I will soon begin a new consulting project. I dare to say it is bigger than any other project that I have ever done. This time I am the one project managing it. I’m a little excited and nervous. It’s a huge project. It is more than twice the size of my largest (which was considered huge already) ever project and there were essentially three project managers for it. Hakuna Matata.

I’ve been seeking recommendations for Project Management Software or Sites. I have one that I use but it’s a little pricey for the scale of this project. So, I am looking for alternatives. So far I have gotten a few that are useable and some that are more like task management and time tracking apps on steroids. In no particular order but slightly organized by category, here are some of the ones suggested so far:

Project Management


Time Management and Trackers

I haven’t reviewed all of them but so far I have found a couple that may work. I just need to look at the budget.

I made my decision on my business cards and domain. I stuck with my original choice. Josh still isn’t keen on it, but it is my domain. He has his own. Now I am going to just wait for the DNS to resolve. I played around with a logo but in the end I decided I probably don’t need one. Not yet at least.

I’m planning to use a CMS to power it. I haven’t decided on which one just yet. I am trying to think of the content that needs to be added first. Oi vey, what a chore.

Tomorrow is Labor Day here in the U.S. It got me thinking about first jobs. My first job as an adult was as a web designer. Go figure. I was hired because someone overheard that I could do it and they were in a pinch. Their desperation = My win! That was over 14 years ago. Granted, I was 18, but still, it seems like forever. So, what was your first job as an adult? Do you remember it fondly or do you cringe at the mention of it? Do you need therapy because of it?

Today I tested a wired lav mic with my Kodak zi8. We bought a couple for work along with a couple of microphones. One is a hand held Sony microphone and another is an Audio Technica ATR-3350 Lavalier Omnidirectional Condenser Microphone that is clipped on. The zi8 inherently pics up a lot of background noise with its internal microphone. Actually most pocket video cameras do. This is why the availability of an external mic jack on the zi8 is so great. We’ve used my personal zi8 with a hand held mic before and that was fine. We’ve never used a lav with it before.

I ran some tests today and the immediate difference in the quality between the internal and external mic was enough to convince one of my co-workers to purchase one immediately for his zi8. I will be purchasing one for myself this weekend. I need to order other items, so I am waiting until I have my shopping list completed. I’m just surprised at how well it exceeded my expectations.

I want to do some outdoor tests tomorrow if it isn’t raining. I am hoping that I can make a quick little video and post it on YouTube to play here for those that are interested. So stay tuned!

Perhaps the title of this entry is misleading. There is no flattery, it’s all theft. I just discovered a site/company/entity is using a photo of mine. While the “credited” me, they did not request permission to use it. The copyright information is listed with the image, but it was still lifted. The annoying thing is, I would have let them use it, had they asked! I’ve yet to turn down someone who wanted to use a photo of mine that involved anything other than the kids. That decision is always theirs or their parents’. Still, I do require permission before use!

So now do I go and request them to take it down? It was apparently posted over a year ago and it’s not being used in a harmful way. Still, how hard is it to contact me? My info is listed with the photo! Perhaps that question has led me to my answer.  I guess it would have been flattery when they asked and when I would have realized they wanted to use my photo amongst the work of professional news photographers. But now it’s down right irritation and theft. Grrr. I don’t intend to name the names as I know that can cause more headache. I’ve been around the web a few times to know that much!

In other photography news. I entered one of my photographs into the employee art exhibit. I have no expectations of winning. I just wanted to do something since no one else in the office was. Someone had to represent, so why not me? I entered a photo of Sawyer. I was going to submit a photo of Hugo, but it just didn’t print correctly while the Sawyer one was really good. I showed it to some of my coworkers and they couldn’t figure out what it was at first until they stood away.

Now I think I shall prepare slumber. I have a busy morning tomorrow. I am attending a social media seminar in the morning. I’m mostly interested in the showcase prior to the discussion. I am interested in seeing the application development. That’s the coder in me trying to get out. The designer and professional sides of me have been suppressing it for too long. Run free little coder, run free.

When I was hired, I had a set task of things I was expected to do. It has been just over two years the scope of my job has changed quite a bit. I’ve been toying around with video editing but because I am just borrowing on of the macs, I don’t have the tools to do everything right. That’s right, I do my job on a PC. Hush. I have pushed to begin using a mac at work but the lack of $$ makes that nearly impossible.

I’ve also been pushed into the realm of social media. OK, I mean for work. I do enjoy it. I just wish I wasn’t limited in what I can do.

So, on that note. I’m still working on saving for a mac. I still have issue with spending that much but sometimes I guess you have to. So I’m still resolved to wait to buy it rather than just purchase willy nilly. I’m wondering how much I can abuse my niece’s college discount (Yep, she’s starting college in he fall). I’ve been keeping my eye on craigslist but so far nothing exciting has come of it.  Anyone want to donate to the buy miftik a macbook fund? Didn’t think so. Well if you do, feel free to email me. I’m more than willing to accept donations. 😛

Growing up sucks. I went to school, graduated and grew up. Now I don’t have the time to do the things that I want. Well, I say that but I’m pretty sure if I tried, I could do what I want. I think the responsible side of me out weighs the rest of me.

I’m thinking of getting a mac. I have issues with their business model, but I have issues with Microsoft’s as well. My biggest issue with a mac is the cost associated with them. I’m just finding that I need to have both OSes (and some *nix) to run OS specific applications that are applicable to my career field. I think I’ve decided that I will get one, but I have to “save” for it. I can’t justify just spending it outright. I want a new kitchen more than I want a mac. So, I’ll work on some freelance projects or I’ll just put a small portion of each paycheck away. Maybe then it won’t hurt so much to fork over that much for the machine and software. Right?

I’ve also been thinking of buying a new domain. Then I thought a little more and said, heck now. I’ve got 13 years worth of content on this site. Though some years are thinner than others, it’s been a good domain and it is still good. So, if I get a new domain, it’ll be for something not related to my every day life.

My evil princess is getting old. I know she’s not on her death bed, but she isn’t her young self. She jumped from the floor to the desk and Josh and I nearly had a heart attack. She hasn’t done that in at least a year. She usually needs to jump into a chair or on a window sill first. Maybe the cream cheese I gave her this morning has given her a bit of her youth back. She’s suffering from allergies. But she works herself into such a terrible frenzy at the vet’s office that we have been avoiding taking her. Instead it looks like I’m going to have to trim her nails and give her a bath. Oh that will be fun. That’s one of the not fun parts of being a grown up. Bathing elderly cats.

I am seriously contemplating a return to globe trotting. I traveled a lot in my younger (read pre-teens) and I want to do it again but now with my husband. I’m hoping that recent revelations by my husband about possible discounted travel options lead to awesome adventures over seas. Keep your fingers crossed; we may jump the pond! Can England handle my return? Probably.

In other news. I am starting my extra-edumacation. I’m doing some online stuff  now and will probably enroll in some courses for the Fall semester. Didn’t I just finish school? What am I thinking?

I’m dabbling in new waters at work using Google, GIS layers and user inputs. I have gotten my ankles and shins wet but once I get the files I need, I’m going in the deep end! Look out world, my brain is expanding!

Speaking of deep end. When I was little I would hang on to the edge of the pool while in the deep end. I was not confident in my dog-paddle technique. Eventually I learned to swim properly, became addicted to and loved being in the water.

This random bit of non-sense has been brought to you by Josh getting a work call just before bed.

After discussing my history of blogging, this site and its toddler years to a co-worker, I’ve come to realize that I miss writing here.  It has always been the stress of work or school, wanting to be with my husband or the stress of having things to do at home that stop me. I suppose I just have to make more of an effort to write.

So, I’m hoping to be a bit renewed in my habits. Hope, it wasn’t invented by the president you know.

Today I have been assisting Josh in brewing beer. It has been raining today so we aren’t able to work on completing the shed. We are hoping to finish before Josh’s parents visit. Right now there is a 50/50 chance of that happening. Again, I do have hope.

The other thing I have been doing today (because there is a lot of waiting in the brewing of beer) is sorting my files on computer. I need to get in a better habit of doing it but for now I am just sucking it up and using the free moments to take care of business. Right. Next.

Work. Because of budget cuts, training and attending conferences has been cut. I’ve been actively searching for ways to get free or discounted training. I’ve also been trying to find a way to get myself to SXSWi this year. There are a lot of panels at this years conference relevant to what I do daily at work. I’ve put in a request to go, but hope is low on that one. So, if you know anyone giving away SXSW passes, don’t forget your gal miftik. I also have co-workers that want to go to the Music and Film portions.  I guess that is the interesting side of working in my department. We do all sorts of crap!

What else. Oh, new reads.

I’ve posted about Vonnie before but I want to mention her again. I adore reading her. She’s part mommy blog, part craft blog, part real blog. All the good ones.  Her husband Bob is pretty nifty too. 🙂

Oh darn. I must go. I forgot to mention that part of my assisting Josh in brewing the beer is that I am recording all of the non-waiting bits. I have to convince Josh to let me buy some new inexpensive video editing software. I think I am more likely to get that than a new machine with Avid. Right?

Josh and I will hopefully get to take a vacation at the same time before Christmas. It seemed to be the least busiest time of year and I figure work won’t miss me too much then. Apparently the week I return will have little to no one at work. I think we’ll be down to four or five in my office. Skeleton crew, that’s more like a side of ribs.

We’ve had some progress in the kitty world. Sawyer is quite brave now. She’s coming up to us and meowing. She’s not running away from us when we come near. Spot managed to sleep on our desks this evening for a bit. I’m not sure if he was trying to get a little closer to the evil princess or now but he was there even after she left.

Speaking of the evil princess. She is getting on in her age. I know it will be rough for me when she passes. She may be evil, but she is my evil little princess. Her asthma still bothers her, especially in the summer. We’ve been trying to manage it but she hates pills and will maul you if you try to go near her face without food or dairy based liquid.

Oh man. Speaking of dairy. I have some low sugar ice cream bars in the fridge. I should go get one! They are really good. I think they are made by Blue Bunny.

As I had planned earlier, I’ve been couponing for work stuff. I am gathering goods food drives and for toy drives. With coupons, I’ve managed to get five Santa Mr. Potato Heads at 0.99 USD each. I scored some stuffed bears for $1 each and some games for under $5. I’m still acquiring toys but I am trying to stretch the dollars and get more for the same amount I typically spend. So far I’m doing awesome. I will try to remember to take a picture. I’ve got goods for three drives.

I am also thinking of making some things for the toy drives. I have tons of fabric scraps and I might be able to make some toys for smaller children. Dolls, fabric shapes? There are plenty of free patterns out there. I think it is just going to be a time issue for me. I have freelance work to get done, regular work and a husband that I like to see. Perhaps a work lunch project. Maybe.

Hello my lovelies!

I’ve been actively researching grants. Whoa is me there aren’t any for the. I’m specifically looking for grant money to send me to various web/technology conferences and workshops or training. Ideally I’d love to go to SXSW but alas it isn’t happening. Work can’t send me because well, budget cuts! I peeked around at federal grants but honestly grants aren’t my area of expertise. If you know of any grants and are willing to pass along the info, help a sistah’ out! We are also delving into the world of social media as well as exploring other technologies, so it would be nice to talk to others who have felt my pain.

In other news, I’m researching button makers. Partly for work and partly for personal reasons. I have taken on many hats in my job and well, a button maker seems logical.

I’ve pretty much sucked at crafting this holiday. It feels like I am working non-stop. I have my job, my freelance and then work around the house. The yard work is never ending, though there is a giant 15 foot area cleared in my front yard. Crazy. Josh went a little wild with the cutting. Not that I’m complaining, it just makes me laugh.

Word just came down to me that the plan is to have the shed finished by February. I was hoping to have it done my Christmas but I’ll take February just the same.

Finally, I shall leave you with a new video from Mumford and Sons. If you’ve known me long enough you’ll probably remember that I have never had a true favorite genre of music, but I do like these guys. I think what draws me to it is the emotion in the songs.  Enjoy.