Sunday, June 29, 2008

Half Year Review

As June draws to an end, we reach the half way point of 2008, as such you might want to take a look at your half year results. If you’ve read anything about GTD (Getting Things Done), you’ve probably heard about the weekly review. So while you can incorporate this into your weekly review, you could also do a special review for it.

Is part of my half year review, I’ve identified some of the things that I have done and plan to do. What is to follow are both highlights and low lights, all have an impact on where I am at this point.

On April 11th we bought a dog. This was one of my goals at 43Things. I wrote about our excitement in picking him up and having a dog again after several years of not having a dog. I wrote about bringing him home. I’ve been writing about him at our family blog from time to time. Having a puppy is in many ways like having a baby except that the puppy is already walking, running, and doing all kinds of things that babies often don’t do until they’re toddlers. Getting a puppy is a life change, especially for those that have never had a dog or that it has been several years. As with having second child, there is now the interaction between our dog and my daughters and us that makes for many of the challenges you face. While all of our lives are so enriched by having our dog, it means that all of our planning now needs to include him, much like adding another child to your family (or even adding your first).

On May 13th we had a fire in our garden hut. Ultimately our backyard shed was destroyed along with all that was in it, and much of our backyard fence was destroyed as well. Nothing in the hut was salvageable, so all of our family’s bikes, all our gardening equipment (lawn mower and assorted garden tools and supplies) were destroyed in the fire. While there is all the work that needed and still needs to be done as a result, there is also the effect that this has had on our lives. We were all shocked and horrified to discover the fire in our backyard; the flame itself had to be over thirty feet and as our backyard is not that big, it was really close to the house. The fire itself was one of those adrenalin pumping events and I’m so glad that nobody was hurt. I’m sure that the girls have had some nightmares somehow related to this event and my wife couldn’t sleep for several days, I believe that her sleeping patterns have been permanently affected by this event. There is a whole host of effects that this has had our lives, it has certainly changed many of the plans that I had for the year.

I wrote about posting my 100th blog entry at our family blog in May. I have spent a lot of time writing posts between our family blog, this one, and a private one that I created a few years ago in honor of my mother. One of the things that I wanted to do as a kid was to become a writer, so while I haven’t written the great American novel yet or made the NY Times Best Seller List, I’m writing. I enjoy writing and would like to find more time to do it.

I really like to travel, so I was excited to go to Copenhagen, Denmark for a client visit on my current project. I got to do a nice tour of the city (I’ll post the pictures at the family blog sometime in the near future). The first night of my trip I had to stay in Malmo City, Sweden because I was unable to book a hotel in Copenhagen, so I got to see a little bit of Sweden as well. While it doesn’t look like I will be going to Italy this year, I did get to get to see a little bit of Denmark and Sweden, something that I hadn’t planned to do this year.

I started a new project at work. I have worked the last two years on the same project, (which is kind of rare in the project world), so it is always interesting to change to something different after a period of time. The new project is challenging and does require a lot of time and energy.

My youngest daughter, Sarah, learned to ride her bike without training wheels. One of the big events in most parents’ lives is when their child learns to ride their bike without training wheels and this was no exception. There is usually a story that goes with in, and in our case of course there is.

One last thing that I accomplished before moving on to second half of this year is that I read books 5, 6, and 7 from the Harry Potter series. Having seen all the movies (that have been released to date) and read these last three books, I was able to start listening to all the HP Progs podcasts that I recorded for my wife. I had avoided listening to that point because I didn’t want to spoil anything. At the moment I’m listening to the podcasts on my way to work and when I’m driving around without the girls.

2008- The Second Half

Some of the things that are currently planned for the second half of this year include…

My father and Aunt Betty are visiting next week. Last year I visited Paris and Scotland with them and we had a real nice visit. Because I’m so busy on my current project and because dad is recovering from a heart attack that he had last October and recent surgery on his knee, we won’t be doing any large trips like that but I’m sure that there will be many nice day trips (many with out me) and we’ll have some great times together. I know that the whole family is looking forward to the visit. I think that it will also be good for the girls because it gives them incentive to speak more English and will probably give Sarah a supercharge in this area.

Our oldest daughter, Anna, will be starting first grade on August 5th. She already had a sleepover and farewell party at the kindergarten. Her last day will be this Friday. This is a big step for Anna and us. I know that there will be a lot to look forward in this area. Something that is almost as hard to believe is that Sarah will now be one the oldest kids in the kindergarten, when Anna’s group leaves! Sarah will be starting first grade next Summer.

I’m fast approaching my 100th post for this blog. I’m often wondering when this will happen and what posts I will write between now and then. I’m hoping to increase my readership, but still need to work out how to do this. I’m also hoping that I’ll see more comments and involvement from those that read my posts. As with many authors, we’re looking for proof that we’re being read and making an impact. I hope to get more feedback so that I can improve the blog, so I’m open to suggestions here.

At work I have a training session coming up very soon. I will be going to Amsterdam for a week long training class. I also plan to get involved in a mentoring program to sharpen my skills and as one those goals at work that I have committed to.

So this is a look at my half year results and what I have planned for the next six months. Have you given any thoughts to what you’ve accomplished in the first half of 2008 and what you have planned for the second half? If you have any other comments, I would love to hear them. If you liked this article, please consider subscribing to the blog via RSS or email, share it on or on Digg and pass it on to anyone that you think might appreciate it. Thank you. :)

On Deck…

I’ll be publishing posts about…

  • The next in my series of weight loss strategies
  • My next Spotlight on the web.
  • More on productivity, web 2.0, social networking, family, parenting, health, and other things that you can use.

Other Posts That You Might Also Like to Read…

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