Glowing plants. Could you imagine anything more magical? Well more than simply stellar-looking, these glow-in-the-dark plants or “biological lights” could be used in the future in place of traditional lighting that requires electricity. Read on.
Some people can boast a green thumb, but very few people can boast a glowing green thumb. For a pledge of $40, Glowing Plants will send you 50 to 100 seeds to let you raise your own glowing plant at home. The project’s creators say that this is a one-off opportunity and the seeds will not be available commercially later on.
If you’re not the gardening type, then a $150 pledge gets you a young glowing plant that already has had a good start to life. It’s up to you to take care of it, feed it, and keep your cats from eating it.
Creating a glowing plant is not a simple process. First, the Glowing Plants team had to design DNA sequences using the Genome Compiler software program. The Kickstarter funds will be used to print the DNA, which is then inserted into Arabidopsis, a small flowering plant. The synthetic biology transformation allows it to glow in the dark, no blacklight required.
Being alone can often seem like a scary prospect for some of us. Sometimes we put ourselves in all sorts of unhealthy situations in order to protect ourselves from “solitary confinement.” But it is only in the state of being alone that we can discover a genuine sense of comfort in our own skin. If you struggle with being alone, here are a few pointers:
* Remember some of your favorite alone activities since you were a child and do them. This could be curling up with a book or a good puzzle or digging in the garden.
* Get in touch with feelings you’ve been avoiding. Often we don’t want to be alone because we’re afraid we’ll have to sit with our feelings. Guess what happens? The feelings remain and build as busily try to avoid them. What resists persists. Sit with it, no matter how awful it may feel at first. You’re showing your deepest feelings respect.
Being lonely and being alone are two different things. The latter can be freeing…and sometimes very necessary to fully check in with yourself.
I listened to this TED talk a few days ago and have been thinking about it ever since. Dan Pallotta discusses the problems with charitable organizations and just nails it. In order for charitable or non-profits to succeed, they need to shed old, limiting concepts that don’t allow for these companies to compete with for-profit companies.
Since much of our readership has ties to charitable organizations, this TED talk is a must.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve heard about the problems stemming from North Korea: threat of world destruction, national brainwashing, etc. So let’s go down South for a bit, shall we? Let’s shed some light on South Korea, who recently swore in its first female president. And lastly, let’s send some positive wishes and prayers to South Korea, who has quite a path ahead of them:
SEOUL — South Korea has inaugurated its first female president. She is Park Geun-hye, the daughter of a former president with a controversial legacy.
Before a crowd of 70,000 people, Madame Park Geun-hye, dressed in an olive green coat and wearing a violet-colored scarf, took the oath of office as her country’s 11th president since its inception in 1948.
She then saluted as a military band marched and cannons fired to celebrate her inauguration.
In her inaugural address, the president called rival Pyongyang’s latest nuclear test “a challenge to the survival and future of the Korean people” and said North Korea will be “the biggest victim.”
Calling on the North to abandon wasting resources on nuclear and missile development, the new president in Seoul pledged to “move forward, step-by-step, on the basis of credible deterrence to build trust between the South and the North.”
President Park also issued a warning to Pyongyang that she will “not tolerate any action that threatens the lives” of the people and security of the nation.
March 21st was World Down Syndrome Day and though we must confess we forgot, hopefully this story is our belated dedication to amazing people making a big difference in our communities.
At Tim’s Place in Albuquerque, N.M., Tim Harris serves customers breakfast, lunch, and hugs.
“Sometimes customers get sad, I give them a hug and they feel a lot better,” Harris told AOL News as he stood by the restaurant’s door, greeting babies, old women, and parents. “My hugs are way more important than the food,” he said, laughing.
Harris likely is the first restaurant owner in the nation with Down syndrome. He demonstrates daily how babies born with an extra chromosome can lead normal, productive lives, investing in their communities and bringing joy to others.
Read more at WorldMag.com.
Watch this touching video of Tim in action.
Even if you don’t sail, you probably understand the freedom and magic that comes with such an airy pursuit. Sail in your mind today, even if you’re stuck somewhere with nary a breeze!
If you live a life of make-believe, your life isn’t worth anything until you do something that does challenge your reality. And to me, sailing the open ocean is a real challenge, because it’s life or death. - Morgan Freeman
I keep sailing on in this middle passage. I am sailing into the wind and the dark. But I am doing my best to keep my boat steady and my sails full. - Arthur Ashe
I use filming as an excuse to take classes. I got my certification in sailing for ‘Wedding Crashers,’ and now I can handle a 26-foot boat. I played a seamstress once, so I took sewing classes. I love dipping into these other lives. - Rachel McAdams
I have no interest in sailing around the world. Not that there is any lack of requests for me to do so. - Edward Heath
What can we gain by sailing to the moon if we are not able to cross the abyss that separates us from ourselves? This is the most important of all voyages of discovery, and without it, all the rest are not only useless, but disastrous. -Thomas Merton
As we’re still reeling from the bombing that took place during the Boston Marathon yesterday, I’d like to share with you an inspirational piece that helped add some light to the darkness. Its a Facebook post by comedian Patton Oswalt that reads as follows:
When we see businesses extending to themselves to people who are struggling, it gives us all hope, especially in a day when businesses can seem only out for the bottom line. Not at Panera! It’s called the Meal of Shared Responsibility…what a wonderful concept. Read on:
ST. LOUIS — Order a bowl of turkey chili at a St. Louis-area Panera Bread cafe and it’ll cost you a penny. Or $5. Or $100. In other words, whatever you decide.
Three years after launching the first of five pay-what-you-want cafes, the suburban St. Louis-based chain on Wednesday quietly began its latest charitable venture that takes the concept on a trial run to all 48 cafes in the St. Louis region.
The new idea experiments with a single menu item, Turkey Chili in a Bread Bowl, available at each St. Louis-area store for whatever the customer chooses to pay. The new chili uses all-natural, antibiotic-free turkey mixed with vegetables and beans in a sourdough bread bowl. The suggested $5.89 price (tax included) is only a guideline. All other menu items are sold for the posted price.
Panera calls it the Meal of Shared Responsibility, and says the potential benefit is twofold: Above-the-cost proceeds go to cover meals for customers who cannot pay the full amount and to St. Louis-area hunger initiatives; and for those in need, the 850-calorie meal provides nearly a day’s worth of nutrition at whatever price they can afford.
Read more at Huffington Post.
Whether its positive or negative news, we often take for granted our ability to simply understand the news stories. Imagine what its like to be learning disabled and the profound sense of disconnection you might feel when understanding the unfolding events of our every day in addition to your lack of political involvement.
One person did imagine it…and did something about it.
People with one or more learning disabilities now have access to easier-to-understand news, thanks to the efforts of journalist and disability rights campaigner Kaliya Franklin.
After she realised the UK’s 1.5 million people with learning disabilities might find her blog posts difficult to read, Franklin got in touch with a charity called United Response, which advocates better access to democracy for people with such disabilities.
Their expert team of people with learning disabilities – UR Consultants – wrote up ‘easy-read’ versions of various news items using visual cues and simplified language to get across important information. The team has subsequently created a regular news bulletin called Easy News, the first issue of which is now available online.
Nick Smith (right) and John Nettles (left) are United Response consultants, as well as housemates.
What would you do if you found an envelope stuffed with cash? Most would try to find the rightful owner (hopefully!) but its still rewarding when someone simply does the right thing, like Bismark Mensah.
It was in the early afternoon of a mid-October 2012 day that Bismark Mensah was collecting carts outside a Walmart in Federal Way, a part-time job for which he earned $9.05 an hour as a “courtesy associate.”
He was used to finding stuff in carts that customers had somehow forgotten — keys, credit cards, wallets. And he turned them in to customer service.
But this particular item stood out. It was a white envelope with a clear window in the middle, bulging with what was inside, a lot of cash. Around $20,000, it turned out.
Because of what he did that afternoon, Mensah now is in possession of a plaque that names him the winner of the retail giant’s national 2013 “Integrity in Action Award.”
Read more at the Seattle Times.