I'm collecting happy, positive stories out of the news and off the internet and just sharing them here. If the article includes the name of the person who posted it, I include it. But, most of the time, the originator is not referenced.
I'm hoping these give us all ideas of how we can help others in small or large ways. It takes so little to make a difference in a life -- whether it be a person or a pet.
Recently I was laid up for several days with the flu. I'm a working mother of four kids who doesn't have time to blink, let alone nap. After hearing that I wasn't feeling well, my neighbor came over and completely cleaned my house! She also did my laundry, made dinner for my family, and even baked peanut butter cookies for my kids. The fact that she found the energy (and the heart) to help me was really lovely.
-- Jodi, Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin
I really appreciate the fact that you post these stories. They make me smile knowing there are people out there still being "nice" to one another.
Comfort Dogs Help Those Grieving in Boston
As Boston struggles to recover from the bombing that occurred during the city's marathon on Monday, a group of furry friends is lending a paw to help with the healing process.
Comfort dogs trained by the Lutheran Church Charities have been deployed to the Massachusetts city to aid those affected by the tragedy. Three golden retrievers were flown in from the group's home base in Addison, Ill., to join two more retrievers who were already on the East Coast following the December shooting in Newtown, Conn.
"People talk to the dogs – they're like furry counselors," Tim Hetzner, president of Lutheran Church Charities, told TODAY.com. "It's a chance to help bring some relief to people that are shaken up because of the bombings." The pooches are set to remain in Boston through the end of the week, with plans to visit the area's hospitals, as well.
Each of the organization's 67 retrievers has undergone almost a year of service training, beginning at 6 weeks of age.
"They bring a calming effect to people," Hetzner added, "and help them process the various emotions that they go through in times like this."
Police Officer's Act of Kindness Makes Little Girl's Day
The world can always use more heroes. And in Oxnard, Calif., no one deserves that title this week quite like Officer Michael Kohr.
Responding to a report of child's stolen bike on Monday, Officer Kohr went above and beyond the call of duty – not just by lending a hand but by fixing the problem then and there for Nina Sanchez and her daughter Bella.
"On my way to take my daughter Bella on a bike ride, to our dismay we realized her cherished Minnie Mouse bike that Santa brought her had been stolen, along with our jogging stroller. To say we were heartbroken is an understatement," Sanchez wrote in a Facebook post that has gone viral.
"Through many tears and reassuring hugs I managed to call in a police report. This afternoon I received a call from Officer Kohr that he was on his way with a brand new Princess bike."
The policeman not only delivered the new bike but taught Bella how to ride it, added Sanchez, giving mom and daughter both a thrill.
"I can not fully express how grateful I am," Sanchez wrote. "He has left such an impression in our hearts, and am thoroughly impressed with his generosity. Thank you once again Officer Kohr."
The post has been liked almost half a million times, and the Oxnard Police Department is among those who are extremely proud of Officer Kohr's actions.
"We don't get emails/messages like this directly from community members often," the department wrote in reply to the photo Sanchez posted. "Thank you, Nina Sanchez for sharing! And, thank you Officer Michael Kohr for taking exceptional service to heart and going above and beyond!"
Because a Cloth Bag Can Save a Life
After hearing about poor living conditions in Malawi, Holly Petitt and her husband knew they had to help. So they started Africa Bags, a nonprofit that provides people in Malawi with the skills and tools they need to make cloth beach bags, backpacks, and shopping bags. Petitt has sold more than 10,000 of the bags here in the United States, with 100 percent of the profits going back to the seven villages in Malawi that participate. Get yours at africabags.org.
Gabe the dog rescued after falling into uncovered manhole in Olathe
Police, firefighters and several civilians sought to rescue the dog, named Gabe, after he fell into an uncovered manhole full of rushing water while being walked by his owner around 6 p.m.
Police said the manhole cover was dislodged during the recent storms.
Officers called in a special unit to lower a camera into the sewer to try and find Gabe. While he was located around 8:45 p.m., rescuers weren't able to get him out of the manhole for another hour.
More than a dozen people, including several firefighters and police officers, checked several manholes in the area as part of the search.
Other than being cold and wet, Gabe does not appear to be seriously injured.
Airline Reunites Boy With Deceased Dad's 'Daddy Shirt'
A 7-year-old boy from Casselton, N.D., who lost his dad also lost his most prized possession -- his father's shirt -- on a March 27 Delta flight from Fargo to San Diego.
Cole Holzer's dad died two years ago when he fell hanging Christmas lights, ABC affiliate WDAY reported. The well-worn Nike shirt that goes with Cole everywhere was the one his dad, Bryan, was wearing when he died.
"Ever since he will lay out and spray his dad's cologne on it and cuddle up with it and sing the daddy song to go to bed," Tonya Holzer, Cole's mom, told the station.
But in the rush to leave the plane when it landed, the shirt was left behind. The family didn't realize it until they were driving away from the airport.
"I started to cry a little bit," Cole told the station.
A letter written to the airline by a family friend who was instrumental in the recovery of the shirt describes how Delta employees went above and beyond to get Cole's dad's shirt back, even digging through the garbage to find it. A copy of the letter was obtained by ABC News.
Kelly Cruchet's letter details the phone call to the Delta 800 number and how that employee called all over the San Diego airport looking for the shirt. The plane the Holzers had been on had just left San Diego for Minneapolis. Eventually, Cruchet got in touch with Delta's Lost & Found at the San Diego airport. Vicki Katseanes, another Delta employee, said she would check with the cleaning crew.
In the meantime, Cruchet sent out emails and posted on Facebook, hoping to find someone who would meet the plane in Minneapolis and see if the shirt was still onboard. Her request was seen by a Delta pilot, Mike McLean, who called her and said he would try to contact ground control and see if they could get in touch with the gate.
"I then got the heartbreaking call from Vicki that the cleaning crew never found it, I thanked her and we ended the call," Cruchet's letter said. "A short time later she called back and said she had been in contact with Alfredo, a Delta ramp supervisor. They wanted to confirm their names to confirm their flight and rows and said they were going to start looking through garbage!"
Thirty minutes later, the call came: They found the daddy shirt.
Cole and his mom went back to the airport to meet Vicki and get the shirt. "They cried all the way back to the airport," the letter said. It was then they were able to start their family vacation.
So what does Delta have to say? Spokesperson Michael Thomas told ABC News, "Efforts made to reunite this very special shirt with this customer and his family is another fantastic example of Delta people going above and beyond for our customers and truly speaks to the culture of our dedicated employees."
"We all miss Bryan so much," Cruchet wrote, "and I so wish Cole had his daddy here to watch him play flag football and baseball and basketball and wrestling – but we all know he is watching them from up above (and as Cole tells my son and all his buddies, 'my dad plays basketball on team heaven!'). I want to thank all involved today for what they did for this little boy they had never met – as a friend stated, 'Delta allowed a daddy to still be there for his little boy'…even if he can't be with him on earth. You all went so far above and beyond and the statement I made to Vicki goes to all of you: YOU ARE MY FAVORITE PEOPLE I HAVE NEVER MET!”
Wow, that one ^^ brought on the tears. So sweet.
Our goal in life should be - to be as good a person as our dog thinks we are.
Thank you for the siggy, Michelle!
Cindy (Human) - Taz (RB Tabby) - Zoee (Australian Shepherd) - Paizly (Dilute Tortie) - Taggart (Aussie Mix) - Jax (Brown & White Tabby)
After years of searching, man reunites with beloved pet
BUTTE, Mont. - For the first time in a half a decade, Mike Taylor sees his bird Love Love
"I've been kind of looking for him this whole time," Taylor said.
The 25 year-old macaw he'd owned for years was stolen from his home in Great Falls, he said. Taylor spent more than five years searching.
"I've always kind of looked on Craigslist and everything," he said, about his efforts to find Love Love.
Then last week, Taylor's friend Steve Campbell told him something that gave him hope.
"I said, 'No I know that's your bird," Campell recounted. He said he saw Love Love at Montana's Parrot & Exotic Bird Sanctuary (MPEBS) in Butte.
Taylor immediately called them up.
"He started to describe various things that only he would have known," said MPEBS founder Lori McAlexander.
From one blind eye, to a funny growing beak and a backwards toe, to loving the game "peek-a-boo-" McAlexander said Taylor gave a spot-on description of the bird she'd been caring for. She knew it was Taylor's macaw.
Turns out, she thought Love Love was girl and named Scarlett- from the person who surrendered the bird to the sanctuary.
Now, Scarlett is back to Love Love- and can finally go back home.
"Hangs upside down already, let me grab his beak, does his peeky-boo, likes to tuck his head," said Taylor, about how fast Love Love picked up his old tricks again.
Taylor said it's been a long time, but he could tell the bird recognized Taylor right away.
"Very heart touching," Taylor said. "He's to himself again already, he really is. I mean, he [didn't] forget."
‘Random act of pizza’: Chicago Tribune buys lunch for Boston Globe newsroom
In what's being called a "random act of pizza" in the wake of last week's deadly bombings at the Boston Marathon, staffers at the Chicago Tribune ordered lunch on Monday for the Boston Globe.
"We can only imagine what an exhausting and heartbreaking week it's been for you and your city," the Tribune staff wrote in a letter addressed to the Boston Globe newsroom. "But do know your colleagues here in Chicago and across the country stand in awe of your tenacious coverage. You make us all proud to be journalists."
"We can't buy you lost sleep, so at least let us pick up lunch," the letter accompanying the 60 pizzas, salad and soda read.
A Chicago Tribune staffer told Yahoo News that the newsroom pooled funds on Friday for the order from Regina Pizzeria in Boston's South Station.
Hungry Globe staffers appreciated the gesture.
Boston boat owner: Give cash to victims, not me
(NEWSER) – The Watertown man whose boat was destroyed after Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was found hiding in it is touched that people are raising funds to buy him a new one—but he wants them to save their money for bomb victims. "It makes me feel wonderful that people are thinking like that," but "I don't want that really," David Henneberry tells WCVB. "I would wish that they donate it to the One Fund Boston. They lost limbs. I lost a boat."
Read more: http://www.newstalk1130.com/articles...#ixzz2RUTlDTya
Yikes! I've been Boo'd ... right off of the stage!
Aaahh, I have been defrosted! Thank you, Bonny and Asiel!
Brrrr, I've been Frosted! Thank you, Asiel and Pomtzu!
"That's the power of kittens (and puppies too, of course): They can reduce us to quivering masses of Jell-O in about two seconds flat and make us like it. Good thing they don't have opposable thumbs or they'd surely have taken over the world by now." -- Paul Lukas
Cassie's Catster page: http://www.catster.com/cats/448678
New swan arrives at Bay Indies
VENICE, Fla. - The lonely male swan at Bay Indies Mobile Home Park is lonely no more.
After weeks of fundraising, residents at the park purchased a new female swan for $1,000 from a seller in Wisconsin. The effort was in response to the death of the previous female. Residents say the swan was killed by a coyote or fox. The male was left by itself, until Monday afternoon.
The new swan arrived at Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport around 4pm. It traveled on board a Delta flight. Gerri Monnier, a Bay Indies resident who led the effort to buy the new swan, was there to pick it up.
"We wanted to hurry this up. A lot of our residents are snowbirds. They are headed back up north and they wanted to see the swan," she said.
In its wooden crate, the swan was placed in the back of an SUV by a Delta employee with a forklift. When the swan arrived at Bay Indies, some of its feathers were ruffled after a long day of traveling. The swan jumped out of its crate, and chased a bystander down the road before it eventually jumped in the water. The male and female immediately noticed each other. As they approached, the swans bumped chests and made a heart-shape with their necks and beaks. It was love at first sight. Dozens of Bay Indies residents watched the two interact for the first time.
"It is wonderful. We have had one lonely swan, so it's wonderful to see the two of them together," said resident Joan Bodenlos.
"It's just marvelous," said resident Carol Sanders.
The hope is for the new female to provide safety and companionship for the male. Many of the residents are hoping the two will have some "little swans" in the future.
Now comes the difficult task of naming the pair. Residents at the mobile home park will vote. Right now, some of the choices are, Bay & Indie, Adam & Eve, and Lucy & Desi.
I wanted to see the swans & found local news video coverage of them together.
I've been Frosted
Men, it has been well said, think in herds. It will be seen that they go mad in herds, while they only recover their senses slowly, and one by one."
— Charles Mackay, Scottish journalist, circa 1841
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