THE MULLIGAN STEW JEWELRY PHOTO ALBUM

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Tuesday, December 23, 2014

The B'Sue Boutiques Design Team for 2015 includes me!!!

I have been so fortunate to be a member of the Design Team for B'Sue Boutiques in 2014.  I am so very, very excited about continuing as part of the Team in 2015.

Whoooo   Hooooo!

Go to BSueboutiques.com and check out the Design Team page.  My picture and bio are there.  I have a bit more gray hair now...and a couple of blue streaks of it on the right.  More about that another time!

Thursday, December 11, 2014

The Glenwood Retirement Community Christmas Bazaar

I had a booth at The Glenwood Retirement Community Christmas Bazaar yesterday.
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The Glenwood show buzzing with shoppers
I really enjoy being one of the participants in this yearly show. It is such a beautiful place and they serve you a gourmet lunch at no cost, AND their is no cost for your table.   This kind of opportunity to sell jewelry is rare.  I am fortunate to be asked back year after year.
I had THREE tables this year!  They were covered with white linen table cloths, and situated on the left as people came in through the entry way.  I met so many lovely people.  Residents as well as other vendors.  The new Event Co-coordinator for Glenwood, Teresa, talked me into teaching a Jewelry class there next January.           
 Now THAT will be a challenge for me!
My Bling Fairy was there with me.  In front of her is a Portfolio/Scrapbook of color photos showing some of my Jewelry Creations, and a few of what I call my "Atta Girl" letters, newspaper articles, etc. 

Here is something I would do differently!  On the Displays of Jewelry Sets I had hand written a large tag with the price, etc.  In the future, I plan to do a better presentation/representation for a set. (The dark rectangle on the left is a mirror...the camera did this!)
Lolita, my display model was an attention draw and a great conversation starter.  She was wearing a matching Necklace and Earring set.  I hung the earring card from one of those over-sized pins once used on plaid skirts back in my younger days.
I used my modified lamp to display multiple necklaces.  I am so glad Mike made me a couple.  I saw them on Pinterest.  What a great idea!
I brought decorative boxes for my stuff.  Wrapping paper, money, tissues, breath mints, band aids, phone charger, and more were right there if I needed them.  No bending under the table this time to get something.

I had fun, met some new people, got some future opportunities, ate good food, and sold some jewelry!  What a great day!


Friday, November 28, 2014

Create using one or more Cameos...what I did with this Challenge.

I really enjoy taking part in the monthly Challenges within the B'Sue Boutiques Creative Group.  Each one is an opportunity for me to challenge myself, to create a design of my own.  Something that is not like anything I have done before.

Before the challenge was announced, I had the above idea set out.  I thought, hey, I will finish this design.

Then I thought....no....it would be pretty...but not a nail biting challenge.  And that is what I wanted to experience.

So......I pulled out a brass stamping of twin snakes that I have never used in a design.  I don't know why I purchased these.  I am not a fan of snakes.  Yet, I did buy several a while back because of the unique design.  I saw possibilities. 


Now what to do with it and one or more cameos?

I laid out this design to look at for a few days.  Yep, I think this may work. 
The coloring was not considered, only the pieces for the design.  I planned to co-ordinate the coloring later.  I chose a butterfly cameo.

After a few more days, I didn't like this anymore.  So...I laid out something different.
Yeah...now I was getting somewhere.  I chose a different cameo for this design.  I thought...she is looking up and these snakes hiding in wait to....well, I decided that was too creepy.  Not working for me.

And then, I changed the design and the cameo that I used.  I was happy with this one!  Put it together, and this is the end result.

I work like this all the time.   Every design I have ever attempted has been a series of transformations before the end result STARES AT ME and I have that "AH HA" moment.


I still don't care much for snakes.  I am, however, pleased with the result of using these snake stampings.

By the way, you can find this stamping here, in raw brass, if you would like to challenge yourself to create with it!

http://www.bsueboutiques.com/product-p/fig01483.htm




Friday, October 10, 2014

The Marietta Marketplace Show

Well, we did it!  Our first outdoor show.  The weather was a roller coaster ride all day.  We had rain, cold, wind gusts (Mike estimates some were at least 40 mph), and hail.  I was reading some of the Facebook posts about the show, and this observation from a vendors daughter is just too cute:  "look Mommy, it's raining rocks".

Regardless of the weather, we had a blast!  Mike came with me as head cashier, and overall support.  I have the best husband in the whole world!

We did a trial setup in our garage a week before the show.  I took pictures so that I would be able to quickly setup the following Saturday.
We still had to print a sign and some business cards.  Some technology problems at our house caused me to wait till the last minute to get those things done.  In fact, the week before the show seemed to be wrought with Murphy's Law in full force.  I have been told to expect that.  Now I know!  There really was nothing I could have done differently to avoid the PC crash, the drying quitting, Mike falling off a ladder (and thankfully ended up with only a few scrapes and bruises), me getting a cold, etc. etc. 

On the morning of the show, we were ready!  Start time was 10:00 am.  We were there and setup by 8:45.  Most everyone was. We had rented a tent. The weather report predicted about a 20% chance of rain, and overcast skies.  The show was scheduled to continue until 5:00 pm.

There was no opportunity to take pictures during the show.  Our iphone was our credit card processor, and we didn't think to bring a separate camera.



What a great place Marietta is!  Here is a view of some of the tents after the show ended with people still shopping.  Such wonderful community support!
Throughout the show, I was busy with customers, and picking up what the wind wanted to blow away.  I met so many nice people!  The community came out to support everyone.  I was able to meet some of the other vendors.  Laura, the event co-ordinator was so nice.  We plan to get together.  I have a standing invitation to as many future shows that I want to do!

And with all the weather challenges, I still made some sales!  Many of us did. 

One of the local television reporters, Haley, stopped by and we chatted a bit.  She purchased a pair of my earrings and said she would wear them on air.  I took that opportunity to discuss a possible venture with the station where I would provide my jewelry for loan during a broadcast, in exchange for having a Mulligan Stew Jewelry credit listed at the end of the show.  She said she would talk to the station producer about it.  Fingers crossed here!

These are some of the pictures after the show end, when all of us started to pack up and go home.  Yeah....the sun started to shine by then.  There's Mike all bundled up.



The "Bling Fairy" was with me.  She is a special gift from a special friend.  I plan to take her to every show in the future.  And I plan to do many more in the future, indoors or out.  Mike said, hey why not.  What a guy!




Sunday, September 7, 2014

Getting Ready

The Market Place show is three plus weeks away.  I am in my workshop every day for at least a few hours.  So far the plan is to have around 150 pieces or so with price ranges starting at $10 and up.  I am working on Necklaces, Earrings, Bracelets and Rings.  And some Necklace sets.

We continue to learn how to use the Credit Card processor that attaches to our Iphone.  I play the customer and Mike is the cashier.  It is apparent that we will never win an Oscar. 

The tent, which we are renting, is a ten by ten foot area.  A pencil sketch of how we are planning our setup is in the early stages.


There are flaps on each side of the tent.  Each vendors area is enough distance from the other that it will be easy for the customers, and for us, to get around.  Ordering a banner and getting some table covers is in the works.  I am hoping that as I root around in my stuff, that I will find something that will work for table covers.

My spare bedroom/sewing room has become the staging area for the jewelry.  The other spare bedroom has umpteen options for displays, etc.  I am trying to keep in mind that I will have to pack and haul all that stuff as I am deciding what to use.

 I saw lamps being used like this for necklaces at another show.  I liked how it works, so we made some.  Finding this type of lampshade is a real challenge.  A good friend gave us one, and we found another out junking last weekend. 

That good friend included a lovely brass and glass lamp with the lampshade.  I was going to use the lamp, until Mike decided he liked it better than the one we had in the living room.  So we switched out lamps.

There is still so much more to do in order to prepare.  I was stressing about it at first.  Now I am just enjoying the process...and remembering to have fun.

I am looking forward to meeting more local people, and any of the other vendors that will visit with me.  Whether I sell anything is secondary.  When I was selling jewelry weekly at my Farmers Market booth, the best part of those Saturdays was enjoying the people who came through. 

Well, back to the workshop for me....

Wednesday, August 27, 2014




I applied for the Fall 2014 Marietta Marketplace show.  The applicants go through a selection process, and the show is limited to approximately 25 to 30 vendors.

In their words: "A curated Market means that we try to find a balance in the types and numbers of vendors in different categories. We will limit the number of vendors in saturated categories (ex. Jewelry) to ensure a better experience for both seller and buyers. In addition, we want to stay true to the goal of the Marketplace–showcasing unique, quality handcrafted goods, art, vintage and food items."

Here is a link to the website.  Each of us are listed in the Vendor tab, which links to our websites.  Pretty cool!
http://mariettamarketplace.com/

Turns out, I am the only one that exclusively sells Jewelry.  I am SO excited! 
The picture above is from one of the previous shows.  I will have a 10 foot by 10 foot area with a white canopy.    I paid to rent the canopy.  It seemed like a good idea to stay uniform, and to keep my expenses lower.  Not sure how many tables I will bring.  Not sure about a whole lot of things at this point of the process.

I have been working on making multiple pieces...necklaces, earrings, bracelets, rings (well, my husband Mike is making the rings).  My goal is to have at least 200 pieces available.  So far, I spend a part of every day making something.  And counting down the days....

Coming up with display items is daunting.  I have pulled just about everything from around the house that is not nailed down.  Not sure if I will use it all...but it is a starting point.  My spare bedroom is the landing place for everything but the tables so far.

Check out the old wig stand.  It belonged to Mike's mom, and he added the facial features.  Too funny!
 Some of the finished pieces.  I am trying to keep the dust off of everything...so freezer bags, store bags, and more are doing the trick so far.  This also keeps the cat from grabbing something and running off with it.  He has a habit of that.  Like a crow, he steals and hides his booty.  I still have an earring that has been missing for over a year....maybe it is under the refrigerator?

More display possibilities and some finished earrings.  Nothing matches...but maybe it does not need to.


Trying to figure out what to use and how to use it for the display is a real challenge.  And because this is the first time that I have done an outdoor show, I have to keep in mind weather issues (like wind, or rain or both!)
 

I purchased and tested a credit card reader for my iphone.  It works pretty good!  My husband came up with a great idea to have a portable charger on site, since there are no electrical hook ups available.  I am sure the phone will definitely need recharged throughout the day.

So....the journey begins. 



Wednesday, June 4, 2014

A question I was asked recently...

I love to create jewelry.  I love to wear jewelry.  I love bling, always have.

I was wearing a necklace recently.  A friend of mine made it.  It is a lovely silver wire wrapped pendant with three beautiful freshwater pearls.  The pendant hangs from a simple silver chain.  It is a favorite piece of mine.

My friend, Janet, loves to make jewelry too.  She is a Jewelry Artist.  She sells her work locally and on ETSY.  She created this beautiful necklace.

I was complimented on the necklace by another friend.  The simple beauty of it.  And how everything I make is so lovely.  I told her that this necklace was designed by a friend of mine.  Before I could say another word, she asked me a question: "you make jewelry, why would you want to wear someone else's?"

That question stumped me at the time.  I said "because I like it"  in one of those responses that comes out like a meek question...ugh.

I've thought a good bit about her question since then. 

And here is what I wish I had said.

I love to create jewelry.  I love to wear jewelry.  I also ADMIRE many of the Jewelry Artisans that I have had the privilege to know, learn from, interact with, and so much more.  They make extraordinary pieces.  I buy their works of art because they are so extraordinary.  I admire the Artists and their creations.

I wish I had said that.

So, Janet, Beanzie, Brenda Sue, Harry and a few more of you....I admire you as Jewelry Artists and love to wear your creations.  And when I am complimented on your pieces, I proudly share that you are the creator of the beautiful piece I am wearing. 

And will now have no trouble explaining why.

Here is the latest piece I have purchased, and can't wait to wear!  A Brenda Sue Lansdowne signed original!



Sunday, June 1, 2014

Something that is hard to put into words.....

My husband and I just returned from spending several weeks in Arizona.  We experienced several Train trips like travelers once enjoyed in the 19th century.  We saw The Verde Canyon and The Grand Canyon....the Red Rocks of Sedona, the Navajo Reservation, the Painted Desert, the old Route 66, and so much more.  We also had the opportunity to share a few days with our son and his wife, who now live on the west coast.  That was the best part!

The entire trip was a multitude of memorable adventures and mishaps.  We met some interesting people and ate some delicious food.  Took hundreds of pictures.  The things one does when on vacation.

I am glad that we went.  I am glad to be home.  I brought home with me something I want to share.  Not pictures, or stories, or souvenirs, or all the other kinds of things shared upon returning from a vacation.

I am not sure what to call it...a memory....an experience....I just know this is different for me.  A light bulb moment...as Oprah Winfrey says.

While at the Grand Canyon...the first time I had ever been there...I experienced something beyond the wonder of the vast natural beauty surrounding me...what I was seeing with my eyes.

I stopped looking...and my thoughts became my eyes...and I was the scenery. 

I had a sense of my being there fully in a conscious way....as if the physical awareness of myself and all of the people and the scenery was not as important.  Now, I did not have an out of body experience....or stuff like that. 

It was more of a sense of awe from within.  A sense of awe about myself.  As if for the first time in my life I truly grasped the significance of  my being "me".  That I was more than "in the moment"...that the moment was "me".....looking at "me"....the seeing of "me".. was as amazing as looking at what surrounds me.

That what surrounded me on the outside was as grand as what is within myself, within each of us.  How unique and ever changing  we are.  How extraordinary we all are.  And... here is the profound part.. we includes "me".

That seeing myself ...not in a physical mirror...in a mental mirror...is a view I have heard about....like the Grand Canyon....yet not experienced....and is just as they say....you have to be there...and you don't want to miss it.

Seeing "me" was not the same as having my thoughts or feelings, or looking in the mirror.

I am struggling with the words here to convey this...the adjectives to describe it, to share it.  It has taken me hours to write this.

Maybe writing about it is some way for me to not lose grasp of it..to give it a tangible existence so that I can hold onto it...or have the experience of it not fade away in memory...as so many experiences sometimes do.

Like seeing the Grand Canyon.....I have seen what I have never seen before.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

YELLOW

It has been a long winter season.  I am weary of the cold.  The lack of vibrant color.  I have been experimenting with Encaustics.  Adding bright, beautiful colors to the wax.  Layering with pretty colored papers.  Longing for color. 

Finally, I can look out the window and see that color IS popping out here and there.  Yellow!  The Forsythia Bush! The Daffodils!  Dandelions!  It is such a warm and welcome color. 

Walking this week, I found yellow in so many places.  The more I saw this bright color, the more I smiled.  I have not smiled much lately.

I felt inspired to create.  As in so many times before, nature provides me with inspiration.

The ideas came.  Beads and metals.  Color combinations.  Maybe this....no, not that.  What?

I decided to create a bracelet.  It had to shout YELLOW.  It had to say "I AM.....I AM Spring, and I AM here.....I AM color, and I AM here". 

And I am so glad.



Friday, March 21, 2014

The Oak Room Art Gallery

This week we traveled to Columbus, Ohio.  I had lived there for over 17 years, and the area is familiar to me.  It remains rich with memories.  While there, we stopped in to visit The Oak Room Gallery, located in the Short North Area.

The rain was coming down in buckets...there were few people in sight.  The upside of that is parking was easy to find.

We arrived early, so we had the Gallery to ourselves.


Adam Kiger's Art is there on display until the end of March.   His Artwork consisted of multiple pieces on canvas using Acrylics and Charcoal.  Except for one piece, they were created with a myriad of shades in black and white.


Seeing Artwork in a photograph truly cannot convey the experience of standing in front of the actual piece.  The size, the subtle lines, the shapes, the details.  The reality of being with the Artwork.  Seeing it and Feeling it.

I took several pictures with my camera.  Not so much as to photograph the Artwork as to capture being there with it.  I stood before each piece, seeing it with my own Artist eyes, feeling it in my own way.   I enjoyed learning about it from the Artists perspective as I read his accompanying written information, including the title, of each piece of Art.

My thoughts and feelings combined to define my own interpretation of each piece.

I thought about how each empty canvas begins horizontally, stretched to fit a wooden frame....then transformed into a vertical work of Art.  How creating is a means to an end....one piece at a time...like stepping stones of yesterday that build a path into tomorrow.  I took this picture.








One of the pieces, titled "Eventually",  drew me back again and again.





It was as if it were the only picture in the Gallery.  I felt loss, love, and hope.  I saw pure innocence.  I had the sense that they were in this together, and so was I. I heard the struggles of communication. I saw how closely entwined are the actions of despair with the actions of affection. 

I reflected on my own experiences that are similar.  That have been similar.  That will be similar.

Websters defines Artwork as ".. a painting, sculpture, photograph, etc., that is created to be beautiful or to express an important idea or feeling : an artistic work.."

To me, Adam's Artwork expresses many ideas and feelings.  And that is what makes it beautiful.


Monday, March 17, 2014

YouTube video?....yeah, I did.

I went to visit an accomplished Artisan, and a dear friend last weekend.  Brenda Sue Lansdowne is the owner of BSueBoutiques.com , a jewelry Artisan, and all around great gal.

You can learn more about this incredible Artist here:

http://www.bsueboutiques.com/dt_brenda_sue_lansdowne.shtml

Among her many accomplishments, she is also known for her outstanding YouTube videos.  Her "how-to" demonstrations, coupled with her down home charm, are favorites for thousands of viewers.  It is not unusual for just one of her videos, of which she has made bunches, to be viewed over 14,000 times.  In fact, her YouTube channel has had over 1.5 MILLION views!

Can you say NERVOUS!

Imagine the joy....and the anxiety...I felt when she asked me to do a video tutorial with her on how to chemically etch metal.  I knew the only way I could do it, and get through it, was with her help. 
Hmmmmm.........here she is...messing around before the video in her Store located in East Palestine, Ohio.  This is where we shot the video.

My husband Mike was there too, but he is camera shy.  He spent his time reading a book and staying out of video camera view....well, except for this quick camera shot.  Is he handsome or what?
Well, the video was made, and we had a good time.  I had to take some fake roses and put them between my teeth for a moment.... and do some other goofy stuff.   I am pleased with the outcome, and so was Brenda Sue.  I hope that many others will now feel confident to try etching metal.  I don't know if I will ever participate in another video.....I had a case of the nerves for days prior!

So here is the YouTube video.  Enjoy!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ghWTlyRHuZo&list=UUZf8o6MNmzVKZf_CnHu0J8w

Sunday, February 23, 2014

A Creative Day with a Friend: Playing with Ice Resin

Last week I visited with my friend Marianne in her craft studio.  What a great place to create Art and a mess at the same time!  That is my definition of a real studio.  We started early in the day.  When I arrived, I was welcomed by Waldo.
We hauled my boxes of stuff upstairs to join her boxes and piles of stuff.  We "ouwwed" and "awwwedd" over it all, and the possibilities!  Here is our work table and some of the good stuff we wanted to use with Resin.
Some of the items we used included Alcohol Inks, Colored Sharpies, Old Book Paper, Specialty Papers, Dried Leaves, Lace, Old dryer sheets, decorative paper bags, wrapping tissue, paper beads and more.  Our resin of choice: Ice Resin.    Marianne had taken a bottom part of an egg shell, peeled the membrane away, then dried the shell.  She brought it for me to use.  What a friend!

Marianne is a true Artist when it comes to using paper to create beautiful collages and decorative effects.  She creates and sells extraordinary and unique Journals at her Book Store here in Marietta, Barking Dog Books and Art, as well as in her ETSY shop BookArtsAndEphemera .

Here she is working on a piece, tearing papers and sponging with resin.
I found that tearing and layering paper was a real challenge for me.  It may sound easy, but it is not.  I have added resin to a single sheet of paper before, but had never layered.  I enjoyed working with a pro! 
Here are some more of the finished pieces, waiting to dry.
We placed our results on a separate table for them to dry.  The table was full by the time we stopped for the day.  I think we used almost two full size bottles of resin!

We decided to take a break later in the afternoon for a quick walk to the nearby Antique Shop.  She had wanted to show me some Chandelier crystals I might be interested in.  Well......we spent hours in there looking and buying.  I did most of the buying!  Time got away from us and the store was closing when we checked out. 

It was after dark, and we both had to get home.  That is one of the great advantages of a creative studio....the mess can wait until tomorrow, next week, whenever.

I have not had a chance to stop by and see how our pieces look now that the resin has dried.  I can't hardly wait!!!!  Marianne told me they are awesome!  

The results are transparent pieces that can be used to create whatever inspires the imagination.  Jewelry?  Journals?  The possibilities are endless!



Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Experimenting...another word for just fooling around

There are times that I like to just fool around with one or more techniques, mediums, whatever....that I use to make Jewelry.  No end result in mind or with the purpose of creating a piece.  Just messing with stuff.  A few weeks ago, I was supposed to get together with a friend for an Ice Resin play day.   We call ourselves the "Resinators".  I got an abscessed tooth, and we had to reschedule.  In the meantime, after I got the tooth issue taken care of, I scattered stuff all over my kitchen to mess around with some Ice Resin.

I made puddle beads (and some puddles!).  I added colors and textures using oil paint, alcohol inks, spices, even some glass frit.  Glass frit is used by glass bead makers and stained glass makers.  It is finely ground glass, in various colors.  And I found out the hard way that some of it is sharp....duh, broken glass.

I painted resin on some different types of paper and some dried leaves, bits and pieces of nature I have found (sticks, shells, butterfly wings).  I made some small bezels by taking some wire, twisting it to make a closed opening...hmmm...does that make sense?  Closed opening?  Oh well, then I hammered the wire.  I laid some small pieces of pretty paper on some wax paper, laid the hammered wire on top, and poured a bit of resin in.  Worked really well. Usually I place a piece of packing tape on the back of an open bezel, then add resin, paper, etc.  I used a mold with various sizes of round cabs, and added some resin with spices.  The pieces fit nicely into some open bezel frames.  I think I will use them for charms.  I covered buttons with resin...those came out pretty cool.  Then I had some old, large shank buttons with indents on them.  I poured some resin in them.  I thought those were pretty cool too.

Anyway, I had a fun time.  I got resin in my hair...talk about worse than bubble gum to get rid of!

My resin mix got hot to the touch and created a clump that went into the trash.  How did that happen?  I put my Part A and Part B bottles in a small bowl with warm water to heat them before I mix a batch.  I got the water too hot, so when I mixed the resin batch...it got really hot to the touch and hardened as fast as I could get it out to the garage.  I thought it might catch fire or something....

Some of the things I discovered (which a bunch of other people probably already know) are:

If I want a resin piece to have a matte finish, I can do that easily by spraying the dried piece with Krylon Matte spray.  Dried resin can be easily cut with a pair of scissors.  A puddle of resin, after sitting for about 4-6 hours, can be cut into strips and rolled into beads.  A piece of scotch tape to hold the rolled bead until it dries completely keeps the bead from unrolling.  Oil paints create beautiful colored resin.  All I needed for a 2 ounce mix was a bit of oil color on the end of a toothpick.  Alcohol inks will mix into the resin, and the resin will cure properly.
Letting the mixed resin sit in the cup for a max of 20 minutes results in a thickening of it, which can be brushed on a dapt filigree to easily fill the openings.  I don't know why I did that...just wanted to see if I could.

That is the fun of fooling around with a medium.  I try stuff just to see if it would work.  I also find out some things that don't work.

My friend and I will be getting together next week to fool around with Resin together.  We both have some ideas about what to try next!

Below are some of the results.  The top left is a Resin Puddle.  I have no idea what to do with that.  The blue pieces are the beads.  Oh, forgot to mention the heart.  I took two metal stampings that I got from B'sueboutiques.com.  An open heart and a closed heart.  I filled the bottom heart with some colored resin, then pressed the top heart on.  The resin domed in the opening and looks like a gemstone.

I am looking forward to next week!











Friday, January 3, 2014

FUN with a Creative Friend!

Getting together with a Creative Friend is so much FUN!  This past weekend I visited with Brenda Sue Lansdowne.  She is a Mixed Media Artist, as well as a Purveyor of Parts via her website, www.bsueboutiques.com.  AND she has a brick and mortar shop here in Ohio.  This is where we had our Brenda Bender!  Several days of creative play with multiple medias.  Check out her latest Blog post "The Best Gift you can give".  She included a picture of me....sigh.

Getting a chance to spend time with a Creative Friend is so enjoyable.  Another Creative Friend of mine is Marianne Monaghan.  We both live here in Marietta, and frequently plan a creative day together.

Fun, laughter, and sharing.  That's what a Creative day is all about.  The hours fly by.  And at the end of the day, there are plenty of memorable "Inspirations, Ideas and Whoopies".


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