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Friday, August 20, 2010

Happy Election Day!

Well, by Sunday we should know who the Prime Minister is for the next while.
Last time, I did an informal vote on purpose. I didn't know much about the different parties and didn't really have definite views anyway.
I was on team that year and we were asked to hand out flyers for the CDP at one of the local voting places for an hour or two. When I got there, I found the flyers called for a total stop to Muslim immigration- something that sounds rather discriminatory for a secular society like Australia. So, I didn't hand them out very enthusiastically.
This election, I've reviewed a lot of parties' policies (ALP, Lib, Greens, LDPCDP, Family First, The Sex Party and The Secular Party -even Senator Online [which I find ridiculous as it would be totally dominated by trolls]) and controversially (among Christian circles, at least) I've decided to mostly go Green.
I don't agree with all their policies (notably the abortion and gay marriage issues), but i do agree with most of them and their general ethos. The "Christian" parties (CDP and FF) make me cringe and the "Anti-Christian" parties (Sex and Secular Parties) go too far in the other direction. The two major parties don't seem to make a hard stand on issues that actually matter to me (like climate change) and I don't want to throw my vote away again.
I encourage every one to go check out the different parties, make up your own mind, put together your preferences and vote like you mean it!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

It's My Birthday!

Today marks my 26th birthday.
I feel the past couple of years have seen me grow a lot.
Getting married and having a child has made me really think about the kind of man I am and the kind I want to be. It's amazing how these kinds of life events change your perspective.
3 years ago I would have thought the idea of committing to a 4 year (at 3-quarter pace) degree was horrible, but now I've committed myself to a lifetime with Tab and Addie (and more soon) so 4 years to be able to better provide for us all doesn't seem too big a deal.
Previously, I had struggled to make a 5-year plan. Now 5-years seems rather short-term.

Today I read this article from NYTimes about "emerging adulthood". Seems rather appropriate.
Here's a quote:

During the period he calls emerging adulthood [roughly 18-30 years old -A. S], Arnett says that young men and women are more self-focused than at any other time of life, less certain about the future and yet also more optimistic, no matter what their economic background. (p4.)
Apparently this is revolutionary stuff for the field- to establish a new 'age group', just as it was when we first started talking about adolescence as a separate time of life to childhood and adulthood.

I found some of the quotes from young people echoed what I felt/thought just a few years ago:

 “It’s somewhat terrifying,” writes a 25-year-old named Jennifer, “to think about all the things I’m supposed to be doing in order to ‘get somewhere’ successful: ‘Follow your passions, live your dreams, take risks, network with the right people, find mentors, be financially responsible, volunteer, work, think about or go to grad school, fall in love and maintain personal well-being, mental health and nutrition.’ When is there time to just be and enjoy?” Adds a 24-year-old from Virginia: “There is pressure to make decisions that will form the foundation for the rest of your life in your 20s. It’s almost as if having a range of limited options would be easier.” (p.6)
Julie, a 23-year-old New Yorker and contributor to “20 Something Manifesto,” is apparently aware of this. She was coddled her whole life, treated to French horn lessons and summer camp, told she could do anything. “It is a double-edged sword,” she writes, “because on the one hand I am so blessed with my experiences and endless options, but on the other hand, I still feel like a child. (p. 7)
Today, on my 26th birthday, I really feel like I have grown out of this stage and further toward a man than an "emerging adult".

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Create more, Consume less...

A blog I love to read is The Art of Manliness. They just launched The Trunk and The Library of Random Man-Knowledge and have a great repository of articles in the archive. In April, Brett (&Kate) McKay, who runs the site, posted an article titled "Creating and Consuming: How to be Mature". The main motto of the article is "create more, consume less".
What a great motto!

Give it a read sometime.

I do think that there needs to be a balance between our consumption and creation, but in today's western culture there is a great need to be careful what we consume. Often people go a long time without any thought as to what it is that they are consuming from other sources- TV, radio, music, movies, books, the internets....
Much of what is out there is not wholesome (to say the least) and is unhelpful for a healthy, godly or peaceful life.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Some pics of Addie

Here's some shots of Addie from the last week or so!
It's nearly her 1st birthday!
Exclamation mark!

Gimme the camera!
Under the table at a party


Look at those teeth (between the banana).