Monday, 27 August 2018

Bath Time And Pregnancy



Making time to relax is so important during pregnancy. Unlike what most people told me, my pregnancy went and is going very quickly. I have been working, renovating a house (not alone I might add) but still, I have had a lot on my plate and finding the time to sit, unwind and relax has been a real saviour for me.


I didn't need to be a big song and dance, with an elaborate ritual which takes time to prepare. For me, I found I was happiest with a bath filled with healing sea salts, a mug of herbal tea and either music or a Netflix series on my laptop. Yes, I do sometimes watch Netflix while in the bath, but don't worry my laptop is well away from the water. For additional relaxation I add a few drops of lavender to the bath, I find it helps me relax even more, and the oils keep my skin feeling soft even after the bath. TOP TIP: add oils to your bath if you're in a rush and cannot moisturise after!

The simplest pleasures are often the ones I treasure the most and the time I spend in the bath, alone, without any distractions allow my mind and body to unwind fully. Which I know will be hard to come by when the baby does arrive, and then they soon turn into toddlers, who want to bath with you with an abundance of toys, which will be awesome don't get me wrong, but not quite the candlelit, self-healing baths I am currently used to.

As, I am now in the later stages of pregnancy - 40 weeks and four days to exact and I write this blog post early in the morning, after waking up with mild stomach cramps it's made me realise how thankful I am to have had such a beautiful, relaxing pregnancy. I have surrounded myself with only positives and have taken time for myself when I have felt like I need it. My self-care has never been more critical, and every inch of my body has been nourished in preparation for the little one to arrive.

For pregnancy bath time I cannot recommend the Living Sea Therapy Calming Bath Salts at night and in the day or the morning the Living Sea Energise Bath Salts

Both products are rich in the Living Sea Complex which is exclusive the Living Sea Therapy, here's a little more about what makes this complex extra special!


LIVING SEA COMPLEX®

Living Sea Complex® combines the unique geology of the Lizard peninsula with powerful, distilled Cornish Sea Salt Minerals and a trio of wild Cornish Atlantic seaweeds from the Cornish Seaweed company. Read on below to find out a little more about the key components.




Bladderwrack

Cornish bladderwrack is chosen for its powerful properties, nutrient-rich, abundant in vitamins, minerals and amino acids are known to help increase hydration and improve skin elasticity, helping to reduce the signs of ageing. This fantastic seaweed is also known to help reduce redness and irritation in inflamed skin and known to support the skins natural detoxification.




KOMBU/KELP

Grown wild and sustainably harvested from the uniquely pure Cornish waters, these seaweeds absorb a vast array of nutrients, offering a rich source of minerals such as calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc, iodine, potassium to name a few and vitamins A, D, E, B3 and B7.




SEA SPAGHETTI

Our wild Sea Spaghetti is harvested and used in our trio of Cornish seaweed extract for its high levels of the vitamins, A, C, E, B7 and B9 (Folic Acid), to help the skin restore its moisture levels. It is also known to have antimicrobial and anti-oxidative properties.



CORNISH SEA SALT MINERALS

Cornish Sea Salt Co. uses a sustainable salt extraction process in the pure waters off the Cornish coast at the Lizard Peninsula, a designated area of outstanding natural beauty, marine conservation zone and site of special scientific interest. At the Salt House, just a few metres from the translucent waters of the Cornish Atlantic, seawater is filtered and purified, removing only 0.5% of salt from the ocean, using only ultraviolet lights and a benign ion osmosis process.




CORNISH SEA SALT FLAKES

Beautiful pure white delicate Cornish Sea Salt Flakes, mineral-rich, with over 60 minerals including Sodium, Calcium, Magnesium, Sodium, Potassium and Sulphur, known for their therapeutic benefits to skin and used in our Salt Scrubs and mineral-rich Bath salts.




PURE ESSENTIAL OILS

Relax into a warm, soothing, refreshing blend of sage, chamomile and lavender pure essential oils. These sweet, spicy, floral oils strengthen the senses, help boost energy and balance the mind and body, triggering ultimate relaxation.

TO SHOP ANY OF THE LIVING SEA THERAPY PRODUCTS

CLICK HERE - www.livingseatherapy.co.uk

USE CODE LST Ambassador Code: CE10 for a discount on your orders 


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Monday, 13 August 2018

Pregnancy Skincare Essentials


Hormones during pregnancy can do wonders for your hair and skin, and I think I have been one of the lucky ones. My hair has never felt or looked better, and my skin apart from the pigmentation feels radiant and hydrated. However, with this being said I don't know how much of this is baby related or the fact that I have been more conscious than ever to look after my hair and skin. I have been religiously applying oils and creams to my body twice a day, which before pregnancy I probably didn't do as much. I have stopped using heat on my hair and just let it dry naturally every time it's washed. I guess I believe it's a combination of the two, but surely I cannot hurt to take a little extra care of my skin and hair during this beautiful time, because after all my body is under a lot of strain and is working harder than ever to grow this bundle of joy, it deserves some extra indulgence.

Since announcing my pregnancy all those months I go, I have had the chance to test out a variety of different stretch mark and skin loving products. All of which I have really loved and would recommend. Before I go into more detail about the products I must stress, some of these items have been gifted but at no point have I been paid to tell you how beautiful they are. These thoughts and views are my own and have been developed through product testing.

In no particular order, here are the products I have been using throughout my nearly 9 months of pregnancy, my thoughts and also a little description of the product. I have also linked them all so you can shop them if you wish to! Also, if anyone wants to know more, just get in touch via my Instagram!





I had used the Tan Organic tanning products before and loved them and that the dry oil didn't disappoint. The oil has a lovely citrus fragrance to it, due to the orange peel extract it contains. It didn't leave my skin feeling greasy, so it this was a great product to use before getting dressed. I applied it all over my body and face. I didn't have any breakouts or feel like my pores were clogged. Just a lovely hydrating feel and quite the refreshing smell!  





If you haven't heard of My Expert Midwife, you need to go check them out right now! Well, continue reading this blog, then go check them out. So, ladies, it's not just our bumps we may want to take care of, it's also our lady regions. They need a little TLC and some much-needed prep before the big day arrives. Now, I am not going to go into too much detail because the wonderful ladies at My Expert Midwife have got that covered and have written a blog on how to carry out a Perineal Massage - READ HERE.

I would hight recommend investing in the Peri Prep Your Bits Oil for before birth and the Spritz For Bits for after birth, again check out their website for more information about how their Spritz can help with recovery.

Another product I have been using recently has been the Fantastic Skin Elastic, which has pleasantly surprised me. It's a rich, oil but thick like cream. It's unlike anything I have ever used before. I would recommend using this product in the evening, or if you're not in a rush to get dressed. It has a very light fragrance, again with a light citrus tone but very subtle. I really felt like this product can prevent stretch marks, it's so creamy and hydrating it almost seems impossible for it not to have some benefits. 

I am yet to try the Spritz For Bits or  No Harm Nipple Balm, so I will come back to you all with my thoughts on this one. 





This is a brand I had never actually heard of, but Science Of Skin reached out to me over social media, and I thought I'd give their products a go. I found their brand very exciting after doing some research, knowing they specialised in healing scars and stretch mark preventions intrigued me. 

I have been using two of their products, the first one being the Stretch Mark Defence which is, in fact, a spray on oil. Really quick and easy to use, just spray over the area you wish to protect and rub in. It absorbs into the skin quite quickly but be sure to give it a few minutes before getting dressed, you don't want to get oil on your clothes. 

The other product I have been using is the Solution For Stretch Marks, now I haven't actually got any stretch marks on my stomach at the moment, but I do have some on my thighs from when I had a growth spurt all those years ago. So, I have been using this product not only on my bump but also in these areas. It's too early to say if they have made a difference but it certainly leaves my skin feeling soft and hydrated. Both products are relatively fragrance-free which is nice if you're feeling queasy and cannot deal with any strong smells. 






As well as all of the above I have also continued using my old faithful Living Sea Body Butter. I have used this on top of the oils and balms or just as little extra hydration when at home or on the beach. This is a product I swear by and isn't just incredible on your body, it's also amazing for your face. 

Last but by no means least the Kit & Kin Stretch Mark Oil. Now, Kit & Kin are famous for their Earth-friendly nappies and baby wipes, which I love but I didn't know they also had a Stretch Mark Oil, designed for mums to be! You can really smell the Neroli Oil in this product which I loved! A little really does go along way, and it's small enough you can even take it with you in your handbag or beach bag. It's creamy but not greasy. 





Hopefully, this has helped any stretch mark product concerns you may have had. There's a variety of products to choose from, and I will be back to blog with my updates on the products after birth. As I said before if you wish to ask some more detailed questions just drop me a message on my Instagram 
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Wednesday, 8 August 2018

The Nursery



For those of you that follow my Instagram, you'll have seen that my husband and I recently brought our first home in Newquay and have been spending the past few months renovating the coastal bungalow in preparation for the arrival of our first child.  The nursery was, in fact, the last room for us to finish, apart from the kitchen which we have decided to not touch for a few months.

Anyway, our nursery was an inspiring project to have mainly because we don't know the gender it's made it all the more enjoyable to put together. I have sourced ethically produced items, upcycled a lot and thrown in a few vintage pieces for good measure. I wanted to find the balance between a colourful, childlike room and a relaxing space for me to also spend my time and I am happy to say I feel like I have found just that.

With soft, snuggly fabrics and colour pops to stimulate the imagination I am over the moon with how it's all come together. I wanted the room to have character and not just look like I'd gone to the baby section of a department store. It needed to fit in with the style of our home as much as anything, and our house has quite an eclectic mix of styles, but all with a fresh homely feel.

As well as having all the basics that any nursery needs, like storage, somewhere for me to nap and room for cuddly toys and delightful artwork, I also wanted to make sure that I had the right baby essentials. I am lucky enough to have a lot of friends with kids, who have helped me out with my nursery must-have list. So I invited a good friend and photographer Sarah Clarke from Checkered Photography to come round and shoot some elements of the nursery.

I have linked the products shown and explained in detail why I have chosen them.

Moses Basket by Bosie Baby - This is the Meerkat design. They are all handmade and gorgeous. I ordered my stand from Clair De Lune and went for the Deluxe White Moses Basket Rocking Stand. It fits perfect. The basket also comes with a mattress and an organic cotton mattress cover. 
The blanket was handmade by my aunt, who actually dyes her own yarns. It was given as a gift at my baby shower, and I couldn't be happier. Boy or Girl, it's going to look lovely snuggled up around them. You can shop her items through her shop - Perran Yarns.



This cupboard was actually in my nursery as a child. It needed a little bit of a makeover so I gave it a lick of paint and upcycled a vintage mirror to match. As you can see, there are a fair few cuddly toys dotted around and some greenery! I love plants around the home, and it only seemed right to get one in the nursery too!


According to my friends, Sleepyheads of Sweden are an absolute must! For someone who is going to have to continue working from home, I think this little tropical little beauty will come in very handy. I opted for the tropical print because even during the winter months it's always lovely to keep that tropical vibes going. 



We currently have a wardrobe nearly full of baby grows, muslins and mini hats and boots for the new arrival but these pairs are my absolute favourite! I am lucky enough to be good friends with the owner of Lottie and Leash, and in fact, my Mum is a seamstress for them, meaning my little one is going to have the loveliest threads to wear! 



Baby skincare and nappy products are essential to me. With most nappies can take between 200-500 years to biodegrade which is unbelievable. As well as investing in a few reusable nappies I will also be using the Kit & Kin products because they are Earth-friendly and a better option to use if I need someone while on the go. 



Another product which is going to amazing when on the go is my Ergo Baby 360 Carrier. Great for on the go and can be used from newborn. I went for the grey colour because this will be something both myself and husband use and I love a neutral colourway. 



Lastly, a little something for the baby to sleep in. From the lovely Ergo Pouch, I chose the cloud design because I loved how fresh it looked. All organic cotton and allows you to unzip to change the nappy and they can also sleep with their arms in or out. 




Photos by Checkered Photography 
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Tuesday, 7 August 2018

Curl Talk



As much as I hate to admit it, I am quite the creature of habit, and this applies strongly to my curl routine. I guess it comes from years of battling with my curls to try and get them exactly how I want and the fear of ending up with a mass of frizz makes me reluctant to deviate from my normal hair routine. Which is why I was a little hesitant to test out the curl range from Umberto Giannini because of the fear the products wouldn't agree with my hair. 

But, I decided to put my silly fears aside and give the products a go. I was gifted the entire curl range to try, and I have had these products for about a month now. I wanted to give them a proper go before sharing my blog post because I am not one of these people you see on Instagram posing with a product they haven't even used or actually like. I always love to make sure I believe in a product before I share it with my followers because I want to be as honest and transparent a possible. 

So, here are my real thoughts on each product I used from Umberto Giannini Curls Range. 


I loved this product. It's something I applied to dry hair, especially when my curls felt precisely that, dry! It didn't leave my hair feeling greasy or heavy. I still had a bounce in my curls, they always looked natural and felt soft to touch. This was an excellent product to use in the day when I want my curls to look a little more wild and untamed but frizz free. 

This product made me a little nervous. I thought it would leave my hair crispy and crunchy which I really hate. However, it was quite the opposite. I used a small amount in the palm of my hands and worked it through the ends, scrunching upwards. It helped define my curls which I loved. 

3. Coily Curl Moisture ShampooConditioner (not a 2 in 1)

Both really nice products. I did have to use a lot of the conditioner to get my knots out, but this may be because my hair is thicker than normal due to pregnancy. I am also one of those people that gets through so much conditioner!


This serum is so lovely. Not heavy or greasy and it really does make a difference. I actually used this when I wanted to finish off my hair or if I needed to smooth out any frizzy ends. A good one to chuck in your bag for out and about. 


A rich creamy but again lightweight product which I applied to wet hair, straight after showering. My hair can absorb a lot of creams, oils and serums so it can deal with a rich cream, but even with this product, I didn't leave my hair feeling weighed down. 


Marketed as a finishing cream and that's how I used it. I did reduce any flyaway frizz that I picked up throughout the day. I the odd occasion that I apply heat to my hair to neaten up some of the curls this product was a nice one to use to polish the look. 

7. Curl Jelly

Another product I wasn't too sure about using because jelly to me sounds like a gel-cream, which will leave my curls looking stiff. Much to my surprise, it didn't! It actually left my curls soft, bouncy and smooth. I worked the product into the end of my hair to finish the style.


When I see a mousse, I tend to think of someone with a perm, scrunching it into their hair and drying it with a diffuser, which isn't really my vibe. However, I wanted to give this mousse a go, so I applied it to my dry hair and scrunched it in all over and much to my surprise I really loved it! It gave me hair extra volume which is always a bonus and left my curls feeling bouncy.

ALL PRODUCTS ARE VEGAN 


After spending a month using the products I can honestly say I love them! I haven't been paid to say this, it's my true opinion and I couldn't be happier to have found a selection of products that give my curls that extra love that they deserve! I would urge any curly haired gal or guy to give them a go!








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Tuesday, 31 July 2018

Daily Rituals

Over the past month, I have been trying to make a little more time for myself; it's never been something I have easily achieved, but the more pregnant I get, the more I am aware I need to make time to stop and relax.

The more I talk to my friends with kids the more I become aware that soon my time won't be my own. Give it a few years, and I'll have a little one wanting to follow me around everywhere, which as lovely as it sounds, also can get a little testing at times I am sure.

With this are the forefront of my mind, I have been making time, one hour a day to be exact to soak in a sea salt bath, light a candle, drink a herbal tea and listen to some music or a podcast. It's effortless but to be honest, the simple pleasures are the ones I love the most.

Depending on how I am feeling will determine whether I have a bath early morning or right before bed and I tailor my sea salts to suit my mood. First thing in the morning I want to awaken my body, while still feeling relaxed, so I opt for the Living Sea Therapy Energising Bath Salts with a splash of their Bath Soak. Both combinations together are so lovely and teaming that with a peppermint tea and a great podcast. I have loved the Mum Talk Podcast by the lovely Emma Jaulin. It's been teaching me a lot about pregnancy and motherhood and an absolute must for any pregnant ladies.

If I am going for a late night bath, then I go for the Living Sea Calm Sea Salts, again with their Bath Soak. Then team this up with a freshly brewed Camomile tea and some relaxing music, I love Ben Howard's new album, and incidentally so does the baby.

Whether you're pregnant or not I urge you to take 1 hour a day to yourself, to relax, exercise, awaken your senses or just shut off from the world. I feel like it has done be a world of good and it's funny to think that before I felt like I never had the time, but as soon as you consciously make the time you can do anything.

Here are the products I recommend and if you wish to shop them pop the code CE10 into the basket for a discount off all orders over £20.





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Tuesday, 24 July 2018

Pregnancy



I cannot believe I haven't actually talked about my pregnancy journey on the blog yet. If you follow me on Instagram, then you should be up to speed with everything, but there are still some elements I haven't talked about. So I thought it was about time I wrote some more in-depth blog posts about the highs are lows of pregnancy because it isn't all glowing skin and thick hair!

Let's start at the beginning...

We weren't trying, but we weren't preventing. We certainly didn't expect to get pregnant as quickly as we did BUT we're completely over the moon when we found out we were.
I had made the decision to come off the pill due to medical reasons and in fact, was advised by a dermatologist after blood tests and scans that coming off the pill would be the best thing for my body. She wasn't wrong, and I did feel a lot better. I started using Natural Cycles which I loved but like I said we were not preventing getting pregnant. So at the start of October, I came off the pill and by the end of November beginning of December we were pregnant! It's incredible really, and we both feel so lucky to have conceived so quickly and with absolute ease.

On the 20th of December, I did a pregnancy test after chatting with Ben and a colleague at work. I felt like I was about to have the period from hell, but it never arrived, clearly the period cramps I thought I was having were, in fact, the early stages of pregnancy. I opted to buy two basic pregnancy tests initially because I honestly didn't know they would come back positive. I remember they tests came in a pack of two, which I did. One line came up strong straight away, with the second line showing up a little later but not as strong as the other. It confused me even more, and I knew the only way I could find out for sure is if I did a Clear Blue, fancy pants pregnancy test which would tell me how many weeks. So, I jumped in my car, to get to the pharmacy before it closed. By the time I'd got home both pregnancy tests I had previously done, now had two strong, clear lines! To be sure I had to do the third test, which in fact came back with the results I was 2-3 weeks pregnant!

I couldn't quite believe what I saw and instantly felt different. A wave of worry, joy, excitement and nervousness washed over me, and I couldn't wait for Ben to get home to share the news. As soon as he walked in the door, I had to tell him the news. We cried, smiled, and stared at each other in complete shock!

Fast forward a few days and on the 24th of December, the sickness began. Not just morning sickness either, this was all day, middle of the night, entirely out of the blue sickness which didn't entirely go away until 14th May! Yes, that's the best part of 6 months worth of sickness (hence why pregnancy hasn't been so rosy for me!). The sickness was so hard to deal with, it made work difficult, ruined our plans but also became part of my morning routine. Wake up, feed the cat, be sick and then start my day! Obviously, it lasted a lot longer than I thought it would but it's over now!

Although, as soon as the sickness ended the heartburn began, and I have been getting multipacks of Renne ever since. To be honest, I've had pretty much every symptom going, including cravings. At the start, I couldn't get enough red meat. I craved steak, burgers, sausages and big hearty dinners, then as soon as that passed it was bags of Jelly Babies! I had stashes of jelly babies in my bag, car, pockets you name it I had Jelly Babies there. Thankfully that's over and was relativity short lived.

It may sound like there's are lots of negatives but it's really isn't, there have been so many high points along the way. Like feel my first flutter, my first kicks, Ben feeling the baby kick, watching it move and roll around and seeing my body change and grow for this beautiful little human. My nails have grown so much, my hair is thicker, my skin apart from the pigmentation is more radiant, my disposition is a lot calmer, and I feel I have a newfound clarity on what I want from my life.

Sadly more recently the high points seem to have fallen to the side, and those low points have crept back in again. I am starting to get more uncomfortable, a little grumpy (poor Ben), my skin pigmentation is terrible, and I hate all the clothes I can fit into.  I love feeling the baby kick and move, but now it's nearly fully grown there is less room for it to move around. Meaning at times it's actually really uncomfortable, especially when the baby decided to hit a nerve!

I think I will leave this blog post here for now, and come back to you all with an update again once the baby has arrived! I am about to hit 36 weeks, so I really don't have long left. Stay tuned for updates on the products I have been using, the nursery and all things pregnancy and motherhood.






Photo Credit: Checkered Photography




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Friday, 29 June 2018

The Cornish Seaweed Company & Living Sea Therapy



For the past 7 months, I have had the pleasure of using the Living Sea Therapy products and what a lovely 7 months it's been. The products are luxurious but still have that rugged Cornish charm that I adore. I've learnt about the products in more detail the more I use them, but I was eager to get out to sea with the Cornish Seaweed team to see how they harvest the seaweed every product sold by Living Sea.

Last week Sarah Clarke from Checkered Photography and I set off on a little adventure to learn more about The Cornish Seaweed Company. Here's what we got up to.

Arriving at Coverack cover my first thought was, why have I never been here before?!
As a surfer, it's so easy to stick to the coastline that has surf and ultimately never leaves. There are so many beautiful parts of Cornwall that I have never visited before and Coverack cover is one. Thankfully I have now ticked it off my list and now know it's somewhere I'd like to visit again in the future. We parked up, and the Sarah and the Cornish Seaweed team (which consisted of Tim & Dan) got into their wetsuits, while I made sure I had enough water and Renne with me (the joys of pregnancy).

The harbour that they launch from is tiny, a very quaint working harbour, and as it stands The Cornish Seaweed Company are the only ones seaweed harvesters who work from there. The boat the work from is essentially a rib, now I don't know boats at all, but I was surprised to see such a small boat. We loaded it up the boat with buckets, bags and their all-important scissors to sip the seaweed with and set off.

As we cruised along out of the harbour, the light northerly winds hit, and I began to get a refreshing saltwater spray to the face! I instantly regretted not packing waterproofs!

Reaching our first spot, Tim and Dan scouted for the best place to anchor up, the water visitability around this part of the coast is fantastic, so it was easy to spot the seaweed amongst the rocks. We anchored up, and Dan strapped on his weight belt, snorkel and mask, grabbed his scissors and got to work.

The process was speedy, efficient and unbelievably simple. I honestly thought there would be a significant process for collecting the seaweed, but it couldn't be further from that. Merely dive down with scissors, cut the seaweed, swim back up, bag it up and go again!

Tim and Dan took it in turns, while Sarah jumped in to document the process. Unable to do a lot due to being 31 weeks pregnant I stayed on the boat, helping collect the seaweed and recording my day on my Instagram stories, which can be seen in my story highlights.

It was great to get the chance to see which seaweed goes in which products and in fact the Sea Spaghetti which they were harvesting that day, goes into every single Living Sea Therapy product. I got to ask Tim a lot of questions about the nutritional value of the seaweed and the impact on the environment their harvesting has. Here are some awesome facts:


- Boasting more Vitamins & Minerals than ANY other food!

- Seaweed can only be harvested by hand

- Only a part of each individual plant can be cut, above the point of growth to allow regrowth

- The key factors that make seaweeds so tough are ‘alginates’, which lock in moisture. They provide the same effect when you put them on your skin, helping to prevent it from drying out.

- All three seaweeds in our Living Sea Complex® are packed full of magnesium, manganese, calcium, copper, iodine, iron, potassium, phosphorous and zinc, essential elements for life. They are also rich in natural vitamins, especially A, B, C, D, E, and K.


I think it's safe to say I have a new found appreciation for the Living Sea Therapy & The Cornish Seaweed Company products. Their ingredients are so beneficial to our bodies both inside and out, and they'r.e created in the simplest of ways. 


Now, back to the harvesting, now with a boat full of seaweed we headed back into the harbour and back to The Cornish Seaweed Company HQ. This is where I got to find out how the seaweed is preserved. It's dried out with a giant dehumidifier and heaters in containers. I got to assist with this first hand, and I loved it. It's always good to get stuck in, and I wasn't going to miss out on the chance to help the guys. 

Luckily for both Sarah and I, we got to go home with some The Cornish Seaweed Company and Living Sea Therapy products to enjoy at home. I can't wait to test out a recipe from their website.

Here are the images Sarah captured on the day. 


















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