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Archive for August, 2008

Fun day

Leonard the Lion
Leonard the Lion
Today Nanny, daughters and grandchildren went to Gulliver’s World for the day, and we all had a wonderful time. It cost just under £60 for all of us, you don’t pay for anyone under 90 cms so Izzy and the boys were free. Plenty to do, lots and lots of rides for Jack and Amy to go on, some by themselves and loads with Nanny or one of the Mummies, all included in the entrance fee. Free parking, no long waits for rides, lots of toilets with baby changing facilities, plenty of picnic benches and all the staff were really helpful and kind to the children. There are soft play areas, sand-pits and climbing frames for small children, Louis and Jamie are 11 months and crawling and they were safe for them and absolutely wonderful for Izzy who is 18 months. We were lucky with the weather, we had rain for only 5 minutes, not sure what it would have been like if the weather had been inclement but, as you can probably tell, I was really impressed with the place.
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So, the police have suggested that football clubs pay for the policing of matches. When I heard about this on the news last night I was preparing dinner and so it just seeped around my consciousness without causing any ripples, then they interviewed people, mainly football fans and utensils, plates and saucepans bore the brunt of my anger. These, obviously unbiased members of the public, were saying that the clubs shouldn’t have to pay as it would increase the cost of tickets. In my family there are several footie fans so I do appreciate that following the ‘beautiful’ game is expensive, but hang on a minute, it is not compulsory. People choose to attend a match, it is a pastime, a hobby. Unfortunately some of the attendees at matches cause problems, football is a very sectarian thing, there is huge rivalry and tempers will be lost and aggression shown. I don’t go to matches, it isn’t my hobby, gardening is one of my hobbies. I don’t expect the tax payer to contribute towards, or subsidise my hobby, why should I contribute toward the policing of a football supporter’s hobby? We are not talking here of an exceptional occurrence, Live Aid; the Queens birthday celebrations; a State funeral, we are talking here about something that happens several times a week, over 10 months of the year, countrywide. We are talking about millions of tax-payers money, the majority of whom don’t go to football matches, being spent to ensure that a minority can enjoy their hobby. We are subsidising either the fans, so ticket prices aren’t increased, or the clubs themselves who are paying their players so much that they can’t think of paying to improve the fans safety. There is something very wrong with a ‘game’ where someone playing for a club can earn in a week what it costs to police a clubs matches for the year.

We are always happy to discuss how it might be possible to further reduce costs, or indeed how football can help the police tackle youth crime, but we fail to see why football fans should pay twice for policing
Dan Johnson, Premier League
Well, Mr Dan Johnson. I also pay tax and I don’t see why a portion of my tax should go toward policing a hobby where clubs are prepared to pay millions for someone to kick a ball around. Why should I even pay once? Out Mr Johnson comes with the clubs have all paid taxes………yes, so have most of us, it’s the law that if you earn money, live in a house, buy petrol, drive a car, buy non-perishables etc. etc. you pay tax. If you fly you also pay tax, you, the person flying pays tax, I don’t pay tax for other people to go on holiday.
Come on you Premiership clubs, pay for the policing.
Afterthought – What happens on the continent, who pays there?

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Emergencies

I was browsing Random Acts Of Reality and found an entry where he was talking about being called to an unplanned homebirth –  “A midwife was called for, and she told Control she would make her way there in her own car. I do have a slight problem with this. If an ambulance crew needs a midwife, it’s generally as an emergency, otherwise we transport the patient to hospital. If it’s an emergency then shouldn’t we pick up the midwife and get her to the job on Blue lights and sirens?” Exactly! Why doesn’t it happen then. Ambulance control have never offered to transport me, or any of my colleagues, I would take them up on it if they did ‘cos I love going in ambulances, especially when ‘blue-lighting’. Make that, ‘I love going in ambulances when they are blue-lighting on flat, straight roads’. Ambulances wallow, it can make you feel rather sea-sick, my old job-share had to be given anti-nausea medication if she was doing any type of transfer, she was never sent if it was likely to be urgent. I nearly, nearly got to do an air transfer once, I was so excited, going in a helicopter. Our NICU was full and we had a woman who was only 27 weeks pregnant but was in prem labour, the nearest unit with a ‘cot’ was 150 miles away and for about 30 minutes it looked as if we were going to have to ‘fly off’ there. Fortunately for the woman and her family a ‘cot’ became available at a neighbouring unit, unfortunate for me as I never got to go in a whirlybird. I have to say that I did have one concern and that was the return journey, as in, would they bring me back again? If we transfer between units via ambulance they will generally return us to the unit, sometimes via calls to other emergencies, but mostly we get back. If we are transferring a woman in to the unit from home we don’t get a lift back to her house, but our car is sitting outside there so we have to hope that a colleague will take us back or we have to make our own way. Wonder what happens following an air-transport?

I have often wondered though why, when we have been called to a woman ‘pushing’ or another urgent call, we don’t have green lights to put on our cars to alert other drivers to the fact that we are trying to get somewhere without unnecessary delay. Imagine it, you’ve just had a call to say that there is ‘a head on the perineum’ or (heaven forbid) a ‘breech delivering’ and you find yourself behind a tractor, or the couple who only take their car out once a month or, my personal favourite, the group of cyclists taking up half the road, if you sound your horn they just assume you are just an intolerant driver and do nothing to expedite your passing them however, if there was a green flashing light as well, they may not understand what it stands for, but I bet they would let you pass. Obviously, I would love to have a siren, or even a large white vehicle with fluorescent stripes but I will settle for a green, flashing, light!

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High wind

My poppies are prone, my sunflowers have slanted and my still sour apples will never ripen now as they are carpeting the grass. It was so windy yesterday evening and into the night that many of my taller plants are now flattened. My pride and joys, the sunflowers, which I germinated in a jar with blotting paper so Jack and Amy could see how amazing nature is, took the worst hammering. One of them has snapped, the cane was too short, whilst even the ones with long canes are listing at a 45 degree angle. At about 8pm last night, when I realised how strong a combination the wind and rain were, I went out and provided more support for the plants I thought would suffer most but in some cases the canes have just gone over as well, and anyway, who would have thought that hydrangeas would be at risk, I suppose it’s the weight of the flower heads. Today will have to be spent pruning where broken and supporting where tilting.

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“Why are you doing homebirths, and why is the government promoting them, if no one has any idea whether or not they are safe?” A question asked by Dr Amy on Homebirth Debate.
Hmmm. Well, I’m a Community MIdwife, it’s my job. Stop thinking, if I think too much I could talk myself out of a job. I mean, who in their right mind would do a job that requires them to work all day, then go home and wait all evening, all night to see if the phone rings to summon them to previously uncharted territory, to meet new people, in unknown circumstances, for an unspecified length of time and all for their usual hourly rate, plus one third and, to then go to work the next day?

My response to Dr Amy was so smarmy, real interview speak “I would rather provide women demanding homebirth with trained support than encourage UC. There will always be women who want homebirth and, if this is the case, then it must be preferable that they have care from a trained professional.”  That’s true, and I suppose it is a component of why I facilitate homebirth, although it does not explain why I promote them. I have purely anecdotal, observational ‘data’ to support my belief that homebirth is appropriate and safe for low-risk women, so from my personal perspective I see no reason not to offer homebirth as a valid option (other than a purely selfish desire not to be on-call!) so I suppose that answers that query.

That makes it sound as if I have no worries about homebirth, I do, but I also have worries about hospital birth. Statistically I have more chance of finding myself encountering a difficult labour, birth when working on the labour ward than I will at a homebirth. If things start to deviate from a clearly defined norm at home I will transfer the woman in immediately, I have absolutely no intention of increasing the chance of harm befalling the woman and baby or finding myself, deliberately, in an emergency situation. I can’t d this in the hospital. Yes, I can ask the Doctors to attend but, as the midwife providing care in labour I have to stay, provide the care the Doctor advises and sometimes be present at an extremely sad outcome.

I wrote the truth when I said that there will always be women who demand homebirth, and I believe that as the caesarian section rate rises, so will homebirth as women search for a less medicalised approach to childbirth. If we don’t provide the choice of homebirth with NHS midwives more women will feel that the only route they can take is that of unassisted childbirth, freebirthing. Obviously, if they have the money they can choose to employ an Indie (Independent Midwife), they can provide better individualised care but they are unable to acquire insurance at present so this may make them less appealing as an option.

There is no ‘perfect’ solution as if we ban NHS homebirths the freebirths will rise and women and babies will die unnecessarily. That’s why I assist women birthing at home.

P.S  I’m ‘on-call’ now and if the phone rings the adrenaline starts flowing.

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Me to a tee!

M Mystical
I Inspirational
D Dramatic
W Witty
I Innocent
F Fine
E Exciting
M Misunderstood
U Unusual
S Sexy
E Exquisite


Name / Username:


Name Acronym Generator
From Go-Quiz.com

I found this quirkiness at Life in the NHS (http://lifeinthenhs.wordpress.com/). I’m finding it really interesting to read this blog by an NHS manager, I may be in danger of empathising with her!

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Amber and teething

A month ago I ‘invested’ in 2 amber necklaces for Jamie and Louis, daughter’s 11 month old twins. I know, really tree-huggy, head so high in the clouds that I have almost gone into orbit, now I will reveal whether I have wasted my hard earned pennies or have found an alternative to pharmaceutical teething remedies.

Well, before the boys had their ‘surfer dude’ accessories they were waking, and not settling again twice a night, at least, each. They were unhappy little lads with red cheeks, perpetually runny noses and extremely sore bottoms. In the past month Jamie has gained one more tooth and Louis has had two break through. Their bottoms peachy gorgeous, Louis has woken once in the night and settled straight away, there are no red cheeks, runny noses, they are happy little guys and, as an unexpected plus, they not only sleep through the night but are sleeping until 8am.

I asked daughter if she thought the necklaces were working, she can’t be sure as they may have turned the corner anyway. Then Hubby suggested that an excellent way to test would be to take the necklace off one of the boys, after all they are identical so if the necklaces do work then then the boy without the necklace would start exhibiting all the previous physical manifestations of teething. It took their Mummy about 5 seconds to decline the experiment by saying ‘ This is my life we are talking about here. No.’

So, what is my opinion? Have I wasted my money? No, I don’t feel that I have wasted my hard earned. We will never know why the boys have recently settled down, it could well be a coincidence but at least there has been a positive change. I would only feel it was money down the drain if the twins were still unhappy, uncomfortable little babies and fortunately they aren’t! So amber teething necklaces get the thumbs up from this Grandmother.

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