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We’ve had a super busy start to January already, which makes me really glad that I had some really great family time over the Christmas period.

And now that both the kids are officially old enough to really enjoy all that comes with Santa Claus, the tree and the presents, everything is a lot more exciting in the Barrett household.

In particular, this year was a landmark year for my youngest Benjamin – it was the first time he really ‘got’ Christmas, and consequently was over the moon when the time for him to open his presents finally arrived.

But here’s something I’ve never really experienced until this year: the tension and anxiety that comes from building a brand new toy with your child breathing down your neck.

They’re desperate to start playing with the toy, but you don’t want to rush it and assemble it incorrectly.

But, that’s what ends up happening, which invariably means disassembling it and putting it back together (with a sherry to help) after the kids have gone to bed.

And I think there’s a relevant point for all of us in the engineering space – when things are rushed, they’re rarely perfect, and they often need tweaking or rethinking.

But if you’re patient enough to do the prep work properly, do the right testing and ensure that the design is right, the chances of a late night reassemble are significantly diminished.

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