Weeknotes 1

by Clive Walker

After reading Rachel Andrew’s weeknotes post, I have been inspired to do something similar for myself. Mainly so that I can look back on the year. Mind you, I’m not expecting my posts to describe quite as much!

Web design and development

This week, I’ve been working on a new site for my CVW Web Design business. A new site is well overdue and it’s something I’ve started more than once but never been happy with the direction or design each time. So, on this occasion, I’ve used the same process that I used on a few projects last year. Rather than design in the browser and iterate, I’ve outsourced the design to another freelancer (this time, the talented Liz Elcoate).

As a result, I’m building the site from design mock-ups created in Photoshop. That’s a bit “old school” some might say but I actually like building a site like this. I think that’s because it allows me to focus on the CSS and front end aspects.

The fresh start means I’ve been able to rethink a few things and remove a lot of float-based CSS in my “framework” (which is a modified version of Skeleton). Now, the starting framework is a lot lighter (not that it was especially heavy or opinionated in the first place). For each new site from now, I’ll use the “lite” Skeleton and add Flexbox and CSS Grid that’s custom to each site.

I’m probably about a third of the way through the build now. It’s going well but I’m sure sites used to be quicker to build in the old days ;-)

I’m also working on a new site for a local business organisation. However, it’s a completely different process! The organisation’s current site is WordPress and I’ll be exporting some of the content to new site on new domain. I’m doing the work for free, which is not something I normally recommend, so exporting to a new WordPress site is the quickest and most practical way to get the work done within time and zero budget.

Perchology

I started the Perchology newsletter in 2016 and it’s been gradually growing its subscribers. I’ve enjoyed curating each issue and I’ve learnt a lot about Perch CMS in the process. Anyway, in recent weeks, Perchology has expanded and there’s now a Perchology Slack channel. It’s come about because the “official” Perch Chat Slack has been shut. That’s because:

… it was confusing to customers that (Perch Chat) exists and is official, but isn’t a place to get official support. With hindsight, it makes much more sense if community chat is owned by the community, not by us (Perch). Drew McLellan - Perch

I was a bit reluctant to start Perchology Slack at first because I imagined that there would be a lot of admin. In fact, there isn’t. So, I’m happy to oversee it and take part myself.

Freelancer business

I decided to change my business accountant late last year. There are a few reasons why but one is to take more control of that side of my business. As a result, I had to submit a monthly payroll for the first time this week. Not too difficult as it turns out but it took me a while to find various company and tax numbers that I needed. It made me realise I need to have better understanding of some aspects of my business (and make some smarter decisions hopefully).

Running

I’m training for the Worthing Half Marathon in February and last weekend I went out for my longest run this year. An 11 mile loop near Horsham. In actual fact, it was my best run this year. That’s because I was able to run with a fellow Horsham Jogger who ran at a very sensible pace for the first half of the route (thank you Richard C). Consequently, I felt strong in the final miles for the first time in ages, So, that’s a real confidence boost.

One of the reasons I’ve been running more is parkrun and my local Horsham parkrun in particular.

Good news at the dentist

A dental visit on Monday and a back tooth extraction, yikes! I’ve known, and worried, about it for a few weeks. However, it went well and wasn’t nearly as bad as I feared.

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