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.