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Metro.co.uk: News, Sport, Showbiz, Celebrities from Metro

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    One of the Utrecht Bee Stops with greenery and flowers on the roof of a bus stop
    We need to save the bees (Picture: Hans Dinkelberg / @uitdragerij)

    Bumblebees are pretty important – they pollinate around 80% of our wildflowers, so we need to take care of them.

    The Dutch city of Utrecht has a great idea to help bees thrive – turning bus stops into little bee havens.

    The ‘bee stops’ are basically just standard bus stops with grass and wildflowers on top to encourage pollination.

    It’s important because it’s thanks to bees we have foods including apple, pears, coffee and vanilla.

    In the UK, it would cost £1.8bn a year to employ people to do the work of pollinators like bees, so investing in supporting them makes sense.

    The 316 stops also help to capture fine dust and store rainwater. As well as the green roofs, they are all fitted with energy-efficient LED lights and bamboo benches.

    Recently, the Utrecht council saw an opportunity to expand the functions of a regular bus stop by giving them a new wholesome purpose: To tackle the growing endangerment of bees. Utrecht is the fourth-largest city in the Netherlands, located in the central part of the country. Provider: Hans Dinkelberg / @uitdragerij
    One of the 361 bee stops (Picture: Hans Dinkelberg / @uitdragerij)

    The ‘bee stops’ are also cared for by a team of workers who drive around in electric vehicles.

    And if you want to build your own bee stop, the city also runs a scheme for residents to apply for funding to transform their own roofs.

    The bee stops aren’t the only great place for city bees to hang out.

    In Sweden, there’s a tiny McDonald’s restaurant for the insects.

    The McHive is tiny wooden structure that looks like a branch of the fast food restaurant but works as a fully functioning bee hive.

    It was built to celebrate the Swedish initiative to put beehives on the roofs of McDonald’s restaurants to help build a sustainable environment.

    MORE: What happens when a mum and daughter go on a digital detox retreat?

    MORE: What I Rent: Sophie, £525 a month for a one-bedroom flat in Sheffield


    METROGRAB Bee StopMETROGRAB Bee Stop

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    Roomba robot vacuum covered in shit, next to pic of kitchen floor covered in shit
    Oh dear (Picture: Ryan Landy)

    Those pesky (but handy) AIs might be taking our jobs with their cool technological ways but they’re not perfect.

    The Roomba robot vacuum, for example, certainly makes hoovering the house easier. But apparently it doesn’t know how to detect dog poo.

    One man learned that the hard way.

    Ryan Landy, from Florida, U.S, left out his Roomba to clean up the floor but when he came back, his home was messier than he’d hoped.

    The Roomba had not only slid through the poo kindly left out by Ryan’s dog Apollo, it had spread it through the house.

    If only there was a robot mop to clean up the mess.

    Picture of dog Apollo and Ryan, the Man whose Roomba runs over dog poo, smears it all over the house
    Apollo, what are you like! (Picture: Ryan Landy)

    Ryan, a filmmaker who studied in New York, shared the poor incident on Facebook where users couldn’t help but laugh.

    He wrote: ‘My new Roomba ran over my dog’s sh*t and proceeded to “clean” the rest of my house. I’m going to need therapy.’

    He added in a pic of the poo smushed into the crevices of the Roomba, in case anyone wanted to see that.

    Ryan later shared an update for followers who wondered how the whole thing happened.

    ‘Due to popular demand, here’s the sh*tter! His name’s Apollo,’ wrote Ryan.

    ‘Also for those wondering, we rescued him recently and he’s not fully trained yet.

    ‘So we keep the Roomba closed off in whatever room it’s cleaning, unfortunately, some of my pets know how to open doors, which is what lead to the catastrophe. You learn from your mistakes.’

    Due to popular demand, here’s the shitter! His name’s Apollo.Also for those wondering, we rescued him recently and he’s…

    Posted by Ryan Landy on Monday, July 15, 2019

    People enjoyed the incident so much, 33,000 shared the initial post with their pals.

    Loads also commented on the post, tagging their mates to show the powers of the device.

    Ryan also shared the story on Reddit where others revealed they had similar experiences.

    ‘I had this exact scenario happen with me years ago,’ wrote one Redditor. ‘I will never forget the smell that greeted me when I opened the front door.’

    Of course, people made jokes too, saying ‘what a sh*tty vacuum’ and ‘disgosten’, referencing other glorious poo incidents.

    One person wrote: ‘Dog and Roomba = recipe for disaster,’ while others boasted that their dog wouldn’t poop on the floor anyway.

    Showoffs.

    MORE: All the ways you’re pooing wrong and how to poo better

    MORE: Modern Etiquette: I’m too embarrassed to poo at work

    MORE: Your toothbrush is probably covered in poo particles


    Man's Roomba runs over dog poo, smears it all over the houseMan's Roomba runs over dog poo, smears it all over the house

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    Joanna's grandmother and mum both had breast cancer
    Joanna’s grandmother and mum both had breast cancer (Picture: Joanna Megson/PA Real Life)

    Joanna Megson decided to have a double mastectomy at 24 after her grandma and mum had breast cancer.

    Now 25, Joanna, from Yorkshire, is one of the youngest in the UK to have had her breasts removed.

    Joanna, a commercial officer in the nuclear industry, had the surgery after finding out she had the BRCA2 gene, which substantially increased her risk of breast cancer.

    She was encouraged by the story of Angelina Jolie, who had the preventative operation because of a family history of the illness.

    The 25-year-old also fundraises for charity Breast Cancer Now for which she raised £6,000 through ITV striptease show The Real Full Monty.

    Topless Joanna Megson with her friends raising money for Breast Cancer Now
    Joanna has fundraised to raise money for Breast Cancer Now (Picture: Lynn Oglesby Gemini/PA Real Life)

    In 2017, Joanna decided to get tested, finding out that her BRCA2 gene meant she had 50-80% of getting breast cancer as well as a risk of ovarian cancer.

    ‘The statistics were shocking,’ she said. ‘It felt inevitable that I’d follow in the footsteps of my mum and grandmother.’

    At first, believing the risk of developing breast cancer in her twenties to be low, Joanna considered delaying her decision to have a preventative mastectomy.

    Then she changed her mind, saying: ‘I thought, “this is the only thing that will save my life”.

    ‘With my family history, screening didn’t seem enough to prevent it. Surgery seemed the best thing to do, but I was still absolutely terrified.

    ‘It would mean never being able to breastfeed. I was worried about the risk of infection and that the reconstruction might not work.

    ‘I worried about not waking up from the anaesthetic, having no sensation in my breasts and what they’d look like.’

    Joanna Megson with her mum Julie Megson
    Joanna with her mum Julie before she passed away due to cervical cancer (Picture: Joanna Megson/PA Real Life)

    Joanna explained how her gran died from breast cancer at 36 and how her mum Julie had it, before developing cervical cancer and dying at 45.

    She said: ‘I think my mum would be absolutely over the moon that I’ve had the op.

    ‘She never had the genetic test, but told me I could have it at 18. Back then, though, I didn’t want to know, so she’d be so proud that I’ve done something to try and prevent what happened to her.’

    Julie was seven when her mum developed breast cancer, and saw her having a lumpectomy years later.

    Joanna Megson as a child with her mum Julie Megson
    Joanna was 13 when her mum Julie had a lumpectomy (Picture: Joanna Megson/PA Real Life)

    ‘It was a difficult time,’ said Joanna. ‘I had to look after her and the house. There were people to help out, but having to cope with that at the age of 13 was really hard.

    ‘It took about 18 months from her diagnosis before she was given the all-clear.’

    When Julie then developed cervical cancer, further rounds of chemotherapy and radiotherapy followed before she eventually passed away.

    ‘Discovering her cancer was terminal was horrendous,’ said Joanna. ‘We cried a lot, but decided to try and enjoy the time we had left together.’

    Joanna Megson's grandma Elizabeth Wilson with her mum Julie Megson as a baby
    Julie’s mum Elizabeth died of breast cancer aged 36 (Picture: Joanna Megson/PA Real Life)

    Joanna added that boyfriend Josh had been supportive throughout the whole treatment, which she had in 2018.

    In a six-hour operation at Doncaster Royal Infirmary, Joanna had a mastectomy and reconstruction using silicone implants.

    ‘Although I had absolutely no regrets, when I left the hospital I saw a poster about breastfeeding and cried all the way home,’ she said.

    Joanna Megson after her operation with silicone implants
    Joanna after her operation, where she was also given silicone implants (Picture: Joanna Megson/PA Real Life)

    ‘The first time I looked at my breasts properly, I stood in front of the mirror, took my pyjama top off and started smiling, then crying with happiness, because my surgeon had done an amazing job.

    ‘It was such an emotional moment. They were real breasts. I had some bandages and a bit of bruising but they looked really good.’

    Joanna Megson at a hen do
    The surgery has given Joanna a new lease on life (Picture: Joanna Megson/PA Real Life)

    Joanna said she feels inspired by other women like her and encourages more people to be tested.

    She said: ‘To anyone wondering whether to have surgery, I’d say do it. It’s scary, but you’ll be so glad you did. I have no regrets.

    ‘It’s such a massive weight lifted off my shoulders. It’s amazing what the surgeons can do.’

    Other young women in the UK who had double mastectomies include Esther Taylor who had the operation at 24 and Hannah Fitzpatrick who had it at 19.

    MORE: Tinder man asks cancer survivor with double mastectomy if she has ‘big t*ts’

    MORE: Woman, 24, has double mastectomy after nine relatives get cancer

    MORE: New breast cancer screening method could help pinpoint individual risk


    Joanna Megson - double mastectomyJoanna Megson - double mastectomy

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    Jennifer with her back to the camera, showing her scar from spinal fusion therapy and Jennifer doing yoga
    Jennifer’s scar from spinal fusion surgery and doing yoga (Picture: MDWfeatures / Jennifer Pond)

    Jennifer Pond was carrying out a revolved hand to toe yoga pose during a class in 2014, when she heard the pop in her back.

    At the time, she didn’t think much of it and wasn’t in pain – but she had actually broken a bone in her back, which gradually worsened and eventually left her unable to walk.

    Event planner Jennifer, 31, from Saskatoon, Canada, broke her interarticularis bone, a small bone found in the lower region of the spine. The pars interarticularis is connected to the facet joints in the spine, which help maintain spinal stability.

    In the days that followed the injury, she felt pain in her right leg and in her hip, but she just assumed it was a pulled muscle, but weeks later, when it wasn’t improving, she went to see a doctor.

    An X-ray revealed that while doing yoga, Jennifer had broken the bone and the injury compromised Jennifer’s facet joints and vertebras, causing the lower spine to slip forward, which is known as spondylolisthesis.

    Jennifer said: ‘This bone is connected to your facet joints, which serve as train tracks for your spine, ensuring your vertebras don’t fall off track.

    ‘I was in a standing twist pose when I heard an internal ‘pop’ in the lower region of my back. It wasn’t until later that I realised this small noise represented a moment that would change my life.

    ‘Immediately after, I wasn’t aware that anything was severely wrong with my spine. My initial symptoms presented in my right leg with intense leg pain and painful sensations in my upper front hip.

    Jennifer using a walking stick
    Jennifer struggled to walk after the injury (Picture: MDWfeatures / Jennifer Pond)

    ‘I assumed that I had merely pulled a leg muscle, however this theory could no longer be supported when the symptoms began presenting themselves in my left leg. By the time I made it to my doctor a few weeks later, the pain had made its way into my lower back. It took an X-ray to see what the problem was.

    ‘The initial injury developed into a pretty severe condition called spondylolisthesis, meaning part of my lower spine is slipping forward. Specifically, one of my vertebras is slipping over the one below.

    ‘As your spine is a complex part of all movement and surrounded by important anatomy, it’s a tough place for things to be shaking around.’

    Since developing spondylolisthesis, Jennifer has lived with chronic pain, leg weakness, nerve pain, stiffness in her back and numbness in her legs and she tried many non-surgical treatments, including physiotherapy, acupuncture, spinal injections and massage therapy.

    What is spinal fusion therapy?

    Spinal fusion is used to join 2 or more vertebrae together by placing an additional section of bone in the space between them.

    This helps to prevent excessive movements between 2 adjacent vertebrae, lowering the risk of further irritation or compression of the nearby nerves and reducing pain and related symptoms.

    The additional section of bone can be taken from somewhere else in your body (usually the hip) or from a donated bone. More recently, synthetic (man-made) bone substitutes have been used.

    To improve the chance of fusion being successful, some surgeons may use screws and connecting rods to secure the bones.

    Afterwards, the surgeon will close the incision with stitches or surgical staples.

    NHS

    Despite trying to reduce her pain for four years, none of Jennifer’s efforts worked. She could only walk short distances and day-to-day activities became very difficult.

    Jennifer’s life was brought to a standstill as she backed out of many career, family and social activities due to the pain.

    She adds: ‘My symptoms have varied over the years and the intensity can change on any given day – you have no real sense of what you’ll wake up to. Spondylolisthesis is like an ever-changing fingerprint: it’s not only unique to you but the print itself is constantly changing.

    ‘I’ve worked very hard with my medical team and tried all conservative treatment methods, including physiotherapy, acupuncture, spinal injections, resting, icing and massage therapy.

    ‘Unfortunately, there was no improvement and they would often cause inflammation.

    Jennifer in recovery from spinal fusion surgery which she hopes will improve her quality of life
    Jennifer recovering from spinal fusion therapy (Picture: MDWfeatures / Jennifer Pond)

    ‘As my condition worsened, so did my quality of life. I was unable to complete many normal and necessary life tasks. If I was physically able to do certain things, in most cases, I had to adjust how and how often I did the task.

    ‘I have to schedule duties around the needs of my condition and most activities result in debilitating pain. There is a constant fear of further slippage.’

    A spinal fusion was Jennifer’s last option, and despite her fears of surgery and the 60 per cent chance the surgery would increase her quality of life, she knew she had run out of alternatives.

    ‘Although spinal fusion surgery has some scary short and long-term risks and there’s guaranteed outcomes, at this point, it was my only option left if I want to fight for stability both in my spine and life,’ she said

    ‘I was very scared of surgery, but I was working with an incredible surgeon and I knew that my medical team had exhausted all other treatment options to avoid this surgery.

    ‘My surgeon believed he could increase the quality of my life with the surgery, so that I have less pain and more stability. Surgery isn’t a cure, but it can help me regain my life back.’

    Jennifer’s spinal fusion took place on June 10, 2019, and although recovery will be slow, she has already seen progress in her walking ability.

    Jennifer's surgery scar. SASKATOON, CANADA: THIS WOMAN heard her spine POP during a YOGA CLASS as one of the bones in her spine BROKE and caused her years of chronic pain, which left her unable to WALK, until a spinal fusion was her last resort at having any chance of regaining mobility. Event planner, Jennifer Pond (31) from Saskatoon, Canada, was performing a sophisticated revolved hand to big toe yoga pose in 2014 when she heard a popping sound in her back. In the days that followed, she felt pain in her right leg and in her hip, but she just assumed it was a pulled muscle. As the weeks passed, the pain spread to her left leg and lower back, making Jennifer realise it couldn???t just be a pulled muscle, so she made an appointment to see her doctor. An X-ray revealed that while doing yoga, Jennifer broke her interarticularis bone, a small bone found in the lower region of the spine. The pars interarticularis is connected to the facet joints in the spine, which help maintain spinal stability. The injury compromised Jennifer???s facet joints and vertebras, causing the lower spine to slip forward, which is known as spondylolisthesis. Since developing spondylolisthesis, Jennifer has lived with chronic pain, leg weakness, nerve pain, stiffness in her back and numbness in her legs and she tried many non-surgical treatments, including physiotherapy, acupuncture, spinal injections and massage therapy. Despite trying to reduce her pain for four years, none of Jennifer???s efforts worked and she was left walking short distances with a limp and unable to complete the household duties or lift anything heavy because of the strain on her back. Jennifer???s life was brought to a standstill as she backed out of many career, family and social activities due to the pain. A spinal fusion was Jennifer???s last option, and despite her fears of surgery and the 60 per cent chance the surgery would increase her quality of life, she knew she had run out of alternatives. Jennifer???s spina
    MDWfeatures / Jennifer Pond

    ‘Waking up was traumatic,’ she says. ‘The pain was severe, and it took hours to get it under control. I was in the recovery room for roughly five hours and unfortunately stopped breathing twice so they had to massage my chest in order to resuscitate me.

    ‘It is both a physical and mental battle, full of challenges that you must overcome. In the initial stages, the level of disability combined with the pain was overwhelming and at times unbearable, but what helps this situation is choosing to accept your position and allow your caregivers and family to take over.

    ‘I also have to continually remind myself to sort of ride the recovery wave as each new day brings on different pain, emotions and obstacles.

    ‘The recovery has been slow, but I am currently walking better. My left leg below my knee is mostly numb, but I’m staying positive.

    How to practise yoga safely at home

    Yoga can have many health benefits but like any physical activity, you need to do what you can to prevent injuries.

    Warming up and starting small before you work your way up to more complicated poses can help.

    Look at some yoga poses for beginners before you start.

    ‘I want to build my life back up again and add those blocks back to it that I have lost over the years. I want to spend energy on finding my purpose and pursue that avenue. I look forward to having children one day that I will not only love, but I can physically hold and play with, and to be able to say yes to new opportunities that come my way!

    ‘I would never be able to manage my way through these obstacles without the incredible support of my loved ones. Caregivers deserve so much acknowledgement for all they do in order to help those living with illness.’

    MORE: Roomba iRobot rolls into dog poo and vacuums it all over the house

    MORE: Hoi An in Vietnam has been voted the best city in the world for 2019


    Yoga Broke my backYoga Broke my back

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    A baby has been born with a head of thick black hair, shocking her mum and the midwives when she came into the world.

    Mum Georgia Robinson, 22, was stunned when Tia, delivered weighing 9lbs on 188 June, was born with a full head of hair.

    According to the mum-of-two, midwives at Burnley General Hospital said they had never seen a newborn like her.

    Now, less than a month later, Tia’s rapidly growing hair has already gone over her tiny ears – and Georgia has no intention of cutting it anytime soon.

    Tia has very long hair
    Tia was born with a full head of hair (Picture: Alex Cousins/SWNS)

    Georgia, who worked in operations before falling pregnant, said: ‘I couldn’t believe it when I saw her, there was so much hair, I really wasn’t expecting it.

    ‘The midwives were as shocked as me, they were saying they had never seen anything like it.

    ‘My friends and family are all absolutely obsessed with her and the hair is the first thing everybody talks about.

    Tia's hair is growing rapidly
    She’s not even a month old and it’s growing very fast (Picture: Alex Cousins/SWNS)

    ‘It’s growing really quickly and we’ve had to start putting clips in already.

    ‘She loves having her hair brushed and washed as well.’

    Georgia and her partner Bradley Duffy also have a two-and-a-half-year-old, Ellis, but he didn’t have half as much hair when he was born.

    They added Tia’s hair colour is a bit of a mystery, as none of them have hair as dark as hers.

    She said: ‘Everyone loves Tia so much.

    Tia with her mum
    Her mum says everyone loves Tia (Picture: Alex Cousins/SWNS)

    ‘Her brother Ellis loves her and is always giving her lots of hugs and kisses, which is great.

    ‘I have posted pictures of her on Facebook and everyone loves her, she’s getting loads of likes.

    ‘Even when we’re out shopping people stop us to say hello to Tia.

    Tia after being born
    Midwives were shocked when she was born (Picture: SWNS)

    ‘Luckily she’s really well-behaved and loves the attention.’

    According to an old wives’ tale the amount of heartburn a woman suffers during pregnancy correlates to the amount of hair on their newborn’s head, although Georgia says she didn’t have any over the past nine months.

    Instead experts say the amount of hair a baby is born with is actually influenced by genetics and ethnicity.

    However, a baby’s hair as a newborn bears little resemblance of what he or she will look like as they grow older.

    MORE: Parents face bigger childcare bills than ever before over summer holidays

    MORE: What happens when a mum and daughter go on a digital detox retreat?


    PRI_76008954PRI_76008954

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    Ben & Jerry's has whipped up a new deep-fried treat, but don't expect to find Oreos or Twinkies anywhere near it.
    Complete with raspberry ketchup and mascapone tartare sauce (Picture: Ben & Jerry’s)

    Summer time beach trips means fish and chips, followed by ice cream – but Ben & Jerry’s have managed to combine both dishes in one.

    The ice cream brand has created Phish and Chips.

    Don’t worry, it’s not ice cream that tastes like the British classic – it’s just made to look like it.

    It’s a block of their classic Phish Food ice cream, coated in a cornflake batter and all deep fried.

    It comes with salty pretzel chips and even has sweet raspberry ketchup and mascapone tartar sauce for dunking, because why not?

    The treat is available every Friday in July from their Soho scoop shop in London.

    the Ben & Jerry's Phish and Chips viewed from the top, with pretzel chips and sauces
    Phish and chips (Picture: Ben & Jerry’s)

    It’s available from 11am-midnight so you might not be able to have it for breakfast, but it’s a solid lunch or dinner choice.

    The whole dish costs £5.95 and is also available without jelly to make it suitable for vegetarians.

    Ben & Jerry’s Flavour Guru said: ‘We’ve been calling London’s Soho Scoop Shop ‘home’ for over a year now, so we knew we wanted to celebrate with our community the only way we know how.

    ‘We hope our Phish & Chips experimentation – hot and cold, soft and crunchy, sweet and salty – reels in a treat that will have ice cream lovers hooked.’

    Of course, if you don’t want your ice cream deep fried, you can try this pop-up that’s serving it with chicken and chips instead.

    House of Ice Cream pop-up will boast a buffalo milk ice cream topped with fried chicken, chips and hot sauce on its menu from tomorrow (which is apparently national ice cream day).

    Like we need an excuse to serve ice cream with every meal.

    MORE: Midwives shocked as baby is born with a full head of hair

    MORE: Woman heard her spine go pop and broke her back while doing yoga


    Ben and Jerry\'s phish and chipsBen and Jerry\'s phish and chips

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    Man unable to shop for himself without pictures
    Why have children when you can get a man who needs looking after like this? (Picture: @Rato_K)

    Today in ‘the bar is extremely low’ news comes a story that has divided all those who’ve seen it.

    The tale starts with plans to cook what we can only decipher is some sort of delicious seafood pasta. Gin and tonics were also due to be had, as far as we can tell.

    Twitter user Rato_K sent her boyfriend to the shop for ingredients for the dinner, with a list for good measure.

    However, it clearly wasn’t enough for him, as along with the WhatsApped list, he needed individual pictures of the ingredients to ensure he knew what to buy.

    Rato_K, who lives in South Africa, tweeted a screen recording of the step-by-step guide she’d given her man, prompting polarising responses from the internet.

    The pictures were screenshots from the Woolworths (not that kind, RIP to a real one) food store, which would apparently help the unnamed man work out what a pepper(?) or a tin of tomatoes(??) looks like.

    If that wasn’t baffling enough, he then sent his girlfriend a picture of the aisle that contained stock cubes and pots, claiming that they didn’t have any fish stock available. She then had to confirm that, yes, they did, and it looked exactly the same as the one she’d just sent him a picture of.

    While Rato_K seemed to think this incompetence was hilarious and adorable, a whole load of others were not in agreement.

    One person replied with ‘Nothing cute here….Grow up!’ while many more compared her to his son. Another said, ‘How are these kinds of men even surviving in the real world?’

    Man unable to shop for himself without pictures
    There was some difficulty telling the different between grapes and grapefruits (Picture: @Rato_K)

    The idea that male incompetence is a form of misogyny has been debated numerous times, and it seems that some people are wise to the little tricks in place. A reply to Rato_K’s post outed all of these man-babies, saying: ‘Lil secret.. He knows… He just wants u to do everything for him as the baby he is.. AND would u look at that he got u’.

    Someone who’s clearly a big fan of this strategy said:  ‘If your woman asks you to do a chore, make a mess of it otherwise it becomes your job. You’re welcomed gents’.

    Although there were supporters of Rato_K’s boyfriend on Twitter – emphasis on the boy part – and people saying that they do the same with their partners, it is simply not something we can get behind.

    Real man stereotypes are often harmful, but a real man is definitely one that doesn’t rely on the women in his life to do the most basic tasks for him (or spoon-feed him as an adult into learning them).

    MORE: Ben & Jerry’s is deep frying blocks of Phish food ice cream to look like classic fish and chips

    MORE: Woman heard her spine go pop and broke her back while doing yoga


    Man is incapable of doing food shopping unless his girlfriend sends him picturesMan is incapable of doing food shopping unless his girlfriend sends him pictures

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    Amazon Prime Day logo with packages, Amazon Echo and a kindle
    (Picture: Amazon, Getty)

    The second and final day of Amazon Prime’s sale is here and there are still massive savings to be found on video games, beauty and homeware.

    There are also great deals on Amazon’s own devices, like the popular Fire TV stick which is unsurprisingly the most ordered Prime Day product by Metro.co.uk readers.

    Amazon has also discounted the recently-released Amazon Echo Show 5 with £30 off, making the smart home device now £49.99 down from £79.99.

    Next up we have Marvel’s Spider-Man (PS4), which was also a bestseller. This game is no longer on offer, but you can check out today’s deals for video games and consoles.

    If you didn’t snap up a bargain yesterday, don’t worry because there are still many products on sale until midnight tonight. And if you’re curious to know what everyone else has spent their hard earned money on, you can check out the top-selling and best deals so far from Prime Day 2019 below.

    Here’s what Metro.co.uk readers are buying:

    1. Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K Ultra HD with Alexa Voice Remote | streaming media player – £24.99

    Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K Ultra HD with Alexa Voice Remote | streaming media player
    (Picture: Amazon)

     

    2. Sony PlayStation Classic Console – £44

    Sony PlayStation Classic Console
    (Picture: Amazon)

     

    3. Introducing Echo Show 5 – Compact smart display with Alexa, Black – £49.99

    Introducing Echo Show 5 – Compact smart display with Alexa, Black
    (Picture: Amazon)

     

    4. Tefal Taste, 20 cm/ 28 cm, Twin Pack, Frying Pan Set, Non Stick – £15.99

    Tefal Taste, 20 cm/ 28 cm, Twin Pack, Frying Pan Set, Non Stick
    (Picture: Amazon)

     

    5. Echo Dot (3rd Gen) – Smart speaker with Alexa – Charcoal Fabric – £22

    Echo Dot (3rd Gen) - Smart speaker with Alexa - Charcoal Fabric
    (Picture: Amazon)

     

    6. Tweezerman Bahama Blue Stainless Steel Mini Slant Tweezer – £9.34

    Tweezerman Bahama Blue Stainless Steel Mini Slant Tweezer
    (Picture: Amazon)

     

    7. Under Armour Men’s Raid 8 Men’s Sports Shorts – £16.95

    Under Armour Men's Raid 8 Men's Sports Shorts
    (Picture: Amazon)

     

    8. Marvel’s Spider-Man (PS4) – £36.99

    Marvel’s Spider-Man (PS4)
    (Picture: Amazon)

     

    9. FIFA 19 (Nintendo Switch) – £28.95

    FIFA 19 (Nintendo Switch)
    (Picture: Amazon)

     

    10. Neos SmartCam | Works with Alexa – £18.99

    Neos SmartCam | Works with Alexa
    (Picture: Amazon)

    Looking to join Amazon Prime?

    If you're not yet an Amazon Prime member and want to take advantage of the exclusive deals and offers this Prime Day, you can sign up now for a free 30-day trial here.

    Better yet, until 16th July Amazon are giving you £20 off your first year's membership (was £79 now £59).

    As an Amazon Prime customer you'll be able to access the Prime Day discounts, but you'll also be able to enjoy all the benefits of membership, including free, one-day and two-day shipping, 'try before you buy' clothes, grocery savings and movies, TV shows, music and e-books.

    MORE: The very best Amazon Prime Day 2019 UK tech and gadget deals today

    MORE: The best Amazon Prime Day 2019 UK deals on offer today

    MORE: What is Amazon Prime Day and when does it end?


    The best Amazon Prime Day 2019 dealsThe best Amazon Prime Day 2019 deals

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    BET Awards 2019 - Pre Show
    Hot girl summer became popularised by Megan Thee Stallion (Picture: Maury Phillips/Getty Images for BET)

    You’re wearing a fierce outfit on a gloriously sunny day? Congrats, you’re having a hot girl summer.

    You feel like a bad b*tch ’cause you finished all your work and can now live your best life. Hot girl summer for you, too.

    If your social media is full of those now-famous three words, then you might be wondering exactly what the hell hot girl summer actually means.

    It’s not the same as getting ‘beach body ready’ or even being hot as the name would suggest, it’s just a state of mind.

    The phrase was popularised by Houston rapper Megan Thee Stallion and then quickly became a meme.

    It’s basically the summery version of big dick energy.

    What does hot girl summer mean?

    As stated above, the gender-neutral concept is just a state of mind: guys too can have a hot girl summer.

    Megan Thee Stallion explained it best in an interview with The Root saying: ‘It’s just basically about women — and men — just being unapologetically them, just having a good-ass time, hyping up your friends, doing you, not giving a damn about what nobody got to say about it.

    ‘You definitely have to be a person that can be the life of the party, and, y’know, just a bad b*tch.’

    Where does the hot girl summer meme come from?

    Although best associated with Megan Thee Stallion who’s known as ‘Hot Girl’ due to her music (mentioned in her song Cash Sh*t), the phrased was first put together by a social media user.

    According to Know Your Meme, one of the first instances of the moniker came from Twitter user Tyra Striker.

    Tyra uploaded a picture saying: ‘I heard it’s a hot girl summer’ and since, the expression has blown up.

    We spoke to Tyra who’s credited for sparking the hot girl summer movement and asked her what the phrase means to her.

    ‘At the time of the original posting of the photo where I used the phrase, the term Hot Girl was gaining a lot of popularity while the actual summer was approaching,’ she explained to Metro.co.uk.

    ‘Hot girl summer to me means living life with no regrets while learning about yourself as a woman.

    The woman who put the words together, enjoying her hot girl summer
    Tyra Stryker, the woman who put the words together, enjoying her hot girl summer (Picture: @sweetliketeaaa)

    ‘As women, we deal we many societal pressure and constraints that kind of limit us from “living our best lives”.

    ‘A hot girl summer encourages women to let all of that go and to just learn yourself, love yourself and be your best self. It’s much more than a phrase, more like a lifestyle.’

    What is city girl summer?

    To understand this, you’ll have to know what a city girl is. According to Urban Dictionary, it’s ‘a girl who has been hurt over and over again by boys or men and now does not care about boys or their feelings.

    ‘She does not believe in falling love because of her past relationships with men.’

    So to have a city girl summer is to just boss up and cater to only yourself without caring about anyone else. By comparison, hot summer girl can be enjoyed even while in a long-term committed relationship.

    Can guys have a hot girl summer?

    Of course. Though the word girl is in the phrase, it’s similar to big dick energy which anyone can possess.

    While BDE is ‘a quiet confidence without cockiness’, hot girl summer can include confidence, sass, and even arrogance.

    It’s just about not giving a f***.

    Can I have a hot girl summer?

    Why, yes. You don’t need to live heady hedonistic lives nor be extroverted, partying singles to enjoy the concept either.

    Wise Megan says you can have it even while in a relationship.

    ‘If you are cuffed up, you can still have a hot girl summer. But you still gotta be on your bullshit.’

    And there you have your hot girl summer starter kit.

    MORE: What does ‘dead ting’ mean? Amber’s Love Island insult explained

    MORE: What does Psalm – Kim and Kanye’s new baby’s name – mean, and how do you pronounce it?

    MORE: Being a ‘hot nanny’ doesn’t mean I want your husband


    BET Awards 2019 - Pre ShowBET Awards 2019 - Pre Show

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    Mr Bigglesworth the rabbit was born entirely hairless.

    And no, we’re not going to do a pun about hares and being hare-less, because rabbits and hares are different things.

    He’s lucky to have found a home with graphic designer Cassandra Hall, her son, Josh, and her daughter, Maddy, who fell in love with the rabbit after seeing his siblings advertised by a local breeder.

    The advert mentioned Mr Bigglesworth in passing, saying he wasn’t ‘sellable’. Thankfully Cassandra and her family disagreed.

    Rabbits with the same condition haven’t survived past four weeks, so there were concerns Mr Bigglesworth wouldn’t make it.

    But two years later he’s thriving, living a happy life with his loving family and finding fame on Instagram.

    Mr Bigglesworth is an Instagram famous rabbit born without any fur
    Mr Bigglesworth’s fans often knit him clothes so he stays nice and cosy (Picture: @mrbigglesworthrabbit/Caters News)
    The rabbit wasn't considered sellable and it was thought he wouldn't survive past four weeks
    He was born hairless due to a rare genetic condition (Picture: @mrbigglesworthrabbit/Caters News)

    He even has a girlfriend, called Miss Cinnamon Bun.

    Cassandra said: ‘It was a worrying time because I wasn’t sure if he would live or die.

    ‘I searched the internet about his condition but couldn’t find anything.

    The family love Mr Bigglesworth and the rabbit is thriving
    He’s quite sweet, right? (Picture: @mrbigglesworthrabbit/Caters News)

    ‘I put photos of him on her other rabbits Instagram account to find out more information.

    ‘I was hoping someone would know about his condition and how to look after him.

    ‘Soon other rabbit owners from around the world, reached out to share their stories on their rabbits having the same condition.

    ‘Eventually I found out Mr Bigglesworth’s parents have a hairless gene and if two rabbits are bred with the same gene they will produce a hairless rabbit in every litter- most don’t live past 4 weeks of age.

    mr bigglesworth the hairless rabbit is now an instagram celebrity
    Mr Bigglesworth’s unusual looks have attracted him a load of Instagram followers (Picture: @mrbigglesworthrabbit/Caters News)
    Mr Bigglesworth the hairless rabbit with the family dog
    He’s also made friends with the family dog (Picture: @mrbigglesworthrabbit/Caters News)

    ‘Even though he is different, he brings so much happiness to his new family, simply by being his happy, cheeky, bouncy, snuggly little self.

    ‘Sharing Mr Bigglesworth’s photos and videos on social media has shown the world that differences need to be embraced, not shunned.

    ‘I receive countless comments and messages about the impact that Mr Bigglesworth is making on individuals lives – he is bringing smiles and happiness to thousands of people, some even make and send him clothes to wear.’

    MORE: Little girl becomes unlikeliest of best friends with a giant rabbit

    MORE: One-week-old kittens found dumped in bin on hottest day of year

    MORE: Gorgeous puppy dumped at animal shelter inside cereal box


    Hairless RabbitHairless Rabbit

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    Two rare Scottish wildcat kittens have been born at the Aigas Field Centre in the Scottish Highlands.

    They may be small and adorable, but they’re fierce.

    They’re the first litter for a wildcat called Glynis.

    This is a big deal – there are thought to be under 400 pure wildcats left in the world, with the cats being described as ‘functionally extinct’.

    A rare pair of weeks old wildcat kittens, nicknamed? Highland Tigers?, which were born at the Aigas Field Centre near Beauly in the Scottish Highlands as part of a conservation movement to preserve the species which are ?functionally extinct? .See SWNS story SWWSCwildcats. A pair of rare wildcat kittens have been captured on camera for the first time. The two adorable female kittens were born as part of a conservation programme to protect the animals which have been described as ?functionally extinct?. They were born at the Aigas Field Centre near Beauly in the Scottish Highlands, and are now a few weeks old. Nicknamed the ?Highland Tiger? because of their vertical stripes, keepers say the fluffy kittens are competent climbers with ?bags of ferocity?.
    Aren’t they cute? (Picture: Ben Jones /SWNS.COM)

    One of the major risks for the wildcat breed is wildcats mating with domestic cats. This produces very cute kittens, but could cause the breed to die out. We don’t want that.

    Disease and loss of habitat also pose risks to the species.

    And so Aigas is part of a project called Scottish Wildcat Action, which, combined with the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland, is making sure Scottish wildcats continue to thrive.

    A rare pair of weeks old wildcat kittens, nicknamed? Highland Tigers?, which were born at the Aigas Field Centre near Beauly in the Scottish Highlands as part of a conservation movement to preserve the species which are ?functionally extinct? .See SWNS story SWWSCwildcats. A pair of rare wildcat kittens have been captured on camera for the first time. The two adorable female kittens were born as part of a conservation programme to protect the animals which have been described as ?functionally extinct?. They were born at the Aigas Field Centre near Beauly in the Scottish Highlands, and are now a few weeks old. Nicknamed the ?Highland Tiger? because of their vertical stripes, keepers say the fluffy kittens are competent climbers with ?bags of ferocity?.
    The kittens are just a few weeks old (Picture: Ben Jones /SWNS.COM)

    For now the focus is breeding these kitties in the centres, but in the future the cats bred at Aigas could be released into the wild. They’ll need to be certain threats to the species aren’t as prevalent before they send out any offspring, however.

    The two new kittens are just a few weeks old and have started exploring their enclosure.

    They’re also learning how to miaow and growl, which results in some very ferocious pictures.

    Keepers at Aigas Field Centre say the kittens are great at climbing and have ‘bags of ferocity’.

    A rare pair of weeks old wildcat kittens, nicknamed? Highland Tigers?, which were born at the Aigas Field Centre near Beauly in the Scottish Highlands as part of a conservation movement to preserve the species which are ?functionally extinct? .See SWNS story SWWSCwildcats. A pair of rare wildcat kittens have been captured on camera for the first time. The two adorable female kittens were born as part of a conservation programme to protect the animals which have been described as ?functionally extinct?. They were born at the Aigas Field Centre near Beauly in the Scottish Highlands, and are now a few weeks old. Nicknamed the ?Highland Tiger? because of their vertical stripes, keepers say the fluffy kittens are competent climbers with ?bags of ferocity?.
    Keepers say they’re already great at climbing (Picture: Ben Jones /SWNS.COM)
    A rare pair of weeks old wildcat kittens, nicknamed? Highland Tigers?, which were born at the Aigas Field Centre near Beauly in the Scottish Highlands as part of a conservation movement to preserve the species which are ?functionally extinct? .See SWNS story SWWSCwildcats. A pair of rare wildcat kittens have been captured on camera for the first time. The two adorable female kittens were born as part of a conservation programme to protect the animals which have been described as ?functionally extinct?. They were born at the Aigas Field Centre near Beauly in the Scottish Highlands, and are now a few weeks old. Nicknamed the ?Highland Tiger? because of their vertical stripes, keepers say the fluffy kittens are competent climbers with ?bags of ferocity?.
    Conservation is crucial for Scottish wildcats, which are now considered functionally extinct (Picture: Ben Jones /SWNS.COM)

    A spokesman at the centre said: ‘We have several conservation projects on the go at Aigas, but the Wildcat Breeding Programme is by far our most critical.

    ‘We are delighted to see all the hard work put in by all our team of rangers rewarded with two new little faces.

    ‘Glynis was quite a relaxed female up to the point she became a mother.

    ‘However, since giving birth she has become very protective of both kittens and guards the entrance to their enclosure.

    Two Scottish wildcat kittens have been born at a centre involved in a captive breeding programme. The mammals have been described as "functionally extinct" in the wild. Provider: Ben Jones/ Aigas Field Centre
    In the future, kittens bred at the centre will be released into the wild (Picture: Ben Jones/ Aigas Field Centre)

    ‘In the last week, our kittens have become much bolder and can collect their own food. Glynis is back to her relaxed self and watches her kittens play and learn.

    ‘It is as if they set challenges for each other, who can climb the highest or run the fastest.

    ‘Having a sibling is defiantly a bonus if you are a young wildcat and it has been fascinating to watch them investigate new smells and climb stumps and posts in their enclosure together.

    ‘The wildcat in Scotland is now considered functionally extinct in the wild, there are just too few spread over too large an area, which makes breeding programmes such as ours vital to their conservation.’

    MORE: Rabbit born without fur thanks to a rare genetic condition becomes Instagram celebrity

    MORE: One-week-old kittens found dumped in bin on hottest day of year


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    The flamingo pool float
    The new pool float is £19.99 (Picture: Aldi)

    Aldi has released a new giant flamingo pool float for under £20.

    The gigantic £19.99 pink float is big enough for you to comfortably lay on in the pool with loads of extra space.

    Unfortunately, there is no drinks holder to hold your cocktail – but it’s so big you could easily balance a whole tray of drinks on there (though we’d suggest using floating cups just in case).

    Aldi describes the float as being ‘great for splashing and playing in the pool when the sun is shining and the kids have broken up for summer’.

    The pool float is massive
    It’s huge! (Picture: Aldi)

    But kids or no kids, we want to take this flamingo float to the local pool and lounge around on it all day long.

    The flamingo float is XL in size and features two air chambers for added safety. It also has durable handles and apparently is big enough to fit two adults on it comfortably (though come on, that extra space should definitely be for snacks).

    If you’re not a fan of flamingos, there’s also a unicorn version of the float – which is equally big.

    The unicorn pool float
    It also comes as a unicorn version (Picture: Aldi)

    It’s totally Instagram worthy, too, featuring a white body with a rainbow mane and tail, rainbow wings and a gold horn.

    Just like the flamingo float, it’s also £19.99.

    For that price, you might as well buy both, put on a nice bikini and snap some photos for your Instagram feed with a cocktail in hand.

    Once again, it looks as though flamingos and unicorns are the go-to theme for the summer.

    MORE: Aldi’s gins have taken the top prize in a world-renowned competition

    MORE: Aldi is getting rid of plastic packaging for their toilet paper


    Aldi Is Selling A Giant Flamingo Pool Float For ?20 -Aldi Is Selling A Giant Flamingo Pool Float For ?20 -

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    The pink house
    The house is so pretty (Picture: Caters News)

    A six-bedroom house has undergone an incredible pink transformation over the past decade.

    The house isn’t new – it’s been available to rent on Airbnb for a few years – but its owner Amy Griffith has now opened up about the process of decorating the house and why she did it.

    43-year-old Amy moved to Essex from London in 2009 with the sole intention of completely transforming the property, painting it bright pink inside and out.

    The house features dozens of stylish rooms, each designed completely differently, from the saloon and space-inspired kitchen to floral staircases and unicorns in the garden.

    The pink house
    Absolutely everything is pink (Picture: Caters News)

    Amy, an artist and creative director originally from California, USA, said: ‘It is inspired by the past, the present and the future as well as more specific things such as art, fashion, music, nature, the universe and of course overall the king of emotion and answer to pretty much everything – love.

    ‘It’s hard for me personally to comment on what it is like to experience the house as an outsider because I created it and it is my reality.

    The stunning kitchen
    isn’t it amazing? (Picture: Caters News)

    ‘The feedback we get from many guests is that it is an aspirational and inspirational place that is often described as a dreamlike and otherworldly escape.’

    The amazing house is available to stay in by making contact through its website and can be hired for television opportunities, photoshoots and music videos.

    It was recently featured in Little Mix’s ‘Bounce Back’ music video.

    The pink bedroom
    The bedroom is gorgeous (Picture: Caters News)

    Amy added: ‘There is no specific price tag for hiring the dream house; each quote is tailored depending on whether it is for commercial or personal use, how many guests there are, and what optional extras are asked for.

    ‘Guests attending have to be over 25 but this can vary depending on the kind of event that is hosted and the occasion.’

    The quirky house includes features such as leopard print wallpaper, floral walls, a pink quilted bed and a waterfall painted on the back of the house.

    The pink dining room
    Can we live here please? (Picture: Caters News)

    Amy added: ‘Almost all of our furniture is recycled from charity shops which I like to support, as well as car boot sales and eBay. I prefer to buy things secondhand as they have a story and so much character, I am naturally drawn to that sort of history.

    ‘I’m obsessed with making things so I’ve made a lot of it too!

    ‘Every room is my favourite for different reasons, but ultimately I see the house as one piece and a total experience.

    The room is stunning
    It’s just gorgeous (Picture: Caters News)

    ‘It is a privilege as an artist to be able to create something on this scale that I can appreciate every day.

    ‘Fortunately, as time has passed, the neighbours now have a better understanding of what the house’s creative purpose is and it has become a part of Tiptree.

    ‘I’m very excited for what’s next – the time has come to move one and create something new.’

    MORE: What is hot girl summer that everyone on social media keeps mentioning?

    MORE: Parents face bigger childcare bills than ever before over summer holidays


    AIR BNB PINK HOUSEAIR BNB PINK HOUSE

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    Man using his feet to control the in-flight entertainment
    DIS. GUS. TEN (Picture: Twitter)

    Last week, we were graced with Naomi Campbell’s fastidious plane travel routine, which involved a lot of face masks and even more Dettol wipes.

    People picked up on her cleanliness on the flight, with some saying it was justified and others joking that it was a bit much.

    Those people may want to re-evaluate their positions now, though, after seeing one of the most horrifying videos ever to exist.

    In the video – posted by New Yorker Alafair Burke on Twitter – a man can be seen using his bare feet to operate the touch-screen in-flight entertainment.

    The footage had been sent by Alafair’s friend who didn’t have Twitter, with the pair deciding that this kind of gore simply needed to be put out there for the world.

    Quite why the man decided to use his bare toes to decide between Avengers and Titanic remains to be seen, but we do know that he must be stopped.

    An outcry followed the post, which went up late last night UK time, and has now got over 111,000 likes and 22,000 retweets.

    One person replied, ‘This is the most disturbing thing I’ve seen on twitter’, while another claimed it was (in all caps) ‘TIME FOR THE METEOR TO END US AS A SPECIES’.

    As expected, many people referenced Naomi Campbell’s cleaning routine, with previous heathens to the pre-takeoff wipe-down saying they had been converted.

    In a valid question, it was asked whether the man had some sort of disability which hampered his movement and therefore required him to use this unorthodox method.

    It was confirmed by Alafair, however, that this wasn’t the case. She stated: ‘The photographer confirms that she saw him walk on and off the plane, carrying his own bag. He just likes to watch TV with his bare feet.’

    Not to kink-shame, but why did nobody simply call the RAF to swoop in and ground the plane? That is the only natural response.

    MORE: Aldi is selling a gigantic flamingo pool float for under £20

    MORE: Woman transforms house into an incredible pink masterpiece available to rent


    Passenger uses feet to control plane touch-screen, Twitter users understandably disgustedPassenger uses feet to control plane touch-screen, Twitter users understandably disgusted

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    Chessie King in the In The Style campaign, and with the other models
    Chessie in the campaign, and with the other models (Pictures: @InTheStyle)

    Online brand In The Style has faced criticism for using influencer Chessie King for a body positivity campaign.

    Earlier this week, the brand revealed the range described as ’empowering’ and ‘body positive’, and it is due to go on sale this Thursday.

    But the campaign didn’t go down well for using size 12 Chessie as the face of the range.

    There are other women involved in promoting the collection but the main focus is on Chessie, with her helping to create the collaboration.

    Author of Plus+ and No Big Deal Bethany Rutter commented: ‘This is one of the most absurd things I’ve ever seen lol a range themed around a thin person promoting ‘body confidence’ like yes I would imagine you are confident about your body ??? And what ???

    ‘Can thin people experience insecurities about their bodies? yes. is it useful to frame conversations about bodies around normative bodies? no.’

    Jo Howard added: ‘Agree with you – nothing radical about slim people with body confidence.’

    The brand defended the range saying that it was ‘a small minority view’.

    Others commented on the Instagram post revealing the campaign.

    One said: ‘Where are plus-size model ? Let me laught with your body posi… Just scrolling on your feed and it’s always the same kind of girl.’

    https://www.instagram.com/p/Bz5QmYahsu8/

    Adam Frisby, In The Style founder: ‘Chessie is someone who we purposefully reached out to to collaborate with not just because of the body positive attitude she adopts but the powerful self love message that resonates through her social media channels and the focus she puts on keeping it real.

    ‘We launched an unretouched campaign earlier this year trying to break the damaging, altered, impossibly perfect images our audience are subjected to every single day and Chessie is a perfect ambassador for our brand statement of embracing who you are.

    ‘Chessie shows herself in all her real life, unedited scenarios, not always glamorous, seldom takes herself too seriously and we absolutely LOVE her for it. Here’s a girl who is living her best life and if everyone was a bit more Chessie maybe the world would be a happier place?!

    ‘Chessie herself has been shamed as being “thin” in this tweet (she is a size 12 not that that matters one iota) yet seemingly that positive discrimination voiced by some denies her the right of being able to tell women its ok to be themselves. It seems that from some, the only people who are allowed to be body confident and share a body positive message is a right reserved only for those who don’t have “normative bodies”. The irony of that does not escape us.

    ‘Fact is we all have body hang ups and we are using our social voice to be able to say we all have them and we are all beautiful.

    ‘Our Chessie campaign and the beautiful array of girls who have helped us bring this campaign to market which varies in sizes from 8-22 , not to mention the diversity in the girls stories, background and shapes is something we are immensely proud of and something we will continue to pursue in our quest for squashing the continual reinforcement of attaining perfection.’

    https://www.instagram.com/p/Bz_AIEZJfVm/

    Chessie King posted a response to the comments on her Instagram page: ‘I use my voice on here to support & empower people, I spread a message I believe needs to be shared. To be told my body is not the right body to talk about body confidence is pure body shaming.

    ‘Every shape, every size, every height, every gender, every human has the right to celebrate their body & all the incredible things it does for us.

    ‘No one knows your story, your relationship with your body unless they’ve lived inside your body your whole lifetime.

    ‘My army of supporters & sisters who follow me will know that my body & I have been through so much together. I will never stop trying to help you all, I have never & will never ever use my Instagram negatively, to put people down. I will never ever be silenced.’

    MORE: Aldi is selling a gigantic flamingo pool float for under £20

    MORE: Passenger uses bare feet to control plane touch-screen, Twitter users understandably disgusted


    In The Style criticised for Chessie King body positivity campaignIn The Style criticised for Chessie King body positivity campaign

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    Liam and Sinead and Elizabeth
    Liam and Sinead and Elizabeth (Picture: Liam Soffe)

    The parents of a girl who was burned in a fire as a baby have written a heartbreaking open letter to the adults who stare at her and shun her because of her injuries.

    Liam and Sinead Soffe revelead how they’ve been asked to remove Elizabeth from a swimming lesson, told she should be locked away and watched when parents let their children refuse to hold her hand.

    The couple were living in Qatar in 2014 when on 29 May, Sinead put six-month-old Elizabeth down in her cot for a nap.

    Just seconds later, she heard her crying and went back upstairs to find the room and Elizabeth on fire.

    She grabbed her, patted her down and ran downstairs.

    Elizabeth lost half of her fingers on both hands, her left thumb and had extensive burns over her body.

    The fire meant Liam, Sinead, Elizabeth and her siblings Danny, 11, Amelia, nine, and William, seven, lost everything and they moved to Birmingham to be close to the specialist hospital where Elizabeth was treated.

    Liam and Sinead Soffe (Picture: Liam Soffe)
    Liam and Sinead Soffe (Picture: Liam Soffe)

    Liam told Metro.co.uk: ‘It had a massive impact on our family. Besides the injury to Elizabeth everything we had was destroyed. We had to leave out home, the country where Elizabeth and William were born, the kids left their school and all their friends. We were flown by air ambulance to Birmingham Childrens Hospital, a city that we had never been before.

    ‘The other children went to Ireland to stay with grandparents. It was five months before we were all together again. When we knew Elizabeth would need treatment at BCH for many years we decided to move permanently.

    ‘We moved into a house in Kings Heath, the kids moved over and started school the next day while Elizabeth was still in hospital. The kids have been remarkable resilient while their whole lives changed around them.’

    Now five years on, the family are settled in the city Elizabeth faces stares and rude comments from other children, but her parents are particularly upset by the comments made by adults.

    The first page of the open letter  (Picture: Liam Soffe)
    The first page of the open letter (Picture: Liam Soffe)

    In the letter, published by charity Changing Faces UK, they explain:

    ‘To all those who make out daughter’s life more difficult than it should be.

    ‘To the parent who tried to remove my daughter from their child’s swimming lessons. To the mum who told me that children who look like my daugther would be locked away in her country. To the parents who watched their children refuse to hold my daughter’s hand and failed to intervene. To all the adults whos stare, double take, gawp day in, day out at our precious girl.

    They add that they understand children staring and being curious because Elizabeth looks different as she has no fingers, no hair, one ear and is covered in skin grafts.

    The letter continues: ‘What I do not understand is adults acting the way that they do around her.

    Elizabeth with her older siblings with their backs to the camera (Picture: Liam Soffe)
    Elizabeth with her older siblings (Picture: Liam Soffe)

    ‘Why would an adult say “at least she won’t have to wear a Halloween mask” or refuse to serve us at a supermarket till because she looked ‘scary’? Why would any adult think this is an acceptable way to behave?

    ‘The worst part is that my daughter will have to deal with this her whole life, every single day, in every room that she walks into.

    ‘Perhaps when she is older the blatant and rude comments will cease, but the stares, double takes, pointing and whispers never will.

    ‘I fool myself into thinking that she doesn’t notice that she is too young to realise that she is different and because she is only five, it doesn’t matter to her. But this pretence will not last long. She will notice, she will be affected by it and I am sure that the sheer weight of it will wear her down.

    ‘One day our daughter will go out into the world by herself and I will not be able to shield her from the realities of the world and from the people who think that her feelings don’t matter.

    ‘I learned early on that she will learn her reaction from me. If I challenge every person who points or whispers or grimaces, then she will. If I get angry or upset or aggressive, then so will she. And that is not the person I want her to be.’

    The second page of the letter  Liam and Sinead wrote about their daughter (Picture: Liam Soffe)
    The second page of the letter (Picture: Liam Soffe)

    The Soffes want parents to realise that the way they treat Elizabeth impacts on other children and there are ways to help them understand.

    The letter adds: ‘I wish I could explain this to the adults who treat her differently – that their children learn their response from them. That if they judge people by how they look, then so will their children. These parents don’t attempt to show their children that our daughter is a little girl just like them.

    ‘They don’t say “why don’t you ask her what her name is?” or “she looks about the same age as you, I wonder if she enjoys swimming as much as you do?”. Instead, their reaction is to remove this troubling difference from their children’s lives so that they do not risk them being upset or asking awkward questions.’

    But the couple say that these people are the ones missing out and reveal that Elizabeth is quite a character.

    They say: ‘My daughter is an amazing, strong, funny, determined, happy, intelligent child. I have seen her have the most profound positive impact on people just by meeting them and sharing a few brief moments.

    Elizabeth and Sinead  (Picture: Liam Soffe)
    Elizabeth and Sinead (Picture: Liam Soffe)

    ‘People like Pete, her wig maker, who was immediately take with her and offered to make wigs for her whole life, to Sophie Countess of Wessex who met her at the opening of the burns research centre at Queen Elizabeth Hospital. These are the people I want my children to grow up around. People who embrace our differences. People who see through them and realise that in fact we are all the same.’

    Speaking to Metro.co.uk, dad Liam explained that they wrote the letter because they wanted other people to understand the impact these comments have on Elizabeth and the rest of their family.

    ‘We wanted to raise awareness of how disfigured people are treated and what they have to deal with. Even a child like Elizabeth is faced with prejudice and nastiness by adults. The letter was to highlight the issue and the try to make parents in particular think how they react and understand that their children are learning from them.

    ‘The reaction to the letter has been amazing, so much love and support. We have received messages from all over the world and it highlights that the negative reactions people have are only from a small number of people. The majority are kind and understanding.’

    MORE: In The Style criticised for choosing size 12 Chessie King for body positivity campaign

    MORE: Aldi is selling a gigantic flamingo pool float for under £20


    Couple write open letter to other parents for shunning their daughter who was burnt as a babyCouple write open letter to other parents for shunning their daughter who was burnt as a baby

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    The £9 trainers
    The trainers cost £9 (Picture: Poundland)

    Poundland has just dropped some new trainers for £9 (yes, we know, isn’t everything supposed to be a quid there?) and they look like a dupe of Gucci’s Ace trainers.

    Gucci’s trainers, which cost a whopping £445 a pair, come in an off-white colour and are made of leather.

    They’re elevated at the sides with green and red woven web panels, and feature metallic-gold bee embroidery, which is a new emblem for the brand.

    The heels of the trainers, which are made using snakeskin-effect leather, are mismatched, with one trainer featuring a green heel and the other featuring a red.

    The £445 trainers
    The Gucci trainers are super expensive (Picture: Matches Fashion)

    We love the trainers, but come on, who realistically can spare £445 for something that could become so easily scuffed?

    And so, we’re pretty happy to see that Poundland has released a dupe – especially as they cost under a tenner.

    The white trainers come in the same style as Gucci’s and also feature a gold embellishment on the side of the shoe.

    The poundland trainers
    These are a pretty good dupe (Picture: Poundland)

    Instead of red and green, Poundland has gone for red and black, with black heels and red and black stripes on the side of the shoe.

    The trainers are one of the most recent additions to Poundland’s fashion brand, PEP&CO.

    They’re available in stores nationwide in sizes 3-8, and due to the price and the fact they’re actually really pretty trainers, they’re expected to sell out fast.

    MORE: Woman transforms house into an incredible pink masterpiece available to rent

    MORE: Aldi is selling a gigantic flamingo pool float for under £20


    Poundland is selling ?9 Gucci trainer lookalikesPoundland is selling ?9 Gucci trainer lookalikes

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    These parents are looking for a festival nanny
    Are you the perfect festival nanny? (Picture: Getty)

    Parents of three children aged six, ten and 11 are searching for a ‘festival nanny’ to accompany them to a few festivals this summer so that they can enjoy the event child-free.

    The advert was posted to Childcare.co.uk last week after their current nanny handed her notice in.

    And this isn’t your standard nanny job either – the pay is amazing and there are also perks involved.

    The parents are offering to pay £500 per festival plus festival entry, food, drink and accommodation.

    Although they are also on the hunt for a full-time nanny, their main priority for now is finding someone to look after the kids while they enjoy the festival.

    The parents describe themselves as being ‘avid festival-goers’ who ‘love to get involved in the powerful energetic atmosphere live music provides’ – but they find it difficult to fully enjoy themselves when they have to look after their three children, which is why they want to bring a nanny along.

    Audience with hands in the air at a music festival
    The pay and perks are good (Picture: Getty)

    The nanny will be expected to take on full childcare duties during the festivals, including getting the children up and dressed, feeding and bathing them and keeping them entertained throughout the day and evening – as well as sharing accommodation with them.

    The parents say that they will be checking in with the nanny and children, but will mostly be away enjoying the festivals.

    If the nanny wants to – and if the children like them – there’s also an opportunity to secure a full-time role with the family after the summer, in Kent.

    Richard Conway, founder of Childcare.co.uk said: ‘I don’t think it’s unusual for families to take their nanny on holiday with them, so that the parents can relax and enjoy themselves, so why should festivals be any different?

    ‘It’s quite obvious from the advert that this family is desperate to find a suitable nanny ASAP, otherwise their summer of partying is at risk.

    ‘I encourage any childcare professionals who enjoy live music to apply, this could be a great opportunity to earn some good money and see some amazing musicians play!’

    MORE: Passenger uses bare feet to control plane touch-screen, Twitter users understandably disgusted

    MORE: Woman transforms house into an incredible pink masterpiece available to rent


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    New wild swimming lake in London A wild swimming lake is opening in south London following a surge in popularity for the sport. It will officially open on Saturday July 20 at Beckenham Place Park as part of a ?6.8 million regeneration of the Georgian mansion and its 237-acre grounds. The 285-metre lake, which is 3.5 metres at its deepest, will take up to 60 swimmers and has a jetty from which water sports will be offered. Similar projects are being considered for Wimbledon Park lake and the duck pond in Broomfield Park, Palmers Green. Outdoor swimming is already well established at the Hampstead Ponds. According to Sport England, the number of people taking part in open water swimming regularly (at least twice in the past 28 days) rose by more than 80 per cent between 2016-17 and 2017-18, from 266,500 to 490,660.
    A new wild swimming lake is opening in South London

    Ready to dip your toe in the cold water swimming craze?

    Handily enough, that’s about to become a lot easier – especially if you live in South London.

    Beckenham Place Park, in Lewisham, will soon open up its very own wild swimming lake.

    The lake will officially open to the public on Saturday 20 July (when it’s meant to be fairly warm, so it’s the perfect day to give wild swimming a go), as part of a £6.8 million regeneration of the park’s Georgian mansion and its grounds.

    It’ll be 285m-long, up to 3.5 metres deep, and open to both kayakers, swimmers, and stand up paddle boarders who can paddle alongside the ducks all summer and winter long.

    It will also have its own jetty and mini beach. Sounds lovely.

    A NEW wild swimming lake is opening in south London this week following a surge in popularity for the sport. A 285-metre swimming and kayaking lake will officially open this Saturday in Beckenham Place Park following a ?6.8 million regeneration of the Georgian mansion and its 237-acre grounds. Over the past three-and-a-half-years, workers have built a BMX track, playgrounds and a wooded wetland, with the house given a facelift and opened to the public in 2016 with a cafe, bar, shops and community spaces
    The lake will be for any swimmers and kayakers who fancy getting out in nature (Picture: Lewisham Council handout)

    You won’t be able to just dive in whenever you fancy, mind you. While the lake is open to all swimmers over the age of eight, anyone keen will need to book in advance and pay before using it. For adults that will cost £3.

    Boat hire will cost £20 for an hour and stand-up paddle boards will be £12 for an hour.

    The lake will be open from 7am to 7pm most days, but there will also be a non-lifeguard splash zone that will be open all the time and free for all. That’s where we’d recommend heading for an early morning swim.

    The area used to be a massive golf course, but has now been transformed into the lake to tap into people’s passion for swimming outdoors.

    The park now also has new playgrounds, a BMX track, wooded wetlands, and a cafe that offers yoga and craft classes.

    If all goes well, similar lakes just for outdoor swimming may open at the duck pond in Broomfield Park in Palmers Green.

    Anyone fancy a dip?

    What's happening on the launch day?

    The transformed park will open to the public on 20 July, from 12pm to 7pm.

    Here’s the schedule for what’s on in the different areas.

    The lake

    • 12.45pm: Speeches on the jetty and formal opening of the lake
    • 1pm: First swim
    • 1–4pm: Swimming (pre-book swimming online)
    • 1.15–7pm: Unit 137 sound system hosted by vocalist Shumba Youth, with: Kosher (vocalist), Zico (vocalist), A.P Grimshaw (Trumpet), Ed West (DJ), Sleepy Time Ghost (DJ), Alliance Sound System (DJ), Hylu
    • 1–7pm: Paddling in the paddle zone (free)
    • 4–7pm: Canadian canoes (£10, card payment only). Every half hour, arrive 15 minutes before. Limited spaces

    Stableyard

    • 1.30pm, 3pm, 4.30pm Georgian dancing and music. Georgian costumes to try on!

    Formal gardens

    • 1.15–1.45pm: Entelechy Arts – community choir from the Albany in Deptford
    • 2–2.30pm: Vocallective – Forest Hill based choir singing a range of popular songs
    • 2.45–3.15pm: Nielsen Reaveley – Radio 6 Music recommended singer song writer with acoustic guitar backing
    • 3.30–4pm: The Lewisham & Greenwich NHS Choir – singing a range of popular songs
    • 4.15–4.45pm: A Grand Scheme – folk band playing light, summery music to enjoy in the gardens
    • 5–5.30pm: Lewisham Council staff choir – singing a range of water-themed songs

    The Mansion

    • 12 noon–6pm: So Last Century market
    • 12 noon–7pm: Forest Hill & District Classic Car Club Display on the carriageway drive

    Elsewhere in the park

    • 12 noon–5pm: Slack lining – a fun activity like tight rope walking. For all ages. Free!
    • 1pm: Guided walk of the park. Meet promptly by the squirrel.
    • 2–6pm: Roaming minstrels – Frisson, a 4 piece a capella group will be popping up and singing!

    All day

    • Free face painting and free badge making by the sand pit of the children’s playground
    • Stationary diggers to climb on – near the children’s playground
    • Jimmy Botton’s Fairground – near Southend Lodge gate (Beckenham Hill entrance)
    • Gardener’s Cottage – the new volunteer hub & community garden open to look around
    • Information point in the formal gardens, along with consultation stands. Lewisham Local and the Bakerloo line extension information stalls near the diggers/children’s play area

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    MORE: How exercise is helping my mental health after a breakdown

     


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    Illustration of pigeon yoga pose
    Try this yoga flow from the comfort of your bedroom (Picture: Ella Byworth for Metro.co.uk)

    Wake yourself up in the morning with our Rise and Shine yoga workout – which is perfect to do in your bedroom, straight after rolling out of bed.

    Yoga is a fantastic way to build a healthier body and work towards a calmer mind.

    The ancient Indian practice has become increasingly popular over the last few years, and it is little wonder with benefits including increased flexibility, better posture and reduced stress.

    But if you live in a big city, regularly attending yoga classes can get really pricey, really quickly. So if you can’t afford to go to a session every week – turn your bedroom into a yoga studio.

    All you need is a little bit of floor space and you can follow our expert tutorial. This week our yoga sequence is all about waking up.

    Becky Crepsley-Fox, instructor and studio coordinator at MoreYoga, walks us through her energising Rise and Shine flow. You can do it every morning before work to give you an extra spring in your step.

    ‘This sequence is perfect to do first thing in the morning, the gentle movements help to wake up and the body and help to get rid of any tension that might have built up through the night,’ says Becky.

    ‘Giving yourself this time in the morning is important to prepare your body and mind for the day ahead.’

    Part of the appeal of yoga is its accessibility. You just need some open space and a mat, you can essentially do it anywhere.

    And with the growth of apps and online tutorials, more people than ever are opting to teach themselves the moves and practice yoga from the comfort of their living room.

    But it’s really important to do it safely – particularly if you’re unsupervised.

    How to practice yoga at home safely

    Always warm up

    Every yoga class starts with breathing, stretching and smaller postures that articulate the spine, create space in the body and stretch the fascia to prepare you for your practice.

    Start small

    There is no point jumping into inversions or some of the more ‘Instagram-able’ poses. Especially if you don’t have trained eyes keeping you safe.

    Nail the basics

    Some of the simplest postures are the most difficult to do, and the easiest to do incorrectly. It’s important to get the essentials correct before progressing to a more challenging practice.

    I am Team GB

    Toyota has teamed up with Team GB to re-launch the hugely successful participation campaign ‘I am Team GB’.

    Inspired by the achievements of Team GB athletes and the amazing efforts of local community heroes, Team GB has created ‘The Nation’s Biggest Sports Day’, which will take place on the 24thAugust.

    Over the weekend, there will be hundreds of free and fun activities across the country, put on by an army of volunteers; the ‘I am Team GB Games Makers’.

    To Join the Team and be part of The Nation’s Biggest Sports Day sign up at: www.IAmTeamGB.com


    Yoga poses for sexYoga poses for sex

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