Winter Break

It has been a few weeks since I last posted. I’ve been up to various things including studying, contributing, working on my projects, and more cooking. With winter coming up, I decided to take the next month or so as a break from applying to places and really focusing on just doing more. This means making more whether it is programming or cooking related. It also means stepping out of my comfort level and going to more meetups, and working on more pull requests for things I might not know how to do right away. These are a few of the things I have been and want to work on during this winter:


A few weeks ago, someone on Twitter was looking for Spanish speakers to help contribute some translations to a project. I later found out it was a project to help aspiring Spanish-speaking web developers learn about HTML tags and their meanings. The project is called LMHT(Lenguage de Marcas de Hipertexto). I really like the goal of this project and have really enjoyed contributing. It has really helped me see how the things I can contribute can be of great help. I’m looking forward to seeing it grow and contributing as much as I can to this.

####Books to Read

My first introductions to programming and Ruby were Learn to Program and Why’s (Poignant) Guide to Ruby. These both hold a special place in my heart for different reasons. They are what made me realize how special it can be to make programs and to think about them logically. From there I went through Eloquent Ruby and POODR. The last two provided some amazing insight and have changed how I think about Ruby, but I don’t think I grasped many of the concepts. Part of my goal this winter is to go back and finish both. Many people have recommended that I start with The Well-Grounded Rubyist so these past couple of weeks, I have been going through it. It is so far the best beginner/intermediate overview of Ruby that I’ve read. I have really enjoyed the explanations and examples. After finishing this, I hope to go back and read the other two books again.


I have been somewhat hesitant to go to meetups over the past month. Sometimes I don’t feel up it or social interaction seems difficult. The downside to this is I don’t get to meet people or talk about the topics that interest me. Meetups are also a good way to keep me thinking and participating in technology and programming. I started up again and went to two meetups recently. The first one was the RailsBridge Chicago Rocketeer Roundup. While the organization is primarily for women and non-binary people, the Rocketeer Roundup is open to all genders I had a blast here, the people were very nice and welcoming, and I even got to pair with someone to help them add a new feature to their Rails app. I realized I needed to do the same thing for my app so now Recetera has a profile page with a listing of your recipe submissions.

The latest meetup I went to was for ChicagoRuby, I have gone in the past and it was good to be back. I like seeing presentations on different ways to think about and use Ruby. The presentation was on the Internet of Things and some different suggestions for project to work on. It was good to sit and absorb and keep my mind thinking about these things. It also felt nice just to have something to do after work in the middle of the week. I’m looking forward to the ChicagoRuby hack night on encryption this week which should be interesting.

####Giggle Water

I have not done as much for Giggle Water recently, but just this weekend I began looking at adding search bar functionality. So far I have created a new controller and model to handle the query and to push results out to the view. So far I am getting a listing of Drinks and Ingredients to return based on what I place in the search box. In terms of structure and layout, I still have a few things to ponder to make sure it looks nice and renders the way we want.


I have mentioned the addition of a “profile” page. Now when a user logs in, they can go to their profile and see a listing of the recipes they created. This is pretty straightforward at this point, but I like that I have some functionality in place for a user to interact with their specific contributions. From here I hope to allow the user to pic a profile pic and have a list of “liked” recipes.


I started taking on more cooking projects. I have been trying to be more consistent in doing more and different recipes, to see what I can learn, or see how far i can take my skills. Two things to note are a milk-braised pork shoulder and a sous-vide brisket that I made recently. Right now, I have pictures up and will be writing some notes and recipes as best I can during the week. All food related posts can be found on my cooking blog, Comalcaliente.

Another project I’m looking forward to is visiting my mom and helping her make tamales for the holidays. I really want to work on learning her technique as well as develop my own. I hope to have a mini workshop with one of my friends where we just experiment with different tamale flavors and really work on solid recipes.

Written on December 7, 2015