home & Garden

Placeholder Content Image

Have you been using a knife and fork wrong?

<p>With the festive season rapidly approaching it would be a good time to start perfecting your table etiquette.</p> <p>Surprisingly, new British research has discovered that 40 per cent of people don’t know how to correctly use a knife and fork.</p> <p>Etiquette expert, Jo Bryant, specialises in table manners and shares the correct ways to hold a knife and fork, when it’s appropriate to use one utensil over another, and finding your way around an elaborate dinner setting.</p> <p>“When it comes to good table manners and etiquette, it is easy to feel daunted. Whether we are trying new cuisines, curbing bad habits, remembering the basics or managing tricky situations, it can seem like there is a lot to get right,” Jo explained.</p> <p>“However, the aim of good table etiquette is simply the essence of good manners: to behave with consideration, thought and respect towards fellow diners – as you would expect them to behave towards you.”</p> <p>Jo revealed the correct way to hold your knife, which involves the index finger resting along the top of the handle. Forks should be held with the tines pointing downwards with your index finger on the handle. Gripping your cutlery with your hands around the centre shows very bad table manners.</p> <p>Jo shared insight into when to ditch your knife explaining, “You should not cut up your food, then put down your knife and fork, or just a fork.”</p> <p>The only occasion it is acceptable to eat with a fork is when eating a meal that only requires a single utensil, such as spaghetti.</p> <p>“In this case, the fork should be held with the tines facing upwards, similar to a spoon,” she continued.</p> <p>If you feel overwhelmed when it comes to elaborate table settings with different sets of cutlery fear no more. Jo revealed the ins and outs of how to work your way around the table.</p> <p>The first rule of thumb is that cutlery is used from the outside inwards, entre cutlery is placed on the outside of the table setting while the main utensils are on the inside next to the plate.</p> <p>If soup is being served as a starter, then the spoon is placed to the right and outside of the main course knife.</p> <p>Dessert cutlery is usually positioned across the top of the place setting, with the bowl of the spoon pointing to the left and the tines of the fork to the right. This rule is broken in extremely formal circumstances, like a banquet with the Queen, where pudding spoons and forks are placed innermost to the knives and forks.</p> <p>Side plates go to the left of the forks, usually with a butter knife and napkin.</p> <p>Wine and water glasses go to the top right of the setting.</p>

home & Garden

Placeholder Content Image

Miraculous find of missing airport cat after 2 days

<p>A cat who went missing on a flight to Cairns has been found safe and sound after a wild adventure from start to finish. </p> <p>Cookie was set to fly with Virgin Australia to Cairns, Queensland on Sunday - however once the plane landed, there was no sight of the beloved pet. </p> <p>Owners Jack and Jessica Thomas are planning to move overseas and were sending Cookie along with their dog to live with family members across states. </p> <p>Several frantic phone calls eventually led to the couple finding out their feline had never made it to Cairns, they told 9News on Monday. </p> <p>At the time, Mr Thomas said he was left “frustrated” by the situation. </p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="/media/7829500/7c16e510-bcf7-11e9-9fd7-3f64e46623c4-1.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/34802d63c76746b1930fb7fe7c2f6f3b" /></p> <p><em>Jessica and Jack Thomas were left feeling "frustrated" over their missing cat, Cookie. Image: 9News.</em></p> <p>“Nobody seems to be able to give us any answers as to how it happened.”</p> <p>“I just want my cat back,” a tearful Ms Thomas said. </p> <p>Thankfully, after 24 hours of distress for the family, the story can finally have a happy ending. </p> <p>“We are pleased to have found Cookie safe and sound after an extensive search and we look forward to reuniting him with his owners,” a Virgin spokesperson said in a statement, as reported by<span> </span><a rel="noopener" href="https://au.news.yahoo.com/cat-miraculously-found-alive-after-missing-flight-054815568.html" target="_blank">Yahoo News. </a></p> <p>“We will continue to investigate how this incident occurred and we will review and update our processes accordingly.”</p> <p>Mr and Mrs Thomas took to social media and contacted news organisations in an attempt to spread the word about Cookie, who they feared could be anywhere in the country.</p> <p>However, the cat was reportedly found in the airport. </p> <p>Virgin Australia<span> </span>staff did not comment on the state of the missing feline.</p>

home & Garden

Placeholder Content Image

Duchess Kate and Pippa Middleton’s former London home sells for $3.36 million

<p>Before she was lapping in royal family luxury, the Duchess of Cambridge was a relatively normal person. When she was just Kate, without the royal title, or a marriage to Prince William – the heir to the British throne – or an address at Kensington Palace, the royal was just plain Kate Middleton. </p> <p>The home she once lived in with her sister, Pippa Middleton, recently sold for an eye-watering $3.36 million. </p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/BzW6_kAhqvP/" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/BzW6_kAhqvP/" target="_blank">A post shared by KatePippamiddleton (@katepippamiddleton)</a> on Jun 30, 2019 at 7:56pm PDT</p> </div> </blockquote> <p>It is not hard to find the personality of the beloved sisters who once graced the three-bedroom Chelsea home – with charm, elegance and a luxury feel, it is no surprise it was once lived in by a member of the royal family. </p> <p>The property recently went on the market for $3.448 million, however sold for a little under the asking price.</p> <p>The flat was purchased by the Middleton parents, Carole and Michael, in 2002 for $1.3 million – a pretty big leap from what it was sold for 17 years later. </p> <p>The home hosts three spacious bedrooms along with two bathrooms and goes over three levels. A large living room – or ‘reception room’ – makes up the bulk of the living space on the second floor, while the three bedrooms can be located on the third floor. </p> <p>Bathed with light, the new homeowners will be spoilt with an open and airy space – a rare find in a London home. </p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/BniHrhHlXR7/" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/BniHrhHlXR7/" target="_blank">A post shared by KatePippamiddleton (@katepippamiddleton)</a> on Sep 9, 2018 at 10:01pm PDT</p> </div> </blockquote> <p>While the kitchen and bathroom finishings are clean and appropriate – they have been left for the new house owners to put their own personal stamp on the place to make it officially their own. Although the home may not have quite the same design or finish as it did when Duchess Kate and her little sister lived there, it  definitely retains the same regal feeling. </p> <p>The royal has not lived in the home since 2009, before she was engaged to Prince William. </p> <p>Pippa has not resided in the property for many years either, and now lives with her husband and son in their $30 million home. </p> <p>The property is not quite a palace, but it is definitely a perfect home for a family. </p> <p>Scroll through the gallery above to see the Chelsea home here. </p> <p>Image credit: Knight Frank</p>

home & Garden

Placeholder Content Image

FRIENDS star's "mansion in the sky" on sale for record price

<p>Actor, writer and producer Matthew Perry’s extravagant penthouse suite has hit the market for a jaw-dropping $53 million.</p> <p>The apartment is on the 40th floor in a celebrity approved, paparazzi-proof 43-storey Century condominium.</p> <p>The apartment covers the entire 40th floor of the building and was bought back in 2017.</p> <p>The building itself rises above four acres of private gardens and comes with access to a 75-foot-long swimming pool, screening room, yoga and Pilates studios as well as a wine-storage facility.</p> <p>The apartment is 868 square metres and offers ceiling-to-floor views over Los Angeles as it’s stunning in daylight and twinkles at night-time.</p> <p>There are four bedrooms, eight bathrooms, a living room with two fireplaces and a huge master suite with multiple living areas. There is also a games room and a home theatre.</p> <p>There’s also a chef’s kitchen that offers island seating as well as a table for casual dining and includes a separate dining room so guests can enjoy views of the city. Four terraces make it ideal for entertaining and dining.</p> <p>Scroll through the gallery to see inside the “mansion in the sky”.</p> <p><em>Photo credits:<span> </span><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.eonline.com/au/news/1061953/go-inside-matthew-perry-s-35-million-los-angeles-penthouse#photo-1022408" target="_blank">E! Online</a><span> </span>and Michael MacNamara and Jason Speth for Compass</em><em>  </em></p>

home & Garden

Placeholder Content Image

IKEA product designer claims that her $1.49 design is the “world’s best”

<p>Iina Vuorivirta “loves doing the dishes” and it was this passion that took the IKEA product designer to the ultimate level.</p> <p>She was given a brief from Ikea to make “the best dish brush in the whole world”, which is a dream come true for the designer.</p> <p>“It still makes me a little bit shaky,” Ms Vuorivirta said to<span> </span><em><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.news.com.au/finance/business/retail/why-this-149-ikea-product-is-the-worlds-best/news-story/b38a51076082b5d3b93d874da95cf3c9" target="_blank">news.com.au</a></em>.</p> <p>The brush that you can buy for a low $1.49 from the furniture giant might not look like much, but it took a full 18 months of design, testing and iteration to meet five requirements set by IKEA.</p> <p>These elements are:</p> <ul> <li>Form</li> <li>Function</li> <li>Low price</li> <li>Quality</li> <li>Sustainability</li> </ul> <p> Vuorivirta worked across the whole product range but said that her favourite products are “these kind of everyday life little heroes that you sort of take for granted, but when you have them right it’s a fluid part of your daily routine”.</p> <p>She spoke at IKEA's recent Democratic Design Days conference in Almhult and went into detail about the extensive testing the dish brush went through.</p> <p>“It was a long learning curve, together with a big amount of people to get this thing done,” she said.</p> <p>“We made it out of recycled plastics. I even designed air bubbles inside the handle to be able to maximise the material but not (compromise) when it comes to the ergonomics, how it feels to handle, how balanced it is, and how it of course looks.”</p> <p><br /><img style="display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" class="post_image_group" src="https://over60.monday.com/protected_static/657795/resources/37749882/big-Screen%20Shot%202019-08-12%20at%2010.18.20%20am.png" alt="" data-asset_id="37749882" data-url-thumb="https://over60.monday.com/protected_static/657795/resources/37749882/thumb-Screen%20Shot%202019-08-12%20at%2010.18.20%20am.png" data-url-thumb-small="https://over60.monday.com/protected_static/657795/resources/37749882/thumb_small-Screen%20Shot%202019-08-12%20at%2010.18.20%20am.png" data-url-thumb-big-scaled="https://over60.monday.com/protected_static/657795/resources/37749882/thumb_big_scaled-Screen%20Shot%202019-08-12%20at%2010.18.20%20am.png" data-url-large="https://over60.monday.com/protected_static/657795/resources/37749882/large-Screen%20Shot%202019-08-12%20at%2010.18.20%20am.png" data-url-big="https://over60.monday.com/protected_static/657795/resources/37749882/big-Screen%20Shot%202019-08-12%20at%2010.18.20%20am.png" data-url-original="https://over60.monday.com/protected_static/657795/resources/37749882/Screen%20Shot%202019-08-12%20at%2010.18.20%20am.png" data-filename="Screen Shot 2019-08-12 at 10.18.20 am.png" data-is-gif="false" data-post-id="411604433&quot;" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;" class="text-center"><em>Photo source: IKEA</em><span></span></p> <p class="">The brush went on sale in Australia in April and has since sold 20,000 units. Ms Vuorivirta said that a lot of thought went into the whole process.</p> <p>“With this one we didn’t only want to make the best dish brush in the whole world but also we were really being picky when it comes to the price tag,” she explained.</p> <p>“This will be the dish brush for the many people and the price tag also needs to be according to that. So it was a long journey. But it still makes me really happy.”</p> <p>IKEA is known for the obsessive and minute changes that are made across its entire range which is used to drive down costs.</p> <p>“You would be surprised if you knew how much time we spent on each single detail of a product,” said Henrik Heegaard, product design manager and co-create Ikea manager. “Cut down assembly by five seconds, cut down the time it takes from the start of the production line to the end, these things make the whole difference.”</p> <p>Heegaard also explained that the recent addition of sustainability to the design requirements of Ikea have meant that sometimes, the company may compromise on price.</p> <p>“Where we look at products where we supply high volumes, of course we are very, very keen on making sure that is planet-positive — how can we go from virgin plastics to recycled plastics, for instance — and today that is more expensive,” he said.</p> <p>“There we go in and say, you know what, here we take our responsibility and put recycled plastic in there since this is a need our customers have. Then there's also times where we need to have a very specific price point where we just need to try harder to add in sustainability."</p>

home & Garden

Placeholder Content Image

“I don’t have one of those!”: Kmart slow cooker fine print reveals hilarious X-rated typo

<p>In a world of social media, something that potentially could’ve gone unnoticed can be immediately shared with thousands around the globe.</p> <p>And that is exactly what happened to homewares giant Kmart as an Australian woman discovered an X-rated typo on her slow cooker purchased from the discount department store.</p> <p>The Newcastle shopper shared the mistake in a Facebook group called Kmart Hacks and Décor and asked the members to point out the unfortunate mistake.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.facebook.com/plugins/post.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fsandie.swain%2Fposts%2F10156235421561594&amp;width=500" width="500" height="620" style="border: none; overflow: hidden;" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" allowtransparency="true" allow="encrypted-media"></iframe></p> <p>The woman shared the appliance’s warning instructions that say “c**k only in this container instead of “cook”.</p> <p>The post garnered a large reaction and many members of the group shared their puns.</p> <p class="mol-para-with-font">"It's a C*ckpot," one person joked. </p> <p class="mol-para-with-font">"What a c*ck up," another commented. </p> <p>“That is hilarious. Just checked mine, says the same thing too. Can’t wait to give the other half the instructions!!!” the woman said.</p> <p>“Does this mean the meat will fall off the bone(r)?” another joked, adding to the long list of puns.</p> <p>Kmart was quick to address the incident in a statement to <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7335503/Newcastle-mum-shocked-finding-X-rated-typo-slower-cooker.html" target="_blank"><em>The Daily Mail Australia</em></a> saying that they were sorry for the mistake.</p> <p>“We sincerely apologise for this error and the team have ensured this does not occur on future ranges,” the discount department store said. </p>

home & Garden

Placeholder Content Image

Royal sneak peek: Prince Andrew shares rare insight into the Queen’s Balmoral Castle

<p>Queen Elizabeth is a royal who loves to spend her summer holidays laid back at Balmoral Castle – one of the homes she has relied on for sanctity throughout her time as Queen. </p> <p>Her Majesty arrived to the sprawling estate on Wednesday where she was greeted by members of the Royal Regiment of Scotland, who provide a Royal Guard throughout her time at the Castle. </p> <p>The Scottish retreat finished being built during Queen Victoria’s reign in 1856 and the royal family have been holidaying there ever since. </p> <p>The property is worth a staggering estimate of $200 million. </p> <p>Prince Andrew is one of the many royals who have found peace at the highland haven, and took to Instagram to share a photograph snapped of his parents from 1984 to share his own personal perspective. </p> <p>“Every year, Her Majesty and The Royal Family enjoy spending time at Balmoral in the summer – this photo was taken by The Duke of York in the grounds of the Castle in 1984,” he wrote in a caption. </p> <p>Not often are fans of the British family treated to see life at Balmoral – it was once described by Prince Andrew's daughter Princess Eugenie as “the most beautiful place in the world”.</p> <p>"I think Granny is the most happy there," the princess said. </p> <p>"I think she really, really loves the Highlands."</p> <p>Scroll through the gallery above to see what royal life is like at Balmoral Castle. </p>

home & Garden

Placeholder Content Image

5 renovations to make your home safer as you get older

<p><span>As you age, it’s not unusual to become increasingly conscious of little things that never used to seem like a big deal when you were younger.</span></p> <p><span>Even when you were young, climbing stairs was probably not your idea of fun -- but perhaps now it seems like climbing a staircase is getting more onerous with each passing year. You never used to think twice about getting in and out of your bathtub, but now it seems like a daunting task – especially when the tub is wet and slippery. Maybe you’re having trouble bending down, so now it’s infuriatingly frustrating to cook a meal in your own oven.</span></p> <p><span>If you’d like to keep living in your home for as long as possible, there are countless home renovations you can do to make your home safer, more comfortable and more convenient. If you’re suffering from any of the frustrations mentioned above, or others like it, consider the following 5 home renovations as possible solutions:</span></p> <p><strong>1. Add grab rails</strong></p> <p><span>Grab rails are low-tech safety devices that can help you in multiple ways. Installing grab rails in the shower can help you to prevent injuries from falling, because you can grab onto the rails to steady yourself as you enter or exit the shower. Grab rails in the hallways can help to keep you from tiring yourself as you navigate through your home, because the grab rail can bear some of the burden of your weight as you walk. If you eventually need the assistance of a caregiver, grab rails can be helpful to both you and the carer as s/he helps to move you from one place to another. Grab rails are relatively inexpensive and worth every penny.</span></p> <p><strong>2. Replace or modify the staircase</strong></p> <p><span>If you’re having a hard time entering your home due to mobility issues, it may be time to consider removing the exterior entry stairs and replacing them with a ramp.</span></p> <p><span>If the interior of your home includes a staircase that has become difficult to navigate, it may be possible to install a chair lift that attaches to your staircase. The chair lift could help you to ascend and descend the staircase more easily than before. An elevator installation may also be a possibility, depending on the design of your home.</span></p> <p><strong>3. Install a stepless shower</strong></p> <p><span>Are you worried that the step up into your shower or bathtub might trip you or cause you to fall? It’s a valid concern. You could eliminate that tripping hazard all together by installing a stepless shower in the bathroom where you typically bathe.</span></p> <p><strong>4. Design a full bathroom for the first floor</strong></p> <p><span>Are mobility issues hindering you from reaching your second-storey bathroom? You can only take so many sponge baths before it starts to get tiresome.  If this is your situation, perhaps it could be worthwhile to consider renovating a first-floor half bath to include a shower.</span></p> <p><strong>5. Replace hard-to-reach appliances with more accessible units</strong></p> <p><span>If bending down is problematic for you, cooking with traditional appliances may have become a challenge. Some freestanding appliances can be replaced with wall-mounted units that do not require you to bend in order to use them. For example, there are wall mounted ovens and microwaves you can have installed at whichever height would be most comfortable for you to avoid the need for bending.</span></p> <p><strong><span>Helpful resources for ageing-in-place renovations</span></strong></p> <p><span>It isn’t always easy to locate the assets, expertise and materials you need for renovating your home to age in place. The following resources may be of interest to you if you wish to perform any of the home renovations suggested above:</span></p> <p><span><a href="https://www.swmsdocs.com.au/">Help With Safe Work Method Statements</a> </span></p> <p><span>If you or your contractors are planning to perform any high-risk construction tasks in your home, a <a href="https://www.worksafe.qld.gov.au/construction/health-and-wellbeing-at-work/safe-work-method-statements">Safe Work Method Statement (SWMS)</a> will be needed to comply with Australian law. If you need help with this, check out the products and services that <a href="https://www.swmsdocs.com.au/">SWMS Docs</a> makes available. </span></p> <p><span>One example of when you and your contractor might need this service: These SMS docs are likely to be helpful if you are planning any staircase renovations. If workers in your home would be vulnerable to falling more than 2 meters as a result of the work they are doing, an SWMS will be needed.</span></p> <p><span><a href="https://www.mobilityaccess.com.au/">Mobility Access Modifications (MAM)</a> </span></p> <p><span>This company offers multiple practical solutions for older Australians who wish to spend their golden years living at home rather than moving to an aged care facility. MAM sells products including rubber ramps and grab bars. They can also install stepless showers, custom rail solutions and similar improvements.</span></p> <p><span><a href="https://www.stannah.com.au/">Stannah Chair Lifts</a> </span></p> <p><span>If you’re having a hard time navigating stairs, Stannah’s products and services may be of interest to you. Stannah makes both indoor and outdoor stair lifts available.</span></p> <p><span>More suggested reading for Australians who want to age in place:</span></p> <ul> <li><span><a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/health/body/how-your-environment-plays-a-role-in-positive-ageing/">How Your Environment Plays a Role in Positive Ageing</a></span></li> <li><span><a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/lifestyle/home-garden/for-australians-to-have-the-choice-of-growing-old-at-home-here-is-what-needs-to-change">For Australians to Have the Choice of Growing Old at Home, Here Is What Needs to Change</a></span></li> <li><span><a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/health/caring/4-advantages-of-at-home-aged-care">4 Advantages of At-Home Aged Care</a></span></li> </ul>

home & Garden

Placeholder Content Image

Man's horrific find in his mother's freezer

<p>Police are investigating after a man discovered a baby's body in his late mother’s freezer.</p> <p>Adam Smith was looking after his mother in her St Louis apartment in the UK until she passed away from lung cancer on July 21, <a rel="noopener" href="https://edition.cnn.com/2019/07/30/us/missouri-infant-freezer/index.html" target="_blank"><em>CNN</em></a> reported.</p> <p>The 37-year-old man was cleaning out the home when he came across a cardboard box in the freezer.</p> <p>Smith said his mother, who had brought the box with her throughout multiple house moves, warned him not to open it. </p> <p>“It has been in my freezer for 37 years. I was always told it was a wedding cake top,” Smith told <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/st-louis-man-finds-mummified-baby-his-deceased-mother-s-n1036026" target="_blank"><em>KSDK</em></a>.</p> <p>When he opened the box, he found a frozen infant corpse wrapped in a pink blanket. </p> <p>“When I reached down and touched it, I could feel a foot,” said Smith.</p> <p>“I could see the baby’s head with hair … It still had skin, hair and everything – it was mummified.”</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"> <p dir="ltr">EXCLUSIVE: A disturbing discovery in south St. Louis. Police are investigating the death of a baby. But tonight, we get more details from a man who found the baby wrapped in a pink blanket in his mom's freezer. Catch the full story at 6 on <a href="https://twitter.com/ksdknews?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@ksdknews</a>. <a href="https://t.co/juSKoL9SQT">pic.twitter.com/juSKoL9SQT</a></p> — Justina Coronel (@JustinaCoronel) <a href="https://twitter.com/JustinaCoronel/status/1155944913931866114?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">July 29, 2019</a></blockquote> <p>Smith told <em>CNN</em> that the baby “looked clean” and “like a newborn baby”.</p> <p>According to Smith, his mother said she had lost a child before he was born. He said a relative told him that his mother gave birth to twins, but one of them died and the other was given up for adoption.</p> <p>St Louis Metropolitan Police said they are investigating the case as a “suspicious death” pending an autopsy.</p> <p>“Who absolutely keeps their own child in a box for this long and never talks about it?” Smith said.</p> <p>"I just have so many thoughts. It's insane.”</p>

home & Garden

Placeholder Content Image

20kg mating pythons crash through Queensland couple’s ceiling

<p>It’s snake breeding season in Cairns, North Queensland, Australia<span> and a local couple got the shock of their lives as two massive pythons crashed through their ceiling whilst mating.</span></p> <p>The pair looked up to see the ceiling flex and crack under the weight of the two pythons, who are estimated to be about 20kg each. The pair managed to slither into the couple’s home via the roof.</p> <p>The size of the pythons and the rigorous activity was too much for the ceiling and the pythons crashed onto the floor.</p> <p>Matt Hagan and Jason Legg of Cairns Snake Catchers were called into the home.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.facebook.com/plugins/post.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fcairnssnakecatcher%2Fposts%2F2369206379992662&amp;width=500" width="500" height="795" style="border: none; overflow: hidden;" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" allowtransparency="true" allow="encrypted-media"></iframe></p> <p>“Extracting this dynamic duo was no easy feat and ultimately resulted in the ceiling giving way as these snakes made a particularly dramatic entry into the office!” the snake catchers wrote on Facebook on Sunday.</p> <p>“If you are lucky enough to host a scrub python party in your roof space this breeding season (end of July to late September) it can get pretty wild as males fight each other to impress females,” they warned.</p> <p>“Occasionally these interactions can result in strange smells wafting through different rooms, and even structural damage to your house in the form or ceiling stains or cracks.”</p>

home & Garden

Placeholder Content Image

Silent protest: This wife hasn't washed her husband's towel for 3 months

<p>A woman has left her husband’s towel unlaundered for three months in “silent protest” – and he is yet to notice the sneaky move.</p> <p>In a <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AmItheAsshole/comments/cgbhm2/aita_for_not_telling_my_husband_that_i_have/" target="_blank">Reddit post</a>, the woman shared her frustration over her husband of seven years, who believes that towels do not need to be washed.</p> <p>As the one in charge of the laundry in the household, the woman disagrees with her husband. </p> <p>“I … have been throwing his towel in the wash at least 2-3 times a month for the 7 years we have been married,” she wrote.</p> <p>She said she has been reminding him to put the towel in the hamper for her to launder “every single time”. However, one day, she decided that enough was enough.</p> <p>“I just... got fed up. Something just snapped, and I stopped putting his towel in the laundry. Never told him. It's now been three months. I have no idea if he knows.”</p> <p>Even though her belief is firm, she said she still wondered if she is in the wrong for such a move.</p> <p>However, people on the forum thread said the woman shouldn’t lose sleep over the matter, as the husband knows the towel should be put in the laundry bin if he wants it washed.</p> <p>“If he insists towels don’t need to be washed, he should be just fine the way things are. Enjoy your own soft, fresh smelling towels,” one commented.</p> <p>“It is his towel. He doesn't think towels need washed. He knows you wash things that get put in the laundry bin. If he decides his towel needs washed he will put it with the laundry,” another added.</p> <p>Others expressed disgust at the husband’s hygiene standard. </p> <p>“The idea of 'never' washing a bath towel makes me gag on so many levels,” one wrote.</p> <p>“People are disgusting,” another chimed in.</p>

home & Garden

Placeholder Content Image

How to grow petunias in a mini greenhouse

<p>Petunias are popular for adding a splash of winter colour but if you sow them in the garden, frost can kill seedlings as they emerge.  You can nurture the seedlings by growing them indoors until they’re ready to be planted out.</p> <p>To provide the required warmth, shelter and moisture the easiest option is to use a mini greenhouse. This features a tray with a lid that has vents so you can control airflow. </p> <p>For successful germination the soil temperature needs to be 16°C which is easily checked with a thermometer.</p> <p>Sow the seeds in the tray and use a spray bottle to mist the potting mix with water, creating humidity.</p> <p>Replace the lid and position the mini greenhouse in a spot with lots of light but no direct sun. </p> <p><strong>TIP:</strong> Some greenhouses are called propagation units and have a built-in heater to regulate the soil temperature.</p> <p><strong>Plant the seedlings </strong></p> <p>Once your seeds are ready to germinate it's time to plant them. Taking petunias from germination to garden bed takes about six weeks. </p> <p>When the seedlings emerge you can remove the mini greenhouse cover and let the growing medium dry out slightly between waterings.</p> <p>After about 14 to 21 days the seedlings can be transplanted to pots or a windowbox. Lift them carefully out of the growing medium with a stick, being careful not to disturb the roots or let them dry out.</p> <p>The seedlings can be put outside on warm days to acclimatise but make sure they’re protected from direct sun and wind, bringing them back inside at night.</p> <p>To plant them out in the garden, choose a spot with good drainage that gets plenty of light but not harsh afternoon sun and has good airflow. </p> <p>Position petunias about 300mm apart and keep the area weed-free.</p> <p><strong>How to grow petunias in a mini greenhouse</strong></p> <p>Petunias like a moist, well-drained growing medium and the seeds don’t like to be covered in too much soil, so we took the seed cell tray out of the greenhouse and used the base for sowing. </p> <p><strong>TIP:</strong> The seedlings should emerge within a week.</p> <p><strong>Step 1: Add mix</strong></p> <p>Add seed-raising mix to the growing tray then make four 10mm deep rows with a ruler, scattering the seeds then covering with a light dressing of mix.</p> <p><strong>Step 2: Water seeds</strong></p> <p>Water in seeds by misting the mix with water using a spray bottle to settle the seeds in position, covering the growing tray with the lid of the mini greenhouse to keep the humidity high.</p> <p><strong>Step 3: Maintain the seeds</strong></p> <p>Position the greenhouse next to a window that gets morning sun, rotating it every few days so the seedlings grow straight up. Keep the soil moist but not wet.</p> <p><em>Republished with permission of </em><a href="http://www.handyman.net.au/grow-petunias-mini-greenhouse"><em>Handyman Australia</em></a><em>.</em></p>

home & Garden

Placeholder Content Image

How to make your hand tools look as good as new

<p>Giving timber-handled tools a bit of TLC to helps them last longer.</p> <p>Check the tools over and replace any with handles that are suffering from rot or severe cracks, especially tools that are used under pressure such as spades and mattocks. </p> <p>For those that pass the test, sand the handles to remove any rough spots and flaking finish, then coat them in boiled linseed oil to inject some moisture and prevent cracking. </p> <p>When you have oiled the handles, clean and sharpen the blades. Use a whetstone for secateurs and clippers, and a file or grinding wheel for spades, mattocks and hoes. </p> <p>Store your tools and wheelbarrow under cover over winter and they’ll be ready to go when the garden bursts into action in spring.</p> <p><strong>Using linseed oil </strong></p> <p>Linseed oil is a natural product that is extracted from flaxseed. </p> <p>It has a wide variety of uses, including as a preservative for wood and an ingredient in paints, varnishes, stains, soaps and inks.</p> <p>Despite the name, most linseed oil isn’t actually boiled. </p> <p>Instead solvents such as turps are added to speed up the drying process, just as boiling does. </p> <p>Without this addition linseed oil would take a long time to dry.</p> <p><strong>TIP:</strong> The oil is very combustible, so dry used cloths outside in a single layer, as a pile can catch fire.</p> <p><strong>Step 1: Sand the timber </strong></p> <p>Sand the timber handles with a random orbital sander and 120 grit sanding pads, then sand lightly by hand using abrasive paper to get into the areas the sander didn’t reach.</p> <p><strong>Step 2: Oil the handles</strong></p> <p>Oil the handles by dipping a cloth into a container of boiled linseed oil and wiping it onto the timber. Let the oil penetrate for a few minutes then wipe off any excess.</p> <p><em>Republished with permission of </em><a href="http://www.handyman.net.au/renew-hand-tools"><em>Handyman Australia</em></a><em>.</em></p>

home & Garden

Placeholder Content Image

Guide to companion planting

<p>Some plants appear to have a direct effect on others growing near them. In some cases, the effect is beneficial, while in others it is detrimental.</p> <p>Roses, for example, seem to be more sweetly scented and less prone to disease when surrounded by garlic, and less troubled by aphids when lavender is grown underneath them.</p> <p>But beans do not seem to do well when grown near onions.</p> <p><strong>Mixed planting benefits</strong></p> <p>Plants of different species, when grown together, compete less with each other than those of the same species, and make it more difficult for pests and diseases to spread. For example, planting potatoes and broad beans together can increase the yields from both crops.<br />Flowers that attract pollinating insects can increase the yields from some other crops. Sweet peas and runner beans work as good companions in this way, and also look very attractive scrambling up bean poles together in flower and vegetable gardens.<br />Other winning combinations include:</p> <ul> <li>tomatoes and cabbage</li> <li>cucumbers and nasturtiums</li> <li>rosemary and sage</li> <li>French marigolds and pretty much everything</li> <li>Weed beaters</li> </ul> <p>Few weeds grow in pine woods because secretions from the trees prevent them from germinating. A mulch of pine needles on the strawberry bed will suppress weeds and may also improve the fruits’ flavour.</p> <p>Rhododendron leaves produce secretions that prevent seeds in the soil nearby from germinating, and the leaves of dandelions appear to have the same effect.</p> <p><strong>Space savers</strong></p> <p>Make good use of space in the vegetable garden by planting shallow-rooting vegetables alongside deep-rooting ones. Carrots and radishes do well together and occupy less space when planted side by side than when planted in separate rows.</p> <p><strong>Disease resistance</strong></p> <p>Some plants can increase the ability of others to resist disease:</p> <ul> <li>Chamomile is beneficial to the health and fragrance of certain plants</li> <li>Foxgloves and golden feverfew (Tanacetum parthenium ‘Aureum’) are helpful to plants nearby</li> <li>Summer savoury benefits beans</li> <li>Onions can prevent mould on strawberries </li> </ul> <p><em>Republished with permission of </em><a href="http://www.handyman.net.au/guide-companion-planting"><em>Handyman Australia</em></a><em>.</em></p>

home & Garden

Placeholder Content Image

How to grow potatoes

<p>Boiled, baked, fried or roasted, potatoes have been one of the world’s most important food crops for centuries.</p> <p>Originating in South America, they were introduced into Europe in the 1500s where they quickly became a staple in the diet of many cultures.</p> <p>Spuds came to Australia with the First Fleet and were a favourite backyard crop until WWII.</p> <p>A starchy tuber, potatoes are not actually high in kilojoules.</p> <p>The reason they are seen as bad for weight control is because they’re often served deep fried as chips, or with fatty toppings such as butter, cheese and sour cream.</p> <p>Cut out the fat and frying and potatoes become a healthy, high-fibre food. Rich in vitamin C, they’re also a good source of vitamin B and minerals like potassium and iron.</p> <p>Described as waxy, all-rounder or floury, pick a variety to grow based on how you like to cook them.</p> <p>Waxy varieties have less starch and a higher moisture content, so retain their shape when cooked, while floury spuds are great for baking or mashing.</p> <p><strong>A versatile veg</strong></p> <p>Easy to grow, harvest and use, spuds also give you a lot of bang for your buck with one plant producing a multitude of potatoes.</p> <p>A common variety spud sends out a shoot from each eye on a seed potato, and eachone of these shoots can produce five to 10 spuds.</p> <p>Another bonus is that you don’t need a lot of space to grow them and can even use a large planter.</p> <p>In winter seed potatoes are available to buy at nurseries and are guaranteed to be disease-free.</p> <p>Chit, or sprout, seed potatoes for planting by putting them in a cool, light spot with good ventilation and wait for shoots to develop.</p> <p><strong>Tip:</strong> Not all potatoes grow well in every climate, so ask your local nursery which varieties thrive in your area</p> <p><strong>In the garden</strong></p> <p>The ideal location to grow potatoes is a spot that grew beans or peas the year before.</p> <p>Avoid planting spuds in the same spot year after year, as this increases the risk of disease.</p> <p><strong>PREPARE THE SOIL</strong> with added organic matter, digging 25mm of well-rotted manure or compost into the top 300mm layer and adding a sprinkling of fertiliser pellets.</p> <p><strong>DIG TRENCHES </strong>250mm wide and deep, and about 600mm apart.<br /> <br /><strong>PLANT SEED POTATOES</strong> in the trenches with the shoots pointing up and cover with 100mm of soil. Keep covering shoots with soil as they appear and water them. This is called hilling up and is usually done about two or three times during the growing season.</p> <p><strong>CHECK THE CROP</strong> after about three months by digging up a plant. If the tuber skins are thin and rub off easily, the crop isn’t fully mature. Leave the tubers in the ground for a week or two more to toughen the skins. This helps protect them from scuffing and bruising during harvest and prolongs storage life.</p> <p><strong>HARVEST POTATOES</strong> in the morning while it’s still cool but don’t leave tubers exposed to the light for more than a few hours or you risk them developing green patches. Green potatoes can cause food poisoning so must be discarded. To dig potatoes out of the ground, put your garden fork at the edge of the foliage to avoid stabbing them. Lift the entire root system, one plant at a time, to minimise bruising, skinning or cutting the tubers.</p> <p><strong>Tip:</strong> Spuds are generally ready to harvest when the white potato flowers bloom, just scrape back a little soil to double check.</p> <p><strong>Planting in a bag</strong></p> <p>If you have limited outdoor space, use garden bags to grow spuds. Roll a plastic bag halfway down and fill with potting mix.</p> <p>Position three seed potatoes cover with mix and water in well. As the shoots emerge, unroll the bag and add more mix.</p> <p>Unroll the bag completely when the shoots are 150 to 300mm tall and add mix until full, covering with a layer of straw. Harvest the potatoes when the foliage yellows or dies back.<br /> <br /><strong>Tip:</strong> Buy plastic grow bags with handles and drainage holes for about $10 each from nurseries.</p> <p><strong>Pests and disease</strong></p> <p>Spuds can suffer from a range of problems, so choose resistant varieties and only grow from disease-free seed potatoes. Enrich the soil with organic material such as compost to reduce the risk of soil-borne diseases.</p> <p><strong>Potato Scab</strong></p> <p>Small bumps on the skin that turn brown and powdery are a sign of this common tuber disease. Most are superficial and can be rubbed off. It’s usually a problem in dry soil, so add organic matter and water well to increase moisture levels.</p> <p><strong>Potato wireworm</strong></p> <p>A type of beetle larvae that burrow into tubers, making tunnels that provide entry points for fungal diseases. Spray with an insecticide such as Dipel before planting and harvest early to reduce the amount of potential damage to the potatoes.</p> <p><strong>Potato leaf roll</strong></p> <p>This virus stunts plants and reduces yields, causing the younger leaves to yellow and roll inwards. To avoid, plant certified disease-free seed potatoes, and control any aphids immediately as they can spread the problem.</p> <p><em>Written by Jecca Blake. Republished with permission of </em><a href="http://www.handyman.net.au/growing-potatoes"><em>Handyman Australia</em></a><em>.</em></p>

home & Garden

Placeholder Content Image

How to grow English Spinach

<p>Famous for giving Popeye his bulging muscles, most of the iron in spinach is not easily absorbed by the body but this leafy annual is still a nutritional powerhouse.</p> <p>It’s an excellent source of vitamins A and C, and antioxidants. It’s also rich in B group vitamins like folate, plus protein and magnesium.</p> <p>Like many vegetables, spinach loses some of its nutritional value in cooking, so just wilt the leaves when boiling or steaming.</p> <p>Spinach grows best in a cool climate as in warm areas it is likely to bolt to seed. Grow in full to part sun in soil that is rich in nitrogen.</p> <p>Turn the soil over before planting so the taproot has a clear path for strong growth and add well-rotted compost. Good drainage is essential, so the roots don’t rot.</p> <p>Spinach is a hungry and thirsty plant, which explains its juicy, deep green leaves. Water regularly and apply a liquid fertiliser every two weeks to encourage fast growth. If the plant is slow to grow it can taste bitter.</p> <p>If you have more spinach than you can eat, trim the stalks, wash and drain the leaves then blanch them for two minutes in small batches.</p> <p>When it is cool enough to handle, squeeze out any excess moisture, pack into containers and freeze for use in soups and stews.</p> <p><strong>Tip:</strong> Cultivate spinach alongside strawberries, broad beans and cauliflower for healthier plants.</p> <p><strong>Choosing a variety</strong></p> <p><strong>Viking</strong></p> <ul> <li>Tasty dark green leaves</li> <li>Grows best in a shady spot</li> <li>Slow to bolt to seed </li> </ul> <p><strong>Bloomsdale</strong></p> <ul> <li>Heirloom variety</li> <li>Large, crinkled, rich green leaves</li> <li>Compact growing plant</li> </ul> <p><strong>Medania</strong></p> <ul> <li>Thick, rounded, dark green leaves</li> <li>Sweet and earthy flavour</li> <li>Reliable cropper</li> </ul> <p><strong>Growing Tips </strong></p> <p>A fast-cropping winter green, spinach is ready to harvest about 10 to 12 weeks after sowing.<br /> <br /><strong>SOW SEEDS</strong> into beds 100mm apart for picking leaves regularly or 200mm apart to harvest mature plants. Keep the soil moist but not wet and don’t let plants dry out or they’ll bolt to seed. Sow seeds every six weeks for a constant supply, soaking them in cold water overnight to speed up germination.</p> <p><strong>HARVEST</strong> the outside leaves with a sharp knife when the plant has at least six leaves, each about 100mm long. If the plant looks like it is about to bolt, cut it at the base just below the soil surface and remove it.</p> <p><strong>WATCH FOR</strong> downy mildew during prolonged periods of damp. Remove the worst affected leaves and spray with a mixture of 100ml full cream milk, 900ml water and a pinch of bicarb soda.</p> <p>Cucumber mosaic virus can be spread by aphids. Remove and burn stunted leaves with yellow mottling and spray aphids with white oil.</p> <p>Pick off caterpillars by hand and destroy or sprinkle with derris dust.</p> <p><em>Republished with permission of </em><a href="http://www.handyman.net.au/growing-english-spinach"><em>Handyman Australia</em></a><em>.</em></p>

home & Garden

Placeholder Content Image

Duchess Kate’s incredibly sweet moment with young girl

<p>The Duchess of Cambridge was all smiles as she unveiled a new play and learn garden space aimed at children to spend more time outdoors.</p> <p>The lush playing space is at Hampton Court Garden Palace’s Garden Festival and proved to be a blast for the children invited from charities to play among the garden designed by Duchess Kate.</p> <p>The <em>Back to Nature</em> space was first debuted at the Chelsea Flower Show in May where royal watchers and fans got to see Prince George, five, Princess Charlotte, four, and Prince Louis, one, play with their parents.</p> <p>The Duchess said she hoped the garden would help highlight the importance of spending time outside for children’s physical and mental wellbeing.</p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/BzYggIHls7F/" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/BzYggIHls7F/" target="_blank">A post shared by Kensington Palace (@kensingtonroyal)</a> on Jul 1, 2019 at 10:43am PDT</p> </div> </blockquote> <p>The 37-year-old looked stunning and simply chic in a Sandro Paris dress for the visit as she chatted with the young visitors.</p> <p>“These environments enable children to develop skills for life through free play, building their confidence, strength, resilience and social skills," a statement from the Duchess read.</p> <p>"In addition to the physical and mental health benefits of being in nature, spending quality time with parents and carers outside has a valuable impact on children’s early development.</p> <p>"In the garden, families can explore together and enjoy nature as a playground."</p> <p>The glowing mum-of-three explained to the excited youngster her daughter had helped collect the pinecones featured in the garden.</p> <p>“There are eight, Charlotte helped me find them,” she said.</p> <p>Throughout the event, the Duchess noticed a nervous eight-year-old Khareesha James who she then pulled aside to a den to give her a few words of encouragement.</p> <p>“I am shy and she said that’s where she goes when she’s shy – in the tent,” the girl later told reporters.</p> <p>Scroll through the gallery above to see the Duchess of Cambridge at a garden picnic in London.</p>

home & Garden