2020 good things list #

For the last three years, I've compiled a list of good things that happened in the past year. Well, this year, it's been much harder for me to want to write about the good things because of, well, everything. Ending a long-term relationship during a global pandemic a month before turning 40? Yeah, 2020 was awful.

Still, a few good things did happen this year, so I'll note them here.

  • I started running again for the first time in 6 years. I stopped when it got too cold, but I'm confident I will pick it up again once it warms up and once I don't have to wear a mask to run outdoors.
  • I discovered the joy of fountain pens.
  • Before the pandemic, I spent a week in Palm Springs with my team for our company retreat. It was such a fantastic time and I'm glad I was able to take one trip this year.
  • I moved to a new apartment with an in-unit washer and dryer. Enough said!
  • I listened to a LOT of #ClubQuarantine on Gabriel & Dresden's Twitch stream. I wasn't a Twitch user before the pandemic, and now I watch so many DJ sets every week.

I don't have any wise words for the end of this post. 2020 was so rough and horrible and I don't even know what 2021 will bring.

Read past good things lists: 2019 good things list, 2018 good things list, 2017 good things list.

Weeknotes 5 - Monday morning edition #

Well, looks like I forgot to write a weeknotes post last week, and here it is, Monday morning, and I haven't written this week's post yet! This post will be quick and short, and I'm hoping to do better with writing a weeknotes post every week again.


  • Today I'm attending An Event Apart Online Together: Front-End Focus. I'm excited to spend the day watching excellent sessions by Jeremy Keith, Ire Aderinokun, Una Kravets, and more! I look forward to learning about improving CSS performance and modern CSS tips and tricks. Plus, I can watch the conference from the comfort of my own home, which means knitting and tea while I watch. Can't go wrong with that!

  • I've started studying for the CPACC exam I mentioned in my last weeknotes post. I've been interested in web accessibility since 2004 when I came across Mark Pilgrim's Dive into Accessibility series, and my interest grew further after my father became a quadriplegic in 2010 while watching him try to access the internet with limited mobility. It's taken me awhile to muster up the confidence to put my accessibility knowledge in action, and getting this certification will further my expertise. I'm nervous about taking the exam in a couple months, but if I study, I know I can pass.

  • Big surprise, I haven't done any work on my website in the past couple weeks! As always, it's hard for me to want to spend time on my computer after coding all day during the week. I'd rather be knitting, writing in my journal with my fountain pens, cooking, watching Star Trek, or listening to music. It's hard to find the time to code more after hours because I do so many other activities in my non-working hours. I do want to finish up the Netlify Large Media work I started a few weeks ago, plus I want to run most of my images through ImageOptim to ensure my images are as small as they can be without losing quality.

  • In non-tech news, I'm on Week 3 of Couch to 5k. I ran almost 2 miles in the rain this morning -- I've missed running in the rain! I can see my progress, little by little, but it's not getting any easier running while wearing a mask. I keep on thinking how much easier running will feel to me once I don't have to wear a mask outdoors, whenever that will be. I've also still been practicing yoga on the days I don't run, and I've sucked it up and went to the dentist to get a teeth cleaning for the first time in 4.5 years. I've been wanting to do better with health-related things, and I feel so much relief after finally going to the dentist. My life is oh-so exciting.


That's it for this week! This week I hope to get Large Media up and running on this site and to actually write my weeknotes post on Sunday. Wish me luck!

Weeknotes 4 - Physical wipe-out #

A box containing seven rolls of washi tape.
I've been using this washi tape to decorate my journal. It's so much fun!

It's been, uhh... two weeks since my last post. Yes. I'm posting this a week late but wait! I have an excuse!


  • Last Saturday, Adam and I went on a 23 mile bike ride on a bike trail a little outside of the city. Now, going from not riding my bike for a year and a half to riding 23 miles in a single day wasn't the best idea, as I woke up in the middle of the night last Saturday night in excruciating pain. Turns out that increasing distance and riding on a low saddle causes a LOT of knee pain, so I spent last Sunday on the couch resting my knees. Ouch. Next time I ride, I'm raising the saddle a little and not riding more than 5-7 miles. I need to start somewhere!

  • Speaking of starting low and slow, I started Couch to 5k again today! Back in 2013 and 2014, I ran. A lot. I ran many 5ks and a couple 10ks in 2013, and in 2014, I ran a half marathon. Sadly, I moved across the country not long after my half and never got back into a running routine, so here I am, 6 years later, starting again. Today's run, alternating 30 seconds of running with a minute of a half of walking, felt a little on the easy plan, but I know that's the best way to start when it comes to running. Now, why I didn't apply this same logic to biking, I don't know. Either way, I'm off to a good start!

  • Before the bike ride on Saturday, I updated the font sizes on this site! I used Utopia for the font sizing ratios and while some of the font sizes are a little different, I'm happy with it in general. I still need to tweak a few things, but as always, this website is a work in progress.

  • In other exciting news, I'm officially taking a course to become a Certified Professional in Accessibility Core Competencies by the International Association of Accessibility Professionals (IAAP)! I've been interested in web accessibility for years, and this year I'm finally taking the steps to get certified. I've never gotten certified in anything before, so I'm both excited and nervous! A couple coworkers and I are working together to study for this exam later in the fall, and I hope we all pass the first time!


I don't really want to make many set goals this week. I'm looking to get next Sunday's Weeknotes post written and continue with Couch to 5k. I'm also hoping to continue practicing yoga on the days I don't run -- I never successfully picked up another activity when I ran last time, and I'm hoping this time I can make both yoga and running stick long term. I feel a lot better staying active and I think this will help my mental health, especially during the pandemic. So, that's it for this week!

Weeknotes 3 - Trying to stay cool #

A hand holding up the toe of a hand knit sock.
Started some bright fun socks for Adam this week. I am enjoying knitting these!

Greetings on a hot Sunday morning here in New England! We're staying nice and cool in our air-conditioned apartment, feeling grateful we can stay comfortable while temperatures soar to the upper 90s (close to 36 C). Let's review my week!


  • First and foremost, I bought a fountain pen! I bought a turquoise Pilot Metropolitan from Goulet Pens and it arrived on Friday. I love pens and have wanted to switch to fountain pens so I'm not buying a ton of single use pens. So far, I absolutely LOVE it. I'm using the cartridge of black ink that came with the pen right now, but I also bought a couple samples of bottled ink and a converter so I can test out a bunch of different things. And, well, I might have bought another pen today, too...

  • I spent my workweek refactoring a bunch of CSS, which makes my little heart sing. Does anyone else get a kick out of refactoring code? I love rewriting code to make it more efficient and deleting unnecesary lines of code causes me so. much. satisfaction. I'll be coninuing this work next week and I will be rewriting our button components to remove unneeded props, and I'll be updating our Storybook instance with all the new button configurations. Oh, and I'll also be updating our tests and I'd love to get visual regression working. Let's see how much I get done this week!

  • Blog-wise? Nope, didn't work on this site all week. I had a week where I didn't want to go on the computer after work except for my regular virtual events, so I didn't write any code for the picture element and didn't get any Large Media configuration done. I don't know if I'll work on it at all today, either -- I chose to spend more of my time knitting and spinning and writing than I did on the internet.


Last week's goals? Well, I've done yoga and I've spun some yarn every day, but like I said above, I didn't do any work on my website. I'm thinking setting one goal a week with my site will work better than trying to set multiple goals, so maybe this week I'll try fixing the font sizes and line heights. I'm looking into using Utopia for determining font sizes and heights, so hopefully I can work on that this week. I'll leave Large Media work to a future week. I have to start somewhere!

Weeknotes 2 - Late edition #

A cat in a chair being pet by a woman with colorful bracelets on her arm.
Cats and bracelets: two of my favorite things.

Well, I'm writing this on Monday night instead of Sunday night as I planned to do, but I'm not going to be hard on myself for missing the date this time. I have a good excuse! This will be short, but I hope to write more next week.


  • This past weekend, I went across the state to visit my sister, brother-in-law, and my niece and nephews! I hadn't seen my sister or niece since February before all this happened, and I hadn't seen my brother-in-law or nephews since November of last year. I was happy to spend time with them both indoors and out -- I really, really enjoyed being in a quiet place for a bit after not having left the city for months!

  • I worked on this website last week! I spent some time setting up Netlify Large Media, as I've wanted to implement responsive images. I had no idea Netlify offered this service, and even better, it's free for up to 2,500 transformations a month. Yes please! Next up, I want to determine what sizes I want my images to be at certain widths, and I want to figure out a way to transform all the images in these posts, written in Markdown, to use the Large Media generated images. I'm hoping to get that set up sometime this week.


Let's take a look at last week's goals! I continued with yoga -- my sister and brother-in-law are doing the same program as me, so we had a lot of fun doing it together the past couple days. I'm writing my Weeknotes post a day late, so maybe that still counts? And sadly, I didn't spin every day for Tour de Fleece, mainly because I was out of town for the weekend. Oh well, there's always next week!

This week I want to: Set up Netlify Large Media with my Markdown posts; update font sizes and line heights on this blog on all viewports; continue with my yoga practice; and continue with Tour de Fleece. Oh, and write another Weeknotes post next Sunday!

These first Weeknotes posts have been a bit rough around the edges, but right now, getting into the habit of writing every week is more important than polish and florish. That will come in time.

Hope everyone has a good week!