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After Elmo's 'trauma dump' check-in, 'Sesame Street' goes all-in on mental health

Their first PSA offers a simple strategy for managing big feelings.

sesame street characters

The Sesame Street gang is here for kids' mental well-being.

Remember when Elmo broke everyone simply by asking how people were doing on X? The viral check-in prompted a flood of responses in which people poured their hearts out onto the beloved Sesame Street character, and the wave of woes was so great all the other Sesame Street friends chimed in with their own words of support.

There's a reason Elmo's check-in hit people so hard. There's something viscerally comforting in the familiar faces and voices of our favorite childhood characters. Over 50-plus years creating high-quality shows for kids, Sesame Workshop has gained and retained people's trust and confidence, so engaging with Sesame Street characters feels safe and cathartic.

The folks behind Sesame Street have always incorporated kids' feelings and emotions into it educational programming, but a new initiative is taking a direct approach to mental health awareness. Teaming up with Huntsman Mental Health Institute, Sesame Workshop and the Ad Council have launched the "Love, Your Mind" campaign with a kid-friendly PSA.


It begins with Elmo humming a familiar tune, the "Sunny Days" theme song from Sesame Street, before his friends join in. Then Elmo explains how humming is a good strategy for managing big feelings. Watch:

It may seem simple, but Dr. Amanda Fujiki, an expert in child and adolescent psychiatry, Huntsman Mental Health Institute, tells Upworthy that humming can be "a calming experience for the brain that can give kids a pause from intense emotions and feelings."

"Humming is one of many coping activities that help kids identify and regulate emotions," says Dr. Fujiki. "Humming, deep breathing, engaging kids with their senses by listening to music, touching a cold item, like ice, or engaging in brief intense exercise, are all mindfulness based practices that can help kids take a pause to identify and regulate their emotions."

"There is research to show that mindfulness practices have positive influences for children and adults," she continues. "For example, studies show that mindful practices can reduce anxiety, depression, and improve physical health in children. By engaging in developmentally appropriate media focused on emotions, parents can offer young children opportunities to engage in dialogue where they can teach emotional literacy and validate big emotions when they come up by referencing examples, like Elmo."

The "Love, Your Mind" campaign comes at a crucial time as young people face an epidemic of mental health struggles. Feelings of persistent sadness and hopelessness were rising rapidly even before the COVID-19 pandemic hit. Since 2020, it's been clear that we need more resources to help youth manage their mental well-being.

“The growing mental health crisis is one of the most pressing issues for parents today and children’s needs can so often be overlooked,” said Samantha Maltin, EVP, Chief Marketing & Brand Officer, Sesame Workshop. “We know that caring for a child means supporting their whole circle of care, whether that’s parents, teachers or other caregivers. We’re grateful for our partnership with the Ad Council and ‘Love, Your Mind’ campaign through which we can reach even more children and caregivers with these emotional well-being resources.”

The Ad Council announced a Mental Health Initiative in November of 2022 to unite brands, marketers, media companies and nonprofits in addressing the mental health crisis for people of all ages throughout the U.S. “We all have a role to play when it comes to supporting and destigmatizing mental health, and parents and caregivers are an important part of that equation,” said Heidi Arthur, Chief Campaign Development Officer at the Ad Council.

Parents and caregivers can find more resources to support children’s emotional well-being, from managing big feelings to coping with more acute mental health challenges, at sesame.org/mentalhealth and follow Sesame Workshop on Instagram, X, Facebook, and TikTok for more.

Angelina Jordan blew everyone away with her version of 'Bohemian Rhapsody."


At Upworthy, we've shared a lot of memorable "America's Got Talent" auditions, from physics-defying dance performances to jaw-dropping magic acts to heart-wrenching singer-songwriter stories. Now we're adding Angelina Jordan's "AGT: The Champions" audition to the list because wow.

Jordan came to "AGT: The Champions" in 2020 as the winner of Norway's Got Talent, which she won in 2014 at the mere age of 7 with her impressive ability to seemingly channel Billie Holiday. For the 2020 audition, she sang Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody," but a version that no one had ever heard before.

With just her Amy Winehouse-ish voice, a guitar and a piano, Jordan brought the fan-favorite Queen anthem down to a smooth, melancholy ballad that's simply riveting to listen to.

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Can we bring back some 50s fridge features, please?

There are very few things that would make people nostalgic for the 1950s. Sure, they had cool cars and pearl necklaces were a staple, but that time frame had its fair share of problems, even if "Grease" made it look dreamy. Whether you believe your life would've been way more interesting if you were Danny Zuko or not, most would agree their technology was...lacking.

All eras are "advanced" for their time, but imagine being dropped off in the 50s as someone from the year 2023. A recent post by Historic Vids on Twitter of a 1956 commercial advertising a refrigerator, however, has some people thinking that when it came to fridges, maybe they were living in the year 2056. I don't typically swoon over appliances, yet this one has me wondering where I can purchase a refrigerator like this.

Of course, there's no fancy touch screen that tells you the weather and asks how you'd like your ice cubed. It's got more important features that are actually practical.

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Pop Culture

Veterinarian lists things pet parents do that 'give him the ick' and they are spot-on

Though meant in good fun, these 'icks' could be helpful pointers for pet parents everywhere.

Representative Image from Canva

Vets are some of the people we'd least like to give "the ick" to


Ally McBeal first brought us the phrase “gives me the ick” back in 1999. And it’s recently had a resurgence, thanks to, you guessed it, TikTok. And while it’s mostly reserved to the dating world, the term can and has been used to describe virtually every red flag or pet peeve under the sun.

And now, thanks to Dr. Frank Bozelka, we can enjoy a veterinarian version of “icks.” And just to be clear, the icks in question don’t come from the patients themselves…but the pet parents.

While Dr. Bozelka is clearly just poking fun, he doesn’t shy away from highlighting some of the choices that pet parents make that cause some serious problems for their furry friends.

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via Pixabay

A middle-aged woman holding a baby.

A story that recently went viral on Reddit’s AITA forum asks an important question: What is a parent’s role in taking care of their grandchildren? The story is even further complicated because the woman at the center of the controversy is a stepparent.

The woman, 38, met her husband Sam, 47, ten years ago, when his daughter, Leah, 25, was 15. Five years ago, the couple got married after Leah had moved out to go to college.

Leah’s mom passed away when she was 10.

Last year, Leah became pregnant, and she wanted to keep the baby, but her boyfriend didn’t. After the disagreement, the boyfriend broke up with her. This forced Leah to move back home because she couldn’t afford to be a single parent and live alone on a teacher’s salary.

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Health

We asked people what they really enjoy that others can't understand. One answer dominated.

Interestingly, research shows that these people are particularly unlikely to be neurotic.

Canva

Some people really enjoy being alone.

We recently asked our Upworthy audience on Facebook, "What's something that you really enjoy that other people can't seem to understand?" and over 1,700 people weighed in. Some people shared things like housework, cleaning and laundry, which a lot of people see as chores. Others shared different puzzles or forms of art they like doing, and still others shared things like long car rides or grocery shopping.

But one answer dominated the list of responses. It came in various wordings, but by far the most common answer to the question was "silent solitude." Here are a few examples:

"Feeling perfectly content, when I’m all alone."

"Being home. Alone. In silence."

"That I enjoy being alone and my soul is at peace in the silence. I don't need to be around others to feel content, and it takes me days to recharge from being overstimulated after having an eventful day surrounded by others."

"Enjoying your own company. Being alone isn’t isolating oneself. It’s intentional peace and healthy… especially for deep feelers/thinkers."

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Unique Vintage is making fashion more fun and inclusive, one killer look at a time

Unique Vintage blends classic designs with contemporary sensibilities, making vintage-inspired fashion for every body.

Everyone loves the timeless allure of vintage fashion. But let’s face it: vintage fashion doesn’t love everyone back. The golden eras of style we so admire were not exactly known for their diversity or size inclusivity, so the silhouettes and sizes of retro fashion leave a lot of people feeling left out. But are you ready for some good news? One LA-based brand called Unique Vintage has set about rewriting fashion history by recreating vintage styles to fit the modern world. With a commitment to diversity and inclusivity, this company is making sure that anyone can rock their favorite vintage looks. If you’re looking for a fashion brand that actually celebrates the things that make us unique, you need to keep reading.

What is Unique Vintage?

In the heart of LA, at the dawn of the new millennium, Katie Echeverry’s love of vintage fashion set her on a course to change the fashion industry forever. Fueled by her passion for the elegance of bygone eras and the thrill of thrift store treasure hunts, Katie opened her own online vintage store, Unique Vintage. However, what Katie noticed was that there were tons of people who loved vintage clothing who could never actually wear. And it was this gap in the vintage fashion market that led her to turn Unique Vintage from an online vintage store to a fullblown vintage-inspired fashion label. Today, Unique Vintage has blossomed into an iconic brand that transforms nostalgia for the past into the fashion statements of the present.

But Unique Vintage isn’t just revered for its style. This company is committed to making diversity and inclusivity the norm in fashion. Their goal is to create classic looks for every body, celebrating our individuality and making everyone feel fabulous. To that end, they partner with a variety of charitable organizations that support women’s rights, animal welfare, and LGBTQ+ communities.

Ready to take a look at what Unique Vintage has to offer? Then lets dive in.

The Western Collection

The bold Western Collection gives you the timeless allure of country and western fashion, updated for the modern world. This collection is a celebration of classic Western aesthetics, reimagined for today's fashion-forward individual. From bold print dresses that capture the vibrant essence of frontier towns, to metallic cowboy boots that look like a sunset over the Vegas strip, each piece is meticulously designed to make a statement.

The Western Collection is where nostalgia meets contemporary style, offering a range of sizes to ensure that everyone can find their perfect fit and embrace their adventurous spirit. Whether you're getting dressed up for a girls night out, or you just like to look amazing when you go to the grocery store, these pieces are designed to turn heads.

Unique Vintage x Barbie

Born in 2017, the Unique Vintage x Barbie collaboration reimagines Barbie’s iconic styles for today's diverse and fashion-forward audience. Unique Vintage has meticulously crafted a collection that transcends time, bringing the nostalgic charm of Barbie's wardrobe into the present day with pieces that celebrate every body type.

From chic pencil dresses to playful A-line skirts, each item in the collection is an homage Barbie’s classic style, updated to ensure that everyone can find their perfect fit and feel fabulous.By blending Barbie's classic appeal with Unique Vintage's inclusive sizing, this collaboration invites everyone to experience the joy of dressing like a true fashion icon.

The Prom Collection

If you’ve got a special occasion coming up and you want to make a statement, the Unique Vintage Prom Collection offers a wide array of styles that cater to every taste. From the timeless elegance of the 1950s, to the bold glamor of the 1980s, and everything in between, this collection proves that classic styles never truly go out of fashion.

Each dress in this collection is a masterpiece specifically designed to make you feel like a prom queen. If you love the intricate details of vintage dresses, but have a hard time finding ones that fit—or that you can actually afford—Unique Vintage can make your dreams come true.

Vintage Inspired Fashion For Every Body

Thanks to Unique Vintage, gone are the days of rummaging through thrift stores, only to face the disappointment of not finding the right size, style, or price. Now everybody can experience the joy and nostalgia of vintage fashion—without even leaving the house. Whether you're in love with the flapper dresses of the roaring '20s, the swing skirts of the '50s, or the bold prints of the '70s, Unique Vintage offers a meticulously curated collection that spans the decades. Shop by clothing category, or by your favorite era, and find the classic looks you want while supporting a company that champions diversity, body positivity, and ethical practices.

So, why wait? With Unique Vintage, every purchase contributes to a broader movement towards a more inclusive and conscious fashion industry. If you’ve always loved vintage fashion, but have never been able to make it work for you, go check out the growing Unique Vintage community on social media for some fashion inspiration. Then check out Unique Vintage online and start building the vintage-inspired wardrobe of your dreams.