Happy Christmas!

It’s almost Christmas Eve and we’re nearing the end of 2016 – it has been a wild ride. I remember everyone (>25 years of age) telling me on my 25th birthday (which closely coincides with new year) that their 25s were amazing. Now that my 25 is almost done, I have to admit that it was indeed an amazing year, involving everything from deep lows to new heights.

I cannot say that 25 was the best year of my life, as the last 6 years have been a crazy, incomparable rollercoaster and have developed me as a person and a professional. However, 25 did match my expectations. In this year, I became an experienced recruiter gaining some serious communication skills, ran into a professional crisis, decided to take a leap and change my career and now here I am – happier than ever, doing what I love.

Every day that I go to work, it doesn’t feel like going to work – it feels like going to a place I enjoy, surrounded by people I like and creating/solving/developing on a daily basis. What more could you ask from a job?

So with all the happiness within me, I wish you all a wonderful Christmas and hope that your 2016 was as dandy as mine. If not, make sure to make 2017 a year to remember! 🙂

 

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First days back in the office

It’s end of day two at YoungCapital and so far I am extremely happy with my choice. I am still getting to know the company, the people and the culture, but I have a feeling that I will feel right at home very soon.

They are also very kind to me. Instead of throwing me head first into the ocean, they are easing me into their workflow. I find it a very suitable way of learning and appreciate it.

On a more personal note, in the last two days I noticed that I am very insecure about my code. Every time I have to show what I have done, I stutter. Even though my code works and I know I met the requirements, I am scared of saying something stupid. At this point, I prefer to keep my mouth shut – deliver and exceed expectations with results, rather than putting it in words.

I am also appreciating that my life is getting back to normal rhythm – it will take the rest of the week, or maybe even two weeks to get fully back in the working flow, but I can tell already that my body likes it. It’s nice to go home with a feeling that you have worked hard and just relax.

Tonight, we had a Christmas dinner with my study-mates from Codaisseur. It was great to see them all – we did all “suffer” together, thus I appreciate keeping up-to-date on how they are doing. It was nice to see people being excited about code, interviews and getting hired. Even found out that one of my mates will be my colleague in few weeks!

I feel very calm and happy! 🙂

Hired!

The last 1.5 weeks have been an emotional rollercoaster. Applying for jobs, having phone, Skype and face-to-face interviews. Meeting new people and of course, continuing to improve on my coding skills, helping out here and there..

Yesterday, however, after an awesome half-a-day on site, I got the long awaited phone call that included the words “We would like to make you an offer!“. You cannot imagine my happiness – after plenty of interviews, this was the company I felt most drawn to. They were open-minded and friendly from the first moment we spoke and continued to be so till the end of the application process. That’s the kind of team I wanted to join and luckily, I have the opportunity to!

Now, I am spending my last days of freedom on organising my life. This includes silly things such as embassy and hair-dressers visits, cleaning up and visiting old colleagues. I walked into the office today and it was like I never left (except for some new faces and interior changes). It felt so good to see the people I spent so much time with the past two years, but it also reminded me that I could not have picked a better road to continue my life on than this one.

As for tonight, I think a little celebration is in order – and what better way to celebrate than with SUSHI!

Final demos and a bright new day!

The very last week of Codaisseur was spent finetuning some of the best projects we’ve made. In my case, it was the continuation of EchtVakantie (the real world project). We added a few extra features, improved stability, did some SEO and made it even more beautiful!

The result? Have a look yourself, maybe you’ll even find a holiday:  https://echtvakantie.herokuapp.com/

As the demos finished, I got hit by a big wave of tiredness from the 2 months – I guess my body knew that the course was over. So, I headed home, had a good night’s sleep and as you can imagine, it was wonderful to enjoy some rest after so much learning and crazy emotions.

I decided to spend the day 50:50. The first 50 for myself and the second 50 for my professional-self. This involved applying for jobs, completing challenges for interested companies and fixing tiny bit of code here and there.

There are some super exciting moments coming up next week, such as important job interviews, meetings and events and I want to go into it with a clear mind and body, so I agreed with myself, that it is important that I start exercising and meditating again – which I did and I feel great! Bee also enjoyed the meditation session, lying on top of me and purring. 🙂

By the end of the weekend I’m sure I will be fully regenerated and ready to rock’n’roll!

After the finish line..

..seven crazy weeks later and you are looking at a certified Ester!

I started Codaisseur with minimal knowledge of web development and I finished the two months 5kg lighter and tons-of-knowledge heavier. However, having more knowledge makes you realise how much more there is to know and I am convinced that I have made the right choice of profession. I cannot imagine this ever getting boring, because there is so much to learn and this industry just keeps expanding.

I would like to take a moment to thank the Codaisseur team. The two months, especially the last weeks, have been incredibly tough. There has not been a day of rest from code, there has been a minimal amount of sleep, very dry eyes, lot of emotions and even through all of that, coding has still remained fun and exciting. Thank you Codaisseur for putting us through these tough times and teaching us so much, in such a short time.

Also, thank you for the kind words at the Certificate Ceremony. As this was a private event, the words were the following:

Congratulations!

We are happy to hear that you chose the right path in your life. We see a real backend developer in you, especially ever time you say: “Don’t look at my styling!”. Also, the test coverage in your projects, is quite impressive.

Please keep being awesome at communicating & explaining your ideas, and how things work. This is a golden skill for any developer!

But the road has just begun and I cannot wait to apply what I have learned in a tight team and build great things together!

Evaluated!

I can easily say that the last 2 weeks have officially been the roughest of the course.

As I explained in my previous post, React was quite a slap in the face, but it got better as the PiggyWash! we built, turned out quite nice. I cannot share the game itself at this point, however I did make a video of it so you can see the outcome of our React battle!

Initial version: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0ByKMF9fz2TRqWWlMZ3hRZjhZZUk/view

Updated: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0ByKMF9fz2TRqc1ZCckU0Zk11Mmc/view

I’ve noticed that the load of the course is slowly starting to weigh on me. We struggled a lot with the game and prevailed, however the lack of any rest is starting to affect me. We finished our game on Saturday, which left Sunday for rest – but little did we know that we had a surprise-exam waiting in our inbox on Sunday morning.

The exam itself was a great way to write down and formulate everything we have learned in the past 6 weeks – it involved a lot of Googling and picking your brain for words to describe some abstract terms such as Promises in JS and so forth. Still, some rest would have been much appreciated.

Too bad peanut butter! We are going into week 7, which involves a personal project, assigned to us by the teachers grace and the teachers were graceful. I get to go back to back-end and Ruby on Rails. Super happy and super scared, as my project is quite challenging.

On another note, I’ve noticed that my itch to go back to work is growing at a rapid pace. I cannot wait to return to the workforce. Toes crossed for that as well!

Peek into the Job Market

React is going better. I struggled in the beginning, but it’s starting to stick as the lessons go by. For this weeks’ React-project Laura and I started our own multiplayer game and we are determined to wash this piggy (Yes, that’s the game!). As always, I will show the result when I can. This project will last till Saturday evening, which is also the official ending of the classes for this course.

Which brings me to the next subject: the job market. As the course will be done this Saturday, I have already started to look around. I’ve found some opportunities and also had my first interview/chat yesterday. It was a great experience – the guys gave me seriously good advice on how to continue and it’s good to have an image of how the interviews for developers can look like. Less nerves next time! 🙂

I felt a really good connection with this opportunity. It matches perfectly what I am looking for in my job and team. However, it depends on their staff-needs if we can proceed, so I have to wait and in the meanwhile keep trying and keep learning.

Tonight, I will be attending another event/meet-up powered by Google – hoping for some inspiring talks!

See you later!