19 Goals for 2019: This Year is Going to be Huge!

I’m not big on New Year’s resolutions. I like the concept of starting fresh but I don’t want to wait for a new year to get things going. For example, I started my current run streak on December 20. Since then, I’ve ran at least 1 mile every day for a total of almost 109 miles. It would have been easier to wait for the new year to keep track of the days, but I wanted to start. While I don’t wait for a new year to start things, a calendar year can be a great way to track your long-term progress.

Recently I heard about choosing a word for your year and I love that idea. This can help shape your year and make it easier to decide what you will or won’t be doing.

My word for 2019 is “Learn”

I was surprised by how little I needed to think about this before I knew what it would be. My word for this year is going to be “learn.” My career and educational goals are the driving force behind it. There will be a lot to take in this year but I’m up for the challenge.

Happier by Gretchen Rubin” is one of the podcasts I regularly listen to. Episode 203 covered a topic called “19 for 2019.” As the name implies, this is a list of 19 things to get done in 2019. This is a fun idea and I will use it to set my goals for the year.

As I was looking into goal setting, I came across a post on Dave Ramsey’s website titled, “How to Set SMART Goals in 2019.” I am well aware of SMART goals, but I liked the categories he broke them into. Here’s the list – and my take on them:

  • Financial: As I get older, I want to keep better tabs of things.
  • Spiritual: Continue to build upon my spirituality and knowledge.
  • Fitness: Get in the best shape I’ve ever been in.
  • Educational: Even having earned my Bachelor’s degree, I think this year is going to be one of the fullest of my life. I have a lot to learn and I can’t wait to get started!
  • Family: More family adventures and memory making.
  • Career: There are major changes coming soon in this category! I have these set but will get them added in a couple weeks.
  • Social: I’m an introvert and can be very quiet. It’s not that I don’t enjoy talking with people, but I just don’t have that much to say sometimes. My goal this year is to be more social.

19 for 2019

Here’s a list of things I want to get done this year

  1. Create a budget. [Financial]
  2. Start a daily journal to track my goals, accomplishments, and failures. [Spiritual]
  3. Start reading The Bible daily. [Spiritual]
  4. Create a life plan. [Spiritual]
  5. Run 1,000 miles this year. [Fitness]
    • As reference, I ran 571.1 in 2018.
  6. Run at least one mile every day. [Fitness]
  7. Do a cross-training workout at least 3 times a week. [Fitness]
  8. Learn at least 1/3 of the roads in our village’s run district for our volunteer fire department. [Education]
    • I want to immediately know the general location as soon as I hear the address.
  9. Read (or listen to) at least one book every month. [Education]
  10. Learn to read basic music. [Education]
    • I could read notes when I was a kid but haven’t done anything with it since then.
    • This is progress towards my long-term goal of learning Ukulele.
  11. Learn WordPress multisite. [Education]
    • I have an idea for a large project I would like to work on this summer.
  12. Continue making progress with learning more advanced WordPress and JavaScript. [Education]
  13. Take at least three camping trips. [Family]
  14. Do more meal prep. We did this once and made six meals in an hour. I loved it and am very interested in doing this on a more regular basis. [Family]
  15. Do one home project every month. [Family]
  16. Do at least one volunteer project as an ʻohana. [Family]
  17. Goal 1 for career to be added soon… [Career]
  18. Goal 2 for career to be added soon… [Career]
  19. Reach out to at least 3 people each week. [Social]

That’s my 19 for 2019. It’s my first time trying this so I’m anxious to see how it goes. Here’s to a happy and productive year to all of us! What are your goals for the year? I’d love for you to share them in the comments below!

Monthly Review: December 2018

Monthly Progress

Happy New Year! It’s hard to believe another year has passed. I hope you and your ʻohana had a wonderful 2018!

My goal for November was to pass my National Registry exam for Emergency Medical Responder, but I couldn’t get the test scheduled until December 1. I’m happy to say I passed the exam and I am now a certified first responder!

Podcasts to Audiobooks

Throughout the month I started questioning some of the podcasts I listen to. It’s not that they’re bad, but a podcast is going to cover what the podcast host(s) want to cover (though some do take input). This is nothing against them, as that’s how I expect it to work. But I am subscribed to a lot of podcasts. Some weeks I would listen to over 60 different ones. That’s a lot of time spent on topics that are “kind of” what I want.

I decided to cut back on the number I listen to so I can focus my time on things I want to learn or “read” about. I’ve been spending more time on audiobooks than I had been, where I pick the topic every time. I still listen to all the WordPress-related podcasts I can find, whether they are relevant to me or not.

I’ll be sharing the podcasts I listen to on my new resources page once the site redesign launches on January 18.

Aloha Friday Words

Goal from last month: Review the code, ensuring it meets WordPress coding and Plugin standards. Start using the plugin on geoffreyshilling.com. 

Progress:  Goal not met. I made a lot of progress, but didn’t have as much time to work on it as I had hoped. This is also going a lot slower since it’s the first time I’ve gone through everything like this on one of my plugins. It not only involves fixing the code, but going through the entire plugin handbook and standards to make sure I’m doing it right. I’m won’t be submitting it to the WordPress plugin directory but I want it to be up to standards so that I could if I wanted.

GeoffreyShilling.com Redesign

Goal from last month: “Finish sketches of the site before I do any more work on the site itself. It will use a coffee-inspired theme called “Kope 808,” likely built on the Mai Lifestyle Pro Theme.  The planned launch date is January 18, 2019 – the day Captain Cook discovered Hawaiʻi in 1778.”

Progress:  I was part way into the project and decided to do more of a beach-inspired theme for now. It won’t be anything special, but will give me a chance to work with the Genesis Framework. The majority of the new theme is built and I’m calling it “Big Island 808,” inspired by the beaches of Hawaiʻi’s Big Island. I will add the theme to GitHub soon.

Learn the Genesis Framework

Goal from last month: I know I’m not going to learn the entire framework in a month, but I want to familiarize myself with what’s available.  I got the Pro Plus plan and can’t wait to really get going!

Progress: Goal met! I read through quite a bit of documentation about Genesis and watched a few videos. I at least have a much better understanding of what’s available to me now.

Fitness

I took a little hiatus from fitness but now I’m back. Although this isn’t directly development-related, I think fitness is important for developers. And fitness is going to be taking more and more of my time, so I’ll be doing a little less developer stuff in the coming year. I’m aiming to run at least 5k every day. My actual goal is to run at least one mile daily and do a cross-fit-type workout at least three times a week. I’m currently doing Beach Body’s Insanity Max 30 (no, I’m not a coach and I don’t sell anything) and I love it! You can follow my progress at geoffrey.gets.fit on Instagram.

  • Running Miles in December: 73.11
  • Total Miles for 2018: 571.1
  • Total Runs: 128

Reading

I wasn’t getting much reading done, but am trying to set aside more time to do this. Here’s what I’ve been reading this month:


Goals for The Month

January is the last month on my current schedule. After that, there are some major changes that I really can’t wait to share! Once those changes take effect, the time I have for development will likely drop. That’s OK though, I’m stoked to see how the year goes!

  1. Aloha Friday Words [Plugin].
    URL: https://geoffreyshilling.com/plugins/aloha-friday-words/
    Continue to review/update code and documentation. Ensure everything meets WordPress coding and Plugin standards and requirements.
  2. GeoffreyShilling.com Redesign Plan [Website].
    URL: https://geoffreyshilling.com/
    Finish up the theme and get the site launched on January 18, 2019, the day Captain Cook became the first European to discover Hawaiʻi in 1778.
  3. AlohaGeoffrey.com [Website].
    URL: https://alohageoffrey.com/
    I keep going back and forth about my non-development stuff and how I want to handle it. I’m getting more into fitness in the coming year. This will be my personal blog for all that stuff. Topics will include recipes, fitness, productivity, general thoughts, and Hawaiʻi.

Aloha, a hui hou (until we meet again)!

Monthly Review: November 2018

I’ve had a revelation and I think I’ve finally figured out what I want to do.  It’s hard to narrow things down when you want to do all the things.

I going to be a full-stack JavaScript Developer that builds WordPress websites and share my progress along the way.

That’s easy to say but it’s going to be a journey getting there.  It certainly won’t happen overnight but it gives me something to work towards.  I’m behind on our homework to “learn JavaScript deeply.” Keep in mind I’m only a hobbyist developer and love my current career path.  This is something I do for fun.

JavaScript.  More and more of WordPress is being built with JavaScript.  I’ve already seen some impressive things and I can see a lot of potential down the road.

WordPress Websites.  I want to build professional, high-quality websites. I have a number of friends and family that have businesses and have asked about helping them get started. 

I’ve been watching a lot of Carrie Dil’s Genesis courses on LinkedIn Learning.  After playing around with the Genesis Framework for a while, I decided this was the best path for what I want to do. I’m now working with the Pro Plus All-Theme Package and learning a lot. 

I’ve decided to move my recipes over to a site designed mainly for our family. This will allow me to focus on development here at GeoffreyShilling.com.  It’d be great to help others going down the same path as me.

Schedule Change

My schedule will change again in a couple months, but starting Monday my plan is to try blocking off time.  I hadn’t done that much in the past because things get shifted around a lot, but I’m going to see how it goes. I’m definitely much more of a morning person and I wake up pretty early every day of the week.  This lets me get my “fun” stuff done without taking time away from family after my day job.

  • WordPress Support, 2.5 hours: I know this has been on my list for a while, but this month I’m making time to get back into the WordPress.org forums.
  • JavaScript, 5 hours: I’ll be focusing on freeCodeCamp in the beginning and then move on to more and more JavaScript projects, separate from the projects listed below.
  • Projects, ~5 hours: This can be anything I have to work on, whether it’s a plugin, a theme, or a site redesign. 
  • Running, at least 3-4 days a week: I love running and would do it every day if I could.  For now, my goal is at least 3-4 runs each week.
  • Cross-Fit-Type Training, at least 3-4 days a week: I’m probably going with Beach Body’s Insanity Max 30, a version of Insanity compressed to 30 minutes.

Monthly Progress

Posts as Grid [Plugin]

Goal from last month: I want to work on a plugin that will display the posts in a category as a grid using the post’s featured image and title.  This will be used on my recipe pages so you can see what there is without scrolling through each recipe.

Progress:  Completed!  I decided I didn’t need to create a separate plugin and stuck with adding it to the theme, though this may be used as a prime example of scope creep.  As I mentioned above, I split the recipes off my main site and those will now be at Island of Aloha.  I also worked on a new theme for this, ʻOhana Favorites, using the Genesis Framework.  The original (Foodie Pro) theme probably could probably could have done exactly what I wanted, but my goal was to learn. And that I did.  I used CSS Grid and am very happy with the results. The site itself still has a few tweaks, but the grid I like.

Password Generator [Bootstrap, JavaScript]

Goal from last month: Start working on a JavaScript password generator that uses Bootstrap. I had been using Norton’s Password Generator, but their defaults are different than what I would like them to be. Since this is actually something I use on a specific project quite a bit, I figure it’d be worth my time creating. 

Progress:  Completed! The password generator defaults to everything I want and it’s as automated as possible.  Features include:

  • Default to uppercase, lowercase, and numbers selected.
  • Default to 16 characters long.
  • Set focus to the Generate button after updating any options so it’s ready to press enter and create a new password.
  • Automatically generate a password and select it on page load. As soon as the page loads, I just need to press CTRL+C and I’ll be ready to use the password.
https://codepen.io/geoffreyshilling/pen/bQEgOb

Laptop Rebuild

Goal from last month: I had ordered an SSD and plan to rebuild my laptop this month.  I’ll be upgrading from Ubuntu 16.04 LTS to 18.04.1 LTS. I use VVV for my local development. The biggest change is that I’m hoping to get rid of my dual-boot system (Windows and Ubuntu) and only run Ubuntu with Windows in a Virtual Box.  I’d love to ditch Windows completely, but a couple things I use for the Navy require it.  I don’t want to mess around with the hacks that would let me potentially run a Windows program on Linux. 

Progress:  Almost complete. Shortly after last month’s post I started having a number of other issues and decided to go ahead and replace my laptop.  I got rid of my dual-boot setup and now run Ubuntu 18.04 with Windows on a VirtualBox machine.  I have a couple Navy websites I’m still working on, but email is finally working now.  

National Registry Exam

Goal from last month: I want to try to schedule and take my National Registry Emergency Medical Responder (EMR) exam this month.  We took a class with our fire department a couple months ago and I’ve completed that, but I won’t be certified until I pass the National Registry.

Progress:  Almost complete.  I need to take the exam on a Saturday due to my schedule.  They don’t offer it every weekend and the next Saturday exam they had is today.  I’ll be taking it in a couple hours after this is posted.  Wish me luck!

Learning

I took most of the LinkedIn Learning courses I could find on Genesis this month and continued on with the Become a Junior WordPress Developer learning path.  I’ve decided not to list the individual courses here and instead just add them to my LinkedIn profile.  I’ll add individual courses as I take them. Once I complete a learning path I’ll remove those and just keep the main learning path certificate.  Part of the reason for this is that I’m taking more courses as I devote more time but also there are some of the courses I find really helpful and go through them several times.


Goals for The Month

Although I may work on other things, I’m going to limit myself to setting three goals every month.

  1. Aloha Friday Words [Plugin].
    URL: https://geoffreyshilling.com/plugins/aloha-friday-words/
    • Review the code, ensuring it meets WordPress coding and Plugin standards. Start using the plugin on geoffreyshilling.com. 
  2. GeoffreyShilling.com Redesign Plan [Website].
    URL: https://geoffreyshilling.com/
    • Finish sketches of the site before I do any more work on the site itself. It will use a coffee-inspired theme called “Kope 808,” likely built on the Mai Lifestyle Pro Theme.  The planned launch date is January 18, 2019 – the day Captain Cook discovered Hawaiʻi in 1778.
  3. Learn the Genesis Framework.
    • I know I’m not going to learn the entire framework in a month, but I want to familiarize myself with what’s available.  I got the Pro Plus plan last and can’t wait to really get going!

Aloha, a hui hou (until we meet again)!

Monthly Review: October2018

Development

I’ve had a really hard time trying to figure out a schedule and a plan moving forward.  I absolutely love WordPress and want to continue working with it. I know I can’t learn it all, but I want to.

This month I’m trying something new: I’m going to learn JavaScript and do WordPress. What’s the difference from what I’m doing now?  Instead of trying to learn everything about WordPress and JavaScript, I’m going to focus on learning JavaScript.  I’m not scheduling any more time to learn WordPress.  That might sound a little misleading.

I’m not done learning WordPress – not by any means.  It simply means I won’t be scheduling my time around that anymore.  I have time each week scheduled for learning and I have time scheduled for projects.  The time for learning will be spent on JavaScript.  The time for projects will mostly be spent on WordPress, since most of the projects I want to do are WordPress.  Most of the projects I have in mind will require skills that are beyond where I currently am.  Instead of trying to learn everything about WordPress up front, I’m going to do my projects.  As I come to something I don’t know, only then will I focus on learning it.  This will certainly cut back on my overall progress on projects, but it’s going to keep me moving at the pace I want. 

GeoffreyShilling.com Redesign

Goal from last month: Plan a new design for GeoffreyShilling.com that I will ultimately build using the Underscores starter theme.

Progress:  I figured out a basic design for the site and started working on the theme I’m calling “Kope 808.”  Kope is the Hawaiian word for coffee and 808 is Hawaiʻi’s lone area code.  The theme is, of course, coffee inspired. 

There was a slight change in that I decided to go ahead and use the Gutenberg Starter theme instead of the Underscores theme. I started working on some drawings but I was anxious to try out the Gutenberg Starter Theme so I worked on code a little bit.

Aloha Friday Words

Goal from last month: Continue to work on the plugin and have it functional by the end of the month.

Progress:  Goal met! The plugin is now working as expected.  I’m sure I’ll run into a few small things along the way, but I’m just about ready to put it on this site and start using it.  The last thing I want to do before then is to go through the code and make sure it’s following all the WordPress coding standards and styles and that it’s following the plugin best practices and standards.
I learned a lot this month.  I had some frustrating days working through adding a default featured image, but I finally got it figured out.

Learning

As much as I want to get into JavaScript, I want to make sure I have a solid foundation of the basics.  I started making websites in the late 90’s.  Although I’ve done plenty of tinkering since then, I want to make sure I’m doing things correctly.  I completed the Become a Front-End Web Developer learning path on LinkedIn Learning and started on Become a Vanilla JavaScript Developer.

Courses Completed:

  • WordPress: Workflows
  • WordPress Essential Training
  • SASS Essential Training
  • Making Sense of the CSS Box Model
  • Learning Responsive Design
  • Learning CSS
  • Learning App Building with Vanilla JavaScript
  • JavaScript Essential Training
  • Introduction to CSS
  • Git Essential Training
  • Bootstrap 4 Essential Training
  • Learning React.js

Personal Development/Improvement

I’ve been making big progress the past two months in the amount of things I’ve been learning.  I’ve been working on several projects, but it adds time going back to make sure everything is coded properly and following the styles I want.  This month I started taking notes for my own style and development guidelines.  Although this will mostly be based off WordPress.org’s various coding standards, there will be a few minor changes.  One of those being CSS: I like to organize my CSS alphabetically within elements and sections.  This style guide will help me as I’m working on new projects and continue to learn so I won’t have to go searching for how I want things.

Fitness

I took a couple weeks off from fitness in October but now I’m back! As much as I would like to run every day, I really need to get in some other training as well.  I’m still trying to figure out what’s going to work best, but I think I’m going to do P90X three days a week and run 3-4 times, maintaining my mileage that I was with 5k/day.

  • Running Miles in October: 79.23
  • Total Miles for 2018: 491.9

Reading

Here’s what I’ve been reading this month:

  • Physical: Hawaiʻi Magazine.
  • Audible: The 4-Hour Workweek: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich (Expanded and Updated) by Timothy Ferriss.
    Thoughts: So far it’s an interesting book. I’m not trying to make millions or get my work down to hours a week, but I’ve heard a lot of people recommend it.
  • Kindle: How to Parent a Genius: Raising Kids that are Smart, Successful, Nice and Happy! by Pat Quinn

Productivity

I’m always on the lookout for more efficient ways to get things done. Here’s what I found this month:

  • “To-Do” Email Address.  I use Trello a lot and there are plenty of ways to for it to help make you even more efficient. Trello allows you to create cards by email and add them to a specific list. I created a very short email address, such as todo@example.com ,and have it forward to the long email address Trello gave me for my “To Do” board.  From there the item is added to my “Inbox” list until I move it where it needs to go. Any emails I receive I can easily forward to this address and have it added to my to-do list.
  • A Week of Sandwiches.  A couple weeks ago I heard a suggestion about making sandwiches and freezing them. I really wish I remember where I heard/saw this so I could give credit.  My son makes his lunch the night before school.  I had him try freezing one sandwich to see how it worked and he said he couldn’t notice any difference in taste.  This is the second where he’s made his lunch on Sunday night and four more sandwiches for the rest of the week. Each sandwich goes in a bag, he puts them in the freezer, and grabs one as needed when he’s making lunch. It’s amazing how much time it saves him getting things out just once instead of every school night.

My News Highlights

A few of the things I found interesting this month.


Goals for The Month

  1. Aloha Friday Words [Plugin].
    URL: https://geoffreyshilling.com/plugins/aloha-friday-words/
    • Review the code, ensuring it meets WordPress coding and Plugin standards. Start using the plugin on geoffreyshilling.com. 
  2. GeoffreyShilling.com Redesign Plan [Website].
    URL: https://geoffreyshilling.com/
    • Finish sketches of the site before I do any more work on the theme itself.  The theme will be called “Kope 808.”  It should be built mobile-first and will likely include designs for small, medium, and large screens.
  3. Posts as Grid [Plugin].
    • I want to work on a plugin that will display the posts in a category as a grid using the post’s featured image and title.  This will be used on my recipe pages so you can see what there is without scrolling through each recipe.
  4. Password Generator [Bootstrap, JavaScript].
    • Start working on a JavaScript password generator that uses Bootstrap. I had been using Norton’s Password Generator, but their defaults are different than what I would like them to be. Since this is actually something I use almost daily, I figure it’ll be worth my time creating. 
    • Of course there are plenty of options out there I could use, but this will also give me a good reason to practice Bootstrap and JavaScript.
  5. Laptop Rebuild.
    • I had ordered an SSD and plan to rebuild my laptop this month.  I’ll be upgrading from Ubuntu 16.04 LTS to 18.04.1 LTS. I use VVV for my local development. The biggest change is that I’m hoping to get rid of my dual-boot system (Windows and Ubuntu) and only run Ubuntu with Windows in a Virtual Box.  I’d love to ditch Windows completely, but a couple things I use for the Navy require it.  I don’t want to mess around with the hacks that would let me potentially run a Windows program on Linux. 
  6. National Registry Exam.
    • I want to try to schedule and take my National Registry Emergency Medical Responder (EMR) exam this month.  We took a class with our fire department a couple months ago and I’ve completed that, but I won’t be certified until I pass the National Registry.


Monthly Review: September 2018

I’m getting back into my monthly reviews but they won’t be anything fancy. The format will be a simple a list of things I’ve accomplished for the month and what my plans are for the following month.

Development

  • GeoffreyShilling.com. I finally decided to combine development and personal stuff like recipes into a single site.  I just didn’t have the time or desire to manage 2-3 sites for myself. It may not be the best strategy for a blog, but I’m not trying to be a professional blogger or anything so I’m okay with that.    
  • Aloha Friday Words. Started working on a WordPress plugin that will easily let me share a new Hawaiian word and its meaning every week. Although I haven’t worked on it for too long, I’ve made some good progress and learned a lot. The plugin currently creates a custom post type using a Gutenberg template, automatically adds the appropriate category, a default featured image for that post type, and generates the title for the post. The only thing I need to do is click “Add new,” enter the Hawaiian word, its definition, and an example of how it is used.
  • LinkedIn Learning. As much as I want to get into JavaScript, I want to make sure I have a solid foundation of the basics.  I started making websites in the late 90’s.  Although I’ve done plenty of tinkering since then, I want to make sure I’m doing things correctly.  I’ve been working on the Become a Front-End Web Developer learning path, including:
    • Completed HTML Essential Training
    • Completed CSS Essential Training 1
    • Completed CSS Essential Training 2
    • Completed GitHub for Web Designers
    • Completed CSS Essential Training 3
    • Started Sass Essential Training
  • Tools, Tips, and Tricks.
    • Visual Studio Code. Atom has been my editor of choice for a long time but I started looking into Visual Studio Code after hearing a number of people talk about it.  I really enjoy it so far.
      • I use Ubuntu and the Alt-Click wasn’t working for multi-cursor editing. By default, it already has another behavior assigned to it.  I found an article that gave a command to run and change this behavior. It worked for me:
        gsettings set org.gnome.desktop.wm.preferences mouse-button-modifier ""
    • Live SASS Compiler extension. I’m just getting into SASS and found this extension. It makes it super easy to compile your SASS code and automatically update your browser using the Live Server extension.
    • Live Server. Automatically reloads the page in your browser when you make changes to the code. No more manually refreshing.

Fitness

I’ve been more focused on fitness lately and that trend is going to continue. It was a busy month but productive! My goal is to increase or at least match the distance of the previous month.

  • Running Miles in September: 104.23
  • Total Miles for 2018: 416.69
  • Set a goal of running at least 5K a day. I’ve been doing that every day since September 12.
  • Decided to create a new Instagram account: @geoffrey.gets.fit. I was originally sharing my progress for #100DaysOfFitness with daily photos on my personal Instagram account. Then I realized a problem with that – I don’t want to do this for 100 days, but until I physically can’t anymore.
  • Completed my fifth Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure on September 29.
    • Set a new 5k personal record of 23:47:34, finishing 32 out of 229 timed runners.

Reading/Books

I set a goal to start reading more. Sometimes there isn’t as much time to read a physical book as there is to listen to something. My “reading” will also include audio books (I currently use Audible).

  • Physical: Hawaiʻi Magazine.
    Thoughts: I love everything there is about Hawaiʻi. This magazine provides some great information and amazing photos of the islands. The worst thing about it is that is only comes every other month.
  • Audible: The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right by Atul Gawande.
    Thoughts: I’m a big fan of checklists. I had previously started this quite a while ago, so I decided to start over. It didn’t take me long to finish. The book shows how checklists are good for all kinds of things, even those that may not seem like it at first. One reason I like checklists is that it makes routine things nearly failsafe. If you have a checklist for something, you go down the list and don’t have to worry about leaving out a small detail somewhere.
  • Audible: The 4-Hour Workweek: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich (Expanded and Updated) by Timothy Ferriss.
    Thoughts: So far it’s an interesting book. I’m not trying to make millions or get my work down to hours a week, but I’ve heard a lot of people recommend it.

Productivity

I’m always on the lookout for a better way of doing things.

  • I tried make-ahead freezer meals for the first time. We may six meals in just over one hour. Once we make sure our family likes the recipes, it wouldn’t add much time to make two of each and have 12 meals. I’m loving these after the first time. Do you do your meal prep ahead of time and freeze it? If so, please leave a comment below with some of your favorite recipes!
  • Repeating cards in Trello.  I discovered this a while ago but really started making use of it this month. I have a number of weekly, monthly, and quarterly tasks both personal and at work. This has been an awesome addition to my workflow.

Miscellaneous

  • I’ve decided to start tracking the podcasts I listen to and make sure I leave reviews for my favorites. I’m gathering a list of WordPress-specific ones as well as a more general list.

Goals for The Month

  • Aloha Friday Words [Plugin]
    URL: https://geoffreyshilling.com/plugins/aloha-friday-words/
    • Continue to work on the plugin and have it functional by the end of the month. 
  • GeoffreyShilling.com Redesign Plan [Website].  The primary purpose is to learn the Underscores theme.
  • WordPress.org Support Forums. It’s been way too long since I’ve spent much time on the forums and I don’t like that.
    • Make time for the forums, even if it’s only 15 minutes each day.
  • Julie’s Site [Website]. My wife has been rocking it with graphic design using just a Facebook page.  That’s great, but it’s time she had a site of her own!
    • URL: Coming soon!
    • Go over her needs then plan and design the new site.

#100DaysOfFitness: 1/3 of the Way Done

Day 0, July 23, 2018.

  • Body Fat
  • Weight:
  • Chest:
    Waist:
    Hips:
    Right Thigh:
    Left Thigh:
    Right Arm:
    Left Arm:

Workouts Completed:

  • Running Distance.
    Running Time.
    Weight.
    Body measurements (monthly?)
    Photo.
    Other, such as physical activities not specifically being tracked.
    Steps taken as calculated by my FitBit.

#100DaysOfFitness Revisited with the Addition of P90X3

I had previously started the #100DaysOfFitness challenge on June 11.  I was meeting my goals but decided that wasn’t enough.  I signed up for Beach Body on Demand (BOD) and started P90X3 on Tuesday, July 24. With the addition of BOD, I reset the #100DaysOfFitness counter to 0.  It took me a while to post something because we’ve had a first responder course and a number of other things taking a lot of time the last month.

I don’t consider myself that out of shape, but I’m not where I want to be.  The command fitness leader (CFL) for our Navy Reserve unit may be switching units, leaving us without an enlisted person in that position.  I’d like to step up and fill the role, but that means I need an “excellent-low” score on my next physical readiness test (PRT).  I have been getting various stages of “good” on my last few tests, so I have to work on that.  In order for me to get an excellent on the PRT, I need to achieve the following results:

  • 1.5-mile run in 12:33
  • 60 push-ups in 2 minutes
  • 78 curl-ups in 2 minutes

I find running to be extremely relaxing. I’d go for a 10-mile run every day if I could. The hardest part for me is finding time and now I’m throwing in P90X3 on top of that. That may seem like an odd thing to do at first. Then you think about what I’m doing by adding something else. It actually makes perfect sense.

“Action expresses priorities.”

Mahatma Gandhi

I saw a quote attributed to Mahatma Gandhi – “Action expresses priorities.” It’s only three words long, but it sure says a lot.  If something really is one of your priorities, you find a way. You make a way. For me this meant shifting around my schedule.  Fitness is no longer something I fit in where I can, I have intentionally put it on my calendar every day.

Updated #100DaysOfFitness Rules

For this challenge, a week will begin on Monday and end on Sunday; the exception is that I started on a Tuesday.  Every week, I want to:

  • Take at least 84,000 steps (this averages out to 12,000 per day).
    • This may change as I see how my steps are affected by doing P90X3 in place of some of my runs.
  • Workout at least 6 days using P90X3
  • Post my weekly progress (starting September 3), to possibly include:
    • Running Distance.
    • Running Time.
    • Weight.
    • Body measurements
    • Photo.
    • Other, such as physical activities not specifically being tracked.
    • Steps taken as calculated by my FitBit.
  • Share my daily progress on Instagram.  
    • This may include a photo, how many steps I’ve taken, and what workouts I completed.
    • Daily progress will be posted for the previous day so I can get an accurate total for my number of steps. Example: My steps and workout for August 20 will be posted on August 21.
    • I’ll be using the #100DaysOfFitness hashtag along with anything else that fits for the day.

Before:  Day 0, July 23, 2018.


  • Weight: 199 lbs
  • Chest: 38-1/4″
  • Waist: 34-1/4″
  • Hips: 36-1/4″
  • Right Thigh: 22-1/8″
  • Left Thigh: 22″
  • Right Arm: 12-7/8″
  • Left Arm: 13″

On your mark, get set, go!

Have you started you own fitness routine?  What are you doing to get in shape or maintain where you are? What are your goals?  I’d love for you to let me know in the comments or on Instagram!

Why I’m Quitting #100DaysOfCode and [Temporarily] Support

With the addition of a new class to my schedule, I now have too much on my plate. I’m not complaining, but I need to make some decisions.  For the most part, I’m the one that chose to do these items.

This is exactly why it’s good to know your priorities.  It becomes a whole lot easier to make decisions when you know them ahead of time.  In addition to my full-time job, I’m working on fitting these into my schedule:

  • Volunteer Fire Department.
    • Emergency Medical Responder (EMR) Training. 
      This is a new class I started a couple weeks ago.  A handful of people from our volunteer fire department are taking this course.  It’s an important one (with homework and everything!) that I want to make sure gets enough attention.  It can literally be a matter of life or death with this one.
  • #100DaysOfFitness.
    I’ve wanted to get in shape for a while, but there wasn’t time to fit it in the schedule.  Now I’ve made fitness a priority and made time in my schedule.  As of right now, my goal every week is to run at least 20 miles, do 75 push-ups, and 150 curl-ups.  
    Read more about my #100DaysOfFitness challenge.
  • Kids’ Playhouse. 
    We’ve talked about building the kids a new playhouse for a while now.  We have some of the supplies, but as I really started going through the set of plans we have, a number of small things just weren’t making sense.  My grandpa was a carpenter and wouldn’t have even needed plans.  We’ve decided instead of rebuilding it from scratch, we are going to fix up the one we already have. 
  • Cub Scouts.
    My son is just finishing up the last of his Cub Scout requirements.  We got a few months behind because our previous Den Leader decided they weren’t interested in doing the job after all.  I took over as his Den leader and we’ve made some great progress.  He’s done with his Weblo requirements but I want to make sure he finishes up his Arrow of Light since that is the one thing that transfers to Boy Scouts.  Once he moves on to Boy Scouts, he will be doing more, but I won’t be running things.
  • Navy Reserve.  
    The normal Navy Reserve stuff.
  • Development.
    I have a couple projects I’m working on, including my Mug Monday WordPress plugin.  It will allow me to share a new coffee mug from my collection every Monday.

Quitting #100DaysOfCode

After several attempts, I’ve come to the conclusion that the #100DaysOfCode challenge isn’t a good fit for me – or I’m not a good fit for it, however you want to look at it.  I love the idea, but it just doesn’t work with my schedule and priorities.

My problem has never been to stay motivated; the problem is finding the time.  I do spend time on code and development, but not consistently enough for something like this.  I have too many variables (no pun intended) in my life that can take no time one week and 20 hours the next.

I still intend to work on freeCodeCamp, but not for an hour every day.  I’ll also continue to work on my other projects and learning development when I can fit those in.

Taking a Break from Support

This is the tough one for me.  Although I haven’t had much time for a while now, I’ve tried to keep up with a little with support here and there, including moderator stuff in the mornings.  I absolutely love doing it, but with everything else right now I’m just taking a break completely for a couple months.  There are some really kind, generous people on the support team.  I may pop into the Slack channel sometimes, but that’s about my limit.

Make the Most of Your Time

I already have enough going on that I don’t like to take too much time away from my family when I don’t have to.  For this reason, my fun stuff or hobbies fit in where there can. 

Obviously, I don’t have a choice sometimes, but evenings are usually reserved for family.  I typically wake up between 4:00-5:00 am so I can do my stuff without taking away from family time.  What doesn’t fit in before work, usually doesn’t happen.

The key is in not spending time, but in investing it.

Stephen R. Covey

Nobody has a lot of time and that’s why we need to make the most of what we do have.  Set your priorities and stick with them.  Don’t waste your time, but invest it things important to you.

How to Display Hawaiian Characters in Your HTML

One of my long term goals is to learn the Hawaiian language. I know a number of words and I studied the pronunciation years ago, so I’m not terrible with pronunciation.

Hawaiʻ i is not the same as Hawa’i or Hawaii.


As I start writing more Hawaiian words (including Hawaiʻ i), I want them to be correct. The ʻ , or ʻokina, is not an apostrophe, displayed as ‘. I won’t go into the details of the language here, but know there is a difference. Just as WordPress has a capital p and is not written Wordpress, Hawaiʻ i is not the same as Hawaii or Hawai’i.

Below is a chart of the letters in case you need to use them on your own site.

LettersHex CodeEntity
ʻ (ʻOkina)ʻ
ĀĀĀ
āāā
ĒĒĒ
ēēē
ĪĪĪ
īīī
ŌŌŌ
ōōō
ŪŪŪ
ūūū

#100DaysOfFitness: A Simplistic Way to Get in Shape This Year

I don’t really consider myself out of shape, but I’m also not where I want to be.  I’ve wanted to do something like this for a while, but just kept putting it off.  I really don’t like push-ups and curl-ups, but my body isn’t going to get in shape doing nothing.  At least not the shape I want. Some people only do stuff to get in shape for summer.  I missed the timing for that, but I’m OK with that.  Although this challenge is only 100 days long ,this is the beginning of a new way of living.  I enjoy running, but the hardest part is finding time.

I made a change in my schedule.  Fitness is no longer something I fit in where I can, I have intenionally put it on my calendar.

Overall Fitness Goals

Since I’m only tracking number for running, push-ups, and curl-ups, it may seem like this is focused on my Navy Reserve physical readiness test (PRT). That’s important, but there are other reasons I want to be in the best possible shape.

  • Kids.  My kids are 4 and 11.  I want to be able to keep up with them as they get older.
  • Fire Department. Be fit enough to continue doing my job as a volunteer firefighter for many years to come.
  • Navy Reserve PRT.  Improve the score on my fitness test.
  • MapMyRun You vs the Year 2018.  I’ve signed up for the challenge to run 1018 KM (~633 miles) this year.  So far I’m a little behind from where I’d like to be, at 190 KM (~118 miles), with 206 days to go.

#100DaysOfFitness Rules

For the purpose of this challenge, a week will begin on Monday and end on Sunday.  Every week, I want to:

  • Run an average of 20 miles.
  • Do at least 75 push-ups. This breaks down to 15 push-ups five times a week. 
  • Do at least 150 curl-ups. This breaks down to 30 curl-ups five times a week. 
  • Post my progress, to include:
    • Running Distance. 
    • Running Time. 
    • Push-Ups.
    • Curl-Ups.
    • Weight.
    • Waist measurement.
    • Photo.
    • Other, such as physical activities not specifically being tracked.
    • Steps Taken calculated by my FitBit.
  • Tweet my progress using the #100DaysOfX and #100DaysOfFitness hashtags.

On your mark, get set, go!

Have you started you own fitness routine?  What are you doing to get in shape?  What are your goals?  I’d love for you to let me know in the comments!

2018 is my year to get fit.  I intend to post a before and after picture.  As a starting point, my day measurements are:

Day 1

  • Weight: 205.2
  • Waist: 36-1/4″

Other Resources: