31 December 2008

Teaching Aid - Food Pyramid for Kids

Today I was looking for a food pyramid for kids and found a cute teaching aid with printable worksheets. You can find it at MyPyramid.

Word Filled Wednesday

Luke 18:11-13
11"The Pharisee stood and was praying this to himself: 'God, I thank You that I am not like other people: swindlers, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector.

12'I fast twice a week; I pay tithes of all that I get.'

13"But the tax collector, standing some distance away, was even unwilling to lift up his eyes to heaven, but was beating his breast, saying, 'God, be merciful to me, the sinner!'

To understand the tax collector a little better, I added this from my study bible: The tax collector's humility is notable in everything about his posture and behavior. Here was a man who had been made to face the reality of his own sin, and his only response was abject humility and repentance. He contrasts with the Pharisee in virtually every detail. He had no hope but the mercy of God. This is the point to which the law aims to bring every sinner.

The purpose of Word filled Wednesday is to share God’s word (no famous quotes or other literature — only the beautiful word of our Father) through photo’s & a Bible verse!

30 December 2008

Message Board

Serving trays serve as message boards with some chalkboard paint(I used Crayola brand), wire, 2 rivets, and 4 clear 3/8" vinyl bumpers for the back. When adding the rivets for the hanger, I also added a black washer to the front on one side so that I could add ribbon & chalk.
To personalize you can either paint or decal the edge. These make great gifts.
Serving trays can be purchased for change at thrift stores and yard sales. Certain steps of this project can be done with children as long as they are supervised.

29 December 2008

Valentine Box

When my oldest was in Elementary School she had to make a box for her Valentine cards. I think I may have gotten this idea from a magazine.
We used a shoe box and cut a little hole at the top for her cards. We then covered it with yellow paper. The front is foamie decorated with markers. We added a grossgrain bow which was topped with a red foamie heart with my daughters name on it. For the back we cut out the shape of the tail and the legs, which cannot be seen, but this added a really cute touch to the project.

23 December 2008

Word Filled Wednesday

This is my first Word Filled Wednesday :)
I chose 2 Corinthians 3:5 this week which says: "Not that we are adequate in ourselves to consider anything as coming from ourselves, but our adequacy is from God..."
I read something amazing last night in a Nelson Bible and wanted to share it here:
One of the great tenets of Scripture is the claim that Jesus Christ is completely sufficient for all matters of life and godliness (2Pe1:3-4)! He is sufficient for creation (Col 1:16, 17), salvation (Heb 10:10-12), sanctification (Eph 5:26, 27), and glorification (Ro 8:30). So pure is He that there is no blemish, stain, spot of sin, defilement, lying, deception, corruption, error, or imperfection (1Pe 1:18-20).

20 December 2008

Clothespin Dolls

My 7 year old and I made these Brownie Girls Scouts for her troop last night. I had her help me paint and to cut out the skirts. The pattern for the skirt and arms is from a Martha Stewart show a few years ago. If that link does not work, you may be able to visit her website and search "clothespin dolls".
The faces and bodies were painted first with acrylic paints. When dry we added the arms and clothing with a hot glue gun, but something like Twice As Tacky would probably work fine too. I plan on adding a little round beanie hat and a eye hook on top for hanging on a tree.

Peanut Lover's Blondies

Preheat Oven 350
· 1 stick (1/2 c) butter
· ¾ c packed brown sugar
· 1 large egg
· 1 t vanilla extract
· 1 c plus 2 T all-purpose flour
· 1 t baking powder
· ¼ c plus 2 T chopped unsalted peanuts
· ¼ c plus 2 T peanut butter chips
· 16 mini Reese’s peanut butter cups
HEAT oven. Line an 8-in square baking pan with foil. Coat with nonstick spray.

MELT butter in medium saucepan. Stir in br sugar & stir 1 min or until mixture bubbles. Remove from heat; let cool 20 min or until luke warm. Stir in egg and vanilla, then flour and baking powder until blended. Stir in 1/4c each of nuts & chips. Distribute the 16 mini cups over top, then press gently until level with top of batter. Sprinkle with remaining 2 T each of the nuts & chips.

SPREAD in prepared pan. Bake 23 to 25 min until a wooden pick inserted in center of batter comes out clean. Cool on wire rack.

LIFT foil by ends onto cutting board. Cut into 16 squares.

19 December 2008

Crayon Box Saver

How many times does the box from crayons get too weak to hold crayons. It happens a lot here and the crayons end up in the big tub with the broken ones. I really love the size of the crayon box because it perfectly fits all the crayons from the box. It's not too small and not too big. My daughters desk is not very big, so I came up with an idea.
I thought I'd try something different, than handing her a pencil box when her box deteriorated. In August when I bought a 16 cent box of crayons, I thought I'd reinforce it with packing tape. It held up well and lasted longer than the crayons. This week we had several crayons break so I was going to give her another box. But, first I reinforced this one too. I could have used the other one, but then I wouldn't have pictures for here. :)

Tape top & bottom first. First I took about a 4" piece of tape for the top of the box. The box top is much smaller (2.75" x 1"). I cut the tape so that it would lay flat when I folded it over. The picture didn't come out well for this step because the tape is clear. After taping the top and bottom of box, I then took a 9" piece of tape and went around the front, sides, and back of the tape. I had the overlapping part in the back so that the front would look nicer. Because my tape is only 2" wide I had to use two 9" pieces of tape.Mark a line with a ruler & sharpie, then cut with a sharp utility knife. Do not cut back side. After taping it I cut it like a flip top box of crayons. I realized after I cut it that I should have used a ruler and sharpie.
Add a button with quilt/button thread (or 1/8" ribbon) & an upholstery needle. Leave ends long for easy tying. Place small piece of tape over ends. The button and string makes it look cute and keeps the crayons inside the box.
Tie some thread at the top with at least a 8" tail to wrap around button. To start with my string was probably 12" long. It's not easy getting inside the box, so I wanted plenty of room to tie the ends off. I added another button as can be seen in first picture at top. I thought it looked better that way. With 2 buttons you'll need an 8" tail of thread, not a 5" one. It would look like an inner office folder if you also add a circle of cardstock a little bigger than the button and use red thread. Maybe next time I will try it that way.

18 December 2008

Christmas Chickadee

Christmas Chickadee

from Klazane's blog
Finished! This is the Black-Capped Chickadee I worked on last night and most of today. :) You can't see it in the picture, but he has a lovely notched tail and little brown french knot eyes. I found the basic pattern here, but I changed it to make it...well, a chickadee. I changed the head shape and the beak, added wings, and, of course, those beautiful chickadee markings! I love those little birds. :) It's a Christmas present for a friend, but I almost want to keep it. :P One down, many more to go. I think I'll do something a little simpler for the rest of my gifts...

17 December 2008

Snowy Morning

We just love waking up to a snow-covered lawn. :)
(Unfortunately, it all melted...again!)
From Klazane: Here's a sneak peek at a work in progress that will hopefully be completed and posted in its entirety tomorrow on my blog. :D

Favorite Authors

Tagged By my daughter: Klazane for the record is not her real name. Her lil sister named her hand that when she was 2.

Who is your all-time favorite author and why? Paul in the Bible, does that count? There is so much theology in every passage. Can anyone wrap their noggin around it the first time, the second, the third? My second would be a tie between Janette Oke and Beverly Lewis. I enjoy reading about the Amish, but do not seem to have much time to read.
Who was your first favorite author and why? My first favorite was Beverly Cleary. There was always something special about those two sisters! I could always relate to the older Beatrice (Beezus) who did not want her lil sister tagging along, but if I could go back, I would have my little sister with me always.
Do you still consider him/her to be among your favorites?
Beverly Cleary: no
; Paul: yes
Who is the most recent addition to your list of favorite authors, and why? Sorry Klazane, new authors? Ha ha ha ha, maybe in the summer when theres time to read.
If someone asked you who your favorite authors were right now, which authors would first pop out of your mouth? Paul, then Beverly Lewis & Janette Oke
I tag:
My sisters, but they are already tagged :)
Our Crazy Farm

Link to the person that tagged you, post the rules somewhere in your meme, answer the questions, tag six people in your post, let the tagees know they have been chosen by leaving a comment on their blog, let the tagger know your entry is posted.

14 December 2008

APPLE CRISP - Cast Iron Baking

On a cold day there is something yummy about smelling apples baking! Here is Apple Crisp in my new cast iron skillet that I won from Blackiron Dude. The skillet is beautifully seasoned. I am finally confident in using it now that he posted great tips on how to keep your iron clean.
I was going to make Apple Pancake, but we usually only make that for breakfast and no one has been in the mood for it. So here is Apple Crisp (with less apples than in the recipe). I'm not sure what I was thinking... I love this recipe. Our school use to make it for lunch a few times a month. I got the recipe from my sister who got it from our old HomeEc teacher. That teacher's family owned a local (famous) candy store, which is no longer in business.
Apple Crisp
5 c sliced, pared tart apples
1 c brown sugar
3/4 c flour
1 t cinnamon
1/2 c butter
3/4 c cooking oats (oatmeal)

Combine flour, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Cut in butter and then add and stir in oat meal. Set aside. Melt another tablespoon of butter in your cast iron, or add melted butter to a pie dish. Add sliced apples. Top with oat mixture and press it down onto the apples. Bake at 350 for 45 - 50 minutes. Serve warm. Enjoy!

12 December 2008

New Washcloth

I found a new pattern for a washcloth. It is the zigzag pattern. I forget the other name for it. It is right there on the tip of my tongue... chevrons... maybe that is it. :) This is a quick one, no border and looks nice, yeah!

Most prefer a washcloth for dishes that is under 8" x 8" (20cm x 20cm). It is just big enough for your hand and you can get into a heavy glass with it. This one is my favorite.

I changed my pattern a little. The first 6 rows are solid the middle two are like rows 7 and 8 and then the last 6 rows are solid again. You can make yours as you wish. My finished washcloth is 9" wide x 8 1/2" tall, (23cm x 21.5cm).
In order to clearly see and/or print the directions to the left just click on it and you should see it full size.

11 December 2008


For a few months I have been browsing things on Etsy. That is how I found Craft Pudding. A few days ago she posted how to make a stamp. There you will find alot of resources. I was curious how easy it was to make a stamp, so, I found an eraser and voila. It's a lil crude, goes to show it too, I only spent about 10 minutes on sunny. Afterwards I began reading more on how to do it. I like all the tutorials but in the end favored Kirberts because he went into a lil more depth. His webpage on rubber stamping is not cutesy but extremely informative.

After making my sun and reading Kirbert's page I see that, I will need smaller tools and rubber to make something worth gifting. All the tutorials pretty much do not suggest having children under 12 do this. I can see that it would be frustrating because you cannot "go back" once you cut too much. The knives/tools are very sharp and pose a danger to lil hands. A way to get your lil one involved if they do wish to do something, you can have them draw a picture of their favorite stuffy or toy; then you can make it into a stamp for them.

I've brought out my premade stamps and my youngest, Lizzy is having a lot of fun stamping her papers after she completes them for school. It has provided an incentive to do neat work :)

09 December 2008

Zakka's ornament idea

I thought this was really cute. You can find the whole thing with more pictures here: http://zakkalife.blogspot.com/2008/12/kokeshi-doll-christmas-ornaments.html I made something like this a few years ago with clothespins, eye hooks at top, but made carolers, skaters and the like. For skaters I used a piece of stiff gray felt hot glued to feet to make the blade of the skate.

Zakkalife was busy making kokeshi doll ornaments for her daughter's nursery class. She decided to give ornaments since she's been told no one throws away a Christmas ornament. Do you think this true? Have you ever thrown away Christmas ornament? The only ornaments most of us have ever thrown away were broken ones. Curious to hear your thoughts.Directions to make Kokeshi Doll Ornaments here. She also made a gift tag to go with the ornaments, see her page, she offers for people to copy and use it if they wish.

It's been very cold in the northeast!

Brrrrr! It's been chilly here in the northeast. Nothing is better than a stew on a day like today, unless you ask the kids; they will say nothing warms better than hot cocoa! I found many recipes for stew over the years. I find they best stew is when the meat is cooked very slowly, in a crock, on the stove, or in the oven for many hours. This one should have been cooked longer, but we couldn't wait. Just like chili, it is better the next day,,, but needs more time on the stove, cooked very slowly. We like it when the meat starts to fall apart.

04 December 2008

Free Christmas Music MP3

Happy Hearts at Home always posts really neat things for home schoolers. Also alot of free things that are very interesting for anyone. Here is her blog.
I downloaded this, it is cute. Thanks Alexandra!!

Free Christmas Music MP3

01 December 2008

Shpiffy Squirrel at Klazane

Today I finished my Shpiffy Squirrel mini stuffie. You can see him on my blog here. :]


29 November 2008

Cards for parents Anniversary

This week my girls and I sat down and made homemade cards for my in-laws anniversary. The first on the left is Klazane's hand painted rose card. The second was made by my youngest (7) and the last one I made. My in-laws really enjoyed receiving the homemade cards. I think we will do this every year.

27 November 2008

Vintage Sewing Attachements

Vintage Sewing Attachments

Two months ago, we dug out an old box of attachments and, boy, did we find a treasure chest! We had gotten them with an old sewing machine at a yard sale a few years ago for only $3! contained many old contraptions that looked like they'd be as hard to figure out how to use as doing the work by hand. (Particularly the ruffler, which is the one farthest to the left in the above picture.)
We also had an old book that explained how to use each one, and dispite complex diagrams and long lists of parts and their functions, they were actually fairly simple to operate.
I am particularly excited about the four hemmers in the kit. I can't wait to easily sew hems with those handy little attachments. I did try out both the ruffler and the narrow hemmer, and was very pleased with the results.
The ruffler was especially fun to figure out, and I love how adjustable it is. It ruffle or plait, scantily or heavily, close together or far apart. And the Narrow Hemmer did a seam fabulously and easily.
Posted by Klazane--

26 November 2008

Finished Cap

Finished Cap

Last week Klazane finished the cap she was working on for her sister.
(Pattern found here.)
"I must say, I am so very glad I started running out of the yellow and was forced to add a large off-white stripe because I'm afraid otherwise it may have resembled a construction hat, and that isn't quite the look I was going for. :P"

Now on to the skirt! :]

25 November 2008

The "Wait" Shopper

When a new series first came out by Beverly Lewis, I was really thrilled and couldn't wait to get it, but I did not... and then forgot about. Yesterday while shopping I stopped in at Ollie's and there were the first three books for $4 a piece. They are usually around $11 a book. I was excited to spend $12 on 3 books instead of over $30.

I've been talking to a few friends who are "wait" shoppers and were saying that they also teach this to their children. "Wait" until it is on sale. This is a very new for me! I am excited about it and wanted to share it! It's pretty neat to buy something brand new for a third of the sale price.

How far back can you remember?

This was taken around the year 1970. I remember the doll house and sink, but not the other toys.
My youngest who is now 7 spends time playing like this; having a few things around the floor going from one thought to another playing for hours. There are days now that I spend time to play with or talk to both girls. That is something I am happy I am doing now. I love not working even though it is alot of work.
Much of my days are filled with teaching my youngest. I spend time with my oldest every afternoon while making lunch & dinner and sometimes after the youngest is in bed. This time with my girls is invaluable! I am grateful for the opportunity to be home. It's a small luxury few mothers get to enjoy, especially in today's economy.
In two more days we will celebrate Thanksgiving and here I wanted to give thanks to God for saving such a wretch.
I wanted to share a gorgeous prayer, puritin prayer.

Thy understanding is unsearchable and infinite,
Thy arm cannot be stayed,
Thy agency extends through limitless space,
All works hang on thy care,
With thee time is a present now.

Holy is thy wisdom, power, mercy, ways, works.
How can I stand before thee
with my numberless and aggravated offences?
I have often loved darkness,
observed lying vanities,
forsaken thy given mercies,
trampled underfoot thy beloved Son,
mocked thy providences,
flattered thee with my lips,
broken thy covenant.
It is of thy compassion that I am not consumed.

Lead me to repentance, and save me from despair;
Let me come to thee renouncing, condemning, loathing myself,
but hoping in the grace that flows even to the chief of sinners.
At the cross may I contemplate the evil of sin, and abhor it,
look on him whom I pierced,
as one slain for me, and by me.
May I never despise his death by fearing it's efficacy for my salvation.
And whatever cross I am required to bear,
let me see him carrying a heavier.
Teach me in health to think of sickness,
in the brightest hours to be ready for darkness;
in life prepare me for death.
Thus may my soul rest in thee, O immortal and transcendent one,
revealed as though art in the Person and work of thy Son,
the friend of sinners.

17 November 2008

Tips for Cooking in Cast Iron

Please see Rick & Kathy's Website Cooking In Cast Iron
They have alot of tips on taking care of cast iron and a great video if you'd rather watch tips. Below I have listed a few but check out the website when you get a chance to, it is really worth it.
1. Use your pans and use them a lot. If your pan has just been seasoned fresh (as opposed to factory pre-seasoned) or re-seasoned it will probably be a shade of brown, BUT it should be completely black within a year if it is used frequently. There's very little that cannot be cooked in cast iron. Rethink the kinds of pans you use. If you normally cook something in the oven on a cookie sheet, it might cook just as well in the skillet. On the stovetop, skillets can be used for much more than frying, but obviously, they're good for that, too. Breads and desserts cook well in cast iron skillets, too.
eep them handy, either on the stove top or in the oven when not in use.
Since cast iron distributes heat so well, under normal situations, you don't need to turn a stove burner above a "medium" heat. Always let the pan heat as the burner heats or let the pan heat in the oven as the oven heats. Don't put a cold pan on a hot surface or a hot pan in cold water. Either has the potential to crack or warp the pan.
4. Check out Rick & Kathy's website...

09 November 2008

2 New Wash Cloths for Washing Dishes

Patterns many times develop when you use variegated colored yarn. This one is my favorite pattern. I love this style wash clothes (for dishes) because they are the perfect size and thickness for my hand. They are also very easy and quick to make.

Gauge: Not important

Hook size: US G/6.00 mm

1. Ch22 loosely.

2. Row 1: Turn, hdc in 3rd chain from hook and then in each chain.

3. Rows 2 - 12: Turn and chain 2, hdc in each hdc.

4. Round 1: Change color if you wish and... Turn and chain 2 (this counts as 1 hdc), hdc 2 more times in corner and then hdc in each hdc except the corners get 3 hdc. On sides evenly crochet around 19 hdc. slst in second chain of beginning ch2.

5. Round 2: Chain 1 and single crochet in each hdc except sc 3 in corners. Slst in beginning ch 1. Tie off.

Key: sc= single crochet hdc= half double crochet slst= slip stitch

08 November 2008

A Homemade Spice Cake

This is a very simple Spice Cake from my trusty cookbook. I found the same recipe here. The topping is simply a glaze of powdered sugar, vanilla, and milk. Yum! This is great on a chilly day with coffee!

06 November 2008

Cast Iron Delight

I have exciting news! I won a cast iron skillet from Black Iron Dude. I am so excited. I found his website because I have 3 cast iron skillets that I would love to use regularly. I've had them for maybe 5 years and have used them maybe 3 times a year because I have never learned how to care for them properly.
After reading his blog and taking notes I seasoned my skillets again and started using them a lot. As you can see, I can finally make eggs in my medium sized pan and the pan is finally totally black! Check out those eggs and that black pan! Yay!!
You can see where I won the skillet here. If you have a cast iron skillet and don't use it, I hope you are inspired to take it out and start using it. Here is a delicious recipe for Apple Pancake. Do not make it in anything except cast iron or you may regret it :)
10" cast iron skillet
4 T Butter
1/4 c Brown Sugar
1 large Apple, cored & sliced 1/8"
5 large Eggs
1 c Flour
1 c Milk
1/2 t ground Cinnamon
Pinch of Salt
Confectioners sugar

Preheat oven to 400. In a 10" skillet, melt butter & 3 T brown sugar. Add apples, and cook 5 minutes, stir occasionally.

In med bowl, whisk eggs, flour, milk, cinnamon, salt, & remaining sugar. Pour batter slowly over cooked apple mixture. Transfer to oven til golden brown, set in center, and puffed around edges, about 15 minutes. Sprinkle with confectioners sugar and serve hot.

Cards for a resonable price

A friend from church gave me great advice on cards and it is too good to not pass along to you!
You can make 300 cards for under 10 cents a piece.
This is what you need from, yes, Walmart. If you don't like shopping there why not make a special trip there very, very early in the morning. You then will pretty much have the entire store to yourself.
In the office supply section buy a package of white card stock (150 sheets). I just bought some in August or September and it cost around $8. In that same section you should see "Invitation Envelopes" that are about 4 3/8" X 5 3/4". In our store they are under $5 for 50 envelopes.
After visiting the office supply section, go to the party/card section where they probably have scrapbooking supplies. Again if your Wal-mart is like most you will be able to buy a bundle pack of scrapbooking papers and cutouts for under $10, I just bought one for $7. In the case that you already have pretty papers and things at home, save some money and use what you have first.
How to:
1. Cut a 8 1/2" X 11" piece of card stock in half so that the 2 halves measures 5 1/2" X 8 1/2". Cut a few more, I'll explain later.
2. Fold the cards so that they are 5 1/2" X 4 1/4", use a teaspoon or a ruler to rub the fold flat.
3. Think of or borrow a design for the front of a cover and duplicate it for a few more cards. If you do a few each time you need a card, you will quickly accumulate a nice assortment.
There is 1 card above that was decorated by a 7 year old with foamy stickers. Kids LOVE making cards too, so this is a fun project for the family.
NOTES: The cosmos flower in the first/second picture is a cut out dye that I used for a sunflower project. The 3rd card was made from a $7 bundle pack that includes 40 patterned 12x12 papers and 437 cutouts. I use Elmers Glue for the cards because people do not usually keep cards for long. I added glitter to the name in the 3rd card as well.

24 October 2008

Crocheted Washcloths

When I was making the above dish cloth, I was wondering if these yellows would look alright together. The center yellow is lemon yellow and didn't match what I had intended it for. I didn't want to let it sit because yellow is such a happy color. So I experimented with the variegated yellow I think it found its match.The 2 blue ones are with my favorite pattern. It is very simple and works well in the sink, the size is just right for a woman's hand. The pattern can be found on the inside of most cotton skeins of yarn.

22 October 2008

Quick Mosiac Frame Project for Boys and Girls

I just love finding a project for boys or girls and with supplies that we already have. I have craft supplies packed in all our storage areas around our house and still there are things stuck here and there around the house as well. My kids were excited to do this project today.
We used 1/2 of a piece of 8 1/2" x 11" cardstock, then folded in half to get it to an invitation card size. I measured and cut a hole in one side as a frame. After she glued cut up pieces of construction paper on it we let it dry. That is what you see above. Tomorrow we will find a picture to put in it and glue the card shut with a ribbon hanger.

20 October 2008

Amazing Art Work

My girls submitted their art work today. The little one drew and then painted with water color. Her picture depicts a family of birds, some are being fed and others look on. She didn't have alot of time to work on it. She did an amazing job!

The next pretty picture was drawn by my oldest. I am very proud of you baby girl! Everytime I look at this I think about what that little girl must be thinking to have a little bird on her hand. I am proud of you, this is beautiful!

16 October 2008

Fall Decorating

Today we put up the fall wreath on the front door. It was made last year and has held up beautifully. The leaves are dried and we are surprised that the colors have not faded.
Two pumpkins sit on our porch but our photographer moved them to take their picture in the leaves. The pumpkins are from the pumpkin patch. A neighbor of ours has 5 children and they have 7 little pumpkins on their banister. Very cute!
We have hydrangeas drying in the garage. I cannot wait to make wreathes this year. A few of the hydrangeas are huge. I definately want to buy more plants for next year.

15 October 2008

Wherefore art thou, dishrag?

September 29, 2008

I've been busy doing small projects crocheting (dish) washcloths while my youngest works on her handwriting lesson. I see now that I should have blocked them before taking the picture. I figure that they aren't for sale and I wouldn't block it before I gave it away, he he.

My photographer is now getting credit for every picture she snaps or fixes. Did you notice? LOL

Above there are only 2 patterns. One is from the inside label of a cotton yarn and the other I bought at a craft store (AC Moore) on clearance. I think it is from the early 90's, it shows you how to crochet about 8 washcloths. I've tried about 4 and so far but only like the flower pattern above.

Cheese and Potato Shells

Cheese and Potato Shells

Box of large shells
3 pounds of potatoes
Velveeta Cheese
1 medium onion
butter for sauteing

My husband's family has been making these for years and they are so yummy. I didn't think I could make them, but my husband convinced me to try and I am so glad I did. They turned out really delicious! It is really easy to make too. They taste a little like a perogie but like homemade. My family has a variety of tastes, and so I am thinking of making a few with different things in them like roasted garlic and onion inside.


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