Knackered. Happy knackered.

Saturday morning: 50th parkrun. Maddie remembered. Thank you Maddie. Paint pickup from Screwfix on the way home.

Got a happy S for company in the afternoon.

Spent the evening on the road behind the house, painting the fence. It took nearly 4 hours for 8 panels. The wood hadn’t been painted in at least 7 years, if ever. It was drinking paint. A 9L can didn’t finish a single coat on the 8 panels.

A late dinner, some Glastonbury on the beeb. Late night.

Today began late, with an aching body.

Took boys for a short walk. Then went for a 70 mins easy run.

Showered, ate, washed the dishes in the sink, made a coffee, and read a book.

Around 7pm, I returned to the rear fence with the second can of paint. Spent the evening clearing the ivy at one end of the fence, then giving the fence a second coat (first coat for bits under the ivy and the bottom fifth).

Finished at 21:30. Cleaned the brush. Fixed (correctly this time) the shower holder. Took a shower. Shaved.

Now, having a pre-meal of peanut butter toast with red wine. Chicken schnitzel is in the oven.

It’s been a productive, happy weekend.

The only area of improvement is that I didn’t get to spend much time with Duds 🙁

Productivity tip: write things down

Your mind is for having ideas, not holding them.

—David Allen, GTD for Teens

The more I hold in my head, the more my head flips around between thoughts, the less focused I am, the less productive I am.

Just write the thought down, bring it to a (temporary) closure, and focus on the task at hand.

Continue reading Productivity tip: write things down

Letting go..

There’s no trying new things without letting some things go.

There’s no new life, if there’s no death.

There’s no bandwidth to explore new books, genres, TV shows, people, if we’re not ready to abandon the ones that turn stale, or we grow out of, or finished.

Bandwidth is finite. Cognitivo capacity is finite. Time is finite.

A core constraint on growing, changing, exploring, is our reluctance to let go of some of what we have and are.

Create space by letting some mediocre stuff go. Then fill it with something new, untested, unusual. If it fits, great. If it doesn’t, chuck it and try again. Something new, untested, unusual.

Wake up routine (updated)

Wake-up with the second or the third alarm, and start doing ankle stretches—10x each of 4 side stretches. Chewie senses my feet moving, and starts snuggling-up tighter, while also turning his belly up. So, the ankle stretches are quickly followed by a couple of minutes of belly rubs, snuggles and kisses.

Then I get off the bed, and do a small set of yoga stretches on the floor—10x lower back stretches, 10x cat stretches, a couple of baby stretches, down dogs and roll-ups. Chewie occasionally joins me for the stretches, though many days he just stays sprawled on the bed.

After the floor stretches, I kick him off the bed, and make the bed—not as well as him, but I do.

Only after that, do we head downstairs to drink water, make coffee, feed Chewie, and take him out for his morning business. I’m wide awake before the coffee is ready.

Continue reading Wake up routine (updated)

Why did the sulking end?

Little S was sulking yesterday afternoon.

I saw him standing outside his house, doing nothing, looking morose. I know that look. That’s almost exactly how I used to sulk.

Later in the evening, he came over for a bit of play and chat, sans parents.

I asked him how/why did the sulking session end?

“My legs started hurting”

I love the honesty in kids 🙂

Goodbye Dreamhost. Hello, Linode + Cloudflare

This week I moved this website from a Dreamhost shared server to a Linode VPS. I then distributed that Linode server through Cloudflare.

It took me a a day and a bit to get it working well on Linode1. Most of the work was i) backing up databases and files from Dreamhost and transferring them to Linode, and ii) ironing out the kinks with the WordPress/PHP configuration that I didn’t have to manage at Dreamhost.
I also had to configure the sites on Apache by myself, though that was fairly straightforward, and setup some security measures and firewall. I’ve always had separate domain registrar (Godaddy earlier, now Gandi), hosting provider (Dreamhost earlier, now Linode fronted by Cloudflare), and email provider (Google Apps + Dreamhost/Gandi), so configuring DNS wasn’t a bother at all.

The website was already faster and more stable after moving to Linode. I had been itching to use Cloudflare2 for a while, and decided to give it a try. I switched the other website first. It worked fine, so next day I switched this one as well.

Switching on Cloudflare was a breeze. No messing with config files or terminal was required (though I kind of missed it3). They even detected all the DNS settings from my existing Linode server. I only need to change the name servers at Gandi, and wait for the change to propagate. I’d done a bit of research on common issues people face when connecting WordPress with Cloudflare, and prepared for them. Thankfully, none of them appeared for me.

With the full Linode+Cloudflare configuration now in place, the website is massively faster than it ever was on Dreamhost. It’s served through a global CDN, the server is better specced, and still has lower load due to CDN caching.

The other interesting bit: this amazing Linode+Cloudflare setup costs me half of what the Dreamhost shared server did.

I am happy 😊

Continue reading Goodbye Dreamhost. Hello, Linode + Cloudflare