Nothing tugs on your heartstrings like a miracle story and a video of a two-month-oldbaby hearing her mother's voice for the first time will certainly get you all up in those feels. Baby Charlotte was born deaf on August 2 with whathas been diagnosed asbilateral profound congenital hearing loss. Writing on her Instagram account, Christy Keane, the stay at home mother of Charlotte, said at the time it felt strange. "It still feels strange to say out loud- our daughter is deaf. To be honest, it still doesn't fully seem real. Like what? How can this sweet, perfect baby not hear me? She never heard me tell her how much I prayed for her when she was in my belly, she never heard me welcome her into the world, she's never heard me sing her to sleep-and the hardest to handle- she's never heard me say "I love you". Sometimes I worry the darkness and silence must feel overwhelmingly lonely and scary for her at night. I pray my touch and presence is enough to reassure her throughout the day. There are still heartbreaking truths in our otherwise hopeful situation- but I choose not to dwell on that too much. When this sweet child locks her eyes on mine, I just know she feels our love for her, our protection, and our hopes," she wrote. The Keanes dreams for their second child to hear their voices came true when she received her hearing aids and the response to her mother's voice was indeed a revelation for the infant who at first smiled then looked like she was wrestling with a lot of emotion. "CHARLY HEARS FOR THE FIRST TIME AND HEARS ME SAY I LOVE YOU FOR THE FIRST TIME!!! (Watch til the end)And she's holding back happy tears and emotional as her mama. 😭😭😭 We had our miracle moment that I have been praying for when Char got her hearing aids today. We didn't think she would hear anything so this was more incredible than I can put into words. Her journey to implants and language development is off to an amazing start!," her mother posted. {"preview_thumbnail":"/sites/default/files/styles/video_embed_wysiwyg_preview/public/video_thumbnails/74YaolZt9Zs.jpg?itok=lfnFolKH","video_url":"","settings":{"responsive":1,"width":"854","height":"480","autoplay":0},"settings_summary":["Embedded Video (Responsive)."]}

Parents often complain about the time children spend on the cell phones especially during important family bonding times like dinner. However, a new survey in the United States shows that children aren't the only culprits. Parents, too, spend an inordinate time on their devices much to the dismay of their kids. The survey shows that more than half of parents have been told by their children to put their cell phones away during meals. The survey shows that parents across the country are almost unanimous in their belief that disconnecting from devices during mealtime improves family bonding, with nearly half (42 percent) not able to remember the last time their family had a device-free meal and some going so far as to disconnect their modems to stop their children’s Wi-Fi usage. The nationwide study of parents, conducted byWakefield Research, also found: Dinnertime is bonding time– Nearly every (98 percent) parent surveyed agrees that disconnecting from devices during mealtime improves family bonding. Parents can set an example– More than half (52 percent) of parents have been toldby their childrento put their device away during meals. Device-free meals are rare– More than two in five parents (42 percent) can’t remember the last time their family had a device-free meal. And Millennial parents have an especially hard time remembering the last time they broke bread without a device at the table (49 percent), compared to Gen Xers (37 percent) and Boomers (33 percent). Sneaking screen time- Parents admit to taking away their children’s devices an average of once per week and more than half (56 percent) have found their children trying to sneak their devices when they were banned from them. Going to extremes to disconnect– nearly one-third (31 percent) of parents make their children leave their devices in a basket before bedtime, while 14 percent go so far as to disconnect their modems to stop Wi-Fi usage. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP)has recommendedthat parents develop personalised plans for their children’s device use, warning that excessive screen-time can displace important activities such as face-to-face interaction, family-time, outdoor-play, exercise, and sleep. The AAP has even developed amedia time calculatorto help parents better track and manage usage. “Technology should adapt to meet our customers’ needs, not the other way around,” said Eric Schaefer, Senior Vice President of Internet and Communications Services for Comcast Cable. Earlier this year, Comcast launchedXfinity xFi, a new way for customers to personalise, monitor, and control their home Wi-Fi, including the ability to instantly pause Wi-Fi connectivity by user or device. The “pause device” feature is now the most popular xFi function, with users tapping “pause” about five million times since launch, most often between the hours of 6:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m.

ArtSplash Centre in Hastings, Christ Church.

Management of a South Coast business has categorically denied an accusation of racist behaviour towards a customer, insisting that it has a policy of inclusiveness. On Saturday evening, Facebook user Matthew Murrell, whose girlfriend reportedly works as a chef in ArtSplash Centre café, posted a lengthy account of unpleasant exchanges with owner, Billy Hosford. According to Murrell, he frequents the Hastings, Christ Church establishment and buys food and drink while he waits for his girlfriend, but had been informed in the past that he was spending too much time there. He went on to recount his observations of management’s interactions with other customers, information relayed to him regarding treatment of staff, as well as a personal encounter on Friday, all of which he said have led him to the conclusion that he was being discriminated against because of his race. Murrell’s Facebook post has attracted hundreds of shares and comments, with many people expressing outrage and pledging to boycott the establishment. A few said they had experienced or witnessed similar behaviour, while others said they were shocked to hear of such alleged treatment at a place they have enjoyed patronising. Facebook users have since left scores of negative reviews on the ArtSplash Centre’s Facebook page, causing its overall rating to drop from 5 stars to below 3. When contacted by Loop News, ArtSplash management declined to give aninterview, but this afternoon posted a statement addressing the matter on its Facebook page. Below is the full statement: "The Artsplash Centre has been subject to unjustified allegations on social media. The Artsplash Centre, and its owners, have an inclusive policy and have never discriminated against any customer, service provider, vendor or anyone for their race, religion or any other attribute. As a small community art centre, we strive to provide great service to all of our customers. We support local artists, families, producers & products with the weekly farmers market, art gallery, children's art school and small cafe. We reject these accusations and will continue to provide the high standard of service which the people of Barbados are accustomed to getting at Artsplash Centre. We would like to take this opportunity to thank all the people who have supported this community art centre over the years." ArtSplash Centre bills itself as a community art centre, with a café, gallery and play park. It hosts a Farmers Market, as well as art classes and birthday parties. UPDATE [8:40 p.m.]: Speaking to Loop News tonight, Murrell explained he is a full-time artist and freelance educator and administrator who does the majority of his work from his laptop and finds the ArtSplash facilities a convenient place to work from on occasion, like many other self-employed persons. However, he emphasised that he does not spend all day at the café and added that while there he would hardly come into contact with his girlfriend, who works in the kitchen. He, therefore, challenged why he had been asked to leave for taking up space when, according to him, the establishment was not full and other patrons were not asked to leave. In his view, the situation was compounded by the fact that during the encounter on Friday, he was wrongfully accused of damaging property on the ArtSplash Centre’s premises.

The management of Corbin’s Catering Services re-launched their event facility earlier this month, presentinga new menu and introducingtheir Executive Chef to customers and members of the press at a function at the refurbished Mahogany Ridge. Just in time to catch the planning for the upcoming Christmas parties and corporate functions over the season, Managing Director Ryan Corbin explained that customers had been asking for something different, something new and the company had ‘made it a mission to respond to the calls’. He added, “I want to assure you that we are keeping all the things that you love - the high-quality product for which we are known; the experience which we have acquired over the past 30 years and the reliability on which we have built our reputation.” Corbin also introduced the newest member of the team - Executive Chef Adrian Williams who he said had brought some innovative ideas and new products to add to the already popular Corbin’s menu. Staff also turned out in new uniforms and showed off some new presentations for the menu items. ‘Flair and Flavour’ as the event was titled showcased not only the new culinary fare from Corbin’s but the decorative talents of the team at Renaissance Designs, one of the partners of Corbin’s who highlighted both Christmas and wedding décor for the location, showing patrons to the event what could be done for their events to further enhance the refreshed facility. The Managing Director also explained that Corbin’s Catering can still cater at any location around the island whether at an office for meetings, at private homes for parties or major events where good food and excellent service are required. The facility can now seat up to 350 persons at round tables. A sound system, stand-by generator and lighting system have all been added to give patrons and event planners a ready-made facility for any type of event. Barbados Bartender of the Year - Ryan Adamson also showcased some of his award-winning cocktails as patrons soaked in the ambience of the newly renovated facility. Corbin expressed his thanks to the staff for their commitment and dedication to the company over the years, highlighting the fact that there were some who had served the 31-year-old organisation for over 25 years.

US talk show host Wendy Williams (centre) and Riddim Tribe dancers, including Creative Director Aisha Comissiong (right) on the set of her show for October 23, 2017.

Barbados' month of Independence for 2017 will be celebrated in a big way on the international scene as the Gem of the Caribbeantakes centre stage on the Wendy Williams Show for all of November. This was revealed to Loop News today by the Director of BTMI – USA, Petra Roach as she travelled back to New York City after Barbados’ dance group Riddim Tribe was featured on the show. Today, Monday, October 23, 2017,was but a taste of what is to come during the November promotion. Roach said that the dancers were on the show to promote Barbados month on Wendy Williams in November. She said that overall there will be 20 winners announced next month and they will each win a holiday to come and enjoy Barbados’ tourism product firsthand. “We will be giving away a holiday for two each weekday during November - flights with JetBlue, accommodation with Elegant Hotels at Waves and Turtle Beach, or at Sugar Bay, Mango Bay, or Club Barbados, and each prize winner will also get a dive with Atlantis Submarines,” she explained. The hotels are giving five stays each." They are also promoting a sweepstake online so Barbados will be promoted through video and shown to the number one daytime show for a whole month. And that, according to Roach, is why the partnership was made with Wendy Williams. “This is prime time TV which would be very expensive if we had to buy advertising. The strength of this promotion is that Barbados as a destination will be showcased for the entire month of November every day so there is consistency of the message which will absolutely resonate in a meaningful way with the audience at a time when they are looking to book their holidays for the winter season and for next year summer," she explained. “Why Wendy? As I said she is the number one daytime show and is also syndicated with BET - her audience is very loyal to her and are very receptive to anything she endorses.” Stating that Riddim Tribe is “an extremely talented young Barbadian group”, Roach said the Barbados Tourism Marketing Inc. (BTMI) New York Division, which organised the initiative, wanted to showcase the whole Crop Over feel and start by bringing energy and life to the promotion with the dancers. Overall, Roach said that Barbados has so much amazing talent that “we need to wherever possible provide a platform for that talent to be showcased to the world.” This upcoming promotion follows the work of the New York office in previous years to highlight the island by way of the Barbados Cultural Night with the Nets at the Barclays Center where both Nikita and Alison Hinds both sang the American National Anthem. The Riddim Tribe dancers thanked the BTMI on their Instagram and Facebook pages showing backstage experiences and post-performance photos. Creative Director of Riddim Tribe, Aisha Comissiong posted, "Massive thanks to @visitbarbados for giving us the opportunity to represent Barbados on the @wendyshow! It was such an exhilarating experience!" BTMI’s CEO in Barbados praised the overseas team, telling Loop, “It’s a great initiative led by the USA team and Director Petra Roach.”

Justin Timberlake has finally been invited back to the Super Bowl halftime show, 14 years after the "wardrobe malfunction" with Janet Jackson caused a national controversy. The NFL announced Sunday night that Timberlake will headline the Super Bowl halftime show Feb. 4 in Minnesota. This will be Timberlake's third Super Bowl halftime performance, the most for any entertainer. Timberlake performed at the 2001 Super Bowl with N'Sync, and he sang "Rock Your Body" with Jackson in 2004 in Houston. That performance concluded with Timberlake ripping her costume to reveal her right breast bare except for a nipple shield. During an interview broadcast at halftime of NBC's "Sunday Night Football," Timberlake laughed off questions about a repeat of the infamous moment, which drew CBS a $550,000 fine from the Federal Communications Commission that was later overturned. "That won't happen this time," he said. Timberlake has won 10 Grammys, and the Tennessee native also has won four Emmys. He said the best Super Bowl performances have spoken to the mood of the nation. "What I really want to do is take the opportunity to put together a performance that feels like it unifies," Timberlake said. "I feel like that would be the ultimate accomplishment, and then the icing on the cake is at some point within that 12 minutes that everybody is shaking their booty."


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