March 4th, 2011 | No Comments »

To our newest Z!Girl, Carin Van Kuijk from the Netherlands! I’m sure most of you have known her as CarinPixel in forums and galleries as she an active scrappers who always ready to comment and help others.

I would like you all to get to know her. She is one of my long time customers – a very good one too! And she scraps delightful and eclectic pages that I’m sure you would find inspiring. She has been a Z!Guest too when we used to have the spot regularly. I am so happy that she’s joining us here at Ztampfilicious Team! You can take a peek at her new Z!Gallery here, and also here at her oldie but goodie Z!Guest Album. And now… let’s start interviewing her so we’ll get to know her even better!

Q: Please tell us a bit about yourself!
Carin: I’m a 36 years old chocolate-holic mom, I’ve got 3 official teens in the house now, Jeroen my oldest is a musician in the making, Esmee my beloved DD is 14 and she’s the artist in the family, and Aranka just turned 10 last week and she’s the little house dragon. Every bad habbit of the oldest 2 are combined in her. When I was younger I loved to draw, make little fantasy dragons and such with Clay, making fantasy books with modgepodge, clay, paint and everything else I could get my hands on. After Aranka was born I struggled with my colons a lot, some hospital errors later they removed my gall bladder, but sadly it didn’t do much good. Until this day I struggle with colon problems and some days are better then others and that keeps me bound at home a lot of times.

Q: What is your mostest favorite thing to do?
Carin: Spending time with my children, my family, my husband and discovering the world little by little. When I was growing up, we didn’t go on vacations outside the Netherlands. The first time I ever set step outside our own country was with my husband. I remember spending a lot of time in the car to go to Spain, and usually I sleep inside the car. This time I didn’t sleep for a minute, the big sunflower fields, the castles, the amazing huge parking areas along the roads, the views and wow the mountains between France and Spain. I knew that minute I wanted to see the entire world!

Q: Any favorite food/drinks you can’t live without?
Carin: A yellow bag of M&M’s is a standard in my shopping cart, I can not go without them, need them, want them, crave them always. Next to that I can not go without a large latte machiatto at my favorite coffee shop Merz, I think I’m there at least 4 times a week!

Q: How about music/songs or books – what are you into these days?
Carin: Make a guess…okay that’s not fair, actually I’m a metal chick….I love Metallica, Ozzy Osbourne, Guns N roses, well not the new trashed metal like slipknot that’s too much for me I like them singing not grunting. I also love a little gothic like within temptation. As far as reading goes, my collection contains nothing but fantasy, Christopher Paolini, omg did he really write Eragon on such a young age? He can become HUGE! R Feist, Bernard Hennen, and offcourse Tolkien, oh those hobbitses and those hairy feet.

Q: What is your favorite subject to scrap about?
Carin: Well if you look at my gallery it says my own children and that is almost correct, however I love to scrap daily live, vacations and my project 365.
And uhm I have a secret never shown stash of… ‘toiletscrap’. I can see your wondering ‘toiletscraps’? well I allready said I have colon problems, and it basicly means whenever I have to go, I NEED to go and that brings me in quite a few toilets. Some are amazingly decorated others are very, very, very dirty. I remember an iron toilet in Barcelona and in Rome we had a kind of shuffling system that was very YUCKY. In Egypt at the Piramides I really needed to go and got a bucket of water with me to wash and flush. That toilet received a -10. I take pictures of those toilets and collect them and scrap about the toilets and give them a rate, 1 being bad, 10 being excellent. LOL.

Q: How did you first find out about digital scrapbooking? Did you paper-scrapbook before?
Carin: Well I think it was old style scrapping I did, saving receipts, tickets, brochures of places we visited and glued them in albums together with photos I cropped and chopped and torn apart. In 2006 somebody introduced me to digital scrapbooking and well that got me hooked!.

Q: What do you love most about digital scrapbooking?
Carin: Well it keeps my room tidy, no mess after scrapping AND there’s an undo button! Besides that when your done with a page and get it printed, inside an album or lose pages or whatever, you have a great memory to share and show others.

Q: Why do you want to be in a creative team? What do you love most about it? Any tips for being a good CTM?
Carin: Well off course if you’re on a creative team it saves you some money. But that is not my main reason; there are designers out there that I really love and adore, I love quality and uniqueness in a kit and I am truly fed up with all the CU items sold everywhere because it gives a lot of kits the same look. Since I do foremost make pages to record memories for my family and future ancestors, I only want to CT for a designer if I know the designs will fit my own needs as well. I think as a CTM your love for the designs itself is enough to make great pages for designers. And next to that I off course play the praise, take a look at ISO threads and enable when fitting. I know as a former Z!Guest that Ztampf! designs are 1 of a kind for sure, and I actually bought quite a lot and well being a Z!Girl has always been 1 of my ‘goals’. So now I can get that out of my 1001 things to do in my lifetime!

Q: How do you manage your time between being your own person, a mother, a wife, a scrapper and a Z!Girl – among tons of other things?
Carin: What other things? Do you really mean to tell me there’s more besides scrapping and family? Kidding off course, well I’m fortunate to still be able to be a SAHM and do volunteers work. I just make time to scrap in the morning hours when everyone is off to school and work. And in the evening, because basically TV only shows stupid stuff. I scrap at least 1 page per day, it is my therapy, my fix, my need. It keeps me a happy mom and wife, and my kids and DH all love a happy me.

Q: How/when did you first find out about Ztampf! – if you remember it? What first attracted you to Ztampf!?
Carin: November 2006 I started scrapping and my first home was SBB, I remember Fhung was selling there as well and I joined in a party chat and won a coupon for Ztampf!. I was in love right away – the rich colors, the unique elements and wonderful fasteners, it all just fitted my style right away!

Q: How/where did you learn digital scrapbooking? Best way/place to hone in your digi-skills?
Carin: Well it was at SBB where I started and learned to create pages, I love the tutorials they have there. I involved in challenges colors and templates, and to me that is a great way of exploring ideas, giving you other options to do things and so on.

Q: What program do you use to scrap with? Is there any certain scrapping tools that you found yourself using again and again?
Carin: I scrap in Corel Paint Shop Pro Photo X2 and that it is.

Q: What is your ideal scrapping time/space would be? Any certain gadgets/programs you are coveting right now?
Carin: Hmmm the ideal space would be a room where no sound from outside could get in, no screaming kids, no TV noise, yeah that would be scrapheaven. And off course a nice printer that could do canvas and large paper sizes. And I really need to sort my photos, my EHD crashed and I have recovered almost all photos, but they are all renamed in lost file with loads of numbers. Sadly I lost most scrapping supplies. Also if a faerie could magically sort my photos again that would be amazing!

Q: What is the single most useful scrapping technique you found so far?
Carin: Extracting, blending and playing with layers, I love that!

Q: What do you love most about Ztampf! products?
Carin: Well I stated earlier that I love quality and uniqueness, and that counts for everything Ztampf! And off course I do have favorites. The sparkle spray overlays are so versatile and pretty.
I think I used them for over a year on almost every layout. And off course, what’s a page without a good stitched photo, and these truly are the best I ever found! And these wandering soul pendants and pins, I just adore them I would really love such a pendant in real live, they look so pretty.


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I hope you enjoyed getting to know Carin – isn’t she fun! I’m also so looking forward to see more her ztampfilicious layouts!

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June 4th, 2010 | No Comments »

I’m so excited to announce this: We have a new Z!Girl in our Ztampfilicious Team!

She has been a part of the digital scrapbooking community since forever! She is known in forums by the name Sorashell and her real name is April. You can take a peek at her new Z!Gallery here. Now, let’s get to know her better!

Q: Please tell us a bit about yourself!
April: My name is April and I’m a 41 years old Stay At Home Mama.  I live in Southern California, practically in Disneyland’s backyard and was raised just down the road in Huntington Beach.  Family is everything to me and I was lucky (and patient) enough to find a man to marry who believes family is everything as well.  His name is Chris and we’ve been married for 10 years!  My side of the family lives 20 minutes away…his side lives 20 minutes away.  His paternal grandmother lives with his folks and my maternal grandmother lives with my folks.  We all get together for swimming, BBQs, holidays and events constantly and our parents are best friends.  I have two children, Sophie and Aiden, and as you can imagine with that much family around they are spoiled half rotten now.  The whole family is in the construction business and apart from doing all of the mom stuff here I do the books for our cabinetry business.

Q: What is your mostest favorite thing to do?
April: Probably my favorite thing to do is to travel to new places.  When I was younger I used to travel quite a bit and spent a year living on a 17′ sailboat in the Caribbean (off the coast of Honduras) and three months in South Africa.  I’ve driven all over the United States and nothing pleases me more than getting on a plane or jumping in a car and exploring somewhere new.  I also love to cook, take photos, read (anything) and go to theme parks.  My other great love is animals and we have a gaggle of them.  When I get some extra time I enjoy volunteering for German Shepherd Rescue of Orange County and help dogs get adopted.  I used to foster for them but my last foster was a “foster failure” and now we have three dogs; Rocky (14 year old Shepherd mix), Caesar (6 year old 100 lb. Shepard) and Stuie (10 month old Shih Tzu Poodle mix).   We also have two cats and a snake! :) Did I mention that I’m an animal lover? Apart from this, scrapping is definitely high on my list of favorite things to do.  Nothing pleases me more than finishing a really great page and showing it off to family and friends.  I get my layouts printed in 8×8 Shutterfly books and will whip them out at a moments notice!

Q: Any favorite food/drinks you can’t live without?
April: I love food!  Comfort food, healthy food, ethnic food…and wine!  I love wine… As for favorites, one would have to be a nice Cambrizola cheese with a fresh baguette to smear it on.  Thai food is my favorite ethnic food and I’m lucky enough to live near the best Thai place in Orange County.  I go there for lunch when I really need a break and it feels like I’m in Thailand!

Q: How about music/songs or books – what are you into these days?
April: I love almost all music but my taste is…eclectic.  Well, “eclectic” makes it sound cool.  A better word might be “old fashioned”.  Or “hokey”. :P The Andrews Sisters, Marty Robbins, Willie Nelson and The Grateful Dead frequently show up on my playlists.  As for books, I recently discovered the Twilight sagas and am currently on my 10th reading of Breaking Dawn.  The movies don’t stack up for me but the books are killer!  My favorite book has to be A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemmingway and P.S. Your Cat is Dead by James Kirkwood.

Q: What is your favorite subject to scrap about?
April: My favorite subject to scrap about is my kids (how predictable, right?) I have a little notebook and write down the funny things they say and my favorite LOs are about these every day moments that I know I’d forget if I didn’t have a reminder like this.  There’s so much going on all the time it’s easy for the small details to get lost over time, and I love looking back at older LOs and being reminded of funny, special things that have happened.

Q: How did you first find out about digital scrapbooking? Did you paper-scrapbook before?
April: I started paper scrapping in 1998 and accumulated a whooooole lot of stuff, and I really enjoyed doing it but when the kids were born I found that I didn’t pull out my supplies anymore.  I noticed someone on a message board who had a cool looking “signature” or “tag” and when I went to find out how they did it I was opened up to a whole new world.  I started on Scrapbook Bytes in 2004 and have been a digi-scrapping fool ever since!

Q: What do you love most about digital scrapbooking?
April: What I love the most about digital scrapbooking is the freedom of expression I have when I create these memories for my family.  I’m not tied to one style and I can change up any elements that I need in order to suit my purpose.  I’ve gone back and paper scrapped a few times since discovering digital and I’m always frustrated by my inability to change the color, shape or size of something that otherwise would have been perfect to use!  I’m also a huge fan of not having any mess to clean up when I’m done and how easy it is to save my work and come back to it at a later time.  There’s so much I can do in digital that I could never have done in paper, especially blending work!

Q: Why do you want to be in a creative team? What do you love most about it? Any tips for being a good CTM?
April: I love being on a Creative Team because it gives me that extra push I need sometimes to get a layout done.  There’s always so many things to accomplish in a day and scrapping sometimes fall by the wayside when, say, my husband runs out of underwear or I have to feed everyone. Again. (rolls eyes)  Getting excited about new products and having a deadline pushes me to make pages that might otherwise have only stayed in my head.  I also LOVE working out of one kit and not scrounging around my hard drive for stuff.  I love the camaraderie that comes with being on a team and getting to know new people!  The best tip I have for being a good CTM is “always try to make your designer happy they asked you to join up.” I would never want a designer to think to themselves, “Why did I ever invite April to be here?”  Find out what the requirements are, be open in your communication and work hard to make your designer some sales!

Q: How do you manage your time between being your own person, a mother, a wife, a scrapper and a Z!Girl – among tons of other things?
April: Honestly, I don’t know how some people make it look so easy.  Their house and car are immaculate, their bills are paid, they themselves are actually wearing a nice outfit and makeup…  It seems like if I focus on one thing, other things suffer so in order to manage my time I have to prioritize.  I don’t scrap when my husband is home (and awake) but my kids are old enough now to entertain themselves if I need to get a page done or (groan) clean house.  I hit the ground running at 5:30 am and usually go to bed around 11:00pm and run around like a crazy person between those hours!  My main job is as a taxi driver to my kids, lol.  They go to school about 30 minutes away so it seems like I’m in the car an awful lot.  I recently stopped working part time as a dog groomer and have decided to really focus on ME and MY STUFF for a change and I’m feeling really positive about it.

Q: How/when did you first find out about Ztampf! – if you remember it? What first attracted you to Ztampf!?
April: I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t aware of Ztampf! products.  Fhung has always been an innovator and had an eye for detail in her kits and I’ve always been impressed by her designs.  Gorgeous colors, unusual and unique elements…what’s not to love?

Q: How/where did you learn digital scrapbooking? Best way/place to hone in your digi-skills?
April: I learned digital scrapbooking by trying to scraplift techniques that I admired other people doing.  My friend Ashley was the victim of most of my first scraplifts, as was Niecey, Krash, Emmem, Kim.bee and Carver.  I loved figuring out just how they did what they did and how I could make it my own.

Q: What program do you use to scrap with? Is there any certain scrapping tools that you found yourself using again and again?
April: I have Photoshop CS4 and am curious about CS5 but for right now I’m pretty happy with my program and most of all, my Wacom tablet.  I absolutely don’t know how I scrapped before getting this tablet!  One thing I’m really coveting right now are Annie Manning’s new photography actions.  Her photos are AMAZING and I wanna be just like her when I grow up. :p  I have a Canon 5D and some nice glass and a huge debt of gratitude for Katy Larsen (PLucky) for teaching me so much about photo editing.

Q: What is your ideal scrapping time/space would be? Any certain gadgets/programs you are coveting right now?
April: My favorite time for scrapping is after everyone has gone to bed or early in the morning before everyone is up.  Nothing kills the mojo faster than wails of “MAMAAAAAA” or the laundry buzzer going off.  I get really focused on minute details on my pages and end up getting pretty aggravated when I have to keep stopping.

Q: What is the single most useful scrapping technique you found so far?
April: Gosh…single most useful?  Probably masks (I do a lot of extracting) and the warp tool.  I’m a freak about shadows and love making them look as real as possible.  I’m also a freak about blending images into my pages as it’s a way to cram more photos into it, lol.

Q: What do you love most about Ztampf! products?
April: What I love most about Ztampf! products is the attention to detail Fhung has.  The quality is always top notch and there are certain products, like her Liquid Kit, that I go to time and time again.

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Q: What are your favorite Ztampf! products so far?
April: Adventouriste everything (seriously in love with that.  The colors are amazing and there’s so many fun things to use in it!). And ArtNOW paper pack.  WOW!  Amazing….

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I hope you enjoyed getting to know April more!
I’m also looking forward to see more of her ztampfilicious layouts!

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March 3rd, 2010 | 1 Comment »

Did you notice?

There is a new Z!Girl in our mist!
I would like you all to get to know her. She is one of my long time customers – a very good one too! And she scraps gorgeous pages that I have always loved. I am so glad that she’s joining us here at Ztampfilicious Team!

Her name is Carolyn Stewart and you might know her as Amson in forums and galleries. You can take a peek at her new Z!Gallery here. And now… let’s start interviewing her!

Q: Please tell us a bit about yourself!
Amson: I am a Mother of 2 wonderful teenage girls and 2 dogs. We love travelling and seeing the world and feel we are more a part of the world than one specific country.

Q: What is your mostest favorite thing to do?
Amson: Standing behind my camera. I love the feel of capturing a framed scene of a bigger picture and I love that photos can convey meaning even outside of original context.

Q: Any favorite food/drinks you can’t live without?
Amson: I love Thai food the most and could easily live without meat but not fruit or vegetables. My number one addiction is tea. This I cannot live without and anyone who tries to talk to me before my cup of tea in the morning is warned. Beware!

Q: How about music/songs or books – what are you into these days?
Amson: I have always loved music and especially classical music. I could not believe in a day without music. Bach is my passion and always will be. Books are also an addiction and mostly non fiction. I love biographies and world histories. So much to learn.

Q: What is your favorite subject to scrap about?
Amson: My daughters number 1 but also places that I have travelled to. Sometimes just scrapping a photo brings back so many memories.

Q: How did you first find out about digital scrapbooking? Did you paper-scrapbook before?
Amson: I have never paper scrapped and found digital scrapbooking when looking online for ways to adjust photos. I started with tutorials and remember staying up late one night on one of my first layouts. I was so excited that I could barely wait until morning to show my daughter a photo of her scrapped with a kit from Ztampf! that I still use: Sweet be Mine. She loved it and although I look back and it is basic, I still love the layout.

Q: What do you love most about digital scrapbooking?
Amson: I can totally lose myself when scrapping a layout. To be able to relax at the end of a stressful day and relax while creating is just perfect.

Q: Why do you want to be in a creative team? What do you love most about it? Any tips for being a good CTM?
Amson: I only want to be on a team where I truly love the products and want to support the creator. You need time so don’t underestimate the commitment. But above all enjoy yourself.

Q: How do you manage your time between being your own person, a mother, a wife, a scrapper and a Z!Girl – among tons of other things?
Amson: I’d love to say that I was totally organised but this is not true. I go for a month or so organised then there is a problem at home and life slips back to survival mode with me up to my head in issues. This is part of the difficulty in being a single mother as you are effectively both the father and mother which is more than a full time job in itself. Scrapping is however my salvation as it is an outlet for creativity and often sanity.

Q: How/when did you first find out about Ztampf! – if you remember it? What first attracted you to Ztampf!?
Amson: I can’t remember when I first heard of Ztampf! but it was right at the start of my scrapbooking. I love that the designs flowed from art and were of such high quality. Kits that I purchased a couple of years ago are still used. They are timeless, versatile and can be used for many styles of design. They are not tied to “trends” of the moment.

Q: How/where did you learn digital scrapbooking? Best way/place to hone in your digi-skills?
Amson: The first task after learning the basics of how to “create a layout” is to learn your scrapbooking program, whatever that may be. You don’t need the best program to create the best layout. There are many sites (some non-scrapbooking) offering instructions. Read all you can, take classes and study the layouts that you like.

Q: What program do you use to scrap with? Is there any certain scrapping tools that you found yourself using again and again?
Amson: I use PSP and have used this program for photo editing for many years. My favourite action would definitely be changing blend modes of photos to create effects and blend photos into papers. I have a few plugins that I use frequently such as Topaz Adjust which allows me to become more creative with my photos.

Q: What is your ideal scrapping time/space would be? Any certain gadgets/programs you are coveting right now?
Amson: I am lucky to have a separate study with desktop computer. (I need my widescreen) It is here that I unwind at the end of a day. I’d love to move to an Apple one day and of course Photoshop but would have to win a lottery first.

Q: What is the single most useful scrapping technique you found so far?
Amson: For me scrapping is to preserve memories foremost. Remember to date every page and include journalling. When someone looks at your pages in 20 years, they will not know which layouts received more comments or standout mentions. What they want to see is the story. This is why I am moving towards creating 2 page layouts where there is more room for journalling and photos. Also I don’t feel that you need to add journalling on the layout for upload. I often add journalling on a separate layer that is not visible to the public; just in my printed version.

Q: What do you love most about Ztampf! products?
Amson: I love Ztampf! products, especially the page borders. There are page borders of every description – painted, grungy, metallic, paper, leather etc. Most pages I complete will use one Ztampf! border. My favourite would have to be the most recent from the Adventouriste Collection. I know I will be using these many times.

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I also have my favourites from many collections: All the ARTiStitches line (most of my layouts have stitching somewhere), Silky Blooms accent pack (flowers you will use again and again), Paint splats from Soaring Series, Papers from AbstractionNation and Circusoiree Kits and all the metal/mesh bits and pieces that I totally love from Robokit, Structure Kit and its Add-On Pack and Meshed Up Accents (all perfect for teens!). No one does metal better than Ztampf!.

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I hope you enjoyed getting to know Carolyn – I know I am!
I’m also so looking forward to see more her ztampfilicious layouts!

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Posted in Z!Girls Talks, Z!matter
November 5th, 2007 | 2 Comments »


my strawberry skinIt’s been over a week since my last entry; my allergy (or whatever that is) really slows me down a lot. The medication doesn’t give me any relief from the itch and now the skin on my arms and parts of my legs and body are textured like orange peel or strawberry skin. I love textures, but not on my skin! To make matters worse, it looks like I’m allergic to the medication too! Aaargh!!! So for the past couple of days I got swollen eyelids and face – they’re still swollen now :(.

So I’ve decided to stop all medications. They are not addressing the cause as the doctors don’t know it themselves. The function of the treatment is to repress the itch and it is not working for me. They’re giving me new problems instead! On top of everything else, my skin now has become hyper sensitive. It’s a real challenge to find clothing that won’t irritate it. Any slightest roughness i.e. on the inner seams would make my condition worse. Perhaps I should shop for all things silk with impeccably soft inner seams and replace my entire wardrobe with them! Anyone willing to fund me for this? LOL

Anyhow, last Wednesday I had some blood test done; since my itch is all over the body it might be caused by something internal/systemic disease i.e. liver malfunction or anything that causes toxins to build up in the body. It is possible that it’s not allergic at all, which might explain why the medications didn’t work. The blood test result won’t be ready until this coming Thursday. They took 6 ampules of blood – they’d better be able to tell me something definite about my ailment.

For now I just drink plenty of water, have a lot of fruits, restrain myself from having any coffee and chocolate (tough!), keeping cool (temperature wise, that is!) and try not to scratch so much…

In case anybody is wondering, the medications are Semprex and Hydroxyzine. I googled Semprex and found out that it is known to have side effects and might cause allergic reaction! I was flabbergasted! How come any of the doctors (or the dermatologist) didn’t warn me of this possibility while they very well knew that I develop this new allergy – that we don’t even know what caused it. It could be anything. At the very least, they should have told me… Oh well! That’s what Google is for, I guess – among many other things!

Anyway! Thanks for those sending me get well emails, much appreciated :). Lynn, I hope your allergy has gone. Yulia, how’s your allergy now – have they pinned point the exact allergen? 3/4 of 30 is a lot! Depending on my blood test on Thursday, I might get a skin prick test. Wish us both luck! Gayle, thanks for the link. I’ve checked my mattress and beddings – and found nothing like described as bedbugs… So at least we know that it’s not bedbugs.

Enough about this wretched topic. I wanted to share these with you – they are my designs produced by Inque Boutique. They basically purchased my designs straight up. If you’re into stamping and paper-crafting, do check the stamps out! They are available both online and off line across the US. I have to admit that I like their system: combining the best features of rubber stamps and clear stamps. You can click on the images to visit the Inque Boutique website.

What A Feeling Set

Journalia Set

And guess what! Did you notice any changes at Ztampfest Gallery recently? Check out the links on the right here on the blog… Under the Z!Girls Galleries… Yes! We have a new Z!Girl! She is Donna, whose gorgeous works most of you have seen during the Ztampf! 2nd Weekly Challenges. We’re all very excited to have her as part of the Z!Team.

Well, I haven’t been designing at all for the past weeks because of the allergy. I do have a few new things in progress – I hope to be able to finish them within the next few days. Thank you for your patience :).

Now please wish me well a.s.a.p. This has been going on for too long…

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