Guus Bosman

software engineering director

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I was putting Leo in bed. They had been playing "boat" in Leo's bed earlier, so the plush animals were all over the place. Leo complained that "he only had four plush animals", not five. So I asked Adrian: "can Leo please have Rikkie?" and look and behold: Adrian graciously agreed that Leo could have Rikkie.

Then it was time to put Adrian in bed. All went well, until the moment that he asked for... Rikkie, when there were some tears. I managed to calm him down.

The next evening Leo was in bed already when it was Adrian's turn. Adrian couldn't find his bear, beer. That was a problem and we all scrambled to look for it, throughout the house. Leo was in bed already but had a funny smile when I asked the first time. So after more searching I came back and asked him strongly, and he laughed and pointed to the drawer. And sure, there is was. There were three plush animals in the drawer. I took the bear to bring to Adrian and on a whip gave Leo Rikkie.

Adrian was happy with his bear -- but then he asked about Rikkie...


Home Depot


We did another round to Home Depot this afternoon, the last one in a while, probably.

Got plants for the front yard and indoors, plus ten bags of mulch for in the back.

When we got home Jaap And Adrian were waiting for us, with big smiles.

Now it's time to feed the chicks.


Supporting the new Bicycle Plan

I spoke at the County Board meeting tonight to support the new bicycle plan. It updates the 10 year old existing plan, and is the fifth one Arlington has adopted -- a sign off how long the bicycle history goes back here, which is cool.

Arlington is making decent progress with protected bikelanes. The plan is to build more of them and this formal Plan helps codify that.

I spoke for only a minute or so, but it felt good to make my voice heard.

Before the board meeting I hang out with many of my Twitter buddies, several of who I met for the first time in person tonight.


Problems with the website

This might be a little bit of a futile message, but I'm having significant issues with the site's stability. This started after I upgraded a set of packages (yum update) and also did some minor Drupal upgrades. I don't believe it's related to the latter, something seems to be not quite right for php-fpm.

Anyway, it is a good lesson on using AWS's options about backups etc.


American Legion/APAH plan approved

The American Legion/APAH plan was officially approved by the County Board today. This is the development in our neighborhood that I was part of the Site Plan Review Committee for.

I couldn't attend today but watched the discussion via livestream. Good discussion on the future east-west connection.


Hunt Valley Towne Center

Today is Marten Luther King Day. It was very cold today, with a strong wind, so went to a shopping mall.

We had lunch at Panera and afterwards did grocery shopping for the week at Wegmans.


A long overdue upgrade

I upgraded my website over the past few weeks, and it's in better shape than it has been in years.

No more server in the attic

The biggest change was moving to Amazon AWS. After many years of hosting a physical server in the Netherlands in my parent's house, I decided to make the switch. Primarily because I wanted to get some hands-on experience with AWS -- I've learned some good things -- but also because the physical server is getting due for a replacement.

Drupal and CiviCRM upgrades

I removed Drupal modules I no longer needed, upgraded CiviCRM to version 5.9, and finally fixed a lot of bugs. Restored the Birthday block, restored the breadcrumbs. Finally, I set up a way to upload images through the browser and have to resized, renamed and sharpened the way I like it. This was something I missed when we were in St Maarten; it was tricky to add photo's to articles.

Server stuff

For my database I now use Amazon RDS -- no more messing around with MariaDB upgrades, and database backups are trivial. I'm using Let's Encrypt for HTTPS certificates and tweaked my favicon settings for Android and Apple products.


I've spent quite a few evenings fixing and patching things. It's very rewarding and I love having my own website and blog. To look back at all the years is awe inspiring. Using Drupal also allows me to track things like my running mileage or books that I've read, all in one place.


A late start


There was some snow yesterday evening and the schools start with a delay. The boys start at 9.45 am, Nora's bus is at 10.36 am.


Back to gymnastics


Adrian and Leo went to gymnastics today, the first time since the winter break. They were looking forward to it and had a great time.

When we arrived, I got Adrian ready first and asked him if he wanted to walk to the room by himself -- no, he'd rather wait for Leo. The two of them walked hand-in-hand to the teacher, so cute. They sat down on the bench and one of the first assignments was to run to the other side with the whole group. All that time they kept holding hands.

While they were doing their thing I went for a run, which was awesome. I figured out a better route than last time and ran on the Custis trail, which is so much nicer than in the neighborhood there. Lots of other runners on the trail, including at least three groups. I was faster than most of them, a good feeling.

We went to Heidelberg and bought three large breads and some turkey; the boys got a cookie. Adrian was already a little tired and cried when he "only" got one cookie and not something to try from the tasting table. We were discussing that outside, when an elderly couple passed by and asked what was going on. I explained it, "he wanted two cookies but we had agreed, only one" and they laughed. The man replied: "sometimes life if is just a one-cookie situation", haha.

For lunch I made a groentesoep -- I had sliced and frozen some vegetables earlier in the week, so this was easy to make. In the U.S. it's pretty rare for pret-cut "soup vegetables" to be sold in the grocery store, I've found. Over lunch with talked with the kids about several things. "Waarom zijn er piraten?" and "Papa wie heeft het geld uitgevonden". Good times.


A new front door

A new front door was installed today! We're very happy with it.

The door we had until today was the original 1967 one, and it was at the end of its useful live. Very drafty and it made the downstairs cold. Because our thermostat isn't too far from the door, it would make the rest of the house overly warm. The new door has glass windows, with privacy glass, which gives a little more light in our hallway. And no more noisy and cold mail slot.

The installers came at 10.00 am, and they took about 4 hours to do the full install. At the end I discovered some concrete that needed to be repaired, so I drove to Home Depot to get a patch and they used that to finalize the step.

It was great working with these guys; a marked difference compared to the previous project five years ago.

Leo and Adrian were quite excited to see all the machines and instruments. When they got home from AMH they could hardly wait to get changed and check it all out. The contractors had a power cable going through the window to the front yard, that was interesting for them to see.

After the work was done, the contractor's car didn't start. I helped try to kick-start, but that didn't work either so they had to call their boss.


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