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Rosh Hashanah 2018: Happy Jewish New Year! When is it, greetings and what does Shana Tova mean?

(Picture: Getty)

Shana Tova! Yes, that greeting means that it’s Jewish New Year – or, as it’s also known, Rosh Hashanah.

This year the celebration runs from sunset tonight (Sunday, September 9) through to nightfall on Tuesday (September 11) – and in Jewish calendar terms, will be ushering in the year 5779.

But what exactly is Rosh Hashanah? And how come people are celebrating New Year now?

Why is this Jewish tradition so important and how exactly is it celebrated?

Allow us to explain.

What is Rosh Hashanah?

Rosh Hashanah – or to give it its Hebrew translation ‘the head of the year’ – is the Jewish New Year.

It’s considered a major date in the Jewish calendar, and the majority of Jewish people keep or mark it in some way, regardless of their levels of religious observance the rest of the year. This year it kicks off tonight (Sunday) at sunset, and will come to an end at sunset on Tuesday.

Are there any traditional Jewish New Year greetings?

Yes, say Shana Tova, which is Hebrew for ‘a good year’.

Some people also say Shanah Tovah Umetukah, meaning ‘a good and sweet year’ too.

(Picture: Getty)

Why is it in September?

That’s because Jewish festivals are determined by the Hebrew calendar rather than the Gregorian calendar.

And if you think the whole New Year in September thing’s nuts, the fact it’s about to become 5779 in the Jewish calendar is also pretty mind-blowing – especially given in Gregorian terms we’re only in 2018.

How do Jewish people mark Rosh Hashanah?

Most Jews will mark the festival by attending their synagogue and spending time with family and friends.

Although it’s a time for celebration, it’s also regarded as quite a solemn festival.

People are encouraged to take the opportunity for personal reflection and ask forgiveness for their wrongdoings over the year just gone.

(Picture: Getty)

Is there any special food?

Oh come now, this is a Jewish holiday we’re talking about – of course there’s food.

Traditionally you eat apples dipped in honey, in the hope of having a sweet year, and honey cake… which is delicious. You can get a recipe for it here.

Are there any other traditions or customs?

If you go to synagogue on Rosh Hashanah you’ll hear the Shofar – an instrument made out of a ram’s horn – being blown, to remind you to think about your actions in the past year, repent, start afresh etc.

It sounds like this:

Anything else?

It’s also traditional to wear white (as a colour of purity). New clothes are also traditional.

The following week is regarded as a period of reflection (although normal life resumes), culminating next weekend in the festival of Yom Kippur – a 25-hour fast during which the whole ‘repenting’ business reaches its peak – and you get a bit peckish.

It also kicks off a month-long cycle of festivals which is followed by Sukkot, a harvest festival, and the festive Simchat Torah – Rejoicing Of The Law – which rounds things off with a massive celebration.

MORE: 14 struggles only British Jewish girls understand

MORE: Tu B’Shevat: Everything you need to know about the festival

In pursuit of exotic destinations: Azamara’s new ship is like a country house at sea


Stepping on board the new Azamara Pursuit is like entering a country house – there are ornate vases on the staircases and lounges named the Dining Room and Living Room.

Dark wood, thick carpets and leather armchairs indicate this is a cruise ship for comfort – and with a main restaurant and two specialist venues, serving steaks and Italian food, you’ll be well fed too.

But there are plenty of opportunities to wear off those calories, from the walking track to the fitness room, and some very active shore excursions.

Azamara Pursuit has a long and colourful past.

Small but perfectly formed: Azamara Pursuit (Picture: Azamara Club Cruises)

Originally built as the unromantically named R Eight in 2001, it became Minerva II and Royal Princess before becoming Adonia, with the christening performed by Dame Shirley Bassey, who burst into a spontaneous rendition of Diamonds Are Forever during the naming ceremony.

In 2016, Adonia joined new cruise line Fathom, and became the first American cruise ship in 50 years to sail from the US to Cuba.

The laudable aim was to provide a way for passengers to do worthwhile voluntary work while also enjoying a holiday, but the venture was wound down and Adonia returned to P&O Cruises in 2017.

Pursuit is now the third member of the Azamara Club Cruises fleet.

It’s all about the views: On the top deck (Picture: Azamara Club Cruises)

At 593 feet long, a maximum of 702 passengers and nine guest decks, it’s regarded as small in today’s world of giant cruise ships.

In Southampton, on the day it was christened in August, Pursuit was towered over by big cousin Independence of the Seas, which carries more than 3,600 guests, while the biggest member of the Royal Caribbean family, Symphony of the Seas, accommodates more than 5,500.

After being sold to Azamara, the ship was completely refurbished at the Harland and Wolff yard in Belfast.

In its new role, Pursuit aims to travel even more of the world, introducing thousands of passengers to new sights and experiences. And it will enrich and educate its passengers, not merely entertain them.

The line aims to stay late in ports and provide a really ‘immersive’ experience for its passengers.

Its so-called ‘AzAmazing evenings’, provided on every cruise over seven days except transatlantic crossings, allow guests an exclusive insight into local customs, culture or cuisine.

Cabaret: Can-can dancers perform for guests (Picture: Dave Monk)
Cabaret: Can-can dancers perform for guests (Picture: Dave Monk)

This was demonstrated on our two-day return voyage to Cherbourg, with the cruise line organising an authentic French street market in the classically designed baggage hall.

Stilt-walkers greeted guests before they were led to tables filled with pastries, cheese and wines.

A half-hour private stage performance showcased a 14-piece orchestra, eight dancers and a singer, with acts ranging from familiar French songs to risque moves from the Moulin Rouge.

Many of the ships’ itineraries will concentrate on a single country during each sailing.

During its inaugural season, the ship will travel to more than 60 new ports that neither of its sisters will call at. Destinations will include the Greek isles, South America and Antarctica.

But the focus on destination doesn’t mean the ships are in any way bland.

Classy: The ship is like a country house (Picture: Dave Monk)

Azamara Pursuit is elegant down to the last detail.

The ship deliberately eschews the bells of whistles of some of its bigger rivals, such as bumper cars and zip lines.

But during my short time on board, I felt relaxed amid the gorgeous wood, soft fabric tones and eclectic artwork. And there is an old world feel mixed with modern technology.

Being a small ship, cabins are cosy and comfortable rather than large, but they are beautifully finished and offer a sturdy table and chairs on the balcony and handy USB charging ports in the bedside lamps.

To really luxuriate on board, consider upgrading to one of the suites.

Spa suites include your own hot tub; and the owner’s suite, sleeping up to three people, has two 55in TVs, a large veranda and butler service – if you fancy paying out £5,700 a person for a 10-night voyage.

Suite dreams: The Spa Suite on Azamara Pursuit (Picture: Dave Monk)
Suite dreams: The Spa Suite on Azamara Pursuit (Picture: Dave Monk)

Live music and entertainment are provided in the Cabaret Lounge and other venues.

As well as the main restaurant, Discoveries, there are the steakhouse Prime C; Italian eatery Aqualina; and buffet Windows Cafe. Coffee lovers can enjoy a cup in the Mosaic Cafe at any time from 7am until 11pm.

Guests can also book a massage in the Sanctum Spa or grab a burger on the Patio, and daytime activities include yoga classes, trivia quizzes and films.

One of Azamara’s signature experiences is the White Night party, where guests dress in white and dine on deck.

All white on the night: Dancing on deck during the White Night party (Picture: Dave Monk)

On the inaugural sailing, we were able to choose from a buffet of freshly cooked meats, lobster tails, tempura prawns and carbonara, as well as a large cold spread.

In the warmth of a French evening, we danced to a live band before ending the evening in one of the bars.

And then there are the 400 crew, who go to great lengths to ensure guests have the best of cruises.

Azamara Pursuit will give passengers the chance to get the feel of what it means to live a country, rather than just be passing tourists stopping for a quick look at the sights before jumping back on board for the ship’s buffet.

And with that, the world is about to get a whole lot smaller.

Azamara's next sailing:

A 17-night voyage on Azamara Pursuit from Rio de Janeiro in Brazil to Lisbon, departing on March 20, 2019, costs from £1,952, excluding flights.

Dave also writes about cruising on his award-winning blog, shipmonk.co.uk

(Top picture: Fire works after the Azamara Pursuit naming ceremony, photo by Dave Monk)

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I feel like my fertility issues are forcing me to have a child before I am ready

Why we should care about children?s mental wellbeing - and what we can do to help (Picture: Ella Byworth/ Metro.co.uk) Metro Illustration Illustrations
(Picture: Ella Byworth/ Metro.co.uk)

I’ve always known that I wanted a family. However, I’ve also always known that I wanted a career first.

I never imagined that before I turned 30 I would even be thinking about starting a family.

Unfortunately, earlier this year I was diagnosed with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) – a condition that impacts how a woman’s ovaries work – and my entire world was turned on its head.

My doctor told me that we wouldn’t know for sure whether I could conceive naturally until I chose to try and get pregnant, which has put me in a position that I never thought I would be in.

I am now coming to terms with whether I should try for a baby at 25, when all I want to do is focus on my career.

When my mum had me, it was the norm for women in their mid-twenties to get pregnant.

Nowadays, statistics show that an increasing number of women are waiting longer to start a family and, like me, putting their careers first so that they can achieve financial stability and a better quality of life.

Right now my career is my everything because I’ve worked so hard to get to where I am today. I love what I do; my job excites me beyond belief, but I have that constant nagging that my damaged, biological clock is ticking.

While I understand that having a child wouldn’t have to mean the end of my career it would change my life in a way that I can’t possibly comprehend.

There is a culture of misunderstanding when it comes to living with fertility issues at a young age and many of us have faced a complete lack of support.

I always imagined that when I started a family, I would be leading a very different life. I would own a home, be married to my partner, and be financially stable with savings in the bank.

I would be able to buy everything brand new for my baby; I would have the latest pram and the newest maternity clothes. I would cherish being a mum because the timing was right.

I would be a hands on, holistic parent. I love the idea of homeschooing and spending as much time with my children as possible.

I wouldn’t feel forced, pressured or unsure about my decision. I would still be terrified of labour (who in their right mind wouldn’t be?), but I would feel ready to face it.

But it now seems like that won’t be the case. There’s no way I can achieve any of my parenting goals at this point in my life.

And I know I’m not the only one in this situation. PCOS is a condition that around 1 in 10 women in the UK suffer from.

While studies suggest that women with PCOS have sustained fertility levels from 22-41, since being diagnosed I have become anxious that the longer I wait to try for a baby, the less chance I actually have of getting pregnant, given that my doctor is urging me to start trying now. 

Studies have also shown that PCOS has the potential to lead to serious mental health problems including anxiety, depression and eating disorders.

Yet there is a significant lack of support for young women diagnosed with fertility problems. All my doctor advised me was to spend nine months trying to conceive, and if that fails to book an appointment to see her.

There was no other advice, there wasn’t even a leaflet – that was it. 

There is a culture of misunderstanding when it comes to living with fertility issues at a young age and many of us have faced a complete lack of support.

Because you’re not actively trying to conceive, people – including many doctors – aren’t concerned about the situation that you are in or the impact that it may have on your mental health, but that needs to change.

Choosing to start a family should be something that you do because you are ready and you want to be a parent. However, for women with fertility issues, like me,  it can feel like there’s no choice – it can feel like it’s now or never.

PCOS Symptoms

  • irregular periods or no periods at all
  • difficulty getting pregnant (because of irregular ovulation or failure to ovulate)
  • excessive hair growth (hirsutism) – usually on the face, chest, back or buttocks
  • weight gain
  • thinning hair and hair loss from the head
  • oily skin or acne

To find out more about PCOS, click here.

MORE: Women reveal what it’s like to live with polycystic ovary syndrome

MORE: Asking women when they’re going to have a baby can be triggering

MORE: 11 things that everyone with irregular periods will relate to

My husband donated his organs to save lives and I hope others will do the same

Hollie with her late husband Seb, who passed away earlier this summer (Picture: Hollie Trezise)

At the age of 29, I had been happily married for two years and was looking forward to celebrating my 30th birthday on a holiday booked by my husband.

We had big plans for a long future together, but on June 11, 2018, everything changed.

I was visiting my mum at her house, about an hour away from where I live, when my husband Seb called to say he was feeling unwell and decided to not work late (something he often did).

I didn’t think it was anything serious, but decided to head straight home to be with him, just in case.

The next few hours passed in a blur.

When I arrived, he was barely breathing.

I spent two years working for an epilepsy charity, and although Seb didn’t have epilepsy, I could tell he had been having a seizure.

At one point, there were two ambulances and two ambulance cars parked in my driveway.

Seb was lying down in the back of one and they were working to make him stable enough to drive to the hospital.

All they could tell me was that he was very poorly.

That morning, when I left my husband, he was a healthy 32-year-old man. But his seizure caused him to have a cardiac arrest, and as a result, he suffered catastrophic brain injury, and died two days later in Worthing Hospital.

When it had become clear that Seb would not recover from his brain injury, a specialist nurse approached me about donating his organs.

She told me that he had signed the organ donor register several times.

I wasn’t surprised to hear that he wanted his organs to be donated, although when you sign the register, you never imagine that it might actually happen.

(Picture: Hollie Trezise)

My husband was a full-time wheelchair user, born with spina bifida and hydrocephalus.

But despite his disability, Seb lived life to the full.

He had always been active and participated in sports, including swimming and athletics.

Seb also loved travelling; we got married in Tenerife and spent our honeymoon in America and the Caribbean.

He loved people, and worked as a youth support worker with several local charities that aimed to support children with disabilities.

Seb was always such a positive person, nobody could ever have imagined he would die so young.

Just two years ago, we were deciding what song we should play for our first dance, now I was having to decide where he would want his ashes to be scattered.

If we ever talked about that kind of thing, Seb shrugged it off and said we were too young to worry about things like that.

Coincidentally, we had very recently watched a Grey’s Anatomy storyline about organ donation, and both shared the opinion that if our organs were no longer needed to keep us alive, but could save the life of somebody else, then we would happily donate them.

If it hadn’t been for the organ donor register and that TV storyline, it’s not something either one of us would have thought about or discussed.

The specialist nurse and the Intensive Care Unit team at Worthing Hospital were wonderful.

When they took him to have his organs harvested, they made me feel comforted and assured that he would be treated just the same as any person having an operation, even though he was dead.

They made me feel that Seb’s decision to give his organs away was something I should feel incredibly proud of.

But I didn’t feel any less shock or pain at the sudden loss of Seb because he had decided to be an organ donor.

Later, I found out that a woman in her 30s received a double lung transplant, a man in his 60s received a lifesaving liver transplant and a woman in her 50s received a new kidney after two and a half years on the waiting list.

When I think about these people and how grateful I would feel if I was one of their family members, I feel proud of Seb’s donation.

It’s absolutely vital to talk about organ donation, so tell your family if you want to donate your organs when you die and make sure that you sign the organ donor register.

It won’t help your family overcome the devastation of losing you, but it might save another family from losing someone who could have been saved, and there is no greater gift than that.

Do you want to register for organ donation?

If you want more information on organ donation or to register, visit the NHS Organ Donation Registration website here or call 0300 123 23 23.

MORE: Is there an age limit for organ donation and how to join the register?

MORE: Opt-out organ donation is not a solution and as someone who will need a transplant, I don’t want it to be law

MORE: Children wait much longer for organ donation as parents don’t consent

Easy ways to improve your sleep quality that actually work


If you are reading this through bleary eyes while mainlining your second coffee of the day, you’re in good company.

It’s a rare person who can boast that they get enough sleep.

Self-inflicted late nights, work-related early mornings, kids, insomnia or unsettled sleep are a feature of life.

Sick man sleeping in bed

In fact, lack of sleep is one of the most common complaints of our time: Four out of five people in Britain suffer disturbed or inadequate – so-called ‘toxic’ – sleep.

But, how much sleep do we really need? Received wisdom suggests eight hours a night – but experts actually disagree.

According to Dr Chris Idzikowski of the Edinburgh Sleep Centre, anywhere between five and a half and nine and a half is normal, depending on the individual.

‘It’s when a person gets less than their constitution demands it is then that they suffer,’ he says.

More useful is to look at the quality of the sleep you’re getting. Better sleep = more refreshed, no matter how much time you have.

Whether you’re operating on 4, 8 or 10 hours, here’s how to make sure your sleep is as good as it can be.

Starting with….


Increasingly hard to pull off now most of us use our mobiles for alarms, reading, music and more.

However, using devices in the bedroom is one of the biggest blockers to good sleep hygiene.

Why? Many reasons. Looking at work emails and life admin creates the wrong mental state for relaxation and can send the mind into active mode when it should be winding down.

The blue light of smartphone screens mimics daylight which in turn inhibits the formation of the sleep hormone melanin.

And having your phone next your bed promotes middle-of-the-night clock watching, which is one of the big no-nos when trying to get back to sleep.

Ideally, you would stop use of all devices at least an hour before bed to allow your brain to switch off naturally.

Over-active thinking patterns keep the mind alert. Do the classic tip of keeping a note pad by your bed instead – if things you need to do pop into your mind, write them down to check on in the morning and free your mind for sleep.

And keep your phone outside the door where you can still hear the alarm – or better yet, get an old-school analogue alarm clock and leave your phone downstairs.

woman sleeping on desk
Living with depression can have a negative impact on your sleep (Picture: Ella Byworth)


…but not too close to bedtime. Vigorous exercise releases cortisol, which can disrupt natural sleep patterns. So, keep your HIIT workout for the morning and make sure anything you do in the three hours before bed is gentle – think a walk, stretching or yoga.

Light exercise can help your body to wind down ready for sleep.


…which brings us on to yoga. A flexible, pain-free body allows for longer and deeper rest. Many with back or hip pain will know how irritating it is to be woken by a throbbing joint that prevents you going back to sleep. If yoga is not for you, try other practices that can help maintain flexibility: tai chi, Pilates, foam rolling, general stretching. YouTube has myriad videos that can help with a ‘stretching for sleep’ program.

Light exercise, stretching and massage all help blood flow, says Idzikowski. ‘One of the things the brain does as we try to sleep is to reduce the core temperature by opening the blood vessels to the hands and feet.

‘So this helps set the body up for what the brain would do naturally anyway.’


You may have heard of foods that assist sleep: Turkey, bananas, warm milk – usually foods rich in tryptophan, an amino acid that promotes sleep, or lactocarium, a nervous system sedative (found in lettuce).

According to Idzikowski though, evidence of this link between specific ingredients and sleep is scarce. More important is the time you eat: that means no big meals less than three hours before bedtime.

vegan illustrations
(Picture: Ella Byworth for Metro.co.uk)


As Shakespeare said, it provokes the desire but takes away the performance. He wasn’t talking about sleep, of course, but the same applies. Getting sloshed might make it a lot easier to drop off (pass out?) but the sleep you get will be unsettled and poor quality as your body deals with sugar levels plummeting and the liver metabolising the alcohol.

One or two is fine, one or two bottles not so much.


A word up there in the irritation stakes with ‘moist’, but we are wheeling it out to cover off the pre-bedtime self-care routine.

According to Mr Idzikowski, that pleasant-but-cliched pre-sleep prep really does help.

A warm bath will gently elevate your body temperature before the subsequent drop, which causes drowsiness.

A scented candle and soft music can create a restful atmosphere.

And lavender sprays, candles or pillows can relax the nervous system. Brain scans in sleep studies have shown that lavender slows the heart rate and increases slow wave deep sleep – and while other studies argue about just how effective lavender is, it is unanimously accepted that as part of a good sleep routine, lavender is beneficial.

It all sounds so silly and superficial until you try it as part of a bigger plan and you realise that it makes sense.

‘It’s about changing the conditions of an unhealthy sleep environment, which can instantly make people sleep better,’ Mr Idzikowski says.

sleep well
(Picture: Ella Byworth for Metro.co.uk)


Sunlight regulates your internal body clock. A walk in the midday sun will help your body find its natural rhythm.


A peaceful, dark room promotes good sleep, no question. Light coming into the room is a powerful trigger for the brain to wake up. If you can’t make your room particularly dark, get a sleep mask. Anecdotally, they also help people struggling to sleep when it is dark – the light pressure holding your eyes gently closed keeps you in sleep mode.

See also: white noise to block out ambient sounds or ear plugs.

Last and least possible…


In theory of course this is an excellent idea. Once your body clock knows what’s expected of it, it is more likely to fall into line. Sleep late and sleep in on the weekends and you’ll wake up with a Monday morning sleep hangover.

Avoid it by setting your alarm for the same time each morning and becoming that smug one who has done a day’s worth of fun stuff before your mates have even woken up.

Admittedly this one means forsaking your social life but, you know, what price a good night’s sleep?


SPEED NEEDN'T MEAN COMPROMISING ON QUALITY - Costa Express means real beans, real milk, really quick.

As a nation we are completely accustomed to expecting convenience. Express food, express trains, express manicures – and express coffee.

But just because we get something fast, it doesn’t mean we expect it to be lesser quality.

With Costa Express can guarentee that your, morning cup will be made with fresh milk and beans of the highest quality and ready in seconds

In fact no less than 112 variations of Arabica and Robusta coffee beans were blind tested to create their ‘Mocha Italia’, the signature blend you’ll find in Costa Express machines.

The beans that make their way into the coffee are truly the very best; only 1% of the world’s beans make the grade.

7 of the best tans to keep you bronzed into winter


Back in the day when Facebook groups were a thing, there was one called ‘I’d rather be a little bit orange than deathly pale’, filled with fake tan enthusiasts who felt that being a little bit Tangoed was a better option than looking like Caspar.

Happily, fake tan quality has improved year on year and you no longer have to pick between one of the other. Summer might be almost over, but it’s still totally possible to retain a holiday glow into the autumn.

As a dedicated tan addict who burns after fifteen minutes of sun exposure, I spend the summer trying out every fake tan on the market. These are the eight best.

(Picture: San Tropez)

San Tropez Everyday pre shower, £14.95 

The classic tanning brand, who’ve dominated the market for years, St Tropez are not lazy about inventing new products. Last year it was the gradual tan shower gel (which was pretty good, though tended to go a bit patchy) but this year they’ve really nailed it. You slather the pre shower tan all over your skin. It’s a similar sort of consistency to shaving foam. You wait a minute, then get in the shower where you wash it off. You’ll see a bit of colour from the first use and it builds up to a really healthy looking natural tan.

(Picture: Bondi Sands)

Bondi Sands 1 Hour express, £14.24

Bondi Sands is reportedly a favourite of various different celebs, not least because it comes in shades up to extra dark. Sometimes a little light dusting just won’t do. My favourite thing about the Bondi Sands was how quickly it worked. I used the one hour development formula, which is great when you want to be brown ASAP without having to go out pre-shower and ruin your clothes. It’s a slightly odd green tinged colour during development but washes off to leave a lovely mid brown shade.

(Picture: Bali Body)

Bali Body Bronzing lotion, £22.95

You’ve probably seen Bali Body all over Instagram. It’s a gradual tan moisturizer, but I found that even from first application I was noticeably darker. I built it up over a week or so and I can confirm that I was a similar skin tone to my sister who had actually just returned from four weeks in Bali.

(Picture: Sienna X)

Sienna X 1 Hour Mousse, £24

I’ve always had a soft spot for Sienna X, as it was my first ever spray tan at Urban Retreat in Harrods. Their formula is really impressive, it lasts at least a week and fades super evenly. I find that their shades come up pretty dark so if in doubt apply cautiously.

(Picture: Cocoa Brown)

Cocoa Brown 1 Hour tan, £7.99

Cocoa Brown, in my opinion, deserves some fancier packaging. It performs way better than the tweenager style bottle suggests its going to, with decent staying power, a really smooth consistency.

I applied the 1 Hour mousse and ended up with a nice gentle glow. I’ve also left it on for a few hours longer than the recommended development time which gave a deeper tan. It’s a great multi tasker.

(Picture: San Moriz)

St Moriz tanning mist, £4.99

If you’re not keen on spending lots of money on your tan but you want an instant browness fix, St Moriz is your best best. It’s not expensive, the tone of brown it creates is really natural and golden and it’s an easy to apply mousse. It doesn’t have the lasting power of some other brands, but when you’re paying such a reasonable price per bottle you can afford to top up.

(Picture: Coola)

Coola sunless tan dry oil mist, £49

Coola is a newer, more modern way of tanning. I tried their facial serum, which goes on before moisturizer, and the tanning oil. Fake tan can be very trying for the skin, so Coola’s ability to moisuterise as well as tan is a bit of a game changer.

The oil comes in a spray on formula. I applied it after several glasses of wine and still found that it game out even and unstreaked, which is something of triumph.

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Toddler freaks out when he rips mum’s weave off and frantically tries to put it back on



Children aren’t usually big fans of parents’ grooming choices.

You only need to look on Facebook or YouTube to see little kids freak out after their dads cut off beard or mums change their hair.

A mum in the US didn’t even change anything and still ended up surprising, and scaring, her toddler.

The unsuspecting tot was playfully tugging at her hair but unbeknownst to him, she was wearing a weave, and he ended up pulling it off her head.

And his reaction was priceless.

The youngster obviously has no understanding of how weaves work so probably got the fright of his life to watch it come off.

When he accidentally pulled it off, an expression of horror and fear marked his cherub face.

The panic is real (Picture: Jukin)

His wide-eyed reaction got a loud laughter from the parent, further confusing the child (he was probably wondering whether he’s in trouble or not).

He desperately tried to put it back on her head but of course, lacked the skill to do so and then pondered his next move.

After quickly deciding he can’t put it back on, he pushed it towards his mummy to get to take it back so he can forget about the whole thing.

The mum, who watched and waited for it to slip off from her head, guffawed throughout the whole thing.

And she got it all on video, so now she can keep embarrassing him in the years to come.

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Greggs has opened a bakery in Cornwall – but refuses to sell its Cornish pasties

A Greggs steak bake now on sale in Cornwall next to a traditional Cornish pasty. 07/09/2018. See SWNS story SWPASTY; A war of words has broken out after Greggs opened its first branch - in CORNWALL Locals in the county - most famed for the Cornish Pasty - are up in arms over the shop. The store has been built just off the A38 in Saltash on the Devon Cornwall border. Locals say it opened to ''no fanfare' in the last two weeks but it still doesn't appear on Greggs' website store locator section.
(Picture: SWNS)

Greggs has its first bakery in Cornwall – but it won’t be selling Cornish pasties.

The bakery chain has decided not to sell pasties because they don’t want to upset the locals.

Instead, the outlet at a service station just ff the A38 in Saltash features a range of slices and other baked goods including sausage rolls, sandwiches and cakes.

Though Greggs has had several stores in Devon for many years, is has never sold pasties in the West Country because it didn’t want to create a ‘pasty war’.

One Devon-based employee said: ‘We don’t sell pasties down here. It is something we have never done and no store in Devon will.’

Staff at the newly opened Cornish store also confirmed they were adhering to the ‘no pasty’ rule.

Greggs confirmed the store had opened in July although there had been no publicity around it and it was still not visible on the store locator online.

In a short statement they said: ‘A new Greggs shop opened at Euro Garages Saltash, Callington Road in July. It is operated under a franchise agreement with Euro Garages and eight new jobs have been created.’

Speaking before the opening, a spokesman said: ‘Cornwall is the only county where Greggs have yet to open. There is strong demand for the Greggs offer and we look forward to being able to make this available to customers in Cornwall.’

However, lots of people living in Cornwall aren’t happy about the new Greggs – because they don’t see the need for it.

Lee Stephens said: ‘Why in the name of Satan does our county need a Greggs? Why would we require Greggs down here.

A Greggs steak bake now on sale in Cornwall next to a traditional Cornish pasty. 07/09/2018. See SWNS story SWPASTY; A war of words has broken out after Greggs opened its first branch - in CORNWALL Locals in the county - most famed for the Cornish Pasty - are up in arms over the shop. The store has been built just off the A38 in Saltash on the Devon Cornwall border. Locals say it opened to ''no fanfare' in the last two weeks but it still doesn't appear on Greggs' website store locator section.
(Picture: SWNS)

‘We have proper bakeries down here, we don’t need cookie cutter franchises like Greggs when we already have legit nom factories.’

Hayley Hill added that she thought the bakery wouldn’t get much custom bar tourists.

She said: ‘I mean Greggs doesn’t even know what a pasty is. Their “pasty” is a bleddy slice.’

However, though locals might be bothered – Cornwall bakers aren’t phased at all. They don’t feel even the tiniest bit threatened.

They said they had faith that locals will always pick a traditional pasty instead of any imitations.

Marion Symonds, 51, owner of Portreath Bakery and Made Marion Gluten Free and a long time campaigner of the traditional Cornish pasty, said: ‘I would have thought they would sell whatever they sell in their normal stores.

‘If they sell pasties in their other shops why wouldn’t they sell them in pasty world?

‘I believe that Cornish people who have had Cornish pasties with traditional ingredients will always go to a Cornish bakery.

‘There’s a chance that we will loose some trade to Greggs but I don’t think there will be a pasty war because Cornish people will always go for a traditional pasty.’

She added: ‘People will always go to a proper baker if they want a pasty made the traditional way.

‘Greggs do a budget line and people on a low income do like it.’

Ann Muller, 64, owner of renowned pasty business Ann’s Pasties, said: ‘I have never been to a Greggs and I don’t know what their strategy is. But I suppose even a bad pasty is nourishing, as long as it has beef, onion and turnips then it is a wholesome meal.

‘If they’re no good at making pasties I’ll teach them a thing or two, for a fee.’

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Metro Road Trip: Your summer pictures of the Midlands


This summer our Instagram page is on a road trip across the UK.

With your gorgeous photos, we’re on a picturesque tour of the most snap-worthy cities, likeable lagoons and stunning countryside the country has to offer.

We’ve already taken in the breathtaking scenery of the south, southwest and Wales, hunting down the most unforgettable vistas this side of the Humber.

Here are some of our best images from Midlands, in case you missed them.

Use #MetroRoadTrip to share your own pictures for the next stage of our journey to Yorkshire.


Instagram Photo

A jaw-dropping composition of Birmingham at its best from @emilyhickeymase.

Instagram Photo

Birmingham is gorgeous from every angle, thanks to @brumlens.

Instagram Photo

Why go to Amsterdam or Venice when you could go to Birmingham with its 35 miles of canals? Courtesy of @andriheriawan.


Instagram Photo

We’re not just about cities; we love getting out in the sticks too. Thanks to @emma.experiences for this shot.


Instagram Photo

When it gets a little chilly outside, you can always hop indoors to warm up a little. Our thanks to @helenhookerarchitecture for this one.


Instagram Photo

There’ll be a lot more bridge crossing for the rest of our road trip, so make sure to follow our Instagram feed for the latest updates! A wonderful composition by @cindytullett87.

The next stage of our #MetroRoadTrip will see us heading to Yorkshire.

You can follow us at @Metro.co.uk where we regularly post the best pictures from London using #MetroLDN.

Students should be able to disclose eating disorders and self harm issues on UCAS, says professor

(Picture: Getty)

At least 95 students took their own lives in the last year, according to advocacy organisation Universities UK (UUK).

On World Suicide Prevention Day, head of mental health for the group has said there needs to be better ways to understand student mental health.

Professor Steve West said one way to do that is is to allow them to detail their conditions on UCAS forms.

The vice-chancellor of the University of West England (UWE) said students are deterred from telling institutions about any conditions as the current format asks them to put it under disabilities which adds to the stigma.

He wants people to be able to declare eating disorders or self-harm tendencies in their applications so universities are better prepared to help them.

(Picture: Getty)

‘For many students coming to university is a life-changing experience,’ he told Metro.co.uk.

‘It offers huge opportunity and possibilities. But students will have their own life experiences, hopes, and needs as they transition to university and then into employment.

‘Their life experiences will inform what they need in terms of support. There is evidence that many students do not declare their mental health needs for fear that it will impact on their ability to access a particular course or university.

‘I want to ensure that students are not inhibited, that there is no stigma attached to disclosing their needs at the point of application. This, however, should not be classified as the same as disclosing a disability which is their only option on the UCAS form.’

(Picture: Getty)

In a blog post written earlier in the year on the university website, Professor West said being more mindful of these issues is a must.

‘Changing attitudes towards mental health, financial pressures, a tough jobs market and the impact of social media are factors that previous generations did not have to contend with in the same way when they went to university,’ he said.

‘Whatever people’s views on this issue may be – and there are many – mental health and well being can’t be ignored anymore.’

He added that the focus is often on how to ‘fix the problem’ as opposed to what causes it and how to prevent it from getting too far.

‘At the heart of this is a desire to break down the barriers to discussing mental health and encourage everyone to understand that it’s okay to admit when you’re not “okay”,’ he said.

‘By making mental health part of everyday language, we can create a culture that is more supportive and enables students to be successful.’

If the reforms go ahead, students will be able to access a new part under disability and special needs where they can outline mental health conditions.

This information is passed onto their chosen course providers as part of the application form, so universities and colleges can begin to think about what support can be provided.

All comments submitted will be private and confidential, under Data Protection laws.

If you want immediate confidential support, you can contact Samaritans.

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Artist uses sunlight and refraction to burn breathtaking designs onto wood


If you were a Brownie or a Scout (or if you skipped the joining in and read books about kids having adventures) then you’ll know that direct sunlight refracting through glass can cause fires.

Depending on the item it focuses on, the heated light can cause items like curtains, clothing, or furniture to go up in blames, and terrifyingly has even caused house fires.

But artist artist Michael Papadakis has been using sunlight to create rather than destruct, creating breathtaking designs on pieces of wood.

The 31-year-old sunlight artist from southern California, U.S has drawn the Statue of Liberty, picturesque mountains, wild animals, and detailed portraits just by using the simple natural sources.

(Picture: Michael Papadakis)
(Picture: Michael Papadakis)
(Picture: Michael Papadakis)
(Picture: Michael Papadakis)

He told Metro.co.uk he’s been involved in heliography, the name of the process, for six years.

The term came to light around 1822 when French ‘photographer’ Joseph Nicéphore Niépce made the earliest known surviving pictures of nature using a heliograph.

Michael uses the same item in his work – a wireless telegraph that signals by flashes of sunlight (generally using Morse code) reflected by a mirror.

The flashes are produced by quickly pivoting the mirror or by interrupting the beam with a shutter.

Travelling around the world inspired Michael to produce the things he was seeing into a unique medium.

(Picture: Michael Papadakis)
(Picture: Michael Papadakis)
(Picture: Michael Papadakis)
(Picture: Michael Papadakis)

‘In 2012 I left the U.S for a year and a half to travel and see the world with my own two eyes,’ he told Metro.co.uk.

‘I found myself in central Asia, high up on the Pamir Plateau, where I felt so close to the sun I could almost touch it!  It was along this route called “The Silk Road” where I discarded my traditional art materials and simply carried around a magnifying glass to create art.

‘Now, each piece that I do can take between one to 30 hours depending on its size and complexity.

(Picture: Michael Papadakis)

(Picture: Michael Papadakis)

‘My most recent favourite piece was for Ripley’s Believe it or Not!, of the Great Smokey Mountains ( which rises along the Tennessee–North Carolina border). It was published in their 2018 annual book and is a permanent installation in their museum in Gatlinburg, Tennessee.

‘Most of the pieces I create are for clients. I’ve worked with a lot of brands to help find their voices through sunlight art. I am also a filmmaker and I create stories with each and every piece.  I believe that the value of heliography is in the process, not in the end product.’

Micheal wakes up at the crack of dawn to utilise the morning sun. But the strong rays can cause eye damage so he carries wielding shields, sometimes a few pairs so onlookers can stick around and have a look.

The talented artist said he loves not being confined to a room and relishes taking inspiration from the outdoors, using natural sources.

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Coca-Cola launches pink cans of Diet Coke for Breast Cancer Awareness Month

You can now get pink Diet Coke cans in the UK (Picture: Coca-Cola; Getty)
(Picture: Coca-Cola; Getty)

Coca-Cola is launching baby pink cans of Diet Coke – though you’ll have to hunt for them if you want one.

The brand has announced it will only be hiding ten special limited edition pink cans, which come in 30x330ml packs, as part of ASDA’s Tickled Pink initiative – a campaign which supports the work of two leading breast cancer charities; Breast Cancer Now and Breast Cancer Care; to fund life-saving research and offer life-changing support to those affected by breast cancer.

The pink cans will mark the start of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, which starts 1 October.

(Picture: Coca-Cola)
(Picture: Coca-Cola)

The brand is partnering with the supermarket to raise money for the two charities, to ‘continue its ongoing support for the campaign with a significant donation’.

Oh, and there’s a prize if you find a can, too. If you manage to uncover one, you’ll win £1,000 – so you’ll be both winning and supporting a charity (though you could always donate the winnings to the charities, too).

The brand is also launching a limited edition tote bag designed by Holly Willoughby that features the words ‘I Am, You Are, We Are Tickled Pink’.

(Picture: Coca-Cola)
(Picture: Coca-Cola)

These were made available in selected Asda stores from 7 September – and you can get one for free if you buy a 4 pack of 250ml glass bottles of Diet Coke (as long as stocks last).

Speaking of the initiative, Aedamar Howlett, Marketing Director for Coca-Cola GB and Ireland, said: ‘Continuing our longstanding relationship, we are really pleased to support the brilliant work of ASDA’s Tickled Pink campaign again this year.

‘We are also very grateful to have the support of Diet Coke’s brand ambassador Holly Willoughby, which only helps to generate further awareness and make this year even bigger and better.’

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Why do men think they get to have an opinion on people wearing makeup on the train?

(Picture: Metro.co.uk)

Men are complaining again about women applying makeup on their commutes.

It’s very bothersome, they say when girls – or people of whichever gender – quietly put on their faces on the way to work.

And it seems we’re constantly meeting men who say they prefer women to have ‘the natural look’.

Actor-turned-director Bradley Cooper even resorted to taking off Lady Gaga’s makeup for her audition in their new film together (something about wanting her to be open, with ‘no artifice’, he said).

So why do so many men feel entitled to share their opinion on the matter? Of course, preferences are preferences and you may just think your partner looks better in her natural state, but a woman or anyone who wants to use their autonomy to decorate their body should be able to so without unsolicited advice.

Because, if you missed it, it’s their body.

The issue with women getting ready on the train has bothered male commuters because they feel it’s private grooming that should be done at home.

What they fail to realise is that it’s basically just to save time. If men could shave on the train (without needing water, a trimmer, or razor) then they would do it too to save an extra 15 minutes in the morning.

No, Bradley, Lady Gaga’s nude lips don’t mean she’s not wearing any lipstick (Picture: Maria Moratti/Contigo/Getty Images)

The whole thing also raises issues about how people react to women taking up social spaces. Manspreading is a famous concept on the train (which directly affects female commuters, physically taking up their space or getting in their way) and yet most men don’t think of it as a problem.

But when a woman has the audacity to quickly and quietly pop on some foundation, lipstick, and the like, it becomes a point of contention.

Men’s complaints of women doing this are also trivial, especially when you consider what women’s thoughts are on the train.

Activist Iman, 24, tells Metro.co.uk that the whole thing is ironic.

‘I think it’s rich that men have a problem with women quietly applying makeup on public transport considering that I have become so traumatised by men’s behaviour on public transport that my anxiety spikes whenever I see a man with his hands lingering around his nether regions.’

She is alluding to men masturbating on public transport. The makeup-on-train issue is insignificant in comparison.

The same arguments can be made against men who stress the importance of the nude look when it comes to relationships.

I’ve had the misfortune of interacting with men who think it’s ‘fraud’ when a woman ‘advertises’ herself as beautiful with her face painted on but her God-given features contradict it (their words, not mine).

Fraud implies a deliberate deception in which the person get something in return (and LOL, we wish we did).

The simple fact is everyone wants to look good, some people take more actions to do this than others, but no one wants to look bad on purpose.

Where there are options, we’re going to take them.

If cosmetics for men were more normalised then yes you’d also be using concealer to get rid of those eye bags.

(Picture: Ella Byworth for Metro.co.uk)

Perhaps most important, men must remember that women are not wearing makeup just for them

It isn’t because Dave in the club isn’t going to notice glittery eyelids or the way the highlighter perfectly catches the light.

Many women wear it as a confidence boost, enhancing what the Lord gave us like when men feel fleeky after a fresh trim.

She’s not trying to dupe you into having relations with her. Yes, some women feel the need to always wear it in front of their partners but that’s not to trick you, that’s simply so she feels pretty and that you notice and feel lucky to have her.

And society is still in favour of a ‘well-kept female’.

‘Well groomed’ women in the workplace earn significantly more money than those who don’t make much of an effort.

And if you’re a woman who’s normally adorned with cosmetics but decide to take a day off – you’ve probably been told you look tired, or sick (I’ve heard both).

Looking good has become synonymous with effort – makeup is just part of it. Why are women punished for utilising it?

Why does everyone want a goth girlfriend?
(Picture: Ella Byworth for Metro.co.uk)

Makeup is also not indicative of a woman’s talents (vis a vis Lady Gaga), persona, or intentions.

Although it takes talent to apply eyeliner on a moving train, a person stripped away from it all is not any better than anyone who plasters it all over.

Lady Gaga, though she may have felt more vulnerable in her audition, was not suddenly gifted with acting prowess when she had her face wiped off, nor was she useless without it.

Women use makeup whenever they feel like it. So we might be channeling Taylor Swift one day with a cute little red lippie or decide to go emo grunge another – you’d be a fool to think it’s telling of our personalities.

We get the appeal of the nude look, that someone who doesn’t wear it is seen as low maintenance. Who wants high maintenance? But it’s one of the oldest cliches: don’t judge a book by its cover.

Don’t judge a woman by her cover-up.

And for those who just ‘luuurve’ the natural look: do you have the same energy for women being natural in other senses such as not shaving their underarms or legs?

Or is that another story for another day?

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Meet the girls who are coming out as debutantes, in 2018

LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 08: Debutantes and their escorts pose for a picture ahead of the 240th Anniversary Queen Charlotte's Ball which took place at Dartmouth House on September 8, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Tabatha Fireman/Getty Images)
#0.1% (Picture: Getty)

If I told you that a girl was coming out you would probably assume she was about to tell her family and friends that she wants to date other girls.

But in the case of a handful of young women, coming out doesn’t mean rainbow flags and kissing girls, it means something entirely different. White ball gowns, curtsying and champagne.

Last weekend saw the annual Queen Charlotte’s Ball, an event where young women are declared as being ‘out’ in society. Traditionally this was a way for girls from aristocratic backgrounds to be presented to the king or queen and declare themselves open for business (well, marriage).

LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 08: Debutantes ahead of the 240th Anniversary Queen Charlotte's Ball which took place at Dartmouth House on September 8, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Tabatha Fireman/Getty Images)
Well this looks fun. (Picture: Getty)

The original Queen Charlotte’s Ball, with an actual monarch, was discontinued in the 1950’s. Allegedly Princess Margaret said ‘We had to stop it really, every tart in London was getting in.’

This version of the Queen Charlotte’s ball does not involve the royal family and is popular with families from overseas, particularly women from China and Russia. Aristocratic British girls no longer tend to be presented. Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie, for instance, were not presented, and Lady Kitty Spencer, cousin to the late Diana of Wales was presented at the Crillon ball in Paris instead.

LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 08: Debutantes ahead of the 240th Anniversary Queen Charlotte's Ball which took place at Dartmouth House on September 8, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Tabatha Fireman/Getty Images)
Everyone say ‘husband’ (Picture: Getty)

Originally the rule was, in order to attend the ball a debutante had to be presented by someone who themselves was a debutante. This often led to socially ambitious girls with money but without pedigree pairing up with other girls who had aristocratic parents but no money for a bit of mutual back scratching.

These days there are no limits on parentage, background or nationality. Applications are open to all girls between the ages of 16 and 20. Places are awarded on the basis of interview.

LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 08: Three winning Debutantes cut the cake durning the 240th Anniversary Queen Charlotte's Ball which took place at Dartmouth House on September 8, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Tabatha Fireman/Getty Images)
Traditionally it’s members of the military who use a sword to cut a cake, but hey, why not copy and paste some traditions. (Picture: Getty)

As part of being a deb, it’s possible to take a course in etiquette, which involves such topics as: introduction to protocol and diplomacy, foreign precedence and the Table of Precedence, seating arrangements, state ceremonial, state visits, official visits and private visits, gifts and invitations, state and ceremonial funerals, titles and forms of address, honours and decorations, flag protocol, the Diplomatic Corp, protocol in international organisations and European institutions and the ranks of the British peerage.

LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 08: Debutantes ahead of the 240th Anniversary Queen Charlotte's Ball which took place at Dartmouth House on September 8, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Tabatha Fireman/Getty Images)
Apparently the rule is that if it’s not a family tiara, you shouldn’t be wearing it. (Picture: Getty)
LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 08: Debutantes make their way to a rehearsal ahead of the 240th Anniversary Queen Charlotte's Ball which took place at Dartmouth House on September 8, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Tabatha Fireman/Getty Images)
V.g stair climbing gals (Picture: Getty)

The ball isn’t just about the debs though. Every year it supports a charity. This year there was a silent auction to raise money for children who are suffering from cancer.

LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 08: A Debutante preparing for the 240th Anniversary Queen Charlotte's Ball which took place at Dartmouth House on September 8, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Tabatha Fireman/Getty Images)
Isn’t doing your make up in public supposed to be an etiquette no-no? (Picture: Getty)

Many upper class Brits regard the whole ritual to be outdated, especially given that young women tend to favour a degree from university above getting married in their teens. However it clearly still has some support in the upper echelons because the Duke and Duchess of Somerset are patrons of the organisation.

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Vegan mayonnaise is coming to UK supermarkets next month

(Picture: Unilever; Getty)
(Picture: Unilever; Getty)

Back in 2016, we revealed that Hellmann’s had launched its first ever vegan mayo.

First released in the US, it’s finally making its way over to UK shelves.

The mayonnaise is made with all of the brand’s usual ingredients – except egg, of course, which has been replaced with maize starch.

The plant-based mayo is totally free from animals and has been certified as vegan by the European Vegetarian Union.

It’s also gluten free and contains no artificial colours or flavourings.

Hellmann's vegan mayo (Picture: Unilever)
(Picture: Unilever)

The Grocer says that the mayo has been launched after Hellmann’s found a third of its consumers eat a predominantly plant based diet.

Jon Walbancke, marketing director for sauces and condiments at Unilever, said: ‘To continue to appeal to new shoppers, we are actively investing in key consumer triggers. which is why we are introducing a mayonnaise that taps into the vegan dietary trend.’

The vegan mayonnaise, which was originally launched in the US and Canada two years ago, will finally be able to buy in UK supermarkets from next month.

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What are the signs someone might be suicidal and how you can help save a life?

Why imposter syndrome makes me feel like I'm faking my mental illness Mental health depression sad cry woman mask fake pills illness sick Picture: Liberty Antonia Sadler for Metro.co.uk
(Picture: Liberty Antonia Sadler for Metro.co.uk)

World Suicide Prevention Day is when people come together to discuss suicide, to raise awareness of it and to decrease the stigma around it.

It’s a conversation we should be having every day but how can someone know if a person is suicidal and what can they do about it?

One out of 15 people will attempt suicide in their life. In the UK, 84 men a week die by suicide. It’s the biggest killer of men under 49.

Symptoms that a person is contemplating suicide often coincide with those of depression. There are a number of signs leading charities reference that can indicate that a person is thinking about taking their own life.

These include developing ideas around suicide or having suicidal thoughts and more outspoken direct or indirect expressions like ‘I don’t want to live anymore’ and ‘There is nothing to live for’.

However, there are also some signs that people often don’t pick up on like dramatic changes in mood.

Your Life Counts says that this can be if someone has a massive change in mood, like when someone moves quickly from seeming okay to suddenly becoming overwhelmingly depressed.

Uncomfortably numb: The nightmare of living with depersonalisation
(Picture: Liberty Antonia Sadler for Metro.co.uk)

Having a loss of interest in previously enjoyed activities, becoming easily stressed, embarking on risky behaviour and becoming aggressive and impulsive are other signs Your Life Counts makes note of.

The charity says you should be worried if a person increases their alcohol and drug use, or loses or gains a substantial amount of weight in a short space of time.

Lack of self-care is another big sign mentioned.

When a person is struggling with their mental health, personal hygiene can seem impossible to keep up with, because they just cannot fathom the energy or the desire to do things like washing their hair, brushing it, changing their clothes or showering.

You should also check in with the people you love if you notice they are tired all the time, sleeping too much or too little or withdrawing from family and friends.

SuicideLine adds that other signs can include self-harming and writing suicide notes.

If you notice any of these signs – or all of them, charities advise acting fast and that you shouldn’t ignore them. Don’t wait to see whether things get better. These people may need help and getting to them in time may just save a life.

Reach out to them. Text them. Call them. Ask them for a coffee. Make sure they are not alone.

(Picture: Dean Noroozi/Metro.co.uk)

But be direct, Samaritans says. If you suspect someone may be at risk of suicide, you need to ask them directly about the thoughts. But you need to make sure you do not sound as though you are judging them – you need to let them know you are there to help.

Things you can ask them include: ‘Are you having thoughts of suicide?’ or ‘Are you thinking about killing yourself?’

Your Life Counts adds that although some people think talking about suicide will put the idea in someone’s mind – it’s not true.

‘Another myth is that someone who talks about suicide isn’t really serious,’ it says.

‘Remember that talking about suicide may be a way for the person to indicate just how badly they are feeling.’

A spokesperson for Samaritans explained talking to a suicidal person can really help.

‘Suicide is a very complex issue and often there isn’t one main reason why someone decides to take their own life,’ they told Metro.co.uk.

‘Often it is a result of problems building up to the point where they can see no other way to cope with they’re experiencing.

‘When a person reaches a point where they feel suicidal, they often lose sight of being able to work through their problems.

‘They can feel completely consumed with hopelessness and often believe those around them will be better off if they are no longer here.

‘A suicidal crisis will pass – feeling this way often only last for a short period of time. Talking can really help a person to see a way through this and we would encourage anyone who is feeling low to reach out for help.’

Mental health charity Mind says it’s important to offer emotional support and practical support. Help them think of ideas for self-help, and help them make a support plan.

(Picture: Liberty Antonia Sadler)

Your Life Counts says that to keep a person who is actively suicidal safe, you should not leave them on their own. Stay with them or arrange for someone else to do so.

And make sure their family members are aware of the situation.

Whatever you do, do not use guilt or threats to prevent suicide. This is not at all helpful and can only further exacerbate the situation.

Call a mental health line who will advise you on what to do unless you are absolutely certain that they are an immediate danger to themselves.

If that’s the case, you either need to call 999 or drive them down to A&E where they will be assessed by an emergency mental health team and may be given a Crisis team intervention – a mental health team that looks after you in times of crisis.

Alternatively, you can ring their GP or out of hours service for an emergency appointment or contact their community mental health team if they have one.

Whatever you do – remember that suicide is serious, and signs should be taken seriously.

Do not ignore them because you think it’s a phase or that it’ll get better.

If you notice something is wrong, do something about it.

Even if you do not yet notice any signs – always check in on the people you love. It’s not hard to call or text.

You never know what anyone is going through and just one phone call could stop someone from making a huge, dangerous mistake.

Mental health helplines and contact details

If you or a loved one is struggling with their mental health, or is at risk of suicide, please, please reach out to the numbers below, where people will be able to help and advise you on what to do.

Samaritans – for everyone
Call 116 123
Email jo@samaritans.org

Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) – for men
Call 0800 58 58 58 – 5pm to midnight every day
Visit the webchat page

Papyrus – for people under 35
Call 0800 068 41 41 – Monday to Friday 10am to 10pm, weekends 2pm to 10pm, bank holidays 2pm to 5pm
Text 07786 209697
Email pat@papyrus-uk.org

Childline – for children and young people under 19
Call 0800 1111 – the number won’t show up on your phone bill

The Silver Line – for older people
Call 0800 4 70 80 90

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Putting cancer on the curriculum will save our daughters’ lives

Why sex ed needs to focus on sexual pleasure
(Picture: Erin Aniker for Metro.co.uk)

I’ve got too many children but it seemed a good idea at the time. Two felt dull. With three there’s one stuck in the middle. Four was the magic number. You can’t send them back and of course I wouldn’t want to (not forever anyway).

But you worry. Have you done things right? There is so much that they need to be aware of, alert to, ready to embrace and avoid. I haven’t wanted them to be fearful, but resilient and prepared for whatever comes their way.

In my experience of parenting, there are a surprising number of times when one is confronted by something completely new, unexpected and often shocking.

My youngest is about to start university. She’s one of the so called snowflake generation. Born in the year 2000, a digital native, never paid a bus fare in London.

According to the media she’s one of generation not good for much except taking a good selfie. When she was born, Uber wasn’t a thing, iPads hadn’t been invented and Spotify, Instagram and AirB&B didn’t exist.

The year 2000 was also the last time that sex education was overhauled in the UK.

So much has changed. Now, how we prepare our children to know their bodies, negotiate relationships and have a healthy understanding of sex needs to be dragged up to date, too.

In July this year, the government launched a consultation on its draft guidelines for relationships, sex and health education in schools.

The public (and that includes young people themselves) have until early November to influence policy on what should be included as compulsory teaching at both primary and secondary school age.

The Eve Appeal’s mission is to stop cancer before it starts. We have a razor-sharp focus on prevention and early diagnosis. A crucial part of this is making sure that children have a positive relationship with and strong understanding of their own bodies.

Banish the taboos, use proper language and anatomical terms, normalise conversations around cancer, screening and signs and symptoms. Then they will be less fearful and better equipped to look after themselves.

September is Gynae Cancer Awareness Month and we want to make the most of the consultation by calling for school children to be educated on the signs and symptoms of cancer, alongside enhanced body knowledge and awareness.


(Picture: Erin Aniker for Metro.co.uk)

Our campaign is underpinned by new research, which reveals two thirds of UK parents think children should be educated about cancer, and that nearly a third of parents feel uncomfortable talking about cancer with their own children.


We’ve also discovered that over half of parents believe a cancer education programme should include gynaecological awareness.

Including health as a topic in the new, compulsory sex education guidance is good news. We want to see specific subjects relevant to women’s cancers included in an age-appropriate way. This will help with early diagnosis and cancer prevention.

Boys and girls should be taught together, directly addressing the stigma and taboos that build up around issues such as menstruation.

There are key elements we want set out explicitly: correct language and terms for the reproductive anatomy, information about HPV and the vaccination programme, signs and symptoms of the key cancers, particularly the ones that might be seen as ‘embarrassing’ like the five gynaecological cancers.

Young children ask where babies come from and how they’re made. Older children are told they’re going to get a ‘cancer vaccine’ but aren’t sure why or what it protects them from.

Girls leave higher education and receive their first smear test letter, and over a quarter of them ignore it.

Parents support this learning and want their children to be able to look after their health but they themselves often lack the confidence and knowledge to answer their children’s questions in the most helpful way.

We would like to see a comprehensive curriculum that runs from primary through to secondary, grows with the child and builds vocabulary and knowledge at an appropriate pace. In that way, issues should be taught and learnt before they are experienced.

For instance why not cover anatomical terms in early primary, menstruation in late primary, and introducing HPV information in early secondary?

What works effectively for embedding information is to introduce it at a basic level and then build on it by returning to the subject with more complex information. This is called ‘spiral learning’.

The Eve Appeal’s Put Cancer on the Curriculum campaign calls on the Department for Education to amend their guidelines to ensure a cancer education programme is taught in an age-appropriate way.

We are asking parents, politicians, our supporters, other stakeholder organisations and members of the public to sign up to a campaign pledge.

With cancer, we know that an ounce of prevention is far preferable to a pound of cure.

If we get this right, we won’t see 58 women a day diagnosed with one of the gynae cancers and we’ll have more 25 year olds booking their cervical smear test when the letter pops through the post.

MORE: How often should you have a smear test, what age should you start and how long do the results take?

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Victoria’s Secret model can code and doesn’t have time for trolls

(Picture: Erik Pendzich/REX/Shutterstock)

Coder Lyndsey Scott, 31, is on the iOS tutorial team for Apple, is a leading software engineer, and has done video tutorials for kids alongside Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg on Code.org.

She is also a Victoria’s Secret model.

But despite all her brilliance (or perhaps because of it) she’s fallen prey to online trolling. Anonymous strangers on the internet think that because she’s beautiful she doesn’t know how to code properly.

As one of the few women thriving in both the beauty and tech industries, Lydnsey does not have any time for haters who doubt her work.

Mandatory Credit: Photo by Erik Pendzich/REX/Shutterstock (1041673ab) Lyndsey Scott on the catwalk 2009 Victoria's Secret Fashion Show, The Lexington Armory, New York, America - 19 Nov 2009
(Picture: Erik Pendzich/REX/Shutterstock)

‘I normally try to ignore negativity but decided to jump into the comment section of this one,’ she wrote.

‘(I’m) not trying to brag, I’m just stating facts in the hope that I’ll convince at least one negative commenter that programmers can come in all shapes, sizes, genders, races, etc. so they’ll think twice before doubting other women and girls they encounter in tech.’

Instagram Photo

The initial comments came under a Reddit thread showing off Lyndsey on the Victoria’s Secret catwalk.

The image caption read: ‘This Victoria’s Secret model can program code in Python, C++, Java, MIPS, and Objective-C.’ But haters were skeptical.

Trolls mocked her abilities saying she can just about print Hello World – a computer program that outputs or displays ‘Hello, World!’ to a user. It is a very simple program in most programming languages.

Another Redditor didn’t doubt her abilities but questioned the quality of it, saying: ‘Anyone can write code, not many people can write code well though. Languages are easy to learn, but scalable, readable, maintainable, efficient code is not.’

One user then tagged Lyndsey on the post to which she replied outlining her achievements.

She ended the post by saying: ‘I’m able to live my life doing everything I love. Looking at these comments, I wonder why 41% of women in technical careers drop out because of a hostile work environment, go figure.’

Many users lauded Lyndsey for hitting back and urged other women to get involved in the tech sector.

One user wrote: ‘With so much of the world’s tech designed exclusively by men it’s essential that more women get involved as they make up nearly 60% of the population’.

Another said: ‘Thank you, Lyndsey. As a woman in technology, I have faced years of men “challenging” my credibility. The ridiculous idea that women in tech have to fit some predefined image is exhausting. You are awesome.’

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An English breakfast served in a giant Yorkshire pudding now exists

Credit: instagram/porky_pig_carvery
(Credit: instagram/porky_pig_carvery)

Have you ever looked down at your fry up and felt just a little bit disappointed by the plate? If so, this is going to make you very happy.

A fry up served in a giant Yorkshire pudding is now a thing that you can eat.

The new dish comes courtesy of Porky Pig, a restaurant in Manchester.

It recently took to Instagram to share a picture of the full English breakfast, which comes in the Roast Dinner favourite.

The breakfast features bacon, sausage, eggs, mushrooms, beans and a hash brown, all piled up in a Yorkshire pudding.

The restaurant told Metro.co.uk: ‘We oven bake the Yorkshire pudding with everything in: bacon, sausage, egg, mushrooms, beans and hash brown.

Instagram Photo

‘The inspiration is just from loving what we do and trying to be different. A Yorkshire pudding on a breakfast is just like having a pancake with a breakfast.’

The whole thing will set you back just £5.50.

The breakfast has been a massive hit with social media users, with the photo having received lots of comments from soon-to-be customers.

One person wrote: ‘Hangover food at its best!’

Another said: ‘Xmas breaky sorted’.

This isn’t the first time the carvery has invented a Yorkshire pudding themed dish – they’ve previously launched a Yorkshire pudding wrap, which was filled with bacon, sausage, egg, a hash brown and cheese, all for £4.

We can’t wait to see what Porky Pig comes up with next – a Yorkshire pudding kebab, maybe?

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Is it okay to watch adult TV on public transport if you’re sitting near a child?

metro illustrations
(Picture: Ella Byworth for Metro.co.uk)

There’s nothing we love than a Mumsnet argy-bargy. Today’s topic? Whether adults should watch TV on the train if kids can see their screens.

An anonymous mum posted that she was watching Homeland on the train, when the mother of some kids sitting in her section asked her to turn it off because it wasn’t suitable for kids. She writes: ‘Travelling on a train, sat at a table of four seats. Opposite me was a woman with one of her kids and her other one was next to me. Once next to her was a toddler and the one next to me probably about 6/7.

I was happily sitting there watching a box set on the iPad with head phones in. US drama with bits of violence (guns, shooting, fights etc) and a bit of sex (Homeland for those who know it).

She asked me if I could turn it off as it was unsuitable for her son sitting next to me to watch it. I think he’d been watching the screen and made some comment to his mother from what I could gather when I took my headphones out.

Told her not a chance as it was not my problem.

Then, about 20 minutes left to go, was killing time playing candy crush – again with head phones on.

This time she asked me not to as her kids wanted to play it and she didn’t allow it and it would upset them.

At that point I politely suggested she pay more attention to what her kids were doing and less to what I was doing and I’d do what I wanted.

She seemed to think I should modify my behaviour because of her parenting choices.’

So, who’s in the right?

Mumsnet users have tended to come down on the side of the mother, rather than the poster, saying that watching Homeland while sitting next to a child wasn’t okay. However even the mums of Mumsnet think that the Candy Crush comment was a step too far.

We spoke to Catherine, a nanny from Kent who gave us her professional opinion. She told Metro.co.uk: ‘In an ideal world, if an adult is watching something not suitable on and iPad, they would angle it away from a child. However I would consider it my responsibility as the childcare provider, not anyone else’s. In that situation I would have asked to swap places with the child so that I was next to the iPad.

‘I try to take enough activities on train journeys that the kids I’m looking after don’t need to watch TV on someone else’s iPad. As for the comment about Candy Crush – I teach children that there are different rules for children and adults.’

Parenting expert Liat Hughes Joshi, author of New Old Fashioned Parenting and 5 Minute Parenting Fixes had a little more sympathy with the mother in question, telling Metro.co.uk: It’s rather a tricky dilemma of modern etiquette. I have sympathy with both sides here.

‘Clearly I’d love to think that people would be considerate around children and not watch clearly inappropriate content around them. If something was extremely violent or sexual in nature then surely that’s just bad manners, whether you’re sat beside a child or an adult.

‘It’s the grey areas though that are more problematic. A young adult just might not realise that what they think is ok for a child to see isn’t, or indeed one parent’s view of what is acceptable might differ from another’s anyway. It’s a similar issue to people swearing in public when kids are around.

‘I do think as a parent you have to accept that sometimes your child is going to encounter things that you’d ideally wish they were not exposed to yet and you have to talk to them about it and explain/ provide context.

Clearly though if someone beside you is watching something pornographic on the train or plane then I think it’s absolutely reasonable to politely ask them not to with a child present.   Good luck with that one though…the sort of person who would watch that kind of thing on public transport probably isn’t going to care…’

MORE: Kirstie Allsopp once smashed her kids’ iPads after they broke her rules

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