My January 2016 Plan

My January 2016 Plan

Every year, I try to make some New Years commitments, and I’ve written about those here. One of the activities I’ll probably engage in on a monthly basis is setting some deliverables to get done that month.

There are several reasons for doing this, but in the spirit of going pro, I want to start building a good body of work now. The reasons for this are financial and professional, but also for my own self gratification. I’m a doer and achiever by nature, and if I’m not seeing consistent progress on something, I can easily get discouraged.

Instead of seeing how far I’ve come, I only see how far I have to go still. Not good.

To combat this, and to state it all publicly, for January, these are my basic plans:

Quick Learning on Lynda

I’m watching on doing at least two of these courses on my current Lynda.com playlist, maybe all four, for the theme I’ll be working on:

  • Debugging with Javascript
  • Up and Running with Sass
  • Foundation 5 course (if I’m using Foundation and not Bootstrap for the theme)
  • Maybe a LESS courses too (if I’m not using Sass, but I’ll probably use Sass)

Building a Theme

I’m planning on builing a simple blogging theme (which I’d want to run on this site) that utilizes Sass, Bower and Grunt/Gulp for building the theme itself. I’ll want to submit this to the WP repository eventually, so I might be building it from the Underscores starter theme, but maybe from FoundationPress or Sage (from Roots).

Currently, here’s what I have for the project:

  • Sketch out the theme (kinda done)
  • Decide between Roots (Bootstrap) and FoundationPress (Foundation 6)
  • Setup Sass, Bower and Gulp Files
  • Go through the Udemy Course for building out the theme, integrate the build tools with this theme (Bootstrap)
  • Theme will include (hopefully) all of the following:
    • masonry front page (like pinterest)
    • absolute menu position
    • if has featured image for the post
    • most recent is a sticky post
    • click and AJAX will serve posts
    • continuous scrolling/loading
    • search and menu is overlay

Develop Two Pluggins

I’ve got two plugins in the works, one for WooCommerce from my most recent project, and another for MailPoet.

  • WC Cc/Bcc Order Email Plugin: this will allow Shop Managers (and maybe eventually customers) to add Cc and Bcc emails in their order requests. It’s basically just adding a Meta Box to the Order custom post type and saving those entries in the meta data. Whenever an order email goes out, then the emails in the Cc and Bcc will be notified as well.
  • MailPoet slide up/popup email capture:  your basic lead capture for anyone who is using the MailPoet plugin.
    • Should die if MailPoet is not installed
    • Should not show for two weeks (so needs to use cookies)
    • Shouldn’t show up until 10 seconds after site is loaded.
    • Something basic that can be developed more as people use it.

Free Code Camp

I’ve been working on exercise and projects for FreeCodeCamp.com, and I’m trying to finish the Front End Developer certification by the end of the month. It should be doable, but there’s plenty left to do before the end of the month. Currently, I have five more to complete.

You can see what I’ve done so far at my CodePen profile. I’m planning on spending at least one hour minimum every day until it’s all done.

To be able to get all three of these goals completed, I’m probably going to step back from heavy client work for the month of January. The idea is that once all of these are done, I’ll be in a better position to do different and better work than I’ve been doing in the past year.

I’ll check back to update in two weeks to see what progress I’ve made.

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Peace,

Nate