Welcome!

Welcome to my Desk, where you’ll find all sorts of items to hold your interest. Unlike my real office desk, which is cluttered with books, files, news cuttings and the remnants of my lunch, this Online Desk will be efficient and easy to navigate.

Learn some of the tricks of solving those weird cryptic crosswords on my tutorials page.

If you wonder about the origins of some of our wonderful English expressions, Words & Phrases is the place to find out more.

Read about the puzzling but positive effect Lovatts has on your health in Puzzles & your Health. We’d love to hear from you, so write a letter to Christine’s Mailbag. You might want to comment on my regular column @ Christine’s Hello.

There’s something for everyone here, so come on in!

Latest Posts

9 07, 2019

The left handed life

  • July 9th, 2019

All left-handed people are evil, worthless, mysterious and bring bad luck. At least, that’s what they used to think in former days. The Latin word for left is ‘sinister’, which has only come to mean evil or treacherous because of its leftist leanings.The old Saxon word for left was ‘lyft’ which also meant worthless. In France left is ‘gauche’ which also [more…]

26 06, 2019

Hello July 2019

  • June 26th, 2019

Puzzler Cathy Parker asks why we say we ‘fall’ asleep. One theory is that when you nod off in a chair, your head falls forward. If you’re lying down, it feels like falling, as you sink into the bed and go to sleep.

Another theory is that to fall asleep, like falling ill or falling in love, is to lose power over [more…]

24 06, 2019

Six ways to keep your memory in tip-top condition

  • June 24th, 2019

If you ever find yourself in the aisles of a supermarket not remembering what you’re there to buy, don’t worry, you’re not alone. We all have days when our memory seems to let us down and we forget not just the finer details, but basic information too.

Fortunately, there are plenty of simple ways to optimise your brain’s health and sharpen your [more…]

22 05, 2019

Hello June 2019

  • May 22nd, 2019

Beer is one of the world’s oldest prepared drinks and the third most popular drink in the world, after water and tea – certainly the most consumed alcoholic drink.

Beer dates back to at least 5th millennium BC, in Iran. Cereal was first farmed around 10,000 BC, so it’s possible beer was brewed then, as it’s brewed from cereal grains.

There was even [more…]

29 04, 2019

Hello May 2019

  • April 29th, 2019

Our English language has a huge vocabulary – possibly larger than any other language.

This is because we have had so many varied sources. The Anglo-Saxons brought their West Germanic languages with them. After the Norman invasion of 1066, French became the language of the courts. The church, universities and legal world used Latin, so many new words were added. We [more…]

24 04, 2019

Our inspiring DIY winner Arthur Daniell

  • April 24th, 2019

Our inspiring DIY winner Arthur Daniell will turn 100 this year! His winning crossword was published in Christine’s BIG Crossword 319.

Arthur Daniell was born on Yorke Peninsula, South Australia in 1919. He was the second youngest of 6 children. His parents settled on a dairy farm at Monteith on the River Murray when he was 8 or 9. In [more…]