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Joy

10 things that made us smile this week

We've got some adorable kids and inspiring grown-ups, some delightful dancing and sassy public servants, and even a cute quokka thrown in for funsies.

Dad holding preemie in NICU, smiling baby taking first steps

Upworthy's weekly roundup of joy.

Life is full of precious and magical moments, from watching a baby take its first steps, to saying "I do," to witnessing an artist transcend in a way we've never experienced. These moments touch something deep inside us and etch themselves in our memories, enabling us to draw on their joy for years to come.

That's one of the coolest things about joy. Some might think of it as a fleeting feeling, but it's always there within us, ready to rise to the surface when it gets tickled.

Bringing out people's joy is one of the things we love doing at Upworthy, which is why we curate these collections of smile-worthy finds each week.


In this week's roundup, we've got some adorable kids and inspiring grown-ups, some delightful dancers and sassy public servants, and even a cute quokka thrown in for funsies. Enjoy!

1. Wee one discovers his ability to walk and his reaction is priceless.

@alissa_and_b

It’s the #pterodactyl noises for me! 😍😍😍 #babytok #babysfirststeps #lgbtqfam

His little roar, followed by that precious smile? It doesn't get any cuter.

2. Iraqi-Irish wedding musical mashup has everyone dancing with joy.

Cultures coming together, especially in the context of love and family, is such a beautiful thing. Read the full story here.

3. Oliver James has taught himself to read in his 30s with the help of BookTok and he's an inspiration.

@oliverspeaks1

Learning and reading books has literally saved my life. How do you feel about books what has reading done for you.? #books #bookshelf #readingbooks📚 #booktok

In this video, James explains how much anxiety it used to give him to go shopping, not being able to read. Now he has a goal to read 100 books this year, and book lovers on TikTok are helping him out. Read more about James' journey to literacy here.

4. A couple asked their grandmothers to be flower girls at their wedding and look how gorgeous they were.

What a wonderful idea. Let's make this a thing.

5. 13-year-old ventriloquist wows with her impressive and hilarious rendition of 'You Don't Own Me."

Ana-Maria Mărgean was the winner of "Romania's Got Talent" and is now competing in "America's Got Talent: All-Stars." What's amazing is that she just started learning ventriloquism during the COVID-19 lockdowns. Read the full story here.

6. Whoever runs the National Park Service Twitter account deserves a raise.

Swipe through to see the follow-up tweets. The whole account is full of delightful silliness, and we are here for it.

7. Dad gets emotional while singing to his NICU baby who raises his tiny little hand.

@fritojohnson89

Remington Hayze Johnson. Proof that God is faithful. Born 4 months early and given a 21% chance of survival. Today we are 2 1/2 months old giving God all the praise He deserves. #worship #nicu #nicubaby #dadsinging #elevationworship

Having a baby in the NICU can be exhausting and worrisome. What a special moment for this family. Read the full story here.

8. Little girl hears a sax in the subway and feels the music in her soul.

Children are so pure and the way they react to music is always fun to see. What a wonderful exchange and testament to the power of live musicians.

9. She brushed her bald dad's 'hair' and her cackle is too adorable.

Gotta love it when a kid goes all in on their own joke. She's just cracking herself up.

10. May we all be as happy and content as this quokka enjoying a beet.

Quokkas always look like they're smiling anyway, but there's no mistaking the joy in this one's snack time. (Also, I want a quokka. Does anyone know where I can get a quokka?)

Hope that gave you a little serotonin boost! Come back next week for another collection of delights. (And if you'd like to have posts like these delivered right to your inbox, sign up for our free newsletter, The Upworthiest, here.)

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