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Duck and Dressing Recipe
Servings: Over 8
Cook Time: Over 120 min
- 8 teal or 3 mallards or 1 large chicken
- 3 bay leaves
- 4 garlic cloves
- Salt and black pepper
- 1 stick (¼ pound) butter
- 2 medium onions, diced
- 2 bell peppers, diced
- 3 celery stalks, diced
- 2 pans Cornbread, crumbled
- 1 sleeve saltine crackers, crushed
Duck and Dressing
- 1 sleeve Ritz crackers, crushed
- 10 slices white bread, toasted in the oven and crumbled
- 1 can (12 ounces) evaporated milk
- 4 large eggs, beaten
- 1 heaping teaspoon rubbing sage
Make the duck: In the large pot, combine the ducks, bay leaves, garlic, and salt and pepper to taste. Add water to cover by 2 inches and bring to a boil over high heat. Lower to a simmer, cover, and cook for 1 hour and 45 minutes or until the ducks are tender. Set aside the ducks, covered with foil. Save the broth.
Heat the oven to 325ºF. Make the dressing: In the large skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onions, bell peppers, and celery and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender, about 7 minutes.
In the roasting pan, using your hands, combine the cornbread, saltines, Ritz crackers, and white bread. Add the vegetables and mix well. Add duck broth slowly until the dressing is pourable but still thick. Add the evaporated milk, eggs, and sage; mix well with a large kitchen spoon.
Place the ducks on the dressing, breast side up. Push the ducks down into the dressing, but leave the breast showing. Bake uncovered for 45 minutes.
Recipe from Miss Kay’s Duck Commander Kitchen
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Willie Robertson’s Armadillo Eggs Recipe
Servings: Over 8
Cook Time: 1-30 min
- 6 to 8 large jalapeño peppers, cut in half lengthwise, seeds and ribs removed
- 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
- 2 pounds breakfast sausage, formed into 12 to 16 patties
- 1 pound bacon, sliced thin
- 1 stick (¼ pound) butter, melted
Willie Robertson’s Armadillo Eggs
If you’re using a grill, heat it to medium. If not, heat the oven to 400ºF. Fill each jalapeño half with cream cheese. Mold sausage around each jalapeño half, making sure to cover the entire jalapeño. Wrap each “armadillo egg” with a slice of bacon.
Cook the eggs on an open grill until the sausage is cooked through and the bacon is crispy. If you don’t have an outdoor grill, bake in the oven for 15 to 20 minutes, then broil until the bacon is crispy.
Remove the eggs from the grill or oven and cover with melted butter.
Recipe from Miss Kay’s Duck Commander Kitchen.
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Willie Robertson’s Crazy Bread
Cook Time: 1-30 min
- 1 loaf French bread (12 inches long and about 9 ounces)
Crazy Bread is one of Willie Robertson’s favorite recipes
- 1 stick (¼ pound) butter, melted
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1 teaspoon garlic salt
- 4 slices bacon, cut in thirds crosswise
Heat the oven to 400ºF. Slice the bread about 1 inch thick without cutting all the way through. Place the bread on the cookie sheet. Pour butter between the slices, then stuff cheese between the slices. Sprinkle with garlic salt. Top the bread with the bacon slices without overlapping them.
Bake until the cheese has melted, about 5 minutes. Turn the oven to broil and cook the bacon to your taste.
Recipe from Miss Kay’s Duck Commander Kitchen
The Duck Dynasty clan stopped by Good Morning America to share their go-to recipes from their cookbook, Miss Kay’s Duck Commander Kitchen, to make at home.
The Robertson family kicked things off with their recipe for duck and dressing, which roasts a whole duck over a hearty cornbread and cracker dressing.
“We’re not losing weight on this meal,” Miss Kay Robertson admitted.
Next up were Willie Robertson’s famous armadillo eggs.
“This is low-fat,” Willie Robertson joked.
“It only has sausage, bacon and cream cheese.”
These meat-wrapped jalapeño poppers are grilled for crunch and smoky flavor, and then finished off in the oven.
Willie Robertson presented his famous armadillo eggs
Jase and Missy Robertson took the reins next with a banana pudding.
“If you didn’t get enough fat from the sausage and the bacon and the butter,” Missy Robertson quipped.
“There are two sticks of butter in this and two cups of sugar to start off with.”
The banana pudding is a no-cook recipe, and Jase Robertson shared its secret.
“That’s lemon juice – you dip [the bananas] in there so they don’t turn brown,” he said.
Miss Kay Robertson attempted to make things healthier with Aunt Judy’s cranberry salad.
“It is a salad!” Miss Kay Robertson insisted of the dessert dish with marshmallows and whipped topping.
Willie Robertson quickly cut off any of her healthy claims.
“But what you really want is the cheesy bread right here,” he said of his recipe for crazy bread.
“This is more bacon on top of French bread with a little butter and olive oil with garlic and you toast it.”
A&E’s Duck Dynasty Christmas Special will air on December 11 at 10/9 C.
Duck Dynasty’s Willie Robertson hit the stage with Luke Bryan for a funny performance during the CMA Country Christmas special.
Willie Robertson and Luke Bryan performed Hairy Christmas and they were making jokes about Willie’s beard.
Willie Robertson hit the stage with Luke Bryan for a funny performance during the CMA Country Christmas special
The Duck Dynasty star recently spoke about performing with Luke Bryan and said: “It’s quite an honor to be invited here with our Christmas album out now, Duck the Halls, we really wanted to show up when we could actually contribute something.”
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When Porter Ridge gang and Dog Killer Ridge crew plan for their respective Christmas parties, a competition grows as to which ridge will have the more spectacular party.
Porter Ridge gang and Dog Killer Ridge crew plan for their respective Christmas parties
Discovery’s Porter Ridge holiday special premieres Tuesday, December 3, at 10/9c.
Duck Dynasty’s Willie Robertson revealed he was thrilled to be a part of Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York.
He told FOX411 that watching the annual extravaganza is something the Robertson family has done every year.
“It’s something we watched together as a family,” the Louisiana man said.
“It’s an honor to be up here, we’re real excited so we brought the whole crew.”
Duck Dynasty stars were thrilled to be a part of Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York
Willie Robertson said that the Robertson clan waving to crowds down Broadway might not to be so strange after all.
“After the year we’ve had I’m starting to believe all kinds of weird things,” Willie Robertson admitted.
“It’s been quite a year, the good Lord’s been good to us, blessed us a bunch so we hope we can continue on the path we’re on, staying positive and keeping it real and moving forward with our faith and family. That’s the recipe that’s gotten us here so we’re going to stick with that.”
So, the Robertson clan didn’t stick around New York City to feast on turkey. Instead they hightailed it right back to Monroe, Louisiana.
“We’ve already celebrated Thanksgiving early so I’m going home,” Willie Robertson explained.
“[After the parade] we’re jumping on a plane. We got to get home and get some things back done at home.”
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When the Porter Ridge gang and Dog Killer Ridge crew plan for their respective Christmas parties, a competition grows as to which ridge will have the more spectacular party.
Porter Ridge Christmas special will premiere on Tuesday, December 3
Porter Ridge Christmas special will premiere on Tuesday, December 3, at 10/9 C on Discovery Channel.
The annual New York City Sidewalk Santa Parade has been canceled after more than a century due to rising costs involved in organizing the event.
The Sidewalk Santas, who for a century have marched up Fifth Avenue the morning after Thanksgiving to collect donations from Black Friday shoppers, are hanging up their suits.
NYC Sidewalk Santa Parade was an annual tradition organized by the Volunteers of America-Greater New York to raise money for its Hope & Hearth campaign, which last year gave over 1,200 families vouchers for groceries during the holiday season, communications director Rachel Weinstein said.
The annual New York City Sidewalk Santa Parade has been canceled after more than a century due to rising costs involved in organizing the event
However, the one-day parade of about 50 bell-ringing volunteers never raised much money and the cost of storing, cleaning and transporting dozens of Santa suits was rising, Rachel Weinstein said.
“We wanted to expand the food voucher program and we needed to find ways to raise more money, and save money (where) we weren’t doing it before,” Rachel Weinstein said.
“In reality it wasn’t raising the money we need for this program.”
The tradition began in 1896 when Ballington Booth, the son of the Salvation Army founders, traveled by horse-drawn carriage across the city to deliver hot holiday meals to hungry New Yorkers.
With more hungry families in the city now than at any time since the Great Depression, Weinstein said cutting the parade costs was a practical decision. The group also takes private donations through its website, www.hopeandhearth.org.
Instead of the parade, the group has set up a collection bin at the Plaza Hotel to collect donations from the parents who bring their children to sit on the lap of the Plaza’s Santa.
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The home of Duck Dynasty’s family has become a huge tourist draw over the years.
On any given day the Official Duck Commander hometown tour takes visitors to 26 locations featured on the show, including the Duck Commander Store and Warehouse, Haskell’s Donuts, Debbie’s Snowballs, and Danken Trail.
Now, Monroe, Louisiana, is pulling out all the stops for some serious holiday festivities.
Throughout December there will be a host of events, which include meet and greets featuring the stars themselves, a massive laser light show-and lots and lots of camouflage.
Get involved in the fun on Saturday, December 14, as Monroe’s Downtown RiverMarket presents A Very Merry Commander Christmas – an event featuring appearances by members of the Robertson family.
Get working on growing out your beard and don’t pack your razor, as organizers hold a star of Duck Dynasty look-a-like contest.
On December 14, Monroe’s Downtown RiverMarket presents A Very Merry Commander Christmas, an event featuring appearances by members of the Robertson family
Get your game face on for the Duck Commander Duck Derby on the Ouachita River. In the afternoon, approximately 10,000 plastic ducks will float down from near the Endom Bridge for the duck race. Prizes will be awarded.
Later in the day, Louisiana’s favorite first family will serve as the grand marshals.
A boat flotilla will make its way to The Downtown RiverMarket, culminating in a laser light show and live music.
“The whole family is excited to ride down the river in the ‘Duck the Halls’ flotilla, and then for the grand finale, the night ends with the biggest laser light show our area has ever seen,” said Korie Robertson.
“It is going to be a great day for families to come out and enjoy.”
Not only is it guaranteed to be a fun day, Korie Robertson says she’s excited to be part of the event because it benefits the Food Bank of Northeast Louisiana.
“Christmas is about family, giving to others, and enjoying time together, but most importantly, Christmas is about celebrating Jesus’ birth,” she said.
Monroe has more to offer this holiday season than A Very Merry Commander Christmas. Make your holiday trip complete with some Commander Christmas shopping.
You can visit the family’s new shop to find great, unique gifts for those on your list this year.
“Rebecca, our oldest daughter, and I just opened a fun new clothing and gift boutique, Duck and Dressing, that we are really excited about, and, of course, fans are always welcome to stop by our warehouse and visit the Duck Commander store,” Korie Robertson said.
You can even try Willie and Miss Kay Robertson’s recipes during your trip at Willie’s Duck Diner.
Korie Robertson says besides Willie’s, Cotton, is their go-to restaurant.
“It’s in downtown Monroe in a cool, old building that overlooks the Ouachita River,” Korie Robertson said.
“You have to try the duck wraps and the duck fat fries; so good!”
For a sweet snack, stop by Not Just Pie, where Korie Robertson recommends the delicious blueberry creme pie.
This year’s Duck Dynasty Christmas special is set to air on December 11th.
The season just wrapped up for Duck Dynasty Season 4, but don’t worry, you are going to be able to get one more dose of the Robertson family before Christmas.
This year’s Duck Dynasty Christmas special set to air on December 11th
There is no telling what Si, Willie, Jase Robertson and the rest of the crew will be up to in the upcoming episode but judging from the video promoting the show, it should be hilarious.
The promoting video shows Uncle Si putting coal in everyone’s stocking while he laughs in his sinister laugh.
Duck Dynasty Christmas special is set to air on Wednesday, December 11th, 2013 at 10/9 C.
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Duck Dynasty ’s Christmas album debuted as No 1 in Billboard’s Top Country Albums chart this week.
Duck the Halls: A Robertson Family Christmas debuted this week in the Billboard chart knocking Luke Bryan’s album from first to fourth.
The album took over the top spot ahead of Thomas Rhett’s It Goes Like This and Toby Keith’s Drinks After Work, which are also in their first week on the chart.
Duck Dynasty ’s Christmas album debuted as No 1 in Billboard’s Top Country Albums chart this week
Duck the Halls is also ranked second on the publication’s list of Top Holiday Albums behind Kelly Clarkson’s Wrapped in Red.
Duck Dynasty’s album is currently listed as fourth on the Billboard 200, which ranks top-selling albums for the week across all genres. The Christmas record is situated behind new albums from Arcade Fire, Katy Perry and Clarkson.
The Robertsons are joined on their album by country music stars like Luke Bryan, Alison Krauss, Josh Turner and George Strait, who won the Country Music Association award for Entertainer of the Year on Wednesday.
Duck the Halls features a blend of original songs, such as Ragin’ Cajun Redneck Christmas, and more traditional Christmas tunes, including Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and I’ll Be Home for Christmas.
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President Nicolas Maduro announced the Christmas season would come early in Venezuela and holiday bonuses would be issued in November.
Nicolas Maduro said state workers will receive the first two-thirds of their Christmas bonuses and pensions on November 10-11 instead of December this year in what the president said was an effort to lift people’s spirits, NPR reported last week.
“We made Christmas earlier because happiness and The Nativity and waiting for the arrival of the baby Jesus, it is the best medicine,” Nicolas Maduro said at the Socialist Christmas Fair in Caracas.
During his visit to the so-called Socialist Christmas Fair 2013, organized by the government in a central area of Caracas, Nicolas Maduro exchanged a few words with actors posing as the Three Kings, sang traditional Venezuelan Christmas songs and witnessed the sale of typical holiday food and items.
President Nicolas Maduro announced the Christmas season would come early in Venezuela and holiday bonuses would be issued in November
Last weekend Nicolas Maduro lit the Nativity lights at the Presidential Palace of Miraflores and said that the last two months of the year should be premonitory of what 2014 will be.
“Merry Christmas 2013, Christmas early, early victory, early happiness for the whole family,” Nicolas Maduro said.
“We wanted to declare the arrival of Christmas because we want happiness for everyone,” he added.
Political experts, though, said the move may be an effort by Nicolas Maduro to get votes for municipal elections on December 8, NPR reported.
Nicolas Maduro won by a slim margin in the spring, and Venezuela’s economy has been suffering, with 45% inflation and a shortage of toys in retail stores for the holiday season.
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Heidi Klum and Seal might have had a less an amicable split earlier this year, but they are set to put their differences behind them and reunite for Christmas, it has been claimed.
According to reports, Heidi Klum and Seal decided to make peace for the sake of their four children – Leni, Henry, Johan and Lou.
And given that Seal and Heidi Klum, who is now in a relationship with her bodyguard Martin Kristen, are both in Los Angeles, it looks likely that they will be celebrating the holidays together at some point over the festive period.
A source told the New York Post: “They’re trying to be co-parents and show up for their children.”
“They are trying to work it out, mainly for the kids.”
Heidi Klum and Seal are set to put their differences behind them and reunite for Christmas
And the publication also reports that Seal hasn’t yet given up on his hope of reconciling permanently with his estranged wife.
The source added: “Seal has been doing everything to get her back. They have been talking on the phone regularly.”
While Heidi Klum and Seal appeared to have maintained their friendship following their split, things turned frosty when Seal accused Heidi of having begun her relationship with bodyguard Martin while they were still together.
Seal said in September: “I would have thought Heidi would have showed a little bit more class and at least wait until we separated first before deciding to fornicate with the help.”
Heidi Klum then retaliated during an interview with Katie Couric shortly afterwards, saying: “I don’t know if we’re the greatest friends right now, especially because of the things that he said.”
With this easy decorating tip, you and your kids can turn a batch of homemade or store-bought cupcakes into a festive treat.
What you’ll need
- Cooled cupcakes (baked from your favorite recipe)
- White icing
- Grated coconut
- Green gumdrops
- Sugar, for sprinkling gumdrop leaves
- Red candy for holly berries (M&Ms work well)
How to make it
- Frost the cupcakes with snowy white icing and top with grated coconut.
- Then use a rolling pin to flatten green gumdrops on a piece of waxed paper sprinkled with sugar. Use an aspic cutter or butter knife to cut out holly leaf shapes.
- Arrange two or three leaves and a few red candy “berries” on top of each cupcake, pressing them into the rosting just enough to hold them in place.
The office party during the holidays or any other time of the year is a key professional opportunity to mingle casually with coworkers, impress bosses, and get to know people you don’t see every day.
Unfortunately, the office party is also a prime opportunity to ruin your professional reputation, alienate coworkers, and fail to capitalize on networking opportunities.
These are seven common office party blunders. Heed them. Some are missed opportunities, but some may cost you your career.
1. Drink too much at the office party
Drinking too much at the office party is the most egregious offense. It’s not just the drinking, though anything excessive is inappropriate at an office party, but the actions that result from over imbibing. With normal inhibition affected, drunken office party attendees have been known to make passes at coworkers, harass partners on the dance floor, and touch coworkers in inappropriate and unwanted ways.
The actions of employees who drink too much at the office party aren’t always aimed at coworkers. One executive, after drinking too many martinis, stripped naked and climbed his city’s water tower. Another ran into a pole while driving a company car that was only supposed to be used for business. Not sure what happened to the executive but the second employee was fired.
If you drink too much at the office party, make amends by apologizing to anyone you may have offended. Don’t ignore your behavior and hope people didn’t notice or that coworkers will have short memories. They did and they won’t. Your behavior will be that talk of the office until something more interesting happens. At best, coworkers will accept your apology and life moves on. At worst, you are charged in a sexual harassment complaint.
2. Dress suggestively at the office party
At a recent office party, I sat across the dinner table from a significant other with a dress that was cut half-way to her navel. Her clothing was distracting to every employee who interacted with her. In fact, I can imagine the conversations held in employee cars as couples discussed the evening. Is this how you want your significant other or yourself remembered after the office party? I think not.
Errors in clothing selection for the office party affect coworkers’ opinion of your judgment, credibility and competence. No matter how festive, the office party is a business occasion; professional, not sexy or suggestive, attire should rule the night. Does this mean you can’t dress up in your favorite party dress or pant suit? Not at all. Just use tasteful discretion in your selection of attire for your office party.
The office party during the holidays or any other time of the year is a key professional opportunity to mingle casually with coworkers, impress bosses, and get to know people you don’t see every day
3. Fail to attend the office party without a good reason
Your company schedules an office party to reward and recognize employees, to provide an opportunity for team building among coworkers, and to promote coworkers getting to know each other informally. The most common reasons involve the office party infringing on their personal family time; a dislike of small-talk and social events, in general; and a genuine family or personal event scheduled at the same time.
A couple of hours a year is barely worth a complaint. Let the boss know when a personal commitment precludes your attendance.
4. Flirt with coworkers or their significant others at the office party
Flirting, especially mixed with alcohol, is unwanted at a business event. It is unwelcome, unexpected, and usually unwanted. Flirting that involves touching can result in a sexual harassment complaint in a worst case scenario. At best, it annoys coworkers at an event that is supposed to draw people together and create a stronger team.
5. Bring children or uninvited guests to the office party
Bringing uninvited guests, or your children to an adult party, distracts you from the mission of the office party, adds to your employer’s expense, and may make legitimate attendees miss out on their share of the food, drink, employee gifts and company swag.
Most companies specify the expected attendees, the recommended attire, and the schedule of events in advance of the office party. You usually have all the information you need to comfortably attend your office party if you just read the invitation. Some may even specify that additional guests are welcome – but, most don’t – at significant annual office parties.
6. Forget that the office party is still a company business function
The office party is not the time to complain about your boss or your company. It is a time to get to know your coworkers more personally so you can work together more effectively in the future. It is also a chance to chat informally with the bosses and members of departments with whom you don’t work every day. With these goals in mind, watch that you listen as much as you talk; draw out your coworkers.
Leave your company complaints, grievances, off-color jokes, and negativity at home.
In fact, don’t talk about work at all. Talking about work leaves significant others out of the conversation. Know the goals of the function and cooperate to achieve them at the office party.
7. Be the last to leave the office party
No matter how much fun you’re having or how much you’re enjoying the band, when you stay too long at the office party, you may have over stayed your welcome. The possibility of drinking too much and committing other gaffes increases with the passing of time. Stay a couple of hours, talk to each coworker and the bosses, then graciously and gracefully excuse yourself. Let your reputation live to attend another office party.
These are your best opportunities to commit career suicide. Avoid them.
The Cadger family from Idaho is showing their Christmas spirit through their annual light display – but they aren’t using any old holiday jingle.
The Cadger family is having a very “dubstep” Christmas after they synced their extensive light show on their Meridian, Idaho, house to a mix of Bangarang and Cinema, both of which are by Skrillex. The video, which was posted on YouTube on November 24, has taken off with more than 500,000 views until now.
The family must be fond of Skrillex’s electronic-style beats because a year ago, their house had the light display synced to the artist’s First of the Year (Equinox).
It takes the Cadgers two months to set up the display, which involves laying out more than two miles of extension cords to decorate the home with nearly 40,000 lights, according to a Huffington Post story.
Cadger Dubstep Christmas Lights House 2012
The display is powered by four 16-channel “Light O Rama” controllers hooked up to a computer, according to the family’s website. They make an effort to use energy-efficient LED lights, according to the site.
The lights are active on Friday and Saturday night from 5:30 p.m. to 11 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. the rest of the week. The Cadgers ask that visitors bring food to donate to the Idaho Food Bank.
Huffington Post: Dubstep Christmas Light Show At Cadger Family Home Sets 40,000 Lights To Skrillex
With a month to go before Christmas, there is still time to make sure you look and feel fabulous this festive season.
See experts’ recommendations here:
GOAL: Radiant, glowing skin
Expert: Sarah Chapman, whose High Definition Facial is almost as famous as her client list, which includes Queen Rania of Jordan, Naomi Watts and Jemma Kidd.
Recommendation: Facial massage every other day is unbeatable for getting an instant glow. Use your knuckles (held in loose fists) and finger tips to roll, knead and drum life back into your skin.
These movements stimulate lymphatic drainage on puffy complexions and boost the vital supply of oxygen and nutrients to the skin. Massage used in combination with your skincare products increases their performance.
Once a week, try a mask (Skinesis Instant Miracle Mask, SpaceNK) to brighten, clarify and lift skin.
Layering a serum underneath a face mask packs an added punch.
You can make your own nourishing mask using a mixture of honey, a dash of olive oil and natural yogurt or avocado.
Or mix together some yogurt and large oatmeal flakes for an exfoliating at-home peel.
Best tip: For a cooling, de-puffing and revitalizing treatment straight from your kitchen, pour a small amount of water into a balloon, leave in your freezer and simply wrap in a cloth and roll all over the face before you apply your make-up.
It ends up looking like a giant ice cube sausage. This mini treatment will de-puff and bring an instant rosy glow.
GOAL: Shiny, healthy hair
Expert: Daniel Galvin Junior, an award-winning colorist whose clients include Kelly Brook, Holly Valance and Amanda Holden.
Recommendation: The most important things to focus on are detoxifying and nourishing the hair.
You can do an at-home hair detox treatment by mixing a quarter of a tablespoon of vitamin C powder, the same amount of cider vinegar and half a cup of hot water to freshly washed hair for a deep cleanse.
You can also deep condition your hair at home with a detox mask (try Daniel Galvin Junior Organics Hair Repair & Gloss, dgjorganics.com).
When applying a hair mask at home, gently warm a hand towel in the microwave and wrap it around the hair for 20 minutes – the heat intensifies the treatment, helping it last around three weeks.
Remember, if you’re planning a haircut or color before Christmas, book appointments now before salons get booked up.
Best tip: If you are going to try an up-do over the party season, start practicing a week before and go through “dry runs” to figure out how long it will take and to avoid any pitfalls.
With a month to go before Christmas, there is still time to make sure you look and feel fabulous this festive season
GOAL: A smoother décolletage
Expert: Skincare specialist Nichola Joss, whose A-list clients include Zoe Ball, Elle Macpherson and Tilda Swinton.
Recommendation: The skin on your décolletage is really delicate, so be gentle with it. You don’t need special products for that area; use the same ones you use on your face.
Cleanse, tone and moisturize your face twice a day and include your neck and chest.
Using facial toner on the area really helps tighten the skin. Always apply plenty of moisturizer with an SPF during the day – even in the winter months.
Before bedtime, substitute facial oil for moisturizer, which will hydrate more deeply (try The Sanctuary Active Reverse Lipid Recovery Facial Oil, Boots).
Skin in this area is too sensitive for exfoliation, but to make skin look plumper and more radiant, apply a firming mask twice a week.
Best tip: Disguising crepey skin with deep lines on your chest area is difficult.
Don’t apply foundation to the area – it will simply sit in the grooves, which can be ageing. Instead, try using an illuminator (St Tropez Gold Skin Illuminator, johnlewis.com) mixed in with your day cream. It gives the impression of more radiant skin.
GOAL: Fewer wrinkles
Expert: Cosmetic dermatologist Dr. Veronique Simon, whose clients include actresses Charlotte Rampling and Catherine Deneuve.
Recommendation: If you are considering Botox (where small injections are applied locally to facial muscles and temporarily paralyze them to reduce fine lines and wrinkles) or fillers (where substances like hyaluronic acid are injected into deeper lines to plump them out) before Christmas, this is the best time to have them, as you may need at least a one-week healing period after these treatments.
To aid healing, I recommend Arnica Cream – try Nelsons Arnica Cream, (Holland & Barrett), which minimizes any light bruising.
As a rejuvenating treatment, I recommend mesotherapy. This involves several small injections to the face that contain a cocktail of youth-boosting vitamins and plumping hyaluronic acid to improve the quality of the skin.
The effects can be seen after one treatment, but have a couple of sessions two to three weeks apart for best results.
Best tip: I always recommend my clients follow three rules: peel – I prefer micropeel, which is deep peeling to eliminate dead skin and promote collagen production (Simontherapie Gold Acid Free Micropeel, simontherapie.com); hydrate – choose something extremely hydrating such as Nivea Creme (Superdrug); and protect – guard the skin against free radicals with a good dose of antioxidants from a diet rich in fruit and vegetables.
A flaw in the latest version of the Android operating system has resulted in the month of December disappearing from People app for storing information about contacts.
The flaw affects the “People app”, which is the default app for keeping contact information on Android devices.
The People app calendar goes from November 2012 straight to January 2013.
Android is Google’s operating system. Version 4.2 was launched in October 2012.
Other Google calendars are unaffected by the flaw.
Google’s Nexus 4 smartphone and Nexus 10 tablet run on the Android 4.2 Jelly Bean version of the operating system.
The Nexus 4 was reported to have sold out within an hour of appearing on the Google Play website.
A flaw in the latest version of the Android operating system has resulted in the month of December disappearing from People app for storing information about contacts
The flaw was reported by an Android news website called Android Police.
“Christmas is ruined. Santa is dead. At least we’ll save money on buying presents, right?” wrote Android Police’s Artem Russakovskii.
“If you’re an early adopter you’re affected by it, but they will rush out an update very quickly,” said Stuart Miles, editor of technology news and reviews website Pocket-Lint.
“It’s quite a small bug. It’s the equivalent of spelling something wrong on the front page of a newspaper – it’s embarrassing and frustrating but ultimately it’s not going to end the world.”
Google declined to comment but according to Android Police the issue has been noted by Android developers.
Wrapping gifts is one of the most fun parts of Christmas, but somehow making it just right can leave many of us in a mess.
So to make it easier this year.
How to get the paper right
Thicker paper isn’t necessarily better. It can work well on larger gifts, but for small or awkwardly-shaped ones it’s difficult to get around corners. For these presents, use brown paper which is thin but tough, this also means you’ll have a blank canvas to add ribbons, bows or decorations to.
The biggest mistake most people make when wrapping presents is using too much paper.
How to work out how much to use
The biggest mistake people make is to use too much paper. An excess just means the gift will be bulky and harder to wrap. Pull the paper taut around the present (but never tape it to the gift as this might damage it), and cut just enough to overlap, then move it to one side of the paper so you can trim the side edge too. A lot of people just fold in the extra paper here rather than cutting it off, but it’s much harder to get it looking neat.
How to match up patterns
It’s best to avoid striped patterns as they’re tricky to line up. Instead, go for a small alternative pattern like spots, rather than large patterns that don’t repeat very often, then it won’t be so obvious where the join is.
How to be tidy with the tape
Ideally you should use double-sided tape for a professional finish. But if you only have regular tape, use small pieces and then cover it with a ribbon. Avoid decorative tape as it’s harder to get right and if you make a mistake it will be really noticeable.
How to get around corners
Crease each edge of the paper as you go along, so the folds are all sharp. Cutting the paper to fit beforehand means there won’t be an excess of paper to deal with here, so simply fold the top edge down and crease, then each corner in and finally the bottom up, turning the edge under neatly and securing with double-sided tape to get a polished finish.
Wrapping gifts is one of the most fun parts of Christmas, but somehow making it just right can leave many of us in a mess
How to do ribbons right
Just wrap the ribbon once around the gift then tying it in a bow. If you avoid doing a crossover around the gift it will look neater, plus you only use half as much ribbon. If you just can’t get the bow right, use a wide ribbon, then you can simply tie a loose knot and cut the ends at sharp angles instead. It looks just as good.
How to get the perfect finishing touches
With simple paper you can decorate the finished gift with fresh foliage such as rosemary, laurel, bay and ivy – and they smell lovely too. You can use also sticks and feathers, and even add nuts and dried fruit to the ribbon using a glue gun. And finally to the gift tag… Strung gift tags are best, slip them under the bow and they won’t get pulled off accidentally. And writing names in metallic pen on large leaves is a great way to get a gift tag on a budget.
Quick tips on how to deal with…
Round tin of chocolates: Start with a tube of thin paper around the tin and pleat both sides in to the centre.
Bottle of wine: Use tissue. Place in the centre of a few sheets of tissue, then gather the tissue around it, tying a ribbon around the neck.
Child’s micro scooter: For large awkward shapes use a paper tablecloth. Place the item in the centre, gather the sides above the top and secure with ribbon.
Socks and other soft items: Wrap them as a cracker with paper and add ribbons and decorations
Gift basket: Place the item in the centre of a large sheet of clear cellophane (available from florists), pull up sides and tie a large ribbon around the top.
Katy Perry and Russell Brand marriage was called into question when they decided to spend Christmas 7,000 miles apart.
According to some reports, it has been suggested the couple’s separation over the festive period was because of a huge argument.
Us Weekly reports that a source close to the couple said: “They had a massive fight. She was like, <<F*** you. I’m going to do my own thing.>>”
The source also said that Russell Brand replied: “Fine, f*** you too.”
“They haven’t split up just yet, but things are not good. The fighting is getting worse.”
Katy Perry and Russell Brand marriage was called into question when they decided to spend Christmas 7,000 miles apart
Katy Perry, 27, was seen lapping up the fine weather in Hawaii with a group of friends while comedian Russell Brand was seen in a pub in Cornwall, England.
The couple were said to have planned Christmas together with reports Katy Perry was going to jet her family in a private plane over to the UK to celebrate together.
But while they are said to have had a big row, which saw then spend Christmas apart, there is little explanation of the nature of the “disagreement”.
Katy Perry and Russell Brand, who married in October last year after a whirlwind romance, have gone out of their way lately to quash speculation that their marriage is on shaky ground.
That good work however may be undone by the fact Katy Perry wasn’t wearing her wedding ring as she frolicked in the sea with friends.
Katy Perry has previously used Twitter to dismiss marriage rumors. She tweeted: “Just cause we don’t flaunt our relationship doesn’t mean there’s something wrong w/it. Privacy is our luxury.”
Russell Brand reportedly spent his Christmas in a Cornwall pub before joining his friend David Baddiel’s charity swim.
In November, Russell Brand’s mother Barbara had tweeted she was looking forward to spending the festive season with her son and daughter-in-law.
Barbara Brand wrote on Twitter: “Spoke to Russell and Katy, they are so happy, it’s lovely. We will all be together for Christmas.”
Apparently, Russell Brand had also arranged for his mother and father in law, Keith and Mary Hudson, to fly into the UK on December 18th so they could all spend the holidays together.
Both The Sun and People magazine reported that Russell Brand and Katy Perry have rented properties in the respective beauty spots for the festivities.
And while People quotes a source that places Russell Brand in Kauai, it points out that he was never pictured on the beach with his wife.
The British actor was also spotted at Winter Wonderland in London’s Hyde Park last Tuesday without his wife.
Russell Brand addressed the recent speculation that his one-year marriage has hit a rough patch on The Ellen DeGeneres Show earlier this month.
When told about the frenzied split speculation, Russell Brand jokingly replied: “What?! She should have told me!”
And added: “I’ve treated the whole internet now as a wicked little liar. I am really happily married.
“Being famous is like a little bit of you is taken away and goes off and lives on its own and does what it wants.
“I wish it would do more interesting things.
“I don’t know what is doing, but I’m married to Katy.
“Perpetually, until death do us part was the pledge. I’m still alive.”
When asked about starting a family, Russell Brand said he would like to have children with Katy Perry.
“I would like one. I love those little babies in the beginning,” he said.
Until then, the couple are content with being godparents to twin boys.
“I’m just observing them like I’m a scientist,” Russell Brand said of his godchildren.
“So I can learn from them. Me and Katy are their godparents, which means we’re responsible for their spiritual growth. Should be interesting…”
Sarah Symonds did not exactly spread festive happiness in December 2008 when she claimed she had had a seven-year affair with Gordon Ramsay.
Former “professional mistress” Sarah Symonds – who now claims to be “clean” – has admitted the loneliness of being “the other woman” at Christmas has in the past made her suicidal.
Sarah Symonds, 40, said the fiery Scottish chef Gordon Ramsay had been her long-term lover, although he denied the claims, saying he was “more likely to have an affair with Delia”.
Sarah symonds also said she had an affair with shamed Tory peer and bestselling author Jeffrey Archer, and says she has lived as a mistress for 15 years.
In a piece for a down-market tabloid newspaper, Sarah Symonds said: “I’ve been clean for three years now.
“I’ve been with no married men since Gordon Ramsay and never will be. I wouldn’t want to be in that situation again.”
Sarah Symonds added: “I take full responsibility for my past. But having affairs is like a drug – you’re always desperate for your next fix of the guy.
“It can destroy you. I’ve felt so low I’ve been suicidal.
“You end up imagining what your lover is doing on Christmas Day and you can’t wait until the New Year because you fool yourself into believing the following year will be your time.
“If you’re in love with a married man you want a life with him. The fact that he’s having Christmas with someone else eats to your core.”
Sarah Symonds did not exactly spread festive happiness in December 2008 when she claimed she had had a seven-year affair with Gordon Ramsay
Sarah Symonds hit the headlines in late 2008 when she went public with claims she had been in a long-term relationship with Gordon Ramsay.
She also claimed chef Gordon Ramsay had been having affairs with two other women.
The chef, who is married to wife Tana, denied anything had happened.
Now Sarah Symonds has spoken about how having an affair with a married man leaves the other woman the odd one out at Christmas when he goes back to his wife and family for the holidays.
She warned women to avoid the trap – but gave some money-minded tips for those who do it – and offered a glimpse into how some of her lovers have treated her in the past.
Sarah Symonds said: “My advice is, don’t have an affair. But if you’re going to, know that he’s using you and use him back. Mistresses should get something nice for Christmas – after all, he’s buying his wife something.
“Mr X was wealthy and he’d always try to buy me off. One Christmas Eve he gave me a Cartier bracelet with diamonds in it.
“He said: <<Each year we’ll put another diamond on it for the amount of time we’re together>>. Another man phoned to say he had a Christmas present for me, which he was very excited about.
“When he turned up he gave me £1,000 [$1,500] in an envelope. It was a sweet gesture, but as we’d just spent a night together his timing made me feel cheap – then he asked me to leave the hotel in disguise so no one would see me.
“In the end, I used the money to clean a carpet he’d spilled red wine over.
“At least he spent some money, though. Jeffrey Archer, who was one of the tightest people I’ve ever met, bought me a tin of humbugs for my Christmas present.”
As a poacher-turned-gamekeeper, Sarah Symonds also had some tips for suspicious wives.
Sarah Symonds wrote: “Christmas is a good time for finding out if your other half is cheating.
“Remember, if you think that something is up, it probably is.
“Does he go to bed after you because he doesn’t want the intimacy? Does he take his mobile phone to the toilet because you might check it or perhaps because he’s secretly texting his mistress?
“Does he have a second phone you don’t have the number for? Look for clues, such as receipts for hotels or presents you know nothing about.
“I wasted years being a mistress but I’ve finally emerged as a much stronger person.”
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