Microbiology lab technician Tasha Sturm decided to do something kinda cool with a handprint: see what kind of bacteria is on it.

Sturm, who works at Cabrillo College, told me the first lab project that students at her college do is swab something in the classroom — like the bottom of a shoe or a cellphone — and incubate the plates to see what kinds of bacteria grow all around us.

Years ago, she thought her kids might find it interesting to know what kinds of germs were on their hands. Plus, since it provided such a good lesson for her class, each year she has her kids make a handprint of bacteria — literally.

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Heroes

10 things worth trying during times of stress, trauma, or crisis.

Feel like throwing in the towel? Try these tips instead.

Regardless of what you're going through, self-care is important.

I once read something that said, "It's not the hard times that define you, it's how you respond." One important tool when it comes to dealing with personal challenges is self-care.

What is self-care? The University of Kentucky's Student Affairs Center describes self-care as "[A]ny intentional actions you take to care for your physical, mental, and emotional health."

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Family

Back in May, Emily McDowell Studio released an incredible line of Empathy Cards.

As a cancer survivor, McDowell had been on the receiving end of some good-intentioned wishes that were a little, well, tone-deaf. She wanted to help people find the right thing to say to friends and loved ones going through tough times ... and she totally nailed it. The cards had messages like:

"Please let me be the first person to punch the next person who tells you everything happens for a reason. I'm sorry you're going through this."

And:

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Elena Delle Donne is one of the best basketball players you've never heard of.

Standing 6 feet 5 inches, Delle Donne is a powerful presence and star of the WNBA's Chicago Sky. In an interview with the WNBA, her teammate Cappie Pondexter suggested Delle Donne could probably play in all five positions on the court. Yes, she's that damn good.

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