Friday, December 31, 2010

Mouse Fest

My eldest daughter decided to buy herself two pet mice. We have never had mice in the family before - well not intentionally anyway! They have provided some amusement and entertainment. This week my husband and two of my kids wangled their way into Arise Fest. This is a two night Christian music concert held at Midmar Dam. The rest of us, feeling a little left out, created Mouse Fest - an obstacle course deluxe for teenage mice!

I will blog again about church and theology soon!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010


This is the entrance to the plantation which runs behind our house for kilometres. It is open to the public as a nature reserve and we have enjoyed walking there - although it is unmaintained and very muddy!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Patriotism/ Nationalism

The story of Rahab in the early chapters of Joshua has recently made me wonder. She betrayed her city by taking in the Israelite spies. When I read that, I actually think that she is a bit of a rat. But now I am realising that I have been taken in too much by nationalism and ethnic consciousness that is so prevalent today. Loyalty to the nation or ethnic group does not come before loyalty to God. So obvious from a Biblical point of view. So not-obvious to most of us South Africans today.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Holiday Thoughts

Christmas is over - the new year can begin! Part of me is impatient to get going. Part of me says that I should enjoy the holiday while I can!
We have found that we have had a more relaxed December than we have had for years. 2008 saw me preparing to move and moving to Grahamstown. 2009 saw the same for Pietermaritzburg, but the whole family this time. This year we moved house, but otherwise things have stayed much the same.
My brain is not even constantly struggling over theological problems! So I don't have much to blog . . .
My big frustration is with UKZN. I want to be thinking about my PhD plans and thesis, but communication from them is close to zero. Maybe I'm going about it in the wrong way . . .
Maybe God is telling me to take a holiday!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Bible Reading

I was faithfully following a three year Bible reading plan until I realised that the plan was repeating sections before the three year cycle was up. I am now hoping to do a one year plan and will, God-willing, have read through the whole Bible again before the end of 2011. The plan that I have chosen is a bit different to most because it doesn't allow one to get bogged down in one section or book of the Bible (the stretch through Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy, for instance, can be a bit heavy), but has an epistle on Sunday, Law on Monday, history on Tuesday and so on. The plan can be found here. I am looking forward to it!


This is our new toy. We are hoping to have many good hours on Midmar Dam!

Summer Solstice

Yesterday was the solstice - or the longest day of the year in the Southern hemisphere. Because we are hoping to do some sailing in the holidays we've been looking at weather forecasts a bit more carefully. This particular forecast also shows the actual length of the day and of visible daylight for your location. It is really cool! So both today and yesterday in Pietermaritzburg were/will be 14 hours and 2 minutes long. Tomorrow will be 3s shorter. In Johannesburg the days are less than 14 hours so this is the place to be!
Weather Underground is the source of this information and other cool facts. (The link takes you to my location near Midmar Dam!)

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Planning, dreaming, praying

Now I am almost on holiday! The trips are done. The house move is made - although the house is not the greatest. The boxes are mostly unpacked. So now there is time to think about next year from a refreshed point of view. Time to actually think about what Jesus might want from me. Time to prioritise my dreams and aspirations.
And I am grateful that there is space to dream. That there is space for me to serve the church and to grow myself. Going back to seminary next year won't be so bad.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Digital Christmas

Have you seen the Digital Christmas Youtube video? Funny!


Well, this morning I drove from Johannesburg to Pietermaritzburg and needed my windscreen wipers on all the way! It was pouring in Jhb and I see from news reports that roads are being closed. Fortunately the rain was less from about 150km outside Johannesburg - and it is barely raining in Pietermaritzburg.
Tick another thing off on my 'things I have done' list!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

That Jazz just keeps going . . .

It is a funny thing. My Honda Jazz is now two years old. It spent its first year of life taking me around Grahamstown and Port Elizabeth and did an average of 2000km a month. The strange thing is that this year in Pietermaritzburg I have also done close to 2000km a month. I can't quite figure it out. Last year I did a 130km trip to PE and back every week. I travelled 50km to 100km to various churches on Sundays. But local travel was very low - about 1.5km to the office and I used to walk to the shops.
This year I have travelled to Howick and back on average twice a week - that's about 20km from Pmb. There has been the occasional trip to Durban - about 90km. But local travel is a bit more - it was about 8km from our family home to the seminary. It is a bit frightening how much these little trips add up.
After 2 years the Jazz is still going well and I am still very pleased with it!

Monday, December 13, 2010


I recently read 'Imperium' by Robert Harris. I think it was recommended by Ben Witherington on his blog. It was recommended as a good book to get an idea of the Roman world in the time of Jesus - for those of us that don't want to read more strictly academic publications!
I enjoyed it. It tells the story of the Roman lawyer Cicero and the author claims that at least 50% of the action is historically true and that there is nothing in his telling that could not possibly be true.
Along the way we meet Crassus who crucified thousands of slaves along the Appian way. Also Julius Caesar as a reckless, scheming youngster. It is so easy to see how Paul would fit into this saga - although he appears in history about 100 years later. Cicero's crafted arguments and political tactics illustrate the world that Paul lived in. Definitely a helpful book to read!

Monday, December 06, 2010

Time to Stop

We are going to the beach for a few days! We are all enjoying the novelty that this will be a 90 minute journey rather than the 7 hours from Johannesburg that we are used to.
We all need the break. It has been very good to be busy, and I hope useful, but now it is time to stop!

The photo is of the Grade R group singing a song at their graduation yesterday afternoon at Brentwood pre-school. We are very proud of them and their teachers!

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Landed again

It might be a bit soon to say 'settled', but we have landed in our new house in Pietermaritzburg. Everything seems good - the washing machine doesn't leak, the geyser works. We feel like we are living in a jungle because we are right on the edge of a bluegum plantation (nice).
This is my fourth home in four years! And that is not counting the two flats that I had (I still have one) at seminary and the two nights a week that I spent in PE last year. I am learning not to be tied to place or physical things. I am still so grateful to be in the same town as my family, unlike last year when we were 1000 km apart!