Saturday, July 30, 2011

Saturday Playdate

Please join me over at The Life of Rylie...and Bryce, Too! Gage and I took a quick trip to FL for the day!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Happy Birthday Henry!

I told you July was full of birthdays!  In fact, just in the last week I've known 5 different people to have birthdays.  Today, I am so excited to wish Henry over at All Together Now a Happy 1st Birthday.  I started reading Brittany's blog long before Henry was born and I love the way she writes and her topics of discussion.  My only complaint is that pictures of little Henry are featured far too rarely.  He sure is a cutie!  Brittany and I shared alot of new mom stories early on.  We haven't talked lately, as we've both been busy.  I miss her emails.  Brittany also has big news coming up shortly, check out her blog to find out!  And to wish Henry a very Happy day.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

AND a very Happy Birthday to Baby Benjamin!

We are so glad you decided to FINALLY make your arrival and that you and Luke will forever share a special day.  Congrats Kelly and Peter!

Happy Birthday, Daddy!

May 2011

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

My 1st Book Review...

Earlier this summer I was emailed and asked to review an historical narrative by Bring It On Communications!  I have always wanted to do a book review, but I have to say I'm a little intimidated by this book, being that it's not a novel, it's historical (something that I hate, ha) and it's a Chrisitian narrative.  However, I agreed to take on the challenge, only after my Praxis test was over and read and review the book.  I am starting it today.  I am a slow reader and find it hard to read things that don't hold my attention.  Let's hope this one does and that I can get through it in a timely fashion.  I have to say that after studying most of the summer for my  Praxis that I'd like to read a thoughtless novel at this point, but nevertheless I agreed to this so I will read it!  Wish me luck.  The book is called The Forgotten Awakening.  I'll keep you posted!

PS.  My friend still hasn't had her baby.  Still waiting...fingers crossed for tonight!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Happy Happy Birthday!

July is the month of birthdays around here!  Another of  my very best friends from high school celebrates his birthday today.  I haven't seen him in quite some time since he lives on the West Coast, but I still hope he  has a great day!  Can't wait to see you again.  Happy Birthday Lawren!

Lawren and wife, Misti- Oct 2008

Oh and you know that friend of mine that was due last Thursday.  No baby yet.  God Bless her in this heat...I can't even imagine!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Babysitters...and why it seems we'll never have one

Babysitters....some are for them at an early age while others, like me, tend to err on my child being at least a year old first.  It's not that I don't trust my friends, if I had any that would've liked to watch him that is, but I just don't trust teenagers.  I work with teenagers all day and leaving my kid with one of them unless VERY CAREFULLY selected isn't something I would want to do.  I have some friends whose brother's sister's mother-in-law recommended this 14 year old and they are fine with that.  I, on the other hand, want them to meet my child, interact with them and I have to know them as well, not just be referred.

In any case, after Gage turned a year old we decided that we would need to find a babysitter if we ever wanted to go out again.  Of course the grandparents are great when they're here, but a) they are not always here, b) they don't live close enough to just drop him off and c) even if they did, they have things they want to do as well.  Enter Babysitter #1:  I have a 20 something coworker who is the most honest, kindest person you could ever meet.  She mentioned that she would love to come over and watch Gage sometime if we ever wanted to go out, even once a week!  However, Gage had never met her (we don't really hang out outside of work) so I wanted them to spend some time together before I left him with her alone.  So as you may remember, I blogged about cleaning out our garage back in April or May and Shari had come over and played with Gage while we did this.  We figured that we would be here if he was nervous or she needed anything but we could still get stuff done.  The day went well, but when it was time for Shari to leave she wouldn't take ANY  money.  Are you kidding me?  She said she couldn't take money from a  friend...remember the MOST honest person alive!  Anyway, I told her we weren't really friends...hah..j/k.  I did tell her that we really wanted her to be our regular babysitter and in that case she HAD to take money.  (She had just told me the week before she was saving up for grad school.)  Anyway, she didn't take the money but Luke and I discussed that we could pay her in gift cards or something else if it came down to it....  Either way, we wanted her to come over this summer to watch Gage and she couldn't just watch him for FREE!  However, because she is the nicest person ALIVE, she volunteered to work at a Christian summer camp in Wyoming and will be gone ALL summer....Exit Babysitter #1.  She probably isn't getting paid for that either!

After we found out she'd be gone all summer, Luke and I started to think of different options.  Then I found out one of my students lived in our neighborhood and got her name and number.  She is a pretty responsible kid but I'm not sure I could trust her 100%, so....I figured she'd be the backup in case we really needed someone.  I also got the name and number of a girl who used to work at Gage's daycare and whom I really liked the few times I met her.  We'd probably still have to re-introduce them, but at least I knew she was certified and took care of kids all the time.  Then...

FINALLY, Enter Babysitter #2:  One of Gage's last days of school before the summer, I mentioned to his favorite daycare provider that we were looking for a babysitter.  She immediately said, 'I'd LOVE to do it!  And that way I get to see him this summer".  My jaw dropped, I figured no chance would she want to do it since she does it all day every day, but I WAS SO thrilled because we LOVE LOVE LOVE her AND Gage is already so comfortable with her and we didn't have to worry about a thing.  A few weeks back I called her to set up a date to take Luke out for his birthday (today) and she said that would be great and I told her I'd get back to her with a time after looking at the movies.  I spoke with her again last weekend to confirm a time, but hadn't talked to her since.  I figured she had written it down and that was that.  As of Thursday I hadn't heard anything but texted her to touch base.  I also called her Friday and Saturday when I hadn't heard anything.  As of yesterday, I had no reason to believe she was going to back out on us.  And then last night when we had heard nothing from her, we realized it was going to happen.  Are you kidding me, I thought.  First, I HATE it when people back out of things and let me know, but it infuriates me if you back out with no warning.   AND did I mention we LOVE her??  I mean, we obviously don't know her personally but we LOVE her at school and had NO idea she would just back out without calling or anything.  I'd really like to believe there's some emergency because I don't feel like she'd do this at all....I am going to be very disappointed if I find out otherwise.  I was planning on taking him to school one day this week anyway and it will be pretty awkward if she's there and has no good explanation!  I mean, why would his teacher do this?  It's not like she'll never see us again....weird, very weird.  Anyway, Exit Babysitter #2.

Now, after all that, we didn't get to go out for Luke's birthday today.  (Good thing we didn't have REAL plans.)  And we are no farther along in the babysitter search than before.  Not sure we will ever get there.....

Hope you're having a good Sunday!

Saturday, July 23, 2011


I almost forgot!  I want to wish one of my very best friends from high school a wonderful birthday!  Happy Birthday Brett!  Hope you had a fabulous day! 


it is over!  I have taken the Praxis test and now I can get on with my life.  No more cramming during nap time- maybe I'll actually have time to clean the house or have some 'me' time.  I no longer have to study after Gage goes to bed, in fact, right now, I'm a little lost and don't even know what I'm going to do with my free time.

This week is Luke's birthday and as every year, he has told me NOTHING that he wants and it's SO hard to buy for him.  Tomorrow we are supposed to go to the movies to see Captain America and on Wednesday he's taking off to spend time with the fam. Gage and I have a mall trip planned this week, the Little Gym, the pool and I think I'm going to take Gage to school one day.  He needs to get back in the habit of following directions, being with other kids, etc.  AND I'm hoping that we FINALLY get to go outside and play.  It has been over 100 since Wed. afternoon and Wed. am is the last time we've even been outside aside from getting in the car.  It really has been quite miserable.  I don't remember the last summer it's been this hot for this long.  Here's to some cooler weather....PLEASE.

hah....this is probably the lamest post I've ever written!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Praxis Test

48 hours from now, I will be ALL DONE with my Praxis test.  Thank the good Lord.  Have I mentioned I have no desire to take this test anymore?  grrr....but what's done is done and I've studied for a reason.  So....Sat. am I will go and take the test and at least I won't have to think about it anymore!  I'll have my 2 hours that Gage naps back to myself and actually be able to get something done around here besides study.  It will be a relief for sure.  Then I found out yesterday that I'll actually get the test scores back in 3 weeks, which is kinda scary, but again I'll know at that point whether or not I'll be certified.  Either way I have a job so I can't complain about that.

I am pretty sure I didn't prepare enough and I won't be surprised at all if I don't pass the 1st time around, but oh well,wish me luck anyway!  After the test on Sat. we have our friend Will's 1st birthday party!  What do you have planned this weekend?

Also, one of my very best friends is supposed to have her baby today?  Cross your finngers everything goes well!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: Summer Fun

Spotting an 'earpeen'

Swimming with Momma

We put out the pool to heat up the water....

but he climbed right in....

You should've seen this diaper!
Peeky boo

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Strathmore: Taikoza

As you all know, I'm always looking for new and fun summer activities to take Gage to or have him be a part of.  That's why I was super excited when the 1st week of summer, I was contacted by a manager from the Strathmore- a performing arts center nearby.  Mike was nice enough to invite Gage and I to one of their summer concert series.  And you all know, I love a good kids concert! 

The Strathmore, located in Bethesda, MD, is a hugely diverse center that has a little bit of everything and something every member in your family can enjoy.  It's a center that features 'a lively and diverse program of art exhibitions, concerts and performing arts programs, and literary lectures and events.'  If you check out their website, there's so much to choose from.  I was especially interested in their summer family entertainment.  There is a free summer concert series every Wednesday night at 7pm and on Thursday mornings there is a Backyard Theatre performance both at 930am and 1130am.  Unfortunately for us, Bethesda is a little bit of a hike and we won't be able to make any of the Wednesday night concerts because of Gage's bedtime.  However, we were definitely in and excited for the Thursday morning Backyard Theatre!  What makes these concerts so neat is the wide diversity of entertainment.  The Strathmore has organized it so there are shows from all around the world and each week focuses on a different genre/area of music.  I think for older kids it would be a really cool learning experience.  You can check out all of the different concerts right here

In any case, because we couldn't make it to the night concerts, Gage and I packed up last Thursday morning and headed for Bethesda.  It was quite a ride, being that I live outside of DC and at that time in the morning there were still people headed to work.  Thank goodness for the HOV lanes!  The traffic sucked, I won't lie, but we persevered and made it with just a few minutes to spare.  The Strathmore was very easy to find and the parking was wonderful.  It was right beside the TENTED stage.  And yes, I was very excited about the tented stage, as hot as it's been around here lately.  What a great idea!  We didn't imbibe in one, but they were giving away free sno-cones as well, which seemed to be a big hit with the older kids!  We checked in, spread out our blanket and it wasn't long before we got to hear some Japenese drums, called the Taikoza!   The performance lasted about 45 mins, which was the perfect length for kids and we couldn't have asked for more beautiful weather.  Gage danced some, but was mostly mesmerized by the big drums and bright costumes of the drummers and other performers.  It was definitely a neat performance with some Japenese dancing as well.  Again, an AWESOME learning experience for an older kid.  Did I mention the concert was right behind the beautiful Strathmore mansion?  So pretty!  If it hadn't been close to nap time, we might have checked out the interior, too!

Unfortunately I didn't get any pictures good enough to post.  We were sitting on a hill and Gage was dancing, so I had to focus on watching him and making sure he didn't fall down, instead of taking too many pictures!  It is too bad that the Strathmore is a little too far for us to travel to on a regular basis.  It took us a little over an hour in rush hour traffic.  They have some pretty awesome programs.  If you live in the area, I highly suggest you checking out their website and heading over there.  In addition to kids programs, they have all genres of music for adults.  Let me know if you check it out!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

20 Months...

My dearest Gage

Oh, how the time flies.  Three days ago you turned 20 months old.  As has been the trend the last few letters, this one is also late.  This weekend we have been lucky enough to have Nana and Grandiddy up to visit and Mommy hasn't had time to sit down and write you this letter.  I have a feeling it's going to be a long one.  I swear it feels like you change so much from week to week, so I can't even imagine how much you've changed in the last 2 months.

Yep, just read the last letter and you seem SO young compared to what I would write today.  I don't even know where to begin.  Let's see....talking, you TALK all the time and in full sentences, you can almost carry on a conversation.  You know your alphabet, all of your numbers up to 10 and some past that.  You say 'excuse me', 'please', 'thank you' and 'welcome' appropriately, you know the names to most of your books and all of your friends at school.  You know about half your letters by sight, but are still struggling with colors.  You know about 4-5 shapes.  You tell people you are '19 months' when they ask how old you are, we are working on saying 20 months.  You tell us exactly what you want for dinner and can repeat anything 3-4 word sentence we say.

You have finally grown out of most of your 12 month clothes and wear mostly 12-18 months with a few 18 months mixed it.  You're still our little peanut.  You weigh just over 22lbs, are about 31.25 ins tall now and have 8 teeth (2 molars).  We have been convinced for about 4 weeks that you were getting your bottom teeth, but nothing yet, just the 2 still.  Your new favorite toys are your alphabet pal, your Chuck the dumptruck set and any book that makes noise.  You have started more imaginative play and it's so much fun to watch.  You will draw something and say, 'the bunny sleeping', or 'look, an earpeen (airplane)'.  I am so so lucky to be home with you at such a special time and to watch you grow and learn every day.  With that and with the terrible 2's it seems, we have had some challenges.  Another one of your favorite words now is 'mine'.  You say it repeatedly when something is taken from you, even if it's Daddy or I taking it from you.  You also HATE to have your diaper changed and you are quite the fit pitcher these days. 

Eating is hit or miss these days.  You still won't turn down a grilled cheese, yogurt, applesauce or fish sticks.  You love shrimp these days too, and sometimes turkey.  Lately, you have become a huge peanut butter fan and ask for it at every meal.  At least it's good for you AND you're not allergic to it.  Lately, you seem to eat great one day and hardly anything the next.  We still can't get you to eat any vegetables, except the occasional sweet potato.  You love brownies and ice cream, just like your Momma.

You still have short legs and struggle with stairs, you don't have much interest in any climbing them.  You are interested in getting up on the couches, chairs, but your legs are still too short for that, as well.  You love the water and love taking baths or swimming in the pool.  You still only get to watch about a half hour of TV a day, but your all time favorite is definitely Yo Gabba Gabba.  You like to ask for Minnie Mouse, Elmo and Thomees, but then aren't very interested if I put them on for you.  You love music and love to dance.  You adore the Sesame Street characters and know all of their names, too.  You still love to be outside more than anything else.  You still love your books and we read for about a half hour a day.  Your new thing is to ask Mommy to read it 'again' every. single. time. I read a book to you. 

I am so lucky to be home with you this summer.  I have enjoyed spending all of my time with you and being able to take you places and do things with you I wouldn't be able to if I worked all year round.  You have really enjoyed the Little Gym and we have been able to go to some kids' concerts and the library once a week.  I feel  like these letters get longer and longer each time but there's so much of you I want to capture at this age right now and want to remember every second of it.  I know it will be hard for me to remember, even in just a few years....The rest of the summer should be fun and we will continue to look for new and interesting ways to spend our time.  We are going to 2 birthday parties in the next few weeks and heading back down to the beach of course. 

It is incredible to watch you grow, Gage and we are so proud of our little man.  You amaze us every day and are so very smart, it's hard to even stand it!  We love you, sweet pea!


Happy Birthday Kat!

I feel like I haven't done a birthday post in forever!  I don't think I had any since the 1st of June.  Guess I better make this a good one then, right? 

I want to wish Kat, over at Living Like the Kings, a very Happy Birthday!  Her blog is super fun!  She has a
wonderful mix of recipes, reviews, weekly memes and of course, TONS of pictures of her precious baby girl.  In fact, she's probably one of the cutest little girls I've seen.  Every time I read her blog I just want a new baby!  Or rather, I just want Kat's for a day or two.  Anyway, please head over to her blog and wish her a wonderful day!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Mister G

Last week was a busy one and this week is turning out to be just the same.  I have to have lots planned to entertain my little guy plus with the unbearable heat we can just spend a little time outside at one setting.  Anyway, every other Wednesday there is a conceert series for kids at a local shopping center.  I was really excited when I saw this, because during the summer I actually get to take advantage of things like this that usually only SAHM's get to experience.  We were all geared up and ready to go Wednesday morning until we woke up to rain...BOO!  I was thinking, 'now what on Earth are we gonna do today?'  I was so excited to find out they moved the show inside.  It was moved inside the Little Gym into a small dance class room, but it turned out to be perfect.

Mister G was the performer of the week.  Mr. G is a teacher turned kids musician and was an awesome performer!  I have never seen a happier boy than my Gage!  I think because of the rain there was a smaller crowd, but I think that made Gage feel more comfortable too.  For about the 1st 10 mins. or so he sat with me, but after that he was on the dance floor showing everyone his moves.  Everyone was laughing hysterically at him- he was one of the only toddlers there and I think Mr. G was impressed with his participation.  He was clapping, screaming, dancing, spinning, you name it, he was doing it.  It was definitely a fun 45 minutes and probably much more fun than it would've been outside on a hot morning. 

Other than Gage thoroughly enjoying it, I can't say enough good things about Mr. G.  He was great with the kids (obvioulsy a teacher) and was a talented musician.  Ther were lots of interactive songs and probably best geared towards 3-5 year olds.  Songs called "Pizza for Breakfast" and "Squirrels" were my favorite.  However, many of the kids were that age and a bit older and had a wonderful time!  From reading Mr. G's website and some of the things he mentioned, it seems he just got back from a trip to Mexico (he's fluent in Spanish, too) working on an album and doing something with a school down there.  He has 2 CD's out, one of which has a few songs in Spanish.  To learn more about him, or to hear some of his songs visit  I think I'm going to download his album to my iPod for Gage to listen to in the car.  He is from Massachuetts and seems to play mostly around that area and not sure if any of you are from that area, but if you get the chance to see him and have kids between 18 mos.- 6, I'd highly suggest it.  Gage had a blast!  Thanks Mr. G!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Mommy Help...

Mommies, I need your help...

I need some suggestions.  This might seem an obvious question to some but my brain can't wrap around it.  Gage is short (as are most toddlers) and obviously can't reach any of the sinks in the house.  We wash his hands before he eats with baby wipes, unless we feel he is especially dirty.  I'm sick of this, I want my child to wash his hands  like he does at daycare, where they have a baby sink.  My problem is that I have no idea how to get him up to the sink, other than a step stool.  Problem is, no step stool is high enough.  My kid is short, did I mention?  However, he can't be the shortest toddler ever and I know others have had this problem.  I just don't know what to do, other than to hold him up and pin him between myself and the sink while I try to turn the water on, soap us his hands and turn it off.  Why does this not seem like a hard concept, but for me it is?  Any suggestions?  Thanks.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Any Dawson's Creek Lovers Out There?

Me, me, oh oh, pick me!  I LOVED this show, y'all.  I thought it was fabulous and I remember wanting to be just like Joey Potter.  Anyway, not too long ago, my old college roomie and I were chatting and reminiscing about good ole Capeside and decided that we just had to relive it one more time and watch every episode from the beginning.  Neither her nor I actually own any of the seasons- I don't ever buy that kind of stuff so we jumped on Ebay,, Amazon, etc. to track them down.  We found them, of course, for cheap and ordered away.  We promised not to watch them with anyone else and tried to figure out how long it would take to watch all of them when we could probably only get together every now and again.  In any case, we were stoked! 

Our 1st viewing party was this past Tuesday night and it was just as I remembered it!  Amazing!  In a teenage kinda way.  (Actually some of the story lines and vocabulary I'm pretty shocked at).  ha....think I'm a dork yet?  Anyway, one minor glitch.  So I had ordered Season 1, but hadn't tried it out.  I had gotten it from Amazon though and figured there would be no reason for problems.  Can you believe Disc 1 did not work??  Can you imagine how disappointed Jennifer and I were when we couldn't watch the beginning of Dawson's Creek?!?!  We did manage, however, to find online episodes so we were forced to cuddle together in front of her laptop.  hah...funny thing is that no 1 website would play all 3 of the 1st episodes we wanted to watch.  Oh well, we managed!  We just have 1 more episode to find online before we get to watch Disc 2, which does work!  We have a viewing party scheduled again for next week....then we have a few weeks in between.  I'm not sure how we will manage. 

Did I mention I went to Wilmington in April and tried my hardest to find everything I could from the show?? 

Did anyone else love this show like I did??

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: A HodgePodge

Beautiful salmon roses Luke brought me home the other night...just because they were pretty.

This didn't come out as good as I had hoped, I'll try again in August.

This is what happens when you take the camera away from our child.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Let Freedom Ring, Let the Whole World Sing...

It's Independence Day!  As we celebrate our independence, I want to thank of all the servicemen and women past and present that have fought for this very liberty. 

Today was much different than our usual 4ths.  I have to say I was slightly disappointed.  For the last at least 5 years, we have gathered with good friends of ours to celebrate the 4th and it has always been tradition.  This year, however, they were out of town and therefore, we were left high and dry.  We will be celebrating with them on Saturday- kind of a belated 4th, if you will.  In any case, we didn't do too much today- ran some errands, took naps and hung out with our some of our other good friends and their family.  We hadn't seem them in a while so it was nice to visit with them, but Chinese food just isn't a part of my usual 4th of July.  I did make my yummy Kahlua cake though, I am saving my special 4th of July dessert for Jamie and Brad's on Saturday.  Maybe I'll share the recipe with you, if I'm feeling up for it.  As far as the rest of the night, we're pretty tired in this house.  Gage hasn't slept the best lately and it's catching up to us.  I, unfortunately, won't be seeing any fireworks tonight, which if you know me, is pretty disappointing in itself.  Maybe I'll be selfish and hope for rain!  J/K.

Tomorrow is the Little Gym, a DC marathon (I'll fill you in on that later), Wed. is a kids concert and swim class, Thursday is the  premiere of BIG BROTHER and Friday, Daddy is off work!  A busy week and so much to blog about!  Happy 4th of July!  Gage had a pretty cute shirt for today, but not sure I got any good pictures. 

Sunday, July 3, 2011


to you, my old decrepit car.  You treated me well, got me to and from the beach many, many times, but recently you've been kind of a pain in my ass needing something repaired every month or so.  After 7 and a half years, it was time for us to go our separate ways.

Eh, this picture doesn't show your age.  You still look pretty good!

I think I already love you.  I know it's much too soon in our relationship to make such a claim, but you have everything I've ever wanted.  You have leather seats, built in navigation with voice activation, 3 rows, dual climate control and even a DVD player.  We can't complain about your price either.  We did enough research and have good enough credit that we just walked in and told them we wanted you and they said OK. (Well, not really, but c'mon, does that every really happen?)  Anyway, I think we have a long, solid future ahead of us and I can't wait to take our 1st road trip!

Can you see the 3rd row?

Gage will love this on road trips!

Can't wait to learn how this works!  (You should see the manual.)

True love!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Couch 2 5K: Week 5, Day 3....FAIL

This is the worst kind of failure too, I didn't even try.  I didn't get my tail out of bed early enough this morning before my husband left to run.  I anticipated having time tonight but since we are in the process of buying a car and Luke has been at the dealership for the last 3 hours, looks like that won't happen!  I was really dreading this run and looking forward to it all at the same time.  Better  luck next week for me.  Now I'm deciding should I do Day 1 over as well or just Day 2 twice?  Either way, I'm not moving on 'til I do Days 1, 2 and 3 all in the same week!  Now, I'm off to study, wahoo!  Hopefully we'll have a new car by tomorrow night!  Happy Weekend.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Pre Posts

Does anyone know how to pre- post and make sure that it really goes through instead of staying in draft mode?  I used to do it all the time and now every time I write a pre-post, regardless of whether I double check it to say 'scheduled', each and every time it kicks it back to draft and I have to go and repost.  Any ideas???

Couch 2 5K: Week 5, Day 2

Yesterday was Gage's last day of daycare and my last official day of not being a SAHM for the next 8 weeks.  After studying of course, I was pondering what to do with my last day off when I read good ole Heather's blog.  If you remember, Heather is my virtual running buddy and she was bragging ;) about how she has just finished her 8 min. runs so I figured I better get to it as well.  I wasn't sure if I would be able to run 2 8-minute stretches, especially at 10am in the sun. (I usually run at night.)  But lo and behold, I did it!  I didn't feel great afterwards, or during, for that matter, but I successfully ran the whole time I was supposed to. 

Now, for the final goal of the week:  Run straight for 20 mins!  Yeah, right!  Wish us both luck!
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