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Christmas Gift Guide

Life's a gas

Keep it fresh

Lunchtime!

Hyper-scheduled

View from the top

Downtime... sorta

Blurred lines

High and tight

Space burger

Self-sufficiency

View from the top

No need for detergent

Taste of home

Regimented regimen

Keep it clean

Exercise in futility?

Pearly whites

Fun with hygiene

Hydration on the go

Very remote outhouse

Tiny commode

Speaking of good aim...

Sleep without gravity

Think you've got what it takes to live on the International Space Station for months at a time?

Day-to-day life can be fun, but it's also a challenge for people who, you know, like gravity.

Caption by / Photo by NASA

Fresh produce does occasionally show up on the ISS. But...

Caption by / Photo by NASA

Most of the time, breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks and even drinks look like this.

A typical meat dish: Barbecue beef brisket. Seen here: a Thanksgiving feast.

Caption by / Photo by NASA

Every element of an astronaut's workday, from experiments (such as this one) to showering, are scheduled by dozens of ground crew.

Caption by / Photo by NASA

Downtime is often spent gazing at the home planet via the Cupola, the station's 360-degree viewing platform. But daytime viewing requires eye protection.

Caption by / Photo by NASA

Even during downtime, ISS astronauts always have reminders of their crucial work. Their sleeping pods have laptops in them, and even the space in the serene Cupola does double duty. It's also the primary control station for the station's robotic arm, Canadarm2.

Caption by / Photo by NASA

Astronauts, including these two from NASA, tend to experience deteriorating vision in space, so regular eye exams are part of the routine. These two are performing the exams inside the ISS Destiny Laboratory.

Caption by / Photo by NASA

Haircuts can be a challenge in zero gravity. Here, an Italian crew member holds a vacuum to suck up hair loosed by a colleague's shears.

Caption by / Photo by NASA

Care for a burger?

This is what a US astronaut ate recently prior to a space walk: beef patties, cheese, tomato paste and Russian mustard on a tortilla wrap.

Caption by / Photo by NASA

Ever dreamt of having your own 3D printer? The ISS has one. (It was used to print this item.) The long-term goal: having a self-sufficient machine shop on board the space station.

Caption by / Photo by NASA

From the Cupola, the crew can see the Russian Soyuz craft, which has been used to bring them to and from the station.

Caption by / Photo by NASA

Clothes, such as the socks worn by this ISS crew member, get dirty just like they do on Earth. But there's no laundry system on the ISS; instead, crew members eject the dirty clothes, which are incinerated in Earth's atmosphere.

Caption by / Photo by NASA

ISS workers do get the occasional favorite treat, such as their preferred brand of mustard or, in one case, marshmallow fluff.

Caption by / Photo by NASA

Crew members often work out twice a day at pre-designated times.

Caption by / Photo by NASA

There are no showers on the ISS. Instead, as demonstrated by this astronaut, crew members take a type of sponge bath using a pre-mixed, rinse-free cleaning solution and a towel.

Caption by / Photo by NASA

A hygiene station includes a hairbrush, toothbrush and other necessities...but zero gravity has a way of undoing a lot of preening.

Caption by / Photo by NASA

Brushing teeth aboard the ISS can be fun, given that the both toothpaste and water...

Caption by / Photo by NASA

...stick to the brush with a little coaxing.

Caption by / Photo by NASA

Is an extra bit of water trying to get away? Just lean forward and drink the renegade water globule.

Caption by / Photo by NASA

Here's a sign posted in the bathroom on the ISS.

Caption by / Photo by NASA

Crew members in need of a toilet had better have good aim; the hole is small.

The good news: There's an array of toilet papers and wipes to choose from, including American-style soft paper and coarser, Russian-style TP.

Caption by / Photo by NASA

Men and women urinate into this yellow suction tube. There are disinfectant wipes nearby in case of a miss.

Caption by / Photo by NASA

Sleep pods on the ISS are on four walls of the station, because gravity isn't a factor.

Caption by / Photo by NASA
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