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    Kate Middleton: Official Portrait By Paul Emsley Of The Duchess Of Cambridge Revealed

    The Duchess of Cambridge's first official portrait was has been unveiled - and was described by Kate as "amazing".

    Award-winning artist Paul Emsley created the large head and shoulders painting of the duchess set against his trademark dark background.

    Kate's painting was commissioned by the National Portrait Gallery and, following her suggestion, depicts her natural, not official, persona.

    The official portrait of the Duchess of Cambridge, by Paul Emsley

    The Duchess, who wore a burgundy dress by Whistles, was joined by her husband the Duke for a private viewing of the painting this morning before it goes on display to the public this afternoon.

    The royal couple spent around 10 minutes looking at the portrait privately then met Emsley and his wife Susanne and daughter Marie.

    Kate has been suffering from a rare form of pregnancy sickness but looked well and smiled as she chatted to the artist.

    She told him: "It's just amazing, I thought it was brilliant."

    William also had high praise for the painting, saying: "It's beautiful, it's absolutely beautiful."

    The Cambridges later attended a private breakfast reception at the London gallery to mark the unveiling.

    Among the guests were Kate's parents Carole and Michael Middleton and her brother and sister Pippa and James.

    705 million tourists worldwide since start of 2012

    Traveler numbers increased by four percent year on year between January and August, according to official figures released by the World Tourism Organization on Monday.

    Over the first eight months of the year, the WTO recorded an increase of 28 million tourists compared with last year's numbers. If the trend takes hold, the WTO predicts that the billion tourist threshold will be reached by the end of the year.

    Compared with the first five months of the year, which saw an average increase in tourists hovering around 5%, June and July were a bit slower, with respective increases of 2.7% and 1.4%.

    The surge was more pronounced in August (+4%), which is generally the most travel-friendly month of the year.

    The best figures come from tourism towards the Asia-Pacific region (+7%) and Africa (+6%). Europe (+3%) and the Americas (+4%) also increased their numbers of visitors.

    In the Middle East, tourism seems to be rebounding, although the numbers are still down year on year (-1%). Last year's tourist numbers for the region painted an even more pessimistic picture, with a 7 percent drop.

    She makes everything sweeter!' Nick Knowles, 49, marries 25-year-old bride Jessica in romantic ceremony

    There might be 25 years between them, but Nick Knowles dismissed any concerns about the age gap between himself and girlfriend Jessica Rose Moor as the pair wed in a romantic ceremony in Rome.

    The DIY SOS star, who turns 50 this year, posed up with his 25-year-old bride as he told Hello! magazine that Jessica 'makes everything sweeter'.

    He told the magazine: 'I came to the conclusion that you can't spend your life worrying about everybody else.

    'She makes everything sweeter!' Nick Knowles, 49, opened up about his love for new wife Jessica Rose Moor, 25, as the pair wed in Rome

    'I'd looked after other people for as long as I could remember and what I knew for sure was that Jessica made me a happier, calmer, far nicer person.

    'She makes everything sweeter. As one of life's romantics, I'd always hoped that I'd find someone who would make me truly happy and with whom I could look into the future long-term - and I have.'

    Father-of-three Knowles looked dapper in a grey suit teamed with a pink shirt and tie for the occasion, while Jessica opted for a modest white lace off-the-shoulder gown and matching veil.

    And despite the fact that the pair hit the headlines when they started dating due to the age difference, Jessica said she was never put off the relationship.

    She said: 'Because of Nick being in the public eye and because of the age difference between us and the fact he has children, there was a lot to consider and I wasn't prepared to enter the relationship lightly.

    'When we started dating, of course I was aware that there was a big age difference, but there really is no sign of it in our day-to-day relationship.

    Photos of Kate Stir Memories of Diana Tragedy

    Do people no longer have the right to a private life once they become famous? Fans and detractors alike apparently have a limitless appetite for dirt on any kind of celebrity from movie stars to "real" housewives to presidents. But that doesn't mean the incessant buzz of paparazzi hovering over their every move, like flies on a wounded animal, is ethical.

    On Friday, the French magazine Closer released topless pictures of Kate Middleton and both the royal family and 10 Downing Street (the office of the prime minister) are accusing the media of "having crossed a red line." Moreover, they have pointed out, the incident is doubly painful because of the late Princess Diana's tortured relationship with the press, which ended in her death in a high-speed car crash while being chased by photographers. "The incident is reminiscent of the worst excesses of the press and paparazzi during the life of Diana, Princess of Wales," reads the official statement out of St. James Palace, "and all the more upsetting to The Duke and Duchess for being so." The statement also called the publication of the photos "grotesque" and "unjustifiable."


    The images were taken while Prince William and Kate were sunbathing on vacation in France at a chateau owned by Lord Linley, the Queen's nephew.

    When Lady Diana Spencer became engaged to Prince Charles in 1981, she was a shy 20-year-old kindergarten teacher. Immediately thrust into the spotlight, she later said that dealing with the press was the greatest challenge of being a part of the royal family. "The most daunting aspect was the media attention, because my husband and I, we were told when we got engaged that the media would go quietly, and it didn't," she told BBC reporter Martin Bashir in 1995, "and then when we were married they said it would go quietly and it didn't; and then it started to focus very much on me, and I seemed to be on the front of a newspaper every single day, which is an isolating experience, and the higher the media put you, place you, is the bigger the drop." In the same interview, she suggests that the constant scrutiny, especially after she suffered from a bout of post-natal depression and was labeled "unstable," battered her self-esteem. Her confidence low, she admits she resorted to self-harm (which she calls "hurting my arms and legs") and bulimia as an escape.

    The Independent UK reports the Royal Highnesses reacted to the publication of the revealing Kate photos with "anger and disbelief" and were "hugely saddened." Still, they proceeded with their duties on an official tour of Southeast Asia. In stark contrast to the photo fracas, Middleton donned a modest pearl grey dress and veil when she attended a public ceremony at a mosque in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and comported herself with mind boggling poise given the controversy. According to Sky News, the future Queen of England chatted with her husband and warmly greeted the gathered crowds. 

    Calling Off A Wedding: 5 Signs You Should Do It

    You would be surprised how many women going through divorces tell me they knew they were making a mistake when they walked down the aisle — in more recent headlines, Kim Kardashian even shared this similar sentiment. Below are five warning signs you may want to consider before saying "I do."

    1. You don't get along with his family. Many couples go through with weddings hoping all the family stuff will "just work out." Don't fall into this trap because it seldom does. In fact, issues with in-laws tend to get worse over time — especially when babies come along. If his family is causing a problem in your relationship before you're married, you may want to give serious thought to calling off your wedding.

    2. You've dated for less than a year. Most people are on their best behavior for the first twelve months of a relationship. After that, people tend to let their guard down a little bit and you get to see what a person is really like. This is important because ideally when you get married, you will be spending the rest of your lives together — you will need to know if your partner is someone you can live with on a day-to-day, long-term basis after the honeymoon phase of your relationship is over.

    3. You haven't come to an agreement about kids, careers and other fundamental issues. So many couples get caught up in wedding planning, that they forget to talk about the fundamental issues of sharing a life together.
    Will you have kids? How many? What religion will you raise your children? Where will you live? Will one of you be a stay at home parent? How will holidays be handled? How will housework be divided?

    Couples should spend at least as much time paying attention to the details of their lives together as they do to the details of their weddings. If you can't come to an agreement to these types of fundamental issues before your marriage, you should consider calling off your wedding until you reach a mutually acceptable agreement on the details of your lives together.

    4. You lack conflict resolution skills. A lot of couples write off arguments before a wedding as "wedding day jitters," but the truth of the matter is that if you have horrendous arguments and fights with your partner and nothing ever seems to get resolved, you may want to consider calling off your wedding until the two of you work on your conflict resolution skills. Long-term relationships require good conflict resolution skills and the good news is that they can be learned if both couples are committed to doing so.

    Why I Completely Support Sometimes Boycotting A Wedding Of Someone You Love

    My sister has been engaged twice. Although if you remind her of this now, she will scoff and insist that she's only been engaged once and she married that man. However, what she has conveniently tried to forget is that once upon a time she was caught up in a relationship with Paul and she had every intention of marrying him. They were, by his definition, engaged despite my sister not having a ring, because as a hippy who shunned material things, "no diamond could express the feelings in his heart." In other words, he didn't have the money to buy one.

    It wasn't just that he didn't have the money, but he didn't "need" the money. According to him, people don't need money; it wrecks havoc on the world and makes them greedy, selfish, and corrupt. It was also very easy for him to say this while he stayed home working on his "art" while my sister, the full-time college student, worked two jobs to keep them afloat. But she was "in love, " and I "just didn't understand what it was like to love an artist who was so dedicated." She was 22 at the time and clearly blinded by her artist boyfriend who, mind you, would sit on the toilet strumming away songs on his guitar about her while she showered. That's what artists do, in case you were unaware.

    I met Paul once and instantly despised him. Everything about him rubbed me the wrong way. I also hated the fact that my sister, who was so consumed with supporting his dreams, was sacrificing her own in the process. We had both been raised to be very strong, independent thinkers, but something about Paul and his manipulative ways reached deep inside her and stripped away that independence. She wasn't just his puppy; she was his drone.

    Everything Paul said about any topic in the world immediately became my sister's opinion, too. His stance on everything was now her stance, she gave up pursuing law because he told her the world had enough lawyers and because he was a vegetarian, he insisted she be one, too. In a matter of months, the strong-willed, stubborn sister I knew was gone; all that remained was a physical clone that had no insides to even give her a pulse. She was practically the walking dead.

    While my parents admitted that she had changed a lot since meeting Paul, the consensus that helped them sleep at night was that maybe she had actually just found her true self. But I knew that wasn't her true self; that robot who only Paul owned the remote control to was not my sister.

    Every time the topic of him came up, and it did often, my sister would viciously accuse me of being jealous of their love. How did she know I was jealous? Because Paul told her so. I was trying to steal her away from him, I was trying to corrupt her with mediocre ideas, I was trying to trap her with society's standards... and on and on she went just vomiting up Paul's perfectly scripted words.

    When she announced that she was "engaged," it had become clear that Paul was definitely bad news. There were so many stories that didn't add up, so many parts of his past that didn't make sense and finally, by then, my parents could see what he had done to my sister.

    So there she was engaged to a puppet master, without a ring and running off to get a third job so they could get married in Fiji. Of course, they were going to get married in Fiji! Getting married so far away would prevent too many guests from showing up who might interfere in Paul's manipulation tactics.

    Mum v daughter in Miss Big Beauty UK

    A MUM and daughter are about to go head to head  in the Miss Plus Size  International beauty pageant for bigger women.

    Here, single mum of four and tea shop owner Michelle, 41, and budding  baker  Bianca, 23, from Charlton, south-east London, talk to JENNIFER  TIPPETT.


    Michelle says

    “FOR us, this is the ultimate mother-and-daughter experience — and to both  make the final after 400 ladies from around the world entered is a real  honour.

    “We both really want to win and that’s great.

    “And we’re the only mum-and-daughter BBW (Big Beautiful Women) team competing  in pageants globally.

    “It just shows that us full-figured girls from south-east London can set the  standard and show the rest of the world how it’s done.

    “I don’t consider either of us large. We’re in the middle.

    “We’ve never dieted and I don’t consider it necessary.

    “Sometimes we over-indulge on special occasions but who doesn’t?

    “I have taught all my children the value of healthy food.

    “We don’t sit around stuffing our faces. Everyone assumes because we are big  that we are lazy, which is just not true.

    “It’s about time people appreciated that big women are part of society.

    “As mum and daughter, we represent different ages and different sizes.

    First Look At The New 'Strictly' Team

    Newcomer Darcey Bussell adds some sparkle to the Strictly Come Dancing panel as she joins her fellow judges for a spin round the floor - in a mirrored, glitterball-style dress.

    All four judges will be seen dancing together in a new trailer as a taster for the forthcoming series in which Bussell replaces Alesha Dixon.

    Len Goodman, Craig Revel Horwood and Bruno Tonioli battle over who can perform the slinkiest moves as they vie for a turn with their new colleague in the BBC One teaser.

    The quartet filmed the routine, choreographed by Revel Horwood, at a glamorous country retreat and it is the first time since the launch of Strictly that all the judges have been seen dancing together.

    The series returns to BBC One on September 15 when viewers will see the contestants team up with their partners for the first time.

    Contestants include former children's TV presenter Johnny Ball - the oldest-ever entrant at 74 - and former England cricket captain Michael Vaughan. Others reportedly taking part are Girls Aloud and Shrek The Musical star Kimberley Walsh and Jerry Hall.

    Motorola Defy+ Now Available In The UK For Just £159

    Last year, Motorola launched the Android powered Motorola Defy+ rugged smartphone. This handset is the successor of the highly popular Motorola Defy smartphone. The Motorola Defy+ is a water resistant, scratch resistant and dust proof smartphone. It runs on the Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) OS. However, this handset is not expected to get the Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) update ever.

    The Motorola Defy+ is already available for purchase in the UK from last September. Clove, a popular online retailer is currently selling this rugged smartphone at a reduced price for a limited period of time. It makes this handset even cheaper than the Motorola Defy Mini smartphone, which was launched last month for £162. If you are planning to buy this device, then check out the complete specs below.

    motorola defy plus

    Motorola Defy+ features a 3.7 inch FWVGA touchscreen display, sporting a resolution of 480 x 854 pixels, 1 GHz OMAP processor, Android 2.3 (Gingerbread) Operating System, MotoBLUR UI, 5 megapixel camera with auto-focus and LED flash, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, 3G Connectivity and so on.

    It also comes with a 3.5 mm headset jack, FM Radio with RDS, 512 MB of RAM, Bluetooth 2.1, GPS with A-GPS, 2 GB internal memory, MicroSD card slot, 32 GB expandable memory, 2 GB MicroSD card bundled, Adobe Flash Player 10, Google Play Store, up to 7.1 hours of talk time, up to 16 days of standby time and a 1700 mAh battery.

    This handset allows you to access more than 450,000 apps from the Google Play Store. Motorola Defy+ originally comes with a price tag of £159. However, you can get this device from Clove at a reduced price of £159 excluding taxes. To get this handset, head over to this page.

    Lena Fokina The Russian “Baby Yoga” Guru

    Lena Fokina The Russian “Baby Yoga” Guru

    In early 2011, a shocking video went viral showing Russian “baby yoga” guru Lena Fokina recklessly twirling and swinging a tiny infant around.

    Babies as young as two weeks old were shown being flung around the therapist’s head, spinning by their wrists and ankles in her bizarre ‘baby yoga’ routine.

    In a short interview to a new video by a British media company Barcroft TV, the 51-year-old is seen teaching parents her techniques in Dahab, Egypt.

    Mothers are willingly handing their infants to Fokina and she swings them around then giving them to try themselves.

    In her videos, the babies can be heard crying and while most babies vomited during or after and were left screaming in tears, Fokina insists in her interviews that it is for their benefit.

    The qualified PE teacher says ‘baby yoga’ is beneficial, relaxing, strengthens their joints and helps babies develop fasters than others. “They are early readers, singers, talkers, swimmers. You haven’t seen anything like it anywhere!” she told DadWagon.com in an interview.

    She continued, “It’s very good for babies and not dangerous at all. Some babies cry at first, but they begin to enjoy it”.

    “Most people think young babies can only lie on a bed, eat, and cry. But babies are born with natural reflexes, which we can use to help them develop physically and intellectually”.

    “I work with parents from across Europe. I hope soon I will be working with a family in England. I think there are a number of open-minded parents there whose babies could benefit from my work.”READ MORE

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