Sunday, February 28, 2010

Physical evidence of further progress. . .

The train table, with properly assembled tracks, will not last, but effort was made!!

The new dresser, painted by the hubby, and the hope chest that should be leaving shortly.

The problematic oversized closet doors. Plan to make some type of mural to cure mass of whiteness, but not sure about furniture arrangement. Welcome all suggestions.

WALT enjoying his clean room. Pay close attention to the neatly organized Littlest Pet Shop, Thomas and books. Please ignore the large stains on the carpet.

Toy central. Home of most of the multi-part toys, including Lego Thomas, Potato Heads, puzzles, blocks, construction gear, musical instruments, and games.

WALT's room is a fully functional and accessible boy's room at last. The books are organized and in book shelves. The puzzles are with puzzles, the blocks are with blocks, and the clothes all have a home in the new dresser with working drawers ( a definite improvement from the previous dresser in which most of the drawers did not work properly). Even the train table is arranged with a fully working set of rails. (though this is mostly for photo purposes because disasters come often to the trains at the hand of the mighty WALT)

Thus far the wild man's room has been the most dramatic change, and the most costly. Mom shelled out the dough for the first two book shelves and the dresser, her "Christmas present" (which was in addition to the large box of toys she had wrapped under the tree) and for which I am very grateful. He also scored a fresh paint job, new curtains, plastic storage bins for Lego Thomas, and a third book shelf (which will be talked about in greater detail later.) At the end of the day he needs a more appropriate TV stand. I am not discussing how evil TV is in a child's room. I will say that it is on only certain times and only certain channels and movies. I will also say that any sane adult will have a TV away from themselves after being exposed to iCarly.

There are still too many toys. I know this. I removed at least three 20 gallon tubs of toys and at least 3 more need to come out. But this is a process. On a good day my child is OCD, on a bad one he is full blown Rain Man, which results in the medical diagnosis of "quirky." Only so much can change in a period of time without a "4 o'clock means Judge Wampner" episode and so I am continuing to weed and purge with each weekend cleaning. Even with this continued removal of stuff his room will look just as full because all 4 rooms left to de-clutter are full of WALT things.

There are also too many books. I say this half heartedly because I am not sure a child can have too many books. I had a huge library sized shelf in my childhood room and it was full of books. Some of those books live on in WALT's room, the rest I bought. I love children's books. If the world is kind, my karmic reward for cleaning my house will be the time and ability to write my own children's books. Children's books are where construction paper creations live. I LOVE children's books. That said I did manage to weed some out. There were some that were simply too young. I have passed these on to my brother in law to enjoy with his nieces. Some were in bad repair due to the amount of love they were shown. And a few were repeats (and are now for sale at I bought the third book shelf and still didn't have enough space. It was then that the hard decisions had to be made, and the Sesame Street encyclopedias were surrendered to the out pile, leaving only the Charlie Brown set (both found at the flea market while pregnant)

The room is still less than perfect. The carpet MUST go, and soon. It didn't look so hot when we arrived and four years of people that hate carpet and the responsibilities that come with it, and 5 different dogs, and 4 different cats, we'll it's not good. We will probably opt for wood/wood laminate and a rug. It's our thing.

There is also the large closet. Too large really for WALT's room. It was built by my handy dandy husband when it was our room. We knew we were going to switch rooms but found the doors for $59 at Home Depot and couldn't resist. Now I can't figure out where to put the bed and have a night stand, but not have the bed next to a window, or in the middle of the floor. It remains a quandary.

But there it is. One bedroom down, 1 and 1/2 to go. And just WAIT til you see the next one. You may be calling one of those reality shows on me yet!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

A Happy Day

This is a quick post because I am on my way to the post office. Why you ask. Because I have 4 books to mail that I sold at for a whopping $31.15. It's not a lot of cash, but it is all going to my smallest debt and that is what matters. Actually what really matters is that there are 4 less books, that I already read, or will never read, no longer cluttering up my life and my shelves. All the packing was also clutter, so again 2 birds with 1 stone, so maybe I am starting to get the hang of it.
This is not to say that I have truly figured out selling on the Internet, but books are easy. In fact I will probably start the spring with a massive yard sale and then try to divide out what is possible to put on the Internet out of what doesn't sale.
I wonder, is it tacky to have a yard sale on Good Friday???

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Be careful what you wish for.

I have mentioned several times that I have struggled to get Robert on board with my grand plans at a simpler life. I can't completely blame him. He has been a good sport and ridden along with me on a number of schemes and designs. But I think that he is impressed with my determination, if not with my speed, of truly cleaning out the house.
He has now taken over the living room as his area to keep straight. The living room hasn't actually been de-cluttered yet, but he is doing a FABULOUS job keeping the floor and couch usable, which is no small task since that is WALT's favorite creation station. He has also agreed to cook on Wednesday nights, which is a huge deal because that is OT afternoon and WALT and I don't get home until around 6. I can't even express the happiness of walking in out of the snow and cold and having dinner sitting on the stove ready. the deal is that I have to tell him what to cook and the stuff needs to be there to cook. I think that a year ago I would have been frustrated that I was unable/unwilling to do the prep, but with the book I am making a weekly menu before going to the grocery store, so I just keep in mind that Wednesday needs to be simple, boiling water, preheating the stove, not too many ingredients. I am excited, I truly hope he stays excited.
He has also been a trooper to paint the new furniture in WALT's room. The shelving just keeps coming, and he just keeps painting. He even went up at half time during the Kentucky game to put on a last coat for the new book shelf.

And yesterday morning he decided that my vehicle was in need of de-cluttering. I knew this, in fact I thought about my car every time the book mentions an office, because that is my de-facto office. Of course, like the bathroom, it is A LOT of things. And it seems like it doesn't matter whether I am entering or exiting the driver's seat, I am behind schedule and there isn't time to do anything but shut the door and drive.
I had fully intended to take before and after pictures, but Robert just wanted the truck clean before Thursday and our trip and so there are no before pictures. It was bad enough that he looked me dead in the eye and said "Sarah, this is unacceptable." Which actually he never scolds or fusses at me, the animals constantly and inanimate objects on a regular basis but not really me, and that hurt. Not in a mean punch to the gut way, but in that you disappointed someone that believes in you kind of way. It was bound to happen.
It did take four laundry hampers to get everything out that didn't belong. 3 full of stuff, from Halloween decorations and costumes, to groceries, to 4 unopened rolls of wrapping paper. And another of recycling, which was mostly magazines and newspapers.
The good news is that is done. We leave for Lexington and our annual trip to Rupp Arena (our family's Mecca) on Thursday. As we were walking in the house Robert looked at me and said, Sarah . . . .I don't expect perfection, but . . " I cut him off I couldn't bear it. "I know I told him. It's going be better this time. I am going to keep it together."
And hopefully, this time I will.

Friday, February 19, 2010

The greatest, but most challenging room of all!!

We flipped flopped bedrooms around Thanksgiving. So in ways we are ahead, like the nice fresh paint on the walls. In other ways we are behind, the room was a complete cluster and we just put it all in boxes and moved it upstairs.
Still with some time, patience, and money, there are some real improvements and expanded shelving underway.
I have also cleared two large totes of toys out and 2 garbage bags of stuffed animals. The remaining issue is the sheer number of books, hence the extra shelving, and room flow. Hoping to make great progress over the weekend!!!

(In posting the pics the thumbnail images looked like an exploding rainbow!)

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Can't you just smell how clean it is????

I have been promising these pics for a bit now, but at long last here they are. Ahh, my nice clean bathroom. It's funny, after I pulled it all out, and then put really like 80% back, Robert kept saying how much bigger it looks. I am thinking the shiny reflective floor gets some of the credit, but then again the lack of piles on the floor alone probably helped.
There is now a place for everything and everything in its place. The imploding economy had put a bit of a freeze on my previous love of all thing soap related, and so for over a year I have stopped the compulsive buying of soap and shower gels, but there were still several bottles and bars that need to be finished. Actually since this picture I have finished off 1 bottle of shower gel and 2 bottles of lotion (and they were properly recycled.) This is also having the dual bonus of helping my Philosophy shower goodness and lotion Divine last the 3 months it is supposed to last. I do continue to have a Belk counter worth of perfume, but a girl has to have something, and I honestly rotate them all depending on the mood/occasion. Robert has 5 bottles of the same cologne but that is my fault probably too and maybe I can talk him into wearing it more often.
Up keep has gone well. I am getting better at immediately cleaning up the bath toys. Mom gave WALT a Valentine's basket that is plastic and full of heart shaped holes. It is perfect because water drains through and so it can stay in the tub all the time even during my showers.
I do have in excess of 20 things of floss that I will donate. This is from well meaning attempts my Allison every time I visit the dentist to encourage more flossing with free floss. I floss the week before a dentist appointment, so I can shake my head yes when the question comes "Do you floss?'' It's not my gig. My teeth are either so far apart that the action seems pointless or jammed so close together that the string frays and breaks. It's unrewarding, and since I haven't had any cavities in the past 20 years, I am declaring it unnecessary. I am tangenting . . . .
All that said everyone seems to be enjoying the new found organization in the bathroom and there seems to be even more activities that occur in its narrow quarters. WALT has even begun brushing his teeth on average of 7 times a day. This is multiplying the upkeep factor, in that he seems to go through a lot of toothpaste, most of which ends up on the sink, or on wash clothes. (but occasionally on the curtains.) But this is a good thing, and I am NOT complaining. In fact he declared a desire to the dentist just this afternoon. Ah the miracle of a clean bathroom!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Changes in Habits/Schedules

It is remarkable how much of the book is not about cleaning at all. I would say at least 50% is dedicated to making conscious awake decisions to streamline daily functions. Being challenged in all facets of streamlining I was curious, unconvinced, but game for a try.

The first is to create a weekly schedule with rooms you concentrate on. I thought how can I predict where the cat is going to vomit or WALT is going to move Thomas world to? But it going better than expected. Waking up every morning and knowing what is going to happen, at least as to whether I am going to fold towels and scrub the toilet, or strip beds and refill book shelves has a calming affect. As the years pass some of that Appalachian/Mullins fatalism has faded and with it the legendary Sarah chaos theory of life. There are ebbs and flows and I am to find my own tiny place in that rhythm. That said my kitchen remains chaos. A half hour of work only uncovered one edge of the table and there is a mole running amuck every afternoon about 2 o'clock, which everyone, including the cat, just ignores. It screams as if in pain, and so I seem powerless to bring any greater consequences. Besides this is not the first mole, and probably not the last, alas the joys of a farmhouse. It is here I could admit my grandmother was right about the allure of a brick ranch, but not today, not yet. I like moles.
Monday is kitchen day and right now that is still a bit in the air, as the kitchen is still such a work in progress. But I try to make sure all dishes are clean and that the cabinets are in good working order. Tuesday is bathroom day. All is going well there, with the acknowledgement that the sink has to be wiped at least every other day because WALT is currently brushing his teeth 7 times a day (and I will not be discouraging that particular obsessive behavior.) Wednesday is living area day and Robert has been volunteered for that (since it is also OT day and that falls to me.) Thursday is the bedrooms. WALT's room is still in makeover mode but we are making progress and he is starting to get a feel for where things go and when.
Friday is other rooms day according to the book. This is where I differ. Friday's are always chaos in these parts. Exploding cars, wrecked cars, (all at mom's) visitors, trips to far and exotic places like Jonesboro(ha) and the general exhaustion of having survived another week. And so Friday is an evening of rest. I suppose it would be nice to have the weekend completely to do as I please, but it's such a novel idea that I can't even imagine. And the truth is-- I don't really have all that much to do on the weekends. Laundry on Sunday is just fine by me. Clean sheets on Sunday night make Monday morning a little less horrific.

In news of the inheritance that keeps on giving, aka my room full of pictures. I did get my military pictures sorted and put in an album last weekend. I have a sinking feeling that when Robert's are found there will be 2 more albums to fill, but those were a lifetime of memories and well worth the 9 inches of shelf space.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Progress, more internal than visible

(Finding this picture had made all this work worthwhile!!!)
(And yes, that is a douche bottle!)

Progress is happening in all sorts of ways. But two in particular that I will now talk about at some length, because I am, above all, wordy.

The first is Valentine's Day. Most importantly the Valentine party for my son's class. This is our third year in which we have had a social event for my child. The first year I truly lost my mind and made elaborate homemade three dimensional cards for 3 year olds. I somehow equate an entire night without sleeping to make these disposable objects as proof that I loved my child the most. Of course I lost that contest my the mother who had custom cards made at the local printing shop complete with the child's picture, a ribbon and pink and white m&ms with the child's name. But I digress.

Last year I went the Shutterfly route and had elaborate valentine's printed complete with WALT's picture and a Thomas background. I won! But now I still have like 10 of those cards that I don't know what to do with . . so this year I was determine to want not, waste not.

In cleaning out the kitchen cabinets I discovered a couple of overkills. Candy was one. Cute and clever holiday theme treat bags were another. Every holiday from Christmas to Easter to July 4th represented. So I decided to eliminate two problems with one party.

Until this particular party I have been the holier than thou mother who has stuck her nose in the air and declared "oh I don't buy candy for school functions, it's pure sugar." Meanwhile my kid is the first to put other people's sugary treats in his mouth -- all at once. So on Thursday night out came the treat bags and out came the mass of candy. When sorting last mouth I had identified which types of candy were plentiful enough to create like bags for 16 kids. In the end we had a vday sucker (from a bag purchased by WALT and mom at target a few weeks earlier) 2 Carmel's, (from a bag brought over by Senior just last week) a pixie stick, candy bracelet, and sweet tarts (all left overs from Halloween.) Tied up with left over curling ribbon they actually looked adorable. I thought that perhaps that the mixture of candy was a bit random, and yet eerily similar to the treat bags WALT is always bringing home from these parties. It makes me think that I am not the first parent to re-gift candy.

The second is that I have been doing some searching on the Internet on my own about scaling down and de-cluttering. I found this incredible article about a woman who had paid off her student loans just by selling stuff on e-bay. Now that my physical house is starting to come back into order I have been spending time thinking/worrying/plotting on how to bring the fiances back into some type of Zen like state. I don't really think that I am going to pay off my student loans, (though that is what she said she thought as well) but there always seems to be a new bill every month and if I could just pay off a few of the small ones I know I would sleep better at night.

I have had luck in the past with in both buying and selling textbooks. I have decided to re-open my little shop there and seriously scale down my book collection. Another one of those two birds with one stone things that is going to make Tammy so happy!

The article lady suggested Sunday as a good day to list. So this week is the books and hopefully over the next week I can get E-bay set up for selling (not just buying) and the same with PayPal and then I can post some of the nice clothing and jewelry that I was going to try to take to consignment.

Oh yea me. Oh and the bathroom is done. I still have too much perfume, but I have no make-up so in my mind it evens out. Pictures to come soon (as soon as the books are posted.)

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

The Bathroom --- Before. So not good.

Photographic evidence of the ecosystem thriving in my toothbrush holder.

All of this is prescribed to Robert.

The sink, it all its cluttered glory.

The undefined space that came to exist after our contractors accidentally destroyed the breakfast nook and we decided it would be better served in making a large bathroom. It seems at the moment to just collect dirty clothes and toys.

Kinda speaks for itself I suspose.


The book gives two major instructions in the section on the bathroom. The first is to pull everything out and the second is to make a list of what purposes the bathroom serves.

Since we only have the one bathroom there are of course some purposes that we all share when it comes to the bathroom:

1. There are the general run of the mill hygiene activities and the major fixtures of the bathroom the toilet, sink, and bathtub

2. It is also where dirty clothes collect

3. It also seems to be where a fair amount of reading takes place. The boys each have their selections in the basket for their man time. I try to slip in an article from the New Yorker whenever possible during a bath.

4. It is likewise where all the toiletries are stored as well as towels and the such and hangers for laundry purposes.

Then there are the individual uses:

5. Robert shaves/trims at the sink

6. Walt sometimes spends a great deal of time admiring himself in the vanity or prowling through my jewelry

7. Emmitt likes a nice nap on the water heater and an occasional poop in the tub.

8. Assuming I do my hair/face, which is a big assumption, it happens in the bathroom

9. It is also the home to my rather substantial perfume collection. I may sometimes fail to act like a lady but I like to smell like one.

10. It also houses my husband's personal pharmacy.

A lot to house in one room for certain. Especially the the long narrow space that is my bathroom.

It did however become much easier once all the out of date cosmetics/lotions/medications. I found a tube of Icy Hot that expired in 2003, we moved here in June 2006. It is not an admission of pride, but rather shame.

The book also gave a formula as to the number of towels we would need. Number of bedrooms x 2 +1. That would be 7. I would have to do laundry everyday. I have no doubt that this woman is a genius in may areas, however I also have no doubt that she does not have children or inside pets. I did scale back, to the tune of chucking 30 wash clothes in the donation pile with I think 5 towels and three hand towels.

Where did all these towels come from? One is sheer accumulation. I do not throw a towel away. Eventually they disintegrate in my hands. The other is inheritance. I get my hoarding of bath towels honest. My grandmother had at least 3 complete sets and lots of spares. I set and several spares ended up in a laundry hamper in my bathroom in July. And there they set, untouched, until last week.

I didn't even know which towels they were. Turns out it was the M monogrammed set. Having always been a bit in love with my last name, and the memories associated with these towels, I admit they are on my shelf. I remember thinking my grandparent's must be doing pretty good if they had monogrammed towels. There were only 4 and 2 hand towels. They simply hide under the beach towels. Maybe next year I will be ready, but not just yet.

I did however do a blitzkrieg on the bathtub toys and the lotions. I also scrubbed the joint down. WALT jumped in, helping scrub the toilet and the bathtub. I hate that there is such a visual difference. It's like damn you could tell that window hadn't been cleaned in 2 years.

I also found the holy grail of missing shoes. One of WALT's crocs had been missing for over a year and there it was, lodged behind the water heater. How it got there will forever remain a mystery, but at least it's back.

I am one good scrub of the door from having the room as spotless as it's gonna get and then I will post after pictures. Since there is another snow day tomorrow the chances are pretty good that its going to happen sooner than later.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Progress heading out of my house!

The pile pictured above is gone!!!

Three large boxes full of clothing from my closet purge made their way to the local charity store today. A fourth box went into the building for the massive yard sale to come in the spring.

I also found a home for the two garbage bags of glad ware/plastic boxes out of the kitchen. (My father in law works at a food bank and was more than glad to take them off my hands.)

I am also happy to report that the "reception station/ entry way is holding up nicely and the last two day I have not had to search for my keys. Now if we can just get the shoe thing fixed.

If anyone knows of a place that recycles glass in the Tri-Cities area that would just make my month!!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

In the beginning, there were too many clothes . . .

For those of you unfamiliar with the text of "How to De-Clutter Your Life in a Week," the first step is to clean out your closet. Well actually all your clothing.

The trick is to put all your clothes together in one place at one time so you know what you really have. I was game to that. Hence the pictures of the insane pile of clothes on the semi-made bed --all mine.

I was honestly amazed at the amount because I thought clothes were the one area of my life that I have the ability to yell "next" and take a big bag out to donation. It is absolutely amazing what lingers un-bothered in the back of your closet.

I had no idea that I had so many pairs of jeans, or that I still have certain sweaters and jackets. I am a certified winter coat whore so that was no surprise. But I maintain anyone who spent 4 winters in Blacksburg has multiple winter coats. I just held on to them ---ALL. Except the snazzy pea coat that literally fell apart and could not be sewn back together that 11th time. I keep a button in remembrance --- that would be funny right? if it wasn't true, but it is.

Everything I forgot I owned I tried on, and only 1 thing still fit. Depressing a bit, but it wasn't like I couldn't even get my legs in too small, just like lay down on the bed and suck it in too small. I am justifying, and that's fine, because I did the right thing --- they all went in the donation pile.

I the end I had three large boxes for donation, even the coat hangers (having invested in the supper snazzy huggable hangers and now having the proper amount of clothes to where I don't need plastic hangers!!!). And another box that I would like to yard sale/put in consignment.

It was surprising what was easy to get rid of --- my favorite pair of skinny jeans and even my black leather jacket circa senior year. I have a new 21st century leather jacket that makes my old jacket look a little lot lizard (I fear that it may have always been a little lot lizard, but if I couldn't bed Eddie Vedder I could at least wear similar clothing.)

Other things were a little harder. The Charlotte Hornet Larry Johnson jersey that I got at a yard sale about two years after LJ retired? Why was that so hard? I do not know, I chalk it up to mild mental illness and my continued belief that the cheap 5th foul on Greg Anthony in the 1991 Final Four may have been the beginning of the end of our civilization. That would be funny too, if I weren't being completely serious. But I am.

I digress, and then there was the horribly date 1980's jean jacket given to me by my grandfather. I have had several reincarnations of this staple and yet this acid washed monstrosity has lingered in my closet. It is of course the memories and so with teary eyes and a shove to the bottom of the pile, it was gone.

There are certain things I did not give up. I still am the proud owner of my Sacramento Kings Hedo Turkelo jersey. I was a Turk fan before last year's finals and I wear it every so often to remind those near and dear. I also kept a couple of frilly J Jill tops that I will get to wear if I ever get another day at the office. There are certain hopes to which we must cling to kept our tenuous grasp on sanity.

Still the difference is noticeable, especially in my dresser drawers. I also worked hard to redesign the flow. The cold hard truth is that I don't know until I put it on. So I am trying to set out pieces that go together and then hang back up the losers that morning. So far so good, but snow schedule is a friend of mine.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Delays and Progress

It's been almost 2 weeks since the last update and of course I have MANY excuses and a couple of valid reasons for the quietness.
1. The weather improved and life went back to what we call normal. School/work five days a week with dinner and baths and homework and bedtime stories, not to mention a little cleaning, leaving no time for blogging.
2. It was my birthday and that entire weekend, the only time I get time to myself (without help from the snow clouds) was spent being part of the Mullins woman tandem my husband fears so much. So much in fact that he cleaned our bedroom and found the missing shoe that started this whole endeavor. So much in fact that he made omelets on Saturday and Sunday morning for all of us. I really have to work on getting Deborah down here more often.
and probably most importantly . .
3. WALT started sensory OT on the 14th. It was rough and the second session started better but when we came back out I was just a mess. It's a helpless feeling sitting in a sterile cramped waiting room not knowing what they are doing to your child. I think I know just enough to really panic. They have to push his buttons, so to speak, so that they know what they need to work on, I get that, it is part of my job to do the same thing to other people's children. And yet this is my child and I have spent countless hours identifying those "buttons" and making sure they are not pushed because it seems so physically painful for him. In essence it is hard to take off the mommy pants. And as a result I sunk into a bout of the "mean reds" so aptly defined by Holly Golightly as:
"The blues are because you're getting fat and maybe it's been raining too long, you're just sad that's all. The mean reds are horrible. Suddenly you're afraid and you don't know what you're afraid of."
So I drove and cried for a couple of days (my favorite coping method) and fought off the urge to just burn down the house and head to some far off place and start over. The omelets helped. I also cut my own hair, just my bangs, but enough to create some internal purification. And we plowed through last week. And of course, as is his way, he came out of the therapy session smiling and eager to show me a large stuffed snake, with the OT marveling at the progress. It is 0%, 0%, 0%, 0%, and then bam 95%, but I wouldn't have him any other way.
Any who, about my progress . . .
As mentioned before, I had my birthday. There is really no greater feeling in the world, especially when suffering with the mean reds, then coming home from work to find a package attached to your gate. Tammy, the goddess divine of a clutter free existence, had sent me the decluttering bible. Apparently it had my name all over it. And of course it does.
So I switched up my previous plan of going room by room, which was still stalled in the overwhelmingness that is my kitchen, and went with the book.
There are a few things I must say about the writer's plan's to declutter in 7 days.
1. It is obvious that she does not have children or a small menagerie of animals because she assumes that the reader has time to herself throughout the day.
2. Either she is a speed junkie who has abandoned sleep for the righteous feeling of unstopability that comes with 22 stay alerts a day, or she has a job that is only about 3 hours of her day because there are tasks to complete both BEFORE and AFTER work. (as if)
3. Obviously she was wise enough to marry someone who did not have an opinion on what should stay and what should go and who also does not bring home new things without approval. Good for her.

As I have none of the above attributes it is going to take a bit longer than 7 days. Indeed it has taken 7 days to do 1 day in the book (minus the at work part because I am a roamer at work and have a desk I never use and leave nothing on) but I am what about 15% finished??? I'll take it.

I have photographic evidence and some feelings to blog out about those first two major steps, my closet, just mine---Robert is on his own, and the "reception station." Soon, I promise, soon. The next step -- the bathroom--- begins right after my second cup of coffee and my brownie.