365 days of gratitude


We’ve been away for a couple of days and came back to a pile of mail which was mostly paper and junk.

But among all that was a real letter, hand written, expressing thanks and love and I’m grateful for it.

Word of the day


Sunder – to break, put or split apart; break in two; separate by or as if by violence or by intervening time or space; disunite in almost any manner, either by rending, cutting, or breaking; to separate; divide; sever; form a barrier or border between; dissolve a connection or relationship; expose to the sun and wind.

Thank you for saying thank you


From  Cheyenne McKay on Facebook:

A farmer.

Most of us know a farmer. Some of us may just even be blessed to be one, or be the child of one. For those who live on farms, or even live in town and drive out to work for someone who owns a farming business, I wanted to say this.

Thank you for the bruises you get on your legs when you’re working in the yards with the sheep.

Thank you for your tough hands that fix machinery and fences.

Thank you for fixing pipes in the heat of the day so stock has water every hour of the day.

Thank you for growing food for your stock, so it grows and then eventually feed the rest of Australia.

Thank you for shearing your sheep, so ladies have wool to knit with for their grandchildren and to keep others warm.

Thank you for the sleepless nights during seeding season and during harvest.

Some people seem to forget to take five seconds to recognise that there are individuals busting their asses off to feed us. Day in and day out.

Harvest would have to be the most tiring and horrible time of the year.

It’s the time where you wake up early in the morning and get started before it’s too hot. It’s putting out fires when bearings snap. It’s working with other people, working in chaser bins and trucks transporting it to silos.

It’s constantly watching the weather, if it’s too windy it’s safer to not harvest, just in case a fire breaks loose. You can’t harvest when it’s damp, silos won’t accept it.

It’s going backwards and forwards in a paddock in a machine that doesn’t go so fast, for hours on end every day.

It’s where you transport a truck load of grain that will make 42,000 loaves of bread that worth over $84,000 but we only get $6,000 for it.

It’s finishing late at night when your wife and children are already asleep, and the dinner that has been cooked for you is in the microwave or oven so the cats don’t eat it. It doesn’t taste as nice as when it’s fresh off the pan.

It’s falling asleep on the couch after dinner because you’re just trying to relax for a few minutes before you shower to rid of the itchiness.

It’s that one day off every few weeks to spend time with your family but there’s always that something around the house that needs fixing, or there’s a special event to attend.

It’s where your family is trying to cope around the house not seeing their dad/husband. That one empty spot on the dinner table that would normally be occupied.

It’s sitting there thinking of your family and hoping they’re coping okay without you, and that you’re excited for it all to be over.

And once harvest is finished, relief washes through both you and your family. Finally! You’re together again!

And before you know it, seeding season starts again and you’re back into the routine with shearing and lambing and spraying weeds, aswell as fixing those fences again.

It doesn’t have to be revolved just around grain farming. This can include fruit and veg, dairy, cattle, piggery. Everything has its season and it’s all busy.

So please, when you sit down with your spouse and children to eat tea, recognise the farmers who have worked hard so you can have food.

Thank you dad for working so hard to provide for so many people and earning the money to help us pay bills, pay for food and keep clothes on our backs. It means a lot to us much more than you think.

We don’t have to feed millions of people, we choose to. Show a little more appreciation, it keeps us going.

Three things


Three Things Art Prints

Three things to remember at the start of every day: #1. this is your real life. #2. joy is easier to see when you quit complaining. #3. you never know what the third thing is going to be until later, so try to pay attention so you don’t miss it. – Three Things –  © 2018 Brian Andreas – posted with permission.

You can buy books, posters, cards, ornaments and more and sign up for a daily dose of whimsy like this by email at Story People.

Rural round-up


Pest eradication has more birds singing – Kerrie Waterworth:

A four-year plan to trap stoats, rats, possums and weasels in the Matukituki Valley, near Wanaka, is music to the ears, writes Kerrie Waterworth.

This summer, for the first time in years, tourist jet-boat operators report hearing birds in the forests of the Matukituki Valley between Lake Wanaka and Mt Aspiring.

Wanaka-based River Journeys guide James Blunt has been taking tourists up the Matukituki River for six years and said he had really started noticing the birdsong since October.

“We’ve gone from long periods of nothing to now getting four to six species of birds most trips.” . . 

Environmental concerns prompt changes – Pam Tipa:

Concerns about the sensitive environment of the Kaipara Harbour prompted the top-performing drystock unit Te Opu to transition from sheep and beef breeding to a successful unit finishing bulls and lambs.

This gave the farm the flexibility needed to respond to the sensitive environmental challenges of its location on the Kaipara Harbour shores.

The farm is now a three year Beef + Lamb NZ environmental focus farm sponsored from several sources. . .

Fish farms get pollution blame – Tim Fulton:

Fish farming in Mackenzie Basin hydro canals is feeding worms usually found in sewage, aquatic expert Rowan Wells says.

Wells, a NIWA freshwater botanist, monitored the health of the glacier-fed water and said the ecosystem in the waterways around the area’s salmon farms was clearly degraded.

NIWA was reporting to Meridian Energy on algae and periphyton and fungal bacterial matter coating rocks and plants. . . 

First up best dressed – Mark Daniel:

The rising fortunes of global farming are raising the demand for European-made tackle, which might signal supply problems for Kiwi farmers and contractors looking to hit the new season with new toys.

Several importers and distributors — including Origin Agroup that imports Pottinger, Joskin and Alpego, and Power Farming Wholesale that imports and distribute McHale, Kverneland and Maschio – are advising early ordering to guarantee delivery by late August.

“European manufacturers were predicting a 3% rise in volumes for the 2018 season after a couple of stagnant years,” David Donnelly, managing director of Origin Agroup told Rural News. . .

Dual meat-Wool sheep sell well – Alan Williams:

Good prices were secured across the board at the annual Rollesby Valley onfarm lamb sales on Thursday with halfbreds especially in strong demand for their dual wool and meat income.

About 20,000 lambs from 12 vendors were sold across nine properties in the wider Burkes Pass area of inland South Canterbury.

Most were store lambs but a good number of primes sold well for processing,with a top price of $160 and the better types trading up from about $130. The second cut of primes sold at $120 to $129, PGG Wrightson’s South Canterbury livestock manager Joe Higgins said. . .

Sunday soapbox


Sunday’s soapbox is yours to use as you will – within the bounds of decency and absence of defamation. You’re welcome to look back or forward, discuss issues of the moment, to pontificate, ponder or point us to something of interest, to educate, elucidate or entertain, amuse, bemuse or simply muse, but not abuse.

Image may contain: text

We hear and apprehend only what we already half know. – Henry David Thoreau

February 11 in history


660 BC – Traditional date for the foundation of Japan by Emperor Jimmu.

1531 Henry VIII was recognised as supreme head of the Church of England.

1752  Pennsylvania Hospital, the first hospital in the United States, opened.

1790 Religious Society of Friends, also known as Quakers, petitioned U.S. Congress for abolition of slavery.

1794 First session of United States Senate open to the public.

1808 Anthracite coal was first burned as a fuel, experimentally.

1809 Robert Fulton filed a patent for improvements to steamboatnavigation.

1812 Massachusetts governor Elbridge Gerry “gerrymandered” for the first time.

1814 Norway‘s independence was proclaimed, marking the ultimate end of the Kalmar Union.

1826 University College London was founded under the name University of London.

1826 Swaminarayan wrote the Shikshapatri, an important test within the Swaminarayan faith.

1840 Gaetano Donizetti‘s opera La Fille du Régiment received its first performance in Paris.

1843 Giuseppe Verdi‘s opera I Lombardi received its first performance in Milan.

1847 Thomas Alva Edison, American inventor, was born (d. 1931).

1855 Kassa Hailu was crowned Tewodros II, Emperor of Ethiopia, by Abuna Salama III.

1861 United States House of Representatives unanimously passed a resolution guaranteeing noninterference with slavery in any state.

1864 Charles Heaphy was recommended for a VC for rescuing a soldier while under fire.

Charles Heaphy recommended for VC

1873 King Amadeus I of Spain abdicated.

1904 Sir Keith Holyoake, Prime Minister and Governor General of New Zealand, was born  (d. 1983).

1905 Pope Pius X published the encyclical Vehementer nos.

1916 Emma Goldman was arrested for lecturing on birth control.

1917 Sidney Sheldon, American author, was born  (d. 2007).

1919 Eva Gabor, Hungarian-born actress, was born (d. 1995).

1919 Friedrich Ebert (SPD), was elected President of Germany.

1920 King Farouk I of Egypt, was born  (d. 1965).

1929 Italy and the Vatican signed the Lateran Treaty.

1934 Mary Quant, English fashion designer, was born.

1936 Burt Reynolds, American actor, was born.

1938 BBC Television produced the world’s first ever science fiction television program, an adaptation of a section of  the Karel CapekplayR.U.R., which coined the term “robot“.

1938 Bevan Congdon, New Zealand cricketer, was born.

1939 – Bryan Gould, New Zealand-English politician

1939 A Lockheed XP-38 flew from California to New York in 7 hours 2 minutes.

1941 The first gold record was presented to Glenn Miller for “Chattanooga Choo Choo“.

1943 General Dwight Eisenhower was selected to command the allied armies in Europe.

1948 John Costello succeeded Éamon de Valera as Taoiseach of Ireland.

1963 Julia Child‘s show The French Chef premiered.

1964 Sarah Palin, 11th Governor of Alaska, was born.

1969 Jennifer Aniston, American actress, was born.

1971 Eighty-seven countries signed the Seabed Treaty outlawing nuclear weapons in international waters.

1973 Vietnam War: First release of American prisoners of war from Vietnam took place.

1978 – Censorship: China lifted a ban on works by Aristotle, Shakespeare and Dickens.

1979 Islamic revolution of Iran achieved victory under the leadership of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini.

1987 Philippines constitution went into effect.

1990 Nelson Mandela, a political prisoner for 27 years, was released fromVictor Verster Prison.

1991 UNPO, the Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization, formed in The Hague.

1997 Space Shuttle Discovery was launched on a mission to service the Hubble Space Telescope.

2006 Vice President of the United States Dick Cheney accidentally shotHarry Whittington in the face, neck, and upper torso while hunting quail.

2008 – Rebel East Timorese soldiers seriously wounded President José Ramos-Horta. Rebel leader Alfredo Reinado was killed in the attack.

2011 – The first wave of the Egyptian revolution culminated in the resignation of Hosni Mubarak and the transfer of power to the Supreme Military Council after 18 days of protests.

2013 – Pope Benedict XVI announced his resignation from the papacy, the first pontiff to resign in more than half a millennium.

2014 – A military transport plane crashed in a mountainous area of Oum El Bouaghi Province in eastern Algeria, killing 77 people.

2015  – A university student was murdered as she resisted an attempted rape in Turkey, sparking nationwide protests and public outcry against harassment and violence against women.

2016 – A man shot six people dead at an education center in Jizan Province, Saudi Arabia.

Sourced from NZ History Online & Wikipedia

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