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Friday, March 31, 2006

Friday Night

Holt Press
It's the start of the weekend! What a great feeling. Footy training tonight. Off to Perth for Asher and Jaye's wedding tomorrow plus a couple of meetings.
The footy's back on the telly.
Does it get any better than this?!

Sport Boy climbing the BUZ climbing wall at the Youthcare fete last Saturday

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I can't be certain but I'm pretty sure this is a 58 Cadillac

A very cool car I snapped while crossing the Mandurah by-pass bridge on the way to Perth on Sunday. A convertible, left hand drive pink Caddie, it doesn't get much cooler, or thirstier, than that! Posted by Picasa

From the Busselton Margaret River Times

This story was published in one of the local papers the day after we left for Melbourne. Posted by Picasa

Thursday, March 30, 2006

The Footy is Back!

The Footy Season has started, you beauty!

My mate Phil is by far the most practical man I've ever met

Regular readers and family members (are they the same?) will know that when it comes to practical skills and doing things with my hands I'm in the below average bracket. My mate Phil on the other hand (pardon the pun) is a dab hand (!) at just about anything he tries. When I dropped in on Sunday afternoon he had just finished assembling a stainless steel kitchen he'd ordered over the internet the day before! He then did a full service on the car. (Well he put three different liquids into orifices under the bonnet!). Having invited me to stay the night he proceeded to knock up a couple of legs and screw them on to the bed base he had scrounged from the verge pick-up so I'd have somewhere to sleep. And as a finishing touch he propped up Barbie in the bed to make me feel welcome (I presume).
He and Julie have recently returned from several years working in Afghanistan. They have their hands full with Pieta and Elijah who have found it a bit difficult adjusting to life in Australia.
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The Great Aussie Bike Ride came through Busselton today

Just the lazy 2600 cyclists, enroute from Albany to Perth, complete with travelling sideshow, entourage and small village for catering, ablutions etc. I wish I could have got an aerial shot, there were tents and bikes everywhere. Posted by Picasa

Elijah

A delicious mix of mischief, cuteness and belonging to someone else! Posted by Picasa

It was 20 years ago today

Some of our wedding photos were taken in black and white and the one on the top left won an award and was published in a photography magazine. Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

The man who married us

Skip Joannes played a big part in our lives 20 years ago. When I returned from my 2 1/2 years overseas living in London and travelling to Europe and America I got a job at the YMCA in Perth. Skip was the man who interviewed me for the job but what really stood out was that he spent about half an hour talking to me about the job and an hour talking to me about God. I'd never heard anything like it before, I'd had no church up-bringing or faith at all so it was completely new to me and the more he told me the more I wanted to hear, it was as if a switch had been flicked on and suddenly it all made sense. I was searching for something, my travels had been wonderful but I came home restless and dissastisfied thinking there had to be more to life. I'd fulifilled all the goals and dreams I'd set but felt something was missing. What Skip told me about God and being able to know Jesus personally resonated powerfully with me and over the next couple of months he shared more of his faith and beliefs with me and I was drawn to what I was hearing, so much so that I put my faith in Christ and committed my life to following God. Becoming a Christian is a decision I have never regretted and the pathway of my life has unfolded from that point as God has lead me into all the major decisions and developments of my life.

Primary amongst those was meeting, falling in love with and marrying Carolyn, 20 years ago today. She worked at the YMCA as well and was on a very similar journey to me, listening to Skip share the gospel and being drawn to faith by God's Spirit.
We started going to a Bible study together then one night had the simultaneous realisation that we loved one another! 3 weeks later we got engaged! 9 months after that we got married in Geelong and Skip came over from Perth to perform the service for us.
14 months after that our son, Zachariah aka The Heir, was born, the first of our 4 children.
It was a period of dramatic change to say the least.

We started going to Calvary Chapel, the church Skip and his wife Terry came to Australia from California to start and we spent many happy years there until a work relocation prompted us to move to a church closer to home on the other side of the city.

After about 15 years in Australia Skip and Terry and their two boys Gabe and Josh moved back to the states and now live in Monterey Bay where Skip is principal of a high school.
We don't talk or catch up very often these days but Skip reads my blog and sometimes leaves a comment. My Mum has visited them a couple of times in California. I'd love to get back to America some day and visit them. Skip and Terry played a very significant part in our lives so it's appropriate that I blog about them today on the 20th anniversary of our marriage.

Unfortunately Carolyn is not feeling well tonight so even a modest celebration of coffee and dessert has been postponed. I did cook dinner tonight and threw a few garlic prawns on the barbie as a way of celebrating our milestone.

The last 20 years seems to have flown by until I pause and think about all that we've done, all the things that have happened, the places we've lived and the jobs we've worked in, and of course the birth and growth of our kids; then 20 years seems like a long time. If I need any more convincing I just need to get out of bed or the car after a couple of hours drive and feel my knees creaking!

I am on record as saying that I have not found marriage easy, there are many times when it has been a difficult struggle, but today I look back with joy and pride as we celebrate the first 20 years of our marriage and I pray that God will continue to strengthen and sustain us and carry us through till finally death parts us.
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But they're guaranteed to raise a smile

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They've been going in and out of style

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Sgt Pepper taught the band to play

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It was 20 Years ago Today

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Miffy the Cow is reborn *

Holt Press
It's official, Miffy the Cow is the new team in the Busselton A Grade Volleyball competition. Amid gasps and puzzled looks, the new franchise was announced at tonight's AGM of the Busselton Volleyball Association. Admittedly the name is unconventional and unlikely to strike fear into the hearts of opposition teams, but it's catchy and friendly and has a certain bovine charm to it that will grow on people. It is also true that none of the other members of Miffy the Cow like the new team name and there may well be resistance to it initially, but these are small hurdles to overcome compared with taking on the giants of Busselton volleyball. We are a new, inexperienced team, thrown together like a cheap suit, an eclectic mix of old and new and untried players, with only our name to unify us. In the tradition of Johnny Cash's immortal story of growing up the hard way in "A Boy named Sue", Miffy the Cow will make us strong!!
Roll on the volleyball season!

Sport Boy has had a sad day today. A kid at school injured him while playing soccer and he's got a "Clinical Greenstick Fracture of the Collarbone". He's not happy because it means no sport or riding his bike for about three weeks. I'm not happy because by the sound of it the kid did it deliberately. We are going up to the school to talk to the Principal about it tomorrow.
There may well be two sides to the story so we'll go with open minds but there is some history of conflict and it needs to be stopped. Sport Boy was genuinely distressed this afternoon and again this evening, not just because of the physical pain but also the emotional impact and the sadness over missing out on things he likes to do. He was due to have his last tennis lesson tomorrow followed by a small tournament. He missed out on playing squash this afternoon, and with the soccer season only a few weeks away he is anxious not to miss out on any of that as well.

I had to juggle three meetings in an hour tonight, and sort of managed it. First was the afore-mentioned volleyball AGM, followed by my monthly YouthCare meeting where I give a report on my work to the committee who supervise and fundraise for the chaplaincy. Then it was on to the Marriage Course small group that Carolyn and I are doing with a few couples from church. Tonight's topic was parents and in-laws and the way they can influence your marriage.

Tomorrow is our 20th wedding anniversary, quite an achievement even if I say it myself! 20 years is a long time and a great deal has happened but I still have clear and vivid memories of our wedding day. We were married in Geelong and our good friend Skip Joannes did the service.

We won't be doing anything special to celebrate the occasion (in the way such an occasion deserves) because money is tight at present having just gotten home from the trip to Melbourne with the boys and still recovering from a number of bills incurred in disposing of the Tarago. I'll earn some extra money by doing the Rypen camp in two weeks so perhaps we'll go away for a night in a motel or a special dinner or both then.

Further developments on the Uluru trip today. The numbers from WA have increased to the point where they've got too many people to join up with the SA crew, so it looks like a WA only trip is back on the cards. The need for a driver is dimished, but the need for a leader with youthwork experience is increased. I'm not sure what to do. The situation is made more interesting because another kid from Busso signed up today. With three kids going from school that's a good reasonfor me to go. The issues are still the same, the money and the time. By the way 2Peter, thanks for the gesture of support.

Sport Update:
Spurs came from behind to beat West Bromwich Albion 2-1 last night and remain in the all important 4th spot in the table and the race for a place in the European Champion's League next season that goes with it.

The footy season starts tomorrow night with the first game between West Coast and St Kilda, bring it on.

I don't normally pay much attention to the domestic cricket competition but thought I should acknowledge Queensland's victory in the Pura Cup Final over Victoria, not because they won so much as because of their score, a whopping 6 for 900 declared!!!! Needless to say they won by an innings and then some!

* Miffy the Cow first appeared as a small group name at Rypen about 8 years ago, under the influence of one Andy Paul. It's a name that deserves resurrecting I'm sure you agree.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

The Heir is Alive!

Holt Press
We won volleyball, 4 sets to 0 but it was a better game than the score suggests.

Squash wasn't so good, I played Penne from work but I was slow on the court and she's small and quick and her drop shots had me struggling. I saved about 4 match points and won the 3rd set to stay alive but in the end she was too good for me. I was pretty wrecked at the end of it, that's a good thing.

When I got home The Heir was chatting on Skype so I spent the next hour conversing with him, it's the first time I've "spoken" to him since January. He's doing well, working hard, has found a good place to live and enjoying life in the UK.

Phil emailed me tonight following my visit to say that Elijah is missing me! Picture small, blonde hair, bright blue eyes, cute, developing verbal skills, into mischief. (I'd post a real pic but I think I left my camera at work, I hope I left my camera at work!)

The conversation as relayed by Phil:

Elijah: where’s somebody?

Me: who?

E: where’s Marcus?

Me: he’s gone. Do you miss him?

E: Nooooo.!!!!!

[Pause]

E: Where’s Marcus? (sadly, to himself). He’s gone.

It's nice to feel wanted!

I drove back from Perth this morning in the Yaris, what a pleasant experience, air con, cd player, power steering, ABS brakes etc etc. So much so that when I got in the Corolla to drive it to volleyball tonight it felt like driving a truck!!

That left me with half a day at work to begin catching up on stuff for Country Week. This will be a recurring and consuming task over the next few months.

I then did a bit of stuff regarding Fusion's trip to Uluru in the coming school holidays, April 16-27. I've got two kids from school who are going on the trip and am hoping to recruit 1-2 more although it's pretty late to be getting people committed at this stage. Rose rang me tonight to say that they have changed their plans and rather than do the trek through the desert from Kalgoorlie via Warburton, they are going straight across the Nullabor to link up with a mob from the Barossa Valley and will head up to the rock from there. Neither centre has enough kids and finance to run a trip on their own so it's practical to combine resources and go together.
I told Rose I would be their third bus driver, to which she responded "You Bloody Beauty!" I think she was happy. I'm not sure if I'll do the whole trip to Uluru, their main need is someone to help on a non-stop trip across the Nullabor. I may go and stay with Vicki and Rex in SA in the interim, or maybe I'll go all the way through to Uluru. I've never been there so this may be a good opportunity. Carolyn, rather than being put out at the thought of me being away for another couple of weeks is keen on the idea. She has been talking to Rose a lot since going to Poatina in January, about Fusion student housing, networking and youthwork. There's a young Aboriginal guy we'd love to see go on the Uluru pilgrimage, it could be a really positive experience for him as he deals with a lot of difficult family issues to do with abandonment.
It will be a pretty full on and tiring trip, driving about 8000 kilometres I think, in a bus filled with teenagers! Just the sort of quiet holiday the doctor ordered!! I may need some financial support (everything Fusion does is done by faith and run on a shoe-string!) let me know if you feel like contributing. The same applies for the kids going on the trip, we are looking for some part sponsorship for them.
NB. Interesting footnote. Fusion uses Uluru, the traditional Aboriginal name for the rock. The Aboriginal worker at school uses Ayers Rock, the westernised name for the rock, named after the first white explorer to find the rock.

The rest of my day was spent responding to emails about Rypen, the camp for teenagers I direct for Roatary each year. There'll be between 50-60 kids attending and I have a team of a dozen people running the camp. It's a big job but the loyalty and commitment of the leaders is amazing, giving up their own time and putting a great deal of energy into preparing for and running the camp. This will be my 12th year of directing the camp and my aim is to do as little as possible. By that I mean, I want to hand over as much of the responsibility to the team as possible, to allow them the opportunity to lead and run the program. I'll be assuming more of a coaching and supporting role, there to help if they need it, giving feedback and encouragement but not doing anywhere near as much of the up-front stuff as I used to. We started this process last year and it worked very well. It's a challenge for me not to want to lead and run things but it will be so much better for the team if they get to do it, learning and growing from the hands-on opportunity. They are such a good team that I have great confidence in their ability. The camp is at Araluen from April 7-9 and we have one more team meeting next weekend to do our final preparation. It will be pretty hectic getting everything ready.

We're going up to Perth for Asher and Jaye's wedding on Saturday, with the Rypen meeting on Sunday, and the CFFL draft on between on Saturday night, it will be another busy weekend. Thank goodness for the Yaris so we can travel in comfort and with good economy.

Monday, March 27, 2006

I'm Home

Holt Press
I'm back! Home again from Melbourne after a fantastic trip.
Normal blogging will resume shortly but right now I need to go and play volleyball then squash.

I had a great stay in Perth last night at Phil and Julie's place, entertained by Pieta and Elijah. Pics to follow.

I went up for a Rypen team meeting, the camp is in 2 weeks time! The pressure's on.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Gone to Melbourne

I've gone to Melbourne! Holt Press will be inactive for the next 9 days or so.

Check on our day to day progress with pics and updates from the Commonwealth Games on our trip blog

www.sportboygoestomelbourne.blogspot.com

Cheers

Marcus

Sport Boy goes to Melbourne

Sport Boy goes to Melbourne

This is our event schedule while we're in Melbourne.


Opening Ceremony 3 Orientation to MelbourneGo to festival venue 19:30 MCG

16th
Table Tennis 14 9:30 - 14:30Melb Sports & Aquatic Centre, Middle ParkTram 112 from Southern Cross station

Gymnastics-Artistic13:30 - 16:00 14 Rod Laver ArenaMelbourne Park
Hockey 10 4.00 – 7.30 State Netball & Hockey Centre
Cycling-Track 418:00 - 22:30 Melbourne Park

17 th
Swimming 4 10:00 - 12:30
Squash 10.00 – 4.00 Both at:-Melb Sports & Aquatic Centre,
Rugby 7s 1418:00 - 22:30Telstra DomeDocklandsSouthern Cross station

18th
Triathlon *9:00 – 14:30 St Kilda Foreshore
Boxing 14 13:00-17:00Melb Exhibition Centre

19th
Marathon *9:00 – 14:00Melbourne CBDStart/finish MCG
Weightlifting 14 18:30-21:00Melb Exhibition Centre

20th
Athletics 14 18:30 - 22:00 MCG

21st
Hockey 12 8:30 - 12:00 State Netball & Hockey Centre
Athletics 14 18:30 - 22:00 MCG

22nd
Basketball 1411:30 - 16:00Melbourne park

23 rd
Shopping etcArrive at airport by 13:30
Depart Melbourne15:10
Arrive Perth16:15
Bus to BusseltonArrive 20:30 – 21:00

Options in Melbourne Festival of Melbourne Circus Big TopInteract @ Birrarung Marr Federation Square Concerts and performances at Alexandra Gardens, Myer Music Bowl Watch the action at Live sites

Busselton SHS Commonwealth Games Trip Melbourne 2006 March 14 – 23
We have confirmed tickets to these events. * Free, non-ticketed events

Accommodation: Box Forest Secondary College, Glenroy Rd, Glenroy
school chaplain- Chris Helm
Marcus Holt Mob:
Blog site: www.sportboygoestomelbourne.blogspot.com

The newest member of the Haynes family

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Baby Kara Lee Haynes, born on Thursday March 9. Mother and baby doing well at last report.

Dunsborough Art Show

A few of the paintings at the Dunsborough Art Show we went to the weekend before last. Posted by Picasa

Crook

Holt Press
My hit counter is currently sitting on 4999, I'm just waiting for my 5000th visitor.

Today is the day we go to Melbourne, the wait is over. Naturally, that means unexpected problems! Like me getting sick! My throat is really bad, I've got some sort of cold, sneezing and blowing bloody mucous out of my nose and great pain when I swallow, just the way you want to feel when you're about to board a plane for the other side of the country!!!!

Other than that things are great!

We leave Busselton at 5.30 this afternoon, the flight takes off at 10.40 tonight, arriving at 5.00am Melbourne time.
It's going to be a long day.
No matter, we're all excited and hanging out to get to Melbourne and all the fun and games of the games.

Look out for us on TV!

Aussie Aussie Aussie!

Monday, March 13, 2006

A few tips on wedding etiquette

The Bride and Groom had obviously been practising because when it came time to dance they did a lovely slow jive, to the delight of the crowd.I can't conclude the posts on the wedding without mentioning some wedding etiquette for any of you readers who may be invited to someone's special day some time in the future and aren't sure what is or isn't acceptable behaviour.
1. If you have a mobile phone, turn it off.

2. If you insist on leaving it on, don't have a loud intrusive ring tone, put it on silent.

3. If your phone rings in the middle of the speeches, don't answer it.

4. If you do answer it , move out of the room as discreetly as you can before you continue the conversation, don't just move to the back of the room and bob down in the deluded belief that you won't be seen or heard by the rest of the guests.

5. If you do answer it, don't proceed to have a loud conversation with someone about the grand final your team has just played in without you, even if they did win, and even if they have been trying for 4 years.

6. If you've broken all these rules, turn the phone off, don't leave it on to receive equally loud and intrusive SMS messages about the same subject then try and justify your actions as if the rest of the guests are going to suddenly decide that your softball game is more important than listening to the father of the bride as he celebrates his daughter's big day!These rules of etiquette may or may not be based on real-life events that may or may not have happened at yesterday's wedding! Just remember the old saying, truth is stranger than fiction. Posted by Picasa

Wedding Post Reprise

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Holt Press is a blog that's eager to please it's loyal readers and in response to a request for some slightly bigger pictures of Greg and Demelza's big day, here they are. I don't know why Ken (D's Dad) has lost his head, bit of a shame really because he was over the moon about the service, on three different occasions he told me how good it had been.

Greg, taking some relief after the pressure was off

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Demelza glowed all day, a very happy bride on a wonderful day

The Rypen crew at the wedding

Several members of Rypen teams past and present were there for the special event. Christine, top middle, left for South America tonight where she'll begin 8 months of travel with friends, taking in Britain and Europe as well. She has a broken heart following an unexpected end to a relationship, I hope she has a brilliant time overseas and maybe meets someone special. She and Emily, middle left on the left are both addicted to outrigger canoeing, something they have in common with my mate Laurie. (Talking of Laurie, congratulations to him and Sonia on the birth of their baby daughter Kara Lee, photo to follow). We sat with Nick and Louell, bottom right, and really enjoyed their company. Nick is one of Greg's bosses. The wedding cake and desserts were specially highlighted with all the guests names, and they were delicious. Posted by Picasa

Tha Happy Couple Take 2

First attempt didn't seem to work. (The picture that is, not the wedding) Posted by Picasa

Big prize on offer

Holt Press
If you happen to be my 5000th visitor, as per the hit counter, leave me a comment and your details because you'll win a brand new car!

Greg and Demelza's Wedding

The wedding went beautifully, without a hitch, glorious weather, great setting, everyone was very happy and I didn't make any major blunders. Many people commented on how much they'd enjoyed the service and especially the personal feel to it as a result of my knowing them well and being a friend rather than just the minister doing the job.
I enjoyed it and was pleased with the way it went. I'll post my message from the service tomorrow. It's nearly 2am Monday morning and we've been home from Perth for about an hour so I need to get to bed. Don't want to waffle on like Harry the Dog!
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Hostility and Civility

Birchy is a great bloke and a close mate and it was good to see him on the weekend and have some fun while we were conducting the wedding ceremony. He's an authorized marriage celebrant so he was able to legitimise what I said and did in the service, we worked well as a team. Posted by Picasa

Hamming it up before the "Big" Game

At the rehearsal yesterday afternoon Birchy and I were flying our respective colours and doing a bit of man-on-man work prior to the NAB Cup semi-final between the Cats and the Dockers Posted by Picasa

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Holt Press

Holt Press
Day one of my 2 day mission complete with just a sore throat in the negative column. The wedding rehearsal went smoothly and easily. Demelza is really excited now that all the work is done and the big day is almost here. Greg is more laid back about it but seems happy if demelza is happy. Darren, my "official" partner in conducting the wedding, was happy with the service, only suggesting one change of wording.
I dropped Carolyn and Sport Boy off at Sally and Warren's then headed off to the Rypen meeting. I was pushed for time but would have gotten there much earlier if I hadn't gotten lost, twice in two days! Early warning signs?
The meeting went well, the team are an amazing bunch of young people, talented and committed; I'm trying to hand over as much of the work and responsibility to them as I can and they are relishing the opportunities to develop their skills and take on leadership roles.

I managed to conclude the meeting in time to get back to Sally's before half time in the football. Sport Boy, Callum and I watched a see-sawing game, with the lead changing about 8-9 times before Geelong kicked away in the last 5 minutes to win by 20 points. They looked good and Fremantle looked predictably disappointing away from Subiaco. The Cats now have a much tougher task next week, playing Adelaide in Adelaide in the Grand Final of the pre-season comp. Not many teams beat the Crows over there and our away record has been ordinary the last few years so I don't expect to win, but, you never know... The only disappointment is that the game won't be played in Melbourne so we won't be able to go! I'll be finding a TV somewhere in the midst of all the Games events.

My throat is really sore when I swallow and I've had a runny nose and some sneezing fits the last couple of days. They in turn have lead to a couple of blood noses! I'm really hoping the same thing doesn't happen tomorrow in the middle of the wedding!
Time to make a couple of last minute adjustments to the service and go to bed, it's a big day tomorrow.

Almost forgot the highlight of the day, the chocolate mousse Sal made for dessert in my honour! Mmmmmm mousse!

Painting # 10

This one is a wedding present, I hope they like it!! Even if they don't, look on the bright side, I'm sure they won't get two of them! Posted by Picasa

Pegged at Phat Phriday

If you think this looks painful, you're right! The things kids will do for a chocolate bar! Posted by Picasa

Painting # 9

Playing around with a slight change in style. Carolyn likes it, Sport Boy doesn't! Posted by Picasa