Friday, October 31, 2014


Another trip tomorrow, this one probably my longest of the year. 6 days in Seattle for the MVP Summit and the PASS Summit. I worked on my new laptop bag last week and I think it's ready to go. However since everything moved, I need to look through it a few times to be sure I can find things.

Photo Oct 26, 10 26 06 AM

I also started to pack my main bag. I've got extra stuff, and I'm slightly worried it might not fit. I may end up checking a bag, just to make life easier when I get there. I can take the larger roller and then put the smaller one in it after I arrive.

I did remember prizes,

Photo Oct 31, 9 54 01 AM

Now I need to see if I can fit everything else in there.

Apricot Chicken

After a hot stone massage yesterday, I needed to get something for dinner. The kids have been looking for something each night and I've been enjoying cooking more, so I did a quick search. I ended up with this:

It was quick, fairly easy, and everyone liked it. With some brussell sprouts and break, an easy meal.

Of course, since I'd had a massage during the day, I ended up riding the bike for some exercise while the others ate and then trying some myself later.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

The Contact Experiment

Today I picked up Kendall from school and headed to the eye doctor. She wanted to try contacts, and I made an appointment for her. I know how annoying glasses can be, so I was happy to give it a try.

We arrived early, and they took her back right away. It’s different than it was for me, or even Delaney. They don’t put them in for you. They gave her a single daily lens, explained how to do it and then watched her practice.

Over, and over. She struggled with it, constantly blinking and pulling her eye closed. She didn’t get enough grip on her eyelid, and kept bringing in her hand at an angle. She never got it in, with about 30-45 minutes of practice. I gave her a few hints from my experience, and then walked away to leave her alone.

She couldn’t get it and eventually we bailed, calling it a day. She was disappointed and I understand that. I’d brought our running stuff, so we changed, had a short 30 minute run/walk, making our way to Firehouse for dinner. A nice time with my girl, chatting and forgetting about contacts. We checked out schedules for some local colleges and made plans to go see a couple.

We walked back, ready to head home as it got chilly. Kendall wanted a brownie, so we drove to Kneaders for one, where I realized my license was missing. I’d had it for dinner, but must have dropped it on the way to the car. We headed back to the park, looking around. We found it on the sidewalk, which was a relief, and headed home.

A good night with my girl.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Yoga Sculpt

Took another sculpt class today.

Boy, it was tough. Less weights, which my elbow appreciated, but it was tough on the legs with lots of up and down, squats, and other leg movements.

A great workout.

Working Outside

It was chilly yesterday. I was going to ask Kendall if she wanted to walk or run when she got home, but it started to snow around 2 and we got a nice thin covering by the time she got home. However today is different.


I sat outside for a bit this afternoon, with the dogs, enjoying the sun. It has to be around 70 today, when it was mid to low 30s this time yesterday.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Heading Home

An early, early morning at Heathrow. Up at 4:50, grabbing a cab to the terminal and then waiting to board a morning flight back to the US. This has been a good trip, but I’m beat and will be glad to get home for a week before I have to leave and fly to Seattle.

I arrived at Heathrow about 43 hours ago and immediately went to London and started meetings and practice for the keynote. I had 4 or 5 run throughs, and then a long dinner with a brand consultant. A late night, with 10-11pm practice for my other talks.

Friday I managed a workout only by walking the 1.1mi to the venue before I had to set up, practice the keynote, deliver the keynote, and then go through 3 sessions in a row, with only lunch to give me a small break. With people asking question and wanting to chat, my voice was tired and I really didn’t get a break until I walked outside and went to St Paul’s cathedral around 3:30. Even then they charge 17 pounds to go in, so I looked in the small entry and then sat in the garden for 30 minutes to unwind.


A not wanted, but needed few hours in a pub with an old friend before a long commute out to Heathrow.

A good trip, and I tend to prefer the short ones when I’m busy, but I’m still tired. 3 trips in September, 3 this month, and one more next week.

Thursday, October 23, 2014


This is going to be a long day. It's early in London, and I had to be up at 6, for a 7am keynote practice, and then the event, dinner, and train to Heathrow.

My workout, I think, is going to be a walk to the venue from my hotel (about 1.1mi). Either that, or I'll try for a walk after my talks for a bit. Either way, a separate shirt and workout shoes for the commute as the cowboy boots I brought aren't great for distance.

A Long Day

Flying across the Atlantic, from Chicago to London. Landing in London, taking a train and cab to the Waldorf (not as amazing as it sounds), then waiting for my bags (mistake) for 45 minute, a quick run, then racing to meet my boss for a one on one meeting.

Fortunately I snagged some nachos at the hotel because I had a bar when I landed in London, and then didn’t have time for anything else. After the one on one, it was two hours of keynote practice, which went bad at first, but pretty good by the end. I’ll need to go over it a few more times in the morning, but that should be OK.

That finished, but I didn’t have a chance to do much else except get a drink in the bar, and slowly watch the charge on my phone go down as I waited for a brand consultant to get into town. I had a dinner meeting with her, and it was good, but didn’t get back to the hotel until 10:30.

A long, long day, and I’m not even sure how long I was up or asleep. At least I had a whole row of three seats to myself and got some rest on the way over.

Now a long day tomorrow, presenting all day before a dinner meeting with my boss and then a train to Heathrow.

This is a crazy trip.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014


It’s late October, one ski resort is open with another opening at the end of the month. And it’s sunny and warm at the ranch.

T-shirts, shorts, it’s amazing how the weather has been this year. I love Denver for this reason. It can be beautiful any day of the year.

That’s not to say the mornings aren’t chilly. The kids are taking turns in the front seat of the Suburban, wanting the heated seat. We definitely need jackets early and late in the day, as without the sun it gets cold.

Still, it’s a beautiful day, and I’m hoping to get a run in this afternoon with the kids.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Sprinkler Blow Out

That time of year, and even though I didn't feel like it, I did it.

The late afternoon had the dozen or so vehicles leave the property, and that left cleanup. Tia was working in the barn, and asked me to get the back yard, so I pulled in chairs and packaged the folding ones and put the others on the porch. I moved the firepit, wrapped electrical cords, and got drinks and supplies inside.

Around this, I set up the compressor and started blowing out the sprinklers. The little 5 gal one only has enough air on a full (120psi) charge to do one zone, so I'd do one, and then let it refill. A short break between zones to let it cool down as it works hard to get things done.

I managed to clean up, though still some things in the family room to take downstairs and get back into closets. Overall, a good clinic week, and we learned some things. I'd do the large clinic again, but only once a year. If we do more, it should be Tia teaching, and not anyone else.

And I'm glad the sprinklers are done. Not a cold week, but since I head to the UK this week, it's good to have this out of the way.

Cycle Walk

Kyle took Kendall to the costume store yesterday. He needed to exchange something, and Kendall needed to find a costume. Tia was busy in the clinic, I'd cleaned up lunch, and was watching football with a sore neck. After an hour, I decided I needed to do something, so I got on the bike while watching the Cowboys battle with the Giants. It was quiet, and I had a good hour on the bike before Kendall came home.

"I thought we were going walking?", was the first thing she asked when she walked in.

She said she was tired and sore and didn't want to go to volleyball open gym, which I understood. Between Thur night late playing and her Sat out at the Zombie walk with the boys, I understood. I said we'd walk later, but since I wasn't sure if she sill would, I rode the bike.

She gave me grief, and I stopped at 70 minutes instead of the 75 I was aiming for, but glad she wanted to walk. We grabbed the dogs and headed out on a short walk, chatting as we did an easy mile.

Not a big workout for her, but glad she was ready to do it.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

A Long Week

Tia hosted a clinic this week, with two well known trainers coming to stay in a trailer on the side of our garage. There was a group here for Wed/Thur/Fri, and another group here today and tomorrow. It's been interesting, with Kendall manning a registration desk and the kids helping get lunch out and cleaned up each day. I've been cooking for the trainers each night (And our family) And it's been good, but last night's catering by Chipotle was nice and easy since we had about 30 people.

Today a quieter day, with kids gone and me puttering around. A welcome break from a crazy month of work stuff, that will continue to be crazy come Monday.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

What will you see at SQL in the City

London, Oct 24, 2014

Seattle, Nov 3, 2014

Come join us.

Friday Shirts

I decided to shoot a collection of my shirts for a mini project. Kendall helped, and here's the result.


I got a few of Kendall as well


Tuesday, October 14, 2014


Photo Oct 14, 12 03 24 PM

Eris is exploring my office today.

This after enjoying a relaxing evening with Uma while I watched football and worked a bit.

Photo Oct 13, 9 55 14 PM

Photo Oct 13, 9 55 24 PM

Sick Kid

Delaney's been down the last two days. He wasn't feeling good Sun when I got home, and actually paid Kyle to go do his chores for him. Then he slept most of yesterday and was still sick last night. Two days away from school isn't good, and I suspect he won't make the last meet on Thur.


I've been wanting to get a Colorado flag (and maybe a Herd of Two one) up in the air. I found a CO flag cheap on Amazon a few weeks ago and ordered it, but with travel and weather, hadn't been able to get it up.

Yesterday I took 10 min and stopped by Lowes to grab more clips. Today after dropping off Kendall, I spent 5 minutes adding the clips and then raise my flag.

Photo Oct 14, 8 54 16 AM

I'm not sure how long the CO one will last, as it's a thin, cheap poly material, but it's flying today.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Book #43 - Continuous Delivery

cdI picked this book up over the summer for work and loved it. I got going and it was an easy read. Then I got busy, and the book repeated lots of the same things over and over, so I dropped it. I had to force myself to pick it back up and work through it.

Don't get me wrong. It's a good book, with lots of good information, but the writing and style were hard on me. Chapters dragged on, which I do struggle with.

Continuous Delivery is about the process of getting your software always ready to release and using automation to ensure the changes you make are always being tested and moved through various test and validation phases. It's a great concept, and I believe in it.

This is the book for a great, though long, overview on the parts of getting CD working, though I have to say the database portion was entirely too light for me. I also wish more war stories with specifics on how to make changes and implement things would have made this better.

Sunday, October 12, 2014


For 10 days. I stayed up late Sat night in San Jose and managed to switch my 6pm flight to an 8am flight. Tired, worn out from travel and stress of new talks, I went to bed, up at 5:15 to shower and drive up to San Francisco for my early flight. An easy flight, apart from some bumpiness, and I was hope by 12:30.

Now I have a couple days of work before I’m taking a few days off with the kids for their fall break. I was thinking to run up to a college for a tour, and still may, but we need to also help Tia run her clinic, which is some cooking and work from me and the kids.

However I still need to get work done. A keynote memorized, another talk ready, and then next week I fly to London for a corporate event. Not looking forward to the trip, but it’s short, and I like the London crowd. This is our fourth year doing it and I see lots of repeat attendees, which is good.

A quiet day today, relaxing, laundry, football, a little exercise. A welcome break.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Book #39 - The Synchronicity War Part 3

51sbfc5axaL._AA160_Once again the book starts with the last chapter of part 2. In Part 3 of the Synchronicity War, we find the humans on their hidden planet, only 11,000 of them left.

And they die.

However their contact with the other aliens, the Friendlies, has given them a time machine that is used by AIs to go back and change the past. This book started to get a little crazy for me, as timelines are followed to disaster, and then someone goes back and changes things.

I'm not sure I love the idea of time travel over and over again to change the story, but that's the premise. It was interesting enough to keep me going.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Faster than Me

We've known Delaney is faster at running than me, and probably everyone else in the family, at the 5k distance. However his PR was 22:00, which isn't as fast as I ran one in San Diego years ago.

That changed yesterday. I flew home from Boston, drove home, then drove 100 miles back up North to Fort Morgan for the last cross country meet of the season. This was the conference meet, and we were thinking Delaney was running JV as he missed a practice this week. After flying 2000 miles and driving 150 more, I arrived at the park and saw Delaney hanging out.

Photo Oct 09, 4 03 28 PM

Those are the varsity boys and as I came up, Delaney said he was running Varsity still, which makes this his 7th varsity race. I think he only missed one this season, demoted to JV when another kid got faster.

We watched and cheered the JV and girls, and finally it was time for the boys varsity.

Photo Oct 09, 5 00 36 PM (1)

Only 4 or 5 schools, and a good day for Delaney. mid 60s, cloudy, and he said he felt good. The gun sounded, and they were off

Photo Oct 09, 5 02 20 PM

A couple hundred yards in, Delaney had a good stride and was in the pack. Sometimes he's been drifting back, but he was in this one. They headed off across the bridge over the Platte and then came back. Around the one mile point, I was glad to see Delaney right behind another kid from his school.

Photo Oct 09, 5 08 56 PM

Smaller strides, and I was hoping he'd keep moving, and get a good time. As I moved to the 2-ish mile point (they weren't marked), I was amazed to see three red shirts come out of the woods together. As they got closer, I saw Delaney a half step behind one kid on his team, and ahead of another.

Photo Oct 09, 5 19 51 PM

They were moving well, and we cheered them on as they went past. There have been 7 varsity boys each meet, and Delaney's typically been the 7th one, closing out their school, though far from last in the meets.

However he did well today and as I hurried over to the finish, I hoped he could hang on.

If you look close, you can see the timer counting. I'm not sure if he crossed at 20:59 or 21:00, but either way it's a PR for him, and faster then I've ever run a 5k at any point in my life.

Delaney finished strong, in 5th place on his team, ahead of two kids that had consistently beaten him all year. I watched as coaches and all the other kids, including the two he beat, congratulated him on his run and beating the other two. It was really cool to see. Worth every minute of my drive.

The entire team.

Photo Oct 09, 5 41 13 PM

Book #38 - The Synchronicity War Part 2

415unT--CHL._AA160_The second book in the Synchronicity war picks up where the first one ended, actually starting with the last chapter of the first book repeated. I like that technique.

The war is going badly and Shiloh continues to have visions. He manages to fend off problems with Earth, while utilizing the AIs more and managing to defend Earth. However things continue to get worse, and he wonders what to do if the visions stop.

We also get the first hint of time travel here, with the idea that these are messages sent by a machine in the future.

Not great, but an interesting continuation to the series.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Thai in Boston

A quick trip this week, flying out early Tues to Boston. I had hoped for a direct flight, but the times weren't good, so I ended up taking an early 8am flight from Denver, flying to Newark, getting off the plane (Which was late), grabbing a drink, and then getting right back on the same plane, same seat.

Boston was interesting. I met a friend for a drink and was supposed to meet some of my work friends, but they sent me the wrong address for the restaurant, having me leave Cambridge and head to Boston. Felt like the same city to me, but Adam, who lives there, corrected me and said it was different.

We ended up in a small, hole in the wall Thai place by BU that he loves. He went to school in Boston, and now that he has kids, he doesn't get to some of his favorite places. A spicy papaya salad and chile chicken for me, which were good. The a couple ciders, watching the Giants/Nats before bed.

Tuesday was almost 3 hours of meetings, then a trip over to the Microsoft office where my company had an afternoon event. I had the intro, then watched my colleague present an hour, then I did 2, before he finished off and we had a short happy hour. My voice was beat, and I was glad to head to the hotel, have a quiet dinner, and go to bed early.

Up this morning at 5:45, then flying back from Boston, driving to meet Tia for lunch before driving to a cross country meet, has me beat.

Sunday, October 5, 2014


I went to a Sculpt yoga class yesterday and it was more a combination of minimal yoga, and some aerobics class with weights in our hands. A hard class, one I had to take a break from a few times, but it was good. Haven't felt shaky after a class in a long time.

Then in the afternoon, after a little work, Kendall was ready to run, so we did a 25min walk/run combo, getting her moving. I was definitely ready to relax, but as we got home and I got ready to shower and lay down, she asked to play some volleyball, so we did. About 20-30 minutes of passing outside.

Today I'm sore. I think a walk tonight might be it.

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Friday Night Turns

I was excited to get to class last night, as we were supposed to use the lathes. I like turning, and was looking forward to learning something and making a tool. On the way to class I hurried to the lumberyard and bought some cherry and more alder for projects.

I went too fast, and later one of the TAs showed me a few things I hadn't thought of. Oh well, more to learn.

I wandered over to turning first, since I will miss next week and didn't want to get behind. We each got a block of wood, about a foot or so long and about 4" thick. We were supposed to mark the center and then make it look like one of the items next to my block.

Photo Oct 03, 6 09 47 PM

Most of the instruction I knew, but there were a few things to learn. Why I'd work from motor to tail, turn the lightest part first, a few things on holding the chisels that I didn't know.

Photo Oct 03, 6 18 39 PM

I rounded mine pretty past and then went to work on the handle. I wanted a baseball bat bottom, and I think I got one.

Photo Oct 03, 6 52 59 PM

There wasn't much to doing the top. I wanted a slightly thicker middle and just a little tapering. I think I got close, but not quite what I wanted. Oh well.

Photo Oct 03, 9 31 53 PM

We used a wire to burn in some circles, and then we were done. Here it is at home.

Photo Oct 04, 3 39 18 PM

That only took about 2 hours, so I spent the rest of the time milling wood, getting it within 1/2" of final dimensions. I then talked to the TA a bit, and he suggested letting it sit before gluing and re-milling. I agreed, and brought it home. I'll try to glue things tomorrow.

He also showed me how to better grain match and pick pieces with that in mind. I'll use that for gluing and also I may try to incorporate things into a second box that I make from the Alder, and see if I can better match things.

A Box Checked

Whew, sent off my three hours of recordings for intermediate T-SQL. I committed to teach a 3 hour class online in July, and have been sweating and worrying about it. I should have completed it in August, but things got to me and I struggled to work through a few of the concepts I didn't know that well.

The last 3 weeks have had me working on demos and slides at night, and recording sections here and there. I completed one class last weekend, one on Thur night, and the last one today. Uploaded and emailed, and now I just have to answer questions in two weeks when the class is broadcast.

Feels good to get that off my plate.

Now I need to get demos squared away for my trip to Boston this week.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Morning Help

The kitten crawled up on my leg, and then the chair, so she got into my conference call. Here's a shot from my boss


Shortly after my hour long call, the kitten had had enough

Photo Oct 02, 10 30 33 AM

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Book #41 - Personal

51P0Ke6iozL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-v3-big,TopRight,0,-55_SX324_SY324_PIkin4,BottomRight,1,22_AA346_SH20_OU01_I was struggling with a book I'd gotten for work, the other ones that Tia recommended didn't catch my interest, so I grabbed Personal, the latest Jack Reacher, on a trip.

It was great. A new thriller, this one reaching back into Reacher's past, where he busted a sniper and sent him away. When there's an attempt on the French President's life from a sniper, the CIA and Reacher determine that only 4 or 5 men could have done it, and his previous arrest was one of them.

The book is a wild ride, first in France, and then in London, where there's a G8 Summit and everyone expects the sniper to take a shot. They narrow down his potential help to a few street gangs in London, and Reacher is out there with a young CIA agent trying to track down the sniper and stop him.

One of the better Reacher novels.

Sick Kiddo

Kendall was feeling sick Mon night, and not just because her team lost. Actually, I don't think that bothered her, but she said her throat was sore as the whole family piled on the couch, kids doing homework, me working through demos with Monday Night Football on.

Tues she woke up with a sore throat, sick, so I had her sleep. She was in her room most of the day, and looking better last night, but still sick this morning, so we had her sleep more.

Now she's gone to bed, and I'm hoping she'll be fine tomorrow.

A Day Off

Not a real day off, with a court date today. Not something I want to disclose, but Tia and I were sued by someone who said our dog had injured their horse. We found the claim baseless, and our insurance company provided a lawyer.

A long morning, but all went well.