As the saying goes, "when it rains it pours," and that seems to be the case with the deluge of troubling headlines dominating news outlets since Trump has taken office. While slightly more difficult to find, however, there are also still plenty of uplifting news stories to give you hope in the age of Trump; indeed, reading a few could be the perfect antidote to politically-induced depression. This doesn't mean you have to stop being angry or motivated — but it's important to take a break every now and then to remind yourself that though things look dark, there is still plenty of goodness and kindness in the world.
With all the political turmoil, just a quick glance at your Facebook feed or random buzz of a news alert on your phone can leave you emotionally drained. Receiving a healthy dose of non-political news involving giant otters and modern-day Robin Hoods can actually be quite good for you, and even help counteract the apocalyptic vision that Trump painted during his inauguration. (Still having nightmares. Ugh.). Looking at just a few of these stories can help reinstate the belief that the world is a wonderful, whimsical place full of love. So let's take a gander at some current spirit lifting stories and maintain Obama's legacy of hope.
1. Rescued Elephants Are Getting Giant Sweaters To Keep Them Warm
A cold spell in India has inspired villagers living near the Wildlife SOS Elephant Conservation and Care Centre to come together and knit enormous outfits for resident rescued elephants. The super-sized sweaters are colorful and cozy, keeping the elephants warm as the temperatures dip near freezing. The rescued elephants, many of whom are weak from years under abusive handlers, are now not only fashionable, but free to live happily and healthily in a place where they are clearly well taken care of.
2. A U.S. Skier Teaches Us To Never Give Up
American skier Robby Kelley hiked back up the mountain after a heartbreaking crash near the finish line at the Schladming Night Race in Austria. The 26-year-old picked himself up and overcame exhaustion to sidestep back up the mountain and finish the run. The crowd cheered him on the whole way, rooting him on excitedly. Kelley showed the true definition of never give up.
3. There's A "Robin Hood" Restaurant In Spain That Is Giving Back In A Big Way
In December, a new restaurant concept opened in Madrid named "Robin Hood." NPR reports that the goal of the cafe is to "charge the rich and feed the poor." The restaurant, run by an 80-year-old Catholic priest known as Padre Ángel, drops the check on paying customers during breakfast and lunch, but dinner service is devoted to feeding the homeless population. The concept has gained traction, feeding more than 100 people each night with the same joy and dignity as the other patrons — and now reservations for lunch are fully booked through March.
4. Young Man Asked His 89-Year Old Neighbor To Move In So He Can Help With Her Care
31-year-old actor Chris Salvatore lived across from his elderly neighbor Norma Cook for years, until she fell ill and was taken to the hospital. She was not allowed to return home until she had secured 24-hour care, which wasn't covered under her insurance. To keep her out of a facility, Salvatore asked Cook to move in. Though doctors predicted Cook wouldn't make it past the holidays, she's still going strong and the pair have been making the most of their time ever since.
5. Flint's Water Is Improving
Plenty of work still remains to correct the public health crisis — don't get me wrong. But at least there's this: According to a recent six-month study, Flint's water has tested below the federal limit for lead. That's not nothing.
6. Twinkies-Flavored Ice Cream Is Real!
This is not a drill. Twinkie and Sno-Ball ice cream is here for a limited time through May 2017, so you can experience a pint of this sweet magic. Talk about a uplifting story!
7. Tim Kaine Officiated A Same-Sex Wedding On Jan. 20
After attending the swearing-in, Senator Tim Kaine officiated a wedding for the very first time, marrying Dea Jones and Shea McLeod. It's all about spreading the love.
8. Oscar History Is Made With A Black Actor Nominated In Every Acting Category
For the first time ever, a black actor has been nominated in all four acting categories at the Oscars in the same year. #OscarsSoWhite is still a problem, and it's still awful that it is still a problem, but 2017's nominations are an important moment all the same.
9. The Netherlands Have Started An International Safe Abortion Fund
In response to Trump's newly reinstated Global Gag Rule, the Dutch government has taken quick action to fill the troubling gap. By setting up a fund to help counteract the loss of $600 million of federal U.S. funding pulled from overseas NGOs that offer family planning services or abortion advocacy, the Netherlands is protecting reproductive health around the world. You go, Netherlands!
10. Japan Has Its First Sumo Star In Nearly 20 Years
The 1,500-year-old wrestling tradition has gone through a bit of a rough patch in Japan with no local heroes to carry the title. As of Jan. 25, though, the Sumo sport saw its first Japanese-born champion in 19 years when Kisenosato was elevated to the highest rank of yokozuna.
11. Salt Bae Is Opening Restaurants In New York And London
Social media darling and meat magnate Nusret Gökçe, better know by his Twitter nickname "Salt Bae," has announced plans to open two new branches of his chophouse Nusr-et in New York and London. This means we could see Gökçe's unique salting style and erotic meat slicing with our own eyes in a matter of months!
12. American Chefs Won The Famed Bocuse d’Or Culinary Competition For The First Time Ever
Team USA took home the gold in the equivalent of the cooking Olympics, preparing some truly succulent-sounding dishes. 10 chefs and helpers travelled to the finals held in Lyon, France and conquered the competition for the first time in the 30 years since its start. Yum!
13. Giant Otters Once Roamed The Planet
Otters lovers, rejoice! New evidence suggests that ancient relatives of the infinitely adorable semi-aquatic creature could have been as big as wolves. Analysis of fossilized remains from southwestern China indicate that the otter-like species weighted approximately 100 lbs, and was just as cute and fuzzy as the ones we know and love.
14. Scientists Are One Step Closer To A New Cancer Treatment
Two British infants are in remission as result of an experiment using universal immune cells to fight leukemia. The study hints that the success of this cell therapy with blood cancers could make treatment more readily available in years to come.
15. A New Study Is Putting The Flavor Back In Tomatoes
Tomatoes were bred to be handled, but this toughness has come at the price of flavor. In a recent genetics study, scientists have identified several flavor compounds that make heirloom tomatoes so explosively delicious, pinning 13 molecules missing from mass-market tomato varieties. This could be the first step towards making your sandwich the absolute best it can be!
16. The 'Devil Wears Prada' Musical Will Soon Be A Reality
The best-selling novel and hit film The Devil Wears Prada will soon be coming to the stage! With music composed by Elton John and book by Paul Rudnick, fans will certainly not be disappointed. We can only pray that Queen Meryl will star.
17. Zooey Deschanel Is Possibly Expecting Baby #2!
Word on the street is that everyone's favorite New Girl actor and secret fairy princess Zooey Deschanel is expecting her second child with husband Jacob Pechenik. Wonder what fabulously whimsical name they will pick for their offspring this time?