Spend Better: Day 2
1 min read

Spend Better: Day 2

Yesterday I told you about starting a one-week project, Spend Better. How are things looking at the end of Day 2?

First, I'm trying to get a handle on balancing work and life. Yesterday my wife and I had tennis lessons in the morning, then my daughter is home from school and right into Trick or Treating, leaving me only ~4 hours or so of time that also needs to include lunch. Today was a similar story, with errands and another daughter activity in the afternoon/evening leaving a similar amount of time for the morning (which is not a very productive time of day for me, better for emails and meetings).

So that's a thing I'm still trying to figure out.

That said, I have made enough progress that I achieved Day 1's goal of establishing an application foundation. As a software engineer, the back end language I'm currently most proficient in is PHP. I'd love to explore another language and stack, but that's counter to my speed goal here. Focusing on that goal, I looked for PHP frameworks and stacks that can get me up and running with basic CRUD functionality for my entities and data.

I went with Laravel for the back-end framework. I know both Laravel and Symfony pretty well, but Laravel excels in rapid development and a plug-and-play ecosystem. Which includes Filament, "accelerated Laravel development" that got me a CRUD UI very quickly.

Laravel also comes with packages that give me a local Docker environment setup, and full-text search integration. I'm going with Meilisearch on this project, which I actually haven't used yet, but figure the abstractions with Laravel will remove most of the speed barrier. Besides, I have to learn something during a project. 🙂

While I am off to a slow start with two busy days, I'm feeling accomplished!

For Day 3, I hope to make a dent on what UI will be for visitors on the app. I have a couple visual design tools (and maybe a splash of AI) that I hope will expedite the process.

Onward! See the UI & search implemented in Days 3 & 4.