Bundle of good news snippets to get the week off to a bright start.
Children around the world should not worry about the logistics of Christmas present delivery while the coronavirus pandemic rages, Dr Anthony Fauci said - because he vaccinated Santa himself. “I took care of that for you,” the top US infectious diseases expert told CNN. “Because I was worried that you’d all be upset. So what I did a little while ago, I took a trip up there to the North Pole. I went there and I vaccinated Santa Claus myself. I measured his level of immunity, and he is good to go. He can come down the chimney. He can leave the presents, he can leave, and you have nothing to worry about. Santa Claus is good to go.”
Forest of Hope: New Zealand is encouraging people globally to turn 'each 2020 disappointment into hope' by planting trees. The trees will eventually form a 'Forest of Hope', symbolising growth and prosperity for 2021.
Tonight is the longest night of the year and the rare occasion of the 'conjunction' between Jupiter and Saturn, appearing so close together in the sky that they look like one giant star - nicknamed the Christmas Star. And, of course, the good news is that, from tomorrow, the days start getting longer again.
Household waste to fuel UK fighter jets: The Ministry of Defense has announced plans to replace as much as 50 percent of its fighter jet fleets' fuel with renewable, recycled "drop-in" fuel sources as part of the country's push for carbon neutrality by 2050. This means that the Lockheed Martin F-35 and the Eurofighter Typhoon fighter jets will essentially be running on alcohol, margarine, and other recycled household waste.
To bring a positive vibe during these tough times, Ohio University’s Wexner Medical Center hired a “justice volunteer” to help. Shiloh’s only job is to go around the hospital and say hi to the staff and cheer them up while they work. In return, Shiloh receives free treats, room and meal plan, grooming, and unlimited hugs and cuddles.
Day off to build a snowman: If you remember, as a child, hoping for a day off school because of too much snow on the roads, you'll love this story. Snow days were, of course, a special treat; an unexpected holiday, a chance to trade in books and blackboards for sleds and snowball fights...
Texas: America's largest wildlife crossing, the 150-foot wide Land Bridge connects the two halves of San Antonio’s Park across a six-lane highway, is now open much to the joy of animals and people alike. Park managers are hoping the bridge will significantly reduce collisions between animals and automobiles.
Researchers have created the first-ever aerial map of Hawaii's coral reefs, enabling conservationists to know exactly where to concentrate their efforts in protecting and restoring this precious marine ecosystem.
Sales of Christmas lights have apparently tripled and festive displays went up earlier than ever - especially outside. The streets are festooned with twinkling tiny bulbs and illuminated sleighs, even on the houses of those who might previously have shunned such things. It’s as though people are seeking to lift all our spirits and connect with each other when we need to most. It's working! In times of darkness, we need lights.
Elf and safety experts report that possible industrial action in the North Pole at the world’s largest toy manufacturing plant has been averted after new supplies of PPE were flown in to save the day. With billions of orders to process during the busiest time of year for the workshop, working around the clock on busy factory floors could have been very problematic. Happily, all has been sorted, and Santa is limbering up for his busy night ahead.