A quick blog….

Ok, so here goes…. a long overdue quick blog that unfortunately is going to remain unedited because, as the title suggests – “There just isn’t enough hours in the day!”

Feel free to skip to “How do you organise your life??” if you don’t want to read about ‘how busy and hard my life is’ – I promise this wasn’t my intention! I am not moaning, I am just after some feedback on how you manage a large workload.

No time? So why waste time writing a blog??

Yeah, I probably am wasting some time here. But my main aim is to get some advice – I am hoping that there may be others reading this that have found themselves in a similar situation and may have some advice – please do comment below or send me a tweet, LinkedIn or something…

My predicament…

I just don’t have enough time! I always have a project going on, both at work, in freelancing and in personal life and I often wonder how I manage to remember everything that I need to do. The truth is….. I probably don’t!

At the time of writing this these are  my current projects (I think – there may be more);

  • My proper job (this alone keeps me busy! – but only til 5!);
    • I’m a production planner and stock controller at a Paper Mill – I love my job as it is very diverse and continual improvement and development is at the forefront, so it is forever challenging and interesting. Geeky Iknow, but I do love it!
    • But… I am transitioning into a new role – Systems Analyst. We, as a company, manage all IT systems, servers, databases etc in-house and most of our shopfloor programs are developed by our current systems analyst. He is due to retire very soon and I am stepping into his shoes. This is a massive step for me with lots of learning, and external courses (Database administration, Database Development, T-SQL, Delphi the list is seemingly endless!) I’m off to FireBrand again in November for another intensive week Microsoft course!
    • Training for my old/current role – as I say it is a continually developing role. But now I have to teach someone else what I do. And to be honest, I don’t even know what each day will bring!
  • The family business (Safe Connect);
    • Have you heard about The Hot Connection Indicator? If you aren’t an electrician (or spoken to me in the last year)… then probably not. But I’m not going to go into it in detail – read for your self here In short… this is an amazing invention that could save lives and stop electrical fires and it was invented by my father-in-law. And I manage the website, social media and promote awareness and ultimately try to increase sales.
    • We have a new product coming out very soon. Aim launch date is just 2 weeks away (Aggghh – not long!!) and it is aimed at EVERYONE, not just electricians! Keep your eyes peeled!
    • Ask me questions about the HCI, if you wish…
  • Private/freelance work. I struggle to walk into the pub without being asked to fix something, give advice or build a website…  Here is a list of my current tasks ( some almost done, some ongoing, some newltyadded);
    • WEBSITE – sports massage therapist – MotionAid
    • WEBSITE – 3D Sculptor – GHaselup
    • WEBSITE – Christmas trees – KentChristmasTrees
    • WEBSITE – personal trainer – JamesOsheaFitness
    • WEBSITE – the aforementioned brand new Safe Connect product – SafeConnect
    • VIDEO EDITING – My mate managed to persuade me to video his sister’s wedding. I have actually just finished this last week… the resulting DVDs we not too bad, even if I say so myself!
    • EXCEL – Development for a telecare firm. This is ongoing, but I love playing with Excel and VBA!
    • LAPTOP Upgrade/clean – “my laptop is slow” I cleaned it up and installed an SSD. Now it is better than new! (ticked this task off yesterday)
    • COMPUTER clean up – I am yet to see the specs of this, but it will probably be the standard clean install and set up (maybe with recommendations of upgrade). I’m picking it up tomorrow.
  • and Last, but by absolutely no means least – My beautiful family! My wife and two daughters;
    • Kirsty – my wife, best friend and soul mate! No explanation needed, I love spending time with her and always aim put her first!
    • my daughters, an extremely close second to Kirsty and definitely one of my main motivations. I just want to be there for their development and growing up.
      • Alexandra – She turned 4 just a couple of weeks ago (31st August) and has started BIG school as the absolute youngest in the year!
      • Emmeline – our new one, at just 3-month-old we want to give her the exact same devotion and dedication that we gave to her big sister
  • Oh, and there is the usual “being a grown-up” stuff – cleaning, cutting the grass, going to the pub 😉 etc
  • And there may be some other stuff – but that is the point of this blog!

Sorry if it sounds like I am moaning/boasting/blowing my own trumpet/playing a tiny violin/*insert gripe here/etc, but here is my point……..

How do YOU organise YOUR life??

I have been on the lookout for a decent ‘Task Manager’ app. My initial findings that have impressed/come close to what I want:

There are others that I have read about too, but I have only sampled these few and I have invested most time into ToDoist. But, I feel that the free version is laking what I fully need and I may need to go premium.

ToDoist almost does what I need, but still seems very ‘manual’ – maybe it is because I am on the free version, or maybe I am just looking/hoping for too much automation!? (I am a VBA-kid after all!)

So…. back to my point – What do you use (if any?) how do you organise your hectic life?!

Have you tried any of the above?

Do you use any of the above?

Can you recommend something different?

Yes, I probably wasted some time writing this, but hey ho, I look forward to your views

Thanks in advance…






Following the popularity of my blog post last week about How to Calculate the Number of Days Between Two Dates (which even attracted the attention of The Official Twitter Page for Excel!), I am continuing the series with an introduction to the WEEKNUM & ISOWEEKNUM functions.


Why Do I Need to Know the Week Number


Many companies work to weeks instead of actual dates. This can be for a number of different reasons, but a common reason is so as not to commit to a specific day/date as there can be many factors to consider.

It’s been a while since my last blog. So to get back into it, I thought I’d start a short series to answer some of the common, simple Excel questions that I am asked.


If you know me, you will know that I love a spreadsheet and can often be found using formulas and VBA to create awesome spreadsheets to automate and simplify everyday tasks.

In the office, it’s not uncommon to hear “Joe, can you help me with this formula?” or “Joe, how do I do this in Excel” or “Joe, Help! Please fix this spreadsheet for me!”

Of course, being the helpful geek that I am, I not only find a solution to the question in hand but usually offer fast improvements overall as well.


How do I work out how many work days are between two dates?


Calculating the days between two dates in Excel is very simple and I am sure that even an Excel Novice can come up with = Last_Date – First_Date to calculate the number of days between the two dates.

I’ve always been interested in computers, technology and automating things. But I have no formal education to prove this, I just play around and learn as I go.

Here’s a little background to my (limited) programming background and how I have begun to progress and where I will go from here. This will likely become a series as I progress further into the world of programming.

The Hosting Minefield

A few words about my quest for the perfect hosting company. Hopefully you can avoid the same mistakes I made.

Back in the 90s

I’ve always been a bit of a geek and loved anything computers and technology. Back in the 90s I always had bits of computer lying around and dabbled a bit in web design. Although this was more html playing than actual web design – do you remember those annoying 90s website mechanics? Graphics chasing the mouse cursor and snow falling down the screen, all very cool to a young geek, but not very pleasing to the user.

So here goes, my first proper blog….

Let’s start with a little introduction to my family and in particular my almost-2-year-old daughter Alexandra.


Alexandra turns 2 at the end of this month and she has come on so much in the past few months. This week she will be graduating from the baby room at nursery and moving up to the ‘Caterpillar’ room.

Mummy says “I’m not ready for my baby to grow up”, but deep down we know that Alexandra is totally ready for the big move. I know I am bias, but she is a very clever little girl and recently she just doesn’t seem as stimulated at nursery as she used to be – probably just because she outgrowing the baby room routine.

Hello, and welcome to my new blog where you will find all sorts – well once I get up and writing!

Expect a very varied range of topics from technology and gadgets to things about my daughter, it’s basically a look into my life along with a few (hopefully) informative articles.


Watch this space!