June, 2014

27 June


One of my favourite weeks of the year…

Hi Guys,

How are you? This week I have been in France filming another series of Fort Boyard Ultimate Challenge.  It’s one of my favourite weeks of the year.


I’ve been part of the team since the show came back on UK screen 4 years ago and I absolutely love it.  Ever year when I return to the Fort, it’s great catching up with the crew (most of whom have worked on the show for the last 25 years in France).    Travelling to the fort on a boat everyday is pretty special and this year the weather has been fantastic.


Zoe Lem styled me for this series and I was really happy with my look; a bright blue top from Karen Millen and some dark ankle cropped trousers with a subtle print. I kept my jewellery simple with some silver hoops and as I’m loving wearing bright red lipstick at the moment, Sylvie the make up artist on the Fort used Mac’s Matte Ruby Woo on my lips.



Since I started presenting the show a few years ago, I’ve married Alex and had Rocco.  The crew have followed my journey which is sweet and this year Sylvie and Celine, the two wonderful makeup ladies, bought Rocco some cute little clothes.

Each year I have an enormous amount of respect for our contestants.  Some of the challenges they compete in push them to their absolute physical limit.  For most , taking part in the show is an opportunity for people to face some of their biggest fears.   This year was no exception and with brand new challenges (even if our contestants had watched the show previously), they didn’t know what to expect.  Andy Akinwolere (my co host) and I tried a few of the challenges ourselves off camera so we both really appreciate how hard taking part is.


Talking of Andy, he has just signed up to an exciting new project with the BBC called ‘Inside Out’.  He starts filming next week and I’m sure he will be fab.  Good luck Andy! He is a top guy and a brilliant presenter.


The new series of Fort Boyard – Ultimate Challenge will hit screens later this year and it’s going to be a good one.  Make sure you don’t miss it.

I’m flying back to the UK today and I am looking forward to seeing how the house renovation has progressed.  On Sunday I’m travelling to North Wales to film there for a few days then at the end of the week I’ll be in Cornwall filming but before all that, I can’t wait to celebrate some of our best friends’ birthdays in Clapham tomorrow night.

I hope you have a lovely weekend all.

Thanks for reading

Laura xxx

20 June


Never a dull moment…

Hey guys,

Wow it sure feels nice to be home and sleeping in my own bed. Although saying that, time at home is actually more frantic than when I am working away at the moment.

I took Rocco to a local little play group on Wednesday morning and it was lovely seeing him interact with lots of other children his age.   It was funny watching a little girl try to take a toy from him, he held on to it so tightly she couldn’t snatch it.  He seems to be growing so quickly, hardly any of his clothes fit!


With everything else to think about, I never really considered the time differences when travelling.  However with only an hour’s difference between France and the UK, Rocco has easily settled back in to his routine UK time!  He is a bit of a fidget in his sleep and seems to keep hitting his head on the side of his cot so it’s time to invest in some soft cot bumpers.

This week has been a particularly busy one.  I attended the Freesat Awards with Andy Akinwolere (to represent Fort Boyard which was nominated for an award), and I had unexpected last minute trip to Spain for a day to film some pick up pieces to camera.

The Freesat awards were brilliant and despite not winning in our category, it was great to see Andy and catch up with my friends from The Jump; Graham Bell, Marcus Brigstocke and Henry Conway.


I was lucky enough to wear a beautiful Bershaw dress to the red carpet event, and the lovely Marie Maveric painted my hands and feet using Calgel.  Their selection of colours is unreal and it was lovely to have a bit of much needed pampering!


I have half a stone of pregnancy weight left to loose so I have decided to try a juice detox.  Over the next couple of weeks I am trying two so I will report back on my thoughts and if I have shifted anymore post pregnancy pounds.


When I look back at the last seven months of my life, it has been pretty crazy to say the least; the arrival of Rocco, moving house, taking on a renovation and learning some new winter sports on ‘The Jump’.  I’m really not sure how I have managed to fit it all in…  To say Alex is understanding it is an understatement!  Hopefully things are going to calm down a little now.

With our house renovation nearing completion, we are starting to unpack boxes and get things organised.  Upstairs is now carpeted and looks fantastic.  The guys from Carpet Right have really done an amazing job.  We chose a carpet called ‘cloudy bay’ (a pretty decent white wine too!) and downstairs we opted for Tegola flooring in the kitchen, hall and utility.  The house renovation has taken around 6 months and it has been a mammoth project.   We are at the exciting starting stage of furnishing and I’ve found some great bits and pieces including dining room chairs on www.londoncows.co.uk.  I discovered a great company who make bespoke headboards, www.theheadboardworkshop.co.uk  and an online light shop www.homelightingstoreuk.co.uk where I sourced a great chandelier.


I particularly enjoy this part of a house renovation project as the house is no longer dusty and I love interior design (hence my new property blog on my website).

We are aiming to be settled in the house mid July but before then I am off to film the fifth series Fort Boyard with Andy Akinwolere and I have two weeks of filming another show in the UK.  Andy and I are flying to La Rochelle for Fort Boyard this weekend and we can’t wait to be back on the Fort and meet this years contestants.

Well that’s it from me for now, it time to head to a voice over – there’s never a dull moment!

Thanks again for reading my blog and supporting me.  Don’t forget to leave your comments below as it’s always nice to hear from you.

Laura xxx

10 June


I really love travelling, but I am really missing home…

Hi Guys,

I hope you are all well!

I’ve now been away from home for 5 weeks and it feels like such a long time.  I really love travelling, especially when I am with my family, but I am really missing home and I can’t wait to be back in my own bed.
I’m sure Rocco can’t either.  I’ve just about had it with my travel cot and find it such a nightmare to collapse.  I don’t think I will bother bringing it back to the UK. Surely there must be one out there that is simple to use…



I have now moved up from Spain in to the South of France.  At the start of last week I filmed an episode in Collioure which was picture postcard perfect – try saying that after a few glasses of vin rouge!  The pedestrianised streets were cute, there was an amazing tapas bar called Casa Gala, as well as some lovely interior shops too.  It was a little touristy and likely to be packed in the Summer but it is a beautiful place and worth a visit.  I am now in a place called Martel, staying in a little chalet at the Soulliac Golf and Country Club.  If you are a keen golfer it’s a lovely course and it’s quiet as it’s not yet peak season.


Me in Collioure

I’m finishing my last episode in Carcassone, one of my favourite locations in France.  It’s such a magical, romantic place and reminds me of a huge Cinderella castle.  I think it was actually used as a filming location for the film ‘Ever After’ starting Drew Barrymore.  I’ve had the opportunity to visit Carcassone several times; a couple on holiday and once previously with ‘A Place in the Sun’.  This time my Mum is with me (as she is looking after Rocco now) which is great as it’s a place she has always wanted to visit.


Me in Carcasonne on a previous visit

Rocco’s first tooth has now made an appearance and he is also very close the crawling.  It’s amazing how quickly he is developing now.  He’s had a couple of nights where he has had broken sleep but this could be down to the fact he is teething and also that he is approaching some big developmental changes – well that’s what ‘baby centre’ (an online source I use regularly) said!  Whilst Rocco has been away with me it has been fantastic but when I get back home I am planning on starting a few classes with him where he can interact with other babies as this is where I feel he had missed out a little.


Rocco teething using his Tommee Tippee toy

If you are going away with your little one anytime soon and you are going on a long car journey (I’ve had quite long drives between locations), I’ve found the ‘Babycademy Music Time’ CD very useful.   When Rocco is crying he immediately stops when he hears this music.   I find myself humming the songs too when I’m on location filming.  The crew think I am a little strange but the songs are so catchy they just stick in your head!


The Tummy Tub

Something else I have discovered whilst being away is the ‘tummy tub’.  I’ve stayed at several properties that didn’t have a bath and Rocco has a bath as part of his bedtime routine.  One of the owners of a property I stayed at loaned me a tummy tub as an alternative.  You fill the water to the marked level and sit your little one in the tub.  Rocco loved it and apparently it is like being back in the womb.  I’m not sure how practical they are to travel with but if you need a bath for your baby and you know your accommodation won’t have one, it’s worth packing if you have the space.

The next time I blog I will be back in the UK.  I’m only there for a week though before I return to France to film Fort Boyard.

Have a lovely week,

Laura xxx

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