Friday, December 26, 2008

...a beautiful txt I received on Christmas morn

"He spoke and it came to be,
He cried and his mother fed him.
He commanded and it stood firm,
He whimpered and His father comforted him.

The Lord reigns,
He made himself nothing.
He is exalted over all the peoples,
A servant, born in the likeness of men.

Wonder of all time and space,
The creator chooses a dirty birth:
Born in a mucky shed,
Born in my mucky heart."

- Mark Spybey

Thursday, December 18, 2008

On gripes and grumbles

There is something terribly Scottish about a good ol moan. According to this there are at least 15 words for "complain" in Scots and I'm sure there's a good few more. It's how we engage in small-talk, relate to one another or break ice in a conversation. Hot topic #1 has to be the weather, then comes increase in house prices, how busy we are and the amount of paperwork we have to do. As a student, Hot Topic #1 has to be exams closely followed by the amount of work we've given to do in such a short time and the busyness of the library to the point where it's almost impossible to find a seat. I know that I moan too much but I do it anyway because it's easy and because it makes for good small talk... Chatting to randoms is one of my favourite pastimes and the number of times I've started chatting to randoms in bus-stops over here because groaning communally about the crazy weather we've been having lately or the tardiness of public transport in this country.
But is this groaning, cultural though it is, even right?

I want my conduct to mirror of Jesus Christ who… “though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.” (Phil2:6-8)
I’m realising more and more the vast importance of a heart attitude. My words and conduct simply mirror what’s inside, even if I try and pretend that there is something else there. And in this passage I see Christ’s attitude – humility, even though He was and is God, far above us humans in every way, yet that didn’t keep from the task at hand – enduring intense public humiliation, suffering, separation from the Father, death on a cross… Talk about a hard example to follow!

I don't think we should just ignore the things that are going wrong with our world, but I'm starting to think that I choose what I say more carefully and think more carefully about how I say it:- Laughing at the weather rather than groaning about it, noticing and being an antidote to what's going wrong in the world but doing it out of genuine concern and love and not just as a reason to groan or as an overspill of oversized ego. It's far too easy to point the finger at others and at other things without looking and seeing fault in myself. I’m aware that this makes it sound easy, or at least easier than it is to put into practice. Especially as it’s gonna take a complete heart-transplant to properly put into action. Min am I grateful though that we have a God who is more than able and willing to perform the operation!

Monday, December 08, 2008

la cuisine communale

Ah I do love the community aspect of student life! I wouldn't be able to count the number of times I'd fed or been fed by other folk in the last couple of weeks let alone the last few years! This week I have particularly enjoyed delicious braided bread (courtesy of the Breakeys), white sausages and "gourmet haggis" with cheese and mushrooms and broccoli, both bizarre but delicious, to name but a few.
It's something I don't want to lose when student life ends... just having folk around, here, there, whenever I can, people who I know and don't know, sharing life and love and food with them.

lab life

I have spent many hours in the Voice Neurocognition lab in the last month and a half... and now the end is nigh, I can't help but reminisce (in bullet-point form) of my toe-dip into the world of psychology research

Highlights have to include:
- my supervisor (bizzarely similar to my dear friend Loik), what with her delightfully dry french sense of humour and her curses and pffffts and groans (primarily aimed at computers)
- getting to do everything bilingual styleee :)
- the laid-back-ness of the lab
- getting to see people I like for a little bit every day because they have to come in to do my experiment :)

The less so fun moments include:
- getting a mouth full of cigarette fumes every time I enter the building (seems psychology academics like to smoke A lOT)
- the fact that everything took much longer than I expected it to, it's slightly disconcerting that my experiment was so based on the ability of other people
- running up the steep hill to the dept which always warms me up sufficiently in this freezing cold, and then overheating the minute I step into the stiffling air of the dept
- the laid-back-ness of the lab (only the phD students are ever in before 10) which causes problems when one has a subject booked in for 9 and no one who has the keys is in yet

Just 8 hours left this week and I have all my data, woop woop!!

Sunday, December 07, 2008

au printemps...


From Glasgow (Prestwick) (PIK) to Grenoble Lyon (GNB)
Sat, 28Mar09 Depart PIK at 18:10 and arrive GNB at 21:20

*********0.00 GBP Total Fare
********25.44 GBP Taxes, Fees & Charges
*********4.00 GBP Passenger Fee: CC
********29.44 GBP Total Paid

I didn't think I'd get round to it, or be able to afford it or that there's be anything at the right time, but a gander on the Ryanair website found me this cheap flight, right at the beginning of the Easter hols (before my french oral exams :)! And so I'm going back for the first time in a year and a half...!

Monday, December 01, 2008

Positive+ and another cheesy appearance on bbc2

Come along tonight to what should be a good gig for a good cause! (our band are playing too!)

Also made another appearance on the wondrous BBC iplayer, just here in fact (I'm on from around 16.05)

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Mustard seed loving

I got into an argument with a physicist at an aforementioned party a while ago. He was trying to persuade me to do a phD and somehow we tangented onto talking about what was more effective, changing a society from the top down, earning yourself accolades and affects millions of people for years to come or changing the society from the bottom up, making a small or large impact in the lives of individuals. I don't think there is anything wrong with the first option, I only know that I am called to the second. I used to think that I would and could change the world singlehandedly. Mainly I wanted to write books that had a massive impact on a lot of people. My 12 year old journals read like a cringe-inducing episode from Dawsons Creek!
I don't know when my attitude changed. I think it's been a gradual thing, in fact I would go as far as to say that it's been a recent thing and I can pinpoint at least one critical moment where I suddenly became more aware of it.

My time in Grenoble was a steep learning curve. It was amazing to be on the receiving end of so much kindness. I discovered firsthand how small gestures like being invited round for lunch or people wanting to share time with me and not just smiles could have such a massive impact on an individual. But at the same time I found it incredibly frustrating to always be on the receiving end. I wanted to be giving too. Yesterday I heard it put well that it's hard to be yourself in another culture and even more so another language. It took me months before I could truly be myself in the french language and of course this restricted what I could do. And I don't think I fully realised that until I experienced it firsthand. It was basically like being thrust from being mega-extrovert into introvert overnight and twas a bit of a shock to the system for sure! People wouldn't necessarily take my suggestions so seriously, wouldn't necessarily ask me to do stuff or help out or being involved in things because I was a foreigner and didn't really know/understand what was going on (which was sometimes true). It was incredibly frustrating. But I do remember, sometime later in the autumn, something clicking in my head. I discovered that I could love God and the people around me through doing small things, like cleaning the tables after youth group at church, playing with kids, or helping out the internationals whose french was even worse than mine when they didn't understand what was going on.

France has only been one small part of this learning/realisation/eye-opening process... I always envied my friends who had felt like they had a strong calling, vision or passion, friends who are passionate about certain countries for example and know they're going to end up there for a large part of their lives. But without my even realising it, I've started burning with a heavy passion too. I want to be someone who makes every moment of life count, who loves individuals practically, with everything I am and have. And though I have seemed to be laiden with a particular burden for a particular need, everyone needs that kind of love! And I don't want to miss people just because I have my eyes trained on a certain group or need. I'm beginning to realise and see for myself that the Kingdom of God starts small and in an understated way... and it's beautiful because it is full of Jesus and His character and it's what lasts. I just need to have my eyes open and be willing and ready to act on what I see... (easier said that done of course!)

I leave you with 2 quotes.
The first an extract from a book I love that has a lot to say about small things and mustard seeds:
Re: John 14:2 “… I began to discover “the greater things”. It was not just miracles. I started to see the miracles were an expression not so much of Jesus’ mighty power, as of his love. In fact, the power of miraculous spectacle was the temptation he faced in the desert – to turn stones to bread or to fling himself from the temple. But what had lasting significance were not the miracles themselves but Jesus’ love. Jesus raised his friend Lazarus from the dead and a few years later, Lazarus died again. Jesus healed the sick, but they eventually caught some other disease. He fed the thousands, the next day they were hungry again. But we remember his love. It wasn’t that Jesus healed a leper but that he touched a leper, because no one touched lepers. And the incredible thing about that love is that it now lives inside of us. In the verses just after the one about the greater things. Jesus assures us that the Spirit now lives in us. Jesus says that he is going to the Father but will also remain inside of us and we in him. We are the body of Christ, the hands and feet or Jesus to the world. Christ is living in you and me, walking the earth. We shall do even greater things because the love that lived in the radical Christ now lives within millions of ordinary radicals all over the planet…I know miracles are real, story after story comes to find. But beyond the miracles, what has lasting significance is love. We can do all sorts of miracles, but if we have not love, it is nothing…”

And the other from Mother Teresa:
"We can do no great things, only small things with great love."

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Highly unimpressed by this billboard advert I read in the underground yesterday -
"You are my desire, you are my lust, Princes Square, I love you."

Other than the fact that it is an utterly ridiculous advertisment for a shopping centre, it makes the assumption that lust = love. Surely the people who make such advertisments know better than this?! grrrr I could rant all day about this, but realised that I'd written vaguely related thoughts about this before. Hmm... actually reading that again makes me feel slightly less angry and almost understanding... almost

Thursday, October 23, 2008

anything but nae chat

This afternoon in the uni library toilets I read this exquisitely profound piece of graffiti; a response to a series of gripes about men and how they are the bane of the female existence (most of which is unrepeatable, or at least I wouldn't put it on my blog) and the question "Are you happy" to which people had made such insightful remarks as "Yeah" and "sometimes"... - "This cubicle has nae chat."

This morning when I went into hospital to get my eyes looked at, the eye specialist also had "nae chat" regarding my eyes, telling me to come back next year, however it seems my subconscious had much to say, especially when she put some "anaesthetic eyedrops" into my eye. While my rational mind was thinking "This is fine, this doesn't even hurt!", my body was yelling "Aaaah stop touching my eye! Get that anaesthetic liquid away from me!!" and less than 30 seconds after I walked out of the room, decided to conk out on me... Most embarrassing! Felt like such a wuss.

I seem to be constantly be crossing paths with folk who seem to have plenty of chat re:God, Jesus, Christianity, the meaning of life and many many issues. From drunk philosophers at the QM stall to international friends to extremely intelligent but also crazy friend of friend physicists and am enjoying it very much! Especially as they also seem to be asking questions in order to get answers and not just to poke holes in what I believe :) However I have to keep reminding myself that chat isn't enough, chat only goes so far, we reason with people but we can't persuade. I am so aware in these chats and was so aware as I had the privelege of witnessing a dear dutch drummer gradually being drawn to Christ over the last semester, that words only take us so far. We may do the sowing but He does the growing. I do know this to be true both from the Bible and experience, but man is it hard to keep as my perspective! At the QM stall the other day one drunk guy quoted St Francis of Assisi at a few of us in an attempt to attack our hypocrisy rather than in an attempt to find answers. And at first it wound me up to no end because he wouldn't let any of the 3 of us who were there get a word in edgeways and jumped in a taxi before we could make any response at all. Then I was reminded that our manner of response is as important as our content. I felt silly that that should have annoyed me so much as though I don't want to be scared of using words, I want my whole life to speak the truth in the way Jesus' life did; acting justly, loving mercy, walking humbly with my God. And to do it all out of love for God and for people, because He first loved me.
Reminds me of another famous quote by St Francis of Assisi "Preach the gospel at all times, if necessary use words."

Pheeew... feeling rather challenged now. Dinner time!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Music only goes so far...

Lately I've been rediscovering the value and joy of approaching God with music. For quite a while singing in particular had, to some extent, lost flavour and sense of purpose to me (playing the cello on the other hand involving my body, soul, mind, everything seemed to be another matter altogether but I won't talk about that here). It seemed kinda odd considering the fact that I am an avidly music-loving enthusiastic musician and it moves me like nothing else. It bothered me a little at first but I think I needed to go through that as was in mid-realising that worship, real worship is a life thing, not a music thing, or a "worship time" thing. I am trying (though often forget) not to call times when we praise God using music "worship" because I am utterly convinced that worship is so sooo much more than just musical praise or what happens at an organised gathering of God's people. It should encompass, or rather just be our whole lives.
But over the last couple of months I’ve found purpose and joy in it again, though I couldn’t have put words together before to explain why that was the case. Through reading bits and pieces and having chats with various folk of varying opinions on topics such as whether we should sing songs that make promises like “I’ll give you everything” that we’ll never keep, I've realised that perhaps it’s my whole approach has changed drastically.
I think before, I wanted to praise God with my heart when I sang or made music to him. And I still do, but now so often I find myself thinking and praying, while I sing, that what I'm playing/singing wouldn't just be good music or half-felt words. Taking the example of lyrics like “I’ll give you everything” etc: I still find those songs difficult to sing but instead of singing them and making those promises, I find myself challenged by them, reminded that this is the only fitting response to such an incredible grace-gift, and while singing (if I’m switched on!) I ask Him to help me give my whole life completely over as worship, even if it is going to be a long and pain-staking process. Songs like that are becoming my prayers, and I was going to put there, "rather than praise" but actually I think that is as much praise as any kind of joyful jubilant rejoicing because it involves acknowledging that He is great and worthy of my whole life. So I find my first priority in music is becoming honesty rather than conviction in praise. Yeah… I think that’s what the change is. I think that must be what has made me fall in love with musicing to God again.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Des petits morceaux and a stress graph

It's been a funny couple o weeks.

Highlights have to include
- the persistence of my french magnetism which seems to be as strong as last year. I'm still meeting french folk in the randomest of places and so have spent much time speaking french. Yesterday the comedy moment of the day had to be having matlab explained to me in french by the research assistant who I'm working on my psychology final year project. Turns out almost everyone in the lab I'm working with is french! And I probably understand her better explaining it to me in french simply because she does a better job of it in her native language!

- discovering that songs such as Arcade Fire's "No cars go" can make what could be miserable walks around Glasgow in bucketing rain, trying not to skid on sad sodden leaves, kind of beautiful!
- rediscovering the joys of supermarket deals at Sainburys on Crow Road (it's worth the extra 5 minute walk!)
- playing purty celtic versions of hymns in purty surroundings which some ace musicians for the BBC
- having long quality chats with many cool people on a range of interesting topics, the benefits and pitfalls of arranged marriages being quite a hot topic!
- Quiet Saturdays when I get to potter productively
- Beautiful live music, jazz, Jo Mango, jamming etc.

Of course behind all this has been the niggle of stress as illustrated by the graph which has made it all into a slightly rocky ride. Stress caused by a general and fairly justified feeling of inadequacy because of my lack of ability to juggle things well and love God and people with all I have at the same time. But since last weekend, as you can see, due to some quality teaching at one of those UCCF trainings days, stress levels have plummeted. I was reminded that God's love doesn't depend on my performance. Jesus wouldn't have died for me if my performance had anything to do with it, but he did. Funny how a change in perspective can make everything else seem so much more manageable! And for that, des petits morceaux and for this I am so grateful! :)

Friday, September 26, 2008

The pros and cons of juggling

to juggle (as according to verb meaning "to keep (several objects, as balls, plates, tenpins, or knives) in continuous motion in the air simultaneously by tossing and catching."

This sums up beautifully the nature of my life just now at uni. But having been out of the way of it these last few months, I've been finding it quite a shock to the system to be thrust back in there all of sudden, and with more objects in continuous simultaneous motion than ever before.
So here, to stop myself from ranting, are the pros and cons in bullet point form:

- variety is the spice of life
- I like being busy
- I tend to get things more productively and effectively done when I only have short bursts at them

- I never have quite enough time to just focus on one thing. Just when I get warmed into something I have to move onto something else.
- I do not like being too busy

I just realised I've pretty much contradicted myself in every one of those statements, each advantage is also a disadvantage which is also an advantage which is also a disadvantage.... hmmm... en bref, I think it's just gonna take a bit of time to get used to it again!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

a forgotten poem

Was skimming through old writings and things on my usb and came across this, a forgotten poem I think I'd written just under a year ago. I want to post it because I think it is a testament to hope and healing because things are so different now to what they were then...

Who would have thought that it could be like this,
could be like this to miss...
We use all those clichés
A hole in the heart, a piece of me out
Feeling half empty, incomplete, worn
But to be honest, most of the time
It isn’t quite like that
I just feel quite sad.
And a little bit broken
Though that’s not all bad.
And most of the time I don’t notice a thing
Even when I’m aware
I still smile, shout, laugh, sing
I still feel a joy that bubbles within
But hurting, still hurting
And tears are so easy...

So I'm waiting on healing
A divine intervention
At least I know one thing
I am alive

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

A moment of silliness

The night before last I was expecting a call from Mark and stupidly put my phone in the part of my room where I get sporadic reception and then fell asleep. I woke up a couple of hours later in the middle of the night after having dreamt that he had been kidnapped by a Japanese gang who then came to my door and spoke to me. I didn't see him until I heard him shout "If you dare come here and speak to my girlfriend again I'll..." as he was being carried down the stairs! I then tried to hunt him down, get some help from some friends and rescue him but didn't get very far before I woke up feeling somewhat alarmed! It was sooo vivid that I picked up my phone and phoned him.
He answered...
"... grunt ..."
"I just dreamt that you were kidnapped by a Japanese gang!"
...long pause... "It's ok. I haven't been kidnapped. I'm ok."
The next morning it was suggested that he could have been held at gunpoint and made to say that... somehow I think not.

The subconscious is a funny thing...!

on being a samaritan and sniffling

Today was my first shift as part of the international welcome programme. I feel like a double agent with a double agenda! On the one hand I'm trying to be a good paid university employee, on the other, I'm trying to be a Jesus loving "good Samaritan" i.e. going out of my way to help my neighbour (the international student in need of friends). I'm loving the fact that I can basically do both at the same time! I sooo want a job that allows me to do that after I graduate!

In other news, I spent last week camping on what rapidly became a swamp (as seen in this photo--->) on the Welsh border at the national CU Leaders conference Forum... much much banter was had, mud, frugal but funny meals, more mud, severe weather warnings, getting our cars stuck in the ditch on an escapade to the pub, laughter and some excellente chances to get fed and taught and trained! I especially recommend these talks here which you can listen to online. "Eye-opening" is probably how best to describe them. After a week of wet socks, I think we're all sniffling now...

Friday, August 08, 2008


My Ammappa (tamil for mum's dad) passed away in Sri Lanka last week after 3 months on his death's bed. The strength of my grandparents and my mum for that matter has never ceased to amaze me! Thing is, they seemed to get all their strength from the best source of all. so maybe I shouldn't be all that surprised. Tis inspiring that's for sure! I remember one phonecall to Sri Lanka to my gran who in one breath told me about how Ammappa had been falling out of bed confused by morphine at 3am and another joked around about my recent romantic affiliation. They were and are never self-centred or self-focussed even when they had every right to be. And my mum is the same. That's what I want to be like even when the world's collapsing round me! I want to be like Jesus...

Things I have learnt in the past few days

- an 87p packet of antihistamines is too good to be true. I appear to still be sneezing like a madwoman this morning!
- the french dept is suffering cutbacks and my course choices have been affected, no one cares about languages in the UK :(
- one should go to the optician reguarly
- the gospel of Mark is exciting!
- the HMV on Argyle Street caters for people of obscure music taste like myself, the HMV on Sauchihall Street doesn't
- getting a paid job that you would more than happily do for free rocks!

Wednesday, August 06, 2008


One of the things I loved most about south of France culture was the lifestyle that revolves around eating. The french reeeeally know how to enjoy their food! Meals are usually long, they last several courses, each one enjoyed round the table with family and friends. No one ever hurries to eat their meal. Even at school, the lunch hour was 2 hours long, an hour of eating and hour for clubs and recreational activity. There was even a stash of wine and cheese for staff who felt the urge! My favourite meals were those when I was invited round for dinner by a french family and we sat eating till well after dark. Every bite is savoured, seasoned with avid conversation, sometimes silences.
There are few things I enjoy more than spending a couple of hours at the table eating a scrumptious meal with people I love. Anyone who knows me will know how excited I get about a plate of good food! (see photo above) I love to savour every bite and then spend loads of time just sitting with the people at the table afterwards digesting :) hmmm (satisfied siiiigh)
Do I have that same attitude to spending time with God? I think that time should be as unrushed, savoured, slowly digested, seasoned with both conversation and silence... And yet so often it isn't... I read this a couple of years ago and came across it again last night. It strikes a chord because it's too often true of me. Makes me think of that banquet parable... although I know it isn't necessarily talking about that, when I read it I can't help but think on how often I end up making excuses!
It's more than just that though, I was thinking about how Jesus describes himself as the Bread of life. But that isn't the only reference made to where our sustenance should come from...
Comparing time with God to time with a yummy scrummy meal helps me to think about my eagerness to spend time with God as much as how I do it. En bref quality time enjoyed.

Monday, August 04, 2008


Yesterday marked the end of an almost solid 3 weeks of youth/kids work. SU Music Camp followed by Maranatha Camp followed by my Glasgow church (Findlay)'s holiday club. Now I am regularly described as a highly energetic person. Once I start dancing on a night out I can keep going and going and going and going. Now I knew I would be tired from doing two residential christian camps in a row but I didn't expect the kind of tiredness I ended up with. I expected sleep deprivation, physical exhaustion, tiredness of the kind where you can't keep your eyes open. Instead I ended up with the kind that seeped out all the joy I had in doing almost everything I loved doing. I wasn't that physically tired and yet this kind of tiredness was so much more zapping. I read this for the first time in ESV translation at the beginning of last week when I was feeling at my most zapped. It says "those who wait for the Lord will renew their strength..."
Waiting does not come naturally to me, I like to do as much as possible as soon as possible. I usually do first and think afterwards which is sometimes good and other times not so.
But I don't think this waiting is procrastinating, inactive kind of waiting around. It's knowing and remembering and seeking and listening in stillness, it's opening the curtains of my heart every day and enjoying the warmth of the sun. These past few days I've been learning how to wait again and I've feel like I've just woken up from a long sleep. Energy and motivation have returned. Ironic since I've spent every morning in the last week running and singing and dancing exuberantly with primary school age kids. I've been very aware of this; his energy at work within me.

My heart and my flesh may fail, but God is the strength of my heart, my portion forever. Ps73:26

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

On living with a bride-to-be

This morning the last of the wedding entourage disappeared... and once again we are a flat of 2... ah twas a beautiful day and so special to be so involved! Tis rather sad though... I have made more than a few new friends over the last weeks and have got to speak a lot a French! :) Living with a bride to be has been an experience...! You might get accidentally mocked in the father of the bride's speech because he thought a message written on your noticeboard was written by his daughter and not by you, have to deal with a constant flow of people (no difference there really though!), have to deal with frequent mood swings, end up with twice as much milk as what you started of with because the mother of the bride wants to make up for "invading your space". All in all it has been a fun and chaotic few weeks and I'm very glad that Mr and Mrs Sharpe have only moved around the corner :)

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Prince Caspian

Saw this tonight with two of my flatmate's bridesmaids-to-be and it was amaaaazing!!! Again the C.S Lewis magic was beautifully captured on film, beautifully played, the characters came out brilliantly and were well developed over the course of the film. I love the fact that a plot can be so fantastical yet the characters, their personalities and inner tests and struggles they go through are so tangible and easy to identify with :)
And again Edmund proved to be my favourite character of all, Lydie (maid of honour/la dame de la cote d'or) put it beautifully when she said "I love that he's so humble, or rather so humbled. Edmund's living under grace and he knows it."
I also love the fact that my heart goes a putter and I get excited shivers when Aslan appears!
...and I'm going to see it again next week with the bf and sis! woop woop! :)

Friday, June 27, 2008

On hen parties, samba gigs and helping little old ladies

I was just thinking of what I've been up to over the last couple of weeks. I've been unemployed and not loving it, but now that I think about it... I've not exactly been bored, what with job-hunting, tidying and re-tidying the flat, organising a rather large hen party, attending another, dancing my socks off in my favourite venue, enjoying the parade, getting a free 3 course meal in returning for helping a lost little lady on the street (blog post to follow), staying up too late and then catching up on sleep again, baking cakes at silly hours, accumulated copious boxes and musical instruments - we now have a keyboard, a trombone, a violin, a couple of guitars, cello and darbuka (drum) - (only the latter 3 actually belong to flat residents), the chaos that ensues when a flatmate is getting married, some jamming and mix that in with a touch o frustration, excitement, joy, grief...
I'm so thankful that God doesn't change even if everything else does!
And also for laughter :)

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

living in "holy fear"

I've been thinking about this for a while... So it's summer now and as soon as I found a way to relax post-exam time (took a lot longer than expected) I hit that post-exam lazy period and instantly found myself battling with both laziness and numbness... Yeah I know it's important to relax and all that, but there must be a balance somewhere, right? So right now I'm striving to find that balance. In the midst of everything I've been doing (see previous post), with that summer feeling and the job-hunting and everything else, I want to still be seeking God with all of my heart. So how do I keep the balance...?
The phrase that has stuck in my head the last wee while has been "holy fear", it comes from the NIV version of this verse "By faith Noah, when warned about things not yet seen, in holy fear built an ark to save his family." Hebrews 11:7 though I guess a better way of putting it would be "reverent fear" like it says here. I think we often forget or at least I often forget that God is magnaminously holy... and His holiness is kinda scary! It's incredible that he shows us any mercy at all! But then that's what makes it so amazing, that's what makes it grace... we can approach Him, be part of His family because of Jesus! But then I should be living my life in light of that... in light of grace, every breath is a gift and I should always be aware of that.
I think there is an antidote to laziness, to complacency, to taking God's grace for granted and it's knowing God, knowing His justice, His righteousness, His mercy, His holiness, His gift of grace. Surely if we start to grasp these things and that they are all characteristics of the one and only God, then we couldn't possibly live in vain!

Friday, June 06, 2008

summer begins...

hmmm summers... not sure what I think of them really! Nearly all of my summers, except perhaps the last one have involved lots of waiting and trusting till I reach the end of my tether. This summer has been no different. I have been trying and applying and trying and applying to go away on mission abroad this summer and nothing has suited or fitted or worked out. I was supposed to go to Romania with Africa Inland Mission and now (because I was the only confirmed accepted member of the team) I'm not, clearly God has other plans! There was a jury citation sticking out like a sore thumb this week but I didn't get picked for that. So I've been job-hunting and recording an album and going to what has seemed like a million birthday parties (which have included...
a trip to Dumfries, a surprise for the flatmate, about 20 bouquets of flowers in our kitchen, seeing people I haven't seen for ages in a nice pub and an international food/fancy dress soiree) and hanging out with folk and cooking a lot and eating icecream and going to the park and catching up on sleep and saying goodbye to internationals (a post devoted to that will follow), hmm maybe (with the exception of goodbyes and mega uncertainty) I do like summers... :)

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

When a scar becomes a feature...

"When everything's grey - colours become really evident."

I was really aware of this in exam-time where things like bumping into someone in the library or a nice dinner become a huge treat. (Though now my exams are over, I'm having to work harder to enjoy little things with all the post-exam fatigue and busyness I'd put off for after exams hogging my time!)

I'm also really aware of this looking back at the last couple of years, after a long time of feeling like Humpty Dumpty. Tis such a sad nursery rhyme really. When I was really really little I used to sing those last two lines with my saddest voice possible:

Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall
All the king's horses and all the king's men
couldn't put Humpty together again :(

I don't think I am always aware of my scars, but then something triggers off a painful memory or an uber-emotional response that catches me off guard and I remember again. They are scars accumulated over the last couple of years in particular, that lie dormant just under my skin and that have always been easier just to ignore. And it's easy enough to ignore them in busyness when everyone else is oblivious to them. Still when I am aware of them, they've always seemed so permanent, making me feel like a Humpty Dumpty. Anyway in recent months, some healing has finally been taking place. The King can put Humpty together again :)
The bizarre thing is, I'm starting to realise that the scars will be a permanent fixture but this is actually a good thing! The acts that caused the scars were most definitely not good, but the scars themselves are playing a part in defining me. They keep me aware of my brokeness and aware of His grace, kinda like it says here, because I am aware of my fragile broken jarofclaylike nature, I am more aware of the fact that it's His power working in me that makes things happen... and it's as though pieces are being put together but in a different and perhaps better combination to the way they were before.
Things also seem brighter before they did before, because I went through the grey, because I did break into many pieces, I am able to better appreciate wholeness and sunshine when I have it! It's a bit like with Glasgow and sunshine: on one of those rare beautiful days, the whole city is out soaking it up because they are rare. We appreciate the beautiful days so much more!
What is amaaazing and what I do want to draw your attention to is that, He's able to regenerate, restore, renew, resurrect and yet what is made whole again is always better than before!!! It blows my mind! Tis crazy that we have such a powerful yet compassionate God! :) Thankyou

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

blue sky patches in the cloud that is exam-time

Sunshine, wearing flipflops, jamming/studying/wandering in the park (of which I do have pretty photos, but these are on my flatmates computer which is currently down in London with her fiancee, doh!), heartbreaking news, playing in the pitchdark planeterium with the band, new beginnings, giggles, silly late nights, scrabulous, getting fed, plenty banter, bonding over exam pains, fluishness forcing me to have a day off when I needed it so much, hearing and being freshed by the gospel yet again at one of those leader days run by them, sunshine, good jazz (both live and on

And I finally finally saw Once! Bizarrely realistic! :- from that first jamming encounter where everything just clicks, band practices in tiny bedrooms, the jamming dinner party... and all so beeeeyooootiful!

And the cloud ends (at least for me) on Thursday afternoon.... oh yeah :)

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Animated Iranians

I'd originally intended not to blog until exams are over. But to be honest, I need a brain break!
Plus this film (which I saw on Tuesday) was truly amaaaazing, I've been dying to rave about it!
Why is it amaaazing?
Because: (in bullet point form)
- It's aesthetically beautiful
- The characters are so real and well depicted
- It's witty and often very funny
- It's highly educational! I didn't know anything about Iranian politics or political history yet didn't feel lost at all since it explains it all really well!

Amazing I tell you! Go see it!

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Wanted: Polaroid

A fellow sortofGlasgower Emma is going to Uganda/Rwanda in 8 weeks. I definitely recommend checking this out

Friday, April 25, 2008

gems is genius... especially when one is procrastinating :D
You stick in an artist you like into a box and it generates a whole load of music that is similar to it!

And through this I have fallen in love with these gems...
- Fionn Regan=purty!
- Adem=ohsobeautifully constructed music
- Kings of Convenience= very chilled but luscious harmonies
- And I've been a fan of Beirut, which I found via 3hive, for quite some time now

And then I've discovered that artists I'd originally dismissed as boring have actually made beautiful songs, notably KT Tunstall with the song "Silent Sea"

Good music does help me to study! Honest!

Monday, April 21, 2008

What would I do without bbc i player?!

Completely forgot about this until someone "beboed" me to tell me they'd seen me on tv yesterday! Doh!

It was filmed back in November to be fair! Songs of Praise (episode 2) - from 14 minutes...

Friday, April 18, 2008

I've got cabin fever...

This is what silly long hours in the library does to me...

Cabin Fever ah!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

At the age of 40, by 9' o clock

Just to give you background on this post. On one of our many french lesson tangents, I was challenged by him to write a story with that first line...
Now just to inform you, what a lot of people don't know is I used to be a compulsive story writer. I was addicted! It was better than TV, better than reading, better than music (maybe that says something about how exciting my life was back then :S)
Anyhoo I tried to write a story based on that title and didn't do so well. In fact I realised I couldn't anymore, there is too much going on in real life to escape it anymore or to make a new one for myself, which is what writing had always been to me. It was, back then, in childhood, escapism. And now I don't want to escape, I want to live! And all I can manage is this jarbbled prose-esque poetry. See I still love words but I've forgotten how to lose myself in another character. I can only write as myself. So this is what I came up with... a genuine fear...

At the age of 40, by 9' o clock, on a Tuesday morning, when the rain has stopped, and the kids have just left for school and the husband for work and the people carrier is sitting vacant, still, after a morning's work, what will I be? What will move me?
If I get a stable job, "career" I should say, a comfortable life, "settle down", will I still be living? And when I say living, I mean really living... breathing, wide-eyed with each breath. By sunsets, scrumptious chords, silly words, real smiles.
Or will I just be numb? Settle for little. Half-hearted days, hollow nights. Comfort having blunted the tips of my nerve-ends. Content just to stagnate in a detached house, drive the kids to music lessons, dance classes, day job, kiss my man good morning, good night. Content that my chat is just gossip, my friends just middle-class, drifting along with what comes easy. Never to engage with the world beyond my front doorstep, beyond what I can see and hear, beyond this suburban dome. Content to give money but never my life. Never to reach up, reach out, yearn for more, love, knowledge, truth, understanding, likeness, lifeblood of my maker.
The very thought strikes chords of fear in my heart, phantom of the opera-esque. "To die slowly" and not . To never have given my all...
Even if I choose that suburban lifestyle, though right now I can barely imagine myself in it... I want to stay here, on a rock that is higher than I, in awareness of brokenness, always in need of that which I do not deserve, always seeing more that needs to change, yet always ever more amazed, ever more in love with Him, in love with them... I don't want an ordinary life, I want one full to brimming.
A prayer to the God of my life... At the age of 40, by 5'o clock, on a Tuesday morning, when the rain has stopped... that's where I want to be.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

In need of pruning

These are my roses which sit by my (as you can see) grubby window, hardly get watered, yet still seem to flourish regardless. Or at least that's what they looked like a couple of days after I returned from a 10 day long stint in Edinburgh last week. At first they'd looked very sad and wilted so I gave them some water hoping that they would spring back to life as they have done in the past which they kind of did - well as you can see... they became this mixture of dead and living leaves growing from the same branches. It was kinda like the dead leaves were getting in the way, just hanging on even though they were dead and impeding new leaves from sprouting. "in need of pruning" was my first thought...

And then that got me thinking... that's kinda like me. I'm a mixture of living and dead bits I think. There are some parts of my life that are flourishing, where God has been moving and I get excited and feel alive just thinking about them. And then there are other parts... they need to change or just go. I can't grow anymore when there's all these dead leaves getting in the way, just like the plant.

So what are these dead leaves? There are a lot of them and I don't think I could put a name to them all or am even aware of a lot of them. But I think most of them stem from pride and selfishness, and that in turn stems from not fully understanding or always being aware of the fact that God is the centre of the universe not me. In Him all things hold together, everything is sustained by Him, depends on Him and that includes me and everything I do.

I think one of the biggest traps I've been falling into of late is thinking that what I do and how well I do it defines me. I find myself drawing identity and self-worth from this. And those thoughts hinder me. They hinder me cos I think I need to do everything, I start doing things just for the sake of feeling useful or used. Sometimes I start doing too much and man oh man are my motives throroughly messed up!

I've been learning over the last while that this is my identity. Not what I do or how successful it is, though God wants me to do everything as well I can and use what He has given me. This tells me that God doesn't actually need me to do His work at all. He's God after all, creator, sustainer, author and perfector of everything. But out of His grace He chooses to use me, to use any of us. Though we mess things up and don't always do things His way and make mistakes which are often humungous. He still wants to make us a part of His plan! Wow!!!
I read this earlier and noticed this:- God uses the Samaritan women to spread the word about Jesus! I mean, a Samaritan woman! She would have been undesirable in every sense of the word; because she was a woman, because she was a Samaritan, looked down on by Jesus' own countrymen and probably looked down on even by her own people because of her loose morals and messy marital history. Yet Jesus gave her the time of day. And people believed in him "because of her testimony"!
That challenges the way I look at myself and also the way I look at others. Even amongst people who are "marginalised" and my role is to love, it is so easy to take on a patronising self-righteous "I'm helping these people" attitude, not treating them like the equals they are, and I will still find myself drawn to those with decent banter or looks or even with "potential". Yet Jesus sees worth in everyone that we can't always see. He sees people as people, made in God's image.

I'd like to see that too.

P.S Apologies for the length of that! Those were a lot of thoughts building up over the last wee while. And I am spending loooooong hours in uni library right now!

Wednesday, April 02, 2008


This post has been a long time in coming... I gush enough about these guys in person I may as well do it in a blog.

So from left to right...
Loik - Breton guitarist extraordinaire (also has a remarkable talent for french pffffffffffffts)
Ilhan - dutchman with east kilbride accent is provider of pistachios, also perfectionist drummer (I forget what kind of drum it is), recorder and author of the "bits analyses"
Elaine, scottish lass with beautiful voice and remarkable talent for making up melodies on the spot to beautiful chords that Loik plays
I cello and giggle (both of which get caught on cheap mp3 player) and eat most of the pistachios (they're as addictive as biscuits ;P)

Together we jam and laugh and eat pistachios and jam some more, and everytime we jam a new song is spontaneously sparked. So we record it, Ilhan emails them to us complete with a bits analysis e.g "3.56-3.58 - perfect guitar bit" and we can then play and refine and play and refine some more...

aaaaaaaah I love it! (in case you hadn't already guessed) :)

Thursday, March 13, 2008


Pheeew... that's a long word to describe what I'd like to achieve in life!

I came back a couple of days ago from a weekend where everything went click in my head. I remembered who I am and how that works out in life and felt like I was looking at the best news there ever could be i.e God's grace shown to us in Jesus, with fresh eyes. But now I'm back in everyday life I'm remembering how difficult it can be to put these things into action.
If only I was always aware of...

God in my living
There in my breathing
God in my waking
God in my sleeping
God in my resting
There in my working
God in my thinking
God in my speaking

Be my everything
Be my everything
Be my everything
Be my everything

God in my hoping
There in my dreaming
God in my watching
God in my waiting
God in my laughing
There in my weeping
God in my hurting
God in my healing

Christ in me
Christ in me
Christ in me the hope of glory
You are everything

I like this song because it reminds me that though I have such trouble including God in every part of my life and not compartmentalising, He actually is in everything, whether or not I am aware of Him. He is there in the unexpected and the expected and the clean and the messy. He is there whatever my state of mind may be. I guess it's the awareness that's the key and also what I struggle with - living in continual awareness of God and of who I am in relation to him. I cleaned my desk a couple of weeks ago, and it's still clear today! (though the rest of my room is not so clean) and I have recently discovered the joy of sitting at my desk by my ohsosunny window, drinking green tea and just being with God. Those times just seem to be getting less and less frequent as I am getting busier and busier though they are becoming more precious as a result. I do appreciate most of the simple pleasures in life, like a scrumptious chord or a collection of crocuses or uncontrollable laugh or an understanding glance between close friends and I know it's good to enjoy these things. I just want to be more aware of God as I go about enjoying them so I can remember that they come from Him and so that I'll thank Him because He is the source of all that is good and love in this world. I'd like to live in continual wide-eyed grateful awe and appreciation...
And that's only one side of the coin. What about when I'm down, agrieved, stressed, guilt-stricken... I want to be aware of God and love Him in that too - by trusting and continuing to love others regardless of my internal state or situation.
It's a challenge, but I want to try and love God in everything...

banter of the last wee while

photoworthy banter of the last wee while
- much jamming (there will be a post devoted to that shortly) and getting acquainted with a jembe at a haggis party (now I can't stop drumming! Got in trouble for drumming at the table the other day)
- Global Village - many stalls manned by international students with many dishes. Things I may have sampled the cuisine of roughly 10 different countries, needless to say the french couldn't get themselves organised to have a stall there. We paid four quid and could sample them all and then were treated to live music and dancing. I discovered that Iranian food is really quite a treat!
- a couple of gigs with the strangers
- a couple more birthdays of the psychology crew, another one coming up on Saturday
- pictionary with a random collection of native and non-native english speakers
NB A. It helps if there is some secondary language in common (in our case french and dutch) then if a word comes up that some people don't know, it makes it easier to explain
B. overcomplicated drawings may be funny, but do not win a game... take for example... Jellyfish

- Nor do abstract interpretations of concepts... here are two drawings to illustrate...
one is literal

the other a little more abstract

both mean "revolution"
C. one must add on looking the word in the dictionary time i.e "Ah I know what the word is but I don't know it in english!" to make things fair
D. don't drum on the table unless you have a deathwish

Slowly getting used to me new camera and so to illustrate these bullet points...

Thursday, February 21, 2008

For those of you who found us sitting and smiling with blank faces comedy, you can now watch the unedited version of that interview, gaelic, english and all here under "agallamh"...

Saturday, February 16, 2008


Mmmm... I love Glasgow Saturdays! :)

Time to catch up on things and chill and sort myself out and enjoy quiet...

Last night I saw Juno - amaaazing film! Definitely almost on a par with that comedy gem Little Miss Sunshine! As per usual did a shed a tear or two. I tend to get somewhat emotional in films. What surprised me was what happened to me this morning as I was standing waiting at Glasgow International airport before picking up and redirecting 19 Canadians. Was watching all the people drifting in through the International arrivals door from a Toronto flight and it was more moving than watching a film... there was a mum smothering her small boy with kisses and a couple of cuddly couples that blatantly hadn't seen each other in a long time and friends reunited with delighted grins and digital cameras everywhere. It could have been a scene out of Love Actually, though (thankfully) a lot more believable! And before I knew it I found myself getting weepy! Completely took me by surprise and had to stay composed to greet the pile of Canadians that soon followed out of the door.

Oh and all this sunshine after so many months of grey... I feel truly photosynthesised! :)

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

"do not give way to fear"

On Friday night at the stall, I was listening to a lad (who was highly intoxicated I hasten to add) rant about his ex-gf and how, since they broke up, in order to make herself "feel hot" i.e desired and loved, she apparently goes out in the most revealing of clothing or whatever it takes to "pull". He told me, in very drunken terms, that he respected the fact that I didn't feel the need to do that. But being completely honest with myself, I don't think I'm completely free of those inclinations. I think most girls have a teeny-skirted, overly-flirtatious, sometimes desperate, silly girl somewhere inside of them. We want to feel beautiful and to be desired and wanted. But we often miss the point, thinking that to be desired is to be loved.
This is one of those bits of the Bible that most christian girls know in theory. I know I always gloss over it, thinking I don't need to hear it. But when I looked at it the other day I spotted something I hadn't noticed before. The section ends " not give way to fear". What fear? The fear that most of girls have of being single? Of never being loved or desired? Why should we fear that? Perfect love drives out fear... and this year I have become more and more convinced that "perfect love" is the love God shows us. The kind of love that doesn't fail us or disappoint us or is unfaithful. But one that lasts in spite of our weakness and no matter how we look, think or act.

Got to quote this again... says it better than I could.

"I ask him to satisfy my longings and fill my hollow places with his unfailing lavish love, this frees me from craving the approval of others or requiring them to fill my 'cup'. Then if someone does demonstrate love to me that's overflow! I am free to appreciate and enjoy it, but I didn't emotionally require it." Beth Moore

Another kind of fear that I struggle with a great deal more than the inner silly-girl and is definitely not exclusive to females is the fear of doing wrong or messing up and disappointed myself, other people and God. It's a fear that stems from my forgetting grace and think that by doing lots of stuff for God, I can earn His favour, or stop myself from losing it. All nonsense I know. And yet it crops up from time to time. Perhaps what I need to remember is this and not only that but this.
For the last week I've had this kids song in my head, dunno who it's by, and I can't seem to find it on google... think it sums up the concept of grace pretty well though:

There's nothing, nothing I can do or say
to make God love me more.
He cares for me in such a way
that lasts forever more.
The Bible says that it's called grace.
I see it there in Jesus' face.
There's nothing, nothing I can do or say
to make God love me more
to make God love me more.

There's nothing, nothing I can do or say
to make God love me less.
I need forgiveness every day
and Jesus' righteousness
But when I turn to Him and pray,
He gives his mercies right away
There's nothing, nothing I can do or say
to make God love me less
to make God love me less.

What a wonderful Saviour!

Monday, February 04, 2008

The reason why I dropped english lit...

... is because so many writers of literature and even more often, people interpreting literature think this...

"The purpose of writing is to inflate weak ideas, obscure pure reasoning, and inhibit clarity. With a little practice, writing can be an intimidating and impenetrable fog!"

Ah the wonders and wisdom of Calvin & Hobbes :)

Wednesday, January 23, 2008


I like that word...

Realised I hadn't blogged about the everyday in a while...

- Like the fact that it's been raining constantly for the last couple of weeks but for the first time in 4 years I have waterproof trainers to keep me dry!

-Handed in the last of my run of deadlines so was able to just hang out with folk with a guilt-free conscience, yaaay! :)

- I spent a quality Saturday night/Sunday-day in Edinburgh. Had the best dinner for a wonderful friend's 21st... breadcrumbed brie with yummily dressed salad for starters, steak with pepper sauce and tomatoes and mushrooms and sauteed potatoes for main and profiteroles for desert, all washed down with water, a glass of red wine and a lovely cup o tea, and then a night of dancing and catching up with ol school friends... wonderful... Got to hang out with the family and folk at Bellevue West too on Sunday which was more than an added bonus!

- And there was an evening last week when Jenni and I got a little carried away with Salvaar Kameez

Thursday, January 17, 2008

God is good

... tis one of those facts that at least I, as a christian, take for granted!
-> The very idea of a God who cares and has forgives and loves with endless abounding love and grace with mercies that never fail and are new every day sounds positively insane in this messed-up human world. It just sounds almost "too good to be true".

When I look at human constructed gods; the gods who in many religions and cultures are selfish and flawed and unsurpisingly human or the gods who are "infallible" but require laborious effort and often tremendous sacrifice to approach, even the more abstract gods of materialism or sex are in themselves, selfish. When I contrast these gods with Yahweh, I realise that this is exactly what we humans so often think. We think that the existence of a God of grace, a God who is truly good and unselfish and far beyond and above human is nigh impossible. And so we have constructed our own gods or box the living God to fit into what we think is legistical. When, for example, we can't get our heads round this idea of "grace", we become legalistic and laws, sometimes even laws which are trivial and man-made, become the be all and end all. We miss the point and we hurt ourselves and others in the process.

The reality is that we have a God who has sacrificed all for us, who loves us extremely and has a heart for the downtrodden in society, who desires, more than anything else, that we act justly, love mercy and walk with him every day. We only have to look at Jesus to see all this en actualité.

Mind-blowing! And because He is good, there is hope for this aching world...

I guess what I'm re-realising here, is how important it is that we get to know the true and living God. Knowing Him, what He is like, His character does and will change our perceptions/mindsets/hearts in everything.

The very fact He can change anything, to me means hope.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

the joys of january

And it's fast becoming a late night in the GU Library writing up the spoon-fed project we did, testing whether Dweck's Entity Theory can be applied to our level 3 psychology class... It's due in tomorrow. I also have 3 hours of exams on Monday and a french essay and translation to hand in on Wednesday...


Thursday, January 10, 2008

Films of 2007

Reading and hearing other peoples thoughts on what their favourite films of the year 2007 have been has spurred me on to create my own list... the only thing is a couple of these I saw last year weren't actually released last year. (The joys of french release dates)

In no particular order

Films that I enjoyed the most in 2007

Most moving and thought-provoking
- The Kite Runner (and they stuck very closely to the book :) though they missed out some of the most gruesome bits)
- Life of Others

- Little Miss Sunshine easily one of my favourite films of all time! (saw that in france this year although it was released the year before)
- Run Fat Boy Run - Miles better than I thought it would be! Touching and funny!
- Ratatouille - wonderful treatment of stereotypical france, though (a mon avis) tarnished by the inconsistency in and appallingly bad french accents!

Most exciting, kept me at the edge of my seat (also most attractive actors heehee)
- Bourne Ultimatum
- The Departed (ditto with the France thing)

Film that made me most want to sing and dance like a madwoman
- Hairspray (yes I know!)

Weirdest Film I saw this year
- The Golden Door - one of those films that "doesn't do what it says on the packet"

Films that were released last year and I wanted to see but didn't
Once, The Counterfeiters, La Mome, Simpsons Movie, La Science des Reves

Bitterly disappointed by -
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, The Golden Compass (though both were ok films, they just didn't compare to the books), Spiderman 3 (just plain mince)

Bring on Prince Caspian!

seasons cleanings

Tried and failed miserably at "spring cleaning" the blog roll. The only blogs I could bring myself to remove were those that had been removed by the author... that is except The Creasinator's... I'm still holding out that you'll recommence blogging Creasy! :(
I was thinking of reorganising the weblinks into subcategories of

- Has not blogged in over a year
- Has not blogged in 3 months
- Sporadic blogger
- Regular blogger

What do folks reckon?

Eternal optimist that I am, I'm still hoping that the authors of the blog-turned-skeletons will suddenly decide to resurrect them. Do a "michie" so to speak. Saying that Mich, that wasn't much of a resurrection!

Anyhooo... I'm supposed to be studying right now...

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

I'm excited!

Yes I know... I'm quite often excited! :) But this year I have every reason to be...

2007 was mainly characterised by:

... my last 5 eventful educational months en France, a 3 month long summer of activity, a messy break-up, good times with my family (highlights being this christmas hol, spending a whole summer at home and still appreciating them at the end of it, and getting to be towel-bearer for my little sister's baptism), a very joyful return to Glasgow, much banter spent with old friends and new friends, studying (woopwoop! still enjoying it... well most of it) and getting to know coursemates better, being back with what had developed into a full-fledged band while I was away, international students galore... siiigh... I love Glasgow... repeatedly messing up and repeatedly being forgiven, learning some difficult but valuable lessons about God and about myself (the latter being the less pleasant part).

What I am looking forward to in 2008:

All the newness; learning new things, taking on new challenges, doing new things such as going somewhere a bit further away in the summer (hopefully maybe). Spring in Glasgow (leaves growing on trees etc. etc.), getting to know some people better and meeting new folk that I will undoubtedly meet, my last full academic year of university (eeeep), getting to know God more and growing closer to him, using my new camera and taking pretty pictures (if it ever comes back into stock in Argos)

Oh and I still want to be a tree