Andy Van Slaars

Andy Van Slaars

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Giving Thanks - 2018 🦃

November 21, 2018

Every year, I think “I ought to write about all the things I’m thankful for”, and then I don’t. So this year, I’m just doing it. Adding the year as part of the title is foreshadowing to a future where I intend to do this annually, but may or may not actually follow through in any given year 😝.

Family 👨‍👩‍👧

I’m thankful every day for my wonderful wife and our beautiful daughter. My wife is a constant source of support and really is my perfect match. Our daughter is full of personality and is one of the sweetest kids you could ever meet. My life is more complete and fulfilling for having them in it.

Work 👨‍💻

In February, I started my current role as an Enterprise Architect for Cengage Learning. The last 9 months have been incredibly busy, but also extremely rewarding. I get to work with an incredible team of architects, engineering directors, technical product managers and engineering teams. I am thankful for the opportunity to shape how we build front ends now and into the future and for the amazing teams I get to work with.

Remote work 🏡

My current job is the 3rd one I’ve had where I get to work from my home office. I do travel pretty frequently ✈️, but most days do not require a commute. That time where I would otherwise be sitting on a train or in traffic (or both, as was the case for my last commute) is now spent with my family. At this point, I’ve spent half of my career in tech working from home and I’m thankful to work in a field where that is becoming more and more commonplace.

egghead.io 🎤 💻

Yesterday I put the finishing touches on my upcoming course covering modern JavaScript tooling. This will be my 6th course on egghead.io and my 3rd for 2018 🎉! Screencasting can be quite challenging, but I love the challenge and I love teaching and helping others. I’m thankful for the opportunity to be a part of egghead and for all the work the egghead team does to support me (and all the other incredible instructors), in getting videos out in front the developer community. Without the marketing, infrastructure, artwork, feedback and guidance from the egghead team, I’d put out far fewer videos and with nowhere near the reach that egghead enables.

Open Source 🆓

Open source software and the open source community has changed my life. Between my day job and my egghead videos, everything I do in a professional capacity is based on open source technology. I’m writing this post in VSCode (using several free and open source extensions), for a blog based on Gatsby, which is powered by React and GraphQL. All amazing tools. All free to use. It really is an amazing time to work on the web! I’m thankful for all the hard work and dedication the community puts into all of these tools. Without them, my life and work would be significantly different.


This is not a comprehensive list and I know I have a lot to be thankful for, but these are the big items that are top of mind for me right now. I would keep going, but I’d end up never finishing and ultimately this would never be published.

If you’ll excuse me, I need to go spatchcock a turkey 🦃