Best and Worst

Celebrities dress up gallery

5:00 AM  Amber Heard and Elizabeth Banks look classy, while Demi Lovato wears a torn-up bra.

Fatal first ride

Natalia Austin, known as Talia, who was killed in a motorbike accident on Sunday, had a big heart and a talent for writing, her family say.

5:00 AM  It was Talia Austin's first time on a motorbike. It was also her last.

Police probe four deaths video

5:00 AM  Police continue to investigate the deaths of three children and their mother in Ashburton.

Elderly neighbours at war

5:00 AM  One is 70, the other 86 - and their dispute landed one of them in court.

Capital's highway stitch-up video

5:00 AM  Discarded off-ramp will be "stitched" on to Wellington's motorway to create a fourth lane.

BP to pay $28b for oil disaster

5:32 AM  Oil company agrees to pay record amount over deadly 2010 Gulf of Mexico spill.

national

Overnight quake rattles region

The 4.1 magnitude quake struck at 5.09 am, 20 kilometres north-east of Pongaroa, at a depth of 54km.

11 min ago  An earthquake in the Tararua district has been felt widely across the Manawatu region.

Ashes returned to mum

Kirsty Bentley's mother reunited with murdered daughter's ashes the day of her ex-husband's funeral.

Christchurch's coastline is at high risk of erosion as this 2001 picture of New Brighton beach shows.

6000 at risk from erosion

5:00 AM  Nearly 6000 Canterbury properties could be at threat from coastal erosion over the next century.

Video

Police probe four deaths

Police continue to investigate the deaths of three young children and their mother in an Ashburton property.

world

Philippines ferry sinks, 36 dead

Passengers of the capsized MBCA Kim-Nirvana ferry (far L) are rescued by a tugboat of the Philippine coast guard near a port in Ormoc city.

A ferry carrying 189 passengers and crew capsized off the central Philippines, killing at least 36 people.

Boko Haram kill 'many'

5:56 AM  Suspected Boko Haram insurgents shot dead possibly as many as 97 in a town in northeast Nigeria.

Washington DC traffic backs up as police respond to reports of a shooting and subsequent lockdown at the US Navy Yard.

False alarm over Navy shooter

No injuries were reported at the US Navy Yard in Washington DC after reports of a possible shooter.

business

Clark wins top Kea award video

Helen Clarke has been awarded Kea's top prize for her contribution to New Zealand.

Former PM gets supreme award at Kea's World Class New Zealand Awards.

Eco tourism vision for city

5:00 AM  Eden Project founder Sir Tim Smit wants to help create an eco tourism attraction in Christchurch.

An artist's impression of the new Christchurch convention centre.

Centre could be scaled down

5:00 AM  "Commercial rigour" needs to be applied to Christchurch convention centre, PM says.

money

More mortgage rate cuts?

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler is expected to cut rates to 2.5 per cent.

Floating mortgage rates are tipped to fall sharply this year, but depositors will feel more pain.

NZ's Ponzi scheme shame

Between 1991 and 2012, New Zealand had undetected Ponzi schemes operating.

ACC to refund 9000 motorists

Always look for good fruit

small business

Selling a start-up in my teens

Careers New Zealand chief executive Keith Marshall (left) and Jake Millar, editor of Oompher shake on the sale of the motivational website.

OPINION: Teen entrepreneur Jake Millar shares his five top tips for success.

Silicon Valley eyeing up NZ video

NZ the next place for "transformative ideas and high impact projects".

Allsorts of success 

Powerless to stop image abuse

technology

Facebook is working on telepathy

James McAvoy as the telepathic mutant Professor X in  X-Men: Days of Future Past.

5:00 AM  Mark Zuckerberg may have tipped his hand about future Facebook technology: telepathy.

Apple Music is a hot mess

Now that Apple Music is available, you would expect things to have cleared up a little. They haven't.

Of the more than 150,000 mostly mobile games classified with the new automated system, 220 were found not fit for sale, including Douchebag Beach Club.

Game censorship no big deal

5:00 AM  OPINION: Aussie fans of Douchebag Beach Club may be out of luck, but this is good news.

life & style

Introducing Tom & Ingrid gallery

Iona & Country Wedding, by Michelle  Fey for Eva Bradley Photography

5:00 AM  An emotional reveal on the big day left the groom (and us) all welled up.

Bearded bride redefines beauty

Harnaam Kaur once considered suicide over her facial hair - now she's an anti-bullying advocate.

Dog

Why dogs make us smile gallery

5:00 AM  Whether it's their knack with selfies or a love of cushions, they're guaranteed to do something cute every day.

well & good

The rise of the yoga supermum

Gwyneth Paltrow is a famous yoga and green juice devotee.

5:00 AM  She's everywhere, from the school gates to the local cafe. So how did the Middle-Aged Mum in Lycra suddenly dominate our world?

Processed: better than fresh?

Steamed greens? Processed. So is homemade bread. Really, we need to change what the word means.

Kiwi comedian Jemaine Clement waded into  Jim Carrey's anti-vax rant on Twitter.

Actor's vax comment 'nonsense'

Jemaine Clement makes a "straw man argument" on vaccination, health expert says.

home & property

The 8 rules of moving in together

Avoid unnecessary resentment by sorting out how you'll split the finances before you move in.

5:00 AM  Before you take the plunge, here's some things you need to consider to avoid a cohabition-induced break-up.

Health hazards in your home

There are some surprising items lurking in most homes that are unhealthy...

Auckland house values continue to rise, with reports that neighbouring regions are starting to benefit.

Auckland fuelling other markets

Reports that of those present at Tauranga open homes, as many as 60 per cent are regularly from Auckland.

food & wine

The ultimate comfort food

Snuggle up with chicken pie and indulgent Paris mash.

5:00 AM  This easy chicken pie is always a hit, and the extra-naughty Paris mash makes the perfect side dish.

Microwave set for a makeover

Half-burnt, half-frozen food be gone - a company claims to have reinvented the humble appliance after more than 50 years.

Decadent chocolate mousse stuff nation

'What they order says so much'

nz farmer

Fonterra confirms job cuts plan

Fonterra workers file into a staff meeting held in the Salvation Army Hall in Hamilton.

Fonterra confirms that massive jobs cuts are underway after a series of leaks about staff meetings across the country.

SFF shareholders gain support

Farmer shareholders have gained enough support to force Silver Ferns Farms to hold a special meeting.

Dairy prices tumble again

Chicken maestro looks home

entertainment

6 signs divorce was nigh

Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner are divorcing after 10 years of marriage.

5:00 AM  Here are six signs all was not well in the Affleck-Garner household.

The end of Forever

5:00 AM  A new documentary series on bullying is among the week's TV highlights.

From left, Tim Gunn and former Project Runway winners-turned-mentors Mondo Guerra, Ayoung-Chee and Nick Verreos in Under the Gunn.

A watchable fashion face-off

5:00 AM  REVIEW: Getting ones head around the rules of engagement in fashion guru Tim Gunn's new design competition show Under the Gunn is a big ask.

travel

Readers' travel pics of the week gallery

My wife, Marie, taken at Bow Lake, Canada. We went to Canada to see the Rockies. This photo is of my wife, Marie, taken at Bow Lake halfway between Banff and Jasper. During our stay in Canada this weather was fairly standard, clear crisp days, no cloud and no wind. The Rockies themselves just go on and on. Turn another corner, another snow-capped mountain range. Amazing

5:00 AM  This week's travel photo entries take us from the Canadian Rockies to a sunset in Spain.

White House lifts photo ban

Selfies are now allowed at the White House after it ditched a 40-year ban on photos during tours.

A bull rider hangs on at the Mount Isa Rodeo in the Queensland Outback.

Going for glory in the Outback

5:00 AM  Dirt, dust, bulls and broncos - welcome to rodeo season in remote Australia.

stuff nation

Five of the best at NZ Film Fest stuff nation video

Jack O'Connell in '71

5:00 AM  Clayton Barnett shares his pick of the flicks at this year's New Zealand Film Festival.

Make public transport free stuff nation

5:00 AM  If we want to reduce traffic on Auckland's roads, we need to make public transport attractive.

Clearly worn out from a long day of doing absolutely nothing.

Pet of the day: Professor Wiggins stuff nation

5:00 AM  Professor Wiggins is our much-loved British Blue, the academic of the family.

motoring

Mini in new record bid video

Garry Orton with a 1964 Morris Mini Cooper S, which is already the world's fastest Mini. The Nelson based Project 64 team is heading back to Bonneville Speed Week in the United States, in early August hoping to set a new record.

A group of Nelson petrolheads are taking the world's fastest Mini back to Bonneville for some "unfinished business".

Driver jumps drawbridge video

Distracted driver sees motorist jump a drawbridge as it was rising in what could have been a fatal accident.

A Ferrari 458 Italia dressed in a bespoke carbon fibre kit.

Carbon fibre kit option gallery

A US company has launched a worldwide service for the supercar owner who wants something a little bit different.

sport

All Blacks ready to defy challenges

Richie McCaw and Steve Hansen watch training in Auckland ahead of the historic Samoa test.

5:00 AM  Steve Hansen is confident of overcoming the All Blacks' worst-case scenario in Samoa next week.

Woods 'affair' with Dufner wife

Tiger Woods accused of having an affair with Amanda Boyd, the ex-wife of fellow golfer Jason Dufner.

Ma'a Nonu, left, and Conrad Smith play their last games for the Hurricanes on Saturday night.

Smith keeps a lid on emotions

Conrad Smith's been trying to downplay the Hurricanes farewell factor all season.

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good reads

Going for glory in the Outback

Bronco, rider and dust all fly at the Dajarra Rodeo in Outback Australia.

Dirt, dust, bulls and broncos - welcome to rodeo season in remote Australia.

Greek bind the worst of Europe

Greece has been put through a kind of endless purgatory since being bailed out by European lenders in 2010. Even though it has implemented cost-cutting reforms, its economy has deteriorated further.

For all of Greece's profligacy, its treatment by European politicians and central banks has been worse.

How to craft the perfect short story

Sunday Star-Times Short Story Awards' judges Stephanie Johnson, left, and Paula Morris will be working their way through the multitudes of entries in the 2015 awards.

We ask the judges of this year's Sunday Star-Times short story awards what makes a great short story.

How to lose a $2b empire

TV personality Martha Stewart poses behind the drapes during Comedy Central Roast of Justin Bieber at Sony Studios in Culver City, California March 14, 2015.  REUTERS/Kevork Djansezian  (UNITED STATES - Tags: ENTERTAINMENT)

Martha Stewart was an authority on simple, do-it-yourself, classy quality, but her brand tarnished badly.

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oddstuff

Top five reader comments

Can you guess the connection one commenter made between vaccines and bacon?

From school uniform policy and anti-vaxxers to New Zealand's favourite film, no topic was off limits for commenters.

Dolphin leaps into boat, lands on woman

Chrissie and Dirk Frickman get ready to talk to the media after the ordeal.

Woman left with broken ankles after dolphin drops in from nowhere.

Russian officials ban yoga

How's the occult down there?

Yoga is prohibited in a crackdown on religious cults.

The bizarre calls we make

Wellington City Council has been receiving some strange inquiries.

"Is this the number where I can find a wife?" a caller has asked Wellington council.

Parenting

Double Trouble: Google Monster

Yep that's right.  There are two buns in the oven.

It doesn’t take long before The Google Monster drags you into the shallows of terror stories.

Greer Berry: Decoding baby talk

Greer Berry claimed the win in the race for her baby to say 'mumma' before 'dadda'.

It is the cutest thing hearing your child's voice for the first time.

Watch: This excited Grandpa  

"We're going to be grandparents!"

Something to brighten up your morning. This Grandpa-to-be is just a little bit excited. 

'Donate $1.5m or I'll abort'

An American woman says she will abort her baby if US$1m is not raised within 72 hours.

Woman seeks huge donation from strangers to prevent her going ahead with a planned abortion.

kiwi traveller

Readers' travel pics of the week gallery

My wife, Marie, taken at Bow Lake, Canada. We went to Canada to see the Rockies. This photo is of my wife, Marie, taken at Bow Lake halfway between Banff and Jasper. During our stay in Canada this weather was fairly standard, clear crisp days, no cloud and no wind. The Rockies themselves just go on and on. Turn another corner, another snow-capped mountain range. Amazing

This week's travel photo entries take us from the Canadian Rockies to a sunset in Spain.

No fancy camera? No problem

The historic Wall of Kabul.

With the right handset and apps, anyone can capture superb travel photos using just their smartphone.

Readers' travel pics of the week gallery

This image was taken at an elephant sanctuary in Chiang Mai, Northern Thailand. Although the treatment of the animals here was much better than in other parts of Asia it was still a sobering experience seeing the business exploitation evident.
This shot was of a baby elephant interacting with tourists and involved me lying on the ground waiting for the right shot while avoiding being trampled.

Paintball, Paris and a baby elephant feature in this week's travel photo entries.

A gold-class taste of Tanzania

Blake Worsfold and wife Toni outside Geita Gold International School, where they teach, with their daughters Tiaki, 2, Anahera, 7, and Amani, 4 months.

Blake Worsfold and his family are enjoying an international take on life in Tanzania's multi-cultural Geita.