Finally, the first issue is out. It took me a few more weeks during which my day job was keeping me super busy, but I made it.
During this time I continued to work on the stack:
Key learning: I could have sent out the issue a long time ago. Even though I told myself it didn't have to be perfect, I kept on working on things, thinking they were all just small tasks. But all those small tasks added up. In the end, they did not make much of a difference for my initial subscribers and I could have sent the first issue back in December. Keeping a more iterative mindset is one of the things I need to get better at.