Category Archives: review

Weekly review: Week ending April 1, 2016

Achievements unlocked:

  • You Mean There’s Another Stanza?: Learned a variation on Row, Row, Row Your Boat
  • That’s the Painkiller Talking: Prematurely declared myself back to normal before the ibuprofen wore off and I realized I needed more rest

This week was a little rough in terms of sleep. A- seems to be getting better at telling the difference between night and day, at least in terms of not cooing adorably for playtime at 3 AM. She’s still feeding every hour or so, but we’re getting better at side-lying. I’ve gotten better at burping her while half-conscious.

Tracking has been a little fuzzy. Now that I have a library of functions that wrap the web-based system we’ve been using to collect data, I can start building a friendlier interface for tracking those middle-of-the-night feeds. I’ve added a few more visualizations and moved it to my private server so that I can use my tools from my phone instead of just my laptop. I’m still puzzling over what kind of visualization would help me answer my questions, though. Also, I’ve started taking notes on how long it takes to calm her down when she’s crying (it seems like eternity, but usually she settles down within ten minutes) and what seems to work (feeding, burping, diaper-changing, etc.). It might be interesting to make another mini-tool that reminds me what to try.

I started looking into various activities for parents and babies. I’d like to eventually build a habit of going to those “baby and me”-type exercise classes so I can improve my health and make more parent friends. I’ve got a few possibilities to check out in my neighbourhood. There are also quite a few free social things, like the Baby Time session I went to at the public library.

Also, we made stuff! W- and I made a simple baby gym for A-. He did the woodworking and I did the sewing. Hours of fun and enjoyment – and eventually A- will figure out what it’s for and have fun with it too. =) I’ll write a blog post about it eventually, so I can link to the tutorials we used and add our observations.

W- took J- along to the gym twice this week, so I was responsible for getting dinner sorted out. Which I did! By myself! Yay!

It was a good week, although I felt a bit run-down at the end of it. Could be accumulated sleep disruption plus a plugged duct. I got plenty of rest this weekend, and that helped a lot. I think we’re mostly back to normal now. W- made roast beef and roast turkey this weekend, so we have plenty of leftovers to help us get through next week.

This week we have three medical appointments. Looking forward to learning more!

2016-04-03a Week ending 2016-04-01 -- index card #journal #weekly output

Blog posts


Focus areas and time review

  • Business (0.5h – 0%)
    • ☐ Earn: E1: 1-2 days of consulting
    • Earn (0.0h – 0% of Business)
    • Build (0.0h – 0% of Business)
      • Drawing (0.0h)
      • Paperwork (0.0h)
    • Connect (0.5h – 100% of Business)
  • Relationships (1.6h – 0%)
    • ☑ Add relative times to visualization
    • ☑ Wrap website with library functions
    • ☑ Research bike trailer strollers
    • ☑ Visualize sleep on timeline
    • ☑ Decide what package of diapers to buy
    • ☑ Create calendar of baby activities
    • ☑ Research night-time cloth diapering options
  • Discretionary – Productive (12.8h – 7%)
    • Emacs (1.5h – 0% of all)
      • ☑ Do another Emacs News review
      • ☐ Do another Emacs News review
    • Sewing (3.7h)
      • ☑ Stuffed tetrahedron with taggies
      • ☑ Stuffed sphere
    • Writing (0.0h)
    • ☑ Fix rotation
  • Discretionary – Play (3.1h – 1%)
  • Personal routines (24.1h – 14%)
  • Unpaid work (79.3h – 47%)
    • Childcare (71.0h – 42% of total)
  • Sleep (46.6h – 27% – average of 6.7 per day)

Weekly review: Week ending March 25, 2016

A- was more awake this week, which was great. A lot of that wake time was during the graveyard shift, though, and some cluster feeding meant that my sleep’s been a bit more broken-up than last week. Still, I’m more comfortable with the idea of on-demand feeding than the idea of making her get on some kind of schedule, so it’s a trade-off I’m willing to accept.

Singing is turning out to be good mental exercise for my fuzzy brain: it’s stimulating for A-, I train my memory by learning lyrics, and it’s fun challenging my brain to think of the next line as I’m singing the current one so that everything flows smoothly. Both the hearing test and the 4-week checkup went fine.

I sewed another soft cube for the newborn of some friends, and I’m looking forward to dropping that off. I picked up some fabric, too, and I’m looking forward to turning that into clothes when things settle down.

On the non-baby front, I learned more about d3 visualizations and drawing graphs with a shared axis. I also checked in with my consulting client. We’ve got some ideas for visualizations I can noodle around here and there, so that should be fun. Managed to fit in some cooking, too – hooray!

This week’s achievements:

  • Sic Transit: A- and I took public transit to the 4 week checkup with the midwives, yay!
  • 9 Pounds of Awesome: What it says on the tin. And the scale.
  • Just Don’t Let Me Near Production Servers: A little bit of consulting. Seemed fine, but there might be a catch 22 there – am I too sleep-addled to tell if I’m sleep-addled? Playing it safe.
  • Cluster F: Frequent feeding. Early in the morning, too!
  • Open Air Poosplosion: Possibly related to the previous achievement.
  • Break Out the Carpet Vacuum: Definitely related to the previous achievement.

2016-03-28a Week ending 2016-03-25 -- index card #journal #weekly


Blog posts


Focus areas and time review

  • Business (5.3h – 3%)
    • Earn (2.4h – 44% of Business)
    • Build (0.3h – 5% of Business)
      • Drawing (0.0h)
      • Paperwork (0.0h)
      • ☑ Check images for Quantified Awesome
    • Connect (2.6h – 49% of Business)
      • ☑ Help OAFB
  • Relationships (2.0h – 1%)
    • ☑ Trim Neko’s claws
    • ☑ Call Eye Clinic and ask about referral to CNIB
    • ☑ 4-week appointment with midwife
    • ☑ Take picture with Tracy
    • ☑ Check re genetic testing referral
    • ☑ Thank you notes
    • ☑ Take A- to hearing test
    • ☐ Check with OHIP re name change
  • Discretionary – Productive (12.3h – 7%)
    • Emacs (1.0h – 0% of all)
      • ☑ Do another Emacs News review
    • Coding
      • ☑ Dump SQLite as CSV
      • ☑ Add button for refreshing data
      • ☑ Add wrapper functions for website
      • ☑ Display latest status
      • ☑ Add relative times to visualization
      • ☑ Add relative time to API
      • ☑ Add a note input to my-track.html
      • ☑ Add visual feedback on successful track
      • ☑ Get childcare to open babyconnect
      • ☑ Fix X server
    • Sewing (0.8h)
      • ☑ Make cube for Jen and Ewan
    • Writing (1.5h)
    • ☑ Research bike trailer strollers
  • Discretionary – Play (0.9h – 0%)
  • Personal routines (15.7h – 9%)
  • Unpaid work (66.6h – 39%)
    • Childcare (58.4h – 34% of total)
  • Sleep (65.2h – 38% – average of 9.3 per day)

Weekly review: Week ending March 18, 2016

I found time for a little bit of coding, sewing, and cooking this week. Awesome! I set up a backup of my sketches on my server, learned more about d3 visualizations by plotting nursing sessions on a timeline, sewed a soft cube with a rattle inside, and got around to cooking the sweet potato I asked W- to pick up. =) I also did some paperwork, posted Emacs News (yay!), and followed up on some things. We went for lots of good walks around the neighbourhood, including an extended walk to Home Depot in the Moby wrap. I’ve been practising with the ring sling and with a different hold for the Moby, too. Progress!

2016-03-19a Week ending 2016-03-18 -- index card #journal #weekly


Blog posts


Focus areas and time review

  • Business (9.2h – 5%)
    • Earn (0.0h – 0% of Business)
    • Build (9.1h – 98% of Business)
      • Drawing (4.0h)
      • Paperwork (1.0h)
    • Connect (0.2h – 1% of Business)
  • Relationships (4.2h – 2%)
    • ☑ Buy rocker
    • ☑ Check re hearing screening
    • ☑ Call SickKids about doctor notes
    • ☑ Child benefits application extra info
    • ☑ Book tentative vaccination appointment in case pediatrician referral falls through
    • ☐ Trim Neko’s claws
    • ☐ 4-week appointment with midwife
  • Discretionary – Productive (3.0h – 1%)
    • Emacs (0.3h – 0% of all)
    • ☑ [#A] Do another Emacs News review
    • Baby viz
      • ☑ Click on a dot to go to the record
      • ☑ Add timeline view
      • ☑ Cache data in a local SQLite
    • ☑ Check expiry and create tasks
    • ☑ Set up sketches directory on my web server
    • Sewing (0.4h)
    • Writing (0.0h)
  • Discretionary – Play (5.6h – 3%)
  • Personal routines (20.3h – 12%)
  • Unpaid work (77.2h – 45%)
    • Childcare (59.4h – 35% of total)
  • Sleep (71.4h – 42% – average of 10.2 per day)

Weekly review: Week ending March 11, 2016

This week actually felt pretty normal. Just the two-week appointment with the midwife, and plenty of time to settle back into household routines. I cooked a little (shake-and-bake chicken), went out for errands, and even got around to vacuuming part of the house. I still have to learn W-‘s tricks for calming A- in the middle of the night, but I’m sure we’ll sort something out by the time he goes back to work. A- still has her days and nights mixed up, so afternoon naps and low-power evenings will have to tide us over.

A- has started reaching out for the white/black/red-patterned quilt blocks I made. I’d like to do some sewing this week – maybe some soft cubes of red and black gingham so that she can look at and play with them, and maybe a few pairs of pants. Might even include a trip to the fabric store…

2016-03-14a Week ending 2016-03-11 -- index card #journal #weekly output

Blog posts


Focus areas and time review

  • Business (6.1h – 3%)
    • Earn (0.0h – 0% of Business)
    • Build (6.0h – 99% of Business)
      • Drawing (6.0h)
      • Paperwork (0.0h)
    • Connect (0.0h – 0% of Business)
  • Relationships (1.2h – 0%)
    • ☑ Register newborn
    • ☑ Check with OHIP re name change
    • ☐ Buy rocker
  • Discretionary – Productive (3.4h – 2%)
    • Emacs (0.0h – 0% of all)
      • ☑ Do another Emacs News review
      • ☐ Check expiry and create tasks
    • Sewing (0.0h)
    • Writing (3.4h)
  • Discretionary – Play (1.0h – 0%)
  • Personal routines (26.9h – 16%)
  • Unpaid work (53.6h – 31%)
    • Childcare (45.5h – 27% of total)
  • Sleep (75.7h – 45% – average of 10.8 per day)

Weekly review: Week ending March 4, 2016

Second week of life with a baby. We did a field test of baby wearing and the camera backpack we’d converted into a diaper bag. We made it out to Dufferin Mall, changed the baby’s diaper, nursed in the nursing station, and even picked up a few supplies. Slowly gaining confidence and competence, hooray!

We started cloth diapering this week, too. So far, so good! We’ll still probably use disposable diapers at night and when we’re out, but it’s good to get the rhythm of laundry and diapering going.

I’ve been getting lots of practice in holding the fort. Actually, things are pretty manageable. I still haven’t made it out to the supermarket or the library on my own. With the way things are, though, it’s better to take it easy and minimize risks.

Starting to learn more about the landscape ahead of us: met with the doctors at the Sick Kids Eye Clinic to learn more about microphthalmia, and met with the pediatric cardiologist to follow up on the murmur.

We picked a name for her, yay! She’ll hereafter be known on this blog as A-. Hello world!

2016-03-06a Week ending 2016-03-04 -- index card #journal #weekly output

Blog posts


Focus areas and time review

  • Business (6.7h – 4%)
    • Earn (0.0h – 0% of Business)
      • ☑ Prepare invoice
    • Build (6.4h – 94% of Business)
      • Drawing (3.6h)
      • Paperwork (1.9h)
    • Connect (0.4h – 5% of Business)
  • Relationships (6.7h – 3%)
    • ☑ Update family
    • ☑ Build data analysis tool for baby connect data
    • ☑ Easily dump CSV for baby connect data
    • ☑ Draft name announcement
    • ☑ Write about micropthalmia
  • Discretionary – Productive (6.4h – 3%)
    • Emacs (0.0h – 0% of all)
    • Sewing (0.3h)
    • Writing (5.8h)
    • ☑ Consider dentist change
    • ☑ Switch phone to personal credit card
    • ☑ Check out Telegram bot API
  • Discretionary – Play (1.7h – 1%)
  • Personal routines (16.6h – 9%)
  • Unpaid work (78.5h – 46%)
  • Sleep (51.4h – 30% – average of 7.3 per day)

Monthly review: February 2016

All right! On to the next phase of this experiment: easing into parenting. We welcomed the newest member of our family this month, whee! Now for a crash course in learning all the skills needed to help a tiny human survive and thrive… It’s been an intense week and a half, but I’m slowly learning how to relax into it. W- is totally, totally awesome. It helps that he has been through this before and can remind me to not panic.

I’ve been able to squeeze in a little writing, coding, and sewing. Consulting is on hold for the near future, and all the things I used to do have been turned over to a wonderful and capable team. Emacs News and other community things are also on hold. I’m looking forward to resuming them when things settle down, but if anyone wants to volunteer, feel free.

Lots of learning ahead, which probably means lots of notes, sketches, and maybe even blog posts when I have the time to try to organize things into some semblance of coherence. =)

2016-03-03c February 2016 -- index card #monthly #review #journal


Blog posts



These time records are slightly out of whack, since I didn’t update them when I was Rather Preoccupied. I’m slowly getting the hang of my new tracking routines now that I want to track both myself and the baby (her diapers and feeding).

Category Period 1 % Period 2 % Diff h/wk Diff h/wk
Business – Build 0.2 0.8 0.5 1.2 0.9
Discretionary – Play 6.7 8.6 1.9 13.5 3.3
Unpaid work 9.5 17.9 8.4 28.1 14.1
Unpaid work – Childcare 0.0 3.8 3.8 6.0 6.5
Discretionary – Social 0.9 1.2 0.3 1.9 0.4
Discretionary – Family 6.4 2.5 -3.9 4.0 -6.5
Sleep 40.9 34.9 -6.0 54.8 -10.1
Business – Connect 0.8 0.7 -0.2 1.0 -0.3
Business – Earn 5.6 4.0 -1.6 6.2 -2.7
Discretionary – Productive 12.4 8.8 -3.6 13.9 -6.0
Personal 16.6 20.7 4.2 32.6 7.0