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Photos of My New Kitty and some Flowers

Sunday, January 20, 2013

First photo of 'Baby'.


Bargain pot of 6 tulips from Sam's Club for only $3.88 +tax.

Fresh flowers really brighten my day, all of my Amaryllis have bloomed, although two of them have have a third stalk growing up!

Baby is still reclusive. She is slowly allowing me to pet her a bit, twice she has jumped into my lap but she won't let me pick her up or hold her. so I can't yet get her to the vet to positively ID her gender and see if 'she' has been spayed or neutered. The man I got her from, Dan, was so happy that I took her out of his garage that he offered to pay half of the vet bill! What a champ!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DIDMIS 4/18/2013 11:23PM

    The only cat I owned (when I was a child) was black and called midnight.

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NUDAY4DEB 1/26/2013 5:02PM

    I love flowers in the winter too, Sunny. Love your new kitty. Looks like she/he is feeling right at home sleeping in the rocking chair. She/he looks like my grandaughter's cat, Stinky Winky.

Debbie in Massachusetts

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FIT4MEIN2013 1/20/2013 9:55PM

    We have 3 cats; John Wayne is a huge black cat, Panda is a formerly feral Tuxedo (more white than black) and my Baby who is black with a white bib and diaper. I love my kitties!

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KARIDIAN1 1/20/2013 9:27PM

    Congrats on the new kitty. Hope all works out well. Keep us posted. The tulips are a great way to brighten up the winter blahs.

Hope you kept warm last night.

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LIS193 1/20/2013 8:50PM

    Beautiful kitty and tulips!

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MILLISMA 1/20/2013 8:15PM

    Beautiful....both your kitty and the flowers. Give "her" time and she will learn to trust you.

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DIDMIS 1/20/2013 7:14PM

    My only cat was named Midnight as she was black. Whn we moved to the city I had to leave her and I cried and cried.

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CATLADY52 1/20/2013 6:25PM

    Whatever the sex is I think you have a wonderful new companion. Just give her/him time. emoticon

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LJCANNON 1/20/2013 2:22PM

    emoticon I know in No Time Baby will warm up to you. She must be a bit overwhelmed at the Wonderful Home she has found! Soon enough I can see her battling the Computer for her "Fair Share" of your time, LOL!!

emoticon The flowers are Gorgeous!! I love flowers, but I have a Brown Thumb, even my Fake Flowers Die!!!

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_LINDA 1/20/2013 1:34PM

    Great photos -looks like she is making herself right at home there! That is awesome of the neighbour offering to help with the vet bill! Those tulips look lovely -great bargain! Blooming Amaryllis -lucky you! Living in a North facing apartment that never gets a ray of sunshine, I can't have plants :(
Enjoy your Sunday!

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BOBBIENORTHERN1 1/20/2013 1:30PM

  This kitty is so pretty. I just love kitties and puppies and all animals.

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MPLSKEN 1/20/2013 12:48PM

    emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 1/20/2013 12:48:18 PM

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CAKEMAKERMOM 1/20/2013 12:18PM

    (S)he's a very pretty cat. I hope she gets used to you enough soon to let you hold her. I love the colors in your flowers!

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DR1939 1/20/2013 12:08PM

    Darling cat. Love the flower!

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SPUNKYDUCKY 1/20/2013 11:53AM

    I like the picture. Flowers always cheer me up as well! Thanks for sharing!

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GLORYB2014 1/20/2013 9:52AM

    I'm sure Baby will warm up to you in no time Sunny and will soon be your lap baby. What a beauty she is!
I love fresh flowers in the house too and especially the potted spring ones!
Have a nice Sunday!

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    I love black cats! Best of luck with 'her'.

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THROOPER62 1/20/2013 5:18AM

    Baby is a beautiful cat, love the tulips

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NCSUE0514 1/20/2013 4:14AM

    What a beautiful cat, and beautiful flowers, too.

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ALICIA214 1/20/2013 2:30AM


Pretty. Both cat ad flowers.

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YJNANA 1/20/2013 1:26AM

    That's pretty nice of him of offer to pay half
Its a beauty of a cat.
I hope you can gain its confidence, I am sure in time, you will, it will trust you.

Nice flowers too :)

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Information that might Benefit Teachers AND Students!

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Research Reveals Which Learning Methods Get an 'A'
Flash cards, pre-test quizzing work best, highlighting and rereading don't make the grade

FRIDAY, Jan. 11 (HealthDay News) -- Students, get out those flash cards: A new study finds that they may be a better study option than some of the more popular methods -- such as highlighting or rereading material.

The study appears in the January issue of Psychological Science in the Public Interest.

"Schools and parents spend a great deal of money on technology and programs to improve student achievement, even though evidence often isn't available to firmly establish that they work," study author John Dunlosky, of Kent State University, explained in a journal news release. "We wanted to take a comprehensive look at promising strategies now, in order to direct teachers, students and parents to the strategies that are effective, yet underused," he explained.

Dunlosky and his colleagues found wide variations in the effectiveness of the 10 learning strategies they analyzed for the study. The two that received the highest rating were "practice testing" and "distributed practice."

Practice testing involves techniques such as using flash cards or answering the questions at the end of textbook chapters. Distributed practice involves spreading out studying over time and quizzing yourself on material before a test.

Five of the study strategies received a low rating. These included some of the most widely used methods, such as highlighting and underlining, rereading and summarization.

"I was shocked that some strategies that students use a lot -- such as rereading and highlighting -- seem to provide minimal benefits to their learning and performance. By just replacing rereading with [distributed] retrieval practice, students would benefit," Dunlosky said.

One reason why students are less likely to use the more effective learning methods has to do with teacher training.

"These strategies are largely overlooked in the educational psychology textbooks that beginning teachers read, so they don't get a good introduction to them or how to use them while teaching," Dunlosky said.

This means that teachers are less likely to pass these easy-to-use and effective study strategies on to their students.

But Dunlosky also stressed that student motivation to excel is key. He said that the learning methods cited as best by the study "will not be a panacea for improving achievement for all students, and perhaps obviously, they will benefit only students who are motivated and capable of using them. Nevertheless, when used properly, we suspect that they will produce meaningful gains in performance in the classroom, on achievement tests, and on many tasks encountered across the life span."

More information

The American Academy of Pediatrics offers 10 tips for your child's success in school.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KASEYCOFF 1/14/2013 2:48AM

    Now that's interesting - they used flash-cards when I was in school, and indeed, even when my kids were in elementary school. As for pre-test quizzing, I see that in some places even now: some of my recent employers have used it when we're getting ready for skills / updates tests, and the citizenship test material included option "Quiz Yourself" sections.

Doubly interesting that highlighting - which came in after I was more or less through school - and rereading isn't as effective!

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_LINDA 1/14/2013 1:48AM

    I was so interested in reading this when I saw it in the Health News (I love reading those stories, they are so timely and informative). I was wishing I had this when I was a student. On an interesting side note -I did make up some flash cards when I was trying to learn a language, but alas my brain doesn't seem hardwired to learn one :(
Have a Marvelous Monday!!

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DIDMIS 1/13/2013 11:46PM

    Nice for all of the teachers on here and there are a lot of them

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KARIDIAN1 1/13/2013 8:50PM

    We use flash cards at work sometimes for helping cashiers memorize the codes for produce and how to identify produce items.

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ONUTHIN125 1/13/2013 7:04PM


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Good News and Bad News!

Wednesday, January 09, 2013

Vitamin D ~ Do we get enough?
For us here in Minnesota, the only opportunity we have to get Vet D from sunshine is between Memorial Day and Labor Day! Channel 4 did a 'Good Question' on this issue this week. Wearing a sun block during the summer months blocks 95% of sun UV exposure ! emoticon So for us a Vit D supplement is a MUST! emoticon

January thaw?
We have one this week, giving us temps in the mid 30F*s! emoticon It ends tomorrow and we go back in the freezer. emoticon

Loosing weight?
Not so far, actually I went up to 166 which I was ashamed emoticon to post! I'm back to 164.2 and starting week 2 of the January Jump-start Challenge!

Trip to ER?
Yes - last Saturday, ambulance ride included! About an hour after I woke up I started to get a burning rash from head to toe. Scared? You bet! Since I live alone, I was afraid to wait it out and called 911. I was beet red all over and my skin was burning! After blood tests, multiple doc exams, and having an IV starter kit installed (no IV, just the connector in my arm) I was released, minus the IV starter kit, with a diagnosis of UK allergic reaction or possibly a reaction to niacin (which I have been taking for the last 3 months), why a reaction now?

Photo of my new black cat?
Not yet, I'm going to name her Phantom! I only catch brief glances of her eating or using the litter box!

Does your grocery have a $1 section?
Unfortunately yes, including a section of dark chocolate bars and cookies! emoticon emoticon I haven't gone there in a week, until I get stronger willpower.

Having no more News, bad or good, I'll sign off. emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SCHOOLCOOK2 1/15/2013 9:03AM

    I had a reaction from Vit C once. Turned orange from the waist up and went to the doctor with no coat on in -30 weather. Turned out to much vit c in the body. It took me four days to get back to the right color.

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KASEYCOFF 1/11/2013 4:05AM

    I didn't consider I might be short on vitamin D until the GP did a check and - wow, what a surprise that was! Our latitude here is more northern than Minnesota even, so she said you can only get enough sun-action on skin about two weeks around the summer solstice. Well, who knew? I think the supplement is helping, tho, so it's a plus.

Re the niacin: same thing kind of happened to me. Apparently it's such a cumulative, that you reach a threshhold some point after you've been taking it with no apparent side-effects. The then-doc said it's easy to end up with too much in your system when you take supplements because so many foods now have niacin added to them.

We live and learn, ain't?

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_LINDA 1/10/2013 12:37AM

    As one of the few Sparkers living 'close' to me, you get an idea of the weather we suffer. Had a mild spell here too, only a few days though before the deep freeze starts again -add our strong winds and we might as well be in the arctic!!! I do take a Vit D3 supllement -our summers are far too short and winters way too long. We usually get lots of sunshine, but this winter has been continually dark as well as cold.
That allergic reaction is very scary -but I sure can't see it happening that fast after you have been taking something for three months!! Time for some serious allergy testing by a specialist I would think. I have heard of quick reaction to too much niacin though.
Sorry to hear you suffer from SAD -make sure you get one of those sunshine replacement lamps -I have heard from Spark friends they do help.
So, a cat has adopted you, sort of, has she? Black cats are the hardest ones to adopt out from shelters -they struggle getting homes for them, wonder if its because of deep rooted superstition? Good of you to take one on!
They have a quick sale bin at my grocery store, but usually its produce past its due date (and not even $1 but half price) and knick knack odds and ends of things they couldn't sell. I am guessing they have no problem selling the junk food as you sure don't see that on a clearance table ever lol.
It was so nice to hear from you Sunny!
Keep on Sparking!

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FRAN0426 1/9/2013 8:34PM

    I take vitamin D 3 as my doctor reccommended I take. Wow can imagine that rash was a real scare. Hope you don't get that rash again. Good thing you went to ER, as you never know what other side effects could have occured. Happy you are doing better.

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DR1939 1/9/2013 8:22PM

    When I walk in the winter I do not wash my face until after I return. My moisturizer has a sunscreen in it and I want the sunshine. As it is my face only I don't worry about just exposing for 15 minutes. I believe I need a longer period in the winter.

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ONEKIDSMOM 1/9/2013 7:05PM

    Those allergic reactions can be a stitch... I had one a year ago that had my doctor laughing while I itched. Penicillin, would you believe? Since I never took meds until about six years ago, it was only my second time on amoxicillin, and lo and behold, HIVES on day 8 of a 10 day course.

Sounds like you had similar symptoms. Glad you took precautions and had it looked at and taken care of! Feel better soon!

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GLORYB2014 1/9/2013 6:29PM

    Wow, what a terrific allergic reaction! Good thing you got yourself to the hospital, could have gotten worse!
I hope all is okay now.

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CAKEMAKERMOM 1/9/2013 5:47PM

    I'm glad you're better and hope your vitamin D is up today. I hate this time of year for the lack of sunshine, hey it's just setting now!

I hope you figure out the allergic reaction and have some benadryl on hand just in case.

My Cub gained a $1 section, right in the first aisle this year. I haven't even really looked at the items because I'm usually getting so little for my dollar it isn't worth it. I prefer fruit and veggies as a snack anyhow.

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LJCANNON 1/9/2013 5:34PM

    emoticon Wow, You have been a Busy Gal!! I usually put on Sunscreen just before I leave the house since most brands don't 'Kick In' for 15 or 20 minutes anyway.
I am glad that you are OK after the Allergic Scare! It is weird how you can take something for Months, and then suddenly One Day your System says WHOA!!
emoticon Just have to Keep On Keeping On, one step at a time.

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NELLIEC 1/9/2013 5:29PM

    Phantom does sound like a good name for the elusive kitty! emoticon

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SUNNYWBL 1/9/2013 5:11PM

    I don't lack Vit C, I am a citrus junky! emoticon

As a child and as a young adult Vit C WAS advertised as the Sunshine Vitamin. It has now changed to Vit D as the Sunshine Vitamin!

I was Officially diagnosed as having SAD by my Mental Health Professional, I am NOT imagining it!

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DIDMIS 1/9/2013 4:49PM

    WOW emoticon and emoticon
I take 50,000 prescription vitamin D. I think Char does also.
I had heard niacin was not good for you.
Sorry you had problems. I know what you mean living alone is tough sometimes.
We have been getting some rain but it is really sunny now, Sunny, and I think in the high 60's. I don't envy you the freezing weather. It is possible that what you thought was SAD was a lack of vitamin C.
Hope you are completely well now.

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BOOKWERME 1/9/2013 4:31PM

    I think it is Dr. Mercola who recommends NO sun screen for the first 15 minutes of being outside in the sun. He also recommends D3...apparently there are different kinds of Vit D and some are more absorbable than others.

Sorry to hear of your ER trip. Hope it is all resolved were wise to NOT wait.

I like KK's post also...good point, Katrina.

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KATRINAKRAUT 1/9/2013 4:14PM

    The allergic sounds scary. And don't be afraid to post when things don't go the way you proud that you owned it! Put yourself first and keeping stepping forward!

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A Wonderful Surprise from My Medicare Provider!

Friday, December 21, 2012

They are offering the Silver Sneakers Program which this year offers a membership in the twentyfour hour Snap Fitness! The best part of that? I can walk to it and it is FREE! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

What a Christmal present! emoticonNo more excuses!!! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SPUNKYDUCKY 12/26/2012 11:58PM

    That is probably the best present I have heard of anyone getting this year - Fantastic!

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JAMER123 12/24/2012 12:40AM

    That's a big WOO HOO for you!! Enjoy!! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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FRAN0426 12/23/2012 3:20PM

    It is wonderful news for you---yes a great Christmas gift of being able to walk to the fitness place and workout for nothing provided by your health insurane. My hubby and I have the Siver Sneakers at a Y through our provider and really are happy with this service.

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SIMPLELIFE4REAL 12/23/2012 9:02AM

    Awesome! You can rack up FitBit steps just getting there!

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DIDMIS 12/22/2012 10:12PM

    Great. It is a nice Christmas present Sunny. emoticon I am sending you a snowman already made so you won't slip whiling making it.

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KARIDIAN1 12/21/2012 9:53PM

    Wow! That is awesome Sunny. Take advantage of that offer for sure.

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DR1939 12/21/2012 6:51PM

    Maybe someday we'll get that in Marshall.

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YJNANA 12/21/2012 5:14PM

    Sunny, that's Awesome
are u going to join the 2013 Challeng

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MPLSKEN 12/21/2012 12:04PM

    emoticon emoticon

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GLORYB2014 12/21/2012 8:42AM

    emoticon Sunny! Great Christmas present!
emoticon emoticon

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NYARAMULA 12/21/2012 4:14AM


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KASEYCOFF 12/21/2012 2:35AM

    Wow, that's terrific! And (for once, lol) smart on their part: preventive medicine is so much more effective than trying to 'fix' bodies weakened from lack of exercise - IMHO!

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ZRIE014 12/21/2012 1:33AM

  keep it up. emoticon emoticon

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_LINDA 12/21/2012 1:21AM

    That is FANTASTIC!! Enjoy!! If they have a Zumba class, you have to try it, so much fun!
Its like me getting free access to my city's Fitness facilities for having a low income! Its just a shame winter is preventing me from getting to them right now :( Very nasty cold temperatures with continuous off and on snow here is preventing me from getting out on my scooter. It has no traction in the lightest of snow and the gel batteries can't tolerate the cold. But I do have an elliptical and DVD's to keep me going at home, so no excuses here either.
I hope you have a wonderful Christmas!
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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Sunny's New Streak

Monday, September 24, 2012

Today is the 7th day of upping my exercise and logging every bite on Body Media.Tomorrow is weigh in day.
Yesterday evening I ran around madly bringing all my plants either into the house and/or garage because frost was expected. Also covered my most prolific tomatoes to get a few more growth days from them.

I'm excited to see if there will be any pounds or inches lost! I'm thinking positively! I don't let the scale determine how I feel. I just write the number on my calender and keep on going.

emoticon emoticon emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

_LINDA 9/29/2012 12:35AM

    That is great Sunny -hope this other site works for you -sounds a lot like Sparkpeople -connected with facebook. All the best with that great streak!
Hope your plants and tomatoes suvived! We went down to freezing here once, but the days have been incredibly warm and above normal for us.
Let us know how you are doing here in Sparksland!
emoticon emoticon

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LIS193 9/28/2012 12:55PM

    emoticon emoticon

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YJNANA 9/28/2012 10:27AM

    Nice Sunny, I need to follow your lead :)

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NDTEACHER1 9/26/2012 11:11PM

    Best of luck.

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KARIDIAN1 9/24/2012 10:08PM

    I am refocusing too and working on getting back on track.

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GARBLEDEEGOOK 9/24/2012 2:22PM


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MAXFOCUS 9/24/2012 11:55AM

    Wow - you are doing so well! Keep on being positive! emoticon

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SIMPLELIFE4REAL 9/24/2012 9:40AM

    Awesome....I saw you bodymedia post on facebook this morning. It's a great way to be accountable!

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LJCANNON 9/24/2012 9:21AM

    Good Luck today. You have a great attitude and you know that when you are making Good Choices and Moving your Body is benefiting, no matter what the Evil Scale says!

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BOOKWERME 9/24/2012 8:38AM

    Ditto those other comments. Good job! Wishing you success. emoticon

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SUSANBEAMON 9/24/2012 1:53AM

  good for you. keep that scale in its' place.

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DIDMIS 9/24/2012 1:12AM

    emoticon Sunny

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