I know I always start my blogs with “had a lovely time this week,” but I really did.
Was down running another retreat with six lovely people, and Rosemary Dun the tutor, who runs a brilliant commercial novel workshop for me, for beginner writers. By the Thursday I needed a break tho,’ so one of my best friends Jennie the yoga lady, and I, went gallivanting! We visited War Horse Farm, near Hatherleigh, associated with famous author Michael Morpurgo, of book, theatre and film fame. Lots of his stuff is there including about the war horses in the First World War. There are animals to pet, and we fed some alpacas!
Had a lovely tea in the tea room, very basic and simple but delightful, and listened to kids having lots of fun, seeing pigs and donkeys and ducks and turkeys… And there are a few other activities laid out for families to enjoy; not many, but it’s charming in its rustic simplicity. Didn’t make it into the big display area inside the barn where there is some audiovisual stuff as well, but we’ll do that next time. Instead we decided to go on a ride on the back of a trailer, through the sheep fields past the baby lambs, and heard a lot about the farming facts as it’s also a working farm. Recommended if you’re looking for a simple day out with the kids!
Exclusive on my newsletter this week is what happened when I actually fed the alpacas by hand! (Subscribe here and you will get an email in your inbox every week telling you when this blog has come out and some exclusive content!)
Apart from that the weather was the worst I’ve known it for absolutely ages, for most of the week. Perfect for writing and being tucked up cosy in your room though! I’m back again on May 15 for the next one:-).
Easter passed in a blur, mostly at work, I must admit, and at least I managed to go and visit my sis on Easter Sunday when the sun came out! Didn’t see the kids, they were visiting in-laws or in Wales. Hopefully see them soon.
Plus I also had a pre-Easter lunch with my lovely pals, having a right old catch up and a satisfying debate about the price of chips in Windsor. Ali Keenan my fellow QVC Presenter is such a lovely lady and such a good friend. Tina looks after all the guests and has done for years. And I’ve known Mark since he was about 21! So nice when we have such long memories and history together 🙂
What a lovely sight this is, every year, beautiful cherry blossom blooms on my big trees at the back, with the distant Devon hills just in shot, and the summer house. Finally the weather changed and it was sunny on Thursday. I sat in there for half an hour sitting in my egg cocoon chair, swinging away, talking to my sister. Lovely! Shame it only lasted half an hour! LOL. Had such a lovely group here this week, all very keen and enthusiastic and loved the workshops with tutor Rosemary Dun.
As you know I’m a massive fan of Audible, and audiobooks. I saw this, this week so thought I would mention it.
So worth getting into, if you loved stories being read to you as a kid for instance.
Or if you never have time to read and you would like someone else to do the hard work, whilst you get on with your day or your work or your jobs or your drive or your run or your walk or anything. Talked a lot about audiobooks this week with the people at the retreat as well.
Was really nice! Transformational for me, I wouldn’t be without them!
Dirty Pan Saviour
I tell you what I was well impressed with ninja this week. Not only did I use my air fryer to start off the chicken for the fajitas, and it made it nice and moist and saved me loads of time.
But I also used this cookware. It is absolutely superb. I’ve never known anything as nonstick as this. After I did sausages, sausages no less, I just used a bit of kitchen towel and rubbed off the baked on stains. Amazing! Going to get some more pans and Bakewear like this!
Watch – A cool one to watch for you, albeit short, this week; well it is only a couple of weekends until the coronation celebrations! Check this out, how clever! (See it here).
PS I’ve had no time whatsoever to watch the telly down here, and to be honest everything at the cinema is not particularly appealing this week :-). Normal service resumed next week… Maybe.:-)
Blooper – Just got to tell you this because it’s really funny. So I have eight glass sections at the front of my balcony, they are curved, and the water dribbles down when I water the baskets hanging on them, to the flat below. So I thought I’d order some polycarbonate sheets to go from underneath the basket right the way down to the gutter on the edge of the balcony. Found a place online, where mum’s partner David was looking. “A 2 mm polycarbonate sheet, is what you need,” he said, and we went and measured. It needed to be 120 cm x 70 cm. I duly put the measurements in, and it came up with a ridiculously low price. I thought oh well what the heck I’ll do it anyway. ‘Stepdad,’ David is saying, “no, no that can’t be right it must be more than that.” Turns out it was more than that – far more than that! Yes, for the size I wanted, it should’ve been over £300. So what arrived in the post two days later? Eight of the tiniest sheets of plastic… divvy here, had ordered 120 x 70… Millimetres! Grrr!! Numpty. Had to laugh though! Hoping that Keith Parker down at the turtle paradise, in Poole, where I’m going next Thursday (see the vlog below), might be able to use them to create a little turtle conservatory or two… 🙂 LOL.
Haha – And look (here) who made an appearance on this funny podcast! Play the game!! See if you can guess the product without cheating! PS I don’t even remember selling this! Must’ve been ages ago!! Listen from 11mins in… x ps thx Nick Godson!!
Go here to get the latest Inside QVC podcast from Will, and the current one if you haven’t listened yet :-). Don’t forget there’s a massive back list to catch up on, too!
Will Gowing speaks to the founder of BPerfect Cosmetics, Brendan McDowell. Brendan talks about the challenges of building his brand, what we can see at QVC and Brendan’s brand new TV show.
Vlog – Had lots of little videos & vlogs this week from out and about, et cetera. But considering the subject matter, go here to see this week’s #Thursdaybantz. Live from the kitchen in Devon, I show everyone what I made for my guests’ dinner at the retreat this week, talk about my trip to War Horse Farm, and importantly, where we will be next week, as well as going to the turtle place in Poole in Dorset on Thursday afternoon and doing a Facebook live from there as well!
Book of the Week – Difficult one this. So I finished my last Dottie Church book, which was much better than the second one I must admit. Am very much missing the characters atm. Not quite as much as its forerunner, with Sidney Grice, but a good sign nonetheless.
Then started a new book, which popped up in the recommendations. Similar genre, era, et cetera. But I just can’t get into it. It was Jason Watkins, really good narrator, and the author is Kate Atkinson, no less. Should’ve been good. But… Just bland and quite unlistenable. Literally reads like an abridged version, or a first draft, kicking off with loads of backstory. Grrr. No fault of the narrator! He is brilliant. A great actor and I will always seek out his work. But it reads like a Virginia Woolf – too descriptive and attached, set in the 20s and very much of the era in its style – and Mrs Dalloway was my nighttime listening for years because I just used to fall asleep! I got all the way through it three times and still couldn’t tell you what happened! So I’d avoid that one.
Then I started listening to another one that also popped up – Helena Dixon’s ‘Murder at the Dolphin Hotel,’ the first of 12 in a series – and looked quite good from the write up, and sounded quite good from the sample: the narrator’s pretty decent, admittedly. However, there are too many murders in one place, there’s not a real spark to it, and the main female character is a bit whiny… yes, I’m afraid #MRCKasasian has set the bar pretty high with the Sidney Grice Gower Street detective series and I’m missing the characters dreadfully :-).
If you can suggest any similar, of the same sort of witty standard, do let me know! Some of the ladies in the Retreat this week suggested a couple of authors but mainly contemporary crime series or police procedurals.
I must find myself a new series soon, so I can get my teeth into it! Got a long journey coming up at the weekend, back to London, possibly to Wales 🙂
QVC TOP DEALS FOR THE NEXT SEVEN DAYS
Friday (today) – go to qvcuk.com and search ‘today’s special value’ to see and buy what’s left of the pretty monsoon three-quarter sleeve printed shirred dress.
Saturday – time for a Radley handbag, the Hanwell Hill medium zip top grab bag!
Sunday – standby for the Amazon all new Fire HD8 tablet 32 GB with case voucher! I’ve got the 10 pm final hearing and I’m looking forward to it, assuming stocks last, and a bit of Dyson for you as well. But do look out for the 9 pm Sunday show — when I launch today’s special value from Spa -rific!
Big deals ending Sunday night
Go to this section of our website each week to discover the current ones which often end on Sunday nights if there are any stocks left!
Big deals are available on air for usually a week, they may be longer online if stocks last. Occasionally they last a couple of weeks but there are new ones every Sunday night so come back again and see them on the link above.
Next week should include:
– style- Hot new brand Izabel London bring us a three-quarter sleeve printed shirt, amazing low prices from this brand!
– extra- cooks essentials have a set of four assorted collapsible food containers
– main – it’s a big Liz Earle deal, a six piece complete face and body collection at another brilliant gift budget!
– beauty – Shay and Blue offer 100 mil fragrance duo, brilliant pricing.
QVC is cutting many prices where others are raising all of theirs!!
Now back to the today’s special values for the rest of the week –
Monday – the spa-rific nano etched hardened glass two-piece manicure and pedicure file set for a super gift budget! This is quite an amazing combination because they are really high quality long-lasting extremely efficient foot and nail files. When I did my fingernails it took the tiniest bit off really accurately with virtually no effort. Looks like they will last absolutely ages and I’m guessing that it also seals in the Layers of the free edge as well. Very impressed. Don’t miss it 🙂
Tuesday – Vax return with a spot wash home Duo machine with additional solution, think how many floors you could do in your 60 day moneyback guarantee!
Wednesday – Tan-Luxe are back after a break with a three-piece essential tanning collection, going on sale earlier in the week
Thursday – Grumpy Gardner sort out your tools in your shed with the household professional sharpener with seven cartridges!
Friday – and Skechers are back with an arch fit phonies slider sandal.
Friday 9 pm – Ruth Langsford continues the fashion same with a side stripe printed bomber jacket.
Plus a big molten brown five-piece luxury hand and body wash collection also goes on sale earlier in the week. A big beauty day on the Sunday 23rd, too, as you will tell from our TV Guide!
Next week – A possible trip down to Wales this weekend, and a definite trip to Lyme Regis including finding out more about the Turtle Paradise, are UK turtle rescue centre, run by one of my regulars on my Thursday bantz, Keith Parker!! I intend getting some writing done… Let’s see 🙂
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