It was a cosy Saturday evening and we had plonked ourselves in front of the Tv with our kids after a day of gardening and jobs. A usual event in our house, to sit down together and watch Ant and Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway. It is one of the only programs we all sit down and watch as a family.
As we watched we made the usual comments about how it was so great to see the age old format that we watched as kids, curtsy of Morcambe and Wise and The Two Ronnies. We laughed at the cheesy puns and silly pranks and loved watching normal families as they were supposed in their homes.
At the end they showed a video of the prize they were giving out to 200 people over the series. A holiday in Florida! wow how lovely that would be. It set us off talking about how we were so ready for some sunshine and how we hadn’t had a sunny holiday for a good 4 years now, we had worked so hard lately and really would love a break. We were planning a camping trip over easter, so we settled with that.
Then it said they had a few more seats left on the plane and you could nominate someone by sending an email. I didn’t think about it again until on the Monday I was cleaning and came across the savings tin that Kitty and William had been putting money in religiously for our next Disney trip. I quietly mulled over the prize and though, why not apply… someone has to win and our kids really needed some fun.
So I did….. I wrote the email and explained about the tin and about who we were. I clicked send and forgot all about it until a message pinged back in inbox. They wanted more information could they call me…
Over the next four days I spoke to producers, researchers, I sent the tin down to the studios and filled in form and form, contract after contract! They still wouldn’t say if we would defiantly be a winner but the plan was laid out.
They would come to our house on saturday and set up a secret camera in the tv, William would have to leave the house while they did it so not to suspect. They would flash to us live in our living room and surprise William by showing his savings tin and telling his he was going to Florida.
It wasn’t until Saturday morning when the producer turned up at our door that we really thought this could happen. I managed to get William out of the house to his friends and we ran around like crazy people as we set up the house for them to film. All the time we were getting ready for our friends 40th Birthday Party in the next city, I was planning and running it for him and had to go and set it all up ready. So I was running around like a loon and the day passed in a flash.
7pm came and we had got ourselves ready to go to Matts party, we called william down and told him we were going as soon as we had watched the show so he needed to be ready. William wanted to play a game on the Xbox so we lied and told him his uncle Neil would be on the show and we wanted to watch.. so he sat with us excit3edly.
All the time, the producers and sound man were hidden in our bedroom! The producer kept texting me.. ‘Move to one side’ ‘ don’t let Kitty touch the tv’ ‘tell Libby to move out of shot’ ( the prize was only for 4 , so the girls weren’t able to come with us!!!’
Then it happened… the tin flashed on screen held by Dec, the camera came on us and we were live to 8 million people! Thank god I had had time to vacuum the floor! William’s face was a picture! he was in total shock and sat with his mouth wide open looking at me for confirmation! before we knew it, it was over, we were booking a taxi and leaving to the Party….
Bizarre….. William was in shock and couldn’t believe what was happening… we were too… as we walked into the party we just carried on as normal, no-one saw it as they were all at the party.. so no-one knew. The only reminder was the beeping of our mobiles and our friends and family text and messaged us with total excitement.
Our facebook page, email and text messages were full of our friends and family who were just so excited for us, work friends and clients emailed us and we felt very very loved!
When we left the party, we came home with some friends and we watched the show for the first time. It was so very exiting and it kind of started to feel real… all I needed to do know was get ready to go to Florida in just under 48 hours!