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J. Daniel Ashton

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Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might, —Ecclesiastes 9:10a NIV
The LORD God has told us what is right and what he demands:
"See that justice is done,
let mercy be your first concern,
and humbly obey your God." —Micah 6:8, CEV
With all your heart you must trust the LORD and not your own judgment.
Always let Him lead you, and He will clear the road for you to follow. —Proverbs 3:5,6 CEV

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Name: Daniel Ashton
Location: Germantown, Maryland, United States

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Sunday, February 06, 2005

Restful weekend

I spent most of last week focused on reviewing job postings within IBM, applying for some of the more promising ones, and improving my jobs application. I was working in a very focused way, not so much focused on doing precisely one task, but focused on work. I found it very difficult to leave work in the evening, and my mind would stay focused on the tasks, thinking about which applications I would follow-up with phone calls, about what improvements I could make to my program, et cetera. I felt a growing mental and emotional exhaustion as the week went by.

Thank God for Sabbath! Friday evening I changed pace by looking at a Zoo simulation on Vicki's computer while the kids crammed for Bible Bowl. Sabbath morning I didn't even take my violin to church: I just rested in the congregation. Potluck was tasty, and soon afterwards we made our way to the Atholton church for the afternoon's event. Four teams participated in this Bible Bowl: Spencerville, Atholton, Triadelphia and Baltimore First. I was delighted to notice their choral initials: S A T B. Before the event started, the coordinator tapped me to serve as a scorekeeper. Each team is observed by a local judge and a scorekeeper, and I kept score for the Atholton team.

By the time the bowl was over the sun was nearly down. We made our way home and ordered pizza from Papa John's. I spent some time setting up Mailman on our web server, and considering whether to replace Sendmail with Postfix, and other such questions.

This morning we took the kids to the barn and enjoyed a couple hours of quiet. I had intended to do some work on the CMW web registration today, but I actually spent most of the day learning about the Firefox web browser and how it handles extensions. (This could actually be a good thing: one of my favorite job openings, one for which my application was turned down almost immediately, is for a Firefox developer. I was encouraged to spend my own time learning the intricacies of and contributing to the development of Firefox so that I could qualify for future similar openings.) In mid afternoon I masked and spray-painted a first coat on the Plymouth Prowler I'm making (thanks, William!), and later I took time to write these posts, including my recollections of last weekend, interspersed with finding and applying for (very long process!) a job with Apple in Pittsburgh.

So I'm feeling, well, somewhat rested. I haven't had as many naps as I would expect in a truly restful weekend. Even now it's after midnight. (Blogging can be such a lengthy process!) But I'm grateful that my mind has been diverted from the stresses of being between projects. Sufficient unto the day . . .


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