365 days of gratitude

December 14, 2018

The weather might not be saying it’s summer but stone fruit is for sale.

Today I had my first peach of the season. It was white fleshed, sweet and juicy as all good peaches should be.

Today I’m grateful for the taste of summer.


Farm Joke Friday

December 14, 2018


Word of the day

December 14, 2018

Altiloquent – speech or writing characterised by altiloquence; loud, elevated, pretentious, pompous, or high-flown.


Sowell says

December 14, 2018


365 days of gratitude

December 14, 2018

This is yesterday’s, several hours late.

It wasn’t that I didn’t have anything to be grateful for, it was just I had better things to do than blog.

That’s healthy and I’m grateful for that.


Rural round-up

December 14, 2018

Windsor Blue off to home of cheese– Simon Hartley:

Oamaru cheesemaker Whitestone Cheese has clinched an important export deal, having just delivered its first consignment of 100 rounds of Vintage Windsor Blue cheese to France.

Whitestone managing director Simon Berry said that to be shipping to Europe where cheesemaking was established showed that ”as new-world cheesemakers we’re coming of age”.

The first pallet-sized consignment, weighing about 250kg, was pre-sold to multiple customers and then delivered to France last month, with a follow-up order expected in the new year. . .

Grape, cheery growers competing for land – Guy Williams:

Wine and cherry growers are competing for land, resources and labour as both industries experience strong growth.

Mt Difficulty Wines co-owner James Dicey, of Bannockburn, said much of the planned investment in horticulture in Central Otago was expected to be in new cherry orchards.

That industry was undergoing a boom after several good years, with the total number of hectares planted in cherries poised to overtake grapes. . .

Farmers want DIRA gone – Annette Scott:

Farmers delivered a consistent message to the Ministry for Primary Industries when they met in Ashburton to consult on the Dairy Industry Restructuring Act review.

“We are a bit over it, and that’s an understatement,” Mid Canterbury dairying stalwart Ted Rollinson said.

His sentiment was largely echoed by all farmers at the meeting that unanimously agreed it’s time for open entry and exit to go, followed by raw milk regulations and access to regulated milk for Goodman Fielder. . . 

Approval given for Alliance to bring in workers – Alan Williams:

Meat processor Alliance has approval to bring in 100 workers from overseas for its Lorneville sheep plant in Invercargill.

They’re expected to be on hand for the peak February to May period, Alliance people and safety general manager Chris Selbie said.

“We’re delighted as it will make a real difference in addressing the staff shortages we had last season.

“We’ll start now to get on and find them.” . . .

Ahead with technology – Anne Hardie:

A cow chewing her cud has long been an indicator of cow health. Anne Hardie reports how monitoring collars can help show how a cow’s ruminations are affected by the state of their health.

Information from cow monitoring collars shows Adam McManaway and Kirsten Daymond the changes in ruminations and activity of every cow in their 465-cow herd so they know the state of their health long before an issue is picked up by eye.

Whether it’s calving, cycling, lameness, mastitis or anything that interrupts their usual grazing pattern, it will affect rumination and activity which is revealed on the computer graphs, or in acute situations prompt a notification from the phone app.

The couple are 50:50 sharemilkers 15 minutes north of Murchison in the Top of the South and were a demonstration farm for the Allflex Livestock Intelligence collars for the first couple of years. It was a convincing experiment for them and when it finished a year ago, they invested in collars for the entire herd which was a big financial commitment for a couple who had just taken on their first sharemilking contract. . . 

Local lingo keeps Uruguay pair on toes – Yvonne O’Hara:

Central Otago farmers have their own way of speaking, which makes it interesting for Uruguayan students Lorena Andiarena (21) and Ana Goncalvez (24).

Ms Andiarena comes from Salto and usually works on her parents’ 350ha beef property while studying to be a veterinarian. ‘

‘I have been all my life in agriculture,” she said. Ms Goncalvez is from Tacuarembo and had been studying farm management


Drugs crime & health issue not either/or

December 14, 2018

Police will now have discretion over whether to charge people for using cannabis.

The rationale behind this loan change is that drug addiction is a health issue.

It is.

But using illegal drugs is also a crime.

Is should be both, not either or.

It should stay a crime as a deterrent but addicts caught should be given the opportunity to have their addiction treated.

Whether it’ a health or crime issue or both, drug addiction will require a lot more money for mental health services.


Quote of the day

December 14, 2018

My creed is that public service must be more than doing a job efficiently and honestly. It must be a complete dedication to the people and to the nation with full recognition that every human being is entitled to courtesy and consideration, that constructive criticism is not only to be expected but sought, that smears are not only to be expected but fought, that honor is to be earned but not bought. –  Margaret Chase Smith who was born on this day in 1897.


December 14 in history

December 14, 2018

557 – Constantinople was severely damaged by an earthquake.

835 – Sweet Dew Incident: Emperor Wenzong of the Tang Dynasty conspired to kill the powerful eunuchs of the Tang court, but the plot is foiled.

1287 St. Lucia’s flood: The Zuider Zee sea wall in the Netherlandscollapsed, killing more than 50,000 people.

1503 Nostradamus, French astrologer, was born (d. 1566).

1542 Princess Mary Stuart became Queen Mary I of Scotland.

1630 – Anne Conway, English philosopher and author was born (d. 1679).

1751 The Theresian Military Academy was founded as the first Military Academy in the world.

1782  The Montgolfier brothers’ first balloon lifts on its first test flight.

1843 The first Auckland A&P Show was held.

First Auckland A and P Show

1851 –  Mary Tappan Wright, American  novelist and short story  writer was born,  (d. 1916).

1895  King George VI was born (d. 1952).

1896 The Glasgow Underground Railway was opened by the Glasgow District Subway Company.

1897 – Margaret Chase Smith, American educator and politician, was born (d. 1995).

1900  Max Planck presented a theoretical derivation of his black-body radiation law.

1902 The Commercial Pacific Cable Company laid the first Pacific telegraph cable, from Ocean Beach, San Francisco to Honolulu, Hawaii.

1903 The Wright Brothers made their first attempt to fly with the Wright Flyer at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.

1911  Roald Amundsen‘s team, Olav BjaalandHelmer HanssenSverre Hassel, and Oscar Wisting and Amundsen, became the first to reach the South Pole.

1918 Friedrich Karl von Hessen, a German prince elected by the Parliament of Finland to become King Väinö I, renounces the Finnish throne.

1922 Don Hewitt, American creator of 60 Minuteswas born (d. 2009).

1932  Charlie Rich, American musician, was born (d. 1995).

1946 Patty Duke, American actress, was born.

1948  Kim Beazley, Australian politician, was born.

1949 Cliff Williams, English bassist (AC/DC), was born.

1951 – Lindsay Perigo, New Zealand broadcaster, first leader of Libertarianz Party, was born.

1958  The 3rd Soviet Antarctic Expedition became the first expedition to reach The Pole of Relative Inaccessibility in the Antarctic.

1958   Scottish singer-songwriter Mike Scott, (The Waterboys), was born.

1958 Spider Stacy, English musician (The Pogues), was born.

1960 – Ian Meckiff of Australia was run out by the West Indies, causing the first Tied Test in the history of cricket.

1962  NASA‘s Mariner 2 became the first spacecraft to fly by Venus.

1963 – Baldwin Hills Reservoir wall burst, killing five people and damaging hundreds of homes in Los Angeles.

1964  Heart of Atlanta Motel v. United States – The United States Supreme Court rules that the U.S. Congress can use its Commerce Clause power to fight discrimination.

1972 Apollo programmeEugene Cernan was the last person to walk on the moon, after he and Harrison Schmitt completed the third and final Extra-vehicular activity (EVA) of Apollo 17. This was the last manned mission to the moon of the 20th century.

1981  Israel‘s Knesset passes The Golan Heights Law, extending Israeli law to the area of the Golan Heights.

1994 Construction began on the Three Gorges Dam in the Yangtze River.

2004 The Millau viaduct, the highest bridge in the world, near Millau,Francewas officially opened.

2008 President George W. Bush made his fourth and final (planned) trip to Iraq as president and almost got struck by two shoes thrown at him by Iraqi journalist Muntadhar al-Zaidi during a farewell conference in Baghdad.

2009 – The New Zealand government recognised the Māori (Tino Rangatiratanga) flag as the preferred national Māori flag.

Cabinet endorses Tino Rangatiratanga flag

2012 – 28 people, including the gunman, were killed in a mass shootingin Sandy Hook village, Newtown, Connecticut.

2013 – A reported coup attempt in South Sudan led to continued fighting and hundreds of casualties.

2017 –United States Congress voted on the repeal of net neutrality regulations.

2017 – The Walt Disney Company announced it would acquire 21st Century Fox, including the 20th Century Fox movie studio, for $52.4 billion.


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