Looking out onto 2012 - project me post 913

I'm sitting alone at home on the eve of the new year and despite it being an ending I didn't anticipate, I can't help but be totally overwhelmed with gratitude and pride about 2012.?I keep on having to go back in the history of the blog or flip through photographs on Facebook to remind myself that all the exciting things that fill my mind really happened in one fulfilling year.

I spent today with my sister and brother in law, helping them move into their new home and we spoke a lot about how far they have come as young couple this year. Now that I reflect quietly on my day with them, I am so proud of how far my sister and I have come as sisters and friends. You know, when I started blogging 3 years ago, my mom asked me not to talk about my family at all because at that stage there was nothing but sibling?rivalry and family feuds. All in one year there has been such a change and I can now blog freely about the majority of my family because we've truly blossomed into siblings who support and care deeply for each other. My dad would have been so proud to see how our relationships have blossomed.

I might have gone from thinking I had found the man I would spend the rest of my life with to ending my year back at single, but I can't say that I won't always be eternally grateful for all I learned about love and what I want from love in 2012. It was my first time living with someone and it was also the first experience of a genuine, long term relationship. I watched how I blossomed as a person and how I grew into my own personal relationship with love. Everyone is asking me how I'm coping with the breakup and I keep saying the same thing ... I'm filled with gratitude that I took the time to find all the gifts in loving and being loved and therefore I have no regrets and will always think back on this as the year I learned about love.

For the first time in far too many years, I am welcoming in a new year with such a strong and proud relationship with my body. In 2012 I lost 14.4kg, which was one of the very reasons I started blogging #projectme in the first place. Besides the weight loss, there is long journey of understanding my addiction to food and finally making friends with my body so that I could understand what I needed to nourish me and how I sabotaged my body far too often. I can't remember ending a year with such confidence and pride and instead of dreading starting an new year with over 35kg to lose, I'm continuing on a steady journey with 20kg not looking like an unreachable goal at all.

I truly settled into my beliefs and stopped feeling that I am lost and misunderstood in the world. With the help of my bestie, Greggie and my amazing mom, we have spent hours talking, visualising and living consciously. Of all the things that is #projectme, living with courage, consciousness and a sense of humour is the most important to me. Reflecting back, I am so proud of friendship I have built with myself and how I truly have lived my philosophies this year.

project me 2012What would my year be without my children!! I'm mostly grateful that I?obsessively?talk, blog, post pics & Tweets about my 3 gorgeous cats and I don't seem to have lost too many followers along the way. It seems cat ladies aren't so bad after all.

To even begin and express how amazing 2012 was for Lifeology and my career would be an overflow of emotion and far too many moments to tell. From having a regular slot on Radio 2000 FM, judging for the Miss Earth SA regionals, appearing on 3 Talk or taking #FollowSA?through?the country to watching my Twitter following grow to almost 25 000, I am mesmerised at my success. It might not have manifested into much financial stability or peace of mind, but I learned this year that you truly need to be on the brink of giving up and knowing there is nothing else on earth that you would do to know that you don't want to give up. That was 2012 for me ... and I truly believe I learned that lesson very, very well.
I couldn't have done it with my business partner, (who is also that bestie Greggie) Greg Arthur, by my side. 2012 pushed us to the limits and tested our own personal esteem, courage and passion but it never had to test our partnership or friendship. This year proved how very solid and focused we are and what a dynamic team we make.

The people I have met through social media, at events, through friends and out in the world have made this year truly special. My albums are filled with special moments and wonderful people and 2012 has been showered with gifts of connections, friendships and collaborations.

Before I say 'hello 2013', I would like to truly say a very big 'thank you' to 2012. You have been a great year of highs and lows, laughter and tears, celebrations and sadness. Thank you for taking me on a journey of growth and helping my build a stronger, more conscious & confident Jodene.

The perfect in every day - project me post 911

It's the perfectly overcast morning for staying in bed, watching movies, eating popcorn while sipping on coffee and cuddling with my three precious cats. While thinking about the very welcome overcast day, I realised that every day has had its perfects as if it were created just for me.

I was with friends yesterday, nibbling on leftover Christmas lunch at Greggie's and the one said that I was either faking it or handling the breakup really well. Proudly, I believe I'm doing really well without having to fake it at all and promised him and now you that I'm not denying any emotions. I bounce around between all of them, but always come back to this perfect place of gratitude.?I haven't done this alone and can honestly say I've had some of the most perfect days in the midst of all the adjustments to the new chapter in my life. The perfection is thanks to who I am surrounded by in my friends and family.

My mom has been absolutely amazing and instead of spending some nights with my sis & her kids, she's been home just long enough to make sure I'm ready for my first night alone. I feel totally safe in our beautiful house, but it's still an adjustment to be that alone at night. She's off to my sis's on Friday until the 7th of Jan and thanks to every perfect moment we have spent together, she's helped me be so ready for one of the biggest steps (in my perception) in moving on.

Jodene & Mr L

My sweetest little nephew (one half of the twin team of love) Mr L & I hanging out at the pool

Then there are my sisters. My big sis has the most open home I've ever known and I have literally moved in, kicked off my shoes, played in the pool, eaten her food and snuggled on her couch. My nephews are like medicine and I've ended every single day feeling whole and happy.

Little sis and my brother in law, well they have been so amazing to me and made sure I don't want or need anything. With a raised eyebrow my sis even managed to get her hubby to give me some of his Christmas chocolate. No part of me crawls into a hole and hides away from life, no matter what happens but it's always easier getting up and going out for a good reason and I've been excited, ever day, to spend time with them.

I have amazing friends and haven't had a day that hasn't been filled with the perfect quality time together. I've done everything from board games to lunching to chatting Chinese horoscopes and sipping on ?wine (and in my case, tea). We have even more perfect plans coming up with a new year's party and my traditional Tweede Nuwe Year (2nd new year) hot dogs and board games day. Greggie and I have been hosting it for a good few years now and I can't think of a more perfect way to start a new year.

When I'm not surrounded by the precious friends and family, I'm finding comfort in my belief system and doing a whole lot of meditations, salt baths, burning incense and focusing on the gratitude of my year and my relationship. It's making it easier to put everything down with a settled heart, and move on to creating new stories in my book of life.

I can't tell you how excited I am for next year. I have spent hours thinking about how much I have grown this year and I truly believe that the Universe rewards bravery. I've been so brave and thrown myself out into the world with such gusto that I can only begin to image the reward that I know are going to make 2013 a very defining year in my life. Remember, I turn 40 in September and I'm determined to step into a new decade having dealt with my issues that haven't let me shed the weight. 14.4kg down today and 20kg to go next year. My career is on the verge of the tipping point and my heart is on the edge, ready to free fall.

I have no doubt that it will also be a year with unexpected lows, fears and tears but no amount of wisdom or consciousness makes us immune to life happening around us. I know that all to well and because of all I have become in 2012 (and mainly with the help of Greggie and my mom ... on a Tuesday) I have prepared myself for everything to be perfect, even in the imperfections.

I would like to share my motto for 2013 with you: "Why sit at the station of hope when you can ride on the train of faith?" I'm writing that on my walls, sticking it on my mirrors, carving it into my heart and heading out into the world for yet another perfect year.

Have yourself a merry little Christmas

I always have that waning confusion about the fact that not everyone celebrates Christmas. Um ... I don't truly celebrate either being a finely concocted mixture of Jewish & Pagan! I do believe that no matter what anyone believes, there is something about this day that does draw us together with friends and family and for that reason I have a great love for Christmas.

So while I spend the day with my family ... I hope you are surrounded by blessings and love and you have yourself a merry, joyful day.

If not, the project me thing to do is use this day to count your blessings. Even if it's one and you give yourself the slightest reason to be grateful, I get the feeling this time next year it will have multiplied a whole lot more than you could ever imagine.

Catch my breath, let it go - project me post 909

I've always found an anthem for a time in my life. That one song that carries me through until I'm ready for a new anthem. What's always so amazing is how I turn to an old anthem and think that it will carry me through, then while driving innocently, lost in thought, with the radio on ... the new anthem emerges.

It's never a song I've heard before, but one that seems to have been written & produced just in time for the perfect merging of the story of my life. Coincidence? Who cares ... the song is always perfect.

The words truly say it all ... because it is my time. My time to catch my breath, let it go and don't let anyone hold me back!

I don't wanna be left behind
Distance was a friend of mine
Catching breath in a web of lies
I've spent most of my life
Riding waves, playing acrobat
Shadowboxing the other half
Learning how to react
I've spent most of my time

Catching my breath, letting it go,
Turning my cheek for the sake of the show
Now that you know, this is my life,
I won't be told what's supposed to be right

Catch my breath, no one can hold me back,
I ain't got time for that
Catch my breath, won't let them get me down,
It's all so simple now

Addicted to the love I found
Heavy heart, now a weightless cloud
Making time for the ones that count
I'll spend the rest of my time
Laughing hard with the windows down
Leaving footprints all over town
Keeping faith, karma comes around
I will spend the rest of my life

Catching my breath, letting it go,
Turning my cheek for the sake of the show
Now that you know, this is my life,
I won't be told what's supposed to be right

Catch my breath, no one can hold me back,
I ain't got time for that
Catch my breath, won't let them get me down,
It's all so simple now

You helped me see
The beauty in everything

Catching my breath, letting it go,
Turning my cheek for the sake of the show
Now that you know, this is my life,
I won't be told what's supposed to be right

Catching my breath, letting it go,
Turning my cheek for the sake of the show
Now that you know, this is my life,
I won't be told what's supposed to be right

Catch my breath

Catch my breath, no one can hold me back,
I ain't got time for that
Catch my breath, won't let them get me down,
It's all so simple now
It's all so simple now

Catching my breath, letting it go,
Turning my cheek for the sake of the show
Now that you know, this is my life,
I won't be told what's supposed to be right

(Catch my breath)

Catch my breath, no one can hold me back,
I ain't got time for that
(Catch my breath)
Catch my breath (catch my breath), won't let them get me down,
It's all so simple now

A day of Bonding - project me post 907

It's a few days into single and I'm torn between the gratitude that it's a public holiday weekend or wanting to be swallowed up by work. Seeing as though it's like a ghost town all around me, I settled for spending a quite weekend at home. It's amazing how understanding everyone has been around me because I've cancelled a few events and literally relaxed with my mom and cats until this morning.

Timing is everything and I've been patiently waiting for my day of bonding ... James Bond-ing!
Today was it and my special little sis and her hubby went with mom and I to finally see Skyfall. I've been a Bond fan (except for that Pierce guy) but my heart so lies with Daniel Craig and I loved every single second of it. Amazingly, I could totally switch off and get lost in the story, snacking on my weigh-less snacks and finding much gratitude in so many shirtless scenes.

But movies come to an end and reality comes rushing back pretty quickly.
It's amazing that any slight act of kindness from anyone sets off a flood of tears. So I cried in the line of the movie when my brother in law put his arm around me. I cried when they bought me extra ice cubes for my slushy. I even cried in the queue to pay when my sister handed me some money just because.
I'm so grateful that I have the family I do, especially my little sis, who I loved spending the day Bonding with. She is married to one of the sweetest men on earth and I shed more tears when he double checked with me if he could keep in touch with Pat at the same time that Pat said he was hoping he would hear from his Billy (The called each other that from Brother in Law ;p)
I'm not like that and I truly believe that everyone formed their own bond with Pat and I know we both need people around us now. Of course, knowing they have such a special bond just made me cry even more ... I think that was standing in the queue to buy popcorn.

I know everything happens for a reason and I know that both of us will be okay down the line, but I get the feeling I'm far from done crying.
Pat and I messaged a lot of the day away yesterday and all I have wanted is for us not to be enemies. So far so good and I'm holding out that we just adjust the undeniable bond that we have.

Okay so I'm in a heap, so I'm going to cuddle with my cats, with whom I have the most precious of bonds ,,,

Oh, I have some exciting news for you ... I'm like just under 2kg away from 15kg down this year. I could never have done it without discovering my self worth and turning my attention onto me, my happiness, my health and the special bond I have with myself.

The reality of love - project me post 906

I've never contemplated over a blog post like I have since yesterday but thanks to the support around me I am reminded that I committed to share my #projectme story and that I haven't hurt anyone in the process of telling my truth before. I've also realised that life isn't about the feel good stories all of the time and that there's so much to learn from heartache if we allow ourselves to.

It's on that note that I sip on my tea, snuggle into the safety of my couch and tell you that sadly Pat and I ended our relationship yesterday. I have been blown a way by how blown away everyone has been around me and then I started to realise that as we noticed that we had?unresolvable?needs in our lives, that I started to blog less and less.

That really is the whole story ... that we both wanted different things, saw the world far too differently and understood love differently. I'm a firm believer that if you are too afraid to tell the truth or make the life changing move, that circumstances do it for us and yesterday was that day.

I love Pat ... and I will always have a special place in my heart for him, but #projectme is my journey and what you want to know and what I want to share is how I am doing.

Empathy ... it's the greatest gift I ever, ever gave myself. It's made it so easy for me to stay calm and have no reason to regret a moment that we've shared. It's also made the ending perfectly okay, even though I feel like throwing up most of the day and had to crawl into my mom's bed at 4:30am. It's made me understand that everyone just does the best they can with what life has thrown them and that wounds are deeper than any of us can realise. Because of this I know that we never intentionally hurt each other, no matter how crazy it got.

I feel so blessed to have felt such a special love, but I've also learned that everyone loves differently and sometimes our ways of feeling & expressing love are like mixing oil and water. It's still worth hanging onto your believe of love and knowing what love means to you, even if there's heartbreak along the way.

It's ouch and I think the tears are going to be around for a while but I have something that I'm most proud of ... I haven't found comfort in food. Something has truly shifted along my journey with my body and in the past I would have binged and sought comfort in pigging out, but the thought hasn't even entered my mind. It's been in the sitting down and eating as if all were emotionally stable that I can see how very much I grew in a relationship that will remain dear to me always.

Okay ... crying again so I have to dash, but I thank each of you for your love and support.

Pat, if you are reading this, thank you for trying to understand why I blog & why I needed to do this post when both of our hearts are so tender and it should be so private. You were so brave to step out into the world with me!!



Kittens and Christmas trees

In my world, down south, it's not really time for 'Christmas trees'. I'm kind of a stickler for the pagan traditions and the tree belongs to winter in my world. On the other hand, that little girl in me gets all excited about Christmas ... even though I'm born Jewish. Confusing, I know, but that's what most people love about me ... I think!

This year is a little different and Pat's son is in town for the holidays so I wanted to put up a tree for him. I didn't forget my pagan roots and added the secret touches that I know would keep my traditions going.

There's just one thing I didn't quite plan for ... a?mischievous kitten ...

TreeThe tree . with all the pretty lights and fake snow!

roran christmas treeRoran discovers the tinsel ... and so the nightmare before Christmas begins

?Fallen tree

Well someone had fun while mom was sleeping ...

Kitten ...

Transformation Agent, Antoinette Taljaard tells her project me story

Antoinette Taljaard is a transformation agent, assisting in the awakening of consciousness. She does this by being the devil?s advocate on occasion, to fearlessly tread in the underworld to mirror the shadow. At other times she gives her joyous attention as a plant communicator to bringing humanity plant-based perfumes and elixirs to transform their lives and support their journeys through the jungle of the New and to just experience some real joy for a change. She?s currently?focusing?her energies and those of her talent bank of friends and connections on creating worldwide awareness of the abundant indigenous knowledge of the plant kingdom available to us Africans and putting her money where her mouth is with African natural perfumes made in conscious collaboration with gorgeous indigenous plants.

On a personal note:
When you know you are connected to someone from the moment you meet but don't act on it straight away, then life's going to make sure you bump into each other along the way. That's been the story of Antoinette and myself and life made sure that the timing was perfect when we finally had our first cup of coffee and found out that our life stories and connection to all that is around is was so in sync. Just from meeting me, she made me the most perfect personalised perfume, all with plants that called out just to me in the perfect?quantities. The harmony of scent has become linked to the breaths I take when my day begins, in the midst of it all and when all is done and I give gratitude for another day. I've become accustom to breathing in the scent and centering myself and once again, in perfect timing as so much change surrounds me right now.
Antoinette I'm so grateful for the time we spend together and for out talks that make me feel so understood and unique at the same time. Everything you touch is pure unconditional love and I am sure many more people will have the joy of connecting with you and falling in love with their own personal fragrance ... be it a perfume, candle or bath oil. I know I will never be the same again.

Antoinette tells her project me story:

What is your definition of happiness?
A deep sense of connectedness with everything. Connected to the special people in my life, the Earth, plants, nature and All That Is. This allows me to express my joy fully.

If you could have everyone say one thing to themselves every day, what would it be?
?I love you?

When we battle to believe in ourselves, we turn to someone who believe in us.?Who is that person for you and why?
I have a handful of people in my life who all support me in this way when I doubt myself, each in their own unique way and there is a special person in my life with who I share my deepest dreams and who stands by me as only he can in this amazing time we?re entering.

What quality do you believe we can never be taught because it is our birth right?

Describe the moment when you realised that you could achieve anything?
I was 33 when I experienced my connection to myself, the Earth and the entire universe in a very physical way. It completely changed the way I saw my reality. What I had thought of as concepts and ?spiritual ideals? became a very real part of my physical reality felt by my body.

How do you deal with the fears that could potentially hold you back?
I speak to them and about them. I own, embrace and love them until they have no further power over me, but instead become a part of me.

What have you always dreamed of being or doing and have you reached that dream?
I never had any dream or idea why I was here. I was always in nature and loving the connection, but it was not something I thought could be a ?doing?. It was just something and somewhere I loved being. I?didn't?conceive this dream until ?I? created the first natural perfumes with Light information and shared it with a friend. My dream slowly took shape as I was living it and I?m on a journey with many dreamlike and magical moments I could never have imagined.

When life gets in the way, what do you always remind yourself of?
We?wouldn't?be here if our ?work? was complete, we would be Home. So we all still have work to do. To be who we are, which is our ?work?, we have access to all the support we ever need and we are never alone. I remind myself to love myself and take care of my body and most of all to RELAX.

We all have something unique to offer the world, what is yours?
I translate information that makes people awakening journeys a little easier. Be it plant aromas into perfumes that support consciousness awakening or writing about new conscious life skills that translate into doable actions. The translation has a more mundane aspect in that I can explain tricky scientific things I?m fascinated by and have digested into easier to understand information bites. It also has an energetic aspect, which is that I walk between Worlds and bring new Light information and my understanding of unfolding awakening processes to people. I share how they can navigate and support themselves and sometimes help them find their inner toolkit.

What do you believe we have lost sight of in the world as a whole?
We are truly interconnected with one another and nature and the Earth is not something we can ever own parts of, but an abundant space we are all sharing for a short while.

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Losing it - project me post 903

I've patiently been waiting for that point when I could feel that I'm not going to slip back into old patterns and have to start all over again a few months down the line. I can't say that I thought I was near that point for the last few months and have had a terrible time panicking that I'm going to pick up all the weight.

That point of no return hasn't seemed to have anything to do with the numbers dropping off the scale and as I head towards 12kg less, I thought I would have been at that point ages ago. Amazingly, I got stuck on that 11kg mark for almost 8 weeks and felt my eating slowly slip backwards. We know I've never been a fan of training so that was easy to let fall by the wayside.

Honestly, it took me a while to figure out that the route I had chose wasn't the smartest one and despite losing the weight, it's not sustainable to live on about 5 items of food. For months I wasn't eating any fruit or having any dairy and even my beloved tea was a no-no. I was supposed to be training 5 times a week and 3 times is already a push for me, so the first sign of weakness and I just couldn't face one more piece of fish or bowl of oats.

My little sis has been a huge inspiration to me as she started simply counting calories with this incredible calorie counting app on her mobile. I thought I'd never manage to log my food daily, but it's easy as pie (low cal pie ;p) and I've become so conscious of what's a smart thing to eat and what not. I still have the nagging advice that I need to train more, eat out less and things that just don't go with my lifestyle, so I decided to do it my way.

Not looking too shabby for a gal who is still enjoying her tea with milk, orange squeezed over her salad, odd bacon breakfast with my guy and?spaghetti bolognese.
Of all the things I've changed, I've mainly cut out breads, eating too much starch at night (maybe once a week), changed to sweet stuff for diabetics and mostly ... I've watched my portion size.
As for gym ... we are still trying to get?acquainted?so I go when I can but give it sticks for my 35 minutes. Who knows, I might be running a marathon one day, but for now at least I'm getting my butt there often enough.

I know ... I'm a trainers worst nightmare but my own best friend!

Mr South Africa 2012 Prince Zane Maqetuka tells his project me story ahead of Siyagyma-SA

My name is Zane Maqetuka, Mr South Africa Prince 2012. Currently residing in Cape Town Rondebosch.

I am 28 years old, born and raised in a small town in the Eastern Cape called Graaff-Reinet, a town that gave birth to great leaders like Robert Sobukhwe and Anton Rupert just to name a few.

Coming from a small rural town, I have learnt to be humble and to appreciate People from all walks of life, rich and poor. The rural life has taught me the art of making the best out of the little that i have and despite life challenges and also get to turn my adversity into prosperity.

I am motivated and driven by not only my desire to succeed, but also to see other People who are less fortunate than me to also thrive for the better.

This year out of almost 2000 Men across the Country, i was fortunate to have been crowned as a Mr South Africa 2012 runner-up after completing all the society based tasks and also the Mr SA office challenges that were given to me in the 7 months time period of the competition.

My crowning was such an honour and humbling, since i have managed to make the top 3 out of the 2000 Men across South-Africa who were aspired to be the ambassadors of the nation as well.

I am committed to uphold the principles and values of the Mr South Africa organisation and the nation in general. Thus my core focus from now is to be a key inspirational ambassador to the youth of South Africa and the public domain as a whole.

?On a personal note:
I don't even know how Zane and I got chatting but we were instantly destined to be friends & support each other's visions. Being totally bias and knowing his passion & commitment as well as the divinely sculpted body under that shirt, he was my choice for Mr South Africa 2012. I'm so stoked that Zane was voted 2nd and named Prince.

His never venture, Siyagyma-SA has me so excited and I'm sad that I can't be in Cape Town for the campaign launch:

The SIYAGYMA-SA campaign is a new initiative that is set to inspire, galvanize, educate, inform and change South Africans? lifestyles for the better.

SIYAGYMA-SA?s key message is to live healthy at all times by exercising regularly, eating a balanced diet and adopting a positive attitude to achieving well-being in all aspects of our lives.

Zane Maqetuka?s experience with childhood obesity and his triumph over this has inspired him to show the country that with self-discipline, patience and determination it is possible to transform into a healthy lifestyle champion.

The Siyagyma-SA Campaign Team together with the Western Cape Department of Health launches this nation building campaign on Saturday 8th December 2012 in Gugulethu Square at 7:15am and has this vision to support the nation:

Zane, I am with you in spirit and wish you much success with your new venture and am so freaking proud of everything you have set your heart on achieving and brought to life.

Zane tells his project me story:

What is your definition of happiness?
My definition of happiness is to accept and pay gratitude to what I have at the moment and make sure that I make the best out of it with sheer satisfactory.

If you could have everyone say one thing to themselves every day, what would it be?
I AM SPECIAL!? People forget how special they are sometimes and get caught in what is expected of them and tend to lose the value of feeling special about them.

When we battle to believe in ourselves, we turn to someone who believe in us. Who is that person for you and why?
Firstly I want to say that once people see you as a strong figure they seem to forget that you also get to feel down sometimes. My Mom and Grandmother always boost my confidence whenever I am down and they have a deeper acumen of what makes me cheer up when things do not go my way.

What quality do you believe we can never be taught because it is our birth right?
To me I believe that it is the quality of inner congeniality.

Describe the moment when you realised that you could achieve anything?
When almost out of 500 Mr SA hopefuls in the country, I got to be crowned this year as Candidate (Mr South-Africa Runner-up) who had an ability to make an impact in South Africa with my authentic leadership aptitude.

How do you deal with the fears that could potentially hold you back?
I like to challenge my fears everyday and often prove to them that I always come out victorious at the end.

What have you always dreamed of being or doing and have you reached that dream?
I have always dreamed of becoming a successful and inspirational creative communication guru especially in motion picture and at this moment even though I have not attained my dreams, the journey to reach them has begun.

When life gets in the way, what do you always remind yourself of?
I am always reminded about one thing ,that I have set the pace already and so many people are looking up to me and inspired by my actions. I can?t? let down those who have invested trust and faith in me by giving up when adversity invades me.

We all have something unique to offer the world, what is yours?
All I have to give out to the world is Love. Without love I believe the world is doomed.

What do you believe we have lost sight of in the world as a whole?
Genuine affection of the human race. We are too caught up in other people?s agendas that we forget that we as people need to express affection with one another as one united species.

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