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Joy

10 things that made us smile this week

Upworthy's weekly roundup of joy.

10 things that made us smile this week

Looking for a reason to smile? Look no further.

Hey there, fellow passengers on this thrill ride!

Are we having fun yet? I don't know about you, but I keep finding myself wanting to yell, "SOMEBODY STOP THIS THING—I WANNA GET OFF!" All of these ups and downs and roundy rounds are making me queasy, I gotta tell you. And that last drop was a doozy.

While we're wondering what lies on the other side of the next climb or around the next corner, let's close our eyes and take stock of what else is happening. Smell the buttered popcorn and funnel cakes in the air. Feel the warm sun on our face and wind in our hair. Be grateful for the friend in the seat beside us, holding our hand as we scream on the descents and laugh on the straightaways.

We can't control or predict everything. But we can choose to find some good amid the chaos.


If you're struggling with the ride and having a hard time finding the good in the moment, this list won't fix everything. But maybe it'll give you a little reprieve and bring a smile to your face a few times. And maybe, for now, that's enough.

May we all be as jaunty and jovial in our later years as this awesome auntie.

I want to be her when I grow up.

The future of medicine is bright, indeed.

Aw. After the hell that healthcare workers have been through the past two years, it's lovely to see such a pure, sweet hope coming from the medical field.

Little boy sees his mom coming down the aisle and adorableness ensues.

The way he looks for her and the way his face lights up when he sees her. A perfect walk down the aisle.

A boy in Kansas sent off a note attached to balloons. A man in Quebec found them.

Incredibly, Reid Habbert's bunch of balloons traveled more than 1,800 miles with a note attached asking whoever found them to contact him. Cree hunter David Longchap found them on the traditional lands of the Cree nation in Quebec, Canada, and a beautiful cultural exchange resulted. Read the full story here.

This boys' school marimba band is nothing but sheer joy.

How fun is that? Read the full story here.

Blue Jays fan caught a homer and immediately gave it to a young Yankees fan.

Oh that kid's face. Talk about a moment to remember.

No idea who this guy is but he's amazing.

If anyone knows who or where this is, please share. Totally made my day.

Kitten discovers a sun beam.

I mean, it just doesn't get cuter than that. Kittens win, hands down.

Gamer's girlfriend surprises him with a visit from an online friend he's had for 10 years.

Proof that "virtual" friendships can be real friendships. So sweet.

This chipmunk's reaction to tasting an almond for the first time.

May we all experience something this week that gives us such rapturous pause.

Hope those little bits of joy made you smile. Come back next week for another roundup!

Family

Dad takes 7-week paternity leave after his second child is born and is stunned by the results

"These past seven weeks really opened up my eyes on how the household has actually ran, and 110% of that is because of my wife."

@ustheremingtons/TikTok

There's a lot to be gleaned from this.

Participating in paternity leave offers fathers so much more than an opportunity to bond with their new kids. It also allows them to help around the house and take on domestic responsibilities that many new mothers have to face alone…while also tending to a newborn.

All in all, it enables couples to handle the daunting new chapter as a team, making it less stressful on both parties. Or at least equally stressful on both parties. Democracy!

TikTok creator and dad Caleb Remington, from the popular account @ustheremingtons, confesses that for baby number one, he wasn’t able to take a “single day of paternity leave.”

This time around, for baby number two, Remington had the privilege of taking seven weeks off (to be clear—his employer offered four weeks, and he used an additional three weeks of PTO).

The time off changed Remington’s entire outlook on parenting, and his insights are something all parents could probably use.

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Millenial names are now "old" names.

You can’t turn back the hands of time and so it’s impossible to avoid being labeled “old” by younger generations, no matter how hard you try. For many of us, our names are tied to the times when we were born and can start to sound really dated, no matter how fashionable they were at one point.

TikTokker Amber Cimotti found this out the hard way when her daughter noted that she has an “old” person's name.

“My daughter told me the name Ashley or Amanda — or my name is Amber — are like old people names and I never thought about it this way,” Amber explained in a video with over 3 million views.

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Image from YouTube video.

An emotional and strong Matt Diaz.


Matt Diaz has worked extremely hard to lose 270 pounds over the past six years.

But his proudest moment came in March 2015 when he decided to film himself with his shirt off to prove an important point about body positivity and self-love.

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Woman shows her misbehaving cat to 'the trenches'

You always hear about a "bad dog," giving the furry goofballs a reputation for getting into mischief, but what about bad cats. Not all cats are angels just lounging around the house until someone gives them food while fanning them with a giant palm leaf. Some cats have a sketchy "catigree" and every once in a while they let that wild streak show. When that happens, what is a cat owner to do?

A cat mom that goes by the user name Lambo Licia on Instagram posted a video showing exactly how she gets her cat in line when he's misbehaving. No, it's not with a spray bottle. She shows him what life is like in "the trenches." You know, the area of town where homeless cats roam and cat burglars have real whiskers and thumbs that don't work, leaving a strange fish smell wherever they lurk.

If Scared Straight: Cat Edition was an actual thing, Mega, the orange tabby would be the first to turn his life around. He looks absolutely petrified from all of the unruly cat behavior he sees out the window and his mom's commentary.

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Science

College students use AI to decode ancient scroll burned in Mount Vesuvius

“Some of these texts could completely rewrite the history of key periods of the ancient world."

When Mount Vesuvius erupted in 79 C.E., it buried entire cities in volcanic materials. While Pompeii is the most famous site affected by the natural disaster, the nearby villa of Herculaneum was also laid to waste—including over 800 precious scrolls found inside Herculaneum’s library, which were carbonized by the heat, making them impossible to open and recover their contents.

Which brings us to the Vesuvius challenge, started by computer scientist Brent Seales and entrepreneurs Nat Friedman and Daniel Gross in March 2023. The contest would award $1 million in prizes to whoever could use machine learning to successfully read from the scrolls without damaging them.

On February 5, the prize-winning team was announced.
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Keith Allison/Wikimedia Commons

Shaquille O'Neal retired from pro basketball in 2011, but he's still one of the most famous players ever.

Fame comes with a lot of challenges, but it also comes with some pretty obvious perks. There's the money that frequently follows fame, of course, but there's also the special treatment people automatically offer you.

Some famous folks might revel in that special treatment and some might even express gratitude for it. But occasionally, you find a celebrity who refuses it altogether.

Take basketball legend Shaquille O'Neal, for instance.

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