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  • (Courtesy: Angel Taylor) Angel Taylor, 34, of Arlington, Texas, seen with her husband Mark Taylor, 34, and the couple's four children, Jordyn, 12, Juliyn, 9 Jaxsyn, 3 and Jestyn, 9 months.(ARLINGTON, Texas) -- A father's silent reaction was recorded on video as he learned the sex of his fifth child.Mark Taylor, 34, stood shocked and speechless as he walked through the door to pink balloons on his living room floor -- revealing that he'd soon be a dad to five girls.Angel Taylor, 34, said her husband, a father of four, was quiet for a whole two hours after learning the news.“He just wouldn’t talk,” Angel Taylor of Arlington, Texas, told ABC News. “He busted out laughing a couple of times. I thought it was hilarious actually.”Angel Taylor said that her husband thought that for sure, this child would be a boy -- especially after the couple had suffered a miscarriage."My husband's thinking, 'This is a miracle baby, so this has to be a boy,'” she added. “He always wanted to call the baby [boy] Tre. I already came to terms that this was a baby girl.”On Oct. 25, Angel Taylor filmed her husband as she and their four daughters, Jordyn, 12, Juliyn, 9, Jaxsyn, 3, and Jestyn, 9 months, announced the news of girl No. 5.Once the shock wore off, dad was excited that No. 5 would once again be a little girl. "Wow," he says in the video, as he took a sip of beer.“Five is my favorite number, so five girls is fitting," Mark Taylor said in a statement to ABC News.Baby Jazlyn is due to arrive May 3.
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  • (Courtesy: Paige Benoit) Paige Benoit and Daniella Pitruzzello, both juniors at Assumption College in Worcester, Massachusetts, smile for the camera. (WORCESTER, Mass.) -- Christmas crept in early for one unsuspecting roommate who hates that people celebrate before the Thanksgiving turkey is even on the table.Assumption College junior Paige Benoit walked into her version of a Christmas nightmare after her roommate Daniella Pitruzzello decked the halls in their dorm early with over-the-top holiday decorations."She always complains about how she hates when people celebrate Christmas before Thanksgiving and when her friends send snaps of listening to Mariah Carey, so I thought, 'If this isn’t the perfect opportunity for a prank, I don’t know what is,'" Pitruzzello told ABC News with a laugh.Benoit said she hates it when people “go from Halloween mode straight into Christmas mode” because Thanksgiving is her favorite holiday."It just bugs the crap out of me," Benoit, 20, told ABC News. "Girls at my school, at midnight on November first, start blasting Christmas music. So it always drives me crazy. My roommates know how annoyed I get by it."Pitruzzello started plotting the Christmas extravaganza prank in September, gathering supplies she already owned and spending $7 on more ornaments, jingle bells and wrapping paper from the dollar store.When Benoit left to grab dinner last week at the dining hall, Pitruzzello seized the opportunity, spreading her holly, jolly spirit all over the room.Benoit returned to a full-blown Christmas wonderland, which caused her to turn into the Grinch."When I came back I opened the door to find Christmas decorations and Christmas music playing," she recalled. "She covered my tapestries, she remade my bed to put Christmas blankets on it, she had a stocking above my bed, Christmas lights were up and she wrapped my closet in wrapping paper. She also put jingle bells around my fan.“I was like, ‘Dear God, why?,’” Benoit said of her Scrooge-like reaction. “I didn’t know what to do, so I walked out of my room.”Pitruzzello said she realized her roommate really wasn’t going to come back until she took all the festive decor down, so she did. But it's all in safe keeping.The decorations are now under her bed, ready to make a Christmas comeback on Dec. 1.To clear the air, Benoit said “Christmas is still a really good holiday.”But, she said, after her grandfather passed away, her family no longer celebrated like they once did.“Christmas was my grandpa’s favorite and he loved decorating for it as a family," Benoit said. "But when he passed away, Christmas drifted back into the background because it was too sad for us to think about. So Thanksgiving became one of my favorites."
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  • megaflopp/iStock/Thinkstock(ATLANTA) -- A Georgia toddler desperately needs a kidney transplant, and his father was deemed the perfect match, but the operation was canceled due to the father's criminal record. Now, the little boy is fighting for his life as his family pleads for help.A.J. Burgess was born a month early and without a working kidney. Now two years old and weighing just 25 pounds, A.J. was set to receive a kidney last month from his father, Anthony Dickerson, who was tested and proved to be a 110 percent match, according to CBS affiliate in Atlanta WGCL-TV.Dickerson was arrested in December 2016 for violating his probation on weapons charges, according to criminal records. He vowed to give A.J. a kidney once he got out, the boy's mother, Carmellia Burgess, told WGCL."He made it his business to say, 'Once I get out, I'm going to promise to my son that he can get a kidney,'" she told WGCL.Dickerson was released from jail six weeks later and he was scheduled to undergo surgery at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta on Oct. 3 to donate his left kidney to his son. But he was arrested on Sept. 28 for violating his parole again for possession of a firearm or knife during the commission of or attempt to commit certain felonies as well as for fleeing or attempting to elude a police officer, according to criminal records."It ain't nothing I'm proud of. It's life. Stuff happens. A mistake happens," Dickerson told ABC News in an interview. "I want to give him a kidney. I’d go to the hospital right now and lay down and give him my kidney. But it ain't up to me."In a letter dated Sept. 28 provided to ABC News by the family's attorney, Emory University Hospital asked Gwinnett County Jail's solicitor officer if Dickerson could be escorted to the hospital for blood work and a preoperative appointment on Sept. 29 in order to continue with the scheduled procedure.According to criminal records, Dickerson was released from prison Oct. 2. But in a subsequent letter provided to ABC News by the family's attorney, Emory University Hospital announced it was canceling the Oct. 3 operation that could potentially save A.J.'s life."Mr. Anthony Dickerson has been approved to donate a kidney to his two-year-old son who is a patient of Children's Healthcare of Atlanta," the letter states. "The Living Donor Transplant Team at Emory has asked Mr. Dickerson for evidence of compliance from his parole officer for the next three months. We will re-evaluate Mr. Dickerson in January 2018 after receipt of this completed documentation."But A.J.'s mother worries January will be too late for her ailing son. The little boy is battling a peritonitis infection and was taken to the emergency room Sunday, according to a GoFundMe page Burgess set up to raise money for A.J.'s medical bills."A.J.'s spirit is strong but his body is not," she writes on the crowdfunding website. "Please help. His father is a match."In an update posted on the GoFundMe page this week, Burgess said the family is "looking into other options" because Emory University Hospital "isn't budging at all."In a statement, Dr. Jonathan S. Lewin, CEO of Emory Healthcare, told ABC News: "The health challenges of two-year-old A.J. Burgess have captured the hearts of all of us in Atlanta, and many people around the country. This courageous and magnetic young boy has kidney failure, and he and his family have bravely battled his health challenges every day of his life. The entire Emory community is motivated and engaged to help him secure a healthy future."He added: "We greatly respect the father's desire to become a donor, and we want to work with him to try and make this happen. The national guidelines for approving a potential organ donor are clear and stringent. When evaluating any potential donor, Emory's medical team is required to consider the ability of the donor to manage the many complications and health challenges that come with a major surgical procedure.""... We want a successful tra
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  • (Dan West) Ohio University Assistant Professor Dan West with his wife of 24 years Vicki Seefeodt West.(ATHENS, Ohio) -- How do you know you're in love? It's an age-old question but one assistant professor's inspiring response has gone viral.Speech and debate coach Dan West, who teaches Introduction to Human Communication at Ohio University in Athens, spends one full day of his 400-person class answering questions about love and relationships.He's done this for 10 years and he told ABC News it's one of his most popular lessons -- students have even brought their boyfriends or girlfriends throughout the years.Students are allowed to write down whatever questions they have about courting, sex, long-distance relationships and even cheating on note cards. West, 51, said that during last Tuesday's class, students penned approximately 200 questions, and he answered each one of them.But it was his response to one question that inspired many students in the classroom. The question was: "How do you know you're in love?""It just hits you. If you plan to be in love, you're not going to fall in love," West began, recalling what he said to ABC News. "Love is something that happens."Then West called on his own experience of realizing how he was in love with his wife of 24 years, Vicki West, to further make his point."I started dating my wife and she had come to see me for the weekend," the assistant professor said, "and we'd gone to a movie and we had stopped at the grocery store."She was picking out ice cream and I realized I was going to be buying groceries with her for the rest of my life, and I'm totally cool with that," West continued.West's 1993 grocery store epiphany was shared on Twitter by one of his students, Victoria "Tori" Helmke, where it went viral with more than 77,000 retweeting the message.The 19-year-old Children and Family Studies major told ABC News when she heard the story, "Everybody freaked out a little bit.""I was sitting next to a girl," Helmke added, "and I kind of just looked at her and we did the whole 'Aw' thing that everybody else did.""I like the way he teaches," the student, who eventually wants to become a child life specialist in a children's hospital, said of West. "He gives you advice, but at the same time he’s teaching the subject."West admitted that he often brings up his wife in class along with their 18-year-old daughter.He said he's noticed his students really struggle with getting into relationships, and he feels the overuse of communication by electronic devices is the main culprit."They try to grow the relationship and maintain it electronically and that creates an idealized version of yourself," West explained. "The reality is...just being in someone's presence and being comfortable in their silence together is what's really important to establish that connection."The professor continued, "We over-rely on the written or verbal communication through text and we’re not spending time with people. I knew I was in love when I was spending time with her and doing mundane things. And that was the biggest rush for me in the world."Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.
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  • (Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando) Dogs at the Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando that have not yet been stored, stay in the Pawgwarts house.(ORLANDO, Fla.) -- An animal shelter in Florida has sprinkled some Harry Potter-inspired magic into its dog adoption process.Dogs at the Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando are now being sorted into the same four Hogwarts houses made famous by J.K. Rowling’s book series.Much like the Sorting Hat did at Hogwarts, Pet Alliance staff divide adoptable dogs into the houses of "Gryffindogs" (Gryffindor), "Ravenpaw" (Ravenclaw), "Hufflefluff" (Hufflepuff) or "Slobberin" (Slytherin) based on their personalities. Employees observe the dogs interacting with toys and with other dogs before assigning them to a house, the shelter said.When potential adopters arrive at the shelter, they read about the dogs' characteristics rather than their breeds.“We want people to look at the dog for their behavior and personality and what their talents are,” said Stephen Bardy, Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando’s executive director. “We really wanted people to take a look at dogs for the dogs.”Bardy said he came up with the idea for the Harry Potter-themed dog houses as a fun way to address what is a serious problem: breed discrimination.The Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando, a non-profit shelter, gets about 1,800 pets per year that are surrendered because their owners are moving and their new landlord does not accept certain breeds, Bardy said, adding that most of those pets are dogs.The shelter hopes that by not attaching breeds to dogs during the adoption process, people will pay more attention to the type of dog that will be the best fit for them. Bardy also hopes the initiative will spark a national conversation and encourage more shelters to do the same.“We want people to understand what they want in a dog and what will work in their lifestyle rather than going into a shelter and saying, ‘I want a black lab,’” Bardy said. “We want people to start talking about their own lifestyles and personalities and allow us to match a dog to them not based on looks or breed.”The shelter took another page from the Harry Potter books by not separating puppies younger than six months of age into houses, Bardy said. In the series, only kids ages 11 and older are sorted into a house.Dogs at the shelter stay in a house dubbed "Pawgwarts" while they wait to be sorted, he explained.The shelter has also created an online quiz for dog owners everywhere to match their dogs with one of the four houses.Bardy reports the shelter has seen a significant spike in both foot and online traffic since launching the initiative last month. In the last week alone, 23 dogs were adopted from Harry Potter-themed houses.The most popular so far has been the Hufflepuff house, whose characteristics apply to nearly all dog breeds: hard work, dedication, patience, loyalty, justice and fair play.“We don’t want to build a bigger shelter. We want to figure out a way to end pet homelessness,” said Bardy. “It comes down to understanding dogs’ behavior and personalities and being a responsible pet owner.”Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.
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