Work archive

From the early days as an IT Technician to my first web developer role, going self-employed for the first time, managing a team of developers and going back and forth to office work. The entire history of my work roles and all the pros and cons of working for myself can be found in here.

Personal Bests and Personal Worsts

I started this week on a fantastic high. After having cracked squatting my bodyweight earlier this year (roughly 72kg give or take) I had been struggling with improving my squats further. Marred by dodgy knees, skipped gym sessions thanks to a chaotic schedule and over-indulgence on food & drink, it’s my own fault. Still, this didn’t stop me on Monday when I smashed out squats at both 80kg and 85kg with a set of 2 for each. Strong strong legs.

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Not content on just PBing there, I went on to pull 50kg doing close-grip front lat pulldowns having been stuck at 45kg forEVER. To say I was buzzing after that was an understatement.

(I am currently using Myprotein Impact Whey Protein to support my workouts but I’m looking to potentially improve on this in the new year. If you supplement protein, I’d be interested to know what you take. Drop me a comment/email.)

This strength-related high was short lived as I got home to yet another round of work related emails (boo) and the ever present threat of the taxman knocking at my door.

Every single year I forget about HMRC’s payments on account, leaving me ill-prepared to meet their demands for large sums of cash at a time of year where things are tight as it is. My kids want Christmas presents and I’m sat watching the balance of my overdraft grow hoping my clients pull their fingers out before December 25th; this doesn’t leave me much leeway to pay the taxman money for a tax year that isn’t even over yet (don’t even get me started).

Why is balancing the ebbs and flows of freelance, and planning sufficiently ahead, such a personal weakness? It’s been over 5 years since I started working for myself and barring a break in the middle where I briefly returned to my old agency, I have had to put money away all this time. And I fail, time and time again.

2018 has to be the year where I nail this shit.

First the plans, now the goals

Off the back of my post about plans for 2017, and following a conversation with my darling husband last night during which I got defensive more than once (even though he spoke the truth) I woke up with fire in my belly. Taking advantage before noisy children and the realities of my todo list extinguish… read full entry »

Working in my pants and other tales from self employment

I’ve been working for myself (either fully, or alongside employment) for over four years now. I like to think that I’ve got to grips with what it entails to work for yourself, be your own boss, rock the entrepeneur lifestyle etc etc. Of course, I’m talking out of my bum. It’s not all ‘pant suits… read full entry »


17th September

Creative blog post title, huh? I’ve just come back from Gloucester, where I ran the Great Highnam Court 10km with Katy (again); slightly slower this year with 01:07:23 but I managed to not twist my ankle this time. It has made me realise that if I can run an injured 10km faster than I can… read full entry »

New project: maths, emails, and an empty ISA

What do you do when you try and find a site that allows the re-sale of preloved cloth nappies but the only one that did exist has closed down operations? You buy the site of course. As briefly alluded to in the last post, I’ve bought into a new project which I’m hoping will give… read full entry »

I want to code

I’m sat at my laptop — nothing new there — with a work todo list as long as my arm because I did very little in the last week (feeling poop) and all I want to do is code. “But Jem, you’re a web developer, work is code?!” I hear you cry. I don’t want… read full entry »


100% Freelance

I’ve mentioned a couple of times this month that I’ve been working with a client for a dedicated 8 hours a week to give me a little bit of fixed income and gets me out of the house twice a week. Despite needing to get out of the house, I’ve decided to change the arrangement:… read full entry »


A few quick words on #BrightonSEO

I’m sat in the concert hall at the Brighton Dome waiting for the keynote before I leave to head for Gloucester. It’s been a great day with some really motivating talks – considering I came for networking potential rather than specifically learning, I’ve taken away some great points and things to try out on topics… read full entry »

Day in the life of a WAHM

It’s Tuesday morning, 6:50am. The kids have just asked me if it’s morning yet and can we get up, and I send them back to bed knowing full well the alarm is going to go off in 5 minutes, but every second I can spend tucked in bed wrapped in limbs and duvet improves the… read full entry »

Taking it Personally

I had a couple of clients (rightly) tell me off this week because schedules had slipped and this wasn’t communicated as well as it could have been. I only have myself to blame, and I don’t mind being honest about it. I should have better anticipated the impact of the summer holidays and time off… read full entry »


First Week

So, it’s been just over a week since I returned working from home. A week of exercising self-control, willpower and planning. A week of trying out a new routine, of getting used to waking up in the morning thinking “I don’t want to go to work… oh”. The ~Grand Plan~ for this time round was… read full entry »


Laptop Limbo (and some news)

As I count down the days til I’m back at my desk at home, I feel like I’m in sort of “work limbo” right now. I’m actively seeking and quoting for freelance opportunities — some of which are looking more positive than others — but I still have a huge amount of work on at… read full entry »