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MLAN613 Posts: 24,359
4/5/20 8:11 A

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Arch, true...a lot of gas station restrooms are less than desireable. Thankfully, I have some nice ones in my area.

And JERF, believe you me, I have made use of many a tree in my day. I even know where I can sneak away along my routes if needed. This is vital because one of my routes is along a busier highway. I don't care to moon anyone and potentially cause an accident! LOL

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4/2/20 9:59 A



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@MLAN613

Some of the gas stations in MA have closed their bathrooms to the public.

which isn't really all that bad a thing given the lack of cleanliness. LOL

But it goes back to my point. Most public restrooms have been closed because there aren't enough cleaners or cleaning products to ensure that they are probably sanitized.

Not only has it been a challenge to find TP, you can't find Lysol wipes. I went on Amazon to find some. Lysol or alcohol wipes can only be purchased online by hospitals or medical facilities while this pandemic is ongoing.

JUSTEATREALFOOD's Photo JUSTEATREALFOOD Posts: 3,185
4/2/20 7:32 A

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“Thankfully, there are trees in a pinch.”

Yep, I’d rather pee in the bushes than use a public restroom any day of the week!



Edited by: JUSTEATREALFOOD at: 4/2/2020 (07:33)
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I eat mostly vegetables, fats, meats, some fruit and dark chocolate. Unprocessed and preservative free food. And it's changed my life!

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MLAN613 Posts: 24,359
4/2/20 6:33 A

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I have noticed too that the portable and public toilets that usually start popping up around this time because Minnesota is thawing out aren't there. I took a 4 mile walk the other day and thought about what I would do if I needed to go. There was a grocery store and gas station. One of the trails I use doesn't go by any facilities and it is one of the places with a closed toilet in a park. Thankfully, there are trees in a pinch.

I am also thankful that a lot of the things I eat are of better quality. For example, I usually buy Old Home Natural Peanut butter. It's peanuts and salt and found in the refrigerated section. Most people prefer the shelf stable stuff loaded with sugar and other things. Win for me.

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4/1/20 1:17 P



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@SLIMMERKIWI

You bring up a very good point.

I know where every public bathroom is on my various walking routes. Since the shelter in place, most if not all have been closed. I suspect it's because there isn't enough staff at each location to make sure they are properly cleaned and sanitized. and most of the public bathrooms I would use would be in places like department stores, the library, cafe or restaurants. They're all closed.

The only public bathroom that I can use would be in large grocery stores. It means if I go out for a walk, I have to be careful how much I drink or be near a grocery store that's open.

When life is back to near normal, I wont take a public bathroom for granted.

MLAN613 Posts: 24,359
4/1/20 6:01 A

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I am glad to hear the NZ government backed off a bit.

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4/1/20 5:46 A



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The Government has relented on the Petrol Stations selling food to the Truck drivers and allowing them to use their loos.
The reason for so many business closures is that there are less people going to them so therefore less chance for spreading it. Having said that, they have allowed some businesses to open, but only for online sales for heating/refrigeration/laundry and essentials in the kitchen like microwave or toaster or phones/computers/printers re home schooling or working from home. . We are in Autumn and the cooler weather will soon be starting. Some people down south are needing them at times already.

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MANDIETERRIER1's Photo MANDIETERRIER1 Posts: 18,061
4/1/20 12:58 A

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I think our drive through restaurants are allowed to remain open. To feed the truck drivers and long distance delivery services.

Our grocery store shut down their hot food and salad bar. Which I think was a smart decision.

No one is perfect. Even if they think they are.


MLAN613 Posts: 24,359
3/29/20 8:33 A

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Kris, it's too bad the restaurant and bakery industry had to completely shut down in NZ. I hope they make it. Even with the curbside, carryout, drive-thru and delivery being available here in Minnesota, many will not survive.

I have an acquaintance who opened a biscuit bakery last fall. He had to lay off most of his staff a couple of weeks ago. It broke him so badly. He is doing what he can to support the remaining 2 bakers and keep his dream alive through this time.

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3/29/20 3:15 A



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In NZ, no restaurants, cafes, bakeries, butcheries or drive-thru are allowed to be open during the lock-down.

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TRUEPEACENIK's Photo TRUEPEACENIK Posts: 1,310
3/28/20 10:55 P

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I struggle with the desire to help out a local restaurant, or save the bucks.

I am craving pizza....

Edited by: TRUEPEACENIK at: 3/28/2020 (22:57)
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LUANN_IN_PA Posts: 31,508
3/26/20 2:33 P

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No surprise there, as the Cheesecake Factory was in serious financial trouble earlier this year.
The company took on significant risk paying over $400 million to acquire 2 new brands, depleting its cash reserves and taking on a sizable debt burden.
It was in trouble well before coronavirus and had already closed several stores.

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3/26/20 12:58 P



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@LUANN_IN_PA

This was posted in the news this morning. The Cheesecake Factory has announced that it wont pay April rent. If a major restaurant chain like the Cheesecake Factory is announcing that they wont pay April rent, what about every small owned restaurant or business ? The implications that the Cheesecake Factory can't make the rent are staggering if not outright frightening.

finance.yahoo.com/news/cheesecake-factory-
wont-pay-april-151959069.html


LUANN_IN_PA Posts: 31,508
3/26/20 12:50 P

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"I have a feeling many small businesses will not survive."
I agree.

"We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand."
~ Randy Pausch

"There's a difference between interest and commitment. When you're interested in doing something, you do it only when circumstance permit. When you're committed to something, you accept no excuses, only results."
~ Art Turock

"We have a saying in Tibet: If a problem can be solved, there is no use worrying about it. If it can't be solved, worrying will do no good."
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MLAN613 Posts: 24,359
3/26/20 10:55 A

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@LUANN_IN_PA What I was getting at is not much has changed from the previous couple of weeks. Life has been stopped since 03/13/2019 for us in Minnesota. I have a feeling many small businesses will not survive.

Edited by: MLAN613 at: 3/26/2020 (10:56)
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LUANN_IN_PA Posts: 31,508
3/26/20 10:48 A

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"Basically, not much has changed."

Closed: gyms, libraries, state stores, bars, beauty salons/barber shops, spas, most hotels, most restaurants, pet grooming places, private clubs, theaters, car dealerships (service only), malls, clothing stores, phone stores, mattress stores, etc.

No eat-in restaurants (take out/delivery only for those who decided to not close entirely), no routine doctor/dentist visits, no church services or activities, no concerts.

A LOT is different where I live!

"We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand."
~ Randy Pausch

"There's a difference between interest and commitment. When you're interested in doing something, you do it only when circumstance permit. When you're committed to something, you accept no excuses, only results."
~ Art Turock

"We have a saying in Tibet: If a problem can be solved, there is no use worrying about it. If it can't be solved, worrying will do no good."
~ 7 Years in T
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3/26/20 10:07 A



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I am still astonished that a liquor store is considered an essential business. I guess people must be using all that alcohol to make hand sanitizer. LOL



MLAN613 Posts: 24,359
3/26/20 6:12 A

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Minnesota's shelter in place starts Friday at 11:59 PM. Essential services, including liquor stores, are open. Exercise outside is allowed as long as social distancing is maintained. Basically, not much has changed.

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3/26/20 6:11 A



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New Zealand has closed the Liquor Outlets during this time, EXCEPT for a few places where they aren't allowed to sell alcohol in the supermarket.
Supermarkets have only been able to sell wine or beer - they've never been allowed to sell fortified wines and spirits.

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LUANN_IN_PA Posts: 31,508
3/25/20 5:26 P

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Yep, MA is like the rest of the states, but we cannot do that in PA.
Not even Trader Joe's and Costco can sell alcohol here.

"We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand."
~ Randy Pausch

"There's a difference between interest and commitment. When you're interested in doing something, you do it only when circumstance permit. When you're committed to something, you accept no excuses, only results."
~ Art Turock

"We have a saying in Tibet: If a problem can be solved, there is no use worrying about it. If it can't be solved, worrying will do no good."
~ 7 Years in T
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3/25/20 1:46 P



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@LUANN_IN_PA

In MA, liquor stores are not the only place you can buy wine, beer or spirits. If you have a state license and abide by the last of the Blue Law policies, grocery stores can sell wine, beer or spirits.

There are three Trader Joe's in MA that are allowed to sell booze at restricted times aka after noon and supposedly, not on Sundays. But that old Blue Law was bent years ago.

Even if MA were to shut down the liquor stores, people could go to certain grocery stores or load up on the two buck chuck at Trader Joe's. On top of that some of the bars that were shutdown because of shelter in place have asked the state if they can sell bottles of liquor as take out. not sure where that will go.


TRUEPEACENIK's Photo TRUEPEACENIK Posts: 1,310
3/25/20 1:33 P

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Mayor Michael Hancock, Denver, ordered all breweries, liquor stores and recreational dispensaries closed on March 23. The closure date was to be today, March 25, coinciding with a city wide shelter in place.
Staggering levels of crowds rushed liquor stores and pot stores.

Hancock reversed the ruling. As long as “extreme social distancing” was practiced, both types of stores could stay open.

We now allow delivery of marijuana, officially becoming a better deal than the Dude you bought from pre legalization.
Restaurants can put alcoholic drinks in to go cups.

The breweries? Idled. One, at least, has switched to making hand sanitizer.



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LUANN_IN_PA Posts: 31,508
3/25/20 1:03 P

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"The one thing that worries me about hard-core alcoholics, is that it is actually very dangerous for them to suddenly stop drinking alcohol. They need to come off slowly, and often with medication to help. With no money to buy alcohol, or not being able to get out to buy it, it is going to be a lot of very sick people but only sick 'indirectly' from the virus."

PA still operates on the antiquated state store system, and those all closed down the evening of March 17th.
So unless the alcoholics stocked up, or unless they are willing/able to drive to neighboring states, they ARE all going to go cold turkey... or change to beer. You can still get beer.

"We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand."
~ Randy Pausch

"There's a difference between interest and commitment. When you're interested in doing something, you do it only when circumstance permit. When you're committed to something, you accept no excuses, only results."
~ Art Turock

"We have a saying in Tibet: If a problem can be solved, there is no use worrying about it. If it can't be solved, worrying will do no good."
~ 7 Years in T
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3/25/20 12:50 P

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I'm extremely fortunate to have a state job at an agency that needs to remain open (I teach in a residential treatment facility for adolescents.) At first I thought we would be closed (all the public schools in my state closed effective 3/16), and was a little disappointed to find out that I would NOT be getting an early spring vacation. If I had, I'd like to believe that I would have used the time productively: working out, riding, gardening, renovating my house, etc.

I think you have a very valid concern, though, about individuals who engage in addictive behaviors because those do tend to be behaviors of isolation. I think these addictions and disorders will be compounded as a result of the coronavirus epidemic, and may well result in more deaths than usual. Add to that stress-induced heart attacks and strokes -- I'm not sure how many lives we're really saving through these mandatory "stay-at-home" orders and self-quarantines.

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JUSTEATREALFOOD's Photo JUSTEATREALFOOD Posts: 3,185
3/25/20 11:03 A

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I’m feeling bad for my local businesses. I hope they will be able to make it through this. Some people online are encouraging people to order takeout from the restaurants but I’m having a hard time getting my head around doing that as we rarely eat out normally because it’s too expensive and now that we are down to one income it doesn’t make financial sense to do it now.

My house has a spending freeze on right now to hold onto the money we have to pay mortgage, hydro, water, gas, car loans and groceries as we don’t know how long this will last.

Luckily we don’t have any expensive habits. Don’t drink, smoke, gamble etc. So that’s good.

JERF - Just Eat Real Food

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I eat mostly vegetables, fats, meats, some fruit and dark chocolate. Unprocessed and preservative free food. And it's changed my life!

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3/25/20 9:21 A



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a cousin of mine is a therapist. He's using Facetime to work with clients who are in the most need of help.

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3/25/20 6:28 A



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A lot of Therapists are ramping up the online help. There will be a huge demand for it over the next wee while.

Kris

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MLAN613 Posts: 24,359
3/25/20 5:58 A

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I did see that an acquaintance of mine had an online AA meeting. That was good news.

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3/24/20 8:17 A



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The one thing that worries me about hard-core alcoholics, is that it is actually very dangerous for them to suddenly stop drinking alcohol. They need to come off slowly, and often with medication to help. With no money to buy alcohol, or not being able to get out to buy it, it is going to be a lot of very sick people but only sick 'indirectly' from the virus.

My late hubby was a very heavy smoker, even tho' he had a number of heart attacks that his Cardiologist told him was only because of his smoking. He still continued to smoke. At one stage he was smoking 3x 50g packs of tobacco a week, and he would consume about 24 Litres (6.35 US Gallons) of wine per week. He would do little cash jobs to pay for it - we were very low income when we work working, and after just him working, and then when his alcoholism and OCD got really bad, we were lower income again as Beneficiaries. When he had no money at all, he wold barrel up to strangers and ask them for a cigarette, or even scrounge their butts emoticon
Kris

Edited by: SLIMMERKIWI at: 3/24/2020 (08:43)
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3/23/20 9:39 A



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Oh, and BTW, one expensive habit I've nixed is buying macadamia nuts.

Last year, I bought a 24 oz bag for $27 and change. that lasted me a few weeks. Out of curiosity, I went on amazon to see what that same bag cost today. $35 ! YIKES !

So, no macadamia nuts for me for a while.

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3/23/20 9:33 A



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@TRUEPEACENIK

Another friend of mine was diagnosed with non alcoholic fatty liver disease in January. His blood work (high cholesterol, tris and low HDL) has always been right on the border. So, for the past couple of months, he has made an effort to eat better by including more servings of fresh fruit and veggies. Whenever he and the family went out to eat (another work in progress), he would order a small sirloin with a side of broccoli or rice instead of French fries. He stopped eating chicken parm subs for lunch.

Flash forward two months and he gets his blood work done. He's back to mostly normal. So, with the coronavirus restrictions in place, what does he order for take out ? a chicken parm dinner. Head smack.

Long story short, I was going to send him a picture of what a NAFLD liver looked like. but I guess the pull of chicken parm was too strong to resist. LOLLLLL

I do agree with others.

I do believe that with the restrictions to our daily lives because of the coronavirus, more people will be turning to comfort food, smoking or drinking. All the restaurants are shut down and can only do take out. And yet, liquor stores are almost all open and with lines out the door.

As a side note, I am seeing fewer people vape. however, I have notice more people smoking. that could be a result of not being able to buy vaping products once states imposed restrictions because of the number of fatalities involved with vaping.


MLAN613 Posts: 24,359
3/23/20 6:06 A

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I do drink strong, fully caffeinated coffee daily. Do I consider myself an addict? No and I have gone without during road trips to see friends who don't have coffee, so I can manage lol. Thus said, I do have a good stash of coffee and food, too.

One could hope that the financial impact of this situation would cause people to stop smoking but it may be a stress release for some, too.

I hope the people who are alcoholics or those who struggle with eating disorders have access to the help they need. I hope AA meetings are available virtually. I hope the appropriate mental health services are available telephonically too. These are honestly and potentially life and death matters during a stressful situation.

Edited by: MLAN613 at: 3/23/2020 (06:32)
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3/23/20 1:00 A

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I think most addictions tend to get worse during stressful times. All the smokers I know seem to be smoking way more than usual lately...

Regarding food addiction, I've been seeing a lot of articles about how people with eating disorders have a high risk of relapsing or worsening during the pandemic.

I think a lot of people are struggling with that right now and I wish there was more information about it but well, I found this article yesterday and I think it offers some good advice for those struggling with any type of eating disorder... Actually, I think some of the advice applies to people trying to lose weight in general, not just those with eating disorders... soo... here it is, in case anyone needs to read it emoticon

huffpost.com/entry/eating-disorder-recover
y-coronavirus-advice_l_5e743b0ec5b6f5b
7c541755d




- Danny :)
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3/22/20 11:15 P

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@ARCHIMEDESII
So much kinder than my supply of photos of blackened lungs. Lol.
I have a friend who will not quit until she is the age her dad was when he quit. Stupidest marker ever. Her own kid begs her to stop, for the last seven years. No luck. All she has are excuses.

@SHERYLDS
Especially breathing impacts.

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3/22/20 8:16 P

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@TRUEPEACENIK
"Will stress make addictions worse?"

IMO ... heck yeah. When people are scared of getting sick, not being able to get tested if they don't feel well, overwhelmed by not knowing how they are going to survive money wise, stuck in their homes, and the great unknown of how long this is going to last...they fall back on old habits for comfort. Even if this pandemic dies down in a few months, it will take a lot longer for the economy to start back up. Unfortunately, many of those 'addictions' lower ones immunity and increase the chances of getting the virus.

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3/22/20 2:43 P



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@TRUEPEACENIK

Before anyone had ever heard of COVID19, I was trying to help convince a co-worker to stop smoking. So, to do that, I showed her some basic math. I asked her how many packs she smoked per week. She was around 3-4 packs per week. I used 4 packs. MA does have a high cigarette tax. On average, a pack is about $11. $44 a week time 52 weeks comes out to $2,288. That's just for 4 packs. If my friend smoked a pack a day, that's $77 for the week or $4004 for the year.

And people don't even think twice about paying it.

Then again, you should ask people if they'll give up their daily Starbucks coffee/latte to save money. A typical Starbuck's drink averages around $5-$6. Some people may limit their coffee expenditure to a once in a while treat.

I was cheap. I drank the company machine coffee. LOL

TRUEPEACENIK's Photo TRUEPEACENIK Posts: 1,310
3/22/20 12:18 P

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As I look at another income-less week, and see the article on quitting smoking, I wonder if people with money and health draining habits will take this time to overcome those habits and addictions.

I do not smoke. Never have. Anything at all. (Surprising given my hippie self and decades of being around folk, jazz and rock musicians, and living in a legal recreational state. I’ve even worked trimming season in Northern California, but no, I never smoked pot)
Most of my family sees smoking as something of a moral failing. I see it as expensive, health degrading and a nuisance for people nearby.

In an economic crunch and during an international pandemic that is respiratory in nature, do you think people will stop smoking?
What about alcoholics?
Or the food addicted?
Or to point at me, the caffeine addicted (soda here)?

Will stress make addictions worse?
Will time away from offices allow people to quit?

Wake up every day knowing you make the decision to begin your journey anew.

This choice in this moment defines now.
What is your now?

Making do or saving every cent you can? Join us on team LIVING LIFE ON A SHOESTRING teams.sparkpeople.com/LLife


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