Oh Bugger

Why is it that when I’m away from the computer I can formulate hundreds of blog entries in my head but the second I sit down to write anything, it all pours away? Buggery. I guess with the lack of anything inspirational or witty to say I should probably update you all on what’s going on around here…

Things are finally starting to calm down. My course module is finished, and I’m waiting on the results. I have a feeling that due to ‘external pressure’ (i.e. juggling work work, home work and a baby) I’ll have failed this one, but I’m hoping that I’ve scraped enough to qualify for the free re-sit.

Isabel is growing in so many ways, but it’s so subtle it’s hard to describe it. For example, the other day she was waving a book at me so I said “bring me the book” … and she did! And that sounds so mundane and ordinary written down, but it means she’s taking in and understanding more and more. I hadn’t given it much thought when I said the sentence… normally I’d just pick her and the book up in those situations so it was very spur of the moment. Anyway, she recognises so many things now. She identifies body parts, knows certain words like ‘car’, ‘cat’ etc. She will “blow” her nose if you offer a tissue or muslin and say ‘nose’. She walks if she’s not thinking about it, but as soon as she realises what she’s doing she sits down or starts crawling. I’m missing out so many things here but there’s only so much time in the day and I can’t gush about her all night :)

No work until Tues 4th Jan now, which is a nice break, albeit just building up to a big deadline when I go back. I’d been working on a big big WordPress project which has introduced me to plugin building (I’ve only ever done basic widgety stuff before). This of course is endearing me to WordPress, which is never a good thing… it’s only ever lead to trouble before and I do love Habari. Sigh.

The cats are mostly a pain in my ass for one reason or another, but that’s not entirely their fault. Isabel loves them, though. I shall get around to taking pictures of them at some point. Crumble has grown, although I couldn’t really see it until I started looking at some of the pictures from mid-year.

I guess at some point I should considering writing a “things that happened this year” post, but thinking back it was fairly quiet and uneventful compared to previous. We didn’t move. Nobody killed anyone. We gained a cat. The baby grew some. I think that’s about it? Oops, guess there’s no need to write that post now then. I wonder what 2011 will bring…

WordPress Plugin Development

Although I’ve used WordPress on and off for years, the closest I usually get to plugin development is custom widgets. This is not through lack of willing, but rather that everything I’ve wanted is already out there and I’m too lazy busy to reinvent the wheel. However, one of our work clients has put in… read full entry »


Cloth Nappies: 6 Months On

Some of you may recall that back in June I worked out the cost of disposable nappies: how much we’d spent in the first 6 months and how much we’d spend if we carried on using them. I played around with some different types of cloth nappies and quickly considered myself converted. Although I’ve spent… read full entry »

The World of Jem

What’s going on in the world of Jem lately? Let’s see… I’ve been back at work 3 weeks now. It’s not as bad as I thought it would be. That’s not to say I wouldn’t rather be at home with Isabel, but I am actually enjoying parts of it. I know! Knock me down with… read full entry »


Christmas Presents for Men

Am I the only one who struggles to buy Christmas presents for men? It’s that time of year again (and right up there with birthdays and anniversaries); normally I spend weeks trying to think of the perfect present and still end up buying books, socks and/or smellies. I struggle to think of anything more imaginative…. read full entry »


What is Search Engine Optimisation?

As a developer it’s always apparent to me that different people have different ideas about what search engine optimisation (or “SEO”) actually is. The most popular opinion, by far, is that search engine optimisation is a series of ‘magic’ tweaks and secret handshakes to make pages rank higher, resulting in perceived usefulness and more sales…. read full entry »


Michael K Steals BellaBook, Breaks GPL License

I received a curious email on November 19th. A German CEO was asking me to state that I am, unequivocally, the developer of BellaBook and that BellaBook was free to use under the terms of the GNU General Public License. I almost took offence that such a thing should be questioned, as BellaBook was my… read full entry »

Diving into HTML5

I made use of a spare few minutes this morning by catching up on HTML5. I had, up until now, ignored HTML5. After having burned so much energy on XHTML — “the future of the web” — I was loathe to put energy into something which was going to end up costing me money (time… read full entry »


Wonky Wonky

Things might look a bit wonky this morning as I update Habari and modify my theme a little (backend stuff, you won’t really see any changes).


PHP Mail Form Updated

Version 2.1 of my basic free PHP mail form is now live; this has been ‘ported over from my personal domain (jemjabella.co.uk) in an attempt to organise my content (and life!) a little better. Please feel free to get in touch with feedback.

Currently Reading: The Art of SEO

I bought “The Art of SEO” while I was on maternity leave with my daughter, but funnily enough found little time to read it. It turns out babies don’t just lie around sleeping all day… who knew? Anyway, following my return to work I’ve invested time in compiling a list of books I’ve not read… read full entry »