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from Photographers' Blog:

Birth in India’s “surrogacy capital”

Anand, India

By Mansi Thapliyal

A smooth, modern road in the prosperous Indian state of Gujarat leads to 35-year-old Chimanlal’s small, windowless brick hut that he lives in with his wife, young son and two daughters. Earning 2500 rupees ($38) a month as a driver, Chimanial says it is not enough to feed his children. Only his son goes to school. But in a year’s time, their lives are set to change.

Some 50 kilometers (31 miles) away is the small city of Anand, known as India’s “surrogacy capital”. Chimanlai’s wife is carrying a baby for a Japanese couple in which she will be paid 450,000 rupees ($7,200), an unimaginably large amount of money for a family like theirs.

Since 2004, over 500 Indian women have traveled to Anand from neighboring villages and towns to become surrogate mothers for families from nearly 30 countries. Dr Nayana Patel and her husband run Akanksha clinic, the city’s only surrogacy facility.

For nine months, the surrogate mothers live away from their families. They stay at a residency provided by Patel’s clinic. Wearing gowns covering their big bellies, the women pass their time by watching TV, talking on their mobile phones and chatting to each other. Some enjoy the experience and see it as break from their tough daily life, while others miss being away for so long from their husbands and children.

from Photographers' Blog:

Baby-kissing Popes

By Max Rossi

There's a man in this world that kisses more babies than any mother over the course of her life: the Pope.

Following the Vatican for more than 15 years I can absolutely say that John Paul II and Benedict XVI have kissed more babies than any other public figure in the world. It's a common scene for the faithful to literally throw their babies to the Pope as he walks by or is driven by in the Pope mobile during general audiences or a pastoral visit.

from Oddly Enough Blog:

You feelin’ fertile, Myrtle?

Blog Guy, I'm hoping you can help answer a question for me. Where do babies come from?

Er, uh, you should probably ask your parents about that.

They told me to ask you, then they went off to work in their haberdashery.

Oh. Well, when a a man and a woman love each other very much, they pick up the phone and order a delivery from the Sperm Bike, which pedals over with a gallon of baby-starter.

from Oddly Enough Blog:

Oh darling, the Baby Leaf is here again!

flower babies 490

Blog Guy, where do babies come from?

Well, when a mommy and daddy love each other very much...

Not regular babies! I'm talking about, you know.......Dutch babies....

NETHERLANDS/Oh, that's totally different. Over there where the Dutch people live, babies are grown by a huge plant called the Victoria Amazonica.

What does that name mean?

It translates to, "It must have been that night we had the margaritas!"

So why are these adorable babies we see here still floating on Victoria Amazonica leaves?

from Oddly Enough Blog:

Uh-oh, my butt is in a sling now!

sling combo 490

Lonnie, get your butt in my office!

What is it this time, Boss?

RUSSIA/Exactly WHAT is going on out there in front of our corporate headquarters?

Just what you wanted, Boss! You told me to set up a Best Baby Sling Contest, remember?

I got 140 contestants, thousands of people in the audience, TV news crews are broadcasting it live, our company logo is in all the shots, and everything. It's HUGE!

from UK News:

Should men be barred from the delivery room?

CHINABabies' arrivals in the world would be more straightforward if women were left alone with only a midwife to help them, as they used to be, French obstetrician Michel Odent will tell the Royal College of Midwives' annual conference in Manchester next month.******"The ideal birth environment involves no men in general," he told the Observer over the weekend.******"Having been involved for more than 50 years in childbirths in homes and hospitals in France, England and Africa, the best environment I know for an easy birth is when there is nobody around the woman in labour apart from a silent, low-profile and experienced midwife -- and no doctor and no husband, nobody else," he said.******"In this situation, more often than not, the birth is easier and faster than when there are other people around, especially male figures - husbands and doctors."******Do you agree?

from The Great Debate UK:

Should men be barred from the delivery room?

[CROSSPOST blog: 19 post: 4568]

Original Post Text:
CHINABabies' arrivals in the world would be more straightforward if women were left alone with only a midwife to help them, as they used to be, French obstetrician Michel Odent will tell the Royal College of Midwives' annual conference in Manchester next month.

"The ideal birth environment involves no men in general," he told the Observer over the weekend.

from Oddly Enough Blog:

It’s nothing years of therapy won’t cure…

Blog Guy, you used to do a good job of covering stupid sports around the world, but you haven't done any lately. Do I have to switch to another stupid sports blog?

No, please don't. Look, this just in from Spain, the sport of Baby Jumping is growing rapidly in popularity.

from Oddly Enough Blog:

Change at the White House, baby!

Blog Guy, we're coming to Washington, DC in July with our small baby. Will there be places were we can change her diapers?

Sure. Just take her over to the White House. Go to the historic Cross Hall near the East Room, and look for this elegant antique bench in these photos. If there's no bothersome president strolling by, you can try using that as a changing table.

from Oddly Enough Blog:

I’m afraid you’re finito, Benito!

From Italy comes news that a right-wing party is offering money to parents who name their babies after wartime fascist dictator Benito Mussolini or his wife Rachele, saying their names are under threat.

Well, it's about time for such incentives! There are some perfectly nice names out there that shouldn't disappear just because of one bad apple!

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