Stunning photos show how a magpie returned the favor to the family that saved her.

Sometimes an animal companion is the best medicine.

Almost four years ago, Sam Bloom went on a trip to Thailand that changed her life forever.

She loves going on adventures with her husband, Cameron, and their three boys, and this trip was no different. One morning, after a dip in the ocean, they decided to get a juice and sit on the roof deck of their hotel. Sam leaned on an unstable part of the railing and fell, landing on the tile floor 18 feet below.

Just like that, everything was different.


Sam broke her back and fractured her skull, causing massive brain bleeding and swelling. Her injuries were so extensive that she wasn't able to return home to Australia for three weeks and had to stay in the hospital for another seven months. When doctors told her she'd never walk again, she says, it felt like a significant part of her died.

Shortly after returning home, the family stumbled upon a tiny three-week-old magpie that had fallen out of a tree.

Little did they know how much the tiny bird would change their lives.

Meet Penguin. Photo by Cameron Bloom/Penguin the Magpie.

The magpie was in desperate need of love and care. After a quick call to a veterinarian friend, the family decided to take her in. She required a great deal of attention, including feedings every three hours, but soon started to recuperate.

They named the magpie Penguin. From that moment on, she was part of the family.

Nap time. Photo by Cameron Bloom/Penguin the Magpie.

Penguin often acted like a pet, but the Blooms never forgot the magpie was wild. She got a nest made out of a laundry basket and could come and go as she pleased.

It felt incredibly special, Cam says, that Penguin usually chose to hang with them.

She loved to clown around with the boys, stealing food off their plates and pooping on their shirts.

Breakfast. Photo by Cameron Bloom/Penguin the Magpie.

Lunch. Photo by Cameron Bloom/Penguin the Magpie.

Even though Penguin could be loud and messy (just like her brothers) she could also be the sweetest companion.

Reading. Photo by Cameron Bloom/Penguin the Magpie.

Penguin's warm, quirky presence was especially meaningful to Sam, who was still recovering from her accident in more ways than one.

Cooking together. Photo by Cameron Bloom/Penguin the Magpie.

"She was great company," Sam explains over the phone. "I was going crazy being stuck at home. She was always on my lap or shoulder. She was good for me because I would just talk to her and tell her what was going through my head."

Photo by Cameron Bloom/Penguin the Magpie.

Sam says she often felt like she was whining too much about her situation to Cameron (to which Cam quickly interjects "Never!"), so she fell into the habit of sharing her feelings with the magpie.

Over the next several months, Sam's mood improved as she watched her kids and Penguin play together.

Kisses. Photo by Cameron Bloom/Penguin the Magpie.

Music hour. Photo by Cameron Bloom/Penguin the Magpie.

When Sam had to do her physical therapy, Penguin joined her.

Photo by Cameron Bloom/Penguin the Magpie.

And even got in some PT training herself.

Photo by Cameron Bloom/Penguin The Magpie.

After a few months, it was time for Penguin to leave the nest.

Setting Penguin free wasn't easy. The family set her up in a frangipani tree outside their house, but she often came back inside to escape the other magpies who tried to dive-bomb her. Magpies can be quite territorial, and Penguin seemed to be infringing on claimed property.

Photo by Cameron Bloom/Penguin the Magpie.

Slowly, Penguin got used to leaving her human nest for longer and longer stretches. Then, over a year ago, she flew away for the last time.

Sam, ever an adventurer, made it onto the Australian para-canoe team and was away competing in the world kayak championship in Italy when Penguin left for good.

"Of course I miss her, but she came at a perfect time and left at a perfect time," says Sam.

The family was certainly sad to see her go, but Sam had been making major strides in her own recovery and finally felt she was in a good place emotionally and physically. The magpie had been there for her while she was recovering, just as her family had been there for Penguin when Penguin needed them.

No matter where she goes, Penguin will always be part of the Bloom family.

She gave them joy and love during a difficult time, and filled their house with laughter. Thanks to Cameron's amazing photography skills, the family also has a book full of incredible photos of Penguin enjoying life with them written by New York Times best-selling author, Bradley Trevor Greive.

Penguin with her family. Photo by Cameron Bloom/Penguin the Magpie.

It just goes to show that you never know what form hope will take when you need it most.

For the Bloom family, it happened to be in the form of a scrappy-looking magpie that needed their help; little did they know she'd end up saving them just as much as they saved her.

Check out an adorable video of Penguin's surprise return here:

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Should a man lose his home because the grass in his yard grew higher than 10 inches? The city of Dunedin, Florida seems to think so.

According to the Institute of Justice, which is representing Jim Ficken, he had a very good reason for not mowing his lawn – and tried to rectify the situation as best he could.

In 2014, Jim's mom became ill and he visited her often in South Carolina to help her out. When he was away, his grass grew too long and he was cited by a code office; he cut the grass and wasn't fined.

France has started forcing supermarkets to donate food instead of throwing it away.

But several years later, this one infraction would come back to haunt him after he left to take care of him's mom's affairs after she died. The arrangements he made to have his grass cut fell through (his friend who he asked to help him out passed away unexpectedly) and that set off a chain reaction that may result in him losing his home.

The 69-year-old retiree now faces a $29,833.50 fine plus interest. Watch the video to find out just what Jim is having to deal with.

Mow Your Lawn or Lose Your House! www.youtube.com

Cities

The world officially loves Michelle Obama.

The former first lady has overtaken the number one spot in a poll of the world's most admired women. Conducted by online research firm YouGov, the study uses international polling tools to survey people in countries around the world about who they most admire.

In the men's category, Bill Gates took the top spot, followed by Barack Obama and Jackie Chan.

In the women's category, Michelle Obama came first, followed by Oprah Winfrey and Angelina Jolie. Obama pushed Jolie out of the number one spot she claimed last year.

Unsurprising, really, because what's not to love about Michelle Obama? She is smart, kind, funny, accomplished, a great dancer, a devoted wife and mother, and an all-around, genuinely good person.

She has remained dignified and strong in the face of rabid masses of so-called Americans who spent eight years and beyond insisting that she's a man disguised as a woman. She's endured non-stop racist memes and terrifying threats to her family. She has received far more than her fair share of cruelty, and always takes the high road. She's the one who coined, "When they go low, we go high," after all.

She came from humble beginnings and remains down to earth despite becoming a familiar face around the world. She's not much older than me, but I still want to be like Michelle Obama when I grow up.

Her memoir, Becoming, may end up being the best-selling memoir of all time, having already sold 10 million copies—a clear sign that people can't get enough Michelle, because there's no such thing as too much Michelle.

Don't like Michelle Obama? Don't care. Those of us who love her will fly our MO flags high and without apology, paying no mind to folks with cold, dead hearts who don't know a gem of a human being when they see one. There is nothing any hater can say or do to make us admire this undeniably admirable woman any less.

When it seems like the world has lost its mind—which is how it feels most days these days—I'm just going to keep coming back to this study as evidence that hope for humanity is not lost.

Here. Enjoy some real-life Michelle on Jimmy Kimmel. (GAH. WHY IS SHE SO CUTE AND AWESOME. I can't even handle it.)

Michelle & Barack Obama are Boring Now www.youtube.com

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via EarthFix / Flickr

What will future generations never believe that we tolerated in 2019?

Dolphin and orca captivity, for sure. They'll probably shake their heads at how people died because they couldn't afford healthcare. And, they'll be completely mystified at the amount of food some people waste while others go starving.

According to Biological Diversity, "An estimated 40 percent of the food produced in the United States is wasted every year, costing households, businesses and farms about $218 billion annually."

There are so many things wrong with this.

First of all it's a waste of money for the households who throw out good food. Second, it's a waste of all of the resources that went into growing the food, including the animals who gave their lives for the meal. Third, there's something very wrong with throwing out food when one in eight Americans struggle with hunger.

Supermarkets are just as guilty of this unnecessary waste as consumers. About 10% of all food waste are supermarket products thrown out before they've reached their expiration date.

Three years ago, France took big steps to combat food waste by making a law that bans grocery stores from throwing away edible food.According to the new ordinance, stores can be fined for up to $4,500 for each infraction.

Previously, the French threw out 7.1 million tons of food. Sixty-seven percent of which was tossed by consumers, 15% by restaurants, and 11% by grocery stores.

This has created a network of over 5,000 charities that accept the food from supermarkets and donate them to charity. The law also struck down agreements between supermarkets and manufacturers that prohibited the stores from donating food to charities.

"There was one food manufacturer that was not authorized to donate the sandwiches it made for a particular supermarket brand. But now, we get 30,000 sandwiches a month from them — sandwiches that used to be thrown away," Jacques Bailet, head of the French network of food banks known as Banques Alimentaires, told NPR.

It's expected that similar laws may spread through Europe, but people are a lot less confident at it happening in the United States. The USDA believes that the biggest barrier to such a program would be cost to the charities and or supermarkets.

"The logistics of getting safe, wholesome, edible food from anywhere to people that can use it is really difficult," the organization said according to Gizmodo. "If you're having to set up a really expensive system to recover marginal amounts of food, that's not good for anybody."

Plus, the idea may seem a little too "socialist" for the average American's appetite.

"The French version is quite socialist, but I would say in a great way because you're providing a way where they [supermarkets] have to do the beneficial things not only for the environment, but from an ethical standpoint of getting healthy food to those who need it and minimizing some of the harmful greenhouse gas emissions that come when food ends up in a landfill," Jonathan Bloom, the author of American Wasteland, told NPR.

However, just because something may be socialist doesn't mean it's wrong. The greater wrong is the insane waste of money, damage to the environment, and devastation caused by hunger that can easily be avoided.

Planet

The world is dark and full of terrors, but every once in a while it graces us with something to warm our icy-cold hearts. And that is what we have today, with a single dad who went viral on Twitter after his daughter posted the photos he sent her when trying to pick out and outfit for his date. You love to see it.




After seeing these heartwarming pics, people on Twitter started suggesting this adorable man date their moms. It was essentially a mom and date matchmaking frenzy.

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