Michelle Obama

Uncovered First Lady shocks

9:16 AM  Michelle Obama, sans headscarf, shows the stark limits under which Saudi women live.

Interest rates may fall

RBNZ Reserve Bank Governor Graeme Wheeler

9:49 AM  Reserve Bank holds official interest rates, but intriguingly says the next move may be "either up or down".

Half a million in half an hour

9:06 AM  Brewer Yeastie Boys raised $500,000 in less than 30 minutes on PledgeMe.

Star escapes drink-drive conviction

9:25 AM  Blues player with All Blacks potential caught drink driving has "learnt his lesson".

Family murdered in axe attack video

8:35 AM  Three members of a Perth family killed with an axe in luxury South African home.

Surgery disaster shocks Brazil

She told women surgery could make them beautiful, but she's changed her tune.

national

John Banks faces retrial

COURT: John Banks appears in the dock.

8:57 AM  Former MP John Banks is to face a retrial on allegations he filed a false electoral return.

Quake rattles south

8:40 AM  Deep south struck by magnitude 4.4 earthquake centred off the coast of Stewart Island.

kitten in letterbox

Kitten left to bake in letterbox

Shock after unwanted 5-week-old kitten stuffed in letterbox to bake on sweltering day.

Video

Perth family killed in axe attack

Horror attack family leaves parents and one son dead, and two children in hospital.

world

Jordan set to exchange prisoner

IS HOSTAGE: Japanese journalist Kenji Goto.

9:04 AM  Jordan willing to swap an Iraqi woman prisoner for a Jordanian pilot captured in December by Islamic State.

'Meditating' mummy unearthed

9:53 AM  The mummified remains found in Mongolia are thought to be 200 years old.

GETTING AROUND: A cyclist makes his way over the Brooklyn Bridge after winter storm Juno brought less than predicted snowfall in New York City.

NY officials in firing line

Officials on the defensive after shutting down city for a snowstorm that didn't meet expectations.

business

VMob says directors tarred

nz money

9:59 AM  Software company says its directors have been wrongly accused of insider trading.

Finance company selects AB

Smiths City Finance enlist All Black Kieran Read as a new face for the brand.

Tom and Phil Davison-Sebry

Typo brings down company

8:56 AM  The 120-year-old business collapsed after a UK register typo listed it as having gone bust.

money

Prenuptials on the rise

The Clooneys show off their rings.

It's true that negotiating a contract isn't exactly a romantic experience, but it can be worth it in the long run.

How I cut my power bill  stuff nation

Switching on some different bulbs and switching off the towels rail can be big power savers.

Kiwis aren't splashing the cash

Get you KiwiSaver on track

small business

Craft beer demand froths over

CAN'T KEEP UP: Garage Project co-founder Jos Ruffell said container loads of orders from overseas customers were being turned down because there wasn't enough beer.

Wellington micro breweries struggle to fill orders as Auckland's penchant for craft beer sends demand skyward.

Meet the bootcamp babes

Two sisters have become a global personal training sensation.

Little targets SMEs video

Taking stock of business IP

technology

Apple Watch available from April

The mysterious Apple Watch will be available in April 2015.

Apple CEO Time Cook says production of the long-awaited wearable is on schedule.

Microsoft's Luxembourg move

The NZ business is now owned from the tine European state best known for favourable tax policies.

New Plymouth's Cory Tito is riding a wave of social network trading.

Sellers ditch auction sites

Kiwis are instead using social networking sites like Facebook for buying and selling.

life & style

She has made modelling history

TESS MUNSTER: The mother from Mississippi has just made history as the first size 24 model to be signed to a major agency.

9:58 AM  American mum shows one mould does not fit all as she is the first size 24 model to be signed to a major agency.

I went to a 'sex yoga' school

When it comes to sex ed, it’s never too late to go back to school.

Rodrigo Alves

$350k to look like Ken doll

It started with a nose job. But 10 years and 30 surgeries later, he still hasn't found "perfection".

well & good

Potential peanut allergy cure

POTENTIAL CURE: At the end of the trial 80 per cent of the children could eat peanuts without any reaction.

9:33 AM  Clinical trial transforms the lives of 80 per cent of young participants with potentially fatal allergies.

You should forgive your bullies

The world isn't neatly divided; all victims conceal sins, and all villains carry sorrows and scars.

IDEAL BEAUTIES OVER TIME: Ancient Egypt (c 1292-1069 B.C.); the Italian Renaissance (c 1400-1700) and the 1980s - aka the Supermodel era.

The ideal body type over time

This stunning three minute video shows that body 'ideals' are a trend more than an everlasting fact.

home & property

A new trick that helps sell houses gallery

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9:31 AM  What if a property for sale could be clutter-free and re-furnished like magic? Check this out.

Strange platform explained gallery video

Is it a landing pad for Batman, or perhaps a time-travel portal to another dimension?

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Five we like: Floor rugs gallery

Floor rugs come in many shapes and sizes - here are the five we are loving at the moment.

food & wine

How 3D printers will change food

carrot

9:41 AM  While traditional cooking isn't going anywhere, you can count on 3D printed foods eventually finding a place in our world.

Jamie's dinners

9:56 AM  Diners will soon be chowing down Jamie Oliver's dishes in the heart of Wellington.

Recipe: Salmon & potato salad

Three ways with... zucchini

nz farmer

Farmers hoping for end of big dry

Federated Farmers Wairarapa provincial president Jamie Falloon.

Farmers have been caught out by the speed with which the severe dry conditions have arrived, says one Wairarapa farmer.

'Big dry' eats up feed

The "big dry" in South Canterbury has farmers feeding out earlier than normal.

Low milk price begins to pinch

Orchard fined $40,000

entertainment

Stern insults 'fat' Sam Smith

NOT YOUR USUAL POP IDOL: Sam Smith performs at the American Music Awards in November 2014.

8:54 AM  Shock jock Howard Stern has raised eyebrows with his description of English singer-songwriter Sam Smith as "fat" and "an ugly motherf---er".

MLK actor defends Cumberbatch

9:13 AM  Selma star David Oyelowo has voiced his support for fellow British actor Benedict Cumberbatch, who came under criticism for using the term "coloured" in an interview.

WHO KNEW: Kim Kardashian has a sense of humour.

Kim K mocks herself video

Who'd have thought reality TV star Kim Kardashian had a sense of humour?

travel

The world's safest city revealed

SAFE CITY: Tokyo's ranking in The Economist's 2015 Safe Cities Index by proves megacities can provide security.

8:30 AM  The world’s most populated city is also the safest according to study.

New beginnings in Rotorua gallery

9:42 AM  Rotorua is steeped in rich and intriguing history, so what’s old and interesting, and new and exciting?

Everyone knows what happens on US Independence Day: flags are flown, meat is barbecued, allegiance is sworn, beers are drunk, picnics are had, and then aliens attack and Will Smith saves the day.

Best national celebrations gallery

9:42 AM  National celebrations around the world are an excuse take the day off work. Here's some of the best.

stuff nation

Pet of the day: Gus from Brooklyn stuff nation

Gus

Like all little dogs, Gus is packed full of personality and attitude.

Review: The Imitation Game stuff nation

This magnificent biopic jumps effortlessly between three main periods in Alan Turing's life.

Light bulb

A $60-a-month power saving stuff nation

Switching on some different bulbs and switching off the towels rail can be big power savers.

motoring

Where tourists crash the most

accident generic police NZ

Overseas drivers were involved in a quarter of crashes on Southland roads, compared to six per cent nationally.

Better looks and a bigger bite

Porsche's new mid-engined Cayman GTS has the potential to step out of the long shadow cast by the tyrannical 911.

Daniel Ricciardo will take on some of the world's best drivers in a Top Gear segment which airs in February.

Aussie eyes Top Gear record

8:53 AM  Aussie F1 star has set his sights on dethroning world champion Lewis Hamilton … in a Suzuki Liana.

sport

NZ-born prop to play for France

NZ-born prop Uini Atonio.

Unofficially the biggest man to pull on a French rugby jersey makes cut for a Six Nations debut.

Lottery to decide playoff spot

10 min ago  Lots will be drawn to separate Mali and Guinea after they ended dead level in African Nations Cup Group D.

RISING STAR: New Zealand basketball star Steven Adams is making a big impression in the NBA.

Adams makes NBA Rising Stars

9:45 AM  Accolades keep rolling in for NZ basketball star, with the OKC Thunder centre picked for challenge.

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good reads

Why you should forgive your bullies

MEAN GIRLS: As with Lindsay Lohan's character in the cult Tina Fey hit, "the world isn't neatly divided into bullies and the bullied; all victims conceal sins, and all villains carry sorrows and scars."

The world isn't neatly divided into bullies and the bullied; all victims conceal sins, and all villains carry scars.

Deaf rapper makes himself heard

DEAF RAPPER: Hip-hop artist Sean Forbes is both def and deaf, mixing sign and rhyme for an audience ready to hear and feel.

Sean Forbes is the undisputed king of deaf hip-hop, bridging the cultural divide between the deaf and the hearing.

A modern translation of Israel

ROOFTOPS OF THE OLD CITY: Almost all the literature indicates that the Nazareth of biblical times was a hamlet; now it’s a sprawling, commercial city of some 60,000.

Who lives where, and why, and at what social, economic, religious or cultural cost?

Abbott's missed opportunity

SURPRISED: Tony Abbott admits to being rocked by the sheer uniformity of negative public and party reaction to his knighting of Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh.

OPINION: Another day, another half-apology. And therefore, another missed opportunity.

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Puzzles

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Cartoons

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Tom Scott, Dilbert and The Little Things

kiwi traveller

Hijabs and hospitality stuff nation gallery

UGC - 14. A street vendor, Shiraz

Iran is a destination with more to offer than you might think - you just have to ask, writes Mike O'Connor.

Your funniest signs from around the world stuff nation gallery

A McDonald's drive-thru served up this treat for Viv Cairns, who said: "Kids thought this was funny as they can't go through drive-thru without their butts!"

We showed you 18 of the world's funniest signs. You saw us and raised us with examples of your own.

The curse of the flower poo

TRAVEL TERRORS: Oh god I can't cope with any more going to the loo. And that was just the beginning.

A Southeast Asian adventure is ruined by an illness, a worm and and an itch that can't be scratched.

How to travel, even if you haven't saved

SWAPPING HOMES: Richard Lintott and his wife turned to home swap as an affordable way to travel the world.

Long and leisurely trips after retirement would have been out of reach if Richard Lintott and his wife hadn't begun home swapping.

oddstuff

Daisy moo-ving with the Times video

Joshua Drummond

She's kept Garden Place shoppers company for years, now Hamilton's iconic fibreglass cow is getting a psychedelic makeover.

'Dead' cat claws himself out of grave video

DETERMINED: His owner thought Bart was a goner, but five days after being buried Bart showed up at a neighbour's house.

His owner thought Bart was a goner, but five days after being buried this fearless feline clawed his way home.

Absolutely dotty video

Wellington's forgotten little laneway Bond Street, has had a major spruce up for a summer of fun and music.

Bond St in central Wellington has a new look - it's gone completely dotty.

Ghost freaks out Pakistani cricketer

FREAKING OUT: Pakistani cricketer Haris Sohail claims he saw a ghost in a Christchurch hotel room.

Cricketer convinced a ghost shook his hotel bed, so he insisted on switching rooms.