August 20, 2023
Week of August 13–19
This is the best way to describe my week. I felt distracted and it took a lot of will to sit down and work each day.
I was distracted at the beginning of the week by the health of our family guinea pig, Teddy. We discovered a lump on her cheek just below her left eye the week before. My daughter and I took her (Teddy) to the vet on Monday. The vet believed that Teddy had an abscessed tooth. We scheduled a procedure for the next day that could have included taking out one or more of her teeth.
I was concerned for Teddy because I know things can happen when little animals have to be sedated. Guinea pig’s teeth are always growing. The top and bottom teeth help to keep them both in balance. The loss of a tooth would mean that we would have to regularly have her teeth filed.
I was relieved when the vet called later on Tuesday morning to tell me that he had been incorrect. Teddy just had a cyst and not an abscessed tooth. We were so glad to be able to pick her up and bring her home. The cyst is just extra skin cells and is not something that will affect her health.
Not as productive
I was able to get things done on Monday and Tuesday but did not feel as productive as I could. The rest of the week I struggled to get started and I just felt distracted throughout the days. I got things done but just had a harder time engaging the work.
It is normal to go through periods like this. My allergies have been bothering me a lot lately and that tends to make me feel like I have less energy and at times, a harder time focusing. I don’t think that it helped that I took the week before off.
I took a walk in the early afternoon at mid-week. The weather was cooler and I really enjoyed walking around the neighborhood and enjoying the nice day. I extended the walk because I was not ready to get back to work. I kept finding other things like cleaning my bookshelves or changing out burned-out bulbs in our kitchen that beckoned to me to give those chores my attention. I resisted the urge but found those distractions occurring more frequently this past week. That is just how my days went this past week.
Despite these distractions and being a bit less productive on the whole, I was able to make progress on my current project this week. I was able to execute an idea for a contact form that will have different fields depending on whether the person interested in the leadership program has applied, already gone through the program, or has some questions before applying.
I also built out a frequently asked questions block where the user first chooses one of three question categories and then drills down to questions under each of those categories. I used CSS Grid to hide and show content based on the user’s input. I used the same functionality on the contact block to hide/show the contact form after the user chooses their relationship to the program.
Other highlights from the week
- At our mid-week All Hands meeting, I got to share with our broader team how we are approaching development differently by creating WordPress blocks with React instead of with Advanced Custom Fields. I showed off how we have more control over the backend editor experience and showed some specific ways I built the editor experience for one of the blocks in my current project.
- For our LGND Campfire on Friday, five of us got together and shared about our favorite podcasts. It was a fun time interacting with my teammates and hearing about their personal interests through the podcasts that they enjoyed. I look forward to expanding my listening options through some of their recommendations.
- I met with 2 of my developer teammates for 1:1 this week. We recently reorganized our team into two divisions, one to work on apps and the other to work on more marketing focused creative work. My two teammates are on the apps side so we don’t interact as much as we had in the past. It was great to catch up with both of them this week.
Articles I read
- When We Follow God’s Plan (Tim Challies)
- Vibe Check #28 (Dave Rupert)
- Deck of Spaces, cards designed to maximize educational space usage, spread to schools around the world (KU News)
- Book exposes complex motivations of defectors during Cold War (KU News)
- Bits of Inspiration from Dan Cederholm’s Design Journey (Creative Market) – I enjoyed catching up with what Dan has been up to over the past few years.
- Remote work is just work (Fortune)
- 5 Pieces of Career Advice (Sahil Bloom on LinkedIn)
- Same old hustle (Design Thinking Comic)
- Michael Oher alleges Tuohy family never adopted him, didn’t share ‘The Blind Side’ profits (The Athletic)
- ‘They will buckle’ – the inside story of how Harry Kane left Tottenham for Bayern (The Athletic)
- The art of the demo (Andy Bell)
- WordPress 6.3; breaking decades of CSS! (David Bushell)
- Victoria’s Anti-Conversion Legislation Promotional Is A Soothing Bed-Time Story (Stephen McAlpine)
- All About Jesus: Tim Keller’s Memorial Service (Gospel Coalition)
- A former MLB player who once struggled with Tourette syndrome finds peace helping others (The Athletic)
- Just normal web things. – Amen.
- Why Chiefs coach Andy Reid runs NFL’s hardest training camp: ‘He’s not going to change his ways’ (The Athletic)
- ‘Why are we making all the other sports suffer?’ College hoops coaches on football-driven realignment (The Athletic)
- Translating ACF Blocks With ACFML for a Multilingual WordPress Site
- Inspirational Websites Roundup #48 (Codrops)
- Book excerpt: Patrick Mahomes, ‘the Pine Curtain Superstar’ (The Athletic)
- On the Crushing Guilt of Failing at Quiet Time
What I watched
- Star Trek: Into the Darkness (Netflix)
- Sweet Magnolias (Netflix)
- Star Wars: Rebels (Disney+)
- The A.I. Dilemma (YouTube)
- The Franchise, Season 4 (YouTube) – Documentary about Kansas City Chiefs 2023 season
- CSS is getting better, but Sass is still relevant (Kevin Powell on YouTube)
- America’s Test Kitchen (PBS)
- American Pickers (Defy)
What I listened to
- Songwriter & Recording Artist Wes King on the Creative Life – Wes King is one of my favorite Christian artists. I love the deep theological truths he weaves into his talented guitar playing.
- The Tetris Company (How We Built This podcast)
Books I am reading
- True to His Word
- Engineering Management for the Rest of Us
- Making Sense of God
- Invitation to the Jesus Life
What I played
- MLB The Show 23 (Rays) – I went 3-5 this past week. I am still very frustrated that my hitting is so bad. I cannot seem to score more than 3 runs a game. My pitching has been the difference. I lost a few games because my bullpen was unable to keep the lead. But I put too much pressure on my pitching by not scoring more runs. I think that the hitting mode (zone is what I am using) is less forgiving than it was in the 2021 version of the game. Because I got a lot of hits and more homers in that game and my precision was not much better.