What a Year…

If someone had approached me at the beginning of this year and said “this, this and this is going to happen” I’d have probably laughed in their face because 2006 has been so… life-changing! In so many ways, I think this year really was the start of my life as a grown-up.

Around January I gave up my first job — out of necessity rather than lack of love for it. I enjoyed it, I got on with the people I worked with and was completing tasks that I hadn’t done before. It’s such a shame that after my ‘contract’ ran out it was completely unpaid and I was doing it for experience. Heyho, can’t have everything!

I started looking for jobs and got my first ever job interview (I wasn’t interviewed for my first job) at New College — another local college. I froze in the interview, getting a basic question wrong but otherwise did OK. They promised me on that they’d get in touch either way. Not only did they not call, but they didn’t answer when I rang them. They really messed me about.

To this day, I can’t decide what is more irritating — not hearing from someone at all after applying for a job/sending over a copy of my CV, or hearing back from them once and then not again.. or worse, going to the interview and not hearing back. This was all irrelevant when I landed a part-time position at a school in Shrewsbury.

I didn’t want the job, but really had no other choice. Still, the first week was actually quite good and I started to enjoy myself. Unfortunately, my boss turned out to be a complete prat and by the end of my first month I was coming home mentally exhausted and frustrated almost to the point of tears. After about four months I gave up listening to people telling me to stick with it, and during the summer I started eyeing up new jobs again.

It was my absolute pleasure to return the favour to New College when they rang me around July/August asking if I was yet employed. I confirmed that I was, but was looking for a new job and would be happy to come in. What I didn’t tell them was that I was in the process of being interviewed for my current job. The morning I was due at New College I took great delight in ringing them up to tell them that I couldn’t make it. I hope I inconvenienced them as much as they inconvenienced and disappointed me earlier in the year. Petty? Yes. A great decision? Definitely.

The reason why I turned down the second interview at NC was not purely ‘revenge’ anyway — the evening before I had accepted an offer from my now-boss, landing myself a shiny new job back doing web development. Hoorah! I think going for the position, doing the interviews and accepting the job was probably the best decision I’ve made this year. I’ve learnt new things, made new friends and what’s more: I found a place to live!

Finally, Karl and I moved out this year. Had I not taken the job I know I’d have not even seen this place up for rent and Karl and I would have been still stuck at his Mum’s. As grateful as I am to her for letting me stay (rent free, I might add) for so long, it is great to be in a place of our own; peace and quiet at last!

Other highlights of the year include seeing my Dad in January, my niece saying “I love you” for the first time and the release of Wii. (Sorry, I had to chuck that one in there. It’s just too awesome!) Writing this out makes it all sound so trivial, but if next year is anywhere near as busy or involves as many “life changes” I think I’m going to be grey-haired by the time it’s over. Hip hip hooray, three cheers for 2006, and here’s to the new year!

Ho ho ho, and all that!

I am sure if most of you took a guess at what I’d been doing for the past 5 days since I last blogged you’d probably say something like “spending Christmas with your family!” Of course, it’d be a huge lie; I’ve actually been playing Animal Crossing non-stop for about a week. After doing the… read full entry »

Animal Crossing: Wild World

I’ve got into AC:WW again, after rebuilding my town. If you’ve got the game and have wi-fi capabilities, send me an e-mail with your friend code, name and town name to jem@jemjabella.co.uk. :)


Feeling of Relief

I am feeling just a little bit relaxed this evening. Work has finished and I don’t have to worry about it again until January 2nd. Don’t get me wrong, I still love my job, but these past couple of weeks have been very busy. It’s not going to change — I have a major project… read full entry »


No Time, No Motivation

I am swamped at work and “at home” (i.e. personal ‘net interests) right now, finding it very hard to catch up after my week away due to illness recently. As such, mails are going unanswered and I just don’t feel like rushing anything to get back on top of things. I will get back to… read full entry »


Quilting Bee Blog Day

Those of you who’ve been readers of jemjabella for a while now may remember me talking about the quilting bee this time last year. I’m going to talk about it again for a while. Things have changed since last year. I’m no longer just a wide-eyed little bee in a swarm of buzzing buddies —… read full entry »

Bloody Politics

Tory leader David Cameron has said his party must do more to keep families together, as a report suggests parental splits are creating an underclass. What bollocks. I’m not an “underclass” because my parents split, I’m an underclass because it’s better than being a toffee-nosed snob with my head stuck up my arse. I would… read full entry »


Wii Envy

My brother called me up at about 9:30pm Thursday evening to tell me he was in Tesco (local supermarket) and that he was queuing for a Wii. He was about 8th in line, they had 20 consoles to sell and he was offering to save me a place… …WHY, GOD, DID I SAY NO?! I’ve… read full entry »


Basic PHP Security Checklist

Due to the relative simplicity of PHP, more and more young webmasters are getting their hooks into scripting. This can be a good thing — it increases the range of functionality and fun that we can add to our websites without the need to learn how to code ourselves — the problem is, a lot… read full entry »

CAPTCHAs

A CAPTCHA is “a type of challenge-response test used in computing to determine whether or not the user is human” (source). More specifically this little rant is aimed at the variety of images containing letters and/or numbers which may be distorted, placed on a background or otherwise messed with to supposedly prevent non-humans from getting… read full entry »

Basic PHP Security Checklist

Due to the relative simplicity of PHP, more and more young webmasters are getting their hooks into scripting. This can be a good thing — it increases the range of functionality and fun that we can add to our websites without the need to learn how to code ourselves — the problem is, a lot… read full entry »


Don’t Trust Awstats

What with the talk of hits recently and a few Awstats/Webaliser screenshots being flashed about as if they were some sort web badge (been there, done that, made a prat of myself) I have to chuck in my own tuppence worth: “hahahaha”. If you’re using any of the bog-standard, built-in stats trackers to try and… read full entry »