10 Practical Measures Of Relationship Compatibility That Are Just As Important As Sexual Chemistry

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10 Practical Measures Of Relationship Compatibility That Are Just As Important As Sexual Chemistry

Everything you ever wanted to know about relationship compatibility…

1. Where do you fall on the cleanliness spectrum?

Love conquers all, except maybe the mounting resentment a clean freak harbors after months of living with a hygiene challenged individual. I don’t care how attracted you are to your partner. If you’re someone who color coordinates their cotton t-shirts, you’re not going to do very well with a person who doesn’t drop everything and start cleaning upon spotting a cockroach. People have very different levels of tolerance for crumbs, odors, and the crust that forms along the seal of a peanut butter jar. So figure out where your partner falls on the cleanliness spectrum stat, and take it into serious consideration.

2. What forms of entertainment do you prefer?

Unless you’re one of those miracle couples that works together and lives together and somehow avoids tearing each other’s hair out in the middle of the night, your downtime is when you’re most likely to focus on reconnecting. When you’re in a relationship and your quality time with the person you love is limited to the evenings and weekends, the ways in which you prefer to spend your precious free time matter . There’s a difference between finding your boyfriend or girlfriend’s obsession with graphic novels kind of cute, and agreeing to dress up and hit Comic-Con without feeling as if you have to sacrifice a considerable percentage of your dignity to do so. Sure, you can take turns choosing between a movie, a concert, and a night spent stargazing between reading aloud to each other. Long-term love requires making personal sacrifices. But life’s a lot less complicated if you genuinely prefer most of the same activities. Who wants to compromise when you can both get your way almost always?

3. What kind of vacations do you like best?

A healthy work-life balance demands vacationing once in a while, something you’re bound to do with your significant other as soon as you mature beyond the phase in which “girls’ trips” and “boys’ trips” are an acceptable excuse to travel. So the type of vacation you like becomes quite relevant. Some people don’t consider it a break unless they’re sunbathing and tearing through a stack of beach reads, pina colado in hand, others won’t consider a destination unless there are culturally enriching activities to pursue there, and still others are focused on scratching their itch for adventure through physical exertion while away. Guess what? If you want to climb Mount Everest and your boyfriend or girlfriend only ever wants to recline beside an infinity pool, you’re either going to take a lot of separate vacations, or one of you is never going to be satisfied while you’re on holiday.

4. How much bandwidth do you have for extended family?

For some, weekly family dinners are non-negotiable. There are people who genuinely love their parents, siblings, and cousins because blood is blood and spending time with them is priority number one. Then there are people who look forward to a family reunion like it’s the next Bird Flu pandemic. They’d rather spend time together as a couple, within the nuclear family unit, than reassure their mom-in-law that her tiramisu is truly delicious yet again, or play multi-generational charades. Since you can’t very well demand that someone spends more or less time with their own family, it’s helpful to get a sense early on as to how much time your significant other plans to devote to their relatives so you can assess whether or not you have whatever it takes to accommodate future requests to attend a lifetime’s worth of block parties, birthday barbecues, and holiday gatherings.

5. How do you feel about eating out versus cooking?

The act of mouthing anything is automatically sensual, and consuming food is pleasurable to almost everyone, so it’s not surprising that couples tend to bond through eating—from the beginning phase of booze heavy get-to-you you sessions to the memorable meals that mark anniversaries and birthdays over the years. But while some people treasure the process of going out and being served, others are perfectly content to raid the refrigerator and gorge on a mishmash of leftovers while standing over the kitchen sink. One person’s restaurant oasis is another person’s headache. Arguably, when it comes to a couple’s rapport, specific culinary tastes are secondary to each person’s preference for eating out versus preparing a home-cooked meal or ordering in.

6. What are your sleeping schedules?

Some people are early risers not because they’re disciplined or virtuous or hardworking, necessarily, but because their brains excel naturally in the early hours, while others tend to sleep late and stay up past midnight regularly simply because they perform better later in the day. The minimum amount of sleep people require to function at full capacity varies quite a bit too. While the “sleepless elite” can easily sustain themselves on five hours or less, some need nine-plus hours daily just to feel human. If you’re a night owl who falls for a morning person, you’re bound to face some logistical issues when planning pretty much everything. You can try setting two alarms and tiptoeing around each other, but it’s best to find someone whose sleeping patterns are at least somewhat aligned with yours, sleep is key to relationship compatibility.

7. What are you willing to outsource?

If your partner would rather pay someone to do their laundry and clean the toilet and nurse their child in the middle of the night and you’re more of the DIY type, things might get sticky down the line as you manage your lives as a couple. Some people are simply more comfortable outsourcing certain tasks, while others feel guilty and/or weird about having someone else fluff and fold their underwear, or watch their kid more than a certain number of hours per week. When one person is committed to undertaking most tasks themselves but the other would rather hire a third party to get shit done, both are bound to end up pissed since we all like to do things our own way. If you can find someone whose penchant for outsourcing matches yours, you’re far ore likely to feel like you’re on the same team.

8. What’s your spending style?

Money is the kindle that lights many a lovers’ quarrel. So when you’re considering how compatible you are as a twosome, think long and hard about your partner’s approach to finances. Are they the type to save, or to squander half their life savings in a day under the guise of “seizing the day”? It can be helpful for someone who’s a little too careful to learn how to splurge once in a while, but in general, comparable spending styles and like financial goals foster peace within a relationship, especially in the context of a joint bank account.

9. How much alone time do you each need?

Introverts and extroverts can certainly harmonize romantically. In fact, an introvert might benefit greatly from dating an extrovert who pulls them out of their shell and into the world, while an extrovert might learn valuable lessons in how to have fun without going out from their introverted partner. That said, it can be tricky for an introvert-extrovert pair to manage their opposing needs on an ongoing basis. So be mindful of just how much solace you and your partner each require, and don’t be afraid to take the divide-and-conquer approach to meeting your needs by doing different things.

10. What are your political leanings?

Sometimes people spend lengthy stretches of their lives completely unaware of what’s going on in the world, politically speaking. The thing is, people tend to become more passionate about their political leanings over time. So while it might not irk you that you’re currently dating an NRA supporter or someone who takes Donald Trump’s White House aspirations at all seriously, you might not be able to handle your partner’s politics if the scale tips any further in a certain direction. If you’d rather avoid debating “the issues” with your significant other on repeat over the years, perhaps pay more attention to their voting history than might seem necessary while you’re both so young and open-minded.

Any other relationship compatibility tips? Leave your relationship compatibility experience and knowledge in the comments.

Read more: https://thoughtcatalog.com/melanie-berliet/2015/08/10-practical-measures-of-relationship-compatibility-that-are-just-as-important-as-sexual-chemistry

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Relationship Advice: The 50 Things You Need To Do For A Relationship To Last

1. Burn your blueprint.

Rid yourself of whatever fantasies you harbor about the bliss of coupled life. They’re not helping. There is no script, so don’t be disappointed when your fairytale gets hijacked.

2. Forgive.

Didn’t Jesus say something about forgiving someone not just seven times but seventy times seven? That would be 490 times….which should last you through your first 6 months. Jesus underestimated because, remember, he wasn’t married.

3. And forget.

If you forgive but don’t forget, did you really forgive? I know people who claim to have forgiven but still use every available opportunity to bring it up. And if you don’t want to forgive, forgetting works just as well.

4. Be a good teammate.

Life can come at you hard. One of the nice things about marriage and relationships is being able to have someone else in the bunker when you’re getting shelled.

5. Grow.

If you still have the same desires, opinions and beliefs at age 50 that you did at age 25, that’s your own damn fault. You will not, and should not, be the same person you were then.

6. And adapt.

Even if you stagnate, the person you’re in a relationship with will change. Don’t fight it. Embrace it, learn from it, be thankful for it.

7. Find your faith.

There is great comfort in believing in something or someone beyond our crude human existence. Explore this belief. Take this journey together.

8. Travel together.

Travel forces couples to rely on one another in unpredictable ways. It will also broaden your worldview and the way you value your relationship.

9. Travel separately.

I want to go to Australia and you want to go to Maine? Cool. Take lots of pictures. See you in a week.

10. Develop your own interests.

It seems counter-intuitive, but you will enhance your relationship when you pursue your separate interests.

11. Cultivate a wide, diverse circle of friends.

One of the greatest joys of living is meeting new people. And many of the people you meet will likely make you appreciate your mate even more.

12. Don’t keep score.

I know a couple who keeps track of the number of times each partner completes a household chore. Don’t do this. It’s exhausting. And childish.

13. Exercise.

You owe it to each other to be in the best physical health possible. The mental side effects from exercise will also be beneficial.

14. Practice self-awareness.

Take frequent looks in the mirror. Reflect on who you are and the contributions you are making to your relationship. Are you being judgmental? Unfair? Harsh? Hypercritical? Defensive?

15. Admit that you’re wrong (even, on occasion, when you aren’t).

This is both the easiest and hardest thing to do on this list. But this simple gesture will pay immeasurable dividends; it will help you grow and it’s just the right thing to do.

16. Celebrate accomplishments big and small.

Whether it’s a promotion at work or the police officer let you off with just a warning, find every occasion possible to toast your good fortune.

17. Surprise one another.

Fill up her car. Let him sleep alone in the bed once in a while. Buy some bacon.

18. It’s the good little things.

Holding the door, suggesting a movie night, paying attention. The reward for these is greater than the sum of the parts.

19. And it’s the bad little things.

Cracking your knuckles, spitting, clearing your throat, picking your nose, chewing ice. These are death by a thousand cuts to your relationship.

20. Cultivate your finer qualities.

When do you ever have an opportunity to really work on qualities that make you a better person? In a strong relationship, you can do it every single day. Qualities like patience, loyalty, compassion, trust.

21. The bathroom is private.

If you think it’s quaint to brush your teeth while I use the toilet, you’ll change your mind about that eventually. Trust me.

22. Talk about sex (but not just right before, during, or right after).

Sex is an important part of any relationship. But for some reason couples don’t want to discuss it unless they are in the throes of passion. Don’t make sex a taboo subject.

23. Encourage each other.

We all have insecurities. Your relationship is one place where you should be completely free to reveal these and your spouse should help you overcome them.

24. It’s okay to have secrets.

Even George Bailey slipped Violet Bick a $20 bill every now and then.

25. Avoid subtext.

This is a cowardly way to communicate. If you have something to say, say it. Don’t hint about it.

26. Put it down.

The toilet seat. Her cell phone. The beat.

27. Pick it up.

Your dirty sock. Your used tissue. The pace.

28. Don’t over-romanticize past (or future) relationships.

You weren’t that great and your ex isn’t that hot.

29. Never use the “s” word.

Don’t call each other “stupid.” That’s just stu…. not wise.

30. Offer solutions, not criticism.

Anyone can criticize. A good teammate (See Rule 4) will offer a way out.

31. Read.

To escape or to expand. Either way, it helps.

32. You are equals.

It doesn’t matter which one of you makes the most money. It doesn’t matter which one of you has the better REO Speedwagon vinyl collection. It doesn’t matter which one of you has the best nickname. It doesn’t even matter which one of you has the coolest food allergy.

33. Compliment each other.

Sincerely and often.

34. Respect each other’s friends.

You know your wife’s loud mouthed, insane friend Cathy who thinks you have weak bullshit and can’t believe you married her BFF? See below.

35. Know when to keep your mouth shut.

No list would be complete without the “Do these jeans make my butt look big?” lesson.

36. Indulge each other’s passions.

Scrapbooking doesn’t count.

37. Lose your arbitrary moral code.

This list alone proves that I am the king of the double standard. When I want to spend money on a new set of golf clubs, it’s a good investment. When my wife wants to spend money on new kitchen countertops, she’s a profligate. It’s not exactly fair.

38. Respect space and time.

Have we not evolved as a species or watched enough Dr. Phil to realize our mate does not want to answer the question “How was your day?” the minute he/she walks in the door?

39. Take pride in your appearance.

Your marriage license doesn’t give you a free pass to always wear sweat pants and T-shirts.

40. Maintain good hygiene.

Could your big toenail puncture a snow tire? Could your breath peel wallpaper? Take care of that, please. I don’t want to have to tell you again.

41. Ask before you throw it away.

Don’t touch that broken, ceramic, animated cactus tequila shot glass holder. I’m serious.

42. Invite his/her family to special gatherings.

At least once. Thankfully, this may be all you need.

43. Speaking of family, everyone gets a holiday card and a birth announcement.

Even your creepy Uncle Steve and their psycho cousin Lisa.

44. Don’t be petty.

So I forgot to stop at the store to get your prescription. Did you have to throw away my ceramic cactus shot glass holder?

45. Be self-sufficient.

Learn to do your own laundry. Know how to cook a meal; how to navigate the grocery store; how to make an online purchase; how to turn off the water to the house; how to erect a Nerf basketball hoop; how to unclog a toilet.

46. Everything is fair game for a joke.

This should be at the heart of everything you do. I have not found a single thing that I have been unable to eventually laugh about. If you know this from the beginning, it makes things a lot more fun.

47. Have good manners.

Don’t yell. Open the door. Help carry the groceries. Cover your cough. Hold your gas.

48. Be responsible with money.

No one lives on love. You need money. If you earned it, you will almost certainly respect it. If you didn’t earn it, you must respect it even more.

49. Remember to say thank you.

Even and especially when things don’t seem like they need to be acknowledged.

50. Adapting beats abandoning.

There will be moments when you want to quit, walk out, give up. You can do that. But you will probably be doing so without giving due consideration to the new life that awaits you. Will you be better off in six months? 10 years?

Read more: https://thoughtcatalog.com/tim-hoch/2014/01/the-50-things-you-need-to-do-for-a-relationship-to-last

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Gigi Hadid Talks Getting Starstruck, Cooking With BF Zayn Malik & More For ‘W Magazine’ – Perez Hilton

Gigi Hadid is sporting a choppy platinum ‘do for the cover of

Ch-ch-check out the stunning supermodel’s cover, even though we can barely tell it’s her, (below):

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The model reveals she’s been a fan of Kobe Bryant for years, even dressing up as a super fan on her 13th birthday at a Laker’s game, complete with a Kobe uniform, yellow braces, and purple/yellow wig, so when she had the chance to meet him at a Taylor Swift concert, her pal encouraged them to meet:

“Taylor was like, ‘Go over. Say hi,’ And I couldn’t. Kobe Bryant is one of the only people who make me starstruck.”

Gigi loves to cook (remember when she wowed Gordon Ramsey on MasterChef?), so obviously her favorite holiday memories have to do with family and food:

“Being in the kitchen cooking with my family. We all like to prepare a different dish, and I always do a crazy dessert buffet where I make trains out of candy and little snowman cupcakes.”

And that love of cooking has carried over into her relationship with BF Zayn Malik, too:

“My favorite thing with cooking is to always try to make something new. I will ask my boyfriend Zayn Malik, “What do you want today?” and I’m pretty good at pulling it off. On my days off, cooking is something that keeps my mind going without having to think of too many serious things.”

But that’s not her only secret skill:

“At the movies or on TV, I can always figure out the murderer. I studied criminal psychology in school, and people know that all my favorite TV shows are that kind of psychological puzzle, usually involving a murder.”

While she might want to be a profiler in her next life, she also gave up one way you can definitely freak her out:

“I don’t like getting out of the shower and for the toilet seat to be open. I’m like, I have water on me, and the toilet has water in it, and I just won’t shower with the toilet open. I guarantee now you’re going to look at the toilet and it’s going to make you feel weird if it’s open while you shower.”

Ew! She also seems to be freaked out by seeing herself on a billboard:

“When I know I’m on a billboard, I can’t even go near the block. I get hot sweats. I ask my friends to send pictures for me because I can’t go anywhere near it.”

We’ll take photos for you any day, Gigi!

[Image via Ivan Nikolov/Adriana M. Barraza/Dennis Van Tine/Future Image/WENN.]

Read more: https://perezhilton.com/2018-12-03-gigi-hadid-talks-getting-starstruck-cooking-with-bf-zayn-malik-more-for-w-magazine/

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How Were Killing Our Childrens Creativity

What will come of the future dreamers? Where will the artists draw their inspiration, and how will the free-thinkers function? I wonder if the young minds full of hope will be able to spring forth despite the chains that bind them, and if those who dare to push the envelope will even be heard. Will the next generation be able to climb out of the box, or will they be subdued back into the status quo? It makes one ask if innovation can be wrung from a dry towel? Or if creative, yet dry bones can be resurrected? Again, I say, what will come of the future dreamers? Are we killing our children’s creativity?

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I was recently watching my middle child bing-bong back and forth with a happy giggle. It brought back memories of the old Atari game, Pong, and much like the game she bounced to and fro through our living room. At times her intensity and energy were exasperating, and I joked with my husband about it.

“You know,” I mentioned, “if she was in public school they’d probably tell us to medicate her.”

And he agreed, with a laugh. I was only joking, but a part of me imagined there was probably some truth to my statement. I felt bad for public educators. You see, they were forced to take a room full of young children and fit them all into the same mold. So, although each child was an individual with unique learning styles, the constraints of the setting required them to all learn the same.

Let’s say you had a child like my own. High-spirited yet shy. A huge imagination, but not always eager to share it in a large group. She was a tactile learner, meaning she enjoyed hands-on education, and carrying out a task rather than listening to lengthy instructions. She could focus on instruction for short periods, but absorbed them more by doing. She was sensitive, easy to cry, yet also just as easy to laugh.

My daughter liked to move around, hop, dance, and fidget. This wasn’t a bad thing, but in some settings, it might be considered that way. The thing was, she was five, and she was high energy. A lot of children that age are, but they are often treated older than they are. I’m of the opinion that much more is expected out of young children than [20] to [30] years ago. I recall kindergarten as a place where I napped, learned to share, tie my shoes, and go back home by noon. Nowadays, according to public school friends, the hours of instruction are longer, sitting still at a desk, without a nap, and with more focus on an advancing curriculum. If they can’t fit into this mold, they might fall behind in class.

The thing about my girl is that although one moment she might be bouncing off the walls, the next she can be sitting still and transfixed on something that interests her and sparks her imagination. She will sit on the floor for hours at a time drawing, coloring, and creating her “art.” She’s told us for some time that she desires to be an artist when she grows up. So we cultivate her interests, and we often structure her school around her creative appeal, while ensuring she also spends time on her A, B, C’s and 1, 2, 3’s. It works well for her, but I see stories in Mommy groups I’m a part of that make me wonder if it also goes as well for other adventurous and unique young ones out there.

When I see the way the education system is shifting, I wonder if we push too hard in just one direction. The system creates markers that children must hit, with little wiggle room for trying a different approach to hit that mark. Standardized testing, increased homework requirements, and a plentitude of projects that are well above the child’s level of understanding. School years that go year round, and if your child rides a bus, then you may have a 5-year-old with almost as long of a day as I have as a bedside nurse. I see cute little pictures of tiny children asleep in the car after school, or crashed out at the kitchen table. Adorable, yet a little sad to me as we push young boys and girls beyond what their little bodies can handle. We have less recess time, but more work that must be completed at home, when children should be spending quality time with their families. This isn’t the educators’ fault, but rather the powers that be who create the overloaded curriculum requirements. I don’t claim to be an expert on such things, but rather share how it appears from the outside looking in. It looks like kids are overwhelmed and exhausted.

And what of the ones who don’t perform well in this environment? Not everyone has the opportunity or circumstances that can afford them the ability to homeschool or send their children to private school. These poor parents are told to take their unique child and put them in a standardized education box. It’s a place where children who like to move must be still, a place where children who learn well with their hands are told to hit the books harder, to prove themselves with improved test scores. It’s a place where suddenly the diagnosis of ADHD or ADD is heard more often than not, and medicating behavior is the standard treatment. It may be a place where the study of arts is pushed out in favor of increased comprehension of Common Core Math.

We now live in a society where everything is seen. Social media is the worst enemy of raising children. It’s become a place to compare behavior, and parents might feel more forced to make their children fit a certain mold. Free thinking is discouraged, and we worry far too much how others parents raise their own children. What will people think?! Social media serves like a herd mentality, where we are made to believe all our children should act the same, have the same interests, or hit milestones at the same time. People judge their parenting compared to the parenting of their peers, forgetting that each child is different, and as such they force their children to follow a certain status quo.

If your child can’t read at a second-grade level by the end of kindergarten, they’re behind. In fact, a second-grade level is the new kindergarten level. And the fact that there are even levels? Don’t get me started. Who set the bar of achievement? And who in the world is it that keeps raising it year after year? Over the past few years, I’ve seen a rapid increase in the number of worried posts on Facebook from moms concerned about their [6]-year-old not being able to read like the exceptional scholar that’s expected. It hurts my heart. These babies don’t have learning disabilities, nine times out of [10], but rather an inability to bend into the box and achieve this standard set by society today.

It almost seems like we’re rushing our babies along. At 2-months-old we’re putting rice in babies’ bottles so they’ll sleep longer, as all our friends keep asking, “are they sleeping through the night yet?!” We’ll potty train by 18 months, have the ABCs mastered by 24 months, and rush them off to preschool as soon as the diapers come off. They’ll be reading by four and I suppose that’s so they can master an Instagram and YouTube account by seven. Get them out of your bed and out into the world! And as we mourn our empty nest we wonder where the time went, even though we were part of the evil slave master pointing to the clock.

Hurry, hurry. Rush, rush. There’s time for extracurricular activities, but only if they look good on a transcript (or Facebook). Gotta get into the right college. No room for trade school, for sure. In fact, we’ve placed such a high importance on educational excellence that we miss out on even the simplest of things, like being a decent human being.

I just wonder, in all the educational changes over the past [20] years, and with the push to learn faster, where do the dreamers fit in? Where do the free-thinkers or the intuitive, out-of-the-box children fit? Our future artists and creative geniuses, I wonder how they thrive being pushed and pounded into a certain mold? I would imagine the creative juices are siphoned right out, and after being medicated into submission, being told they’re bad, slow, or too hyper, they just submit to the chain-gang. I remember hearing Einstein didn’t perform well in elementary school. I wonder where our world would be had he or Mark Twain been placed on *Adderall?

Now, I know this is a tender subject, and I know it likely won’t be received well, but let’s just think about it for a minute. Why have we become a world that would rather seek a quick fix of medicating our kids over finding out what environment will help them excel in their own way? And I’m not saying that every child with their head in the clouds not listening to the teacher is the next great genius. But who are we to say they’re not? We’re not even giving them a chance before we put a muzzle on them and push them back into the box that this decade has labeled “normal.”

If we’re not rushing children to hurry to the next milestone, appointment, or extracurricular activity, we’re telling them to slow down, pay attention, and focus on the things we deem worthy of time. We’re telling them to learn a certain way, sit still, and get involved, even if they don’t want to. We praise them for good grades, but don’t notice when they pick up the friend who fell.

“Run faster,” we say. “Don’t slow down for anyone!” And when they find themselves unhappy, years down the road, with the race that is called life, they can always find a new medicine to make them feel better for the dreams they were never able to fulfill. I know, I know. It sounds melodramatic. But isn’t it peculiar that the faster we go, and the more we place on ourselves, the more depressed we become? So, why do we keep up the tradition with our offspring?

Well, you ask, what’s the solution? I guess, maybe, we as parents need to think outside the box. We need to see our children as unique gifts from God, and not expect them to fit a certain mold. We need to relax, stop placing unrealistic expectations on our littles, and put our foot down when the world tells us we must. We have to stop comparing our parenting skills and our kids to others. We have to celebrate their special personalities. We can slow down on searching so desperately for a diagnosis and just love them. We can slow down and savor their childhood, and stop the rat race before it begins. We can look for alternative options for education when our kids won’t fit the new mold, and relax already. We can stand firm, stand up for our kids, and be proud of them. We can focus on what’s really important in life, and stop drinking the kool-aid that says there’s anything more important than loving your children and teaching them to love others.

Is this to say there aren’t children with special needs or children who need medication and diagnoses? Not at all! I just find it interesting how these things have recently become such an epidemic. And it makes me wonder if perhaps we (society) are not the epidemic. It’s worth considering, right?!

What will come of the future dreamers?

I guess you could say if we’re not careful, we might just snuff them out.

Addendum

*You may wonder if I’ve had experience with this medicine? Yes, for many years, I’ve seen firsthand how it affects a child. No, I’m not a fan.


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Neighbor helps family in dramatic house fire rescue: Hes a gift from God

A Texas family of eight was rescued from a fire in their mobile home. (Parker County Emergency Services)

A quick-thinking neighbor came to the rescue of a family-of-eight in Weatherford, Texas, as their house went up in flames early Thursday.

Firefighters had mounted a rescue from a bedroom window, the only room that wasn’t already burned, but footage showed smoke start to quickly fill the room and pour out the window.

“Oh, I got a kid! Got a kid, come on,” a firefighter is heard saying in body camera footage. “Pass me the kid! Pass me the kid!”

https://w3.cdn.anvato.net/player/prod/v3/anvload.html?key=eyJtIjoiZXBmb3giLCJwIjoiZGVmYXVsdCIsInYiOiI1MTU0NDQiLCJhbnZhY2siOiJabUE5Z1k5OWE2VDhxTjJpMjJmbzltck5IejY5b0t5cSIsInNoYXJlTGluayI6Imh0dHA6Ly93d3cuZm94NG5ld3MuY29tL25ld3MvcGFya2VyLWNvdW50eS1mYW1pbHktb2YtOC1ob3NwaXRhbGl6ZWQtYWZ0ZXItYmVpbmctcHVsbGVkLWZyb20tYnVybmluZy1ob21lIiwicGx1Z2lucyI6eyJkZnAiOnsiY2xpZW50U2lkZSI6eyJhZFRhZ1VybCI6Imh0dHBzOi8vcHViYWRzLmcuZG91YmxlY2xpY2submV0L2dhbXBhZC9hZHM%2Fc3o9NjQweDQ4MCZpdT0vNjM3OTA1NjQva2Rmdy9uZXdzJmNpdV9zenM9MzAweDI1MCZpbXBsPXMmZ2RmcF9yZXE9MSZlbnY9dnAmb3V0cHV0PXZhc3QmdnBvcz1wcmVyb2xsJnVudmlld2VkX3Bvc2l0aW9uX3N0YXJ0PTEmdXJsPVtyZWZlcnJlcl91cmxdJmNvcnJlbGF0b3I9W3RpbWVzdGFtcF0mZGVzY3JpcHRpb25fdXJsPWh0dHAlM0ElMkYlMkZ3d3cuZm94NG5ld3MuY29tJTJGbmV3cyUyRnBhcmtlci1jb3VudHktZmFtaWx5LW9mLTgtaG9zcGl0YWxpemVkLWFmdGVyLWJlaW5nLXB1bGxlZC1mcm9tLWJ1cm5pbmctaG9tZSJ9fX0sImh0bWw1Ijp0cnVlLCJ0b2tlbiI6ImRlZmF1bHQifQ%3D%3D

Two of the older daughters reportedly ran to a neighbor’s house to call 911, who then helped in the rescue, Fort Worth Star Telegram reported.

Parker County Sheriff’s Department said neighbor Eric Judd helped save them and buy more time by using his iPad as a flashlight to help locate the mother of six, Sarah Leonard, and her children still trapped inside.

Leonard had attempted to take the children out of a bedroom window but couldn’t locate because of the smoke, according to her sister, Leah McDaniel.

“Six babies and my husband. Six babies and my husband,” Sarah repeatedly told firefighters and her neighbors after they got her outside.

Judd then found two kids under a bed when he spotted four feet.

“After we pulled out the second kid, the 10-year-old, the roof collapsed 30 seconds later,” Judd told KTVT.

Their grandmother, Lori McDaniels, praised their neighbor for his heroic deed.

“He’s a gift from God,” she said. “I just am so glad that he was over here and would wake up and come over here in his underwear and save my daughter and kids.”

EMT SAVES PARTNER’S LIFE AFTER HE SUFFERS A STROKE AT THE WHEEL: ‘IT’S A TRUE MIRACLE’

Officials report that two of the children are in critical condition.

The Parker County Fire Marshal said an electrical fire in the kitchen likely caused the fire.

The Leonard family said they do not have insurance, but a GoFundMe page was set up to help them after they lost all their possessions.

Read more: https://www.foxnews.com/us/neighbor-helps-family-in-dramatic-house-fire-rescue-hes-a-gift-from-god

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HyperSurfaces turns any surface into a user interface using vibration sensors and AI

Imagine any surface, such as a wooden table, car door or glass wall, could be turned into a user interface without the need for physical buttons or a touch screen. That’s the ambition of HyperSurfaces, the London startup originally behind the Mogees line of music devices and software, which today is unveiling what it claims is a major breakthrough in UI technology.

Dubbed “HyperSurfaces,” the new technology, for which the company has four related patents pending, combines vibration sensors and the latest developments in machine learning/AI to transform any object of any material, shape and size into an intelligent object able to recognise physical interactions.

Equally important is that once trained for a particular object, the HyperSurfaces neural network-trained algorithms are able to run on dedicated microchips that don’t require connection to the cloud for processing. This means that gestures can be instantly recognised and in turn trigger specific commands entirely locally and at much lower cost.

The idea, co-founder and CEO Bruno Zamborlin tells me, is to merge “the physical and the data worlds” in a more seamless way than has been previously possible, ridding us of unnecessary keyboards, buttons and touch screens.

“The HyperSurfaces algorithms belong to the current state of the art in deep learning research,” he explains. “On top of this, the computational power of microchips literally exploded over the last years allowing for machine learning algorithms to run locally in real-time whilst achieving a bill of material of just a few dollars. These applications are possible now and were not possible 3 or 5 years ago.”

Zamborlin says it is difficult to imagine what the applications of HyperSurfaces technology might end up being, in a similar way as it was difficult to imagine 10 years ago all of the applications a mobile phone could enable. The most immediate ideas include the possibility of creating technological objects made of materials that until now haven’t been associated with technology at all, such as wood, glass and different kinds of metal etc.

“Imagine a new wave of 3D wooden IoT devices,” he says, only half jokingly.

This could result in a wooden kitchen table becoming the controller for your living room smart lights and smart thermostat. Or perhaps your home’s floor becomes an advanced security system able to accurately distinguish the steps of a thief from those of your cat. HyperSurfaces has also already seen a lot of interest from car manufacturers.

“Other initial applications will probably include accommodating the desire of car manufactures to eliminate buttons and switches from their car doors and cockpits, creating a brand new experience for the user,” adds Zamborlin. “We are used to flat plastic surfaces, but this won’t be a requirement anymore.”

The HyperSurfaces team

To get this far — the video demos are very impressive and can’t help but fire your imagination — HyperSurfaces (then called Mogees) raised $1.1 million in seed funding about a year ago and has been heads down ever since. This included Zamborlin recruiting a team of top AI scientists and completely re-focusing on research and development. “They are all from Goldsmiths [University of London], like myself, where we specialise in the niche of AI for real-time interaction,” he says.

Read more: https://techcrunch.com/2018/11/20/hypersurfaces/

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A Welcome Back Letter To My Depression

http://bit.ly/2r0Ejnq
Cataloged in Psychology

A Welcome Back Letter To My Depression

Dear Depression,

Don’t worry, I see you.

Not only do I see you, but I feel you crawling onto my skin. I feel you sinking into my muscles and clutching onto my bones. I hear your silence in the middle of the night as I wake up after another torturous nightmare and lay with my eyes wide open, until the sun comes out. I taste you in the endless cigarettes you make me inhale until my throat is too dry to have another.

I know that you’re back. I also know that you never actually left. You remained in hiding, just waiting for the moment I’d least expect you to attack. Creeping out while I’m in the midst of falling in love, standing in the middle of a dance floor, or completing a difficult chapter of my life.

You never come when I’m already sad, because that would be a waste of your time.

You always come when it’s most inconvenient. You challenge me when I’m unprepared. You pull me down after I’ve managed to climb mountains.

But, I have been here before.

And even though it has been hard to get up in the morning, I will not let you hold me down under the covers for too long again. I will drag my legs out from my sheets and plop my feet onto the cold hardwood floors. I will take my body that aches for no reason into the kitchen to pour myself a cup of coffee and start writing, even though every word I type seems to lose its meaning. I will still write, even if the message that comes out is darker than the black coffee that sits by me on the table.

And even though you have used food against me in the past, I will still eat. Even when the most decadent food tastes bland and I can’t seem to swallow anything but liquor, I will eat. Even when I have felt as if I’ve eaten far too much, because of the stress you brought upon me, I will still eat the next day.

And even though you whisper sweet words that compels me to stay indoors, I will step outside. The harsh wind will hit my face and make me think of how much warmer I would be in hiding, but I will still remain. Even when the sun is too bright against the darkness you have created in me, I will lift my head up to it and take in every ray of vitamin D to fight against you.

And on the days that you win–the days you keep me locked up in my room as time slips away and unanswered texts bring light to the screen of my phone, I will still try again. For every canceled plan, I’ll make another one. For the wasted hours of napping too long, I’ll start to get up earlier. For every negative thought that lingers in my mind, I will write down a positive one. And for every time I become angry with myself for falling into your trap, I will forgive.

So, I welcome you depression. I welcome you into my life, because every time you have entered it, I have come out stronger than before. Every time I fight against you, I feel it becoming easier and easier.

You may never leave, but I will also never stop fighting. If anything, I will embrace you into my arms and care for you. I will rock you back and forth while telling you everything is going to be okay. I will show you what it is like to be appreciated.

You will begin to see the lack of control you have over me and run off into hiding once again.

For now, I see you. I welcome you back into my life, but don’t think for one second that I won’t be going down without a fight.

Read more: https://thoughtcatalog.com/jordan-lueder/2018/11/a-welcome-back-letter-to-my-depression

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“The 30-Hour Fight”: What Finally Ended the War With My Husband

A couple of weeks ago we had a disagreement that lasted all day and into the next afternoon.

I refer to this one as the 30-hour fight. We were not seeing eye to eye and there looked like little chance we were going to. Agreeing to disagree wasn’t agreeable. It started as such a small thing and escalated into a bigger thing, like arguments often do.

We had been visiting my family, and they knew we were having some friction. I felt like a loser considering I co-author a blog that encourages women to love their husbands, and here I was fighting with mine. My sister told me some nice things I could say to Scott to smooth things over, but it didn’t work. He could tell my nice words were laced with sarcasm. When it was time to head back home, I hugged my dad and sister goodbye, and got in the car. I could tell they were a little concerned that Scott and I were going to be in such close quarters.

I am not the kind of person who can just pretend to be okay when I feel upset. I can’t just sing along to the radio, read and have small talk. You know that filter between your brain and your mouth that keeps you from saying things that you shouldn’t? Ya, I don’t have that. And that saying, “Put it on the back burner?” Well, evidently I only have front burners.

I brought up our “issue,” hoping we could figure it out by the time we got to the outskirts of town. Two hours later we were still no closer to a resolution. I finally looked at him in tears and told him I couldn’t stand it. I didn’t like that we fought. I wondered aloud what was wrong with us. What he said turned around all of my negative feelings in a flash. “We are fighting, yes. Fighting for our marriage.  And God is bringing us through,” he said.

That did it. I stopped feeling angry. I felt like we were on the same side again. That was the best thing he could have said. I looked at my husband’s profile as he drove. He looked so cute over there on the other side of the car. How was I so mad at him? I felt very sorry we had just wasted a whole day being petty. But I was proud of us for trying so hard. I felt glad we are both so stubborn.

As I sat there, I asked God what he wanted me to do. I didn’t want to get in these silly fights anymore, but sometimes they seemed to come out of nowhere. I wanted to use our time enjoying each other and building good memories, not bickering. I told God this: “When Scott is old and gray and hunched over, I want him to look back on our marriage and feel thankful for me. I want to be a good thing in his life. What can I do to bless him?”

Two words were heavily pressing into my heart. “Help him…”

Help him? Don’t I already do that? I do so much for our family. My first reaction was to feel defensive. I pictured myself chained to the kitchen sink, slowly scrubbing a cast iron skillet. Help him? I know being a helper is not a new concept. God created Eve to be a helper to Adam. I told myself what I knew about God as our Helper. He is right by our side, rescuing and assisting us in every aspect of our lives. It is actually a position of strength to be able to help someone. Of course, I will never be the perfect Helper that God is, because He is never grouchy, selfish or tired, but I can become a better helper by following His lead.

When I got home I looked up scripture that shows God as our Helper to see if I could gain some wisdom. I went right to my favorite passage of scripture.

Isaiah 41:10 says,” Do not fear, for I am with you; do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.”

If I reflect this trait of God to my husband, he can’t help but feel encouraged. It means protecting him. It’s giving him a safe place in this harsh world. It’s not just cooking, cleaning and batting my eyes at him. It’s working with him, being his companion, and comforting him when he is weary.

Marriage is the perfect reflection of God’s love for us. He promises to never leave us. He comforts, counsels, and protects. My perspective changed as I thought about being a helper to Scott. I even got a little excited thinking about what this really meant. The more I help him, the more he is able to lead our family and bless those around him. I help him so he feels rested and comforted. I help him because he is my friend.

Lord,

Help me to lean on you as I become more of a helper to my husband. Show me practical ways I can make things easier on him as he walks out Your purpose for our family. Thank you for showing me how important this is in our marriage. Help me to protect, strengthen and comfort him as You do all of those things for me. Thank you for this high calling of companionship. I know blessing my husband in this way will not only give me satisfaction, but it will bring you glory. It will spill over into other’s lives, including our children, friends and family. I pray for other wives as they daily strive to be helpers to their husbands. I pray they find joy and friendship with their husbands in the process. Thank you for being the perfect Helper to us.

In Jesus’ Name,
Amen


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Victim’s father ‘watched sex tape of her’

Image copyright PA
Image caption Barrie Fellows has denied involvement in the abuse and murder of his daughter and her friend

The ex-girlfriend of a man accused of killing two young girls has described seeing the father of one of the victims watching his daughter “having sex”.

Marion Stevenson was 16 years old when Nicola Fellows and Karen Hadaway were sexually assaulted and strangled in Wild Park, Brighton, in October 1986.

She told the Old Bailey that Barrie Fellows had been viewing images on a TV of Nicola with the family’s lodger.

Russell Bishop is on trial for a second time accused of their murders.

The convicted paedophile, now 52, and formerly from Brighton, was cleared of the children’s murders in 1987.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Karen Hadaway (left) and Nicola Fellows went missing after they had gone out to play

In 1990, he was convicted of abducting, sexually assaulting and trying to kill a seven-year-old girl.

Ms Stevenson, now aged 48, was called to give evidence for the defence team which has cast suspicion on Mr Fellows.

She told jurors she first got to know Bishop through the Fellows’ lodger Dougie Judd, who was a good friend and “like a brother”.

She said she was “always” hanging around in Mr Judd’s room at their house in Brighton.

She recalled how one afternoon, a couple of months before the murder, she was there “smoking pot” and drinking with Mr Judd, his brother Tim and Bishop.

‘Sexual noises’

She said: “I was going to go to the kitchen to get a drink of water because I was thirsty and you have to go through the front room.

“I first heard sexual noises so I turned round to where the noises were coming from, which was the TV.

“Nicky (Nicola) was on Dougie’s bed with him. Dougie touched her and got on top of her and was having sex. They were both undressed,” the court heard.

Ms Stevenson said Mr Fellows and another man were watching the images on the television and she observed them unseen for two minutes.

Joel Bennathan QC asked if she had any doubt it was Nicola in the video.

Image copyright Julia Quenzler
Image caption Bishop was acquitted of the murders in 1987 and is on trial for a second time

Ms Stevenson replied: “No, definitely.”

Mr Fellows has denied claims he was party to the sexual abuse and murder of Nicola and her friend.

Giving evidence earlier in the trial, he also denied being party to his daughter being filmed in a homemade pornographic video and watching it.

Ms Stevenson went on to tell the court how Bishop had failed to turn up to meet her on 9 October, the evening the girls went missing.

When they both joined the search the next day, Bishop described last seeing the children out “conkering”, and said he had felt guilty “because he wished he had told them to go home”.

He allegedly told her: “I hope I don’t find the bodies if they have been murdered.”

Jurors were told that Bishop later told Ms Stevenson about finding the bodies “cuddling up together”, and that they had been strangled.

Cross-examining, Brian Altman QC asked: “Had anybody mentioned before this happened the girls had been strangled?”

Ms Stevenson replied: “No.”

The trial continues.

Related Topics

Read more: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-sussex-46362901

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Corporate food catering startup Chewse raises $19 million

Chewse, a food catering and company culture startup, just announced a $19 million fundraising round as it gears up to expand its operations in the Silicon Valley area. This brings Chewse’s total funding to more than $30 million. Chewse’s investors include Foundry Group, 500 Startups and Gingerbread Capital.

Instead of plopping down meals in the office and bouncing, Chewse aims to create a full experience for its customers by offering family-style meals. In order to ensure quality, Chewse employs drivers and meal hosts so that it can provide them with training. Chewse also offers it drivers and meal hosts benefits.

“We initially started with a contractor model but then very quickly started to realize our customers often mentioned the host or the driver in their feedback,” Chewse CEO and co-founder Tracy Lawrence told TechCrunch.

“I know there’s a lot of other companies that are like food tech or logistics but for us, it’s all about elevating and improving company culture,” Lawrence said. “We have technology but we’re investing in it to create an exceptional real-life experience.”

“On the tech side, we’re using a ton of machine learning and algorithms to learn what people like to eat and create custom meal schedules,” Lawrence said.

To date, Chewse has hundreds of customers across three markets. Chewse initially launched in Los Angeles, but paused operations for a little over one year in order to focus on achieving market profitability in San Francisco. Chewse has since relaunched in Los Angeles, in addition to launching in cities like Palo Alto and San Jose. As part of the Silicon Valley launch, Chewse has partnered with restaurants like Smoking Pig, HOM Korean Kitchen and Oren’s Hummus Shop.

Within the next year, the goal is to double the number of markets where Chewse operates. But Chewse faces tough competition in the corporate meal catering space.

Earlier this year, Square acquired Zesty to become part of its food delivery service, Caviar. The aim of the acquisition was to strengthen Caviar’s corporate food ordering business, Caviar for Teams.

At the time, Zesty counted about 150 restaurant customers in San Francisco, which is the only city in which it operates. Some of Zesty’s customers include Snap, Splunk and TechCrunch. Zesty, which first launched in 2013 under a different name, had previously raised $20.7 million in venture funding.

“Zesty is a direct competitor of ours for sure,” Lawrence said. “When we’re thinking about the things that set us apart from Zesty and ZeroCater, the investment in using the technology and building a meal algorithm — which is something we know they’re doing by hand — and then automatically calibrate when we’re getting feedback because we employ our hosts and our drivers. Yes, it’s more expensive for us but because it provides such a superior experience, we retain our customer longer.”

*Zesty has reached out to clarify it, too, has an algorithm at play to determine best foods and meals to serve.

Read more: https://techcrunch.com/2018/12/03/corporate-food-catering-startup-chewse-raises-19-million/

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