KASEYCOFF   101,751
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Day 214: Catchin' Up... Sort Of

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

Day 2 of the nominal reboot went okay. I walked a little over three miles, in addition to the WiiFit.

Held the line on the diet - which wasn't easy, necessarily. I found some fresh nectarines at the store yesterday, and since they seemed to be fairly firm, I wasn't expecting much. It was all I could do not to go back out in the kitchen and get a second one. It was tempting. Not a bit tart or acidic, just the right texture, and pure sugar.

The 'net, or my computer, or the newspaper archives, or the ancestry website, or whatever, was working today. Between the other stuff (since I really didn't have as much time to spare for it today as I would have yesterday) I didn't have a lot of opportunity to retrieve the information, but I'm making a little headway. You know what I always say: all progress is good progress.

I feel sort of bad that I didn't have time to do one of the catch-up blogs. We want to get back into our 'Wandering Wednesday' routine. For quite a while we had a habit of going out on Wednesdays, taking in a park or walking path or public garden if the weather was nice, and a museum or gallery - something indoors - if it was rainy.

In other words, going out tomorrow means I won't have a chance to catch up on the computer stuff - including the belated blogs. And I need to get the things together for my aunt, plus there're a few other pieces of business / correspondence that need attention.

But I think it's important to get a good routine established, and if I have something scheduled Monday thru Thursday that gets me out of the house, walking and moving around, and we catch up on housework and chores and the social events on Friday - Saturday - Sunday,* to my mind, that would be a good schedule.

*In our circle, we're the only retirees, so far, which means get-togethers tend to happen on weekends. With that and the crowds in public places and malls on weekends, I'll pretty much go for anything that has us out when the rest of the world is in, and vice versa.

This is an extraordinarily long way of saying... I think I'll go out tomorrow, see what kind of mischief we can get into. The blog(s) can wait - Hardwick Hall and Erddig ain't going anyplace, anytime soon.

Can't believe how tired I am. Does that mean this extra walking is doing me good, or doing me in? lol... Goodnight, Sparklers, wherever you are!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    It's good to be tired, especially at bedtime! Don't fight it. I have gotten hooked on peaches and nectarines right now. They are sold at the produce stands (those are the BEST), and are so delicious. Expensive though. My guy is charging $1/each, but you can get 3 for $2.50. They are worth it. And only 40 or so calories. So have two! YUM!

Enjoy your Wednesday out. Wish I could retire NOW!

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LYNMEINDERS 8/3/2011 6:07AM

    Love the re boot....glad your got to walk and held the diet on line....
Yay....go you....

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LEANJEAN6 8/3/2011 5:41AM

    Hi Kasey--I need to ""reboot"" too---- love the concept---- Ive been busy with daughter and family here--visiting---need to catch up on yer blogs---- I enjoyed this one---- REBOOTING---Great idea!!!---- Lynda

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MEDDYPEDDY 8/3/2011 12:51AM

    What a good new routine you are establishing - I agree on the importance and envy the outdoor-indoor choice and the company!

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ASPENHUGGER 8/3/2011 12:48AM

    Oh look! Camping! I love camping! And we're going next week: me, my DGS, his friend, & a dear friend of mine. 4 whole days on the crest of the Sierras! In one of my most favoritest spots in the whole world. So favoritest that I'm going to ask to have some of my ashes spread there. Well, if I was going to become ashes I would. Acksherly, I'm leaning more towards a green burial, so there can be a headstone. See how genealogy will warp you!

This is where we're going:
acountygold.com/gallery/photo_03.html -- we're gonna rent one of these boats and go fishing on the lake. It just doesn't get any better than that!

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DTOWNSEND1966 8/2/2011 7:44PM

    I need to investigate the concept of wandering Wednesdays emoticon

Walking is a very good thing!

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ONEKIDSMOM 8/2/2011 7:20PM

    Ooh, I love the concept: Wandering Wednesdays... someday when I grow up I want to wander on Wednesdays... emoticon for now I'll dream of wandering!

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BEST_LIFE_NOW 8/2/2011 6:08PM

  I love the wandering Wednesday idea. You live in such a great place. Besides, if you write about it, then I get to see all you do through you!

I got my walk in and then was tired all day ... wonder if the weather isn't zapping the energy out of me.

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LECATES 8/2/2011 5:43PM

    Glad you got a walk in --and yes, go on your outing tomorrow---wish my dh had the energy to do that kind of stuff---he has off on Wednesday and Sundays---nice to be able to do stuff when not so crowded.

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Day 213: New Month, New(er) Goals

Monday, August 01, 2011

Today being the first of August, I'm doing one of my mini-reboots - the first of any month always makes me think of New Year's, and I have a thing for The Clean Slate. (Not to be confused with The Clean Plate.)

I have to say, I enjoyed doing the photo blogs for a couple of good reasons: following thirty days of suggestions imposed a bit of structure (which is convenient) and primed the pump - always a good thing, to my mind.

Back to today. The usual Monday stuff, menu, groceries, some laundry, some housework. I've set a goal to cut back on computer time this month, so I drew up a To-Do list of computer 'projects' that I thought would help me stay focussed. Hah.

The biggest priority right now is printing out some of the genealogy items for my aunt - I had another great conversation with her yesterday. She is just so much fun! She gave me more good leads and I told her I would get some things sent to her (snailmail - she's not online) so she could help me fill in the blanks when I call her next week.

Of course, every time - every . single . time - I sat down here to work on it, the computer has been acting up. Or Ancestry's website has been acting up. Or our server, or their server, or I've got a virus, been hacked, you name it. Argh!!!

Although I made a good start at doing some of the new goals (like walking) that I want to work on this month, I also ended up spending more time on the computer than I had wanted - without anything to show for it. I haven't been able to print out one stinking page. *sigh*

Best laid plans o'mice and Sparkers...

Also, this month I'm setting my alarm 30 minutes earlier in the mornings. Concomitantly, I'm trying to get to bed 30 minutes earlier at night. Generally I hit my sleep amount at just about the right level (I think so, at any rate) and I don't want to mess it up, but I think shifting to a little extra time in the morning and not trying to catch things up at night when I'm tired will be good. Certainly it's worth the month-long experiment, so that's one of my August goals.

I've started in with the WiiFit (and you wondered where I was gonna use that extra half-hour, hah) again, and it's amazing how quickly I can lose the high scores and good ratings on some of the features. Well, what the hey. It keeps me occupied to try to build them up again. I've set doing time on the WiiFit daily as another August goal.

In a few minutes we're going to go do BeatleBand for fifteen or twenty minutes. I'm under no illusions it'll do much for the batwings, but another of my goals is to try to get more activity in each day. I might be sitting when I drum, but the arms are flying, and I don't run the risk of knee damage or PF, so... all to the good.

And I think that's it from me. I wasn't kidding about being too tired at night to think, lol. Maybe I should shift the blogs to the AM hours, but I'm finding I can't fit everything in during mornings, and I can't set priorities making everything #1 on a list. Once I start overanalyzing 'What's REALLY most important' I can quickly drive myself nutz. (I know, I know, it's a putt. All I need is a windmill.)

Seriously, I'll give the early-in-the-day blogs a think, though. It would kind of mess up the recap of my day, but it might make for easier going when I'm trying to cover something like a trip from the day before. Worth pondering. Thinks me.

Jump in here anytime, people - suggestions & ideas welcome, nay, invited even. Goodnight, Sparklers, wherever you are!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LYNMEINDERS 8/3/2011 6:04AM

    Love the goals you have set yourself....look forward to watching you achieve them....
Sleep well...

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MEDDYPEDDY 8/3/2011 1:09AM

    You inspire me to go check out a wii fit... I am not sure that it should be a priority but it sounds fun.

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ASPENHUGGER 8/3/2011 12:38AM

    You want a way to determine what's most important to you? I can send you one. My life coach had me do it, and then -- theoretically (cough) -- I should be able to make decisions easily about how to spend my time, money & sanity. And I have to admit, it has helped. But I'll send it to you if you're interested.

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    Kasey, here I am at work sneaking onto Sparkpeople and reading your blog when I should be doing something else, so I am probably the last person who should be giving you advice on how to structure your day and get it all done! I am constantly doing the same thing, re-evaluating my To Do (or WANT To Do) list and measuring it against the minutes in the day I have, and let me tell you, one of those always comes up short. My computer is my chief frenemy, because I have to be on it to get things done, but it is also the biggest time suck I know (what a gross term, but it's so descriptive in its gross way!)

I guess the closest thing I do to time management is something along the lines of Steven Covey's advice distilled ~ take care of the "important" before it becomes "urgent" ~ and then I just make sure there's a little time left in each day to enjoy life. Sometimes, when I get home from work, I make myself tick certain things off my list before I even turn the computer on ~ sort of delayed gratification. But for the most part, it's simply making choices all day long. I would love to blog, but if it's a choice between that and making dinner, feeding the cat, taking the trash out, and taking a walk, then some things I have to let go of...sigh...!

You'll find what works best for you, and your friends will support you along the way. Happy August!

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WINE4GIRL 8/2/2011 7:43AM

    I have the same problem... the computer sings it's siren's song and I'm lost. But school is back in on Aug 23, so that'll be the end of most of my time on it. I was thinking of getting up 30 minutes early to exercise, and to get used to being up intentionally at 5:30am. Right now, I'm up by 6am. Darn internal clock!
Good luck! YOU CAN DO IT!

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LECATES 8/2/2011 4:57AM

    I use a timer a lot to keep me off the computer as much----set it for 15 or whatever--when it goes off, then I have to get up and go do something--whether it be household chores, exercise, etc----have to earn my time back on the computer---it does help on the days I do that. I think a lot of us are trying to revamp things this month---every month should start on a Monday!

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BEST_LIFE_NOW 8/1/2011 8:54PM

  Let me know how the less time on the computer goes. emoticon That's a real issue with me. I try. I fail. I try again...

I like your concept of getting up earlier. After many 'tries', I'm finally a morning person myself.

I would think that since it's calm and peaceful earlier in the day, it might make for better writing.

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ONEKIDSMOM 8/1/2011 7:02PM

    Morning blogs you can give perspective on a recap of the day before... don't have to lose that!

Rest well, awake refreshed! emoticon

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DTOWNSEND1966 8/1/2011 6:42PM

    I'll be thinking of you on the WII Fit. Do you do the balance games?

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BLONDWUNN 8/1/2011 6:12PM

    Gosh, just when you want to cut back on the computer, it's foibles pull your attention back to it!!

I like your idea to get up a little earlier. It would be a great experiment for all of us, and I'm sure if will cause one or two tasks to be completed that would have taken longer otherwise.

Hope you enjoy the WiiFit ! I've read several blogs where Sparkers have a lot of fun with it!

Hope you have a wonderful August! You're off to a good start!!

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Day 212: What I Did On My Summer Vacation Blogs

Sunday, July 31, 2011

And - here we are.

As given to me, the photograph-blog list only had 30 entries, so I'm making this one up.

I think this was a great blogging-theme for summer. I didn't write anything especially profound. No deep thinking or heavy introspection led to 'meaningful' statements. There were no epiphanies here.

But most of them were fun, a couple were scary, and even without musing over them, here and there I had some small insights. So it worked for me.

For you, I hope you learned a little bit about me... stopped to consider your own viewpoints on some of the topics... found some ideas that interested you... and enjoyed the light reading for what it was.

No picture for The End - you'll have to fill in the blank. Goodnight, Sparklers, wherever you are!

p.s. I think I'm gonna miss the Kodak Girl - she's been a great representative. IMHO

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BEST_LIFE_NOW 8/1/2011 8:54AM

  It was so nice reading them. You are a wonderful writer.

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LYNMEINDERS 8/1/2011 1:49AM

    Your blogging with pics was superb...I really enjoyed reading them each day and part of me is sorry your assignments are finished...however i am sure your blogs will still be exciting and thought provoking....

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DRB13_1 8/1/2011 1:20AM

    Enjoyed visiting your well done blogs all through July -
very entertaining! emoticon

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MEDDYPEDDY 8/1/2011 12:33AM

    Yes it was nice and I am really proud to have completed the list following your example.
I wonder if I could be as consistant on my own... thanks for the inspiration and it has been interesting to see your choices of pictures. emoticon

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CAROLYNVIL 7/31/2011 7:43PM

    sleep well! emoticon

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SUNNYWBL 7/31/2011 6:05PM

    I hope at this time of day, you are enjoying a refreshing sleep! Sweet dreams!

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ONEKIDSMOM 7/31/2011 6:04PM

    It's been a great ride, and yes, had some thoughts along the way. I love having "regular" writers to read.

Rest well, friend Kasey! emoticon

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LECATES 7/31/2011 5:38PM

    Glad you are back to doing what you wish to do on these----you have promised a couple fo travel blogs---LOL

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Day 211: Photo Blog #30

Saturday, July 30, 2011

The thirtieth assignment is: "A picture of you last year and now - how have you changed since then?"

Faithful Readers know that I've posted before-and-after pictures a couple of times. The milestone markers seem to come up at regular intervals, so there are a few floating around on SP.

But in light of today's theme, I figured what the hey:

Now, that wasn't taken exactly one year ago. I don't seem to have any pictures of myself from July (or June, or August) last year. That's not very surprising, as I've resisted having my picture taken the last few years, so there aren't very many about. At any rate, on 30 July 2010, my weight was 213.62.

The picture above was taken in November, by which time my weight was 190.74. Today, it's 157.3. Himself took the picture below earlier this month, when we went to Hardwick Hall:

A major change, in other words, is having lost over 50 pounds in the intervening year. This is one of my favorite recent photos: I did the now-traditional picture of having both legs in one side of the knit slacks I was bursting out of just two short years ago:

But isn't this about more than about losing weight? Not just about getting physically healthier, but 'all over' healthier: mentally and emotionally, as well as physically. At least, that is my goal(s) on this journey.

The three major goals I outlined on my main page as of 21 February 2010 (just about 18 months ago, on what was effectively my two-year Sparkiversary) were to stabilize my blood sugar; increase my activity; and find motivation - something, anything, that would keep me going.

In order to achieve them, I planned three main steps: 1) moving as much as possible; 2) tracking both nutritional and fitness data; and 3) overhauling my attitude. That last continues to be the hardest work-in-progress!

Today, I am diabetes-medication free. I keep it under control by lifestyle. (As you may have read before in my blogs, the medical profession tends to call non-medicated Type 2 'diet controlled.' I prefer to call it 'lifestyle controlled.' Eh. A rose by any other name, ain't?)

A year ago I was taking one thing or another - and sometimes two and even three different medicines - but I'd really begun to despair it would be possible to backtrack to a sufficiently healthy point that the BG would be in the normal range without some kind of medicinal boost.

But here I am, off the meds, so that's a big change from last year.

Activity: I move a lot more than I did two to three years ago. At the same time, I don't move nearly as much as I should. That's down to me, and it's a real bugaboo. I know what to do, but I have a lot of difficulty 'forcing myself' to do things I need to in order to build up the strength of my back, to tackle the ongoing plantar fasciitis, to improve the knee that increasingly needs surgery.

But I am moving more, doing more, walking more, than I did a year ago, so there's a definite change.

The last - motivation, and the accompanying attitude - are my biggest struggles. I generally use the fear-based approach (FRs know what I'm talking about; those who don't - well, let's not go there tonight; I'll hash that topic soon enough). My best guess is that motivation and the underlying attitude are something I'll have to struggle with, and rework, and keep plugging away at, over and over, the rest of my life.

But I'm better at it than I was a year ago, and that's a major positive change.

I've got a long way to go. Sure, I know, it doesn't look that way on the ticker, but these last 20-odd pounds are taking forever. In science, we're taught that something mega-frozen can approach absolute zero, but never reach it - radioactive minerals will become less so as the half-life continues, but there's always some radiation left. It can't reach an 'absolute zero.'

I sometimes feel as if my weight goal is like that: it's an artificial line, an absolute zero that I can never attain. The ever-vanishing point will continue to fall just beyond my ability. 'A person's reach should exceed their grasp, or what's a heaven for?' Indeed.

Health isn't all about the scale, and the weight, and the BMI, and the constant numbers. It's about feeling strong, and awake, and energized, and alert. It's about drawing a deep breath and having it make you feel good - about picking something up and feeling muscles come into play.

Yes, I've got a ways to go. But between July 2010 and July 2011, I've seen some good changes. Good things.

Tomorrow: last photo blog. Goodnight, Sparklers, wherever you are!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LJCANNON 7/31/2011 10:31PM

    Awesome Blog!! I am so Happy that you have succeeded in getting off the meds and are using Lifestyle to control your Blood Sugar!!
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
You Rock!!!

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DRB13_1 7/31/2011 5:42PM

    Your term - "lifestyle controlled diabetes" - is SO much more accurate and I applaud you (STANDING OVATION) for getting your glucose levels regulated without medications!

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DTOWNSEND1966 7/31/2011 1:57PM

    Wow. I'm impressed!

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2KITTIES 7/31/2011 7:44AM

    I hope you felt a major sense of accomplishment after this post-I'm proud of ya!! And it certainly gives me hope that there are better days ahead. Most importantly, gettin goff the meds. That's big!

Congratulations on your journey for this last year-you look fantastic, and more importantly, feel good!


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LYNMEINDERS 7/31/2011 1:14AM

    Awesome pics and boy there have certainly been some major changes....
Well done

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MEDDYPEDDY 7/31/2011 1:01AM

    Wow, awesome and inspiring!I am glad I hooked on your photoblogs as I have not been aware of your success. But now I am and maybe I get a picture of me to have something to show next year - because so far it is not htat much of a difference...

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LECATES 7/30/2011 7:55PM

    The computer keeps you tied down too much---it is sooo addictive---LOL---I need to more more too.

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ONEKIDSMOM 7/30/2011 6:19PM

    I love this paragraph, Kasey, as it says sooo much:
"Health isn't all about the scale, and the weight, and the BMI, and the constant numbers. It's about feeling strong, and awake, and energized, and alert. It's about drawing a deep breath and having it make you feel good - about picking something up and feeling muscles come into play. "

You go, woman! You are doing fantastically. Spark on! emoticon

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Day 210: Photo Blog #29

Friday, July 29, 2011

Really closing in on it, now.

Today's assignment: "A picture that can always make you smile."

There're quite a few, actually, ranging from personal pix (there are some of my kids that are riots - to my mind, at any rate) to staged photos to Sunday funnies.

I went looking thru some I have on my computer and this is what I came up with. (Because no, I couldn't just stick with one, now, could I?)

There are some pictures that just cry out for humorous taglines:

'Mabel, I said to her, Mabel, you just haven't heard the worst of it--!'

Animal pictures are often amusing anyway, and can usually make me smile. The witty type:

I love really good puns. The borderline crude--

--generally get a smile out of me.

There's the kind of picture that is - possibly - unintentionally funny:

Heaven forbid there are loose women who double as pickpockets in their spare time.

Then there are cartoons, such as talking food:

It spoke to me. I mean, ice cream DOES speak to me.

But when I sifted thru this little collection (I say 'little' - there are probably a good fifty - sixty pictures in the folder) this is the one I kept coming back to:

I know, I know. But it's so representative of both my many food issues, and my warped sense of humor - I can't help grinning. Eh. You know what Vonnegut said. 'So it goes, so it goes...'

Goodnight, Sparklers, wherever you are!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

NEUSERIVER 7/31/2011 1:20AM

    I have never seen the fruit image before...too, too funny!

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DTOWNSEND1966 7/30/2011 5:54AM

    Loved this one. Thanks... that banana image will stay with me for a really long time!

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HICKOK-HALEY 7/30/2011 2:59AM

    That was great!

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MEDDYPEDDY 7/30/2011 1:32AM

    DO I agress - oh, that banana... eating a banan is a little indecent in itself but from now on I will not se a banana without smiling... thanks!

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ASPENHUGGER 7/30/2011 12:20AM

    Just saying hi -- it's been a killer week, what with training and new computer programs, & all. The weekend threatens to continue in the same vein. I'm giving up and going to watch the rest of Murder Most English. Colin Watson is one of my all time favorite authors. The series does him justice.

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PROT358 7/29/2011 10:54PM

    That is one naughty banana! Enjoyed the pictures. Thanks for the laugh!

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ONEKIDSMOM 7/29/2011 7:52PM

    Anybody who thought I was refined would be shocked, shocked, I say, to see my reaction to this! emoticon

However, YOU know me better than that! emoticon

Rest well, friend Kasey! emoticon

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DRB13_1 7/29/2011 6:19PM

    emoticon Love your sense of humor - so funny! emoticon

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