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Joy

10 things that made us smile this week

Upworthy's weekly roundup of joy

smiley face ball floating in the water
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Take a scroll through our smile-worthy finds.

What brings you joy? The kindness of strangers? The silliness of your pets? The breathtaking beauty of nature? Spending time with the people you love?

There are so many places to find joy in life, from watching someone nail their talents to listening to a conversation between preschoolers to belly laughing at a joke from someone you didn't expect to be so funny.

We've covered all of those bases and more in this week's list of 10 things that made us smile. So if you could use a little uplift, take a scroll through our roundup of delights.


1. Single mom shares her neighbor's sweet 'wellness check' captured on her doorbell camera

@amandakayex

The world needs more Greg’s. Hes always checkin on us 🥹♥️ #fyp #goodneighbors

What a sweetheart. The world does need more Gregs! Read the full story here.

2. Man gets everyone feeling their feelings when he talks about his wife, Paige

Find someone who makes you feel "infinite" and who tears up just talking about how much they love you.

3. Malala Yousafzai cracks an epic Barbie joke and her husband responds in the best way

Malala jumping on the Barbie meme train and Asser hoisting himself right into the boxcar with her is everything. And now "I am Kenough" has become a meme of its own. Epic.

4. Cats not realizing their tails are part of their bodies is hilarious every single time

The best part is that this kitten will never learn. In 10 years, it will still be caught off guard by its own tail moving, and it will be equally funny then.

5. Gabriel Henrique hits Whitney Houston's high notes on AGT and holy moly

It's impressive enough when a woman nails those notes. Like, how? Absolutely incredible. Read the full story here.

6. Baby eating a tart kiwi and coming back for more is endlessly entertaining

Those faces! We feel you, little one. So painful, but so good.

7. Conversation captured between preschoolers is a masterclass in friendship-making

Can we just have all preschoolers mic'd at all times? This is how all of us should make friends—sharing our daily nap habits, giving and receiving compliments, telling one another to watch out for dog poop. It's perfection.

8. Bride has 15 men walk her down the aisle for the most moving reason

Under the most tragic of circumstances, she got the support she needed to overcome. What a beautiful way to acknowledge the men who continually stepped up for her. Read the full story here.

9. Dad accidentally mistakes 'babies' for 'rabies' and it results in the best misunderstanding ever

@momchats

Maybe we will do better when she asks where babies come from.

Watching them figure out what happened is a heck of a hilarious journey. Moms do go through a lot in labor, but foaming at the mouth? HAHAHA. Read the full story here.

10. May we all take inspiration from this wee one learning to use a spoon

Be patient. Keep trying. Never give up. A valuable lesson for us all. Read the full story here.

Hope that brought some joy to your day! (And f you'd like to get these posts in your inbox so you never miss them, sign up for our free newsletter, The Upworthiest, here.)

All images provided by Prudential Emerging Visionaries

Collins after being selected by Prudential Emerging Visionaries

True

A changemaker is anyone who takes creative action to solve an ongoing problem—be it in one’s own community or throughout the world.

And when it comes to creating positive change, enthusiasm and a fresh perspective can hold just as much power as years of experience. That’s why, every year, Prudential Emerging Visionaries celebrates young people for their innovative solutions to financial and societal challenges in their communities.

This national program awards 25 young leaders (ages 14-18) up to $15,000 to devote to their passion projects. Additionally, winners receive a trip to Prudential’s headquarters in Newark, New Jersey, where they receive coaching, skills development, and networking opportunities with mentors to help take their innovative solutions to the next level.

For 18-year-old Sydnie Collins, one of the 2023 winners, this meant being able to take her podcast, “Perfect Timing,” to the next level.

Since 2020, the Maryland-based teen has provided a safe platform that promotes youth positivity by giving young people the space to celebrate their achievements and combat mental health stigmas. The idea came during the height of Covid-19, when Collins recalled social media “becoming a dark space flooded with news,” which greatly affected her own anxiety and depression.

Knowing that she couldn’t be the only one feeling this way, “Perfect Timing” seemed like a valuable way to give back to her community. Over the course of 109 episodes, Collins has interviewed a wide range of guests—from other young influencers to celebrities, from innovators to nonprofit leaders—all to remind Gen Z that “their dreams are tangible.”

That mission statement has since evolved beyond creating inspiring content and has expanded to hosting events and speaking publicly at summits and workshops. One of Collins’ favorite moments so far has been raising $7,000 to take 200 underserved girls to see “The Little Mermaid” on its opening weekend, to “let them know they are enough” and that there’s an “older sister” in their corner.

Of course, as with most new projects, funding for “Perfect Timing” has come entirely out of Collins’ pocket. Thankfully, the funding she earned from being selected as a Prudential Emerging Visionary is going toward upgraded recording equipment, the support of expert producers, and skill-building classes to help her become a better host and public speaker. She’ll even be able to lease an office space that allows for a live audience.

Plus, after meeting with the 24 other Prudential Emerging Visionaries and her Prudential employee coach, who is helping her develop specific action steps to connect with her target audience, Collins has more confidence in a “grander path” for her work.

“I learned that my network could extend to multiple spaces beyond my realm of podcasting and journalism when industry leaders are willing to share their expertise, time, and financial support,” she told Upworthy. “It only takes one person to change, and two people to expand that change.”

Prudential Emerging Visionaries is currently seeking applicants for 2024. Winners may receive up to $15,000 in awards and an all-expenses-paid trip to Prudential’s headquarters with a parent or guardian, as well as ongoing coaching and skills development to grow their projects.

If you or someone you know between the ages of 14 -18 not only displays a bold vision for the future but is taking action to bring that vision to life, click here to learn more. Applications are due by Nov. 2, 2023.

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A woman, 35, and her husband, 38, had been married for 10 years and during that time became good friends with a neighbor in her 20s. Two years after they met the neighbor she had a son. She said the father wasn’t in the son’s life because he was a one-night fling.

The woman had health issues, so the couple happily took care of the child when she was in the hospital. Sadly, the woman died when the child was young, so the couple became his foster parents and legally adopted him at the age of 7.

Years later, when their adopted son was 10, and their biological child was 5, the mother noticed that both children looked a lot alike. “Now that they are 10 and 5 years old and they looked so much like each other that I begin to have suspicions,” the woman wrote on the Reddit Relationship Advice subforum.

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The sign isn't something fancy that they printed up at Office Depot or something. It's just a piece of cardboard with black sharpie writing. Geits, who is a model, debuted the sign in July, racking up more than 6.4 million views on TikTok. Since striking virility, she's taken to filming herself with some pretty eyebrow raising signs.

People walking along the streets seem to be a mixture of confused and amused by these silly signs, which sometimes actually result in money. One of her signs, "need money for a Birkin" had onlookers giggling and some folks forgetting they were in New York traffic while craning their necks to...read her sign. I'm sure.

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Czech photographer Jan Langer's portrait series "Faces of Century" shows them in a different light: as human beings aged by years of experience, but at their deepest level, unchanged by the passing of time.

In the series, Langer juxtaposes his portraits with another portrait of the subject from decades earlier. He recreates the original pose and lighting as closely as he can — he wants us to see them not just as they are now, but how they have and haven't changed over time. That is the key to the series.

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For a dad named Andrew, this is one of the biggest “unsung benefits” of parenthood, and he is ready to sing its praises.
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In 1997, singer-songwriter 19-year-old Fiona Apple was a massive breakthrough artist on MTV, having recently scored big hits with “Shadowboxer,” “Criminal” and “Sleep to Dream” from her debut album, “Tidal.”

However, even though she was still a teenager, she was already suspicious of celebrity culture.

When accepting the award for the single "Sleep to Dream" at the MTV Video Music Awards, she gave an impromptu speech taking dead aim at the music industry. She asked the young people watching to stop emulating the stars they see in music videos and to be themselves.

Her speech was a bold move by a young woman in a room full of celebrities, rock stars and industry people. At the time, it looked like she was committing career suicide in front of the world. Twenty-six years later, it seems even more audacious in a world where the notion of being sellout is a Gen X relic and the entire culture is dominated by influencers.

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