Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Zimbabwe Postal Service

Zimbabwe postal service has introduced a new stamp with a picture of Robert Mugabe in honor of his achievements. In daily use it has been shown that the stamp is not sticking to envelopes.
This has enraged the President who demanded a full investigation. After a month of testing a special presidential commission has come out with the following findings:
1. The stamp is in perfect order.
2. There is nothing wrong with the applied adhesive.
3. People are just spitting on the wrong side

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Nativity Scene

These ceramic figures were made for me by my "American mom", Jackie Edele, the year I spent in South Charleston, West Virginia as an exchange student. Every time that I have set up this scene for the past 40 years, I have marvelled at its beauty. This year was no exception. It's not only the beauty of the figurines that shines through, but also the love and acceptance that I received from the family, and community among whom I spent the year.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Born To Die

Grocery shopping is an obesity occupation, especially when freshly baked cakes are attractively arranged at the entrance to supermarket. Just savouring the odour as I pass adds kilograms to my frame. But sometimes it can be quite an intriguing experience - as it was a couple of weeks ago. On the first table, amongst other goodies, Christmas mince pies were on display, as one would consider usual for this time of year. However on the adjacent table were hotcross buns. I bought a pack of each as evidence, and to photograph for posterity. Here is the evidence. We did eat them!

So I suppose that this goes to prove that the theology of some must be true - Jesus was born to die. His life and resurrection pale in comparison - in fact, can be disregarded in the face of these two overwhelmingly important events. No wonder there are so many who come to services on Christmas Day and Easter, but we see neither hide nor hair of them for the rest of the year. Strange though, that its Jesus's death (symbolised in the hotcross buns) that is more important than his resurrection - there were no 'easter eggs' on sale. We don't see crowds at Good Friday services. Maybe 2009 will be different, seeing that the supermarkets are marketing his death so effectively.

Makes me wonder - if Jesus life is of so little importance, what about my life, and everyone else's lives? Why did I not die 'the hour I first believed'? Hmmmm.


Advent - the four weeks before Christmas - a time of reflecting on Christ's coming into the world in the form of humanity, preparation for Christ's coming again, and recognising Christ's coming in the present, daily, in all times and circumstances. In preparing sermons and thinking about the passion of John the Baptist, the forerunner to Christ; and the courage of Mary, Jesus mother - a different perspective on Advent arose. To what extent is Advent a waiting on our part for Christ to come - and to what extent is it God waiting for us to say YES to God's invitation to us to carry God's Word into the world?

A Year of Celebrations

2008 has truly been a year of celebrations.
Nephew, Phill Rodda and Ashleigh in November

Niece, Sandy Forrester and Julian in September

Son, Ian Donkin and Juliette in May

Nephew, Andrew Fath and Lara in March

Nephew, Sean Hendrikz and Tam in March

Two great nephews born, for which I have no photos.
We are truly blessed!

Natalie's Wedding

Natalie is the youngest daughter of our very close and dear friends Dave and Les Morgan. She married David Mendes on Saturday 13th December in a beautiful, happy ceremony on a farm just outside Barberton.

I don't know what it is like for a dad to let his daughter go, but Dave managed to 'keep his pose' remarkably well!

Dave, Les, and Les's mother Dora. Natalie is the first of her grandchildren to get married.

The very happy couple.

We have known them as family since their eldest daughter Kirsty was born, and our eldest son Ian was 1 year old - so they really are an extension of our family!

Sixty Years

It seems like such a long time - but when you look back it's not really. I have known my sister, Wendy, for 58 of her 60 years. Ned and I went to celebrate with her and her family at the end of November.

The combined ages of everyone in the family photo is about 547years!
The Lord said: 'Go forth and multiply' - and that is what has happened. My mother, the oldest relative alive, aged 85, has multiplied to 1078 if I add up the ages of all her children, children-in-law, grandchildren and grandchildren-in-law, and great grandchildren. Imagine that.!

Friday, December 5, 2008


That was the license plate on a golden, low-slung Jaguar that was driving in front of me this afternoon. I couldn't read the model number. Well, I thought about what the owner was saying on the license plate, and I decided - no, I do not envy him/her. I do not envy the cost that it would be to maintain such a vehicle, or what would be spent in fuel on that vehicle. If someone were to jump a red robot and crash into it, it would sustain similar damage to any other crashed-into vehicle, and cause just as much grief and inconvenience as anyone else would suffer. It probably would not be hi-jacked - but then neither would mine as mine is not a sought after make or model. I am content with my car, and very happy with the 5.5L/100Km that it gets on a long trip. No, that Jaguar is NOT 4ME2NV at all.