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Heroes

It’s the Hubble Telescope's most famous image. Here’s how it almost didn’t happen.

Every part of the sky deserves a closer look.

In 1995, astronomer Robert Williams had the opportunity of a lifetime: a chance to use the freshly repaired and ready for action Hubble Space Telescope.

Every astronomer in the world was desperate to get time on the Hubble to photograph galaxies, nebulae, and deep space objects with humanity's most powerful telescope. Williams wasn't interested in that. He knew there was something remarkable out in space that regular earthbound telescopes couldn't see. Normally, his colleagues would be excited for such an opportunity. This time, they told him he was crazy to even consider it.


The Hubble Space Telescope: humanity's eye above the sky. Image via NASA.

When the Hubble Space Telescope was placed into orbit 340 miles above the Earth in 1990, it was one of the most ambitious — and expensive — scientific projects in history.

NASA promised an eager public that the Hubble would take better images than any telescope on Earth. But for the first few years of its life it couldn't focus properly, leaving it unable to deliver the awe-inspiring images of space it was meant to provide.

The Hubble's repairs made a huge difference: at left, a galaxy photographed by Hubble before its repairs; at right, the same galaxy after. Image via Space Telescope Science Institute/NASA.

Most people in NASA felt that the first images to come from the Hubble after its billion-dollar repairs needed to help them regain the public's trust. They had to be a sure thing, and Williams’ project was anything but.

“It was very risky. I had a team of young, bright astronomers who were fresh out of school. Plus, there was a real chance we might not see anything,” Williams said. “I felt it had to be tried anyway. I told administrators that I would take full responsibility if it was a flop. It took me promising to turn in my resignation to convince them.”

Williams picked a tiny square of space near the Big Dipper constellation. It was one with very few visible stars — to be fair, very few visible anything. It was as close to an empty speck of sky as one might find looking upward, as tiny as a single grain of sand held out at arm's length.

Then he pointed the Hubble Telescope at it for 10 full days.

The image that resulted is one of the most important photographs of space ever taken. Astronomers called it the Hubble Deep Field.

From a distance, it looks like any average image of space — a smattering of stars shining in inky blackness.

Image via Robert Williams (STScI), the Hubble Deep Field Team/NASA.

But only about 20 of those bright lights are individual stars. The rest are distant galaxies. More than 3,000 of them.

Aside from the one bright star-shaped spot in the front, every object in this image is a galaxy. Image via Robert Williams (STScI), the Hubble Deep Field Team/NASA.

For Williams and his team, the realization that they had taken a truly remarkable image didn’t come right away. It took months of research for them to confirm what they’d suspected — that they’d captured evidence of some of the oldest objects in the universe.

Here's where it gets mind-bendy.

Because of the time it has taken their light to reach us, the Hubble Deep Field shows us galaxies as they were a few billion years after the Big Bang. As Williams explains:

"If you want to study anything — people, agriculture, etc. — it’s always good to understand the past to see how you got there. Astronomy is the only profession where you can actually do that. At the time, the Hubble Deep Field was the closest we’ve come to seeing the moment where our universe came into being 13.7 billion years ago. I like to call it 'Humanity’s Baby Picture.'"

For many astronomers, this image made them question everything they thought they understood about the size and age of the universe.

At the time, astronomers believed there were about 10 billion galaxies in the known universe spaced out so widely they could hardly be photographed together. The Hubble Deep Field showed that wasn’t nearly enough. Now they estimate there are trillions of galaxies, at least. Maybe more.

They also learned that young galaxies formed closer to the Big Bang looked a lot different from older ones. Our home galaxy the Milky Way is a beautiful majestic spiral galaxy with four graceful swirling arms. The adolescent galaxies captured in the Hubble Deep Field were oddly-shaped and awkwardly bumping together. Taking this image and others based on it allowed astronomers to view space in a brand new way: during its teenage years.

By far, the most important legacy of the Hubble Deep Field project is the data it created.

Before the Hubble Deep Field project, astronomers would retain exclusive rights to their data for at least one year, giving them the best chance of making a big discovery on their own. Williams and his team opted to make their research available as soon as they finished collecting it. “Having unique access to this data would have been a great thing for all our careers. But data needs to be free and shared,” recalled Williams. “This was an important community service project that might change the culture of science to be more collaborative than competitive.”

Robert Williams. Image used with permission.

Once again, Williams was right. In 2004, astronomers built off the work of the Hubble Deep Field team to take another snapshot of empty sky, this time near the Fornac constellation. The resulting image — the Hubble Ultra Deep Field — showed 10,000 galaxies, the most that can be seen in the visible light spectrum.

In 2012, they took it even further. Astronomers viewed the same space with an infrared telescope to capture galaxies so far away their light can't be seen by the human eye. The Hubble eXtreme Deep Field reveals the faintest and most distant galaxies ever seen, up to 13.2 billion years back in time.

The Hubble eXtreme Deep Field is the furthest back in time humanity has ever looked. Image via NASA, ESA, H. Teplitz and M. Rafelski (IPAC/Caltech), A. Koekemoer (STScI), R. Windhorst (Arizona State University), and Z. Levay (STScI).

Williams had no way of knowing for sure what the Hubble would see when he pointed it at that patch of empty sky in December 1996. All he had was a theory he wanted to test.

His gambit paid off, but even if it hadn’t, Williams would have no regrets. “If you’re going to make a discovery, you’re going to have to be a risk-taker.”

Sandhya with other members at a home meet-up

South Asian women across the country are finding social support in a thriving Facebook group devoted to them.

The Little Brown Diary has over 40,000 members, primarily between the ages of 20 and 40, and 100 subgroups devoted to niche topics. Some of these include mental health, entrepreneurship, career advice, and more.

Members of the group can discuss their experiences as South Asians, inner conflicts they face, and even bond over their favorite hobbies. The Facebook group has become a safe place for many of its members to find support in the most transformative periods of their lives. These include:

  • Supporting women in domestic violence and sexual assault circumstances
  • Sharing mental health and suicide resources
  • Connecting members to support each other through grief and loss
  • Helping members find the strength to get a divorce or defend their decision to be childfree
  • Helping them navigate career changes
  • Helping to find friends in a new city
  • Finding a community of other neurodivergent people in their shoes

“I joined the online community because I was looking for that sense of belonging and connection with others who shared similar experiences and backgrounds,” expressed Sandhya Simhan, one of the group admins.

“At the time, I was pregnant and eager to find other desi moms who could offer support, advice, and friendship during this significant life transition,” she says.

Another group admin, Henna Wadhwa, who works in Diversity and Inclusion in Washington, D.C., even uses the group to inspire new areas of research, including a study on ethnic-racial identity at work.

“I was surprised and excited for a group that brought together South Asian/brown women. I wanted to meet other women with similar research interests and who wanted to conduct academic research on South Asian American women,” Wadhwa says.


While social media isn’t always the best place to spend our time, studies show that the sense of community people get from joining online groups can be valuable to our mental health.

“The presence of LBD has allowed so many South Asian women to truly feel safe in their identity. The community we have built encourages each person to authentically and freely be themselves. It is a powerful sight to witness these South Asian women be vulnerable, break barriers, and support each other in their journeys,” says Wadhwa.

Hena and Neesha

According to an article in Psychology Today, a study on college students looked at whether social media could serve as a source of social support in times of stress. Turns out, these students were more likely to turn to their social media network rather than parents or mental health professionals for connection. The anonymity of virtual communities was also seen as appealing to those experiencing depression.

“The social support received in the online group promotes a sense of well-being and was associated with positive relationships and personal growth,” the article states.

This is why finding a community of like-minded individuals online can have such a positive impact in your life.

“There are almost half a million women in our target audience (millennial South Asians in North America) and about 10% of them are part of LBD. It’s been a game-changer for our community. LBD is all about embracing your true self and living your most authentic life. It's amazing to see how the members support, relate, learn, and lift each other,” says Wadhwa and Simhan.

Taryn Charles blew everyone away with her BGT audition.

For nearly two decades, people have been enjoying "Got Talent" competitions all over the world, inspired by the first "America's Got Talent" in 2006. And thanks to social media and YouTube, we can enjoy the most memorable auditions over and over again.

For instance, this one from Taryn Charles on the 2024 season of "Britain's Got Talent."

Charles is a music teacher who works with special needs kids. She even brought one of her students and her parent to be part of the audience during her audition. When the judges asked why she wanted to be on "Britain's Got Talent," Charles said, "I love to make people smile and I think my voice is alright."

Talk about an understatement.


As she stands waiting for the music to start, she shakes her hand by her side a few times, clearly getting some nerves out. But as soon as she starts to sing the first line, "Looking out on the morning rain, I used to feel so uninspired…" it's clear from her rich, raspy voice and easy stage presence that she's got something special.

And it only gets better from there. "(You Make Me Feel Like a) Natural Woman" was written by singer-songwriter Carole King, then famously covered by Aretha Franklin, which is a hard act to follow. But Charles knocked it out of the park, blowing away the audience and judges alike. In fact, the performance earned her not one but two standing ovations and inspired judge Bruno Tonioli to smash the Golden Buzzer button before the judges even began to offer their feedback.

Watch:

What makes this performance especially memorable is how humble and unassuming Charles is before and after her knock-out performance. If you didn't watch til the very end, you may have missed her hilariously real, "I think I've wet myself," which only makes her even more endearing.

"WOW I was blown away with her angelic and powerful voice," wrote one commenter. "And yet she is so humble and has a beautiful soul. Plus, I have never in my life seen a double standing ovation, she so deserves a golden buzzer, wishing her the best success."

"This is how you do an audition, stunning tone to her voice.....if anyone deserves a chance it's this lady......BOOM!!" wrote another.

"This was so inspirational. Taryn I am in tears," shared another. "I know what it feels like to struggle with self-worth. You are a mirror to show me that that those people are not always right. You are phenomenally gifted and you have an amazing career as a professional singer ahead of you! Blessings!"

Talent competition judges often warn contestants about the challenge of singing songs done by big vocal divas, and we've seen singers attempt to sing the likes of Whitney Houston or Mariah Carey and fall flat. It's not easy to sing an iconic song most people associate with Aretha Franklin—the Queen of Soul and Rolling Stone's #1 singer of all time—and have any hope of impressing people. And yet, Taryn Charles managed to make the song her own and wow everyone in the process with her unique voice.

We'll definitely be keeping an eye on this humble music teacher as she makes her way through the "Britain's Got Talent" gauntlet. Heck of a way to kick it off.

Sponsored

3 organic recipes that feed a family of 4 for under $7 a serving

O Organics is the rare brand that provides high-quality food at affordable prices.

A woman cooking up a nice pot of pasta.

Over the past few years, rising supermarket prices have forced many families to make compromises on ingredient quality when shopping for meals. A recent study published by Supermarket News found that 41% of families with children were more likely to switch to lower-quality groceries to deal with inflation.

By comparison, 29% of people without children have switched to lower-quality groceries to cope with rising prices.

Despite the current rising costs of groceries, O Organics has enabled families to consistently enjoy high-quality, organic meals at affordable prices for nearly two decades. With a focus on great taste and health, O Organics offers an extensive range of options for budget-conscious consumers.

O Organics launched in 2005 with 150 USDA Certified Organic products but now offers over 1,500 items, from organic fresh fruits and vegetables to organic dairy and meats, organic cage-free certified eggs, organic snacks, organic baby food and more. This gives families the ability to make a broader range of recipes featuring organic ingredients than ever before.


“We believe every customer should have access to affordable, organic options that support healthy lifestyles and diverse shopping preferences,” shared Jennifer Saenz, EVP and Chief Merchandising Officer at Albertsons, one of many stores where you can find O Organics products. “Over the years, we have made organic foods more accessible by expanding O Organics to every aisle across our stores, making it possible for health and budget-conscious families to incorporate organic food into every meal.”

With some help from our friends at O Organics, Upworthy looked at the vast array of products available at our local store and created some tasty, affordable and healthy meals.

Here are 3 meals for a family of 4 that cost $7 and under, per serving. (Note: prices may vary by location and are calculated before sales tax.)

O Organic’s Tacos and Refried Beans ($6.41 Per Serving)

Few dishes can make a family rush to the dinner table quite like tacos. Here’s a healthy and affordable way to spice up your family’s Taco Tuesdays.

Prep time: 2 minutes

Cook time: 20 minutes

Total time: 22 minutes

Ingredients:

1 lb of O Organics Grass Fed Ground Beef ($7.99)

1 packet O Organics Taco Seasoning ($2.29)

O Organics Mexican-Style Cheese Blend Cheese ($4.79)

O Organics Chunky Salsa ($3.99)

O Organics Taco Shells ($4.29)

1 can of O Organics Refried Beans ($2.29)

Instructions:

1. Cook the ground beef in a skillet over medium heat until thoroughly browned; remove any excess grease.

2. Add 1 packet of taco seasoning to beef along with water [and cook as directed].

3. Add taco meat to the shell, top with cheese and salsa as desired.

4. Heat refried beans in a saucepan until cooked through, serve alongside tacos, top with cheese.

tacos, o organics, family recipesO Organics Mexican-style blend cheese.via O Organics

O Organics Hamburger Stew ($4.53 Per Serving)

Busy parents will love this recipe that allows them to prep in the morning and then serve a delicious, slow-cooked stew after work.

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cook time: 7 hours

Total time: 7 hours 15 minutes

Servings: 4

Ingredients:

1 lb of O Organics Grass Fed Ground Beef ($7.99)

1 ½ lbs O Organics Gold Potatoes ($4.49)

3 O Organics Carrots ($2.89)

1 tsp onion powder

I can O Organics Tomato Paste ($1.25)

2 cups water

1 yellow onion diced ($1.00)

1 clove garlic ($.50)

1 tsp salt

1/4 tsp pepper

2 tsp Italian seasoning or oregano

Instructions:

1. Cook the ground beef in a skillet over medium heat until thoroughly browned; remove any excess grease.

2. Transfer the cooked beef to a slow cooker with the potatoes, onions, carrots and garlic.

3. Mix the tomato paste, water, salt, pepper, onion powder and Italian seasoning in a separate bowl.

4. Drizzle the mixed sauce over the ingredients in the slow cooker and mix thoroughly.

5. Cover the slow cooker with its lid and set it on low for 7 to 8 hours, or until the potatoes are soft. Dish out into bowls and enjoy!

potatoes, o organics, hamburger stewO Organics baby gold potatoes.via O Organics


O Organics Ground Beef and Pasta Skillet ($4.32 Per Serving)

This one-pan dish is for all Italian lovers who are looking for a saucy, cheesy, and full-flavored comfort dish that takes less than 30 minutes to prepare.

Prep time: 2 minutes

Cook time: 25 minutes

Total time: 27 minutes

Servings: 4

Ingredients:

1 lb of O Organics Grass Fed Ground Beef ($7.99)

1 tbsp. olive oil

2 tsp dried basil

1 tsp garlic powder

1 can O Organics Diced Tomatoes ($2.00)

1 can O Organics Tomato Sauce ($2.29)

1 tbsp O Organics Tomato Paste ($1.25)

2 1/4 cups water

2 cups O Organics Rotini Pasta ($3.29)

1 cup O Organics Mozzarella cheese ($4.79)

Instructions:

1. Brown ground beef in a skillet, breaking it up as it cooks.

2. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and garlic powder

3. Add tomato paste, sauce and diced tomatoes to the skillet. Stir in water and bring to a light boil.

4. Add pasta to the skillet, ensuring it is well coated. Cover and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

5. Remove the lid, sprinkle with cheese and allow it to cool.

o organics, tomato basil pasta sauce, olive oilO Organics tomato basil pasta sauce and extra virgin olive oil.via O Organics

@letsgoripley/TikTok, used with permission

What a smart doggo.

Speech-language pathologist Christina Hunger and her dog Stella were the first to experiment with talking buttons in 2019. Since then there has been a surge of online content showing other pet parents using similar kits to communicate with their own pups.

The most fascinating aspect of this phenomenon is the question of whether or not canines are able to understand full-blown complicated sentences beyond “treat” and “outside.”

While the overall jury is still out on that, scientifically speaking, dogs like Ripley seem to make an incredibly compelling case for believing the hype.


The Australian Shepherd has an entire TikTok account documenting his impressive talk button journey, but a video posted on March 28, 2024, feels next-level.

In the clip, Ripley presses the “smell” button as his parents eat lunch. When that doesn’t get their attention, he begins to bark.

“What do you smell?” a voice finally asks. To which Ripley replies “outside,” followed by “gardens.”

Confused, someone asks, “It smells like the gardens outside?”

Ripley’s parents had apparently just started a load of laundry before making lunch, and the detergent had been spilling all over the floor from the washing machine. Ripley had been smelling the detergent, which was reminiscent of the gardens outside.

Unfortunately, they didn’t put two and two together until after they went back to the laundry room. Hence the moral of the story: “You should always listen to your dog.”

@letsgoripley He’s so freakin’ smart! #Talkingdog #letsgoripley #ripleytalks #fluentpet #australianshepherd #dogs ♬ original sound - Ripley the Australian Shepherd

Ripley’s amazing feat prompted lots of praise from viewers.

“All of the treats,” one person wrote.

Another added, “I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again, he is brilliant.”

Others were quick to compliment the breed. And rightfully so, as Australian Shepherds are known for their remarkable intelligence, as well as their strong drive and exuberance, according to the American Kennel Club. They thrive when they have a job, and the way Ripley jumped into action is a pretty great example of this characteristic.

So, while we might not have definite evidence for the efficiency of talk buttons, one thing remains abundantly clear—our dogs are trying to communicate with us in whatever way they can. All we need to do is listen.

Check out even more of Ripley's talk button shenanigans on TikTok.

Family

Here are 13 of the 'most surprising' things people learned after getting divorced

"The person you married is not the same person you divorce."

A couple is having a hard time in therapy.

Studies show that after the death of a spouse, getting a divorce is the second most stressful life event a person can have. It’s even worse than going to jail or losing one’s job.

Going through a divorce can be incredibly stressful because it involves significant changes in nearly every aspect of life. The process can feel overwhelming, from emotional upheaval and legal complexities to financial adjustments and parenting challenges. It often means redefining personal identity and future plans, which requires time, patience and support from loved ones to navigate successfully.

However, there can be many positive sides to getting a divorce, the biggest being able to get away from someone who is causing you grief. It can also be a means of escaping a tough financial situation or distancing yourself from toxic in-laws.


Getting divorced can also open the door for some much-needed personal change.

A Redditor who goes by BondEmilyBond asked divorced people on the AskReddit subforum, “What's the most surprising thing you learned from getting divorced?” Many people were happily surprised by some of the lessons they learned from getting divorced and the positive outcomes they never expected.

While the post could have easily turned dour, many shared that getting a divorce allowed them to grow in ways they never expected. The separation was also an opportunity for many of their spouses to grow as well.

Here are 13 of the “most surprising” things people learned from getting a divorce.

1. "The person you married is not the same person you divorce." — Royal_Arachnid_2295

"Very true! One thing I learned getting divorced fairly young (33) was that we only have one life, you have to make sure you’re happy. Marriage was not the partnership I expected, especially after having kids. I was doing the majority of the household work while also doing the majority of the childcare and working full time. I suddenly realized this couldn’t be the rest of my life. And things are so much better now." — Klopije

2. Sometimes, everyone needs to change

"How I DID need to change certain parts of myself and my life, but I was not the entire problem in our marriage." — Ughfinethisusername

3. "I expected to be heartbroken but mostly just felt relieved." — Oddwithoutend

"What is worst than being alone? Wishing you were alone." — AnnatoniaMac

"When the time came for me to spend my first night in my shi**y apartment, I unlocked the door, walked in, sat down on my couch, turned on my TV and then it hit me: No matter what I did that night, nobody was going to yell at me. And I felt so much relief in that moment, I was free and I didn't even realize that I hadn't been. I came to love that shitty apartment. My daughter and I lived there for three years (she's with me 50% of the time) and those were three of the happiest years of my life." — Spcoalpresense

4. You're never completely rid of your ex

"Not from my experience, but having children with your ex means you're not really rid of them, ever. They will always be around unless the children choose to remove themselves from their lives at some point. That includes the extended family, too, so it's a package deal at every event. It's not like they magically go away after the kids turn 18, though you do get to deal with them a little less." — Magicrowantree

"This is true, but I learned that it's much, much, much easier to be divorced with kids than it is to be unhappily married with kids." — Rusty0123

5. "I felt even more lonely when I was married." — bunbunzinlove

"First husband and I went to see 'The Misfits,' the 1961 Marilyn Monroe, Clark Gable movie at the vintage movie house. At the very beginning, she's getting a Nevada divorce, and tells her husband: 'If I'm going to be alone, I want to be by myself.' He doesn't realize it, but that was a turning point in our marriage; that line floored me." — Flahdgal

6. Lawyers are expensive

"Sometimes you have to pay them to be able to communicate with someone you’re not able to communicate with." — Youngest_Syndrome_78

"Your lawyer is as expensive as your relationship was terrible/you or your ex is stubborn." — Youngest_Syndrome_78

7. Being alone is freedom

"How content I could be on my own. Never having to compromise throughout the mundane moments because you are living alone is very freeing." — Independent_Sunshine

"You know what I feel when I walk into my small divorce apartment? Peace! Blessed peace. No one's criticizing me. I'm not responsible for someone else's disappointing life choices. I am not his rage sponge, anymore. Goodbye, McMansion in the suburbs. Don't miss you." — Kit3399

8. The stress can be unbearable

"You can almost die from grief and disappointment." — HeartofGold48

"During one of our last fights, I fainted, fell backward on the concrete floor, and got a concussion and MRI. Apparently, stress can do that. The physical impact of divorce is something I never expected." — Haunting_Cattle2138

9. True love is awesome

"Pretty much how awesome life can be with a caring, kind, supportive spouse. I had no idea how bad I had it until the old one abandoned ship, and I met the true love of my life." — Relax-Enjoy

"This is so true. If you’ve been in an emotionally abusive relationship for a long time, experiencing real love is just astounding." — InactiveUser247

10. Unhealthy can be normalized

"You know, I remember at one point in my marriage thinking 'I guess this is just how it works.' After being unhappy for so long, it just seemed like the normal. But I've definitely found out that no, it's not how it works! A relationship can be happy and supportive, without you feeling like you have to do all the work!" — Anothercrockett

"Same. I put my emotional and physical needs on a shelf, just chalking it up as 'my lot'. The rest of my life was great (kids, family, friends, house, money, pool)... It wasn't until she dropped the D-word on me at the beginning of the year that I let my feelings of neglect out." — IBSeanB

11. You're more attractive than you thought

"How many men I knew that wanted to date me lol." — OK_Acanthistta5022

"My current partner also had this realization. The moment her separation became public then certain 'friends' were circling. She was still of the opinion that women can have truly platonic male friends, which they can, but the majority I believe have other motives." — LordBiscuits

12. Couples are great at putting on a facade

"When I got a divorce, it turns out it was the beginning of a spree of divorces in my neighborhood among my friends. In a 2 year period, 5 couples I knew in my neighborhood got divorces. All of them, to a tee, were couples that I thought were very happily married. It sparked a lot of frank and open conversations among me and my newly-divorced friends about marriage, relationships and goings-on that I had never had before. Turns out I was living a really dull and sheltered life. I was astonished at how much infidelity was going on, for example. There were shenanigans going on everywhere. ... So the takeaway for me was, couples can be very good at putting on a fake front of happiness." — framptal_tromwibbler

13. You can still be friends

"You can still be mates. It's not all 'burn your ex to the ground' sh**e. It is perfectly possible to get on with everyone (including in-laws). Sometimes marriages just do not work out." — CarpetGripperRod

"Plus, the new partner can actually be pretty ace! She’s wonderful to my kids and has always treated me with nothing but love and respect. My kids come first and I can’t see any downside to them having more love in their lives." — Substantial-Land-248

Family

Mom creates a thrilling roller coaster ride for her kiddo without even leaving the house

Build core memories for free with just a couple of simple props.

Daiana Valadares/TikTok (used with permission)

You don't have to take a young kid to a theme park to give them a thrill ride experience.

Taking a child to an amusement park can be a lot of fun—and also a lot of money, time and energy that a parent might not have. Just looking at the cost of theme park tickets these days is enough to make a parent rethink such an outing, especially with young children who may only get a couple of hours of enjoyment out of it before exhausting themselves (or their caretakers). There are also other obstacles, from distance to mobility to sensory issues, that might make a trip to the thrill rides not possible or ideal.

But that doesn't mean that parents can't give young kids a taste of a wild roller coaster ride in other ways. In fact, as one mom demonstrates, it's fairly simple to create a thrilling simulation right in the comfort of your own home.


A video of a woman using a couple of simple household props and a POV video to create a fun experience for her little girl has people praising her joyful ingenuity—as well as her muscle endurance.

The video shared by Daiana Valadares on TikTok shows her sitting on the end of a bed, setting her young daughter on an upside down chair on her lap with a cushion in the bottom of the seat. The chair legs stick up from her lap, and the little girl grabs hold of the front legs like handle bars. Once she's situated, Valadares turns on a video showing a roller coaster ride from a first-person point-of-view.

Once the "ride" begins, Valadares uses the back two chair legs and her own body to create vibration and steer along with with the video, giving her daughter the sensation of actually riding the coaster. Valadares is exceptionally good at creating the simulation, and they both seem like they're having an absolute blast.

Watch:

@daianavaladares

Criando memórias afetivas. Amo nós duas juntas! #crianca #diversaotiktok #diversao #memoriasafetivas #menina #meninaemaistranquila #vaiprofy

"Not only is the idea amazing, the execution of it is equally brilliant. This is one of the cleverest ways to have fun with your kids I've ever seen," wrote one commenter on Reddit.

"I adore that she did the vibrations too lol. That's so on point," wrote another.

"I was terrified of rollercoasters when I was little (love them now). I wonder if this would have desensitized me and let me enjoy them sooner. Regardless, super idea by mom!" shared another.

"I used to do this with my kids. We would watch the Olympics and then they’d get in a laundry basket for the ‘bobsled run’. Kids are so fun!" added another.

As the video shows, it doesn't take a lot of money to make fun memories for kids—just a few household props and some creativity (and maybe some leg strength). Some people pointed out that you can do something similar with a laundry basket instead of a chair, and while there is a game on Steam called Planet Coaster for the simulation, there are free POV roller coaster videos on YouTube you can use as well.

Here's to parents figuring out fun, inventive ways to build memories with their children without breaking the bank. You can follow Daiana Valadares on TikTok.

Science

Watch Carl Sagan eloquently explain why books are the 'greatest of human inventions'

"A book is proof that humans are capable of working magic.”

Carl Sagan explains why books are magic.

Carl Sagan was one of the greatest scientific communicators of his generation because he had a knack for putting things into perspective. Whether explaining the vastness of the universe through the “pale blue dot” or how we are all made of star-stuff, Sagan was able to stoke feelings of wonder in everyday phenomena that we sometimes take for granted.

On episode 11 of his groundbreaking PBS show “Cosmos” in 1980, Sagan perused a library and explained why books and the libraries they call home are pure magic.

“What an astonishing thing a book is. It’s a flat object made from a tree with flexible parts on which are imprinted lots of funny dark squiggles. But one glance at it and you’re inside the mind of another person, maybe somebody dead for thousands of years,” Sagan explained.


“Across the millennia, an author is speaking clearly and silently inside your head, directly to you,” Sagan continued. “Writing is perhaps the greatest of human inventions, binding together people who never knew each other, citizens of distant epochs. Books break the shackles of time. A book is proof that humans are capable of working magic.”

Sagan goes on to ponder how human development would be stunted if humans only shared information by word of mouth. Great stories told by people in the past would slowly change over time until they eventually lost all meaning.

“A library connects us with the insights and knowledge of the greatest minds and the best teachers drawn from the whole planet and from all our history,” Sagan continues. “To instruct us without tiring and to inspire us to make our own contributions to the collective knowledge of the human species.”

"Libraries in ancient Egypt bore these words on their walls: 'Nourishment for the soul' and that's still a pretty fair assessment of what libraries provide," Sagan concluded the segment.