Holiday Time

At 11 am school turns out for the end of term and we're off to sunny Greyton for 10 days. The boys are uber-excited, poor Joel hardly slept at all last night! Eli can't wait as he's going to ride his bike on the road with Daddy for the first time and Joel just wants to kick-back and chill in the coffee shops of Greyton. Definitely takes after his Mum!

The house is in the good hands of Charmaine who's house-sitting so Rosie will get a break from the boys whilst being well looked after.

So, phones off, computer off, adios Blog, Facebook, Twitter et al for 10 days. Fantastic!
Once a week whilst studying at All Nations our tutorial groups were posed with a conundrum under the guise of Mission In Practice. There were rarely straightforward answers and more often than not no real answers at all, just plenty of discussion, some good arguments and the occassional chance to wind someone up for a laugh!

So here's one for today..

Life, Death & Cake!



Once again the weekend demonstrated what a diverse life we seem to live at the moment, and quite how many opportunities we have to participate in all walks of life and be ready with a word of encouragement, listening ear, tissue(!) etc. etc.

Puppet Master

I joined Joel in class today to help with the final stage of his puppet making. Each of the children had to design a puppet, work out what they needed, get the materials (plenty of running around for Mummy!) and then make the puppets. So today's stage was finishing off the puppets and the parents had been asked to come and help and I was the only Dad there.

Trees

We missed the National Arbor Week last week but may just have made ammends this week.

With a bit of help from my mate Rod we've just planted four indigenous trees in the garden. I love trees so it's a real privilege to be able to plant some and especially to plant indigenous trees that are in harmony with the environment.

Right to left they are: Assegai, Cape Beech, Natal Mahogany and Cheesewood. All are reasonably quick growing and the Mahogany & Cheesweood are noted for their attracting birdlife.

Today we celebrate our 19th wedding anniversary which is quite amazing! We keep being asked if we're doing anything special to celebrate our anniversary but to be honest it feels a bit odd as next year is a bit of a biggy being the china anniversary (20th).

Still we've got a great evening lined up as we'll be out enjoying a good meal with good friends as we celebrate Jo With The Blue Car's 40th birthday. It should be a lot of fun!

Bring on the next 19!

A few previous posts about our anniversary.

Elf n Safety

I'm not one for all the politically correct nonsense that surrounds so much of what masquerades as 'Health & Safety', particularly in places like Blighty where it's all gone way over the top!

Having said that, I do think there's a place for exercising a degree of common sense and looking at the 'scaffolding' being used by these plasterers on the house being built at the back of ours, I would suggest this might be a good opportunity for applying said common sense!

We had a lot of fun in the Nature Reserve this morning. The highlights were watching Eli climb onto the roof of the jungle gym whilst a young mum pushed her 18 month girl in the swing. She kept looking at us and then looking at Eli as if expecting us to do something. We just chuckled. If she ever has a boy she might one day understand. She did look really shocked though when Daddy announced "Last one back to the car smells of dog poo." Joel & Eli rose to the challenge!

I’ve been giving a lot of thought to the whole issue of church and what it is or what it shouldn’t be and what we as Christians should and shouldn’t be doing.

A case in point at present is the whole media circus around a tiny church of 50 and their idiotic pastor. Either he’s a marketing genius who has got himself known all around the world or he’s a lunatic. Either way there's very little of the grace of God in his interviews etc. Anyway, he’s not my main topic here and he’s already had way too much publicity so back to the question in hand.

Two things I’ve read lately have come back to bug me and the more I think on them the more I feel they are simply wrong. It took me a while to come to this conclusion because one of the comments came directly from a church leader I have massive respect for and the other came from a leader in the same church.

Learn To Earn

Yesterday we realised another dream as we were able to take 3 ladies, from the 3 different communities in which we work, to visit a local empowerment project, Learn to Earn. It is based in the largest township outside of Cape Town (around 1 million people!). Their motto is 'a hand up, not a hand out', which we love -that is the only real way to empower people.

They offer courses in sewing, cooking, woodwork, computing, graphic design and admin skills to the unemployed, asking them to contribute 5% towards the cost of the course (ie: approx £20 to £40).