2018 – The Year In Review

Here we are with another year having passed… where did it go?!! It was another rough year health-wise with that horrid 3 month migraine, then my surgery, and helping the folks after dad’s surgery. Health and family first = less crafting time. I was pleased to see I still managed to publish 63 posts during the year. I still have a few queued up as drafts that I just haven’t been able to finish off… hopefully I’ll get caught up this coming year.

There were over 2.570 visitors to this blog from 67 countries this year, including the 79 of you who are followers. And they kindly took the time to leave over 860 comments. Thank you all for your encouraging support! I promise not to bother your inbox any more this year. : )

I was pleased that a couple of my creations received special recognition this year…

20170720ArtImpressionsFor THIS card:

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for THIS card:

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Here are the three blog posts that got the most comments from you sweeties. If you missed any and want to see the post, just click on the pic:

You’ll notice they’re kitty themes… Us cat lovers tend to be vociferous! >^.^<  Of course the Cat Lovers Hop falls in October and that’s always the month I get the most visitors. There’s some adage about ‘birds of a feather,’ but I reckon cats go FURther! : )

And, the only non-paper craft project to draw top attention from y’all:

On Instagram I was amazed to hit 250 followers and have 2391 likes on my 77 posts there this year. Here are the top 9 with the most likes from y’all (22% of the total!)… actually there are 10, as the last two tied, so I squeezed them into one frame. : )

If you missed any of these and would like to see the posts, just click the link on the pictures below:

    

  

   

The post with the most comments on Instagram was this one:

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On Pinterest, the top re-pinned pin from this year (284x) was this one:

Again, you can click the pic to go to the post if you want.

I was floored to find out that, in the almost 4 years (coming up in March) that I’ve been posting on this blog, the 362 posts had 9,384 visitors from 92 countries. Once again, I cannot thank you all enough for your generous support of my crafting adventures! I’m looking forward to seeing where the whim takes me next year and having you come along with me on the journey!

Hugs,

~D.Ann

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Neat & Tangled USPS Gift Wrap Ensemble

Good evening! I’m about tuckered out, but I want to get this post out, for the Neat & Tangled Throwdown challenge that is about to close, so here we go…

I really wanted to do something nice for my USPS postal carrier this year as she always trudges up to my apartment when there are packages rather than just leave them down at the mailboxes. She even asked about them one day as she saw they were art related and her teenage daughter is getting into arts & crafts. I know thy’re going to have a party when they get this as they LOVE chocolates!

I have been wanting to use the Neat & Tangled Truck die (thanks Miriam!!) but life has been so hectic, this was my first chance to pull it out. It’s darling and easy to put together the main truck. All the optional add-ons – especially those blinker lights – are a bit tiny for my big mits, tho. : ) I also wanted to wrap up a box of Ferrero Rocher chocolates extra elegantly. I’ve never used a die cut to wrap something before, but I thought the Neat & Tangled Doily Envelope die would make a gorgeous way to wrap it up… I was right! Check out the gift ensemble:

The card is a shaker. I framed it up with the edges of the Doily Envelope Die to tie the ensemble all together.

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The envelope is lined with the same embossed wrapping paper as I used to wrap the chocolates. The truck opens up and holds tiny presents… in this case, a single Ferrero Rocher Chocolate! (hmm… now that I look at it, I think I’ll add some tissue paper in there to cushion it.)

It was a fun set to make I know she’s going to get a kick out of it! I can’t wait to make more of those adorable trucks – probably in UPS brown next time!!

Supplies:

  • Neat & Tangled Truck and Doily Envelope dies & Sweet Treats sentiments stamps
  • DCWV glitter card and chalkboard stack (black and gray sheets)
  • Core’dinations cardstock: white & black
  • Brother Sister Design Studio Embossed Foil Gift Wrap (wrapped chocolates and envelope liner)
  • Tsukineko Memento Tuxedo Black dye ink
  • Tombow Dual Brush Pens 565 &845
  • Sakura Gelly Roll pen – White 10
  • Ranger Inkssentials Glossy Accents (windows & headlights)
  • Blank Slate by Traditions open heart confetti (shaker)
  • Laura’s Loft Red Hot Love sequins (shaker)
  • Queen & Co Diamonds toppings (shaker)
  • Sookwang Scor-Tape
  • Simply Defined “Stay Put” adhesive and Simply Dimensional Foam Adhesive Sheets
  • Misc. glitter cardstock in red and orange; acetate; printed usps logo
  • Ferrero Rocher chocolates – both for the recipient and the crafter!! : )

I am playing along with the following challenges – click on any one for more information on how you can join the fun!

Ok, I’m off for a very late supper. Y’all have a lovely weekend!

~D.Ann

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Happily Ever After Fairy Tale Anniversary Tunnel Card – The Princess Bride

Surprise! Didn’t think I’d make it back again this year, but here I am! It’s anniversary party time (their 54th!) and I have a cool fairy tale tunnel card to share with you with some fun references from The Princess Bride!

The extra grass on the prince and princess’s levels was done by partially die cutting with a grass die. After it was put together I wanted to add the As You Wish sentiment, so I embossed it on acetate. Princess Bride fans know “As You Wish” means, “I love you!” Not a Princess Bride fan? INCONCEIVABLE!! (That means the rest of us are laughing at you right now! Lol!) I added the Happily Ever After after it was together, too.

This was my first time playing with these dies and I wasn’t sure how to color them. I started out with Aqua Blend pencils, but I wasn’t satisfied with the results (guess I need more practice!), so I went right over them with alcohol markers, which added to the shading and I was happier. Then I added a bunch of ‘gilding’ with some metallic markers and a Sparkle pen.

This was my first time using a concertina fold (the sides) to put together a tunnel card. Not as easy as it looks and hard to keep it from warping = I need more practice!!

Well, the picture of the back looked fine on my phone, but now it looks blurry. sorry. It’s already in the possession of the happy couple, so here are some of their favorite Princess Bride quotes that I used: “Mawage. Mawage is wot bwings us togever today.” “This is true love – You think this happens every day?” “INCONCEIVABLE!” “Have fun storming the castle!”

Supplies:

  • Crafter’s Companion Happily Ever After Create-A-Card die set
  • Crafter’s Companion Happily Ever After Edge’ables die
  • Impression Obsession Small Grass Border die
  • The Ink Road – As You Wish stamp set
  • Recollections 110# cardstock – white
  • Spectrum Noir by Crafter’s Companion Aqua Blend pencils: Beeswax, Blue Marine, Bottle Green, Bright Green, Brunette, Carrot, Cobalt Blue, Deep Forest, Dove Grey, Ginger, Honeycomb, Iron Grey, Oak, Oregano, Pesto Green, Sky Blue, Slate, Spinach, Strawberry,Verdant Green, Wheat
  • Spectrum Noir by Crafter’s Companion Basics permanent alcohol markers: Apple, Bamboo, Cerulean, Earth Brown, Emerald, Forest Green, Meadow, Natural Brown, Pale Citrus, Pecan, Silk, Willow
  • Spectrum Noir by Crafter’s Companion Metallic markers: Rare Minerals – Burnished CopperGold Plate, Silver Ingot; Precious Metals – Blue Topaz
  • Spectrum Noir by Crafter’s Companion Sparkle pen – clear
  • Tsukineko Versamark Ink
  • WoW! Gold Sparkle embossing powder
  • Tsukineko Memento Tuxedo Black ink
  • Sookwang Scor-tape double sided adhesive
  • Simply Defined ‘Stay Put’ glue
  • Misc. gold glitter cardstock and clear acetate

I’m playing along with the following challenges – click on any one of them for more information on how you can join the fun:

Thanks for stopping by and for sharing your comments!

It just might be next year before I post again, so y’all take care and Have fun stormin’ the castle!!

~D.Ann

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Decoupaged Napkin Cards

Why, hello there! I’m glad you’ve stopped back by! Today I have some fun cards to share with you. Seeing one of Janis’s projects over at HerPeacefulGarden reminded me that I had done some decoupage cards with napkins a few years ago that I never got around to posting. We’d gone to my cousin’s husband’s family’s house and she showed us all how to apply those pretty napkins like you get at Tuesday Morning to heavy cardstock or tagboard with some lightly watered down glue spread thinly over it. You pull the napkin apart, select the part you want to see, and carefully lay it down, pressing with a brayer, rolling pin or something else, to keep bubbles from forming. Once dry, apply it to a card base and you’re done! Here are the two I made that day:

SO pretty and SO easy! Now I always watch for clearance napkins for cardmaking, but I have a hard time covering them up as they are so pretty. : )

She had a neat sentiment for the insides:

  

“This is more than a card. It’s  HUG with a fold in the middle.’ I love it!

Later, at home I took a set of tea napkins I had and decoupaged them, but when dry, I die cut the napkin base and layered it on a card:

That was a couple of years ago (so don’t feel too bad, Janis!) and it still looks just a if I’d made it yesterday! You can see the inside has just a little bit of chalk around the edge to make it special, too. It’s a lovely any occasion card in cool winter colors.

Materials used (blue tea cup card):

  • PPD Paula Scoletta Teacups Morocco Napkins
  • Spellbinders Resplendent Rectangles
  • Coredinations 110# white cardstock and 65# blue cardstock
  • Colorbok Metallic Paper: Shiny Gold
  • Sookwang Scor-Tape
  • Tombow Xtreme adhesive runner
  • Aleene’s Original Tacky Glue
  • Pebbles, Inc. Pearlescent Chalks Jewel Tones

I am playing along with the following hops and challenges. Be sure to click on them for more information on how you can play along and enter for prizes:

Thanks for stopping by and for leaving your comments!

~D.Ann

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p.s. any ads on this page are placed by WordPress and are not endorsed by me.

 

 

 

 

Hello My Favorite Nuts Acorn Shaker with Gift Card

Hello, again! I’m glad you’ve returned! Today’s card is a shaker with a surprise:

Those of you who follow me, may recall THIS card with a similar concealed surprise. I just love that the Spellbinders Die-of-the-Month acorn can be turned into a gift card holder for these fun acorn-shaped gift cards from that coffee shop that ends in BUCK$!

And the Queen & Company Happy Harvest Fall Kit has those fab acorn shakers to match. This time the shaker is filled with fabulous mini ‘gems.’ Observation: The gorgeous glitter paper in that kit is made so well that the glitter won’t rub off, but that also means it’s not really the best for intricate dies, like the Hello Fall insert of this acorn die. It simply doesn’t want to cut clear through. I recommend using it for non-intricate cutting. The leaf also gets added dimension when you score the veins. The acorns get some realistic color with a dauber and some Distress inks.

What else is behind that acorn?….

This darling family! I love that the two squirrels/chipmunks in the acorn are hugging, with coffee in hand… something that has led to many a spill in this family! And the mugs have kitty paw prints on them and a stuffed kitty is lying on the floor… another signature of our family. The sentiment: ‘You are my favorite nuts’ – ever so apropos! By cutting them out of separate cardstock, I was able to color them with Copics and not have them bleed through to the back of the card. It also allowed me to fussy cut around the arms and put them through the cup handles.

By the way… didja notice that acorns, just like humans, come in all varieties?! : )

Materials used:

  • Spellbinders Small Die of the Month – October 2018
  • Queen & Co.  Happy Harvest Fall Kit (dies, foam, clear plastic, paper, glitter paper and beads)
  • Neat & Tangled My Favorite Nut stamps & dies; Puppy’s Favorite Things stamps
  • Core’dinations cardstock: white, brown, kraft, yellow
  • Recollections card base
  • Tsukineko Memento Desert Sand dye ink
  • Ranger Tim Holtz Distress Inks: Spiced Marmalade, Rusty Hinge, Barn Door, Vintage Photo and Walnut Stain
  • Copic Markers: E13, 23, 25, 29, 31, 55, 71;Y38; YR02, 04, 07, 24; W1
  • Simply Defined Permanent adhesive runner & Stay-Put adhesive glue
  • Misc. ribbon and Starbucks gift card

I am playing along with the following hops and challenges. Be sure to click on them for more information on how you can play along and enter for prizes:

I’m so glad you stopped by! I enjoy reading your encouraging messages and greatly appreciate them!

~D.Ann

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p.s. any ads on this page are placed by WordPress and are not endorsed by me.

Hello Pumpkin Spice Season Zen Cup and Shaker Card

Hello crafty peeps and Hello Pumpkin Spice Season! Ahhh…. PSL (Pumpkin Spice Lattes)… my favorite treat of the year! So much so, that I got a great Black Friday deal on a coffee maker and a bunch of decaf pumpkin spice pods so I can have it year round without having to pay mega BUCK$ at that place that ends in ‘BUCKS’ (in just 6 cups I will have recuperated my investment). But we’re not here to talk economics. The Fall/Winter Coffee Lovers Hop continues…

I received a Happy Harvest Fall Kit from Queen & Company (THANKS!). It includes the stamps, dies, and pre-cut adhesive foam and clear shaker covers, fall papers and cook shaker beads and gems:

I did a little bit of surgery to the stamps with a scissors to get the sentiment I wanted, added the fabulous Zen cup from Stamplorations and a card base and, violá:

To get the dimension on the pumpkins, I added some score lines and then hit them with a bit of darker ink on my finger (too lazy to go get a dauber. lol!). The unused inner piece of adhesive foam was perfect to cut up and use for popping up the sentiment. (I’m thinking I should have popped up the cup, too. 20/20 hindsight!) I ran yellow and orange markers along the edges of the foam that would show so they weren’t stark white.

There is something satisfying about hearing a shaker… It must take us back to our childhood and the comforting sound of a rattle

Supplies used:

  • Queen & Company Happy Harvest Fall Kit (stamps, dies, foam, clear plastic, papers and beads)
  • Stamplorations Zen Coffee Cup Layering Dies – CUTplorations
  • DCWV card base
  • Tsukineko Memento Potter’s Clay dye ink
  • Core’dinations orange cardstock
  • Tombow Xtreme adhesive runner
  • Simply Defined ‘Stay Put’ adhesive glue
  • Misc yellow and orange pens

I am playing along with the following hops and challenges. Be sure to click on them for more information on how you can play along and enter for prizes:

Thank you so much for stopping by and for your encouraging comments! I read and appreciate them all!! Happy hopping!

~D.Ann

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p.s. any ads on this page are placed by WordPress and are not endorsed by me.

 

Coffee Lovers: Thanks a Pool-Sized Latte! Card

Have you ever wondered what it’d be like to wake up one winter morning to have the ground covered in snow and your pool full of hot coffee with cute little foam animals floating all over? ‘Dive in!’ you say?! The current Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge: B is for ? = Big, Bodacious Blue pool full of coffee with foam Bears (and cats)!! That’s where my crazy imagination took me for today’s Coffee Lovers Hop card:

The hand drawn and fussy-cut pool of ‘coffee’ has a liquid look due to glossy accents:

The inside of the card and the back of the envelope continue the theme:

The ‘Thanks a pool-sized latte!’ sentiment was done on the computer. To get the soft singed edges on the foam critters, I used Polychromos pencils and Gamsol.

Supplies:

  • Hero Arts Foam Animals stamp set
  • Tsukineko Memento Desert Sand dye ink
  • Faber-Castell Polychromos colored pencils:Cobalt Green; Light Cobalt Turquoise; Caput Mortuum Violet; Burnt Sienna; Raw Umber
  • Gamblin Artists Gamsol & Q-tips
  • Marvy Le Plume !! pen #1122
  • Ranger Inkssentials Glossy Accents
  • Core’dinations 65# cardstock: white, brown, blue
  • Recollections 110# cardstock (base)
  • Tombow Xtreme adhesive runner

I am playing along with the following hops and challenges. Be sure to click on them for more information on how you can play along and enter for prizes:

Thank you so much for stopping by and for your encouraging comments! I read and appreciate them all!! Happy hopping!

~D.Ann

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p.s. any ads on this page are placed by WordPress and are not endorsed by me.

2018 Fall/Winter Coffee Lovers Blog Hop – Life is BeauTEAful card

Hello and welcome! Time has flown by. I can’t believe it’s already time for the 2018 Fall/Winter Coffee Lovers Blog Hop!

Here is my first card, using fall colors:

The inside and envelope coordinate, too:

Oh, and FYI that sentiment is done by some precision cutting of two different stamps. : )

Materials used:

  • Hero Arts Tea Party Fancy Die
  • Hero Arts To Seize or Not to Seize & Kit-tea stamp sets
  • Spellbinders Floral Ovals dies
  • Your Next Stamp Coffee & Tea Border die
  • Ranger Tim Holtz Distress Inks: Scattered Straw, Spiced Marmalade, Rusty Hinge & Barn Door
  • Tsukineko Memento dye ink: Tuxedo Black
  • Core’dinations cardstock: white & black
  • Scotch tape runner
  • Sookwang Scor-tape double sided adhesive
  • Simply Defined ‘Stay Put’ adhesive glue

I am playing along with the following hops and challenges. Be sure to click on them for more information on how you can play along and enter for prizes:

Hopefully, I’ll see you back real soon with a couple of other caffeinated cards I’ve made, if I can get them typed up. : )

~D.Ann

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Art Impressions Cat Twist Ties Cuddle Cats Group Hug Gate Fold Card and Construction Tips

Yes, another cat card! This one was supposed to have made the Cat Lovers Hop, but the company I’d ordered the stamp set from goofed and sent me the wrong set and the correct one didn’t arrive until after the hop was done. (FYI, it wasn’t Art Impressions, this was before they had this set up on their site) I still needed to make up the card I had planned, so here we are. : )

This stamp set is SO us, I just HAD to get it to make first and foremost for the other special folks in my favorite group hug pack! And, you know me… I’m a sucker for interactive cards…. This one is a doozy!!

This is a gate-fold card, where the two sides fold together and meet or overlap slightly in the middle. Only on this one, they’re tied together by the interlocking cats. If you push in slightly on the edges, you can slide them apart…

See… the orange tiger kitty is sliding away from the group.

Since the current Art Impressions challenge #245 is Washi Tape, I framed the outside with washi tape and lined the inside with a couple of layers of it, too. For those of you who don’t know what washi tape is a thin decorative adhesive tape; much thinner than masking tape… You can see the underlying patterned paper on the front of the card under the orange, and the row of hearts from the washi tape under the pink washi tape on the inside:

For the inside, I fussy cut the cuddly group and put them together exactly behind the ones in the opening so they’re still hugging on the inside when it’s opened and it says: “Does somebody need a cuddle?” Awww!

There was one part of the directions for this set that wasn’t quite clear. I’m going to jot down some tips and pointers both for my pea-sized brain to refer back to as I’m likely to forget next time I put one of these together, and FYI, too.

Tip #1 You want the stamp to hit the edges of the paper. I used a MISTI and put the paper in the corner to stamp it, which means there was a tiny space between the edge of the stamp and the edge of the paper, so it didn’t cut out completely. (also: Don’t ink up the corners in the stamps below the cats… they’re just there to help you place the cats properly… place the corner of the stamp on the corresponding corner of your card.

No big deal… it’s just 4 tiny snips with a scissors, but you COULD avoid it. Just sayin’.

The instructions say to ‘score a 9 1/2″ x 5 1/2″ panel of cardstock at 2 3/4″ and 7:”. Fold like a gatefold card with the left panel on top.’ Well, perhaps you’re smarter than I am, but I wasn’t sure which is the left panel or if it made a difference, so I did it both ways:

As you can see, the longer panel (2 3/4″) puts the finished product in the center of the card. (not to say that an off-center card isn’t cool, too):

Tip #2:  I clearly marked on my package that the wider 2 3/4″ panel is the left panel to TRY to help me remember next time. (We’ll see if it works! lol!) 

Tip #3: don’t crease your scoring until you have the cats stamped and cut out… that gives you a little wiggle room to adjust the folds, if needed.

Tip #4: you can cut off a bit more of the bottom edge if you want some of the foot from the cat in the back showing:

Since the cute stitched edging didn’t show up on my patterned paper, I decided to outline it with a lace heart. None of the heart dies I had on hand were the exact shape of this heart opening, but the Spellbinders Lace Hearts can be cut down and made to fit with a little finagling.

Supplies used:

  • Art Impressions Cat Twist Ties stamps and dies
  • Spellbinders Lace Hearts dies
  • Altenew Halftone Hearts stamps
  • Tsukineko Memento dye inks: Tuxedo Black, Rich Cocoa, Angel Pink, Rose Bud
  • Core’dinations white cardstock
  • Authentique Devoted pad: “Frisky” & “Affection” papers & Devoted Details stickers
  • Copic Markers: C1,3,5,7; E71; YR02, 24
  • Recollections Washi Tapes… various
  • Scotch tape runner
  • Aleene’s Original Tacky Glue

I am playing along with the following challenges, click on any one of them for more information on how you can join the fun:

Next, I hope to finally finish a post I’m working on with some jewelry inspiration for you. You know me… no promises on when I’ll actually finish it, so just stay tuned! : )

Crafty hugs,

~D.Ann

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T-I-double g-Rrr… Wobble Tigger Easel Card! Hoo-hoo!

Welcome to my final post for the 2018 Cat Lovers Hop! Yes, your inboxes will finally get a break from this cat card blitz. >^.^< Wohoo! We’ve surpassed our previous record and have over 200 entries in the hop already this year and there’s still half a day to go!!

This card sums up my feelings about the Cat Lovers Hop pretty well!

For a change, I’m going to start with the back of the card:

Knowing me, I’ll probably write a few funny lines back here like, “I wonder where I put the car keys?” or “I wonder where I left my glasses?” : )

When you open it up, it becomes a stand-up card easel-y (I just HAD to put the pun in!) using that pretty easel base by Anna Griffin, :

To get the leaves filled out with some depth and texture, I die cut the ornate frame and then embossed it into some green cardstock, too. I fussy cut along the outside, cutting straight across the top where the easel die would be attached. Then I affixed the die-cut piece over it and colored it up with chalks.

To hold the card in place, I put some felt cobblestones on the path. Tah-dah!

I was going to color Tigger, but thought it might be easier to just cut out the parts I would need in the corresponding colors and emboss the background for his stripes. It involved a little bit of fussy cutting but looks grrreat (oops! wrong tiger!).

Here he is bobbing around in all his glory on that tail that’s made out of springs… Bouncy, trouncy, flouncy, pouncy, fun, fun, fun, fun, fun!:

Supplies:

  • Character World: Disney, Winnie the Pooh: Tigger die
  • Anna Griffin Ornate Frames & Easy Easel dies
  • Mama Elephant Hooray die
  • Technique Tuesday DIY Say It Hugs
  • Recollections 100# cream cardstock,
  • Core’dinations 65# black, green, pink, orange & yellow cardstock
  • Spellbinders Platinum Pack 3 poster board – gold
  • Simon Says Stamp Action Wobble mini spring
  • Anna Griffin Pretty Prose vellum sticker quotes
  • Pebbles, Inc. Pearlescent Chalks Jewel Tones
  • Creatology embossed felt – cobblestone copper canyon
  • Aleene’s Original Tacky glue

I’m playing along with the following challenges – click on any one of them for more information on how you can join the fun:

Well, that brings the 2018 Cat Lovers Hop to a close – for me, anyway…. this cat’s tuckered out! Don’t forget to get your comments in for all of the giveaways before 11:59pm Sunday, October 27, 2018. For those of you counting the Spellbinders dies used, this completes my projects (Hint: there were non used on this card. lol!) I had someone ask if it was dies or sets, so I’ll clarify: It’s the number of different SETS. You can tell them apart by their names! Please be sure to look at my actual blog posts and not your email versions as I had to update a couple. Sorry.

TTFN (for those who don’t know, that’s Ta-Ta For Now from Tigger (and me))

~D.Ann

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p.s. any ads on this page are placed by WordPress and are not endorsed by me.