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Freelady vs. the Mini-Wheat

Saturday, March 06, 2010

Numerous individuals from age 11 to age 20 graze in my kitchen. SOMEONE left a Maple-and-BROWN-SUGAR Bite-Size Mini-Wheat, just one, on the counter. It was just sitting there looking up at me when I came to get my planned food.

A thought fluttered briefly, "Mmmm, I might as well just EAT that one." But almost before I knew it I had raised my hand and FLICKED that little rectangle out of sight.

"Ah HA!" I cried with a maniacal laugh. "You didn't get me that time!"

While puttering around the kitchen I gave thanks to God. Of course that minute of munch would not sink my diet or ruin my day. Yet resisting signalled an internal change, a surprising new set of impulses emerging. And I mused on WHY I was able to prevail against that quick 'n' easy sugary crunch.

Basically . . . that's not the way I eat any more.

I walked into that room already knowing what I was going to have for breakfast, having mentally rehearsed the preparation, portion, and position (sitting at the table with my April Cornell placemat that has birds on it). I was looking forward to it. With God's help, my attention was mostly focused on the plan, so the allure was less.

The Beck Diet Solution has hammered some habits into my head, so those routines were my friends this morning. Every little nudge helps. For the last 9 weeks I (mostly) did not allow myself to pop something into my mouth while standing up or walking around. So . . . to eat that Mini-Wheat I would have had to walk to the other side of the room, pull out a chair, and sit down. I would have to put it down in my food tracker and figure out the decimal equivalent of one Mini-Wheat. Small efforts, but I'm holding myself to these routines. I have seen this structure just about eliminate mindless eating . . . pivotal for me, pivotal.

Larger in my consciousness was a reluctance, felt even in that brief second, to expose myself to that taste again. Fifty pounds ago, Brown Sugar Mini-Wheats were a common snack for me. For several months I have avoided them, choosing to spend my calories elsewhere, and I don't want to complicate things. I'm feeling a bit self-protective: what I'm doing is working pretty well---I don't want to flirt with old ineffective patterns.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

HSMOM2FOUR 3/6/2010 8:59PM

    Fantastic!! That shows that it really is YOUR lifestyle now!!!

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BORN2BMORE 3/6/2010 7:47PM

    Thanks for the giggle! I'm still picturing that little mini-wheat flying! Thanks also for your encouraging words on my blog the other day!


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HIDIANE 3/6/2010 5:41PM

    You won the battle, congrats! I know how one little bite can turn into a were strong to pass it by!


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INGRACE 3/6/2010 5:33PM


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SEWINGMEG 3/6/2010 3:33PM


Way to go... keep it up!

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MAZZYR 3/6/2010 2:44PM

You WON!!!

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ID_VANDAL 3/6/2010 10:08AM

    That's super - what a change in the thought process. Not that I'm encouraging this but I wonder if you would have burned more calories by eating that little mini wheat where you would have had to walk over sit down to eat and then completing all the other activities associated with it?

Nah - you did it right!! The strength you showed will serve you well in the days ahead. Congratulations!!

I'm convinced that I've saved at least 10 pounds by strictly following that rule of NEVER EAT WHILE STANDING UP. With very few exceptions I have made that rule stick and I love it!

Great job and congrats again.



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SLIMMERJESSE 3/6/2010 10:07AM

    Bravo! You're doing great! And you reinforce the Beck concepts for me when I read them on your blog. Thank you! Have a wonderful day.

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HGISFM 3/6/2010 9:26AM

    Way to Go!!!!!!

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NANCY- 3/6/2010 8:30AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon
It is wonderful that you are protecting yourself.

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YAYAMEMA 3/6/2010 6:22AM

  Good for you! emoticon

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DAY 27: Master the Seven Question Technique

Friday, March 05, 2010

I practiced these 7 questions (from the Beck Diet Solution) when I wanted to eat leftover chicken and pasta late at night. The desire was a sneak attack, a fierce yearning that distraction did not diminish.

1. What kind of thinking error could I be making?
Faulty positive fortune telling. I think eating the pasta will make me very happy.

2. What evidence says this might not be completely true?
In the past, when I've eaten at night, I strongly wish I hadn't. When I exceed my calorie range, I strongly wish I hadn't. "Cheat" indulgences sometimes don't taste quite as good as I expect them to.

3. Is there an alternative way of looking at this?
I can put the chicken and pasta on my food plan and enjoy it for breakfast tomorrow. That's not too far off.

4. What is the most realistic outcome?
Eating the pasta now will bring brief enjoyment, but later I will wish I had those calories back.

5. What is the effect of my believing this thought? What could be the effect of changing my thinking?
Believing the thought that pasta equals happiness tonight will weaken my resistance muscle and cause some regret later. I know how to get past it and move on, but that will use mental & emotional energy that would be better spent elsewhere.
If I tell myself, I will enjoy that food even more if I wait until morning, I can look forward to it with liberty. It will taste very good then. Ten of these wise choices will add up to another pound lost.

6. What would I tell my friend or my daughter if she were in this situation and was asking me about this thought she had?
Last time you told me you wished you hadn't eaten that extra pizza. You said you should have saved it for lunch. If you eat it now, the enjoyment might not be as keen, or last as long, as you expect. Wouldn't it be nice to look forward to having it tomorrow, when it fits into your calorie budget?

7. What should I do now?
Put the chicken and pasta on my food tracker for breakfast, go put that load of clothes in the dryer, and get in bed with a good book.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SEWINGMEG 3/18/2010 5:20PM

    Very good questions!!! Thanks!

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MAZZYR 3/6/2010 2:43PM

Great work!

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ID_VANDAL 3/5/2010 10:06PM

    Excellent! Great job in putting the Beck's principals to work!

I've gotten away from the 7 question technique so this is an excellent reminder. In fact I'm going to add them to my cards so the questions are readily available to me when something strikes PLUS I won't forget it again since I do read my cards daily!

Thanks for the reminder.



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    I love that you decided to eat the pasta for breakfast. I have used this technique before. Early morning is my only "alone" time so it is great to savor something like your pasta. No interruptions.

Give yourself credit for not eating it last night, savor every bite and know that if you just simply love this you can make more.

We can teach ourselves to relax and not overeat by assuring ourselves we are allowed to have it again and again until we are satisfied. All we need to do is fit it in and count it.

You are so good at stopping yourself before the damage is done. Excellent analysis.

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TRAVELGRRL 3/5/2010 6:06PM

    Wow, this is awesome!

You totally kicked that craving to the curb! What a great mastery of the Beck principles!

PS -- I'm the "get-in-bed-with-a-good-book" kind of girl too.


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SLIMMERJESSE 3/5/2010 2:32PM

    Thanks to your blog, I am taking the book off the shelf and rereading it this weekend. I've meant to subscribe to her newsletter, and have suggested that SP interview Dr. Beck for this site. Thanks for the reminder. Have a fun weekend.

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GLAMOURGIRL-9 3/5/2010 12:46PM


I really need to pick that book up and FINISH it!

Great way to get through the craving!!!! emoticon

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SUCHAHOOT 3/5/2010 12:46PM

    Thank you! Thank you! I'm just beginning the Beck program and these are so helpful to read.
I like where she says when you choose the food over health (paraphrasing, obviously) you then have TWO problems...your extra weight & the feelings you have to deal with for having made that choice. I'm getting there.

Great job choosing clothes dryer over chicken & pasta!!

I really enjoy your postings.


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Quote Digest 6

Thursday, March 04, 2010

"Failing" is only failure if you quit. Otherwise it's a learning opportunity. SparkQuote posted by DivaLady4Life blog 2/22

Oh well. Moving on . . . So I binged one day out of the last 10 days. Not the end of the world. If I get back on track right now, I'll bet I can still have weight loss this week since one day is not such a big deal. It's really good that I am here now, debriefing about what happened... from MORERED blog 2/18

I can't fall off the wagon! I'm the one in the driver's seat! - from TRAVELGRRL blog 2/22

The bottom line is that none of us is perfect. So what, really, is there to fear? Failure? Pick yourself up and start again. You probably learned something from not being perfect. from JLITT62 blog 2/23

How you deal with a set-back and recover quickly is more important than being "perfect" at your eating plan. Use it as a learning experience and think about what you would have preferred to have done. Play it back visually in your mind as if you had made different choices. That will erase the bad feelings and re-program you to change the habitual pattern. from HAPPYWALKER218 comment on Morered blog 2/18

I've never gotten anything other than kindness, warmth, understanding, and wisdom from the folks here at SP. . . My wish for all of you is that, whenever you have a day that goes sideways, you will remember to be just as kind and understanding with yourself as you were with me. - from SlimmerJesse blog 2/21

Cultivating new habits requires patience, repetition and the will to change. Do not quit halfway through due to frustration. It can be done. Persevere and push through. The action has to be repeated over and over again for it to be stored in our subconscious mind and becomes natural. from NANCY- blog 2/17

Why try to climb over or break through this issue - I'm just going to walk around it. After all if a boulder was in the path would you spend hours trying to move it - no you would just walk around it and get on with the journey. - ID_VANDAL blog 2/22

. . . Tomorrow is a clean slate. This isn't an all or nothing approach and I'm learning to balance every day. - from LosingAmber 2/19 commenting on Freelady Day 24 blog

What I realized is that I have a 146 Pound Muscle Machine underneath all this fluff and I know, she is finally ready to reveal herself! - from 330poundWoman external blog

I'm amazed. I'm so very thankful to God for His help! For the first time in my life, I'm actually losing weight, and I don't feel condemnation, legalism, and deprivation. Instead, I feel empowered and free! - from AMARAN blog 2/22

The Lord's lovingkindnesses indeed never cease, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness. - from the Old Testament, the Book of Lamentations, chapter 3 verses 22 & 23

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

AMARAN 3/7/2010 11:10AM

    I'm humbled that something I said touched you. Thanks for the encouragement!

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GLAMOURGIRL-9 3/5/2010 12:47PM


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ID_VANDAL 3/5/2010 10:15AM

    This really is a great idea for a blog and obviously a big hit with your other readers!!

I also have to comment on the pictures you put up on the site - just great - really great pictures. I love this one of the melting ice - spring is coming!!



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HEIDINDRIVE 3/4/2010 11:50PM

    THANK YOU...those are SUPER quotes! Something for me to ponder on...

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    These are such treasures when you do summarize and condense according to topic like this. So thank you for that, it must be time consuming but it is so effectively done.

Binging: I guess that you might take a look at how you are defining that. Look at that situation you experienced and turn it around and look at it some more. Was it really a binge? You know the drill... What were your emotions at the time? Was your resistance muscle talking to you and were you denying it? Or, didn't it talk to you at all?

I didn't binge last night but I did "blow" my day by eating more than I intended to. Unplanned eating, there I go again.

But we have made so much progress. We got back up, didn't quit, walked an extra mile and we'll pay the price of not losing as much as we might have. But it will still come off because we are in for LIFE. Take heart Freelady and give yourself a hug. emoticon

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330POUNDWOMAN 3/4/2010 5:01PM

    WOW, this was really great! I loved that you took the statements that motivated you and shared them with us. How wonderful, I liked them all so much, it's hard to pick a favorite, I will write several of these down bucause they touched my heart.

This is really a great idea! I am flattered you chose one of mine :)

Comment edited on: 3/4/2010 5:06:59 PM

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SEWINGMEG 3/4/2010 3:23PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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CRAVE_FREE 3/4/2010 2:50PM

    So much fun to read! Thank you!

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JLITT62 3/4/2010 2:27PM

    I may just have to steal this idea . . .

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NANCY- 3/4/2010 2:02PM


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SLIMMERJESSE 3/4/2010 9:24AM

    It's nice to read these quotes and see what others are thinking. And thank you for using mine as well. Have a wonderful day.

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LOSINGAMBER 3/4/2010 9:24AM

    What a great compilation of quotes! I loved reading everyone else's and it does give you a lot to think about! emoticon

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A BigLittleIdea from BigLittleWoman

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

I hug my kids every day. Would I say, "Okay, great. I've got them to the point where they're secure and feeling loved. Now I can relax. I don't have to go to all that trouble any more . . . ." No, of course not.

Why would I think that healthy, moderate eating is any different?

I have to use a lot of skin cream. I have never thought, "My skin is moisturized now. I'm so glad that hassle's over with. I've reached that goal. Now I don't need to be concerned about it any more." No, of course not. It's just something I do all the time to take care of my body.

Why would I think that healthy, moderate eating is any different?

Prayer and meditating on the Bible are also part of my daily routine. I'm not thinking that one day I will say, "Whew! Finally I've reached being a disciple of Jesus Christ. Don't need to fuss with that any more!" No, of course not.

Why would I think that healthy, moderate eating is any different?

I generally look at the toothbrush when I'm adding toothpaste. Putting it on is fast and simple; I'm not even conscious of it; it's just part of starting to brush my teeth. But thinking about it now, I realize there's a certain amount I always put on. But I've never wondered, "WHEN can I stop measuring this out, and just use AS MUCH toothpaste as I want, WHENEVER I want it????"
No, I just keep doing it a particular method. At some point that became a habit, and it's automatic.

I really think this is the kind of effortless operation Beck is nudging me toward with the "NO CHOICE" concept. No choice, no struggle. If I plan and prepare and portion and partake of my food a certain way consistently, even though it feels awkward or tedious or restrictive, eventually it will be more like the toothpaste process. Just the way I do things. From now on.

And thanks to BigLittleWoman, I'm loosening my maniacal grip on those goal numbers. She turned on a light bulb in my head this week. Read her insightful and eloquent blog of March 1, 2010.

Nevertheless, when the big day comes, you'll still be seeing Emoticon Overload from me!!!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

NANCY- 3/4/2010 2:05PM

    I loved this post.
You framed this so well.

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MONGO2TEN 3/4/2010 5:53AM

    Good thoughts! Thanks so much for sharing them:)


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ANNANN63 3/3/2010 5:58PM

    Love this blog entry. We have all heard it time and time again-diets do not work. But lifestyle changes do work. You put this all together so wonderfully well. Great job!

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MOUSEWEILER 3/3/2010 5:18PM

    I like this blog very much, for a couple of reasons. 1) You're right, developing new habits is very difficult -- we put up a lot of mental roadblocks against such development. We are, after all, creatures who tend to like the status quo. But once a new habit is developed, it becomes part of our habit file, and becomes, itself, difficult to dislodge, and easy to follow without even thinking about it. And 2, congratulations on weaning yourself off your number obsession! Progress is measured in so many ways other than what the scale says. The tape measure is a fantastic idea, but, more importantly, how are you FEELING? emoticon

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    This was a great blog - Moderation (temperance) is one of the 7 Virtues! It is the opposite of Gluttony.

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SEWINGMEG 3/3/2010 3:24PM

    Very good! Thanks

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GABBYANNIE 3/3/2010 3:07PM

    Awesome blog, sooooo true!!! Thanks for the wonderful insight. emoticon emoticon

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INGRACE 3/3/2010 2:48PM

  So well put. Thank you for sharing your insights and your encouragement. God bless your week. I appreciate you! emoticon

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BUSYMOMTO3PLUS6 3/3/2010 2:44PM

    Love it! Great thoughts!!! Life long focus not just a one day change!!

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TAMNTN 3/3/2010 2:11PM

    So true...this is a lifelong journey...the journey of good health. We are striving to live a new and healthier lifestyle not just diet. Our bodies will change over time and we will have to adjust our healthy lifestyle accordingly as we progress. The cool thing is we are in control...we can do this! Rather than struggling on and off with an ole diet, this is something we can do daily with our sights on being the best we can be. Good luck to all of us on our journeys. We got this!

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ORGOLDENDUCK 3/3/2010 2:05PM

    Great concept with the toothpaste....great way to put it all in perspective! Thanks for the blog!


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26 Commandments for New Runners

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

In the movie What About Bob, the main character ropes himself to the mast of a sailboat so that he can experience Lake Winnipesaukee in spite of his multiple phobias. He stands awkwardly as the boat flies across, grinning wide-eyed, hair blown back, calling out, "Look, I'm a sailor! I sail!"

It is in that context that I say, "I'm a runner! I run!"

Here are 26 Commandments for New Runners.
[Adapted from the 53 Runner's Commandments on Megantris 3/1 blog, originally from Greenpeppergirl]

1. Never apologize for doing the best you can.
2. Walking out the door is often the toughest part of a run.
3. Keep promises, especially ones made to yourself.
4. Don't compare yourself to other runners.
5. All runners are equal, some are just faster than others.
6. Keep in mind that the later in the day it gets, the more likely it is that you won't run.
7. For a change of pace, get driven out and then run back.
8. If it was easy, everybody would be a runner.
9. Getting out of shape is much easier than getting into shape.
10. A bad day of running still beats a good day at work.
12. No matter how slow you run it is still faster than someone sitting on a couch.
12. Keep in mind that the harder you run during training, the luckier you'll get during racing.
13. Races aren't just for those who can run fast.
14. The best runs sometimes come on days when you didn't feel like running.
15. Distance running is like cod liver oil. At first it makes you feel awful, then it makes you feel better.
16. Don't wait for perfect weather. If you do, you won't run very often.
17. When tempted to stop being a runner, make a list of the reasons you started. *
18. Without goals, training has no purpose.
19. Spend more time running on the roads than sitting on the couch.
20. Make progress in your training, but progress at your own rate.
21. "Winning" means different things to different people.
22. Runners who never fail are runners who never try anything great.
23. Never confuse the Ben-Gay tube with the toothpaste tube.
24. Preventing running injuries is easier than curing them.
25. Running is simple. Don't make it complicated.
26. Running is always enjoyable. Sometimes, though, the joy doesn't come until the end of the run.

* LOL Dr. Judith Beck would say, Make a list of the advantages to being a runner. Read it every day. If you're tempted to stop, read it again.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GLAMOURGIRL-9 3/5/2010 12:51PM

    LOVE IT!!!!!!! emoticon

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MOUSEWEILER 3/3/2010 5:23PM

    I am just starting to run, and I appreciate you posting this. I will make a list of reasons I've started, and will read it when my enthusiasm starts to flag.

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NANCY- 3/3/2010 6:28AM

    Great list. I do not run...(yet). The running part could be replaced with swimming also.
Adapting this would help keep anyone motivated.

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WATERMELLEN 3/2/2010 8:11PM

    Really liked this! It's amazing to me that some days which you think are going to be great running are not: and other days when you are really dragging your butt turn out to be great!

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TRAVELGRRL 3/2/2010 6:08PM

    We don't run, but TC and I have walked many, many races over the past 10 years including a full marathon. I can identify with the entire list except substitute the word WALKING. We walked a half marathon in November and NOT ONE RUNNER could have been any prouder than I was of crossing that finish line.

At the starting line, we keep to the back of the pack, let everyone pass us, and then--start walking! We always have wonderful conversations with the half-dozen or so other people our age who are walking as well. Races are wonderful and I highly encourage EVERYONE to try one. Even if you are "just" walking a 5K, they are HIGHLY ADDICTING!


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    Perfect list for me since I have started to run and hope no one is looking. I used to have a bad knee and the doctor said "knee replacement time for you". I think that is what pushed me to see a healthy lifestyle. I don't feel old enough to have bad knees and surgery, etc., etc.

And!! I find my knee has improved as my muscles improve and I have less weight to stress it. It probably won't be like the old days but I can cope with this and yes, I CAN RUN. emoticon

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MAZZYR 3/2/2010 1:31PM

You may have to change your SparkName to NewWoman!!

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ID_VANDAL 3/2/2010 12:04PM

    Great rules to live by as well. I think #3 is especially important!



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HGISFM 3/2/2010 10:48AM

    Definitely things to remember - though I personally am not a runner. I can apply those to my work outs. Thanks!

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DENNISC300 3/2/2010 5:27AM

    Awesome, loved it!

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