June 27, 2012

I Earned It!

Have you seen it? The commercial..er infomercial rather, for a particular workout called "Insanity"?

Please watch below if you have not. If you have, then we are both the kind of people that are up at 2 in the morning with insomnia watching this for no other reason other that hating the fact that we don't work out and that's probably why we have bad sleeping habits in the first place...or that just might be me, either way skip on down below.

Right, so now that you have finished rolling your eyes at those people (Seriously! How annoying are they? Or maybe it's all those happy endorphins exercise is supposed to give you? Who knows?) we can continue with my story.

This past Saturday, after having a lovely, leisurely day lounging at the beach The Boyfriend suggested we work out, being one of those annoying people that works out he suggested we do an insanity video. Now, my first instincts were to say, "Hell No" but instead I smiled said, "Yeah sure!" and geared up in my best, new and never used work out clothes. Bring It!

There is a reason, it's called Insanity. There are a few reasons actually:
  1. The people that created this work out are insane!  (I'm looking at you Shaun T and Beachbody employees behind this workout)
  2. The people that buy this workout are insane!
  3. The people that buy and actually do this workout are insane!
  4. The way you feel during, after and the day after doing this workout is insane. 
  5. Your body will go insane...as in you will want to throw up 15 minutes into it the first time around.
I mean...look at these people:
About 15 minutes into it I had to step outside and get some fresh air so I wouldn't vomit in the living room. But to be honest I felt pretty kick-ass after the work out...a little insane but at least it was kick-ass insane. 

Let's fast forward to Monday morning, I woke up and felt the most excruciating pain I have ever felt in my calf's. I think I injured them. I couldn't stand, walk, or basically move my legs in any way possible for like a good 5 minutes with out wanting to cry. Finally, I mastered a crab like walk that allowed me to move around and get ready for work. Might not have been a good idea to start on his routine seeing as how I've never done a video before. Today is Wednesday and they still hurt. But the insane part is...I would totally do another video again.

Yeah that could so be me in that "I EARNED IT" T-Shirt. But it's not, just in case you were wondering.  


June 25, 2012

Time of My Life

Undeniably, i'm sure that either you have heard the following converstaion or have had the following converstaion:

person a: What your favorite movie?
person b: "Dirty Dancing"
person a: OMG! I love that movie too!
person b: I know right!
person a & b: "I've had the time of my life..." or "Nobody puts Baby in the corner"

Now here's the thing, this conversation may have gone differently but the jist of it is the same and weather you hears or participated, probably depends on your sex. If your sex is female, then you most likely particpated in said conversation. Unless that said femail happend to be me.

Up until Friday I had never actually seen Dirty Dancing. Yes, I know, I feel like a shame of my entire sex glaring down on me. To make things worse, I have seen "Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights." Yes... even more shame for me.

So when I found out that Friday night (last Friday night) there was going to be a showing of it out at the California Plaza, and that it was going to be a free event, I figured it's now or never. The Boyfriend graciously scored brownie points by indulging me and taking me. To which he questioned "How have YOU not seen this movie?" I really don't know, darling...I really don't know.  

We picked a spot to stand (as seats were taken) and the show got started. I call it a show because they even had dancers recreating the moves. It was actually a really great experience. There were cheers and hollers the moment that Patrick Swayze walked on screen. And more cheers at poignant moments in the movie...but the final most fiery cheers came during the "Nobody puts Baby in the corner." scene. Totally get it now.

I'm glad this is how I got to see this movie. On a big screen, surrounded by people that love it on a (rather chilly) summer night out. Had I seen it at home on a boring Sunday afternoon, alone it might not have been the same. And I would have been like, "What's the big deal?" I'm off to buy my Baby/corner t-shirt...Not really but at least I can finaly join in on the conversation above.


June 21, 2012

Spanish Shirt

You know how certain scents or fragrances remind you of something or someone? Well, I have a shirt that reminds me of Spain. Actually I have two shirts and a pair of shoes that reminds me of Spain. However today, I'm just wearing the one shirt. This one simple white shirt, long sleeve with a boat neck. Thick, so it almost feels like a sweater...ah memories.

When I was in college there was one thing I wanted more than to graduate, and to learn how to write grammatically correct sentences. I wanted to do a study abroad program. Even though I had always wanted to go I waited until that last minute where I had to send the full payment for the trip to be included. So I ended up in Madrid, Spain all June 2007. Best last minute decision ever!

One day during this trip my roommate and I went shopping. I bought this white shirt and she bought a pink one. Needless to say, this shirt will for ever remind me of that trip...and maybe now of the fact that I never did quite learn how to get over my run-on sentence issue.

Also, I think I'm finally going to start blogging again. I took the Spring "off" and seeing as how yesterday was the first day of summer...I don't have an excuse anymore. 


March 29, 2012

Blog Spring Break?

{best cupcakes sold at the best winery i've ever been to...and I've only been to 4 so that's saying a lot...sort of.}

I'm taking a little break from blogging. Technically I've been on this break since my last post but decided to actually make this a notice to my 9.5 readers and for myself so I can relax. I've been a busy girl and will continue to be for the next week or so. Plus I'm off to China next week and I still don't know what to pack?

But before I'm off to the far east I'm off to dream about these cupcakes and I'll be back soon. Hopefully with more energy and better pictures and a more defined grip on grammar and little wittier! Well...definitely with more energy.

March 22, 2012

Healthy Snack Alert: Greek Yogurt & Fruit

I had this today and and it was delicious. I also had it the day before and it was equally delicious. The best part is that it's easy to make. Also, it's sweet and healthy.

I like things that are easy to make, and since all the effort this requires is some chopped strawberries, i'm all for it. This is all you need:
1. Chopped up Strawberries
2. Blueberries (or any fruit really)
3. Some kinds of granola (i had Kashi Go Lean Cruch)
4. Greek Yogurt (i had Karoun Mediterranean Non Fat)

Oh and I add a bit of organic honey because i'm still new to the flavor of plain Greek yogurt.
If you cut up the strawberries and wash the blueberries you can store them for a few days to keep enjoy this treat effortlessly. 

Now go make it!


March 20, 2012

Tidafors vs. Milo

Never go to IKEA on a Sunday afternoon. Just don't do it. If you value your sanity don't do it. I went with my family to look at some closets for my sisters and came home with a couch. Talk about impulse buying!

I think the disappointment of not being able to fit the one I really loved/wanted (Milo) in my little apartment forced me to feel deflated and I bought one at IKEA. In the As Is section.
Here's Milo:

Here's what I got - Ikea Tidafors:

Don't mind the sloppy pillow in the middle there...that was just an extra I had hanging around. Woe is me...not even close to the Milo. Dam you Milo and your largeness!

Here's the thing though, buying IKEA stuff is like buying a Honda. You can ALWAYS sell it again. Seriously. Just check Craigslist for anything you may want from IKEA and guaranteed it's being sold by someone somewhere. Plus I didn't pay full price for this guy and it's perfectly fine, nothing wrong with it. Heck, I can even end up selling it for more than I paid if I wanted to (is that shady?). So I'm OK with the impulse purchase...for now.   

I may also get this chair from Target. Although, when I first saw it I thought it would look cute with Milo not Tidafors...geez even the name of that couch is not that great.
Although paying $340 for Tidafors beats paying $1500 for a Milo sectional! you just wait Milo, you just wait until I buy a house...


March 16, 2012

Jugo de Tamarido

Alrigh-t for you non-Spanish speakers, that title up there translates to: Tamarind Juice. This past weekend my mom made this little treat from scratch. While sipping on it, I was suddenly transported to elementary school. Yes, I'm talking to you 2nd grade class at Eucalyptus Elementary School. And no, I wasn't magically transported...more of a mental flashback but it felt really real.

What do a second grade me and and Tamarid Juice possible have in common? An entire class room of laughing at you children, that's what. Let me finally get to the point...

Back in you guessed it, 2nd grade, we had a class party. Every child was in charge of bringing some kind of treat or drink. I volunteered to bring juice. Most normal children would have brought some Kool-Aid or Sunny-D, both perfectly acceptable to the taste buds and visuals of a second grader. However, I requested my mom make my favorite drink, at that time, her home tamarind juice. If you are not familiar with Tamarind, check it out below and then google it for more images:

Looks pretty weird right? it's actually really tasty. Now, image what these guys look like floating in a juice. You getting a visual yet? As I proudly added my pitcher of tamarind juice to the collection in the back, I couldn't wait 'till the party! Around lunch time all the goods had been spread out and that my friends is when the laughing began. More like cruel mocking really. Some snarky boy in my class yelled out, "EWWWWWW Who brought the Poop Water?"

Let the emotional scarring begin. Good thing nobody saw me bring it in so nobody knew it was mine. I joined in on the laughing and pointing and "ewws" that were spread around while we were looking for a culprit. The teacher finally managed to calm everyone down and distracted everyone with soda and Oreo cookies.

I survived that one!  However I was not so lucky with the 6th grade oatmeal cookie debacle. Who doesn't like oatmeal cookies? My entire 6th grade class, that's who! I finally shared these stories with my mom, we both laughed until we had tears in our eyes and finished our tamarind juice.

Have a great weekend!  


March 13, 2012

I Love: Celestial Green Tea

Whoa..I haven't been writing much. But I have been consuming a lot of Tea. A lot of Green Tea. A lot of Celestial Seasonings Green Tea. This is what happens when you can't drink coffee anymore. Why yes, coffee makes me sick even though I used to drink it every Sunday when I was 10 years old...might also explain my height. That and genetics. I have a cup as soon as I get in the office and one more in the afternoon. Sometimes a third cup if I'm working late. Which is pretty much every day anyway. I'm also officially obsessed with glass mugs.   

But not only do I have to have my green tea, I have to have Celestial Seasonings brand. I don't know why. It just tastes better to me. Then I realized I always buy this brand. Sleepy Time tea...Chamomile tea...fruit teas...all Celestial. So I took a look at their website and was blown away by all the flavors that I have yet to try. I picked up the Honey Vanilla Chamomile and the Decaf Sweet Coconut Thai Chai recently. Both really yummy and if I just add some milk and honey to the chai one,  it's like I'm in heaven! And by heaven I mean thoroughly enjoying my other addiction...chai latte's. As much as this is starting to sound like I'm pushing a product here, I'm not. I just really believe this is great tea that you can purchase at your grocery store.

Anyways that's pretty much all I've been up to. Working late, still fixing the apartment, working late, not preparing for my trip to China, eating and drinking lots of tea. 

Oh yeah, have I mentioned I'm going to China? No, well, guess what... I'm going to China next month. So if you have been there, let me know about your experience. Oh and see what I did there... with the green tea and the notice about China?? No? Oh well, that's because I'm a dork and you are much cooler than I. If you did get it...you are totally awesome and are much cooler than those that di not get it. 

March 6, 2012

Oh Chunky Red Infinity Scarf...

It was warm yesterday. It's not today. And it was hot on Sunday. Like bust out the tank tops and short shorts hot. Not that I even wear short shorts so I busted out a dress but then realized I haven't shaved. Ewe...sorry. So out came the tank and jeans.

But this post is not about a dress or jeans or unshaven legs. It's about my chunky, red, infinity scarf. It's more of a brick red than a bright red like the photo below. Winter is pretty much over and it never really got started here in L.A. There was maybe a solid week's worth of really cold weather this winter but nothing to to make you punt on a thick coat AND a scarf. But I'm obsessed with this one so much i wore it like 3 times a week. I think it's due for a wash.

This picture is not from today either. It's from a perfect winter/not really winter day last week. Where it was sunny/warm enough to not wear a jacket but windy/cool enough that you need a little something to keep you warm. It's amazing how one little item like a scarf can keep you warm.

Why yes that is a sparkly, sequined shirt peaking out of my denim shirt. 

As we transition into Spring, I will miss you red scarf. Until fall, when I pull you from my drawer and wrinkle my nose at your funky smell and wash you immediately and finally wear you again. Or until tomorrow when it will be 60 and for me, that's pretty much freezing.  


March 1, 2012

Conversations With My Neighbors

I don't think I will be a very neighborly person once I own my own home some day. I wont know the people that live on my block maybe not even my next door neighbors. The Smith's? The Rodriguez's? (These are my imaginary future neighbors.) 

Right now though, my neighbors are my parents. So at the moment I very much KNOW my neighbors. And they know me. They also know I don't have a functioning kitchen...yet.
current state of my kitchen....
 Last night about an hour after I got home, I had the following exchange:
MOM: Hi Mija, how are you, are you hungry??
ME: HI Mom, no I'm good right now, had a long day and I'm tired. 
MOM: Are you sure, I made some (forgot name of food offered) want me to heat some up for you? Or how about a sanwich?
ME: No, I'm not that hungry, just really tired. 
MOM: OK, do you want some cereal?
ME: (dam it now I want cereal, my late nigh weakness) Um...OK, I'll have some cereal. 
MOM: OK, it's cold outside so I'll send your Dad. 
ME: Yeah it's cold.....What?
MOM: (yelling at dad across the room) Honey, take her some cereal.
ME: Mom, it's....(interrupted)
MOM: OK your dad is taking you some cereal. Have a good night mija.

2 minutes later..knock at the door, Dad walks in.
DAD: Hi Mija, where are you?
ME: Laying down, I'm tired.
DAD: (hands me a bowl of milk) Here you go.
ME: Oh, thank you, but where's the cereal?
DAD: (Walks back into living room)
ME: (I should have asked for a banana...)
DAD: (Comes back in with box and a banana)
ME: Yay! How'd you know I wanted a banana?
DAD: I know my daughters.
ME: (Aww...)
3 minutes later Mom's at the Door. 30 minutes later my neighbors finally left parents went home, they may or may not have tried to tuck me in. (awkward).

I love having my own place and still be close to home and a free kitchen. However, they know my every move day and night and drop by when they like....just like nosy neighbors would I suppose. But I can stand it, for now,  since they are my parents.


February 29, 2012

Guest Post: Alejandra

February's Guest Post comes from my cousin, Alejandra, in Guatemala! She's growing up and teaching me a lesson along the way...

Life Is An Adventure
A couple of months ago, I went to a “Feria del Libro” (Book Fair) that was installed in my university. I live in Guatemala City, and this activity is a way to motivate students from San Carlos University to buy and read books. They don’t only sell new books but also used ones. I went there only to sniff around because my personal budget that day was Q15 (quetzal), which is about $2.00, not really a fortune. While I was looking at the titles I found one, by the cover I knew it wasn’t new, it was very worn out. The title was “Spark of Life” and I honestly don’t know what called my attention. Maybe, its English title – a great source to practice a language I’ve been try to dominate, English – or its irresistible price of Q10 which matched perfectly with my budget, I don’t know exactly why, but I bought it. I started to read it, it’s about people’s life in a concentration camp and their suffering during the II World War. However, the book captivated me for other reasons first of all, it was written in 1952, but I have on my hands the printing of November 1964! The book is about one century old, so when I first opened it I could smell this particular fragrance that is a mix of humidity, old age and experiences. Second, when I flicked through it I could read in the last page a stamp with an address in Puerto Rico, it belonged to someone there. It lead me to imagine the great stories and anecdotes it could tell us if it could talk, imagine all the people it has met and how many of them thought it was interesting enough to read it, imagine how many places it has visited. It was printed in USA, it belonged to someone in PR and now it’s here in Guatemala, with me. 

But why am I telling you this story about the book?? Last month I turned 22 and this is my senior year at University, so it’s a year of reflection and decisions.  I have to decide what I want to do with the rest of my life because I don’t want to waste my time or later regret not doing things, or making mistakes, but then I thought, what if do all of these things?? What if I make mistakes and lose my way??  I realized I’m afraid of growing older… But, then I just got it, growing up might be hard but also exciting because it’s sort of an adventure. I see my grandmother and my mom – Grandma’s younger version, and my older version (hopefully) - They’re women who built their characters through hard experiences, but in the battle with life they won. Growing up is like the book, it’s a compendium of experiences and moments that build you character and make you be who are. I understood that old things are beautiful too in their own particular way because each wrinkle, mark and stain are memories, good or bad they teach you something, and they are the proof that adventure exists, even in a book cover…
{Grandma and Mom}
 So I’ll try to live my life according with what I think is correct, I’ll fight my own battles if I have to, and with God’s help I hope to be able to get something good out of it. If I make mistakes, they’ll just mean a learned lesson for the future and if I get hurt, it’ll just mean I have scars to be proud of. I’m ready, are you??


February 28, 2012

Dry Shampoo Reviews

I have greasy hair.Yes, it's true, as much as I hate it and don't want to admit it, I have greasy hair. Not just greasy, but also super fine, thin and life-less hair. Plus, the ends are fried. I don't get it. 

The more I wash it the oilier the top gets and the dryer the ends become. It's a vicious cycle. It gets greasy in extreme weather too. If it's too hot or too cold...greasy. Then one day I discovered dry shampoo.

The first brand I tried was Blow Faux Dry Shampoo

$20/ 2.4 oz / No scent  
Initial thoughts after first use:
This seems to work pretty well but might be better suited for blonds, no smell so better than baby powder. Not really too impressed for something this pricey but maybe it's worth it?
Final verdict after extended use:
This thing BLOWS! As in it sucks. The nozzle stopped working half way through the bottle. I always had white residue, and it gave me dandruff. Might at well stick to the baby powder trick. I say Pass.

Then while cruising a target I found: Tresemme Fresh Start Dry Shampoo, Suave Professionals Dry Shampoo, and Dove Invigorating Dry Shampoo. 

I lumped these three together because I have pretty much the same feeling about them.
Tresemme $5.29 / 5.7oz / citrus scent
Suave $2.74 / 5oz / also rather citrus-y
Dove $4.49 / 5oz / smells like dove stuff. 
Initial thoughts after first use:
Ssmells pretty. Seems to work OK...but...hmmm. Great price though. 
Final verdict after extended use:
SO NOT OK. The effect only last for a little while then you have gunky greasy hair again. Neither gave me any body and the smell ended up going away rather quickly. I felt dirty, not clean.

Tresemme: the worst offender, it left a residue and made my hair really gross, it just seemed to spread the oil. Then gave it a sticky feeling.
Suave: left white flecks and then gradually turned into the gunky look with the sticky feeling.
Dove: was probably the most decent out of the three but not by much.Took a while for the good stuff to come out of the can.

On yet another target trip I bought Umberto Dry Clean Dry Shampoo.
$8.99 / 4oz / no scent.   
Initial thoughts after first use:
OhMyGod!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This might actually work.
Final verdict after extended use:
OhMyGod!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This actually works. No residue, no white stuff (although at first yes, but then you shake it off), no funky scent, in fact, no scent at all. Gives me body and fullness and the oil is gone!! Works for at least a good 24 hours, maybe more. See photo below.

The first shot was right before I left for work, hair was clean fresh. Second shot was the next day late in the afternoon. The third shot was about 2 minutes after the second shot.

You have no idea how this has changed my life. I love Umberto, whomever he is. I am still curious about other brands so I might buy them just to try it out and compare but Umberto's has my heart and greasy hair till then. 


February 23, 2012

Bedroom Inspiration: Desk Space

Yes, the Bedroom is still "in the works." I last shared my overall inspiration but now let's get a little more specific. More specifically, my desk area. As usual Pinterest has served as the source for said inspiration more specifically my Desk Space Board.

Things to note:
1) I am obsessed with white desks apparently. 
2) Must have fresh flowers on my desk!
3) Must have art and photos on my desk!
4) I want that ghost chair!!!(the clear chair in the second to last image)

I'm almost done with my desk, but am faced with the decision of what type of chair to get. 

What do you think: A or B??


February 22, 2012

Dino Myte!

Have you ever been to the Cabazon Dinosours? You have no idea what I'm talking about do you? Well, that's OK. You see when I was a kid I saw a movie called The Wizard, towards the end there is a scene with some dinosaur statues. I became obsessed with those dinosaurs and wanted to visit them. For a long time I thought they were probably a set, sometime later I found out they are a roadside attraction. But alas, I never went.  

This past weekend, the boyfriend and I had to go to Palm Springs for my bosses b-day. Here's the thing. The dinos are on the way. I made sure The Boyfriend was all in to visit the dinosaurs. I may or may not have have been extra giddy about this visit.
We only stuck around for like 20 minutes because it was freezing and super windy! But we had a lot of fun for two grown people visiting old dinosaurs that don't do anything.

 I'm not sure what The Boyfriend was trying to get me to do here but there are like five shots of me inside of thie guys mouth.

There was a gift shop were we picked up a  "talking" dinosaur head for The Nephew but I think secretly he bought it for himself...I called him Dino Myte!

See what I mean? And one more...


February 20, 2012

Making Cake Pops

Friday night I decided to make Cake Pops. They are exactly what they sound like they would be. Pops make out of cake. It all started with this lady: Bakerella. Then everyone and their Starbucks started making/selling them. I looked over the recipe and then looked at this blog to get a better picture of the process. I went to the store and bought everything, went home and winged it. As in I just made them based of what I remembered from reading earlier in the day. They are easy to make but pretty tedious.
Lesson I learned while making Cake Pops:
  • Don't over bake your cake, you need it to be moist not dry.  I didn't over bake on purpose i just wasn't careful.
  • Use about 3/4 can of frosting not just half. 
  • Before melting the candy melts, lower the microwave temperature to low. VERY IMPORTANT!
  • Refrigerate the cake balls for at least 2 hours or 30 minutes in freezer before dipping. Not 30 minutes in fridge.
  • Dipping must be an art form, one that I am not talented in. 
  • if you start at 10pm you will go to bed really late. but you will smell like cake. 
  • 5. Next time don't just "wing it" look up directions.  Although, now I'm pretty sure I got it.
  • There is a reason they are expensive to order or buy. 
  • You will get dirty...or frosty.
  • Even with all that, they are still really, really, freaking good!
  • They are like Pringles, you cant just eat one. Or five.

Have you tried them yet? If you are interested I know a pretty cool chick that makes them, and no i'm not self promoting I really do know someone that sells them: Betty Lou!


February 16, 2012

Taco Sauce Lessons

I really should have called this post "Death By Taco Sauce!" To be clear, no one died from taco sauce. At least none that I know of. You may want to Google it. Let me explain why...

A little while ago after watching a movie with Claudia, we decided to have something to eat and what I actually mean by that is: I was craving these spicy cucumbers from Taco Dollar (a dodgy looking taco truck in my equally dodgy part of my neighborhood) and made her go with me. Taco Dollar as you might have guesed sell tacos for $1. I dont have photos from that night but here is one I found online:
Although I called it dodgy, truth is, by taco truck standards this place is pretty legit. Not sure what their official hours of business are but they are open very, very late. They also have a parking lot, a security guard, and a DVD/CD "store."

So we pulled in, parked and walked on over to order 3 chicken tacos plus an horchata for me and 1 al pastor taco for her. We perused the "store" while we waited for our order. Once they were up I immediately stacked my plate with the cucumbers and then I was faced with a choice...what sauce to use? I had 3 tacos, there we 3 sauces. I had eaten there before but always had the tacos brought to me never had to choose anything. Common sense, or maybe even a little bit of a lapse in common sense due to hunger, led me to try all three. Three sauces for three tacos, done!
I was about 15 cucumbers and 1 green sauce taco down when I felt a little bit of a burn. Nothing I couldn't handle, it was actually a nice burn. I ate the second taco (I ate them in taco sauce order from left to right) and ate more cucumbers...still enjoying my burn. Then about two bites into the third taco with the red sauce when suddenly I really felt a burn. First, on my lips and slowly on my tounge then finally in the back of my mouth... I started to feel really hot and like I couldn't breath. Never having had this type of burn before, panic settled in and I thought I was about to die. 

"Oh My God, Claudia! I can't Breathe! I can't Breath!" I may have repeated that about 10 times while I removed my jacket, scarf and rolled down the window...I felt a little like Yosemite Sam at this point. You know when you face scrunches when you eat something really sour? Well, apparently it happens to me when I eat something really spicy. So now I'm fanning myself, not breathing, my whole right side of my face is scrunched up, I'm pretty sure steam is coming out of my ears, my lips are swollen and my eye have started to water, not tear up...just full on water. I drank the horchata but it was no help. Claudia suggested I drink milk because it cures the burn. She doesn't know this, but I was thinking, "Where the *bleep* am I gonna get some milk sitting in my car in a taco stand parking lot!" Sorry, Claudia...she did however have chocolate covered popcorn in her purse. Milk chocolate covered popcorn. And yes it cured the burn! 
A few days later I told The Boyfriend this story, I expected a chuckle but instead I got a lesson, "Don't you know the rule of thumb? The redder the sauce the hotter!" Obviously, no. 

So there you have it. Two lessons in one post. 1) Redder = Hotter & 2) Milk chocolate covered popcorn = cure for spicy burn. 

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