Secret Mommyhood Confessions Saturday

My kid is a window-licker.

I know babies put everything in their mouth because it is a way of exploring.  They see, they smell, they touch, they hear, and of course, they taste.

I also know that baby drool, like dog drool, helps babies recognize things.

I also am aware the baby drool has certain germ-killing things in it (it really does!  I learned this from Eddie’s ped AND babycenter, so you know it’s GOT to be true!)

But as Eddie grew, so did his pension for relentlessly sucking on every last thing in our house.

Oh, he still puts things in his mouth from time to time, but it’s more to bite at stuff than to explore.  He doesn’t suck on lamby anymore (thank GOODNESS), but he will still put the head of superman in his mouth and bite at the pointy hair.  You know, toddler stuff.

However recently Cort and I have started noticed some, uh, licking.

Cort watched as Eddie pressed his face on our sliding door.  They giggled as Eddie’s face smooshed.  And then?  The lounge came out.  As Eddie slid his face, his tongue slid along on the glass.  Ew.

About a week ago Eddie and I were home together in the evening.  He walked up to a shelf we have with a lamp on it and started licking the shelving unit and then biting at the screws.  As he licked he watched me…smiling.

My child seriously watched me as he ran his tongue over the enter shelving thing.  Like he expected me to be all sorts of proud of him.

Um, what?

Yesterday our daycare provider, Miss Amy had a question for Cort during pick-up.  Did he know that Eddie licks windows?

Sigh…

Yes.  We know.

Does your toddler do this?  Is it normal?  And maybe the most important question…WHY is he doing this?

Don’t forget to enter my birthday giveaways!  You have less than 24 hours to get in on the goodness!

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And while you are feeling the love of Sluiter Nation, will you please vote for me in the Mom Central Grant Contest?  We have slipped to 5th place, and I would love to stay in the Top Five.  Please?

Secret Mommyhood Confession

I love my birthday.

I know some women like their birthday, but they are not really all that excited about turning another year older.

I am seriously like a child about my birthday.

As soon as the calendar says March, I start thinking about that day at the end of the month that is MINE!

MINE!

Yes, I turn 33 on my birthday, and no I am not ashamed to say that.  Some people don’t like to admit their age, but I have no problem telling it to you, my students, or a random person on the street.

So what?  I am 33…or almost 33.

No, I don’t LIKE that I am getting older, but as my dad says, “it’s better than the alternative.”

So true, dad.  So true.

And that is why my birthday is so awesome.

Not only is it my very own special day when I entered this world, but it means I am still here.  I made it another year.

I have made it through another year of crap and celebration.  Of mountains and valleys.  Of anxiety and joys.

I know I spend a LOT of time hating on myself and seeing my downfalls…but for some reason?  Every year, my birthday is the day I have no problem celebrating me.  Of finding the happy in who I am.

I think it’s because for people to celebrate you on your birthday is natural.  It’s easy to take people for granted throughout the year, but birthdays are days we think about the special people in our lives.

And that works for me as well.  I mean, it works for me to think about ME that way too.

It’s funny because birthdays were really overemphasized in my family.  Yes, my mom and dad made a point of making us the “special kid” on that day because it was our day, but we never had extravagant parties or got out of chores or were allowed to stay home from school or any of that.

We were celebrated simply.

But somehow, out of that simple love, grew a HUGE love of my birthday.

In high school and college I used to remind everyone in my life of how many days there were until my birthday starting at LEAST a month ahead of time.

I don’t go to those extremes anymore, but I do love the people who take the time to really remember that I love my birthday.

Cort is really great at that.  He is not that overly attached to his birthday, but he knows it’s a big deal for me and always works extra special hard to make me feel special. As do my parents and some super awesome friends.

(by the way?  I LOVE that facebook advertises your birthday…getting a trillion birthday wishes from people who probably don’t even talk to you the rest of the year?  I’ll take it!)

So.  I love my birthday.  March 27, 1978…the day I arrived here from my momma’s tummy.

This whole week coming up is full of birthday wonder and excitement (yes, I even have some pretty awesome giveaways for YOU!!).

As if this whole blog thing isn’t about me enough already?  It’s about to get a whole LOT more all about me!

So get ready!

Thus begins…The Week of Kate!!!  ::insert me doing my tappity tappity birthday dance…or perhaps shaking what my momma gave me::

Get ready to party, people. And yes, this is me with blond hair again.

Do you love your birthday?  Are you a fellow March birthday?  Tell me some birthday stuff about YOU!

Secret Mommy-hood Confession Saturday

My child is determined to make me look like an idiot.

It all started when he was quite wee.

He would cry and scream and carry on in his colicky way.  I would cry and scream and pull my hair out.

And then we would go out in public or to one of our friend’s houses or to see our family.

And the boy would sleep or coo the entire time.  People would pass his little burrito-ed self around and sniff his head and tickle his toes and he would be the most content thing you ever met.

Everyone would say, “I don’t know what you are talking about!  He is always so GOOD!”

I was sure this was coincidence.  I mean, and infant cannot have a diabolical scheme against his parents, right?

The boy grew and changed. This is when the tantrums and the meltdowns started.   We would say, “no no, Eddie” and he would fling himself to the floor or hit the chair or the cat or us and scream.  Oh did he scream.

We go out?  And he is all smiles and dancing and wonderful.  He is a different child.

This is when I started giving him the side-eye.  I was pretty sure he had an agenda to make the world believe this his parents?  Were lying imbeciles who just liked to complain about how hard parenting is.

This week, he convinced me of his plotting.

Let me preface this by saying last week he hurt his ankle (or foot…hard to tell with a 20 month old) by falling over a friend (yes, he is as graceful as his mother).  It bothered him for less than 24 hours.  The weekend was totally fine.

Tuesday night?  Things got NOT FINE very fast.

All night long Eddie was up clutching his foot (or ankle, who knows).  Every 30-45 minutes he would SCREAM out from his bed, and we would find him holding his foot or waving it in the air at us.

This was a long night.

Somewhere around 4am, I asked Cort if he wanted me to take Eddie to the doctor that day.  I knew he couldn’t take our little man; Wednesday was his first day of his new job.  They tend to frown on people taking off their first day.

We agreed that I should stay home.  This was obviously painful to him and his little foot was warm and a bit swollen.

So I groggily put in for a sub and typed up some last minute lesson plans.

Fast-forward to our appointment later that morning.

Not only does Eddie totally walk into the appointment all cheery (like he really got more sleep than I did?  no.), but he dances…DANCES…around the exam room with the toys.

At this point I feel like his doctor is going to shoo us away with a nice pat on the head for the crazy worried mommy, but no.  She thinks that to be safe, he should have an X-ray done.

So I get Eddie’s socks and shoes back on, we check out at the pediatrician’s office, and head downstairs to take the corridor to the hospital to get the X-rays.

And yes, Eddie runs through the corridor like a crazy person because there is so much space.

I struggle to keep him somewhat not annoying to others in the lobby, then fight with him to stay on my lap in the little check-in room, and then finally let him play with the toys while we wait for the X-ray tech to call us back.

When the tech finally comes for us, Eddie is clearly done with this trip.  He does NOT want to leave the toys.

Enter: meltdown.

I calmly hold his hand and drag guide him to where we need to go.

And of course, the X-ray tech says, “hey, I thought he couldn’t walk on it.”

Yeah, thanks.  That was when he originally hurt it.  Now?  Apparently he is ready for Cabaret.

So they do the X-rays, we get back home, have our lunch and both take naps.

My nap is interrupted by a phone call from the pediatrician’s office.

“X-rays came back normal.  No fractures.”

Just like I figured.  He probably pulled something that was throbbing a bit in the night.  But he is fine now.

And while this conversation is going on?  My students are treating my sub like crap, my monitor at work dies, and my son?

He is sleeping and dreaming of his next plot to make me look like a lying crazy lady.

Click to vote every 24 hours for Sluiter Nation to win the Mom Central grant!

And don’t forget to shop my Thirty-One party! Ends this week! (go to “my events” and shop my party–Katie Sluiter).


Secret Mommyhood Confession

I judge.

That’s right.  I’m a judgey judgerson.

Don’t be all nervous.  I am not judging you.  right now.  Chances are I did though.  When I first met you or read your blog or emailed with you or read a comment you left.

Some people call it “first impressions”.  That is just a nice way of saying “judged”.

I think we all do it, am I wrong?

I mean, I fairly certain my brain is hardwired to make a judgment the first time I “meet” someone.   Isn’t everyone’s?

We all know how I judged every person in the Olive Garden a couple weeks ago.  And as many of you said in the comments, it’s all about making first impressions.

I started thinking about that, and I realized that I judge everyone and everything…at least once.  And I have been beating myself up over it.

For example, this morning I went to Shoe Carnival to get myself some cute black shoes to go with the outfit I want to wear tonight to Cort’s cousin’s wedding.   I judged everyone in there on what they were wearing.

I immediately put it out of my head (because I am not a total jerk), but for a split second, my mind took in what they had on, what kind of shoe they were looking at, and even how their kids were acting.

Admittedly, the woman with the tatrumy toddler?  I gave her the “oh honey…you are so brave” look.  But my FIRST thought?  “Ugg…screaming kid” because I had just left one of those at home.

And I know people were judging me too.

I have a zit colony the size of DC on my jowl chin and I hadn’t done my hair except for a messy bun.  I was wearing an old hoodie (in an attempt to be bulky enough in the collar to cover up my zit colony) and blow out boots (yes, I bought new boots).

If I saw me?  My first thought probably would have been, “it’s Saturday, not Slopperday” and then I would have immediately dismissed it.

But I left the house that way anyway.  Because hopefully, people are like me, they  judge and dismiss…unless given a reason not to.

I know people who are all like, “I totally withhold ALL judgment until I get to know a person,” and I have to call BS on that.  How can you not make SOME sort of immediate judgment when you first encounter someone either in person or in the blog world?

We size up what someone is wearing.

We hear the way they talk…the words they choose.

We see people’s writing.

We know what they choose to share.

I think because I know I do this, I am assuming everyone else does too.  That is probably why it is a very rare thing for me to be caught shopping in my pajamas.  Yoga pants and sweat shirt, sure, but not my jammies and slippers.

I am also conscious of it on my blog.

Sure I write for me.  But to say I ONLY write for me is a total lie.  I write for you too.  I like you. I like what you have to say.  So I think about YOU when I write.

And I always think, “what if this is the first post a new reader sees?”

Because I know blogging is a fickle place.  If I visit a blog for the first time and I am overwhelmed with ads or widgets in the side bars or music is blasted at me or if the content is hard to read or if the content is boring…I am probably not coming back.

And I know you are that way too.

I judge.

And you do too.

It’s how we know we like someone or don’t.

It’s how we decide to follow a blog or not.

It’s the reason first impressions are important.  Because I the world is judging.

Now pardon me…I have a zit colony to expunge.

Revised to Say….

I don’t mean to sound like all judging results in negative decisions.  We judge things based on what we see/read/hear, but then we make decisions based on those judgments.  Not everyone that I “judge” is deemed a bad person/mom.  Most of the time it’s just the opposite.  In fact, unless you prove you’re not wonderful, I judge that you probably are!

Secret Mommy-hood Confession Saturday

This bothers a bunch of my family and friends but…

I don’t do the telephone.

I hate it.

Talking on the phone for non-business reasons gives me hives.

Ok, to be honest, I am not a fan of making business-type calls either.  But when I can have a script in my head of what is going to be said by me and then by the person on the other end?  I am better than just a friendly call.

Most people think I am just being silly when I tell them to text or email me, and they call me anyway.  And they go to voicemail.  And they get a text back.

I am serious, people.

I don’t do the phone.

Yes, I will return parent phone calls at work and occasionally make calls to parents when it’s necessary.  But I prefer email or face to face.

The only person…and I mean ONLY person…I do not feel weird with on the phone is my mom.  I call her ALL THE TIME.  Probably because she is my mom.  I don’t need a script with her.

But even with Cort…I prefer an email if I am at work or a text if I am elsewhere.

It doesn’t help that I HATE to be on the phone outside of my house even more than I hate being on the phone inside my house.

I don’t hear people well on the phone…that could be another one of my issues.  And because it’s the phone I can’t figure out what they are saying by gestures of facial expressions.

Yes, I have had my hearing checked, and even after the years of loud concerts it is perfect.

So I don’t know.

I don’t even like to call for pizza or Chinese food.

It is that bad, people.

Cort tries to MAKE me call sometimes, but it’s of no use.  I will change my mind about dinner just so I don’t have to call for it.

(On a side note:  God bless online ordering.)

I am just better in writing.

Writing gives me time to think…to pick just the right words.

I like to think I am great at communicating in writing.

On the phone (and even sometimes in person)?   Not so much.

I am awkward.

So now there are people out there who are begging me to get on skype.

What are you trying to do to me, people?

Secret Mommyhood Confessions

This week has been a roller coaster for me as evidenced by my up and down posts this week.  In the middle of said coaster, I was directed by The Empress to go read a post by Melanie on Bronx to Boulder. And when the Empress tells all the world to do something?  You do it.

I totally related to Melanie’s post about blogging being a bit like high school–not knowing who your “circle” of friends is.

And then, the lovely Gigi posted about questioning your blogging.  Amazing.  Again it was EXACTLY what I had been going through lately.

Because friends?

My name is Katie, and I have low blog esteem.

It’s true.  I have been fighting it like crazy and telling myself I don’t care about numbers or comments…I am here to WRITE!

Yeah, right.

I’ll just admit right now that I love it when people read my words.  Love it.  Getting comments is like a little high..once you’ve had that high, you want it over and over.

I have been blogging for almost four years.  Just my family and friends read for the first three years.  If I got a comment, I about had a heart attack.  Oh there were some faithful friends (Missy, Trisha) who would leave me a little love here and there, but I mostly wrote just because I wanted to.

And then you all found me (I won’t lie, twitter helped with this. So if you are all new to blogging?  GET ON TWITTER!).

Since that day I have been struggling with my confidence as a blogger.

You see, I have read the “big blogs,” I have swapped stories and comments and twitter love with some bloggers who–in my eyes–are wildly successful.

I have found myself thinking that I am “friends” with a group of people only to notice that they have jokes I know nothing about.  Or they are all DM-ing each other on twitter, while my direct message column sits empty.

I have had posts I write explode with comments only to have a week go by where you would think my blog fell off the interwebs.

I have (foolishly) stared at my analytics to see if I am getting more readers.

And I have compared my writing to some of the best (again, foolishly).

Up until recently, I thought everyone in the blog world was lovely and friendly and just great.  People?  This is not the case.

I have learned of backstabbing and using and lying and stealing and gossiping and hurt.

I liked it better when I was naive and didn’t know there were “mean girls” in the blog world.

I never went into blogging thinking I could make a name for myself or get a book deal.  I just like to write.

More often than not, I have to remind myself of that.

Because I have become addicted.  Addicted to the comments.  To the community.  To the hope of finding real friendships.

And this addiction has left me uncertain.

Am I good enough to hang with the great writers?

Do I deserve the recognitions that people do give me?

Will those readers be back tomorrow?

Should I be doing more?

But in the end?  It really doesn’t matter.  I do love to push myself to be better for you, but really I am here for me.

And the only person I am really competing with here is myself.

Secret Mommyhood Confession Saturday

Before I tell you my confession this week, I have to first state that I know I am extremely blessed.

Not only is my husband a budgeting ninja (yeah, eat it, Dave Ramsey….you WISH you could be as sexy with your budgeting prowess as Cort is), but I am blessed with opportunities that allow me to bring in some extra money for my family so we can still have some fun.  I really, REALLY am thankful for what I have.  So this is not a complaint.  It’s a confession.

That being said?

I am the jealous type.

Not when it comes to my husband. No way.

I realize Cort is a super cutie pie who is easy to flirt with.  Shoot, he’s been woo-ing the ladies since I met him at the ripe age of 6.  Yes, moms and grandmas LOVE Cort.

No, I am jealous of what you have.

It’s true.

That contest you won where you got a Gussy/The Vintage Pearl/super awesome great etsy shop credit?

Or that sweet vacation you just tweeted about?

How about that sweet cute thing that someone sent you because your kid is so darn cute?

Jealous. Jealous. Jealous.

I am jealous of your body, your clothes, your accesories.

I envy your writing talent, your blog numbers, your sponsors, your craftiness.

I die when I hear about your sweet new TV, your ipad, your trip to that warm place that serves drinks with umbrellas, or your massage.

Your toddler who calls you momma?  I want that.

Your husband who buys you flowers and jewelry?  I wish mine did that sometimes.

Your time to exercise?  I wish.

I want three bathrooms instead of one dinky one.

I want a second floor with a cute banister and a fireplace.

I want your sweet new car (even if it IS a minivan ::shudder::) just so I am not driving something that cramps my child’s legs.

I want your carefree attitude.

I want your stay at home-ness (but when I am home?  I want your workingness).

I want your king-sized bed.

Yes, I even want you sweet tats and edgy haircut.

sigh…

Ok, I don’t really WANT all these things.  At least not all the time.

I am just jealous.

I KNOW good things happen to us, but I feel like those good things are mostly happening to other people.

But I know that is the murky perception that is my depression.  It distorts things and makes me feel like only crap falls on us.  Which simply isn’t true.

However, I thought it fair to tell you now that when something awesome happens to you?  Yes, I am SUPER jealous…but I am also over-the-moon excited for you.

And jealous.

But mostly happy for you.

Mostly.

Secret Mommy-hood Confessions Saturday

I really like that Kim does Secret Mommy-hood Confessions Saturdays.  I helps me vent out things that have been weighing on me all week.

So here is today’s:

I’m tired.

I know that is not a juicy one.  In fact, now you’re bored and will probably just move on, and that’s ok.

But I’m going to plunge ahead anyway, Ok?

This week totally exhausted me.  So much so that after getting out of bed this morning at 10:00 (thank you, Cort!), I played with Eddie for an hour and then passed out on the couch for THREE HOURS.

This week was hard on me even though it really wasn’t a bad week.  Ever have one of those?

I am tired of picking up after teenagers.

I am tired of students leaving things behind and then freaking out WEEKS later.

I am tired of having to say, “get back to work,” “let’s focus,” “talk while you work…WHILE you work,” among other things.

I am tired of giving a thousand chances to maybe get a D- instead of an F.

I”m tired of having to hound 18 year olds about graduation requirements.

I”m tired of doing more for less.

I also learned some exhausting lessons this week.

students never hear you the first time (this should not be knew, but in light of the week, it was frustrating).

adults can act every bit as immature as a 14 year old can.

adults can back stab you if they think it will get them in good with someone.

not many people can keep a secret.

massive week-long blog events that include a gazillion giveaways are incredibly rewarding…and exhausting.

I need to toot my own horn when I want to be recognized for something I am proud of.  Maybe others will pick up their horns for me too, but maybe not.  So I have to play LOUD–for myself.

It’s exhausting to be proud of yourself.  Many positive things happened to me this week–mostly in the blogging world–and keeping up with them left my head spinning.

But I will end this tired ramble with the things I am proud of, that I hope you will take the time to check out.

The first is huge.  HUGE.  I have a new button on my blog.  It looks like this:
I was syndicated on BlogHer.com

That’s right!  I am on BlogHer with my post My Mother’s Hands.  Because of tons of encouragement from this lady, this lady, and of course this lady, AND with Cort rooting me on, I shoved all my fear of rejection down and submitted five of my babies posts to BlogHer.

Knowing the talent that they usually pick up, I really wasn’t expecting to hear back (I know, I know…lame of me), but when that email landed in my inbox?  I FREAKED OUT!

Cort was gone to class and I just scooped Eddie up and danced and cried with him.  He thought his momma had finally lost it.

So anyway, please go read my post over there…and leave me some love and sparkles if you like it.

I have also been adding this little guy to a couple of my posts lately:

 MommyofaMonster This post was featured!

That’s right, the sweet and talented Natalie has taken notice of me lately (which makes me blush), and has featured me two weeks in a ROW on her Monster Likes weekend round up of her fave posts.  This week my writing tips made the cut.  Go check out who else she likes this week (always good reads, by the way).

Third, in case you hadn’t heard, I am now on the team at The Red Dress Club

I am all sorts of honored and still blown away that Nichole and Cheryl–two writers I hugely look up to–would even consider me to be part of their team, let alone ask me!  To me, this is exactly the thing that has been missing from my writing life.  It pushes me to read more, contact other writers, and think outside of my own writing box.  I love it.

Speaking of The Red Dress Club, some of you may or may not know that I have this blog:

this is where I do my creative writing.  Right now there is a piece of fiction I just posted–and I almost never write fiction–that I feel pretty good about.  I’d love for you to give it a read and tell me what you think.  It’s called White Agony.

Since I am listing things I am proud of here, I also still have Katie’s Bookcase:

I haven’t posted here in a while since I am in the middle of reading books…as are many of my contributors.  If you have read a book that you would like to submit a review for, contact me, and we will set something up!

Lastly, if you haven’t entered all of mine and Miranda’s giveaways?   You can find a list of all the links here.

More than one person asked me this week asked how I do it all.  Even my therapist wanted to know.

And I just shake my head.

I don’t know.  I really don’t.  I all I can say is, if you really, REALLY love something, you will do it.  If something brings joy to you in spite of the challenges it causes, you will do it.

Or at least I will.

But?  It will still tire me out.


Secret Mommyhood Friendship Confession

This week’s confession is something I have been thinking about A LOT this week, which means poor Cortney has had to listen to it a LOT this week.

I don’t understand, therefore I am not good at, female friendships.

At least not the ones that require me to be involved in them on a daily basis.

That sounds bad.

Here is my deal:  I suck at being a way involved friend in REAL life.

My best friend lives in Chicago.  Since high school, we have never lived close enough to hang out regularly.  We send each other random, funny cards.  We text each other.  We email.  We facebook.  We tweet.  But we don’t see each other a ton.

And our friendship is awesome.  It was awesome in high school too, but it’s still like that.

I really do care and love ALL my friends a TON.  But my level of involvement as far as planning things and hanging out?  Totally sucks.  I’m not good at it.

Also?  I don’t like to “mix” my friend groups.  I like my high school friends separate from my college friends separate from my work friends, etc.  Yes, that is all OCD of me, but when they mix, dynamics change and I get anxiety.

Plus?  I tend to be honest.  I assume when you ask me my thoughts on someone, you want the real answer.  I don’t try to be cruel, but if you ask me about something bothersome, I’ll tell you.

I mean, I assume no one has PERFECT friends, right?  We all have something that bugs us about each of our friends, right?  There are the friends who suck at returning emails.  There are those who seem to be “one-uppers” and always have something worse happening than you do.  There are those who seem to lack any sort of common sense.

But we still love them because they are our friends.

(by the way, I am sure one of the main irks my friends find with me is that I am never available except online, but that is a guess).

Let me give you an example.  Cort and I have a male friend who is pretty cheap.  He likes to hold onto his money.  He knows this; we can say it and he doesn’t get mad.  BUT if I had a female friend who was cheap?  And she found out I thought she was cheap?  She would get mad.  Even though SHE IS CHEAP. But the thing is?  I would love her despite her cheapness.

sigh…

Anyway, what I am trying to say is, I love my friends fiercely…really.  But sometimes, I am afraid they get all mad and drama-ish because of something I say or plans I can’t make.  And I don’t get that.

Cortney and his friend Mat have often referred to me as Elaine from Seinfeld.  There is an episode where she is crabbing about not having many female friends–that she just doesn’t “get” them.  They respond that she is a “man’s woman”–that she just does better being friends with men because there aren’t any hidden codes or drama.

Yes.  This is me.

But I do treasure the female friends I have.  They are so much more supportive–verbally–than guys are.  They can sense my hurt and they know what to say.  They feel my joys and say more than, “cool”.

But I just suck at understanding those women and what they want from me.

I like to laugh.  I like to talk about serious stuff.  I like to know I can trust someone.

I don’t like to try to figure out what “someone means by that”.  I am not good with passive aggressive statements and code.

So many women talk about others behind their backs like they don’t want the subject to know…why?  When I say something about someone, it’s something I would tell them to their face if they asked.

But who asks, “what do I do that is annoying to you?”  because we don’t want to know!

I don’t want to hear that I suck as someone who will show up to planned events.  I know this.  I would hope my friends know this about me and love me anyway.

I guess what this whole ramble is about is that I just don’t get it. I grew up with brothers.  If they thought I was being a turd?  They told me.  And I told them if they were being lame. I am this way with everyone in my life.

If you are ever mad at me?  You should probably just tell me…because I have no clue. If I sense crabby or passive-aggressive anger from you?  I will just let it be because I don’t have the time or energy to “figure out” what I did to you.  JUST TELL ME.

And I hope you love me anyway…even for my faults.  Because I love you despite your faults.

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