Friday, 16 August 2013

Housekeeping and The Faith Brothers

So many things popped into my head while I was on holiday that left me thinking 'ooh I must mention that on the blog!'

I thought a weekly (or more often) housekeeping post would help my brain put everything into one place - responses to some comments, newness, what I've been doing - and just general news.

First up:

Thank you for your lovely responses to yesterday's post. I'm so encouraged that you got where I was coming from and grateful for the support. Let us make no more mention of 'them' and move on to nicer people. :)
Some of you had recognised Amica and couldn't quite place where - she was one of QVC's longest-serving models - but to us she was much more. A longtime friend and neighbour - our kids go to the same schools and we we've witnessed her journey with cancer first hand. When I turned up to do my first on-air QVC show Amica was coincidentally booked as the model. Seeing her face in the Green Room immediately put me at ease to the point where Aly said on air: 'You two are like old friends!' - to which we both replied 'We ARE!'. She was a kind, generous, loving woman and will be greatly missed by us all.


I used to travel a lot for work. Everywhere - the US, the Far East - but I have never been so jetlagged as I have been this week after getting back from our hols. Last night was the first time I've begun to sleep normally in a week. What is THAT about?


Why don't kids get jetlag like adults? Ugh. Mine are like Duracell batteries while the Mister and I are sofa-bound sloths.

IBS (possible TMI for those of you that prefer to skip ahead to the next topic).

Unfortunately the food was not great while we were away and it triggered the worst bout of IBS I've had in years. Literally. I've managed IBS with diet for the last few years and had forgotten just how bad the cramps etc are. So many of you mentioned you suffer too - feel free to leave me any sworn-by remedies in the comments - I can do without that again!


All quiet on the retail front. It's August. The world is either away - or pretending they are away.

Everyone in beauty retail.

Let the September pre-Christmas madness begin!

One more before I go.

Many years ago (almost 30 - WHAT?!?!) - my girlfriends and I followed a band called The Faith Brothers. *waves to Cheryl, Heather, Michelle, Nicky, Jo and the Faith's gang*

Ah how we rocked a crimper.

Formed by Billy Franks and Lee Hirons (check the surname) they are ultimately how I met Jim.

Their first album has just been remastered by my very clever brother-in-law and has been released as a special deluxe edition. What kind of a platform is this if I can't plug family?

*throws hands in the air - shouts 'GRIP-PERRRRR!!!!!'*

The Faith Brothers music is available on iTunes, Amazon and through Cherry Red Records.
More info on Billy and Lee.
Fath Brothers FB page.

Thanks for letting me shamelessly plug the fam.

Have a great weekend.


  1. I suffer from IBS too. Such a debilitating illness that no one really takes that seriously (if they ever DARE to mention it in the first place *rollseyes* )

    Whilst I don't have any quick-fixes, the one thing that really helps me is Peppermint Tea. The warmth helps ease cramps and the peppermint helps to ease the nausea a little bit. No mirracle cure by any means, but it does help.

    Feel better!

    El x

    1. Forgot to mention, these really help with stomach spasms too!

  2. Great post as always. Can you recommend a few good moisturisers for oily to combination skin please.

    I love you lots!!

  3. Probiotics, and peppermint tea. And avoid all your triggers if you can, at least avoid icecold and carbonated drinks, and spicy food. Sorry about that, I had a horrible bout lately after a course of antibiotics, and I also had forgotten how awful it was :(

  4. So sorry about your sweet friend, cancer is such an evil disease. Probiotics help with my IBS but in times of worry or stress all is out of the window! Going gluten free did help me now that I recall. Glad you were able to get away and thank you for all you do for us!
    Question: I am 33 and use sunscreen daily yet around my bottom eyelids and under eye area I have sun spots, not dark circles but more freckles that have popped up. Any suggestions

  5. I too have the dreaded IBS! I recently started using a probiotic (which also contains digestive enzymes) called Align. I think it is working but it is too early to tell for sure. Will keep you updated! I was very surprised to read that you had it too. You live such a productive life! Please share YOUR secrets/techniques on management...I'd love some advice.

    In addition it was probably the stress of travel+food you aren't used to that triggered the episode. Hope it's smooth sailing from here!


  6. I have no idea about IBS, so sorry! I have heard that it is quite awful! Not a good way to spend a holiday.

    As for jetlag, sleep and hydration are the only things that ever work for me. It knocks me down good, too. And no kidding to the world being on holiday. Even the postal services seem to be. Annoying for us waiting for orders of precious cleansing balm to arrive!!!

    That's great that you plugged your brother-in-law. I support mine, too, when he is not being a douchebag -- excuse the expression! (He jumps out of aircraft to save people for a living. I think the constant altitude is affecting his brain.)

  7. I suffered with 'IBS' for 10 years, I had cut out gluten a few times but never stuck with it. In January I cut it out totally after seeing a dietician - I am now better I'd say 95% of the time, I may get a flare up once a month as opposed to multiple times a day. I can't even explain how much this has changed my life.

    If gluten doesn't make a difference I would definitely recommend a low FODMAP diet, there are booklets online that even tell you which brands and products are FODMAP safe. It isn't just gluten for me, I am sensitive to a lot of things that the human body can struggle to digest - couple of examples are apples, garlic and onions.

    With the probitoics that other people have recommended, my gastro says there is no evidence to suggest they help because the intestines contain millions and millions more bacteria than the probiotics.

  8. The FODMAP diet is brilliant even if you don't have bowel problems, it helped me no end, I had the best hair skin and nails and also I am always almost anaemic but after months of FODMAP I had the highest levels of iron I've ever had even when taking supplements.

    My partner has Crohns and he controls it with vitamins and eating well, minimal processed foods and peppermint tea for nausea.


  9. First time posting and first off I LOVE your blog caroline. Common sense and honest truth in a sea of marketing and photoshop. THANK YOU!!

    With regards d IBS, I suffered for years all through my teens, I've no need to tell you how embarrassing that could be! A few things would help a little, like a strict eating schedule and probiotic yogurt but there was one thing that changed my life. Cognitive behavioural therapy. It might sound extreme but ultimately my iBS was caused by stress. Once I learned how to handle it better my IBS pretty much dissappeared. I didnt realise I was stressed at all until I got rid of the stress! Anyway that's my ha'penny's worth

  10. First time poster too.
    I've suffered with IBS for the last 11yrs. It has been considerably bad for the last 2years. After seeing my fourth gastro dr I eventually got some relief. He actually listened to me!
    He prescribed spasmonal and lustral. 6 weeks later I was a new woman. I need to take them for another few months to insure my system had calmed down.
    He also recommended that acupuncture ( he doesn't know how it works but he has seen good results ) is great for digestive problems and he also recommended cognitive behaviour therapy to help with dealing with stress.

    Im so sorry to hear about your friend. Her loss to her family and friends is unimaginable. Ar dhéis Dé go raibh a hanam dílis.

    I have to thank you for introducing me to hydraluron it has made a huge difference to the condition of my skin. Love your straight talking honest advice and information.

  11. The first (least dramatic) thing to do for IBS is drink a glass of warm (not hot) water before you do anything else in the morning. It's like combining a gentle wake up call with a gentle cleanse for your insides. Anyone I know with IBS who sticks to the warm water in the morning swears by it, and it's far less restrictive than gluten/dairy free and low FODMAP diets.

  12. Hi
    Just started reading ur blog. Love British beauty. I would be very grateful if u could review some high end natural American brands. I want to purchase but they r so high priced I'm not sure they r worthwhile. Brands like Tata Harper and May Lindstrom come to mind. Thank u so much.

  13. Hello you. I've just got back off holiday and I'm catching up - Amica :( Oh no. I remember her from the Q when I started watching it when C was a baby. Such a *lovely, lovely* woman. So very sorry for her family and friends.

    IBS - my lovely MIL used to suffer. Chewing dried papaya helped her - she had a few cubes in yoghurt each morning. Avoiding gluten too - white carbs are the devil's food.


  14. Another first time poster here. I just discovered this blog. Want to step up the skincare & have already found a lot of ideas and answers here. Thanks, Caroline, for all the useful info!
    I also used to suffer from IBS & have tried many different approaches. The only thing that has really helped me is the YorkTest FoodScan test (not affiliated, just happy with the results I've had). I don't live in the UK, so ordered the test kit online & sent it back in the post. Easy peasy! You get a booklet explaining the foodstuffs that you're intolerant to & you can have a telephone consultation with their staff who will help you with your diet. Turns out I'm highly intolerant to fermented foods & I would never have discovered this through an elimination diet. I cut out the fermented foods (no more du pain, du vin, du Boursin...) and my symptoms cleared up immediately. I have to stick to the diet though or the symptoms come back. So I guess this is not a quick fix. The test is not cheap, but you can order the FirstStep test for £10 and if it's positive you can upgrade to the actual FoodScan. I hope you're better now & good luck with finding the cause of your IBS!

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