Archive for 2007.March

+ home at last

Friday, March 2nd, 2007

Alyssa and I moved to Portland in June of ’06, ready for a fresh start and a new city. Our reasons for coming here specifically included Portland State’s great programs in System Science (for me) and English (for her). While I don’t plan to attend for another couple of years, Alyssa is already well on her way to a masters in English literature. She is absolutely brilliant and is doing much better in her progam than she will ever admit. There has also been a romantic pull for us, since we both have loved Portland as long as we could remember and the idea of being only two hours from Canon Beach was more than a little appealing.

With my employment being fairly flexible (if not light on the work load), we were able to move down without the weight of a job search. Our first affair–after a hasty remodel of our duplex unit (thank you Avery and Geanna!)–was to find a church body. We had both decided that smaller was better. Three to four hundred would be ideal. Unfortunately, Portland has few churches of that size. They tend to be either mega (1000+) or micro (30-) gatherings with little in the moderate range.

After trying a few of the smaller churches, a friend convinced us to try out Imago Dei. It sounded a bit daunting, having some 1500 in attendance on a weekend, but we thought we could at least give it a shot. It was home at first service. We were amazed at the cultural relevance and sense of community paired with very direct and scriptural teaching. Eight weeks and one membership class later, we became full fledged members (something neither of us had done at any other church). We now attend a Home Community on Mondays and are getting more and more rooted in the body at Imago. I can only pray that everyone else has somewhere to be so connected and fed.

+ a vision underway

Friday, March 2nd, 2007

For those of you who don’t already know, Alyssa, my parents and I have started a new venture together. It all began with some needs that my parents electrical business had. I watched as they struggled to find a fitting solution, even going so far as to implement one before realizing that there wasn’t a solution out there that fit. After some discussion, we they decided to hire me to build a small-scale custom system that would address their payroll and job costing needs. As I dove into the research for the project, I quickly saw the great potential that such a system would have.

I was not alone in this revelation. Dad made comment to the same effect, as mom–being the primary user of the developing system–raved about how easy it made her life. The four of us sat down and decided that our little project should be given the chance to reach the potential we all saw.

Thus began Vantage Payroll Services, the first leg of a larger vision to provide businesses with the services they need to focus on what they do best. I spent the vast majority of my time on various aspects of this business, from getting legal requirements in place to the actual coding of the system and hiring contractors for various pieces of the puzzle. Alyssa serves as our marketing guru, putting together our literature and materials and generally directing the look and feel. All four of us are active in the direction and visioneering of the business. Dad will become more involved as we dive into the actual sales portion of our beginning, and mom remains a crucial part of the development, helping me find and address various needs. She also oversees the financial aspects of the venture.
As it stands, we are about a week out from having a final contract, fully operational and informative website, and brochures about our various lines of service. I will attempt to keep you posted on our progress, but feel free to nose around the site when it goes live and email me or post any questions.

+ the maiden post

Thursday, March 1st, 2007

I have been meaning to launch a blog for about a year now. I hemmed and hawed over it in the sparse moments between more imortant occupations, knowing that it was something that I needed to do; something I wanted to do. At one point I even secured my domain name for the year. I have many friends and family spread across the world, and I don’t spend enough time in communication. The people I love tend to reside on the bottom of my list–or worse, just past it. In the back of my mind I know that they will always be there, and all the other things on my list will be trouble if lost or forgotten.

I was finally pushed over the edge into blogdom when I encountered the need to install WordPress for someone else. It took me virtually no time at all. Having found the perfect solution, I couldn’t put it off any longer. So here I am, installed, configured and domain-routed in the space my fifteen minute retreat from the mountain of tasks.

This site will likely host discussion on a wide range of topics. Any who know me understand that I am a jack of all trades and a master of none. One of my more obvious traits is a joy in learning. That being said, you may find snippets of php code or a monologue on AJAX next to my thoughts on some new band that I heard between recipes and a very personal take on my walk with in the Faith. Naturally I intend to brag on my incredible wife and will sometimes include updates on the family affairs.

I hope that this blog will encourage, assisst, or just amuse all who visit. God bless.