Life @ The Cleary Family

Like most of you, we have been in lock-down here in Virginia since March. Now we are opening back up with some restrictions. It has meant though, that my three boys have been here at home the whole time, with no school. The school system here was not quite set up for remote learning. Even though my middle school-er and senior in high school had chrome books, they joined zoom calls, where they would hang out. No real school work was required, and if they completed any work, it did not count towards grades, as their grades were already decided based on the first two semesters.

It meant that our family life changed drastically, with us all at home 24 hours a day, with no place to go. We did, however, make adjustments, that we continue to do. Saturdays became the time we would hike as a family, and Sunday afternoons were family walk, or me and boys would scooter together. While at home, we tried out best to balance relaxing time with some school work and online learning. We signed the boys up to Varsity Tutor, which provided free classes and camps on all different topics, not just core subjects but also fun topics such as building Minecraft worlds and bug bites. My eldest son didn’t get the graduation from school, he hoped. However, we did drive through the parking lot with all the seniors, which was very cool. We got a quick graduation walk, where he could wear the cap and gown and get his diploma, at least, with a few photos.

I had to move my recording equipment to the basement for my work, which is a little quieter, where I now have multiple screens set up, a green screen, a 4K camera, and dual lights for presentations. It meant I could continue recording courses and enjoy the many Zoom and Teams meetings that we all love so much now.

During this time, my son-in-law started his basic training in the AirForce, which meant my daughter came back to live with us. It added further complications of its own. A married daughter used to all the freedoms she wants now living as a guest again in her parent’s house….fun times 🙂

During this time, we also found out myself and Lisa will become grandparents. Yes, I am now that old, according to my 12-year-old son 🙂

As time went on, my son-in-law transferred to Mississippi, which meant my daughter had to get back with him. With all these crazy things going on, it somehow ended up that I had to fly to Utah to load up their belongings and then drive cross-country to Mississippi. Yes, I just did that, and it took 35 hours!! I spent three full days in a U-haul towing a car behind, driving through Utah, Colorado, New Mexico, Texas, Louisiana, and Mississippi. Nothing like driving for 13 hours through New Mexico to Texas, and see nothing. As a family, we helped our daughter get set up in her new apartment, then enjoyed a quick break at the beach (across the street from her apartment), then headed back through Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee, Georgia, and Virginia.

During this time of strangeness, we have come accustomed to wearing masks, covering ourselves in hand sanitizer, and spending time as a family with little or no contact with any other people. My work could not have been busier, which is a blessing I know in these uncertain times. I was also able to release multiple courses:

As well as courses, I have been working with schools in the UK to deploy Microsoft Teams as their Remote Learning Platform. I ended up creating PowerShell scripts to implement everything needed that met the specifics requirements provided by Microsoft and the Department for Education. I have also been doing usual consulting for Microsoft 365, Office 365, SharePoint On-Premises, and Security.

I have not spoken at any conferences, either physical or virtual, with workload and travel for my daughter the timing did not work. I have however been able to do some webinars which are available here:

I also did an Exam Cram webinar today for MS-100 Microsoft 365 Identity and Services. I am also doing an Exam Cram for MS-500 Microsoft 365 Security Administration. Both of these will be available online through the Skill Me Up website

Lastly, I got the chance to write a Microsoft 365 Community Document. Marc Anderson reached out and asked if I could write something on security for Microsoft 365, so I did, and it was a pleasure to help out. You can find that article here. I may end up writing some more, as it was great to get back to writing content. Thank you Marc for inviting to participate.

All in all, it is still a bizarre time for the Cleary Family. Unsure as to how things will change. No idea if and when school will start back for my two youngest boys, and what it will look like in the future.

What is sure is that we will be enjoying family time, looking forward to our first grandchild being born, and from me, a bunch more courses, training, and community work, even if I don’t leave the house.

It is an honor to be renewed as a Microsoft Valued Professional (MVP) again for the 14th year. I am grateful to Microsoft and all those that participate in validating and choosing who stays and goes. I am thankful I made the cut again this year, and love the long-time friendships I have made with people who work at Microsoft and all those other MVPs and community supporting individuals.

It is an honor to be renewed as a Microsoft Valued Professional (MVP) again for the 14th year. I am grateful to Microsoft and all those that participate in validating and choosing who stays and goes. I am thankful I made the cut again this year, and love the long-time friendships I have made with people who work at Microsoft and all those other MVPs and community supporting individuals.

I look forward to an exciting, fun, strange, and maybe bizarre rest of the year. Be safe wherever you are.

Liam Cleary

Liam began his career as a Trainer of all things computer-related. He quickly realized that programming, breaking, and hacking was a lot more fun. He spent the next few years working within core infrastructure and security services until he found SharePoint. He is the founder and owner of SharePlicity, a consulting company that focuses on all areas of Technology. His role within SharePlicity is to help organizations implement technology that will enhance internal and external collaboration, document and records management, automate business processes, and of course security controls and protection. Liam also serves as the Principal Technology Advisor at Rencore, where he is helping to develop offerings that help organizations further understand and mitigate security and compliance risks, within SharePoint and Office 365 customization's. His core focus will is to identify, control, and protect whether they are full-fledged customization's or out-of-the-box Office 365 functionality. He is also a thirteen-time Microsoft MVP focusing on Architecture but also crosses the boundary into Development. He is also a Microsoft Certified Trainer (MCT). His specialty over the past few years has been security in SharePoint and its surrounding platforms. He can often be found at user groups or conferences speaking, offering advice, spending time in the community, teaching his kids how to code, raspberry PI programming, hacking the planet or building Lego robots.

You may also like...