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Beauty begins at the cellular level and in a complementary form of our feelings, thoughts and emotions. It begins when we start to understand what our active ingredients are and how we can use them to our advantage, mentally and physically. With May as Mental Health Awareness Month, I dedicate this column to mental health,...
From tattoos to clothing to furnishings, more people are adorning their bodies and homes with themes from nature. Designers and artists who see this “biophilia” trend think it’s a response to the pandemic and anxiety about environmental destruction. “Our collective yearning for nature and the solace that it brings, especially during the pandemic, has led...
Laura Ali has helped countless clients fine-tune their diets to promote healthy eating habits in her three decades as a registered dietitian and culinary nutritionist, 16 of them in a clinical setting at the Cancer Institute at UPMC, now Hillman Cancer Institute. Good nutrition is a cornerstone of good health, with study after study showing...
If you have an inability to make plants grow, count yourself among those who have a “black thumb.” Even if you love plants (and who doesn’t?), you might have decided you just lack the knack to keep them alive and given up. But all is not lost. Laura Klavitter, the plant expert behind Planted. in...
It’s spring, which means that summer is on the way. To me, that means I’ll soon be tending to my garden, which I love for many reasons. I love to play in the dirt. I’m sort of a child when it comes to gardening. I get so excited when the first little shoots start to...
You might have heard the word compost, but what is it exactly? Compost is organic waste that breaks down in time into a nutrient rich soil. This “gold” for your garden will provide nutrients for anything you might be growing and will save you money in the long run by improving the structure of your...
Linda Schacht has an innate gift. Upon stepping into a space, she can almost instantly envision its fullest potential. “It’s just something I think I developed over time,” said the 42-year-old Chicago native. “I had a very creative father and I grew up watching him build. Watching that design process, it’s just in my blood....
The increased demand for gardening supplies and plants during the past few years will likely continues to have effects on this year’s gardening season. Area garden centers predict challenges with shortages and shipping delays will affect the upcoming gardening season. For gardeners, local center owners urge patience until items come in, shopping early for supplies...
Hopefully, April showers brought us May flowers. As I write this, we are two days into spring, and people of the neighborhood have emerged. Kids are running around. Adults are active on the main drag. And there are a lot of open garage doors, inviting the warm air and neighborhood banter in. Each street has...
Before you know it, summer will be in full swing. And many parents will be looking for activities to keep kids’ brains and bodies active once the school year wraps up. Here are a few ideas, with additional resources, to help get you started: For bookworms Carnegie-Stout Public Library Summer Reading Program: Highlighting the theme,...
The social media platform is filled with easy recipe hacks that can change the way you cook — for the better. What’s one thing you’ve recently learned that forever changed the way you do an everyday task? For me, it was that an egg and some chili crisp could transform packaged ramen into an actual...
Kale salads might be all the rage, but served raw, the sturdy green can be off-puttingly tough. So we looked at its cousin, cabbage, for clues on how to tame the texture without cooking it. Kimchi and sauerkraut recipes use a salt massage to soften leaves, and we were pleased to find the same technique...
Kitchen renovations are one of the most popular, as well as one of the most rewarding, home improvements. A new kitchen design can make that space a more functional, compelling heart of your home, in addition to increasing your home’s resale value. The average cost of a kitchen remodel is between $13,475 and $38,170, according...
Creating clean beauty is a standalone style of makeup artistry. Clean beauty and the “no-makeup, makeup” look go hand-in-hand to showcase a fresh, skin-focused face. The look is soft, complimentary and suitable for all age ranges and skin types. Here are the key points of the clean beauty look: Supple skin Skin is the foundation...
Hot styling tools, coloring and chemical processes all can lead to the same thing: Dull, dry locks that tangle easy. “Many of the styling steps we take to look our best can ultimately leave our hair looking flat and dull,” said Jonathan Colombini, L’Oréal Paris creative director of Style & Color. “Fortunately, there are some...
Have you ever noticed a pimple pop up during times of stress? What about fatigued or dry skin? Chronic stress can show up on the skin, making it appear dull and tired and even leading to acne, redness or general discomfort. Continual stress also is one of the top contributors to making inflammatory skin conditions...
Beauty and fashion is all around us. Our clothing and accessories are visual ways we display our image in an effort to stay current with the latest trends. It’s safe to say that many designs come and go, but there classic choices stand the test of time. The concept of beauty and fashion relates to...
When is it appropriate to use black in home decor? Once considered harsh, black is now more popular than ever and often is the go-to color for those looking for an elegant, upscale vibe. Black offers the opportunity to infuse a bold and luxurious look into nearly any space. When using black, there are some...
There are some things that just make sense to have in the bathroom: towels, soap and your toothbrush. You likely store quite a few other things there, too, like razors and makeup and even medications. Not all of these should be stored in the same room — where you take hot showers, however. Here are...
As this month’s magazine theme is fashion, I wanted to highlight the balance between fashion, comfort and function. Did you know that more than three million people age 50 or older require some form of help when dressing? This data was published in the latest National Health Interview Survey. We all know that when we...
Have Easter guests jumping for joy by planning a celebration that is not only memorable and joyful, but affordable, too. To ease the stress of organizing the holiday event, Dollar General is offering these egg-citing ideas for activities, recipes and basket essentials that are convenient and budget-friendly. Hoppin’ activities While the egg hunt is a...
I had just finished teaching in a fifth-grade classroom. I was packing my materials to move on to the next class when a small, serious-looking boy in square-rimmed glasses approached me. As he handed me his eye pillow, he politely asked if he could have my phone number. At first, I was flummoxed. It took...
Jealousy is a tricky emotion to have. It can be perilous if you do not know how to use it. By definition, “jealous” is a feeling or showing envy of someone or achievements. I have moments of jealousy that I am not proud of; however, I am choosing to lean into it more after learning...
Kate McIntosh likes to be surrounded by the beauty of what she loves most — and she finds it in places others might not think to offer a second glance. “I like to find recycled uses for older things,” she said. It’s evident as soon as one sets foot inside the space she has worked...
The world of fashion often conjures images of haute couture, high-paid models on the catwalk and trendy clothing with expensive price tags. But some fashion designers are delving into what has become known as fashion activism — using their designs and their high profiles to advocate for social change. For Katie Martinez, the owner of...
A Dubuque business owner was honored last month with a statewide award recognizing her work as an entrepreneur. Erica Brewer, owner of Belle Allure Minkz and Boutique, received the Deb Dalziel Woman Entrepreneur of the Year Award from America’s SBDC Iowa. The program is hosted by Iowa State University and is an affiliate of the...
With winter officially over, we are entering the wedding season. Wedding planning can be stressful. This stress has been enhanced during the past few years due to the added stress of a pandemic and ever-changing guidelines. Brides-to-be are under more strain than ever before. Appropriate self-care during this period is essential. Self-care is taking time...
Spray tanning has been a part of my menu of services since 2010 and is a very popular beauty trend. Appointments take less than 20 minutes with developed color lasting from five to seven days. The active ingredient in cosmetic tanning solution is dihydroxyacetone (DHA). DHA is an active ingredient made from sugar cane or...
From fitness conscious consumers to busy moms who always are on the go, casual athletic attire is becoming a socially acceptable and on-trend style. In fact, it’s so popular, it carries a name: Athleisure. It might sound like a piece of cake to dress in casual and relaxed clothing. However, avoiding a just-rolled-out-of-bed look is...
Like many new moms, Lindsay Applebaum Stuart would lie awake at night, tired and uncomfortable, while breastfeeding her first child. It was three and a half years ago, and Stuart couldn’t get used to sleeping in a bra, which was necessary to hold pads to absorb milk that leaked during the night. “Nothing was comfortable,...
When I reflect on changing seasons, space planning and organization impacts how I arrange items, especially in the garage. Prioritize placement of your possessions, and acknowledge if stored items compliment and enhance your lifestyle. Spring is more than cleaning windows, changing the air filter and performing annual maintenance. It’s the perfect opportunity to evaluate toys,...
While there is a lot of guidance available about what to feed children, until now, there has been little guidance about how to feed them. New recommendations offer parents and caregivers practical tips for encouraging healthy eating habits vital to growth, development and health. “Childhood is a critical period for developing lifelong eating habits, and...
Who doesn’t love Nutella? This dreamy, finger-licking dessert recipe is from the Italian company’s cookbook, “Nutella: 60 Classic Recipes,” by French celebrity chef Gregory Cohen. Along with a history of the chocolate-hazelnut spread, it contains everything from simple cookies, quick breads and small cakes to fancy desserts involving choux pastry. I adapted a recipe for...
I have spent a lifetime experimenting with variations on basic instant ramen, with the vague goal of someday reaching noodle soup perfection. As with a lot of things, there were instances when I believed I had reached the pinnacle of homemade ramen, only to see a new idea bubble up, hinting that there could be...
So much snow. And nothing to do with it. Or is there? When there is a big snowstorm like we typically get in the Midwest, it is time to make snow ice cream. It is the frozen precipitate equivalent of Jiffy Pop popcorn. That is, it’s as much fun to make as it is to...
While investing in your health and wellness can sound like an overwhelming goal as a parent, doctors say that there are easy, tangible steps you can take to feel your best and better protect your health. “It is always the right time to consider your personal goals and how you can make positive health choices,”...
For many, the additional isolation and never-ending uncertainty of the past couple of years has led to mental fatigue and burnout. Experts say that no matter your age, turning to play instead of social media can help you feel more like yourself again. “While it’s tempting to constantly reach for our devices to check social...
I remember walking into the yoga studio, but this time was different. Before, I had breezed in with a mat, my keys, a water bottle and my growing baby bump. Nothing and everything had changed since the last time I had joined this group of mamas-to-be. Now, I navigated the narrow hallway with a diaper...
“Secondhand sadness” is a new phrase I heard recently. I thought it was a made-up emotion. I thought I would Google it to find nothing. I was surprised to find that it is a psychological phenomenon in which we experience someone’s sadness as if it was our own. My daughter defines secondhand sadness as empathy...
As this month’s magazine theme is about parenting, I realize that many of us are watching our parents get older. It is one of our greatest honors to care for those that cared for us. One goal almost is universal: We wish to keep our parents in their homes for as long as possible. This...
It’s not unusual for the Ball family home in Peosta, Iowa, to be Ground Zero for a flurry of activity — shuttling kids between sporting events, running errands and juggling an assortment of overlapping schedules. But despite the busyness from one day to the next, Abby Ball wouldn’t have it any other way. She and...
For expectant mothers, a pregnancy always brings changes and adjustments, but the March 2020 lockdown and what followed took that to a whole new level. For many, it brought abrupt changes that often were obsolete within a few hours. In the future, it’s a good bet that stories will be told around dinner tables and...
Sara Steuer knew at age 15 that she did not want to give birth to or raise children. Steuer found meaning in the arts, sketching for herself a future working in a big city. She would live in a loft, make lots of unique friends and perhaps meet a partner. Steuer would travel abroad. That...
Traveling with pets? Whether you’re taking to the skies or the highways and byways, bringing furry friends along for the ride can sometimes be stressful for pets and people alike. Consider these tips to make the journey easier on everyone: 1. Pack right. Be sure to pack more than enough food and medication for your...
There are great women all around us at all times. And when you take a look through history, it becomes apparent very quickly that always has been the case. But unfortunately, too many of those trailblazers have gone too long without the recognition that is their due. Here is a list of a few of...
As someone who has seen her fair share of brides, weddings and beyond, I want to share industry tips (for the professional and bride-to-be) that will help make artistry experiences the best. Bridal artistry has come a long way since my early days of being a business owner. Often when I connect with brides, they...
This one goes out to all you lovebirds who got engaged during the holidays and now are left planning a wedding with zero event-planning experience. Somehow you’re expected to craft a day that’s traditional, yet modern. Well-attended, yet intimate. It’s about you as a couple, but also shouldn’t be offensive to any of your guests....
Visible light is the light we can see, and excessive amounts of exposure can contribute to the production of free radicals, which could have negative, aging effects on the skin. VL comes in many forms, from sunlight to the light emitted from digital screens like cellphones and laptops. That’s why experts advise taking steps to...
W ell-meaning adults would tell Anana Johari Harris Parris when she was a young girl that she needed to take better care of herself. “I was like, ‘How?’ I felt everybody else had it figured out and I didn’t,” Parris said. But years later, she would be forced to take a big step toward self-care....
Relationships inspire a new beginning by bringing two people together. This includes new experiences, fine-tuning your lifestyles and most importantly, learning to compromise with one another. With everything positive happening in your newly combined life, it’s easy to overlook the stuff you bring into your relationship. This applies to new romances or those who would...
For many people, the bedroom is a key room, one in which much of the day is spent. From a design standpoint, it’s a place into which you might want to invest in elevating your decor. How do you make a bedroom your favorite room in the house? Create a mood To help springboard your...
On April 28, 2021, my husband, John, and I said goodbye to our best friend, Wrigley Thomas, our 12-year-old golden retriever. Having a dog was not my idea, especially not this discount puppy. Wrigley was somewhat of a clueless animal when we brought him home. He needed to be trained on behaving in our house...
Valentine’s Day is no longer just for the happy couples. Whether you’re married, dating or content being single, there are ways for everyone to celebrate love of all kinds, including romance in 2022, regardless of relationship status. 1. Custom cards. SmashUps, from American Greetings, can help prioritize love and romance any day of the year....
As we settle into another year living with the COVID-19 pandemic, Valentine’s Day is next up. And showing love and gratitude can feel more important than ever. Perhaps during a regular year, you and your dearest might have gone out for a romantic dinner, or somewhere special like the theater, a concert, a horse-drawn carriage...
Casseroles have long been a favorite for family meals and gatherings because one-pan dishes are easy to make, a dream to portion and can feed a crowd. Lasagna is a particular favorite because who doesn’t love the magical marriage of cheese, pasta and tomatoes? Add that it can be composed ahead of time, taking some...
At lunch with my colleagues recently, the conversation turned to a morning news feature about a group of 13 women who contributed $3,000 apiece to time-share a diamond necklace, each having the use of it for a given period each year. The rules are flexible: Anyone celebrating a special occasion could take temporary custody, as...
Life has thrown a few surprises at Ashley Ayala. The 36-year-old Dubuque native grew up in a what many would describe as a traditional Midwestern household backed by strong family bonds, despite losing its patriarch in 2003. That loss would lead Ashley to discovering a passion for the practice of yoga, eventually tapping into the...
There is an Irish proverb that says, “A good friend is like a four-leaf clover — hard to find and lucky to have.” We all have friends through the stages of our lives. The grade school friends, the middle school friends, the high school friends, the college friends, the work friends. Our lives change as...
Josh White wants to make friends. He moved to Dubuque in September from the small tourist town of Lake Lure, N.C., with his wife, Amy, and their three children. But Josh, 39, is challenged by the adjustment. “Even though there are a lot of people here, I don’t have the greatest social skills, I guess,”...
“Be the one who nurtures and builds. Be the one who has an understanding and a forgiving heart, one who looks for the best in people. Leave people better than you found them.” — Marvin J. Ashton Healthy relationships with family, friends and other loves ones can be a significant source of comfort, support and...
Did you know that 25% of the 805,000 heart attacks per year in the U.S. are recurrent? The American Heart Association reports that once you’ve experienced a heart attack, your chances of having another one is higher. In fact, nearly one in five patients who’ve had a heart attack will have another cardiovascular event, such...
After learning to live life more remotely in 2020 and 2021, it’s time to view 2022 as a fresh start. To help you adopt a new, balanced way of living, interior designer Taniya Nayak is sharing five home interior design trends meant to inspire spaces that will welcome guests, while incorporating the special intimacies that...
Resolving to green up your act in the New Year? Here are just a few tweaks you can make right at home to substantially reduce your environmental footprint: Make appliance upgrades Home appliances are improving all the time, with many newer models designed specifically with efficiency in mind. If your home appliances, such as your...
A frosty winter wonderland is fun to experience — outside. Inside is another story. By keeping your home heating system running at peak performance, you’ll lower your winter utility bills and experience increased comfort. According to North American Technician Excellence (NATE), here’s how to stay toasty this winter without breaking the bank: Get the right...
Caregiving is a sacred role. It is extreme love in action. What could be more loving than caring for someone who needs you? You are supporting the needs and wishes of the care recipient and giving back to someone you love. When done properly and mindfully, it can be a beautiful act of love and...
When it comes to household duties such as changing diapers, handling chores and meals and managing family schedules and activities, many couples who don’t have children expect that they will more or less share the work equally should they have kids one day. The reality is not quite so rosy — at least for mothers....
January: The beginning of a New Year, a new chapter, a new outlook and new experiences. The majority of New Year’s resolutions focus on going to the gym and eating better. These are excellent goals but can sometimes be unrealistic because of time. Most of us believe we need to make sacrifices to do everything...
Recently, my daughter received a compliment from her boss: “I noticed your work excelling since you decided to live by your calendar.” This simple instrument has been around for centuries and can be a magic organizational tool if you use it correctly. I learned at a young age the value of a calendar. My mom,...
Sticking to a schedule is good for health, wellness and productivity, and the start of a new year is the perfect time to form great habits. Resolve to adhere to a daily routine with the following tips and tricks: Write it down. The act of writing things down can help reinforce priorities. Keep a list...
The New Year offers the perfect time for a fresh start and a renewed commitment to getting finances back on track after a season of spending — one where many Americans felt the effects of the pandemic on their wallets even before the onset of the holidays. In fact, COVID-19 already has prompted consumers to...
Diets always have been associated with weight loss. But as we learn more about the complex systems within our bodies and how food works with those systems, diets have become more than a way to shed some pounds. We now know that the way we eat has a lot to do with how long we...
Summer vegetable gardens have been long put to bed, and winter fruits and vegetables are now on the menu. Elizabeth J. Bailey, a Mayo Clinic registered dietitian nutritionist, says that traditional winter vegetables can be satisfying and healthy. Winter brings cooler temperatures — sometimes downright cold temperatures. A crisp cool salad might be what the...
We rarely appreciate cauliflower for what it is. We grill slabs of it and pretend it’s steak. We mash it like potatoes. We even mangle it into pizza crusts. But cooks around the world, from Greece to Israel to China, have shown us how good it can be. That is, when we stop fussing so...
Those who are luckiest in life say they have one thing in common: They’ve found what they describe as their “calling” — that elusive “something” that gives them a sense of purpose in what they contribute to the world. Meg Rima counts herself among those individuals. “I was 100% called to open this,” she said,...
Starting a new fitness routine as part of your New Year’s resolutions? Protecting your feet and ankles is critical. “‘No pain, no gain’ may be a motto for most workouts, but ‘too much, too soon’ can lead to foot and ankle injuries, which can sabotage fitness goals,” said Jeffrey Loveland, a foot and ankle surgeon...
It’s January, which means we’re being hit with lots of New Year’s resolution advice: When, how and what to eat, workout and on and on. It seems this time of year, we are especially likely to let others set our goals for us. We release the majority of our power in terms of wellness decisions...
It’s already the time of year to reassess where the past 12 months took you and decide what you want to improve, change or start doing in 2022. Coming up with meaningful resolutions can be hard. To help simplify this process and get started toward becoming a better you, here are five things to consider...
Many Americans view health as a product of the medical care they receive. However, public health experts say that’s just one piece of the puzzle. “In reality, our health is shaped more by the zip code we live in than the doctor we see. In fact, where we live, our financial circumstances, our access to...
When setting New Year’s resolutions, a person must reflect on the past year to look to the future. You take a thorough look at the moments that made you happy, as well as any setbacks. You then start your list of things you want to improve — working out more, losing 15 pounds or starting...
As our year comes to a close and we review what we did well and what we want to do better for next year, I thought it would be appropriate to share some advice from some of our very best area family caregivers. This wise guidance is gathered from our local moms, dads, husbands, wives,...
If your workplace offers life insurance at a low cost (or no cost) to you, you might assume it provides sufficient coverage for your family and not bother to give the subject a second thought. According to the 2021 Insurance Barometer study, 57% of U.S. workers rely on their workplace for life insurance. But you...
Out with the old and in with the new. I love this outlook for basically everything. As a new year approaches, we inspire to improve, one way or another. Organization and time management will help you achieve your goals. This brings me to the power of creating a list. I love lists. It’s not just...
’Tis the season for traditions. In the next month, we will initiate or participate in numerous family traditions. This might include decorating, baking or gift-giving rituals. Our memory tree, a Christmas tree filled with ornaments from places we have traveled to, is my favorite holiday tradition. Reminiscing our past holiday celebrations and our departed loved...
Have you (reluctantly) turned on your furnace? We have, too, which indicates it’s probably time to snuggle up for winter. It also means it’s time to brush up on your chili recipe repertoire so your insides will feel as warm and toasty. Chili is a favorite fall dish and often includes either chicken or beef....
Get inspired by these five holiday party outfits so you can be sparkling all season long. 1. Basic tee + sequin skirt + velvet blazer + heels + earrings Velvet is a must-have material for the season because it makes any outfit look festive, yet cozy. An oversized blazer paired with a mini skirt instantly...
The holiday season brings an abundance of feelings that could include joy, comfort, gratitude and, unfortunately, stress. Don’t let the task of entertaining friends and family break the bank or your back. Instead, create memorable gatherings with loved ones while saving time and money in the process using these hosting tips. Delicate decor Creating the...
Balance: What a lofty goal. Every day, we run into obstacles that make keeping our objective of living a balanced life a struggle. It seems the holiday season is a particularly rough time to foster a sense of balance in our daily lives. Ayurveda is a holistic system of health that has been practiced in...
Whether you’re a beginning baker or an experienced entertainer, having the right tools can make the process of holiday party prep faster, easier, more festive and ensure you can achieve expert-level results. Here are a few must-haves to add to your holiday shopping list: Spatulas that make you smile From cookie batters to mashed potatoes,...
I will be the first to admit, I grew up as a bit of a stem snob. I thought the only way to bring a festive forest into my home was with real pine and arrangements. However, thanks to Mary Carol Garrity years ago, I have discovered that faux can be just as beautiful and...
Ginger is not just spicy, sweet and delicious. It’s also tremendously good for you. The holiday season is the perfect time to pack a punch with it in everything from the cookie tray to the cocktails. Here’s why and how to include this efficacious superfood in your holiday festivities: Be good to yourself Amid the...
If there were one word to describe Whitney Sanger, “community” might encapsulate it. As the creative communications and development director at Hawkeye Area Community Action Program and co-founder of Project Rooted in 2019 — a Dubuque-based organization that aims to connect youth to the origins and importance of fresh, nutritious and locally sourced food —...
In what has become a classic movie scene from “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation,” Chevy Chase’s Clark Griswold insists that his family drive out to the country to choose and cut down a Christmas tree. “We’re kicking off our fun, old-fashioned family Christmas by heading out into the country in the old front-wheel drive sleigh to...
The holiday season is officially underway. While it might be tempting to stay in and binge Hallmark movies and traditional holiday classics, an assortment of family-friendly happenings can be found across the tri-states to help you settle into the holiday spirit and count down to Christmas. Here are a few highlights. Be sure to check...
If you’re a lover of comfort food, cozy pajamas, snuggly blankets, hot beverages and Christmas movies that end all tied up in a lovely bow with a happily ever after thrown in, then you’re in luck. The holiday movie season is in full swing. If you want to become adept at this seasonal sport, these...
The pressure is starting to build: What can we gift for the holidays that is special for the people we love? Rather than have that feeling crescendo to a paralyzing state of panic I have a new way to think about this conundrum. This year, consider designing an experience for your loved one. It builds...
For breast, cervical and colon cancer, screening tests every few years can help doctors catch the diseases early and improve outcomes. But when the COVID-19 pandemic struck in spring 2020, many people skipped or delayed their cancer screenings. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program provides...
Although “time is money” is a popular adage, when it comes to retirement, it’s often timing that matters most. Significant losses or depletions to your savings early in retirement can shrink your nest egg. This is known as the sequence of returns risk, and it is an important concept to know about so you can...
Despite the recent resurgence of COVID-19, many consumers are more comfortable shopping at brick-and-mortar stores compared to last year, and experts are predicting substantial retail traffic this holiday season. “While COVID-19 is still making headlines as we head into the holidays, vaccine availability and retailers’ health and safety measures have put us in a different...
These are meals that are made entirely in a single pot, which cuts down considerably on the monstrous chore of having to clean up after cooking dinner. Another advantage is that they often are quite good, presumably because the flavors blend organically together. Sometimes they are even better than quite good. And occasionally they are...
It’s that time of year: Pumpkin spice is here and so are shorter days and cooler nights. Before nightfall comes too early, take advantage of the milder temps to prepare your home for winter. Here are a few easy, DIY tasks to check off your list: 1. Close up the patio. It’s important to protect...
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