Russell Brand: “I’m very  focused on the mystical connotations of Mabel’s beauty and grace. Not so good on the nappies.” Photograph: Carl Court/Getty Images

I didn’t give my children any breakfast this morning. I didn’t pack a lunch, wash a face or drive anyone to school. Instead, I just channelled Russell(...)

 William and Kate with   Meghan and  Harry  on Christmas Day in Sandringham. Photograph: Stephen Pond/ Getty Images

If you’ve been keeping up with your news of the British royals recently – as opposed to doing something useful while you wait for January to pass, lik(...)

The Apple watch: ‘Even though this relationship doesn’t seem to be doing either of us any good, I can’t quite give her up.’ Photograph: Lynne Cameron/PA Wire

It was my colleague Samuel who convinced me I needed a fitness tracker. We were desk neighbours at a job I had a few years ago in Silicon Valley and, (...)

Rob Delaney with his two-year-old son, Henry, who died last January. Photograph: Rob Delaney/Facebook

The actor Rob Delaney has been speaking about his family’s grief at their first Christmas without his two-year-old son, Henry, who died last January. (...)

Only people on Instagram  use their coffee tables for storing books. For everyone else, they’re a place to put remote controls, piles of laundry and feet

The Coca Cola Christmas truck came to town a couple of weeks ago. I was dimly aware of its presence, due to the some 1,537 people who told me it was c(...)

Liam Tilly in his Christmas jumper outside his house on Bath Avenue in Sandymount, Dublin. Photograph: Bryan James Brophy

Liam Tilly is not going mad for Christmas this year. He has ordered only three turkeys: one each for two of his sons, and one for himself. Each one wi(...)

Time to stockpile your favourite UK-made goods, or switch to an Irish brand ahead of Brexit in March

We might be able to live quite happily without spam, spotted dick or Cornish pasties – but could you get by without Heinz ketchup, McVities digestives(...)

Naively, I thought all tips, card or cash, went to the staff. Photograph: Getty Images

A friend told me recently about an experience she’d had eating out in the US. Running low on change, she had left a relatively modest tip, and found h(...)

The Book Centre, Waterford. Photograph: Jennifer O'Connell

This wasn’t how it was supposed to be. The digital revolution was going to kill off physical books and bookshops altogether. It’s true that between r(...)

Eric Zhi Ying Xue was born in Ireland and was threatened with deportation along with his Chinese mother

The woman sitting on a bench at the Luas stop outside Heuston Station was in a bad mood. It was a skin-strippingly cold morning, the kind that hits yo(...)

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