Monday, September 29, 2008

Farm Update

As our regular visitors to the farm are aware, we are continually working to up-grade the facilities at the farm to make them more and more user friendly. At the very early stages we commenced with just a caravan in a shed with an earthen floor, and an earth toilet, bucketing water by hand each day for our vegetable garden. With a limited income, time and energy, our progress was, of necessity, slow, commencing as we did with virgin bush country which required to be cleared before anything at all could be achieved. A kind friend being aware of our predicament, provided us with our first pump, powered by a petrol/kerosene motor which served us well for the first years. And so we have progressed over the years, using, whenever possible the timber off the farm and recycled windows and doors and whatever else we could procure to supply our needs.

The original doors in our units were recycled from a clients house which was in the process of being re-furbished, and which our client had intended taking to the tip. They served us well for nigh on thirty years, although being a continual concern to our clients, and ourselves as often our clients would forget to latch them when open, which meant the possibility of the glass being broken if caught by the wind, an occurrence which fortunately was rather rare. To overcome this source of concern we have now replaced them with sliding doors. We also took the opportunity to replace the casement windows alongside them with louvres to give better ventilation, the results of which you may see below.

The clearing and re-planting of the orchard continues apace, with each day progress being made in this area. The neighbours cattle have been causing us some problems which we are addressing slowly, as they only seem to arrive in the wee hours of the morning when sleep is the order of the day. Nevertheless we are truly thankful that the damage they have caused is minimal, as well as at the same time supplying us with a certain amount of organic fertliser. To say the least, we are truly blessed.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Anti-biotic Link to Cerebral Palsy

Antibiotics: Link to cerebral palsy in children

If you’re pregnant, you will probably be offered an antibiotic as part of routine ‘just-in-case’ procedure. And, if you are, you’re advised to refuse the drug, according to a new study.

Antibiotics are routinely given in order to reduce the possibility of premature labour and to fight any possible infection.
But researchers who followed-up seven years later on mothers who had routine antibiotic while pregnant discovered their children were more likely to suffer some sight or hearing impairment, or had cerebral palsy.

Researchers from the University of Leicester tracked 4,221 women who had been given either erythromycin or amoxicillin while pregnant, or had been given a placebo. In all, the researchers were able to take a health assessment of 3,196 children. Of these, 658 children hose mothers had been given an antibiotic suffered some functional impairment compared with 574 children whose mothers were in the placebo group.

In light of these findings, doctors in the UK have been advised to stop the practice other than for cases where antibiotics are genuinely needed.
(Source: The Lancet, 2008; DOI: 10.1016/SO140-6736 (08) 61203-9).

Story from WDDTY:

Published: 18/09/2008 12:33:00 GMT