2014 Year End Review

This year has been an incredible one and I wanted to take some time today to reflect on all that has happened.

2014 was filled with great triumphs and great loss. It has been a bittersweet year. It was also incredibly busy. One marker of this busyness is the fact that I had a single blog post in 2013 and it was about how I was going to write more and here it is on the eve of 2015 and I am making the first post of 2014.

Reflecting on the things I had written about back in 2013:

  • I remain involved with jumpstart foundry as a mentor but this summer I took off due to travel
  • I have been serving as an advisor to gun.io. These guys are killing it.
  • Golf remains and obsession of mine. I'm still horrible but my handicap index has dropped from 35 to 22 since that post. I plan to take it down to the mid-teens by the end of the 2015 season.
  • We ended up focusing more on ThoughtStreams than production.io and have been writing code and doing customer development for KPITree.
  • The service offerings we launched as part of Eldarion's agency business have done really well and are permitting us to help entreprenuers even more.
  • We had another great year of quality and focused family time.
  • aminoSoftware is still going strong.

In addition to these updates:

  • My grandmother passed away after a long bout with Alzheimer's
  • I started CrossFit.
  • I delivered by first talk
  • Attended Brian Rosner's wedding
  • A number of "firsts" were had in our family

Peggy Rawls Wedgworth

My grandmother passed away on July 2.

I was fortunate enough to spend some time at her side in her final moments. I will always remember how much fun she was and how much joy she would bring those around her.

"Mom" and her grandchildren, circa 1983. That's me standing behind my brother on the right hee-hawing

Some 30 years later, all the grandchildren are grown and there are some great-grandchilden.

"Mom" glances at me taking this photo while supervising a family card game.

Mom, as we all called her, was always seeking out ways for her family to have fun together.

Whether it was organizing trips like the time all the cousins went skiiing for Christmas in Colorado, a cruise to celebrate her wedding anniversary with the entire family, "sneaking off" with different grandchildren to hit the strip in Las Vegas, or just simple games and stories while gorging on candy from her "snack bar", she was all about filling our hearts with joy and creating experiences that will live on as fond memories.

CrossFit

Just signed up for CrossFit. I hope I don't die.

I posted this on January 9th on Facebook. I didn't die, but I did feel like I should have after those first couple of weeks.

Then something happened.

I become addicted to the progressions. I loved being able to to show up and have workouts already programmed for me so I didn't have to think about what to do.

Also, critical for me, was having a group of people to do the workout with. It's a powerful blocker to quitting a workout early when the group you started with is still going.

I kept at it and by November I was doing this:

I am finally getting some of my strength back that I had as a 20-year old college athlete. A great feeling as I enter my late 30s.

Speaking

I have long known that I should start speaking about things that I know. Not only to teach others but also to expand mind-share for Eldarion.

For just as long of a time I have let my fear of public speaking rule over me so that I have let opportunity after opportunity pass me by. Well, this past fall another opportunity arose to fill in as a speaker at DjangoCon. I am not sure whqt came over me but I committed to it before I could think about it for too long.

I jumped off a cliff.

At least that is what it felt like. I spent a TON of time preparing for the talk and about half to 3/4 of that time I think was preparing the wrong way. I ended up with some technical difficulties in my talk but felt completely at ease and actually ended up enjoying the experience.

I am updating and cleaning up this talk, perhaps with a bit of new content, and will look to be giving it another go soon. In addition, I am currently developing a few more talks on Django and different startup/enterpreneurship topics.

Brian and Hannah's Wedding

Amy and I flew out to Denver for Brian and Hannah's wedding. James and Brian are so much more than just co-workers at Eldarion–they are great friends. It was such a blessing to be able to celebrate this milestone in Brian's life together.

Family Time

We have had some incredible times of family-growth this year. This includes both our marriage as well as with our children.

We discovered a drive-in movie theater through a family friend. It was a fun experience which I am sure we will be going to much more next summer.

There were many firsts for our family this summer. Ben learning to water ski was certainly one of the highlights as was spending more than a month on Fort Myers Beach in Florida (one of the benefits of being able to work from anywhere).

As this year winds to a close today, I thank God, through Jesus, for all that I have permitted to have in this life. Most of all, my family. I am honored to have the privilege of the the titles of Husband and Father and these are roles that I do not take lightly.

One thing that I have learned this year, probably more so than in the past, is that experience trumps material possession. The things that give me so much sense of self and wholeness are memories of things done, not of what things I have owned. With that in mind, I want to create more experiences in 2015 for my children, for Amy and I, and with my friends.