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Flashback Friday: St. Peter’s Church in Malacca, Malaysia

Hi there!  Welcome to my very random Friday blog post.  I’m currently on spring break from teaching and I’ve had a chance to revisit some photos that I never got around to editing a while back.  I just can’t bear the thought of having gone on such a fun adventure and not sharing the photos, so thanks for indulging me by checking out this throwback post…

Here’s some background:  In June and July 2012, I had the awesome opportunity to travel to Southeast Asia as a recipient of a Lily Endowment Teacher Creativity Grant.  You can learn more about the photography club I started and the great things I saw happening in Cambodia on the blog with much gratitude for the experiences the grant allowed me to have.  One bonus of my trip was the time to travel to Singapore, visiting my cousin and her family.  While there, I took a quick side trip to Malaysia, visiting the city of Malacca (also known as Melaka).  When I returned from my southeast Asia adventure, my life got a little crazy, as did my photography business.  I continued to teach, travel, and photograph, and found that time got away from me and I didn’t get to edit and share photos from my many adventures.  So I’ve decided to revisit those photos and share some over the next few months.  I hope you enjoy these somewhat outdated photos!

When I got off the bus in Malacca, I started to explore and was immediately drawn to this church, St. Peter’s.  I think that after spending a couple weeks in Cambodia where Christian churches are uncommon, I found this church to be a novelty and enjoyed checking it out.  While the date is somewhat in question, most believe that St. Peter’s was erected in 1710.  I loved capturing the light pouring into the sanctuary and appreciated the more modern installation in front of the church remembering Jesus walking on water.  I hope you enjoy these photos.  More Malaysia photos will be coming soon!

 

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Making Memories in February: 34 Highlights

In keeping with my birthday month tradition, here are some of my favorite memories made throughout February.  This is my seventh go at documenting the fun parts of February (because, let’s face it, it’s a pretty depressing month weather-wise!) as I force others to celebrate along with me.  🙂  The last couple years are here and here on the blog.  As you’ll see, the focus wasn’t on fancy photography, but on capturing the memories.  Thanks to all who helped make it a great month!

 

#1- Watching the Super Bowl with my community group from church  (All fun, except for the ending!)

#1- Watching the Super Bowl with my community group from church (All fun, except for the ending!)

#2- Meeting my great friends' (Jenny and Peter​) baby girl!

#2- Meeting my great friends’ (Jenny and Peter​) baby girl!

#3- Coming out of work to this sky

#3- Coming out of work to this sky

#4- First Friday at Harrison Center for the Arts

#4- First Friday at Harrison Center for the Arts

 

#5- Fun times with my silly nieces and nephew

#5- Fun times with my silly nieces and nephew

#6- A great afternoon spent with my Indy mom, Sheilah  :)

#6- A great afternoon spent with my Indy mom, Sheilah 🙂

#7- Indiana's winter skies

#7- Indiana’s winter skies

#8- Making myself go for a run after a prolonged break.

#8- Making myself go for a run after a prolonged break.

#9- Hosting a small version of our community group at my place!

#9- Hosting a small version of our community group at my place!

#10- Laughs with friends in my apartment and the clean-up afterward.

#10- Laughs with friends in my apartment and the clean-up afterward.

 

#11- Valentine's Day love from my students.

#11- Valentine’s Day love from my students.

#12- Going home to Pennsylvania and getting snowed in with my parents.

#12- Going home to Pennsylvania and getting snowed in with my parents.

#13- Valentine's Day at home-home, an early birthday celebration, yummy food, and a really nice time with my parents

#13- Valentine’s Day at home-home, an early birthday celebration, yummy food, and a really nice time with my parents

#14- Lots of time with my parents being snowed in all weekend over President's Day.

#14- Lots of time with my parents being snowed in all weekend over President’s Day.

#15- Building and enjoying fires in the fireplace with my Dad

#15- Building and enjoying fires in the fireplace with my Dad

 

 

#16- Pennsylvania snow

#16- Pennsylvania snow

 

 

#17- Ash Wednesday service at my church

#17- Ash Wednesday service at my church

 

 

#18- Going to Shoefly with church friends after the Ash Wednesday service (now I feel like we should've looked more somber for this pic...)

#18- Going to Shoefly with church friends after the Ash Wednesday service (now I feel like we should’ve looked more somber for this pic…)

 

#19- Bazbeaux on 2/19 with some really great friends from various parts of my life in Indy

#19- Bazbeaux on 2/19 with some really great friends from various parts of my life in Indy

 

#20- My first time at Ball & Biscuit and a really nice time with some great girls

#20- My first time at Ball & Biscuit and a really nice time with some great girls

 

#21- A whole lot of randomness that made me happy this month: hilarious bday card, a few musicals I watched with my parents, bubble wrap, a balloon from my friend at work, useful gifts like a stapler and sheets, and Oreos.

#21- A whole lot of randomness that made me happy this month: hilarious bday card, a few musicals I watched with my parents, bubble wrap, a balloon from my friend at work, useful gifts like a stapler and sheets, and Oreos.

 

#22- Gifts and cards from students who were so sweet to think of me

#22- Gifts and cards from students who were so sweet to think of me

 

#23- Pics with my respective reading classes (who actually requested a group photo with me since they saw last year's)

#23- Pics with my respective reading classes (who actually requested a group photo with me since they saw last year’s on my desk)

 

#24- Actual birthday day (2/21) and waking up to this winter wonderland

#24- Actual birthday day (2/21) and waking up to this winter wonderland

 

#25- The real birthday and a yummy birthday lunch with my brother's fam at Bub's

#25- The real birthday and a yummy birthday lunch with my brother’s fam at Bub’s

 

#26- Sled riding on my birthday (2/21) with my brother's family.  And yes, I said sled riding.  That's how we say it in Western PA.  :)

#26- Sled riding on my birthday (2/21) with my brother’s family. And yes, I said sled riding. That’s how we say it in Western PA. 🙂

 

#27- Various facetime chats with my sister and her family across the pond throughout February.

#27- Various facetime chats with my sister and her family across the pond throughout February.

 

#28- My niece sent me on a birthday scavenger hunt, the cutest one ever.  :)

#28- My niece sent me on a birthday scavenger hunt, the cutest one ever. 🙂

 

#29- Cheesecake Factory with my friend Kate.

#29- Cheesecake Factory with my friend Kate.

 

#30- A great Sunday at my church and catching up with my friend Jackie visiting from VA.

#30- A great Sunday at my church and catching up with my friend Jackie visiting from VA.

 

#31- Going out with work friends to RAM on 2/24.

#31- Going out with work friends to RAM on 2/24.

 

#32- My first Indy Fuel game

#32- My first Indy Fuel game

 

#33- Catching up with my friend Sara over some delicious Thai food.

#33- Catching up with my friend Sara over some delicious Thai food.

 

#34- Celebrating this lovely lady's birthday a week after mine with some mani/pedi action.  :) Yay for February birthdays and a great month!

#34- Celebrating this lovely lady Kate’s birthday a week after mine with some mani/pedi action. 🙂
Yay for February birthdays and a great month!

 


Honduran Countryside

In my last post, I showed you some sites from the city of Tegucigalpa from my trip in November.  I had the chance to leave the city a couple times to visit a school and coffee plantation in a cloud forest, as well as going to my friends’ wedding at a beautiful place called Casa Blanca in the village of Santa Lucia.  I’ve also included a few personal photos at the end since the focus of my trip was more on people than places and I wanted to share a little bit of the great time I had with some of my favorite people who happen to live in Honduras.  🙂

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Breaking photography rules again and posting a photo taken through a car window. I just loved what a classic Honduran scene it is… had to share.

 

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Coffee plants in a cloud forest outside Tegucigalpa

 

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This is a coffee plantation that supports an orphanage and school.

 

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I believe this is the blackberry section of the ranch I visited.

 

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This is a coffee plantation that supports an orphanage and school.

 

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A soccer field on the ranch for the students and families.

 

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A soccer field associated with the school and orphanage.

 

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I love this view on the drive back toward the city.

 

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I love this view on the drive back toward the city.

 

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My friends Johana and Miguel got married at a lovely place called Casa Blanca in the village of Santa Lucia, outside Tegucigalpa.

 

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My friends Johana and Miguel got married at a lovely place called Casa Blanca in the village of Santa Lucia, outside Tegucigalpa.

 

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My friends Johana and Miguel got married at a lovely place called Casa Blanca in the village of Santa Lucia, outside Tegucigalpa.

 

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My friends Johana and Miguel got married at a lovely place called Casa Blanca in the village of Santa Lucia, outside Tegucigalpa.

 

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My friends Johana and Miguel got married at a lovely place called Casa Blanca in the village of Santa Lucia, outside Tegucigalpa.

 

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My friends Johana and Miguel got married at a lovely place called Casa Blanca in the village of Santa Lucia, outside Tegucigalpa.

 

Here is a photo of a few of my wonderful friends I was able to visit with during my trip.  It was so fun to be present for my friends' wedding!

Here is a photo of a few of my wonderful friends I was able to visit with during my trip. It was so fun to be present for my friends’ wedding!

I can't resist posting a few personal photos here of some of the wonderful people I was able to visit with while I was there.  It's so hard to believe my former first grade students are now in high school!  It was also great to see my friends' expanding families!

I can’t resist posting a few personal photos here of some of the wonderful people I was able to visit with while I was there. It’s so hard to believe my former first grade students are now in high school! It was also great to see my friends’ expanding families!

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One of my favorite views ever- being above the clouds. 🙂

 

 

 


Tegus in November

I spent my Thanksgiving break in Tegucigalpa, Honduras visiting friends and enjoying the country that I consider my second home.  I taught first grade at International School of Tegucigalpa from 2003 to 2006 and love returning every few years to see my friends and former students.  Tegucigalpa often gets dogged as not being a very picturesque city (and also having a really short runway, which makes for very adventurous plane landings), but I have to say that through my time there I’ve learned to love good old “Tegus” and the beauty it possesses.  This post has some of my favorite photos from the time I spent in the city back in November.  I’ll do a separate post soon with some highlights from my time outside the city.  Enjoy!

 

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A beautiful morning in the colonia of Las Hadas

 

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This is the church I attended when I lived there. It was so great to be back.

 

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Tegucigalpa, as seen from the drive down from El Hatillo

 

 

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Tegucigalpa, as seen from the drive down from El Hatillo

 

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Tegucigalpa, as seen from the drive down from El Hatillo

 

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Tegus at night from Lomas de Jacaleapa

 

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A neighborhood park in Lomas de Jacaleapa

 

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Visiting International School, where I taught for three years, and enjoying all the new improvements that have been made there.

 

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The view of local neighborhoods from International School

 

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Visiting International School, where I taught for three years, and enjoying all the new improvements that have been made there.

 

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Visiting International School, where I taught for three years, and enjoying all the new improvements that have been made there.

 

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There’s probably some rule that I’m breaking right now by posting a photo that I took through a car window, but I’m ok with that. It was fun to see new roads and other improvements that have been made to the city since I lived there.

 

 

 

This is taken from the plane about to take off.  The black gate shows where a road used to be... the runway has been lengthened a bit since I first went there in 2003.

This is taken from the plane about to take off. The black gate shows where a road used to be… the runway has been lengthened a bit since I first went there in 2003.

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This is a market near the neighborhood of Satelite that I went to with my friend Ana.

 

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Here is Tegucigalpa from the airplane- the peace statue on the hill and the national stadium at the bottom of the photo. I always try to get a window seat on the right when I fly out because I love this view of the city. 🙂

 

 

 


South Carolina Family Sessions- Sheldon, SC

I had a great privilege a couple weeks ago when I was visiting my brother’s family in South Carolina.  Remember that beautiful plantation I photographed?  I got to do some family photos for my brother’s family and some family friends of theirs at that same plantation a few weeks ago.  Here are some of my favorites!

Here is my new friend with her little girls:

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And here are my newest Honduran friends:

 

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And here we have the family of my brother and sister-in-law (with his eight youngest children.  Unfortunately his two oldest weren’t in town for this photo shoot):

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We love our jumping photos in the Mansell family!

We love our jumping photos in the Mansell family!

 

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This photo was Maddie’s request. 🙂

 

Here is the whole crew together:

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Since this was my family I was shooting, I got in on the fun too!

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Plantation Evening

It’s amazing what I can get done with this blog when I don’t have a full-time job during the day this week!  Here are photos from a couple Sundays ago when I went with my brother’s family to a local plantation in Sheldon, SC.  Needless to say, it was a magical evening.  Enjoy!

 

That dog really wanted to be in my photos.

That dog really wanted to be in my photos.

 

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Can you spot the white horse?

Can you spot the white horse?

 

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My new favorite.

 

This photo feels a big magical to me.

This photo feels a big magical to me.

 

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My nephew with some of the local animals.  :)

My nephew with some of the local animals. 🙂

 

My lovely niece who accompanied me all over the plantation chasing the good light.  :)

My lovely niece who accompanied me all over the plantation chasing the good light. 🙂


Have you ever tried goat milk soap? If not, you should!

My brother, sister-in-law, and eight of their ten kids live on Sheldon Family Farm & Dairy where they manage their many goats, cows, ponies, pigs, bees, chickens, cats, dogs, as well as a goose (or maybe it’s a duck?) and a rabbit.  I think I’m still forgetting something.  Anyway, using the milk from their goats, they’ve created a fantastic line of goat milk soap available here and various stores in the low country of South Carolina.  As I alluded to in a previous post, I had some run-ins with the goats when I tried to capture some photos of their products last week, which is documented in some photos below.  You can check out some of the beauty of the farm in my post about the farm after a rainstorm.  Here are some photos to entice you to check out their great smelling, high-quality (i.e. leave your hands feeling amazingly soft) soaps.  🙂

 

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I thought photos of the goats by the soap would be cute, like this one. 🙂

 

... then this happened.  Goats really will eat anything!

… then this happened. Goats really will eat anything!

This was the best I could do to get the babies to pose for me.  :)

This was the best I could do to get the babies to pose for me. 🙂

 

So many options and scents available!

So many options and scents available!

 

Available in downtown Beaufort at Greenfish.

Available in downtown Beaufort at Greenfish.

 

At the local feed store.

At the local feed store.

 

Also available at the local cider store.

Also available at the local cider store.

 

Special gift wrap also available.

Special gift wrap also available.

 

Some new residents on the front porch.

Some new residents on the front porch.

 

The bees whose wax/honey is used is some of their products.

The bees whose wax/honey is used is some of their products.

 

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If those photos aren't enough to make you want to check out their great soap products, check out the adorable kids who help make them!  :)

If those photos aren’t enough to make you want to check out their great soap products, maybe these adorable kids who help make them will help! 🙂


Sheldon Family Farm & Dairy after a rainstorm

As I mentioned in my trip preview post, I was able to visit my brother’s farm last week  in South Carolina.  It was so fun to have family time and to get a glimpse of the farm in action.  I got some photos after a rainstorm and also tried to capture some of the great things they have going on with their Sheldon Family Farm & Dairy projects, like the bees and goat milk soap.  I absolutely love the soap and can attest to how great the scents are and the great feeling on your skin after using it.  If you’d like to order some for yourself, check out their website.  I’ll post more photos of the soap business in another blog post soon.

Such a great description of my brother's family.

Such a great description of my brother’s family.

Here's my brother, sister-in-law, and their eight youngest children (two others aren't at home anymore).  I'll post more of this photo shoot soon.

Here’s my brother, sister-in-law, and their eight youngest children (two others aren’t at home anymore). I’ll post more of this photo shoot soon.

 

Here are the photos I got after a rainstorm one evening:

 

After a rainstorm

After a rainstorm

 

 

 

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It started raining when I was out there.  Love the glistening raindrops!

It started raining when I was out there. Love the glistening raindrops!

 

Love the chickens through the window.

Love the chickens through the window.

 

How I love evening shadows.

How I love evening shadows.

 

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Evening light is one of my favorite things.

Evening light is one of my favorite things.

 

Rainbow!

Rainbow!

 

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Sneak Peek: My Trip Down South

Hey ya’ll!  (I know, it just doesn’t work coming from me, but I like to try to fit in with local vernacular when I can.)  🙂 I’ve been hanging out with my brother’s family in South Carolina this week.  It’s a beautiful area here in the low country.  Here are a few sneak peeks of a post or two I’ll try to share soon of the great things I’ve seen and photographed.  Enjoy!

Some of my favorite kids with whom I've gotten to spend the week.  They also happen to be my nieces and nephews.  :)

Some of my favorite kids with whom I’ve gotten to spend the week. They also happen to be my nieces and nephews. 🙂

 

A rainbow AND ponies!  Childhood dreams coming true!

A rainbow AND ponies! Childhood dreams coming true!

 

Fun on the farm with Charlotte the goat.

Fun on the farm with Charlotte the goat.

One of my favorite things ever- a tree-lined path.  :)  This was taken at a local plantation near my brother's.

One of my favorite things ever- a tree-lined path. 🙂 I took this at a local plantation near my brother’s.

 

Took a quick trip to Charleston.

Took a quick trip to Charleston to visit my nephew and his wife.

 

Visiting my nephew and his wife's alma mater- The College of Charleston

Visiting my nephew and his wife’s alma mater- The College of Charleston

 

My brother's family makes goat milk soap.  I was taking photos to go on their website and thought it would be cute to try to get some goats in the photos.  Big mistake.  Big.  Huge.  Stay tuned for another blog post detailing that experience.  :)

My brother’s family makes goat milk soap. I was taking photos to go on their website and thought it would be cute to try to get some goats in the photos. Big mistake. Big. Huge. Stay tuned for another blog post detailing that experience. 🙂


Hawaii Revisited- Last Days in Maui

My last post about the Road to Hana wasn’t my final experience in Hawaii and even though it’s taken a long time, I wouldn’t feel ok until I closed up the Hawaii posts with this wrap-up.  🙂  Here are photos from the various places we explored on the last two days Samantha and I spent visiting with Shara and Mike before we returned to the mainland.

 

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Ka’anapali Beach

 

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A view of the island of Lana’i. Shara told me there’s a ferry that you can take over to it. It has one little town and a couple of really nice resorts. It’s owned by Larry Ellison, who owns 98% of the island.

 

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A very scenic walk to Honolua Bay

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A very scenic walk to Honolua Bay

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Honolua Bay

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A very scenic walk at Honolua Bay

 

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A banyan tree in Lahaina

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This was some good stuff! Shara and I enjoying Ululani’s Shave Ice, Front Street, Lahaina

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The waterfront in Lahaina. This photo just screams America to me. 🙂

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Lahaina

 

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Sunset from Lahaina

 

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Lahaina

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Maipoina ‘Oe la’u Beach Park (aka Veterans Park in Kihei)- Hanging out with Bandit and cooking out. A great way to spend our last night on Maui!

 

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The West Maui Mountains

The West Maui Mountains view from Maui Lani Pkwy in Wailuku

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Iao Valley

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Iao Valley

Shara, Samantha, and I enjoying our last day together in Maui.

Shara, Samantha, and I enjoying our last day together in Maui, hiking in Iao Valley before flying out that evening.

 

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Iao Valley