EVERY EVENING, TheJournal.ie brings you a roundup of the day’s main stories – plus any bits and pieces you may have missed along the way.
- It has emerged that the gunman who killed six people and then shot himself in Texas on Christmas Day was dressed as Santa Claus as he committed the murder-suicide. Police in the US also confirmed that the man was a relative of the victims.
- A teenager was stabbed to death in broad daylight on London’s Oxford Street today, the busiest shopping day of the year.
- Gardaí in Cork are investigating the deaths of two men at a house in Cork City on Christmas Day.
- It turns out we’re not the only ones who have ghost estates as Chinese bloggers have discovered empty, unfinished developments throughout China. The country has numerous ‘ghost cities’ as well. See the pictures here.
- Ireland has sent tents, blankets and other aid items to the victims of Typhoon Washi in the Philippines.
- In today’s column, an Irish woman has told TheJournal.ie why she became a foster mother and how she was heartbroken by the departure of one of her foster children.
- 2011 was a year of great change in the Middle East. Susan Ryan has compiled a slideshow of 29 extraordinary images from the Arab Spring uprisings that have changed the face of the world forever.
- The uprising in Syria continues but as Arab League monitors prepare to enter the country to ensure peace agreements are being kept by Bashar Assad’s government, violence has escalated with rights groups claiming at least 20 were killed by security force shellings in Homs today.
TheJournal.ie reader Shannon Healy sent us this picture of her dog Boo trying to follow Santa back up the chimney yesterday. Unfortunately it looks like he’ll definitely need a post-Christmas bath.
- Hundreds of people queued outside Arnotts, Clery’s and other stores around the country today to grab the first bargains of the 2011 post-Christmas sales. Some dedicated shoppers started lining up at 5pm on Christmas Day. Look!
- Our Review 2011 series continues with a roundup of the year in Twitter hashtags. Remember #prayforjapan, #GE11, #LondonRiots and #ArabSpring. And then of course there was #tigerblood, #winning and #SeanOBrienFacts.
- Christine Bohan has also been taking a look back at the insults, catfights and all-out feuds of the past 12 months. Don’t worry, we haven’t included any of the family tensions seen in your house in the past 48 hours.
- Donald Trump has officially said he is no longer a Republican. Why? He changed his voter registration to unaffiliated so they he can run in next year’s Presidential election if the GOP nominates a person he feels will not be capable of beating Barack Obama.
- Ashton and Demi, Hugh and Crystal and Bryan and Delta were just some of the celebrity couples who called it a day during the year. For those in need of a gossip injection, TheJournal.ie has recapped the comings and goings of the famous over the past year.
- Contagion, Superinjunction, Arab Spring, dwarf-throwing and more buzzwords from 2011 in our official glossary of the year.
- As we say goodbye to another Christmas, a big question has been answered: Where are the cast of Home Alone right now?
- And finally, another Christmas video to keep your hearts warmed. We’re not sure if we’d like our parents to have kept such detailed records of our family life but this American Dad has put together some very sweet video footage of his kids as they grew up. Here is his lovely 25 Years of Christmas video, which notes new pets, renovations and members of the extended family: