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My REFLECTIONS as a BAHAMA MAMA

Friday, June 19, 2009

For the past 13 week's I've been participating in the DONE Being the Fat Girl "Spring Into Summer" Challenge. I was blessed with the opportunity to be a Bahama Mama.

From day one we all just seemed to click and we've been there to support each other through every cup of water, minute of cardio, yoga pose, sick child, vacation, crazy work hours, lay-off, school schedule, wedding, worship experience, birthday, Done Girl of the Day Celebration, sick parent, wise decision at a restaurant...you name it.

We not only changed physically but you could tell by the tone of our threads we've become better wives, mothers, girlfriends, sisters, daughters, employers, employees, sisters and SPARKERS.

So being a true Bahama Mama, I'm using this blog to complete the last challenge which is worth a total of 50 points. Here are my REFLECTIONS as a BAHAMA MAMA

WEIGHT LOSS 10 points: Did you meet a goal you set for yourself?

It was my goal to lose 13.5 pounds, I lost 7.5 pounds and 7.5 inches
** I'LL TAKE IT!!!**

FITNESS 10 points: Did you meet any fitness milestones during the challenge? How did it make you feel?

I am ecstatic that my cardio has moved to the next level and I'm strength training consistently...WOO HOO! The fitness milestone that I'm most proud of took place during the 5th week of the challenge when we had to "Bust those Butts and Guts!'. It was my goal to do at least 7,000 crunches and squats that week to get 7,000 points for the team. I got so pumped during that week my final results were 560 Squats and 7,802 crunches for a total of 8,362 points!!!

Thanks to this challenge I'm now more comfortable with doing Yoga. Plus as a result of all of the Yoga talk that we had on the BAHAMA MAMAS thread I learned some new poses and improved my overall flexibility.

Here's a picture of me a few weeks ago acting silly while traveling with my Mom and Sister. On the serious, side this picture is a testament to how fit I've become. I was able to stand in the bed and keep my balance. I got up there and got back down with little effort. It was my one moment in time as a cheerleader...LOL!


SELF-THOUGHTS 10 points: How has your opinion of yourself changed throughout the course of this challenge? Are you happy with the changes?

Although I'm happy with the outward changes, I'm even more pleased with the inward changes and quite a bit of that is due to the interactions that took place on the BAHAMA MAMA thread.

GOALS GOING FORWARD 10 points: Make some goals for yourself after the challenge ends.

My goals are the same that they've been for the past eleven years. To keep trusting in God to give me the strength and will to continue to work towards reaching my final goal.

BEFORE & AFTER PICTURES 10 points:

Before Picture of my Face:


After Pictures of my Face:



Before Full Body Picture:


Last but not least, the After Full Body Picture, I am especially pumped about this one. During week two of the challenge we had to list another goal that we were hoping to accomplish before Summer other than lose weight. My goal was to be able to fit back in my purple silk blouse.....

.....TA DAAAA!!!


My REFLECTIONS as a BAHAMA MAMA are all good...and the best is yet to come as we are SWIMMING THROUGH SUMMER INTO FALL...the new challenge starts tomorrow....BRING IT!!!

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BEAUTIFUL beyond words
AMAZING inside and out
HEALTHY for life
ABLE to handle any challenge
MOTIVATED to succeed
ALIVE with the thrill of changing our lives

MIGHTY in our will to resist negativity
AMBITIOUS to reach all goals
MASTERFULLY creating our futures
ALWAYS ready for the goodness coming our way (by TEENIE_BEANIE)

"I thank my God upon every remembrance of you." Philippians 1:3


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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

STEPHAM1 6/22/2009 1:23PM

    Oh Deondra - you always have such a way with words! Look at how well you're doing - you are such a beautiful person inside and out! Proud to know and love you!
Steph

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MUSCADINE_WINE 6/21/2009 1:05PM

    BAHAMA MAMAS ROCK!! whooo hoooo! I agree with Chrystal, thanks for being there on the thread for all of the advice (and sillyness) and for racking up all those points!

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AWILLIAM1 6/20/2009 7:58AM

    I would like to join? what do I need to do? I believe it will motivate me! emoticon

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ANNISSAMARIE 6/20/2009 6:58AM

    Thank you for this blog. You have definitely inspired me! Girl... swats and crunches? I may have to try that if the result was 7.5 and 7.5! Continued success.
Annissa

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FIT2BTHIN2 6/20/2009 6:52AM

    Congrats, you look great!

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CLEWIS0607 6/20/2009 1:43AM

    BEAUTIFUL beyond words...that's you girl, inside and out!! Will never forget the day I became a Bahama Mama and met some of the most amazing women I will probably ever know. Thank you for being such an uplifting and driving force during this entire challenge:) Looking forward to Swimming Through Summer to Fall with you!

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TIME4SINA 6/20/2009 1:23AM

    Dee, this is an awesomely inspirational post. This group sounds like one I would like to contribute to. Is it private? *goes off to search and hopefully join*

Keep up the wonderful work sis... you are a motivational tool to each of us...

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GIRLINMOTION 6/19/2009 10:58PM

    To think something like jumping on a bed can be such an achievement! Did your Mother tell you to stop? LOL.

As Lynn said you look fabulous alwayas, you sexy Bahama Mama!!!!

Hugs, Sonia

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DONNAEWMS 6/19/2009 10:51PM

    Deondra, you are so motivational and inspirational to me and others! I truly enjoyed reading this blog and it has motivated me to join the DONE Being the Fat Girl team. Keep up the good work and many blessings to you.

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2008LYNN 6/19/2009 10:30PM

  As always, FABULOUS!!!

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LIZZIECA55 6/19/2009 10:23PM

    I LUV this blog. You look absolutely amazing; I'm telling my friends here all (well, as much as I know) about you. You can even motivate this old lady and you have. Keep on keeping on...

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EMPOWEREDN09 6/19/2009 10:02PM

    Your look radiant from the inside out. Congrats on a job well done.

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KAYEREADER 6/19/2009 9:44PM

    Go on Ms Lady! You look fabulous in that purple blouse!

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TNLONGHORN 6/19/2009 9:37PM

    Congratulations on the achievement. Bask in the moment!

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CAROLKCP 6/19/2009 9:29PM

    Love the hair! & I believe the only thing bigger on you is your smile.

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Sparked by the SPARK Features!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Every week I seem to find a new feature on SPARK that totally impresses me and reignites "the spark". I have recently discovered three features that have totally blown me away and I just had to share them with my SP friends if you didn't already know about them.

First of all I had no idea that my entries in the nutrition and fitness trackers were editable. Until today whenever I needed to change an entry I would delete it, then post the revised update. I don't know how I discovered that little trick, but I'm so glad I did!

Then I've challenged myself to consistently lift weights at least three times a week. With my recent promotion, my schedule has been hectic and I have been unable to get in the gym. But thanks to the SP Workout Generator, I am still on track with my weight lifting goals. As a matter of fact my strength training routine at home has been more strenuous than the workouts I usually do at the gym!!! emoticon

Last but certainly not least, I am soooooo impressed with the Fitness Maps. You can actually map out a walking/running/biking map even in your own neighborhood then there's a calculator that figures out how many miles you covered and calories burned!!!

So, thanks to SP there's no such thing as excuses only results!

May God continue to bless and keep Chris "SparkGuy" Downie and the ENTIRE SparkPeople Team!!!!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LIZZIECA55 6/18/2009 3:36PM

    The fitness maps are wonderful. I use them every Tuesday morning when I walk around the neighborhood. You can name and save your route so you can use it over and over again OR you can build a library of walking routes.

Congratulations on your promotion.

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JESSICALYNN0102 6/18/2009 10:17AM

    Wow thanks for pointing out the real time chat...totally didn't see it!

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EMPOWEREDN09 6/16/2009 10:39AM

    Amen.

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CONSTANCELG 6/16/2009 9:54AM

    Spark really can make a difference in all aspects of your life!! Kudos!!

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KAYEREADER 6/16/2009 8:21AM

    I didn't know about the fitness maps, but will check them out. It is that time of year that I love to get outside for a walk or jog to mix up my workout routines.

You are making it work for you as always!!!

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2008LYNN 6/16/2009 5:38AM

  I only figured out how to edit items in the nutrition tracker a few weeks ago. I guess because it doesn't look like a link, we never clicked on it.

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GIRLINMOTION 6/16/2009 1:16AM

    Have you discovered realtime chat rooms yet? Bottom of your screen to your right. SparkPeople sure does have amazing features and amazing members.

Hugs, Sonia

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Back to Basics...the REMIX!!!

Monday, June 08, 2009

In the past two weeks I've gained a total of almost eight pounds.

I initially didn't get too worked up because there haven't been any significant changes to my measurements plus my clothes are fitting pretty well. But I still wanted to be careful not to blatantly ignore the scale. Then after yesterday's Back to Basics weigh in I decided to heed the warning of my mechanical friend and revisit all of my plans considering that my weekly cardio minutes are on the decline, my sodium intake has been inconsistent and I have not been lifting like I should.

Thankfully I am actively participating on two SP challenges that I believe will help me get back on track. One with the CARDIO CONNOISSEURS began today (K.I.S.S. [Keep It Simple Sparkers] Independence Challenge ) and the other with the BAHAMA MAMAS (The DONE Girls Spring into Summer Challenge) both groups are an amazing source of support, motivation and accountability...to quote my pastor, TEAMWORK makes the DREAM work!

Listed below are my goals for the challenges:

1. No eating after 10 pm--this brought me huge success during the Lenten Challenge with my church.

2. Cardio 45 mins. a day at least 5 days a week--I was looking at some of my 2007 CARDIO CONNOISSEURS posts...I was averaging around 120 mins. of Cardio 7 days a week...surely I can hang in there for 45 mins. now.

3. Strength Training 3 days a week--need to tone tighten and of course build strength! (Deb a/k/a MONTANAGAL a/k/a my Strength Training Fairy already has her wand on standby!)

4. Dance every morning even if it's only for 5 mins. I will either do a CR workout or just dance on my own...this will help to set the fitness tone for the day.

5. Last but not least---I must get my sodium intake back in range. No more excuses...I need to be like Nike and JUST DO IT. Two of my main accountability partners KAYEREADER and 2008LYNN have already promised to randomly spot check my nutrition tracker.

Yes indeed, teamwork does make the dream work 217 HERE I COME!!!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ALICIA_S 6/23/2009 9:34AM

    Love your blog, questions - What's a CR workout?

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RAVEN227 6/9/2009 12:58PM

    It is always nice to read your blogs. You help so many of us stay on track. You can and will get rid of the 8 pounds and achieve your ultimate goal... emoticon

MzV

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KAYEREADER 6/8/2009 9:54PM

    I know you'll do it!

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TNLONGHORN 6/8/2009 7:53PM

    How is your sleeping? When your're not sleeping, you will also tend to retain water -- same thing with being stressed. If you journal, take a look at that and see if you're getting enough shut-eye.

Good luck!

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LIZZIECA55 6/8/2009 5:24PM

    I too like your pastor's quote, "Team work makes the DREAM work!" What a great blog. I'm just interested in how you've kept this going and I will also check in on your activity and nutrition tracker.

This is a great motivation blog. Let's get busy... LOL

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MONTANAGAL 6/8/2009 4:46PM

    Girlfriend!! You KNOW I am right here beside you cheering you on!! Go my friend! And I am ready with my wand and waiting... so get to it!! Lol.

Love ya
Deb

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SUMMARAH 6/8/2009 4:07PM

    Good for you for recognizing your shortcomings and committing to do something to combat them. I'll be rootin' for ya girl, cuz I know that you can do it!

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KATRINIA17 6/8/2009 4:04PM

    You are check with your body and that's one of the best things. Many people would not even notice until it was completely out of hand. Get back on track and get those pounds down!

Hugs-Kat

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IWANT2LOVEME4ME 6/8/2009 2:58PM

    sounds like you got a plan...you can do it..you done it before, now you gonna do it again!! emoticon Nothing is impossible with the help of SPARKFRIENDS and having a game plan..and of course, I dont need to mention, but just in case...THE ALMIGHTY GOD!

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GIRLINMOTION 6/8/2009 2:32PM

    I love your pastor's quote "TEAMWORK makes the DREAM work! ", thank you for sharing it.

I need to push up my cardio up too and get back to doing more strength training too. I am slowly creeping up and I am sure that it is because this is where I am mostly slacking. So when it comes to these things you are not alone.

Hugs, Sonia

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SIS Week 11 Challenge: Spring has Sprung!

Sunday, May 31, 2009

So here's this week's challenge for the DONE Girls Spring Into Summer Challenge...

WEEK 11 CHALLENGE – SPRING has Sprung

“S” – Smile at someone today and mean it! A genuine smile can brighten a person’s day. Give yourself ONE point each day for doing this. (Total of 7 points for the week)

“P” – Pamper yourself! Take at least 10 minutes each day to make yourself the priority. Do something for yourself that makes you feel special. Give yourself ONE point each day for doing this. (Total of 7 points for the week)

“R” – Random Act of Kindness! Do one random act of kindness today… either on Spark or in “real” life. Report this to your team so they can be inspired. Give yourself ONE point for doing the act each day AND ONE point each day for reporting on it. (Total of 14 points for the week)

“I” – Invigorating Dance! Find a song that makes you want to tap your feet or shake your bootay…then DANCE your way through that entire song. Give yourself ONE point each day for doing this. (Total of 7 points for the week)

“N” – No going back! Take note of a habit you’ve changed or broken. Or do something crazy… like throw away a piece of clothing that no longer fits you. Enjoy the thought or the moment! Give yourself ONE point each day for doing this. (Total of 7 points for the week)

“G” – Goal-setting! Set a goal for yourself for this week and work at it every day. Give yourself ONE point the first day for setting the goal AND ONE point for each day you meet it. (Total of EIGHT points for the week)

The MAXIMUM amount of points each member can earn is: 50 points

LEADERS: Here is a sample tacking post you can use for the challenge:

WEEK 11: Spring has Sprung

Saturday 5/30/09:
Smile: 1
Paper Myself: 1
Random Act of Kindness/Report to the Bahama Mamas: 2
Invigorating Dance: 1
N0 Going Back: 1
Goal Setting/Goal Meeting: 1 (My goal is to do some type of exercise targeted at my quadriceps and hamstrings, like the stair climber for at least 6 mins. a day. I'm trying to build back up to staying on there for 60 mins. and work on toning up these monster thighs!)

Sunday 05/31/09:
Smile: 1
Pamper Myself: 1
Random Act of Kindness/Report to the Bahama Mamas: 2
Invigorating Dance: 1
No Going Back: 1
Goal Setting/Goal Meeting: 1

Monday 06/01/09:
Smile: 1
Pamper Myself: 1
Random Act of Kindness/Report to the Bahama Mamas: 2
Invigorating Dance: 1
No Going Back: 1
Goal Setting/Goal Meeting: 1


Tuesday 06/02/09:
Smile: 1
Pamper Myself: 1
Random Act of Kindness/Report to the Bahama Mamas: 2
Invigorating Dance: 1
No Going Back: 1
Goal Setting/Goal Meeting: 1

Wednesday 06/03/09:
Smile: 1
Pamper Myself: 1
Random Act of Kindness/Report to the Bahama Mamas: 2
Invigorating Dance: 0
No Going Back: 1
Goal Setting/Goal Meeting: 0


Thursday 06/04/09:
Smile: 1
Pamper Myself: 1
Random Act of Kindness/Report to the Bahama Mamas: 2
Invigorating Dance: 0
No Going Back: 1
Goal Setting/Goal Meeting: 0


Friday 06/05/09:
Smile: 1
Pamper Myself: 1
Random Act of Kindness/Report to the Bahama Mamas: 2
Invigorating Dance: 0
No Going Back: 1
Goal Setting/Goal Meeting: 1


TOTAL CHALLENGE POINTS (Max 50):

  


A Picture Perfect Day

Saturday, May 30, 2009

This morning I started my day around 6am. I got up so early because I knew today would be a busy day and I wanted to make sure I completed my morning ritual, some light house work and my early 2 mile walk.

After my walk I got home just in time to get dressed for the Mother/Daughter luncheon that was hosted by my Mom's Religious Sorority (O.E.S.). I was blessed to be there with not only Mama, but my Grandmother as well. She's been sick for the past few months, but thankfully she is feeling like her old self again...God is indeed good. So here's some pictures of me with my Grandmother (a/k/a Mother) and Mama (DDROSE) as well.




After the luncheon I jetted home to change clothes and hair for the wedding.
Mine was a little frizzy from the morning walk...but my philosophy is when your hair doesn't act right...wear some hair that will! emoticon

Anyway, I had so been looking forward to this wedding for 3 reasons:

1. The bride is such a sweet person and she had finally found the love of her life, so I couldn't wait to see her get married.


2. My niece NEWBEIN was one of the bridesmaids and I am just always glad to see her. She is my #1 Fitness Motivator! And yes we both had our water bottles in tow...we're not playing!!! ;~)


3. Last but not least, one of my BAHAMA MAMA goals would come to fruition.

During the second week of the DONE Girls Spring into Summer Challenge 3/27/09, we were instructed to post our goals that we wanted to accomplish by 6/20/09 . So other than reaching my next weight loss milestone (229.5), my goals were to fit back in my purple and beige silk blouse (DONE 4/28/09) and the other goal was to fit into a beige linen sun dress that I bought almost 2 years ago on clearance....AND HERE IT IS!!!



I was so thrilled and felt so overwhelmed that even as I type this blog I am still beyond words. So, I'll let the big ole smile in the picture speak for itself. I guess the old saying is true, a picture is worth 1,000 words. AIN'T GOD GOOD!

P.S. The closest I came to that cake was in this picture. I was armed with a Fiber One bar, of course my water bottle and some sugar free gum to help fight the KRYPTONITE!!!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GODZDESIGN95 6/5/2009 10:23AM

    lol keep fighting girl.

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CAJUNBUTTAFLY 6/2/2009 11:53PM

    JUST BEAUTIFUL...SUCH A MOTIVATOR AND SUCH A BEAUTIFUL SMILE....KEEP UP THE FANTASTIC WORK...AND YES GOD IS GOOD...

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LANIYA1 6/2/2009 3:28PM

    That is one pretty dress. And looks like you have alot of room in it too. Sooooo I'm guessing it'll swallow you very soon.....and I need a motivational piece....sooooooo um, how do you want to handle this---PayPal? Money Order? Cashiers Check? emoticon

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EMPOWEREDN09 6/1/2009 7:49PM

    Three generations of beauty. GOD IS GOOD!

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GIRLINMOTION 5/31/2009 12:37PM

    God is good!

Congratulations on reaching more goals and having your KRYPONITE under control. Way to go!!!!

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TNLONGHORN 5/31/2009 9:04AM

    Awesome awesome awesome dress. You look great in it and hats off to you for such a great accomplishment! God really does give it to us when when we're ready. And it sure looks like you're ready!

Temptations which accompany the working day will be conquered on the basis of the morning breakthrough to God. Decisions, demanded by work, become easier and simpler where they are made not in the fear of men, but only in the sight of God. He wants to give us today the power which we need for our work.
- Dietrich Bonhoeffer

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MONTANAGAL 5/31/2009 8:51AM

    Congrats on meeting yet another goal. You just keep on moving right along girl!! Proud of you. And you look BEAUTIFUL in that dress! Sounds like a perfect day!!

Love ya!
Deb

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HUMMINGBIRDFLY 5/31/2009 8:28AM

    Beautiful family, beautiful dress, beautiful smile....I'd say you had a beautiful day!! Have a great week.....Myrna

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NOEILAND 5/31/2009 8:07AM

    You look so pretty and happy in your beige dress . Great hair! ;)

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CLEWIS0607 5/31/2009 1:34AM

    Deondra,
You must not dread aging at all, those women so beautifully wear their age!! Speaking of beautiful, absolutely LOVE the new dress. Extremely flattering on you! Be glad the bride didn't clober you, you may have even outshined her:) Glad it was such a fun day for you...and major kuddos on avoiding the Kryptonite and coming prepared.

Chrystal

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KRISTA-GIRL 5/31/2009 12:46AM

    You are so beautiful! You inspire me so very much. When I am really feeling slumpy, all I have to do is come to your page and I am refreshed :-) Thank you! This blog brought tears to my eyes, you are truly beautiful - and not just on the outside. - Krista

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MODESTA 5/30/2009 10:55PM

    What a wonderful busy day you had, And you all look so Gorgeous! Keep on smiling.
Mollie

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BABY-G1 5/30/2009 10:47PM

    You really do look beautiful with that big smile...congrats on your accomplishment and keep up the good work..


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KAYEREADER 5/30/2009 10:40PM

    Love, love, love the linen dress. You look slim and beautiful, not to mention happy.

Your mom and grandmother are two beautiful women. Glad to hear that you had a wonderful day!

I really am off to bed now - LOL!

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