Monday, March 30, 2015

Cinderella

I love me a good fairytale (especially if there are ornate dresses involved) so I suppose I will eventually be seeing Cinderella, most probably when it gets on the cheap tickets list. But the idea of meeting your prince, and escaping poverty as a result, is not just a fairytale idea but a dream that is often born of harsh realities.

This article in the SMH shines a light on how the continuing gap between rich and poor in America leads to the kind of situation when a way out of poverty becomes not so much about hard, honest work but that kind of extremely lucky break that only a fairy-godmother can pull off.  I am guessing there are probably plenty of Australian statistics that might point to a growing gap here in the lucky country too.

If this is increasingly the case in modern-day America, how much more so if we pull back the lens to look at economic systems on a world scale. What dreams might a small girl born into poverty have for her future in a developing country rife with corruption and a broken political system in 2015?

The complicated situations that give rise to inequality are not solved in an afternoon.  However, Psalm 140:12 says "I know that the Lord secures justice for the poor and upholds the cause of the needy." So that's the side you probably want to be fighting on.

A Cinderella world is not really very beautiful, despite the dresses. It's one that needs the grace of the gospel to redefine it's priorities.  But the fact that we cheer for the triumph of good over evil in this tale suggests that we still recognise injustice and we long for a day when the schemers and the deceivers get their comeuppance. The question is, how can we influence the real world to reflect that desire for justice, rather than just float along with the current?

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Refugee flatpacks go into production!

The UN has put in its first order for 30,000 flat-pack shelters.  You might remember I mentioned them here when it was being trialed.  Now, it's all systems go!  However, it's introduction has suffered some hurdles: Lebanon nearly knocked back the shelter because it was too good.

If you missed it the first time, here's the video explaining the concept...


And in Cat News...

Bringing you the latest in important cat-related news from around the globe...

First up, we have the answer for those of you have always thought to yourself, "I really wish my cat could have their own Instagram account which would upload automatically so our kitty could share her wonderful life more easily".

Really.

Someone thought that?

Really.

But, moving on.

Any-hoo, here it is:


Never mind the cats.  There are so many possibilities with that one.

In other news, the ABC has announced that scientists have discovered that putting 'scrunchies' on your cat can prevent them catching wildlife. You will remember the scrunchie from the 80s - that celebration of bright fabric and elastic that graced the many high ponytails of a generation.

The great news is that a 2-year study has shown that placing a scrunchie on a cat like a collar cut the number of native wildlife killed by that cat by more than half.  Seems the bright colours tip off the birds better than a bell which the cat can learn to silence.

Wait.  Did they just say a 2-year study?  Somebody was putting a scrunchie on a cat for 2 years?  No wonder the cat is making this face.

 Scrunchies prevent wildlife deaths

Oh the humiliation.  You'd just be too ashamed to leave the house to hunt.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Sunday, March 22, 2015

I'm still here, really

Some of you who have been reading various blogs for a few years or more will be getting that feeling.  There's a point where the blog posts become so infrequent that you start to wonder how much longer this blogger will go on.  Well, I wish I could say for sure that I'll be around forever but I have to admit it's getting really hard to get time at my desk to reflect and type out my thoughts.  I'm doing my reflecting in snatched moments like the little space of time between when you put the toothpaste on the brush but before you make contact with your teeth.

But maybe we'll level off soon and I'll get back to things.  Maybe.  So hang in with me a little longer.

Anyway, work is going well. It's solid but not overwhelming.  We are all still wearing clean clothes and eating dinner so things are okay at home.  The kids are actually having a great start to the year school-wise and home-wise so that's a relief.

We just got back today from our church camp. It was fun but my awesome husband was the camp coordinator, so it was busy and now we both feel like the-day-after-a-youth-group-sleepover. Kind of fury around the eyeballs. Still, you can't beat being stuck together over a whole weekend for getting to know people and bonding.

Someone asked me this weekend if teaching was a stressful occupation.

Well.  You know from the question that they don't have a teacher in their family, I guess.

I answered fairly honestly when I said that some times it was energizing and sometimes it was exhausting and very stressful.  I can't imagine now not being a teacher. When I had been on maternity leave for about 6 years, and I was walking back into my school to start back on a tiny part-time allocation of 20 days a year, I remember feeling a wave of excitement and thankfulness coming over me. I love that place so dearly.  It's the people, I guess.  It's the opportunity to do good.  It's the joy of seeing lights come on when someone makes a discovery about learning or life.  It's the wounds and the sorrows of not being about to help make a difference in some cases.  It's kingdom work and it is the joy of working at something that lasts.

So, yeah, it's a busy year. And, yes, it has already been stressful.  But, oh, I love it!

Sunday, March 8, 2015

A truly terrible honeymoon

I read this blog post aloud to my husband tonight and had to keep stopping to mop up my tears of laughter.  David Murray explains why he won the "Most Interesting Honeymoon" prize at his recent church fundraiser.  Go on and read it aloud - it's like therapy.

Monday, March 2, 2015

3-D printing a hand

I seem to be just re-posting videos at the moment... I promise I'll write something of my own before too long.  Till then, enjoy this video about a local high school, a 3D printer and a little boy who could do with a hand... literally!


HT A holy experience

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Attention to detail is a strength

So, a dad was worrying about his autistic son who was going to "age out" of support services in the U.S. He came up with this (which is awesome)...
HT 22words