MISSG180   117,060
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MISSG180's Recent Blog Entries


Thursday, December 29, 2011

I'm blogging now. I shouldn't be blogging now. I should be putting the suitcases into the car and saying goodbye, ready to drive to the airport.

But instead I'm blogging, because United canceled our flight.

Oh, they were quite nice about it. They changed us to an afternoon flight and everything. But it means that instead of getting home in the early evening, we get home at midnight. Whereafter we have to try and fall immediately into bed so we can get up in the morning and get right to work, rather than having an evening to unwind and get back on schedule.

It's interesting: I really don't want to leave California, but if I have to I'd rather just get it over with. The delay is irksome.

I do have to say that my worry that I would suddenly adjust to Pacific Time was unfounded. I woke up at 5:30 this morning and could not talk myself into going back to sleep.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

NELLJONES 12/29/2011 9:45AM

    This stuff happens to all of us. You'll get home and adjust to the delay, and then it will fade into a story you'll remember for years. Until it happens again, and if you fly often enough it will, alas. Blogging sounds like a good solution to me.

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New Years Resolutions: dreadful things!

Monday, December 26, 2011

It's that time of year when everyone gets ready to start a fresh new year by setting themselves up for failure: "I'm not going to eat sweets" or "I'm going to work out for two hours every single day" or "I'm never going to eat more than 1200 calories in a day."

If you are like most New Year's resolvers, you will violate your resolution within a week - quite possibly on New Year's Day itself. And then a little voice in the back of your head will be saying, "You were a loser from the very beginning of 2012." And at the end of 2012, when people are looking back and asking if anyone kept their resolutions, that little voice will be saying, "No, you were a loser!"

And we wonder why we don't feel good about ourselves.

Two years ago I decided I was done with subtractive resolutions, the kind of things that are all about sacrifice. Instead, I decided that I would make New Year's Goals, positive, definitive actions that, when accomplished, I could point at and say, "yup, I did that!" My first goal was to learn to juggle, and by the end of the year, I had learned to juggle three balls. I was ecstatic. Last year I resolved to learn to bake sourdough bread, and we have lovely bread all the time now.

Making a goal of something you want to learn is so much more positive than a resolution of self-prohibition that you have to police all year. It's happy-making!

My goal this year is to participate in Ohio's Pedal to the Point bike ride to benefit MS research ( main.nationalmssociety.org/site/TR?p
). There is definitely a huge fitness component in getting ready for that ride, but it has a definitive goal, and as we are friends with people who are heavily invoved, a big fun component as well.

What's your goal for the coming year?

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

EUPHRATES 12/26/2011 11:13PM

    Oh wow. And I've been *wanting* to add biking into the mix...

There's not a whole lot of event details on the site yet (like the routes, times, etc) - I'm guessing it'll be updated later?

Of course, that would mean I need a bike (which I'd been HOPING to do last spring...and I've got a friend just itching to take me bike shopping, plus there's 'Yote's "brother" who's worked at a bike & ski shop in Vermont for the past 15 years who's also offered to help with tips and any way he can...).


Pondering is...I may just join you m'dear. Are you on a team yet? Shoot me the info if you are, so I can either donate or join up (after I've pondered the logistics a bit).

August huh?

That might just be doable. Hmmmm....

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AHNAZEE 12/26/2011 6:27PM

    awww,. MISSG, as a person with MS, thanks for picking that as your goal!
I love the thought of additive resolutions. I've read that our subconscious mind doesn't deal with negatives and so 'I will not smoke' becomes 'I will smoke'. Go you, you juggler!

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MISSG180 12/26/2011 12:36PM

    I will keep training aerobically through the winter, then start biking as soon as I can in March.

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ILLINITEACHER52 12/26/2011 12:22PM

  How do you train for that during the winter?

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You're not going to like this, but sometimes that's my (self -appointed) job

Friday, December 23, 2011

I love Spark People, but there are times when reading the message boards and blog posts makes me intensely sad. Because I see people completely ignoring the message of Spark People and continuing to make the terrible mistakes the the multi-billion-dollar diet industry thrives upon. I see 200-pound people talking about their 1200-calorie eating regime, I see people exercising at a high intensity for 3 or 4 hours a day, every day. I watch people crowing over this week's triumph, and know that they are setting themselves up for next year's disaster.

But I feel like I can't just go around to everyone's journal and play Cassandra, continually predicting future sorrow and woe. For one thing, like Cassandra's, my words would be very unwelcome and mostly ignored, anyway.

So I'll get this off my chest here and now: nothing you are doing to lose weight and get into shape will be successful unless it's sustainable for the rest of your life.


If we look at the research and statistics, it's clear that weightloss is a health improvement with terrible long-term results. Between 75% and 95% of the people who lose weight using any method regain it - and often even more, ending up heavier than when they started. Furthermore, the weight they lose is generally at least 1/3 lean muscle mass, while the weight they gain back is almost completely fat. So when they get back to their original weight, they are actually in much worse shape than if they'd never lost the weight in the first place.

The sad thing is that I'm probably not telling anyone reading this anything that they don't already know. And yet here we all are, striving to be the ones who beat those odds.

That's not a bad thing, in and of itself. Working hard to improve ourselves is generally a good thing to do. But doing it in a way that sabotages our own efforts is foolish and crazy.

Dramatically undereating damages our metabolisms and actually slows weightloss. It also means that when we go back to eating normally we will gain weight much faster. Our bodies use about 10 calories per pound just for normal, baseline functioning. So that 200-pound person has a maintenance level of 2000 calories. If she works out enough to burn 300 additional calories a day, her maintenance level is 2300 calories. Therefore, to lose at a safe, 1 pound a week rate, she should be at a 500 calorie deficit, and so eating 1800 calories a day. Minimum. If she eats only 1200 calories a day, her body will perceive itself as starving, she will stop losing weight, and her energy level will bottom out. Then when her body demands food again and she find herself eating uncontrollably, those extra calories will pack on extra pounds because her metabolism is trained to use them much too efficiently. Self-sacrifice = failure, time and time again.

Likewise, it's great to train hard, but if that training is so hard that we eventually suffer injury or are otherwise unable to continue with that level of training, our bodies will deteriorate at an appalling rate. Again, self sacrifice = failure.

So how do we actually succeed at this game? By doing now what we will be able to sustain and accepting that our level of sustainability might not lead us to our "perfect" weight, but can get us to our ideal weight, the weight at which we can live a healthy and sustainable life. That's probably a higher weight than your dream. It's probably a size 10-12, rather than a size 4-6.

Yes, some women will find this notion appalling. But ask yourself: would you rather have years of pictures to look back on where you're a size that can be bought in any department store, or a handful of pictures from those few months when you were spectacularly skinny to dwell over for all the years you're a size 20 or larger?

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SUGARSMOM2 12/29/2011 1:05PM

  faceing the truth is never kind . we all need to think what we are doing . with a new year coming we need to face ourselfs and learn the truth . how to do for ourselfs .

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AHNAZEE 12/27/2011 10:48AM

    I am living with this right now! It is so addictive to overexercise and undereat - but I crashed and burned last week. That was probably one of the best things for me as I have had to realize I am not my calorie budget or my exercise plan. I started fresh yesterday by making sure I ate all of the nutrients I was supposed to (I have not been eating the reccomended amount of carbs) and only going for a walk, as opposed to a run and kettle bell exercises.
I started out today letting myself sleep in, as it was pouring the rain and that is always my body's inclination to rainy mornings.
And today is a running day. Even in the rain. I'm finding that balance.
I love the statement: we are all an experiment of one.

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HONBAD 12/26/2011 1:48PM

    Thank you for this blog. You make awesome points! I share in your frustration not only on SP, but also in my personal life and professionally as a dietitian. I hate fad diets and the quick fixes people always chase after. I am always telling people that whatever changes they make better be something they will be able to continue with for the rest of their life! I think this is shocking to them sometimes. Using that as a guideline really eliminates a lot of the silly diets and ideas for weight loss that people come up with.

It is hard to decide how to handle those situations. I try to be very positive (especially on SP) but sometimes I almost feel negligent by following the "if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all" rule.

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EUPHRATES 12/26/2011 1:08AM

    The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over, and expecting different results. THAT is what comes to mind when I see the kinds of blogs and comments you're talking about. *sighs* Or hear my friends say "Oh I could never lose weight, I'd have to give up XYZ" and when I try to explain that no, really, slow and steady *works* they just tune me out.


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WINDSWEPTACRES 12/24/2011 8:14PM

    Yes, you're right, it has to be sustainable change and not a crash diet, which often turns into crash-and-burn. And it has to be tailored to the individual's overall health and lifestyle. I'll never be a runner, so setting a goal of doing a half marathon is unreasonable. My knees wouldn't like me if I tried.

Maybe the people who are doing radical diet-and-exercise programs plan to sustain that change for a lifetime. Maybe they feel so much better eating vegetarian, paleolithic, or whatever, that it's worth it to them. Maybe hitting the gym six nights a week is their stress relief.

I would never want to restrict my diet to the point where I felt deprived. I don't want to carry around a list of "bad" foods in my head, and punish myself for indulging occasionally.

I'm just me, and I'm still trying to figure out what works for this body I inhabit. What other people do is between them and their medical advisers.

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LYNNKSMITH 12/24/2011 11:55AM

    I'm with you! My weight has been up and down and all over the place... and I've learned from it. I also know myself. I too am a foodie - I love a wide variety of foods, cooking, and baking. I have a very healthy metabolism and I want to keep it that way. I recently joined SP and I'm spending the first couple of weeks determining how many calories I need to maintain... then I'll set my own slow and steady calorie intake goal based on that.

Thanks for the great post!

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MISSG180 12/23/2011 8:24PM

    HDHAWK, if I could buy the overnight body perfection product, I would completely buy it! But life doesn't work like that, alas.

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MISSG180 12/23/2011 8:21PM

    Sky, thank you so much for coming back and responding again. I admire how hard you are working, and the changes you are trying to make in your life. It's hard, and it's frustrating, and it's natural to want automatic solutions to the problem.

That's what makes us so darned vulnerable to the promises of the $6 billion a year diet industry.

It's in the industry's best interest for us to be always trying, but always failing, and always unhappy with ourselves. You being completely successful at losing weight and keeping it off would be you no longer being a consumer of their products. All of us learning to accept that health is more important than an unattainable perfection would mean they don't make money.

It's in their best interest for us to feel like failures. But it's not in our best interest.

I look forward to continuing our acquaintance.

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TRAVLNWOMAN 12/23/2011 7:56PM

    Hi MissG,

I think the most important statement you made in this blog is "nothing you are doing to lose weight and get into shape will be successful unless it's sustainable for the rest of your life."

That is the key point to not only achieving our goals but to also maintaining those goals once we reach them. So many fad diets have huge restrictions then "teach" you to add back the foods that were forbidden. These have never worked for me because it was like telling a crack addict that once you kick the habit you can have a little crack each day.

I lost a ton of weight on the liquid fast diet back in the 80's. Our classes would show allowable serving sizes that we were to memorize for when we reached our goal weight and could add them back in to our daily diet. All the weight came back just like an addict would go back into full addiction once I was allowed solid foods. The same thing happened with Atkins. I lost 60 pounds in 3 months and gained it all back ++ when I got to the part where I was to slowly add carbs back in my daily food intake.

I've tried them all and they all failed in the end. What I am doing now is what I will be doing 10 years from now. I try to stay between 1500 and 2000 calories and exercise about 3-4 times a week. When I get to my goal weight there is NOTHING I have to change. I will never be anything less than a size 12. That is the size of my bones. I strive to be eventually a 16. I am totally happy with just feeling better than I have in years!

I understand your frustration when you see Sparkers make the same mistakes. If you were not a caring person, it would not frustrate you. It is like we have this awesome insight into all we have done wrong and finally "get it". We want to share that insight with everyone in hopes of really helping them succeed. By blogging about it you get the word out for anyone ready to hear it.

I'd like to say to SKY2012 that I agree life should not be such a serious thing and that we should have fun. I embrace that fun aspect wholeheartedly. I am not "waiting" till I reach my goal weight to do fun and silly things like turn over the furniture cushions and make barriers to jump over while playing Nerf War with one of my grandkids. I follow MOSTMOM1'S example of trying new things and even made some hula hoops AND use them! I am really looking forward to the first big snowfall so I can sled down the hills and try snow shoeing for the first time in my life. I'm doing it all now! As I get smaller I will just do it more!

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HDHAWK 12/23/2011 7:43PM

    Everything you said is right on point. I see so many people here that want to lose the weight over night (me included), but I've learned that it isn't going to happen. There's only one way to lose it and keep it off. Eating right and exercising. It takes time and you have to find what you can live with for the long term.

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SKY2012 12/23/2011 5:37PM


Loveeeeeeeeeee your Winnie the Poo emoticon.
I have a stuffed toy Winnie the Poo in my car :-)

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SKY2012 12/23/2011 5:31PM

    HI Miss G,

Thank you for taking out the time to respond, sincerely.

My apologies for not being a scientific person for real.... so I not sure to which you refer about science. I just know I love being here with ALL of you sparkers :-)

I sooooooooooo agree about setting attainable goals or realistic goals... like for me would be setting goals in five pound increments.

One of the Bright side of your post.... is that it got people thinking and responding emoticon

thank you again for your reply and compassion emoticon

emoticon One world, one place with room for everyone, yeh!

I look forward to your next blog emoticon

have a wonderful holiday weekend for you and yours.


Comment edited on: 12/23/2011 5:33:04 PM

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MISSG180 12/23/2011 3:20PM

    Sky, I certainly would never make it a law that everyone in the world has to do things the way I say, but if we can't ever give anyone advice, or point out why some things don't work, what's the point of even having these forums?

I don't think people should "not have goals." I think, though, that most people want to have lasting success, and not to make themselves less healthy in the long run. And goals are perfectly possible to make realistic. Having a realistic goal is not the same as giving up.

I said that I don't go into people's blogs and tell them that they are doing it all wrong, because I *do* respect their right to live their lives as they please. But I do have a right to my opinion, and to expressing my concerns, in my own blog.

The things I'm saying to you are not just my opinion; they are based on years of research and statistical analysis. If you are happy approaching your life in ways that are scientifically, provably ineffective, that's certainly your business. I wish you the best.

Comment edited on: 12/23/2011 3:32:05 PM

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SKY2012 12/23/2011 3:04PM

    I am about to express my opinion to this blog and to the responses received so far.... Dosent mean I am right,
Dosent mean I know it all. It is just a view point.

okay... the blog was kinda depressing to read.... not just the blog but some of the responses and I hope I have not misunderstood what I read because I thought it was pretty clear cut and to the point of the responses written and blog. At least I think so.... again I could be wrong and if so, I sincerely apologize ahead of time.

I hear what you are saying and that is your view point on your blog on your spark page and you have every right to do that and as you said... it is your job.

My job = is to focus on the positive
and focus on goals emoticon as it makes life FUN with a purpose! emoticon

on the POSITIVE side: Whether one can attain a goal or not, it is nice to HAVE goals, something to shoot for. I am glad we have GOALS because it makes life interesting and fun!

Whether someone exercises too much or not enough or not at all so what? Isn't that really "their" business and "their" choice really. If all they can do it for is a few days or a few months, at least they DID it! Life changes takes time and sometimes years. If that is what makes them happy in spirit, mood or just happy to be able to move their bodies at all, then so be it.

emoticonWho are we to judge other people? emoticon
I mean really.

I am happy for people who want to at least TRY to do something, even if it is to take one or two steps or a babystep, sincerely. Why? because it is their choice in their life.

emoticon Who am I or anyone to say or hint that a certain way is right or why arent they listening to me or others or one day they will learn and then they will see that I was right all along. Really? I mean seriously, really?

It may be called: "Freedom of choice" and "not" a dictatorship. I say in my opinion, not a fact.

I say let people have fun on their journey and let them be them and I pray we can do it together :-)

I can share with people, this saying:

"YOU do you
I will do me "

and we maybe meet in the middle :-)

Whether someone overeats or tries yet another diet, that is their choice. emoticon who is anyone to criticize or point out faults really?

Maybe it is the JOURNEY that is so wonderful, the experience of the trial and error or the JOY of it all.... whatever it is.... it is "their" choice and MY choice to do so and hopefully have FUN at it :-)

and well if people don't like my continual journey and continual efforts to set and reach goals and keep trying .... then I will pray for them.

Bottom line in MY opinion:

We are who we are and life is what we make it to be. Life is not that serious.... so let's have FUN and enjoy the ride, yeh!!!

I would rather continue trying over and over and over again, than give up and choose to do nothing. That is just me cause I enjoy making things fun or helping make life Fun, smiles.

No matter our choice in life or the journey or path that we choose to venture into... isnt wonderful that we have one another to do it together with and cheer one another on or support one another from a distance if we live far away?

Maybe I am too much of a person that enjoys focusing on goals and focusing on positive things and choices.... I just like being happy and spreading the love or friendship and looking at the BRIGHT side of things so all of us can work together for an enhanced life and stuff like that emoticon

sooooooooooooooooooooooo ..... would you consider taking my hand and walking this journey with me?


and let's go and have some Fun! emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 12/23/2011 3:16:15 PM

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CHOOSE2BELIEVE 12/23/2011 2:52PM

    I can so relate to the advice and your complains! Lol, I have been all over the board here...with eating WAY LESS then I should to lose weight fast to gain it back to exercise too much and get hurt! I eat healthy now, and exercise to lose anywhere from 1 to 3.5 pounds a week (more on average of 2 pounds) I don't KILL myself with workouts and if by chance I don't get it done I don't beat myself up about it, diet isn't major calorie cutting, it's about cutting out the tons of junk food and unhealthy junk. U can have the piece of cake but NOT the whole cake, you can have just about anything in moderation. You have to exercise to lose weight and tone your body, I have seen so many ppl on here talk about not having to exercise to lose weight, that is true...but what kind of weight are they losing without exercise? I could go on and on about the whole diet industry and the multi million dollars wasted by ppl looking for the quick fix...but I won't ;)
Thanks for posting this I'm happy to see I'm NOT the only one who also sees this!!

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SKY2012 12/23/2011 2:44PM

    Thank you for sharing .........

Comment edited on: 12/23/2011 3:01:51 PM

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BLUE42DOWN 12/23/2011 2:39PM

    I know the feeling, and I know I "preach" parts of that occasionally in replies I make or even in my own blog.

One thing I have discovered - we all learn when we are ready, and not a day sooner. If we don't want to hear advice that runs counter to the way we want something to work, we aren't going to hear. And sometimes personal experience is a far better teacher than anything else, painful as it is.

I do try to still give the replies though for two key reasons.

1) Even if they're not ready to learn now, even if "lifestyle change" in their mind is nothing more than a euphemism for "diet", somewhere along the road into the future when they ARE ready, they may remember some of those wise words and think "well, the other stuff didn't work - let's try that, no matter how unappealing it sounds".

2) Other readers - whether fellow SparkPeople or those who find themselves reading a blog after searching something on the Web. The calm, helpful, rational responses to the blog can help those people see there's another way and a lot more to SparkPeople - and perhaps be helped themselves.

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DSW310 12/23/2011 12:46PM

    That's great advice!

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iSpark isn't easy!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Stuck at the airport for many hours, still two more before we depart, assuming the plane doesn't end up even later. Doing Spark on my iPhone, which is a slow and clunky process. But hey, it's not like I'm going anywhere!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

EUPHRATES 12/23/2011 5:05AM

    Have a great trip!

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TATTER3 12/22/2011 8:08PM

    LOVE this. So sorry for the slowness but there are days when my home computor is just like that! Keep Sparkin'!!

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AMANDASHRINKING 12/22/2011 11:41AM

    its so slow on my phone as well but atleast your doing it!

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THE-MORE-GIRL 12/22/2011 10:15AM

    Have a safe and happy trip!

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AHNAZEE 12/22/2011 9:12AM

    When I started on this site, my iPhone was all I had. It was wanting to engage more with SP that finally got me to get a computer!

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TIBURONA 12/22/2011 4:22AM

    And you have access! Bon Voyage.

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3 month anniversary (+1 day)

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

I've been on Spark for 3 months now. What have I accomplished?

-20 pounds lost
-Increased flexibility and stamina
-10,000 Spark Points earned, as of posting this blog entry
-New friends
-Increased awareness of my health
-I've had fun!

I've managed to inherit a Spark Team, become a Spark Community Member, and found a tremendous amount of inspiration and support here.


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DSW310 12/21/2011 7:00PM

    Way to go! I'm close to my 3 month mark, too!

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TRAVLNWOMAN 12/21/2011 3:30PM

    Wow! Some awesome progress!
emoticon emoticon emoticon

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BLUE42DOWN 12/21/2011 2:23PM

    HAPPY emoticon!

What a great quarter of a year it has been.

Comment edited on: 12/21/2011 2:23:39 PM

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EUPHRATES 12/21/2011 2:20PM

Happy Sparkversary!

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AMANDASHRINKING 12/21/2011 10:52AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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.DUSTY. 12/21/2011 9:59AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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YULLABELLE 12/21/2011 9:56AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon Keep up the great work.

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AHNAZEE 12/21/2011 9:50AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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THE-MORE-GIRL 12/21/2011 9:48AM

    You're superb! Way to go!

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