Lifestyle Favorites | March 2015

Happy April!  Spring is in the air and hopefully here to stay.  I’m excited to share some of my favorite things from the past month with you.  These range from clothing, accessories, and beauty items to home goods, multi-media picks, and food.

All image sources that are not originally my own photos are from the links provided below.  Please be advised that some of the links provided are affiliate links and I do receive a small commission if you make a purchase using those links.  I very much appreciate your support of this blog in doing so!

Clothes & Accessories

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✻ The North Face Mezzaluna Hoodie – I’ve basically lived in these amazing micro fleece hoodies for the past month.  They’re the perfect late winter/early spring weight and fit just right (not too loose, not too tight).  Mine are the Stria variety from last year’s collections (no longer available), but it looks like The North Face currently offers the same model in different colors with just a slight variation with some ruching on the sides.

✻ Fitbit Flex – I basically haven’t taken this fitness tracker off since I received it in my target=”_blank”>Popsugar + Target Must Have Box.  I’ve had so much fun with it tracking my steps, exercise, and sleep.  Using the silent alarms has also been a really effective way for me to monitor my water intake.  I think it’s a great motivator for anyone interested in stepping up their activeness.

✻ Erin Condren Wellness Journal – I’ve kept a food and fitness journal off and on for the past decade.  In the past I’ve  target=”_blank”>used blank moleskines to design my own.  I received this little gem in a New Years special bundle package from target=”_blank”>ErinCondren.com and decided to give it a try.  It’s a simple yet colorful design that is perfect to fill in meals, snacks, and activity.  You can also track your weight and measurements over the course of three months (which is how many weekly spreads are in the journal).  I like using mine as a tool to help me be more aware of how I’m fueling my body.

Beauty

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✻ Tarte Tartelette Amazonian Clay Matte Eyeshadow Palette – I hesitated to purchase this palette after hearing so many mixed reviews about it, but decided to go for it to see for myself.  I actually love it!  I think some people don’t care much for the formula, which is a bit more chalky in consistency, which I usually don’t like either, but for some reason it works for me in this palette.  This range of beautiful neutral matte shades has been my go-to lately for soft, natural looks.

✻ MAC Sheen Supreme Lipstick in Bare Again – I dug this oldie but goodie out of my lipstick stash and immediately fell back in love with it.  The formula is unbelievably creamy.  It’s the perfect “me” brownish pink neutral shade.

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✻ Pantene Sheer Volume Shampoo and Beautiful Lengths Conditioner – I picked up this duo on a recommendation from MakeupByTiffanyD and couldn’t be more pleased with the purchase!  My hair is absolutely loving this set.  The jumbo size with included pump at a very reasonable price are added bonuses.

✻ L’Occitane Almond Shower Oil – I actually recieved this as a gift late last year and hesitated to use it because I wasn’t sure about the whole oil business.  I’m so happy I got over that and pulled it into my shower for spring, because it’s an amazing body wash.  I simply pour a small amount onto my favorite Eco Tools Loofah, run under water, and poof!  The oil quickly turns into a nice lather and leaves my skin feeling clean and soft.  The deliciously light almond scent is the icing on the cake!

✻ Tree Hut Shea Body Scrub – I’ve featured this scrub before in past favorites, but it bears mentioning again, because it is so awesome.  I’ve absolutely loved pairing the delicious Brazilian Nut variety with the almond shower oil.  They’re a match made in heaven!

Home Goods

OJ_TBBB_04-01-2015_05✻ Lifefactory Glass Food Storage – I picked up this cute little glass container earlier in the month after seeing them around for awhile.  I’m so happy I went for it!  The heftier weight thanks to the glass combined with the nonskid silicone outer wrap makes it a great choice for snacking in the car, because the container stays where I put it.  I’m enjoying using mine in this capacity, but I feel like it might be a bit too heavy/bulky to tote around in a bag.

✻ Lifefactory Water Bottle – Yet another repeat favorite, I wanted to share this water bottle again, especially since it’s another Lifefactory pick.  I prefer glass water bottles for the purest flavor as well as their durability.  Lately, I’ve been really into the flip cap style.

✻ Lunchskins Reusable Snack Bag – Keeping with the on-the-go food storage trend in this month’s favorites, this awesome reusable snack bag lives in my bag with my emergency stash of mixed nuts.  It’s lightweight, small, and washable, making it a great alternative to using plastic baggies all of the time.

✻ Keep Cup – This has been my favorite new travel mug ever since I pulled it out of the January Popsugar Must Have Box.  It’s the perfect size to enjoy a cuppa on the go.  That being said, I don’t think that it’s designed for long term warming like other thermal travel mugs.

Multi-Media

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✻ Confessions of a Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella – I read this book when I was in the mood for a quick and easy chick lit read.  It wasn’t actually my favorite book.  If you’d like to hear more about my thoughts, I reviewed it here.

✻ The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo – I very much enjoyed reading this best-seller that gives advice on purging and organizing your home all in one go.  You can see my review here and see how I put Kondo’s advice into practice when I recently purged my entire wardrobe here.

✻ Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty – This chick lit-ish book was much more up my alley than Confessions of a Shopaholic with a more developed plot line and character profiles.  I reviewed it here if you’re interested in hearing more of my thoughts.

✻ Inferno by Dan Brown – Big Little Lies put me in the mood for a bit more mystery, which is why I reached for Inferno next.  I’ve enjoyed all of Brown’s books in the past, especially because he includes so much historical fact with great attention to detail in his writing.  I plan to post a book nook on this soon!

✻ If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late by Drake – In the past I’ve surprised some people with my appreciation of Drake’s music, as I might not seem like the rap-loving type.  Honestly, I don’t listen to much other rap, although I appreciate it as an art.  There’s something about Drake’s particular sound that I find quite soothing, despite the rather rough lyrics and themes.  His choice of melodies and beats is almost chant-like to me.  I like listening to his music when I need a bit of calm.

✻ Dr. Who Season 8 – My husband Don and I are big Dr. Who fans. We finally caught up with the last season (not the latest one) and enjoyed getting to know Peter Capaldi as the new Doctor.  The show has taken a bit more of a serious turn over the last few seasons, but still retains its quirky charm and knee slapping humorous bits.

✻ Bones Season 9 – Speaking of knee slapping humor, Bones is another show we like to keep up with (and, true to form, we’re a season behind, but that’s just how we roll).  We love its cheesy punchlines mixed with great murder mystery plot lines.

Amelia Liana – I don’t know how it took me this long to discover Amelia’s channel, but she’s basically the only YouTuber I’ve watched all month.  I’ve enjoyed catching up on her vlogs especially.  I find her personality sweet and refreshing.  She seems wise beyond her 22 years!

Tasty Treats

All hail the deliciously divine avocado!  I can’t get enough of this delectable fruit (yes, it’s technically a fruit).  It’s a healthy fat that, in moderation of course, is as good for you as it is tasty.  A few of my favorite ways of enjoying it recently include mashed up on a piece of toast with a sprinkle of sea salt and spread on a turkey and spinach wrap.  Double yum!

If you’d like to hear more about my March favorites, check out this video:

It’s giveaway time! I wanted to share the awesomeness that is the Fitbit Flex with you.  The March 2015 Favorites Giveaway will run until Wednesday, April 8, 2015 at 6 PM CT.  The giveaway is open internationally.  All entrants under the age of 18 must have parental permission to enter.  TWO winners will receive a Fitbit Flex and an Erin Condren Wellness Journal.  You can enter by following the directions in the Rafflecopter widget posted below (check out this blog post for more information on entering Rafflecopter giveaways).  I’ll announce the winners on THIS blog post and contact them directly through email, as always.  Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sometimes Rafflecopter experiences technical difficulties. If you can’t enter for some reason, try again later and it will probably work.

I would love to know what some of your March favorites were if you care to share.  I hope April is off to a great start for you!

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 * Post contains affiliate links.  This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are genuinely my own. *

107 comments

107 thoughts on “Lifestyle Favorites | March 2015”

  1. I use a homemade food journal. =) Been wanting a fitbit and the erin condrin wellness journal looks cool. thanks for a chance to win.

  2. Hi Jen,

    I Use a combination of the Samsung Galaxy S Health app and my fitness pal to track my steps, exercise and food/water intake

  3. Hi Jen! I like the reusable snack bag – so handy! For anyone who is a 90210 fan, I listened to Jennie Garth’s Deep Thoughts of a Hollywood Blonde on audio this past month and was surprised to find that I loved it! Of course it has the behind the scenes details I was shamelessly after, but I also found Jennie Garth to be much deeper that I knew – the title is obviously warranted 🙂 I also started listening to Thrive by Arianna Huffington, which rightfully calls out our cultural shortfall of overworking and under-resting and rejuvenating. I highly recommend it. Happy April!

  4. I have been enjoying your video’s. Your Marie Kondo purge was great ! Thank you for sharing that book ! I have done a number on my house ! My husband is stunned. I would like to see at least swatches if not different eye looks with the Tartelette eye shadows. I am going to try the Pantene shampoo and conditioner after hearing such great reviews from you and Tiffany. As always, thanks for sharing Jen !

    1. I find that actually writing things down in a journal makes a bigger impact on my awareness of what I’m eating personally.

  5. I love your favorites vlogs/blogs. Regarding your Lifefactory water bottle…do you remove the rubber cover to clean it? Or is it ok to leave it on. I have the KeepCup and I find if I don’t remove the rubber band, it gets kind of gunky underneath. I just wondered if it is a huge pain to remove the rubber cover from the water bottle. Thanks!

  6. Currently I’m only tracking my health in my head but I’ve been searching for a fitness band to count my daily steps for some time now.
    Thanks for sharing your favorites 🙂

  7. Thank you Jennifer for this fabulous chance to win these great health conscious items! Plus, I’m loving how you shared how you use them. If I were to win them, I would definitely use them as you have shared! Great suggestion also on setting the band to vibrate to drink more water!!! Thanks ever so much!

  8. I don’the currently track my fitness or nutrition but need to do so. I am losing bone mass and I need to build up my muscle to support my bones.Would love to have these tools to help with that.

  9. I’m excited about this giveaway. Tracking my fitness and making my health a priority is a big thing for me starting in April. Thanks for hosting this!

  10. I’m just getting started on my weight loss journey and its going to take some time. I’ve just been writing my information down on a piece of notebook paper. Nothing to formal. You are an inspiration!

  11. Hi Jen, I use RunKeeper, but love the fact that you can have an alarm on the fitbit to remind you to drink water, this is 1 area that I do need to concentrate on and that is drink more water, with the RunKeeper, I hold my phone in my hand when I am walking, I am currently losing weight, You are an inspirational and motivational, Thank you 🙂

  12. I don’t take my fitbit off when showering, but I do take it off when I take baths. May I suggest you watch “Sam and Nia” on youtube?

  13. I have used the Blogilates Fit Journal and just tracked those things in a notebook. I would love to try the Erin Condren wellness journal. 🙂

  14. I love almond oil shower oil. You can also use it to shave with. I was hesitant at first to use it to shave with but it works, less drying than other shaving creams or foams.

  15. I track my food intake and movement on the Weight Watchers app. I’ve been using it for a few years now and have really enjoyed it.

  16. I have been a member of Weight Watchers on and off for many years and as a person who has struggled with weight my entire life, I have found that I am only successful when I track. Recently, I have found the my fitness pal app and absolutely love it. It is my understanding that you can sync many of the fitness watches to this app as well. I am looking into one as a birthday present to myself, any suggestions?

  17. I used the app My Fitness Pal to track calories once and became unhealthily obsessed, it was a scary time. I managed to delete the app and get myself back on track. I keep a food diary on and off, especially when I’m having dietary issues, I seem to be developing a lot of food sensitivities as I get older! I do my best to NEVER look at calories now though. I know what’s healthy and what’s not, I indulge from time to time but I’m pretty sensible, I could never go back to counting again!

    Sarah 🙂
    Saloca in Wonderland

  18. I just actually use my Life Planner to keep track of what a eat, how much water I drink and how many times per week I do CrossFit, Hot Yoga or just to go the gym. It works really well for me! xx

  19. I’ve been toying with getting a fitbit so glad that you are keeping us up with how it’s working for you. So often we get things an duse them for a short while and then move on, so knowing that you’re still using it is very helpful – Thanks!

    I use a personal size Filofax with 2 days/page for my food diary. The smaller size = portability so no excuse not to use it. I also cut my customized shopping list to the same size and laminated those pages, so I can plan my meals, create my shopping list, and track what I eat all in one place. For fitness, I started using a bendy calendar (to drop into gym bag) – and LOVE what I came up with, and then promptly pulled my knee (not looking good for Tinker Bell this year, but no more deferrals – Ouch!).

  20. I would LOVE to win these two products to help start my fit life! I entered and I know it’s run by Rafflecopter (am I spelling that correctly?) I just wanted to let you know how wonderful of a giveaway this is for many of us. I suffer from multiple chronic pain disabilities and obesity as a side effect. I’m aiming to live my best life in a bad situation and this would be a blessing. I know we’re all in it fair and square and I love that about rafflecopter! I just wanted to share that this is a generous and possibly life changing give away you’re hosting. May the winner use it to it’s fullest and be full of gratitude 🙂

  21. I use Herbalife products for breakfast and dinner, eat a healthy lunch and snack in between. As far as fitness I go to a boot camp 6 days a week and track my morning runs with an Nike app. I want to start training for a marathon soon. You inspired me with the Disney Princess Half Marathon 🙂

  22. i just started to workout on a treadmill and track my food on my fitness pal.
    I started in January and mostly became motivated by you:)
    I stumbled upon u this past year and have watched all of your videos.
    Thanks for motivating and inspiring me.
    P

  23. The fit bit looks cool I’ve been wanting to get one for a long time though I am finding my new phone has a app already installed to track pretty much the same things. My favorite for March is map my run app it’s fun and it shows me exactly where I ran and if it was at a all out sprint or not as well as tracking my progress on the map of the neighborhood.

  24. I love the myfitnesspal app. As far as convenience there Is nothing easier once you get your food up to date for about a week. I have been hearing a lot of wonderful things about the fitbit but I’m still on the fence for if I actually want one. I have been re-reading an old series called A Modern Witch by Debora Geary… wonderful for when your life needs just a little bit of magic

  25. The Fitbit Flex is totally waterproof. I wear mine doing dishes, having a bath or shower, swimming. I only take it off to charge it, had mine for almost 2 years. So go ahead and leave it on.

  26. I don’t have a tracker of any kind so this giveaway is super sweet of you! For the last month or so I have been researching the Fitbit because I’ve been completely unmotivated in the health department. Having this hot little band on my wrist every day will keep me moving! Thanks for the opportunity and I’ll pick one up anyway if I’m not the lucky winner because of your praises. Thank you for all of your hard work!

  27. I use myfitnesspal and the apple health app. But always wanted a Fitbit to help with fitness tracking while at work on long days where I cannot have my phone on me to track my steps or stairs climbed. It would be very helpful to see how much activity I do in a day at work in order to balance calories expended and ingested.

    1. Also, I’ve been following you for a while now and find you a very inspiring. I don’t think I go a day without seeing your face or reading your blog. Thank you for being you!

  28. I m not really counting my calories,but I m careful about what I have on my plate and this period of the year is really a great period where I privilegate fruits and vegetables,the wetaher is so beautiful so there is a lot of outside work in the garden..
    Thank you for the giveway and I really love your favorites,nice video.
    Happy April my dear!

  29. I would love a FitBit. I usually try to eat a balanced diet but I do love my chocolate! I had gestational diabetes with all 3 pregnancies and my blood sugars remain slightly elevated. Being in the healthcare profession I know how important it is to take care of your body and health. I like how you use it to keep track of your water intake. Great idea!

    I love the monthly lifestyle favorites! I look forward to them to find out about new and interesting things. I have similar tastes and interests and I trust your opinion on finding great things.

  30. Love your videos and blogs! You always have great suggestions and I’m always inspired by you. Thank you for hosting this giveaway!! You are very generous. I have tried using different apps for health and food tracking, but find that I don’t keep up with them. I should write it down, somewhere. I would love a Fitbit, I feel it would make a huge impact on my fitness goals and love that you can set silent alarms for reminders. Thanks again!

  31. Jen, thanks for doing a Fitbit giveaway. I’ve been debating whether I want to get one. I bought my husband one for his birthday last year and he loves it. I thought it may keep me more on top of my fitness through the rest of my pregnancy. Winning one would be great, if not I’ll probably go purchase one since everyone that has it really likes it. Loving your lifestyle favorites!

  32. I Jen, I use a Polar Loop activity tracker! I use it along with a Polar H7 heart rate monitor when I work out. Just like the Fitbit it tracks your exercise, sleep and steps but it also has the capacity of tracking your heart rate when wearing the heart rate monitor. It is also fully waterproof so I never take it off even in the pool or shower!

  33. Jen there’s are also amazing desserts that can be made healthier and more nutritious with avocados! I had brownies that were amazing. I use an app called Nexercise for my fitness tracking and another called FatSecret (yea what’s with the name?) which tracks and calculates caloric intake for me and has a barcode scan which makes things really easy for the i dividual food items in my meals. (It also has a fitness tracker but i like the rewards system on the Nexercise App. Good luck to all who enter!

  34. Hi Jen,

    I love your channel. I have been a subscriber for about 6 months. I really enjoy your holiday and party prep videos. I have also recently started my POP SUGAR must have subscrption becuase of your unboxing videos. I have only received one box, but I am very pleased with the subscription so far.
    Anyway, I track my fitness on my phone. I use 2 aps…Fit and Withings (android). I use 2 aps because Humana Vitality only syncs/lnks to Fit via Withing to track my physical activity,in order to qualify for cheaper health nsurance at work. At this time i cannot afford a FitBit, but i am saving for one. BUT thank goodness for phones with fitness aps,huh. lol

    well take care and i will see you in your next video 🙂

  35. Hi Jen I’d love to try Tarte makeup but it’s quite hard to come by in England and your palette looks lovely. Do you mind if I ask, do you have a Kindle? Like you I love to read, although time is scarce for me as a working mother, and I really don’t know whether it’s worth the investment? I love that they’re so small and thin but I also the the idea of a book that can be thrown around (if that makes sense!).

    1. I do have one that I mainly use for travel and I really like it. I think it’s worth it if you think it’s something you’d use and don’t care about collecting actual books.

      1. Thanks Jen I usually read books and then take them to a charity shop so from that point it might be worth it. I’m not a collector.

  36. I use My Fitness Pal. I love that you can scan the bar codes on food with your smart phone to add them to your food diary. It’s so easy! I having been looking into getting a fitness tracker because here in Australia you can link the tracker to your FlyBuys account and gets points for everyday that you take 10 000 steps or more. You can then convert the points into gift vouchers. So I would be getting paid to get fit and healthy! Excellent motivation 🙂

  37. I use a self-made menu planner and grocery shopping list and then transfer foods the day before I eat them into myfitnesspal.

  38. Been eyeing off a fitbit for a while now. One of things that I don’t wan’t to splurge on just in case I don’t like it. I do need to get more motivated though. Really like that EC Wellness journal, I also need to start toning down the sweets!

  39. I’ve just been using the “human” App on my iPhone, I would love to get a FitBit or similar band to add to the App 😀

      1. Sorry for some reason it cut off the rest of my comment.

        I love your channel! You are such an inspiration and such a motivation for me!
        I started tracking my fitness at the beginning of the year as a resolution. I love the my fitness pal app but I have found that I’m more of a “need to write things down” person. I also had started looking into a fitness band to wear to keep up with my steps and then you received one of the fitbit bands in one of your subscription boxes and I was holding out to see how you liked it before purchacing one.

  40. I now use my phone to track how much steps I do on a daily basis. but I’d like to have a wristband to be more accurate because I don’t always wear my phone on my body so I miss some steps. I am also really curious how I sleep to set a better schedule for sleeping. Love your videos 😀

  41. I’ve been using the Dailygreatness Training Journal : 12 Weeks to a Rocking Fit Body and Mind, for a few weeks and so far I like it a lot.

  42. I’ve used myfitnesspal on my iPhone for almost four years now! I actually lost over 50 pounds by tracking my food and fitness. Although its hard to admit, I stopped tracking my food and fitness (mainly because I stopped working out and eating whatever I wanted again) due to not having spare time with college and work. Now that I have gained all of the weight I lost back, I’m really putting in the effort to get back into better shape to not risk getting into bad health. I miss having lots of energy and feeling great about myself. Thanks for hosting this very gracious giveaway, Jen! 🙂

  43. One of my goals this year is to do better at tracking my food and fitness. I have an EC Life Planner and wellness journal. Right now, I just track my measurements and the time I spend exercising. I don’t have a fitbit or polar or anything like that to track my calories burned and steps, so I hope I win 🙂 Thanks for the chance to win one.

  44. I currently use a Home Made food journal. I used to use my fitness pal but found it easier to track it in writing. I love everything erin condren and would love to have the wellness tracker! Your giveaways are always so sweet and generous Jen. I love watching your channel, you seems so down to earth and relatable and I love that. As a fellow YouTuber I strive to be that relatable with my viewers, you set a great example! ❤️

  45. I was using the Withings Pulse fitness tracker but I just recently lost it. It was one of those that clipped onto your pocket and it must’ve fallen off. 🙁 when I track food, I use my fitness pal but I would rather write down my food. Your food journal system vid inspired me to get a moleskin book. I use it for goal setting mostly.

  46. I use my fitness pal but mostly use.a homemade spreadsheet in my notebook to track. Thanks for the opportunity to enter the giveaway! I just discovered your channel on YouTube and I’m hooked!!

  47. I don’t currently use anything, but have had my eye on a fitbit for quite a while. I’ve tried a few apps in the past, but haven’t found the right fit for me yet.

  48. Hi Jen, you had some great favourites this month. I’m jealous you have the Tartelette palette, it’s not available in UK but everyone seems to be loving it on YouTube. However, I’m also quite smug because I’ve been watching Amelia Liana for over a year already, I agree she is quite amazing. I only watch the best people though (wink wink). The most recent food record I’ve kept was on the iPhone using the Fitbit app. I like it, especially as I’m working on my water intake. It’s useful even though I don’t have an actual Fitbit.

    1. Hi I just wanted to let you know if you go to Sephora’s website and look for their shipping information it looks as if they do now ship to us in the UK!!! It’s a £6 charge for orders over £75 but that wouldn’t be too much of a problem I don’t think?!

  49. I currently don’t track my fitness/food because I can’t find a system that works for me. I usually start for a week and then forget about tracking all together. Maybe a fitbit would be the solution! Or maybe I just need to stop being lazy about it!

    Thanks for the opportunity to win these great products.

  50. Fantastic favorites! I use a hand made coil journal to record my daily meals. But I’ve been eyeing the Erin Condren wellness planner. The fitbit would be a dream as I am working on losing the last bit of the 20 lbs I packed on my last pregnancy.

  51. I use RunKeeper and Calorie Counter to track fitness and food, though I need to get on track and be more mindful about the process for it to be more effective for me, which is where this prize would be so helpful!

  52. I keep track in my planner. And I LOVE those water bottles!! My pink one like yours was stolen when visiting family at Christmas. Thanks for reminding me…I just hopped over to Amazon to order another. And I also ordered two of the bowls….a 1 cup and a 4 cup. I had seen these in a health food store when traveling and didn’t want to add to the luggage. And I haven’t seen any in my area. I haven’t even been able to find another pink bottle. Amazon is so easy peasy…don’t you think? 🙂

    Thanks for the eye shadow suggestion. I just went to Mac and bought a quad but they are shimmery. And as I am always 29 each year, 😉 I need a little less shimmer. I look forward to giving this a try!! 🙂

    The seasonal make up looks is a nice idea. I always love to pick up tips. And yes, Amelia is a doll!! Lots of fun and full of energy!! 🙂

  53. I track my diet with a little notebook, but I have just started adult ballet class after not dancing in years, and would love to be able to track my exercise with the Fibit! 🙂

  54. Thank you so much for such a generous giveaway!! I tried using a pedometer all in the past but it tends to confuse steps with general use in the phone. I have been trying to be more active but recently started a full time desk job. These are great tools to help keep me on track. Thank you again!

  55. Thank you so much! I can’t wait to receive the Fitbit, I have been wanting one for awhile now. Again, thanks for your wonderful giveaways.

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