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Michael Crichton – The Andromeda Evolution

I received the new sci-fi novel The Andromeda Evolution, perfect for Michael Crichton fans everywhere, to review and share my thoughts with you guys. This post contains affiliate links.

Father’s Day is almost here. How many of you guys kinda… forgot? With all the craziness in the world right now, and with life off of it’s regular schedule – I barely realized it was June, let alone that Father’s Day was almost here! I have a really rad gift idea for you though – keep reading to check it out…

Who remembers the novel, The Andromeda Strain? Here’s a quick reminder: First published fifty years ago, The Andromeda Strain redefined the science fiction genre, and immediately established Michael Crichton as one of the brightest voices in contemporary literature worldwide. 

“A military space probe, sent to collect extraterrestrial organisms from the upper atmosphere, is knocked out of orbit and falls to Earth. Twelve miles from the crash site, an inexplicable and deadly phenomenon terrorizes the residents of a sleepy desert town in Arizona, leaving only two survivors: an elderly addict and a newborn infant.

The United States government is forced to mobilize Project Wildfire, a top-secret emergency response protocol. Four of the nation’s most elite biophysicists are summoned to a clandestine underground laboratory located five stories beneath the desert and fitted with an automated atomic self-destruction mechanism for cases of irremediable contamination. Under conditions of total news blackout and the utmost urgency, the scientists race to understand and contain the crisis. But the Andromeda Strain proves different from anything they’ve ever seen—and what they don’t know could not only hurt them, but lead to unprecedented worldwide catastrophe.”

I’m SUCH a junkie for science fiction, disasters, aliens, saving the world. So, The Andromeda Strain is a book that I have read many, many times. So good, you guys. And now, there’s a new chapter to the story…. The Andromeda Revolution. Here’s a bit about this new novel:

The Andromeda Evolution picks up the original story decades after The Andromeda Strain almost ended the human race. In the ensuing decades, research on the microparticle continued. And the world thought it was safe…

Deep inside Fairchild Air Force Base, Project Eternal Vigilance has continued to watch and wait for the Andromeda Strain to reappear. On the verge of being shut down, the project has registered no activity—until now. A Brazilian terrain-mapping drone has detected a bizarre anomaly of otherworldly matter in the middle of the jungle, and, worse yet, the tell-tale chemical signature of the deadly microparticle.

With this shocking discovery, the next-generation Project Wildfire is activated, and a diverse team of experts hailing from all over the world is dispatched to investigate the potentially apocalyptic threat.

But the microbe is growing—evolving. And if the Wildfire team can’t reach the quarantine zone, enter the anomaly, and figure out how to stop it, this new Andromeda Evolution will annihilate all life as we know it.

I’m only halfway through this book – stay tuned, I’ll update this with a full review shortly. This book feels super relevant to the state of affairs in this country today, as it seems like every day the news is filled with chaos, and major threats to life as we know it. There are some really great lines and quotes that you might have seen already, if you follow me on Instagram?

 

 
 
 
 
 
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I’ve shared a few peeks at the book as I read it, in my Instagram Stories. If you’re not following me – do so here, and follow along as I finish the book. Or, pin this post to Pinterest, or bookmark it, to come back in a few days to see my full review. But I can tell you – so far, this is almost impossible to put down. It’s one of the best books I’ve read this year – and I have a read a LOT of books, you guys, lol. #quarantinelife ;)

“The Andromeda Evolution” is a great gift for any dads in your life – or grandads, or even yourself. Available in paperback as of May 19th via HarperCollins, “the New York Times’ bestseller uncovers the next exciting chapter of Michael Crichton’s game-changing novel.” The book can be easily purchased on Amazon.com or through a local bookstore as many are open for customer orders. And, you can follow Michael Crichton’s Facebook fan page too, for more cool stuff.

I’m here in Yakima, Washington, where we are still in Phase 1 of lockdown, because we are the fastest-growing coronavirus outbreak on the west coast. Big yikes, and super scary for an immune compromised, chronically ill girl like me. So, no stores to shop in, or local bookstores to browse – but these books are both available on Amazon, which is where I do the majority of my shopping anyway. 

And – right now, both are part of the Amazon sale, Get 3 for the price of 2, meaning, pick three books, movies, or games in this section, and you’ll get the lowest priced one for free! You can find The Andromeda Strain, The Andromeda Evolution, and tons more cool stuff in the promo.

You can order this set as a Father’s Day gift – if you order today it will be here by Friday – and then you still get to choose another book for yourself too if you use this promo. Sweet, right?

Written by Daniel H. Wilson, “The Andromeda Evolution” is the perfect gift for any Sci-Fi thriller fans! It’s the first book sequel ever authorized on behalf of Crichton’s estate, which is a big deal – and coincides with the anniversary of the bestselling novel he first introduced to the world in 1969, “The Andromeda Strain.” It’s a wonderful continuation of the Crichton legacy as mastermind behind some of the world’s greatest pop culture masterpieces such as “Jurassic Park,” “The Lost World: Jurassic Park,” WestworldERComa and Twister, among others. Check out a few more Crichton faves here on Amazon too:


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1, 3, 5, 7, 9… I Cannot Even Today.

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Hello, Tuesday? I’d like to speak to your manager.

First of all, the weather. It’s like… moist. Humid. Gross. I’m not a fan. At all. This morning was cold and sweatpants {my cool new ones from Bookish Shop that say Don’t Let the Hard Days Win and are the most comfy sweats everofalltimeomg.} Currently it’s warm and muggy and musty and overcast and the air feels heavy. I have rheumatoid arthritis, neuropathy, and a million other weird random old lady diseases and this type of weather makes me more achy. The pool is clean and blue and so ready. I just want to sit poolside and read my book all day, ok? *Sigh*

{Random side note: #OOTD – I haven’t had a haircut in 6 months. I haven’t even dyed it at home because I have some weird scalp autoimmune weird nonsense going on and it’s inflamed so I can’t. I haven’t even brushed it today. Makeup probably from BoxyCharm because they send me personalized stuff each month since I suck at knowing what to pick myself. But I’m accessorized, yo. Necklace is from ThreeBirdNest, one of my absolute favorite shops at the moment. And this Mama Bird t-shirt is from ThePineTorch, another absolute obsession – they’re shirts are long, thin, soft, drape perfectly. I cut the neck to be off the shoulder because regular crew necks strangle me because I have anxiety. The link I added should give you 10% off or something I think. I am a hot mess. Emphasis on hot. Also on mess. Ha.}

Anyway. Tuesdays are lunch day – Abby’s school district has two different locations, one is 5 minutes from our house, where you drive through and pick up a week’s worth of breakfast and lunch items. There’s honestly not very much food at all – but, Abby likes seeing the little juice boxes, frozen burgers, things that remind her of school days and normality, you know? So, we did that. Then came home to do Abby’s school work. But…. her computer.was.broke. Like, Oregon Trail-looking font on a black screen telling me that it had no operating system or soul and haha you bought me 5 weeks ago but I’m done now haha sucker. Because that’s how 2020 DO, you know?

I immediately call tech support (my brother Brian who is a very smart man in the robot world of technical shenanigans) and he walks me through some diagnostics but it seems that my hard drive is just nope. But fast forward 2 hours, battery out, power off, restart, blah blah, and I’d run a new diagnostic that it passed, so I ran other stuff, and I say “just do SOMETHING this time, sweet lil baby Jesus in your manger just please ok I can not even anymore today” and then hit the button and…. Abby’s eyes get so big because it.boots.up.again, like normal, like nothing happened, because the robot gods and baby Jesus heard my prayers and I have no clue what happened but ok. Good. It’s all ok. Thank you, universe.

 

 
 
 
 
 
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Then, there were just other assorted other sh*t shows all day, k? So, no school work done. No house work done. No patience left. Abby’s dad comes to get her for the evening – she goes to visit every Monday and Tuesday evening + every other weekend. I had these 4 little baby waby cuteness rescue kittens, right? And he let her take one to live at his house, about a week ago. But today he says the kitten she brought there {Salty, a little white one that started out really hissy and spitty and scared and mad but ended up being my bff little bro cat} probably has to come back to my house because his girlfriend has allergies so — I’m gonna have SIX CATS and the dog. Cool. Great. Let’s buy another litter box. Ha. I turned 40 last month right after getting these 4 rescues and I didn’t find homes for ANY of the others so I guess it’s just Crazy Cat Lady Lifestyle for me. 

Then, after she leaves, I think imma sit down, quiet, finally, for a few minutes, get my head sorted out. Nope. My momma called, she left a sprinkler on in my back gardens. I go out to turn it off. We have about a half acre out there, and the sprinklers that I had to shut off were all the way in the back. As I’m coming back to the house, walking towards the shop, I see a flash of fur, and think I accidentally let a kitten out again. But no. That is black and white and the right size but that is a SKUNK omg. And the dog sees it. My grumpy little old man dog who’s half blind these days and BORKS HIS FOOL HEAD OFF at every other cat and dog in the neighborhood because he is all about that protect and serve, you know? I know he’s going to attack the skunk and I’ve never handled a sprayed animal before and this day is just too much so clearly I know he is going to get sprayed. My boyfriend is on the phone listening to me scream at the dog to “please do not attack the skunk!! Run away!!” I throw a pinecone to distract him. It’s no use. He goes right towards the skunk. And… they sniff each other. And my dog who attacks every animal he doesn’t know… does nothing. Like, all friendly hey what’s up little skunk man. And it’s a BABY skunk. It is so cute. I wait, in panic. But… it runs to hide under the shop, no spraying, nada. But if there’s a baby skunk doo doo do doo, then there’s a momma and maybe siblings and daddies and aunties and uncles. Oh my.

So I grab the dog and run in the house. I’m over today. 1, 3, 5, 7, 9… I Cannot Even Today. {Get it? That’s counting by odd numbers. No even numbers. Because, can’t even? My kiddos joke. Hilarious. I’m delirious? Who knows.}

E X H A U S T E D.

All cool. Very cool and good and ok. How was your day? Leave me some comments. Or come on over to my Twitter – @sunandsipcups – where I like to talk about politics and current events and staying hopeful in a world of idiots that is on fire in every way. Come cheer me up with bad puns and good jokes and memes and pics of your cats. K? Cool. All so very cool today.

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Random Rad Stuff

Since I whined a whole lot and you guys are such good listeners and I love you, here’s some stuff that doesn’t suck, ok? Yay! Just some randoms that I think are extra cool that I’ll share. 

FabFitFun. You probably see the posts all over social media about them. A lot of people think only the “influencers” get cool stuff. But, I have a subscription I pay for myself, and get RAD stuff. I just paid for another full year subscription – I like to prepay, so that I get early access to customization and Add-Ons. I got my summer box recently but haven’t even put pics up – you’d think that being a pandemic and all, and me being immune compromised and staying home, that I’d have more time? No. I never have time. Anyway – you can see the Spring Box pics on my Facebook. And if you’re interested – sign up here and get $10 off your box. Every single box I’ve paid for the past year and a half, I’ve loved, and has been worth it.

Speaking of subscription boxes… I’m a junkie for them always. But extra more right now, since there is no leaving the house or shopping or anything like that. {I’m in Yakima, Washington. We have the highest rate of COVID19 cases on the West Coast. It’s bonkers.} I am super in love with BookishBox – last month’s theme was Harry Potter, and was one of my all-time faves of any subscription box I’ve ever gotten. My link gets you 10% off. Another really great book nerd box is Owl Crate – these have such fun stuff. And each month there is a hardcover book, signed, often with a handwritten note from the author with notes about the book/why they wrote it/etc, they’ll have special edition covers, or gilded edges. The personalized touch of a note from the author makes my daughter feel like it’s a super special package, and really motivates her to read. They have a kid’s box, the Owl Crate Jr. – but we get the young adult one, and read the book together. She’s 10, the stories are often in a fantasy, magical, adventure type them. We love it.

And, since we’re all shopping online, are you using Rakuten? It used to be called Ebates. You get cash back on almost everything you buy online. It isn’t *quite* as good as it used to be, I admit, since Pandemic life online shopping has got a little weird. A few sites no longer give cash back, like Target. But, I use this every time I shop, and rack up quite a bit of extra totally free money this way. If you aren’t using some type of cash back site, you are legit missing out. Sign up today and you’ll get a FREE $10 gift card. If you already use it, share it with your friends and get the referral bonus. #winning

 

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Vacuum and Wash Your Floors at the Same Time with One Cordless Cleaner! BISSELL CrossWave Cordless Max now at Best Buy!

This post about the amazing new BISSELL CrossWave Cordless Max is a sponsored post in partnership with my fave people over at Best Buy. #BISSELLClean #BuyBISSELLSavePets.

Introducing the NEW! BISSELL CrossWave Cordless Max now at Best Buy: Vacuums & washes your floors at the SAME time!

I’m a neat freak type of person. I have diagnosed OCD, and mine is the “need everything neat and tidy and organized the ‘right’ way or I’ll get grumpy and irritable.” My family thinks it’s amusing to come to my house and move the canned goods out of order, or flip a hanger or two in the closet the wrong way. I think that it makes me want to yeet them off of the front porch. But I love them anyway, lol, because I do know I can be a little — ok, sometimes maybe a lot — crazy about how things are around the house. ;) I just feel so much calmer and happier when my home is clean and organized and happy and bright. 

But with a wild 9-year old daughter, lots of nieces and nephews who love to come over, neighborhood kiddos who gather here for shenanigans, a grumpy old man little fluffy Shih Tzu, and two crazy cats… let’s just say that trying to keep things as clean and neat as I’d like, is a challenge, to say the least. ha.

That’s why clever cleaning gadgets are near and dear to my heart, for reals. And, I have absolutely fallen in LOVE with cordless cleaners! I have neuropathy in my hands, as well as moderate rheumatoid arthritis – so sometimes, holding onto a vacuum or mop can be tough for me to hold onto. But a cordless cleaner is lighter, and it’s easier to quickly grab and go when you need to quickly clean up a mess – since there’s no cords needed. You have no idea how handy this is, until you have one!

Vacuum and wash your floors at the same time with cordless freedom

[Read more…]

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Playing with Fire in Theaters on November 8th – Win a Big Prize Package Today!

Hey guys! I’m SUPER excited to share this with ya – an awesome film opening up soon, “Playing with Fire,” which stars John Cena. Speaking of John Cena… a few months ago, a stray cat kind of adopted us. He’s a scrappy little guy, comes around for food every night, sweet as can be. My 9-year old named him John. Weird name for a cat, but ok. Then later, I found out that his full name is John Cena. Because she says the cat looks like a super tough guy. Love it. Anyway… A film starring the real John Cena, not our feline version, opens November 8th, and to celebrate, I have a super cool giveaway you can enter to win! Keep reading to learn how…

About the Movie:

When straight-laced fire superintendent Jake Carson (John Cena) and his elite team of expert firefighters (Keegan-Michael Key, John Leguizamo, and Tyler Mane) come to the rescue of three siblings (Brianna Hildebrand, Christian Convery, and Finley Rose Slater) in the path of an encroaching wildfire, they quickly realize that no amount of training could prepare them for their most challenging job yet – babysitters. Unable to locate the children’s parents, the firefighters have their lives, jobs and even their fire depot turned upside down and quickly learn that kids – much like fires –are wild and unpredictable. 

Opening November 8, 2019. Rated PG. [Read more…]

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How to Save $10 on Pet Food and Supplies on Amazon with Coupon!

This post contains Amazon Affiliate links, and any purchase you make through one of my links earns me $$.

Hey guys…. So, a couple of months ago I shared a post on how to get amazing deals on snacks, baking supplies, household goods, etc – by using the Amazon Prime Pantry stock-up deals, sales and coupons, and the extra bonus coupon they had at the time. It was, by far, one of my most popular posts in a long time! So, when I came across this rocking deal on using Amazon to save a ton of money on food, treats, and supplies for your pets, too – I knew I should share with ya. ;)

how to save on pet food at amazon

So I did a pretty sloppy job of covering up my personal address, I know. And I don’t really care… if y’all want to send me stuff in the mail, or show up for tea, I’m cool with that, lol. Anyway – this shows you the coupon deal, which is super great! If you spend $40 or more on selected pet items, they’ll take a big ol’ $10 right off of your purchase. Amazon prices are already really good – I shop around quite a bit in town for pet food, and everything I wanted on Amazon was slightly lower than what I pay in town. I also found a few really sweet sales. And then when you take the $10 off? Serious savings.

How to get Amazon Pet Food Deals!

This is my first shipment, that I got last week. The deal is STILL going on, so I stocked up again and bought another big box that’ll be here soon. To give you an idea of savings… In town, buying cat food cans, Friskies is their fave, I average about .55 cents per can, whether I buy it per can at the grocery store, or in bulk. Here’s what I bought at Amazon:

So, this isn’t the order shown in the screenshot above, that’s the order I just put in today. I’ll share that too, in a sec. So, on this order the total for the cat food comes out to .51 cents per can, cheaper than even the best deals I find in town – but then once you add the big container of treats so that it’s over $40, and gets the $10 off – they’re way cheaper! Score, right? And here’s what I ordered today:

So – all really great deals on brands and varieties that I already use, and then take another $10 off the total again! Whoo. 

Now, a few tips on saving money on pet food at Amazon:

Here’s the selection to choose from: Save $10 When You Spend $40. This is a limited time deal, I have no idea how much longer it will last. I chose a few items I knew I needed – then, to get right close to that $40 mark, I used the search function at the top to “Sort By” price low-to-high. There are small treats, toys, etc. in the under $5 range. 

Next, on each item’s page, some of them automatically go to the “subscribe and save” option. If you do that, you sometimes can save a couple bucks, but it won’t work with the coupon. So be sure to click the one time purchase button, before adding to cart. 

Do you use the Honey app? I kept hearing about it forever, especially those promoted posts on Facebook. I never signed up, I just didn’t “get it” I guess? But it is SO cool. There are a million uses – I’m sure I’m missing loads, so feel free to give me tips in the comments. But what I did so far is add it to my Chrome toolbar. So the little icon is there, and every time I shop online, I will click it at checkout to see if it can find a better coupon code than what I have. And often, it does! You can use it with Ebates {now called Rakuten} sometimes, but not always. It’ll tell you if you can’t use both. Anyway – it works awesome with Amazon. Everything that’s in my cart, Honey will keep an eye on it, and every day I get email updates if prices dropped on stuff I want. So.freaking.cool. It also shows a little icon when you’re shopping on Amazon, to tell you if there’s a better deal on that same item from another seller. Sign up here to check it out totally free: Join Honey.

And, speaking of Ebates/Rakuten – did you know that it lets you earn cash back on some of your Amazon purchases?? HOW DID I NOT KNOW THAT?? Lol. I’ve used them for yeeaaaaars. But only recently realized this. Because I have that in my toolbar too, so it automatically reminds me anytime I’m checking out somewhere, and asks if I want to activate cash back. It doesn’t do that on Amazon. You have to go to Ebates first, then click through. You don’t earn cash back on pet food – but there are a ton of categories that you DO earn with – I’ve been buying clothing on Amazon more often, and you earn on almost all of that. Def worth signing up. Join Ebates here.

Did you know you can save on Amazon Prime? If you’re a regular Amazon shopper, you pretty much MUST HAVE PRIME. {Plus there’s all the perks like Prime-only pricing, free movies and audiobooks, etc.} If you have an EBT card, you get a discount on Prime. If you don’t have an EBT card, and don’t have Prime yet, you can get a free trial of Amazon Prime here. There’s also a free trial of Amazon Family {formerly Amazon Mom} – which gives you big discounts on diapers, and exclusive deals on baby items. All cool stuff. I have a pile of chronic illnesses these days, so I do the majority of my shopping using Amazon. Can’t recommend Prime enough, if you don’t already have it.

I hope you find these helpful and stock up on deals too! 

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The Best of Jewish Children’s Books for the New Year!

I partnered with PJ Library on this sponsored post.

The Best of Jewish Children’s Books for the New Year! 

For Jewish people worldwide, the new year kicks off on Rosh Hashanah when people wish each other l’shana tova – a sweet new year!  This September, on top of eating delicious apples with honey and making resolutions for the coming year, families raising Jewish children can also kick off the New Year by signing up for PJ Library, a free program that offers monthly, age-appropriate books celebrating Jewish values and culture through the joy of story books.

A program of the Harold Grinspoon Foundation, PJ Library sends more than 200,000 books a month to families across North America. Expertly curated, the monthly selections exemplify the best of Jewish children’s literature and offer books that are certain to capture children’s imaginations with cheerful characters, compelling stories, and vibrant illustrations. 

Start the Jewish new year off right

PJ Library welcomes all Jewish families, whatever their background, knowledge, family make-up, or observance may be. The stories help families engage with Jewish values, ideas, and traditions on their own terms, and the books are paired with activities and resources for the whole family to learn, create, and play together.

Celebrate the new year by signing up your kiddos for PJ Library. Sign up today!

 

Be sure to follow PJ Library on social media – connect with them on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram – to learn more and share your stories! You can also follow me on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram too, and let me know your thoughts about PJ Library using the hashtag #PJLibrary!  

 

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Fall is My Favorite Time of the Year!

“Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.” – Albert Camus

I live in the PNW – in central Washington state, a mid-sized city called Yakima. We grow apples here, and are right next to Wenatchee, which is considered the apple capital of the world. 77% of the hops grown in the United States come from the Yakima Valley. And we’re fast becoming a major wine tourism destination. We’re the 11th biggest city in Washington, but still a MAJOR agricultural area too. We get four distinct seasons here, and fall is my favorite – the colors of the trees, the harvest of all that fall produce, the U-Pick farms that turn into corn mazes and haunted tours and pumpkin patches. Fall always feels like new beginnings, fresh starts, an embrace of changes – and the start to some of my favorite things like hoodies and boots, holidays and entertaining, football and fun!

Fall favorites quote

Since the fall weather here is so beautiful, this is the time of year that Abby and I like to get our family photos together. Last year we used a local photographer for a s’mores themed photo shoot, outside of town at a big ranch with horses and open fields and beautiful views. My favorite was one that was kind of out-take… Abby thought it would be funny to eat a s’mores like Lady and the Tramp ate their spaghetti. The photographer caught us in the middle of that, and it’s so funny. ;)

fall smores photo shoot

I love to entertain. And being just a few hours away from Seattle, the Seahawks are our JAM here, man. So we throw a lot of game-day parties here. And if you love football parties too – you have got to check out my Snackadium tutorial! These pics are from a few years ago – I’ve made bigger and more elaborate versions the past two years, but never took time to post them. This year tho, I promise! This original post though – it is honestly NOT hard to create, it’s pretty cheap too – you can get all of the supplies you need at your local Walmart super cheap {pro tip: order it all online, do ship to store, and then just pop in and pick it up, easy peasy!} – it just takes a little bit of time. Totally worth it though, it’s a pretty rad way to serve your snacks during football season!

football party food snackadium tutorial

Another thing I absolutely heckin’ LOVE about fall is …. HALLOWEEN! Abby {she’s NINE now, can you guys believe it?} and I into witchy stuff, we love dress up, a black cat lives with us…. lol. It’s totally one of our favorite holidays. A few years ago I got a black pre-lit tree from Treetopia, that I put up in late September, to decorate for Halloween. Our last theme was a DIY Nightmare Before Christmas tree – lots of Dollar Tree decor, Sharpie markers to draw Jack and Sally on the big shiny ball ornaments, and some extra lights for pizzazz. After Halloween, I take the themed ornaments off, and stuff some fall flowers and leaf garlands on it for Thanksgiving. Then we decorate it up for Christmas too. It’s a tree for the whole holiday season. We are festive as all heck over here. 

diy nightmare before christmas black tree

What are YOU guys excited about when it comes to fall? I love to hear from ya. Leave me some comments below – or chat with me on Twitter at @sunandsipcups, or on Facebook at Sunshine and Sippy Cups!

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