A Song of Nice and Fire: 7 uplifting moments from this week's 'Game of Thrones.'

On the surface, Westeros can seem like a land of brutality, scheming, and bloodshed.

GIF from "Game of Thrones"/HBO.

But dig a little deeper, and you'll find it's actually a land of kindness, empathy, and respect.


GIF from "Game of Thrones"/HBO.

For some strange reason, most "Game of Thrones" recaps tend to focus on the negative. The killings. The burnings. The killings. The stranglings. The killings. Such a bummer!

But it doesn't have to be! The second episode of season 6 was full of sweet, inspiring, and just plain aww-worthy moments. And if you look, they're obvious!

You just have to squint a little.

*SPOILER ALERT* because duh.

1. Davos and Melisandre score one for religious tolerance!

GIF from "Game of Thrones"/HBO.

Sure, the two have had their differences over the years. Davos politely advised against sending Melisandre into battle, Melisandre asked a god to kill Davos' son. Davos asked King Stannis to leave Shireen at the wall, and Melisandre had the princess burned at the stake. Davos is an avowed atheist. Melisandre is a 400-or-so-year-old fundamentalist priestess of a merciless, vengeful god.

But that didn't prevent them from coming together this week to achieve a common goal: creating a pallid, terrifying, potentially soulless Jon Snow zombie.

2. Jaime kind of did a feminist thing. Kind of?

GIF from "Game of Thrones"/HBO.

Blink and you'll miss it, but the (all things being relative) mellower Lannister twin does call out the High Sparrow over the ridiculous gender double-standard of imprisoning Queen Cersei for fornication and Queen Margaery for perjury while ignoring Jaime's sins — specifically those involving lots and lots and lots of killing (not to mention the unspoken sin of sleeping with his twin sister on the reg).

Not even a few dozen black-clad, mace-wielding zealots can put that one back in the bag.

3. Tyrion tells the dragons a story and takes their chains off!

GIF from "Game of Thrones"/HBO.

Slice it any way you want — that was just plain nice of him.

4. Ramsay maintains a well-run animal shelter!

GIF from "Game of Thrones"/HBO.

Yes, he feeds his dogs human flesh — in this case, his still-living stepmother and newborn stepbrother. But hey, he obviously cares about the lil' pups. Small victories!

5. Yara Greyjoy channels her inner Sheryl Sandberg and leans in!

GIF from "Game of Thrones"/HBO.

When you're a highborn woman of the Iron Islands and your lord father plunges to his death off a rickety rope bridge under mysterious circumstances, it's natural to experience impostor syndrome. You might think to yourself, "There are so many people more qualified to be lord than me" or "Have I raided and sacked enough villages to truly be taken seriously?" or "Is my hair long and stringy enough to retain that regal saltwater and kelp smell that I need to consolidate power?"

But not Yara Greyjoy, who just straight up assumes she's got the gig and vows immediate revenge on her father's killers. While the Drowned God might not be fully on board just yet, with that level of confidence, how could things not work out great for her at that Kingsmoot?

6. The Three-Eyed Raven takes environmental activism to the next level!

This guy, amiright? Photo via Pexels.

What better way to learn empathy for all life in Westeros' fragile ecosystem than to actually become part-tree?

A+ job on that front, Raven.

7. Hodor gets to say more words!

GIF from "Game of Thrones"/HBO.

After all this time and all the "Hodors" — like ten thousand "Hodors" — it turns out that Hodor once had the ability to speak?!

One thing's for sure — we're all going to spend the next week looking forward to the funny story of how he lost it. It's definitely going to be a funny story. A nice, funny story involving nothing bad.

Yep. Definitely.

Join me next week for more nice moments from "Game of Thrones."

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When a pet is admitted to a shelter it can be a traumatizing experience. Many are afraid of their new surroundings and are far from comfortable showing off their unique personalities. The problem is that's when many of them have their photos taken to appear in online searches.

Chewy, the pet retailer who has dedicated themselves to supporting shelters and rescues throughout the country, recognized the important work of a couple in Tampa, FL who have been taking professional photos of shelter pets to help get them adopted.

"If it's a photo of a scared animal, most people, subconsciously or even consciously, are going to skip over it," pet photographer Adam Goldberg says. "They can't visualize that dog in their home."

Adam realized the importance of quality shelter photos while working as a social media specialist for the Humane Society of Broward County in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

"The photos were taken top-down so you couldn't see the size of the pet, and the flash would create these red eyes," he recalls. "Sometimes [volunteers] would shoot the photos through the chain-link fences."

That's why Adam and his wife, Mary, have spent much of their free time over the past five years photographing over 1,200 shelter animals to show off their unique personalities to potential adoptive families. The Goldbergs' wonderful work was recently profiled by Chewy in the video above entitled, "A Day in the Life of a Shelter Pet Photographer."

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Dr. David McPhee offers advice for talking to someone living in a different time in their head.

Few things are more difficult than watching a loved one's grip on reality slipping away. Dementia can be brutal for families and caregivers, and knowing how to handle the various stages can be tricky to figure out.

The Alzheimer's Association offers tips for communicating in the early, middle and late stages of the disease, as dementia manifests differently as the disease progresses. The Family Caregiver Alliance also offers advice for talking to someone with various forms and phases of dementia. Some communication tips deal with confusion, agitation and other challenging behaviors that can come along with losing one's memory, and those tips are incredibly important. But what about when the person is seemingly living in a different time, immersed in their memories of the past, unaware of what has happened since then?

Psychologist David McPhee shared some advice with a person on Quora who asked, "How do I answer my dad with dementia when he talks about his mom and dad being alive? Do I go along with it or tell him they have passed away?"

McPhee wrote:

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When Sue Hoppin was in college, she met the man she was going to marry. "I was attending the University of Denver, and he was at the Air Force Academy," she says. "My dad had also attended the University of Denver and warned me not to date those flyboys from the Springs."

"He didn't say anything about marrying one of them," she says. And so began her life as a military spouse.

The life brings some real advantages, like opportunities to live abroad — her family got to live all around the US, Japan, and Germany — but it also comes with some downsides, like having to put your spouse's career over your own goals.

"Though we choose to marry someone in the military, we had career goals before we got married, and those didn't just disappear."

Career aspirations become more difficult to achieve, and progress comes with lots of starts and stops. After experiencing these unique challenges firsthand, Sue founded an organization to help other military spouses in similar situations.

Sue had gotten a degree in international relations because she wanted to pursue a career in diplomacy, but for fourteen years she wasn't able to make any headway — not until they moved back to the DC area. "Eighteen months later, many rejections later, it became apparent that this was going to be more challenging than I could ever imagine," she says.

Eighteen months is halfway through a typical assignment, and by then, most spouses are looking for their next assignment. "If I couldn't find a job in my own 'hometown' with multiple degrees and a great network, this didn't bode well for other military spouses," she says.

She's not wrong. Military spouses spend most of their lives moving with their partners, which means they're often far from family and other support networks. When they do find a job, they often make less than their civilian counterparts — and they're more likely to experience underemployment or unemployment. In fact, on some deployments, spouses are not even allowed to work.

Before the pandemic, military spouse unemployment was 22%. Since the pandemic, it's expected to rise to 35%.

Sue eventually found a job working at a military-focused nonprofit, and it helped her get the experience she needed to create her own dedicated military spouse program. She wrote a book and started saving up enough money to start the National Military Spouse Network (NMSN), which she founded in 2010 as the first organization of its kind.

"I founded the NMSN to help professional military spouses develop flexible careers they could perform from any location."

"Over the years, the program has expanded to include a free digital magazine, professional development events, drafting annual White Papers and organizing national and local advocacy to address the issues of most concern to the professional military spouse community," she says.

Not only was NMSN's mission important to Sue on a personal level she also saw it as part of something bigger than herself.

"Gone are the days when families can thrive on one salary. Like everyone else, most military families rely on two salaries to make ends meet. If a military spouse wants or needs to work, they should be able to," she says.

"When less than one percent of our population serves in the military," she continues, "we need to be able to not only recruit the best and the brightest but also retain them."

"We lose out as a nation when service members leave the force because their spouse is unable to find employment. We see it as a national security issue."

"The NMSN team has worked tirelessly to jumpstart the discussion and keep the challenges affecting military spouses top of mind. We have elevated the conversation to Congress and the White House," she continues. "I'm so proud of the fact that corporations, the government, and the general public are increasingly interested in the issues affecting military spouses and recognizing the employment roadblocks they unfairly have faced."

"We have collectively made other people care, and in doing so, we elevated the issues of military spouse unemployment to a national and global level," she adds. "In the process, we've also empowered military spouses to advocate for themselves and our community so that military spouse employment issues can continue to remain at the forefront."

Not only has NMSN become a sought-after leader in the military spouse employment space, but Sue has also seen the career she dreamed of materializing for herself. She was recently invited to participate in the public re-launch of Joining Forces, a White House initiative supporting military and veteran families, with First Lady Dr. Jill Biden.

She has also had two of her recommendations for practical solutions introduced into legislation just this year. She was the first in the Air Force community to show leadership the power of social media to reach both their airmen and their military families.

That is why Sue is one of Tory Burch's "Empowered Women" this year. The $5,000 donation will be going to The Madeira School, a school that Sue herself attended when she was in high school because, she says, "the lessons I learned there as a student pretty much set the tone for my personal and professional life. It's so meaningful to know that the donation will go towards making a Madeira education more accessible to those who may not otherwise be able to afford it and providing them with a life-changing opportunity."

Most military children will move one to three times during high school so having a continuous four-year experience at one high school can be an important gift. After traveling for much of her formative years, Sue attended Madeira and found herself "in an environment that fostered confidence and empowerment. As young women, we were expected to have a voice and advocate not just for ourselves, but for those around us."

To learn more about Tory Burch and Upworthy's Empowered Women program visit https://www.toryburch.com/empoweredwomen/. Nominate an inspiring woman in your community today!