Photo of myself holding a pillow with the Flash logo on it and my then-fianceé (now-wife) holding a pillow in the shape of the Epstein–Barr virus

RIP Flash. Yes, these were a part of our engagement photos. Unfortunately, infectious viruses will not also be reaching end-of-life at midnight.

Notes from Essentialism 📚

Find the convergence of “inspired by”, “talented at”, and “significant need”.

Discern more so you can do less.

Zero-based budget your time.

If I didn’t have this, what would I be willing to do to get it?

What is the “slowest hiker” in your job or your life?

What is the smallest amount of progress that will be useful and valuable?

Ultimately, what is important right now?


There are many days where I’m cynical about our politics but I will not let today be one. There are many great current / future public servants on the ballot this week. In a year where our state is experiencing a pandemic and reckoning with racial injustice, I’m grateful I got to vote for a black physician to be our next governor in addition to getting to vote for my literal neighbor three doors down to represent us in the state house. Get out there everyone! Our system works best when more people are involved.

Selfie of me voting

Does anyone know of any interesting open-source projects related to COVID-19 looking for contributors (LAMP stack especially)?

Lastly, one of my side projects has been customizing WooCommerce to handle recurring payments for sponsorship programs. In Deed And Truth Ministries has been my test pilot for their pastor sponsorship program and they have almost $1k a month of transactions running through it now. I’d love to bring on another small non-profit (faith-based or not) who is running a program like this to try using the software (at no charge) so I can get some more feedback and frankly motivation to keep working on it.

If you know anyone, the project’s homepage has a contact form that’ll go straight to me.

Third up, Precept, I had a lot of fun working on this with the team at Whiteboard. While we initially built their system to support online Bible studies, this summer the proportion of online groups naturally increased drastically. Last week we rolled out a set of advanced filters to make sorting through them easier. They have over 100 studies available now anyone can join from home.

Second up, TBR, at the beginning of 2018 on a cold sunny day in Brooklyn, Alex laid out Book Riot‘s vision for a book recommendation subscription service they were starting where the recs were made individually by the cohort of hardcore reading enthusiasts they have on their team (no AI). I’ve made a commit to TBR’s codebase in 31 of the last 32 months since (the only month I missed was after Nora was born). It’s been fun to watch it gain its footing and grow. I think besides Mogiv, it’s the longest I’ve ever been a part of a piece of software. This summer, after numerous revisions and learning too much about sales tax and deferred revenue, we launched gifting so you can send a set of recs to a friend! They’ll supply the recommendations letter in a digital form so the recipient can go buy the books on their own or they’ve partnered with an independent bookstore in Maine who will mail a box of hardcovers.

First up, this summer Joel and I revamped Boil Line Coffee Company’s site from being for a brick-and-mortar business who’d also sell you their product online to a 100% e-commerce business. We started by setting up WooCommerce to facilitate their new local delivery option and continued from there.

I don’t always patronize my client’s goods / services but with Boil Line I do! With the extra coffee consumption at the Paulson house lately, we’ve been ordering the 5lb bags. I’ve been to some of the top rated coffee houses in NYC and Melbourne and Jeremy seriously roasts coffee that can hang with them.

We love the Trail Builder blend which is a perfect mix of coffee from Africa and the Americas. Plus, it supports the maintenance of one some of the hiking trails we used to frequent regularly.

Praxis published Leading Beyond the Blizzard in late March and it has held up remarkably well. I’m feeling fortunate that I got to spend my summer helping some great organizations pivot for the “winter” and “little ice age”. Over the next week I’m going to be blogging about some of the work I did.