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It's playtime... with my new son and the return of The Big Money Game

WITH an eight-week-old baby on my hands and a new series kicking off – it's been a manic week.

The Big Money Game is back tomorrow and I cannot wait.

This is exactly the type of show I love to present; it's family based and there's lots of banter with the audience.

Sometimes people ask me if I would like a gig on shows such as The Voice Of Ireland. I would never turn down work, but I prefer working on shows when you've been there from the start. That way you're strongly associated with it and part of the team, rather than just slotting in.

 

Birthday

On Monday, it was my granny Josie's 85th birthday party. There were 56 family and friends in 37 Dawson Street for lunch. 37 is one of my favourite bars in the town and my granny was a big fan, too. She had a fantastic day and got spoilt.

For her present I'm going to take her out for afternoon tea – she loves that sort of thing and then we'll probably take in a show. And in September she's heading to America. I call her The Travelling Granny because she's always off on holiday and she's full of action.

On Tuesday, I headed to Clonbur with my brother Michael. Our uncle Tom is a real fisherman; he owns a boat and is out on Loch Corrib every other day.

We went down and I caught one fish which is a bit pathetic. But the weather was too good for fishing. I mainly go to clear my head and relax a good bit – it's very chilled out and lets me have some time to chat to the lads.

On Wednesday morning, I headed into RTE for rehearsals for the Big Money Game Show. Sinead [co-host Sinead Kennedy] is away in Spain at a wedding so it was a one-man show.

She'll be back on a Saturday and won't have chance to rehearse – so it'll be panic stations. But Sinead is such a pro that she'll fly through it.

The show is recorded a few hours before it's shown and is recorded as if it was live – that keeps the energy up and there's real excitement in the audience.

There are a few changes to the show so that's exciting. In the game Safe Cracker contestants can win anything from €1 to €25,000 and now they'll be able to win a holiday.

I'm back in the studio first thing this morning getting ready for the show. I have to look at what I'm going to wear and make sure Sinead and I don't clash! I'm joking really, but we do the sound checks, make any scripts changes and I record a few promos for the radio. It's a long day – doing all those small things takes a lot of time and a lot of waiting around but you need to make sure everything is right when you're doing a big Saturday night show.

Tomorrow, it's showtime and we'll be shooting all day. The show goes out at 8.30pm on RTE1. The first show of the season is always exciting and we can see how everyone reacts to the changes.

After filming, Pippa and I are going out for one of our friend's birthday. It'll be nice having a drink with close friends after being on my feet all day.

And on Sunday, I'm heading to Tayto Park. I have a video business company called Corporate Profiles – we shoot videos for business so I'll be heading down and helping them film that. I'll be back in Dublin in the evening and will probably enjoy a walk with Pippa and baby Ollie.


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