- I woke up far too early on Wednesday. 5 AM! I wanted to go back to sleep, but my nerves got me, and I got up.
- Although I do not eat or drink anything until after my weigh-in, I made the coffee and sat down to catch up on my email and Facebook.
- I wanted to watch “This Is Us” on-demand, but I didn’t quite have enough time, so I put it off until Wednesday night.
- Eventually, I showered and dressed, made my breakfast, put it in the thermos and by 7:45 I was out the door.
- I arrived at WW Class. I am almost always the first one with the exception of the woman who weighs us in, Tami.
- As you can see I have done very well for the month of January.
I am so proud of all my hard work. Losing weight is not easy, but if you really work on it, it can be done!
- After class, I felt like I was walking on air, and I did a little grocery shopping and then came home. I didn’t have a lot of time to kill, but just enough so I could make take-along lunches for Jack and me.
- We drove down to Manchester, NH and after a series of about six turns, we arrived at Dr. H.’s Office.
- I was put through a series of preliminary tests, a complete medical history was taken, and then I was led into another exam room where I met with Dr. H.
- She is an amazing doctor, and she did a complete exam before ordering a “Field of Vision” and a picture of my “Optic Nerve“.
- After those tests, I was shown into her other office, and she completed the exam and then went over the results.
- I have Intra-Ocular Hypertension. It is the beginning of Glaucoma. So far the tests indicate that my “Optic Nerve” looks okay, and the “Field of Vision” was close to normal. I am starting drops and hopefully, this will bring my pressures down (currently they are 26 in each eye) and I can avoid any other problems.
- I go back in one month for a recheck, and it is hoped that the daily drops will do the trick. All in all, the day was busy, but with only really positive results!
Thirteen Things I Think About.
- I saw a sneaker on the side of the road. I wondered…where is the other one? Is there a man or woman walking around with only one sneaker?
- Why do people enter the roadway in front of you, and then slow down? I wondered at this today when I had no car behind me and yet a young man roared in front of me from a side road and then slowed down to a snail’s pace?
- Why do Wild Turkeys always seem to gather near the edge of roads? Are they trying to get hit?
- Why do Tornados seem to head for and hit Mobile Home Parks?
- How does dust settle on my tables, shelves etc, mere moments after I dust them?
- My “Crow Proof” bird feeder isn’t exactly crow proof.
Those little buggers fly up, grab some suet, fall off and go right back and try again. It’s provided Jack and me with endless moments of entertainment!
- My little Downey Woodpecker comes by to visit each day.
By this, I mean he actually comes to feed when I am standing outside or seated at our little patio table. He almost seems to know me and trust me. I just love this!
- There is a Fox in our neighborhood. We’re all a bit nervous. The last fox taken into custody was Rabid. So we’re watching the pooches carefully.
- I finally got tired of seeing Arnie’s ears all but dragging on the ground! So I picked him up and gave his ears a good trim!
I still need to work the stripping comb on him. He has such a thick and luxurious coat, that needs thinning and stripping, that is for sure.
- What am I making for dinner tonight? After such a long day I would hate to cook a big meal, knowing I still have no dishwasher and will need to wash, dry and put away all the dishes I make! Ugh!
- I need to get paid more. Besides doing the cooking, dishes, cleaning, and laundry, I have another title…Nurse! Jack fell again today and cut himself in three places. After cleaning the wounds, I bandaged them up. Yup, add Nurse to my job description!
- I’m struggling with WW. There I have said it! I try and I get through breakfast and I’m doing well and then at 10 o’clock I want to eat. Ugh! I will not give up.
- And lastly, today I saw a company moving one of those huge water tanks. You know, the ones you see in towns up on stilts? Anyway, the flatbed truck had it strapped down, and it took up two entire lanes. Four State Police vehicles with lights were guiding the way as well as two outriding company trucks. I have never seen anything that large on a public highway! I was driving and I couldn’t take a picture. But here is a water-tank very close to what I saw on the flatbed.
Wednesday was a great day for catching a few pictures of this great area I live in. So here are some of my pictures and a small blurb about each one.
1. Yes, the fruit trees are starting to bud and once again life is returning to these parts!
2. My neighbor’s beautiful forsythia is about to blossom, and yes, that is the driveway leading down to my house. At the bottom of the drive to the right is my house!
3. This is one of the smaller rocks that Jack dug out of our driveway. The upper part of the driveway is dirt, and in it, we grow rocks every year! That’s why they call us the Granite State! LOL!
4. Here is another one. There is still another very large boulder, but we will need to hire a backhoe to pull that one out!
5. This is one of my favorite summer houses along the boulevard, at Weir’s Beach. The owners always keep it well painted and beautiful. Despite the somewhat funky colors, I love it!
6. This is a wide angle view of Weir’s Beach. It is on Lake Winnipesaukee. In the bygone era of the late 1800s and early 1900s, wealthy families owned these homes and came up from the city to escape the heat and enjoy the Lakes.
8. My own little lake, Lake Waukewan. We are called The Lakes Region, as 1/16 of New Hampshire is water, much of it in the Lakes Region. The largest lakes in the region include Lake Winnipesaukee with 72 square miles of water, more than 200 miles of shoreline, and 274 habitable islands; Squam Lake, where the movie “On Golden Pond” was filmed; Lake Winnisquam, Newfound Lake, and Ossipee Lake.
9. There are nearly 1,000 lakes and ponds greater than 10 acres in the state with a total surface area of almost 165,000 acres (NH- DES, 2008a). With the exception of Lake Umbagog and Lake Sunapee, the largest lakes are in New Hampshire’s Lakes Region: Winnipesaukee, Squam, Winnisquam, and Newfound. But I really do love our little lake!
10. One of the nice things about living in the country is that we can allow the dogs to run. They are all older now and do not wander. In fact, they’re more company than I ever expected them to be. What wonderful companions!
11. We also share our area with some cute animals, like this Ground Hog who lives in our front yard.
12. Not to mention all the Wild Turkeys that traipse through our yard and eat the apples and drive the dogs insane!
And yes, I did take this picture!
13. Lastly, I love the deer that live all around the Lakes Region, as well as our State. Last year we had three families that came to our yards to live and to have their fawns. That was so special.
I also took this one!
Actually, I took them all. I hope, that you can see at least a few of the reasons that I love my beautiful New Hampshire!
- When I woke up on Wednesday it was snowing! I groaned. Nothing was sticking, so I knew my day with Savannah would be safe.
- I showered and dressed and tossed my breakfast into my WW bag. I started to write a note to Jack, but he woke up and I told him everything in person.
- I left the house at 7:45 AM and headed to Weirs Beach where my WW Class is held.
- Down another pound this week at Class That makes a total of nine pounds this month! I feel quite good about this. I have made adjustments in my eating plan and I think it is working for me.
- After Class, I headed down to my daughter’s House. The kids had a half a day of classes there, so I drove down to spend the afternoon with Savannah.
- I stopped at the local Shaws Supermarket to get a salad and found a prepackaged meal of baby back ribs for Jack and me for dinner. I decided to get that, as I knew I would be late getting back and that Jack would want a good meal for dinner. (I was right!)
- I drove to Mandy’s after that, put my stuff in the fridge and then went out and sat on the wall near the driveway, to wait for Savi.
- Oh my goodness! The sun was shining! The sky was blue and cloudless! As I sat I could feel the warmth of that sunshine on my head and face and I felt that Spring was finally here!
- Then the School Bus turned down our street and stopped in front of where I had been sitting. I could see Savannah pop up after the bus was still, make her way forward, and wave goodbye to her friends and the driver after she reached my side. Then she threw her arms around me! (Melt)
10. We had lunch, we read books, Savannah learned how to tell time, and started the process of learning to lace shoes. We made Snapchat videos and took pictures, and then we did what all girls do. We went window shopping on Amazon.
11. We played with her two American Girl Dolls, that I’d given her the last two Christmas’s. Then we looked at Dolls, at Doll Clothes, At Dresses for her, at Toys and all sorts of things. What fun that was!
12. Then about 4:15 I allowed her to put on the TV. She was watching a little TV before her folks arrived home when it happened. She lost the remote! We searched high and low, but could not find it! I retraced her last steps. Bathroom, dining room to get a chair, and snack closet. Yep, there it was, inside the snack closet!
13. Mommy and Daddy and Quinn arrived home and I got hugs from them all, and then off I went to drive home. The ride was a little hairy due to the 45 mile an hour winds, that seemed to pick up my Toyota Highlander and toss it around. But I made it, and the pups and Jack were happy to see me.
Since I have not done a Thursday Thirteen list in a while, I thought what better way to start the month of November than with a Thursday Thirteen list of things that will be happening this month.
- Today I need to take Miss Anneliese into the Vets in the morning. Her left eye is badly clouded over. Not with a cataract, but something else. Her eye also appears swollen and I am more than just a little concerned.
- I finally get my hair done today after waiting a month and a half. It was just one of those things where time slipped by and I kept running out of time. Today I will get my hair dipped in the fountain of youth, and then have a nice shaping. I can hardly wait!
- I was sitting here typing up my list waiting for my TV show to start. Suddenly the channel changed. I looked up. I changed it back. Continued typing and the channel changed again. Only this time it changed and changed and…..I got up and looked over at a seemingly harmless Jack, asleep in his chair, holding his remote and in his sleep, he was changing the channel. Jack was relieved of his remote control! He woke briefly, and then fell back asleep!
- Sunday, of course, the clocks fall back. That is my favorite time of year and I wish the time would just stay there all year long.
5. Sunday also finds me going down to see Savannah in the Community Theater play of 101 Dalmations. Savannah loves being in these plays and she always asks to audition. I am so proud of her. She also works hard on her lines and learning all the songs. I am going for both shows, spending the night and then heading home after I get Savi on the bus in the morning.
6. Tuesday I go in for my facial biopsy. It’s a good size area and so they want to biopsy two places. More than likely it is just scar tissue, but I will be glad when the biopsy is over and we know for sure. Jack has an appointment the same day and his is right after mine, with the same doctor for a few places he is having problems with. Yes, we love our Dermatologist!
7. Tuesday is also “This is Us”. My favorite show and I hate to miss an episode. I’m a little unhappy that next week’s episode will be preempted, due to the mid-term elections. Ugh!
8. Wednesday is WW of course and so I always try to block out that time. I really enjoy the meetings and they do help. Plus I get to spend time with my friends. We have a luncheon planned to celebrate my friend’s birthday and mine. We were born eight days apart, the same year, so we are both turning sixty!
9. There are Christmas Bazaars coming up locally and I am looking forward to those. The one at the Catholic Church is amazing and I plan to go to that one.
10. Of course, my birthday will be coming right up, and I have a nice meal out with Jack planned, as well as a shopping spree at Talbots!
11. My daughter, Mandy has also given me a list of things to pack and a time to be at her house the day after my birthday! I do not know what she has planned for my sixtieth Birthday Celebration, but I’m guessing it will be fun!
12. Thanksgiving will be upon us early this year, on November 22 and it looks like it will be just Jack and me, although I am hoping my cousin and her husband will join us. It’s okay, I love to cook Thanksgiving meals, and the leftovers are awesome!
13. Lastly, there is a German Christmas Market the last day of the month and I am really looking forward to going to that with my cousin.
So that’s the month of November and I am sure a few other things will pop up. It’s always a busy month and then boom, December will be upon us and all the wonderful Christmas Craziness!
As you may recall, last week I returned to Weight Watchers to try to get a handle on my weight. I decided to follow the plan to the letter, to write down everything I ate and just see what happened. Here is how my week went.
- The first thing I did was to sit down and read everything I was given at class, twice! There is so much information and I wasn’t sure I understood it all.
- After reading everything, I decided that I needed to journal my eating (write everything down so I could keep track of the points accurately!). Since I have purchased both the online and in-person meeting program, I’ve been keeping track of everything online.
- Then I set about fixing wonderful Zero point salads, and also Zero point meals. I was thinking about how to plan things that I was eating. For instance, I attended Savannah’s party and I knew there would be steak and cupcakes! And I also knew I would want both! So, I ate only Zero point meals until dinner that night. Then I had my steak and my cupcake too!
- I was in the grocery store and I saw the first bags of California New Potatoes. A particular favorite of mine. Hmmmm. Well, I checked and a 5-ounce potato was 5 points. Okay, I can do that. So with my wonderful Haddock fillet, I had the New Potato and Corn on the Cob, which is also Zero points!
- It struck me after a few days that I was never feeling hungry. I was eating balanced meals, and snacks too, and never felt like I was deprived. I am eating all the things I enjoy and it was working.
- I also got a little worried. Could eating this well really produce a weight loss? What if I did everything right and come Wednesday morning, didn’t lose an ounce! Or worse yet, gained weight! Perish the thought!
- As I got ready on Wednesday morning for class, I didn’t even dare to sip a cup of coffee before weighed in! I just knew that one sip of coffee would put on at least a pound of fluid in my body!
- I got to class, went to Tami who has been weighing me in since 2008 when I have attended class and has always been rooting for me. I told her that my scale showed a good weight loss, but if I didn’t show the same weight loss at class, that old scale was being thrown out!
- I stepped on the scale and………Tami said my scale wasn’t going to the dump just yet! I was down 5.2 pounds!!!
- I cannot tell you how happy I was and How relieved too. But my leader, Pam and my cousin Rikki were both right. They told me that if I worked the program it would work for me! And it had!
- So, when class began Pam asked if anyone had anything to share, good or bad or helpful? I raised my hand and was all but jumping out of my seat, much like Hermione Granger in the Harry Potter movies!
- She called on me, and I started out by recounting my week. I spoke of Zero Point foods and meals, of not feeling hungry. I also spoke of some of the things I ate, like Baby-back ribs, pork chops, the best grilled steak ever, and the California New Potatoes! And how I had lost 5.2 pounds this week! And how good I felt! Many of the people there asked questions, and other people talked about their struggles and their triumphs with the program.
- It was a great way to re-start my quest for a healthy weight through the Weight Watchers program. I know I will not lose 5 pounds every week, but I do believe that this is an eating plan I can live with lifelong.
I thought that today would be a great day for a Thursday Thirteen! Yes, folks, that day when I look around me and try to come up with 13 things to put on some sort of list. So, I will make this a random list, of 13 things I am thinking about right now. In no particular order.
- Today was a perfect day weather-wise. It was 68 degrees, with almost no breeze at all. The trees are all blossoming, and it’s a real pleasure to drive around and just look at everything. Yes, it was beautiful, and I enjoyed every moment!
- Greta’s undercoat no longer exists. She is old now at 14 years old and her fur is thin and matted. So today I set her down, got out my doggy clippers and trimmed her back and sides.
She gets so upset and tired (me too!) that I can only work so long on her before I need to quit. But she is looking so much better!
- I got beautiful flowers on Mother’s Day. A lovely bouquet from my daughter and roses from Jack. I’ve been diligently taking care of them, and they look like I just got them still. They are also so fragrant!
- My sister’s yard will eventually recover from the Tornado. Who knew that Connecticut has had several Tornados over the years. Certainly not me. I’m so glad that Melodie had a hankering for Chinese food and had gone to get take out. The owner of the restaurant kept her from leaving when the storm approached and when she got home she realized, that had she tried to go home, the trees might have crushed her and her car. I am very thankful to that man for keeping her safe!
- Jack had his feet examined today. The doctor is very happy with what he is seeing. He told me I’m doing good work keeping them healthy for Jack!
- We wanted to take back roads today from the VA in Manchester up to Sam’s Club in Concord. I got the map out and quickly picked out a route. I smiled. 35 years ago I couldn’t read a map. Now Not only can I read one, but I love maps! I know, call me a little strange!
- Savannah’s Birthday is coming up and I have been working on buying her gift. I won’t spoil the surprise, but I have been having so much fun!
- Who is going to get up on Saturday and watch the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle? I do plan to get up and watch. I’m always fascinated with the other people’s dresses and hats, etc. Should be very interesting since so many of the guests are going to be crazy American’s.
- Thursday I am going to slow cook a pork roast that I got for 89¢ a pound! The entire rost was just over $3.50! I plan to slow cook it and then make pulled pork! Yum!
- I am caught up on laundry and since dinner will cook itself, I think tomorrow I will spend the morning in the Office dusting and vacuuming.
- I’m planning a trip to see my sister in June. Not sure of the exact dates yet, as Savannah also graduates from Kindergarten and I want to be able to go to that.
- I’m looking forward to the Preakness Horse Race this weekend. Now I do not follow horse racing year round, but I really enjoy watching the horses run in The Kentucky Derby, The Preakness, and The Belmont Stakes. It’s so exciting.
- Lastly, I made a new recipe for Greek Pasta Salad. It tastes very good and I will post the recipe on Saturday.
Since tomorrow I will be skipping the Friday Five, I thought I might skip back and do a Thursday Thirteen. When I first started blogging, I used to do a Thursday Thirteen list each week. Eventually, I ran out of ideas. Let’s face it, I’ve been blogging since 2005 and I think I may very well have made lists for almost every part of my life.
This week, I am going to write a list of thirteen things I have learned are important in life.
- Always tell the people in your life that you love them. Don’t miss that opportunity.
- Life is short. Don’t spend it being angry or carrying a grudge. Go forward.
- Find your joy! Find it and hold onto it and allow yourself to feel it.
- Remember that your children and grandchildren are the most important people in your life. Spend time reading to them, getting down on the floor and playing with them, laugh with them and when your kids are nearly grown or grown, remember to always listen to them. I saw a quote that said: Hearing is one of the senses, but listening is so important to learn. I’m still working on this!
- Remember to treat your friends like you would a beloved garden. Nurture them, care for them and never be too busy for them.
- Believe in something greater than yourself. I believe in God, and my faith has gotten me through some very tough times. My faith also gives me hope for the future.
- Go someplace. A beach, a field, a mountain top, somewhere and sit in the quiet. Hear the peace around you. I always love to go outside in the middle of a snowstorm and just stand there and listen to the silence. It lowers your blood pressure and trust me, it will put a smile on your face!
- Listen to music. Not just when you are in your car, but turn on a series of tunes when you are working around the house, doing laundry, etc. Make a playlist of your favorite songs and then…rock-on!
- Laugh! If you are having trouble finding things to laugh about, put on a good old comedy movie. Quite honestly, having 4 dogs gives me plenty of chuckles each day. That and the fact that I am a big klutz makes me laugh a lot. Laugh at the silly things you do. Don’t take everything to heart!
- Listen to the voices of your people when they call your name. A few weeks ago I entered my daughter’s home and the children both came running calling out my name…”OMA”! and my heart filled! Likewise when I hear my daughter call me Mom or Jack call me Hun, I smile because I know I am loved.
- Take a long walk. Through a forest, along the shore, and just breathe. Remember the things that make you love where you are walking.
- Take your time. Enjoy what you are doing, seeing, feeling, and believing. Don’t rush. Life goes by in a flash.
The Me Edition!
1. I was Born on November 17th in Massachusetts.
2. I weighed 9 pounds and 1 ounce, and I was 23 inches long. My mother swears that this nearly killed her, as she was barely 5 feet tall!
3. I was my sisters first baby! She was five and a half years old, and she was so happy to have a little sister. Truth be told, I am lucky to have her!
Melodie and her baby, little sister, Maribeth.
4. My appendix ruptured just before my fourth birthday. I wasn’t scared at all. I did not like the Ether, but I did get twice the gifts for my birthday that year! One I remember quite well was “Digger The Dog”. This may explain my love for long dogs! In my life I have almost always had a dog. And at this point, I think I always will.
5. I was the youngest child to perform in our community theaters version of The King and I. What I remember the most is showering after the shows and watching the make-up and the spray in black hair color wash down the drain.
That’s me, the third from the left right out in front.
6. I remember JFK’s assassination because I was home from school with tonsillitis. I was lying on the sofa with my pillow and blanket and Mom was watching her soap operas, when the news came on. Mom was so upset and at 5 years old, I wasn’t really sure what was happening, but I knew it wasn’t good.
7. When I was 8, I won the much coveted role as Gretl in the community theaters version of “The Sound of Music”. I had memorized all the music from the record, and I loved singing it. I recall a large tryout, and then the announcement was made. I was Gretl in the first cast. In fact, after the play debuted, I was even mentioned in the review of the play. Not bad for a little kid.
8. I loved growing up near the beach and spent a lot of time down there. Actually my whole family loved being therre, with the exception of my father, who burned very quickly, so he almost never went with us.
9. My cousin, Janet and I rode our bikes all over Falmouth. When they came down to Falmouth from Billerica, Uncle George always brought their bikes and off we went. One day we rode all the way to the Bourne Bridge and then rode over. Oh my goodness! It was so windy, that I admit to walking the bike back over on the way back! But Janet and I sure had a great time riding everywhere on our bikes!
Me and my much loved cousin and best friend, Janet!
10. I was a pretty good student until I reached High School. I seemed to lose it then, and although I graduated just fine, I wish I could go back and really work hard to get the grades I know I could have gotten!
11. I sort of played the flute. Okay before you ask, how I sort of played the flute, I will tell you. I had a mild case of dyslexia, which made it impossible for me to learn to read music. But I loved music. What happened was, for me a sort of miracle! Once I heard the music once I could either play it on the flute (or sing it in the choir). But to this day, the ability to read music eludes me.
12. I love to cook. Okay, that is no surprise to most of you, but what you may not know, is that way back when I was married to my first husband, I was a terrible cook. I could barely boil water! I once actually made meatloaf and put chunks of hotdog in it! I shudder now, but well, I guess you have to start somewhere. By the time I married Jack, I had a better idea of what I was doing, and no one was forced to eat experimental cooking that involved ground beef and hotdogs!
13. I think being an Oma (grandmother) is the best thing in the entire world! When I learned that Mandy was expecting Savannah I cried with happiness, and each day since Savannah’s arrival has been filled with joy. And then we were so blessed with the arrival of Quinn, and I cannot remember what life was like before them! They bring smiles to me each day of my life. And I know that it just doesn’t get any better than this.
My daughter, Mandy, Matt and their beautiful children, Savannah and Quinn! My loves, my life!
I haven’t done this in a long time, but I thought it would be fun to do a Thursday Thirteen about me, on this, the day before my 59th birthday! So here goes. Thirteen things about me!
- I was born in Wareham, Massachusetts. Mom said it was a bitter cold day, but nice and sunny. I weighed in at 9 lbs and 1 ounce, and was 23 inches long. Mom swears I nearly killed her.
- I was blessed to have a brother, Dickie, who was 7 years older and a sister, Melodie, who is 5 and a half years older. When we were really young we did a lot of things together. One time we rented a cart, where two people peddle and the three of us drove all over town. Many of our parents friends were amazed to see us actually wanting to spend time together.
- When I was 8 years old I played Gretl in the Sound of Music. That was a big time in my life. I learned my lines with my Mom helping me. I found it actually quite easy as I had a fairly decent memory. I also love to sing and the Sound of Music songs were simply the best. Looking back I think it was this time in the community theater that gave me so much confidence.
- The first time, I married young, and had two beautiful daughter before I turned 20! Despite the fact that the marriage didn’t last, at least I can say that we have remained friends.
- My daughters were the best thing that ever happened to me. Giving birth to them, raising them, and watching them grow, are at the top of my list of all time most fabulous things!
- Seeing Mandy grow in her life and have her own children, and a successful career also makes me feel very happy for her. My daughter is the most amazing woman. I am so proud of her!
- Finding Jack and having a successful second marriage also has brought great happiness and a lot of adventure and love. It also helped me believe that love can find you the second time around,
- Becoming a grandmother is the best thing ever. I remember holding Savannah for the very first time. Oh the joy that welled up inside me, cannot be described. Looking in to that beautiful little face, It was as if I had known her all of my life. Even now, five years since her birth, I still feel as though Savannah has always been with us. And my love just keeps growing and growing.
- The same could be said about Quinn. I held him just a couple of hours after he was born and the moment I held him I knew, that he, like Savannah, had captured my heart and each time I see him, my heart grows a little more.
- You know, that is the thing. Those two little ones, have a place in my heart and soul that I didn’t even know existed! Oh yes, being an Oma, a grandmother, is just the best.
- I am also blessed with the fact that I am best friends with both my sister, Melodie and cousin, Janet. I have literally known them all my life and cannot recall a time when they were not there. These women love me unconditionally and this is a wonderful thing.
- I also have met several women that have become sisters by choice. These women are always there for me and I am blessed. You know who you are! I also have made friends with several men who are like brothers. Especially my brother in-law, Ron. I have known him since I was 8 years old and the night of my car accident, he sat with me in ICU. My other “brothers”, also know who they are and I thank you all!
- I love my dackels! I first saw a wire-haired dachshund when I went to Germany with Jack to meet his dear friends. They had one, named Shubi and it was love at first sight. I knew then that I had to have one and I dreamt of breeding them. I did not know then that I would breed Greta and keep two of her babies. Raising a brother and sister from the same litter has been one of the most interesting and loving parts of my life.