Posts tagged with "People magazine"

Australian farmer herds sheep to form a heart in honor of his late aunt

August 30, 2021

Recently, an Australian farmer herded his sheep into a huge,” heartfelt” valentine shape—photographed from above by a drone—in order to pay tribute to his aunt after she died, People magazine reports.

Indeed, Ben Jackson recently lost his aunt Debby, according to the BBC—but he was prevented from attending her funeral by COVID-19 restrictions Down Under. Jackson was 400km (248 miles) away in New South Wales when his Aunt Debby lost her two-year cancer battle in Queensland—and regulations forbade him from travelling to Brisbane to be present at her last rites.

So, in an effort to participate and show his love, Jackson posted a video on social media on Tuesday, August 24. In it a drone captures the moment when hundreds of his sheep are released into a pasture to form a huge heart by following a trail of grain laid out for them.

Jackson told the BBC it took a few attempts to form the heart and that he got the exact pattern down after a “bit of guesswork.” 

“There was no way I could get up there and see her, say cheerio, or go to the funeral,” he told the outlet, “So I felt hopeless, helpless—I didn’t really know what to do. But because I was doing a bit of feeding already, I just decided to do a massive heart in the ground, which in all earnest, pales in comparison to hers.”

The farmer’s family received the video ahead of Aunt Debby’s funeral and played the sweet clip at the service while Jackson watched on through a live stream.

Jackson told BBC he had done other “sheep artworks” in the past and his aunt, an “incredibly giving” woman, was a fan of the animals’ designs. The video of Jackson’s tribute to his aunt has gone viral since the clip appeared on Twitter.

“She would be proud as punch to see so many people smiling and enjoying the heart I’ve made for her,” he said. “It’s just love. Love’s sensational.”

In an interview with the Associated Press, Jackson shared that he started experimenting with shapes and spelling out his favorite bands’ names by leaving trails of feed for his sheep amid Australia’s drought last year.

“It certainly lifted my spirits back in the drought,” he told the outlet.

Speaking about the reaction people have had on social media to the sheep shape, the farmer said, “This heart that I’ve done for my auntie, it certainly seems like it’s had a bit of an effect across Australia. Maybe we all just need to give ourselves a big virtual hug.”

Research contact: @people

Whiz kid: Toddler with IQ of 146 is now the youngest member of American Mensa

June 1, 2021

Kashe Quest is a two-year-old with a bright future ahead of her. The toddler from Los Angeles is now the youngest member of American Mensa—a group of highly intelligent people who have scored in the top 2% of the general population on a standardized intelligence test, People magazine reports.

“Kashe is certainly a remarkable addition to American Mensa,” Trevor Mitchell, executive director of American Mensa, recently told People in a statement. “We are proud to have her and to be able to help her and her parents with the unique challenges that gifted youth encounter.”

While most toddlers should be able to recite some numbers by the time they’re two, Kashe’s mother, Sukhjit Athwal, told KTTV her daughter is able to count to 100. Kashe also knows more than 50 signs in sign language—an impressive feat.

“We started to notice her memory was really great. She just picked up things really fast and she was really interested in learning,” Athwal told the outlet. “At about 17, 18 months, she had recognized all the alphabet, numbers, colors, and shapes.”

Adding to her many milestones, Kashe is learning Spanish and can point out all 50 U.S. states by their shape and location.

Her IQ is 146, according to Athwal, which is far above the average American IQ of about 98.

But, as Athwal noted, Kashe is still a typical child in many ways: “At the end of the day, she’s in that toddler stage,” Athwal told KTTV. “She very much is still a normal 2-year-old where we have negotiations, we have tantrums, we have everything and it’s different because the way we communicate with her, it has to be different because she’s able to understand just a little bit more.”

“I think one of the biggest things with me and [my] daughter [is] making sure she has a childhood and we don’t force anything on her,” she added. “We’re kind of going at her pace and we want to just make sure that she is youthful for as long as she can be.”

Research contact: @people

‘Bee Best’: Angelina Jolie poses covered with bees to raise awareness for conservation efforts

May 21, 2021

Actress and director Angelina Jolie got up close and personal with bees for her latest call to action, People magazine reports.

Alongside a bold new portrait taken by photographer Dan Winters for National Geographic‘s World Bee Day (May 20) exclusive interview with Jolie, the star shared why it’s more important now than ever to protect the bee population.

“With so much we are worried about around the world and so many people feeling overwhelmed with bad news and the reality of what is collapsing, this is one that we can manage,” Jolie, 45, told the National Geographic. “We can certainly all step in and do our part.”

“I don’t think a lot of people know what damage they’re doing. A lot of people are just trying to get through their day,” she added. “They want to do good. They don’t want to be destructive. They don’t know which thing to buy. They don’t know which thing to use. So I think part of this is wanting to help it be simple for everybody, because I need that.”

Jolie—who has been designated the “godmother” for Women for Bees, a program launched by the United Nation’s UNESCO to train and support female beekeeper-entrepreneurs around the world — said it’s up to everyone to pitch in however they can.

“I have six kids and a lot happening,” she said, “and I don’t know how to be the ‘perfect’ anything. And so if we can help each other to say, ‘This is a way forward, simple, and this is something you can do with your kids.’ ”

As for how she pulled off the stunning snapshot, Jolie said she couldn’t shower for three days beforehand.

“It was so funny to be in hair and makeup and wiping yourself with pheromone,” the Those Who Wish Me Dead actress said. “We couldn’t shower for three days before. Because they told me, ‘If you have all these different scents, shampoos and perfumes and things, the bee doesn’t know what you are.’ … Then you put a few things up your nose and in your ears so you don’t give them as many holes to climb in.

“I did have one that got under my dress the entire time. It was like one of those old comedies,” she added. “I kept feeling it on my knee, on my leg, and then I thought, ‘Oh, this is the worst place to get stung. It’s getting really close.’ It stayed there the entire time we were doing the shoot. And then when I got all the other bees off, I lifted the skirt and he went away.”

She noted, though, that it “just felt lovely to be connected to these beautiful creatures.”

“You have to be really still and in your body, in the moment, which is not easy for me,” she recalled. “I think part of the thought behind it was, this creature is seen as dangerous sometimes or stinging. So how do we just be with it? The intention is we share this planet. We are affected by each other. This is what it should feel like and it really did, and I felt very honored and very lucky to have the experience.”

Research contact: @people

Letting the cat out of the bag: Bomb squad opens ‘suspicious duffel,’ finds momma cat and kittens

February 23, 2021

The Butler, Ohio, County Bomb Unit was pleasantly surprised on February 18 when officers responded to a call from a church, reporting a suspicious package. When they unzipped the duffel bag with the greatest of caution, they heard purring instead of ticking, People magazine reports.

“There was a momma cat and her six one-day-old babies in a bag,” the Butler County Sheriff’s Office said in a post along with pictures of the cats.

The statement continued, “There was a note left stating ‘Sprinkles’ went into labor yesterday 2/17.”

“Momma and babies are warm, cozy, and fed at the Animal Friends Shelter!!” the sheriff’s office assured. They also included several photos of Sprinkles and her kittens receiving medical care.

Animal Friends typically does “Feline Friday” posts of cats looking to be fostered and adopted on social media. This Friday’s post was dedicated to Sprinkles and her kittens found by the bomb squad.

“Sprinkles and her newborns were immediately brought to Animal Friends for care late Thursday afternoon,” they confirmed. The shelter shared that the animals received “gentle baths when they arrived.”

“Sprinkles, purring throughout it all, received her vaccines and blood test and appears to be in good health. She’s doing a fantastic job nursing and caring for her babies, and all 7 will be placed with their foster family this afternoon,” Animal Friends revealed.

They added, “We will give regular updates on Sprinkles and her kittens as they grow and mature over the next two months.”

The shelter also called for donations for “supplies and medical costs” of pets being taking care of by foster families in the form of money or buying supplies for animals.

“Last year, we provided care to over 1,300 at-risk kittens. This was only possible thanks to support from our community,” Animal Friends wrote.

Research contact: people

Casper and Romeo are the ‘reigning’ cats and dogs on Instagram

January 27, 2021

They think they are twins, but there are some obvious differences. People Magazine reports that Instagram’s newest odd couple is Casper and Romeo—a white and fluffy Samoyed dog and Peke-faced cat that have found love, despite their distinctive personalities.

The pet pair belongs to Rinsa Li from Christchurch, New Zealand. And despite what you would assume, the Casper of the pair is the smiley dog; Romeo is a gruff-looking two-yea-old feline with a heart of gold.

“Romeo looks grumpy but he is the sweetest cat I have ever met; he allows everyone to hold him and gives great cuddles,” Li first told Daily Mail about her kitty.

The animal lover always wanted a cat, but was worried about how Casper would react. After the six-year-old dog spent an enjoyable play date with a kitty belonging to Li’s friend, Li decided to take the plunge.

Casper and Romeo kept their distance at first, but soon curiosity got the best of both of them. It only took a few weeks of adjustment for the duo to become inseparable, People reports. Now, the pair spends two hours of each day outside exploring New Zealand with their owner, who also happens to be a professional photographer.

Li posts her shots of the pets to their Instagram #CasperAndRomeo, where they have over 43,000 followers.

When Casper and Romeo aren’t on road trips, they can often be found cuddling together on the couch at home.

“It warms my heart so much to see them as siblings and I enjoy waking up to the both of them every day; I can’t imagine a life without them,” Li said of her adorable Instagram celebrities.

Research contact: @people

T-Riffic: Texas family aces pregnancy announcement with T-Rex themed photo

January 7, 2021

Nicole Berkley, of Aubrey, Texas, has loved dinosaurs since she was a child. And when she learned she was pregnant with her fifth child, the expectant mom wanted to stray from the usual “cute, generic” baby announcements, People magazine reports.

With that, one word came to Berkley’s mind: dinosaurs!

“My family, we’re all pretty big Jurassic World fans … We wanted to do something that was fun and fit with our personalities. So, I came up with the idea to do dinosaur costumes with our pregnancy announcement.”

Excited, Berkley ordered four child-size T-rex costumes on Amazon and two for adults. Although her family loves dinosaurs, Berkley says they took a bit of convincing before agreeing to participate in the unique shoot.

“I wanted it to be funny and so true to our personalities,” Berkley, age 28, told People. “But everybody in my family thought I was crazy — my husband included. “They were like, ‘We’re gonna get in costumes? It’s not Halloween.’ My kids thought I was nuts.”

Still, Berkley’s husband, 26-year-old Daniel, and their four children were “troopers.” she says. The family met with Susan Garrett (of Susan Garrett Photography) on September 21 and headed to Arbor Hills Nature Preserve in Plano on a rainy Texas day; where they put on the costumes and posed with a sonogram of the new baby.

“People walking by were stopping and taking pictures and videos of us. It was a spectacle,” Berkley recalls. “The kids braved it and it was phenomenal. It was amazing and it turned out to be one of the funnest sessions ever. We had so much fun in these costumes.”

In the photos, the Berkleys are shown in their orange T-rex costumes, with the children’s faces poking out of the middle. Berkley and Daniel held the sonogram on a toy dinosaur egg.

She says it was fun watching her kids — Myleigh, 10, Montana, 6, Lane, 5, and 4-year-old Hannah — run around in the costumes.

Berkley recalls laughing at the photos with her family as soon as Garrett sent the finished product. The expecting mother couldn’t help but to share the photos on Facebook. The post quickly amassed hundreds of “likes” and shares.

“I was getting a lot of comments and a lot of shares from people I didn’t know so I, kind of, had an idea it was going a bit viral locally,” she explained to People. “But I never expected for it to become a national thing! I’m a little overwhelmed with how much positive feedback I’ve gotten.”

Research contact: @people

Go with the Flowbee: George Clooney reveals how he cuts his hair

December 11, 2020

With salons largely closed, male grooming has been in freefall since the start of the spring lockdown—and DIY haircuts have proven less-than-successful for many who no longer cut a dashing profile.

However, one Hollywood star has shown that—even in a global pandemic and, in fact, even before that—bad hair is not the great equalizer we hoped it would be, The Guardian reports.

George Clooney, the 59-year-old actor and human rights activist, has admitted to successfully cutting his own hair at home using a device called a Flowbee—an electrically powered vacuum cleaner attachment for cutting hair that has been on the market since 1988,

“My hair’s really like straw, so it’s easy,” Clooney recently told CBS Sunday Morning.

According to Clooney—twice voted People magazine’s sexiest man alive—the $139.95 (£103) contraption is so reliable that he has been using it for more than 22 years—and not simply during 2020. “My haircuts take literally two minutes,” he said, adding that its speed and efficiency had afforded him time to stain the garage doors, mop the floors and do much of the family’s washing during lockdown in their Los Angeles home.

The Flowbee was a defining product of the 1980s infomercial boom in the US. It was designed in 1988 by Rick Hunts, a San Diego carpenter who was moved to invent the product after using his industrial vacuum cleaner to suck sawdust out of his hair. Hunts initially created and sold the gadget from his garage. But it was live demonstrations at a local county fair that edged him towards success, before global fame soon beckoned him, in the form of late-night TV demonstrations. By 2010, more than 2 million Americans had bought one.

But times have changed and, more recently, the product has needed a “spokesperson” like Clooney to remind Americans that it still exists: Google searches for Flowbee took off following Clooney’s weekend admission and the Flowbee website itself crashed, The Guardian reports.

But while his endorsement will no doubt lend invaluable celebrity cachet to the brand’s image, largely unchanged since the 1980s, the Clooney effect is not in fact wholly responsible for the product’s recent success: The lack of personal services during the pandemic and the sharp increase in bad hair days are two major factors.

As early as mid-March, the Flowbee had sold out on Walmart’s website and on Amazon. It is not available in the UK, according to Fortune magazine; and  Amazon says it doesn’t know when the item will be back in stock.

Research contact: @guardian

Lions and tigers and bears, oh my! Brother Nature provides adorable wild animal encounters for all

October 29, 2020

The world is a wild place right now, whether you are in New York City or Lisbon or Abuja, Nigeria. However, while many of us have had to cancel trips and confine our movements during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, there still are corners of the Internet where animal lovers can find some relaxation and happiness, People Magazine reports.

Two of those virtual places are Brother Nature’s Twitter and Instagram pages. Run by Kelvin Peña, a 22-year-old living in Los Angeles who is also the titular Brother Nature, the accounts are filled with Peña’s amazing wild animal encounters.

But, People says, the popular social media accounts, which boast over 4 million followers, didn’t start with shots of penguins and rhinos. Instead, Brother Nature was born because of a deer. In 2016, after graduating from high school in Texas and moving to Pennsylvania for college, Peña spotted a deer up-close in his cousin’s backyard and then a buck in the driveway of his father’s house on the same day.

These peaceful and awe-inspiring deer sightings in Pennsylvania were some of Peña’s first interactions with wild animals, and some of the first posts on Brother Nature. After filming the deer, posting the videos to his own social media pages, and witnessing the quick and enthusiastic response to the clips, Peña was inspired to create Brother Nature so there could be a place online where engaging animal encounters would be available to all.

“I truly felt like I had a connection to the animals and that I could be the voice for wild animals for people who don’t know much about wildlife,” Peña told People about the mission behind Brother Nature. “It’s for those who have always admired wildlife from a distance. It makes animals cool, so people can really admire them and see them in a new light.”

Through Brother Nature, Peña’s feelings on animals have changed too. Before the accounts, most of his interactions with wildlife were restricted to nature documentaries, but now, thanks to the success of Brother Nature, Peña has enjoyed numerous opportunities to meet and help wild animals all over the world, including the chance to assist in the relocation of wild giraffes to safer territory in Uganda.

These experiences have allowed Peña to provide his followers with firsthand knowledge about the problems that plague the world’s wildlife and how humans can help conserve and protect these precious species.

“We need to respect nature and respect the planet that we’re on,” Peña said of what he hopes people take away from Brother Nature. “It’s obvious the world needs a bit more love.”

Research contact: @people

Meet the candidates: People magazine asks us to cast a ballot for the World’s Cutest Rescue Dog

September 8, 2020

After receiving over 10,000 entries since August, People’s annual World’s Cutest Rescue Dog Contest—presented by the Pedigree brand— has found its ten furry finalists. And now through September 14, the magazine is asking all of us to cast a ballot for the top dog.

From the top three dogs determined by votes, the winner will be chosen by judges from People and Pedigree, as well as by celebrity judges Carrie Ann Inaba from Dancing with the Stars and The Talk, singer-songwriter Cassadee Pope, and Good Morning America’s Lara Spencer.

The Grand Prize Winner will receive:

  • A custom photo shoot;
  • A feature in People Magazine and on People.com;
  • A year’s supply of dog food from the Pedigree brand; and
  • A $1,000 donation to the pet rescue organization of the winner’s choice.

Meet the cuddly canines chosen as the finalists for the 2020 contest and help these dogs get one paw closer to the grand prize by voting now.

The World’s Cutest Rescue Dog will be revealed this September on ABC’s Good Morning America. What are you waiting for? Vote for your favorite finalist now!

Research contact: @people

Full house, fuller life: The more children a woman has, the more slowly she ages

February 22, 2019

Just as the U.S. birthrate has hit an all-time low—at 12.2 newborns per 1,000 women aged 14-44 during 2016, according to the Centers for Disease Control—a study has found that, the more children a woman has, the more youthful she remains.

It’s counterintuitive, considering all the mental and physical stress mothers experience. However, a study conducted in 2016 by researchers at Canada’s Simon Fraser University indicates that the higher the number of children a woman gives birth to, the more slowly her body will age, People magazine reported on February 20.

Specifically, the study led by health sciences professor Pablo Nepomnaschy and postdoctoral researcher Cindy Barha found that women who give birth to more surviving children exhibited longer telomeres. Telomeres are the protective tips found at the end of each DNA strand and are indicative of cellular aging. Longer telomeres are integral to cell replication and are associated with longevity.

Some common physical examples of this can be seen in skin and hair, which are most affected by the shortening because they reproduce the most often, the study has found.

The researchers actually did not study a cohort of U.S. women. Instead, they evaluated a pool of 75 indigenous Guatemalan women over the course of 13 years—finding that the women who gave birth to more children had longer telomeres.

Hormones may play a role in the anti-aging results, Nepomnaschy recently told Science Daily, noting, “The slower pace of telomere shortening found in the study participants who have more children … may be attributed to the dramatic increase in estrogen, a hormone produced during pregnancy.”

This makes sense, he said, because,“Estrogen functions as a potent antioxidant that protects cells against telomere shortening.”

Another plausible explanation for why having a higher number of children slows down the shortening of telomeres is the social environment it creates. Nepomnaschy explained that women with more kids tend to receive more support from outside sources, like relatives and friends, which can help increase the amount of metabolic energy that such mothers have. This, in turn, contributes to tissue upkeep and slows down aging.

Research contact: @SFU_FHS