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

5 10, 2018

Hello October 2018

  • October 5th, 2018

The English language is constantly on the move, and it can be quite a challenge to keep up with the flow of new words and phrases entering our vocabulary.
Some of these verbs you may be familiar with. For instance, you may have heard of the verb to binge-watch, meaning to watch multiple episodes of a TV serial in succession. To upcycle [more…]

5 10, 2018

Hello September 2018

  • October 5th, 2018

I was lucky enough to spend a week in the Apple Isle recently, also known as the Holiday Isle or Island of Inspiration. How appropriate – Tasmania’s ancient landscape is a place of rare beauty and diversity, uncrowded and unspoilt.
We were rocked to sleep by the waves while crossing the Bass Strait overnight, aboard the Spirit of Tasmania.
One of the first [more…]

6 08, 2018

Hello August 2018

  • August 6th, 2018

We all have one, you may hang yours or hold it high. You may shake it, turn it or scratch it. Lose it, keep it or bang it against a brick wall.
I’m talking about your head, also known as bonce, noggin, loaf or nut.  Loaf comes from Cockney rhyming slang ‘loaf of bread – head’.
Head comes from Old English heafod. Maybe [more…]

20 07, 2018

Hello July 2018

  • July 20th, 2018

We all have one, you may hang yours or hold it high. You may shake it, turn it or scratch it. Lose it, keep it or bang it against a brick wall.

I’m talking about your head, also known as bonce, noggin, loaf or nut. Loaf comes from Cockney rhyming slang ‘loaf of bread – head’.

Head comes from Old English heafod. [more…]

13 06, 2018

Hello June 2018

  • June 13th, 2018

I am sometimes asked why people do puzzles, especially by non-puzzling people who can’t understand why we spend time struggling with crosswords or sudoku puzzles when we don’t have to. It’s a good question, and finding the answer to that is a puzzle in itself.

First of all, humans have an innate urge to discover patterns and to solve problems. We like [more…]

2 05, 2018

Hello May 2018

  • May 2nd, 2018

Although we might think of the word blog as a recent addition to the dictionary, it’s nearly 20 years old.
It comes from the term weblog, coined in 1997, which means an online personal diary, where people write about day-to-day events in their lives – literally a web log.
In 1999, blogger Peter Merholz jokingly broke the word weblog into [more…]