters and a divorced single mother’s tale of romance with a slightly younger guy!
QVC top deals for the next seven days
Friday (today) – go here to see and buy what’s left of the Moda in Pelle trainers I have been wearing on air. Problem is, it’s a size 9 that I’ve been wearing on air, as the 8 is too tight across my Hobbit feet, and if I can get my Vionic insoles inside, it will probably help my bunion on my right foot, but at least they are wide enough. (I’m at 7 1/2 in Clarks.) I’m on earlier in the afternoon, in fact by the time this blog comes out I will have done most of my shows, so join me right now if you read this at exactly 4pm Friday for Beauty Loves with Lulu! 🙂
Saturday – after a night with the kiddies, I will be back at work in the afternoon with L’Occitane at 4pm, Skechers at 6pm and Revitalise your Beauty at 7pm, also featuring the wonderful L’Occitane TSV deal for Saturday – the Divinely Beautiful Today’s Special Value. I have been trialling this for a couple of weeks and I’m very impressed at how soft my skin is the next morning. Considering this is the iconic bestseller worldwide, and Immortelle cream is always highly reviewed in the anti-aging bible, but a premium price, it’s well worth stocking up whilst it’s a TSV considering what else you get, two of the night serums, one of them for eyes. You can buy this and integrate it into your existing routine, perhaps by just using it at night time, by the way, well worth a try if you’ve always wondered what this range can do. And don’t miss the launch on Saturday night of the big gardening event, Refresh your Garden.
Sunday – several of us have asked questions of our gardening experts including Michael Perry, Mark Lane and Richard Jackson who will be in for the day with hour after hour of gorgeous ideas as we think ahead to spring and summer – hallelujah! I’m particularly looking forward to my 5pm hour on Sunday called the Wildlife Friendly Garden. The new TSV for the day is a garden trellis from Garden Reflections, it’s one that can cover up bins, walls and sheds and look like a proper flowering trellis. Snap up a couple on the day and join us for some interesting behind-the-scenes stuff as well!
Big Deals are available on air for usually a week, they may be longer online if stocks last. New ones every Sunday night! Subject to change!
Tan-Luxe two-piece Super Glow Hyaluronic Serum Supersize edit
Denim & Co. stretch textured shirt with vest
Cuddl Duds lightweight quilt crew snap jacket
OPI six-piece Halo-Day Ready collection with bad
Protect-A-Bed Mattress and Pillow Protector set
Bundleberry by Amanda Holden set of three metal trunks
Wilfred’s Pies set of 12 premium Welsh pie selection
OPI six-piece Halo-Day Ready collection with bag
And here are the new Big Deals launching on Sunday 13th at midnight:
Quacker Factory embellished scalloped V-neckline elbow sleeve top
Judith Williams three-piece Royal Collagen Night collection
Lock & Lock six-piece Nestable Pantry Storage Containers
Bundleberry by Amanda Holden set of three tonal metal trunks
Now back to the Today’s Special Values for the rest of the week:
Monday – it’s a super TSV from Skinsense, the Hydranet five-piece Intense Hydration collection.
Tuesday – time for an abstract floral jumper from White Stuff whose fabrics are incredible and it’s a really popular brand.
Wednesday – if you want a premium blender, how about this one from Blendtec, it’s the 650, which comes with additional mini Wildside jar. A premium price but you do have 60 days!
Thursday – JM by Julien Macdonald is here with an unusual one, a large light-up table mirror. Looking forward to seeing this, many of us need it for sure.
Friday – it’s Laura Geller time, going on sale earlier in the week, the Springtime Essentials five-piece collection, featuring your favourite Balance ‘n’ Glow Foundation and some essentials for the make-up bag. What a good way to buy it in this combination! Quite rare to see these nowadays so do stock up.
Friday 9pm – casting ahead a week, we will be bringing you the Lola Rose semi-precious 58 strand necklace called the Oscy – we’ve had the name of her lovely son previously, so watch out for the stories behind the designs. And since it is jewellery day, we will have tons of choices all day long including Kirks Folly back after a gap of many years, Lara Pearls presented by Laurie Wickwire, top quality like Honora used to be, and also at 10pm a Diamonique Tova collection with lots of tributes to the lovely lady who departed this world recently.
Next week – I will be Blake and Kaleb-sitting on Saturday night, which I can’t wait for. I would have been down in Wales briefly this week dropping off some furniture Lauren needs from Devon, but they were a bit poorly so I stayed in Devon longer! And back to Devon to run another retreat next week! I have arranged for a couple of valuers to come and look at my place, so it will be interesting to see what they say.
And a little PS – the VAX Platinum Smart Wash Carpet Cleaner with a 1.5 L Carpet Wash Solution also goes on sale probably mid week. I’ve been playing with this to great effect at home and my sister has two. You should see what we got out of our carpets – look out for the special feature on it next week but here’s a little preview.
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Look after yourself in this mad weird world at the moment, and have a nice week, speak to you next week.