Tag: happiness

What to do When you have Itchy Feet…

If you read my blog regularly (thank you!) then you will know how much I love traveling and how I am always dreaming about new places I want to visit and discover.  Apart from fashion, traveling is my favorite thing to do with my time and I have invested so much time and energy into taking big trips and seeing the world.  That’s because traveling inspires me, the discovery and new experiences it brings helps me to grow and change the way I see the world and it makes me feel happy and excited about life.  I honestly feel so lucky for all the incredible places I have visited so far and I can’t wait for all the future trips I plan on taking.

Right now we are starting to research for our summer trip and we are thinking Colombia in South America!  So I have been reading a lot of travel guides and searching travel blogs for tips about top places to visit in Colombia.  All this makes me super excited because Colombia sounds amazing!  And it also brings back beautiful memories of my gap year traveling around South America! But it is also giving me pretty itchy feet and making me yearn for my South American travels right now.

I am lucky because it will only be about ten weeks until we take our summer trip but I know there have been times when there have been no trips on the horizon and my life has been consumed by day to day things and working.  And in times like this its easy to feel like travel is far away and out of sync with your lifestyle.  So today I wanted to share with you my five easy ideas to do when you have itchy feet and how to bring adventure into your life when you can’t travel anywhere.

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Research.

Even if you don’t have any trips coming up in the immediate future always keep yourself open to the idea of traveling by doing research.  Read travel magazines and blogs, save and rip out articles of places you want to visit, make a Pinterest Board of travel ideas or make a travel book of places you dream of visiting.  Keeping you travel dreams in mind increase the chances of you actually making them a reality and gives you things to feel excited for in the future.

Inspire Yourself.

Search for new sources of inspiration by watching travel documentary’s, reading magazines like National Geographic, visiting photography and anthropology exhibitions, reading travel books and journals and watching adventure films.  Following the adventures of others will open you mind and bring you inspiration for exciting things you can to do in the future.

Embrace Your Local Scene.

Find out what exciting things your local scene has to offer and make an effort to visit them in your free time.  If you are really busy dedicate one day a month to having fun and take off for an adventure in your city or local area.  Visit museum or exhibitions, soak up the culture in another near-by town, go hiking or cycling and explore the countryside or check out local festivals and events.  You may be surprised how much your area has to offer and it will give you appreciation of the amazing place you live in.  To find out about whats going on check Trip Advisors of your town, blog posts, facebook events and local magazines and newspapers.

Push Yourself to Try New Things.

Create adventure in your day to day life by pushing yourself to try new things and create new experiences.  Eat out at new restaurants, take some fun classes, try new sports, experiment with cooking exotic foods, visit parts of your city you haven’t seen before.  Including new things in your life keeps you feeling inspired and energized, helps you learn and grow and can even open doors to new opportunities and introduce you to new people.

Get Creative.

Remember and feel gratitude for all the amazing trips you have always taking by finding creative ways to honor them.  Create scrap books or your trips or make a photo wall in your home showing all your favorite trips and experiences.  Honoring your past travels in this way will help to keep them alive and fill your life with positivity and achievement.

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How to Define your Personal Style…

I have always believed developing unique personal style is more important than following the latest trends and buying into the newest craze.  That’s because, for me, personal style is a representation of our identities and lifestyles.  Really great personal style is special, unusual and timeless. It allows the wearers personality to shine through and doesn’t always involve the most high-fashion or on trend pieces.

It is a key area I always help my Image Consultation clients to develop because once you have a clear idea of your personal style you feel more confident in your fashion choices, find shopping for new pieces easier and feel the real you shining through in every look that you wear.  But defining your personal style can be tricky and its sometimes difficult to know where to start.  So today I decided to share with you three tips for rookies who want to define their personal style…

Continue reading “How to Define your Personal Style…”

Positive Vibes – Dream Big

Ever since I was young I have always thought it was important to dream big.  That’s why I took a year out and went traveling around South America with my best friends.  That’s why I did a study exchange to Milan.  That’s why I started my career as a Fashion Stylist.  And its something I always try to share and encourage through this blog.

We only live once so I think it’s really important to make sure our lives are as beautiful and exceptional as possible.  And a great way to do that is to dream big, visualize our ideas and work hard to achieve them!   Even the biggest of dreams is possible to achieve if you believe in yourself, have a plan and keep focused.

When I turned twenty I wrote a list of dreams I wanted to achieve before I turned thirty.  Some of those (like living abroad, starting my own business & traveling Sri Lanka I have done) but I have still got quite a few things I need to tick off.  So for today’s posts I thought I would share with you nine dreams I want to achieve.  I hope it gives you some inspiration and I invite you to share your dreams in the comments below…

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(traveling in colombia)

1 – Climb Mount Kilimanjaro.

Ever since one of my friends did this in her gap year I have been fantasizing about climbing to the summit of this incredible mountain in Africa.  It is the highest freestanding mountain in the world and from the top you can see beautiful views over Tanzania.

2 – Travel around Columbia.

Even though I have visited a lot of South American countries I have never had the chance to go to Columbia yet.  Everything I hear about this place sounds amazing and I dream about spending a summer backpacking here.

3 – Become a Master at Cooking.

This is something I am always working on.  I love trying new foods and I think a great way to learn about a culture is through the food.  Whenever I travel I like to study the food and learn how to cook something special.

4 – Go to Coachella & Glastonbury.

Ok I know this is technically two dreams.  But as a huge lover of both fashion & music I have always wanted to live the bohemian dream at these two festivals.

5 – Work in New York.

New York is one of the most inspirational cities for fashion and in the future I would love to work regularly over there styling Editorials and Photo Shoots.

6 – Visit India.

The colours, the food, the people and the culture.  Everything about India fascinates me and I have always dreamed about making a big trip around this country.

7 – Work with a Women’s Support Charity.

As a girl who is building her own business I believe it is so important girls & women are empowered and have the support they need to achieve their dreams and make a positive impact on the world and I would love to work closely with a charity who advocates this.

8 – Write a Book.

As a Blogger and a passionate writer, having my own book published and being able to inspire others would be incredible.

9 – Shoot an Editorial for Vogue.

As a Fashion Stylist who works with lots of international magazines working with Vogue is the ultimate dream!

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Why Traveling is Good for the Soul

Hello friends,

I hope you are all great after an amazing Easter weekend!

We had a really great time and five amazing days visiting my family in England! Even though I was technically going home, the whole weekend felt like a holiday.  I felt so excited all last week in the build up to going away and it was amazing to have long, fun filled days together without having to think about responsibilities or work.  We went out for lunch, watched the rugby with friends, ate amazing food, caught up with family at our big party on Easter Sunday and had long walks in the countryside.  It was so much fun!

And it reminded me of the main reason I love traveling – because it is good for the soul!  Having a packed out work schedule, a long to-do list and a whole load of boring responsibilities can sometimes mean we get stuck in the day to day stuff and forgot to make the most out of life.  Having an exceptional and beautiful life is something I am always working for and traveling reminds me of how important that is.  So just in case you needed a little reminder or wanted some inspiration to go traveling, here is my list of why traveling is good for the soul…

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(sigiriya – sri lanka – summer 2015)

Traveling opens your mind to new cultures, ideas and ways of thinking.

It allows you to build amazing memories with new people and places.

Traveling gives you the freedom to make the most of every opportunity and fill your day with exciting new experiences.

It can push you out of your comfort zone, boost your confidence and help you discover all the amazing things you can achieve.

With all the incredible experiences and challenges you are faced with, traveling helps you to get prospective and give you inspiration on the kind of life you want to live.

Traveling teaches you to live in the moment, enjoy every experience to its fullest and let go of negativity from the past.

Traveling lets you chill out and take a break from our crazy, fast paced lives…

which can give you the head space you need to reflect on your life and feel inspired to make some positive changes for the future.

And it teaches you to trust your instincts, your ability and your ambitions and goals, which leads to a full and happy life.

I decided pretty early on that I wanted my life to be adventurous, beautiful, exciting and interesting and traveling is one of my favorite ways to do that.  I hope it does the same for you!

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Postive Vibes – Ways to Feel Amazing This January…

January can be a bit of a hit and miss month for me.  I can either feel really incredible about the start of a new year and all the cool things I want to achieve and do, or I can feel really flat that the holiday season is over and I have another three months of boring winter stretching out in front of me.

I am happy to say this year its the first one for me.  2015 was a really exciting year because I took a really big step in my fashion career and started my own business as a freelance stylist and for 2016 I have a long list of things I want to do to build my business.  I can’t wait to get started and I feel really excited about all the possibilities.  But I know this isn’t the case for everyone.  Going back to work, starting a post-holiday diet and trying not to give up on resolutions can get us all a bit down.  So I decided to share with your some ideas to make yourself feel amazing this January.  Whether you have those january blues or not we should all try to make ourselves feel as amazing as possible…

Ways To Feel Amazing this January

Buy a New Shade of Lipstick.  Whenever I need a little pick-me-up I love going to my favourite beauty store and choosing a new lipstick to rock for the month.  It’s a really cheap and easy way to mix things up a bit.  Try and choose a colour you wouldn’t normally go for and see how amazing it makes you feel when you catch yourself in the mirror with your new look.

Organise Some Special Time With your Best Friends.  Plan a coffee date in a cute cafe, go shopping together or stay at home and cook a yummy dinner, it doesn’t matter what you do as long as you are having fun with your best friends.  Whenever I feel down all I have to do is spend five minuets with my friends and I feel amazing again and I love that the special time together will help make our relationship even stronger.

Get Outside.  Even though the weather is rubbish, wrap up warm and head on out to spend some time in nature.  You could go running, on a bike ride or for a winter walk in the park.  Being outside is really relaxing plus it will help you get back into shape after all the holiday treats.

Plan Some Trips.  A great way to feel energised is to have something to look forward to.  Start planning some trips or interesting things you want to do over the year and make them happen.  It could be that dream holiday you always wanted to take or a weekend in a new city.  If you are short on money planning fun days out or weekends visiting friends is a great way to get some fun things into your year without spending too much dollar.

Treat Yourself to Something In the Sales.  Instead of mindlessly shopping for things you don’t need, focus your sale shopping this year and buy yourself something you have always wanted but couldn’t quite afford.  It could be a special piece of jewellery, a designer handbag or that amazing pair of boots.  Investing in something you have always wanted will make you feel great and you will feel so happy every time you wear it.

Start a New Hobby.  Start a new sport, take up yoga, learn a new language or start a crafts class.  Starting a new hobby is a really good way to get yourself out of a rut because you learn something new, meet interesting people and find something to feel passionate about.

Have a Wardrobe Purge and Give Yourself a ReStyle.  A great way to make yourself feel amazing again is to organise your wardrobe and clear everything out.  Start by trying to create new outfits out of the clothes you already have – you will be amazed at how many things you own that your never wear – then clear out any items that no longer fit or look good anymore.  The new outfits your created will make you feel like you have had a make-over and you haven’t even spent any money.

Plan to Catch Up With an Old Friend.  Make a date to catch up with a friend you haven’t seen for a long time.  It’s so nice reconnecting with old friends, hearing what they have been up to and sharing your experiences too.  If you don’t live close enough to meet in person, plan a skype chat with them instead.

Have a Beauty Treatment. Get a manicure with your favourite colour nail polish, go to an amazing brow technician or have a relaxing massage.  Treating yourself you some pamper time will leave you feeling so good about yourself.  And if you can’t afford to splurge on a beauty treatment this month, organise an at home spa with your friends – paint your nails, do face masks and have fun!

Write Down Three Positive Things Each Day.  At the end of everyday, write down three things that happened that made you feel positive or that you are thankful for.  It could be something small like how good your morning coffee was or that you caught the sunset on your way home.  It doesn’t matter as long as it made you smile.  If you do this regularly you will start to notice patterns and it will make you realise you have some much to be happy about already.

What are your tips for feeling amazing this January? I would love to know about them in the comments below….

 

 

Postive Vibes – Resolutions Worth Keeping This 2016…

I love the start of a new year because it signifies a fresh start and I think it offers a great moment to take some time out to reflect on how life has been going, where you are at and what you want to achieve.  I always try to take a few days to think about what I really want out of life in the next twelve months and how I am going to get there.  I have also noticed over the years that if I want to make some positive changes in my life, I have to set the right kind of goals to get there.  Whenever I have set myself the generic ‘lose some weight‘, ‘save some money‘, ‘get more organised‘ resolutions I find I have given up on them before January is out and I am left feeling negative about myself. That’s definitely not a good way to live! I have learnt I need to set myself the right kind of goals to make sure I stick with them and in return that brings more positivity and happiness into my life.  Here is a list of positive resolutions I hope will inspire you to feel great this year…

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Eat more Fruits and Vegetables.  If you try to put yourself on a super strict diet from the first of Jan you are probably going to get sick of it pretty fast and end up binging out of chocolate before the month is out.  Instead of trying to commit yourself to some crazy fad-diet choose to make one small change in your eating habits like eating more fruit and veggies.  The positive effect on your body will mean you start to lose weight naturally and will feel great.

Be Kinder.  The world can be a tough place and you never know what kind of private battle the people you meet may be dealing with secretly.  Taking time out to do one kind thing every day or helping a stranger out when you see they are in need may make a bigger positive impact on their life than you think.  The more nice things we do the more positive energy we spread.

Find a Type of Exercise you Love and Make it a Regular Hobby.  I can’t tell you how many times I have signed up for a gym membership in January only to find by April I am not using it anymore.  I used to feel really bad about that, but then I realised… It’s because I HATE the gym! I find it really boring being stuck on stationary machines and I don’t like working out inside.  I started trying out other sports and realised I love yoga, cycling and swimming.  I now do yoga three times a week and I joined a cycling group to go out at the weekends. Now exercise is something I love and look forward to doing every week because I found what works for me.

Make Quality Time for the People You Love.  With busy schedules and heavy work loads its easy to get caught up in daily routines and forget about doing things that matter.  Try and make time once a week to really dedicate yourself to your loved ones.  Cook a special meal for your boyfriend, plan a fun shopping trip with your girls or organise a special day out with your family.  Our close friends and family are the most important people in our lives and investing time in your relationships will bring you so much positive feelings and love.

Give Yourself a Break.  Even if it’s just at the weekends or one evening a week put some time aside and dedicate it solely to yourself. You could start a new hobby, go for a walk in nature, read a book, take a bubble bath or just chill on the sofa and watch some TV.  It doesn’t matter as long as you are focusing only on yourself and how you are feeling.  Taking a little time out will recharge your batteries and help you de-stress.

Cut Down on your Social Media Usage. This one is a tough one I know, and I’m definitely not saying try to cut it out altogether because that would be impossible. But set yourself a small goal just to use it less. It could be to turn your phone off when you are meeting up with friends so you really dedicate your time to them, to have one hour a day social media free or to stop using your phone after 9PM – whatever works for you. But reduced social media usage increases your actual human interactions and makes your relationships stronger.

Express More Gratitude.  Finally before you start planning all the things in your life you want to change, take stock of what you already have and how lucky you already are.  It’s really easy to compare our lives to others and think everyone is doing better than us.  But the truth is we are all lucky in our own way and we all have so many great things going on.  If you make it a regular habit to look for gratitude you will realise you have more amazing things than your thought.

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Postive Vibes – 17 Things I am Thankful For This Christmas…

Yesterday I flew to England for ten days of Christmas celebrations and fun! I still have some work to catch up on, but all my important projects and big deadlines have finished for the year and I am really looking forward to taking some time out and seeing my family and friends.  As the year winds down and the celebrations begin I always like to take this time to think about the things I am happy about which happened during the year and what cool stuff I want to do in the year to come.  Here is my what I am thankful for this Christmas…

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1. Being at home with my family.  Living in Italy means I don’t get to see my family very much so when I do see them it is always really special.

2. Catching up with friends.  I miss my friends so much when I am not at home and I cannot wait to have a big Christmas meal together, catch up, drink wine and have fun.  They are the best people I know and whenever I am with them I never stop laughing and loving life.

3. Special time with my boyfriend.  Before I left for England me and my boyfriend celebrated an early Christmas dinner together.  We cooked amazing food, drank champagne and opened our presents to each other.  In the run up to Christmas we have both been super busy so it was so nice to have a night all about us.

4. Taking some time out to chill.  I have been working really hard recently and for the next two weeks I am all about chilling, relaxing and making time for me.

5. Christmas food! As much as I love Italian food you can’t beat traditional turkey, stuffing, roast potatoes and mince pies.  My Dad is a chef and he makes the BEST food over Christmas.  I love it!

6. Presents! I know that sounds shallow but presents are one of my favourite thing about Christmas.  Not because I love getting new stuff but because I love buying presents for my friends and family and I love seeing their reactions when they open them.

7. Having a week off in Milan when I get back from England.  For the last two years I have spent the whole of Christmas and New Years in England.  But this year we decided to give ourselves a break from all the visiting and moving around and spend the last week of the holidays at home in Milan.  I am actually really excited to have a whole week at home with nothing planned and I want to do some major sale shopping, try new yummy restaurants and do some sight-seeing in Milan.

8. Cuddles with our new Labrador puppy – she is so cute!

9. Chilling on the sofa watching Christmas films and reading lots of books.

10. Having time to recap and review. 2015 has been amazing for me. I set up my own business as a Stylist, I did some amazing photo shoots and I worked for some really cool magazines. I feel so happy about how everything has started off and I am excited about my plans for 2016.

11. The travel I have done.  This year I visited Amsterdam and Sri Lanka and did a lot of traveling around Italy.  I had so much fun and I am super grateful for the amazing experiences.

12. The cool magazines I have worked for.  Since setting up as a freelance stylist in July I have worked with some really cool international fashion magazines.  I have loved every project I have worked on and I can’t wait to start shooting again after Christmas.

13. The amazing photographers, brands, models and MUA’s I have collaborated with.  I find working with new people really inspirational and this year I have been so lucky to have worked with lots of really cool and talented people.

14. Our home restyling project.  When we moved into the house two years ago we decided we needed to restyle everything.  This year we redecorated the living room and started on the kitchen and it feels amazing coming home to a beautiful house I love.  I am a home interior addict so I can’t wait to start doing more stuff.

15. My girly weekends away.  This year I had a girly weekend at the beach and a weekend away with my friends in a country cottage.  I don’t get to see my friends as much as I would like to so both these holidays were so much fun and super special to me.

16. For finding the most amazing yoga class near my house and discovering how much I LOVE yoga. My teacher is amazing and this year I have learnt so much about meditation, chakras, yoga posing and strength. I never thought of myself as a sporty person before but I go to classes two or three times a week and I love it. My goal for this Christmas is to do yoga every morning to stay healthy and fit.

17. To all you lovely people who follow and read my blog.  Your comments and support is amazing and really motivating and I appreciate you guys coming along for the ride.

And there we have it guys.  I wish you all an amazing week of fun in the run up to Christmas and a magical Christmas Day!

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6 Must Do Things in Torino

Torino (or Turin in English) is located in the north west of Italy in the Piemonte region.  Originally the capital of Italy, it’s an elegant and grand city made up of wide boulevards, sweeping plazas and old marble arcades.  It feels less touristy than Italy’s other major cities and spending a day or two strolling around allows you to observe city life and local Italian customs without the heavy crowds of Rome or Venice.

I have visited Torino twice, both times with visiting friends and family, and found I fell in love instantly with the compelling mix of culture, architecture, restaurants and wine bars.  Located 120km from Milan it’s possible to arrive in under an hour on the fast train so makes the perfect place for a day trip.  Here are my 6 must-do’s while visiting Torino…

Visiting Torino - 6 Must Do Things

1 – Try some Chocolate from a Traditional Chocolate Cafe.

The Piemonte region is famous for growing hazelnuts and a result of this is they make really incredible chocolate! Torino city center is full of traditional chocolate shops and cafes, all of which have inviting counters displaying hand-made chocolate and treats.

2 – Take the Lift Up the Mole Antonelliana & Admire the City Views.

You can’t miss the beautiful and unusual architecture of the Mole Antonelliana towering above the city skyline.  Taking the lift up to the top of the tower allows you to admire the architecture up close and gives you panoramic views of the city below.

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3 – Visit the Film Museum.

Inside the building of the Mole Antonelliana is the Torino Film Museum.  One of the coolest museums I have visited in Italy, the museum features exhibits on cameras through the ages, optical illusions, famous film sets, movie props and 3D cinema.  It feels really crazy and as you walk through the rooms you don’t know what you might find next.

4 – See Mummies at the Egyptian Museum.

Torino also has the largest collection of Egyptian artifacts outside of Cairo housed in the Egyptian Museum.  See ancient Mummies, Sarcophagus, painted tombs, royal jewellery and even a Sphinx!

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5 – Stroll Through the Widest Plaza in Europe.

Torino’s ‘Piazza Vittorio Veneta’ is the widest plaza in Europe, with wide boulevards stretching between marble archways, elegant shop fronts and open air cafes.  The plaza finishes by opening up onto the banks of the River Po.  Take a walk around the plaza and finish up on the river where you can walk across the bridge and enter the beautiful church on the other side.

6 – Have Dinner in a Local Trattoria.

The Piemonte region is famous for being one of the best regions in Italy for food.  So make sure to eat in a little ‘trattoria’ – a simple style restaurant serving up local dishes from the region.  These places are frequented by locals and have menus based on the season so you are sure to try some authentic Italian cuisine.

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Beating September Blues

As I sit writing this post I am snuggled up on my sofa with a hot cup of tea because it is TORRENTIALLY raining outside.  Its looking really cold and really grey and really wet.  Living in Italy means I have not seen weather like this for a while and I am taking its presence as a sign autumn is definitely on its way.

I actually really like the start of Autumn because I think it brings with it a sense of renewing and restarting after a long summer break – I still get that ‘back to school’ feeling – and I love seeing the autumn colours in the trees. (See my Ciao Milano post for 20 reasons I am happy for autumn in milan.)  But I admit, as the evenings start to creep in earlier and the weather starts to turn bad I do sometimes get a pang for summer to return.

If you feel the same then here is my list of fun ways to beat September Blues…

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1) Have a hot bubble bath… 

Light candles, bring a good book and turn off your phone for some relax-time.  I love using bath bombs and bubbles bars from Lush.  They smell amazing and always make me feel really pampered.

2) Start shopping for new Winter clothes…

Nothing makes me more excited for a changing season than shopping for new clothes to wear.  Autumn time is great for fashion because it brings so many options; think soft layering, chunky scarves, cosy knits… Plus winter always calls for new shoes, coats, boots and sweaters.  Have fun and experiment with some new looks.

3) Go for a long walk and see the autumn leaves…

Wrap up warm, meet some girlfriends and go for a long walk to see the pretty colours of the autumn leaves.  I admit I am still a child at heart and I love walking through big piles of crunchy leaves – I’m sure you still do too…

4) Go back to school…

Use the dark evenings as a change to sign up for evening classes.  You could learn a language, do a beauty course, start crafting or try yoga… Learning new stuff is energizing and fun and its also a really great way to make new friends.

5) Get reading…

When it is cold and grey outside nothing is better than snuggling up on the sofa with a cup of tea and a good book.

6) Plan something exciting to look forward to…

Christmas feels like a really long time away so plan something fun to do in October or November so you have something to look forward to. I have a weekend staying in a county cottage booked with my girlfriends in October and I cannot wait! Other ideas could be a mini-city break, a spa weekend, a shopping trip or even a fun dinner party at home.

7) Have a girls sleepover…

Fill your living room with blankets and pillows, put on your favorite films and eat a ton of chocolate.  It doesn’t matter what the weather looks like outside when you are spending time with your best friends.

Have any suggestions of your own, please share them in the comment below…

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