The Young and The Restless

tracey and ovi

Tracey Bregman has been a mega-star on CBS’s hit daytime show The Young & The Restless for an impressive 35 years. Hard to believe since she looks like she isn’t a day over 30 years old. In my pre-interview research I discovered that Tracey and I had two big things in common: we are twice over re-riders and we fully believe in natural horsemanship. So basically we should be best friends and she should give me all her beauty secrets, specifically the whole looking like a non-aging supermodel secret. Okay, maybe we aren’t there yet, but she was nice enough to humor me and answer some of my questions.

Like most equestrians, Tracey got her start as a little girl and fell in love instantly with the sport. Unlike most little girls, however, Tracey began working in middle school on the set of Days of Our Lives and had to put her equestrian endeavors on hold to focus on her career and school. Fast forward more than a decade later, throw in a Daytime Emmy and two children of her own, and Tracey found herself back in the saddle. This time, she switched riding disciplines and took up dressage. However, when her young trainer was killed in a riding accident, Tracey was understandably shaken and she took a second hiatus from the sport. It wasn’t until 2013 when Tracey pushed the fear aside and allowed horses back into her life. Her son, Austin, had returned home on a break from college and simply said, “I want to learn dressage and I want you to do it with me. It’s time for you to get over what happened.” Soon, with the support and company of her son, Tracey was back doing what she loved.

HG: Like you, I have taken two breaks from riding, totaling over 12 years when combined. I am actually doing a fun online diary of my riding “comeback” this time, mainly to hold myself accountable. Do you have any tips on how to stay positive? 
TB: I wish I had tips. Just take it one day at a time and don’t push yourself.

HG: You have mentioned how your horse, Ovi (short for Standing Ovation) chose you. I totally believe in that, and feel very similar about Chloe, but could you share with me your experience?
TB: My trainer sent me his picture saying she was going to see this horse. Well, he literally took my breath away and of course, I had to go see him too. I remember when we drove up and saw him. My heart skipped a beat. He healed me. Now, if anyone has had a scary experience on a horse, I let them ride him and everyone heals. He is a very special soul.

HG: I love that you are a fan of Buck Brannaman and natural horsemanship.  You can learn so much about yourself, or what mental blocks you have, by how your horse responds to you or behaves.  For instance, Chloe recently reminded me to leave my work problems at work. What is the most important thing Ovi has taught you?
TB: I call Ovi my yoga, my zen. He clears my mind. I will tell you, whatever I am dealing with in my life comes up in my riding. I find it fascinating that somehow our horses can sense what’s going on and helps us move forward and push through.

HG: I am going to assume that you cannot have played Lauren Fenmore on Y&R all these years and have not been influenced by her fashionista ways! Can you share some of your favorite dressage brands for everyday riding or lessons? What is your typical barn attire like?
TB: Everything I wear is from Halter Ego. Love the name! Her Instagram is @shophalterego. I’m in breeches and boots all the time and go everywhere in them so I want them to fit perfectly and look great

HG: Dressage is pretty conservative in the show ring. Is there anything you wear that may skirt the rules a bit? 🙂
TB: Yes. I have been known to wear Chrome Hearts tank tops with my breeches. Ha!

HG: I have read that the hours on set for tv shows are demanding. This, combined with being a mom, must leave you exhausted. How do you balance riding with the rest of your life?
TB: I look at riding as my form of exercise, so I’m at the barn four days a week. Sometimes more, or if I’m traveling or shooting a little less, but I have three horses now and one on the way!

HG: Do you have any riding goals for 2018?
TB: When I have been asked, I have said I wouldn’t compete, but that I would think of doing an exhibition. I have a new horse, Art Nouveau, that may make me do more than I’ve said!

HG: Okay, seriously, can you share any beauty secrets?
TB: You are so sweet. I wear all lead-free, cruelty-free products.

HG: What are the chances we will see Lauren on a horse? I think Ovi wants to make his Y&R screen debut.
TB: Wouldn’t that be fun!

So, in summary, Tracey Bregman and I are best friends and she said her beauty secret is to own 4 horses. 🙂 Thanks so much Tracey for being a good sport. Lauren Fenmore forever! xoxo

Life Equestrian is Equestrian Life

Life Equestrian is Equestrian Life

Helen is a fellow equestrian blogger that I enjoy following. Her account is Life Equestrian and she is based out of Los Angeles. She is tall, blonde and beautiful, of course, but don’t let that intimidate you. She is very friendly and has been nothing but welcoming to me and Horse Glam. Her style is easy, breezy and I think everyone can relate to that.

Helen is an executive for FX Networks and with the high demands of the corporate world, finding time for horses can be challenging. Luckily she has found a balance that works for her; riding 3 days a week with a horse show every few weeks. She says that her time at the barn is her zen, providing her with clarity and a sense of accomplishment. She always leaves the barn feeling re-energized and ready to conquer her dreams.

So happy to have her partake in a HG Quickfire Style Interview!

HG: Favorite apparel color for Winter 2018?
Helen: I love black down jackets with a silver vest, so I would say that my go to is Black and Silver.

HG: Must-have warm weather riding jacket?
Helen: JOTT Seda vest is my favorite riding jacket. It’s the perfect warmth for your pre-ride and is easy to take off in the ring. The light weight nature of the vest makes it easy to store and stuff in small places. It’s very versatile and easily cleaned making it my favorite “go-to” for riding in warm weather. 

HG: Show coat: Green or Navy or black?
Helen: Depending on horse color, I always lean towards Navy. I feel like it gives a polished, yet classic look in the Hunter Ring.

HG: Favorite piece of jewelry for everyday?
Helen: I love layering bracelets from “Half Full LA“. They are hand-made and so fun to add to any outfit. Being that they are made of high quality materials (gold, conflict free diamond, etc) they are super durable so I wear them all the time, from riding to the shower.

HE: Heels or flats on Friday night?
Helen: Heels, boot heels that is! Rag and Bone booties are my “go-to”. They are so comfortable and provide just enough heel to dress up an outfit.

HG: Favorite horse show food?
Helen: Breakfast Sandwiches, as a kid I always remember the hot steamy sandwich that I would devour after my ride. Oh ya, only after my ride. I’m not one to fill my tummy before heading into the show ring.

HG: Messy bun or baseball hat?
Helen: I would have to say messy bun, only because I don’t usually have a baseball cap handy.

HG: Snow or sand?
Helen: Sand, 100%. I grew up in Canada with the chilling arctic weather so I feel like I have done my time with snow…it’s all beach for me!

HG: Plaids or Florals?
Helen: I love plaids but a nice floral can be a fun print. Keeping the Hunter’esk feel I do always lean towards a beautiful navy plaid for my horse gear and attire.

HG: Bomber or Blazer?
Helen: Bomber when choosing between bomber or blazer but my “go-to” jacket is a black leather motto jacket. It’s just bad ass enough that no one messes with me 😉

HG: Go to nail polish?
Helen: Essie Pretty in Pink….it’s a light classic pink that brings a natural look to both my toes and hands. I sometimes swap up for a fun coral or grey tone, but mostly stick to my fav light pink by Essie.

Thanks so much Helen! xoxo

Don’t let them tame you

Don’t let them tame you

“Don’t let them tame you” is a simple phrase, but if you ask 10 different people what that phrase means to them, you’ll get 10 varying answers. Each day I have a different reaction myself but perhaps this is what makes those 5 words so enchanting. Sometimes, it stirs in me motivation. Sometimes, determination or grit. Sometimes, it reminds me to be true to myself. Other times I see it as playful, and I fondly think of my headstrong mare, Chloe.  One thing is for sure, when I look down at my AtelierCG bracelet or matching ring I get instantaneous good vibes. And who isn’t all about good vibes?

I love everything about this set. I love the gold with the black. I love that the engraving isn’t flashy, but you know it is there. I love how even though the bracelet is elegant, it feels substantial. I love how the bracelet can easily be stacked with other pieces, but it is strong enough to hold its own solo on your wrist. I love that the ring is classic and is all you need on your fingers. It also fits under riding gloves and can be worn to the barn without issue, which is great when you are heading straight to the barn from your job or school.  Clearly, I was pretty much obsessed with this matching pair from the get go. However, when the owner, Cindy, shared with me her deeply personal story, I ended up loving the pieces even more. Cindy is so inviting that I soon felt comfortable enough to ask her why she came up with the inscription and brand motto, “Don’t let them tame you”. She laughed warmly and told me “to grab a glass of wine”. She wasn’t exaggerating. Seriously, go grab a bottle.

 

Before there was AtelierCG, Cindy and her husband owned a company together, where Cindy did all the design work. Unfortunately, their relationship fell apart and they separated. Unable to continue working with her husband, Cindy walked away from their company and her financial security.  She moved into a new place with her two small children and because she needed help with the rent, took on a roommate.  The rest of her family lives in Europe so Cindy was very much alone, wondering what she was going to do next to make ends meet.  For so long Cindy had felt like she had lost herself and her unhappiness was draining. Now, she had the additional anxiety of supporting herself and children. She knew she had to pick up the pieces and move forward. She made big plans to launch her own equestrian inspired luxury company where she would be the sole owner and her own boss, and have total artistic freedom.  However, the stress and crippling anxiety of her emotional, personal and financial situation triggered related health issues and, on the way to her design factory, she suffered a stroke. Doctors were unsure if the stroke was a result of a pre-existing heart condition or the enormous stress she was under, and they prescribed Cindy an anti-depressant. Suddenly she began to have seizures and she was prescribed more medicine to help prevent those. The seizures subsided but the combination of the two medicines made Cindy literally feel crazy. She was in a mental fog. She became “numb” and felt like “she needed a break”. This feeling of “needing a break” translated into two suicide attempts, with the last one landing her in a forced 72 hour lock down in a psychiatric ward. To hear Cindy describe her experience there is truly a scene from a movie.  She began to write the following notes to herself, repeatedly, “Stay strong, don’t let them tame you. Stay strong, don’t let them tame you”. When she was released from the psych ward, her medications were immediately reviewed.  The particular combination of medications had a history of creating mental health issues and she was taken off the seizure medicine immediately and weened off the anti-depressant. Once off the medicines, she felt normal and began the process to get her life back… and her kids. After the psych ward incident her husband received temporary custody of their children. With this final blow to her world, Cindy felt like she had finally lost everything. Feeling sorry for herself was never an option, she couldn’t afford it and it wouldn’t bring her kids back. Instead, the feeling of utter loss without her kids drove her forward. Cindy channeled all her hurt, anger and fear into her work and she passionately launched AtelierCG in 2016. Today AtelierCG is carried in over 25 retail stores and Cindy shares joint custody of her kids, who remain her greatest source of inspiration.

I asked her what those 5 words mean to her today. She paused and said, “I think I would want the message to be to never give up. Bad times happen to everyone, but bad minutes do not equal a bad life.” Saying there was nothing easy about her journey is an understatement. I cannot begin to imagine what it felt like to be so alone, broke and broken, with two kids you are fighting for and battling major health issues. Cindy inspires me because she never lost sight of what she needed to do. She dug deep, and then even deeper, and she survived. She would not be tamed. xx, HG

Ring/Bracelet set comes in other color options if you do not love gold like I do and they can be purchased separately, but it is much more price efficient to take advantage of the set. SEE HERE.

The gorgeous necklace I am wearing is adjustable, black leather with a gold horse bit pendant. HIGHLY recommend it, as it is easily dressed up or down. Leather and gold…it does not get more equestrian. SEE HERE.

Cindy and her family. PC: SimpleeFocused.
Cindy and her family. PC: SimpleeFocused.

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AeroEquine: The next generation of Tack Trunks has landed.

AeroEquine: The next generation of Tack Trunks has landed.

When I first read about AeroEquine’s arrival on the tack trunk scene, I was pretty intrigued. Like many, I’ve had my wooden tack trunk from Phoenix West for over 20 years. It still has my maiden name on it, it is covered in vinyl colors worthy of a 12 year old’s taste and it looks like a 100 lb bottomless box for unorganized equestrian gadgets. Tack trunks have been on the barn aisle scene forever and they haven’t changed at all…until now. AeroEquine has created a line of modern tack trunks that weigh substantially less and are thoughtfully designed for the wannabe organized equestrian.

HG: Can you share more behind the personal story which sparked the idea for AeroEquine. When did you realize you were truly onto something?

GE: My husband, Brian, works with his brother at Edwards Interiors and they manufacture a lot of aircraft parts for Gulfstream. He has access to the latest and greatest substrates available on the market. When he met me, he had absolutely no horse experience, which we all know can be quite a culture shock! I had a hideously beat up/heavy trunk from Phoenix West. One Christmas a few years ago, he re-wrapped the vinyl on it with my farms colors. It worked fabulously (for me a least!) until I became super busy last winter with my two young jumpers hauling to shows almost every week. He of course was assisting me loading and unloading the trailer. One particular show after a few hours of unloading, set up, and schooling, we went out for dinner. He said “You know babe, your trunk is SO ugly and heavy…. what do you think if I just made you a completely new one out of some aircraft material at our shop?” Of course I wasn’t going to turn him down. A few weeks later he came home with a clean-lined tack trunk, that he could easily lift by himself. To be honest the craftsmanship surprised me so much I said you know, I think these things would sell like CRAZY…. I showed a few of my clients here at the farm and they said they wanted to be our first customers. It’s been a whirlwind since then!

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HG: AeroEquine trunks weigh only 40lbs, roughly half the weight of traditional wooden trunks, which makes all the difference at the end of a long show week. What are some of the other major differences between AeroEquine’s basicBox and the traditional wooden box that is sitting in front of most stalls today? I personally love the organizational compartments, convenient catch-all mesh pocket, cork board insert, complimentary grooming tote AND bit box…did I miss anything?!

GE: We have now started spraying the interior of the boxes and all of the compartments with a truck Bedliner material. It provides extreme durability (I did prototype testing by beating on it with a hammer!) and easy cleanability! The basicBox also has lockable casters on the bottom. We can custom match most paint colors and it adds a beautiful visual texture to the inside of the box. When you walk down our farms aisle at the show, the basicBoxs have a stunningly simple beauty about them. Clean lines, matte finish, custom logos, and most importantly, every basicBox is crafted by Brian himself (of course after I approve the design and paint colors :)).

HG: So far we have only talked about the basicBox…and there is nothing “basic” about it. However, I am drooling over the techBox. As an equestrian lifestyle blogger and small business owner (Pony Glam), I am always on my phone. I am either taking pictures, emailing orders or doing my social media catchup/homework. In other words, my phone is always dead. The techBox comes with an USB charging port AND bluetooth speakers!! I could simultaneously charge my phone while making Chloe listen to my (amazing) playlists! This is genius! I also saw that there is an ammyBox that is coming soon. Any hints?

GE: I debuted the first techBox at a show in Aiken, South Carolina recently and it was a HIT!!!! Everyone was stopping by to play their favorite song and catch a quick charge. See a snippet from the show below!

 

The ammyBox was the brainchild of one of my amateur clients at the barn…. we are developing a cooling box that will keep your medications, water, cocktails, you name it, the perfect temp within easy reach! Also, I should mention we are doing  a ponyBox, which will be a smaller size of the basicBox for the pony kids at the barn!

HG: In the future, do you see additional products that you want to add to your line or do you think you will focus solely on the trunks for now?

GE: We have a few new products working their way through our design stage. The wallBox is a wall grooming box that we anticipate will weigh around 10-15lbs, compared to traditional wall boxes at 40lbs!  Also, be on the lookout for AeroEquine’s Wing. It is something everyone needs, but that is all I can say about it right now! 😉 I am also a bit of an equestrian fashion nut so I am hoping to be able to launch my own line of clothing sometime in the future, focusing on streamlined sophisticated style.

HG: Any good tips for running a new equestrian business with a spouse?

GE: You definitely have to have a sense of humor. Starting any business is so tough, and so many fail before you even get a chance to reap the benefits. The most important thing to remember is that you get what you put into it. If you truly believe you have a product that will make a huge impact on an industry, you have to put everything you have into it. And another key word is patience. Coca Cola sold 24 bottles their first year in existence. Our first year has been tough, and we don’t expect it to get much easier in the near future but we are firm believers in what we have to offer, and will do everything we can to make it successful!

Thanks so much Genevieve for giving me the scoop on AeroEquine. Best of luck to you and Brian- you have a truly great product and vision for the future! I can’t wait to hear more about the top-secret Wing! xx, HG

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Ponies = Parker Peacock = Name To Remember

Ponies = Parker Peacock = Name To Remember

Meet Parker Peacock. She’s cute as can be, full of spunk, and can ride a pony like a champ (quite literally). Parker is a mere 9 years young, although she was quick to let me know she is almost 10. She lives in Winston Salem, North Carolina, where she currently has 6 ponies she rides for Peacock Acres, a farm owned and managed by her mother, Ashley. Growing up in an equestrian household means that Parker “has been riding for as long as she can remember”.

HG:  When you are not at a horse show, what is a typical Saturday at Peacock Acres like for you?
PP: I go to the barn early and ride 2-3 ponies. Then I play with my mini ponies and jump them over mini-jumps.

HG: In addition to your minis, you have so many adorable ponies. I hate to have you choose, butttt I am going to anyway. When I say a word, tell me the pony that first pops into your mind.
HG: Sweetest?
PP: Neigh.
HG: Treat monster?
PP: Sailor.
HG: Class clown?
PP: Waylon.
HG: Fancy?
PP: Waylon.

HG: You answered that Waylon is the class clown of the pony barn. Why?
PP: Well, Waylon is the youngest and can often misbehave. He also has the most nicknames, like shrimp and grits, biscuit and cream puff.

HG: What is it like being the daughter of a trainer and the barn owner?
PP: I like it cause I always get to go to the barn.

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Parker and Neigh.

HG: Congratulations on recently qualifying and competing in the Small Pony Hunter division at the prestigious Pennsylvania National Horse Show in Harrisburg. What was going through your mind when you entered the indoor arena for the first time?
PP: I was very nervous because it was my first time showing at Indoors and the arena is very overwhelming when you walk in. Neigh (AKA Glenhaven Astoria) was nervous too because it was her first time also so I rubbed her neck right before we walked in.

HG: What was the best part and worst part about Harrisburg?
PP: The best part was how cool it was to do an Indoor horse show. The worst part was how the arena felt really small when I was riding.

HG: Tell us about winning the Sportsmanship Award there? That is quite an honor. Why do you think you won?
PP: I always went into the arena with a smile. Even when the trip wasn’t the best, I always made sure to reward Neigh. Neigh was one of the youngest ponies, and I am only 9, so we were one of the youngest teams. I think the judges liked our positive attitudes, no matter how our trips went.

HG: What are your pony goals for this show season?
PP: My goals are to qualify for both Devon and Harrisburg, again.

HG: What is one thing you want to improve on with your riding?
PP: I need to keep practicing my course jumping. I want to slow it down and make it look as smooth as it can.

HG: Where do you see yourself in 4 years?
PP: I want to be doing 3’6″ hunters and start doing equitation.

HG: Do you have any good luck charms or superstitious things you do or wear at a big show?
PP: My grandmother passed away before Pony Finals 2017. I keep her casino card in my pocket.

HG: What is your must-have rider product and must-have horse product?
PP: Samshield helmet and Pony Glam Hoof Hi-lites.

HG: What do you hope Santa brings you this year?
PP: I want a puppy from Santa! I also want a halter for my mini, new riding gloves and chaps, and a Jott jacket.

Thanks so much for chatting, Parker. Can’t wait to see you shine in the pony ring this year! xoxo

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Mini playing at Peacock Acres.

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Bethany’s Equestrian Style

Bethany Lee is the founder and voice behind the hit blog, My Equestrian Style. She is in the top running for Style Editor for The Plaid Horse, so please be sure to vote for her if you can! A long time equestrian, Bethany has been riding since she was 5 years old, and currently shows as a professional in the hunter/jumper divisions in Jacksonville, FL. Her favorite thing about the sport is seeing how much a green prospect can change and develop in a short amount of time with consistent riding and proper training.  When asked about her personal goals for the remainder of the year she said she would love to be more consistent about hitting the gym, as she thinks it is the best way to get better at riding outside of being in the saddle. I was so excited to be able to chat with her about her personal style because I love her effortless look and casual vibe, and I think you all will too! Big thanks to Bethany for being Horse Glam’s first quickfire style interview!

Scarf from the Red Scarf Equestrian

HG: Must-have color for Fall?
Bethany: Rust and burgundy.

HG: Ruffles or pin-stripes?
Bethany: Both!

HG: Favorite color of Tailored Sportsman?
Bethany: I love that dark green with the vintage patches (Black Forest, I believe!).

HG: Big Christmas item on the wishlist this year?
Bethany: I got it early— my new CWD saddle 🙂

HG: Go-to hairstyle?
Bethany: I have so much hair and with the heat, I usually throw it in a top knot until it’s under a helmet!

HG: Beauty secret? (Mine is I wash my face every night no matter what!)
Bethany: Kleenex Cleansing Wipes right after I ride.

HG: Sun glasses or hat?
Bethany: Both.. have you seen my ginger skin?

HG: Lipstick or lipgloss?
Bethany: Lipstick.

HG: Black or navy?
Bethany: Black, but that was a really hard decision for me!

HG: Favorite Fall jacket?
Bethany: For fall, I’m more of a vest girl. I have a great Ellany Equestrian puffer vest with my monogram on the back of the neck. Its gorgeous!

HG: Off the shoulder or cut out sleeves?
Bethany: Off the shoulder, always.

Thanks Bethany!! xo Andrea + Chloe

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What’s in your Pony’s Pantry?

What’s in your Pony’s Pantry?

Meet 14 year old, equestrian entrepreneur, Gabbi Sousa. She rides ponies by day, and cooks up organic horse treats by night. Just 3 months ago, she launched Pony Pantry, a natural Horse Treat company based in Matthews, North Carolina. Pony Pantry’s inaugural treats are called OatNuts, which are donut-shaped treats made with yummy goodness, and they come in 3 flavors: Carrot, Apple and Peppermint. For those of you technical people out there that don’t trust my palate, Oatnuts are made of rolled and steel cut oats, molasses, whole grain rye flour and other secret, but healthy, ingredients.

Chloe:  So Gabbi, do you need any professional taste testers? I am pretty busy but I can clear my schedule for a longtime friend.
GS: That would be great! We would love to have a horse with your incredible palate try our treats!

Chloe: Offer accepted! I know you have been making horse treats for yourself and your barn friends for a few years. When did you decide to take your treat making to the next level and start Pony Pantry?
GS: I began making horse treats in the local Young Riders 4-H club as a project. I had always loved making horse treats because Bella, my first pony, loves treats. I always gave her some of my home made treats after a ride, and now I do the same with my current pony, Jackson! I wanted to begin my own business to create my very own treats so that Jackson could have an unlimited supply and so I could share with others!

Chloe: Sounds like music to my ears! What has been the hardest part of starting Pony Pantry?

IMG_4167GS: Learning that making treats and actually selling them requires a lot of approvals, legal things, laboratory analysis and other things that my dad was responsible for!

Chloe: Yeah, you should definitely make your dad do all the boring stuff! Tell me more about the monthly subscription service. Could I just slip you this credit card I found in Andrea’s bag and you add my name to the service?
GS: Absolutely! The Monthly Treats Club allows you to receive two tubes of treats each and every month for 1 year. You can cancel at any time!

Chloe: Is there anything you want readers to know about Pony Pantry? Why should they choose your treats over the other options?
GS: Our treats are a simple, nutritious snack with all natural ingredients.  After speaking with many equine veterinarians, they were concerned about the amount of refined sugars people were feeding to horses and ponies. So because of this, we do notdecorate them with sugar or fondant.

Our biggest seller is our Pony Pantry Trainer Treats. These are peppermint-flavored small treats that can be used as part of training for groundwork and bonding exercises, and simple rewards. Also, and why trainers love them, they are a great replacement for that piece of peppermint candy given ringside. Our feeling is that instead of giving them a lump of straight sugar, you can give them something that tastes good and is healthier for them! Finally, another cool thing is that our tubes can fit easily in your grooming box or in side pocket of your ringside backpack or riding backpack!

Thank you so much Gabbi, and dad, Rick, for hanging out and telling everyone more about Pony Pantry! For more information and to purchase your Pony Pantry treats, visit www.ponypantry.com.

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