These days families come in all different sizes and configurations. Surrogacy is an option growing in popularity. But one arrangement that remains rare is the single dad by design. Not that Louis DeFilippi cares much about labels. When the 64 year old decided he wanted children, he made it happen.
“I’ve always taken my own path,” says DeFilippi in an article in Today Moms. “I don’t follow the crowd. I don’t care what the crowd’s doing.”
Though still highly unconventional, single dad households are slowly on the rise. The other options open to DeFilippi were adopting, which he claims would have taken too long, or finding a much younger wife.
Just what does the reigning queen of pop eat all day? It's been 30 years since Madonna entered the public lexicon with her epononymous album. As an ode to her cult of personality, a New York Magazine writer decided to try to follow in her Madgesty's footsteps, to see if a mere mortal could survive on a superstar diet and punishing exercise regimen.
Staying on top is hard in an industry as hard-assed as the music biz, and yet the 'top-selling female artist of all time' has more than managed it for three decades. So it follows that she must be made of some tough material. Discipline being her middle name, etc...
But "being Madonna is not easy" as one writer found out when she attempted to follow the star's grueling dietary and fitness habits for a week.
What it entailed: following an uber-strict macrobiotic diet that excludes pretty much every basic food group known to man—wheat, eggs, meats, and dairy—in favour of “sea vegetables.” The meal plan, taken from a cookbook by former private chef Mayumi Nishimura, comprises the likes of “Tofu Tartar Sauce” and “Sauerkraut With Thyme.” Hungry yet?
As for workouts, Madge has her own series of DVDs called “Addicted to Sweat” that are akin to military exercises, and involve performing pushups with feet on chairs and the like. (Apparently trainer Nicole Winhoffer had to manipulate the star into “really odd positions” in order for her to feel the burn.) Don't know about you, but I'm feeling faint already.
Kudos to the intrepid Rebecca Harrington for undertaking such a challenge, and living to write about it. She deserves a medal for even attempting the tofu cheese. You are seriously a bigger person than I'll ever be. (Then again, probably not, after a few days on the sweat and seaweed regime...)
Anyone who eats like that deserves the title of revolutionary. Happy thirty, Madonna!
Nada al-Ahdal is like any ordinary 11-year-old girl. Except that she's not. In a three-minute clip gone viral, she makes a passioned case for ending child marriages, like the one she left her home in Yemen to escape.
According to an article in the BBC, Nada's video entreaty has had more than seven million views, and clocking:
"Does it satisfy you for me to be married?" she addresses the camera. "Does this satisfy you?... Mum, accept this: I don't want you. You killed my dreams, all of them."
However, some are skeptical about the colourful tale spun in highly adult language by Nada, who is staying with an uncle while she pursues charges against her parents.
Regardless, she has held up an international spotlight to the issue of child marriage, which remains a controversial if "socially accepted" custom, prevalent in rural areas of Yemen.
Women's right's NGO the Yemeni Women's Union claims that Nada is telling the absolute truth and that hers is not a rare case.
Though the legal age of marriage is 15, the law is rarely upheld, with 48.9% of Yemeni females married before the age of 18 according to data from the International Center for Research on Women records. And Yemen is not the only place with the dodgy custom.
Sometimes children as young as eight are married off against their will in what we in the West would surely regard as licensed abuse.
Here's hoping Nada's story will spark change in her country. Find out how you can help.