It's that time of year again, dearest reader. As many annual posts as a cat has lives, fittingly published on Purrsday1.

To begin; a sentence that contains eight words.

I've been having a really lovely time for the last year.

I'm able to confirm that Rachel is The Best. In October we found a neat little flat just outside town and began cohabiting.

In fact, things are going so well we were able to take our relationship to the next level, and I'm happy to announce that we (you guessed it) bought a food processor together.

We participated in Veganuary which was good, and manageable enough that we kept going with it. Which means I've another mark on my tally chart of "things that the majority of people both do and enjoy that I am specifically avoiding".


Bibliocloud continues to deliver excitement and challenges in equal measure.

Last year we had to say goodbye to (honourary) team member The Mighty Tik. Followed by the departure of superb and all-the-points-winning Emily who went off to solve problems for the masses at GDS.

Emily leaving felt pretty scary, and at the time I was worried that things would start travelling backwards once all the forward momentum she had provided ran out.

Thankfully, I need not have worried. We've slowly but surely pulled things together in a way that seems to be working well for a team that is now 100% developers. We've got process where we need it, are still gathering client feedback early and often, hit 50% test coverage, and have found, dare I say it, a groove.

It also turns out that Sara is, and I do not use this term lightly, a bloody legend and Pokémon Go raid wrangler extraordinaire. I've really enjoyed having someone to coach and support and promise to eventually figure out a way of saying code or commands out loud in a manner that makes them easy to type into a computer.

Roughly six months ago we took a leaf out of Friday's book and introduced "side project day". Once a week we gather together at midday, briefly describe our goals for the afternoon, enjoy four-ish hours of programming whatever we want, and then join together again at the end to discuss progress and problems. It's an absolute joy. I'm working on a little thing that I might talk about soon. Emma managed to use the time to start a whole new business!

I'm very glad to have found this job.


Rach and I jetted off to Seville, to spend time with the Spanish side of her family, and to Tignes for snowboarding with the usual gang, which involved the most snow I have ever seen as well as exhilarating runs through hip-deep powder.

A wise person once said to me; "just keep running"2. So I have. Last month I ran at least a mile every day to see if I could. It went well, to the point that I now miss it a little bit. Hackney Half is next weekend, where I'll be be aiming for a new half marathon PB. After that, there's the Wycombe Half which will be hillier than you'd like a thirteen mile run to be. I'm hoping to run a marathon towards the end of the year…

This year also came with quite the personal revelation: "Yes! I do want to spend considerable amounts of time and money collecting tiny plastic people, painting them, and then using them to play a dice-heavy tabletop game".

Despite the silliness of the hobby, I've been having a blast with it. Doing something creative-ish with my hands that doesn't involve a screen is refreshing. I also dragged Matt, the most excellent of brothers, along for the ride. Getting to spend a decent chunk of time with him on a regular basis has been the best bit3.

I've an Instagram account showing off my models if you're into that sort of thing.


Quenching the thirst of the senses:


Steve and Tasha, presumably worried that they wouldn't get a mention in this year's post went and made another human. I'm sure he's going to grow up to be as awesome as his big sister.

I'll continue to stand up for the things in which I believe, but will do it in a less clumsy manner.

Having friends and family as cool as the ones I have is highly recommended.

I'm having a lot of fun with programming again.

I'm feeling more fit and healthy than ever before.

What a great year.


  1. I'm wearing a cat shirt as I write this 

  2. Or was it "don't stop running"? The point remains the same 

  3. Props to Rach for putting up with the nonsense that now clutters our flat 

  4. Now until the end of time, it seems