Monday, October 13, 2003
Tuesday, August 12, 2003
So much to do, so little timeMuch has come to pass since the last entry here. Let's try a brief synopsis:
My original contract at SPX was to be "for six or seven months." Starting in October of 2002, that would mean that six months would be up at the end of April, and seven at the end of May. After speaking with the person that is my contact at SPX, we determined that I would be kept on indefinitely until the project I was working on was in a stable condition. It was never my intent to be anything other than a contractor at SPX.
Then, I was offered a full time position. I had been looking for other jobs via Monster but had not found anything. Also, I noticed that this was the first job that I actually really enjoyed. Some others were fine, but this was the first one where I really didn't mind going to work. So, Kendra and I decided that I would take this job and continue to commute.
Well, it quickly became obvious that the 105 mile commute twice a day was really eating up tons of time and really wasn't much fun. Also, after chatting with one of my boss people who had recently just relocated from Maryland, it occurred to me that it might not be so bad living in Kalamazoo. Especially since there is a fairly nice relocation package included as part of my job; I like to think of it as a "signing bonus." :-D
Although it will be sad to leave the area, it made sense that we should be closer to my job. So, we went looking for houses. The second house Kendra and I saw together was the one we liked; we still went looking at eight more or so, but found we kept comparing them to this one. So, after only one day of looking, we made an offer. A couple of counter offers later, we have a new house in Portage (right next to K-zoo.)
We don't really need two houses so that meant it was time to say goodbye to our first house. It was a frantic week as we went through the house, getting rid of old junk. Most difficult was the basement with the tons of boxes and other stuff. Amusingly, many of these boxes were still sitting there from our move into the house, over four years ago.
However, sorting through the stuff went much easier than it had in the past, thanks to a book that Kendra gave me a while back. After reading it, I realized that I didn't need to continue to hold onto items that I did not need simply because they were "good." Of course, there is still much to go through. We did, however, get all the stuff prepared for the charity that came to take junk on that Thursday.
Kendra and I will each miss our activities in the local area. Kendra will miss singing with the choir and I will miss my karate (I have withdrawn at the rank of purple belt.) But, we are sure to find similar groups in Portage.
Monday, April 14, 2003
From whence I came...Amusingly (or not,) it is becoming unlikely that my contract is going to be renewed at SPX. Although they definately have work for me to do, and they are thrilled with my performance, the "six month rule" seems to be the law. Apparently a case against Microsoft has frightened many companies into limiting the amount of time a contractor may spend working for them. Although it would seem my situation is much different than that of the MS case, it is a worthless endeavor to argue.
Thus, the job hunt begins, again. :)
Hopefully, the added experience working with diagnostic software (don't worry, I won't explain it again ;)) will leverage me into another company doing something similar, yet not being located 100 miles or so from home. At the very least, the six months spent programming in Visual Basic 6.0 should provide more leads. Again, if any of my loyal readers (all three of you ;)) have any jobs you for which I may be suited, I would be most appreciative if you were to pass those along to me. If you are uncertain if I would qualify for the said position, forward it to me anyway and I shall separate the chaff from the wheat.
Other things to note:
- Kendra is still pregnant
- I have promoted to the rank of green belt
- Been playing the Getaway on the PS2 and having a blast
- I made a correction to the scripts on this site so that the correct name and info will be display for the Daily Monkey even when certain selections are set in the Choose Style section.
Friday, March 28, 2003
Another Little MonkeyFor those of you who have not yet heard, Kendra and I are having a baby. :) The due date is October 21, 2003. These are exciting times, indeed. :-D
Kendra apparently is a carrier for cystic fibrosis, so I was recently tested. Thankfully, I am not a carrier, and thus, our child will be C.F. free (although there is a 50% chance of baby being a carrier. Please consult your Punnet Squares for possibilities.)
The Countless Days of SPXI've been working at SPX for about five months now. The original contract was for six months, and it would have meant that it ended at the end of April (Friday, May 2nd, actually.) However, as the project I am working on has a scheduled release date in mid-July, they want to extend my contract until the end of June (it takes about two weeks for their testing/release process.) It is likely that I will continue until that time.
They have mentioned the desire to hire me as a full time employee after my contract. Although I am pleased with many aspects of this company, it is unlikely that I will take this position. As I am unwilling to commute, and they are unwilling to allow telecommuting, the only remaining option would be for us to move closer to Kalamazoo. A move is always a possibility and SPX is willing to compensate us for the move, but if we are going to move, I'd rather really make it count and go out of state (like Redmond, Washington.) And, of course, my karate school is in downtown Ann Arbor, so attending class would become a huge pain in the butt. And, since Kendra's job is in Ann Arbor, I suspect she might not be too excited to move away. Although, the cost of living is much cheaper in K-zoo, and it might be possible for Kendra to work at home, or just take care of baby. Still, I think it is most likely that I will try to find something closer to home. :)
Karate tournament this Saturday. I've taken several private lessons and have developed a routine with dual nunchuckus; it should be really cool. During the little practice session we had last Saturday, I got a round of applause from the spectators. :-D
In other Karate news, I am now officially one of the assistant instructors. Essentially, there is a program called SWAT (Special Winning Attitude Team) that certain students were invited to join. These monthly meetings are geared to help develop leadership and teaching skills, as well as help with karate skills. One of the options is to help with different classes. Since I always go to the 1:30 class on Saturdays, I volunteered to help at the 12:45 class. My first time was last Saturday, and I had a good time. I knew that the instructors were patient, but I only realized how endlessly patient they are after watching how the main instructor handled the inattentive little children for the entire 45 minute class. Amazing. :) So, I received a red SWAT member shirt to wear while assisting. Yay! :-D
In other news, I finished the heart blanket I was working on. I will post a picture of it here when I upload it.
Also, there was something amusing I noticed the first day at my new appartment that I meant to mention, but kept forgetting about. Below, you will find the exciting picture.
Wednesday, February 05, 2003
The Next EntryIt was always fairly easy to find time to update at a somewhat regular interval when I was unemployed; as I was busy doing nothing most of the day, I could easily schedule a little of something here and there. Now, as I am at work again during the day, the updates are limited to when I can find time at work, or when I can inspire myself (or remember) to update at my apartment. Several months have passed since the last update; amazing how quickly time can move.
Because of the time that has elapsed between posts, I will bullet several key happenings in my life:
- I took a trip to Mercury Marine in Fon du Lac, Wisconsin for work.
- We had a water softener from RainSoft installed in the house.
- My sister received a dog as a Christmas present.
- I have advanced to the rank of Orange belt in Karate.
- For Christmas, I received both a Gamecube and an XBox.
- Met with guy from Wallside Windows and scheduled an appointment to have our windows replaced.
- Both Kendra and I bought Treo 300s (didn't pay price listed at site!!!) from Handspring. Old PCS phone available for sale.
- Dryer broke. Maytag repairman was excited to actually have something to do. (actually Best Buy repairman)
- Ordered pizza online from Dominos. Very neat.
There. Now I should be all good for another couple of months. ;)