Celebrate: The April Babies

HT: Sunday Scribblings

If we’re celebrating, I’m gonna start by typing in my favourite colour today.

It was a year ago today that I was praying like crazy that my friend Carrie would give birth to her first child a day early (the one known to the blogworld as ‘Elastababy’ was due April 6th). So I was also glued to my mobile in case I got a call/text to say that Carrie was in labour. He ended up being born directly in the middle between his Mummy’s and my birthdays instead.

25 years ago, my Mum was having a horrendous time in the hospital known to most Edinburgers as ‘the Baby Factory’…(sorry about that Mum!). She likes to remind me every year by either phoning me or bursting into a room I happen to be in screaming in pain at some point between 10 p.m. 4th April and 10 p.m. 5th April. And you know I’m not kidding, don’t you? :)

I know a lot of April babies…and birth is one of these things that I love to celebrate. And, you know I may be biased, but I reckon April babies are the best babies…!

In fact I was trying to remember all the people I know who are April babies. Seriously there are some fabulous people (including one miracle baby who was born the day before my birthday last year – he almost died and spent a couple of weeks in the ICU at RACH and astounded his nurses & doctors by making a full recovery!) 

Eleanor, Laura, Richard, Emmet, Kate, Steven, Jennifer, Samuel, Susan, Sarah, Jamie, Helen, Stuart, Elspeth, Carrie, Kirsty, Craig, David, Calum...to name but a few!! 

And it’s not just birthdays…

It was a year ago today that I was at my friend, Nicola’s wedding – the first of the ‘high school’ friends to be married!! Nicola and her husband, Graeme are celebrating their 1st wedding anniversary today.

Today is also Day 14 of The Art of Joy - and the last day of Love out Loud. Today the prompt is to give lollipops to adults you meet. I fully admit that I engineered that particular prompt to be the one that happened on my birthday because it sounded fun!!

Next weekend lots of people will be celebrating the resurrection of Jesus Christ. With those ‘rebirth’ connotations we’ve kind of adopted fertility festivals into it (very Chocolat) and I have to confess I love the chocolate eggs, and in our family you have to roll your first chocolate egg to break it (you know like the stone rolled away).

In essence, I love to celebrate. And I love to do it by having fun, dancing, bouncing, spending time with friends and sharing things with people. 

Although my Mum is disappointed that I won’t be home this evening, I’ll be singing to help lead sung prayer, praise and worship to God with some of the folks who are part of MBC. I’ll get to have breakfast with some of the folks in my smallgroup. And if I have time and I find my cake tins I may make a chocolate cranberry cake with chocolate fudge icing. 

To end I’d  like to say a big

Happy Birthday!!!

to Sarah (my blog friend in Alabama) and Jamie (friend in-real-life)

And as it’s my birthday and I didn’t get round to organising my children’s style birthday party, I give you full permission to eat jelly and ice cream, play musical bumps/statues/chairs/cushions, blow hooters or bubbles and spread the lollipop love. Just make sure you brush your teeth tonight ok? ;)

LOL/TAOJ Day 1 Reportage

Day 1: Be encouraging! Be proactive in complimenting the people that you meet today.

This was waaay more difficult than I thought it would be. 

Firstly, I woke up with my Mum creeping into my room to check I wasn’t dead or something (she’d last seen me when I went up to ‘the attic’ when we got in yesterday teatime and was concerned because I hadn’t gone to church, which is out of character for me). I jumped out my skin and cussed in fright and realised I’d slept through 2 alarms.

Not a good start to the day.

So I wasn’t in the best of moods as I made the journey to work.

I did say thank you to the bus driver. I managed not to yell at any fellow road users. But I forgot to compliment the woman in the café where I picked up my usual ‘soup and bagel – to take away’, and one of our volunteers. And they are both so amazing!!

I did however manage to compliment some of the people I interacted with today. Finding things that I could encourage and compliment them on was not difficult, because it was all true. It’s working up the courage to say it, because I’m scared of sounding trite, insincere or worried they’ll think I’m winding them  up or just a total lunatic.

Did any of you guys take some proactive complimenting/encouraging action today? What were your experiences?

Check into The Art of Joy twitter feed from Midnight (GMT) to see what the next prompt is!

Loving Out Loud

So today is the first day of Love Out Loud fortnight.

Our smallgroup is kind of extending it with our venture The Art of Joy, and I’m so excited about what we’re doing. In fact I can’t believe that it’s really happening when it wasn’t that long ago we were sitting in around our friends’ table with some leftover wallpaper and felt pens dreaming big and not really sure what was going to become reality.

We’ve set up a facebook group which so far has 83 members. Wow! Some of you are LFS readers, so thank you so much! I love that there are joy bringers stemming from our wee venture in Edinburgh that are as far flung as Alabama and Australia! It’s so encouraging to see your names on the members list, and hopefully you can join in by spreading the joy.

Please, please consider checking into our Twitter profile each day where one of us (probably me) will give an idea for some ‘random acts of kindness’ you can do. It doesn’t matter where you live, it would lovely if we could all spread a little joy where we are.

Maybe from there you can link to each day’s prompt on your blog, your own Twitter profile or by texting or e-mailing friends?

We’d also LOVE if you could pray for us. One of our group has been ill last week, and as you know I’ve been having a rough time too. I am much better now though not 100%. I’m finding myself tiring easily and my digestive system is acting confused. I’ve got my latest ‘drug’ to try out (which comes in syringe form…), which I was supposed to start last week, but of course couldn’t get to the chemist to pick it up, or the medical centre to get it administered because I was in such a state.

Although on the funny side of last week, my friends have shown me some of the texts I sent while I was unwell. I think they can all be filed under ‘What planet is she on?‘ as most of them make not a blind bit of sense.

It’s good to be able to hold a conversation again :)

Sunday thoughts

This post is scheduled for Sunday 15th March at 09:00 GMT.

Well, we come home today.

I’m going to miss my breakfast time with thestatethatiamin, bringonthejoy and Miss Sweetroot this morning. I love breakfasting with them and us all going to church together and sitting in ‘our pew’. Although I am a lil bit worried that one day one of us is going to get squashed by a car while ‘running and hiding’ after the meeting is over. And quite frankly, TSTIAI and BOTJ are not very good seekers. They seem to take forever to find Miss S and I  = even if we’re blatantly peeping to see if they’ve realised we’ve hidden yet! Lol.

Or we’re giggling. Loudly.

Sidenote: I was commenting to my friends the other week how I’ve gradually become one of ‘those people’ who gets perturbed if we have to sit in a different part of the church building. I mean honestly! Don’t ‘they’ realise that’s where WE sit and they’re sitting in OUR seats? Sigh. And yes, I know how completely ridiculous that is. :)

Will be thinking of the artists who will be hanging their artwork up in The Lot Bistro today for The Art of Joy. I feel bad that I’m not there to help. Please get some photos of the artwork guys!!

Also a reminder to you all (since recent e-mails have made it clear that several male members of the MBC worship team did not have this on their radar until I mentioned it)…that next Sunday is Mother’s Day (in the UK at least).

Aww…I’ve missed all of you guys while I’ve been away! See you all soon!

Joy, joy, joy

Ok…We’re planning some guerilla joy spreading! Needing some ideas of random acts of kindness that people can do wherever they are. One ‘random act of kindness’ per day will be posted on The Art of Joy Twitter feed.

Or it might just be something fun you can do to make someone laugh or smile.

Got an idea (or ideas?) Can you e-mail them to me?


PS Will update this post later…I’m off to work now!

The Art of Joy ONLINE

Well there is of course: The Website

And then there is the Facebook group

And of course I couldn’t help but start a Twitter feed been inspired by the Lent thing, and thinking of posting a prompt each day for things people can do to spread the joy during ‘Love Out Loud’ fortnight…

(The List started following me on Twitter after I was posting about The Art of Joy updates…awww!)

There are loads of cool things going on, and if I had more time and a bit more awakeness I’d have done a great post like bringonthejoy did last night. But why reinvent the wheel. You can go over to her blog and read it!! :)

And there is our Flickr photostream.

Oh, and good news! Cassie the Corsa has passed her MOT! Hurrah! I went down to garage and bank looking like a right chav with my hoodie to cover the scary and unwashed hair do earlier this morning – a look completed with a husky ‘I just woke up‘ voice. Nice…! So feel the need to look slightly more presentable when I go to pick her up. I feel a shower may be a step in the right direction…

Nothing ventured, nothing gained?

So I’m venturing into a few things just now. I mean why do one thing when you can do lots more? Here’s what’s going on…

1. The Art of Joy 

The Art of Joy

That picture is a piece of artwork by a member of our smallgroup who is kindly letting us use it as The Art of Joy logo! There’s more information about how you can be involved in this and as the details get clarified I’ll have details of some of the events and workshops we’ll be putting on as part of The Art of Joy - running in The Lot from March 25th – April 17th 2009! We are doing a blog on our progress which both myself and Bringonthejoy have been posting on.

2. Writing

So I got inspired hearing how Tam is writing a book, so I’ve joined Our Creative Community to get some inspiration and accountability as I take some baby steps into doing the same. I’ve had many people say that I should write a book based on the past and ongoing dramas of the brunettekoala, and I guess blogging has been my way of testing the waters in this area a little. I was overwhelmed by the feedback I got when I shared my experience of pregnancy crisis/abortion, and there have been other pieces of my life I’ve shared and been so encouraged to hear and see it leading others to opening up about their own struggles and similar experiences. Well, here we go. It might actually happen. The encouragement to do this stems many years ago on a day I mentioned in a previous post.

Lately I’ve questioned whether I should continue writing about past and present questions and struggles. But it’s comments left on my blogs like the ones here that make me think, ‘well maybe it is worth keeping writing‘. And they also remind me to pray for those who are so desperately wanting to experience healing, peace and restoration…

3. Training

Those of you who used to follow my ramblings on Musings of a Koala. Do you remember how much I was panicking when I ventured into the world of public speaking by doing a seminar at the CMF conference?

Well, about to do something even scarier next month. This time I’ve got 2 wonderful women from Dundee joining me.

I’ve also got a request on this one too. A GP who will be running some training on medical education in countries lacking in resources is looking for 200 copies of the BNF. These are to be given to medical students/health professionals in Albania. If you have any to donate – it doesn’t matter if they are written on or anything, could you get in touch with me?