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Waitin’ and Holdin’

Or – more exactly – waitin’ for the HOLDEN.   Sitting in the customer service lounge for the service of our Holden Commodore – been on leave for a few days, and thought I’d wait for the car service, and bash through some emails, and blog posts/drafts.

Would have been good to jump online and use some wireless while waiting, but not available, so it’s offline email and post’ing.

Has been great to have a few days off work, with the winter blues taken hold of me heading into July.   The merger and takeover of the company I work for – by the company I used to work for – has all but been completed, with all staff moving to new contracts and employment agreements from July 1st (new financial year).  

And – mobile phone contracts are being changed to personal contracts, as opposed to the company mobile phone plan.   I finally got mine organised yesterday – signing up to a 24 month capped-plan with Optus, and a new Nokia handset. 

Work of late has included a fair amount of “jovial negativity” related to the new “mothership” company – morale been a bit (a lot ?) up and down, and I had been working on some “old” SharePoint 2003 technology (and Outlook 2003) – which was a bit frustrating & annoying at times, and hard to push myself along some days.

Just prior to a week off, it was actually nice to have 2-3 days working on a client site, to get my head down, and into some fairly meaty SharePoint (MOSS !) code – developed a console app to churn through Site Collections, and update Content Types – had to delete documents first, then re-create Content Types, and copy files & meta data from another site collection.

I’m now in the middle of a week off work, just been hanging out at a home-style resort located in Wantirna South (my house – in case you didn’t get the reference). 

Has been great to spend time with family – and some achievements that I never seem to get done during work weeks & the precious 2-day weekend :

  • Completed initial draft for the K2 book chapter, to be reviewed by K2 technical staff – assuming that there will be some edits, hopefully not toooo much !
  • Measured out levels for back patio, to have concrete laid.  Brother-in-law/s used a spirit level and “laser” (Austin Powers style inverted comma’s) to determine the flat area required.   My Dad helped swing a shovel, and we move 10-20 barrows of soil – it’s pretty much ready to do the concrete/paving now – sore muscles, and blisters, but it’s done !      (and concrete should happen in 3-4 weeks)
  • Painted the “dome” for the back patio, which will be above the spa in the corner of the patio.   Can now have the roofing on the “dome” installed – lazerlight, etc
  • Visited optometrist, and had my eyes tested, and new glasses ordered.   Realised that the last time I got glasses was June 2003 – just over 5 years ago.   My current glasses are pretty scratched and bent out of shape, haven’t been the same since I was hit with a flying bottle of water at the Big Day Out in January – knocked out the lens, and bent the frame.
  • Signed up for new mobile phone & contract – I opted for a lower-spec, old-school style unit, a Nokia 6620 – which has much of the same innards as the Nokia N95 – but in a standard phone format.   It’s actually called the 6620 classic – looking like the phones of “old”, but with 3G, GPS and a 5 MP camera, and Nokia Maps, etc.    Can’t do WiFi, and still have to configure email/InBox syncing – and load some MP3’s – but it’s a nice, simple unit – just like ME I guess.    🙂    Pretty much a stock-standard phone, some fun smarts – but it’s a PHONE – not an “i” phone.   It’s main purpose it to make phone calls, not generate hype.    Came with a 1 GB memory card too – I was assuming I’d have to buy one – tiny micro-SD card., as mentioned above.  
  • Had a fun day at the snow with the family – Cameron hadn’t been to the snow before, he had a great time – as we all did.   Rugged up, and lots of layers – jackets, pants, boots and gloves – and zooming about on toboggan.   Cameron was giggling and laughing in delight, and we sped downhill – and getting sprayed with snow when steering/stopping.   We had a MacGuyver moment, and sat Liam’s pram onto the toboggan to push it from the car, to the top of the toboggan slope – to watch, and hang out – not actually DOWN the slope !   Made a few snowmen too – although Cameron had more fun when kicking it over !

Today is Thursday, nearing the end of my time off work – but still some time to relax, and think about the few months ahead – and some plans/thoughts for the remainder of 2008 – some personal / some work related.

  • Complete K2 book chapter – has been a lot more work/pressure than initially thought it would be – and hassles/annoyances with the documentation for U.S. taxation – IRS document, had to tick box for “Alien seeking payment” – or something like that !
  • Study for, and take some exams relating to SharePoint – always on my list, need to get my butt in order. 
  • Study, play with, develop samples & documentation for new K2 blackpoint – still in Beta release – and the next update for K2 blackpearl.
  • (Try to) attend the Tech.Ed conference in Sydney (August) – and present at MOSSIG (K2 blackpoint ?)
  • Develop some Silverlight demo’s and applications – esp. within SharePoint environment.  Following on from the Silverlight training course, and the material for labs/VM
  • Get across some of the Software+Services concepts, and specifics – S+S is the BIG new push from Microsoft – will include some changes from a technology perspective, as well as customer engagement & business rules and functionality
  • Have fun with lads from work, mid-year dinner on Friday night, out to see new Batman movie, upcoming snow day will be great for morale, and to have a laugh with workmates, and to meet up with some folk from DWS.
  • House – complete the back patio & yard ready for Liam’s 1st birthday in October (!)    Work to get the spa installed, and ready-for-use (by end of 2008) – and some garden beds, once the weather allows – spring, summer, daylight savings
  • Spend (more) fun time with family – especially Liam, who is growing so quickly – crawling everywhere, he will be walking by Christmas !
  • Spend more time/attention on our poor neglected puppy dog – Chloe is such a great dog & companion, but she doesn’t get much attention with busy lives and two active young lads.   Need to take her out for more walks, and just some pats & belly rubs from time to time.    (She’s just turned SIX years old !)
  • Read for fun – there’s a new Jason Bourne book due out any day, and a book that I got for a birthday present – even the new Top Gear magazine has barely had a look in.
  • Some more blogging, and so on – include some posts about our new Nintendo Wii, and progress for the patio we’ve been working on (before/during/after).

Car service is just about done – hope the credit card doesn’t melt – will head home to do some more digging/painting.   

🙂

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