Red Carpet Glamour and Remarkable Pull in Pants!

Hi guys,

I hope you’ve had a great couple of weeks? Mine has involved a couple of red carpet events, judging ladies day at Kempton race course, personal training sessions, a week filming in Spain and organising a baby shower! I’ve also been trying to persevere with the Gro Clock to try to stop Rocco waking up so early. Here I am going to report about it all…

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I was privileged to be invited to the launch of Ella Jade Interior design show room in north west London. The event dress code was ‘Black Tie and Cocktail dresses’ so what better excuse than to wear a beautiful floor length black and lace gown from ‘Cristallini’. It was absolutely gorgeous and with some trusty pull in pants, my stomach looked reasonably flat… We can’t all look as fabulous as Abby Clancy did just 12 weeks after giving birth! Did you see those photos? It certainly made me feel pretty awful about my post baby body, and I’ve literally been working my butt off with John Beeby for two months. Some of us (or possibly most of us) just aren’t that lucky… anyway I digress, the dress was gorgeous and I felt fabulous. Their collection is totally worth checking out.
www.cristallini.com.

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Immediately after the event I drove to Bristol to film my last two episodes in the current series of ‘Cowboy Builders & Bodge Jobs’. I’ve really enjoyed filming the shows. We’ve managed to help some really deserving families by completing some incredible room make overs.

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After making over two houses in Bristol, it was then time for me to get ‘made over’ myself as I headed to the races at Kempton to judge ‘Best Dressed’ for Ladies day. Feeling the pressure to look good myself (as I knew I would be being judged), I decided to wear a long black and white dress from MIMI Tran Design. I teamed it up with a simple black fascinator from ‘Lucindas’ (one of my local shops), and some beautiful diamonds from www.diamond-boutique.co.uk. My lovely friend (hair and make-up artist) Catherine Legg put my hair up in a messy up do. Here are a few pics of me at the event…

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The winning lady had travelled all the way from Liverpool and I thought she looked fabulous in her outfit which she told me was from Coast.

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I bumped in to Toby Anstis from Heart radio who was DJ’ing at the event. He is such a lovely guy.

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The following morning the passports were packed and myself, Rocco and Tahlia headed to Spain for another week of filming in the sunshine.

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I actually think because I am abroad filming every other week at the moment I’m not having much luck with the Gro Clock. Rocco doesn’t wake until 7am when we are abroad because we are one hour ahead, but then we come back to UK and it throws him. All the travel with the children does have other benefits though. Rocco has starting to pick up some Spanish and really impressed Alex when we came home and said “Hola, Como estas! Gracias”.

I can’t believe in just two months he will be two and I already got a great little birthday party planned.

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After my week in the sun (well actually we experienced some torrential rain), I landed back in Blighty and hosted a baby shower for my friend who is due to have her first baby in 4 weeks. Having hosted two myself, I had a pretty good idea of what to do. I organised a vintage afternoon tea for everyone, and had a beautiful cake and cup cakes made. Everyone enjoyed drinking Shloer all afternoon which was the perfect non-alcoholic drink! I also organised for a massage therapist to treat everyone to a hand and foot massage, and we played the baby food game guessing the flavours. The afternoon was a success and the mummy to be enjoyed herself.

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As I left the baby shower, I was excited to see the launch photos of the Bizzi Growin blankets at a baby trade show in Europe. As you can see the stand features two ladies who you might recognise?

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This coming week I am in the UK, so I will be training hard with John Beeby, on my mission to loose my last 1st and 3lbs. Then at the weekend I am off to Tuscany to film so hopefully next time I will be reporting from the sunshine!

I hope you all have a brilliant week.

Laura xxx

Filming, Fashion, Fitness and some frightfully early mornings!

I hope you all had lovely bank holiday weekends?

After another manic few weeks travelling abroad as well as around the UK filming, we are having a relatively quiet one. I say quiet, it’s never really quiet with two under two but we are spending time together as a family and catching up with friends at home.

Last week I took Rocco and Tahlia to one of my favourite places in Spain, Mojacar. It’s on the Costa de Almeria and it’s nice low rise Spanish holiday town that is family friendly. The weather was beautiful and whilst I filmed in the pretty old town (The Pueblo), Rocco and Tahlia got to enjoy the swimming pool back at the hotel.

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I finally got to wear my beautiful peach Elie Tahari dress (which was a great pick as it was nice and cool.) I teamed it up with my Aruna Seth Sandals.

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For my closing chat of the episode I wore a bright yellow, skater style dress from the high street, designed by Gok Wan and I finished my look with a side updo and my MAC Russian Red lipstick. I have noticed Gok has designed some nice pieces for the highstreet recently so it’s worth checking out!

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Another product I have discovered is Bouffe Spray. Yep it does exactly what it says on the tin – If you love BIG hair, this product is a MUST have. My hair is usually quite fine and this dry spray gives it loads of volume. It comes in different shades so you can match it to your colour and it’s really effective.

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Being away from home meant I was unable to train with John Beeby, but he was sending me regular workout plans and I managed to do a 3k beach run. I really hated not being able to workout with John as it helps motivate me and I’m starting to see results.

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A week later we landed back on UK soil and I had three training sessions with John. He weighed me and I’m now down to 9st 9lb so I have 1st 3lb to go. I’m still following the 5:2 diet which is going well and my fast days are particularly easy because I eat the meals the the Fast Diet Kitchen send me. I was pretty proud of myself when I told john I had completed a 3k run and a 5k bike ride and burnt off my 500 calories on my fast day but he advised me to be careful. He told me that “stores of calories/energy are stored in muscle, liver sugar stores. You eat into the first available store that your body can use then into the longer term stores that will include the fat stores in the body. You are then in a surplus on a fasting day and then the body will recruit the energy or slow down. So working out on a fast day isn’t a good idea – slapped wrist Laura!

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Moving on to my gorgeous children – I can’t believe Tahlia is already 3 and a half months. She is a little angel who now sleeps through from 7-7 much like Rocco did. We have been very lucky! However, it’s Rocco who seems to be the one waking early. At 5:30am he comes running in to our room saying ‘I just want a cuddle’ – it’s completely adorable and of course you can’t resist his request but, in order to put a stop to this early rising we are trying the Gro Clock. We read him a story that is associated with the clock and hopefully it won’t be too long before he learns that he can’t come in to Mummy and Daddy’s room until the sun is up on the clock. I think it will take a few weeks for him to understand but it’s got to be worth a try!!

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Next week, as well as filming in Bristol, I have two big red carpet events, one of which involves judging ‘best dressed’ for ladies day at Kempton Race course on 5th September. I’ve found a beautiful dress, hat and jewellery but I still need to sort my shoes! I will of course share lots of photos with you next week.

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Well that’s it from me in this blog. But before I sign off I have a little bank holiday treat for you. As you know I love property and interior design and I’m a big fan of candles. One of my friends found it particularly funny that it was one of Rocco’s first words! Anyway the guys over at Heir and Grace have kindly offered all my followers a 25% discount and free UK shipping. All you have to do is enter the word ‘Laura’ at checkout.

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Enjoy guys!

Laura xxx

Multi tasking on a new level…

Any of you who are regular readers of my blog will know I recently gave birth to my second child, a little girl named Tahlia. Anyone who is new to my blog – hi! Thanks for reading… I hope you enjoy my ramblings.

Before I had children I crammed as much in to one day as I possibly could, but now that I have two under two, it’s takes the word “multi tasking” to a completely different level.

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Whilst I’m still trying to organise renovation bits to our house, I’m also a wife, a mummy, am trying to lose baby weight (working out with John Beeby at least 3 times a week), and I’m filming two TV projects. Alongside of this I am trying to keep on top of my beauty bits like having my Calgel Manicures and my lash extensions. Alex my husband tells me I never switch off or relax but I just don’t have the time to!

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Because it’s slightly full on, after 11 weeks of breast feeding I have decided to stop. I felt a little sad about my decision because we aren’t planning to have any more children, so I won’t be doing it again. That might sound odd but apparently a lot of people feel this way when they stop. I feel like I’ve given Tahlia a pretty good start in doing it as long as I have and now she’s taking formula milk I have been able start the 5:2 diet as part of my baby weight loss program. I’m basically eating normally for 5 days and then I limit myself to 500 calories for 2 days. The Fast Diet Kitchen sends me my meals for my two fast days which makes it pretty easy to follow and so far, after following the program for two weeks and training with John, I’ve managed to loose 5lbs.

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John is a fountain of knowledge. Initially I told him I was disappointed I wasn’t losing anything but he advised me that after having a baby it can take our bodies a little bit to readjust. I’ve quizzed him about shakes, and all sorts of faddy diets but he said I have to do it slowly and ‘the right way’. He is happy that the 5:2 is a good way to think about portion control and make me more aware of what I am consuming and I agree! My stomach is starting to get flatter and at the moment we are building on cardio fitness. By getting my fitness back, the weight will naturally drop off and then we can focus on tone.

I’m definitely not one of those people who just pings back in to shape after giving birth. I’m having to work hard at losing the weight and it takes an enormous amount of will power to resist the temptation of ‘naughty snacks’ when I’m on set filming and everyone is eating sweets.

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I am determined to stick with it because I want to look and feel fab in my clothes. Saying that I did feel fab in the clothes I purchased from the Elie Tahari concession in Harrods recently. I picked up a beautiful floaty peach dress for filming in, some cool black skinny jeans for day to day and a great fitted coral dress that I wore on a ‘date night’ with Alex to The Chiltern Firehouse (yes we are making sure we still fit those in to our busy lives too!)

I teamed the coral dress up with a cute jacket from Joseph Ribkoff (another brand I’m a big fan of at the moment – www.josephribkoff.com). They’ve got some beautiful pieces in their autumn/winter collection and I’ve invested in some staple pieces for my wardrobe.

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I finished it off my look with some statement earrings and bracelets from Merola Jewellery (www.merola.co.uk) and my new bright pink Mac Lipstick.

The restaurant was brilliant and it’s worth a visit. The crab cakes are tasty as is the steak tartare.

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So date night came and went but I had a few more excuses to get glammed up when I had a couple of filming days in Worcester and then also for a photoshoot I did at home with Bizzi Growin the Childrens brand. I am currently helping them to promote their gorgeous blankets.

I’ve attached a few little snaps of the shoot below so you can see a sneak preview.

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Rocco wasn’t part of the shoot and I think he was looking over myself and Tahlia whilst Tony the photographer took photographs. He is such a caring little boy but I definitely think he is starting to show signs of wanting more attention and is perhaps a little jealous. He can see I can’t completely focus on him and he no longer has my sole attention. If any of you have any advice or tips I’d love to hear from you…

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This weekend I am taking the children abroad again whilst I film. I’m going to continue with my dieting and John is putting an exercise regime together. I won’t have any shirts to iron, or cleaning to do but I’m sure I will be doing a million other things…

Have a great weekend guys,

Laura xxx

Family Time, Fitness and Fairy Doors!

Time spent together as a family is precious, and our family holiday, a week in Sardinia at Forte Village was no exception.

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When I was given the opportunity to visit the hotel and write a travel review for the Daily Mail I was extremely excited. From what I had read about Forte Village it had received glowing reviews. When we arrived, Alex and I were pretty impressed by our room in the 5* newly renovated hotel Il Castello. It was spacious with a large terrace and there was an adjoining door to the children’s bedroom. We were welcomed by Marcello the general manager who gave us a quick tour and overview of the facilities, they were extremely impressive; 8 hotels in 47 acres, 21 Restaurants, the Chelsea football academy, a rugby academy, netball academy, boxing academy and dance academy (all run by www.superskillsexperiences.com), designer clothes and jewellery shops, a pharmacy, a tennis academy, 9 swimming pools, a children’s club, a nursery and a weekly programme of evening entertainment. We were lucky enough to look at the Royal penthouse suite and it was something else… just a little over our budget!

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Alex and I really wanted to spend some time together going out in the evenings so we made the most of the babysitting facilities that the hotel offered. Francesca, a local lady and mum (who has worked for the hotel for 12 years), came to look after the children every evening from 8pm until 11pm. Thankfully they were both well behaved and slept! It was really important to us that we kept the children in their routines, so they both slept for two hours each day which meant Alex and I could spend some time relaxing in the sunshine and then in the evenings we got some ‘us’ time. Our favourite meal was at ‘Schuhbeck’s’ Michelin star restaurant. We also really enjoyed eating at ‘Trattoria’ and in the ‘Wine Cellar’ where we treated to a meal cooked by the top chef Chris Wheeler from Stoke Park in the UK. It was fantastic.

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It’s fair to say Forte Village isn’t cheap, but with amazing facilities for families and a world class spa, it’s a special place to visit. As you wander around the grounds it’s a bit of a celeb spotting place too… We bumped in to rugby players Will Greenwood and Ben Kay as well as ex Crystal Palace football player Andy Johnson all of whom were really lovely…I will let you know when my full review hits the press so you can have a read but in the meantime if you want to check out the hotel you can visit their website here www.fortevillageresort.com or even download their phone app!

As soon as I got home I hit the ground running with work and working out! I’ve been having some really exciting work meetings, I’ve managed to fit in 3 personal training sessions with John Beeby, and I’ve been filming in Southport this week. Holiday seems like a distance memory.

In my training sessions I have been boxing with pads (which I love), and John has had me doing squats and lunges with a medicine ball (a weighted ball). He said he is easing me in gently but I definitely got a sweat on and worked hard. At the weekend I’m going to start my diet plan with www.fastdietkitchen.co.uk so hopefully by next week I will start seeing some results in terms of weight loss. #mrsimpatient!

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When I’ve been on location filming in Stockport this week, the children have been staying with me. Our nanny Sarah planned an amazing day out with both of them at Chester Zoo. It was great for Rocco to visit this zoo because it’s somewhere Alex’s grandparents took him regularly as a child and he loved it. The zoo was also voted the best in the country this year so it’s a top place to take the kids this Summer. Check out the little video Sarah took of of Rocco below.
www.chesterzoo.org

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Whilst Sarah has been with me (and when she visited the zoo), she was ‘test driving’ the brand new tandem Egg pram which is like the Range Rover of tandem prams! Tahlia is on the bottom in the carrycot and Rocco is on top in a forward facing seat.

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I have been lucky enough to test a few prams and the Egg is certainly one of the best. It looks fab, is really solid and its especially easy to use. The frame collapses down and fits in to a relatively small space and it’s not too heavy! Sarah loved using it and I think it’s brilliant too. It make life a little easier being out and about with two under two. www.eggstroller.com

This weekend I’m really excited to be going out to dinner with Alex at the Chiltern Firehouse. I’ve heard it serves great food and is a bit of a trendy hang out. Date nights are SO important when you have children and I love it when I get to experience new restaurants with my husband.

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Before I finish up this week’s blog post I just wanted to tell you about another fun thing that I have recently discovered for children. A few weeks ago I attended an event being run by The Irish Fairy Door Company. www.theirishfairydoorcompany.com. When you buy a fairy door, you get a little booklet that explains how it all works. You go online to register your fairy and then every so often your child gets up dates and little surprises from their fairy. It’s a really sweet idea and they make such lovely gifts, worth checking out.

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Now what should I wear for date night?

Have a lovely weekend.

Laura xxx

Holidaying in Sardinia

Hi guys,

Hope you are all having a good week?

I’m writing this week’s blog from sunny Sardinia where I’m am visiting and reviewing Forte Village. It’s a very impressive place that has excellent facilities for families. It is our first holiday away as a family of four and and we are having such a great time. It’s already Tahlia’s third trip abroad and she is not even 10 weeks yet!

laura-hamilton2Rocco having a blast and I’m really enjoying watching Alex get to spend some quality time with him, playing with him in the swimming pool. Rocco is extremely confident in the water which is fantastic but also a little worrying at the same time.

laura-hamiltonWe’ve met lots of great people including Will Greenwood (whose son also happens to be called Rocco!) and Anthony Campos from the ‘Superskills Experiences’ team who run the majority of the sports academies at the hotel. They are a really lovely group of people.

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I will be revealing more about my stay at Forte Village in next week’s blog and also how I’m finding it travelling with two under two, but in the mean time you can find out more about ‘Superskills’ here www.superskillsexperiences.com

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In my last post I mentioned I am starting a fitness regime to try to loose 2 stone of baby weight. I’m certainly feeling the pressure because of being on screen and I’m a little impatient when I don’t see results immediately. I’ve started working out with John Beeby, a personal trainer who I am aiming to workout with at least twice a week, work permitting. It’s early days and he is putting a program together for me. Although I state I want to loose two stone, I’ve said that because I’m aiming to get back to what I weighed when we got married. The number on the scales isn’t actually that important, it is what I look like and how I feel in my clothes. I have a photo of myself that I’m working towards my body being like again. Many people say that after having children your body is never the same again and after having two c-sections it is supposedly harder to get back in shape. There is also the c-section overhang that a few people speak of. This is basically the area above where they cut. Getting it completely flat can be tricky. John Beeby is going to be helping me train the correct way after major surgery and I will be sharing this information with you along my journey. My first training session involved John assessing my strength which he seemed pretty impressed with.

laura-hamilton3 My real training starts next week and I’m raring to go. Whilst I’m training I’m going to be following a diet program too. www.Fastdietkitchen.co.uk will be sending meals direct to my door. I have decided to do this because as a busy working mum, I am always making sure the children have everything they need and are eating well that I sometimes forget about myself, or I snack on food I’ve made for Rocco which isn’t good. I need to be eating well to train properly so I’m giving it a go.

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Before we came away I had my first evening out alone since Tahlia was born and I didn’t feel guilty! Alex looked after both children whilst I attended the annual ITV Summer party. The party is held at the Director of ITV’s house and it’s always a great event. Everywhere you look you are surrounded by familiar and glamorous faces from ITV. This year I wore a burgundy colour dress from The Pretty Dress Company. I decided to go for a colour clash with my footwear and wore red suede shoes from LK Bennett. As always I was beautified by Jo Adams and I felt fab. Here is a sneaky pic from the event when I was papped outside!

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Anyway that’s it from me for now. Better get back to enjoying quality family time. I hope you have a good weekend guys.

Laura and family from Sunny Sardinia! X

The first 8 weeks…

Hey all,

It’s been a good few weeks since my last blog post and it is good to finally be back. It has certainly taken a little while to settle with two under two.  Bath time is pretty challenging and initially it was a bit of a stress when both children were crying at once.

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I’ve been trying out some new bath products for Rocco and the DGJ organics Top to Toe soaps smell great!  Things are getting easier now with Tahlia especially as she is establishing herself in to a pretty good routine, sleeping from 7pm until 7am only waking up once during the night. She is an absolute cutie and Rocco adores her and always wants to kiss and cuddle her.

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You may have seen our recent photoshoot with Hello! Magazine introducing Tahlia to you.  We thoroughly enjoyed the day and hope you liked the photos.  As I haven’t had much time for pampering, getting glammed up for the shoot was lovely and I felt truly fabulous thanks to Jo Adams and Arabella Boyce the clothes stylist.

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The house smelt fab thanks to some beautiful Heir and Grace candles we had burning, and both Roccos and Tahlias rooms looked fab with their cots and beds dressed using beautiful Clair De Lune linen, little personalised Teepees from ‘Just for Tiny People’ and gorgeous rugs from ‘Nubie Kids’ (all fab companies for design conscious parents!).

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I guess most people who follow my blog with know I am a bit of a workaholic, but I truly love my job and I’m so lucky I am able to travel with my children.  When Rocco was 4 weeks olds, some of you may remember I took part in ‘The Jump’… Well, when Tahlia was four weeks old, I returned to work too, but this time to film in the sunshine! It has been an interesting juggle but thankfully we now have a fab nanny who travels with us too and Tahlia who is now 8 weeks old and has visited Malloica twice and there are lots more trips in the diary including our family holiday to Forte Village in Sardinia in a few weeks time.  I feel like a bit of an expert travelling with children now, but knowing exactly what and what not to take!  You often don’t need as much as you think and you definitely shouldn’t be put off by travelling with children.  I think the experience can only benefit them…

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The hardest thing about returning to work is that on a couple of occasions my boobs have started leaking milk on location but I’m determined to continue breast feeding for as long as I can.  I’ve got a great Tommee Tippee expressing machine which is coming in very handy and I’ve found some really handing clothes from www.boobdesign.com which are worth checking out.  I’m finding it easier second time round and I’m hoping whilst it’s good for Tahlia it will help me get back in shape.   I actually have two stone of baby weight to shift and because I am on TV I am slightly feeling the pressure.

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I fly back to the UK on at the weekend and fingers crossed the weather is still nice so we can spend time in the garden.  As a little treat for Rocco when Tahlia arrived, we bought him a Little tikes climbing frame.  He absolutely loves it and when we are at home it’s all he seems to want to play with.

I hope you have a great weekend.  I’ll be back next week with some information on my new fitness regime and how I plan to get back in shape and loose my baby weight as well as some much deserved new mummy pampering products!

Lots of love

Laura xxx

Three become four!

Hi guys,

So this is my first blog post since the birth of my daughter… and our family of three has now become four.

Our little girl actually arrived a week early but thankfully we were prepared for her arrival. When I appeared on The Wright Stuff on 7 May and said my baby could come any minute, I didn’t expect her to arrive to following morning!

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Alex has had two weeks paternity leave from work and it’s going to be interesting now he is back at work and I’m going to be home alone with them both. Mornings and bedtime are pretty interesting that is for sure and it has certainly been a busy few weeks so far. When I say I’m going to be at home alone, I’m not actually going to be at home because I am returning to work in a few weeks and taking the children abroad with me. Travelling with two is going to be a completely different ballgame…

When our little girl arrived,  Alex and I were totally overwhelmed by all the kind messages, flowers and gifts we received, so I’d like to take this opportunity to thank a few people.

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Louise and Beryl are a couple of wonderful ladies who have followed me since Dancing on Ice.  They sent us a cute hungry caterpillar baby grow which was very kind. I’d also like to say thank you to Dee who sent us a gorgeous outfit too. She has followed me for many years when I first appeared in Panto with Stephen Gately and has always been very sweet.

Sassy Bloom Box sent us a lovely gift box full of useful bits. Baby Bjorn sent a great pink baby carrier which will be very useful when I go away. We love Fruji and Ruby and Boris sent our daughter some cute outfits and useful muslins, and My 1st years sent her her very first dressing gown! A new company I have recently discovered called Bizzi Growin sent both her and Rocco a beautiful blanket each and a Prince and Princess doll.

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I also want to say thank you to the teams at Cowboy Builders and A Place in the Sun who sent very thoughtful gifts of clothes and a Tiffany necklace. And I would like to thank all our wonderful friends who have sent us beautiful gifts… you know who you are. We had so many beautiful flowers too and the house smelt and looked amazing – if only we could have flowers like that all the time.

Finally I want to say a BIG thank you to Bubblee and Jessie Bassi from the children’s designer clothes shop Childsplay who have sent us some gorgeous clothes for the children to wear in our HELLO! photoshoot taking place this weekend. You may recall Childsplay shop featuring in the ITV show Minors in Designers? If you didn’t see the show, the store is really incredible. They have a great website and their customer service is amazing. Bubblee, one of the owners is a lovely lady and she actually hosted her first big fashion show in Manchester this week so I hope it was a huge success for her and the team.

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So I can’t give too much away in this blog post and therefore it is short and sweet. What I can say is don’t forget to pick up HELLO! magazine in a couple of weeks to see the first exclusive photos of our little girl and also to read about how it was a slightly scary experience giving birth.  Thankfully everything turned out okay…

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Until then, lots of love,

Laura xxx

Baby fever hits London and fun family days out before the new arrival…

Hi guys,

I hope you are all well and had a lovely bank holiday weekend?

How exciting was it that Kate and William welcomed their new little Princess in to the world? And what a gorgeous name too… Kate looked beautiful as she left hospital – she was in and out in record time. I’m hoping I will be out just as quickly… I am not so sure I will look quite as glam but I will certainly be giving it my best shot! Just like Alex and myself, Kate and William will have two under two… Let the fun begin!

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Since I last blogged I have been struggling to get over a really bad cough – someone mentioned to me that the 100 day cough is going around (which is awful), but I think when you become ill and you are pregnant it’s just harder to fight because all of your energy is going towards making a little person. I’ve been trying to eat healthily and starting the day with a tasty new granola cereal I have discovered called ‘Lizi’s Granola’ which doesn’t contain much sugar but provides much needed slow-release energy. They’ve got some really delicious flavours.

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I actually really feel huge now and I’m going to be honest, I can’t wait to try and start getting back in shape. I think it is going to be tough but Alex and I aren’t planning to have any more children so this time I am going to be really focused. I’m planning to do lots of skipping which I did before I got married, and I also plan to use the Techno shape which is an air compression machine I can use whilst working out on the cross trainer. I know I will need to wait a few weeks to recover before I can start my exercise regime and I do plan to breast feed so eating healthily will be my priority.

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Over the last couple of weeks it has been great to do some lovely things with Rocco. I took him to Hobbledown in Epsom with my friend Sam and her children. Hobbledown isn’t too far from where I live, it was absolutely brilliant and makes for a superb day out. As well as having loads of farm animals, there is a huge indoor Softplay area and a fantastic play ground outside too. Rocco particularly loved bouncing on the huge green pillows with his little friend Isla who was dressed as a princess. If you are thinking about places to visit with your little ones this is definitely a top pick of mine: www.hobbledown.com.

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Last Sunday we had another trip out as a family. As I continue to support ‘Dreams Come True’ charity, we took Rocco to Hamleys to support their ‘Dream Day’ out event. The store kindly closed its doors for two hours whilst lots of children the charity support were able to explore. Rocco didn’t quite know where to look or which cuddly toy to pick up next. He wasn’t so keen on Spiderman but adored The Gruffalo and a colourful bird puppet and it is so amazing seeing his face light up when he sees things like this.

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So with just over a week to go now until his little brother or sister arrives, the nursery is ready for the new baby – decorated neutrally of course, complete with its own little teepee ready for the new baby’s initials. We have chosen a name for a boy and a girl and thankfully like last time, Alex and I are both in agreement, but we have kept the names to ourselves.

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We have ordered a climbing frame from Little Tikes as a present for Rocco as people say we need to spoil him when the new baby arrives. We have also got him some cute little gifts for Galt toys who have a great range of bits for children of all ages. Who knows what he is going to make of the new arrival? Fingers crossed he is fine!

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I actually have two days work to complete before the new baby is here – I will be on The Wright Stuff tomorrow (Thursday) and also at the A Place in the Sun exhibition on Sunday. Neither of the days are long so I’ll be taking it relatively easy.

The next time I blog hopefully our family of three should be four…

Until then, wish me luck!

Lots of love,

Laura x

My temptation this week… did I find out the sex of our baby?

Hi!

Hope you are all well and enjoying the sunshine?

This week it is my birthday week! Well my actual birthday is on Friday but I had a lovely little surprise celebration on Saturday night when Alex arranged for a private chef to come and cook at our house for 8 of us. Lucy Furlonge is none other than Lord Sainsbury’s chef, and when she arrived at my house on Saturday night and took over our kitchen with her waitress Anyas in toe, I was more than excited to sit back, relax and enjoy the culinary delights.

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Lucy’s menu and creations were incredible and it was amazing to be entertained at home. Thank you Alex for such a great surprise and thank you to my friends who were able to join me to celebrate the occasion. #luxurylifestyleliving for sure!

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Over the last week, I’ve been trying out some lovely new maternity clothes. I’ve discovered a lovely brand called ‘Heavenly Bump’, who stock some really cosy maternity wear, and cute dresses for Summer. If you follow me on Twitter you may have noticed me in a couple of their cute dresses but I particularly like these outfits too…

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Paisley print maxi £40

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Green flower print wrap dress £36

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Palm tree playsuit £32

If you are expecting a baby I recommend checking them out www.heavenlybump.co.uk – who said being pregnant doesn’t mean you can’t be stylish?!

Moving on to more clothes but this time children’s ones… how cute are these designs that come gorgeously gift wrapped…

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Shmuncki’s are a London-based design house specialising in classic and stylish babywear and accessories. Their collection takes inspiration from heritage designs, and all of their clothes are made in Britain (www.shmuncki.com). I’m starting to wish we knew what we were having now so I could buy lots of bits… Although saying that there isn’t really long to wait at all.

I was actually a little naughty last week because I tried to find out the sex of our baby without Alex knowing when I attended St Helier hospital in Surrey. I was given a guided tour of their birthing facilities and helped present an award to their maternity team with UNICEF representative Anne Strong. The award was given to both St Helier and Epsom hospital, recognising their high standards in encouraging and supporting new mums to bond with their babies and make the best choice in how to feed their newborn. It’s important that all parents get the support and help that they need to feed and bond with their new baby, and I think it’s great that both of hospitals that are local to me are doing that so well.

So…whilst I was there I asked for a cheeky scan but unfortunately they were unable to fit me in… Oh well the surprise is meant to be. I’ve waited this long, so what is another couple of weeks?

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Aside of my pregnancy news, my new show Cowboy Builders and Bodge jobs starts on Channel 5 next Monday and A Place in the Sun is back on Channel 4 too. Hopefully you get to see them.

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Have a great weekend guys,

Laura xx

My baby shower, as featured in this week’s HELLO!

Hi guys,

How are you all doing?

So this week’s blog is all about my wonderful baby shower that was kindly hosted by Sketch London on Conduit Street. This venue is pretty special and one word that springs to mind is TOILETS! If you haven’t been, you need to go and check this place out…

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My baby shower is also featured in this week’s HELLO! magazine who I would like to say an enormous thank you to for all their support to the wonderful charity. My baby shower was actually in aid of Dreams Come True.

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In the lead up, I decided to give myself a little pamper before the event. I was treated to a gorgeous new hair colour at FOUR LONDON by Jenny and a lovely blow dry from Amy. It’s amazing how much better I felt. I really love this salon and the girls are all so lovely.

I had my usual lovely lash extensions my Emily Ponte from Poeme beauty, and I chose to wear a dress from the Mamalicious Collection complimented by a gold belt from Oasis with my Christian Louboutin heels (not too high!), that Alex treated me to last Christmas. After Jo Adams waved her magic wand, my make-up was done and I was good to go!

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Given that this was my second baby shower I wanted to do something a little different to the first time round.  I decided to make my baby shower an event where I could do something to help others. At the same time as fundraising for Dreams Come True and helping them launch their dream tea week (15th to 21st June) I ensured my guests enjoyed an amazing afternoon tea at Sketch and also made sure they felt well and truly pampered with the help of my good friend Hayley Sparkes. You might have seen Hayley on This Morning (as their beauty presenter) and I can’t thank her enough for helping me plan the event. She is a top girl!

Sophia came with her assistant to paint nails (www.sophiastylianou.com, @Sophia_Nails), Fake Bake gave everyone hand scrubs and massages (www.fakebake.co.uk, @fakebakeunited) and the Lava angels team came to offer hot lava shell shoulder massages to everyone (www.sharedbeautysecrets.com, @lavashells, @lavaangels), all of whom were a massive hit!

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My guests got to take away goodie bags with lovely treats from all the brands above as well as some lovely bits from The Vintage Cosmetic company (www.thevintagecosmeticcompany.com, @thevintagecosco) and Miners Cosmetics (www.minerscosmetics.co.uk, @minerscosmetics).

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In addition to all of the pampering we had a very special cake made by a celebrity baker and a royal tea taster! I don’t want to give everything away so to see all the fab photos of the full feature on my baby shower and who attended, make sure you pick up this week’s HELLO! magazine AND if you want to host a Dream Tea party and help support Dreams Come True, you can find out more about the charity here… http://dreamscometrue.uk.com.

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Have a great weekend all – I hope this weather lasts – I’m thoroughly enjoying my last few weeks with my bump in the sunshine!

Laura xxx

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