Wednesday, November 28, 2007

bend it like beckham

Last night SP and I went to see the game - it was pretty good and full of action. Eight goals were scored in all which doesn't happen very often in football, it made the game exciting and interesting.

There was of course a Beckham special, a free kick from 25m bent right into the top left hand corner of the net = special indeed!

Sydney FC played well, knocking three goals in in the first half, Beckham scoring the first goal for the Galaxy a minute before half time. The second half had more goals, a few rough and tumbles, a sending off and for some reason only nine men playing for the Galaxy at the end instead of ten, I couldn't quite work that out, as they only had one sending off?!?!? Anyone else know the answer to that one?

Two more goals for Sydney and one more goal for Galaxy leaving Sydney with a comfortable win!

Our seats weren't too bad to watch the action but we were not close enough to get great pictures - I had my 300m lens on so managed to get some - I will post these up later as we didn't get home until midnight...

Australian Idol singer Natalie Gauchi sang her new single 'Here I Am' too which was a nice surprise.

All in all it was a top night with just over 80,000 people out to see the big game! What a crowd! I think this has done great things for the sport over here in Oz!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

is chivalry dead or do people just not appreciate it anymore?

I wrote a post several weeks ago about how I appreciate seeing men give up their seats on the bus for women and how I actually think it should be the men who do it! A few people commented on how women sometimes chastise men for offering to open the door or for giving up their seat and also mentioned how there is a fine line in knowing who exactly should you give your seat up for. eg does that person look older than they actually are and might not want you to stand up for them? Saying that I am not old but I would appreciate it?!?!?!

In regards to the chastising, yesterday I experienced that that can most certainly be the case. I was waiting for a lift (the kind that take you 'up and down' not the 'pick you up in the car' kind) when two men came to wait for said same lift. One of the men gestured to let me on first and I said "Oh thank-you" and he replied, "Wow, you said thank-you, most women just give me a look." I am assuming by 'look' he means the 'how dare you look' not the 'oh how simply lovely of you look'. He seemed taken aback that I had actually said "Thank-you"*, I responded with, "Well, I appreciate that kind of thing."

How funny - that he was so shocked by a simple thank-you for letting me on the lift first. Maybe it isn't about chivalry at all, maybe some people just don't have great manners?

* I am not suggesting that I am the politest person on the planet or anything like that, I was just shocked by how much a little thank-you was responded too, as if it just doesn't happen very often.

did you say red hammer?

You just thought about a red hammer, didn't you?

"98% of people would answer a red hammer while doing this exercise.

If this is not your answer, you are among 2% of people who have a different, if not abnormal, minds."

I realise a few of you, like me have a different or should I say 'abnormal' mind as the email I received called it. I thought of a 'purple spanner' and I was looking at a white email when I picked purple - I think a couple of you could have been influenced by my purple blog!.

Unfortunately in my little experiment here on my blog it appears that there are more than 2% of abnormal people that read my blog, it's more like 45%, BUT don't get me wrong, I love that I am not alone and that abnormal people read my blog - please keep reading. You 'normal' people out there you keep reading too!

This isn't really all that exciting so I hope you didn't lose any sleep last night at the excitment of the results! I thought I would get a lot more people saying red hammer - then it would have been cool.

la galaxy v sydney fc tonight

So tonight is the night, I booked tickets months ago and it is finally here - I get to go and see Beckham do what he does best - play football (it's not soccer!) and look good.

LA Galaxy V Sydney FC - but who do I go for?

Sydney FC - as that is where I now live?

LA Galaxy - I am not American but I have some family who is (when I was little I thought that made me a teeny bit American, but it didn't). Beckham plays for England, I am English and therefore support England, (although given they just got knocked out of Euro 08 I am a little hesitant in admitting it?)

Anyhoo, I can't wait it will be my first ever big football match, unless you count all the games I use to go to when my Dad played - he was a pretty good player, but I don't know that he was as good as my Gan-Gan (Grand-dad for normal people!) He played and tried out for Charlton Athletic and also got a game for them, but that was when the game was lot different to what it is now..

I have my super zoom lens at the ready so providing we are not in the nose bleed stands, I might get a few good pics!

Monday, November 26, 2007

are you 98% or 2%?

Are you in the 98% or 2% of the population?

At the end of this message, you are asked a question. Answer it immediately. Don't stop to think about it. Just say the first thing that pops into your mind.

This is a fun "test"... Give it a try and write your answer in the comments box, I will give you the answer later! Now, just follow the instructions as quickly as possible.

Do not go to the next calculation before you have finished the previous one. You do not ever need to write the answers, just do it using your mind. You'll be surprised.

How much is:

15 + 6

3 + 56

89 + 2

12 + 53

75 + 26

25 + 52

63 + 32

I know! Calculations are hard work, but it's nearly over. Come on, one more!

123 + 5


What did you think of?

happy thanksgiving - better late than never

photography course

For the past 5 weeks SP and I have been doing a basic SLR photography course on Monday nights for two hours at a local community college. It has been really helpful in understanding our camera more and how to use certain settings and how to get certain effects.

This week is our 6th week out of the 8 week course, our homework this week was to take some portrait pictures of each other, I love taking photo's but don't really like getting my picture taken! Anyhoo, it was really helpful in understanding light and shadows. Doing the homework set each week can be a bit of an effort to try and find the correct things to take pictures of but I have found it really beneficial in practically understanding the lessons and how different functions on our camera work.

I will try and post some of the pictures up that we have taken soon. I think my favourite assignment so far was the water one.... We had to take 3 different pictures of water - we took pictures of a water fountain, we had to take them at different shutter speeds. In the first 'slower shutter speed' photo the water is really blurry and in the last photo on a 'faster shutter speed' you can see the droplets of water - very awesome!

Anyhoo, I will post pics soon.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

why go to church?

I read this this morning and liked it!

A churchgoer wrote a letter to the editor of a newspaper and complained that it made no sense to go to church every Sunday. "I've gone for 30 years now, " he wrote, "and in that time I have heard something like 3,000 sermons. But for the life of me, I can't remember a single one of them. So, I think I'm wasting my time and the pastors are wasting theirs by giving sermons at all."

This started a real controversy in the "Letters to the Editor" column, much to the delight of the editor. It went on for weeks until someone wrote this clincher:

"I've been married to my wife for 37 years now. In that time my wife has cooked some 32,000 meals. But, for the life of me, I cannot recall the entire menu for a single one of those meals. But I do know this.... They all nourished me and gave me the strength I needed to do my work. If my wife had not given me these meals, I would be physically dead today. Likewise, if I had not gone to church for nourishment, I would be spiritual dead today!"

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

leaving church

Some of you may or may not know that we are leaving church in a few weeks. It has been a hard decision but a decision we have been thinking and praying about for over a year now and we have decided the time is now right. We decided at the beginning of this year to leave but had a few commitments including Bible Study that we wanted to continue with until the end of this year. We love our Bible Study and have so enjoyed these past couple of years learning more about God with them.

I have really enjoyed my time at CIM and I have learnt so much about ministry, God has grown me in so many ways for which I am enormously thankful and CIM has given me the opportunities to do so many new things that I would have never tried before.

It hasn't been an easy decision, I have been going to church there since I arrived in Australia over 3 1/2 years ago and SP joined me about 8 months after that. Most of my friends go to CIM and although I know leaving churches doesn't stop the friendships I know it will change some of them a little so it will mean really making the effort to catch up and hang out, which we are very keen to do. I will miss seeing everyone so much each Sunday.

There are a few different reasons why we are leaving, one of which is we are keen to go to a morning church closer to home. We have checked a couple of churches out over the past few months and are swaying towards one church in particular but we haven't totally made up our mind as yet. Both of the churches we have tried have been amazingly welcoming and the word of God was preached clearly and with conviction, we also felt looked after, but we can only go to one.

Please pray for wisdom as we think through what church we go to next, we want to be godly in our decision, we want to go to a church that is community/outward focused where we can use the new skills and gifts God has given us to build and grow God's kingdom and of course we want a church that preaches Christ crucified.

I am going to try and organise a little get together before we leave so keep posted and I will let you now about it when I have the details.


These are chalk drawings from Julian Beever, he is an English (Yeha) artist who is famous for his art on the pavements of England, France, Germany, USA, Australia and Belgium. Beever give his drawings this amazing 3D effect. Enjoy...

Friday, November 16, 2007

thank you

I just wanted to say how thankful I am to all of you that have commented on my post below and also to those of you who have been praying for us. The power of prayer is amazing and we have really felt your prayers during this time. God has given me the strength and the attitude to get through this past week and a half and I really am thankful to him for that.

The last 10 days have been interesting and full of varying emotions from - 'totally lost it I can't speak' to 'calm, collected, at peace with God and his will for us' (praise God that this one has been the one I have experienced most).

This whole situation has taught us a few good but hard lessons. Thanks for praying for SP too as I think it can be so hard for the husband as the experience of early pregnancy - where you can't see or feel anything and you don't go through any of the physical changes the wife goes through - makes it not very tangible. He also had such a tough week at work last week and has been so stressed - he needs prayers for this too.

This week is going well and I am feeling pretty good, church prayed for us on Sunday night - we weren't there but we have since received emails, text messages and phone calls from our lovely church family sending love, prayers and support. This has been so nice, we feel very much loved and taken care of by our church.

If you get a minute here are a few prayer points:

- That God might be glorified through this whole experience.
- That we might continue to trust God and his will for us.
- Praise God that my body seems to be getting back to normal.
- That God may bless us with a healthy pregnancy and baby next time around and that it wouldn't be too long before that happens.

Thanks again to all of you for being so great!

Thursday, November 08, 2007

sad news but trusting God

The reason I have not really been writing much or commenting lately is due to a very sad time in our little family. The reason I really want to share this is so that as brothers/sisters in Christ you might pray for us but also as my friends I want you to know about this important yet sad time in our lives, it's important to share the good and the hard with each other, to build each other up and to encourage each other in God's word.

We found out about 5 weeks ago we were pregnant! We were very excited at first but when I reached 6 weeks I started spotting, I felt really uneasy about this and it didn't sit very well with me. Pregnancy + bleeding = bad news to me!

Anyhow, the doctor requested I go for a 8 week scan which was last Monday. For a whole week and a half I had stopped being excited and was actually preparing myself for bad news. I guess a glimmer of hope always remains but as a women I think God has most definitely given us an intuition and I just knew in the bottom of my heart that things didn't look good.

Monday was a really tough day, we went early for the ultrasound. I had two ultrasounds but no fetal heartbeat could be found, the sac and fetus were only measuring 6 weeks and I should have been 8 weeks. I was very certain of my dates and also with the spotting starting at around 6 weeks I just knew what the outcome would be. There were many tears and I felt sick in my tummy at the prospect of the results.

An hour later and I collected my results and it was confirmed that it was a nonviable pregnancy. I felt awful and I cried a lot on Monday, seeing that everything was there but not growing was tough - you try not to get too excited especially knowing that 1 in 4 women miscarry but there is a part of you that can't help but think through having a baby and what that might look like...

Then the process of the miscarriage started all by itself, it was like my body was given permission to do what it needed to do, the news having been confirmed.

Although I have had a few really bad days and today being my first day back at work I feel a little fragile I want to say that through all of this - I have felt God's peace and his comfort at this time. He is in control and the reason this has happened is because he wants what is best for SP and I, even though at times it might be hard to understand - right here right now I trust him and his will for us!

I know God is already teaching me so much and I am sure once we get through to the other side there will be even more he has taught us... God wants us to lean on him, to trust him, to follow him. When things are going well and when life is good it can be easy to forget our need for God. It is when something like this happens where we are totally out of control that we seem to cling to God more than ever. I guess ironically we need God for the very breath we breath each day - it can just be easy to forget!

I see this as an opportunity to glorify God, to show friends and family that we trust God even through the hard times, that even through the hard times we believe that God is in control of everything... Maybe I will also have other opportunities to speak to other women who have been though the same thing, that I might be able to encourage, love and speak to them about this experience.

Please pray for us as we grieve this loss, as my body does what it needs to do and as we think ahead to the future. It has been so stressful and the thought of going through this again freaks me out - please pray that God might be gracious in granting us a healthy pregnancy and baby in the near future.

I hope you don't mind me sharing, it's good to write it all down when it is fresh so I can look back at how God has been working and is working in my life right now.