This week will bring me a welcome change to the routine of my time at home since all our lives were restricted at the end of March. I’ve decided that the falling Covid infection rates in London, combined with the more relaxed guidance from the Government and the significant measures our management have put in place to keep all QVC employees safe, have indicated that the time has come for me to return to work at the QVC studios.
I’ve been joining my fashion show Morning Style from home on Wednesday mornings on a video call to stay safe, as I am asthmatic and diabetic and therefore at increased risk should I catch the virus. But I’m excited to be heading back to appear live from our studios – my first show will be the Morning Show on Tuesday, shared with Simon Biagi – at an appropriate distance of course!
I’ve had both sad and happy events during the last few weeks. I’ve been looking after my elderly aunty Barbara for the last couple of years, since my Dad, her brother, died. I helped her find a care home to move into when she decided last year, at 96 years old, that she was struggling to cope on her own. She celebrated her 97th birthday on Christmas Day but sadly wasn’t to make it to her 98th. She died at the end of April and yesterday I was one of only five mourners at her funeral. Although it wasn’t the celebration of her life that she would have chosen it was a beautiful and fitting ceremony, and I will organise a thanksgiving memorial for her in her local church when we are allowed to gather together in numbers again.
I do want to say how grateful I am to all the staff at the Sandfields Care Home in Cheltenham. Without exception, they cared for Barbara as though she were their own loved one, at a time when their own strength and resources are being tested to the maximum. They do a tough job magnificently well and it’s hard to express how thankful I am.
Similar thanks go to the NHS staff at Peterborough Hospital, who looked after my daughter when she went into premature labour with my second granddaughter. This is the happy event I mentioned, as after some time spent in hospital, baby Eliora Rose is now safely at home with Bex and Dan and two-year-old sister Zoe. It was a worrying time, and difficult for Bex and Dan as he wasn’t allowed in the hospital to support Bex with Eliora. And little Zoe couldn’t understand why Mummy, who has been at home with her 24/7 for weeks, suddenly wasn’t there. But we are all having to cope with situations we’d rather not and cope they did – and they are now a grateful, happy family of four enjoying getting to know the new addition. Eliora, or Ora, won’t be having a social media profile so no photos, I’m afraid, but believe me – she is beautiful! (Just like her sister.)
I’ve been making the most of the enforced confinement at home, along with the glorious weather we’ve been blessed with, to have a go at sorting out our garden. We’re very lucky to have a large outdoor space but we’ve lived here for over thirty years and I have neglected it in recent years. It’s bordered by woodland and I’ve kept it ‘natural’ and fairly low maintenance. But one thing I’ve always wanted is a vegetable patch – I’ve never got around to creating it, largely because I’m usually not here enough to keep on top of watering, as my husband Olley and I like to get away in our motorhome whenever we have a couple of days opportunity. Of course, that’s not an option at the moment, so I finally have an area to grow some fruit and vegetables.
Like many of you, I have found QVC wonderful for supplies and plants while the local garden centres have been closed. I’ve just received the Gardening Pick of the Month – some gorgeous African Daisies already in bloom and looking fantastic. They’re available until the end of May, so don’t delay if you fancy some instant colour in your garden – perfect for beds or containers. They’ve already received 34 reviews with 29 at five star and an average of 4.7.
I’ve noticed that Thompson & Morgan have just brought us a collection of 35 vegetable seed packs that I might order as well.
It’s a good idea to sow fast-growing crops like lettuce and rocket every couple of weeks, to ensure fresh salad from the garden right through the summer. And if you don’t have space for a proper vegetable garden, maybe try something like the Veg Trug planter that I’m using for my herbs. It’s on Waitlist at the moment, but worth getting your name down in the hope we manage to get some more stock.
To bring some colour into my garden, I generally use containers and one of my favourite suppliers from QVC is Plants2Gardens, as the plants are usually a good size and garden ready with all the hard work already done for you. I received five French lavender plants a couple of days ago, which were brilliantly packaged and arrived in perfect condition, and the first flowers are already opening up. These are now out of stock, but there are six English lavenders available in early June.
I’ve ordered a Phormium Pink Stripe to add height and drama to my patio and another plant I’d recommend is the cheekily named Pinky Winky Hydrangea.
I have found great solace in my garden over the past few weeks – getting outside in a green space is recognised as a good way to help stay on an even keel in troubled times and it certainly works for me. I appreciate that I’m luckier than many as I have my own space to enjoy, but I hope that you have found a way to keep some peace in your heart and mind.
So, after an absence of a couple of months, I will be back in the dressing room that I share with Ali Keenan next week, back sharing the Morning Show with Simon and back with Morning Style at 10 a.m. on Wednesday. I hope you can join me on Wednesday, not just for the great fashion we always try to bring you, but also for the Today’s Special Value, which is from the awesome Laura Geller make-up range. It’s a collection of customer favourites and contains the only make-up that I’ve been wearing while at home – the Balance-n-Brighten Baked Foundation. It smooths and balances the tone of my skin without looking or feeling like I’m wearing make-up. I love it! With a saving of £23 – over one third off the QVC full price – it’s well worth a look. If you can’t join us on Wednesday, take a look now as it’s available early on our website…
But I hope you can get to a television on Wednesday morning and tune in to QVC, where we’ll do our best to keep your spirits high and maybe even offer you some retail therapy in the form of some fantastic fashion!
Take care until then,
Can’t wait to have you back in person, albeit at distance!
Lots of love
Hi Kathy lovely to hear from you. Condolences on the death of your aunt,a difficult time at the moment with restrictions on funerals. It’s so wonderful though that you and your family have a new addition to your family with baby Eliora . So glad that mother and baby are doing well especially as Bexs had Covid 19 earlier in the year. You must be really excited about seeing them all when it’s allowed, I’m desperate to see my three grandchildren but am hoping it won’t be long! It will be lovely to see back at work although I have been watching you by video call. I agree with you about the garden I have spent a lot of my time in the garden and I find Plants2Gardens products very good I have lots from them in the garden. Best wishes Debbie. X
Hi Debbie, thanks for your message. I’m writing this while Olley drives us to Peterborough to see our granddaughters – I love that plural!! Feeling very excited to meet Eliora and see Zoe again. Today is possibly the last day of this glorious weather so we’re planning a picnic in the garden…
Take care and stay well
Great to hear from you! I’ve been wondering lots how you are as I’ve been working throughout so not seen you on tv. It’s been a pretty horrendous few months for everyone. I’m so sorry you lost your auntie who you’ve been so good to when she needed you. I’m sure the memorial will be lovely when the time is right. I can’t begin to say how wrong our world is when sports stars, tv personalities are paid stupid amounts of money and yet the healthcare staff, assistants, porters etc are so poorly paid. It’s dreadful and I can’t see it changing. I’m sure Bex has so many colleagues working throughout so hope they are ok.
Now congratulations on your new granddaughter! I am so delighted for you! I haven’t heard of the name before but very pretty. I hope they’re all adjusting and I’m sure it was very scary for you all. Especially when you and dan would have wanted to be there.
It’s lovely you’ve had your garden to help cope and the weather too but as we’ve said before, the north and northwest of the UK have been not as blessed as you so that’s been a shame. Having storms this week/weekend.
Hope you are ok coming back to work. Will be thinking of you x
Hi Susan. I hope your weather has been better in the last week or so – it seems like the whole country has enjoyed some warmth and sunshine. I’m excited to be on my way to see Eliora, and Zoe of course, now we’re allowed to see more than one person. A day in the garden is planned, can’t wait to get there.
I’ll be back at QVC for Morning Style tomorrow, they’ve put in so many measures to keep us safe I felt fine going back last week. Let’s hope we all stay well!
So good to hear you are safe & returning to to QVC. We have missed you, even though you did join us for Morning Style.
I am sorry to hear your sad news, a lot of people are in similar situations at the moment which is heartbreaking. Congratulations to you on the birth of Ora though, I hope she is doing well despite her premature start.
I look forward to seeing you back on air soon. In the interim, stay safe & enjoy your garden
Big hugs, Joanna xx
Thanks for your message, Joanna, good to hear from you. We’re on our way to see Ora now, but she also has a medical appointment this afternoon as there are still a few worries. Bex is praying she doesn’t have to return to hospital a second time but at least we’ll get to meet her first, and they are just being careful as she was premature. Can’t wait to see the girls!
Take care and stay well
Lovely to hear from you Kathy and know you will be back. Totally wise to have stayed away and safe
Lovely news about your granddaughter but so hard not to be able to see and cuddle both of them
I have a tiny garden and weather up north means things are behind you down south. Including our lockdown which continues. However things beginning-to grow so hopeful my myriad of pots will bloom. Nearly all home grown seeds in absence of garden centres. Have tried ordering plants (from QVC and other suppliers) over the years with mixed success. Guess the extra distance doesn’t make for happy plants Anyway stay safe x
Well done for growing from seed – I’ve done that for the first time this year and love how I feel when something I showed myself grows! I haven’t eaten any of it yet but the rocket, radishes and lettuce are coming on well. And I’ve tried zinnias and cosmos – no flowers yet but they’re alive!
Good luck with your garden…
Love the Garden and yours looks very large Cathy its getting the looked after and then you will be keen to spend extra time on it as more things grow keep safe and well when back xx
Thanks for your message, you’re right – I do enjoy time in my garden. I hope you have things that help you stay as happy as possible at the moment. Stay safe and well.
Hi Kathy, so sorry to hear about your aunt , it’s so sad.Congratulations on the birth of your granddaughter, you must be overjoyed! Your garden is looking good, I like the look of the trug and growing herbs. Will be lovely to see you back on TV, XXX
Thanks – I love my herb trug! Ali Keenan and her husband Colin came around for a socially distanced meal yesterday – we sat at opposite ends of the table! 😂
I used my home grown thyme in the tomato tart, rosemary in the chicken thigh tray bake and we enjoyed fresh peppermint tea after the meal! And my radishes are about ready to harvest – I’m so enjoying rowing my own food!
Kathy.. I have to confess I haven’t tuned into QVC much recently.. But watching this morning which I believe is your first day back… I must tell you that you look absolutely amazing… Jumpsuit suits you so much and you look very healthy with your summer glow too… Stay safe and well 🌈 x
Thank you Pauline, very kind of you to say. We’re just so lucky that the glorious weather has made the lockdown time easier, for those of us lucky enough to I have our own outside space at least. It does mean that I haven’t done any of the tidying and sorting that I had planned for inside the house, but at least the garden is looking ok!
Hi Kathy, sorry to hear about your aunt. My husband lost his mum on March 30th and like you and so many more couldn’t give her the send off she deserved. On a happier note congratulations on your new granddaughter and so pleased your daughter is alright and they are back home together as a family now. We have also had a similar situation too, our daughter in law gave birth to our third granddaughter 3 weeks early, she had pre-aclampsia so it was a very worrying time and she had to stay in hospital for a week after , leaving our 2 granddaughters and 2 grandsons at home with our son and not being able to see them. We can’t wait to meet Bobbie-Grace and see the other 4 plus our son and daughter in law but that won’t happen yet as my husband is one of the shielded. I too have been gardening and bought plants from QVC, your garden looks lovely. Take care and enjoy your family when you can. Love Diane. xx
My word, your son has been busy! I hope your daughter in law and new granddaughter are both doing well now, and the family are all together at home. My husband and I are on our way right now to meet little Eliora – I can’t wait to see her! You and your husband may have to wait a while longer to keep him safe, but I hope you can meet Bobbie-Grace (lovely name!) very soon. And cuddle all five of your grandchildren – I love being a Nana twice over, how wonderful to have five grandchildren!
Take care and I hope you all stay well