Let’s be honest, these last few weeks have been difficult to keep up with the news. There seems to be one tragedy after another making headlines. From hate crimes increasing nationwide to climate change impacting countries worldwide, there seems to be little to no happy news.
Despite how awful the news can be, there’s always something happening that can brighten our days. Because these happy news stories often fall through the cracks as a result of the importance of the other issues, we’ve made it easier here at Daily Kos by compiling the happy stories for you.
Girl Scouts announcing a new cookie
Girl Scouts of the USA announced that a new Raspberry Rally™ cookie will join the nationwide lineup for the 2023 Girl Scout Cookie season. I don’t know about you, but I just can’t get enough of those cookies, so a new one is definitely some happy news! According to the press release, the thin, crispy cookie is a “sister” cookie to the beloved Thin Mints™. It is infused with raspberry flavor instead of mint, but has the same chocolate dip. The cookie will also be the first in the Girl Scout Cookie lineup to be exclusively offered for online sale and direct shipment only.
“We hope that we’ll hear some healthy competition from folks – maybe a little Thin Mint-Raspberry Rally battle,” Wendy Lou, the chief revenue officer of Girl Scouts of the United States of America, told NPR.
Army plans to create the first tactical bra for female soldiers
For the first time, the United States Army is creating a tactical bra for female soldiers. According to the Army Times, the bra—also called the Army Tactical Brassiere—is in development at the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command Center in Natick, Massachusetts.
Four different prototypes of the bra are allegedly being developed at the moment. The Solider Center’s Design Pattern Prototype Team is expected to present the prototypes for evaluation this fall to the Army Uniform Board, the Army Times reported.
The bra aims to add an extra layer of protection for female soldiers and will be worked into their body armor. If approved, it would make the garment the first tactical bra to be added to the U.S. Army’s uniform.
IRS plans to forgive penalties for taxpayers who filed late
The Internal Revenue Service announced in August that it will waive and refund penalties for Americans who filed their 2019 or 2020 tax returns late.
The relief program will automatically wipe away two years’ worth of “failure to file” penalties, which usually require taxpayers who miss the IRS’ filing deadline to pay 5% of unpaid tax per month.
Almost 1.6 million taxpayers who have already paid fines for failure to file, penalties for their 2019 or 2020 returns will automatically be refunded by the end of next month, the agency said in a statement.
The FDA made it easier to obtain hearing aids
In regulations issued Aug. 16, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced that some hearing aids will be offered over the counter starting in the fall. The final rule is effective 60 days from the regulation’s publication, meaning that consumers could see over-the-counter hearing aids on the shelves of community pharmacies nationwide by October 2022.
The agency’s announcement referenced studies estimating that about 30 million Americans experience hearing loss, but only about one-fifth of them get help. Costs for hearing aids often limit who has access to them since getting them often includes visits with an audiologist, which can range from about $1,400 to $4,000 or more, The New York Times reported.
“This could fundamentally change technology,” Nicholas Reed, an audiologist at the Department of Epidemiology at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, told the Times. “We don’t know what these companies might come up with. We may literally see new ways hearing aids work, how they look.”
First female self-made millionaire, Madam C.J. Walker, gets her own Barbie
Mattel, the maker of Barbie, announced that it would be adding a Madam C.J. Walker Barbie as part of the company’s “Inspiring Women Series,” a line that “pays tribute to incredible heroines of their time; courageous women who took risks, changed rules and paved the way for generations of girls to dream bigger than ever before.”
Walker, known as America’s first self-made female millionaire, will join other historic dolls including Rosa Parks, Ella Fitzgerald, and Maya Angelou, each of which will come with a historical photo along with a short biography explaining how these female role models helped change the world.
Walker became a millionaire due to her homemade line of hair care products for Black women. In addition to being a businesswoman, she was known as a philanthropist, activist, and advocate. According to the Mattel website, she helped other Black women become more financially secure by establishing clubs for her employees and offering bonuses to those who gave back to their community.
A’Lelia Bundles, Walker’s great-great-granddaughter and official biographer, worked with Barbie designer Carlyle Nuera to help bring the doll to life in an authentic way,
Bundles shared the doll’s significance in an interview with NPR.
“I hope that when little girls and little boys pick up the doll, that they will see something that’s a little different than just a generic doll … as an entrepreneur and as a boss and as a philanthropist and a patron of the arts and somebody who cared about social justice, that they will perhaps see themselves and take one of those narratives,” she said.
Bundles continued, “It means a lot that a child can look at a doll, can have a doll that looks like them … so that they know that they’re part of the world.”
Drought reveals 7,500-year-old Spanish Stonehenge
While the droughts Europe is facing are obviously horrible, the lack of water has allowed for several relics, including the Spanish Stonehenge, to rise.
Located in the Valdecañas reservoir of Spain, this version of Stonehenge, the Dolmen of Guadalperal, has risen to due to the severe drought that is drastically reducing water levels. However, while new to many, this isn’t the first time it’s made a surprise appearance, Up Worthy reported.
The Dolmen of Guadalperal was first discovered in 1926 by German archaeologist Hugo Obermaier. According to Reuters, this structure was deliberately flooded for a rural development project nearly 40 years after Obermaier found it. Since then it has risen about four times, with the last time being a drought in 2019.
A video from Good Morning America explains the relic and its construction, dating back to 3,000 BC.
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