Thursday, August 31, 2006

eh hem....

please take a moment to enjoy the new header -- refresh if necessary
I'm amazing, aren't I? This too could be yours... for a price... :)
Here's the nitty-gritty. I am thinking 400 bucks for the whole shoot. Now, before you gasp in horror, realize that I do a LOT of behind the scenes editing of my photos. It's not just the 1-2 hour photo shoot. Just ask any of the people above. These shots do not look this great out of the camera. Except for the one of the boys, that was straight from the camera, but I felt bad not having them on there. The 400 dollars would cover up to 4 people in the session. If there's more, you need to email me for a quote and to discuss if someone else could better meet your needs.
Also, that would be for everything -- the whole CD (or DVD), images, slideshow, and decorative cover -- including a copyright release for you to print as many pictures as you want, wherever you want (and I'm happy to provide recommendations and up to 5 fixes of prints on the CD -- re-cropping, lightening, etc.). The CD will have almost all of the shots I took of you and your family during the session and the ones I like will be enhanced, converted to black and white or sepia (your choice) and cropped.
So, that's the story.
Oh, and if you're a friend of mine, or a ward member, or an employee at O'Connor. I have one word for you.
A healthy one. At least for the time being. Email me, let's chat.


I've been harping on Conner to make sure that he's choosing good new friends in his new first grade class. He only has one other little boy that came from Mrs. Ross's class to that class so the field is white and ready to harvest, if you know what I mean. The added benefit is that most of the kids in Ms. Dodson's class were hand-picked for this class, being that it's a 1st/2nd combo. That's one of my most favorite things about it. With most of the kids, you just can't lose.
I was thinking about friendships in my own life. I don't know how careful I am about choosing friends anymore. I know that I crave the friendship of other women. I also know that I HATED going to this new class, because the friend base that I had gotten used to from Room B is no longer with me. They've all moved on to other classes, and I too am set to make some new friends. I'm excited and terrified at putting myself out there.
I think every once and a while it's time to set back and realize what's really important in your life frienship-wise. I hope I can be a good example for Conner in those whom I choose to associate with.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Some New Layouts

I'm pretty sure I didn't do the mom one justice, but I am in love with the San Fransisco one. I know it's crazy, but it's totally how I feel when I'm in the city.
{is my pocketbook secure... are my kids all close, am I stepping on any homeless people (long story) -- stressful for me}.

Update on past topics

Potty Training Many of you are concerned about how this is going. Besides a very nasty stint about a week ago (and the nice accident on Conner's first day) we have been doing really well. He has finished 1/2 of the ginormous dry pants check chart. He got some fancy superman underwear for his efforts (his choice, of course -- but DANG does he look cute with the little superman logo on his backside... trying to figure-out how to take a tasteful photo of that...). He is now in the stage where, when he has nothing to do, he'd like to see the disgusting insides of every restroom God has given us. Lucky, lucky me.
First Grade Just rockin' along. I was worried that Conner wasn't making friends. When I ask him how he's getting along with his peeps he doesn't have much to say. However, I talked with his super-fabulous teacher today and she says he's doing just fine. Now, if I could just get him to tell me what he's learning... besides PE, we'd be on the right track. I did notice that he STILL can not keep his bum planted in his chair for any set amount of time. I don't know what to do about it. I mean, every 5 minutes while we're at a meal I'm reminding him to sit down. I'm thinking of putting a bungie cord on him, just as a reminder. Anyone else's kid have that problem?

Oh, and as a final word -- Mervyn's is having the BEST sale EVER. I got 14 pieces for 42 bucks today. That's only one shirt for Drew (sadly, nothing for me) and the rest were for the kids, most being 2 or 4 bucks. Anyway, it was a rockin' good deal. Get on over there before 10 pm, see if you can find anything.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

I am in Love with my Lipstick

Now, it could just be that my husband is gone a fair amount now, or the fact that I'm working out more.
but MAN do I love my new lipstick. I was at the store getting some things in the personal isle (which I RARELY venture down) and I saw this lipstick.
It's from Mabelline it's called Moisture Extreme.
I don't like heavy feeling lipsticks, and I like moisture on my lips. Anyway, it feels like a lip balm when you put it on and really does help with the whole moisture thing. Also, it's fairly shiny, but not so shiny that I feel like I just diped my lips in varnish. I like a little shine. I think it was $6.99 at Safeway, probably way cheaper at Target.
I got the rum raisin -- fyi.

Monday, August 28, 2006

We're all Still Alive

Well, he made it through his first day and I have filled-out the paperwork.
As we were getting in the car Conner told me it was a miaracle, I asked what was a miracle and he said, "I wanted Ms. Dodson, and I got into her class, I am so lucky." Made me feel good, and glad that he notices that there is a higher power at hand in all of our lives.
On a bright note, room #1 has a website.
I'm pretty sure Me and Mrs. Dodson will get along quite nicely. :D

he's at school and I'm here....

Alrighty peeps, that was WAY worse then Kindergarten. That first week, I think Kindergarten was like an hour the first day, 1:30 the next, maybe 2 hours... anyway, by the time the week was over you were ready to send them to the army just to be done with the whole pick-up drop-off thing.
We did the whole name thing, and he ran right in... I stayed looking dumb for a few minutes... and then I left.
Mrs. Dobson seems perfectly nice, but I had to sing marching band music when I saw her to prevent myself from crying.
I hate new things, I hate change. I'm pretty sure I should re-name my blog "i hate change."
Had a little tear on the way home and now I'm ready to GO GO GO, just have a great day with Mr. Spencer, concentrating on him, and his needs.
ETA: Right after I wrote this, Spencer had a NICE big accident, the solid variety to remind me, as the LDS song says-- "you're not alone."

Sunday, August 27, 2006

1st Grader

Tomorrow he's a first grader.
Tomorrow he's MY first grader.
Tomorrow. Full day of SCHOOL first grader.
Spencer napping. Me, scrapbooking... or something equally productive.
Tomorrow. Makes me want to shut-off my loins if you know what I mean.
Conner is going to be in a first/second grade mix at Ponderosa with Mrs. Dobson (who has received only glowing remarks). I think we all remember my personal love for Mrs. Ross, so I do go into this day with a great deal of tripdation, but Mrs. Dobson WAS hand-picked for Conner by the aforementioned and loved Mrs. Ross.
Wish us luck!

Friday, August 25, 2006

Big news

A) Lunchables are on sale at Albertsons -- 75 cents each if you buy 20. They're on a 20 for 20 promotion, and then if you buy 20, you get 5 dollars off. Sweet. We've stocked up... :)
B) Hilary is now charging for photo sessions. I've had a fair amount of interest, and because I am realizing how much time editing and the actual shoot are taking away from my home life, I've just decided it's time to charge. Stay tuned for info on pricing (or call if you're interested). OR, if you have a nice idea on how much I should charge... feel free to leave a comment here.
C) More scrapbook pages (gasp)

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Another fine photo shoot

My friend's family is SO cute, I wish we were just half as cute. Wanna see more?

My Thoughts on Being an Advanced Fetal Monitor-er

So, I had an advanced Fetal Monitoring class today. Yes, that's right, there are CLASSES on how to read those strips you all stare longingly at while you're in labor... and we have to take them every 2 years.
Today, I was jus amazed at all the little things in the human female, that make it so the baby can survive. There's so many receptors and ways that blood work that make it so the baby can survive. I was just struck at how God must be involved with this... and I think we all know he is.
Also, I am no good at tests, but gosh am I fast at them. I missed 9. You could miss 9 and still pass. Horray for me. BUT, I was done HOURS before everyone else (ok, probably just minutes)... but i knew that if I went through and made another pass at it, I'd change a bunch of right answers.
Anyway, glad to be done with that for a couple of years.
P.s. I put a whole chicken in the crock pot before I left. I just added some of those baby carrots, some of my pre-cut onions (insert giant smile), chicken broth, and then I sprinkled the bird with salt, pepper and poultry seasoning. Yummy, cheap and easy.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Spilling it

Alright my friends, I have to say something, and I have to say it now.
My friends are all moving me, and I have a huge paranoia that I am going to be the only person left in Santa Clara... I'll have to drive hours and hours to find anyone I can befriend.
I am bitter.
It's honestly the worst part of living here. People don't stay here. i'm not one to judge, because we don't plan on staying here forever either, but it's so hard to plant your roots. Our ward is extremely transient, and poor Conner. His class used to have like 20 kids in it, and I think it has like 7 now, soon to be 6. Killing me. I just see as he grows up, it's going to be so hard to hold onto those friendships we hold dear. Each year seeing old ties broken, and having to forge new 0nes. And here's my biggest secret, i am not much of a friend "blacksmith." I don't introduce myself well, I don't meet new people well. Obviously, that is why God put me here. I'll be a freakin' missionary by the time we leave.

Monday, August 21, 2006

I am forgetting Rule #1

Rule #1 with kids -- when you're with them, don't try to get anything else done. Sometimes things just get done, but don't plan on it, and don't force it.
My voice is tired from all of the yelling and BOY am I in a rotten mood.
With all these baby shoots I've been spending so much time editing, and I've also been trying to clear-off my computer. Anyway, I need to let it all drop (including blog entries, but I'm doing this while Conner has an assignment to write down all his summer reading books so he can go get a freebie at the library).
Problem is, I don't know how to let things drop. I feel so compelled to finish things, I can't just set them aside and realize it'll get done later, instead I like to yell and get frustrated and mad. Does anyone else ever get this way?
I must admit that these tendancies were nice in college, when it was just me. I'm talking REALLY nice. I always had stuff done before the deadline, and I studied well (just didn't test well, haha).
Anyway... wanna see more of Ms. Maren (btw, thinking of just mis-spelling the kid's name in every video that I do -- kind of make it my 'signature')(and I did fix it on the video I gave Angie).... look here.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Guess who did another newborn shot

I'll give you three guesses....
AHHH... peeps, STOP HAVING BABIES... spread out the love.
Actually, Angie was the last of a quick birthing spree at church. Hopefully I'll get a break for a bit. Thankfully, Angie's sweet little girl was adorable and made the shoot a delight. And NOW, Angie has her very own movie to cry over. So, without further adieu, I present Ms. Maron's first theatrical presentation:

Also wanted to give a shout out to my musical background for these little treats. It's Nicolette Larson, and she has the best baby CD ever. So calming, so great to sing to the little sweets. My SIL Kristin gave me the CD when Conner was born, what a great baby present, and apparently one that keeps giving. :)

Friday, August 18, 2006

This is me

on a roll

Thoughts from Pottyville, on day 8

Yes, my peeps things were going well... and then we spun into the unrelenting spin that is accidents. Today we are going on 4. I just found a nice little present in his room after he took off his pull-up.
Peeps..... hold me up.
My patience is waining.
We lost our sesame street flash cards today...
I'm just about to fold.

Look who's a scrapbooker....

That's right people, ME... prior to all this photography nonsense, I was a SCRAPBOOKER.
I have GOT to get back into my gluing action...
So, I started by just clicking on Creating Garden at two peas, and using the first layout I saw as inspiration. I found this. And made this:

And then I made another. Check me out.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

I woudln't call me a liar

Ok, Becky... it's not ON my blog, but I am linking to my little photo show... in case someone wants to check it out (and you know you do).
Anywho... did a little photo session for my new pal Benjamin. We're basically best friends, although he's not a big fan of looking at me. I'm trying not to take it to heart... here's a few favorites from the session.
Want to see more?

K, Becky said I could put it on.... TADA... Mr. Benjamin:

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

I'm trying to make a buck or two

Thought I'd try Google's Adsense, because I have so many hits... fairly sure I'm not going to make a cent.
Is it bugging anyone that it's there?
I tried to make it fairl unobtrustive, so if you were just checking my latest post you won't even see my fancy ads...
Mostly, I wanted to see what it would put advertisements about.
Note: Currently, they are all about potty training.
They know a target audience when they see one. :)

Why I am in love with my crock pot

People, is there any more joy then knowing your dinner is already made? I doubt it.
I have a pork loin sitting in my crock pot right now simmering away waiting for dinner time, where it will be consumed with little effort.
I wish I used my crock pot more often. I am going to try and make it a goal to use it at least once a week. It always seems like I have at least one day each week where the day is just crazy, and I know it would benefit us all to have something that even Drew could pull-out, slice and serve. Does anyone have any crock pot recipes they love? If I love this one, I'll let y'all know.
As far as my other goals, i have a little chart (that's right, Ginger -- a chart) for my goals. I hope that by having some sort of a way to chart my progress, and make myself accountable each day I'll do better. That's right, Spencer has one for potty training, and I have one for being more healthy. Nothin' wrong with that. Anyway, my current goals are not watching TV during the day. It seems like I always lay on the couch after i put Conner into quiet time, and then it just seems to eat my whole day up. No good. My other goal is not to overeat, I have a collumn for each meal as well as one for snacks. I am hoping to limit myself to one snack each day. Yesterday, I had two cookies, but I blame Carly for making such delightful ones at RS, couldn't resist.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

The Longest Years

Today is my anniversary.... well, Drew and my anniversary. People, I have been married 9 years now. We always say we're going to do something very fun and exciting. We never do. Much like the day we got married, our anniversary falls very near band camp, and we all know what havoc band camp causes to the Ericksons.
I just wanted to say that Drew is an A#1 husband. He's attentive, he's great with the boys. Can't get enough of him. Wish I saw him more.
Maybe in another 9 years from now....
P.S. After having our phones for 6 months I FINALLY figured out how to upload photos to my blog from my phone (well, really my phone to my computer)... check how exciting the blog is going to be NOW?

Monday, August 14, 2006

Remember that Time At Band Camp?

Friday officially started my days of widowhood... but it wasn't as severe because I knew the next day was Saturday and I could have a nice list of chores for Drew to do (none of which, got done).
Today is the first day of the week-long band camp. It's one of the longest weeks of my personal year. Drew's gone from 8-5:30 (more like 6... but he'll never admit it) and then he comes home and stews about band or lays on the couch/bed for the rest of the night. Sometimes they have meetings, which are completely useless.
I think back to my days in band camp. In HS there was excitement of being in charge, of being amongst the best, of seeing good friends from other schools who were also band freaks. I seem to remember loving band camp -- not sure why. I know it often hit 100 degrees as we sweated out on the field. I had several kids who totally disrespected me, but my best friends were in band, and I was able to spend a whole week with those friends.
In college band camp SUCKED. I am SO bad at memorizing music and we had about a song a day to memorize -- which took me forever!!!! HOWEVER, in college came the excitement of what boys would be coming to band fresh of missions and ready to date a cute piccolo player. I made so many great friends in band. My freshman year, I remember it was so nice to already have a friend base of almost 200 as I walked around campus as the new kid on the block. I remember my roommates thinking I had SO many friends already, being jealous (part of that coming from the fact I'm FROM Provo... and a good part of my high school went to BYU).
Anyway, I know what Drew is doing is building memories for these kids. I know he is helping some become leaders, some become confident, and some just getting a few new friends. Needless to say, I'd rather have him here setting up a set of hooks in the boy's room... but I digress...
P.S. Still no accidents for Mr. Spencer, but he won't go in potties except at our house -- he's holding it, but it's just another hurdle to cross. Anyone have bright ideas on this?

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Day 3

Well, it's 6:18 pm on Potty Day 3... still no accidents since day 1.
Feel the joy....
{waiting for the accident} {living in fear of accidents}

Friday, August 11, 2006

Thoughts on the Afternoon of Potty Training Day 2...

So, basically potty training, day 1.5.
{this is me knocking on wood, and totally aware that whatever particular "plane" your child has reached at any particular potty training moment is subject to change at any time}
We haven't had ANY accidents today!!!!
He's going on his own accord. He's done #1, AND #2... and I'm just trying to be non-chalant about it inside, but BOY am I screaming INSIDE!!!!! :)
I madea a "dry pants check" chart. It has almost 200 spaces, I think -- 19 X 10 or something, anyway it's a lot of work (however, currently we're doing potty checks ever 15 minutes while he's awake), and he'll get some giant reward after it's all done.
Anyway, that's what's up with things here.
Made some no-bake cookies this afternoon with Conner. I was hoping that if he and I had some concentrated time he wouldn't be so bitter over the whole potty training thing (and he is). Not sure if it helped.
Oh, and potty training, and dieting -- not a workable duo.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Potty Training in Less then a Day -- Day 1

While many of my friends are having babies, I'm potty training... thought I'd give a day by day view of how things are going... so those friends, in 2-3 years can read my blog and feel better about their lives.
So, my friend Miranda gave me this book. It kind of goes along the same lines I did with Conner. Frequent liquids, to command frequent attempts, rewards instead of screaming... stuff like that.
So, the day starts out and we taught a wetting dolly how to use the potty, with heaps of praise and a jelly bean or two (which, Spencer was able to eat once we learned the dolly didn't have a mouth, and after the fact that he also had dry pants). Oh, we put on training pants (the fabric kind -- no pull-ups until sleep for us) prior to all this fun. Then, the dolly has an accident, and we go through the accident procedures with her. These include practicing (you go from on room and then run to the potty, pants down, sit, pants up and then on to the next room) 10 times (Spencer doesn't like this) and then making sure they know the difference between dry and wet pants. Then, it was Spencer's turn. I think he went on our 3rd attempt, and actually did pretty well with like 3 pees with no accidents. And then came the accident, he cried the entire time we were doing the practice (you do the practice in the wet pants -- I think it helps solidify in their minds that they do NOT want wet pants). He was relieved to get new pants on. So, we did that all morning -- with, 4 accidents and about 7 sucessful attempts. We put a pull-up on for naps and then he had 2 accidents after naps and 2 sucesses.
I'm not sure that he knows when to go on his own. I seem to be prompting a lot this evening, but I think since I wasn't jucing him up during naps he didn't have any to give. I am hoping tomorrow to just set my timer for every 15 minutes, do a wet/dry pants check and hopefully that'll be his reminder to go to the potty if needs be.
Anyway, that's what happened today. I am now going to veg on the couch. Drew is entirely in charge of housework today (his last day before he starts school). He also took Conner for some fun this morning so Spencer and I could be alone. Oh, and I had to turn my phone off this AM, so if you called -- that's why...

Tuesday, August 08, 2006


Alright, today I cleaned-out my closet and my drawers.
I defrosted my freezer.
Cleaned-out my hall linen closet (which is huge).
AND I went to Costco.
Feeling fairly productive.
Only 2 more days of having a husband and then he creeps off to the land of marching band. {sigh}

Monday, August 07, 2006

My Wife-ly Tip

So, sometimes I just feel like I am so frugal it's not even funny.
Today was one of those moments.
Have you ever seen those giant bags of chopped onion? Ok, I hadn't til' today. But I'd read in this book how you can take it, freeze it and then hack-off chunks. Lately, I've just been feeling like I'm spending like 50 cents on an onion, and since my kids are little and aren't big fans of the onion scene, we only end-up eating like 1/4 of it... the rest going moldy in our produce drawer...
SO, because I am sure I would hack-off more then onion if I tried to get a bit off (namely, my finger)... I put 1/2 cupfuls into little snack bags, and then put the whole thing in a giant freezer bag (removing all the air, of course) and stuck it in the freezer.
I'll let you know how it goes...

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Yes 'm goin' to the potty, potty...

So... not this week, but the week after that, we're going cold turkey potty training. I think it works better than easing into wet carpets with pull-ups.
Anyway, my big plan is to go straight into underpants next Monday. Then, it's to the potty every 5 minutes, with a juice box every hour... jelly beans for sitting on the potty, and some other magnicifent prize (starburst, or something like that) if there is production.
I have a friend who did a little chart and they got a sticker each time they went, and then when they filled the chart they got a prize, thinking about doing that as well...
Anyway, does anyone else have potty training hints that are tried and true? Thought it'd be easier before Conner's in school and before we have to start staying inside more...
Anyway, so excited... can you tell?

Friday, August 04, 2006


I am fairly sure I could entitle every single blog entry with this... but it seems so effective for my thoughts today.
Yesterday, I was at work. We had a fetal demise, but the twin of the baby was still alive, but fighting for her little life. It's amazing how the mom's priorities changed from being uncomfortable and tired, to sad and hopeful... just with one little change.
I also had a patient who was umm.... well, where the baby was going to exit was apparently a very important area to her. She had some jewlery, and had some real concerns about what the baby would do to that area (she wasn't breastfeeding, so-as to protect the other areas).
I had a friend at work, who I have always liked. She is investigating the church. She is feeling pressured by the missionaries -- but her priorities really are in the right place. Her priority isn't to be baptized into something she's not sure about... and their priority is to increase their numbers. It was truly a special experience to talk to her about my thoughts on the gospel. I understand why missionaries are so zealous. I love the gospel too, and I want to share it with everyone I know -- I just think that readiness is also a huge factor... in fact, I would call it a priority.
Anyway, it's a bit of a babble... but I just wanted to share some thoughts I had.
I worked yesterday, today, and word on the street -- I'm workin' tomorrow. I am SO ready to play mommy again.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Why Do I like Mayonaise So Much?

Well girls, it's about time for me to get back into a work-out lifestyle change. I only have one more week of working crazy hours and then I'm back to my regular stay-at-home-mom-who-only-works-one-evening-a-week person. It'll be a welcome change.
Here's the big plan as it stands now: Of course, I want to keep my walking routine up. I am hoping my friends will still have me since I've been working and gone so much this summer, it'll be nice to get back into that routine.
HOWEVER, the big plan is portion control. I eat like a mad woman -- WAY too much my peeps. So, I am now eating off Conner's plates (which are like 8 or 9 inches), I get one serving, and that's it... and 1/4 of the plate at LEAST needs to be vegetables. I hate feeling over-full and I feel it too often. Anyway, I really need to work on this, and I think it'll help a lot of my problems. I should also never go to Utah again -- because I think I gained a bit o' weight while I was there.
Anyway... that's my big plan. Anyone else have plans now that the school year is almost here?

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

The Job that Never Ends...

Yes, it goes on and ON my friends.
That's right -- I'm talking about sorting through kids clothing. You start out with something so small, and you're fully aware that you have more clothes for this tiny being then it weighs -- probably times 4 or 5. And then those clothes are grown-out of so dang fast...
more are bought...
the grown-out ones go into a bin (for the possible next child, which you don't want to think about right now)...
and more are bought...
and more are outgrown...
and more are bought...
you bring a new little guy home. You love the fact that you saved all those sweet baby clothes...
there are more bins...
and more are outgrown...
and you keep buying for the older one (although, more wisely, because you are now realizing these clothes are going to have to go through 2 fairly clumsy little boys)...
and more are outgrown (at twice the pace now)...
OK SERIOUSLY FOLKS... when DOES this cycle end.
I am guessing that it ends with this:
and then they move-out...
although, I am really hoping at some point in my life I can say, "I AM FINISHED" and start throwing the out-grown clothes into a yard sale/send to DI pile. Will that point ever come?

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

That will teach me to make a new header

Welcome to August 1st my friends. I wanted a new header.
Was making it... hear a crash...
Next thing I know, ladies night out having dessert is cancelled (for me, at least) and we're off to the ER with Mr. Conner. That's right, it's the Erickson's family first set of stitches. Actually, just one stitch to be more specific. If it was anywhere other then the face I wouldn't have done anything -- but being that it was crossing the vermillion border and kinda gaping, I thought it was best to have my peeps at Kaiser take a look.
We were given the option, 1 stitch, or none but after we hauled Conner up to the table he did a rockstar job. I'm really thankful the doctor (she signed her name PAC, whatever that means) did such a great job.

A Mini-Trip

We just got back from our mini-trip to the new Sacramento Temple. Usually, temples are only for adult worthy members but prior to a temple being dedicated, it is open for the public to take tours through. We thought it was a great opportunity for our kids. We had an FHE last night about the importance of temples and some of the things we'd see there. We also stayed at the Rancho Cordova Residence Inn (thanks to Drew's cousin, Valerie and her Marriott reward points) last night and had a nice time being together as a family and forcing Conner into some swim lessons without his floatie.
BUT, back to the temple.
We watched a little film (which Spencer decided to lay on the floor and suck his thumb, rather than view) about temples and then we had a tour. The temple is amazing, very beautiful. I think it made an impression on Conner, at least I hope it did. Temples arne't scary, there aren't big secrets but they're something you should only experience when you're ready. Thankfully -- he won't be ready for a while. Then, after a stop at Baker's square for lunch (and pie -- you've gotta have a treat after going to the temple) we headed home.


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