Monday, December 24, 2007

Calm before the storm??

It's Christmas eve and I'm sitting here listening to Martin make breakfast with Allie at his side. I love it. She's soaking up so much right now and I feel like the pressure is on to be the best role model for her. Brushing teeth, opening doors, yes ma'am, no thank you, please sir, cleaning up toys, kisses and hugs, sharing, living in the moment, prayers, being thankful..... the list just goes on and on except there is no list!

Friday, December 21, 2007

We made it!!!!

Tonight was our 5 year anniversary. We got all dressed up, dropped the kids off with my mom and dad and went out to a nice dinner. It was wonderful. I didn't realize how busy we've been since we had kids. Martin and I have been together for 10 years now and for the first 7 years of our relationship all we did was obsess over each other. Every fight, walk, kiss, look and touch felt like it lasted for an eternity. We could take the time to focus on why we were upset and how we were going to be more considerate of each other's feelings. Good Lord, I'm lucky if by the end of the day, I remember what, if or why Martin and I were fighting. We usually just pretend like it didn't happen, since neither one of us has the energy to argue or the memory to make valid points. Earlier this week, Martin and I called a truce, to forgive and forget, well just forgive each other for all the petty little fighting we've been doing. After our truce, we really needed to spend some time together reconnecting. So tonight was much needed.

In preparation for our big date, I finished up all my chores, took a long hot shower, did a mini facial, and pedicure. I was trying to bring sexy back, so I had on a cute little dress with my fancy leopard heels. I carefully applied my eyeshadow, just the way the MaryKay lady showed me and I even wore matching bra and panties!!!

When we got to the restaurant, The Melting Pot, Martin had a bouquet of flowers waiting for me at the table. We sat close to each other and talked and laughed and flirted like we did when we were dating. Well in my attempt to be all seductive, I gave the hostess at the restaurant a little more than she bargained for. She came to our table to take a picture for our anniversary, and this is what she saw......

yeah, so I guess you're not supposed to put nursing boobs in a regular bra!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

To all the confused supporters,

I know there are a lot of people who are confused about why I took away all of my babies beloved toys. I've written lots of emails, talked for hours on the phone and probably annoyed the hell out of my family talking about it all. So I'll unleash here for awhile to give them a break. First I want to say that the choice I made is very in sync with my personality. I'm a very passionate person. So this issue has been added to my crusade to rid the world of wrong-doers. =) Second, I whole-heartedly believe that everyone/mother who puts thought and a sincere effort into raising their children and doing what they think is right for their family is a good person. With that said, I just want you guys to know that just because I feel so strongly about this issue, doesn't mean that I look down on anyone who doesn't. So here it goes..
Getting rid of the toys -
I know what I did was extreme. I wanted it to be, so that I could get the attention of anyone who was looking in my direction. My hopes were that if I took it to the extreme it might, just MIGHT influence someone else to make a small change.
Why so extreme -
Our relationship with China has always bothered me. Their human rights policies, international policies, military tactics and the extremely uneven import/export relationship we have with them are some of the issues that come to mind. When the toy recall issue exploded, it was an opportunity for me to do something.I know there is nothing I can do to change China. My goal is to change US policy on how we deal with China. I know this is a huge thing, but my Dad always told me that if you aren't doing something about it then you have no right to complain. So I'm doing what I can. From what I've read, OUR policies are what are failing us when it comes to the safety of our children's toys. We simply don't have the money and man power to monitor and test ALL of the toys coming from China. (Actually the The Consumer Product Safety Committee doesnt test products until there is a complaint ) AND since we can't trust our own companies (not all of them but Mattel and FisherPrice to be exact) to test their own toys, then we really need our government to step it up.
And for those of you who think what I did was TOO extreme, here is a list of other things you can you do to show your protest-
Write your Representatives. A bill has been passed to improve the CPSC, but show your support.
Write to Mattel
Don't buy any more toys from China until something changes in the US screening of imported toys. Here is an interesting article on how upper class Chinese are buying foreign toys. FYI- If you are buying MIC.... Most local toy stores get their toys from smaller factories in China which were not part of the big recalls.
Check out this site. They have screened toys for lead and other chemicals that the US doesn't regulate. HomeDepot sells lead kits to test your toys, but if you are really concerned, which I wouldn't be, you could always have your kids tested at the doctors for lead. I really don't think that any of our would have lead poisoning, but if you are worried, you can go to the doc.
Every time you walk into a store make sure that the owner knows you are looking for toys not MIC. It wasn't too long ago that we, as Americans, took pride in buying our own brands, maybe if we support our toy makers they will be more available to us.
Buy your family this shirt. **unless of course it's made in China**Now that would be funny.

Saturday, December 8, 2007

A little pick me up

So I've just been down lately and my brain is fried. I'm posting this picture to cheer me up!
They love each other so much and that makes me happy. When I'm having a bad day I try my best to remember that I brought two people into this world and I am responsible for providing the best life for them. No matter how tired I am or how grouchy someone made me that day, my babies deserve the best me. So that's it, short and sweet!

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Yeah I said it.... BOYCOTT!!!!!

So I took the plunge and I'm surprised at how many people are NOT being supportive. I'm just so pissed and I really don't know what to do, but get all that crap out of my house. I cannot stand the thought of my babies putting something in their mouths that could later be recalled. It's bad enough that we've already had to throw out some toys, but if I continued to let them play with toys from China, knowing what I do now, I wouldn't be able to forgive myself if they issued another recall. So they're gone. All of them. I cried and I don't even know why. They're just toys and I had to keep telling myself that. Well I'm lying, not ALL of them are gone, I kept two for sentimental reasons.

So it's official, I'm boycotting China toys. That's right I said it... boycott! I had already bought all of my kids' Christmas toys but there was no way in hell I was going to give those to them now, so I had to start all over. I was pretty successful buying their Christmas gifts at IKEA. My cousin and I had a great time buying the kids toys. I know these aren't BIG toys, but I'm happy with what they're getting. Allie got - a train set, accessories, wall lamp, pots and pans, a baking set, Martin - stuffed animals, rattles, balls, play rug, musical toy, push toy and finger puppets.

**This was all that was left of our toys**

So I'm all set for Christmas, but after our toy purge yesterday our toy bins looked so pathetic. I had to go and buy the kids a few toys, and I mean few since that's all that's available. Allie got a drum set and a puppy and Martin got some noise makers and cars. I also had to replace the people from Allie's Little People set, since they were made in China, but the house wasn't. So I found a Playmobil which is made in Germany and I LOVE their toys. They are so detailed and fun, but a little too old for Allie. So for now I'll just settle for a few pieces to fill in our gaps.

I know it looks like we found a lot, but Dear Lord it was pain. First of all, when I tell anyone that I'm not buying China toys they look at me like I'm insane and abusing my children. Then comes the "all toys from China aren't bad" lecture.... Yeah I know, but come on!!! when it's in the millions then I'm pulling out! Oh and then I love "the '80%, no,90%, no 98%, no 99%???? of toys are made in China so why bother?" lecture! Well I'm bothering because I don't feel like I can complain if I'm not willing to put my money where my mouth is! What ever happened to the American tradition of boycotting? If we want something to change then we have to hit them where it hurts. How else will big companies like Mattel and big chain stores like ToysRus, know that this isn't acceptable? I might not make a dent in their earnings, but you know what, at least I'm not choosing material objects over my principles. Regardless of what Walmart, Target and ToysRus will tell you, MY kids will still love me and be happy even if I don't buy the the latest and greatest China toys!

So all in all, my kids won't be the most popular in playgroup since they don't have the 'must-have' toys of the season, but at least I won't be frantic every time the announce a new recall.

And a formal farewell to our toys.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Catching up

We are in full swing at the V residence. Thanksgiving was good, not great, but for my first time hosting I think we did ok. There was a whole blending family, how to carve a turkey and cold food dilemma, but we survived. We're all set up for Christmas and I even finished my shopping!!!

Just one picture since I have to go wrap presents.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

If you give a mommy a kiss...

If you give a mommy a kiss, she'll ask for a hug too. When you give her a hug, she'll notice how sticky your hands are and will probably want to wash them for you. When she's done, she'll notice how dirty the sink is and she'll start cleaning the bathroom. Then she'll see a wet towel on the floor and want to throw a load into the wash. When she carries all the towels to the laundry room, she might notice a dirty dish in the sink. So she'll have to empty the dishwasher. When she's finished putting away all the dirty dishes from the sink, she'll want a Swiffer to mop up. She'll start mopping. She might get carried away and mop and vacuum the whole house. She may even end up vacuuming under the sofas as well. When she's done she'll probably want to take a nap. But the baby will start to cry. So she'll have to pick him up and change his diaper. The diaper pail will probably be full and she'll have to take the trash out. When she goes to put another bag in the diaper pail, she'll notice that there are none. She'll need to make a grocery list. When she goes to the computer to get a paper and pen, she'll trip over a toy. Which means she'll need her kids to come help clean up. She'll help them clean up their toys and then stand back to look at a clean living room. Looking at her cute little helpers will remind her that she's happy. So... she'll ask for a BIG hug. And chances are if she asks for a big hug, she's going to want a kiss to go with it.

Fantasy Land

So today I finally made it to the spa. My dear sweet husband bought me a day at the spa last year around this time and for some insane reason I just cashed it in. Well, I was big and pregnant and didn't want to waste a perfectly good massage on one of those fake "on your side pregnancy" massages. So, one more baby, 11 months of very little sleep and shove out the door later, I was off to my day of beauty.

I'm finally in my warm, comfy robe and slippers and I'm waiting in this serene room for my fairy spamother to come and take me to my massage. I open a book that I began to read while I was pregnant with my son and let out a deep sigh. ahhhh. A young woman walks in and I give her the polite southern nod and smile and then stick my nose back into my book. An older woman is carried off to her facial fantasy and massage and she is quickly replaced by another woman, who has the same look of dreamy bliss on her face. The trickling of the waterfall is in perfect sync with the relaxing music in the background and a smile spreads across my face. I can already feel the knots unraveling in my shoulders. .... car accident?....traumatized?? Dear Lord, what is the girl babbling about? I look around the room and I could see from the look on the other woman's face, that our one day of mother's fairytale bliss was going to be thwarted by the evil spa partner. This young girl had apparently just been in a car accident and was suffering from short term memory loss. Yeah just my luck. So for the next 5 hours I had the pleasure of sharing my lunch, manicure and pedicure with an older version of my two year old. Same stories over and over, can't follow what in the world she was saying, but I just nod my head and smile. I mean, she just came out of a car accident so I couldn't just tell her, "Um yeah, I know you just defeated death and are feeling lost and confused and are seeking out comfort, but PLEASE find someone else to unload on, because this is my ONE day off and I really don't feel like listening to your ramblings." Nope, couldn't say that, so I listen and nod and pray really hard that someone will come and rescue me. After awhile, I forget about my book and just decide to go with it, so we chat.

I'll spare you all the details of a 21 year old's life, and sum it up for you. Wreak, miracle that she's alive, more worried about car, wants another Mustang, wants Ninfa's instead of fancy spa grill food, best quality of boyfriend is money, talked to said boyfriend they whole day, AND doesn't want to breastfeed because of saggy boobs! Ha! I spared her the reality of her boobs changing whether or not she breastfed, I mean it was after all her spa day too.

Picture: Me when I 'young' and I obviously didn't ever think I'd be where I am now, then, OR I would have never posed for this picture!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

My house is quiet

All day long, the house is filled with the sounds of tea parties (well it's coffee in this house and that should tell you something about mommy), blocks crashing, pots being thrown around in the kitchen, "Allie, be gentle", "No kitty!!!", "Are you listening to mommy????", and well you know, life noises. Right now, I'm sitting in total silence, something I never thought I would love and hate so much at the same time. I remember the first few months I was home with my brand new baby girl and I would wonder how on God's green earth would I spend the whole day at home. What would I do? Wouldn't I get bored and lonely? I can still hear the chuckles and snorts of experienced moms but they were kind enough to just tell me "It'll change, don't worry." CHANGE??? Ha, if that wasn't the understatement of the year. Now, silence is like chocolate around here.... I always want it, but when I have it I feel guilty. My babies are growing up so fast and we are so busy with life that I'm NEVER bored and I think I even forgot the meaning of lonely. I love it but sometimes I feel like I rush the day. Everything goes by so fast and when I look up it's a different month. Dear Lord make it slow down.

Prayers answered. Today for a precious two hours, time slowed down for us. I was having a bad day and everyone was suffering. It was just one of those days. You know, where you run into the wall, drop everything you touch, the kids make more mess than normal, you forgot about dinner.... you know just one of those days. It's not helping that it's 88 degrees in NOVEMBER!!!! So I found myself just being grouchy and wishing the day away. As I'm wallowing in my misery, my daughter is tugging at my arm and begging to go outside again. At first I was going to say no, we had just spent the morning playing outside but with one look into that cute face saying, "pppppppleeeeese mommy, ppppplease" I jumped up and we were out the door to play. Guess what? We had a great afternoon. Swings, slides, airplanes, grass, bugs and giggles. What more is there? All the things I was complaining about flew out the door with us and as I was sitting in the grass with my son, watching my daughter play, I whispered a Thank You. Thank you Lord for filling my day.

My house is quiet now, but in 7 hours it will be filled with renditions of the ABC's, teredactal squeals, and life again.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Me Day

I walk around naked in front of my husband.

I'm not a supermodel and I've had two kids in the last three years, so my body is traumatized, to say the least. I think I'm beautiful. I mean, I know I need to lose weight and sure my body looked better 10 years ago. I'm no fool, but I still think I look beautiful. Why am I so different than millions of women who look into the mirror everyday and hate what they see??? Lord knows that there are a lot more women, who'd rather pluck their wild eyelashes than stand naked in front of a mirror. So why not me?

I've chatted with a few ladies and we worry about our daughters, their self-esteem, body image, confidence and ability to resist peer pressure. I'm terrified. I mean with heels for 3 year olds, skimpy Halloween costumes, and restricting jeans for toddlers, who wouldn't be worried....... and there's that line again. Too strict? too lenient? Do I let my daughter follow the crowd a little? If so, where's the limit?? What am I talking about, there's no way in hell I'd let her wear a trashy Halloween costume or wear heels at three!!!!!!!! Good grief, it seems like maybe there are too many mothers out there worried about peer pressure and if their friends or kids will think ill of them. JUST SAY NO!!! They will survive and be better people for it. We need to teach our children to love their bodies and all the things that their bodies do for them. Teach them to take care of their bodies and nourish them with healthy foods and thoughts. A comment like "I'm ugly" can be just as harmful to you as eating McDonalds.

So back to the point. I've got ups and downs but for the most part, I'm a confident woman and have great self esteem. So how do I make sure that my daughter will too. I don't know?!?! Every time I try and put a strategy into words, I fumble. Try, try again right? So here it goes.

I still have no plan, only a random list of things I know.

My mother told me I was beautiful every single day of my life. She meant it and I believe her. I know it's not as simple as that, but it is. My Dad tells my mother she's beautiful and she is. I remember growing up and watching my mother put lipstick on for my Dad. I remember seeing my Dad sneak a pinch of my Mom's butt, when he thought we weren't looking. I remember my Dad putting his hand on my Mom's bare stomach, where her shiny wrinkles were etched in her skin like badges of honor. I remember my Mother combing my hair every morning, kissing me when she was done and telling me that I was beautiful. Preciosa. Precious.
I remember my Dad taking care of us on my Mom's "Me days", where she would pamper herself. I remember my Dad dressing up and putting cologne on for my Mom. I remember the day I wanted to wear sweatpants to school and my Dad told me NO. He said that school was my job and I needed to be respectful of myself and my teachers by dressing accordingly. "It might not be fair, but people do judge you based on how you look." I know this last one sounds contradictory, but it means to take pride in who you are. If you have all this wonderfulness in you to share, but it's crowed up with trashy clothes, unkempt hair, or a negative self-image, then you are denying yourself and the world of your greatness!

So I will continue my Mother's great tradition of "Me Day" and take the time to clear out all of the junk (whether it be clogged pores or stress) that could get in the way of my greatness. I'm proud of who I am, and that is what I'll teach my children.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

I don't waaaaaaaaaaaana

I just don't want to. I've been a 'stay at home mom' ** that's the cool way to say it** for the last3 years and I'm done cleaning the house. DONE.... D.O.N.E!!!! I'm sitting here trying my damnedest to come up with every reason not to get up and get it done. Oh, I know poooor me. I get to stay home with my kids, go to the park, play dolls and blow bubbles on baby tummies. I LOVE it, but the cleaning is killing me. I like things clean and in order, but. Those cannot exist in the same sentence with CHILDREN. With my daughter it was manageable, but two is a different story. I'm just keeping afloat with changing diapers, picking up toys, cooking, dishes, making beds, two loads of laundry, errands, playing with the kids, sweeping and mopping the floor everyday. Don't get me wrong the house is decent, but I'm exhausted and have no energy to clean the ceiling fans or vacuum in the sofa. So what do I do??? Well today, NOTHING. I think my two year old has officially broken me in. Type A mommy, gone out the window to a more deserving woman. Here to stay mediocre housekeeper and wonderful mommy! Just in case you were wondering what did me in...........



Mani/Pedi night!

Thursday, November 8, 2007

How much is too much?

Is it not enough? What am I doing???? So these questions come up pretty often as a parent. Unfortunately, I knew all the answers BEFORE I had kids, and now I have no idea. Sometimes I feel like my life is a "Choose Your Own Adventure" book. You know where at the end of the page you have to make a decision that will determine the direction your WHOLE story goes, and then you have to do it all over again on the next page. Yeah, well that's my life, except when I make a decision and it turns out to be a huge mistake I can't go back to the previous page and choose the better option! Every day, at every turn I feel like I'm having to make a big decision on how to raise my children and it's so scary. I want my children to be happy, successful, independent people who have meaningful relationships in their lives. So, someone give me the cheat sheet and I can choose all the right adventures and end up with happy, successful and independent children. Anyone???

Ok, page 11 of my life book...

If you choose to teach your two year old daughter how to be responsible, by giving her chores, turn to page 26.

If you choose to do everything for her right now since she is only two and forgo responsibility until next year, turn to page 12.

I choose Page 26..... Too much??

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Is it a sign????

So yeah, I was doing so great with the whole walking/jogging/trotting and then I got a sign from God yesterday...... As I was walking to the bathroom to clean yet another poop diaper, I ran into a chair. Now I'm sure if you are a normal person, you are asking "How in the world does a grown woman run into a chair, that she obviously knows is there because it's her house???" Well, it was early, I was up for 1 1/2 hours in the middle of the night to try and help my son learn to self soothe, I had no contacts on yet and most importantly I hadn't had my coffee. So in my delirious state, and being over eager to get poop out of my hand, I made too wide of a turn. Like so many other things in my life, the chair refused to budge, so my toe did instead. A swollen foot, call to my hubby, trip to the doctor's for an x-ray and two hours later.... my toe is broken!!! But that's not the good news..... We can't do anything for it but tape it and I get to heal med-free, because I'm nursing!!! Yippee

Now just when I was beginning to enjoy torturing my body with 2 mile walking/jogging trips, I'm going to have to put them on hold. I guess it's for the best, because 1 1/2 years ago when I attempted this whole 'getting fit' thing, I ended up pregnant because I was so hot, my husband couldn't resist me. hee

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Busy, busy, busy

Dear Lord it's been a busy few weeks. My son was baptized and the holiday of all holidays......... Halloween!!!!!
The baptism went as great as it could have gone with all the problems we had. First of all the cake was delivered to my house in pitiful conditions. It really looked like a really old person, without their bifocals and ANY cake decorating experience, scribbled my son's WRONG initials in his cake and then threw a hair in there and said, "Here ya go!" So I ranted a little and sent it back. Then as we were getting ready to go to the church, I'm finishing up my hair and running the last few things on my To Do List through my mind, when I say to myself....."What's it going to be this time? Something big ALWAYS goes wrong, what this time? The last thing on my list is to grab the birth certificate. THAT'S IT..... I won't be able to find the birth certificate and he won't be able to go through the ceremony, and all these people are going to be at the church and.... Just then, my husband walks into the living room as I'm getting the kids out and says, "Which shoes am I going to wear with this?" WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAT???
Now back up a week or two. I asked him to pull out his suit, try it on to make sure it fit and I was going to take it to the cleaners. Why it never occurred to him to make sure he had shoes, is beyond me, but here we were. The exact minute that we had to leave to be on time and my husband has a pair of brown shoes to go with his black suit. Now here's the real shocker. I didn't stress over it. I told him to figure it out. Now in the past I would have stressed and it would have ruined my day, but he could have shown up in flip flops and I really wouldn't care. But you can't wear flip flops after Labor Day right? So, he called him mom and she brought him some black shoes to the Church and as he was going to put them on.......... yup the shoe lace broke. hee hee Just one of those days. Oh yeah, and our brisket never got smoked, so we had to buy it by the pound and a lot of friends and family never showed up to eat it! But all in all, like I said a great time was had.

Halloween was great. We rushed through pumpkin patch, carving pumpkins, and costumes, but I'll arrange the pictures to tell a different story. We had a great time with great friends, but good Lord this is a crazy day that I can only see getting more hectic. It was a 'no nap' day, which if you have small child, you know is equivalent to a mental breakdown day for mommy. Allie couldn't even lay still because of her sugar rush from our daytime trick-or-treating. So we just pushed through, hoping that the sugar would carry her to bedtime and mask how tired she was. Martin and I just kept pumping her up with candy to make it through the party and trick-or-treating. Fun.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Am I a Grown-Up Yet?

Ok so I rented a movie on Tuesday, it's Friday and I still haven't seen it! I remember my Mom doing this my whole life. She never watched a show all the way through. I don't think she's seen a comercial since 1980, because those were her mini-marathons when she folded the laundry, straightened up the kitchen, scrubed something or just got up to run around in cirlces because she simply couldn't sit that long. The same senerio plays out during all meal times as well. Mom is the last one to sit down and all through the meal she jumps out of her seat 10 seconds before you can think of what you need. Why do we do this?

Today I was watching one of the few shows I actually sit down to watch and I think I got up about 10 times... Wipe the counters, put away the pumpkin bread, check on the kids, fold the towels, reload the washer and dryer, bring the cat in, finish loading the dishwasher and starting it, clean up the bathroom one last time.... yup that was 8 times, about the amount of commercial breaks in a one hour show.

So I am my mother. I knew the day would come when I'd have to admit it and it's here. As her child, I just wanted her to sit and enjoy the movie or meal with us instead of fussin' around. We wanted her company. As a mother, I just want everything to run smooth without my whole 'process' falling to bits. I want to fulfill my family's needs. I don't mind becoming my Mother so much though, because my Mom is a wonderful Mom and now that I'm behind the scenes running my own production, I can truly appreciate everything she did for us. The movie can wait a few more years.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007


OK so I'm finally going to start writing here. I've had this blog open for almost a month now, but just couldn't find the right moment to start it. Then yesterday, I found myself say "Oh, dear Lord..." so many times that I thought, OK now's the time.

Oh, Dear Lord.... why does my child think it's funny to paint the table in ink.
Oh, Dear Lord... why won't my baby sleep.
Oh, Dear Lord... why is it 90 plus degrees in October.
Oh, Dear Lord... what is this sticky stuff I just stepped in.
Oh, Dear Lord... why did I just eat a mini Snickers bar, when I'm trying to get rid of this baby fat.
Oh, Dear Lord... what was my husband thinking when decided to work late, again.
Oh, Dear Lord... why is Allie eating foil?

OK so you get the point.

I realize that I might be starting this blog off in a seemingly negative way, but it's the complete opposite. You see, I love my life. I feel like I woke up one morning and amidst all of the chaos of my daily life, I have a wonderfully loving husband, two beautiful and challenging children, a supportive family and great friends. I run into challenges daily but I wouldn't have it any other way. So when I'm sweating my butt off in October as I'm fighting a two year old to get out of the car, while my 6 month old is strapped to my back and pulling the baby hairs on the back of my neck, so that we can get to music class 5 min late, I'm really loving every moment of it! And then, when we actually get to the music class and I bring out my best annoying mommy voice to repeat the phrases, "Good job, baby", "Allie, listen to mommy", "Allie, NO", "Allie, Allie, ALLIE!!!!", while the baby is now drooling on my back, I might appear to be losing my mind and patience, but I know I'll lay in bed that night and tell my husband that we had a great time in music class. So how is it that I can be living in chaos and loving my life at the same time? I pray. It might not be a formal prayer on my knees and in the church, but I have a running dialogue with the Lord all day long, so that I can keep my wits about me and have perspective on life.