October News

Hello everyone. I am very busy at the moment, but here is a quick update of my goings on.

Yesterday, Tressa and I went to a Kings of Leon concert. We both thought it was pretty good but not exceptional. It was very nice to get out and take in some live music.

I am currently finishing a single chapter as a collaborative author for the upcoming book HTML 5 Games Most Wanted. This project looks very cool as it discusses several very distinct and current topics. The book does not yet have a cover image. My chapter will be entitled "Beginning WebGL" which is the Web Graphics Language.

Here's a hodgepodge of stuff: Wedding planning is going fairly well. I turn 30 on October 21st. Looking forward to Halloween - seeing Tressa's M&M costume and the Pipster's costume (whatever she is gonna be). And I hope to have some interesting news in a few weeks (no it's not a child)...


End of Summer

After the big event that kick-started the summer, the rest of July and August went by fast and without much excitement. We are busy preparing for next year's wedding and tightening up our chequebook. I went to OSCON in Portland, Oregon for a couple of days which was a great experience and Tressa went to Rocky Mountain House for a family visit. That is about it though in terms of travel.

Tressa is back at school teaching and enjoying it very much. I just finished a technical review of the upcoming Apress book Foundation HTML 5 Animation with JavaScript.

We are trying to get the most out of the beautiful weather while it lasts, going for some nice "strolls" in the evening and discussing houses along the way that we would hypothetically buy.


"Pro PHP Programming" Published

The Apress book, Pro PHP Programming, which I coauthored is available for eBook and print order now and will be in stores in a few days.
Apress
Amazon
Chapters/Indigo

 

I have written seven chapters:
3 - Mobile PHP
4 - Social Media
10 - Libraries
11 - Security
13 - Refactoring, Unit Testing and Continuous Integration
14 - XML
15 - JSON and Ajax

The Full Table of Chapters of the Book is:

  1. Object Orientation
  2. Exceptions and References
  3. Mobile PHP
  4. Social Media
  5. Cutting Edge
  6. Form Design and Management
  7. Database Interaction I
  8. Database Interaction II
  9. Database Interaction III
  10. Libraries
  11. Security
  12. Agile Development with Zend Studio for Eclipse, Bugzilla, Mylyn, and Subversion
  13. Refactoring, Unit Testing, and Continuous Intergration
  14. XML
  15. JSON and AJAX
  16. Conclusions

Appendix - Regular Expressions


Engaged!

Engaged!

I am now engaged to my caring, beautiful, cute, smart and funny girlfriend of the past two years, Tressa Kirstein. If you know Tressa, then you know that she has a heart "two sizes too big", the opposite of the Grinch. I love her quirkiness as it matches my own nature.

And now the story of the engagement:

We have been living together for almost a year and a half. Though she is a bit of a neat freak, and I am more of a night owl, for the most part it works very well. We both bring out the best in each other.

Tressa has not so subtly hinted at marriage ; ) before. Several months ago we were in a mall and she joked that we should see some rings in a jewelry store. I think I shocked her when I said "ok" as her arm was shaking and hand sweating. All we came home with that occasion was a ring measurement and a somewhat flustered woman ; )

I know it frustrates Tressa sometimes that I am quite aggressive in some matters, while quite slow and cautious in other decisions. One evening at open mic night, watching my brother Robert and his wife Lisa perform some songs, I finally came to a decision, saying to Robert while Tressa went to the washroom "I think I am finally ready Robert. I'm ready to ask Tressa to marry me.". 

(As a side note, you should know that I have a history of not always keeping surprises. So the fact that only Robert knew before hand, and no one knew the exact date is impressive.)

Tressa finished working at the school at the end of June. July 2nd-3rd we were in Lloydminster visiting my sister's family along with my parents - it is my dad's birthday. Tressa's friend Ashley was in town and stayed overnight Tuesday. Another friend of Tressa's, Angie, was supposed to be visiting on Wednesday. Starting Friday, Tressa and her mom were to travel to Alberta for a week. So I told Tressa I would make supper for her on Thursday without trying to make too big a deal of things - as this was the date I decided to pop the question.

As it turned out, Angie had to cancel for Wednesday, and Tressa wanted me to make supper Wednesday instead. Her and her mom were to leave Thursday now. Previously in the day I had bought tickets to Shakespeare on the Saskatchewan for Thursday. I told Tressa that I would rather not as I had made plans for Thursday night...this almost ruined things as Tressa knew something was up. Humorously, she thought I had booked a hot air balloon - which actually would be awesome! Maybe as a wedding present from someone...haha.hint. I did my best to downplay things and rescheduled for Wednesday.

Wednesday, July 6th after work I cooked Tressa chicken alfredo - the first meal she ever cooked for me. Then I told her that we were going to Shakespeare on the Saskatchewan - "Love's Labour Lost", but not before singing her two songs. The play was pretty good but it was styfling hot. My plan was to propose at intermission, but I thought it was longer than it actually was (15 minutes). I did not know exactly where to go, but we went for a little walk along the river and at a spot I deemed ok, I went down on one knee and asked Tressa to marry me. I got her by surprise! And she got emotional and then said, "Yes, I will!". The second half of the play was tough to take in - Tressa was grinning ear to ear. Also it was Shakespeare...so unless you know what is going on or an old English major, you're lost.

We got home, phoned our immediate families, and texted our wedding parties (it was fairly late) then went to the Yard and Flagon for a pint of beer and an appetizer.

The aftermath:

After the proposal, Tressa and her mom delayed the trip until Monday which was nice. But I have not seen her since. She is actually twenty minutes outside of the city now, so yay!

We are shooting for a summer 2012 wedding, though the exact date is not finalized yet.

Beyond marriage..I hope to be able to travel with Tressa and hopefully have some children... but let's not get too ahead of things. 

I love Tressa! xo


the arts

A couple of weeks ago I watched my brother Robert and his wife Lisa perform at an open mic night at Lydia's in town. They sounded good, and I have always wanted to get the skill/nerve to perform in public.

The open mic at Lydia's is very cool too. There are many different genres of music and everyone gets around four or five songs to sing, so the setlists entice you if enjoy the performer and give your ears a break if you do not.

I decided that I would like to play at an open mic night in the future - maybe in a month or two. I figure I can pull off a solid set of four or five songs. I hope to play a couple of original songs, a couple of obscure covers and maybe one well known cover - possibly an instrumental version.

I have been playing more guitar recently and bought myself a classical music book, which is challenging but fun.

When it comes to movies and music, I am on a retro kick. I figure that there are a lot of bad present day movies and a limited amount of time on this earth. So I am starting to watch proven classic films from the AFI 100 years, 100 movies list and listen to some albums from Top 100 Canadian Albums (legally and for free at grooveshark).

So far, I have watched Casablanca and the Graduate for the first time...and heard some Neil Young tracks that are great and I had not heard yet..."here's lookin at you kid"


Spotlight Song
Ray Lamontagne - Jolene

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Spotlight Album

Ray Lamontagne - Jolene ()

...A man needs something he can hold onto
A nine pound hammer or a woman like you
Either one of them things will do
Jolene
I ain't about to go straight
It's too late
I found myself face down in the ditch
Booze in my hair
Blood on my lips
A picture of you, holding a picture of me
In the pocket of my blue jeans
Still don't know what love means
Still don't know what love means...



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Words of Wisdom

Everyone hears only what he understands.

Goethe

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