Duff and Rosenberg have been engaged since 2012, when he popped the question on April Fool’s Day. However, in the ensuing years, the young couple was so busy with work and raising Ryan that they decided to postpone their nuptials.
“We talk about it and think, ‘Maybe now we’re ready to do it’ and then life happens and toddler happens,” says Duff to People Magazine. “We feel married already and it hasn’t become something that both of us are gung-ho about.”
As for little sister Hilary, her son Luca just celebrated his sixth birthday, and of course Aunt Haylie and cousin Ryan were on hand to celebrate. Hilary and Haylie have both shared how tight-knit their family is, especially their children.
“They really play well together,” says the eldest Duff. “One time I had Luca for a sleepover and the two of them were outside running around on a Slip ‘n Slide, and I remember looking out at them in the yard being like, ‘This is what they’re going to do as teenagers.’”
Awww. And now there’s another playmate to add to the mix. Congratulations, y’all!
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Suicide rates increased by 25 percent across the United States over nearly two decades ending in 2016, according to research published June 7 by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Twenty-five states experienced a rise in suicides by more than 30 percent, the government report finds.
More than half of those who died by suicide had not been diagnosed with a mental health condition, said Dr. Anne Schuchat, principal deputy director of the CDC.
“These findings are disturbing. Suicide is one of the top 10 causes of death in the US right now, and it’s one of three causes that is actually increasing recently, so we do consider it a public health problem — and something that is all around us,” Schuchat said. The other two top 10 causes of death that are on the rise are Alzheimer’s disease and drug overdoses, she noted.
In 2016 alone, about 45,000 lives were lost to suicide.
“Our data show that the problem is getting worse,” Schuchat said.
Increases In 49 States
Using data from the National Vital Statistics System for 50 states and the District of Columbia, CDC researchers analyzed suicide rates for people 10 and older from 1999 through 2016.
Overall, the US experienced a 25 percent rise in the rate of suicides during that period, with individual states ranging from a 6 percent increase in Delaware to a nearly 58 percent increase in North Dakota, the researchers say.
All states except Nevada experienced an increase; although Nevada showed a 1 percent decrease in suicide, the state’s suicide rate was still high, ranging between 21 and 23 suicides for every 100,000 people through the years studied, the researchers say.
Suicide rates were four times greater in the highest state compared with the lowest when calculated on an annual basis during the most recent time period, 2014 to 2016.
Montana experienced about 29 suicides for every 100,000 people — the highest in the nation — compared with about seven people out of every 100,000 in the District of Columbia — the lowest. As a whole, the nation saw 15 people dying by suicide for every 100,000 in 2016.
“The most common method was firearm, followed by hanging or suffocation, followed by poisoning,” Schuchat said. “Opioids were present in 31 percent of individuals who died by poisoning.” She added that intentionality is difficult to determine in cases in which a person dies by overdose.
Deborah Stone, lead author of the study and a behavioral scientist at the CDC, said, “We typically see that firearms make up about half of all suicides, and that tends to be pretty consistent.”
Schuchat noted that the researchers “focused in on 27 states where we have extensive data from the death investigations to try to understand the factors or circumstances leading up to suicide.”
These data, derived from the National Violent Death Reporting System, showed that 54 percent of those who committed suicide in 2015 did not have a known mental health condition. Digging deeper, the researchers found that several circumstances, including the loss of (or problems in) a relationship, were more likely to trigger a suicide among those who did not have a mental health condition.
Regions and demographic groups were also compared.
Economic Factors Behind Suicide
The Western area trend of high increases in suicide rates could be related to the fact that people in rural areas have less access to services as they more slowly benefit from the economic recovery than other parts of the nation, she said.
“We don’t have all the answers. There may be several, but we knew that economic factors can increase the risk of suicide and that limited access to care, behavioral and social services may also increase the risk of suicide,” Schuchat said.
Recent government reports have highlighted rising rates of suicide among women. “The percent increase was higher in women, but it’s important to say that men have a three to five times higher rate than women,” Schuchat said. The rising suicide rate for women, then, is “increasing but at a much, much lower level” than for men.
Veterans are also “overrepresented” in the report, she said.
“Veterans made up about 18 percent of adult suicides but represent about 8.5 percent of the US adult population,” Schuchat said, noting that not all veterans who died by suicide were recent veterans. Still, the researchers found a 10 percent higher risk of suicide among people who had served in the military.
Middle-age adults had the highest increase.
“This is a very important population right now in terms of national statistics,” Schuchat said, noting the high rates of drug overdose in this group as well as “deaths of despair” described in social science literature. She believes this group may have been hardest-hit by the economic downturn, but she added that unknown factors probably contributed.
“We think a key message is, there’s not just one group; many are at risk,” Schuchat said.
Whether or not they had a mental health condition, most people who died by suicide had experienced “one or more factors that may have contributed, including a relationship problem, a crisis in the recent couple weeks and problematic substance abuse,” she said.
K. Bryant Smalley, a professor of community medicine and psychiatry at the Mercer University School of Medicine, described the mental health care challenges experienced by patients in rural areas as the “three A’s”: availability, accessibility and acceptability of care.
Smalley, who was not involved in the new research, pointed out that about 85 percent of federally designated mental health professional shortage areas are rural.
“Due to higher poverty rates, higher likelihood of hourly pay and productivity-based labor, and lack of transportation infrastructure, mental health services are often not accessible even if they are available in a rural community — that is, even though it is there, many people either cannot get to it or cannot afford (either directly or indirectly) to go,” he said.
Add to that, rural areas have very high levels of stigma surrounding mental health services. “Rural residents face lower levels of anonymity in seeking services due to the close-knit nature of rural communities,” Smalley said. The possibility of “someone seeing your car parked at the only psychologist’s office” means rural residents are less likely to seek care when needed.
Dr. Sandro Galea, dean and Robert A. Knox Professor at the Boston University School of Public Health, said the National Vital Statistics System is the “best system we have of keeping records in the country.” Galea, who was not involved in the new study, added that for this reason, the new research should be taken “very seriously.”
“There have been previous reports recently that have shown suicide is one of the major contributors to a decrease in life expectancy in this country, which makes it even more alarming,” he said.
“The paper makes a clear case, correctly, about the fact that there is no one cause for suicide,” he said, adding that “availability of means” makes death possible.
“A lot of suicide is a one-time effort, so having guns available, for example, makes one more likely to complete suicide, but that in and of itself is not an explanation for why suicide is going up,” Galea said.
“CDC data shows that suicide happens to everybody,” he said. “Social and life and economic stressors are the ones that create the conditions for suicides to happen.”
If you feel extreme distress, you can call 1-800-273-8255, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, to speak with someone who will provide free and confidential support 24 hours a day, seven days a week. If you want to learn how to help someone in crisis, you can call the same number.
The CDC also recommends its own policies, programs and practices for prevention.
Shuchat said there are simple steps anyone can take to help someone at risk. “Beginning a conversation, helping keep them safe, helping them connect and then follow up with them,” she said. “We don’t think every single suicide can be prevented, but many are preventable.”
After some time away from the spotlight following an injury, singer Carrie Underwood is back and better than ever. On June 6, Underwood proved she hadn’t lost any of her sparkle when took the stage at the 2018 CMT Music Awards at the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville for an impassioned performance of her new song, “Cry Pretty.”
Although not technically her “comeback performance” (that took place back in April at the ACM Awards in Las Vegas), Underwood’s dazzling presence cemented her status as a superstar talent. Watch her own the stage in the video below:
The most-awarded artist in CMT history, she held 17 total trophies going into Wednesday’s event. This year, she was nominated for four more and ended up adding one more win to her collection. She won female video of the year for “The Champion,” her song featuring rapper Ludacris.
In her acceptance speech, Underwood took the opportunity to thank her fans for their loyalty.
“Thank you God for all of us who are lucky enough who sit over here that we get to do what we get to do,” she said. “And thank God for you guys — the fans. You guys really are the reason that we get to do what we do. Whoever went and voted for anybody, just thank you for taking the time. It means everything.”
She also gave her husband, former pro hockey player Mike Fisher, a quick a hug and a kiss on the cheek before she went to the stage to accept her award.
On Thursday morning, she took to Instagram to retiterate her gratitude for her record-breaking win, giving a special shout-out to Ludacris for “lending some of your magic to this song and video,” alongside a photo of her grinning and proudly displaying her award trophy:
Congratulations to Underwood on all her recent success!
Brides-to-be were immediately eager to emulate Markle’s polished wedding day look. Of course, not everyone is working with a royal budget‚ but there are plenty of pretty white dresses fit for a duchess — without breaking the bank.
Check out these 12 affordable white dresses that will channel your inner Meghan Markle for your wedding, graduation, or any other occasion you might be celebrating:
1. Sharagano Sleeveless Lace Dress, Kohl’s, $100
Like both of Markle’s dresses from her big day, this sleeveless number from Kohl’s is understated yet classic. The pretty lace detail keeps it from being boring, and the simple silhouette makes it super-versatile, so it’s appropriate for the office and summer parties alike.
2. Faith High Neck Extreme Split Front Maxi Dress, Boohoo, $44
This high neck maxi dress mimics Markle’s Stella McCartney reception dress pretty closely, and the dramatic slit definitely ups the sexiness factor.
3. Chelsea28 Bell-Sleeve Lace Top Dress, Nordstrom, $59.40
This bohemian-inspired dress is a more casual, relaxed take on Markle’s wedding gown. It has the same bateau neckline and the lacy bodice, but the on-trend bell sleeves add a little fun.
4. American Living Waffle-Knit Jacquard Dress, Macy’s, $58.99
This sweet-looking short-sleeve dress incorporates the bateau neckline of Markle’s Givenchy gown, but with a curve-flattering A-line silhouette. You can dress it up or down with accessories and shoes, depending on the occasion.
5. Bar III A-Line Mini Dress, Macy’s, $59.63
This playful mini dress emulates the high neck halter style of Markle’s reception dress, and the A-line silhouette is flattering on a variety of body types.
6. Melrose 3/4 Sleeve Lace Fit And Flare Dress, JC Penney, $42.49
This lacy fit and flare dress incorporates the bateau neckline and longer sleeves of Markle’s Givenchy gown and is conservative without being stuffy.
If you love the bateau neckline and long sleeves of Markle’s ceremony gown but are looking for something a little more casual, this ivory shift dress offers simple elegance that is just waiting to be accessorized. A bold statement necklace would really make this look pop.
12. Karen Scott T-shirt Dress, Macy’s, $44.50
This cotton T-shirt dress is effortlessly chic and incorporates the bateau neckline and sleeves of Markle’s ceremony gown in an everyday-ready dress.
This picture is just too sweet but the firefighter says he was just doing his job.
Capt. Chris Blazek of the Chattanooga Fire Department in Chattanooga, Tennessee arrived at the scene of a car crash on June 2 to find a pregnant mom and her three children, all of whom seemed pretty shaken up by the wreck. The mother was extremely distressed as she was having abdominal and back pain, and her 4-month-old baby was crying as well.
Blazek did his part to ensure everyone was OK physically and also gave one of the children some old-fashioned tender loving care to calm her down and make her feel safe. The Chattanooga Fire Department shared a sweet photo of Blazek cradling the little girl at the site of the crash, along with his story of what happened, on Facebook this week:
“The children ranged in age from 7 years to 4 months,” Blazek explained in the post. “Both big girls were fine, but the baby was screaming hysterically, too. So I took her out of her car seat and did a quick physical exam to make sure she was OK. She immediately laid her head on my shoulder. Shortly after that I decided that my guys had the scene under control, so I decided to take a break with my new friend. She immediately fell asleep in my arms.”
How sweet! Blazek added that the baby’s mother was transported to the hospital and that other fire department personnel stayed on the scene with the children until they were turned over to family members.
“It’s moments like this, that I am reminded, this is why I do the job,” Blazek wrote.
The department’s post has since gone viral and has been shared about 8,000 times and liked more than 11,000 times! People flooded the comments section with messages of support for Blazek’s service and act of kindness. For his part, Blazek says he was just doing his job.
“My peers do this on a daily basis,” he told Chattanooga’s WRCB-TV. “This was a normal call for us. This is something we would do without thinking. Recognition like this is amazing but we do it knowing that some day there may be no recognition.”
The woman involved in the accident, Whittley Hightower, also later added to the comments, “I really want to say thank you for being there for my three girls. It was such a scary moment for all of us. God bless you.”
Blazek responded in kind, writing, “Mrs. Hightower it was an honor and privilege. Glad to know you and the girls are doing well.”
What an inspiring story! We’re so glad to know that first responders like Blazek are out there helping those in need.
The summer heat will be in full swing before you know it, and you’re going to need something to get you through it. Thankfully, there are some chilly treats out there for adults that will make your time spent outdoors this summer a whole lot more enjoyable.
Here’s one to drop into your pool bag: Slim Chillers Skinny Freezers vodka ice pops, which come in a sleeve, just like those colorful pops you loved as a kid (only better!). Whether you’re hosting a backyard party, sitting poolside or lounging on the shore, these 100-calorie boozy, icy treats are bound to help you beat the heat.
These delicious adult pops come in four cocktail flavors, including Cosmopolitan, Watermelon Lemonade, Appletini and Lemon Drop. Yum!
We’ve selected a few that will definitely get you through the hottest days this season:
1. Jack And Coke Popsicles
This classic combo is sure to please in frozen form. We put this recipe from Boulder Locavore to the test — and our taste testers were not disappointed!
2. Strawberry Moscato Pops
If you’re looking for an extra sweet treat, these strawberry moscato pops are exactly what you need. Get the recipe at Mind Over Batter.
3. Moscow Mule Pops
Even the most classic of cocktails can be frozen for easy, portable enjoyment. Get the recipe at Shutterbean.
4. Red Wine Ice Cream
Looking for an excuse to have wine before dinner? Well, now that you can consume it in ice cream form, you’ve got all the more reason to day drink — umm, we mean eat. Get the recipe at Cooking With Janica.
So, who’s ready to kick off summer with these adult treats? Please eat responsibly!