Wow – it’s December already, and Christmas is only a few days away.  Yikes – where did the year go?

2015 started with some lovely family time – Connor and Kyla came across from Brisbane and we had all the grandkids together. All the Grandkids Jan 2015

On the home front things have been good.  Kyla has settled in and has added spice to our lives.  She and Joshua are wonderfully close and the two cousins keep us on our toes.

My travel has been pretty hectic – as evidenced by the TripIt stats:

2015 Total
Trips 24 166
Days 171 1139
Distance 336,448 km 1,621,588 km
Cities 34 70
Countries 11 22

Highlights for me were visiting the Taj Mahal, QCon  London in March and getting to Thailand and Malaysia for the first time.

On my way to London I stopped in Grenoble and had a night in Paris before taking the Eurostar – my first trip through the Chunnel.  Definitely more relaxed than flying between cities.

Fondue in Grenoble

Paris by Night

For my birthday Spence and his lovely family took me to Bletchley Park.  It’s sad when you see computers you actually worked on in a museum.

I wrote my first programs on punchcards

 

In March the Agile Alliance board meeting was in Wellington – the only face to face meeting we’ve had that I didn’t need to travel to.  It was great being able to host the event, we had an open space event before and Arthur cooked us an amazing meal on the Monday afterwards.

Agile Board in Wellington

In April we took a trip to Taupo and Tauranga.  Serena and Abigail came with us and we had a great time catching up with family in the Bay of Plenty.

 

Kyla, Joshua and I went river rafting on the Rangiteki River, level 4 rapids.

We survived the rapids

Grandad's girls

Big news on the family front was Melody getting together with Hayden, and the two of them promptly deciding to have a child.  The baby is due in early January, so we’re heading across to Brisbane to greet the newest granddaughter.

Melody & Hayden

Jade and Cam came down to Wellington in May to meet Abigail.

JAde, Cam & Abigail

Cyberview Resort in Malaysia

Abigail turned one in July and Scott’s family came across from Melbourne for the event, as did Melody and Hayden.

Abigail's First Birthday

In June I was in Thailand and had a chance to do a very brief tour.  I definitely want to go back.

Agile 2015 was in Washington DC, and I did some sightseeing there one evening.  Thanks Sharon for being such good company.

The Lincoln Memorial

Thailand

In September I spent an amazing week at Menlo Innovations learning about the Menlo Way and how they really have created an environment of joy in work.  It was truly inspirational and I’m trying to bring the ideas and philosophy into my own work and the workplaces I come in contact with.  Richard, James and the Menlo team truly live the values and are wonderfully generous in sharing their ideas.

In the same trip I visited Minneapolis and Des Moines – thanks Angela, David, Kent, Lisanne and Juao.   Then on to Portland for an Agile Alliance board meeting and open space event.   We were defeated by the overwhelming sweetness of Voodoo Doughnuts!

Voodoo Doughnuts

In November I went along as a (grand)-parent helper when Kyla’s class had a trip to Kapiti Island.  It was a great day out, even if my legs swore at me for the next week!  I flew the next day to Thailand for the Agile Tour and was definitely hobbling around the conference.

Looking back at Paraparaumu from Kapiti Island

SoftEd has opened an office in Singapore, which means I’ll be spending more time in that part of the world.

This year I’ve done quite a bit of conference speaking, including being invited as a keynote at Agile Tour Singapore – I do enjoy the great variety of people I get to meet at conferences and have made many new friends in different places this year.

Next year I will be speaking at Agile India in March and have submitted proposals for Agile 2016 and Agile Australia – I’m sure more will emerge 🙂

My last trip for the year was to Brisbane and Saudi Arabia.  It was great to meet with a small agile community in Riyadh.

 

Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

On the family front, Steven, Serena and Abigail are flourishing and it’s wonderful to see Abigail growing so happily.

Mom has moved to a rest home close to us and whenever Serena comes to visit Abigail and her NanNan get into all sorts of mischief together.

At the rest-home Christmas party they had a group of bikers taking people for rides – needless to say both Mom and Kyla took full advantage of the opportunity.

NanNan on a Harley

Kyla Close BehindI got to catch up with Matthew, Colette & Conner and Melody & Hayden in Brisbane – they’re all well and thriving.

Jade and Cam are doing great in Auckland, as is Robert.

Arthur and Nicole are also thriving – Arthur is still at Ortega Fish Shack and spoils us with his culinary prowess whenever the come and visit.

Joshua did very well at school this year and is headed for great things.

Kyla also brought home a great report, and she’s decided to stay with us next year too – doing her high schooling in New Zealand.

Cressida is well, still struggling with the loss of Chris but coming through it.

Arnold is engaged to Sam(antha) – the two of them make a lovely couple.  Sam is looking for work in Wellington and will move over here when she finds a suitable role.

To end, Nancy and I wish all who celebrate the holiday a blessed and merry Christmas and everyone a wonderful 2016.

 

 

I took this photo from the beach close to us – it symbolizes why we love living where we do.

Sunset over Kapiti Island

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