Today is my birthday. I'm 29. I've successfully completed yet another trip around the sun. I find that a birthday is a great time to reflect on the last year, so that's what I'll do now. This'll be mostly a catch-up post of things I've been meaning to write, but haven't yet.
Buying a house
Last fall, we purchased our first home. Up until then, we had been living in a rented town house in Boulder. I get a very mixed feeling when I reflect on home ownership.
On the up side, you now own something (or at least part of something) that is very tangible. The land, the structure and all the decisions that come with it. It's a liberating feeling knowing that you can change just about anything, even if you never do.
On the down side, you now have more responsibility. Moving from a rented unit to a single family home, you now have to do yard work, worry about the roof, etc. And, if you have shitty neighbors, it's not likely that either you or they will be moving anytime soon.
Overall, I think it's a net positive. Taking ownership and pride in something just feels good, even if it is sometimes a pain in the ass.
Our second daughter was born
Roughly 3 months ago, our second daughter was born. The second birthing process I've been party to went more smoothly than the first. It was much quicker and I felt much more comfortable with my responsibilities as the husband, and eventually the father. For the purposes of this post, I'll reference this baby as A.
A is a significantly larger baby than our first (who I'll reference as M). This isn't a problem per se, but was the first thing I noticed.
She's a generally happy baby, and now, being 3 months old, smiles at everything.
They say that having 2 kids is quite difficult, and I tend to agree. It's not double the work, but somehow more. Everything gets more difficult and non-trivial when you are looking after 2 children.
Our first daughter turned 4
M turned 4 this year. Over the last 12 months, she's become a real person. She asks real questions that aren't always easy to answer. For example, she asked me how people see other people, with their eyes. It's not a typical question I get from her, but I explained it in the best way I could for her intellect.
The biggest change I've noticed in her is that she now has decisions. She no longer blindly does what you ask, but seems to try to find reason in it prior to doing it.
When I started this whole fatherhood thing, I wasn't fully aware of when certain things would start to develop. I wasn't sure when her first memory would be made, or when she would start to look for logic in things.
Consultancy - Year 3
This year I've been self-employed (so to speak), as a software consultant for 3 years. It was a great year financially and also a great one in nearly every other way.
Working from home hasn't been as difficult as people seem to make it out to be. For me, I have a set task list that I generally prepare the day and/or week before. Then I pull from this list and get stuff done. The caveat to that is it gets harder when Mia has a random day off from school, either due to the school being closed for some administrative task, or because she has a fever. And, it also becomes more difficult when people are home in general. For the last 3 months, my wife L has been home with our newborn daughter (A) and to people who don't work from home everyday, it's a strange concept. I generally tell her to pretend I don't exist during my typical working hours.