Our Christmas cranberry relish is surprisingly versatile performer. While it doesn't exactly take centre stage and perform a saucy fan dance, it's good for more than just a walk-on part with the turkey and ham.
Either it's an election year, or Nick Clegg has suddenly discovered some principles. This week, George Osborne announced that there would be another £25 billion in spending cuts after the 2015 general election and around half of that would come from the welfare budget. For Clegg, who must have been given a spine at Christmas, it was apparently the straw that broke the camel's back.
The dead week between Xmas and New Year sucks. You feel fat and bored and the excitement of seeing your family for the first time in 6 months has worn off. It's a dull week, with rubbish weather, and half your friends are already back at work.
A funny thing happened to me over Christmas. After over 16,000 attempts, suddenly I tweeted something that went viral. At the last count it had received 1,231 retweets, and at midnight on Christmas Eve, I was trending 11th in the United Kingdom.
Earlier this week I attended a fantastic meal put on as part of the 'Bethlehem Unwrapped' festival put together by creative director Justin Butcher. The food was cooked by celebrated chefs Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi. Ottolenghi is Israeli and Tamimi Palestinian.
Are these experiences from 2013 familiar? You arrive on a train and are greeted by a message warning of the penalties awaiting those with incorrect tickets; you arrive at a department store and notice a security guard; you are slightly behind with your Council tax payments and a top-hatted bailiff turns up on your doorstep.
Many people in the UK decide to detox after the Christmas period. Stilton, port and vast amounts of mince pies are all very well, but come at a cost. It's a price some aren't always happy to pay, so they then spend January and beyond moaning about weight gain and their plans to get fit for the summer.
At Christmas the biggest concern for many of us is last minute shopping for gifts or making sure we get everything done in the office before heading home to the family. Unfortunately, for some of the most vulnerable people in our communities this can be a time of loneliness and desperation.
How do you mend a broken heart? There is no magical cure, just actions and words. No special book will help you. It is down to you to mend you. You can recruit friends and family. Take each day as it comes.
Work is looming, bills will soon start to shoot sadistically through the letterbox. Could things get any worse? No, so here are some reasons to be cheerful in January - put down that sausage roll!
Did anyone happen to see what Channel 5 decided to showcase on Christmas Day to win the TV ratings war? I'm sure millions tuned in but in case you didn't know, at 8.40pm Channel 5 decided to go into the prime time battle by screening Eddie Stobart - 12 Days of Christmas.
Reaching Christmas Day is a huge milestone for us mentally... It was very hard to spend Christmas away from loved ones, but we managed to get through the day by reminding ourselves that Christmas is not just a time for being with family and opening presents, it's also a time to think of people less fortunate than yourself.
Christmas is supposed to be a time for family, or so it is said. But what do you do when you have more than one family who wants your time over the holiday? I'm not talking specifically of children who have to deal with separated parents, - though that is something to be considered - but rather bog standard couples trying to split their time between both sides of the family. How do you keep everyone happy?
Carbonade Flamande - or Beef in Beer - is a succulent, meaty casserole that provides a complete contrast to what many of us have been eating over Christmas.
As Christmas 2013 draws to a close, it must be said that I have plenty to be thankful for: my family are in fine health, I am generally happy, plus I got One Direction's calendar for the upcoming year. However, as the inevitable Christmas Day argument ensued, I began to ponder other annual occurrences that most families experience specifically during the festive season...
The Christmas festivities are finally over and you have been left with an unwanted gift. Yes, you guessed it: a few extra pounds and you can't even take them back to the store to get a refund or credit note. But that's no problem is it? Just start on one of those trendy celebrity-endorsed diets that guarantee a slender body in no time at all.