The Week: Most Recent Lifestyle Posts recent posts.en-usSun, 21 Dec 2014 16:00:00 -0500http://theweek.com Recent Lifestyle Posts from THE WEEKSun, 21 Dec 2014 16:00:00 -0500Your very own, very slow, electric skiff<img src="" /></P><p>This "meticulously handcrafted" 16-foot skiff ($17,000) is ideal for exploring quiet waters, said Elizabeth Hutchison, Jessica Mischner, T. Edward Nickens, and Jed Portman at <em>Garden &amp; Gun</em>. The Edoak Designs Electric Skiff's top speed is 6 mph, but its pair of electric motors will run all day on a charge, "and quietly enough to slip up on herons feeding on the water's edge."<em><br /></em></p> <a href="">More</a>By The Week StaffSun, 21 Dec 2014 16:00:00 -0500How to build a beautiful gingerbread farm<img src="" /></P><p><br /></p><p>Welcome to my farm, where fresh coconut snow is always on the ground and life smells of cinnamon and dark chocolate. As I take you on this tour, please feel free to interact with the buildings: Nibble on the doors, have a bite of the gravel roads, lick the windows &mdash; it's all edible! (And not in a Violet Beauregarde way, I promise.) This is a three-day tour, so your legs may get a bit tired, but don't worry: A blue raspberry hot tub awaits you at the end.</p><p><strong>First, let's discuss the walls on this farm.</strong> They are built to withstand nearly every natural disaster: harsh Midwest winters, swinging...</p> <a href="">More</a>By Molly YehSun, 21 Dec 2014 12:00:00 -0500How I lost all my money<img src="" /></P><p class="p1"><strong><span class="s1">THE RICH ARE </span></strong>all alike, to revise Tolstoy's famous words, but the poor are poor in their own particular ways.</p><p class="p2"><span class="s1">I have some personal experience here. Like a lot of other people, I started life comfortably middle class, maybe upper-middle class; now, like a lot of other people walking the streets of America today, I am poor. To put it directly, I have no money. Does this embarrass me? Of course it embarrasses me &mdash; and a lot of other things as well. It's humiliating to be poor, to be dependent on the kindness of family and friends and government subsidies. But it sure is an education.</span></p><p class="p2"><span class="s1">If money...</span></p> <a href="">More</a>By William McPhersonSun, 21 Dec 2014 08:00:00 -0500House hunting: 7 lovely Victorian-era homes<img src="" /></P><p ><br /><strong> New Orleans.</strong> Built in 1870, this six-bedroom house sits in the Bouligny District. The interior features 12 working fireplaces, wainscoting, two double parlors, and a gourmet kitchen.</p><p ><br /> <br />The home has retained many of its period architectural details, including original hardwood floors, ceiling medallions, and arched doorways. $2,195,000. Dorian M. Bennett, Dorian Bennett/Sotheby's International Realty, (504) 944-3605.</p><p > </p><p ><br /> **</p><p > </p><p > </p><p ><br /><br /><strong>Camden, Maine.</strong> This five-bedroom Victorian is owned by descendants of Norman Rockwell. The clapboard house, built in 1905, includes a turret, ornate ceiling medallions...</p> <a href="">More</a>By The Week StaffSat, 20 Dec 2014 16:00:00 -0500How to plan the right amount of food for a dinner party<img src="" /></P><p><br /></p><p>I hear it time and time again: Planning portions for a dinner party is one of the most stressful things for at-home entertainers. Take a deep breath &mdash; no one's going hungry.</p><p>Case in point: Last year, I was asked to cater a very VIP dinner party for 25. By 3 p.m. the day of, most of my food was ready to go, and I was feeling pretty calm. Until I got the text every private chef dreads: "We have seven more people coming! Hope that's okay." Panic. I didn't have time to make anything else, but there were a few minutes to run out and buy extra cheese and bread to help fill people up, and some...</p> <a href="">More</a>By Anna Watson CarlSat, 20 Dec 2014 12:00:00 -0500A brief history of the Christmas present<img src="" /></P><p class="p1"><span class="s1"><strong> How did the custom get started?</strong><br /> Christians see gift giving as a symbolic homage to the Three Wise Men's tributes to the baby Jesus. In the New Testament, the Magi are described as honoring the newborn Savior with valuable gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. But gift giving this time of year dates to an even older tradition. Pagans in Europe and the Middle East gave presents at several winter festivals, including Saturnalia, a raucous Roman festival in honor of Saturn, god of agriculture, which began on Dec. 17. During this weeklong holiday in the cold, dark dead of winter, pagans would lift...</span></p> <a href="">More</a>By The Week StaffSat, 20 Dec 2014 08:00:00 -0500The beauty of the bread basket<img src="" /></P><p><br /></p><p>Sometime between opening the menu and patiently waiting for the appetizer, a basket may arrive at your dinner table. It might be filled with hot-from-the-oven slabs of sourdough accompanied by chive-flecked butter, or, under more unfortunate circumstances, ho-hum whole-grain rolls that aren't worth their calories. At the apex of the Atkins Diet craze, some restaurants ditched tempting (and costly) bread services altogether. Today, however, chefs are re-embracing the humble carb, lending it the fanfare it so richly deserves.</p><p>(<strong>More from <em>Tasting Table</em>:</strong> Finger food)</p><p>Patrons queuing up at white...</p> <a href="">More</a>By Alia AkkamFri, 19 Dec 2014 14:20:00 -050012 holiday gifts for the hardest-to-shop-for people on your list<img src="" /></P><p><br /></p><p>'Tis the week before Christmas, and your worries are clear &hellip;</p><p>There are still several unpurchased gifts lingering on your to-do list this year.</p><p><em>O.K., deep breaths.</em></p><p>Luckily, there's no need to panic &mdash; or resort to doling out gift cards.</p><p>Because whether you've failed to find the right present for your picky mother-in-law, or you just can't muster the excitement to shop for the dad who seems to have everything, we've got you covered.</p><p>With these 12 budget-friendly gifts, you're sure to please the most hard-to-shop-for people in your life.</p><p><em><strong>For the kid who has everything... </strong></em></p><p ><br /><br />(<em>Toys...</em></p> <a href="">More</a>By Natasha BurtonFri, 19 Dec 2014 08:40:00 -0500This week I learned your coin toss odds are better than you think, and more<img src="" /></P><p><iframe width="100%" height="166" scrolling="no" frameborder="no" src=";color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false"></iframe></p><p><strong>Read more about the facts mentioned:</strong></p><p>Spin it to win it (<em>Now I Know</em>)</p><p>Men wore corsets and 7 other unknown things about the world of Jane Austen (<em>Smithsonian</em>)</p><p>Corsets - a history lesson (<em>Festooned Butterfly</em>)</p><p>Is it possible to extinguish the sun with water? (<em>Kottke</em>)</p><p>Syracuse biologist reveals how whales may 'sing' for their supper (<em></em>)</p><p><strong>Listen to more of <em>The Week's </em>podcasts: </strong></p><ul><li>The great paradox of the greatest rock 'n' roll showdown of all time</li><li>Please obey this simple rule for airplane seat reclining</li><li>This week I learned that Canada was once accidentally at war with the U.S., and more...</li></ul> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/lauren-hansen" ><span class="byline">Lauren Hansen</span></a>Thu, 18 Dec 2014 16:54:00 -0500One girl's extraordinarily wild world<img src="" /></P><p>Amelia Paul Forman was 3 years old when she first befriended a chimp. "You two fell off the chair hugging," Amelia's mom, photographer Robin Schwartz, recalls of her daughter.</p><p>Amelia, now 14 years old, is actually named after a capuchin monkey. And her interest in, if not love of, animals is inherited from her parents who have long lived with not just dogs and cats, but also primates, lemurs, and other species more readily found in petting zoos than homes.</p><p>Amelia quickly became her mother's muse and model. By the age of 2, the blue-eyed, cherubic girl was already being photographed with her namesake...</p> <a href="">More</a>By <a href="/author/lauren-hansen" ><span class="byline">Lauren Hansen</span></a>Thu, 18 Dec 2014 10:10:00 -0500