Friday, May 29, 2015

All I Want For My Birthday Is.... not get gastro.....unlike what happened the day after my birthday last year.

I have a Viennetta in the freezer I'd quite like to enjoy tomorrow, too.  It's an annual tradition for me.

Image from here

Happy Birthday to me for tomorrow!  You too, Libby, if you're reading this post.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

5 More Sequels Which Were As Good As Or Better Than the Original

Here are my first five.

1.  The Gods Must Be Crazy/The Gods Must Be Crazy II

2.  Terminator/Terminator 2: Judgment Day

3.  Father of the Bride/Father of the Bride: Part II

4.  Shrek/Shrek 2

5.  The Wizard of Oz/Return to Oz

Tuesday, May 26, 2015


I'm currently in the process of some major decluttering.  I have SO MUCH JUNK! Everything must go! Yes, I'm in nesting overdrive.

My study is being transformed into Rory's new bedroom and the new baby will have Rory's current room. When they're older maybe they can share a room, but until then the contents of my study are either being thrown out, recycled, sold, given away, or relocated around the house.

Which brings me to the point of this post....I really don't understand hoarders!

What is the point of hanging onto things that you don't use or don't work, saying "I'll use it/fix it one day."?  Guess what? Chances are 'one day' will never come. Throw it out!

I hear so many people complaining that they need a bigger house for all of their stuff. Unless you're a family of seven in a two bedroom apartment, how about you just have an almighty decluttering session instead? 

I don't get it. Please explain....

Monday, May 25, 2015

Against the Wind by Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band

Sometimes life really does feel like I'm running against the wind. I could really relate to these lyrics during that lost feeling I had during my first year of uni...until Jesus found me.

And the years rolled slowly past,
And I found myself alone,
Surrounded by strangers I thought were my friends,
I found myself further and further from my home.
And I guess I lost my way,
There were oh so many roads.

Against the wind,
I'm still running against the wind.
I'm older now, but still running against the wind.
Well, I'm older now, but still running against the wind.

Lyrics from here

Thursday, May 21, 2015

The Church Often Gets This Wrong

Yesterday's Bible verse tells us to warn those who are idle, encourage the timid and help the weak.

Unfortunately the church often gets this so wrong - warning the timid and the weak rather than helping and encouraging.

Too often churches mistake reluctance to serve as laziness, when it is really due to fear or shyness.  The church focuses on the people they WANT, rather than the people they HAVE. Instead of encouraging people to use their gifts as part of the body of Christ, people get bent out of shape, like square pegs being squashed into round holes. They focus on what ministries and personalities they want, instead of trusting that God has arranged His church just as He wants it. I've blogged about this before in The Young Adult Body Part.

How about we all realise that not everyone is an outgoing, dynamic leader-type....and that's ok. Some people will step out of their comfort zones....but with encouragement, support and proper training. I think that's why a lot of people are reluctant to serve on committees, as they're aware they're just going to be chucked into an unfamiliar role by someone who's desperate to get out of it, and be expected to swim.  Proper 'handover' takes a lot longer than 30 minutes.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Bible Verse of the Day

And we urge you, brothers, warn those who are idle, encourage the timid, help the weak, be patient with everyone.
1 Thessalonians 5:14

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

It's Too Long!

It looks like I won't be entering that writing competition after book is double the length of the maximum word count permissable (yes, it's an epic!).


Back to hunting for more competitions and agents:

Manuscript Monday - Pan Macmillan Australia accept the first 100 pages from an unpublished manuscript on the first Monday of every month.

Monthly Catch - Penguin Books Australia accepts unpublished manuscripts during the first week of each month.

I think I need to enter some short story competitions as well so I have an impressive resume.

Monday, May 18, 2015

The Next Step

I've decided to stop sending my book to any more agents for now and enter this competition instead:

Entries are due by the end of this month.  The catch is I can't send my book to any agents or publishers until the winner is announced later in the year.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Diary of an Incubator: 20 Weeks

I'm now starting to feel like I did at 30+ weeks with Rory...breathless, uncomfortable at night.  I've had Pregnancy Rhinitis since early on, and it got so bad I was struggling to breathe at night.  To stop the river of gunk coming out of my nose and constant sneezing, my doctor and local pharmacist said I should use a preventative nasal spray.  This bubba sure is hard work to grow.

The bubba is cooking well.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Wedding 3 2015

Our third wedding of 2015 was that of John and Kathy.  We know John from church and Bible study and are thrilled that he has met his match.

The ceremony and reception were held on Saturday 18th April at John's parents' farm and, my goodness, it was a freezing day!  I don't know how Kathy survived in the cold, but she said she would only get to wear her dress once, so she wanted to make the most of it.  I spent the reception sitting by the fire pit, wrapped in a blanket!

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Walk On

This was the next on my list of Christian biographies to read this year....

U2 have always been controversial among Christians.  Some see them as inspiring, revolutionary and an encouragement to live out the message of Jesus, particularly among the world's poor.  Others see them as frauds and immoral.

Walk On tells of U2's spiritual and musical journey through the decades, from their hometown of Dublin to becoming one of the world's biggest rock bands.  It explores the thought processes and experiences which inspired some of the greatest songs out there today.  At times it is a bit tedious going through almost every song and album over the past few decades, but interesting to know how these well-known lyrics came about.

As an aspiring artist, I've always been encouraged by U2's example of spreading the gospel through music.  I share their desire to break free of the Christian arts subculture.  It seems that when people find out you're an artist who's a Christian, they want you to create FOR Christians.  No, I want to create for those outside the church.  There is more than enough stuff out there for Christians already.

Are U2 Christians?  That's not for me to judge, only God knows people's hearts.  But, from this book, I'd say 'yes', all but one of the band's members follow Jesus.  I don't agree with all of their convictions (smoking, swearing etc.) or their decision to shun the traditional church at times (although I kind of get where they're coming from as well), but this book encouraged me to think long and hard about how I live out my faith practically and how I deal with the tension of wanting to be a Christian, yet break into mainstream arts.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Quote of the Day

If I'm honest, I'm rebelling against my own indifference. I am rebelling against the idea that the world is the way the world is, and there's no d***ed thing I can do about it. So I'm trying to do some d***ed thing.
- Bono

Friday, May 08, 2015

Friday Funny


Should I have a baby after 35?
No, 35 children is enough.

What is the most reliable method to determine a baby's sex?

My wife is five months pregnant and so moody that sometimes she's borderline irrational.
So, what's your question?

My childbirth instructor says it's not pain I'll feel during labour, but pressure.  Is she right?
Yes, in the same way a tornado might be called an air current.

When is the best time to get an epidural?
Right after you find out you're pregnant.

Is there any reason I have to be in the delivery room while my wife is in labour?
Not unless 'alimony' means anything to you.

Is there anything I should avoid while recovering from childbirth?
Yes, pregnancy.

Do I have to have a baby shower?
Not if you change the baby's nappy very quickly.

Our baby was born last week.  When will my wife begin to feel and act normal again?
When the kids are at university.

Thursday, May 07, 2015

Try Again by Aaliyah

If at first you don't succeed,
Dust yourself off and try again,
You can dust it off and try again.
If at first you don't succeed,
You can dust it off and try again,
Dust yourself off and try again.

Lyrics from here

Wednesday, May 06, 2015

Bible Verse of the Day

For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathise with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are - yet was without sin.
Hebrews 4:15

Monday, May 04, 2015


I received a rejection letter from the literary agent I sent my book to in the mail on Friday, and I spent the weekend trying to process how I felt about it.

I'm not going to give up.  I'm going to go through the rest of the list of the agents and send my book to others.  After all, J.K. Rowling had Harry Potter rejected by a publisher (yeah, I bet they're kicking themselves).

But, on the other hand, I need to pray about it.  When a setback comes all sorts of questions are raised.  The main one being:  Is this what God would have me do, or what I want to do?

Although I knew in my head that writing fiction is a tough industry and I should be prepared for rejection, it still hurts and it's still disappointing.  It's hard because most of the reputable literary agents in Australia seem to be female and a book about football might not be to their taste.

I spent Friday night laying it all at God's feet and pouring my heart out to Him.  He's not a remote God.  He knows how I feel.  After all, He knows what rejection feels like (albeit for a different reason).