Saturday, November 21, 2009

The Evolution of Lexi Ali

By request... here's some of the greatest photos of all time of our little Lex.
It's like you're growing up with her!

[nggallery id=6]

Friday, November 13, 2009

What's he up to?

Well, it's once again been a few months since my last update... So I guess I better try and fill everyone in on what's been going on.

Really, it's the same ol' stuff... and I don't know why I blog about it to be honest.
One day, I'll change this site into something useful... Which brings me to my first 'catchup' topic.

I love wordpress... no seriously, it's just awesome.  I've really been doing a lot of stuff with it, and to say it's a powerful blogging platform is an understatement.  It has become a decent CMS to me.
How did this come about?  Well, I got tired of looking and working on the original site I did for a friend. (back in 2006 mind you)
It needed an update in design very very badly, and I wanted to put it behind some sort of cms so if there was something to be added/edited, and I wasn't near my home computer, etc.  It could be done, and done well.  Plus, I'd love for the people I host sites for, to become able to manage their own content, rather than rely on me.  So I played around with several different cms's for a while, experimenting... I tried joomla, and liked it a lot... but the designing was not ever super easy, and some things took a long time to figure out.  Once I did, it sort of made sense... but it always seemed like I was trying to remember things like, ' do I need to go to section or category now?' or 'how many different modules do I need to make a stinkin menu!' etc.  Just was a much larger learning curve, and while I can see where it would be powerful... I just don't have the time, effort, and knowledge to make it work right.  I was closest with it though, and I'm still considering it for a couple of other projects maybe.
I tried others too, some too simple, not enough support, etc.  And I was going to try Drupal as well, but my age old hosting stopped me from that.  Something kept bringing me back to Wordpress though.

I use wp for everything... Honestly, if I buy a domain, I should just go ahead and install a version of wordpress!  In fact, I should probably look into MU so I can stop having to update 5-6 sites at a time.
So it was with little resistance that I looked into wordpress as a cms... there's a lot of articles out there about this.  And each one has different information, and a lot have the same.  The trick is figuring out what you need in your version, and then going out and making it work.  Try different plugins that do the same thing,  and don't be afraid to search for something that you don't think could possibly even exist!  Chances are, it does somewhere.  I know I was shocked a couple of times.  (It works the other way around too, as there was one thing that I couldn't believe no one created a plugin for... but I found a work around!)
So even though I had to fool with it quite a bit, and it's no where NEAR a normal blog site... it's functional, the friend likes it, I like it... and I had a lot less frustrating of a time building it, because it was based on a great system I'm more familiar with, etc.
Could I have used something else?  Sure... might it have worked better?  Maybe...  But it might have taken even longer to do because the learning curve would have been much higher.  With this method though, there's a huge community of people, striving to make wp be a wildly flexible platform... and I'll take that anyday.
It's also renewed my love for it... it's not like I ever didn't like it, but I just kind of forgot about it.  Now I'm thinking about it more and more again.  Coming up with ideas on how and where I can use it.  It's even got me posting on here again!
So don't dismiss a banana!  Just because it's normally your breakfast fruit of choice, don't forget there's lots of people putting it in ice cream with chocolate and strawberry toppings with whip cream on top and calling it a split.
Strange analogy, but think about it!  Take something good, add other things to it... makes the original thing better.

Next up...
Our little Lexi is growing up so fast!  I'll have to put a photo gallery up of her... she's without a doubt the most photogenic dog I've ever seen.  Anyone know how she could become a puppy model?  I think we've got the next Kathy Ireland on our hands here.
She's a great dog, and we're making it through all the tough puppy phases ok I guess.

Work is good...  Still trying to move forward with revamping the old studios, etc.  Quite a chore actually.  I like starting from scratch much better than clearing, cleaning and then building.

Family is good... Brooke is hanging in there.  There's issues, but she's tough.
Mom is almost done with her radiation treatment now, and hopefully we'll all be able to put this behind us.
Dad is dad... he's been really good with mom through this whole thing.  I know they're both ready to get back down to Florida, and I don't blame them... it'll be a nice vacation from this year.
And everyone else is hanging in there from what I can tell.

Friends are good...
They're all busy like everyone else, but they're good... For the most part.  Not going to air their dirty laundry on MY blog anyways... they've got their own to do that with... (Billie)

The holiday season is approaching quickly!  Thanksgiving is right around the corner... We're going to be hosting again in Paducah, and even adding a couple of guests!  Not only have we been working really hard with Lexi on her 'park it' command so she doesn't beg during the feast... but now we'll have an actual animal joining us at the table!  He's more of an ape actually... which is part human.  The original Tarzan himself!  My uncle John will be comin down to join the Kieffner's and Elrod's is a feast fit for the heavens!  Should be a fun gathering...

And Christmas should be just as fun.  We've got our tickets, and we're heading to New York!  White Plains to be exact... The family get together continues, only has a change of venue!  I'm not sure if we've ever had a Christmas there actually... If we did, I don't remember it.
B's never been though, so she'll enjoy the trip to the city.  I on the other hand have become fond of much smaller cities over the years... guess I got that from dad.  But, I'm sure I'll enjoy it... even if I act like I don't.

Well, it's Friday... almost 5.
You know what that means!!!

a weekend full of leaf collection................. fun