Today is my 40th Birthday.

Technically, its the 40th Anniversary of my birthday.  I figured I should write something down today so when I am reminiscing 80 years from now, I will remember how it felt to be so young.   If you aren't my future self reading this, well maybe it will give you a bit of insight into my life.  If you aren't interested in that, why are you here on my site? 

So, future Jeff, here's what's going on in my life:

I have been watching my calorie intake (food) and output (exercise) pretty consistently since August 27th.  I have lost around 10 lbs and am still going for 40-50 more.  (That's about 18- 22 kg more,  which I can only hope would be the normal way of measuring weight and mass 80 years from now).

I still love my android (made by a company called Google, remember them? ) phone about 10 months after getting the first model produced with that phone OS.  There is currently a bug in Google calendar that won't let me save events to my alternate calendars from the phone.  This bugs me.  Hopefully if the robot apocalypse was avoided, then computers are much smarter at helping us get through and organize our lives.  

Garret turns 10 tomorrow.  He will have a birthday party at Peter Piper Pizza on Sunday.  He has invited his fourth grade class to join him.  He is still learning to focus his attention on one thing at a time and hopefully has not only mastered this ability by the time you are reading this, but has excelled into the great man I know he will be one day.  

Gwen (and Garret and I) has just gotten over a cold and is back in school.  She is such an awesome little girl, bright and cheerful. I can't wait to see what she does with her sparkling personality and intelligence.

Leslie is still getting in to her new job. She is very excited about it and seems to love the new challenges it brings.  They seem to appreciate the work she does and that makes her happy.  I appreciate all the work she does with the kids and with me.

I have been walking since August, nearly every day and now some of my friends are encouraging me to sign up for a half marathon.  I have certainly walked just about that distance before during road marches in the army. Specifically the expert infantryman's test was 12 miles that had to be done in 3 hours with a "full" rucksack and uniform.  It seems like walking 13.3 miles in shorts, t-shirt and running/walking shoes should be no issue.

I'm still active in the SCA and still the Atenveldt Web Minister.  We just implemented a ticket system for helping us out with the tasks associated with that.  I need to enter in some of the old emails that are waiting for attention to the ticket system.  I am hoping someone will show some interest in taking this job over from me so I can spend some time exploring other things in the SCA.

This weekend I am going to a tournament to help out Master Yehudah's (Larry Baum's) family after his untimely death last month. I'm sure everything will work out well there.

Thats pretty much the news from here, on my 40th birthday.

Exercise Increase

For the last couple of weeks I have been focusing on tracking my calories, in and out.  Much of it has been with the help of a great app my wife found called Calorie Counter on the Android.    Calorie counter links to which has a database of foods and exercise that you can enter in to keep track of your progress.  A great feature of the app on my G1 is that I can scan a barcode and more likely than not, the food is in the database already.  This makes it very easy to keep track of during the day.   Although I have been trying to eat balanced with not too much of anything, I am not trying a low carb diet at this point.  Just trying to keep the calories I am eating less than the calories my body is comsuming.  You can see my progress at the fatsecret site.  

Yesterday after walking my three miles in the morning (at about 3 mph). I was feeling pretty good and decided that today I would try to move up to jogging.  Although I was able to run/jog down the street, I felt a lot impact on my legs and on my body in general.  I decided that I would just try to increase the speed I was walking until I could lose more wieght and try to run again.   So I completed 2 miles this morning in just over 30 minutes and could definately feel some muscle pain/soreness in my calves shins.  So I will try to work on that speed for the next while until I feel pretty comfortable doing that for one hour or more.  

Squarespace featured on High Scalability Blog

The High Scalability Blog featured Squarespace recently and it was interesting overview of some of the technology that my site runs on.  I have to admit that I feel a bit guilty not running on Dotnetnuke or another Microsoft platform but I do like the ease of use of Squarespace.    I encountered Squarespace much the same way that Todd @ High Scalability did, through advertising on Twit.TV.  

My main wish is that Squarespace was a bit more extensible.  I'd like to add my own modules.  I'd probably even plug through Java to do it if I had to.  I'd really like to overhaul the Kingdom of Atenveldt Order of Precedence and put it on a platform that runs fast and is consistantly reliable.  This weekend I plan on spending some time on the site, upgrading to the latest version of DNN and maybe working on the skin a bit.  I have had a couple of designers show interest in helping me make a skin but nothing has ever come through with it. Maybe I can bring some more life back to the DNN based Atenveldt site with a bit of TLC. (tender loving care, not the learning channel... )


New Beginnings

Today was the start of some new stuff.  I started my new class at University of Phoenix.   Its pretty interesting so far.  I don't want to talk specifics too much but I am interested in it and hope it will be of some benefit for me.

I also woke up this morning at around 5, managed to drag myself out of bed and run around the block a couple of times.  Going around my block is just about exactly one half mile so I ran/walked a mile.  It took me about 18 minutes which obviously isn't great, but its a start and I plan on running about that long every morning, ramping up the distance as I get faster.   I asked Leslie to join me but its unclear if that will happen.  I also learned that taking a shower directly after running is kind of useless as I will continue to sweat after I get out of the shower.  So I will need to cool down a bit first tomorrow.  I also want to take advantage of all these new beginnings and changes of schedule to start fighting more.  I fought this weekend at the Highlands War, but it was the first time in a few months.

Awareness Test

As I look through my livejournal entries, seeing which ones I want to import, I find this one that is more relevant to me than when I initially posted it as this specific commercial came up in a lunch time conversation and I am doing more bike riding lately than I was when I posted this originally.  I kinda wish squarespace had an import of livejournal as they do for some of the other blog engines but oh well.

What do I want to do with this site?

So I am up early this morning.  I have already taken a shower and gotten dressed and its still only 5:40am.  I have been waking up at 5 all week but this is the first time I got out of bed and did something.  I probably should have gone on a bike ride but I woke up with some ideas about the site and I wanted to write some of them down.

Why do I have this site?  Because I am a web developer and I ought to have a website.  Like many web developers already out there and blogging, I'd like to do some stuff about code or whatever but most of what I do isn't particularly new and I feel like I am more than just a web developer.  I have other interests that I want to delve into here.  Since I have bought my Android, I have been listening to a lot of podcasts. (Another thing I want to blog about at some point soon).  Some of them have been from the network.  This is where Leo Laporte has created an internet radio/tv/broadcasting station about tech and the internet.  This has made me aware of a lot of the things that people do on the internet that I wasn't doing 3 months ago.   Twitter, friendfeed, and all this social media stuff that people in the media are talking about because everything else is just bad news about the economy.  Blogging to these guys is so... six years ago.  But I haven't every really gotten off the ground with it.

I want this blog to be useful to people so I intend to have tech stuff that I discover on the job.  I also intend to do some stuff about the SCA.  I think there are enough web developers talking out there to the echo chamber that is the developer community.  I'd like to use some of my powers of web development and technical geekiness in areas that aren't about web development and technical geekiness.  So I guess I am choosing historical recreation geekiness.  The idea I woke up with this morning was to go get a cheap video camera and start collecting interviews with various SCA persona and find about about them.  I really loved the Lions Road podcast while it was going and its too bad it didn't last.  I'd like to create something that will help the SCA bring more people in that will enjoy its good times.  It so easy for people to get caught up playing World of Warcraft, why not do these things in real life with people who are right in front of you rather than over a wire?

So I need to figure out how to have some separate blogs so that the internet can get some focused pages to return in search engine results but still have them consolidated into one feed that is this site.  I have some ideas about this as squarespace supports creating redirects to certain pages.  So I should be able to create a page called and have it just be my blog posts about the SCA.

I also know from reading other blogs that in order to be a decent blog you have to just go for it and write on a regular basis.  So here I am writing.  I know not all of it will be interesting to all people, or even some people, but with practice I hope I will be focusing my efforts.

A new

Welcome to my new site.  It is hosted at Squarespace which I have really enjoyed working on.    It would be nice if there would be a revamp of Dot Net Nuke that would be as nice as this is to work on.

I decided it was time to get a new site.  My old one was kinda slow and lacked a lot of the information that I really wanted to put into my website.   This should have a nice blog and continue to grow and be a pleasure to work in. I plan on writing blog entries both on technology and the SCA, as well as any other journalling that I'd like to do.

I am very open to comments and interested in who comes here and what they think.