My Blog

I try and blog about things that pique my interest, something I’ve had difficulty with, or just anything in general that I either want to keep at hand or think may be useful for others to know.

You can therefore find posts covering diverse subjects such as software development/programming, writing and all things Disney.

My journey to parenthood – part 2

My second post in a series of articles about James and my adoption journey is our experience of the first day of “prep group training.”

A few days ago we turned up at the Halesowen Barnardo’s office for day 1 of three days of prep group training – a course that’s designed to provide the information, explanation and tools we will need as adoptive parents – not just to get through the adoption journey, but for the life of our future children.

Reflections Read more


My journey to parenthood – part 1

This series of posts is an insight into the world of adoption from the viewpoint of a same-sex, male couple. I decided to publish our story for a number of reasons: 1) because I’m a private individual and rather than talk to people, sometimes it’s easier to put it into writing. 2) to help others who are thinking about going through the process, and 3) so we have something written down to show our future children how they came into our lives.

This is the first in hopefully a number of posts charting our journey.

Reflections Read more


I like Fridays, and the promises they bring

After I finish work on a Friday, I like to reflect on the week that’s been. Whether it’s in the car on the way home, or with a glass of wine later in the evening, I think about what we* did well, what we could do better – and what was just a complete disaster.

This week has been a rollercoaster at complete opposites of the scale.

Reflections Read more


Posting to social media? Why timing is everything

Earlier this month, myself and James went to see Take That play the opening night of their Wonderland tour in Birmingham, and I learnt an important lesson when posting to social media.

It was a a great gig and I took lots of photos for my gallery. Like most people, I used the power of social media to quickly share the joy and the buzz I felt.

Miscellaneous , Social Media Read more


“Explosions” at Manchester Arena following Ariana Grande concert

A reported 19 concert-goers attending an Ariana Grande gig in Manchester have been killed following an explosion in a foyer area within the arena.

Greater Manchester Police are treating the incident as terrorism.

Miscellaneous Read more


Take That Wonderland 2017

I was lucky enough to have received tickets for the opening night of Take That’s Wonderland 2017 live tour.

The boys played the Genting Arena in Birmingham and were supported by 90s girl group, All Saints.

I’ve been a Take That fan since before the breakup. I’ve supported them since the re-formation, the arrival and departure again of Robbie, and the more recent departure of Jason. I was gutted to have missed out on The Circus tour (regretted not trying to get tickets after seeing the DVD!) so I was extremely excited for Wonderland Live 2017.

Entertainment , Reflections Read more


Simply Remind Me: my first SaaS application

It’s rare for commercial software developers, such as myself, to get to use the software we write. We rely on our users to report problems or suggest new features for the applications we develop.

Therefore when I read about a PHP development framework (Laravel) that looked so interesting I just had to try it out, I came up with the idea of an application where you tell it all the dates that are important to you, and it will send you e-mail or SMS text messages when those dates are coming up.

And so… Simply Remind Me was born.

Simply Remind Me , Software Development Read more


Delegate invocation can be simplified – C#

When you have worked with the same technology day-in, day-out for almost 15 years, it’s easy to miss some of the “under-the-radar” changes that are made without any fan-fare.

This, for me, is one of those in C#.

Software Development Read more


Server maintenance – 1st/2nd November

My hosting company, Memset Ltd., have advised me they will be performing important maintenance work on their Miniserver platform.

This maintenance is to apply critical security patches to the Linux kernel of the physical servers that host the virtual servers like mine – that power this website.

It is taking place between 22:00 GMT on 1st November and 04:00 GMT on 2nd November. My server will be down for 15-30 minutes during this period.

Miscellaneous Read more


Walt Disney World to close for Matthew’s arrival

The Walt Disney World resort announced on Twitter earlier today that it will be closing all theme parks, water parks, golf courses, Disney Springs and the ESPN sports complex for hurricane Matthew’s arrival.

The parks will close at 5pm local time today (Thursday) and will not open at all on Friday.

Disney , Reflections Read more