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Old 10-26-2007, 09:55 PM   #31
ashleypmo
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We're havin' Breakkie w/ Cindy, bay-bee!

Okay, change of plans. I know I said next was "What's in my closet?", but we've had a new development. I hope you can forgive me, Jenna. I'll get there tomorrow. (If anyone DID decide to wager on when I officially strayed from the plan, here it is! )

So, if you've planned a trip to Disney World, and more specifically, if you've planned a trip to Disney World and you have a daughter , you've no doubt gone through the Cinderella's Royal Table Reservation Gauntlet. If you haven't, let me fill you in.

Once upon a time (appropriate, don't you think?), making a reservation for breakfast in The Castle was as simple as catching strep in an elementary school. Alas, those days are gone. Now the coveted seats are as rare as a...as a....dang, I can't think of anything...or at least not anything PC... but you get the picture.

The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World outlines the process for increasing your chances of snagging a seat w/ Cindy and the gals . It includes synchronizing your clock w/ atomic time (I'm really not joking), making a test call several days ahead of the 180 day window to see how long (to the second) your phone line takes to make a connection, and writing down your numerical responses to the various prompts so that you will waste no time listening to the recording. Then, exactly 180 days from your desired date, you wake up a little before 7 am EST, and based on your timing practice call, dial in, hoping to get through to one of the 100 res agents on the first round. There recommedation is to call on a Weekend for the best chance.

But I had read on the DIS that sometimes FDM (Fuzzy Disney Math) applies to ressies made by Dis resort guests....So even though today was technically 186 days or so from my desired ressie date, I went ahead and called today at 3:15 pm. I figured at the very least, I'd gauge my connection time, go through the prompts, and ask the res agent to give me the exact date I could call for my res.

I was on hold for maybe 5 or 6 minutes, and then a cheery voice answered the phone (she really wasn't all that cheery, but I am a firm believer in revisionist history). I told her I would be staying on property, and asked if it would be possible to get a table at CRT for the last Breakfast seating on May 1, and if not (knowing it was well over 180 days away), could she please tell me what day I should call back. So she asks for my res #, and my name, etc. etc, and I'm thinking "Gee, they sure do have to get a lot of personal information just to check availability. Then next thing I know, she's asking for my credit card info. I'm like "NO WAY??!!?" and she's like "YES WAY!!!" (well, she didn't actually say that, but wouldn't it have been funny if she had? She should have.)

I am so stinkin' excited! The only downside is that because there will be 8 of us, we'll have to be split into two tables of 4. That's a bummer, because everybody wants to see Ramie's face when she meets the princesses ! The res agent said they would try to get us at tables next to each other. Otherwise, we might have to play musical chairs and take turns sitting w/ Ramie. Can you just see it? "Chinese Fire Drill!" The poor servers will be so confused. "Here's your orange juice ma'am--I mean....sir???"

So I've reported on my first ADR before I've even covered the whole how we decided to go in the first place, getting flights, hotel, etc. Just like me to start in the middle--I'm such a rebel!
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Check out my pre-trippie: And THAT'S when I threw up on my grandmother!http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=1617655
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Old 10-26-2007, 10:06 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by ashleypmo View Post
Okay, change of plans. I know I said next was "What's in my closet?", but we've had a new development. I hope you can forgive me, Jenna. I'll get there tomorrow. (If anyone DID decide to wager on when I officially strayed from the plan, here it is! )
You are forgiven!

Congratulations on the ressie w/ Cindy!! We have yet to do a meal in the castle, but we did do the princess meal at Akershus.

Ramie will it!!
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Old 10-26-2007, 10:47 PM   #33
ashleypmo
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You are forgiven!

Congratulations on the ressie w/ Cindy!! We have yet to do a meal in the castle, but we did do the princess meal at Akershus.

Ramie will it!!
Thanks Jenna! I knew you'd understand!

I can't wait to see Ramie's reaction! The older kids have been before, but that's a story for another day...

How was the princess meal at Akershus? We did lunch there once back before they did the princesses. It is such a cool place--I loved it! I thought about booking there, but I've heard they sometimes have the kids get up and participate or something, and because of Ramie's nut allergy, I can't have her wandering around anywhere with food around.

Until we ate there last time, I had no idea there were so many ways to prepare herring .... But that cheese--did you try the getjost cheese? OHMYGOSH!!! It's so sweet--it has like 12 grams of sugar! Those Norweigian farmers must give their cows lots of sugarcubes! Our Kroger carries it, as does our local natural foods grocer. When the kids and I are studying Norway later this school year, we'll be eatin' some getjost! MMmmmm!!!!
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Old 10-27-2007, 07:17 AM   #34
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Hey Sistah!!! Wonderful so far. Congrats on the Cindy's ressie. When we went last year we had 7, and our tables were right next to each other. Thats when MY kid threw up on one of Cindys helpers (and me). Ramie will love the princesses, my DD did on her first trip, was in such awe. DH and my dad were really only into Jasmine over at Akershus, but DD had a great time.

And you really don't want to know whats in my closets (actually I am hiding the Halloween candy there so that DH doesn't find and eat it all before Weds )
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Old 10-27-2007, 07:58 AM   #35
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Talking

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Originally Posted by VernRDH View Post
Hey Sistah!!! Wonderful so far. Congrats on the Cindy's ressie. When we went last year we had 7, and our tables were right next to each other. Thats when MY kid threw up on one of Cindys helpers (and me). Ramie will love the princesses, my DD did on her first trip, was in such awe. DH and my dad were really only into Jasmine over at Akershus, but DD had a great time.

And you really don't want to know whats in my closets (actually I am hiding the Halloween candy there so that DH doesn't find and eat it all before Weds )
Hey Veronica! Thanks for comin' over and readin' my pretrippie!

She threw up on one of Cindy's servants? Isn't that the worst, to have your kid throw up in public, and everybody gives you "that look?" That look that says "What the heck horrible contagion have you exposed us all to, lady?!?!?!" and you're like "It's just all the excitement! Honest!" Oh yeah, my kids have thrown up in public before. But never in a castle--that's priceless!

Oh, there is much scary stuff in my closet. I won't let the exterminator put spider traps out, because I'd rather live in denial and just kill the ones I find. Seeing a whole trap full of them--blech!

But there's also some fun stuff in there.... some stuff relating directly to this thread (not the throwing up on Grandmother part--that's pretty much over. Not to say there won't be more throwing up at Disney World, just that Grandmother wasn't there for this one--and it wasn't ME doing it! But alas, that's another story for another day....

See ya'!
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Old 10-28-2007, 08:58 AM   #36
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I KNEW a gorilla didn't make sense...

My mother says it was, in fact, an orangutan. I KNEW a gorilla didn't make sense, but at that age, one big primate was probably as good as another. I hope this doesn't destroy my credibility w/ you guys!
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Old 10-29-2007, 08:17 AM   #37
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Waaaaay overslept this morning (as usual), drastically cutting into my DIS time today. I have a relatively short "to do" list though...let me see, fix breakfast, 10:00 physical therapy appt. for Mason, get to the lab for a blood draw, drive thru somewhere because I haven't made it to the grocery store in over a week and the kids are tired of eating lunch meat w/ no bread, make at least a cursory run thru the grocery store to pick up something for dinner, rush home to put Mason down for nap, then drive back across town for Ramie's dance class. A full day's worth of home school has to fit in there somewhere, but after that I should be able to post another installment!

Oh I wish I could just and get this kitchen clean and my done....
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Old 10-29-2007, 03:00 PM   #38
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What's in my closet...just in time for Halloween!



As promised, it's time for a trip into my closet!
What does my closet have to do with planning a trip to WDW, you ask? (You didn't ask? Well, you should have. I mean, it's a perfectly good question.). I'll tell you...

Way back in the days when we just had a couple of kids and believed highly in the power of planning , we decided we would go back to Disney World every 4 years. So we took Riley when she was 3 (and I was 7 months pregnant), and 4 years later we went again when Ethan was 3 and Riley was 7. Shortly after that we got pregnant again--right on schedule--and so we just assumed we would go back when the new baby was 3, Ethan 7, and Riley 11.

But God had other ideas....

Shortly after Ramie's first birthday, and one week before Christmas, I'm on my to pick up the last of our boxes to be moved to our brand new house--the house Mommy spent 9 months (ironic--remember that) as general contractor, driving across counties to meet with subcontractors and pick out fixtures, months of laying tile myself, painting right alongside DH, finishing cabinets, you name it--if you didn't need a license to do it, we did it. So I'm picking up the last of the boxes from our TQ(temporary quarters), and I am just rejoicing in the fact that we will have this wonderful 4 bedroom home, where everybody gets their own room and there will be no crib in mommy's room anymore when --what's today's date? The 17th? OHMYSTINKINGGOODNESSYOUSOCANNOTBESERIOUS!!!:scared 1:
I detoured into Walgreens on the way to the apartment, and --ohyesIamsoserious!!! There was no denying that second purple line!!! That purple line that meant my sleepless nights were far from over, and that there would indeed be another crib in my room for a while!

Now, I am so happy that God decided to hijack my family planning on this one . Having 4 kiddos is amazing, even though I spend most of my waking hours nearly comatose. But the fact of the matter is it did mess up our date with the Mouse. So Ramie turned 3, and with a 1 year old infant w/ Down syndrome whose needs were really still more like that of a 4 or 5 month old, it was apparent that our trip would be postponed.

Well, months passed, and Mason has grown and matured, and the time came that we finally decided, in the words of the wise Rafiki, "It is time!" So we sat down and hammered out a date. Actually, I sat and debated it with myself, and when I arrived at a date, hubby said "Whatever you want to do, honey." (Gotta luv that man!).

So it was decided we would go in May and miss the summer crowds. We (I) thought about waiting until September, but Mason turns 3 in August, so we are going to squeeeeeze in this trip while at least his park admission is free.

But at the time, it was still too far out for us to feel confident buying airline tickets, and I still needed to work out every possible permutation of lodging options. All of the planning was so abstract--I needed something concrete, something real and tangible to prove that this trip was really going to happen. So what would any sensible woman in my position do???

SHOP, BAY-BEE! That's right! So for the brave of heart, here it is--the tour of my closet!

It's a lot like the Haunted Mansion, but with more dust....right this way...I'll deck the first person to make a wisecrack about the pile of dirty laundry (there is a laundry basket under there somewhere)....Now, that grey metal door in the floor to your left is an in-ground tornado shelter. I am a tornado-phobe, and after driving through west Texas to go pick up my BIL in the hospital after an accident in Wichita Falls and actually finding myself driving into a tornado (nephew: Tia Ashley, did you notice there aren't any bridges or ditches or anything around here??? Me: Ya' know Little Sal, I was just thinking to myself that if I was going to build a road right in the middle of Tornado Alley, I think I'd put a few bridges and ditches around....), anyway, after that harrowing experience, I decided the next house we built would have a tornado shelter in the house. We take all my son's birthday party guests down in it at parties and tell them it's our dungeon.....Anyway-can everyone fit? Okay, most people just hide their Christmas presents in their closets, but this is where Mommy hides--the Disney Trip stash!!!

It started with 7 blue shirts from Disney Shopping. I decided we should all have matching shirts for at least one day. But then I decided, why just one day? But when I went back to the site, they were all sold out of everything except size 3X in yellow... So I looked on ebay and found some bright lime green Disney shirts, some lime green Animal Kingdom lodge shirts, and started "collecting" them. So far I have enough for everyone except DD4 and DS2. For some reason, nobody ebays toddler Disney World shirts, so I may have to get creative.

So, matching shirts--CHECK!

Next: pre-trippie souvenirs! I hate spending valuable touring time in souvenir shops, and I hate paying $30 for a $10 stuffed mouse. So it's back to ebay! Right here in my (Shhh--) magic Disney bag are Safari Mickey, Safari Minnie, Safari Goofy, and Safari Pluto....and I think an extra Safari Mickey because I lost track of what the heck I was doing at some point....

Here's a pretty white straw hat for DM, so she doesn't get her nose sunburned!

Some of those really annoying light-up-and-spin-around-things to break out for the kids while we're waiting for Fantasmic! A couple of little hand-crank music boxes for Ramie & Mason-- Ramie's plays "Beauty and the Beast," and Mason's plays "The Second Star to the Right.", 4 lanyards (Animal Kingdom for Riley, Pirates for Ethan, Princesses for Ramie, and Mickey for Mason), 4 pins to start their pin-trading habit (because I am totally in to complicating my life...), a neoprene Safari Mickey water bottle holder...a jumbo book of Mad Libs for waiting in line, and each child's envelope w/ the stash of Disney Dollars they have received for birthdays & holidays.

So the plan is to take all this stuff with us, and then dole it out (dole....mmmmm--dole whip here I come!) while we're there to appease my little souvenir junkies...and the kids, too! We'll still do some shopping, of course. In fact, we've gone all through the Shopping section of the Unofficial Guide, and each of us (me & the 2 oldest kids, anyway) has gone through and selected the shops we want to hit....but that's another story for another day!

Next up: 1978 at the Contemporary, and can't we have a Disney Vacation without somebody throwing up?
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Check out my pre-trippie: And THAT'S when I threw up on my grandmother!http://www.disboards.com/showthread.php?t=1617655
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Here am I and the children whom the LORD has given me! We are for signs and for wonders....Isaiah 8:18
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Old 10-30-2007, 07:36 AM   #39
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Hey Ashley!

the trip report! Congrats on the Cindy ressie! Wow you really are a smart planner. I would never think to buy all those suvoniers ahead of time, then again I am not a mom let alone a supermom like you!

My mom and I are thinking about going in the beginning of December before the crowds. We really want to see the Christmas decorations. When I was young we went once in the summer not that long after Epcot opened and I remember it being unbearable! Then 4 years ago we went in October and last year we went in September perfect weather for me. I would love to go in spring too maybe next time. We made a pact that we would go every few years and so far we are sticking to it!

So did you get you AKV ressies?

Michele
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Old 10-30-2007, 08:02 AM   #40
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That's me--SuperMom!

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Originally Posted by LaLaroo78 View Post
Hey Ashley!

the trip report! Congrats on the Cindy ressie! Wow you really are a smart planner. I would never think to buy all those suvoniers ahead of time, then again I am not a mom let alone a supermom like you!

My mom and I are thinking about going in the beginning of December before the crowds. We really want to see the Christmas decorations. When I was young we went once in the summer not that long after Epcot opened and I remember it being unbearable! Then 4 years ago we went in October and last year we went in September perfect weather for me. I would love to go in spring too maybe next time. We made a pact that we would go every few years and so far we are sticking to it!

So did you get you AKV ressies?

Michele
Hey Michele !

Me? Supermom? Nah. Okay, maybe. But you are soooo sweet to say so!

And I'll make sure to tell hubby that my current ebay fetish is just "smart planning!" That's what I've been saying all along! No, he hasn't actually given me any flack for it...yet! Gotta love him!

Our Cindy ressie is currently for Thursday am. Truthfully, I really wasn't expecting to be able to book it that day, so I just asked for the first morning we'd be waking up in the World. Now I'm thinking I may call and see if I can change it to Saturday, thinking that I hate to give up prime Thursday am touring time at whichever park has morning EMH, but Saturday being a more crowded day in general, I might not mind spending an hour or so up in the castle!

We actually ended up renting points for VWL . Originally, we just thought it was going to be too expensive, as AKL has "value" villas for a lot cheaper. But in the end, some "stuff happened" (my VBF says that if I were a game show contestant, underneath my name tag they would have to print "Stuff Happens to Me."), and we ended up at VWL. The kids are soooo stoked--especially Ethan , my little explorer boy! They would have been happy at AKL, and we were this close (see how close together I'm holding my thumb and forefinger?) to booking it, but then there was that "stuff," and it just made it a better decision to book the VWL since that was the one the kids and I had fallen in love with in the first place.

We'll be staying at ASMo Wed, Thurs, Friday, and Saturday, because the rates at the DVC properties double on weekends. We'll move on over to VWL Sunday morning, which will be fine because my Cuz will have to head to the airport then as well, so we'll be around seeing her off anyway. I wish she could have worked it out to be there while we are in the VWL.

We're getting a 2BDR villa, and even though the weekday cost is about $120 a night more than the cost of 2 rooms at ASMo, if we fix breakfast in our room every morning, and then prepare our own snacks to take into the parks to tide us over til lunch, then fix lunch when we come back for a nap/swim break, we should save enough on food to justify the difference.

I am sure I am going to have some great pics.....in MAY--only 6 months away! So I have 6 months to figure out how to post pics on here....Photobucket? is that what I'm supposed to use? Can you believe I built a 10 page website for the nonprofit, complete w/ color & photos and all that jazz (you've seen it, right Michele? Not too shabby, right?), but I am totally intimidated by the thought of trying to figure out how to post pics! I am, after all, a bear of very little brain.....

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Old 10-30-2007, 08:12 AM   #41
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Oh yes--December!

Quote:
Originally Posted by LaLaroo78 View Post
Hey Ashley!

the trip report! Congrats on the Cindy ressie! Wow you really are a smart planner. I would never think to buy all those suvoniers ahead of time, then again I am not a mom let alone a supermom like you!

My mom and I are thinking about going in the beginning of December before the crowds. We really want to see the Christmas decorations. When I was young we went once in the summer not that long after Epcot opened and I remember it being unbearable! Then 4 years ago we went in October and last year we went in September perfect weather for me. I would love to go in spring too maybe next time. We made a pact that we would go every few years and so far we are sticking to it!

So did you get you AKV ressies?

Michele
Michele--as in THIS December? How amazing! That would be my absolute first choice of a time to go, but we love us the family tube ride at BB (even though it includes me wearing a swimsuit ), and we wanted to wait a few months to let Mason have a chance to develop a little more. He had his gross motor assessment yesterday, and he's at about 16 months (at 26 months old). Waiting til next Dec. meant he'd turn 3 and not be free anymore, so May it is!

But you'll have to figure out the photobucket thing and post lots of pics--and then tell me how to do it!
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Old 10-31-2007, 09:04 AM   #42
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Hey Ashley!

Happy Halloween Everyone!

Since we had a suprise last minute trip to Aruba this summer this December is out. So December 2008 it is! Honestly I really wanted to go for my 30th b-day in January (2008) but my mom wasn't having it (neice's b-day is the day after mine so I think that has something to do with it) I need at least 11 months to plan and wait it out. It drives me nuts planning so early and waiting but hey its all worth it in the end.

I will have to play with the photobucket thing and try to post some of my Aruba pics. If I can figure it out I will let you know!

Glad to hear Mason is developing more! I know what you mean about the 3 yr rule. I think it should be children 5 and under are free. Sometimes when I take my younger neice (she's 3) places I think it is ridiculous what they charge!

Anyways, can't wait for the next installment!

Have a great day, guys and ghouls!

Michele
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Old 10-31-2007, 10:11 AM   #43
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Just signing on...just to be nosey!
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Old 10-31-2007, 10:40 AM   #44
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Still loving the report!! (and still afraid of my closet!!)

Keep up the great work!
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Old 10-31-2007, 01:14 PM   #45
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Can't we go to Disney World without someone throwing up?

So the year was 1979...I know I said 1978 earlier, but I recalculated based on how old my baby sis would have been at the time, and it was definitely 1979 (although I thought Dennis Quaid was Kurt Russell, and that an orangutan was a gorilla, right DisneyDadFaNaTic? ). My dad would always take off 2 weeks in the summer for our vacation. He was in fleet & leasing, and was pretty much at the top of the food chain, so he could switch out his demo for whatever he wanted for our trip, which back in the seventies meant STATION WAGON BAY-BEE!!! Back before all of this seat belt & car seat awareness (WHICH, by the way, having been in the juvenile products industry, I am an absolute fanatic about as a mother--you won't find an improperly installed safety seat in this family's Suburban), when you could sleep laying down in the seat on road trips.

Someone had told my dad that the Contemporary was THE place to stay , and of course, my Dad had had to stay at THE place, so Contemporary it was. I really wanted to stay at the Poly or those Treehouse villas, but Dad said Nope! . That' back when WDW had only 3 resorts on property. So the Contemporary it was. And it was pretty darn cool having the monorail running through the hotel.

Well, we were having lunch at the hotel restaurant one afternoon, and Dad took Courtney (my baby sis--7-1/2 years younger) up to the salad bar (which was sooo cool, because back in 1979 I don't know that I'd ever seen a salad bar before). She picked out some cherry tomatoes, evidently thinking they were actually cherries. I don't know where that communication breakdown took place, and I can't believe she had never seen a cherry tomato before, but she was only 4. So when they get back to the table and Courtney takes a bite, she's like ! And of course, she has no interest in eating the other 7 cherry tomatoes on her plate. But Dad, who lied about his age so he could go to VietNam back in the 60s and would never forget all those starving VietNamese children, was insistent that Oh Yes She Was!

So there was some and some and some and some , and then something happened that there is no icon for....Oh yes!! Baby Sister threw up at the CR! At least this time it wasn't me!

So, for next time I guess we have to do a current trip planning update...so maybe I'll poll my crew on what everyone is looking forward to the most....Or maybe I'll divulge our surprise early birthday present for DH...I bet if I really put my mind to it, I could tie them together in one neat little package!
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Here am I and the children whom the LORD has given me! We are for signs and for wonders....Isaiah 8:18
DH Me DD16 DS12 DD8 DSDs6 DDDs 5

Last edited by ashleypmo; 10-31-2007 at 01:17 PM. Reason: afraid of the grammar police!
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