There is a moment and you will be in it

I’m realizing that life is really an exercise in acknowledging that the only thing constant is change. I know that’s such a cliche, but after someone told me the other day that I was “there in the good old days,” I realized that while to me, it always seems like I’m coming in on the tail end of something, other people have the same perception of their own lives. There are no “good old days” or “the end of times.” There is just time. And it’s always moving. And it’s always relative to your own experience.

All you can do is find a way to be happy in the moment and not take yourself too seriously. I’m working toward that.

A love letter of sorts

It’s coming home from a day spent with an old friend to find out the tub has been unclogged—and cleaned. It’s stopping in the middle of wrestling a stubborn new sink to install a pendant light just because you know it will make me happy. It’s finding my favorite beer in the fridge after working several 12- and 13-hour days in a row. It’s holding my hand and patting my leg because there’s nothing really that can be said to make it better, but knowing the sadness is understood helps somehow. It’s scrapping moves and reworking plans and settling for smaller, safer changes until things calm down, and knowing that even if things never calm down, you are there for me and it will still be OK.

It’s the little things that are the big things, and you do them right.

Sometimes you show up to your mother-in-law’s birthday party and a man in snakeskin boots plays his turquoise guitar and sings beautiful, original songs to a room full of flush-faced, middle-aged women who hug each other and smile the way only old friends do.

And you stand outside in the crisp fall air and chat with people you haven’t seen in years, or those you’ve just met, and realize this is what it means to be a part of a family. And even if you’re mostly on the outside looking in, and even if it’s just for a couple hours on a windy Friday evening, people are happy to see you and stop what they’re doing to talk to you and hand you glasses of wine, and you feel contented and warm.

I take back all the curse words I screamed at Movable Type at the time

I found out today that a website I built won two awards!! We won’t know what level of award (gold, silver or bronze) from each of the award programs until their respective banquets, but just knowing the site won something is enough to make me giddy.

This was the first client site for which I was responsible for the web development (it was designed by my coworker Ben, and Summer, Rex and Megan were responsible for content and overall strategy), and I will not lie: It was overwhelmingly difficult at times. Going from kind of knowing CSS and not ever having built anything in Movable Type to Oh Hi Let Me Build This Site Quickly Now was a challenge, but looking back I see how much I learned from the entire experience.

Luckily I had a lot of support from Patrick (we hired him as a consultant to teach me how to write my own CSS and built in Movable Type–all in like a week) and several super-smart coders and Movable Type users on Twitter who were so responsive and willing to help.

According to the notification we’re not supposed to officially announce anything until the awards are actually given out, so I’m not going to tell you the site name or the awards. I tried to stay as cool and collected as I could at the office—oh who am I kidding, I blabbed to whoever would listen how all those times I said I was going to jump out the window because Movable Type wasn’t working and all those times Ben threatened to kill me because I wouldn’t stop asking for more images in different sizes and colors TOTALLY WORTH IT.

I’m so lucky that I work someplace that lets me do what I am interested in and trusts in me enough to understand that if I don’t know how to do something, I sure as hell will find out. And I’m so proud of the team that worked so hard to make this site so awesome. Even if it didn’t win anything we would still understand its value, but it’s always nice to have validation.

Now, I wonder how I can weasel my way into a trip to accept the awards? ;)

Best comment I’ve read in a while

From the Nashville Scene’s Nashville Cream blog post “Kings of Leon at The Sommet Center, 10/16/09”:

Can’t we all get along? Stop this arguing. There’s too much sand in your collective vaginas. This world should just be one finger-bangin’ party, where angular haircuts, men in capri pants or “lands end sweaters” and girls in fresh “American Apparel hoodies” and “tote bags bigger than their midsections” can cohabitate with rock critics and rock stars. You know, ride the minivan people–two fingers up front, three in the back!

Amen, brother. A-fuckin’-men.

I survived BarCamp

I finally sucked it up and went to BarCamp this year—by myself, which for those of you who know me really says something—and am so glad that I did. Not only did I sit in on some really insightful sessions, but I finally got to meet one of my most favorite people in the entire interwebs, newscoma. She has been so kind and supportive to me over the past few years of blogging within the Nashville community, so I was glad to be able to finally hug her neck and sit down and talk with her.

It was also great to meet some people I had only previously talked with on Twitter or via our blogs, and to see again those I hadn’t seen in some time. There was a great deal of killing folks on the popular iPhone game GPSAssassins (I’m a bad ass—Ian and I are relentless on our commute and will take your ass down), followed later by a lot of complaining.

(People, it’s called GPSAssassins, not GPSIHopeIDon’tHurtYourFeelings. Christ.)

Anyway, I had heard that these networking things can be kind of cliquey, so I was pleasantly surprised to find the sessions had a good flow to them and I was never just standing around looking lost, like the weird, awkward girl I really am.

Something I took away from the conference and broached on Twitter this morning, though, is the lack of female web developers/coders in Nashville. I can’t technically call myself a web developer (yet), but I’ve been learning as much as I can for work. I am not complaining about the tech dudes around here, as those who follow me on Twitter are always very quick to help me out when I have questions, but I am left wondering why there are not more women in the field.

The idea of me organizing a female-coder meet-up was broached (and a venue was graciously offered), but I’m afraid I wouldn’t really know how to set it up, or even how I would lead it. Maybe starting with a Facebook group first might be the way to go?

And sometimes The Universe tells you it’s going to be OK in strange ways

As I drove down into the garage at work this morning, “Smells Like Funk” by the Black Eyed Peas came on. It’s a silly song with a good beat, and never fails to pick up my mood.

I got in the elevator, and at the next stop an older gentleman got on. He smiled and started humming quietly as we rode up. It wasn’t until he exited a few floors later that I realized what the song was.


The most expensive home I’ve ever owned

For our anniversary Ian got me the Crumpler 5 Million Dollar Home to carry as my daily bag, as I’m now carrying my Canon XTi with me pretty much everywhere I go. I have a 4 Million Dollar Home that I love, but for daily use it was just too small (I couldn’t carry a full wallet, my Flip camera and my braces case all in there together, and there’s no way I would be able to carry an extra lens with any of that stuff).

The 5 Million Dollar Home gives me more room without being bulky or making me feel like it’s obvious I’m carrying a camera. Dimensionally, it’s actually a bit smaller than the purse I would carry on a daily basis. And I get a couple more pockets than I had with the 4MDH, which is great. I love pockets. A lot.

Crumpler recently updated their MDH line, too, adding another clasp and–most excitingly–velcro silencers. Anyone who has used a previous iteration of a MDH knows how loud and tough the velcro can be. While it’s great to know the velcro holds secure, the silencers are great for when you don’t want everyone in a 2 mile radius to hear you RIIIPPP open your bag.

I took several pics of this bag (can you tell I’m excited?), which you can see here.

If you’re in the market for a bag for your camera, I would 100 percent recommend Crumpler. They aren’t cheap, but they are definitely worth the money. I drug the 4 Million Dollar Home around with me pretty much everywhere over the last few years, in all kinds of weather, and it protected my camera and gear wonderfully. And still looks pretty much brand-new.

You can’t beat that with a stick.

One year

A year ago today I married my best friend. He tends to shoot me skeptical looks when I describe him that way, but it’s true. There’s no one I’d rather spend time with. He makes me laugh, does nice things for me, encourages me when I need support, and gets me to reign it in when my special brand of crazy starts to emerge.

We laugh at the same stupid things, promote each other’s laziness, nerdiness and drinking habits, and pretend we don’t feel the weight of the world.

He loves me in all my weirdness, and I love him back. A lot.