Natalie Hawkins is the mother behind gold medal Olympic gymnast Gabrielle Douglas. Sixteen-year-old Douglas managed to capture the gold medal in the women’s gymnastics all-around, and helped lead the U.S. women’s gymnastics team to the gold medal in team competition. But Gabby couldn’t have done it without the love and support of Natalie, who sacrificed time, money — and even keeping her family together — for her to succeed. Two years ago, Natalie allowed Gabby to move across the country to Des Moines, Iowa, to train with Shawn Johnson’s coach Liang Chow, and her sacrifice paid off.
Just days after Gabby’s ground-breaking win as the first African-American woman to win all-around gold in gymnastics at the Olympics, we spoke to Natalie about how she raised four kids — and an Olympic champion.
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Sir Ivan is what might happen if David Guest and “Juicy” Joe Giudice had an adult baby. He made this horrific song and spent approximately 99 percent of the music budget on body paint. So it’s basically can’t-look-away terrible. Color us thoroughly mindfucked. [Sir Ivan]
We fell in love with these vintage images of Russi and had to share. Taken during the 1910s, ’20s and ’30s, this collection showcases the exotic style of life behind the Iron Curtain. Check out the drama, the romance and the sweet vintage style!
Studies have shown that animals can help sick patients heal. But what do you do when a patient is in quarantine, unable to receive visits from the animals they love? Teenage cancer patient Maga Barzallo Sockemtickem was prohibited from seeing her pet cat Merry, so Seattle Children’s Hospital visiting artist John Blalock decided to help satisfy her kitty cravings. Blalock had helped create awesome artworks and installations for patients around the hospital, and for Maga, he made an immersive cat show. Blalock first collected cat photos from hospital workers, and then took to the Internet to get additional pictures of cute kitties. More than 3,000 images poured in, and Blalock made a cat-filled presentation for Maga, complete with purring sounds. On July 25, Maga reveled in more than 1,800 cat images, specially selected by Blalock.
“It was a big surprise, how big a response I got,” says Barzallo Sockemtickem. “But I think it was the simpleness of it all. People love cats; animals make us happy.” [NPR]
Wisconsin man John Unger loves his pup Schoep a lot. He’s had the 19-year-old Husky since the dog was a puppy. So when vets told him that Schoep was suffering from painful arthritis that made it impossible for him to sleep, Unger decided to help him in the only way he could — he took Schoep swimming in nearby Lake Superior. The calming water lulls Schoep to sleep. Unger does this every night. Explains photographer Hannah Stonehouse Hudson:
“Shep falls asleep every night when he is carried into the lake. The buoyancy of the water soothes his arthritic bones. Lake Superior is very warm right now, so the temp of the water is perfect. I was so happy I got to capture this moment for John. By the way, John rescued Shep as an 8 month old puppy, and he’s been by his side through many adventures.”
Schoep also saved Unger’s life.
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