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Australasia vs Oceania

You may have come cross the name Australasia in our crosswords. It is the regional name for Australia and New Zealand, and despite the last four letters, it does not include Asia. It means ‘south of Asia’.

Every place on Earth has an antipode, ie the spot on Earth’s surface that is diametrically opposite [more…]

Beauty trends through the ages

If you think the modern trends of wearing tattoos and piercings are a bit over the top, think about life in ancient Greece and Rome, where an essential ingredient of face masks for women was fresh crocodile dung. Lovely!

We might complain about going to the dentist, but many African and Asian tribes used to [more…]

Wake up and smell the roses 🌹

It’s often said that smell is the most evocative of senses. Just a whiff of some particular smells can transport you back in time, triggering memories from your childhood. The smell of lavender always reminds me of my grandmother. The scent of my newborn grandchildren takes me back to the days when my children [more…]

Favourite foreign phrases

You might think our English language has some crazy sayings, but we’re not alone. Here are some of my favourite sayings from other languages:

We might say ‘when pigs fly’ – meaning we don’t believe something will ever happen. Germans have a saying ‘I think my pig whistles’ meaning I can’t believe it. In [more…]

Good things come in small packages

They say that good things come in small packages or that it’s the little things in life that mean the most, and it’s interesting to note how many words there are to describe a tiny amount, such as a whit, a scrap, a trace or a spark. A smidgen is a Scottish word for [more…]

Pull up a chair

We spend a great deal of our lives sitting down, whether driving, eating or reading because it’s very hard to do these things standing up.

Fortunately, there are many different types of seats to sit on. In the kitchen, there’s a kitchen chair or backless stool. In the dining room, there’s the dining chair, or [more…]

What’s in a middle name?


We sometimes ask for a person’s middle name in a crossword clue, although we usually choose a well-known one, unless we’re feeling very cruel.

We have middle names for various reasons. A person may be given a middle name to distinguish them from other people with the same first name and surname, especially a father [more…]

12 Fun Facts this Christmas

Brace your elves, as we’ve compiled 12 of the most fun facts about Christmas.

So put on your favourite Christmas tunes, grab a cuppa and discover something new about the festive season!

1. Xmas Xplanation
There is a common misconception that the word Xmas stems from a secular attempt to remove the religious tradition from Christmas [more…]

Subscriber Sweepstake UK September/October 2019

CONGRATULATIONS to the latest winners in our
Lovatts Subscriber Sweepstake!

These lucky subscribers have shared in £250 worth of prizes!

Kindle e-Reader – Mrs J Lonsdale, Barnsley.
Olympus 8 x 40 DPSI Binocular – Mr David Robinson, Cleveland.
Breville Sandwich & Panini Press – Joy Ward, Coventry.
NUTRIBULLET Magic Bullet Blender – Mrs Malka Block, London.

The Sweepstake is our way [more…]