Posted in Attitude, Design, Personal Life, Uncategorized

Welcome to #Notevemeber

Inktober was so much fun and breathed life into the idea of having rituals and routines to make something happen, I decided to follow it up with Notevember.  This is a popular event among writers with a whole bunch of rules and guidelines.

As with Inktober, I won’t be following any of them ūüėÉ Instead, my goal is simply write a note every day about things I’d personally like to improve in and how to go about it.

So, here we go!
And yes… I know it’s November 2nd. Time management is on my list of topics to come. ūüėɬ†
Posted in Attitude, Design

What I’ve Learned During #Inktober



This was the first year I decided to participate in Inktober – a month where artists from around the world draw/ink/create/share one piece of art every day using either their own ideas, subjects, or the official Inktober Prompts.¬†There’s a TON of talented artists out there and part of the fun of Inktober is having an easy way to connect with and be inspired by them.

I chose to do my own Inktober featuring my beloved spiders! Not actually my idea, my sister and fellow artist suggested it to me and it sounded like a pretty great idea. I had concerns at the beginning with my attention span and possibly being tired of spiders by the end of the month.

But, NOPE! I think I love spiders even more now. And I can’t deny everyday when I’d browse around for my new subject, just looking through the vast variety of species made me extremely happy.

A few things I learned in the process that I want to remember that carry over into other parts of life : 

  1. “Feeling like it” is completely over-rated.
  2. Even a half-hearted attempt at something completely new and different can be amazing. 
  3. Routines make it much easier to get in ‘the zone’.¬†
  4. I fight routines tooth and nail.
  5. Suspending judgement is the only way to get anything done.
  6. It’s easier to let go of ‘right’ and ‘wrong’ ways of doing things than I thought.
  7. It’s okay to be late, just don’t give up entirely. Get back on track in the middle of the night if necessary.¬†
  8. The middle of creating something is my favorite part.

Today is the last day of Inktober, and I am 5 days behind. Sometimes I have a problem with ending things – I don’t want it to end so I’ll drag it out. I think that’s what happened here. Oh well, I’ll catch up as soon as I can. These last 5 posts will be more artistic than accurate representations (you have no idea how I agonized about how many leg segments to show), especially since my #spidertattoo ideas seemed to be more liked than any of them. Check it out:

I have a similar daily challenge I thought of for November, but haven’t fleshed it out yet. #Staytuned .

Posted in Design, Uncategorized

Votes are in!

A heartfelt THANK YOU to all of you who helped me by voting for which design you liked best!

Voting Stats: 
A = 22
B = 9
C = 6
D = 11
E = 5
Using of everyone’s input, I made a few revisions and believe I have a MUCH stronger design than any of the previous ones. Here’s the breakdown:
A + D : These two were most liked by those who voted, and many people couldn’t decide between the two. I’m not exactly sure why since they don’t look similar at all, but that’s what happened.
Equally appealing to men and women
B : Many people liked how bold and clean this design is – but the white space seemed to confuse people.
Only men preferred this one
C : People liked this one for the same reason as B, because it was bold and clean.
More men Preferred this one
E : The least liked of all, which I expected. One person asked to see what it looked like without the border, and it looked like a squashed spider! D: Which I do NOT promote!! I’m glad she asked for that though, otherwise I might not have realized it until too late.
Only women preferred this one

Other Insights: 

I got a TON of feedback from some people I didn’t know paid that much attention to my feed. Some people I haven’t talked to in quite some time and it was a good way to reconnect. ‚̧
My goal is to make a design that’s attractive to either gender. Mainly because I love making T-shirt designs and I want either gender to be able to wear a shirt with this logo on it and feel cool about it. With the geometric framed ideas, I was thinking they would make cool necklaces, but … but I’m not really committed to making that happen so, not a big factor, that was just the thought behind it.
I had no idea how many people really loved my hh design of my current logo! I was really surprised when people started suggesting I put it on the designs that didn’t have it. This was a Huge encouragement so thank you for that. ūüôā

More About the logo: 

Everything about all of these designs means something.
I had two perspectives to view the spider from : in a Web and Facing Forward
I chose a hexagon because this ties into my photography business Honeycomb Images¬†which I’m trying to mesh into this somehow without it being too abrupt. It also made a nice ‘web’ shape and gave the spider placement. Also, it’s a cool way to show radial symmetry and reflection. Since a lot of my art is geometric, it tied into that too.
A spider facing forward at eye level was important to me because this is how I try to face problems (‘try’ is the keyword there!). Spiders are usually viewed from above because we’re so much bigger than they are, but still they can make grown men scream like little girls.
It’s highly¬†beneficial¬†for our own sake’s and those around us to take a direct look at exactly what scares us and try to figure out why…and then see if we can turn it around for our¬†benefit.
In one way, spiders represent the small fears and habits that either make or break our lives. They can be a nuisance, a terror, or ideally – the thing that keeps all the other pests away.¬†Details and small things matter in the grand scheme of things. The devil’s in the details. Big, amazing things that happen are great, but it’s the little, daily habits that can really improve quality of life.

I’ve revised and narrowed it down to 4 designs. The voting last time proved that all those designs were good since they all got at least one vote ūüėČ I’m pretty confident that any of these would nail it …. but which one?

Which one do you think is best and why?


Posted in Attitude, Design

Help Me Choose!

I‚Äôm modifying my logo a bit for my new website launching in September, and I’m all tangled up with internal conflict – maybe you can help.
I know what I’d like to be incorporated with it – Spiders, Geometry, Symmetry or Asymmetry, Negative Space and possibly my current logo.
I sound like so many of my clients right now. …but not the good clients that say, “You’re the designer, I trust your judgement!” The picky clients that ask for endless revisions and keep saying, “It’s good, but…something isn’t right.”
I wonder if I attract these clients because I have this problem internally. I’ve always said, the hardest client to please is myself. Second guessing and self-doubt are my main obstacles.
I’m wanting the same thing that a lot of my clients ask of me. I want it to represent so many things in a glance. …and it’s a bit unreasonable.
The work I’m going to showcase will be about angles, contrast, asymmetry, symmetry, geometry, nature, and oddities – mixed in with symbolism and personal insight into how these things relate to life.
Elegant, but not girly.
Edgy, but not scary. 
Fun, but not cartoony. 
Bold, but not boring. 
I want it to look good on screen and in print.
I want it to be a good watermark.
I want it to be scalable. 
I want it to be the most amazing thing ever made.
This is why I feel like I have a lot of patience for the client – I feel exactly like them. All the time. On every design project I do.
I’ll know it when I see it!” …but actually, I won’t.
I’ll know it when it’s put in to action.
Negative space logos are my favorite – but I‚Äôm not minimalist. Which is very popular right now… but not at all who I am. And not really a job I enjoy doing.
Anyone that knows me probably wouldn‚Äôt use the word ‚Äúminimal‚ÄĚ to describe me in ANY way. ¬†I like vintage, geometric, eclectic, and weird things.
Logos ‚Äėshould‚Äô be inherently simple, easy to understand at a glance, easy to remember, and unmistakable. Can this be done without being boring minimalist?
“A genius hits a target no one else sees.”
Most of my projects are minimalist and simple designs. None of which I’m particularly proud of and have yet to point to one and say, “Yeah, I did that!” A lot of them tend to be corporate boring jobs. And frankly, I‚Äėd rather Not attract more of that type of work. …But money is money. So here we are. A logo is the equivalent of ‘dressing for the job you want’.
I’m sick to death of minimalism and perfect lines.¬†I hate perfection. It’s So Boring.
Recently, I had a different type of client (@TangerineCoastalMarket)  who didn’t want simple or minimalist (which is in high demand right now), but instead wanted vintage, abstract, and almost realistic logo. That project was a lot more fun and fulfilling than most of my previous projects.
With this logo, I’d like to see if I can attract people looking for a more risky style.

This is my internal debate – should I ‚Äėfollow the rules‚Äô or just go with my gut?

Here’s a few below I feel like are ‘close’. I’d LOVE to get feedback from you guys to see which one is liked more.

VOTE! A. B. C. D. or E.

Which one sticks out to you the most?

Posted in Attitude, Design, Personal Life, Psychology, Uncategorized

#Workmode Hello Holly Vlog: Rule of Threes

Last night, I was having a conversation with a client of mine and he introduced me to the “Rule of Threes”.

The Rule of Threes can be a lot of things, as I found out when I looked it up after we talked. In context, he was referring to a method to narrow down a focus in business – specifically how to market myself and narrow down what I want to do with my business.

I wonder how many other designers have great conversations like this with their clients. Truth be told, I often pick my clients brains about business strategies and try to absorb as much of their lessons from experience as I possibly can without being too obvious. I feel like this is another reason why I prefer working with start-ups, new businesses, and small businesses that need an update.
Maybe I’m an entrepreneur at heart – maybe I’m taking notes for later.¬†

I’ve worked with a few Engineers lately in particular (engineers seem to be¬†some of the most interesting brains to pick), who have really let me in to their thought processes and I love it – I don’t always understand it, but, I file it away for later so hopefully one day I will.

This is probably my favorite part of what I do – being able to openly talk with super interesting people. The line between “Client” and “Friend” is very blurry for me – I would call almost all of my clients ‘friends’. They’re people I’ve gotten to know really well over the phone, internet, whatever – and once you work on a project with someone, it’s pretty impossible to Not form a connection. For me, anyway. I wouldn’t know if this is the case for other designers because THEY NEVER TALK ABOUT THIS!¬†

Anyways, back to topic. 

The rule of three in this context is making a concept catalyst.

Ideas that react with problems to synthesize solutions.

Dividing the concept into two categories – Overall Concept and Description – I narrowed down what it is I really do … and I feel like I’ve found a lot more.¬†
Probably the best thing I got out of doing this exercise was the ability to clear the clutter in my head. 

“Graphic Design” is a very vague term and can mean a lot of things.
It’s easier to say what I don’t¬†do than what I do. And usually, if someone requests something I haven’t done before, I’ll take a calculated stab at it. 90% of the time it works out. 10% of the time I finish it – but, don’t exactly nail it.
Trying out new things lets me know immediately what I’d like to do more of or stay away from in the future.
Posted in Personal Life, Psychology, Uncategorized

3AM Internal Alarm Clock

Why I’m usually up at 3AM in no particular order:

  1. Someone is Snoring Loudly
  2. Cats. Cats are being loud.
  3. I’m thirsty.
  4. I had a weird dream and now I need to look something up
  5. I had a night terror and woke up screaming.
  6. I read somewhere waking up at 3AM is the perfect brain frequency for working on creative projects.
  7. I was born at around 3AM, so now I feel like it’s a “lucky” time for me.


So, what do I do with this time? 
I use this as “extra” time. I can do whatever I want! If I want to draw, I draw. If I want to play a game, I game out. I exercise, do yoga, write, read about spiders. Whatever I want to do.

Sure, I could probably use it to work or do something “productive”, but I noticed when I try to do that, I get sleepy very, very fast. I need this time to be pressure free.

And that’s what works for me. Anyone else have this weird internal alarm clock thing happen to them?

What do you do with your “Extra” free time?

Posted in Attitude, Personal Life, Psychology, Uncategorized

The Bully in my Head

When I was in highschool, there was a guy I thought was just the apex of cool. The way he carried himself and the things he was interested in were so outside everyone else I knew. From music to movies to ways of writing and reading, it was a window into another world.
I studied his family from a distance trying to figure out their family dynamic. Somehow, they seemed closest to my own.

His parents were also a huge influence on me. They were my teachers and children’s church leaders. And they talked to me like I was an actual person…which I didn’t feel like most of the time. I didn’t really think of them as parents, but I definitely trusted them.

Their son was my #1 role model as a teenager and the primary voice of doubt in my head for years afterwards. He was a huge jerk most of the time. Always saying things like,¬†“You’re a loser.” “No one cares.” “No one cares what you have to say.”¬†

He did me a huge favor by impersonating all of my self doubt.

And, as an added bonus, since we basically grew up together, I saw the times when he was hurt, angry, frustrated and vulnerable. And at the strangest moments, he would do something kind and sweet. Which was usually not taken seriously and rejected. This gave me a huge insight.
He had made his reputation and probably felt like he was in too deep to turn it around. People were already expecting a certain thing out of him and I think we all know from experience, how hard it is to destroy your reputation in a positive way and rebuild.
This made me want to try to understand why he would say so many of the mean things that cut me deep – seemingly totally unaware of what effect his words had on other people. I learned later on that this need to understand people that on the outside seem so mean is called, “Compassion“.

I might have misinterpreted the quote – “Keep your Friends close and your Enemies closer.” But it seems like it happens way too often to ignore that we have more in common with our ‘enemies’ than our friends. And get more out of it. Our enemies challenge us, push us, and make us better people. As the Joker said in The Dark Knight, “I don’t want to kill you – You complete me.”

Strangely enough, I started counting up the similarities between us. Neither of us felt like we belonged where we were. Neither of us wanted to be there most of the time. Both of us wanted bigger things in life than the people around us. Both of us had so many questions that were constantly going unanswered – and being reprimanded for asking.
The big difference was, he externalized all of his anger. He wasn’t afraid to get in trouble. He wasn’t afraid to hurt someone’s feelings. He wasn’t afraid to be in a bad mood. While I, on the complete opposite end, was terrified of all of these things. I internalized all of my anger and kept my thoughts to myself because I tried to avoid confrontation at all costs.¬†

‚ÄúPerhaps all the dragons in our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us act, just once, with beauty and courage. Perhaps everything that frightens us is, in its deepest essence, something helpless that wants our love.‚ÄĚ – Rainer Maria Rilke

This guy is the epitome of “dragons turned into princesses” for me. He unknowingly showed me how to confidently look my monsters in the eyes and have compassion for it.
Because, I realized having compassion for my monsters, my demons, my bullies – is having compassion for the darkest parts of myself.
Posted in Attitude, Personal Life, Psychology, Uncategorized

Vlog #10 : Transforming Anxiety

I’ve spent a LOT of time analyzing anxiety – studying where it comes from, biologically what happens in the body, and mystical theories. I’ve also spent a lot of time documenting different strategies on how to cope with anxiety, so I’ll share some of that with you today.

In terms of biology – Anxiety is the fight or flight response. Something has sparked the survival instinct in you that says, “You’re in immediate danger! Quick! Either put up your fists or RUN AWAY!! THIS IS LIFE OR DEATH!” All of this happens in the less evolved part of the brain nestled inside of the neocortex – the Limbic system in us. Meanwhile, our rational evolved pre-frontal cortex is like, “What are you freaking out about? There’s nothing happening.” And this is where¬†judgment¬†of ourselves really intensifies matters. Because once we start saying to ourselves, “I’m¬†overreacting” we belittle ourselves (often adding depression to the mix) and have little hope of actually figuring out what’s going on.

Our minds are a complex interaction between the evolved parts (the prefrontal cortex) and the primal parts (the limbic system and the “reptile brain” autonomic functions). However, since the primal parts don’t know how to speak in words (frontal lobe – far, far away from the limbic system) – we must learn how to interpret their signals.

For years, I tried meditating, a LOT of exercising, reading, affirmations, pretty much everything you can think of besides medication. I really did not want to take medication. Then, in 2014, I was going through a very stressful time and having convulsive panic attacks which were scaring my stepdaughter – really, if it wasn’t effecting people around me, I probably still wouldn’t have gone to the doctor! But because I knew I needed to keep my sanity for her, I went and was fortunate enough to have a fantastic doctor who listened to what I was going through. She prescribed sertraline and buspirone and seriously, it was life changing. I was internally warm for the first time that I can remember. Walking down the stairs was a challenge because I could actually feel my legs – I had no idea I was living as a floating head all of this time, totally disconnected from my body. I was actually viewing life through first person view instead of 3rd person. AND! The best thing is, I continued doing all the things that were supposed to help and they actually did! Meditation, exercise, even sleep, everything was so much more effective. I was afraid that medication might ‘change me’ or make me a zombie, but it did exactly the opposite. I would just lay in bed and enjoy feeling my own body heat itself. This was the first time I felt “back in my body” again.
As a teenager, we had this furnace in the hall next to my room, and I would lay in front of it trying to get warm. But it was like the cold was on the inside and I couldn’t get the warmth past the skin.¬†

Another part of anxiety was the racing thoughts. Darting from here to there, up and down and around again. At around the same time I started taking medication, my husband was also experiencing intense anxiety said he had never experienced it like that before. He’s normally a very level, even keel type of person and really didn’t know how to handle it. I remember saying to him, “It’s like you’ve eaten way too much sugar and your brain is foggy and racing – but you haven’t eaten any sugar.” He was like, “YES, exactly!” I like to think that it helped to have someone near that understood – even if I¬†couldn’t¬†make it go away.

When I feel really anxious, I feel like I can see the particles in the air. Everything is intensely bright and loud.

I’ve had really intense night terrors – there was nothing to fight, nothing attacking me, just extremely real. I once dreamed my husband and I were going to bed and all of these children were around. I told them they needed to go to bed and all but one ran off. The one girl sat at the end of our bed. I picked her up to carry her to bed and she fell limp in my arms. Her head turned to the side with a slack jaw and half of her skull was missing with the brain exposed. I woke myself up trying to scream and when Brian asked me what was wrong I told him about the dream and told him the girl was “pretending to be alive“.

I still haven’t figured out a solid way to get rid of anxiety for good. But I have found a few ways to transform it into excitement and use the extra energy for good.

  1. Racing thoughts – WRITE IT ALL OUT. It¬†doesn’t¬† need to be pretty, it doesn’t even need to make sense. Take a timer, set it for 5 minutes and just try to get out everything that’s in your mind. If the timer buzzes and you’re still writing, keep going and go until you can breathe again. If you finish before the timer, then say to yourself, “Wow, all the things I’m worried about fit into less than 5 minutes.”
  2. CLEAN something! Anything. And really take your time to see the difference. The floors work great for me, especially the corners, because you have to get on your hands and knees into “working posture”.
  3. Think about how much time you’ve spent being anxious. Say to yourself, “Something bigger than myself knows that this thing is bothering me – I’m going to trust in it that it will take care of me.” Trust in God, the Universe, Family, Community, whatever you believe in that’s bigger than yourself will help you realize you’re not alone and you don’t have¬†to figure it all out yourself.
  4. Realize that sometimes, anxiety just happens for no reason at all. Once you stop looking for a reason, you break the cycle of “Why am I anxious?” Cut off the dialogue in your head with the anxiety. Instead, start a conversation with gratitude. “Why am I thankful today? What am I looking forward to in the future?”

Being anxious is a repetitious and addictive cycle that feeds off of itself.

Be thankful that you experience human emotions with such intensity – this means you’re a very empathetic individual, meaning you’re very in tune to those around you and¬†desperately¬†want to help. Let go of control and start trusting that everything will be okay in the end. Once you realize you’re stuck in a rut and determine you’re ready to move on, only then can you really break out of it. But don’t expect to be ready right away, it’s a process. And it’s totally okay to run around in this circle for a long time until finally – you’re just bored of doing the same thing over and over again. Get bored of being anxious!
Once that happens, you can transform the anxiety to energy you can put into the things you have control over and be aware of the things that are out of your control.

Then we can focus more on becoming who we want to be, rather than who we were or what happened to us (often lending ourselves to blame and giving up our responsibility and power to others), only then can we move forward with our lives.

‚ÄúYou have many habits that weaken you. The secret of change is to focus all your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new.‚ÄĚ

Posted in Attitude, Personal Life, Psychology, Uncategorized

Thinking Whole Brained

Today, I want to talk about WHOLE brain thinking and share with you a couple of books that have really helped me to think in different ways when I put in the effort.

Some of you might have heard the term “Renaissance¬†Man”. This term references the ultimate jack of all trades and man before his time – Leonardo Da Vinci.

There are Seven Da Vincian principles:
  1. Curiosita (Insatiably curious approach to life)
  2. Dimostrazione (A commitment to test knowledge through experience, persistence, and a willingness to learn from mistakes)
  3. Sensazione (Continual refinement of the senses)
  4. Sfumato (A willingness to embrace ambiguity, paradox, and uncertainty)
  5. Arte/Scienza (Development of the balance between science and art, logic and imagination)
  6. Corporalita (Cultivation of grace, ambidexterity, fitness and poise)
  7. Connessione (Recognition of and appreciation for the interconnectedness of all things.

These are the principles I’ve studied and try my best to live by because it covers Everything! And, I know I’ll never ever be able to “perfect” these things in my life. Sometimes, we need completely¬†unattainable¬†and unrealistic goals to push us forward. Because even if we don’t meet that goal, we’ll still do way more than we would have otherwise.¬†

Also, if you’re always pushing yourself to think in these seven different ways, forcing yourself to be aware of your own thinking patterns, actions, and words – you will be WAY less likely to get irritated with others or ungrateful for the life you have. If you’re focusing on doing the best job you can – and I mean Really focusing and trying hard – there’s no energy left to nit-pick on others or do the mindless things that hold us back.

Really, the only energy left is a silence. This silence allows others to be themselves and allows you to understand and appreciate the people around you – even with all their flaws and inconsistencies.

Posted in Attitude, Personal Life, Psychology, Uncategorized

Feeding Your Demons Pt. 2

Yesterday I talked about the process of “Feeding your Demons” and it seems like people are really interested in this, so today I’ll walk you through the exercise.

First, I should define these “Demons” because it sounds very serious and scary – but really, it’s just the shadow parts of ourselves. Stress, irritation, impatience, shame, hopelessness, loneliness – this are all part of the human existence and I’m not saying that there’s a “Cure” for these because all of these have a purpose. Just like pain in your physical body, they’re there to draw your attention to something – we just have to learn how to listen and understand what they’re pointing at.

Say, if you find you’re having a problem with being jealous all the time of other people – there could be a part of you that feels like you’re not giving it the attention it needs and projects this feeling onto other people. If you’re finding yourself turning to alcohol or substance abuse of any kind, chances are there’s a part of you that wants to feel comforted and is craving relief.

Before I begin, I want to caution you about this exercise.
It’s possible that when thinking about whatever it is you’d like to confront, you may start to feel really anxious or sad or angry – if you find yourself becoming too emotional, take a break! Walk around and focus on your breath. This isn’t something that should be rushed or approached with a “Get it done” type of an attitude. This is just one part of the process of healing.

Another note of caution is, make sure you’re really wanting¬†to move forward in whatever area it is. This opens your eyes to parts of yourself that you honestly do Not want to see and can be a very humbling process. Prepare yourself to have a cushion of acceptance to fall back on so that you’ll be able to accept and hold that part of yourself.

Start with something small.

If you’re an alcoholic or had a severe trauma – do NOT start with those things!!! Start with an every day thing that you feel just lowers your quality of life, that frustrates you every day. Narrowing this down alone could take a bit of reflection and introspection – but I encourage you to put the time in and maybe make a list of things you’d like to investigate. The more effort you put into it, the more you’ll get out of it.

In the book( Feeding your Demons), Pema Chodron describes the exercise of sitting down on the floor and “facing” your demon. This is all really symbolic of course and you have to really get in touch with the child in you that used to play pretend. So you sit down, on the floor or in a chair. Then you put a pillow or a chair in front of you so you’re facing it. You start by focusing on your breath and closing your eyes. Then whatever it is you want to face, whether it’s fear, impatience, anxiety, depression, whatever it is that’s causing you the most stress, think about it in your head and start trying to visualize it. What color is it? What form would it take? Is it an animal? What does it smell like? Try to involve as many senses as you can. When you get a clear image in your head of this, invite it to sit in front of you. Take a moment for breathing and really feeling what it feels to be in that ‘worst’ part of you. Then, when you’re ready, you can start asking it questions.

  • What do you want¬†from me?¬†
  • What do you need¬†from me?¬†
  • How will you feel once you get what you need?

Be silent and calm breathing in to it. It may take a minute or two to ‘hear back’ from it. It helped me to have a notebook so I could write out what I was feeling it say, whatever works for you!
Then respond by “feeding” it in a very descriptive way. You can make it in whatever form you like, but make it very visual. If it’s wanting comfort – making something warm and thick like honey for example.

Once you’ve “fed” your demon, calmly wait for it to be satisfied. Breathe into it and just sit with that feeling of being satisfied and fulfilled.¬†

If you wait a bit longer after the demon has been fed – sometimes it will get up and leave (in the case of oppression or trauma you’ve held on to), or it will transform into an ally (such is the case with “double sided” emotions like Excitement and Nervousness).¬†It could take several sitting down sessions feeding your demon before your ally shows itself.

When your Ally appears, breathe into it and ask it these 3 questions (or more if you feel inclined): 

  • How will you help me?¬†
  • What pledge do you make to me?¬†
  • How can I gain access to you?

Here’s an example of this process in my own notebook. If you want to get a special notebook to document your discoveries, insights, and milestones, I would HIGHLY encourage that!

Sometimes it helps to see how far we’ve come with ourselves to appreciate where we are.¬†