October Beauty Favourites 2016

  • Monday, 31 October 2016

Happy Halloween! 

I am really excited for November to start. James and I have lots of really fun plans over the next few weeks and I can't wait for the month to begin. This week alone we have gig tickets to see Birdy and Bears Den and we are going to a Bonfire Party at my Mum's house on Saturday. The following week we are taking a long weekend away to Bratislava, the capital of Slovakia. It's going to be a really busy month but so much fun!!

Beauty wise, my make up has stayed pretty much the same throughout October as it was in September, however I have picked out a few favourites of mine that I have been using over the last few weeks. I have really been loving the Mac Mineralize Skinfinish in Lightscapade which has become my new go to highlighter. It is really soft and subtle but gives a lovely glow to my cheekbones with it's mother-of-pearl finish. I have also been using the Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara which provides a really full looking lash with lots of volume.  

I have loved wearing a very natural look over the last four weeks. one of my top three picks is the NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream in Cannes which is a lovely shade that is lovely to apply, really pigmented and has incredible longevity. Another lip pick has been Benefit's Posie-Balm which is a really hydrating lip product with a slight tint of pink which leaves your lips feeling and looking plum. My last natural lip pick that I have been using  over the last few weeks is Mac's Satin Lipstick in Brave. I love this product because it is so easy to wear with any outfit, at any time of day. 

What have been your October beauty favourites?
What are your plans for November?


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Make Up, Body & Skincare Storage Tour | YouTube Video

  • Sunday, 30 October 2016

Happy Sunday!

This is just a quick blog post to let you know that I have published a new video over on my YouTube Channel. If you haven't already guessed from the title, in this video I will be sharing with you my makeup and body and skincare storage. 

I really hope you enjoy having a peek at all of my beauty bits and bobs!


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3 Simple Halloween Make Up Ideas | YouTube Video

  • Wednesday, 26 October 2016

I really enjoy Halloween and I think that it is loads of fun seeing everyone get dressed up and it feels as though you can be a little kid again. However, I always get a little stressed when it comes to deciding what to wear. Sometimes, as much as I want to join it, I don't always want to buy a brand new outfit or spend hours perfecting my look. So I have decided to put together Three Simple Halloween Make Up Ideas that are really quick and easy to do.

With each of these looks I have just used make up from my own collection and I only bought the Cat Ears for £1.50 from Primark and the Day Of The Dead Mask for £2.99 from a fancy dress shop.  I have filmed each of these looks so be sure to head over to my YouTube channel to see each make up creation in detail.

The Day Of The Dead Inspired Make Up Look

Vampire Inspired Make Up Look

Cat Inspired Make Up Look 

I hope that you enjoyed these Three Simple Halloween Make Up Ideas. 

What will you be going as for Halloween this year?
Will you be trying any of these looks this Halloween?


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Book Review | Beloved By Toni Morrison | My New Reading List

  • Sunday, 23 October 2016

Beloved By Toni Morrison - The Blurb

Terrible, unspeakable things happened to Sethe at Sweet Home, the farm where she lived as a slave for so many years until she escaped to Ohio. Her new life is full of hope but eighteen years later she is still not free. Sethe's new home is not only haunted by the memories of her past but also by the ghost of her baby, who died nameless and whose tombstone is engraved with a single word: Beloved.

My Thoughts 

This was a fairly difficult read and I felt a great sense of achievement once I had finished it. I studied American Studies at University and much of my Degree was heavily focused on Slavery and so I thought that this would be a really interesting read. Although it was Historical Fiction it was loosely based on true events whereby Morrison had researched similar trials as the ones written about in Beloved. 

As the main character was quite unstable and so the book was written in a format that reflected that, with chapters flitting between time and relationships. Although quite hard hitting, it was a very interesting read and for anyone wanting to learn more information about Slavery and the treatment of Slaves, it was very true to form and insightful.

I was given this book for my birthday and I am really excited to read it. It is the first in a trilogy and if it is as good as reviews say, I am sure that the next two books in the series will be on my Christmas wish list. I have seen the trailer for the film that has just come out and so I want to crack on and read the book before going to watch the film at the cinema.  

This is a really cool idea for a series of books and I can't wait to get stuck in. The premiss of the book series is too look at Disney stories from a different angle, what if something that was supposed to happen, didn't? In this book, it is the story of Aladin but if Jafar had found the lamp instead. As a huge Disney fan I think that these books are going to be really interesting and exciting to read. 

In York we have The Big City Read every year which is a series of events and talks with the design to encourage people to read more. As part of The Big City Read, there is always a free book for anyone in York to collect from any one of our libraries, that you can take home and keep. This year's book is a Historical Fiction novel set during World War One and so this sounds perfect for me and I'm really looking forward to reading it. 

What have you been reading lately?
What books are on your reading list?


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Make Up Bag Staple | Mac Mineralize Skinfinish In Lightscapade

  • Wednesday, 19 October 2016

I love a good highlighter. I think that it really adds the finishing touches to make up and it makes me feel extra glamorous and really girly. I always used to apply liquid highlighters once I had applied my make up, however I find that a powder highlighter can provide a bit more of a natural finish without messing up your foundation. I had hit pan on my last powdered highlighter and so I have been on the hunt for a new one over the last few weeks.

I headed to lots of different beauty counters in an attempt to find the perfect powder highlighter. I knew that I wanted to try a more premium quality product but I was on a mission to find the right one at the right price. I came across this Mineralize Skinfinish one from Mac which seemed to be the perfect proportions of quality and price.  

It is a beautiful highlighter in the shade Lightscapade which has a stunning mother-of-pearl finish to it. It is designed to have the same effect on your cheekbones as to when the sunlight hits the inside of a shell, radiating the light and really making it sparkle. At £24 it is a definite premium product but only a small amount is needed to create a fully strobed look, I know that it will last a really long time. What I love about highlighters as well is that they are an all-year-round product that can be used everyday and so it will be a complete make up staple. 

Do you like using a powder highlighter?
What is your favourite highlighter to use?


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Fashion Staples | Some New Additions To My Autumnal Wardrobe

  • Tuesday, 18 October 2016

I love the change of a season as it seems the perfect excuse for a little retail therapy. I am currently trying to hang fire a bit when it comes to my wardrobe as I feel as though I have too many clothes and so I am trying to slowly but surely condense my clothing. Having said that, I decided that a few key staples wouldn't hurt and so I thought I would share with you what I have picked up lately to add to my Autumnal wardrobe. 

I bought this Floral Print Dress a few weeks ago to wear on my 25th birthday night out. It is from New Look but I loved that it looked a little more sophisticated and feels more expensive than it was. It only cost me £29.99 which I think is a bargain for a staple dress that I know I will get a lot of use out off. It is a skater style number with a deep plunge neck-line filled in with a black mesh. I really like this cut as it is very flattering for my slightly larger lady lumps, but I don't feel exposed and as though everything is on show. I love the colours as the off white base makes it a little more autumnal and the black core colour means that it can easily be worn with tights during winter. I am sure that I will get a lot of use out of this dress over the next few months. 

I also picked up these cute little Mid Block Heels from New Look and fell in love instantly. I have been wearing these at work as I think that they are the perfect combination of smart and comfortable. They were a great price of £19.99 and they are so versatile. I think that they are the perfect day-time heel that can dress up an otherwise casual outfit.

Tartan scarfs are a very traditional and practical autumnal staple and I picked up this beautiful Red Rust number from Primark for just £4. Incredible! It is unbelievably soft and goes perfectly with my Topshop Camel coat from last year, as well as with jeans and a simple jumper. 

The last autumnal staple I have picked up recently is this lovely Double Buckle Western Belt with silver detailing. I have seen so many girls on Instagram fashioning something similar and I thought that it would be great with jeans or to wear around my waist with dresses and skirts. I think that I will get a lot of use of this accessory over the next few months as it is so versatile. 

Have you bought any autumnal fashion staples lately?
What do you love to wear during Autumn?


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Perfecting My Everyday Brow With Benefit Cosmetics

  • Monday, 17 October 2016

In recent years it seems as though everyone in the beauty industry has become obsessed with eyebrows. When I was a young teen I never touched my brows, if anything, it was fashionable to have very slim, practically non-existent brows. I know, shock horror! However, it has now almost become a social faux pas to leave ones brows bare and there is no excuse with hundreds of brow products to choose from, from a range of drug store and high street brands.

When it comes to brow products, my go-to brand is Benefit Cosmetics. For years, Benefit have spread the message of the importance of brows, and have had an iconic range of brow products on sale alongside their brow bars in all major cities across the UK. Over the last few months Benefit Cosmetics have taken this one step further and re-packaged and re-launched their whole brow range, whilst showcasing a huge range a brand new products! On the cusp of their launch, Benefit teamed up with a number of magazines to give away deluxe samples of a few of their new products which was a brilliant marketing tool to give their customers a 'try before you buy' opportunity.  

All of Benefit's brow products are now packaged in an incredible silver casing with bold pink and black writing, really making them stand out from the rest of their products, as well as other brow products on offer. Each product has also been given a quirky name in very typical Benefit Cosmetics style. 

My favourite product from the range is one of their first; Brow Zings. This is a great little compact that consists of a wax and a powder formula that can provide a full and natural looking brow. There is a pair of tweezers in the compact to get rid of any stray hairs, a slanted brush to apply a wax outline to the brows and a blending brush to apply the powder in order to fill any gaps in the hair. I love this compact as you can make your brows as dramatic or as natural as you like. I like to use it to keep my natural shape but fill in any gaps in the hair.

For an even more natural look, I have enjoyed using Gimme Brow in shade 5, a fibre gel that gives a thicker, fuller impression to each brow hair, providing more definition. I also like the Goof Proof Brow Pencil in shade 2 to gently fill in the gaps in my brows for a very soft and natural look. For days when I just wish to tame my brow hairs, or to set a more defined look, the Ready, Set Brow 24 hour clear gel is ideal at keeping every hair in place when used on its own or alongside another product.

I personally like to keep my brows looking very natural and I don't tend to go too overboard when it comes to applying brow products. Therefore, my favourite products from the range are probably the most natural and easy to use products from their collection. With the large range of products they have on offer however, it is well worth having a peek at the entire collection, as I am sure that there is something for everyone.

Have you tried anything from the Benefit Cosmetics Brow Collection?
What are your top picks from the collection?


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For The Love Of Autumn | An Autumnal Vlog

  • Sunday, 16 October 2016

If you are a regular reader of Madolyn Thinks, or follow me on Twitter or Instagram, then I am sure that you will know that Autumn is one of my favourite times of the year. I love the cosiness that comes with the change of season, with film marathons, spiced pumpkin lattes and baths filled with beautiful Lush bath bombs. 

I seem to be on a bit of a roll with YouTube and have published another video for you to watch; An Autumnal Vlog. I have really enjoyed filming these videos for my channel lately and I think I'm starting to get a hang of editing and publishing. I would love to hear any feed back and would love for you to subscribe if you enjoy watching my videos!

I hope you're having a lovely weekend - what are your favourite parts about Autumn?   


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Some New Pieces From Lush's Autumnal Range

  • Friday, 14 October 2016

I am a huge lover of a Lush pamper night in. I love taking the time to run a nice hot bath, grabbing some of my favourite skincare goodies and taking a soak with a Lush bath bomb and a good book. I went into Lush last week for a look at their new Autumn collection and ended up leaving with two new bath time beauties.

Sparkly Pumpkin Bubble Bar

The first one I picked up was the the iconic orange, pumpkin shaped glittery bubble bar. It looks so cute and smells absolutely amazing. It contains Lime Oil, Juniperberry Oil and Grapefruit Oil which creates a beautiful citrus concoction. They cost £3.95 each, however, the idea behind a Lush Bubble Bar is that you crumble the product  with your hands under the running tap so that it froths and bubbles into your bath. Therefor, only a small amount is needed per bath, unless you enjoy copious amounts of bubbles.

Autumn Leaf Bath Bomb 

The second product I picked up from Lush's new collection was the Autumn Leaf Bath Bomb. These are £3.75 each and are made up with a lovely mixture of Sandalwood oil, Japanese Maple Sap, and Bergamot Oil which provides a very fresh scent. The bath bomb is a leaf shape that has a lovely autumnal colour palette of red, yellow and green in a marble like effect. These colours are meant to look like falling leaves when the bath bomb is put into the water and create the feeling that summer is drawing to a close and the count down to winter is approaching. 

Are you a fan of a Lush bath and pamper night?

What are your top picks from the new Autumnal range?


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Birthday Bits & Bobs | YouTube Video

  • Wednesday, 12 October 2016

It was my twenty fifth birthday the other week and so I decided to gather together a few of the lovely presents that I was given from friends and family. I decided to film another YouTube video so be sure to hop over to my channel to have a look at what I go in more detail. Just as a little disclaimer, I don't mean to sound like I'm being boastful or showing off, it's just that I love watching these sorts of videos and so I thought that it would be fun to film one myself.

I got a couple of books, some lovely bits of stationary as well as some lovely bits of food and drink. I'm so excited to read A Whole New World, A Twisted Tale which is all about the story of Aladin and what would have happened if he didn't find the lamp. I was also given Miss Peregrine's Home For Peculiar Children which I would love to read before seeing the film at the cinema. I had also asked for some money for my birthday so I bought a few new bits of Benefit Skincare which you can read about here

Have you had a birthday recently?
What's on your birthday wish list?


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Three Recent Reads

  • Tuesday, 11 October 2016

I have been trying my hardest to set time aside everyday to read. I set myself a goal at the beginning of the year to read more as it is a huge love of mine, but I always felt as though I had no time. I few weeks ago I published a Holiday Reading List as so here I am, writing mini-reviews of a few books that I have recently read. 

The Blurb: 19 year-old Chani lives in the ultra-orthodox Jewish community of North West London. She has never had physical contact with a man, but is bound to marry a stranger. The rabbi's wife teaches her what it means to be a Jewish wife, but Rivka has her own questions to answer. Soon buried secrets, fear and sexual desire bubble to the surface in a story of liberation and choice; not to mention what happens on the wedding night 

My Thoughts: I really enjoyed reading this book. It was a little different to what I am used to however I found it interesting and liked how much of insight it provided into an orthodox Jewish way of life. The book consisted of two parallel stories, one of a young woman and the build up to her wedding day, and one of a married mother of three looking back on her marriage and the different life choices she had made for her husband. It showed the difficulties and different choices that each of the characters had to make in order to live in modern day society without compromising their religious beliefs.  

The Blurb: We've all seen him: the man - the monster - staring from the front page of every newspaper, accused of a terrible crime. But what about her: the woman who grips his arm on the courtroom stairs - the wife who stands by him? Jean Taylor's life was blissfully ordinary. Nice house, nice husband. Glen was all she'd ever wanted: her Prince Charming. Until he became that man accused, that monster on the front page. Jean was married to a man everyone thought capable of unimaginable evil. But now Glen is dead and she's alone for the first time, free to tell her story on her own terms. Jean Taylor is going to tell us what she knows.

My Thoughts: I love a good 'who done it' crime fiction novel. The Widow was a really interesting read as it focused solely on the aftermath of a crime and it was mostly written from the point of view of the woman married to the person accused of the crime. It was a gripping read and an absolute page turner that meant that it was difficult to put down. Each chapter was written from the point of view of the Widow, the Detective or the Reporter of the case which kept the story very fresh and kept you wanting more.  

The Blurb: Detective Harry Hole is meant to keep out of trouble. A young Norwegian girl taking a gap year in Sydney has been murdered, and Harry has been sent to Australia to assist in any way he can. HE'S NOT SUPPOSED TO GET TOO INVOLVED. When the team unearths a string of unsolved murders and disappearances, nothing will stop Harry from finding out the truth. The hunt for a serial killer is on, but the murderer will talk only to Harry. HE MIGHT JUST BE THE NEXT VICTIM.

My Thoughts: Another crime novel which was recommenced to me by my dad. Jo Nesbo is a Norwegian writer and the main character in his series of novels is Harry Hole, a detective inspector. This is soon to become a film and I think that it will be brilliant if the book is anything to go by. It is a really fast paced story with lots of characters and tones of twists and turns throughout. I'm looking forward to reading the next one in the series as I really enjoyed Nesbo's writing style and the structure of the story. 

What have you been reading lately?
Is there any books that you would recommend?


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Forward Thinking, Planning & Organising A Luxury Trip | Italy’s Trendiest Destination Emilia Romagna

  • Monday, 10 October 2016

I love planning and organising trips away. I have recently just been for a trip away to the Lake District and I have another trip booked in the middle of November to fly over to Slovakia. One of the most exciting things about traveling for me is planning that goes into it. I love the build up to a trip away, planning outfits, researching the area and deciding what it is you want to do when you get there. Not only does this make me really excited about my trip, but it also makes me feel a little more relaxed if I plan ahead and create some sort out outline to the trip ahead. 

Below is a fantastic guide to help with planning a road trip in Emilia-Romagna, a beautiful city in Italy. It looks like an incredible place to visit with lots on offer and it is definitely on my radar of places to visit. 

Situated near the border of the independent republic of San Marino, in the North of Italy, the region’s rich history goes back 2200 years ago, to the reign of Marco Emilio Lepido, who in 187 B.C. built the famous road Via Emilia (260 Km long) that traverses the region in a diagonal fashion. It connects the major cities of Piacenza, Milan, Bologna (the capital) to the chic beach town of Rimini by the Adriatic Coast. The region’s historical value and the allure of ages past can be felt in the special atmosphere of the many small towns and medieval villages and cathedrals, and also in the splendid scenery that the panorama offers. It provides a spectacular opportunity for a wonderful road trip, as attested by the many tourists who prefer the city of Bologna as the starting point for their trip. Through sites like Primerentcar, one of the most popular rental services with a wide choice of vehicles, you can rent one of these luxury cars in Bologna so that you can reach the many secluded hilltop villages and natural locations that lie off the main roads. From there you can drive across country to taste the region’s culinary specialties, and especially Parmigiano Reggiano and Parma ham, produced in the town of Parma and for which the region is particularly known. Here you can also learn about the ancient techniques of cheese-making and processing.

Head to the lovely medieval town of Dozza, perched on a hill top overlooking the valley and the ancient river Sellustra and visit the Enoteca Regionale for a wine-tasting and educational excursion of its wide variety of whites or reds (Sangiovese, Lambrusco, Pignoletto, and many more). The town is decorated with beautiful paintings on walls and houses made by popular artists who gather there every year to celebrate the ‘Biennale del Muro Dipinto’ and holds the majestic 13th Century fortress, the ‘Rocca Sforzesca’ with excellent views of the surrounding valleys. If you are a sports car enthusiast, and did not know that Modena is where the Ferrari, Maserati, Lamborghini, Pagani and DeTomaso factories were founded, then you need to drive there and visit the many car museums that tell you the story of your favourite car maker and the vehicle’s evolution over the decades. Listed as a UNESCO world heritage site for its historical and cultural importance, Ferrara is where historical and architectural beauty comes to life. Here you will find 12th-14thCentury royal palaces and cathedrals, like the Romanesque Ferrara Cathedral (12th Century), Castello Estense, the Renaissance era Palazzo dei Diamanti, and natural treasures like the exotic varieties of the Botanical Garden.

I have never been to Emilia-Romagna but I would love to go back to Italy and explore this area in depth, especially as it has so much to offer for tourists.

Have you ever been to Emilia-Romagna?
How do you like to plan and organise trips away?


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The Lazy Girls Minimal Make Up Collection

  • Friday, 7 October 2016

As much as I love getting dolled-up and applying make, I equally enjoy the times when I can get away with hardly any make up and have a very natural, minimal look. I have a pretty perfected work-time make up face that I apply Monday to Friday. On weekends however, if I know that I spending the day pottering around the house, nipping into town or popping over to see family, I tend to opt for very quick and easy, minimal make up.

One of my key, go-to items when I am creating a minimal make up look is a light-weight, natural looking base. I have been loving this beautiful Silk Skin BeeBee Cream from the Heaven By Deborah Michell make up and skincare range. It is a really light make up base, for those days when you want a little coverage, without the effort of a full face of make up. It glides on to the skin and has a very soft and light feel to it. It almost feels like I'm applying a serum rather than make up. It it very good at creating an even skin tone but for more prominent blemishes I tend to apply some sort of concealer as well. I like to apply the BeeBee cream with my finger tips rather than a brush as I feel like my skin absorbs the product better, leaving a lovely dewy finish.

To complete the lazy, minimal look I like to sweep a dash of the Tarte Blush to the tops of my cheeks, a spot of the No7 Stay Perfect Eyeliner, Benefit's They're Real Mascara and some NYX Lip Cream.

Have you tried anything from the Deborah Michell range?
What are your minimal make up picks?


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Benefit Skincare Haul & YouTube Video

  • Wednesday, 5 October 2016

I have been a huge lover of Benefit skincare for a number of years. I have tried a number of their products but really became invested in the brand when I started working for them. My skin was at its absolute best at this time, yet since I left Benefit I have dabbled in trying other (and cheaper) brands and products, when it comes to skincare.

My skin of late seems to have some major issues as I keep getting pretty bad break outs, I'm getting an increasingly oily T-Zone and it generally feels under the weather. As far as I can tell, my diet and environment haven't really changed and so I thought that I  would re-invest into some Benefit Skincare, in an attempt to improve my skin. It has just been my 25th Birthday and so I asked for some from my family to put towards some key pieces of high-end skincare. 

I picked up the Triple Performing Facial Emulsion, the Foamingly Clean Facial Wash and the B.Right On Girl gift set which includes a Total Moisture Facial Cream, and three miniatures which is part of their Christmas range. You can find out more about each product and why I picked it by watching my YouTube video above.

Do you like to use anything from the Benefit skincare range?
What are your go to skincare picks when your skin isn't feeling up to scratch?


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Why Autumn Is My Favourite Time Of Year To Go Away

  • Tuesday, 4 October 2016

There are lots of things that I love about autumn, one of them being that I think that it is one of the most wonderful times of year to go away on holiday. Not only is it beautiful watching nature change to the autumnal rainbow, the weather still lovely and you can often find cheaper holiday deals around this time of year.

Autumn is my favourite season by far. I think that it is such a pretty time of year and I love to watch the leaves change colour, and the emergence of the oranges, reds and yellows burst out of all things natural. I think that it is a beautiful time to go away on holiday. I find it so relaxing taking the time to go out on long walks, enjoy hot chocolates outside and sitting curled up with a blanket during the darker, more cosy evenings. It is so easy to get wrapped up in the routine of everyday life and so taking out some time to stop and relax is one of my favourite things to do. I have recently just had a lovely week away in the Lake District and it was so nice to take the time to sit and appreciate the low rising sun, the crisp breeze and the gentle change our countryside takes during this time.
Not only is autumn a beautiful time to take a break from work and relax, it is usually a lot cheaper. Most people like to go away during spring and summer whist the weather is a little warmer and the days a little brighter. Holiday destinations often increase their prices during this time as they also coincide with the school summer holidays and so they know that parents will take this time to go away as a family. For young adults and couples however, Autumn is a fantastic time to go away on holiday as a lot of places decrease their rates, knowing that is isn’t as popular a time to go away. For me, this just seems to make going away at this time of year even better as it is a little easier on the purse strings.

Most places in Europe are still fairly warm at this time of year, even if it gets a little chillier on an evening, and the breeze may have picked up a little more. It is still a perfectly lovely time of year to go away. Likewise, the UK is a beautiful place to explore at just as much of a bargain price and I would recommend it to anyone that wants a cheap yet enjoyable holiday.

Do you have any plans to go away this season?
What is your favourite time of year to go away?


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