For the last 5 1/2 months I’ve been involved in planning & executing #UPROCK2019; the annual Christian Hip-Hop Summit run by KROSSWERDZ.
This week has been an alright week, quite a bit quieter.
This week has seemed fairly long, with a few things going on…
Monday was the last day for my sister Anna and brother-in-law Arthur in Hong Kong before they shipped out to London and Europe, so the majority of the day was spent taking care of final bits and pieces for them. We headed to the General Post Office in Central so that they could send a few bulky items back to Australia, cutting down on their travel luggage. Next stop was Cheung Hing Tailor for Arthur to try on his tailor made suit and trousers, which needed a slight lengthening. I decided to take advantage of getting measured up for another suit and some trousers, which fit better, and are cheaper than street bought suits and clothes… We took in a late lunch at Crystal Jade Xio Long Bao in Causeway Bay before heading back home for them to pack and head off to the airport. At night with just the three of us, we wandered around the streets of Causeway Bay to find a place to eat, we ended up at a very busy little Hong Kong Cafe which serves a variety of foods. I ate tomato & beef with fried egg rice and drank a very tasty and refreshing tangerine with honey and lemon, served in a wine cariff…
This week has been a fairly busy week, but shortened by a day in lieu on Friday.
My main challenge this week was the conversion/move of St Paul’s email hosting to use google apps for business. Whilst a fair amount of groundwork was laid towards the end of last week, this week was when the switch was flicked and our guys went ‘live‘ with the service. It was mostly a smooth transition, surprisingly smoother than expected, but not one without it’s troubles and frustrations… The major hiccup was an anomaly on one machine which meant that IMAP emails weren’t syncing. Craig managed to fix this with a reinstall on Wednesday evening.
Monday night Geoff and I caught up at his place and watched a couple of Smallville episodes; slowly creeping towards the final episode ever after 10 seasons!!
On Tuesday night Steph and Hamish came around for dinner. We had cream of mushroom soup and olive bread. During their growth group, I confined myself to my room to watch some tv, continue restoring parts of my hackintosh and writing a post on lust.
Wednesday afternoon I stuck around work till 6:30 whilst Craig sorted out some computer problems in the office.. In retrospect it was a poor decision on my part as it meant that I didn’t get enough time to cook and eat dinner before growth group. So after growth group finished at 9:30, I headed off to Coles to purchase some cheese and an onion and proceeded to cook a carbonara with some bacon leftover from KYCK #3, as well as washing up a whole stack of dirty dishes… By the time I’d finished cooking and gotten around to eating, it was close to 11pm. I soon found that one of the big problems on filling up on carbs late at night is the inability to sleep… I think I finally went to bed and got to sleep around 3:30am…
Thursday was a struggle to say the least… I needed to sort out my normal Thursday tasks as well as organise my Friday tasks, all of this on about 4 hours sleep…. Followed by college at night, which I only really got through thanks to caffeine in the form of Redbull and coffee.. Still it was enjoyable looking at the book of Isaiah: with the prophecy of the servant that we see fulfilled in Jesus.
Friday and Saturday I went along to Semi Permanent which has been running for 9 years, of which I’m pretty sure I’ve been to all 9 of the Sydney events, AND the inaugural Melbourne Event. After arriving in the city early, I grabbed a Workshop Expresso coffee before venturing out to find some mini DV tapes for my camera and then wandering on down to the conference. The talks were good, and it was really interesting to hear what these designers, producers, photographers and artists are up to, but also to hear about their lives. A couple of things that kind of stood out for me were comments/tips given that had parallels or application in Christianity, and then some which were just totally against it. The guys from Super Vixen talked about “Self Less Promotion” with this whole idea of not being out there promoting themselves in order to attain work, but rather promoting their clients and letting that work speak for itself. It kind of reminded me of what Peter says in 1 Peter 5. Also Reg Mombasa; Mambo artist and a member of Mental as Anything had some drawing of “Australian Jesus” as well as some other biblical inspired paintings. It was quite interesting how he used the scriptures as a source of inspiration, just not quite the right outcomes…
My favourite speakers from the conference were Corey Arnold; a photographer and Alaskan fisherman, Kayt Jones; a fashion photographer from LA, Gemma O’Brien; a designer working primarily with type, specifically customising letters and typefaces, and Dean Poole of Alt Group; a multidisciplinary design studio from Auckland, New Zealand.
On Saturday night after Semi Permanent I eventually caught a bus to Newtown (ask me about it sometime) to head to the Garage Hymnal album recording at St Stephen’s Newtown. It was a great evening, despite my lateness, with very catchy songs, which I think are a bit more theologically sound than a number of those commonly sung, some great lighting and production. I managed to grab a few snaps; playing with the manual focus, higher ISO, lower aperture and slower shutter speed. Here’s one of my favourites of the bunch:
Sunday morning I met up with Nic Trevena for our one to one time. We were too early for our usual haunt of Maison Robért, so we ended up heading to Pablo & Rusty’s. At graceat6 James Davidson spoke from Luke 10:25-37, commonly known as the parable of the good Samaritan. It was a good talk, making us think about who our neighbor is and reminding us that we are unable to justify ourselves and fall short of God’s standards and so we need to remember that we need a savior and we find Him in Jesus Christ.
After graceat6 finished, I left pretty quickly; I just wasn’t feeling up for social interaction and didn’t really get a vibe that the social wanted to interact with me. I’m really feeling a frustration and a weight with this, which is affecting me physically in my sleeping patterns, and emotionally, meaning that I’m rather withdrawn from things…. Please pray for me, that I’ll be relying on God, casting my fears, anxieties and frustrations on Him, finding strength and solace in His Word. Also thank God for those around that have ears to listen and hear what I’m saying, offering appropriate advice and support. Life’s not always rosey and often we think that it should be…
This week has been a really really tough week for me. It was a culmination of many things that resulted in me feeling overwhelmed, sad, disappointed and just generally down. Mike’s talk on Facebook gave me a whole bunch of things to think about in the way I conduct myself online.
This week our ministers went away for senior staff conference to look at the plans for our group of churches, leaving only a couple of us to hold the fort and run the church. It was a fairly productive time for me to knock off a few bits and pieces.
Monday night I got to catch up with Geoff after almost a month. We got out to Macquarie Centre for some dinner, some Philemon, a chat and to watch Thor.
Tuesday morning for our graceat6 meeting, we met over breakfast at The Flat. The meeting was pretty good, we got to pray for our brothers and sisters in Christ and look at the running of graceat6 for this week. At night, I got out to have dinner in North Rocks for my Mum’s birthday on Wednesday. It was a tasty meal; we had Peking Duck, San Choy Bow, Buk Choi and Salt and Chilli Flounder.
On Wednesday I went along to the 8th bi-annual IT Forum run by the Sydney Diocesan Secretariat, stopping in for a Workshop Expresso coffee on the way. We heard from Anglican Youthworks and the ways in which they work as a Christian organisation. Then as some of the Parishes, we looked into what the Diocese could provide for us and then resources we have access for procurement. After lunch we heard about the implementation of Sharepoint for a school’s intranet and then some details about cloud computing. At growth group we started looking at the gospel of Matthew.
Thursday night a college we had a guest lecturer because Peter Bolt had to attend a family funeral. It was really quite a difficult night because the pace of the lectures was so quick that I couldn’t gather thoughts or take notes quick enough, there wasn’t time for my brain to process things…
Friday night at touch, we got a good 30 people which made for an interesting and fairly messy game. I scored a nice try early on in the night, but as things progressed, we seemed to forfeit more tries. SALT was good, the first one back for the term. It was the first of the new format, which is still in need of some work. Mike preached his second talk in Breathing to Death series on Lust. It was a really good talk, full of challenges and rebukes. I’m keen to give a more indepth rundown of it sometime soon.
Most of Saturday I spent my time rebuilding and reinstalling my Hackintosh Pro machine, updating it to OS X 10.6.7 because there were a few gremlins in the system. I did get out for a coffee with Matt Turner in Eastwood. It was a good chance to chat, catch up and get his 4c on some of the things that I’d found difficult of late.
Today I got home to have lunch with my family for mothers day, we had Malaysian noodles and congee. James Davidson spoke at graceat6 tonight from Luke 7:11-23, which speaks of Jesus’ raising a man from the dead, making a mother’s day. To me, it felt like quite a simplistic talk, which I can understand the purpose of, being an opportune time for people to bring mothers to church. The main points made were that Jesus has conquered death and saved us from judgement, so we need to make sure that we pay attention to Him, putting our faith and trust in Him.
This week coming I’ve got some work to do on our email system, transferring it over to Google, before I get along to Semi-Permanent on Friday and Saturday and then off to the Garage Hymnal album launch. I’m really looking forward to those couple of days….
This week has been a bit busier in my down-time… and a still fairly quiet in the office, with the majority of ministers being at CMS Summer School. I’ve had the opportunity to work on redesigning the graceat6 website, which is planned to (re)launch on the 30th of January.
After getting the guys back in the house, we got on to playing Xbox on Monday night, with COD Black Ops: Zombies which was pretty fun… Though I’ve been finding that living here is not quite what I expected. My previous shared house experience with my uni mates John and Ed was mostly enjoyable. We bought groceries together and shared food, cooking and cleaning together. So far here, it feels like I’m renting a room… We all spend time in our own rooms, or out, there is little communication, and I feel a bit strange coming in as the third person to a couple of people that have lived together for a little while already. I’m sure that it will just take a bit of time to sort out, or adapt, but for the moment, life is really developing my graciousness and patience..
On Thursday night I dropped back home for some dinner with my folks before heading off to play indoor soccer with Jesus Lives. We played a good game of soccer and beat them, though I’m not sure what the final scoreline was, but I came away with a hurt shoulder. I was running up the right side of the field after the ball, and was tripped/tackled fairly abruptly. I wasn’t expecting it and wasn’t able to get my hands onto the ground to soften the blow, so I landed on my right shoulder, grazing a 2.5cm by 1cm patch and bruising a bigger patch around it. I didn’t really notice the damage that was there until after the match had finished, and then the severity of it hit again when I was driving home and wasn’t able to move my arm properly without experiencing pain. My folks suggested that I get to see the doctor as soon as I could. Sleeping proved fairly difficult as well, since I could only sleep in a couple of positions…
Friday morning I was off to see my Dr down in West Ryde at the medical centre. I arrived just short of 8am, which is when they open, to secure a spot in the line to see her when she arrived at 9… As I waited, I got to delve into some more bible reading, on a bit of a catch-up session. I didn’t get in to see the Dr. until about 9:45am… She examined my injury and told me to get it x-rayed, along with my chest, since I told her that I had been having a fairly sore throat for a few weeks. So I went upstairs to get my x-rays done, and dropped back down to see her, where she told me that there was no break, which was good, but that the muscle was bruised and that it would take a week or 2 for recovery, and also that I had chronic laryngitis…
The rest of Friday at work was pretty enjoyable; doing up bits and pieces for JMC (January Ministry Conference) which is happening from tomorrow until Friday at St Paul’s Carlingford with Craig Schafer speaking on Psalms in the mornings and Paul Grimmond speaking on 1 Timothy in the evenings from 7:30pm. I also spent some time in the afternoon making a wedding card for James and Charlotte’s wedding.
After work was touch footy. We had a fair amount of guys turn up again this week. I struggled to play a bit with my shoulder meaning that I couldn’t catch the ball or pass it particularly well, though I managed to get a couple of good attempts, including an intercept which led me 2/3 the way down the field, only to be tagged by Jace. At night I ended up at the folks for dinner again, this time with my sister and brother in law, plus a family friend. My sister also tidied up my hair with the clippers, taking out some length around the sides of my head.
Saturday was the union of James and Charlotte at Trinity Grammar School Chapel. Despite it being overcast, the weather was still quite muggy, especially uncomfortable in a suit.. James and his groomsmen: Hamish, Gareth and Geoff all looked quite handsome in their dark, subtley pinstriped suits, white shirts and green ties. The bridesmaids: Emily, Sophie and Peneloope looked equally as beautiful in their green dresses, but Charlotte was the standout, as she should be; a radiant bride in her lovely white dress, complete with a massive smile on her face. The reception was held at Angelos on the Bay in Cabarita and was an enjoyable time with family and friends of the lovely couple, with the traditional speeches from the fathers of the bride and groom, the best man, and the groom. The meal was tasty; I had salt & pepper calamari, beef medallion on a bed of mashed potato with vegetables, and an icecream pyramid. It was also good to see Sootie & Will; the photographers, who were the same ones who took photos for my sister’s wedding last year.
Here’s one of my favourite shots from my camera on the day. I plan on working on the rest with adjustments and what not soonish. They’ll go up on my Flickr eventually, most probably after I’ve given a copy to James and Charlotte.
Today has been a pretty lazy day: playing computer games, watching some NFL with Jase and Lairdy and a nap in the afternoon before graceat6. graceat6 felt pretty disastrous: the church server had no power when I got in there, so that meant no network and no internet, I didn’t get the song details till late this afternoon, and of the four songs that I got, we didn’t sing one of them, which was the first one up. These things aren’t a huge importance, but it’s helpful to have them done right and with sufficient preparation. I wonder how things will be this year if I pull back from doing tech….
My bible reading plans have fallen through this weekend… I’ve not done as I said I would do… I guess it’s a good thing that the plan I’m on has a few days le-way, but it’s something that I shouldn’t take advantage of… This week won’t help much with it either with JMC.
I can’t believe it’s been a month since I last wrote here. The month of February has been seemingly long and extremely busy. Here’s a run-down on what has happened, with a view to potentially blog happenings at a later date:
- Graceat6 launched
- My sister Anna married Arthur
- Con Campbell gave an intro to Colossians
- Growth Groups started for the year
- I turned 30
- Moore College
- The Hurt Locker
- Mens Katoomba Convention
- One Night Only with Way Out West and John Digweed
I’m currently in the process of re-theming CHONGLAND again. This year should hopefully see an upgrade to HTML5 & CSS3 in the code as well as a mobile site for you iPhone users.
So I’m in Melbourne until Tuesday. So far I’ve wandered the streets of the cbd, stopping in for a haircut at Synergy on Collins St, caught the train out to Malvern to see Veigli’s pad, missing the last tram back to the city and being ‘rescued’ from a tram headed for Kew. I’ve dined on ribs, red wine and taster desserts at The Grill Room, been dancing at Allumbra and heard 2 days of inspirational and informative talks at the innaugural Semi-Permanent Melbourne.
The last time I was south of the border was about 5 years ago when coming down to hear DJ Hernan Cattaneo play. Since then there has been a mass of development in the cbd and surrounds. The buildings going up seem to be nicely designed, interestingly shaped and quite colorful. It’s also interesting to note how branded Everything here in Melbourne is…
I’m not sure what the remainder of my time down here will consist of, if you have any suggestions or recommendations, let me know!!
Last Thursday the 10th of September I went under the knife to have an Arthroscopy and an ACL reconstruction. I was booked as the second in the operating theatre, so it was an early start, arriving at the Sydney Adventist Hospital (SAN) at 7am. After heading to the Day of Surgery Admissions area, my Dad and I sat down to wait for things to kick off….
First up was the Anaesthetist who took us off to run a patient history and check to make sure that what was planned in the drugs department would be alright. Then it was back for a short wait before the clerk took us through the admission, mostly paperwork and money….
More waiting before a nurse took me through to be weighed, changed and put into a bed to wait to be prepared for surgery. This involved getting my right knee and surrounds shaved, washed and sterilised, and having a teds stocking on my left leg. Not long after that a porter came and took me upstairs to the operating floor, saying farewell to my Dad in the process…
After being placed in the operating queue, I was quickly whisked away to the outer operating room, kind of like an air-lock on a space ship. The Anaesthetists came and stuck a catheter in my left arm and then it was into the theatre to see Dr Hope, with a few last minute checks, like which knee was being done, it was G.O. time. The last few moments of consciousness began with the words “Think of your favourite place on earth“, my inner monologue went along the lines of “What’s my favourite place on Earth?? I wonder if Heaven counts??“…..
The next thing I know, I’m in the hospital bed in a ward with an oxygen thingo in my nostrils, a drip in my left hand, and little to no feeling in my legs. There’s also a cord with a green button tied to my right hand, which I soon work out is the pain relief drugs…. Throughout the afternoon I became accustomed to my new surrounds, drifting in and out of sleep…. I also worked out that intravenous pain drugs and I don’t mix particularly well when they make me vomit up any water that I’d drunk…. It kinda felt like the hamster experiment where it tries to eat the food with an electric current through it. After a couple of attempts, it just leaves it alone, preferring the hunger to the shock. I preferred to put up with the pain than to vomit and get hot and light headed. The nurse did offer a shot in the bum OR a pill up the rear to stop the vomitting, but I quickly refused those too… It was a shame that the nausea was still present at dinner time, resulting in a watery dinner tray, because the only mouthful of soup I had tasted very nice: a creamy tomato soup.
The night went very slowly, drifting in and out of sleep and having the nurses check oxygen, blood temperature and feeling in my toes every once in a while…. When the morning finally arrived we got breakfast and I was very relieved when I was actually able to stomach it. The cornflakes with apricot halves and skim milk, wholemeal bread with marmalade and Orange Juice went down nicely. Then the discharges started, with all four guys in my ward being discharged that day.
My discharge was the longest: After Dr Hope came and saw me, telling me how happy he was with the surgery and that he wished all his patients were like me, the nurses finally came round to unplug all the tubes and whatnot…. and then when they went to take the dressing off of my leg, we found out that the bandages over the stitches had soaked through, so they needed to be re-dressed, which took a bit of time… Then the Physio came to give me some exercises to do and teach me how to walk on crutches…. Her phrase for stairs was helpful, but not quite right:
The good go to Heaven, the bad go to Hell
meaning that when approaching stairs, the good foot goes up first when ascending them and the bad foot goes first when descending. Then it was another wait for the pharmacist to tell me what drugs I had to take, one for anti-inflammation and a pain-killer. And then I had to wait for my Dad to come and take me home…
Since I’ve been home I’ve been in bed for most of my time, sleeping and watching television…. I’ve had to battle my way through some headaches as well, mostly just with sleep…. On Sunday Mike came over to visit in the afternoon which was enjoyable.
On Sunday night despite wanting to go to church I wasn’t able to, but I did attend via Skype and was able to hear the majority of the service. Wazza spoke on 2 Peter 2, and I was able to catch up with a couple of people after the service through the chat window….
So for the remainder of my time off (2 more weeks) I plan to:
- write – specifically my Engage posts
- some design work – CHONGLAND, and maybe SALT
- play games – Marvel Ultimate Alliance comes out soon and I’ve a copy on order
- setup some computer stuff, if my body allows for it
Thanks goes out to all that have been praying for me during this time, it mean alot and I love you for loving me in this way