I'm a Christian, a designer, and a gadget fan who lives in Cheltenham, UK.

This is my blog, a creative outlet to mess around and play with as well as a place that logs my thoughts and inspirations.

Lockdown 3

We have been in Lock­down 3 for a few weeks now as Cov­id-19 con­tin­ues to spread through the pop­u­la­tion. The gov­ern­ment issued stay at home notices again, but this time people don’t seem to be fol­low­ing things quite as closely.

It’s both frus­trat­ing and annoy­ing see­ing so many people still meet­ing up with friends, even trav­el­ling across cit­ies to meet in the park for birth­days. Every­one it seems is able to find a way of exempt­ing them­selves from the rules.

I’ve decided to approach this lock­down dif­fer­ently as well. Maybe because it’s also a new year, I’m not sure. I’m try­ing to eat more health­ily, snack less, and exer­cise more.

The nations favourite–or maybe least favour­ite judging by some of social media–PE teach­er Joe Wicks, has been doing his live workouts again. This has been my workout of choice so far, I’ve not been doing it live as it’s at an incon­veni­ent time for work, but I’ve been doing the recor­ded ver­sions at a later time. I’m 6 for 6 so far, and I’d nev­er thought I’d say this about HIIT workouts, but I’m actu­ally enjoy­ing them. Although not the ache or stiff­ness in my legs after.

I’ve also been tak­ing more time to read this time. In the first lock­down I couldn’t con­cen­trate on a book, I wasn’t able to focus for more than a couple of minutes and would find myself reread­ing sen­tences over and over. This time how­ever has been dif­fer­ent. I’m find­ing that famil­i­ar refuge in fic­tion again. Get­ting lost in anoth­er world that exists only in my ima­gin­a­tion and one that doesn’t have the anxi­ety that comes with the world we live in right now.

I’ve also been watch­ing the last sea­son of Por­trait Artist of the Year. It’s one of the few “real­ity” tv shows I enjoy. Pre­vi­ous series have always made me feel inspired, but this time around it seems to be more so. I’ve even sor­ted out all my old art mater­i­als with the aim of find­ing some time to pick up a brush. We will see what hap­pens there.

As I fin­ish writ­ing this the sun is com­ing out. The cov­er­ing of snow I woke up too this morn­ing is still there, but I fear it may not last long. Time to dig out the wel­lies and go for a walk.

Domain conundrums

Over the years I’ve amassed a num­ber of domains for vari­ous web­sites I’ve wanted to cre­ate. A few of those are related to my former freel­ance busi­ness, and two relates to blogs. This week I got a noti­fic­a­tion that 3 of them are up for renew­al in Janu­ary, it’s left me ques­tion­ing if should renew them all or if it’s time to let some go.

I have the domain for this blog, philbowell.com, which I will def­in­itely renew. I have philbowell.blog, which I used briefly for this site, and I have philbowell.design, which is what I used for the last couple of years of work­ing for myself.

Since I star­ted work­ing as part of an in-house UX team, I’ve been intend­ing to con­sol­id­ate my port­fo­lio into my per­son­al site. One domain for both places. What I hadn’t thought of was how to handle the domains. A redir­ect seems to make the most sense, but the cost of renew­ing them is much high­er than I expec­ted it to be. Let­ting go of domain names is some­thing that I don’t like doing and I’m try­ing to work out the impact of doing that. It’s a tricky conundrum.


Today is Thanks­giv­ing in Amer­ica, and des­pite being a Brit I thought it would be good to try and post some­thing I’m thank­ful for this year. I star­ted to write this post at lunch­time, and struggled, I couldn’t zero in on some­thing. This even­ing after my coun­selling ses­sion I real­ised what it is I’m thank­ful for this year. I’m thank­ful for all the people who have helped my fam­ily nav­ig­ate through the year. The mem­bers of their church, some old friends from pre­vi­ous churches, some new friends, some new col­leagues who have become friends. Some people who were friends and I’ve dis­covered are now very good friends. For all of them I am thank­ful, we couldn’t have done it without you.

Any­one know of a mouse that can be paired with both a Mac and an iPad? I’m in need of a new mouse, my wrist is begin­ning to suf­fer after years of using a Magic Mouse and I want one that works with both my Mac for work and iPad for per­son­al stuff. I’ve my eye on the MX3 but I can’t tell if it can pair with both devices…

Look­ing to sim­pli­fy all my web­sites. Since I’m no longer freel­an­cing and don’t need a port­fo­lio online at the moment, I’m think­ing to move away to some­thing light­er than Word­Press. Trouble is I don’t know what. I don’t want to main­tain everything oth­er than the design and want to reduce costs.

Star­ted play­ing around with Notion a bit today. I’ve heard so many people talk­ing about it I figured it was time to give it a go. Not quite sure where it fits yet. Ini­tially I’ve set up a Watch List using one of their exist­ing tem­plates and a Weekly Review tem­plate to try and get in the habit of that.

I’m try­ing to find some exer­cise that I can do eas­ily and slowly build up in to a habit. It occurred to me last night I could prob­ably find some free Pil­ates videos on You­Tube to try. A small searched revealed some begin­ner videos for men, so giv­en one of those a try this morning.

It’s now been a week since I ran out of cof­fee beans. More are on the way, but I miss the morn­ing ritu­al of brew­ing myself a coffee.