The Sixth Fourth

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It’s a tradition around here to do a State of the Union post on the Fourth of July. This is the sixth one! (1) (2) (3) (4) (5).

Obligatory fireworks stock art:

I type this from Milwaukee, Wisconsin – where I now live. I’m back in my home state and I really like it. It’s the best neighborhood I’ve lived in for quite a while. Thirties friendly, I’ve been saying. Great coffee shops, great little grocers, great bars and music clubs like the Cactus Club. Young and fun but not college-y. There is just a nice park between the house I’m renting and Lake Michigan. I literally watched fireworks right from the park a few days ago for the opening of Summerfest.

In the last year I’ve started doing Chronicle posts, and writing this feels like that a bit. A way for me to post what’s going on with me, the site, and other projects I work on. I’ll probably continue doing those, as it’s a great outlet for things that I think are important but don’t warrant entire posts to themselves.

Last year I wrote that I finally get to focus on “The Big Three” – for me being CSS-Tricks, ShopTalk, and CodePen. That’s exactly what happened and that’s exactly what’s going to keep happening. It felt like the right thing to do and it still does. I’ve come to realize perhaps my biggest strength is dedication and persistance in working on the projects I choose. ShopTalk is a good example of that. We’ve recorded about 80 shows so far and we’ve only ever missed a week or two in the entire time.

If anything has changed, it is shifting even more time and attention to CodePen. We’re a team of three full-timers now and we have so many ideas we’ll be busy building for years.

Another reason I feel better this year is that I’ve learned a lot about what introversion means. It’s not like I’ve had a hard time in life because of it (probably the opposite), but it certainly caused some discomfort that I didn’t understand. But now I do. Understanding yourself better is quite a good feeling.

Around here on CSS-Tricks, there will be some work being done soon. Perhaps even this long weekend. I may or may not be calling it “v11” but there will be somewhat major changes. Not so much with the design. I plan to tweak things and streamline things, but the look will probably largely be very similar. “v11” will be all about functionality. I want to bring the forums together with the rest of the site with a single login. I’d like to have comment editing. I’d like to expand The Lodge by adding additional videos/resources to some existing content. I’d like to try some responsive images stuff. And there is a ton more on my list. No specific timeframe for all of it, but I hope to do it all in a few big chunks.

This Summer I have some fun things planned. I’m headed to UX Mad next weekend. I’m headed to Scotland with some friends for a pure-fun trip later in July. I’m headed to a “camp” for adults to jump start weight loss and excercise a ton and learn more about being healthy later in August. I’m headed to Bend, OR for another CodePen all-team Jam in September. And I have various friends visiting from all over all Summer. Yay!

Last year I wrote my sister was getting married, and this year she’s pregnant! So I’ll be a real uncle. That’s pretty sweet.

It sounds like a lot when I write it all out, but all-in-all, I’ve cut back on the amount of big events and travel I’m doing. I’m going to keep that as light as I can for the next year at least. I want more time to actually build and work on my projects, while having a bit of a life here in Milwaukee.

Here’s to another year!