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Saturday, September 14, 2013

Father Bares Some Skin in Daisy Dukes to Teach Daughter a Lesson

Utah father Scott Mackintosh wanted his 19-year-old daughter to wear longer shorts. But when she refused, he didn’t take the usual route to punishment by grounding her or taking away the cellphone.

‘Mackintosh, 52, donned a pair of Daisy Dukes short-shorts to teach his daughter a lesson about modesty.

“I know it sounds weird to embarrass her, but I wanted her to know she’s of great worth,” Mackintosh told ABC News.

Mackintosh, a father of seven, said the disagreement between him and his daughter Myley occurred in late August when she refused to wear longer shorts to their weekly family night. Instead of a knockout drag-out argument, Mackintosh took a pair of scissors and turned an old pair of jeans into short-shorts.

“They don’t want to see a 52-year-old fat guy dressed like that,” he said.

But Mackintosh wasn’t done yet. He also donned a black T-shirt that his other daughter had given him with the words “Best. Dad. Ever.”

Mackintosh’s wife, Becky, said her initial reaction was, “Are you kidding me?”

“I was embarrassed but I was hoping it would be a really good lesson,” she said.

Scott Mackintosh chronicled the whole ordeal on his wife’s blog and said his kids laughed and didn’t think the new outfit was that big of a deal as they dined at a restaurant. After dinner, the family went to play mini golf and Mackintosh was intent about keeping the outrageous outfit on.

“People were snickering, pointing,” Mackintosh’s wife said.

But the lesson couldn’t have been too painful for Myley because she seemed to enjoy her father’s lesson on modesty. Myley posted the images of her father on Tumblr and received more than 130,000 comments.

“What this father did was an excellent way to get his message across,” Michelle Golland, a clinical psychologist in Los Angeles, said. “It was funny, it was creative, it engaged the whole family and it engaged the teenager.”

While Myley got enjoyment out of her father’s new-found fame, she says a lesson was learned.

“Mostly, I just learned the lesson of how much he loves me and that he really cares about it,” she said. “It got the point across. Yes.”

Mackintosh says he hopes Myley will remember his motto: “Modest is hottest.”


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Get the ‘Real Answers’ on What Those Food Expiration Labels Mean

ABC News’ Cecilia Vega reports:

If you think you need to throw out the food in your fridge after the expiration dates have passed, think again.

See below for some foods and their shelf lives, according to the USDA

“I don’t think we can really pinpoint a single food safety incident that happened because a food product was past its date,” said Jena Roberts, vice president of business development at the National Food Lab.

GTY expiration date tk 130910 16x9 608 Get the Real Answers on What Those Food Expiration Labels Mean Getty Images

The only food that federal law says must have a use-by date is infant formula. Some states also have their own rules on dates for foods such as milk.

Want to make groceries last longer? Check out “Real Money” secrets to ending food waste and saving thousands of dollars.

Roberts said the rest of the dates were voluntary, put there by manufacturers to tell consumers when the food tastes best, not when it’s going to make a person sick.

“The ‘use by,’ the ‘sell by,’ the ‘code dates,’ the ‘best by’ dates — those are all there for quality reasons,” she said. “They are not there for safety reasons.”

Roberts said, however, that bagged produce such as spinach and lettuce should be tossed by the dates on the package.

“I would stick very, very closely to the ‘use by’ date,” she said. “With lettuce, there isn’t a heat step or a process to kill pathogens.”

Roberts also said to follow the package dates for meat unless it is frozen. For eggs, she said they could be eaten up to three weeks past the date on the carton, as long as they are cooked all the way through.

Roberts also said to hold onto condiments such as mustard and catsup.

“Bacteria isn’t going to grow in them. It’s just a quality issue,” she said.

According to the Department of Agriculture, it is OK to cut the mold off hard cheese, cured meats and hard vegetables such as bell peppers and carrots. Roberts said for dry and processed foods in the pantry, “the ‘use by’ date or the ‘sell by’ date for many of these products is anywhere from six months to possibly two years out.”

Below, find additional foods and their shelf lives, according to the USDA. Every food product listed should be stored at a refrigerator temperature of 40 F and below for the following shelf life to pertain.

14 days [unopened];3 to 5 days [opened]14 days [unopened];7 days [opened]

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Lego Unveils First Female Lego Scientist

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Lego’s first female minifigure scientist is breaking through the glass ceiling, one Erlenmeyer flask at a time.

Professor C. Bodin, Lego’s first female scientist, took the limelight this weekend as Lego introduced its Minifigure Series 11 to the world. Professor C. Bodin comes equipped with an impressive resume, winning the “coveted Nobrick Prize for her discovery of the theoretical System/DUPLOR Interface,” according to her bio. This Scientist’s specialties include “how to connect bricks of different sizes and shapes” or mixing two colors in one element.

Not far from reality, most Lego STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) minifigs are male. (There is a female astronaut.) The unveiling of Professor C. Bodin, also known as the Scientist, addresses and confronts the lack of women in the hard sciences. Professor C. Bodin’s introduction in the math and science series is a breakthrough, bridging the gender gap in Lego Minifigs and fighting the stereotype in real life.

According to the National Association for the Education of Young Children, research shows that strongly gender-typed toys “might encourage attributes that aren’t ones you actually want to foster.” Through Professor Judith Elaine Blakemore’s research, a professor of psychology ?at Indiana University-Purdue University, it has been found that girls’ toys are most often “associated with physical attractiveness, nurturing and domestic skills,” which may mean that for girls, it will emphasize the importance of cosmetics and physical appearance, with the most important message being to look pretty.

But the introduction of the Scientist is breaking through gender barriers, one mini brick figure at a time.

“Anything that gives girls a sense of belonging” is positive, Janice Earle, a senior program director in the Research and Evaluation on Education at the National Science Foundation, told ABC News.

“Having something that you can relate to, because you see that they are like you, is not insignificant,” she told ABC News, and that will produce a positive impact on girls and the general public’s perception of females in the fields of science, technology and engineering. It’s that feeling of ‘Gee, if someone like me is there doing that work,’ then ‘I can too.’”

Professor C. Bodin is accompanied by Diner Waitress, Evil Mech, Jazz Musician, Holiday Elf, Constable, Dirndl Girl, Scarecrow, Barbarian, Welder, Mountain Climber, Grandma, Island Warrior and a Gingerbread Man in Lego’s latest minifig collection. In stark contrast to the Scientist, there is also the Lady Robot, decorated in pink accessories and rosy cheeks. She has a feat others can’t claim: She claims to party like nobody else.


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When It Comes to Food Portions, Yes, Size Does Matter

ABC News’ Dave Zinczenko reports:

We’ve always been told to clean our plates, but is that advice making us fat?

Whether it’s hamburgers, mac and cheese, or mashed potatoes, American staples come in many different sizes, so what exactly is one serving?

“All we need to do is say, ‘Let me look at the size and not the labels,’” said Brian Wansink, a marketing professor who runs the Food and Brand Lab at Cornell University.

He held a serving size demonstration to determine what effect “knowing” your food’s portion size has on how much you actually eat.

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In a demonstration for ABC News, Wansink invited 12 students who believed ABC News was conducting interviews for a profile on the professor.

Wansink offered lunch to the students, giving everyone eight ounces of pasta.

Some students were told they were getting a half-sized portion, others were told they were getting a regular-sized portion, and the rest were told they were getting a double.

“If you tell them that they’ve got a small-size portion, they [think], ‘Oh my gosh, I’m going to finish it all and I don’t have to feel guilty,’” Wansink said.

And that’s exactly what happened.

The groups that were told they were eating half-sized and regular-sized portions cleaned their plates, while the double-sized portion group had leftovers.

“I was thinking that I probably wouldn’t want to eat all of it,” said one of the students who had been told they were eating a double-sized portion. “A double portion doesn’t sound like a portion I should eat.”

Wansink said this can explain a large part of the nation’s obesity problem: Americans eat what they’re served without thinking about how much is actually on their plates, which can be a problem considering restaurants across the country sometimes serve huge portions.

So what is the right amount of food?

Experts say the protein and carbohydrate portions of the meal should be about the size of the eater’s palm. There’s no limit on vegetables.

“The easiest way to pick the right amount to eat is to use a small plate,” Wansink said.? “That way we think we’re getting a full plate, and a full serving, but we’re actually tricking ourselves into eating about 23 percent less than we otherwise would.”

The difference between leaving a little bit of that pasta on a plate and not can add up.

The students who were tricked into cleaning their plates ate 140 calories more, equaling an extra 12 pounds over the course of the year.


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Veteran Serves Up Inspiration at US Open

ABC News’ Marci Gonzales reports:

Angelo Anderson never thought he’d be on the court of the US Open running alongside some of the biggest tennis champions in the world.

In fact, the Navy corpsman once worried he may never run again.

“At the time I didn’t see myself being athletic again,” Anderson said.

Three years ago in Afghanistan, Anderson was bleeding from two gunshot wounds — the other bullet shattered his femur.

Read more: Second Tour

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It’s not the scar he focuses on now, but the date — July 2, 2010, which is tattooed in roman numerals on his leg.

“The tattoo on my leg is actually my alive date,” Anderson said.

The date symbolizes not the day the 24-year-old Purple Heart recipient almost lost his life, but the day he began fighting for it.

Anderson underwent several surgeries and six months of rehab and learned to walk again.

When he was asked to try out to be one of the ball persons at this year’s US Open, he knew all of that hard work had paid off.

It was a once-in a life time opportunity, a chance to inspire.

“Military wise…people who might be disabled, please take something as I’m doing as something you can also do as well, your injury isn’t the end of the world,” Anderson said.

He said his world opened up by that day on the battlefield.

“I can’t say that what happened to me is a burden or the worst thing ever because look at the opportunity that came from it,” Anderson said.


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Friday, September 13, 2013

Girlfriend’s Surprise Reverse Proposal Veers Off Plan

At first, everything was going according to plan for Vicky Wang on the sunny day in May that she was planning to propose to her longtime boyfriend, Jonathan Law, whom she’d been dating for eight years.

It meant a lot to Wang to be the one to finally propose, since Law had attempted asking her twice already, with not-so-successful results.

“He proposed once when he was really inebriated, so I don’t think he really meant that,” Wang, 31, of New York City, told GoodMorningAmerica.com. “But about a year ago when I finished law school, he actually set up this really sweet and creative proposal with a food truck. He hired the truck to trace the great food places we’ve liked to eat in our relationship.”

But unfortunately for Law, Wang says she “just wasn’t ready yet,” adding “the timing just wasn’t right at that point in my life.”

So this time, Wang decided she’d take matters into her own hands by being the one to officially pop the question.

“I knew I put him through a lot,” she explained. “So when the time was finally right, I just knew I had to be the one to propose.”

So along with the help of Law’s parents, whom Wang refers to as her “partners in crime” for the elaborate surprise, she arranged a sweet ceremony of sorts at the school he attended as a boy in his hometown of Vancouver, getting their closest friends and family to hold up signs retracing the most memorable landmarks of their relationship.

“He had no idea,” said Wang. “We’d actually just attended a friend’s wedding where he was a groomsman the night before. He had been busy and exhausted the whole weekend and was kind of in a daze. He didn’t know any of this was coming.”

When the time finally came for the proposal, Law’s father told him they were all going out to a nice dinner to celebrate Mother’s Day, insisting he be sure to change into a suit.

“It wasn’t until we got to the school he realized what was going on,” Wang said. “It’s a really special place for him. Aside from his family, his school really shaped him into who he is today. So I thought that was a really appropriate place to do it.”

One by one, Law, 34, was ushered down the aisle of what was once a small chapel on the school grounds. He was greeted by smiling faces holding signs with the exact date and memory he and Wang had shared together, from their first date at McDonald’s, to the first time he met her parents, ultimately ending up at his own parents learning that on April 9, Wang had asked their permission to marry their son.

“I was so incredibly nervous in the moment,” Wang said of the moment she was about to propose.

But suddenly, the tables were turned.

“No, I can’t let you do this. Will you let me be the luckiest guy and marry you?,” Law mustered out through tears of joy, as his dad stepped forward, handing him the ring he had bought for Wang two years earlier.

In that moment, the remainder of Wang’s two months of planning flew out the door as Law dropped to his knee and asked for her hand in marriage one last time.

Fortunately for Law the third time is the charm, and she said yes.

The happy couple is planning to wed next spring in South Africa, where Wang grew up.

“We got engaged where he’s from, so we thought it would make sense to get married where I grew up,” she said.


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Lettuce Love: Dating App Connects Salad Lovers

HT salad match app 02 jef 130912 16x9 608 Lettuce Love: Dating App Connects Salad Lovers Salad Match dating app by Just Salad matches salad enthusiasts with one another. (Credit: iTunes)

Chopped salad has become a go-to lunch for many cosmopolitans in search of a healthy, convenient meal on the go. But can it also lead to love? A new dating app suggests it might.

SaladMatch, launched by the Just Salad cafe chain, asks users to indicate their salad preferences by filling out a short in-app profile, then allows them to peruse a series of other like-minded diners. If two individuals select each other, it’s a “match.” The app then suggests meeting in person at the nearest Just Salad location and initiates a text conversation between the two salad enthusiasts.

“It’s definitely an app that doesn’t take itself too seriously. We don’t claim to have the best matchmaking algorithm out there or anything,” said Nick Kenner, co-founder of Just Salad and one of the creators of the app. “We’re just creating a fun environment for customers and users and trying to get people together in places they are already going to for lunch.”

Launched at the end of August, the SaladMatch app is actually the next evolution of a dating website the chain launched in 2010. With more than ?10,000 profiles on the site before it was shut down, customers were clearly interested in meeting one another online and, potentially, in store.

The site has since been closed as it moves ?to the app, which Kenner said is a highly improved matching model. “We currently have over a thousand users and over 200 matches,” he said, but he would not elaborate on any romance success stories stemming from the app just yet.

While the Just Salad chain currently only ?has locations ?in New York and Hong Kong, the app is available to salad lovers everywhere, according to Kenner. And if chopped salad isn’t your thing, other dating sites for matching people with similar eating habits abound.

GlutenFreeSingles.com caters to the celiac set, while Veggie Date links up possible meat-free mates and SamePlate.com invites users to create profiles according to any palate ?preferences.

“There are definitely certain characteristics of people who choose to eat healthy when eating in a rush,” said Kenner on the notion of a food-based connection leading to a romantic one. “While you’re in line, you might as well talk to someone and just go with it.”


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Would You Fly on 9/11?

GTY airport empty tk 130911 16x9 608 Would You Fly on 9/11? Security on the ground and in the air has made vast improvements since 9/11. But would you book a flight? (Credit: Getty)

On the 12th anniversary of the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, many Americans’ thoughts turn to travel, aircraft security and TSA checkpoints.

But does this keep people from boarding planes?

Airline travel did dip in the years immediately following 9/11, but since 2005, the number of airline passengers has steadily increased, according to the most recent data from the?U.S. Bureau of Transportation Statistics.

And airports are far from empty on 9/11, said John Nance, aviation analyst for ABC News.

“For the first five or six years following 9/11, the drop was true,” said Nance. “But now it’s mostly a mythology. There hasn’t been anything for the past five or six years that indicates the possibility of another aerial attack on that date.”

Nance also said that procedures at TSA checkpoints had markedly improved in the years since the attacks.

“There’s no question that what we had passing as security before 9/11 was a sick joke,” he said. “We had the absolute bottom-level employees, who couldn’t even speak English in many cases, and who had a minimum amount of training working a job they didn’t want to be doing. It was an idiotic system doomed to failure, and it was only a matter of time.”

Even more crucial, Nance said, is the increase in aircraft security over the past 12 years.

“The No. 1 job in making sure 9/11 never happened again was denial of access to the cockpit, and we’ve done that,” said Nance, referring to the reinforced doors and changed cabin drills that prevent intrusion. “The risk of having an airplane commandeered and used as a missile is pretty close to zero.”

Still, for some, more than a decade and numerous security improvements have not diminished the emotions and fear surrounding air travel on the 11th day of September

“Besides a couple of terrifying near misses involving a shoe bomber and liquid gels, there hasn’t been a major incident or threat,” blogged Rita Anya Nara, author of “The Anxious Traveler.”

But she herself would not be flying that day. ?The date Sept. 11, she wrote, “still holds that sickening power of imagination and dread over us.”


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Airman Dad Returns Home Just in Time to be Daughter’s Tooth Fairy


When Master Sergeant John Capsalis returned home on Aug. 6 from his two-month deployment to Kyrgyzstan, he had big plans to surprise his 5-year-old daughter, Juliana, at her school.

Little did he know that once he got there, she would be the one surprising him, nearly bringing her newly stateside father to tears.

“You lost a tooth!,” Capsalis, 46, of Salem, N.H., shouted in this heartwarming ?video posted on Welcome Home Blog.

This was the first tooth little Juliana had ever lost. It fell out while she was at school just three hours before Capsalis’ arrival, making him the first member of their family to see the fresh hole in her mouth.

“I missed a lot of things while I was gone,” Capsalis told GoodMorningAmerica.com. “My oldest son’s birthday, Father’s Day, the Fourth of July. But three hours prior to me getting there she had lost the tooth at school. Nobody knew about it other than me. I was the first one to see her without her tooth. That was awesome.”

Soldier Turns Homecoming into Surprise Airport Marriage Proposal

No one in Capsalis’ family knew he was coming home, which was all part of the master surprise plan he had worked out with Juliana’s school in advance.

“I contacted the school via email while I was deployed and I asked them not to tell anybody I was coming home, including my family members. Not my wife, not my mom, nobody,” he explained. “They agreed not to say a word and asked me to contact them when I landed.”

Right when he touched down around 2 p.m., he called the school to let them know he’d be arriving shortly before 5 p.m.

“I was 15 minutes out and called them. They all went outside, and brought all the kids outside,” said Capsalis. “I don’t think anyone was more excited than I was. My heart was pounding and all the teachers were crying. But she [Juliana] had no idea.”

Soldier Surprises Sister at Wedding, Bringing Her to Tears

As soon as Juliana laid eyes on her father, she ran up to him, wrapping her arms around his neck giving him the biggest hug she could manage.

“My daughter and I have a bond like no other,” Capsalis said. “She’s hugging me and squeezing me and telling me she loves me.”

Fortunately, with no known redeployment plans in the near future, the adorable father-daughter duo has plenty of time to share many more “firsts” together. That included Juliana’s very first visit from the tooth fairy later that evening.

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GoldieBlox Helping to Build a Generation of Female Engineers

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Debbie Sterling is on a mission to build up girls by breaking down a few barriers.

Fed up with the lack of women in her engineering field (the latest studies from the National Science Foundation show that 11 percent of engineers of women), Sterling, a graduate of Stanford University, came up with an idea after coming across research that kids’ toys could have a huge impact on their career choices.

The San Francisco woman said she set her sights on building a construction toy for girls after visiting a toy store.

“My head literally started spinning and I was so disappointed that there weren’t things that would inspire girls to [use] their brains,”?Sterling, 30, said. “The girl aisle was kind of about how to be pretty and I wanted to put something in there that girls can see that they too could find a passion in engineering and that they too could find these subjects fun.”

And so the idea for GoldieBlox, toys that encourage girls to not just play with dollhouses but build them, was born.

“In creating the GoldieBlox character, I wanted to make a character that girls could relate to,” Sterling said. “She’s feminine and she loves building.”

To fund the dream, to the tune of $150,000, Sterling made a plea, complete with a video, on Kickstarter. The money started flooding in.

“We reached our goal in four days,” she said, “and ended up almost doubling it by the end.”

GoldieBlox is now sold in about 500 independent stores in the United States and Canada, and even at Toys R Us. Sterling said her toys had been consistently in the Top 20 best-selling toys on Amazon.

“It is just amazing to see what these girls are kind of putting together,” Sterling said. “They start playing with GoldieBlox, they start building all kinds of things that none of us would have ever thought of.”

She said creating the toys had been fulfilling for her.

“You know, the best thing about starting this company – and I know that Goldieblox is just one tiny, tiny little step — [is] that I firmly believe that in my own lifetime I’m going to see a huge shift,” Sterling said. “I’m going to see an enormous shift of more girls entering these fields, inventing amazing things, with men.”


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Mario Batali Encourages Foodies to Use Feedie App to Share Meals and Feed the Hungry

Mario Batali, one of the most famous chefs in the U.S., with 23 restaurants and six television shows, is known for his trademark humor, his vest and those orange Crocs.

“Orange is the color of the Batali family,” he told ABC News. “It’s Fashion Week in New York now. I usually take a beating from the fashion blogs.”

These days, though, the “Chew” television personality has one wish for his fans and guests to his eateries: When snapping pictures of meals, Batali wants foodies to choose a new, free app called Feedie.

Want more information before you download the app? Get additional details here.

Here’s how it works: Post an image of your meal at a participating restaurant across the U.S. via Feedie and the restaurant contributes to a non-profit group called the Lunchbox Fund. The fund, which provides meals to orphaned and vulnerable children in South Africa, matches it with a meal at a table a world away.

“The Feedie app is all about the sharing and the joy,” said Batali, a father of two. “There are a lot of people out there taking weird photographs of everything they do and putting them somewhere in the social world. The Feedie app takes our obsession with the delicious and beautiful food that we see in the restaurant and it transforms [it] into a donation to the Lunchbox Fund.”

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The Lunchbox Fund, which Batali has been involved with for nearly 10 years, said the app included features such as a map to help users locate restaurants and the ability to share their favorite eateries and meals with other Feedie users, as well as on social media.

Batali said posting pictures of meals is nothing new.

“A lot of people are doing this anyway,” he said. “Hunger is the easiest thing because we already know the answer. … People just have to think about it. … We’re having this delicious food and, while we’re doing that, we’re definitely contributing to something that’s better than us – and that’s serving undernourished, underprivileged children.”

ABC News’ David Muir and Eric Noll contributed to this piece.


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Human Toes Wanted to Complete Famous Cocktail

Cocktails: There are endless ways to stir one up. A shot of this, a splash of that, and don’t forget the amputated toe. That’s how one Yukon hotel serves them up.

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It’s called the Sourtoe Cocktail and more than 60,000 people have tried it, according to the staff at the Downtown Hotel in Dawson City, Canada, where the cocktail is served. These drinkers belong to the Sourtoe Cocktail Club. For $10, you can, too.

Here is how it works: Bar patrons can choose any drink or shot, but it becomes a Sourtoe Cocktail when the toe is added.? The Downtown Hotel has been serving the drink since 1973.

It all started when riverboat Capt. Dick Stevenson was rummaging through a cabin in the Dawson City area. He came across a toe being preserved in a jar of moonshine. Word around town was that the toe had been preserved in the alcohol since the 1920s, when guys in the area were running moonshine by bobsled. Their toes would freeze in the winter weather conditions, and it was easier just to cut off the frozen toe than find help.

In the past 40 years, the Downtown Hotel has gone through about 12 toes. The original was swallowed in 1980. Whenever that happens, the swallower must pay a $500 fine. Toes are hard to come by, so swallowing the toe is discouraged.

ht sourtoe glass ll 130830 16x9 608 Human Toes Wanted to Complete Famous Cocktail ???????????????????????????????????? (Image Credit: Downtown Hotel)

There is one rule for Sourtoe Cocktail drinkers: “You can drink it fast, you can drink it slow — but the lips have gotta touch the toe.”

The bartenders watch closely. Because the toe can be put into any drink, Downtown Hotel bartenders said most people choose a shot to get it over with quickly.

The hotel recently had to put an ad out on its website so it could keep the Sourtoe Cocktail on the menu. Adam Gerle, a hotel spokesman, said a patron had swallowed the toe intentionally in August.

“The toe was swallowed by Josh from New Orleans. … Some reports are that he was working in Dawson City for the summer, and it was his last day so it was a bet from his buddies,” Gerle said. “He came in with a couple friends. They were prepared to do the Heimlich [maneuver] on him if he choked. He paid without being asked and left.”

Dr. Robert Truax of the UH Case Medical Center in Cleveland said choking would be the only health hazard associated with swallowing the toe.

“Consuming the toe would not have any ill effect,” he said. “As long as it’s well preserved and drained of all blood and bodily fluids and preserved long enough to dry out, so there is not a way for infectious conditions like Hepatitis or HIV to exist.”

Truax added that if the toes were dropped in a high enough whiskey count, any infection could be killed. He said recent attention toward the cocktail could encourage other bars to create their own version and if the toes they use have not been preserved safely, there could be an issue.

In order to prevent anyone intentionally swallowing the toe at the Downtown Hotel, the fine was increased to $2,500. “There is one toe left as of now so we’ve been welcoming new toes,” Gerle said.

The hotel put out this ad so it can keep the Sourtoe Cocktail on the menu:

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“We’ve had a few offers this week after posting the ad,” Gerle said.

He said the offers were mainly from people who had an accident or plan to undergo a medical procedure.


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Photographer Creates Eye-Catching Images of Super Strong Babies

HT karate baby web jef 130909 16x9 608 Photographer Creates Eye Catching Images of Super Strong Babies Courtesy Eric Sahrmann/Alter

These eye-catching images of super strong babies might make you believe the tiny tots had eaten plenty of Wheaties, or perhaps Popeye’s spinach or maybe they overloaded on mother’s milk in order to gain such strength.

But really, the little ones’ abilities to do pint-sized push-ups, high-flying karate kicks and shirt-busting bicep curls are just the handy work of photographer Eric Sahrmann and retoucher Abe Finkelstein of ALTER, an agency that produces striking imagery for print, broadcast and interactive media.

The super-human baby photos were created as part of an advertising campaign called “strong baby” for the Milwaukee Health Department advocating healthier behaviors by young mothers to lower the city’s infant mortality rate.

But wrangling the babies for the photo shoot was no easy feat.

“The most difficult was the karate baby,” Sahrmann, 36, of Chicago, told GoodMorningAmerica.com. “As we had it sketched out, the baby was yelling like he was doing a huge karate kick. And I was thinking, ‘How the hell are we going to get this?’ We tried to digitally morph the baby’s mouth and it just wasn’t working. It got down to the wire.”

“But then suddenly,” he added, “This baby let out this huge yawn and boom, I was able to capture that real quick. We were able to get the eyes scrunching up and the mouth wide open, and it ended up being perfect.”

An interesting fact about the babies in the photos, however, is that it’s not just one baby.

“It’s a big puzzle. No baby is one real baby,” Sahrmann explained. “We had a casting for babies between the ages of 3 months and one and half years old. We ended up getting about 30 babies and parents come to the casting. It was a loud and crazy day.”

He chose 10 babies to be used for each of the three photos, individually shooting each one and then digitally merging them together to form the finalized image. Each finished piece consisted of about 15 separate photographs composited together.

The younger babies, around 6-months, were used to compile the faces, and the older children, around a year old, were used to compile the bodies because they had more muscle mass.

But the work didn’t end there. With all the squirming children on his hands, Sahrmann hired a professional “baby wrangler” to hold the babies into the positions he needed to?composite the final photographs.

“The shooting days were just insane,” he said. “You’ve got these little 6-month-old babies running around. The poor baby wrangler was probably exhausted by the end of the shoot.”

All their hard work paid off, however. The ad campaign was very successful, even earning a prestigious CLIO Healthcare award.


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Oops! United Airlines Accidentally Offers Airline Tickets for ‘Free’

The next time you’re sitting on a full-price seat on a United Airlines flight, the person next to you, likely hogging your armrest too, may have paid just $5, or less.

An unknown number of United Airlines customers purchased flight tickets for practically nothing Thursday after a computer glitch caused some fares to show up online for anywhere from $10 to $0.

“I just booked a couple of round trips from SJC – BOS via IAH in November and December for $10 round trip. Found them on United.com,” user Quiltingatty posted on FlyerTalk.com, an air travel online forum.

“UA: IAD – MSP $5 each way Sept 25th/26th… Just went to book this for a work trip and ended up paying $7.50 all in,” posted another user on the same site.

“During this time I’m looking up everything,” said Dawnica Jackson, a United Airlines customer who rushed to book flights after seeing the glitch.? “I’m like, we’re going here.? We’re going there.? I was like we’re going to do Christmas in Maui.”

As word spread online of the deals, United quickly shut down the booking section of its website and phone centers to prevent more tickets from being sold.

The website began again accepting reservations, at the normal prices, around 2:45 p.m., CST.

A spokeswoman for the Chicago-based company told the Associated Press the error was not a website malfunction but an error in filing the fares.? The airline does not know how many of the bargain-priced tickets were sold, nor does it know how it will handle the tickets that were sold.

“As always, we will do what is appropriate,” United spokeswoman Megan McCarthy said.

United did not reply to ABC News’ request for comment as of this writing.


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Mom Protects Sons From Girls Posting Sexy Social Media Photos

They say “Don’t Mess with Texas,” but thanks to a recent blog post that has so many parents buzzing, it’s more like, “Don’t Mess with This Texas Mom.”

Kimberly Hall, the director of women’s ministry at All Saints Presbyterian Church in Austin, Texas, posted an open letter called “FYI (if you’re a teenage girl)” on her blog, “Given Breath,” on Sept. 3, asking female friends of her three teenage sons to stop sending sexy photos on social media.

As she explains it, her family “sat around the dining room table and looked through the summer’s social media photos … Wow – you sure took a bunch of selfies in your skimpy pj’s this summer!”

She wrote, warning, “There are no second chances with pics like that, ladies. We have a zero tolerance policy. I know, so lame. But if you want to stay friendly with our sons online, you’ll have to keep your clothes on, and your posts decent. If you post a sexual selfie – or link to an inappropriate YouTube video – even once – it’s curtains.”

The blog is sparking debate online, questioning how much a parent should manage their teens on social on media.

“I don’t think she’s being reasonable,” wrote one commenter.

“We all did stupid things when we were younger,” chimed in another.

Parenting expert Tammy Gold explains how to help teens make better choices.

“On the whole, it’s a good message,” she said. It’s showing a mom who’s involved, who’s involved watching social media, and someone who’s saying let’s have some teenage self-respect, both boys and girls.”

However, Gold does have one problem with the message.

“My problem is the developmental piece,” she explained. “The developmental age of a teenager is where they figure out who they are. Psychologically it’s called ‘ego identity’ versus ‘role confusion.’ Who am I and what I should do. And the goal of the parent is to guide them, not make the decisions for them. By blocking them, she’s kind of stunting the developmental process.”

On Hall’s blog, she says, “If you are friends with a Hall boy on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, then you are friends with the whole Hall family.”

California mom Diana Wegner, 54, agrees with Hall’s mission, even going a step further than she does, by monitoring her 17-year-old son’s Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Vine, even his cell phone for more than three years.

“I wouldn’t say extreme, like we’re standing over him,” said Wegner, of Burbank. “He does have freedom and privacy, but we do try to help him understand that it’s a dangerous world and we just want him to be safe.”


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Fashion Icons Naomi Campbell, Iman Demand Diversity on ‘Racist’ Runway

Supermodel Naomi Campbell glittered as the grand finale to Diane von Furstenberg’s show at this week’s New York Fashion Week, but DVF is the exception to what Campbell and others are calling racism on the runway.

“I don’t like it, and I say it,” Campbell, 43, told ABC News. “I say, ‘Where’s the others?’ I’m very outspoken, as we know.”

Now, as part of an advocacy group called “Diversity Coalition,” Campbell, beauty icon Iman and former model-turned-advocate Bethann Hardison are taking the unprecedented step of naming high-profile designer names who they say are sending a negative message by appearing to define beauty and high fashion as virtually all white.

In an open letter to the governing bodies of fashion weeks across the globe, based on what they saw at last season’s fall shows, Campbell, Iman and Hardison name designers Calvin Klein, Donna Karan, Armani and others for using just “one or no models of color” in the fall shows, which featured dozens of models, calling it a “racist act.”

“The statistics, it’s really shocking,” Campbell said. “Heartbreaking. Your body and beauty, it doesn’t matter what color you are. If you’ve got the right talent, you should be there having the opportunity to do the job.”

They hope that by speaking out, diversity will become fashionable. “Who else? Iman asked. “Who’s going to do it [speak out]? Somebody has got to do it. And change does not happen easily.”

Hardison said, “I don’t want to try and embarrass anyone to do anything.”

“You know, this is not the business of shaming,” Iman, 58, agreed. “And as we go back again to clarify it, nobody is calling any of these designers racist. The act itself is racism.”

Iman, the supermodel turned makeup mogul, also known as Mrs. David Bowie, may be a mega power player, but she says she’s outraged that things haven’t changed since the 1970s.

“There were more black models working then than it is happening in 2013,” she said. “There is a time when silence is not acceptable at all. And if the conversation cannot be had publicly in our industry, then inherently there is something wrong with the industry.”

ABC News reached out to many of the designers on the list and none responded to requests for comment.

But Campbell praised Diane von Furstenberg and other designers for taking diversity seriously. She said Tom Ford casts all his own runway models and doesn’t rely on casting agents or “stylists” to make that judgment. “He has diversity because he sees the beauty in diversity,” Iman said.

The Council of Fashion Designers of America sent two emails to the designers in New York Fashion Week, writing, “The most powerful message is one of diversity,” it told ABC News.

But industry analysts say the excuse is often artistic.

“As a creative visionary, people do have very specific, artistic notions of how they want all their creations to be presented,” said Emma Rosenblum, the Etc. section editor at Bloomberg Businessweek.

Campbell’s not buying it, saying, “I think they hide behind aesthetics.”

Added Hardison, who broke barriers along with Iman in the 1970s: “I think they’re ignorant and they’re arrogant, and I think it’s not even about racism.

“I think it’s a sense of laziness and they’ve told themselves a story.”


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64-Year-Old Man Has Eaten 12,000 Big Macs in 30 Years

Dennis Rosenlof has special sauce coursing through his veins.

“My first meal of the day is always at about 10:30, when they open up the Big Macs,” Rosenlof, 64, told ABC News.

The fast-food giant ?McDonald’s can keep its Egg McMuffins, Filets-O-Fish and all the rest of it. Rosenlof said he isn’t interested.

“I enjoy what I eat,” he said. “It tastes good, so I order the same thing every day.”

And for Rosenlof, that’s a Big Mac meal. The electrical appliance salesman and Vietnam vet is apparently in great health, despite being a self-confessed Big Mac-aholic with a 30-year habit.

“Mondays I always eat a Big Mac, two on Tuesdays, one on Wednesdays, two on Thursdays, one or two on Fridays, and two every Saturday,” he explained.

That is 10 Big Macs a week. Rosenlof estimates he’s scarfed down more than 12,000 of the special sauce-covered burgers in a lifetime.

He eats almost nothing else, except on the day of rest.

“Sunday my wife cooks meals and we eat a family dinner, so it works out great,” said Rosenlof.

But health professionals recognize the vital nutrients he is not getting.

“What’s missing from his diet it seems are vitamins, minerals, fiber,” said ABC News Nutrition and Wellness Editor Dave Zinczenko. “The good news is he’s keeping his calories in check, 700 fewer calories than the average American man brings in.”

He just eats them all in Big Macs.

“It has all the major food groups in it,” Rosenlof said. “I’m not sure what’s in the special sauce, but you put them all together and it makes a fantastic sandwich.”


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Child Care Takes Flight With ‘Flying Nannies’

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Mary Poppins will always be the original flying nanny, but she now has company thanks to Etihad Airways’ new in-flight service that brings nannies aboard flights to entertain screaming babies and children.

Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, announced earlier this week that it plans to have 500 “Flying Nannies” working across the airline by the end of 2013 to lend a helping hand to parents traveling with children on long-haul flights, according to a news release.

During the past two months, 300 flight attendants completed training for the role, which includes courses on child psychology and sociology at the U.K.’s Norland College.

“The Flying Nanny will liaise with parents and use their experience and knowledge to make the travel experience easier,” Aubrey Tiedt, airline vice president for guest services, said in the release. “This includes helping serve children’s meals early in the flight and offering activities and challenges to help entertain and occupy younger guests.”

Eileen Ogintz, who writes a nationally syndicated column about traveling with kids, says the new, free service will alleviate a lot of stress for parents.

“It could possibly be a game-changer. It’s just a really smart idea and especially if you’re going to have a parent who has more than one child or one parent has to take one child to the bathroom, or take care of one child,” Ogintz said.

The Flying Nannies will be identified by their orange aprons and will be able to entertain the children with tours of the plane, arts and crafts, origami and magic tricks.

The introduction of the Flying Nannies comes one week after Scoot Airlines, a subsidiary of Singapore Airlines, offered to put passengers in a quiet zone away from children for an additional price.

“I think anything we can all do that makes travel a more pleasant experience for all of us,” Ogintz said. “No one wants to be on a plane next to a crying, screaming kid.”


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Rhode Island Boy Colin Naughton, 9, an Author Prodigy

While most elementary schoolboys are settling into a new school year this week, one 9-year-old in Rhode Island is working his way through a five-book deal as a budding author.

Colin Naughton, of Warwick, R.I., has already published his first book, is preparing for the release of his second book and is looking ahead to his first novel, about a superhero.

“My favorite part about being an author is, well, helping the kids because I’m a kid and I have fears like everybody has fears,” Colin told local ABC affiliate WLNE.

Colin’s first book, “Not So Spooky Halloween,” is the first in his “Not So Spooky” series that focuses on helping kids through spooky situations.? In his Halloween book, Colin cast himself as the main character, a young boy named Colin, who navigates his way through the scarier parts of Halloween — such as a scarecrow and a scary barn — with the help of a hero.

Colin’s dad, Bill Naughton, a local podiatrist, said his son became a published author after a teacher read Colin’s first draft of the Halloween book, handwritten in pencil, and found it very creative, Naughton told the local newspaper, the Warwick Beacon.

Colin’s sister, Caitlyn, helped draw the illustrations for the first draft of Colin’s book that the family sent to publishers that Naughton found by searching online.? Publish America responded and turned Colin’s story into a book now available on sites including Amazon.com, where it sells for around $20.

Next up in the “Spooky” series is a book on bedtime, to be released sometime in 2014.? The remaining three books in Colin’s series will focus on going to the doctor, the dentist and the first day of school, the author told the Beacon.

After writing his first book in pencil, Colin has upgraded to a laptop, which he writes on every night.? He told WLNE that he has even bigger plans for his superhero-focused novel.

“I can do anything because I can write books,” he said.? “I’m hoping my novel can be on the big screen.”

The Naughtons, who did not reply to ABC News’ request for an interview as of this writing, said they are putting all royalties from Colin’s books into a college fund.


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Ordinary Women Seek Stars’ Features in Quest for Ideal Face

Have you ever wished you could look more like your favorite celebrity?

Picture it: you with Julia Roberts’ famous smile, or Jennifer Lopez’s cheekbones, Natalie Portman’s nose or Jennifer Garner’s jaw? How about you with Kim Kardashian’s eyelashes or with Anne Hathaway’s glamorous pixie cut?

According to doctors, dentists and beauticians everywhere, these stars had the features most desired by everyday women.

The New York Post recently put them together to reveal the ideal face.

Olivia Wilde: Plastic Surgery Advice and Working With Jason Sudeikis

“Regular people want to look like celebrities, they want to resemble celebrities,” Dr. Lana Rozenberg, a cosmetic dentist in Manhattan, said.

Jewelry designer Olya Kislin wanted her smile to be more red-carpet ready, so she got whitening and veneers.

“When I came to Dr. Rozenberg I did show her a picture of (model Elizabeth) Hurley and I said I would love to have a smile like that,” Kislin said.

After the procedure, Kislin said she feels “amazing.”

Study: Plastic Surgery Won’t Make You More Attractive

Asked which celebrities people referenced the most, Rozenberg said the most popular ones were actresses Julia Roberts and Angelina Jolie.

Sarah Moreno, a 23-year-old nursing student, had plastic surgery to change her fuller face for the appearance of higher cheekbones like those of actress Jennnifer Lopez.

“I see celebrities with … contoured high cheekbones and that was something that I wanted,” Moreno said.

Dr. Alan Matarasso, a plastic surgeon, said he took fat out of Moreno’s cheek to give better definition to her cheek and jawline.

A 10-Minute Solution to Erasing Tired Eyes

If going under the knife is too much for some people, there are minor treatments that can offer big results.

Alicia Hunter, a celebrity lash artist, says she has received requests from clients who want the look of Jolie’s “cat eye” or of Kardashian’s lush lashes.

Hunter’s client, Deborah Lomax, wanted Jolie’s lashes, calling them “understated yet sophisticated.” She opted for lash extensions.

Achieving the perfect face doesn’t come cheap. It can cost as much as $42,000 for a Julia Roberts-like smile, $4,000 for cheekbones like Lopez’s, $10,000 for a nose like Portman’s, $1,500 for a Garner-like jaw, $400 for lashes like Kardashian’s and $200 for Hathaway’s haircut.


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7-Year-Old Jets Fan Shows Tampa Bay Buccaneers Fan Who’s Boss

He’s a little guy who talks a big game, especially when it comes to his beloved New York Jets.

AJ Safa, 7, can be seen and definitely heard in this cellphone video screaming at a Tampa Bay Buccaneers fan during the Jets’ season opener Sept. 8 at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J.

The video has gotten more than 41,000 hits on YouTube since it was originally posted, and while some are amused, others have raised the red flag on his behavior with comments like, “Whomever this kids’ parents are should be ashamed.”

But Safa’s father says he was by his son’s side in the stands, and is still standing behind his behavior now.

“AJ’s a good kid,” dad Meemo Safa of Staten Island, N.Y., told ABC News. “He’s very passionate about his sports. It was all in good fun. That’s why nobody got involved. Everybody was laughing.”

It’s not uncommon to see grownups behaving badly in the stands and on the sidelines, but even if this little fan’s heckling is all in good fun, his behavior begs the question, is it ending a bad message?

“People are upset that this is acceptable and even cute in a sporting frame of reference,” Lauren Hartmann, an author for the parenting site Babble said. “In another reference, no one would think this is cute.”

In the end, the Jets won by a single point, a small victory for the small fan who got his point across loud and clear.


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‘Duck Dynasty’ Star Sadie Says Dresses Should Be ‘Daddy-Approved’

ABC News’ Bethany Owings reports:

She’s known for duck calls and camouflage, but “Duck Dynasty” star Sadie Robertson has gone from the swamps of Louisiana to the glitz and glamour of New York’s Fashion Week, all part of a trend to encourage teens to dress more modestly.

The 16-year-old daughter of Duck Commander CEO Willie Robertson took to the runway Sept. 9 to model her new fashion line, Sadie Robertson Live Original, a collaboration with top designer Sherri Hill.

“They’re things that Sadie enjoys wearing,” Hill told ABC News. “They’re very feminine, very girly. Sadie’s an athlete but she has a girlie side, too.”

10 Things You Didn’t Know About ‘Duck Dynasty’

Fans of A&E’s hit reality series might remember last season when Sadie was searching for a homecoming dress and earning dad’s seal of approval wasn’t exactly easy.

So the young “Duck Dynasty” star took to designing, factoring in her dad’s opinion, telling Us Weekly she followed three simple rules when designing: “It’s got to be long enough … The finger-tip rule … ,” making sure her dresses are “daddy-approved” and, as for the neckline, she says, “Everything modest up here.”

And that’s something most parents can agree with.

“It is so important to get your parents involved in how you dress,” Tammy Gold, a parenting expert for MommyCoach.com, said. “Studies show that girls that have a strong self have a nice and close relationship with their dad.”

Go Behind the Scenes of ‘Duck Dynasty’ With Uncle Si

The dresses featured in Sadie’s fashion line can be worn for prom, but brides are also buying them to wear at their receptions.

You can catch Sadie and the rest of her family on Duck Dynasty airing Wednesdays on A&E.


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Dallas Zoo: Black Labrador Becomes Cheetah Cubs’ Unlikely Playmate

ABC News’ Aditi Roy reports:

Two eight-week-old male cheetahs Winspear and Kamau are the newest attractions at the Dallas Zoo. But they’re about to get an unlikely playmate – Amani, an eight-week-old Black Labrador retriever.

“The dog will be just a calming influence for those cats. There’s no danger for Amani – he’s 14 pounds,” said Sean Greene, Dallas Zoo, VP of Guest Experiences. “He’s almost twice as big as, as these guys, right now. And we are going to socialize them in a way that when they’re two years, they’re already going to have that established relationship.”

The Most Adorable Baby Animals: See the Photos

Greene said the trio will be together 24/7.

While they’re cute and cuddly now, as all three grow sharing the same room – they’re going to start noticing some big differences.

The cheetahs are expected to grow to three feet long and weigh 140 pounds.

“About 8 months from now, these cheetahs are going to be running here at the Dallas Zoo, 50-to-60 miles an hour,” said Greene. “And, it’s going to be great to have a dog that can also show them how to run and chase and do all those things that we want those animals to do, because that’s a natural behavior.”

ABC gma baby cheetahs 6 jt 130907 16x9 608 Dallas Zoo: Black Labrador Becomes Cheetah Cubs Unlikely Playmate ABC News

The cubs are part of the zoo’s Animal Adventures outreach program to help teach the public about highly endangered species.

“There’s less than 10,000 cheetahs in the wild,” said Greene. “So, hopefully, this education: it’s not just about seeing a dog and a cheetah, it’s about learning more through books, the internet, about how they can help wildlife and that’s really what we’re all about.”


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Las Vegas Mom Gives Birth to Quintuplets

The Kardashian family may have made naming your kids with the same first letter famous thanks to their abundant use of the letter “K,” but a Las Vegas family has outdone even them.

Deniko, Dariz, Deonee, Daician and Daiten Derrico were welcomed into the world Friday, a healthy set of quintuplets who join their four older siblings, who also all have first names that start with the letter “D.”

The quintuplets were born at Banner Desert Medical Center in Mesa, Ariz., Friday to Evonne Derrico, 33, a Las Vegas resident who relocated to Mesa in her 22nd?week of pregnancy to receive special care for her high-risk pregnancy, the medical center announced Monday.

Derrico and her husband, Deon, did not know the babies’ genders before they were born.? Evonne Derrico called out the names of the babies – two boys and three girls – one by one as they were born, the medical center said.

The babies were born at 32 weeks and two days and all weighed less than three pounds.? They were delivered between 11:17 and 11:21 a.m. on Friday.

The quintuplets are the second set of multiples for the Derricos, who say they have never used fertility drugs to conceive.? Their twin sons are 1-year-old, their older daughter is 7 and older son is 3.

The babies are being cared for in the NICU at the Cardon Children’s Medical Center in Mesa.

The family plans to return home to Las Vegas once the babies have been discharged, hospital officials said.


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Virgin America Named Best at Passenger Choice Awards

HT virgin america tk 130910 16x9 608 Virgin America Named Best at Passenger Choice Awards Virgin America was named Best Overall Passenger Experience at the Passenger Choice Awards 2013. (Credit: Virgin America

Virgin America took top honors on Monday night when it was named Best Overall Passenger Experience at the Passenger Choice Awards 2013 in Anaheim, Calif. The airline also swept three other categories, including Best in Region, Best Ground Experience, and Best IFE User Interface.

“We are honored by the recognition we’re receiving from travelers,” Jennifer Thomas, director of corporate communications for Virgin America told ABC News. “The idea behind Virgin America is to reinvent the travel experience and these latest awards are a testament to the work of our team and demonstrate that we’re hitting the mark with our flyers. Our mission is to continue to innovate on behalf of our guests.”

In a couple of areas the airline didn’t take top honors. For instance, the?Scandinavian?budget carrier Norwegian beat out the carrier for Best In-flight Connectivity and Communications with its free in-flight Wi-Fi.

“We are extremely happy that passengers all around the world consider our connectivity the best,” said Lasse Sandaker-Nielsen, a spokesperson for Norwegian, which plans to be fully wi-fi equipped in all planes by 2014. “Currently, 60 Boeing 737-800s are Wi-Fi-equipped out of 79 aircraft. But we will add another 14 by the end of the winter.”

The process for Wi-Fi setup in Norwegian planes takes about five days, a fair amount of time to be out of traffic. But the carrier believes it is time on the ground well spent.

“We are definitely percentage-wise the most connected airline in Europe,” said Sandaker-Nielsen.

And the U.S. is fast on their tail. Gogo, Virgin America’s Wi-Fi service provider, is due to announce the next generation of its in-flight technology products on Wednesday.


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