Posts Tagged: Family

30 March


Aoife’s really started getting into music…

Hi everyone,


Hope you’re having a lovely Mother’s Day! I’ll be doing a Twitter chat tomorrow (Monday) and answering all your questions so make sure to follow @hellomag and send them with #HELLOUna!


Ben’s Mum was down for the weekend to look after Aoife when we went to Rochelle’s birthday party, so we’re spending today having a ‘3 generations’ meal together – Ben’s taking his Mum and Aoife’s taking me!


I always send my Mum flowers for Mother’s Day, she loves them. I think the best thing I ever gave her was Aoife – she absolutely adores being a grandmother. I think she loves Aoife more than she loves me! I can’t wait to be a grandmother one day, but at the moment it’s far away. First, I want Aoife to have a little brother or sister. I don’t really mind which, I just think it will be lovely for her to have a sibling.


My Mum joked the other day that being a grandparent is better than being a parent, because you love the child and can spend time with them, but at the end of the day you can give them back to the parents!


Aoife’s really started getting into music – any time a song plays she gets up to dance. She’s been trying to play the guitar lately, but she’s so small she has to play it like a harp. I’ve got her her own mini guitar, so she loves to play with that. I’ll definitely get her to take piano and guitar lessons when she’s a bit older, I think she’ll really love it.


She goes to a dance class at the moment but it’s for babies and toddlers, just to get them playing and meeting other children. As well as dancing, she loves swimming and splashing around in the pool, but I won’t be taking her armbands off any time soon, she’s still much too young.


Speak soon,


Love from Una xxx

24 February


I’m a bit worried Aoife is going to ask us for a real pony…

Hi everyone,


Hope you had a lovely weekend!


Aoife did something really cute the other day. Ben was watching television and I was in the kitchen calling out to him, but he didn’t hear me. Suddenly, Aoife ran in and yelled, “Ben!” at him, and found it so much fun she didn’t stop. Since then he keeps protesting, “I’m Daddy! Not Ben! Daddy!” but she’s not having it. I’m not going to help him, I think it’s funny!


She’s learning a lot – she knows how to say her own name now. If you ask her what her name is, she’ll say ‘Aoife’, and when she sees pictures of herself she points at them and giggles, ‘That’s Aoife!’. It’s so cute. If she sees a picture of her and I, she points and says, “That’s you, that’s me”. She used to recognise us but it’s the first time she’s been properly expressing it.



Every day she becomes more and more playful. The other day I was cleaning up and picking up her toys, and she jumped on me, pretending I was a horse! I think she plays that a lot with her grandmother and thought I wanted to play, so I went along with it. She absolutely loved it – I’m a bit worried she’s going to ask us for a real pony! Luckily, we have a big antique rocking horse that Ben’s mother got her, so we can give her that, but at the moment she’s still a bit too small, I worry she would fall off!


Another game she loves is hide and seek, especially when she plays it with Ben in the evening. She laughs so much when we hide around the corner and jump out at her. Her favourite toys are her little Fisher Price people, especially her Princess Castle. She’s also obsessed with a little farm she has and the toy farm animals. I’d love to live in the countryside one day, I think it’s a great place to bring up kids because there’s so much space for them to run around in.


Speak soon,


Love from Una xxx

13 February


I remember my worst haircut ever…

Hi everyone,


Hope you are having a lovely week, despite the grey and rainy weather!


Ben and I took Aoife to a sing-a-long of Disney’s Frozen a few days ago. The atmosphere was great as all the kids sang along. Even the adults joined in – I think they might have been even more into it than the children!


Aoife enjoyed it for about 10 minutes, then decided to get up from her seat and run around. It was the first time we had ever taken her to the cinema, but I’ve realised now she’s still a bit too young. I was a bit disappointed we had to leave early as the film looked really good, so Ben and I are going to go and see it if we can.


I really love the new hairstyle Amanda Holden debuted at Britain’s Got Talent, it looks great. I like to leave my hair down generally, although I like a chic updo for the red carpet. When I’m around the house, I prefer a messy bun – it’s so easy to do and it keeps my hair out of my face.


I remember at the beginning of the Saturdays, I had my worst haircut ever. The hairdresser at the time convinced me to cut a fringe in, and I hated it! I tried to hide it by parting it in the centre, but that only made it worse because then it looked like I had curtains. It was awful. So for our very first music video, If This is Love, I had dead straight hair with curtains. Luckily nowadays I can laugh about it, but I definitely won’t be repeating that style again.


I love to use Kérastase products in my hair, as my locks go through a lot of stress. I leave their products in my hair overnight, about once a week, and I also use their shampoo. It’s great because my hair is coloured, so it helps lock in the shine.


When I was younger, I dyed my hair all the time. I’ve been blonde, dark brown, black. I’ve even had blonde highlights, but they were hard to maintain because my natural hair colour is mahogany brown, so they needed a lot of upkeep. I love the colour I have now, it’s becoming my signature look.


Aoife’s hair is amazingly silky and thick. I play with it all the time, doing different styles such as pigtails, buns and ponytails. I have to put her in front of the television to get her to sit still though, otherwise she gets distracted starts moving around a lot.


Speak soon,
Love from Una xxx

07 February


Aoife and her friend Koa are adorable together…

Hi everyone,

Hope you’re having a good week despite the horrible weather!


Ben and I met up with Kian and Jodi last weekend for a Sunday roast. Aoife and their son Koa are adorable together, they play together and are really good friends. They’re the cutest little things! Aoife is still very young so she hasn’t made many friends, but Koa is 3 months older and they get on so well. He told Jodi that he really likes Aoife and thinks she’s really pretty – it was so cute. When Aoife sees photos of him, she recognises him and points him out as her friend. It’s so sweet.


Her birthday is coming up in March, so I just bought her dress. I haven’t made any big plans as she’s still quite young, so I might make it a small party. I think next year she’ll be old enough to appreciate all the excitement, cake and presents a bit more.


I do want to try and get her picture on one of the children’s TV shows where they say happy birthday to kids. The picture pops up and they wish you a happy birthday and say your age, which is very exciting for both the child but also the parents I think. When I was 7, my Mum sent one in, and it was shown… but I missed it! The next day everyone was talking about it at school, and I was so disappointed that I hadn’t seen it.


She’s almost 2 now, and she understands a lot of what we say and what’s going on. It’s lovely, because she’s just so happy-go-lucky. I wouldn’t be able to be apart from her, I see her almost every day.


I think for her birthday I’ll be getting her some clothes and toys, but I’d love to get her a sing-a-long CD player for children as a birthday gift, so if you know any great ones, I’m open to suggestions!


Speak soon,


Love from Una xxx



23 January


Aoife has started repeating everything she hears…

Hi everyone,

Hope you’re having a good week. Ben and I took Aoife to the Hilton London Syon Park hotel this weekend, which was really nice because it’s very rare that we both get a whole weekend off. We went swimming and then to the spa, where I had a lovely ‘lava shell’ massage. It’s kind of like a hot stone massage, but instead of stones, it’s shells which are sourced from the Philippines.


It was great for me because I had loads of knots in my back from diving, so it was completely relaxing!  We also took Aoife to the swimming pool which she absolutely loved, because she loves being in the water. I’m really keen to get her swimming.

photo 2


We met up with some friends for dinner and played giant Jenga, which Aoife loved because she kept trying to pull all the pieces down. I think she was excited because it was past her bedtime, but we let her off because it was nice to spend some time together.


I’ve got to be careful about what I say in front of Aoife as she’s started repeating everything she hears. I accidentally swore the other day and she copied me, so I said, “Aoife, I’ll be saying ‘oh shoot’ instead now!” It’s funny because when you’re young you think you have to be careful in front of your parents, and then you become a parent and you have to be careful in front of the children! Especially because children are like sponges – they pick up everything that you say! It’s also quite exciting though, because every day she’s learning more and more vocabulary.

Ben had some exciting news this week as he’s been signed on to NEXT management. He’s done shoots before for magazines, so he’s got some experience.


Speak soon,


Love from Una xxx


21 January


I’m a bit worried I’ll get nervous on Splash…

Hi everyone,


Hope you are all well! I’m getting really excited for Splash, but I got nervous watching the others. I’ve seen them training so I know how hard they’ve been working. It’s been nerve-wracking watching them, especially as I don’t know how I will feel when I’m up there! All it takes is last-minute nerves to kick in and make you mess up.


Seeing the others do their best did encourage me though. I want to do as well as I can, so that if I don’t make it through I know I tried as hard as I could. I feel ready for it, although I do think my last few training sessions will really help to make me confident to do the dive. There’s a lot of pressure because it’s live, and they play dramatic music as you approach the end of the board!




I’m a bit worried I’ll get nervous, but nerves can be a good thing, and luckily being on stage has taught me to get control of them. Plus, I used to swim a lot when I was young, so I already know the feeling of being by a pool before a competition.


Ben, my parents and the band will be there to support me, so it’ll be nice to have them there, especially if I don’t get through. Aoife is a bit too young to come which is a shame, but it’s also probably for the best because I worry she would call out ‘Mummy!’ and distract me.


Speak soon!


Love from Una xxx

20 December


Aoife will be a little Queen Bee at the dinner table this Christmas

Hello lovely readers

How are you all doing? I’m so ready for Christmas now. I was just listening to The Pogues’ Fairytale of New York – that’s hands down my favourite Christmas song.

Aoife was too young to really enjoy last Christmas properly, I think this year will be a little different though. She’s been enjoying her advent calendar although I’m not keen on her having lots of chocolate so she’s got a tiny one. She’s actually got quite a sophisticated palette already. She loves her greens (broccoli is a current favourite) and she’s mad about avocados and even olives.




She’ll be sat at the head of the table for Christmas dinner, a little queen bee. Last year we were over in Ireland and we didn’t have her highchair so she sat in her stroller for lunch but this year it’ll be different. Aoife will be in the thick of the action with her cracker hat on and loving her lunch no doubt.

This year we’re spending Christmas with Ben’s family and some of our friends, I think there will be about 15 of us in total. Everyone will much in with the cooking – I’m planning to do a baked camembert and cranberry dish. She’ll be really spoilt by everyone and totally doted on on the 25th because she’ll be the only child there. Her big cousins are coming over on Boxing Day though so it won’t be just adult company though. On the 27th I’ll be flying with Aoife to Ireland to spend New Year with my family. Ben has got to go back to training though so unfortunately he won’t be able to join us.

Speak soon.

Love Una xxx

12 December


My mum is my number one fan

Hey everyone,

Who’s feeling Christmassy? I definitely am! I’ve almost finished my Christmas shopping, I’ve got just a couple more bits to get which I’m hoping I can do at the airport when the Sats fly up to Glasgow for a gig at the weekend.




It was so lovely to have Frankie back with us to perform the Top of the Pops Christmas special. I chose a eye-popping pink dress for that, quite a fun and festive look. We also all got together to perform on Strictly last weekend. We went for a sophisticated black and gold look. I really loved the black Hervé Léger bandage dress I wore for that.




You’ll be seeing a lot of the Saturdays on TV on Christmas day – in Ireland you’ll be able to watch the first of the Una’s Dream Ticket series, Rochelle will be performing on the Strictly Christmas special and the five of us will be on TOTP.


photo 4


I’m not really one for watching myself on TV – I’ve already done the filming and I’m happy with how it went so that’s enough for me. I’m spending Christmas with Ben’s family and some of our friends so if they want to watch it then I won’t stop them. I know my mother will definitely be tuning in – she always does, she’s my number one fan!

Speak to you all soon.

Love from Una xxxx


07 November


I love watching Ben play rugby and I support him in everything he does

Hi everyone,

I went to watch the England v Australia rugby match last weekend. I was watching over at Ben for most of it while he was warming up but unfortunately he didn’t get a game. He’s been playing very well recently but obviously there’s fierce competition to get a place in the team. Hopefully I can go back this weekend and the next and I’ll get to see him play.

Ben gets given three gifted tickets for close family and friends and the seats are with the rest of the England team’s family and friends. I went with Ben’s dad, his sister and a couple of friends. I didn’t sit in the family and friends bit this time but still had really good seats on the opposite side. The atmosphere was so good though, it doesn’t honestly matter where you sit. I want to take Aoife along in a couple of weeks so I’ll be up in one of the boxes for that because you can’t sit down in the stands with a small child on your lap – it would drive everyone mad!




I wasn’t massively into rugby before I met Ben but I have a real fondness for the game now. I’m his wife and so I want to support him in everything he does. I’ve got to know some of the other players now and that makes it even better to watch.

People often say to me, “Oh but you’re Irish and you’re supporting England!” and I’m like, “Not really, because first and foremost I support Ireland as a country, but my husband does play for England so I’m hardly going to turn my back on him when he’s playing!”




Often there’s a bit of banter between Ben and I if they’re playing Ireland because I’m always shouting for Ireland, even if he’s playing. He doesn’t mind, he totally forgives me for that because you always support your country first when it’s like that. I support England but only when Ireland aren’t playing!

After the game we went to a dinner with all the England and Australia players and their partners. It was the first time we’d sat together at an event and had the same surname on the placecards which was lovely so I took a little snap!




I’ve got to know some of the other wives and girlfriends so it’s always good to catch up. These events have a really relaxed vibe so it’s just a chance for the players and their partners to get to know each other. Sometimes they have black tie events but they normally just have a chilled out dress code – I normally I wear a dress with opaques and heels.

Chat to you all soon.

Love from Una xxx

03 October


Ben and I watched One Direction’s first ever auditions on YouTube

Hey everyone

Hope you’re having a great week. I’ve had a few days at home with Aoife which has been lovely.

I’ve been catching up on TV too. I’m loving the X Factor and Downton Abbey being back on – I’m big fans of both. Ben and I watched the X Factor together the other night with a takeaway once we’d put Aoife to bed.

While we were watching we thought it’d be really funny to watch One Direction’s first ever auditions on YouTube so we did and it’s amazing to see how life-changing the show was for all of them. They went in as five very young individuals and got put together – just look where they are now! A  couple of them had auditioned before and Liam had made it to the judge’s houses so it just goes to show that you can go back and still make it.




I thought the new seat system where you get a place but it might be taken away from you is quite harsh. It must be horrible being up on the stage with the whole room watching you and having your place taken away from you. However I don’t think the contestants can complain too much because you know when you’re entering that kind of competition that you might end up in a position like that. TV shows like X Factor are known for introducing all these twists because the format has been going for so long so they have to introduce new things to keep people interested in the show.

I’m really looking forward to seeing the live shows, that’s when things get really exciting. The UK music scene is really welcoming of fresh talent. People just need to fill spaces that haven’t yet been filled by bringing something new and different to separate themselves from the rest.



I spent hours and hours signing album posters and CD singles last week. I got comfy on the sofa and got into the swing of it and got through stacks and stacks of them. Sometimes people are surprised when they find out that we do the signing ourselves and they think it’s done by a machine but it’s not. I think it’s really nice for our fans to have a keepsake single or poster signed by us. CD singles are really popular with our fans still, they’re almost a collector’s item nowadays. The first ever single I bought (in tape form!) was Michael Jackson’s Bad. After that it was True Blue by Madonna and Kylie Minogue’s Locomotion – so eighties, I really wore those tapes out, they were my world!



I remember the days when everyone used to record songs off of the radio to make homemade tapes, you’d have to pause the recording before the DJ cut in and you had to be really on it to get a smooth recording! My sister and I used to record ourselves singing and we’ve kept the tapes so they’re very funny to listen to now and again. When our cousins came over we used to have singing competitions and talent contests, I used to get really upset if I didn’t win so they came up with a way to make everyone a winner to keep me happy.




I’m a big radio listener – I love Heart for chilled music, Radio One for up to date stuff and Radio 2 for a bit more conversation and older, classic tunes. My latest album download is an American country album which is full of lovely songs.

Our new single Disco Love is out on Sunday so we’re doing lots of promo work for that. I’ll tell you where you can see and hear us in my next blog post.

Speak soon.

Love Una xxxx

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