Archive for the “Books” Category

The second pilot of Spill the Beans is here for Lent 2011.


Spill the Beans is a resource pack for age group learning and all-age worship written by a few people in Clydebank, Blantyre, Ayr, Edinburgh, Glasgow and other places who all have the same sort of situations in church of smaller sunday schools and who are looking for a creative approach to worship. The idea of the material is to base everything on the stories of the Bible rather than themes. They let the stories do the talking and all the activites and worship suggested are there to help engage again for the story, link stories together and find our own stories tangles with the faith stories.

You can download it here. One is a smaller file than the other. No difference except image quality. Help yourself. Do let them know if you are going to use it or going to try it out and let us know how you found it.

They hope, depending on this second pilot, to possibly have a whole year’s worth of material available from September 2011.

Download Spill-the-Beans-LentA-Booklet (High Quality)

Download Spill-the-Beans-LentA-Booklet (Lower Quality)

It all very homegrown. It’s very real. It’s not commercial but based on ideas that would work in their own congregations. It’s written for themselves but they know others have the same sort of situations and communities as they have so it might be useful to others too. If it is then have a go and tell them what you think. More for September hopefully.


Comments 2 Comments »

Do you ever notice that when you are focusing on an idea, a concept or a task that resources appear.  A blog post, a tweet, a book, a newspaper article, a movie or a conversation somehow relates to your thoughts.

Sometimes it happens the other way around and something inspires you to focus on something but I tend to find that it’s when I’m focused that ideas come and inspiration appears.

So, why do I try to do 100 things at once?  And why have I been saying that since, well forever?

Do less better.

It’s the memo Jerry McGuire wrote in the 1996 movie.  It’s the thing we all tell ourselves when we are swamped or up against a deadline.

Leo Babauta of Zen Habits fame has put virtual pen to paper and written :Focus, a simplicity manifesto in the Age of Distraction… and he’s giving away a free version.

And by free I mean no cost and no copyright (when was the last time you gave something away for free?).

It’s well worth a look.  It chimes with some of the stuff we have talked about here about Sabbath, getting stuff done, creativity and relationship.

Now, what was I supposed to be doing?

Comments No Comments »

booksWhen people say they have booked up for the summer they usually mean that they are off somewhere sunny and warm for a couple of weeks.

Well… I’m taking an altogether different approach!

Again, sorry for the lack of blogging but deadlines are approaching.

In other news, for a bit of a distraction me and the wife saw Inception last week.  Brilliant film.  Loved everything abut it.  Go see it at the cinema (unless you have a massive TV then you can wait for the DVD).

Now, back to work.

Tags: ,

Comments No Comments »

Addition by Adoption

Addition by Adoption: Kids, Causes & 140 Characters

Love, laughter and lunacy in 140 characters.

by Kevin D Hendricks

A work-at-home dad turns to Twitter to share updates about kids, causes and life.

It’s a curated selection of bizarre quotes, funny stories and temper tantrums. Woven between potty-training woes and breakfast time songs is a family growing through adoption and learning how to change the world, one status update at a time.

You’ll find humor, parental commiseration and life-changing wonder mixed into a quick and compelling read.

Available from on May 11 for $9.99.

Pre-Order April 13-20:
Addition by Adoption
will be available for pre-order from April 13-20 only. Why pre-order? Glad you asked:

  • It’s cheaper. The pre-order price is $12.99 and shipping is included. Because the shipping is included it’s ultimately cheaper than the official version will be (the book will cost $13.98 with basic shipping from Amazon).
  • More money to charity. Twice as much money will go to charity: water. Score.
  • It’s autographed. Each pre-order copy will be signed by Lexi, my 4-year-old daughter and star of much of the book. Bonus.
  • Get it early. You’ll receive pre-order copies 2-3 weeks after ordering (depending on shipping and printing times), but likely before the official launch.

Pre-order now!

Comments No Comments »

redemption stories is a collection of stories.

There are words, pictures and verse, but all of them tell a story — a redemption story.

We received input from Adele Sakler, Ben & Joy Thomas, Laura Bridge, Jason Duke, Adam Howie, Christine McIntosh, Trent Yaconelli, Emma Boyd, Angus S. Mathie, Paula Spur, Avril Cutler, Emma Boyd and Rob Griggs-Taylor.

This e-book is definitely worth the read.

And the best part – it’s free.

Tags: , ,

Comments No Comments »


I’m not big on resolutions.  I’m not sure they serve much purpose, especially when they are things we don’t really intend to do or stick to for long.  So, instead I’m going to set some personal goals for the year.  I have a forward plan for my work so these goals are just for me.

In 2010 I will:

complete my Masters in Research

I don’t have a lot of choice in this one but I hope to have my dissertation complete by the end of April. I’ve changed the whole concept of my research and instead of something on social media I’m going to be doing a project evaluation with a church in Linwood.

run / cycle / walk more

In 2000 my brother-in-law and I ran a half marathon.  Since then he has completed the Maggies Monster Bike & Hike, I’ve sat on my couch!  I’ve never felt better in my life than when I was running regularly so I’m going to start getting out more.  Avril got some running gear from Santa so I’ll have company.  I also bought some lights for my bike so I have no excuse for not getting out on it over the dark winter months (apart from the snow and ice!) and we are going to climb more hills this year as once I get my Masters out of the road we should have some more leisure time!

learn to play the guitar

My oldest son is learning guitar at school.  I have one and I can’t play it.  I want to learn. Hopefully this will be something we and I can do together.


I like to read but don’t do it often.  I go through little splurges of reading a lot then maybe nothing for a few months.  The TV is going off more and books will be read.  After The Guns of Navarone, obviously.


They say that everyone has a book in them.  I want to see if mine is ready to come out yet.  I’m not committing to a huge project but I want to write more in this blog and write a related e-book about one of the topics I’m passionate about.

take more photos

Perhaps that should be ‘take better photos’ but I read somewhere that your photos get better after your first 10,000 so perhaps quantity is important.  I started a 365 project last year, trying to take a photo a day, but it ended up in scrambling about to find some random thing to take a photo of.  Instead, I’m going to try to take my camera with me more, take it out of my bag and take more photos.  You can see the results on my Flickr page.

I know that doesn’t sound a very exciting or even particularly ambitious list but I will be very pleased if by the end 2010 I can run 10 miles without stopping, have climbed a dozen hills, can play 10 songs on the guitar, have read 20 books, have an Masters degree and some decent photos of all that.

So, what are your goals for 2010?

Tags: , , , , ,

Comments 5 Comments »

Seth Godin is giving stuff away again.  He’s gathered together 70 thinkers who share What Matters Now.  You can download this inspirational collection of thoughts here for free.

Tags: , ,

Comments No Comments »