Lifestyle

London Santa says leap of faith is part of Christmas magic

wo-year-old Elijah Pham presents his wishes to actor John Field, dressed as Santa Claus, at a Christmas grotto at the Wetland Centre in London, Britain, December 5, 2015. When Father Christmas is not at home with the reindeer preparing for his big sleigh-ride, he likes to play practical jokes on the children who visit him asking for presents. In his ... Read More »

Human Rights Day: Best quotes by famous personalities to mark UN day

The United Nations observes Human Rights Day every year on 10 December after the UN General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948. The theme for this year’s UN day is “Our Rights, Our Freedoms, Always”. This year the UN day highlights ‘Freedoms’ recalling the four freedoms that underlie the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and two major human ... Read More »

FDA lifts clinical hold on Advaxis’ cancer compounds

Drug developer Advaxis Inc said on Wednesday the U.S. Food and Drug Administration had lifted a clinical hold on three of its experimental cancer therapies, sending the company’s shares up as much as 38 percent. The U.S. health regulator had in October put on hold mid-stage trials of the company’s lead therapy, axalimogene filolisbac, after a patient died. Advaxis had ... Read More »

Girls slightly outperform boys in English proficiency, says research

Are girls more proficient in the English language than boys? This is a question researchers from Cambridge English Language Assessment have attempted to answer by looking at thousands of test results from teenagers taking IELTS exams between January 2014 and January 2015 Researchers looked at 16-19 year old test takers in 35 countries sitting the exam for academic or immigration ... Read More »

Canada: Edvisor named best BC tech startup

Edvisor, an online management system for education agencies, has been named the best technology startup in British Columbia for 2015, winning CAN$100,000. The annual prize is awarded by venture capital firm New Ventures BC, supported by the BC Innovation Council, to “the idea most likely to be commercially viable with the greatest value”. “The sole reason we exist as a ... Read More »

Alys Fowler: let’s hear it for hippeastrum

‘Ihave ordered some amaryllis bulbs,” I say. This doesn’t go down so well at home. Hippeastrum (often wrongly known as amaryllis) are seen as highly naff. Big, gaudy blooms, often the wrong shade of red or pink or both, perhaps with some white picotee edging for effect. “I have ordered very tasteful varieties in green and deep red,” I say. This is ... Read More »

I’m going to have a rubbish Christmas – and nothing makes me happier

We’ve been stripping out our old kitchen units to make way for the new ones my partner, Chris, is making (with a friend’s help). The refit is long overdue and I’m delighted to see it go, but I’m loath to say goodbye entirely. What was past its best in the house still has a lot of potential in and around ... Read More »

Deck the halls: great Christmas decorations

Rustic treescape (above) Hanging tree, £40. On tree, from top: mirrored glass floral wreath, £33. Porcelainstar, £5 for two, and leaf, £5 each. Bristle bears, £18 each, selfridges.com. Porcelain antler, £10. Glitter bauble, £2.50, johnlewis.com. Copper and whitebauble, £35 for 12. Owl, £4; frosted pine cone, £2.50; rope glitter bauble, £3.50; hanging cedar weath, £4.50; and glitter stag, £4, johnlewis.com. ... Read More »

My wishlist for really useful kitchen gadgets

Iwas born in 1966, from which vantage point next year, 2016, was the unimaginable future. All I knew for certain was that life would be better half a century hence, more exciting and at the very least much more shiny. Back then I expect my hopes for the future involved hover cars, interplanetary travel and digital watches. And credit where ... Read More »

Who says the dinner party is dead?

Who is to blame for the media’s continuing obsession with the demise of the dinner party? At this point, I’m not precisely sure – though as I write, doubtless some poor PhD student is hard at it, tracing the dots between our postwar literary culture, Katherine Whitehorn’s 1963 appropriation of the word “slut”, the early work of Mike Leigh and ... Read More »