Sunday, January 01, 2012

Six Years

Do you keep a diary?

In January, 2006 I decided to attempt to follow in Dad's footsteps and start a diary. I've now completed the first 6 years in a Collins Kingsgrove Day to A Page diary.

I didn't begin writing until Friday, 27th January, but tried to fill in the first month, after the event.

Looking back over the past six years is interesting, though I expect I have written down some unimportant things and neglected some of those that I should have recorded.

I won't forget 1st January, 2006 because on that day I preached at Bathurst Evangelical Church and then baptised Luke Seve in the Macquarie River. It took a bit of doing to find a place where he could be fully immersed as the river was so shallow at that time.

All sorts of things have happened in the past six years: my father's two sisters died, my mother died, several people's marriages died, but we also celebrated David and Heidi's wedding with our whole family. We were so pleased to have Justin come home for the wedding and introduce his wife, Debbie to the family.

During the life of this diary, Joan and I began going away to celebrate our wedding anniversary and have stayed in Wellington, Abercrombie Caves, Carcoar, Blackheath and Cowra.

We also welcomed our second, third and fourth grandchildren and were thrilled when Number Four was our first granddaughter, Hilary.

The diary records my putting on all the weight I had lost in the couple of years before the diary began. I had lost 15 kilos, but by the time the diary was started I was already putting it on again, weighing 84 kilos on 1st January, 2006 and steadily increasing my weight until it was 97.8 on Cathy's birthday, 26th April, 2011.

During this six year period, i enjoyed teaching Miriam Siers, and seeing her awarded her A Mus A. Very exciting!

On that day, I got serious about losing the weight and began a diet and a few days later joined WeightWatchers. I'm pleased to say my first entry in my new diary records my weight as 82.2. I do hope to lose 8 kilos more and get to the top of what WeightWatchers says is my healthy weight range, stay there for 6 weeks and then get WeightWatchers free for life, provided that I don't gain more than 2 kilos.

When I began the diary, I had embarked on a project of reading through the Old Testament, inspired by Ron McCarthy having given us a chart to tick off reading through the New Testament in 90 days. I used the diary to record my progress and during the past six years have read the whole Bible through in
Today's New International Version (TNIV)
The ESV Reformation Study Bible,
The Books of the Bible: a presentation of Today's New International Version
The New Living Translation, 2nd edition
The Good News Bible,
The New Jerusalem Bible,
The ESV Study Bible,
The NIV Archaeological Study Bible
and The Contemporary English Version (CEV)
I'm currently a third of the way through the Holman Christian Standard Bible, using Logos Bible Software and consulting the New Bible Commentary or Tyndale Commentaries as I go. And I'm about 20% of the way through listening to The Bible Experience, which is a dramatic presentation of the TNIV by an African-American cast.

I'm pleased to have a record of my activities as a census collector in 2006 and 2011. I sincerely hope it talks me out of ever attempting it again. It is a difficult, low-paying job, but I'm pleased to have at least got my first e-reader out of the meagre proceeds.

During the past six years we have renewed our carpet and lino, bought 2 cars (both in 2007, because I wrote off our first Camry by driving straight through a Give Way sign on the corner of Howick and Rankin Sts and being collected by a Rural Fire Service Toyota Landcruiser, only 5 months after we purchased it).

I also have a record of my activities working for Western Research Centre in another low-paying job which involved telephone market research. That was not a pleasant occupation and I stopped before the centre suspended work during the global financial crisis.

And I can look back on the first weeks of term 4 each year, where I ran a voluntary Music Appreciation program for U3A at Mitchell Conservatorium. Over the past 9 years, I have enjoyed presenting programs on J S Bach, Mozart, Handel, Mendelssohn, Chopin and Schumann, 19th century Russian Music, 20th century British Music, French Music and Australian Music.

On 1st March ( St David's Day), 2009 I joined Toastmasters. I can look back on a few of my adventures there by looking up Mondays.

My diary also records a little of what has happened at our church over the past six years, which has coincided with Rodney Macready coming to be our pastor during 2006 and then Mark Sutton joining him last year.

If you are still with me, I'd be interested to read how you use your diary. Haven't started one yet? Today could be an ideal time. Or you could start later in January, just as I did in 2006.

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