Tuesday, January 29, 2013

I just got an RSVP for the wedding that was literally a maybe.

People are really, really frustrating.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Crafting update! So I made a few handmade gifts for Christmas this year. Next year I'd like to ramp it up, maybe make some ornaments for everyone. I need to start this summer though if I truly have a shot in hell of doing it.

For my sister, I finished up some pot holders. Hopefully she's getting real use out of them. That's my second (or my eighth if you count them all individually) completed quilting project. Here's a front shot and a back shot for your viewing pleasure.

And now, no more potholders. I have all the supplies to make my first full size quilt. It's intimidating and exciting. And I hope to start cutting some time in March. You may see some posts of me just showing cutting/laying progress along the way. A full quilt is going to be a huge project.

It's funny, looking at that pic it seems really gold heavy, but it really won't be. The main color of the quilt is a cream color. The gold swirly one will be the backer fabric (so you could argue it's gold friendly but on the underside). There are actually far more options of other colors than there are gold on the actual front of the quilt. But we'll all have to see as it gets closer.

I also made a dog scarf and dog leg warmers as a Christmas gift. It's kind of a joke? My sister got a dog and the dog has a coat (since it gets so cold here). And now the dog has accessories as well.

I am definitely not going to be winning any photography awards any time soon. But that's how I wrapped up 2012 - crafting a few gifts and preparing for my next adventure. I'm also busy embroidering this. Weird truth: I use way more embroidery floss than this seller thinks I will need. I made one of these last year and also ran out. I'm on par to run out again this year. Shrug?

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

I have officially lost my mind. It's in the wind somewhere, possibly in Hawaii where I will be in a week's time. I know I promised a coding post and perhaps I'll get to it on Thursday. But I am spending so much time just trying to keep my head on, my phone in my purse and my keys located not to mention actual work. It's about my limit. It is my limit.

But that being said, I'm finally excited about getting married. In a week and a half I'll be a Mrs. Mrs. Loml. I'll be in Hawaii and relaxing. Not worrying about a thing. I cannot wait.

I hope to manage some posts while in Hawaii. Perhaps just an image or two. I promise not to rub it in too much.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Coding introduction

I realize I shouldn't just splat: start in with a coding post. So here's my introduction of who I am and how and what I develop. I'm Katie. I had a quarter life crisis at 23 and decided to get a grad degree in "computers". My only knowledge of "computers" was because of this here blog. In fact, I just got distracted going back to the archives in 2005 to read about my decision to go to grad school and quit my job (I was a much better writer back then and so confused about life). Grad school showed me I love coding. I got a student job when someone took a chance on me and I've been coding ever since.

My first language was java. My second C#. After that I was working in legacy VB and old ASP. Some asp.net and C# when it was available. My student intern gig was promoted to full time. My department reorganized and I was a nobody floating in a sea of peoplesoft and .net developers. SharePoint was picked as our new CMS and 10 sites were slotted to beta in 2007...no one else wanted to do it so it fell on me. And I've been a SharePoint developer ever since. I think you could say my sharp languages are currently javascript, C#, XSL and HTML at this point. And the SharePoint crap. Aside: i've dabbled in ruby on rails and python for funsies.

We use SharePoint at my organization in two main ways: front end websites and collaboration team sites. The team sites are cut and dry - no one really does much to them, development-wise. But the front end stuff is highly customized. We're in the process of reworking our front-end framework to be responsive. It is a challenge - not only is it hard to design a responsive site, but it's even harder to force SharePoint to respond in the way it should. Speed has to be fast (so that mobile devices with a bad connection have a great experience). We need the SharePoint editing tools themselves to still work, but at the same time to be creating HTML5. We need so much to be different than what SharePoint provides. Aside number two, I have a coworker who does all of the design work while I work with all the code doing fun stuff like minimizing HTTP requests and tricking SharePoint into not formatting pages by using tables. He writes CSS but no javascript, so that front-end dynamism is my bag too.

So what I'm going to be putting on this blog is weird stuff I've found in SharePoint as I've gone along. Stuff we've coded that I haven't been able to blatantly rip off of the internet (most development issues/questions are answered by google and Stack Overflow). And I'm going to try to start building a git profile for myself. We do interesting things and we should share them with the world.

If you don't know what any of this stuff I'm saying means, but you want to, let me point you to a few places. If you don't know what it means and don't want to, well, why are you still reading?

Responsive design, to me, is synonymous with Ethan Marcotte. Go to his site or read his book. I own it if you want to borrow it.

SharePoint is...a beast of a CMS. Oh, I guess I should say, a CMS is a content management system. I spend a lot of time on msdn most days, so I might as well link there.

GitHub is a collaborative code sharing community. I've used a lot of git stuff in my life. Probably the first code sample I'll share with you is inspired by a PHP git.

HTML5 and CSS3 are really what makes this responsive stuff possible. New standards that we developers live by. Not sure where to link for those except, you should just go read all of the A Book Apart books. Have them all, will loan.

Stack Overflow is a development help site/forum/thingy. Can be troll-y but usually is super helpful. Example question.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Things on my mind today:

  • How do I make it easy for normal people to insert an image using sharepoint that is also captioned and responsive?
  • Suits & Ties and Justin Timberlake
  • Career. Coding. Coding. Career. Management. Career. Frown face.
  • How can i get myself to drink more water during the day?
  • Will i have a massive pimple on my wedding day? I'm close to breaking out...it seems an unfortunate possibility...
  • Bane's voice is dumb. So is Batman's. But catwoman is hot (will she bang batman? Is Joseph Gordon Levitt Robin?). We're watching Dark Knight Rises right now, perhaps I'll have these answers before the end? 
  • Hawaii, 15 days! Screee!
  • First coding post on Thursday? I'm thinking about it...

Thursday, January 10, 2013

I'm in love with my fitbit. I received an ultra for Christmas and it is AWESOME. Basically it's a little step counter that I wear at my waist. And actually I'm a first adopter because they just announced a wrist band instead of a little clippy guy. I hear the wrist band doesn't show a step count actively and I need that step count on the click of a button to spur me to take more steps. But listen - it might be the gamer in me - I have started walking at lunch because my step count is below what I feel it should be. Fitbit automatically sets a goal of 10,000 steps a day...and my first day back in the real world I only hit 6,000 (holiday/vacation days don't count as I am a motionless lump). After walking a bit every day at lunch I'm getting closer to 10, though to be fair, even with a 20 minute walk I'm currently at 8512 steps.

It also tracks my sleep - I can wear it on my wrist and it tells me how often I'm highly active every night (the answer is about 5 times on a good night...more on a really tossing/turning night). The night before I got sick (we had a touch of the flu in the house) it cataloged my really poor sleep for me. At this point I'm not wearing it to bed every night - it was interesting for a few nights and then it was basically the same. I will admit that it was a fun measure of what time loml gets in bed every night.

So yes, tracking my steps has been awesome. And maybe even neater for me is my fitbit scale. That's right, my scale - my weight and fat percentage is beamed via my fancy wifi scale to my fitbit account and I can track my progress online. See how active I am, what my weight is, how many steps I climbed. All with little to no effort on my part (I clip my fitbit on every day. That is the extent of my effort).

I have a streak of statistical mathy nerd in me - charts and percentages really make me happy (you should see my RSVP document for our wedding, it calculates all kinds of things, for fun). So the fitbit is right up my alley. Do recommend.

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

Umba! Remember when I was chronicling the monthly handmade goodies I received? Lo 6 months ago? We're back - and sadly, those packages in between are lost to you forever. Things I remember getting: picture album (for instagram pics), weird magnet vase (that has since been donated) and clothespin magnets (on the fridge). I can't remember what else. But forget all those missing months, what did I get this month?

Pear cobbler chapstick!

This stuff has a pretty strong smell - of like...creme brulee? It feels nice, but I'm not sure about the smell. From Live Beautifully.

Coaster desk calendar!

I unabashedly love and am delighted by this calendar. I generally like calendars - I have one hanging in my cube (of pictures by my brother in law of our family trip to Canada) already but needed a desk size calendar. And it came in the mail as a surprise! Bonus! Happy 2013 Umba! By Sugarcube Press.

Thursday, January 03, 2013

These last few weeks, besides being on holiday, I've also been tying up all of the loose ends for two weddings (a ceremony + dinner in Hawaii and a party in Chicago). I have planners for both, so I know I'm super lucky and a lot less busy than some brides/grooms. Loml is also OK about helping (though often he does it grudgingly and without opinions). For some things I don't really have opinions either. I want to have a fun party - but the details are less important to me than I expected them to be. I really thought I would be super opinionated about flowers and linens and look/feel - maybe a baby bridezilla with that stuff. But it turns out I don't care that much. Hopefully it'll turn out great.

And while that's a lot of big words, I am trying to coach myself that if something isn't like I imagined it..to not freak out. On the day of my wedding and the day of my wedding reception, I want to just be happy and ready to party. And worrying about being social rather than details (as in, I don't really like crowds and especially crowds where I am the center of attention. Groan). I already am prepared to not really talk to anyone for any length of time in Chicago. Five hours with 300 people = very little time for talking to any one of them..

Wednesday, January 02, 2013


Do I say this every year? I'm not sure, but I'd very much like to commit to writing a blog post twice a week this year. I often will have nothing to say - but in the absence of content, perhaps I can find silliness here again. Do I even have any readers? Debatable. Currently I'm planning on a Tuesday/Thursday schedule. See you again tomorrow!

This year I also want to start blogging about actual code. I am a developer for a living and sometimes we actually do cool things. Eventually I'd like to move any content to a coding blog, but I'm not convinced I am disciplined enough to write about code often enough to actually have a dedicated coding blog. So there will be a trial run or two here.

I'm currently home sick - I was actually bragging about how I rarely get sick to a friend a few weeks ago. I guess I deserve this uncomfortable cold? Lots of snot and hot/tired eyes over here today. Day 5 of this cold - hopefully the last.