I missed only 1. Thanks $5 Traffic School.

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So at the start to this summer’s state capital we made it over the pass heading towards Denver in our rental, and honestly, I couldn’t tell how fast we were going, but a CHP was concerned and pulled us over.

I don’t say a jerk because honestly nicest officer I think I’ve ever gotten pulled over by – and I’ve had a lead foot now and again, (even on my birthday!) but this guy was super nice, even was polite with Daisy & Lilly, explained how the ticket worked since it was in Mojave, not Bakersfield, and sent us on our way, and that extra caution on speeding, really did make the rest of the trip much safer, and I think avoided us an accident or two.

Officer Franklin – Thank you, sir. Got me more mindful of the rental’s speed, even managed to get its cruise control running that much more accurately and by trip’s end the car was second nature!

But thankfully since my speed hasn’t been an issue for a few years I was up for Traffic School, after a slightly painful ticket – but found 5 Dollar Traffic School. It was on the list they sent, and honestly it didn’t look like Netscape 1 was the only compatible browser (there are a LOT of crappy looking traffic school sites) – had some PHP errors I reported, but all in all, worked great.

Took it all in a day. All of the quizzes were super helpful to the point at the end as I said, only missed 1 (96%) and now I have a ticket on it’s way to being removed from my record, even paid a little extra for status since its all digital now with the courts + got a copy of things for my own records just in case something is wonky.

Nice to have one more thing off the list in the grand to-do! I start a new project tomorrow, and hopefully get paid for a server project here soon too! Lots on the docket as of late, but I’m still moving forward – been a busy/rough couple of months, I’ve applied to another IT job, no response. I do have a name that I could drop, but I’m seeing what I can do at this point on my own, but for now, I’m “Under Review” so we shall see.

Back to it for another hour then it’s bedtime. For me, that’s early to bed, and before 10 AM is early to rise, so working on it 😀

New-ish Chapter?

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So at the push of a friend and the Mrs. I’m submitting my application for a job in the morning. Something I haven’t done since I was let go when the local company I worked for was purchased by a BIG company, and at the time they did offer me a position in Reno but wasn’t a fit that I felt right for me, thus after an extra week or two, I was fully let go.

Fast forward nearly 6 years of consulting, hosting, touch of graphic design and a lot of working for a meal later 😀 times once again are changing and while I have a few things on the docket, this is one that I once again would enter the IT Director position but at a much larger scale – sure one could say when you work on servers which power sites on the internet you work for a WORLDWIDE set of people, let’s be honest, it’s much different than desktop support.

I’m honestly interested to see what it could be. If I get the position I’d be making the largest salary I’ve ever had in my life, even working for myself, it’d mean some big changes, and honestly, I’m not sure it’s a good fit, but I’m up for a challenge.

So if you think of it, I’d appreciate a prayer or three. Final formatting adjustments on the resume in the AM, making sure the app looks good, then submitting it and saying a prayer. Could be a good thing, may say:

Woah! You’re exactly what we wanted, let’s go for the higher end of the pay scale!

At which point:

I’d of gone car, but I don’t want to set any false expectations. Plus everyone loves tacos. So tomorrow we’ll give it a go and see how things turn out, might have a new IT Directorship here soon, it starts in July if I get it, so likely a lot of legwork between now and then but one step at a time, meetings galore this week, T-Ball, Swimming, Music, etc. going to be a busy one so wrapping it all up!

Night!

PS:352 – Job Offers that Aren’t Offers!

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Oi – I got a note from a random person who said they saw my skillset and had a position for me at their company. Exciting right? I wish it had been.

I scheduled a call, which suddenly went from being with the original person to a “director” and the “Team” role seemed honestly out of place. The language around things seemed vague, and honestly, I knew it was going to be some marketing scheme very quickly. Honestly? See it through, maybe I’ll be wrong.

I wasn’t.

The first thing he said after being 15 minutes late to the call was he wanted me to come in, they had a position and I’d be easily making an “additional” 1k-3k extra a month through various “referral sharing” and “revenue stream sharing” options. So… my skillset being great how does this work?

So I asked how my IT experience and years with a successful company helped get me this position, and he said “Oh we don’t need anyone with IT or Web Skills, we want you to come learn how to sell our product as an additional revenue stream” – so I tried to keep myself calm from both first thought anger, then really just laughing. He explained how it could make me rich beyond rich – making MUCH more than what I’m making now.

He asked me some rather personal and forward questions about my finances – and I was done being nice, and for that matter straightforward and honest. Suddenly I was a real estate owner galore, several properties I rent, cryptocurrency investor – I think I may or may not have owned an island lol after a while I just felt like selling the guy the same load of crap he fed me. Sadly? I think he was starting to believe me.

I wrapped up the call, he gave me the usual “well if I know of anyone looking for IT services… I’ll give them your number” line, and wished him well.

Would have been nice to be a real offer, a few floating around lately of projects, but a few places I’ve applied are still silent, so for now? Keep burning it up and building! For now wrapping up some customer work, then at least 30 minutes on my own work before crashing out entirely.

PS:340 – The NAS Project – Copying & Building

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So far I must say – not a bad NAS.

I’ve had experience with a few before, both custom built FreeNAS setup or two (even a simple build on my own) and commercial NAS products from other companies, but honestly? ASUS has done a great job for this price point. Very nice.

Now I won’t know the overall performance for another day or two, as I’m copying 2.8TB of data to the RAID1 to clear off the 3rd drive, but even that is chugging along while finishing building the array.

Software wise, I have looked around and overall? Not too shabby. Once it’s not copying and rebuilding data I hope to have a better look and install a thing or two for some testing, but as-is, logged in via SSH using rsync to mirror the USB 5TB drive (Formatted HFS+ which it was able to mount without issue!) and it’s not too shabby! It contains a lot of various things including a few old Time Machine backups from Mac’s long gone.

I’d say about a day more of copying, then it’s letting the RAID1 finish building, once that’s done then after I do a few spot checks of data (ensuring the Photos are safe is a big one) then I’ll get the 3rd drive moved into the array and running smoothly as RAID5.

For now, a night of work ahead, picked up a new contract, and some data to get moved around… honestly makes me a little tired just thinking about it lol. So off I go.

PS:307 – The PS Project

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While the idea was to PS (Post Something) for 365 days in a row, I obviously failed. Some might be able to balance all of life, six companies, 2.5yr old, bills, cooking, driving, trips, etc. – Sadly in that wild-life timeline, Posting to a blog didn’t fit in the top priority listing. Which has given me pause to writing as a side job, maybe it isn’t the right time.

I need a lot more scheduling and planning if I hope to launch a site in which the primary content is my writing. Long ago with HappyPalm and others, it was easy, I was passionate about what came on my phone, what news was a trend, it was in my face, and my responsibilities were fewer.

I want to get to the point where I can write, where I can do what I’m doing right now – typing, getting my thoughts out there, or the steady improvement of recording a vLog style video to produce and handle monthly for customers, but maybe find a way to do it nightly. I need a stronger schedule. Soon.

Taxes are coming. I am dreading them on the one hand, however this next week I’m going to sit down, crunch the numbers, get it all lined up so all I need to do? Plugin numbers, add all of it into Turbo Tax, see the good or the bad, get it sorted out and got it done. I don’t want to dread till the 18th; I need to find an accountant, likely need to re-structure how I do business – anyone knows anyone trustworthy and reliable?

Work has been a tad nuts, really working to get things ironed out smoother and smoother, just been one of those things where just when you think it’s going to get easier? Monkeywrench. Last week got one of those, and this week still sadly sitting waiting on one contract I have to pay out 3, going on four invoices – all of which I had hoped would be in the bank already, one is 60 days overdue today. Oi. Not the first time a customer’s done that – again I need to find a better way to handle these sorts of things.

I want to get back into the swing of the PS project; I want to get back into the swing of trying to write something every-day. I have pondered the start of the day and the end of the day, at the moment? Leaning towards the start, but imagining it’ll stick to the end. For now? Wrapping it up.

PS:189 – Day After.

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Tired day. Seems like everything that could of piled up has piled up. This is going to be an insanely busy and hectic week. Tomorrow my baby girl turns 2 and sadly I fear I have to work a large portion of the day and into the night. 🙁 Not fun. How I wish sometimes for the boring 9-to-5 but as of late? I don’t have the worry of no work, seems like projects are flowing in pretty good, just finding the time to balance them and complete them. On I go. 4 migrations, 2 coding projects and a website design! Oi.

PS:183 – Faster.

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The great thing about servers is they can be pushed to limits. Saves money, and allows for a decent density of customers, but at some point you hit limits. Things won’t go faster.

I’ve always been one who is not a “SMUSH EM IN!” type of business. I don’t oversell. I have limits on each box and I stick to them, not even a “Well this customer isn’t really using it…” type of line, if they are a user, they are taking up resources. Plain. Simple. Easy.

So this weekend I’ve been moving folks from one set of servers to another. A fresh new VPS cluster not using Virtualizor but Proxmox which seemed a little more “Grown up” to me. It’s been around for ages and finally just decided – transition = something new.

Things thus far are running insanely well. I was able to migrate a number of mail servers over with so far 0 issues. 0. As in none. This re-structure thus far is going great!

This blog even just finished it’s move over and it’s a bit more snappy network wise, pure SSD setup is snappy, and all of my settings carried over just have to shift a cPanel license as soon as the remaining two sites are fully migrated and then it’ll kick this out of “Trial Period” mode and onto full production.

An insanely busy week ahead. My body isn’t having it – long hours, high stress, deadlines galore. I’ve gotten a lot of things on my plate as of late as I noted with these contracts, one of which is going to live in a small Linux virtual here on my laptop so as I’m traveling the code goes with me and I can test in a dev environment which requires no network connection.

Thankfully the trip the first part is about 5.5 hours to Sacramento, which has WiFi, so occupy a small child, do some work over the VPN (which also is rebuilt and on this speedy network) and have hotspot in tow just in case – a lot try to squeeze into the next 3 days – thus why I’m posting the blog at just about 1AM vs. later tonight. Go Go Go. Lots to get accomplished and it feels more and more like so little time.

Have a good week all!

 

PS:21 – What can I do?

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I know I’m all over the map lately. It’s my life currently. I’m at that spot where I’m waiting to see what this job offer brings. Why? Maybe it’s time to mix things up a bit more than just being the “company owner”.

July 2014 I did get a new title added to my business card: Dad. Big upgrade, huge list of responsibilities, and a cute little girl who does like laughing at my jokes.  But since then I’ve picked up bigger jobs, more work, more responsibility. Talk about stress.

I’ve looked at starting a website, I’ve tried expanding my product lines, I am upping my game, but sadly a lot of it falls flat. I started a ministry website before she was born, really looking to write and share my faith more online. The last post was April 2015. Not too active for over a year.

I want to be a good dad. My dad wasn’t the steady job guy for quite a long time. As a kid he was sick a lot, he did things like rebuilt cars, handyman work. He did get a 9-to-5 job, till he got hurt on the job, but my dad did his best to take care of us all – and that’s what I’m trying to do too.

I’ve been told “Chuck why don’t you do something else?” maybe this job is it. Sure same field, but dedicated pay, insurance, I could simplify my taxes! The lack of my own business I could turn things down, no LLC taxes, no long-form tax returns, simple.

The thing is I do love doing what I do. This past week has been insanely stressful, but at the end of the day, I’ve gotten some amazing responses from my client base. More of a club it feels like than a business sometimes, but imagine how much the stress goes down when you read:

Huzzah! Thank you for your heroic efforts.

Thanks, as always, for all that you do for us!

Everything looks perfect on our site. Praise the Lord!

Thanks Chuck for all you are doing!

Sure I had some customers not as happy, but in the end not a single customer left, and the lights continue to be up and online 95 hrs, 11 mins at the current check of remote monitoring.

It’s not all about the praise. I mean it doesn’t hurt 🙂 but at the end of the day I love working for these people. Sure it may not be $300 a month clients or billing them each for support @ $65/hour – but it’s a blessing to get a check from someone saying “Thanks for your help”. It’s nice to know your work is appreciated.

But I’m thinking more and more like a dad. So much coming up in life, so much I want to have Lilly do. Some tough choices to make do I stay or do I go.

Some things to definitely pray about.

PS:13 – Product Manager

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So I’ve had a talk moving forward on my job offer. It sounds great. Still not all the specifics as of yet like things in the pay, benefits, etc. but very light ground work laying out for me what I would do.

I don’t mind the 9-to-5 job. It is nice to work with a crew and build something. I worked as the “IT Director” for a lab supply company for five years, before that I was the “eCommerce Guy” for a growing web firm, before that I was “IT Coordinator” for a High School Design Acadameny. Each has had it’s perks to it which have been nice.

This company has been awesome to work for as a contractor, and my brother works at this company too but has been insanely hands off, even to the point that I report to other people. I’ve even had the CEO hit me up and pick my brain even to the point he had me migrate a family members website to his servers.

So 9-to-5 solid, some options for bonuses based upon some factors if I can grow things for them (shouldn’t be too hard) and no conflict in working my own thing! Though moving forward some of my client base, if things seem solid, I may consider just bringing them into the fold.

I’ve been in and out today, but trying to keep with the post something every day, I’m up for a short bit – so here’s my post! Hopefully, this next week I’ll have a firm offer, heck even an active new job.

PS:10 – A Job?

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A 9-to-5ish kind of job? Maybe.

I got a note Monday night from the company I do a lot of contract work for and they asked if I’d be interested in coming on full time as a “Web Engineer” (not even sure what that means lol) but I like the idea.

I love doing my gig; it’s fun. I have had 13 years of doing it, and even as I worked previously at another company for around five years, it can be done.

The cool thing, this time, around is it is in my field. Web/Servers. I have been working for them as a contractor for a few months, and I’ve enjoyed the crew, and helping out a new dynamic of customers.

So I’ve said I’m interested, and they are getting me a job description and call by weeks end. This could be a good thing, or a bad thing, or a good, bad thing. Time will tell 🙂

Hopefully, in a few posts, I’ll have something more to say!