Christmas decorations mix modern with traditional to cater to young

Hamburg - Glittery stars, ornaments piled on ornaments, tinsel and wooden figures: The practice of digging deep into the decoration box will be part of Christmas 

People tuned in to tradition are delighted by such displays, while purists are horrified. But Christmas is a time when contrasting worlds of taste collide but still manage to celebrate the holiday peacefully together under the Christmas tree. 

The two conflicting decoration styles seem to have particularly inspired younger designers who have used entirely different forms in their creche and incense smoker creations. 

Gitanjali Gems acquires Gitanjali Exports Corporation; Q2 Net profit surges 31%

Gitanjali Gems acquires Gitanjali Exports Corporation; Q2 Net profit surges 31%Jewellery maker Gitanjali Gems Ltd has increased its stake in "Gitanjali Exports Corporation Ltd" (GECL), a material non listed Subsidiary Company from 51% to 100% and thereby made it a wholly owned subsidiary Company. 

GECL is primarily engaged in the manufacturing and exports of diamonds and diamond studded jewellery and trades in diamonds.

Gitanjali Gems has reported a 31.06 per cent increase its net profit for July-September quarter at Rs 35.19 crore over the corresponding period a year ago.

World's oldest cooked cereal was prepared just like today’s instant food

Washington, October 25 : The world’s oldest cooked cereal, enjoyed by European diners about 8,000 years ago, was prepared instantly just by soaking it in hot water.

The researchers behind this finding have revealed that the ancient cereal, dating from between 5920 to 5730 B. C., consisted of parboiled bulgur wheat that Early Neolithic Bulgarians could refresh in minutes with hot water.

"People boiled the grain, dried it, removed the bran and ground it into coarse particles," Discovery News quoted lead author Soultana-Maria Valamoti, an assistant professor of archaeology at Aristotle University of Thessaloniki in Greece, as saying.

Don't bet on a recession in sport

Sydney - Westfield Group founder Frank Lowy, whose two great loves are making money from building shopping malls and running the game of football in Australia, reckons the global recession will hit professional sport hard.

Attendances will be down, the dollar-value of television broadcast contracts will fall and clubs will struggle to survive as the turnstiles spin more slowly.

"There's only so much money to go around," the country's richest man and the chairman of its Football Federation said. "I think the world will have to contract, so will sport have to contract, it's as simple as that."

But, as other recessions have shown, it's not as simple at that at all.

Australians wake up to lost sleep

Australians wake up to lost sleepSydney - Some are calling sleep the new sex - lives are so frazzled that at the end of the day what many adult Australians long for isn't a cuddle but temporary death.

When the working day begins and ends in the dark, the absolute height of luxury has become slipping between the sheets for five, six, even seven hours.

Doctors worry that the sleep-deprived are getting ever younger.

The chronic tiredness that comes with a frantic lifestyle, according to University of South Australia researcher Tim Olds, is causing "serious drop-offs in school performance, attention and memory."

Puppies help kids shed puppy fat

Sydney - Old people with pets live longer and are healthier than those who don't share their home with a dog or a cat.

Sadly, research by the Australian National University's Ruth Paslow has exposed this commonly held view as a myth.

After interviewing 2,551 Australians aged 60-64 she reluctantly concluded that pet owners were more likely to be depressed and to take painkillers than the pet-free.

"I would've been happier finding that pets are good for you," Paslow said, "but I wanted to do research that's reliable and statistically sound."

On the other hand, children who grow up in a home with a dog are less likely to be overweight.

Eyeliner pencil too hard? Blow on it or hold it over a flame

Berlin - An eyeliner pencil that is too hard can be softened by holding it over a flame or simply by blowing on it, said the Berlin branch of Germany's consumer product testing organization.

The organization tested 16 black eyeliner pencils, including one that has to be sharpened and those with an in-built, automatic mechanism for sharpening. Five of the eyeliner pencils were rated good in a report by the organization's monthly magazine. The remainder were rated satisfactory, including an 18-euro eyeliner -

the most expensive among the tested products.

Skiing helmets are back in fashion

Heilbronn, Germany - Today's skiing helmets sport panda patterns or fur covers. Skiers can even hit the slopes with a helmet designed to look like a watermelon, if they dare.

A helmet is an essential part of any skier's equipment. Almost every manufacturer includes them in their catalogue. Most have the same basic structure and manufacturers have learned to distinguish the subtle details of their models. But discerning customers can find differences - one model may have adjustable ear protection while another one may be particularly light.

Booming kids clothing market traced to moms demand for style

Washington - Their children wear designer jeans, brand-name polo shirts and the finest shoes.

Wealthy parents in the United States are putting their children into the best high quality designer fashions money can buy. Whether it's a Burberry dress for 180 dollars or a coat recently seen on the catwalk for 375 dollars, price is not an issue for rich parents in the US and other places with high concentrations of wealth. As they shop for their youngsters, mothers are increasingly living out their own fantasies and turning their children into copies of themselves.

More than half of Greeks say cancer "unavoidable"

Athens - Nearly half of all Greeks believe that there is nothing much people can do to reduce one's chances of contracting cancer, according to a recent study.

The study, carried out by the Athens Medical School and the Centre for Health Service Studies, found that nearly half of the 1,490 respondents interviewed were passive about cancer, saying there is nothing they can do to avert the threat of contracting cancer.

The findings, which were published in the Greek daily Kathimerini newspaper, came as researchers indicated a 25 per cent increase in the diagnosis of cancer over the past 10 years.

Wanted: Sponsorship for gay Australian athlete

Wanted: Sponsorship for gay Australian athleteSydney - There are out-and-proud cabinet ministers, ambassadors, high court judges and religious leaders, but Australia's only openly gay elite athlete is Matthew Mitcham, who came to fame but not fortune by denying China a clean sweep in the diving at the Beijing Olympics.

Amazingly, the 20-year-old, bottle-blond charmer was the only out-of-the-closet gay man in Beijing's 10,000-strong athletes' village.

Handsome and eloquent, he's likely to be the country's only gold-medal winner not to feature in a television commercial or on a packet of breakfast cereal.

New "working poor" in United States cannot make ends meet

Washington - The new "working poor" in the United States have all the things expected of average Americans: a house, a car and a television. Though they work to the point of exhaustion, they cannot make ends meet. Their refrigerators are empty, their bank accounts overdrawn.

"If you keep your nose to the grind, you can get ahead in this country," so goes the motto.

For nearly 25 per cent of the US middle class, this no longer applies. Victims of the economic crisis, they have turned the traditional concept of poverty on its head.

Take Vicky Gardner, a 44-year-old geriatric nurse. Every morning she drops her two children off at school on the outskirts of Washington, D. C.

From chic to shrill: Brussels and its colourful fashion scene

Brussels - Grey office blocks and European Union civil servants - that's the common image of Brussels.

But behind this cliché lurks a colourful scene waiting to be discovered especially for followers of fashion. A walk through downtown Brussels reveals a palette that reaches from chic boutiques to shrill trendy shops.

"Most people think of fashion only in terms of haute couture from Paris or London, but Brussels is right at their doorstep," said Anne Weger of Belgium's tourist bureau in Cologne.

Choosing the right footwear for hiking

Stuttgart - The main thing to consider when buying hiking footwear is the kind of hiking for which it is intended, notes the Stuttgart-based magazine Outdoor in its October issue.

Multifunctional shoes are fine for day tours and long walks in uplands, the magazine's experts say. Similar to athletic shoes in form and wearing comfort, they provide nearly as much support as proper hiking shoes do.

Someone planning weekend hikes with a heavy pack should choose hiking boots, however. These boots are also suitable for simple hikes in the mountains and provide reliable support in difficult terrain. Waterproof inner lining keeps the hiker's feet dry.

Don't feel like walking the dog? Hire a dog-walker in Buenos Aires

Buenos Aires - Anyone out walking in a Buenos Aires park is bound to notice large packs of dogs numbering 10 or even 20 animals whose leads are held by a lone man or woman - an often stressed-looking "paseaperros."

Owning a dog in Buenos Aires is chic and the bigger the animal, the better. But taking the doggies out for long walks is not quite so popular.

So "paseaperros" or dog-walkers take to the streets with their barking hounds to save wealthy portenos - as the residents of Buenos Aires are known - the bother.

Buenos Aires boasts around 200 registered dog-walkers, and the activity is a popular side-job among young people and students, says Alberto Termine, a representative of the city's Environment Ministry.

Give it up for the latest fashion trend for men - ''mantyhose''!

MantyhoseMelbourne, Oct 15: Men have invaded ladies'' fashion domain a little further, for after ''man-bras'' and ''manscara'' the latest must have for men is "Mantyhose."

"Mantyhose" or pantyhose for men have become a popular sheer garment from truck drivers to cowboys.

A self confessed male hosiery-wearer Harisnya is so passionate about the issue he set up e-MANcipate, a website aiming to "accelerate the acceptance of male pantyhose as a regular clothing item".

The site offers men a step-by-step guide on how to wear pantyhose without damaging it.

Australians urged to talk about suicide

Australians urged to talk about suicideSydney - More than 1 million television viewers watched the All Saints glamour couple get married.

A day later, actor Mark Priestley, bridegroom in that episode of the hospital drama series, leapt to his death from a Sydney hotel balcony. He was 32 and seemed to have everything to live for.

There are around five suicides every day in Australia. It's more than the national road toll.

"It's a national tragedy and we've got to do something about it," said Alan Staines, director of the Salvation Army's Suicide Prevention and Bereavement Support Programme.

Uncork the holy wine to celebrate the cantucci's 150th anniversary

Rome - In Prato they are proud of their famous biscuits; just don't call them cantucci, even if your name is Pope Benedict XVI.

The German pontiff, noted for his sweet tooth, is reportedly a fan of the slice-like, almond-studded confectionary, a passion he shares with among others, former US president Bill Clinton. Designer Giorgio Armani offers them to visitors at his fashion showroom in Milan.

The cantucci or cantuccini (the smaller version) may have conquered palates beyond the confines of their Tuscan town of origin, but back home they all insist on calling them the biscotti di Prato (the biscuits of Prato).

A good cut and grooming can make hair look fuller

A good cut and grooming can make hair look fullerHamburg - Most women crave fuller hair, but in reality the dream of having flowing tufts is comparatively easy to achieve with the right cut and appropriate hair care.

Even fine, thin hair can be made to look like there's a plenty of it. Getting the right cut is the first precondition.

"Not much can be done to create volume with medium-length, fine

Older Australians told to move on

Older Australians told to move onSydney - Retired couple Lyn Gardiner and Rob Gay are selling their Melbourne home, buying a camper van and joining the tens of thousands of older Australians perpetually on tour in the wide brown land.

It's a lifestyle change that warms the heart of sociologist Bruce Bradbury of the University of New South Wales in Sydney. His research shows that lots of pensioners have little money in the bank but are living in houses worth a fortune.

Bradbury is urging more to sell up, take out a reverse mortgage or opt for any other way they can find of turning bricks and mortar into dollars and cents.

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