Tips For A Better Night’s Sleep

I’m tired just writing the title, folks. Hey, how is it going?! For those of you on Spring break, how has your break been so far? In today’s post, I’m going to be sharing my tips for a better night’s rest, because when you sleep better, you have a better day.

I used to be very insomniac, and it was hard for me to fall asleep. Luckily, I’ve found some things that have helped me fall asleep easier, so hopefully, those tips will help you as well. Shall we get into it?

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-Get Cozy-

Okay, this should go without saying, but you need to get cozy, people. Grab some blankets and cozy socks, snuggle up in your little nest of warmth, and relax. Let go of any stress and just chill. Put your electronics in another room, turn on some soft piano music…the works. This is your time.

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-Treat Yourself-

Treat yourself, people! This is similar to getting cozy. Put on your best pajamas, slather yourself in lotion, grab a pint of ice cream (okay, maybe not), put on your slippers…set aside time for yourself. You survived the long day, you deserve it.

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-Read A Book-

Reading a book is a wiser option then being on your phone or laptop before bed–otherwise, it will be harder to fall asleep. My favorite book of all time is Heartless (have any of you read it). Just look at that cover. It’s gorgeous.

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-Use A Fan-

I talked about this in my post about my evening routine. A lot of people told me in the comments that they use a fan to fall asleep as well! This really works. It seems strange, but if you get a small fan, the relaxing noise of the fan blowing and the cold air will make it easier to fall asleep. I always make sure the air is blowing right on my face, so it makes me feel cold, and I bundle up under the covers. Make sure your fan doesn’t have an annoying noise, though, or it could make it hard to fall asleep.

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-Do Yoga-

I know many of you do yoga, but if you don’t, give it a try! I love doing the Yoga for Bedtime practice from YWA, but if you don’t have a lot of times in the evenings, she has a seven minute practice. Yoga will definitely help your body to relax and prepare you for sleep.


I hope you sleep well tonight! Do you already do some of these things? Let me know! Thanks for stopping by!

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My Evening Routine

Hey, welcome back to another post! This is a common post idea for bloggers, and although I prefer coming up with my own content, I really wanted to do this. I have a long evening routine, so I thought I would share it with you. Let’s get right into it!

I usually start my evenings with stretching and yoga, which is the best feeling after a long day. If I didn’t workout earlier in the day, I’ll squeeze in a quick run or some cardio (if I feel like it).

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When I’m done with yoga, I wash my face with the Calia facial cleanser. I’ve done a review on this and other Calia products; here’s the link. This cleanser has high quality ingredients and works well to remove makeup and sweat.

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I didn’t take a picture of this, but I usually use some oils on my face for my acne. Lastly, I moisturize my face with the Cetaphil daily facial moisturizer and brush my teeth. Many people rave about this moisturizer, but unfortunately I’m not a fan of it. It gets the job done most of the time, but lately my face has still been dry after using it.

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I don’t go on electronics before sleep, because it makes it much harder for me to fall asleep. Instead, I read my Bible, write in my gratitude journal, and cross off things in my planner. If I feel like it, I’ll write a schedule for tomorrow of the things I need to accomplish. This is my favorite part of the night! I can get all the thoughts out of my brain and spend some time talking to God. Evening Routine #1.JPGEvening Routine #2.JPG

After I’ve cleared the thoughts from my brain, it’s time to get comfy, relax, and destress. I light a candle, turn on my diffuser, and snuggle up with cozy blankets and read a book for an hour or so. Evening Routine #6.JPG

I fall asleep within minutes, and over a few years I’ve developed ways to help myself sleep easier. The best solution I’ve found is to turn on my small fan. (Yes, even in winter!). I can’t sleep without my fan on. I then snuggle under tons of blankets and the relaxing noise of the fan and the cold air hitting my face helps me to fall asleep.


If you’re interested, I would be happy to share my morning routine as well! Just let me know in the comments. Thank you for stopping by! Sweet dreams, and I hope you have a wonderful evening.

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How To Live A More Positive Lifestyle

Heyo, long time no see. I’ve been on vacation! My family & I went to Lake Placid, NY (a few hours away from here we live). I’ll have a post up on the blog soon, so stay tuned for that! In the meantime, shall we get into the post?

This is something I’ve wanted to post for a while. I struggle with being negative, and I’ve found a few things that help me think & act more positively.

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-Keep A Gratitude Journal-

I’ve actually written a post on this–here’s the link if you feel like taking a peek and learning more. Here’s how it works: every night, I write down a few things that I’m grateful for. Boom, done. try to think out of the box–food and Netflix definitely make the list–but sometimes I’m just grateful for nature and rainy days. Whatever comes to mind, I write it down.

You don’t even need a journal. When you go to bed at night, think of a few positive things that happened during the day that you’re grateful for. This wires the brain to think positively and focus on the good things during the day rather than the negative things that happen.

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-Talk To Yourself In The Mirror-

Don’t freak out on me. Don’t you dare scroll down, either, this is important. One of my friends does this, and she recommended it to me. What do you do? It’s simple. Go to your mirror, look at yourself, and talk. Say things you love about yourself, smile, keep your chin up. This branches off into self-love, which is fantastic, because if you want to live a more positive life, it’s important that you aren’t negative to yourself.

Every morning and night, I look in my mirror and tell myself that I’m strong, capable, smart–whatever I feel like I need to say. But be specific–don’t give yourself random adjectives. Throughout the day, I remind myself of these things, and it helps me to remember to smile and take a deep breath. The show must go on.

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-Read The Bible-

This may be something you already do, but it’s so important. The highlight of my night is reading the Bible. Reading the Bible & praying lifts my spirits, it makes me feel cheerful and positive, and I almost always wake up with a smile on my face. A few different bloggers have talked about journaling in their Bible, one of them being Styled By McKenz, and I love doing that now!

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-Workout And Do Yoga-

Isn’t working out amazing? The feeling of moving, breathing deeply…it’s just fantastic. You probably know this, but studies have proven that when you excercise, your body releases endorphins–helping to release stress and make you feel happier and positive. I love working out and yoga, and trust me, if you’re feeling negative and cranky, go workout. And grab some chocolate, too.

Ever since doing yoga, my head is clearer and I feel happier in general. I talk about yoga so much on my blog, but it’s something I’m passionite about; I can’t say enough about it.

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My last tip? Smile. Just keep on smiling until your cheeks hurt. Whether the sun is shining or the rain is pouring, you’re alive. Life goes on. I would love to hear your thoughts on this post, so be sure to let me know if it was helpful. Have an amazing, positive day/night!

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Photos edited with VSCO.

31 Days Of Yoga // My Thoughts + Results

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I’ve been doing yoga for almost two years now, and I love it more every day of practice. My first yoga video was from the Youtube channel Yoga with Adriene, and I’ve been doing it ever since. Recently Adriene did a yoga “revolution”, a.k.a. 31 days of yoga for the month of January. It ended on Tuesday, and in today’s post I’m going to be sharing my thoughts!

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How I Feel Mentally

Amazing! After doing yoga every day, I found that my head was clearer, my thoughts were less scattered, and I was calmer and not stressed. Many people mistake yoga for being a physical practice, but don’t realize that it’s more of a mental practice. Yoga has taught me to love myself, to be confident, and to keep my head up high through the bad & good.

How I Feel Physically

My arm muscles are definitely looking bigger. 😉 I can also do more push-ups and have more core strength than before! My muscles were sore the first few days, but eventually my body adjusted and felt amazing after each practice. Along with being stronger, I’m way more flexible!

Why I Do Yoga

I do yoga to be the best Abigail that I can possibly be. Yoga helps me to think positively, it connects my mind to my body, and allows me to let go of negative thoughts and move on. I’m still not perfect at downward dog, I fall when doing tree pose, but none of that matters. What matters is that I show up and do my best.

Day 16 was my favorite practice by far, and I keep going back to it to stretch and get in a nice workout! Here’s the video if you’d like to give it a try.

Even though the revolution is over, you can do it! Be sure to check out Adriene’s channel, she has so many yoga videos. If you did the revolution, I would love to hear what you think about it/your results! Thank you for reading. 🙂

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What’s New & Christmas Updates

Wow, time flies. It really does. The last time I posted was Thanksgiving, and here we are! It’s almost Christmas! This is my favorite time of year. I adore the snow, the holiday cheer and the delicious cookies. 😉

button.jpgThis year, I’m participating in #stitchingsanta2016.  I took a few photos of the things I made & bought, but the photos somehow got deleted from my camera’s memory card. If you would like to see my updates from last year, here’s a link!

I really enjoyed coming up with things for my recipient this year. I found these adorable coffee mug coasters on a blog and ended up crotching over thirty for my family, and friends for Christmas presents. I included four gray ones into my recipients package. I wish I had the photos to share, but I assure you they looked fabulous! 🙂

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Photo taken from RepeatCrafterMe.

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Moving on a different topic, I love the food this time of year. The cookies, the cakes, the chocolate sweets…but by New Years, I find myself more than ready for excerise to get in shape and feel healthier! My favorite yoga Youtuber, Yoga with Adriene, is doing a 31 day yoga camp, or as she calls it, a yoga revolution, and it’s basically a month of yoga! What makes it even better is that it’s completely free! It starts in January. I joined and I urge you to join as well! I love doing her yoga videos, and they are all free. You can sign up here!

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One last thing to share–a few weeks ago, we went to get our Christmas tree! That’s probably one of my favorite things about Christmas. I love not only picking out the tree, but decorating it by the fireplace while listening to Christmas music. We went to a family farm, where you can pick your own tree. The day was beautifully cold and crisp, but not miserably cold, which made it a very enjoyable experience.

I hope that you have a very Merry Christmas! Thank you for reading!

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Healthy Foods: What to Make

Hello! Long time, no see! It is Day 27 of the pledge. I got a request for tips on making healthy foods. I spent a while trying to figure out how to lay out this post. So, for this post, I am going to be sharing my top two foods/recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert, and snacks. This is going to be a long post! If you missed the first pledge post, check it out here.Let’s start with some good old breakfast.

Breakfast

Breakfast has always been really easy for me. I’m not a breakfast person, so I typically have something small. 🙂IMG_9243

One of my favorite things for breakfast is a plate of some healthy fruits & sometimes veggies, like celery. It really helps give me energy and fills my stomach.

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For my second option, I love ack-mack crackers with peanut butter on them.  Ack-mack crackers are just bland sesame crackers, but they have essential grains in them, and they’re really good for you. I also like these because they’re really basic, so you can basically put anything on them. (For a lunch option, you could melt some mozzarella on them and put a couple pieces of basil on….yum!) You can buy these at Target, Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, Hannaford…pretty much anywhere.

Lunch

Lunch is really fun, because you can have the same kinds of foods as dinner.

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One of the most basic, delicous things that I like for lunch is a quesidilla. I seriously have these for lunch almost every day. These are super easy, and you can add chicken, beans, sour cream, etc. Make sure you use a whole wheat tortilla, it’s healthier!

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Roasted veggies are becoming a favorite for me. I love sweet potatoes, russet potatoes, beets, carrots….I just peel and cut them and throw them in the oven for about 45 mins. To make your life easy, just cut a ton of veggies of your choice and cook them for the week. You can warm them up whenever you want them for lunch/dinner. Easy! 🙂

Dinner

Rice Bowls

I love Mexican food, and one of the easiest dinners is a rice bowl. Just cook up some rice (use brown rice, it’s better for you) and add some salsa, cheese, beans, lettuce, etc. Rice is a really good foundation because it’s used in all kinds of food–from Indian food to Chinese food. I have rice bowls probably twice a week.

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Another classic for dinner is just some wheat pasta and sauce. Make sure you use a healthy wheat pasta that has essential grains. If I’m feeling lazy, I’ll just have leftover pasta for lunch, too! If you want an easy pasta, just cook the pasta of your choice and add some butter, salt and pepper, and basil.

Dessert

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If you have a sweet tooth, no worries! Me too! For dessert, you can actually have dark chocolate, if it’s over 80% cacaco. Dark chocolate is really good for you, and it’s delicious. Make sure you pick a fair trade and organic opition.

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I also love date fudge! I found this recipe on one of my favorite youtube channels, Holistic Habits. Check it out here.

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And because you can’t go wrong with more desserts, I’ll mention my favorite three ingredient peanut butter cookies. These seriously take ten mintues to make and cook, and they are so so so good. 🙂 Check it out here. 

Snacks

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I love a refreshing cucumber after a long day. I always peel it, and put a pinch of salt on the slices for a better flavor.

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You have no idea how obsessed I am with dates. They are SO sweet and soft. If you put them out in the sun for a while, they get a slightly crystallized taste. Make sure you buy pitted dates to make your life easier!

And there you have it! I’m sorry I haven’t posted in a while, but it’s better late than never. Also, I went on a huge fabric haul a few days ago, so stay tuned for that! Thank you for reading!

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How To Keep A Gratitude Journal

Hello! It’s day three of the pledge! Be sure to check out the first post if you missed it. If you’re taking the pledge with me, how is it going so far? I got a request for a post on making healthy food. This is going to be a long, helpful post, so stay tuned! I’m going to be sharing some of the easiest and inexpensive meals and some resources. It should be coming out within a few weeks.

As for today’s post, this is a post I have been wanting to do too. This pledge is not just about what you feed the brain–it’s about what you feed your mind. I have found that keeping a gratitude journal really helps erase some of negative thoughts in my head.

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A gratitude journal is a place where you keep track of the things that make you happy and positive. It helps you to reflect on the good things that are happening in your life at that time.

Some people simply don’t have time to keep a journal, and I totally understand that! I’m always on a crunch for time too. Hopefully today’s tips will help you stick to writing in your journal every day.

Start by picking a time that works for you.

Some people enjoy mornings, others enjoy the evening. I personally like the morning, because it helps me start my day with some positivity.

Find out how you want to organize your journal.

There are two ways that you can organize your journal.

Way One: Write the things that you are thankful for in a list. It looks something like this:

  • I’m thankful for my blog
  • I’m thankful for my followers
  • I’m thankful for my family
  • I’m thankful for Charlie

And so on. If you don’t have a lot of time to write in your journal, I would recommend this for you. If you only have time to write a couple of things a day, that’s fine!  

Way Two: Write the things that you are thankful for in short paragraphs. This is more descriptive and tends to be like a diary, but make sure your paragraphs aren’t too long. It looks like something this:

  • I’m thankful for the rain. For the last week, it’s been very hot and the garden just needs some fresh rain. This morning, I had time to read and eat breakfast while watching the rain fall down.

Also, don’t be worried if your journal becomes a little random. The first couple pages of your journal will probably have important things, like “family” “heat” “a nice home” “food”, etc. But if the other pages stray to “Dogs” and “My arm”, Don’t worry! If you can’t think of what to write, just don’t write anything. Try to focus on things that you are thankful for that are happening in your life at the time. 

If you cannot think of anything else to write, start some new sections in your journal, like “Things That Make Me Happy”…whatever you want to add that helps you channel positivity will help. 

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Please excuse my horrible handwriting. 🙂The last step is applying this to your life. If you are having a bad day, read through the journal. Look at everything you’ve written. Remember the memories that you captured in a single word. Think of the kind words people have said to you, the smiles you’ve received. Your spirits will rise instantly.

And look at photos! Keep photos near you to help stay positive during the day.

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I have a cork board where I have a couple of my favorite photos hanging there. This is a photo of me in Boston, where I was born. 

I hope that this post has given you some inspiration! If you have any questions, drop me a comment or contact me via email.  If you still aren’t sure what to do for your gratitude journal, or if you have any questions whatsoever on the pledge, I’m here to help.

Have a beautiful, happy, and positive day. I’ll see you in the next post!

 

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And So It Begins!

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The Pledge officially begins today! If you missed my first post, please check it out here for more details. Since it’s a Sunday, today’s post is pretty small. I just wanted to give you my quick agenda for today:

Tonight, I’m hoping to do a yoga workout. It’s a rainy day here in New York, so I’ll probably do a gentle workout, maybe this one?  Or maybe I’ll make my own little workout up. 🙂

I’m going to also make some three ingredient peanut butter cookies. These are soooooooo good and since they don’t have a lot of ingredients (an egg, sugar, and peanut butter), they’re a pretty healthy choice! I make these all the time. If you want to make these, be sure to use organic & all natural peanut butter.

I’m also hoping to do a coconut oil hair mask. (I’ll have a post coming soon on this!) I do these all the time, and they work wonders for growing your hair! I cut two inches off my hair recently and I’ve noticed that it’s already grown back.

Hopefully, fingers crossed, I’ll have a post ready for you tomorrow. I’ve been thinking up some fun post ideas for this month, and here are some ones that I’ve came up with:

  • A quick yoga routine for the morning
  • Tips for growing long and healthy hair fast
  • A coconut hair mask
  • Keeping a gratitude journal

And of course I have some more sewing creations to share with you! Do any of those post ideas interest you? What kinds of things would you like to see?

Thank you very much for reading! Have a wonderful day.

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P.S. My $100 gift card arrived recently. I’m looking forward to doing a fabric haul! Stay tuned! 

 

 

Take the Pledge

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Hi! Today’s post is long and complicated. Please bear with me and read the whole thing!

To kick off the addition of healthy living and natural beauty, I’m doing something that I have wanted to do for a very long time. I try to live a very healthy lifestyle. I do yoga every day and constantly eat fruits and veggies, and nourish my body with filtered water. I go on hikes and walks and participate in track. I stay clear from dyes, syrup, etc.

I am trying to really eliminate all the bad–not just in my food, but also in the products I use–I try not to use sulfates in my hair, and I’ve been checking the labels of my facial products. If it has chemicals, it doesn’t fit the bill.

So here’s the point I’ve been getting to:

For a whole month, I’m going to monitor every single product and food item that I eat. And I’m inviting YOU to join me! And hey, maybe if this month is a great one, you can keep living like this. 🙂 If you already do live like this, join me for the fun of it!

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Over this month, I am going to post different products that I use, keep posting updates, etc. I’ll have tons of freebies, yoga workouts, recipes for healthy eating….it’s going to be awesome! I will go day by day sharing some of the things that I have eaten and I’ll have some quotes and inspiration photos. You can follow along with me in the comments or share with me some of the things you’ve eaten over the week. take the pledge why.jpg

Wonderful question.

  • Eating healthier gives you more energy throughout the day.
  • Eventually you can stop your sugar cravings (yay!).
  • Your headaches or toothaches from unhealthy foods and drinks will cease to exist.
  • You’ll be more aware and proud of what you eat!
  • You’ll look flushed and healthy–your skin will brighten, and you may lose a pound or two. Trust me, your body will thank you.
  • All in all, you will just feel better and more active, and you’ll find you don’t have to reach for those advils anymore.

And let’s be honest, healthy meals look pretty impressive on Instagram. 🙂

Here are the rules for this.

  • No protein bars (unless homemade). These are actually bad for you!
  • It’s pretty obvious, but no fast foods.
  • Nothing microwavable.
  • No boxed lunches.
  • No Gatorade!
  • Nothing with dies, high fructose corn syrup, etc.
  • Try not to eat too many sugars!
  •  No candy! (Sigh.)
  • No gum.
  • No soda.

Oh, while I’m at writing these big paragraphs, I have another thing to add. Don’t worry about calories. I know some people that judge what they eat by how many calories the food has. Just by looking at the ingredient list, or in general knowing what the food is, you can probably guess whether it is healthy or unhealthy. You need calories, no matter what people tell you, and there are good calories and bad calories.

Like I said, this pledge is not just about food. Go to your bathroom, I’ll wait, and check the ingredient list of your shampoo, look at your makeup, and trash whatever has bad ingredients. Do the same with your home products.

What to look out for?

  • Sodium Laureth Sulfate
  • Sulfates in general
  • Carbon Black
  • Carcinogens
  • Triclosan
  •  Ammonia
  • Sodium Hydroxide
  • Parabens
  • “Fragerence”

Found some of these? Pitch it. This post is getting long enough, so I won’t go into detail of why these are bad. However, some of these are toxic chemicals, and others are just ingredients that were made in a lab…you don’t want these on your body or your home surfaces.

Another thing to add–If you are a coffee drinker and MUST have your coffee (Some people get headaches when they don’t have caffeine in the morning) I’m not going to make you quit drinking coffee. Remember, everything in moderation.

So there you have it! Thirty days of healing. Take a walk! Breath in the fresh air! Eat healthy and put away that phone for goodness sake! Enjoy life. Become a better you.  Each week I will post an update with the foods I’ve eaten and some more tips, sources, and products for a healthier life. And I’ll do at least two or three yoga workouts for beginners.  Who’s with me? Let me know in the comments, please!

And of course if you have ANY questions do not hesitate to ask! In fact, please do! If you have questions about healthy living, yoga,  or this whole pledge thing feel free to drop me a comment or contact me via email!

Thank you so much for reading! And be sure to really consider this–I would love to have you join me in this journey for a healthy, better life. If you already strive to eat healthy, cheers! Good for you! Join me anyways! I’m looking forward to this! We will start officially May 1st.  Have a wonderful day.

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