Thursday, 31 December 2009

Watch Out People!

You know you're completely out of the blogging loop when you log in on blogger and it kindly informs you that you have 261 unmoderated comments. For a mere second I let it go to my head a tiny bit and felt tres popular indeed. Right until I scanned the comments prior to moderation and found each and every one to be completely identical, all offering me Viagra.

Viagra? Are you kidding me? I have 3 kids, the smallest of which it appears failed to read our family sleeping policy prior to arrival in chez Siswick and is killing me slowly, mostly a brain cell at a time. I think I'm likely down to approximately 12 remaining right now.

I need a pill to keep me awake in the morning and another to put me to sleep at night preferably for at least 8 gloriously solid hours. Viagra I can live without, it is surplus to requirements here.

But is this what the blogosphere has come to in my absence? Spam comments? Uncool.

It was a humbling moment when I came to the realisation that if I neglected one of my kids as badly as I have neglected my lovely blog these last 12 months or so social services would've intervened long, long ago. Surely my blog is as worthy of my love as my offspring?

So I have used up all my paltry excuses for not blogging:

I'm pregnant and tired-check.

I just had a baby and am even more tired-check.

I fell over because I was so tired and fractured my shoulder-check.

I can hardly string a sentence together due to combined tiredness from pregnancy, having a baby, fracturing my shoulder and having to contend with dear sweet beautiful Libby whose single goal in life is to ensure I never get a good nights sleep-check.

No more excuses people, I'm back on the blog.

And I mean it!

That is my only New Year Resolution.

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Friday, 30 October 2009

Really? My Child?

Now that my firstborn is in full time school he frequently comes home with his jumper generously spattered with stickers in recognition of his good works and impeccable behaviour.

Obviously I always feel a smug glow of pride when he comes out adorned with stickers while other parents pick up their kids who aren't so beautifully decorated. (No doubt that'll be me next year picking up Eli, he's just not all that bothered about making people happy like our Thomas).

Of course in school I was always the model of perfect classroom etiquette (when I wasn't idly chatting to my classmates and ignoring the teacher of course) so I think Thomas is just following in my footsteps.

The other day as we were collecting his coat I enquired as to why he'd received a sticker of a dinosaur that said 'excellent-saurus'.

"I had the tidiest pile".


"When we got changed for PE and had to leave our clothes tidy my pile was the very tidy one".

(Completely bewildered) "Oh, right!"

"Cos some of those kids just are not good at being tidy".

And that behaviour he did not get from me.

But I'm hoping it's contagious because my house would really benefit from a healthy dose of that.

(On a tangent I just barely got around to removing the 'your pregnancy' widget. Imagine my horror when I just checked it only to find I'd neglected it so long it was telling me I was 7 weeks pregnant all over again! I'd rather fracture my other shoulder than be pregnant all over again).

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Tuesday, 6 October 2009

New evidence that nothing good comes from cleaning.

Imagine the scene.

A young(ish) Mother's first day with all 3 kidlets all by herself.

The 4 year old gets to school, clean, dressed and on time.

The 3 year old gets to nursery, somewhat clean, dressed and on time, albeit reluctantly.

The Mother delights in her efficiency and arrives home with 2 week old baby in tow feeling like maybe life isn't gonna be the chaotic existence she imagined after all.

She gazes at her sleeping baby and glances at her watch. She has time to quickly overhaul the house and get things all shiny clean and super tidy before the baby needs feeding then she can indulge in uninterrupted baby time before the 3 year old needs collecting.

Bliss, yes?

Until the part where the completely excellent Mother falls over who knows what bashing her head and fracturing her shoulder.

And that, friends, is why I'm never cleaning again.

(I wish I had it caught on camera because that tumble would be truly hilarious to watch I am sure, just saying!)

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Monday, 31 August 2009

Welcome..... the world Libby Mae.

Libby made her entrance into the world on 28/08/09 at 10:40pm.

Weighing a hefty 7lbs 3.5oz.

A real whopper by our standards.

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Monday, 6 July 2009

Giving a Bit of Credit Where it's Long Overdue

For Father's Day this year we happened to be off by the sea enjoying some sunshine on our family Summer holiday.

On Thomas's last day of school before we left Rob wasn't working and so he went to pick him up. I tried to talk him out of it because I knew Thomas would be coming home with some top quality hand crafted card or gift and I had wanted to keep it as a surprise for the big day itself.

But Rob went nonetheless and really I should have just been grateful that someone else was doing the pick up for a change. Because really after the 212th pick up of the academic year the monotony really started to kick in.

Thomas came home with this card.

I knew right away what the drawing was. It couldn't have been more obvious.

It's Rob playing his Xbox. Priceless.
I looked at Rob, he seemed crestfallen, he said with a tinge of sarcasm, 'Oh it gets better!'

So I looked inside and there recorded by his teacher is what in the eyes of Thomas his dad liked doing the most in all the world.

Rob was both gutted and concerned that Thomas's teachers would have a far less than top notch opinion of his fathering prowess.

Behind a chuckle I tried to comfort him by suggesting that it could have been far, far worse.

After all It could have said my dad likes to play Grand Theft Auto or some Zombie killing game.

So should Thomas's teachers ever fill their spare hours randomly googling parents of their pupils for the record I'd just like to say what a fab dad Rob truly is (and that his Xbox generally only enjoys the wonder of electrical power when they kids are fast asleep in bed).

I don't give him nearly enough vocal credit (or probably non vocal credit either) and I don't devote nearly enough blog posts to him (really I should cos the guy has hilariously killer OCD and what's not entertaining about that?).

On Father's Day when he was well within his rights to demand a nap and maybe even breakfast in bed (which I'm pretty sure were my Mother's day demands) he was instead doing this with his two biggest fans.

Plus one things for sure you'd never catch me doing stuff like this with them.

I'm impressed I even went outside to take pictures of it.

Mummy's are for warm, indoor and clean activities only.

Oh and for the record Rob actually didn't even think the Xbox tennis was that special.

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Friday, 3 July 2009

What a Difference 365 Makes

Yesterday Eli had his very first visit to Nursery School.

As we spent our hour there playing in very familiar surroundings (due to the fact that we drop Thomas off there every afternoon) I couldn't help but let my mind wander back to the same experience a year ago when I was doing the exact same thing with Thomas. (Though mercifully back then it was about 10 degrees cooler and I wasn't incubating what feels like a litter of puppies).

A year ago I was full of apprehension about my firstborn growing up too quickly.

This year I can't help thinking, Roll on September!

Last year I decided to send Thomas in the afternoons so that we could all enjoy lazy mornings in our PJ's together.

This year I realised that with 2 boys under 5 lazy mornings simply just don't exist so Eli will be headed to school at 8:40 with his brother every day and I'll have lazy mornings by myself (new baby permitting).

Last year Thomas cried for 30 minutes after leaving his visit to Nursery he was so enamoured.

This year, all year, Eli has cried and had to be wrestled out of nursery when we drop Thomas off on an almost daily basis. I feel ready for that particular brand of humiliation to end. 11 days to go and counting.

While Eli and I were visiting Thomas's teacher came over to tell me that she's thrilled to be getting Eli because it'll make it easier to say bye to Thomas. She expressed that it'd be like having Thomas still there.

A lovely sentiment.

But Eli isn't a bit like Thomas.

The main contrast?

Last year I remember being really concerned that Thomas would injure himself playing with their real grown up woodworking tools.

This year I'm far more concerned that Eli will bludgeon someone other than himself.

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Saturday, 27 June 2009

I'm a tiny bit concerned.....

....that this baby currently residing in my uterus (with something wedged rather inhospitably under my ribs) is gonna be born with the uncanny ability to count from 1 to 3.

She will probably think too that my normal tone of voice is that of a shrieking beast.

For such is the frequency these days that I appear to be giving out warnings and counting sternly to three before one of my delightful monsters requires a visit (or 8) to the naughty spot.

I just can't work out if my unborn child's numerical brilliance will be the result of my good parenting or bad.

Ah well brilliance is brilliance.

Who cares how we get there.

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Wednesday, 24 June 2009

Belated Birthday (Revisited)

You'd imagine after last years birthday I'd have been more on the ball this year.

It would appear that guilt eventually wears off because on May 24th our baby turned 3.

Leaving all traces of babyhood behind him.

And I'm only just blogging about it now.

A month late!

(Future Eli: Please note that this year I was equally neglectful blogging about Thomas's birthday so don't grow up to be a bitter and cynical middle child please.)

We'd been preparing him for months that three year olds don't have dummies and they don't ride in strollers, and apart from a viciously hellish week of sleepless nights all has gone swimmingly.
He had a space rocket cake (made by my good self) that I could have quite happily devoured in one sitting.
He got gifts galore and when asked later what his favourite gift was he replied without hesitation:

"My Nanny got me a Queen Car (Translation:Lightning McQueen) card that sings happy birthday to me".


Next year I'll save myself a fortune and buy him a £2 birthday card and spend the rest of his birthday fund on new shoes for me. Because clearly that's the only way that money is going to be truly appreciated.

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Saturday, 20 June 2009

30 Weeks: A Four Year Old's Perspective

Months ago Thomas came home from nursery with this picture.

In case you're wondering that's me on the right. (But isn't that completely obvious?)

Apparently my most striking feature is my gigantic googly eyes but please do pay attention to (and even envy a little) my stick thin body and arms.

It's like me and Victoria Beckham were separated at birth or something.
If you happen to be wondering who the rather round and squat person is on the left of me that would be my mother. She was visiting at the time and lucky for Thomas she was so thrilled by the knowledge that he could write his very own name that she got completely distracted from the fact that he had drawn her with an uncanny resemblance to an Oompa Loompa. Though I have to admit to being rather amused myself.

Roll on to last Sunday when Thomas drew this beauty of a family portrait in his Primary class at Church and oh what a difference a few months makes.

Again that would be me on the right.

Long gone is my stick thin body, (though I do appear to have maintained a pretty good set of legs).

Shrunken are my eyes, stupid pregnancy insomnia.

Imagine my horror to find out that this is a representation of how I'm looking these days.

Please note our baby girl dwelling comfortably within my gigantic body cavity, pigtails et al.
So do you think he did me justice? Here is a picture of me yesterday at 30 weeks gestation.

Oh and please don't hate me for not being enormous.

Or for the fact that this is by far the most near to being enormous I have been at this stage in pregnancy.

Bring on the next 10 weeks and somebody hide all drawing materials from the 4 year old.

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Wednesday, 17 June 2009

The Price of Fame

Over here in recent months (cos really that's how far behind I am with blogging) I have been swelling, not just with pregnancy either, but also with a little bit of pride.

In January our brother in law, Alex, was recruited as the new face of the BBC's preschool channel.
The good fortune honestly couldn't have shone upon a more deserving guy. (Alex was even AP on his mission and the really good kind too, not the kind you secretly want to poke in the eye or even better bake laxative laced cookies for).
So you can probably imagine how thrilled the boys were to see Uncle Alex on TV, right?


Thomas was immediately traumatised as to why on earth Uncle Alex was shacked up in some rather different house (which is the set for the channel) with a woman who was very much not his Auntie Jo.

Gradually he overcame his grave suspicions of infidelity and we were able to watch in relative peace without him voicing concern every 12 seconds that all was not quite right in the world.

We dutifully switched our allegiances from our usual (very selectively chosen to maintain my sanity) programs and channels and started to watch Uncle Alex instead.

Turns out having a celebrity in the family has it's downside.

In supporting Uncle Alex my kids were exposed to TV shows that I'd previously avoided at all costs and pretty much immediately Eli was completely enamoured with 'In the Night Garden'.

If you're thinking 'I've never heard of that show'. First of all let me say, lucky, lucky you. (And I really, really mean it!)

Secondly let me go ahead and provide an explanation. Think Teletubbies (but without that incredibly creepy sunshine that was actually a baby), but whilst thinking teletubbies imagine slightly more drug influenced creators. (If such a thing is imaginable).

Can you picture it perfectly in your head now?

A garden world full of characters like Iggle Piggle, Upsy Daisy, Makka Pakka, the Pontipines and the Tombliboos. That spend their time being escorted around on either the Ninky Nonk or the Pinky Ponk. (Seriously now you think you're the one that's drug influenced don't you? But alas, no, it's all true I assure you). The characters remain annoyingly almost mute but are narrated by the super calming voice of Derek Jacobi. Which just about stops my head from exploding whenever I am cruelly subjected to the show.

Where an average episode involves the Tombliboos trousers falling down followed by a aimless trip on the Ninky Nonk. The End.

Just as well the channel scriptwriters seem to have a bit of a thing for dressing Uncle Alex up as a woman (which results in his becoming his mothers twin) because the endless amount of amusement that brings me almost compensates for my In the night Garden hell.

But in the mean time at least we have the flipside that we can go on the channel website and print out our very own (if slightly disturbing looking) Uncle Alex to colour and how many kids can say that about their Uncle?

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Monday, 15 June 2009

Twenty20 Vision

In the past when shamelessly bearing my soul. I made no secret of my appreciation for the gentlemanly game of cricket.

Recently I have been somewhat absorbed by the World Twenty20 championship (that's fast and supposedly somewhat sexier cricket for those of you not as informed as I). Though when I say world I actually mean just 16 measly countries (cricket is a sadly under appreciated sport it would appear) but still that is vastly more of the world than the Baseball world series which covers just North America. Which hardly qualifies as the whole world really. But, hey I'm no stickler for geography.

I can't but think as I support my country in their cricketing endeavours that if they just used this picture I found completely by accident (honestly!!) in their marketing and advertising that worldwide viewership and support would rapidly increase.
Am I right or am I right?

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Saturday, 9 May 2009

Pee, pee, pee, pee, all the way home.

You know we have never gotten around to teaching our boys to pee standing up.

I'd always figured that considering the bathroom is a place of zero privacy they'd kind of see their father in action and follow suit eventually.

In the mean time I was more than happy with them aiming at their target from the safety of a sitting position because they manage to somehow make enough mess that way without having free reign to spray all of the bathroom should they wish.

See, small things make me happy.

Fast forward to a walk home from school.

A walk that I have now forced Eli to endure despite his very loud protests because pushing an almost 3 year old in a pushchair up a 80 degree hill in my delicate condition is just not good for my blood pressure.

Or maybe I'm just using that as an excuse.

Truth is the kid is enormous and when he walks up that hill he sleeps like an angel which is good for his health and excellent for my mental health. Win-win.

We got about one twentieth of the way home one day and Thomas informs me he needs to pee. This is a frequent conversation on the journey home and I tell him he should have gone two minutes ago at school and now he'll just have to wait until we get home.

He lingers behind sulking. Eli stays with him. After all misery does love company.

Thomas shouts 'It's OK. I'll go right here' and before I have a chance to inform him that dogs are just about the only species for whom it is acceptable to pee in the street. He has his pants half way down his little white bottom, wilbsy liberated in the front and he pees into the bushes.

Completely horrified but knowing there isn't a right lot I can do to stop him in mid stream. I say a frantic silent prayer that the good Lord will render all 3 of us completely invisible, possibly forever.

You know because there are 650 pupils in Thomas's school and ours is a popular route home.

Just when I start to convince myself that maybe I won't have to move to some remote Scottish island with just sheep for company and where nobody will have heard about the boy who pees in the street because it probably wasn't even that noticeable really. I hear another little voice announce 'Me pee too!' as Eli in his newly potty trained fervour replicates his brothers actions perfectly.

But fails to be even slightly discreet.

Needless to say we avoided the walk home for a while and I took the car instead.

If only it had blacked out windows.

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Sunday, 19 April 2009

The Secret

Remember me harping on about the Second Trimester energy boost and how it clearly must just be pure pregnancy propaganda to keep us poor pregnant souls going through the arduous First Trimester?

I have now unearthed the beautiful secret.

This is the magical key to the much desired energy boost.

Pack up offspring in car and go to your mothers house.

Enjoy the fact that in her own house she is primarily responsible for all cooking and cleaning.

Revel in the joy that she doesn't get to see her grandson's as often as she'd like so is more than happy to entertain them while you rest.

Wonder how on earth you were blessed with such a great mother in the first place when she gets up at 7am with the kids and encourages you to sleep until 11am.

Yep 11am. Like you're 15 again.

Leave 4 days later feeling completely refreshed but slightly devastated that it's over and normality ensues.

Thanks Mum, we had a wonderful visit. I may well be returning.

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Sunday, 12 April 2009

Some things I should have blogged about but didn't because I was just too lazy.

Remember how my boys always had hair that looked something like this?
(Though I admit Eli's is particularly insane in his picture.)Well around Christmas Thomas started asking to have his hair cut 'all spiky' just like his dad. So I eventually relented and took him and felt saddened the entire time as I watched him grinning from ear to ear as the stylist cut off all his hair.

He looked SO grown up but also super cute so I quickly learned to live with it!

A few weeks later Sabbath day boredom kicked in and we decided it was time to bid farewell to Eli's hair too.

Rob somehow managed to persuade him and we pulled out the clippers and went to town on his head. In fact Rob went to town with a little too much ferocity and mistakenly put the number 3 guard on instead of number 6.

Which resulted in hair so short that we had to resort to shaving our hairy boys forehead because his forehead hair was longer than the hair on his head.
Eli wasn't so impressed with the outcome. He asked several times for his hair back and confided to anyone who would listen with disgust that 'my daddy did it to me!' Fortunately it's growing back now and we'll be keeping it long (but not so dishevelled looking) in the future.
Thomas who didn't escape the Sabbath day boredom also got his hair buzzed off and at the end of January turned 4! (Yes I am ashamed I'm blogging about this 2.5 months late.)

He chose to go bowling and somehow even with the bumper bars up he managed to beat me. Well, more precisely utterly thrash me considering he whooped me by 30 points or so. Clearly all my bowling prowess on the Wii just didn't transfer into real life. Gutted.

Blasted Nintendo people giving me a false sense of confidence and achievement.

February saw England get its worst snowfall in 18 years. Usually we get a mere sprinkling that leaves within a few hours but this snow kept on coming and lingered for a week or so.
The boys (including Rob) of course were thrilled and made the most of every snow filled day.
I on the other hand put on as many clothes and possible and waited for it to pass.
Whilst wondering why on earth I wasn't born somewhere warmer and how come global warming hasn't actually made me any warmer at all.
After months of watching from the sidelines Eli recently officially started football training for the West End number 5's alongside his big brother. For the most part he has zero clue what is going on and runs around aimlessly which is far from productive but on the bright side it is very amusing to observe.
Today is our 6 year anniversary. I'm actually not even at home with Rob. I came to my mum's with the boys for a few days this afternoon. 6 years has flown by. But I am grateful for the husband I have and the time we have spent together.

We all miss you already Rob!

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Friday, 10 April 2009

The Verdict?

Please pray for us that she won't get the hairy back genes that Eli got.

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Wednesday, 8 April 2009

What I'm thinking.....

I'm thinking I had forgotten just how extremely glamorous pregnancy is. After a recent trip to my doctor I came home with old lady tan support stockings (toe to thigh no less) for my gorgeous varicose vein on my left calf (courtesy of pregnancy number 1) and Haemorrhoid cream, you know just in case, Nice.

I'm thinking it wasn't worth attempting to win some Mothering Award by sending my kids to preschool at different times of day. Just so I could have quality time with each. I could be having 9 extra quality hours of sleep a week. Surely that's of far more import than quality time.

I'm thinking I shouldn't have read Marley & Me while I was pregnant. The demise and death of that dog had me literally cowering behind the sofa sobbing uncontrollably hoping the kids wouldn't see me so upset. Also Rob's untimely arrival home had me rushing to the bathroom to ferociously splash my face with cold water in an attempt to hide my ridiculous hysterics. (He would never understand he's never owned a dog, he's of the opinion it's just a dog).

I'm thinking that this pregnancy may have cured (fingers tightly crossed) the natural disaster which is my hair. My effortlessly poker straight chocolate tresses that started growing intermittent frizzy patches during my pregnancy with Eli seem to be correcting themselves. (In hindsight I should have known he was gonna be a handful when he managed to singlehandedly ruin my hair from the confines of my uterus).

I'm thinking after experiencing the joys of morning sickness for the first time with this pregnancy that if this pregnancy introduces me to the further joy of stretch marks for the first time also that baby number 3 will officially be my least favourite child. Forever.

And finally I'm thinking now that I'm halfway done that I can't wait to find out what this little nipper is.

Good job I have my ultrasound TOMORROW!!!

Watch this space people.

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Monday, 30 March 2009

LOST that loving feeling.

You know what they say, desperate times call for desperate measures.

So I am overlooking the fact that it's 9pm and the only place I really want to be is in bed.

Because there is something I have to say.

Something very important.

What on earth have they done to Sawyer?

Come on ladies, who doesn't watch LOST and secretly think if they had to be marooned on a desert island it would be slightly more bearable if Sawyer were around to ogle all day long and maybe share a mango with?

Don't get me wrong I am still a LOST devotee (despite all these seasons in still having no flaming clue what is going on or what might potentially happen next) but this 'Lafleur' Sawyer I just cannot get on board with.

The shiny straight groomed hair and general cleanliness just don't cut it.

Though I have to admit seeing him shacked up with Juliet does may me go 'ahhh how lovely'. (but I'm pregnant remember and the crazy hormones get me thinking just about everything is lovely.)
TV executives please bring back the old Sawyer just the way we love him.



But most importantly shirtless.

Because after all that is what makes good TV.

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Sunday, 15 March 2009


I figured it time to provide an explanation regarding my absence when I started receiving messages of concern for my well being.

Worry not, I have not had any tragic finger loss issues that stop me being able to type/babble on. All of my digits are blessedly intact.

The truth is simple.

I'm lazy. But pregnant lazy not just lazy lazy, so that's OK , right?

I'm just anxiously anticipating my second trimester energy boost. Actually to be fair I'm still eagerly awaiting the second trimester energy boost from my previous two pregnancies that rudely never happened to materialise. Third time around I'm wondering if such a thing actually exists or if it's medical propaganda to get us through the the first trimester with an ounce of hope for the future.

By the time I've had to tell Eli to leave his wilbsy alone (potty training has provided 24 hour access to his favourite area) for the 8 millionth time each day and I get the nippers into bed and I actually have time to blog all I'm actually fit for is falling into bed with a good book.

Rob says it's really fun being married to the equivalent of an 80 year old.

So when that energy boost hits I'll be back with a vengeance. That of course could be any day now or in 5 years time when all my kids are in full time school and I actually get to occasionally enjoy such luxuries as peeing in privacy, if only between the hours of 9-3 on weekdays.

I hope I'm worth the wait!

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Wednesday, 25 February 2009

Why Boys are All Identical

Yesterday Eli and I had a little chat about best friends in which he informed me that Nanny was his best friend and so was his wilbsy. (Wilbsy is Siswick speak for boy parts).

In the days BPT (before Potty training) I was unfortunately changing Eli's nappy. He made sure to give his wilbsy a good old squeeze and poke just to make sure it hadn't fallen off in the last couple of hours since his last nappy change.

I guess boys think such things are possible.

He looked up to me with the biggest grin on his cheeky face and said, "Mummy I love my wilbsy!"

Yep, you and everyone else on the planet with a XY chromosome combination, son.

The joys of being a mother to boys!

But at least he's honest.

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