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Wednesday, 29 April 2015

You are invited to Afternoon Tea at the Sunflower Cafe!

I can't believe we are nearly there yet again with another book launch  - this time it is AFTERNOON TEA AT THE SUNFLOWER CAFE.

Now there is a taster ebook out called LADIES WHO LAUNCH both introducing the ladies of the cafe AND also acting as a sequel to Here Come The Boys.  It's only a shortie - but it's free so at least you can get your moneysworth.

Well if you check out my website  there are some dates where I'll be signing books - but this blog is all about the official launch in Mapplewell Village Hall, our traditional venue.

The themes of the books are here - without giving TOO much away...
chocolate, cleaning, sunflowers, Marilyn - and of course afternoon tea!


If you want a ticket, you should get in quick as there aren't a lot left.  The details are all here - ring or email Caroline or Sandra.  They don't take card payments but you can send a cheque or cash, call in for the tickets or leave them here for the day.  Please unpaid for tickets cannot be reserved as there will be a waiting list.

It's on Monday 15th June
5.15pm - doors open for early bird signings
6pm - we start!  I'll do a talk and then we will hold
7pm-ish... the doors to the world-famous buffet open & I'll be signing books which will be on sale on the night (and also some of my backlist)

Please feel free to bring any books you have already bought if you want them signed, I don't mind at all.

NOW... there are a lot of people to thank here for their contributions to the raffle and the evening - not the least Mapplewell Village Hall and the catering ladies, the caretaker and the management who are great and it's such a fab space to rent - at very reasonable prices.  I always have very little to worry about in their safe hands (very little = nowt)

Bidbi are doing the goody bags.
Steel-City are supplying some of the stuff inside (shhh) 

The raffle is held on behalf of Yorkshire Cat Rescue and The Well, which is a therapy centre for local cancer patients.  Both of them do an amazing job.
We have all sorts of prizes coming in daily so keep checking what you could win... promises of massages and food - oh all sorts!

Here are some of the fabulous contributors! (please look at their sites - there are some great deals, competitions, fun stuff on them)

Two lucky people are going to win a mini-cruise break to Amsterdam leaving from Hull  There they will be able to see Van Gogh's sunflowers for themselves.  Amsterdam is a fabulous city - I'm very much in love with it - and we go on these mini breaks a lot.  They're great value, great fun and there are always loads of special offers ( 2 for 1 !!)  We've also done the Bruges one - but this prize is for Amsterdam because of the subject of the book... all will become clear on reading. 
We have sunflowery lemon cake from CAKES BY CHRISTINA

This STUNNING hamper from Rob Royd Farm shop as our joint star prize... it is so beautiful and HUGE!!!

My lovely Aunt Bessie has sent me coupons for the goody bags. 
This lovely cat collar from Petmail (orders can be taken!) 

A cut and blow from Jesse at Russell Eaton in Barnsley (I LOVE him)


And some beautiful folded book art from Margaret Smith Designs (cut and paste to facebook - )

We have a coffee stash from Beanies (Sainsburys and Tesco sell it - it's really yummy flavoured coffee)

GEMS gift voucher anyone?  A back neck and shoulder massage from a lovely place on Huddersfield Road.  Lovely treat for someone!

And this is SO pretty - a handmade stained glass tealight holder which is as pretty standing in the sunlight as it is with the candle lit.  Thank you... Heather G Designs (

We have some books from local author M Jonathan Lee so you can discover this great new voice in literature for yourselves!  

Tetley have sent this gorgeous clock - and loads of tea bags! 

The Holiday Inn, Barnsley - a Sunday Lunch for Two voucher! 

My incredibly talented photographer and artist friend Chris Sedgewick has donated one of these beautiful hand-tinted sunflower photographs.  If you want to see more of his work, then please go to the Spencer Arms at Cawthorne because they are exhibited on the walls.  Chris is available for portraits and weddings and is bloody great at his job (he does all my pics and manages to make a sow's purse out of a sow's ear... next stop 'silk') 

 Elizabeth Arden have sent me lots of sunflower goodies - it's been my 'day' perfume for years - it's beautiful. 

 We have these adorable sunflower candles!

A beautiful Beswick trinket box (donated by my other half which I'm having trouble even thinking about giving away!)

I have a set of nails voucher from Unique Nails on Racecommon Road - they do mine! 

And a lovely vintage Afternoon Tea for Two at the beautiful White Heart in Penistone

And afternoon tea at The Potting Shed (or Maltstone Garden Centre as I call it in my books) 

I have a gorgeous hand-made box and a cushion cover from Katelain Crafts (cut and paste this for the FB page -

...aren't they bonny?

I have massages from the wonderful therapists at The Well in Barnsley

I have a signed book by my author friend Debbie Viggiano 
A lovely pendant from Roobies (who make some beautiful stuff!) 

And look at these beautiful spoons - no two are the same - from the very very lovely Dormouse and the Teapot.  I do love a bit of vintage 

Gorge sunflower earrings from Chris Rose Linacre!

Sunflower and paw earrings from Daisy and Bert, who are on facebook as

£50s worth of vouchers to spend at Belinda Price's Nail Spa in Scisset (so generous!) Belinda also does loads of beauty treatments too x

The girls from Perfect Pout have donated this really smashing lip scrub and balm.  They're Horizon CC students who have set up an enterprise and can be found on facebook here and Twitter here @ARKcosmetics.  They've just been granted £2000 to develop their product range - how great is that for our local lasses?


There will also be two tickets to see Peter Foster and myself perform April in Paris (in October) at the Lamproom

Some beautiful Van Gogh postcard books

My wonderful novelist friends Victoria Howard has given me some download vouchers for her romantic suspense books, a lovely hand-made-paper book and a necklace. 

Mill House design (Facebook:  Steph's Crafty Bits, Twitter: @steph_crafty) has sent me a big box of sunshiney sunflower treats and told me to keep a necklace for myself - so this is my launch jewellery sorted!  The rest is up for grabs.

Oh and for anyone who wants some sunflower jewellery - or a paper clip - Steph will give a donation to my charities.  The photograph can't do them justice! Just get in touch with her via one of the above ways and she'll make one for you 

COMPUTER PROBLEMS OF BARNSLEY is donating a good old service for your PC (you'd be surprised how much better they run after one of these)  That is worth - if you'll excuse the pun - a few bob! They have saved my life on more than one occasion when I haven't saved my work and the PC crashed.  The whole of the Yorkshire Pudding Club in fact... 

There is sunflowery bunting from the cleverest girl in the girl - 17 year old Eve Lodge who has her own company and is winning prizes and acclaim left, right and centre with Barmy Bunting

And this beautiful piece of artwork from Grandad Barmy Bunting (clever lot them, aren't they?) Brian Clarke

There is THE most gorgeous Teapot from...well, have a guess!  It's a beautiful proper pot!

There is this lovely cat bag handmade by Kerry who you can find on Facebook at

There are tea hampers with these darling little tea for one pots!

And Marilyn Monroe scarves.

There will be 2 tickets to see Peter Foster and myself at the Lamproom performing April in Paris in October (self promotion in its highest form)


 And even a jigsaw

The goody bags this year will include some Marilyn Monroe chocolates from Sciolti Chocolates... you'll have to read the book to find out the importance of these... but they're double-dipped ganaches of summer fruits and clotted cream.

And isn't this purty? A beautiful vintage sunny rag wreath from Vintage Jacqueline-Louise.  Copy this link into Facebook to see what else she makes... they're just lovely!

My dear friends at InVogue have sent me a HUUUUGE box of nail wraps so everyone will be getting one of those who comes to the launch.  They make some fabulous stuff.  Check out those eyelashes!
And there is BEER from my hypnotherapist friend Maggie Irwin from Magnificent Me who helps victims of sexual abuse rebuild their confidence and move on. 

The promo pens have arrived from the wonderful Steel-City  (who are also doing the gift mugs that the 'Launchers' will be getting in their gift bags!  Last year Steel City got me out of a right hole when some promo people let me down and they stepped in with their excellent service.

And the gift bags are here from Bidbi.  Anyone who has got one of these knows how indispensable they are!  I - hmm hmm - designed these.  My son says they are 'pathetic.'

Lovely girly kits from my friends at Hot-House (they make some gorgeous stuff!) 
And BOOZE from the lovely Andy at Beatson House, which is the nicest restaurant in the known universe. 

Masque photography have donated a voucher for a makeover and a photoshoot to the value of £50.  The photos are fabulous... They can immortalise you in print looking better than you've ever been.  Quick - pass me their number! 

Tony the Barber has donated a cut throat shave
Jayne Dolman has donated a £100 treatment voucher

And YES there will be the usual monster Staniforth cakes! 
My Lovely friends at Walkers Shortbread (purrlease... is there any other sort of shortbread)
Douwe Egberts have sent a couple of jars of coffee
...and still they roll in!