366 days of gratitude

May 2, 2016

The garden has that autumnal look of decay and disorder but the hardier of the roses are still blooming and walking among them gives the gift of scent for which I’m grateful.


You don’t think you need a flu jab?

May 2, 2016

It’s Immunisation Awareness week:

Health Minister Jonathan Coleman says immunisation week is an opportunity to raise awareness about the importance of immunisation. This year’s immunisation week theme is – ‘protecting baby begins at pregnancy.’

“Expectant mums are encouraged to enrol with a Lead Maternity Carer, be immunised during pregnancy, and immunise their baby,” says Dr Coleman.

“Getting immunised against whooping cough and influenza when you’re pregnant are two of the most important ways you can help protect your baby for their first few weeks of life.

“Babies are vulnerable to whooping cough until they have completed their six week, three month and five month immunisations.

“Pregnant women are more likely to suffer from complications from influenza that can put their health, and their baby’s health, at risk.” . . .

It’s not only pregnant women who are at risk from the flu.

Polly Gillespie writes on losing her sister to the flu.

If you’re likely to be upset by graphic details of what the illness did to her body, don’t read on.

Read the rest of this entry »


Word of the day

May 2, 2016

Zafty  – a person easily imposed upon.


Rural Round-up

May 2, 2016

EU ramps up dairy production again – Keith Woodford:

The EU has now released dairy production statistics for February 2016 and from a New Zealand perspective the news is all bad. Daily milk production has increased 6.5% from January to February. Some increase was expected – February is always higher than January on a daily basis – but the extent of the increase is a surprise.

The combined January and February production is up 7.4% from last year, and February production, once adjusted for the leap year, is up almost 10% on a daily basis from January last year.

There are some glimmers of hope in other parts of the world, and I will come to that later in this article. First, more about Europe. . . 

Silver Fern Farms’ response to requisition for shareholder meeting:

On 13 April, Silver Fern Farms received a requisition led by Mr John Shrimpton and Mr Blair Gallagher, representing a group of 80 shareholders. The requisition is for the Board of Silver Fern Farms to call a special meeting of shareholders to consider the following resolution:

“Resolution: as a Special Resolution:

That the shareholders of Silver Fern Farms Limited (the Company) hereby approve the proposed partnership of the Company with Shanghai Maling and the restructure described in the Notice of Meeting and Shareholder Information Pack dated 28 September 2015 by way of this special resolution of shareholders.” . . 

Quit humanising animal agriculture – Kellie for Ag:

There is a difference between human and humane. I think people are forgetting that very important difference.

The last few weeks I’ve been dealing with animal rights activist on my Facebook page and I was quite stunned at what they were saying to me. One of my ‘favorites’ was, “How would you like it if I raped your mother and killed your father and siblings?”.

This comment bothered me in more than just one way. First of all, don’t you dare threaten my family. Second, humans and cattle are not in the same ‘playing field’. Survival of the fittest isn’t about equal rights for everyone.

If animal rights activist had their way: . . .

Livestock broker tackles broncos – Sally Rae:

He’s a bronc riding, world-record setting “stick-throwing” stock agent.

At just 21, Madison Taylor has already represented New Zealand in two very diverse activities, pipe bands and rodeo.

Now living in the Hakataramea Valley, Mr Taylor works for South Island-based independent livestock broking firm Peter Walsh and Associates. ……….. 

Schools to help name biosecurity puppies:

The Ministry for Primary Industries has proudly welcomed six new biosecurity puppies and is giving New Zealand schools the chance to name one of them.

Working biosecurity detector dog Aria gave birth to the beagle puppies (three boys and three girls) in March. They are collectively called “G-litter”.

The floppy-eared puppies will undergo intensive training to work at New Zealand’s ports and airports where they will sniff out food, plants and other items that could pose biosecurity risk to New Zealand. . . 

Side event chance to connect:

Attend the South Island Dairy Event 2016 in Invercargill and invest in yourself and your business.

That’s the message from Side event committee chairwoman Heidi Williams, who wants dairy farmers to set aside June 20 to 22 for the dairy conference.

Organised by farmers, for farmers, the annual programme was designed to promote thinking and debate, and help like-minded farmers to network and find inspiration, she said. . . 


Quote of the day

May 2, 2016

The child supplies the power but the parents have to do the steering. – Benjamin Spock who was born on this day in 1903.


May 2 in history

May 2, 2016

1194 – King Richard I gave Portsmouth its first Royal Charter.

1230 William de Braose, 10th Baron Abergavenny was hanged by PrinceLlywelyn the Great.

1335 Otto the Merry, Duke of Austria, became Duke of Carinthia.

1536 Anne Boleyn was arrested and imprisoned on charges of adultery, incest, treason and witchcraft.

1559 John Knox returned from exile to Scotland to become the leader of the beginning Scottish Reformation.

1568 Mary, Queen of Scots, escaped from Loch Leven Castle.

1670 King Charles II granted a permanent charter to the Hudson’s Bay Company to open up the fur trade in North America.

1729 Catherine the Great, Empress of Russia, was born (d. 1796).

1737  William Petty, 2nd Earl of Shelburne, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom was born (d. 1805).

1806  Catherine Labouré, French visionary and saint was born (d. 1876).

1808  Outbreak of the Peninsular War: The people of Madrid rose up in rebellion against French occupation. Francisco de Goya later memorializes this event in his painting The Second of May 1808.

1808 Emma Wedgwood, English naturalist, wife of Charles Darwin, was born (d. 1896).

1816 Marriage of Léopold of Saxe-Coburg and Charlotte Augusta.

1829  Captain Charles Fremantle of the HMS Challenger, declared theSwan River Colony in Australia.

1863 American Civil War: Stonewall Jackson was wounded by friendly fire while returning to camp after reconnoitering during the Battle of Chancellorsville.

1866  Peruvian defenders fought off Spanish fleet at the Battle of Callao.

1868 – The clipper Celestial Queen arrived at Port Chalmers carrying the first shipment of live salmon and trout ova from England.

First shipment of salmon and trout ova

1879  The Spanish Socialist Worker’s Party was founded in Casa Labra Pub (city of Madrid) by the Spanish workers’ leader Pablo Iglesias.

1885 Good Housekeeping magazine went on sale for the first time.

1885  Cree and Assiniboine warriors won the Battle of Cut Knife, their largest victory over Canadian forces during the North-West Rebellion.

1885 – The Congo Free State was established by King Léopold II of Belgium.

1889 Menelik II, Emperor of Ethiopia, signs a treaty of amity with Italy, which gave Italy control over Eritrea.

1892 Manfred von Richthofen, German World War I pilot – the Red Baron – was born (d. 1918).

1895 Lorenz Hart, American lyricist was born (d. 1943).

1903 Benjamin Spock, American pediatrician and author was born (d. 1998).

1918 General Motors acquired the Chevrolet Motor Company of Delaware.

1932 Comedian Jack Benny‘s radio show aired for the first time.

1933 – Gleichschaltung: Adolf Hitler banned trade unions.

1935 King Faisal II of Iraq was born (d. 1958).

1936 Engelbert Humperdinck, Indian-born singer, was born.

1945 World War II: Fall of Berlin: The Soviet Union announced the capture of Berlin and Soviet soldiers hoisted their red flag over the Reichstagbuilding.

1945 World War II: Italian Campaign – General Heinrich von Vietinghoffsigned the official instrument of surrender of all Wehrmacht forces in Italy.

1945 World War II: The US 82nd Airborne Division liberated Wöbbelin concentration camp finding 1000 dead inmates, most starved to death.

1946  The “Battle of Alcatraz“ in which two guards and three inmates died.

1950 Bianca Jagger, Nicaraguan socialite, was born.

1952  The world’s first ever jet airliner, the De Havilland Comet made its maiden flight, from London to Johannesburg.

1955  Tennessee Williams won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama for Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.

1963  Berthold Seliger launched a rocket with three stages and a maximum flight altitude of more than 100 kilometres near Cuxhaven.

1964  Vietnam War: An explosion sank the USS Card while docked at Saigon.

1964 Tram #252,  displaying the message ‘end of the line’ and with Mayor Frank Kitts in the driver’s seat, travelled from Thorndon to the Zoo in Newtown – the last electric tram journey in New Zealand.

NZ's last electric tram trip

1964 – First ascent of Shishapangma the fourteenth highest mountain in the world and the lowest of the Eight-thousanders.

1969   Queen Elizabeth 2 departed on her maiden voyage to New York City.

1969 Brian Lara, Trinidadian West Indies cricketer, was born.

1982 Falklands War: The British nuclear submarine HMS Conqueror sank the Argentine cruiser ARA General Belgrano.

1994– Bus disaster in Poland, 32 people died.

1995 During the Croatian War of Independence, Serb forces fired cluster bombs at Zagreb, killing 7 and wounding over 175 civilians.

1998  The European Central Bank was founded in Brussels in order to define and execute the European Union’s monetary policy.

1999  Panamanian election: Mireya Moscoso became the first woman to be elected President of Panama.

2000 President Bill Clinton announced that accurate GPS access would no longer be restricted to the United States military.

2000 Princess Margriet of the Netherlands unveiled the Man With Two Hatsmonument in Apeldoorn and the other in Ottawa on May 11, 2000, symbolically linking the Netherlands and Canada for their assistance throughout World War II.

2002 Marad massacre of eight Hindus near Palakkad in Kerala.

2004   Yelwa massacre of more than 630 nomad Muslims by Christians in Nigeria.

2008 Cyclone Nargis made landfall in Myanmar killing over 130,000 people and leaving millions of people homeless.

2008 – Chaitén Volcano began erupting in Chile, forcing the evacuation of more than 4,500 people.

2011 – Osama bin Laden, the suspected mastermind behind the September 11 attacks and the FBI’s most wanted man was killed by the United States special forces in Abbottabad, Pakistan.

2011 – An E. coli outbreak struck Europe, mostly in Germany, leaving more than 30 people dead and many others sick from the bacteria outbreak.

2011 The Conservative Party of Canada was elected with their first majority government.

2012 – A pastel version of The Scream, by Norwegian painter Edvard Munch, sold for $120 million in a New York City auction, setting a new world record for an auctioned work of art.

2014 – Odessa Clashes between supporters of a united Ukraine and supporters of Federalization resulted in 48 casualties.

2014 – Two mudslides in Badakhshan, Afghanistan, leave up to 2,500 people missing.

2015  – Princess Charlotte of Cambridge was born.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia


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