Welcome to my eclectic journey of my life and delights. This year my theme is surrendering my writing pen to the true author, Jesus Christ, while looking forward to the future, reflecting on the past and dancing through my journey.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

I Surrender All - Sunday Singings

As I slowly gather up a few of my adult children trophies from all of their accomplishments - sports, music  and varies church activities, my mind wonders back to this song.

Released in the early 90's, prior to the birth of our fifth child, this song entered into my spirit very deeply.  So many of the words spoke my heart then as it does today.  It becomes my prayer once again.(this is not the well known hymn)

The break in this song always caught my mother's heart.  It reminds me not to make my children an idol in my life.
Just like Abraham laid Isaac on a sacrificial fire, if all that I have is all  that you desire...I Surrender All.

I hope you have a chance to hear the song through....even if it isn't your type of music the words are really strong.

Now this partial empty-nester must put away the trophies my children earned, and continue to pray that they too will "Surrender All" to Him.

Thanks for joining me on Sunday Singings.  Happy Reformation Day!

Friday, October 29, 2010

Maple Leaf Cookies, Crazy Hair, Pumpkins and Cast


In Texas we are still having hot weather, but the leaves are starting to change, and November may usher in cooler weather.  Change of temptature or not we still enjoyed our October.

Falls arrival means cooking.  Apple Dumplings and Maple Leaf Gingerbread Cookies.
Saturdays spent watching our fourteen year old play baseball.
We began the morning with Crazy Hair Day, thanks sissy, and ended with a broken bone.
Pumpkins and Gourds have arrived for us city folks.
We still made it to the Pumpkin Patch and Hay Ride.
God reminded me that so many deal with the obstacles I dealt with at the pumpkin patch...carrying cast boy  around, yet their struggle is permanent.  I will now watch for occasions to help some one out...we were offered very little assistance....what a shame...MAYBE IF YOU PUT DOWN YOUR I-phone YOU COULD HELP and not miss your own children's adventure! (sorry soapbox moment)
We end the month with stories and a movie on Martin Luther.  Now we move into a month of Thanksgiving and two birthdays.
What a great season of seeing God's faithfulness!!  
Good-bye October 2010!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Pumpkin Bread Detour

I am not a person who enjoys my course of action to be re-directed.  I love to see things stay on course, but of course, life doesn't work that way.  I am sure God just laughed when I married my husband, knowing that my husband would thrive in detours, while I would become frustrated.

So after I posted "Won't You Be My Neighbor" and had a vision to reach out to our new neighbors....then came the DETOUR!!  Our son broke his leg and my course was temporarily sidelined in order to serve my little man.

God, on the other hand, wasn't frustrated with my detour... He was guiding the path.

I had prayed a selfish prayer that our new neighbor would have a son for my high school son to play with.  After my re-energized vision to reach out, I began to pray for my new neighbors.  Their arrival came over a few weeks.  One day, the grandmother stopped me to let me know her daughter was moving into the house.  Parts of the story unfolded.  She was a single mom and the family had gone through some big adjustments.  Now I had even more to take before the Lord.

So while my cast boy was healing, God was preparing.  With increased freedom, I made a batch of pumpkin bread and became ready to welcome the family to our neighborhood.  The family arrived with a teenage boy, who loves baseball.  While my house was empty, I took the bread in hand, prayed over my steps and strolled next door.

The woman received me with open arms as I handed her the pumpkin bread.  As I stood on her front porch she began to unfold her story.  Through smiles and an uplifted voice, while fighting back tears at different points in her story, I was able empathize.  Her marriage of 19 years had come to a very ugly end and she was now going through drastic downsizing.  Where she had only worked part time, her new journey requires full time.  Her mother helps since her job takes her out of town for multiple days in a row.

Many of the lines of her story were similar to mine.  The downsizing meant getting rid of items and leaving behind extras not found in a rent home. For her, she is missing her swimming pool and I miss my trees.  We both laughed about how much we really didn't need.  She is giving up her three Christmas trees.

We both smiled at each other with "that is life" and you could hear the determination to go forward.  She let me know they were going to be around for the evening to visit some more. There was a moment to share where we go to church and invite them to join us. What I felt was a "detour" was instead God's perfect timing.  When will I learn that His timing is always right?

This will require an investment of my time in order to cultivate this relationship. I came away THANKING  God that I now had life experiences that could relate with hers.  I look forward to being able to share my Christ as the healer, as I first embrace her as a friend.  I was convicted...everyone has a story to tell, but have I taken the time to listen.

"Do you not say, 'There are yet four months, and then comes the harvest? Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes and look on the fields, that they are white for harvest."Already he who reaps is receiving wages and is gathering fruit for life eternal; so that he who sows and he who reaps may rejoice together. "For in this case the saying is true, 'One sows and another reaps.'  I sent you to reap that for which you have not labored; others have labored and you have entered into their labor."John 1:35-38

I hope you can look up from what you may feel is a detour and see that God knows the path ahead....and maybe, just maybe, the perceived "detour" is  instead His perfect path. Now I need to go make some more bread, there is another neighbor I need to meet!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

We Need Some Extra-Strength RAID!

A pest has taken up residence in our home and started to multiply itself through out our dwelling.  At the beginning it was hardly a bother, even laughter encouraged its occupancy.  Besides, who wanted to extinguish with heavy chemicals, we are trying to live with less chemicals.  As we turned our heads, the pest believed it was invisible.  We had encouraged it by purchasing "how to books" for increasing its productivity, even though it was a joke.

This can be bought through Amazon

However, it has been so productive and I am quite sure this isn't what God meant in Genesis when he said, "be fruitful and multiply". We are now having to engage in chemical warfare to rid this pest from our home.

It has devoured our dreams, our productivity, our health, our education, our money and our relationships.  It was so easily allowed to take over our home that we may not know who we are without it.  BUT IT IS TIME TO GO!

The head needs to come off this pest and our home needs to learn to keep it away!
  1. Weight Excuses 
  2. Exercise Excuses 
  3. Romance Excuses 
  4. Lack-of-Excellence-in-Education Excuses
  5. Not-Serving Excuses
  6. Money Excuses
  7. This list could take a whole page so I will stop - it has invaded every area of life
In order for us to want a change, we have to hate the thing that needs to be changed more than the change it will take to get rid of it.  I went to some sources on Excuses....I wanted to become sick of excuses.

Dictionary definition - A reason or explanation put forward to defend or justify a fault 

Excuses are the nails used to build a house of failure - Don Wilden

Excuses are the tools with which persons without purpose in view build for themselves great monuments of nothing. - Steven Grayham

A lie is an excuse guarded . - Jonathan Swift

We excuse our sloth under the pretext of difficulty. - Marcus Quintilian

He that is good for making excuses is seldom good for anything else. - Benjamin Franklin
(now that one really makes me want to get rid of our pest)

The bottom line....it comes to destroy what God intended in our life.  We become robbed, dissatisfied, apathetic and lifeless.

DEU 30:11  Now what I am commanding you today is not too difficult for you 
or beyond your reach.

"But Lord," Gideon asked, "how can I save Israel? My clan is the 
weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my family."

I found myself with others in the scripture, which were there for my example.  My extermination will be coated in prayer, because fleshing it out will not bring death to something that has been so easily welcomed into our home.  We will need His strength and being girded up in His Word. There is also no condemnation for those in Christ, so I am not walking in condemnation, but conviction. I will now grab my RAID and spray the pest of EXCUSES!  
Do you need a can of RAID for some pest in your home? (I am not asking you to answer)

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Tagged Seven Questions

Heart Choices

Debbie at Heart Choices has tagged me to answer Seven Questions!
  1. If you could travel anywhere with no thought to cost, where would you choose to go?  Easy I would go to the Mediterranean.  I have taught Ant. Civilization to my children for years and I would love to see where it all happened.  Greece, Italy, Israel, etc.
  2. What song would you choose for someone to sing at your funeral?  At this time it would be "I Can Only Imagine", but I would like for it to be danced also. I would love a concert of praise! 
  3. If you could spend a day with anyone (dead or alive) who would you choose?  At this point in time it would be my grandmother.  She had five children, four boys and a girl.  She lived through so many trials and stayed strong to her faith.  I would just love to have time with just her and talk.
  4. What do you want people to remember you by?  That I loved my God, my family, and I encouraged others through word and deed.
  5. Are you an early morning person or night owl?  EARLY Morning....you will find me going brain dead after 9:00 pm...I am totally useless in the evening, but enjoy the beginning of the day
  6. What is your favorite meal to prepare?  I love being creative in the kitchen, so getting to cook a new recipe is always my favorite. I tend to enjoy variety and get bored when I have to repeat a dish....so a favorite would be the newest meal I cooked. Now I do love making cheesecake!
  7. What would a perfect day be like to you?  Since I would say perfect has no boundaries it would start with my whole family on a beautiful beach.(of course that means I would look good in a bathing suit, even being in one would be a perfect day)  After playing all day with my family I would enjoy attending a live musical with my husband.  Enjoying family, nature, the arts and special time with my husband would be a perfect day!
Now I was tagged twice...how much fun.   Sandy from Faith, Hope and Love also gave me a list of questions.
Here are answers from her tagging.

1.When did you accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior?  I accepted Christ at age 5 and wrote a post on my spiritual birth while recording my youth with Mommy Piggy Tales.
2. What is the first thing you're going to say to Jesus when you see Him face-to-face? I will truly be speechless for the first time in my life...I will probably be on my face!
3. What qualities do you look for most in a friend? transparency...I tend to be very open and expect that back
4. What type of clothing do you enjoy wearing on a regular basis? - let's see...I wish they were smaller...probably jeans
5. Do you have any hobbies? love to paint, sew, read, cook, and entertain
6. How many brothers and sisters do you have and are you close? I am the oldest of four, three girls and one boy...different choices have separated us
7. Describe yourself in seven words or less.
determined, loving, caring, sensitive, logical, analytical, and creative

That was fun....I tag you and if you would love to join in then just answer the following questions and post on your blog. I will be visiting!   I just can't make up my mind on who to ask....so I must be fickle...so just go for it, consider yourself tagged.

  1. If you could go on two vacations, without any concerns, one  with your family and one with your husband where would you go?
  2. If you could write a book, what author would you want to be like and why?
  3. If you could dream up the most romantic evening with your spouse, what would it be?
  4. If you could hear your parents say anything about you, what would you want to hear?
  5. If you were to have your dream job/career/extra-occupation, other than the blessings of what you are doing today, what would it be?
  6. If you could be a missionary in any country, where would you go to serve?
  7. If you could go back for a day, year or month in your past, what would it be and why?
Have fun...it is nice getting to know you all better!!!  What a fun post!!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Just Your Presence

I heard his wakening voice calling.  I called back, "I am coming!"  He is unable to get himself out of his bed, therefore, depending on us once again, for the normal task most four-year-olds accomplish by themselves.  

He calls back, "I don't need anything, I just want my Daddy." His Dad rushes to his side to bend down and kiss him all over his face as our son lights up in enjoyment...his day has started out right.  Just his Daddy's presence was all he desired.

I stood in the door way, having finished my time with my Heavenly Father, thinking isn't that what all Father's want from their children?  He didn't want anything, just to see his Dad.  Did I approach my Father with the delight of just being in His presence or did I go with a list of desires I wanted from him?

My heart burst into song, which poured from my mouth.  My husband lead this song so many times years ago...my heart sang it back to my Heavenly Father.

As the deer panteth for the water
So my soul longeth after thee
You alone are my hearts desire
And I long to worship thee
You alone are my strength my shield
To You alone may my spirit yield
You alone are my hearts desire
And I long to worship thee

May He be your heart's desire today. May you long to just be in His presence...having a childlike heart of joy while resting in His arms.

Cast boy is doing fine, crawling around while I am learning to just take one day at a time.  We go Friday to have more x-rays and another cast.  He should be able to walk with a walking boot soon.  We are planning a cast signing party next week! Thanks for your prayers.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

You Know Better Than I - Sunday Singings

You know better than I
You know the way
I've let go the need to know why
For You know better than I

This has been my hearts cry this week.  As I burst into singing this song over and over I seem to knell before His throne in the confession of "You know better than I".  This week God spoke so strongly about his Sovereignty, so this song echoed what God was teaching me in my spirit.

This song is from Dream Works- Joseph, King of Dreams.  The video is just as powerful as the music.  Then again, the story of Joseph alone is powerful.  My little guy's middle name is Joseph!

I hope you have time to listen, watch and enter into the Throne Room of God.  Sunday Singings are dedicated to my grandmother who would take me to "singings" in East Texas.

I thought I did what's right
I thought I had the answers
I thought I chose the surest road
But that road brought me here
So I put up a fight
And told you how to help me
Now just when I have given up
The truth is coming clear

Chorus 1:
You know better than I
You know the way
I've let go the need to know why
For You know better than I

If this has been a test
I cannot see the reason
But maybe knowing
I don't know is part of getting through
I tried to do what's best
But faith has made it easy
To see the best thing i can do
Is to put my trust in You.

Chorus 2
For, You know better than I
You know the way
I've let go the need to know why
For You know better than I

I saw one cloud and thought it was a sky
I saw a bird and thought that I could follow
But it was You who taught that bird to fly
If i let You reach me
Will You teach me.
(Repeat Chorus )

For, You know better than I
You know the way
I've let go the need to know why
I'll take what answers you supply
You know better than I

Friday, October 15, 2010

Do You Hear Your Mother's Voice?

Okay, if you are already laughing then you know what I did....I broke the carnal laws of washing and drying my clothes.

My mother's greatest gift to me was preparing me for taking care of my own household.  So, at the early age of 19, when I married, I never remember calling to ask for advice... I had it down.

So, the other day when I opened my dryer, I started to laugh out loud with my mother's guiding voice in the background.
  1. Always hook your bras straps together...so they will not attach to other garments
  2. Never dry your bras...hang them out to dry
  3. It is best to hand wash your bras
I guess after running my own household for 30 plus years, I must have had a little rebellion in me because I  didn't obey  the rules. I grabbed my unhooked bras and tossed them into the washer.  I then proceeded to throw them into the dryer.  Round and round the dryer went, entangling the hooks of my bras in its grip.

To my 14-year-old's horror, I called him down for assistance.  He reluctantly, with a red face, dislodged the dangling boulder holder from it wedged claws of the dryer door.

What is funny is that I did this twice in two weeks....sounds like a hard head to me.

I walked away wondering... when my adult children hear my voice, what do they hear?  Do they hear..."don't mix whites with colored clothes or you will have pink underwear", when they pull them from the dryer?  Do they remember me when pulling out melted plastic from the dishwasher?

My prayer is that they will remember more... that they will remember our prayers, our devotionals, our forgiveness, our laughter and most of all, our relationship with Christ.  I pray that memorized scripture will come back to memory when the time is needed... that all the Proverbs we read will be there for their guidance.  I hope my voice will be remembered for tenderness and love, rather than just correction.

Listen, my son, to your father's instruction and do not forsake your mother's teaching. Proverbs 1:8

Have you heard your mother's voice lately?  What was she saying to you?

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

What Kind of Runner Are You?

Years ago, while homeschooling four children under the age of eight, I received these wise words from a friend.  She looked at me and said, "you are a long distance runner."  She went on to expand her observation.  She saw herself as a short distance runner.  She could do anything for a short distance.  She was fast out of the block and could push her abilities to the finish line, as long as the finish line was in view. She was the one who attended all the funerals, weddings and baby deliveries.  She was there to bring the meal or assist, for a short period of time.  She would not sign up for the constant day in and day out assignments...like having home group at her house each week or homeschooling her children, but she ran her short distance race with grace and success.

She saw me, however, as a long distance runner.  I would not be able to see the finish line, and I would have to pace myself.  I would have to keep the goal in mind, but not get frustrated on the long, sometimes mundane course ahead of me.  At that time in life, my race was raising four children, working in leadership in the church, homeschooling and helping my husband start his own business. I was the one with home group at my house every week.

I am sure she has never thought of our conversation again, as she has run her race so well.  I, on the other hand, have rehearsed those words so many times as I see the long distance race before me.  They have encouraged me to pace myself and learn the lessons along the path.

These next few weeks, I have a short distance race with my son in a leg cast.  I have come out of the gate grateful and with full energy.  I have made up songs, carrying him to the bathroom yelling "potty patrol", moved from one thing to another to keep him from being bored, while hearing "momma" more than normal.  I see the finish line in front of me, and "norm" will be back again before the holidays.

On the other side of me, I have had some very long distance races.  Homeschooling only came to completion with four of my children at the time of graduation from high school.  Marriage is also a long run...sometimes the hills can be exhausting and the valleys can stretch your relations, but the union into one comes with a price.  Other losses and disappointments can show their head when you don't expect it, showing that healing doesn't always come overnight...another long distance race.

I am still on a long distance run and I still don't see the goal line, but He does.  He has given me encouragement for this race in His word.  My responsibility is to know that He sees the finish line and He knows the prize that  is set before me.  Ultimately the prize is Him, but along the way, I know He has other blessings in store. I know He is strengthening my muscles, toning me up and preparing me for the next leg of my journey.
"Know ye not that they which run in a race run all,
but one receiveth the prize? 
So run, that ye may obtain.
And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things.
Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible.
I therefore run, not as one that beateth the air:
But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection:
lest that by any means when I have preached to others,
I myself should be a castaway." (1 Corin 9:24-27)

 1Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. 2Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.  Heb. 12:1-3

Blessings on whatever type of race God has you on, either a short or long distance run.  May you see what type of runner you are as you race forward.  May you have His strength to get to the finish line.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Sunday Singings - Shout

My "Sunday Singings" post is dedicated to my grandmother who would take me to "Singings".  Each week I will post a song that spoke to my heart that week.

This song started in my ear on Monday.  I would say it is one of the top songs of the 90's.  I usually feel all forms of praise with this song...kinda how I imagine it will be in heaven.  Shouts of joy, dancing in celebration, and then eventually bowing prostrate before a Holy God becomes my posture of worship during this song.  I am also going through a Bible Study on Genesis...the pictures in this video show His wonderful creation. Genesis 1:1 - In the Beginning, GOD created the heavens and the earth. 

This song introduced Hillsong (Church from Australia) to the world and I can still see all the precious people around me through the years as we worshiped to this song.  My husband usually sat at a black grand piano, praising God through the playing of the keys, as I joined in to worship with our children in the congregation.

My grandmother would have loved it!

Don't miss the video and join in singing - "Shout to the Lord". 
*My little guy broke his leg this week, so we have a new adventure for the next six weeks.(first break out of six children... amazing!)  Our praise is that his leg didn't have to be set and our precious friend took care of him.  New temporary adjustments for our family.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Won't You Be My Neighbor?

The song from Mr Roger's Neighborhood has been ringing in my ears lately.  Not because I hear it on the television anymore, but because the message still rings clear.

In a world of high technology we can fall short on knowing our neighbors.  It is easy to come home, drive our cars into a garage, pull down the automatic garage door, to hibernate until morning calls us back out to our labor.

One year, our pastor called the leadership of our church together to speak from his heavy heart.  As we all gathered into the room, we knew he meant business.  The first question from his mouth was, "How many of you know your neighbors?"

You will not believe the answer.  We were the only couple in the room who not only knew our neighbors on both sides, but even the neighbors down our street and around the corner.
His second question was, "How many of you know any non-believers?"  The response back was even more troubling.

He was horrified, even though it confirmed what he was afraid of.  So, with intense passion, he started to shut down programs at the church.  No one was allowed to be at the church for more than two events per week...we were to be out....meeting our neighbors.  We were to be out getting to know pre-Christians.

The transition was very easy for our family at that time.  Our first four children were young, their involvement was outside the home with pre-believers, and our outgoing nature made the assignment easy.

Fast forward years later.  The teen years hit, schedules filled the calendar, life happened and taking time to meet and care for our neighbors started to vanish from priority.

Today, I am baking pumpkin bread....the loaves will be delivered to the neighbors.  Someone is moving in next door, and two different households are single women. There will be time to have a friendly chat and ask the Lord to open the doors to a continuing fellowship that He has ordained.

Mark 12:33
To love him with all your heart, with all your understanding and with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is more important than all burnt offerings and sacrifices."

To my blogging friends...thanks for visiting my neighborhood on blog-sphere...thanks for being my neighbor. If I could send you pumpkin bread through the internet, I would.  Instead, just know that you are loved and appreciated.  Have a wonderful fall day and enjoy your neighbors!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Changing of the Seasons

Flowering Season is coming to an end....butterflies are migrating south
A final visit to our front yard

My Change of Season!
There is nothing in a caterpillar that tells you it's going to be a butterfly.
Buckminster Fuller

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Still Needing a Little Hand

As my nest grows smaller it is funny to watch  when my adult children ask for a "hand".  Although their independence from me is a good indication of a job well done, a mother's heart still needs to know that she is needed...every so often. 

Sanding all the surface for the base coat...this old piece will be transformed for a 19 year olds apartment.

 Base coat  of "pepto bismal pink!", Behr crackle brushed over all surfaces (the darker pink drawers has been coated with the crackling)
 The top coat is a white with just a small tint of pink.  The crackling affect starts immediately.
Finished product...ready for delivery to her new apartment, where she plans to adorn the finished dresser  with personalized knobs.

So as my daughter launched into the world she returned for only a small helping hand.  She needed  a dresser redecorated for her new apartment. Everyone needs a hand now and then....for a mom, well it is one of the most treasured things we are allowed to do....offer a hand!

Get Your Craft On Tuesday

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Sunday Singings

Some of my grandmother's music that was left to me!
When I was a child I would attend "singings" with my grandmother.  "Singings" were gatherings of  people  from everywhere to the church, tent, or courthouse to sing "gospel" music.  My grandmother had a beautiful alto voice.  She knew the Stamps Quartet music backwards and forwards, as well as the hymns.  In later years she branched out into "contemporary" Christian music which she lead or performed in the "singings".

Before God called her home she called to let me know the songs she wanted sung by my husband at her funeral.
The week before her death I walked around my home singing the old hymns, hearing my grandmother's voice, knowing heaven was preparing for her arrival.

This week our home school community lost two mothers, leaving behind children and another young home school student.  The mother's lost their battles with cancer and the student went home to be with the Lord after a wreck.  Our close friends watched their elderly mother enter glory after her struggle with cancer.

So on Sundays I am going to post a song that spoke to my heart during the week.  The post will be dedicated to my grandmother, who is singing her lungs out in heaven.

This week's song is "Home Free" by Wayne Watson.  This is the song that God comforted my heart with when He gentle ushered my Aunt into heaven, after her struggle with cancer.  I don't know this woman, but she represents all the women I know who have had the Ultimate Healing and are "Home Free". *Please if the video is too much, just close your eyes and listen to the words...they are a healing balm.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

My Chickens

I have so delighted in fellow bloggers displaying their wonderful pictures of their chickens and their coops.  I can say they would all win awards in my book.  

So this Saturday I thought I would invite you into my city, postage-stamp-sized backyard, neighbors within sneeze distant...my chickens, that are approved for my current dwelling.

Yes this is my first one, bought by my husband, framed in red.  Her title is Mr E Tudman's Partridge Cochin Hen, "Titania", she won first prize at Birmingham in 1870 and 1871
Her companion hangs right beside her.
Buff Cochin Hen named "Blossom" Bread by Mr H Tomlinson....she didn't win any awards.
Below them stands a glassy looking fella.
Wearing a little thin from her falls from her high perch, she guards the kitchen.
He has conquered them all, so he stands cocky from his coveted position on the island.  What can I say, this is a male dominated household.
 If the good Lord ever wills for me to have some of these that are alive and a dressed-up coup...you can bet your last dollar (no I don't believe in gambling, just a saying I learned as a child) I will share them with you. For now, they don't produce well, but the clean up is a cinch.

HAPPY SATURDAY! For all the Texas and Oklahoma residents - GO HORNS!!!

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