The Pour: Great Bubbly From England, Believe It or Not

MARLOW, England — Even though Henry Laithwaite was born into a prominent family of English wine merchants, he never imagined he would be selling English wine. His ambition was to make wine, which in the 1990s meant leaving England. By age 17, he was apprenticing in France, and soon was working two harvests a year,…

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Work Friend: Oh Please Stop Saying Please

Can you ask a question that isn’t obvious as heck? Try us at workfriend@nytimes.com. The “Please” Police My co-workers never say “please.” In an effort to be the change I want to see in the world, I say it all the time, but it is never reciprocated. They ask nicely, they favor “could you” over…

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Encounters: Ariel Winter Makes Friends at the Animal Shelter

Ariel Winter knew her lines: “Sit. Sit. Sit. Sit. Sit.” But her co-star, a brindled hound mix named Tigger, didn’t budge. It was the Tuesday after Thanksgiving, and Ms. Winter, a dog lover, had come to Animal Haven, a shelter on Centre Street in Lower Manhattan that finds home for abandoned dogs and cats. In…

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Australia Fare: The Delicious Diversity of Australian Christmas Cooking

In the lead-up to Christmas 2012, while living in Los Angeles, I set my heart on plum pudding. For once, I was going to eat the hot steamed dessert in the winter (admittedly a warm winter), when it made sense, rather than in Australia’s sweltering summer. Australia has adopted plum pudding, like so many things,…

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PowerPoint Is the Most Efficient Way for Kids to Manage Their Parents

Makennah Gatica, who is in eighth grade in Lubbock, Tex., knows exactly what she wants for Christmas: record albums, Puma sneakers, posters and slippers, all relating to her love of BTS, the South Korean boy band. To convince her mother to buy some of these items, Makennah, who is 13, created an 85-slide PowerPoint presentation.…

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Frugal Traveler: 9 Things You Should Know Before You Go to India

Image A street food vendor in Bapu Bazar, Jaipur, India.CreditPoras Chaudhary for The New York Times India is one of the most vibrant, colorful, exciting places to visit in the world. The diversity of people, culture and cuisine make it a worthwhile destination for any traveler. Here are nine tips to ensure your next (or…

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A Good Appetite: A Baked Pasta for Anytime (but Especially Now)

The blustery, freezing December weather is bad for many things — my hair, my commute, my morning run. But it’s awfully good for baking a cheesy pasta in a skillet. That’s not to say that I wouldn’t make this cozy, gooey Cheddar-rich casserole in nicer weather. But the colder, darker and gloomier the day, the…

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