Monday, 6 January 2014

The Charlotte & Rosie Show

Hi Everyone

I know I haven't written in ages but I have been mega busy.  I will write later this week...promise.  In the meantime I thought I would post my kids first webisode of their funny little show they did this week :-)   'The Charlotte & Rosie Show' Episode 1.

The Charlotte & Rosie Show

Monday, 28 October 2013

Fluoride in Water Good or Bad?

Hello Folks

I am very pleased today to welcome Fluoride Free NZ as my guest blogger.  There has been a lot of press recently about the issue of fluoride in our water and the harmful effects it could be having on your health.  After hours of endless research looking at medical studies and watching I don't know how many videos and presentations I am in NO doubt that I never want to drink fluoridated water again!  We have been buying bottled water now for about two months and I have noticed all sorts of improvements in my families health.  In particular for me absolutely no more heartburn, which is wonderful.

We should have a say in what goes into the water we drink, this is a medication it's that simple.  I don't appreciate being given medication without my permission!  This is your opportunity, don't take my word for it, I'm not a doctor the information is out there, check it out and make an informed choice.


SAY NO to fluoride in our water !

Is Your Water Making you Fat? 

by Mary Bryne

This may seem like a strange question but if you are having trouble losing weight, or are feeling tired or depressed, and don’t know why, it could actually be the chemical added to your drinking water.

A fluoride chemical is added to the drinking water in many towns and cities in New Zealand. (See Is My town fluoridated). There are many adverse health effects associated with ingesting fluoride including brittle bones, impaired immune system, ADHD, lowered IQ and lowered thyroid function.

Low thyroid is a major reason why many people cannot lose weight no matter what they do. And low thyroid function is reportedly to be seriously under diagnosed in New Zealand. It is already known to affect around 15% of women with estimated 15% - 20% more women over 60 with sub clinical hypothyroidism. Thyroxine is the 19th most commonly prescribed drug in New Zealand.

And guess what? Doctors in Germany, France and Argentina successfully used pharmaceutical grade fluoride to treat hyperthyroidism (over active thyroid) for many years up until the 1950s when safer medications became available. Doctors prescribed 2 – 5 mg per day of fluoride to patients to lower their thyroid, the same level that many New Zealanders are exposed to as a result of water fluoridation.

Fluoride chemicals are added to the water supply at a rate of between 0.7ppm and 1ppm, with most councils aiming 0.85ppm. This means for every litre of water there is 0.85mg of fluoride. If a person drinks 3 litres a day (ten cups of tea coffee or water) plus any processed foods made with fluoridated water, they are easily receiving 2.5mg per day, and that is not including the fact that some foods are high in fluoride such as fish and tea.

In 2006 the US National Research Council (NRC) found that very low levels of fluoride can affect people’s thyroid. Normally the Ministry of Health only talks about the dose of fluoride that is being added to the drinking water, but what is really important is the dosage that people are receiving. Dosage is milligram per kilo per day (mg/kg/day) and is how medicine is normally prescribed. The NRC found that dosages as low as 0.05 – 0.13 mg/kg/day when the person has adequate levels of iodine and 0.01 – 0.03 mg/kg/day when iodine is inadequate is likely to affect the human thyroid.

So this could explain for many people why they are having so much trouble losing weight even though they do everything possible (including drinking more water!) and still don’t lose weight.

The NRC was set up by the US Government’s National Academy of Science, which is the top scientific body in the US, to review fluorides in drinking water. In the US some parts have very high levels of fluoride and their maximum allowable limit is 4ppm. The NRC was charged with reviewing all the scientific data on fluoride to establish if 4ppm was safe. This was the most extensive review that has ever been carried out, and even though it was not looking at fluoridation per se, a lot of the data they reviewed was relevant to the levels of fluoride used in fluoridation. The Review found that 4ppm was not protective health but was not allowed to state what it would consider a safe limit. Three of this 12 member panel have been brave enough to speak up against fluoridation and they can be seen on this video along with other health or scientific professionals.

This information is even more important when we think about bottle fed babies. Fluoride cannot be boiled out so many babies in New Zealand are receiving a huge dose of fluoride. In fact, a bottle fed baby in a fluoridated area receives around 200 times more fluoride than a breast fed baby even if the mother is consuming fluoridated water. Considering, there are now 35 published studies linking fluoride to lowered IQ, this must be one of the most reckless things the government can do. And we even have proof that children are receiving too much fluoride as, according to MoH data, 44% of children have some form of dental fluorosis. This is white spots or marks on the teeth and even though, for most children, it does not look that bad, it is the first outward sign they have been overdosed with a toxic substance.

Another horrifying aspect of this is that the fluoride chemicals used (hydrofluorosilicic acid or sodium silicofluoride) are often contaminated with heavy metals such as lead, mercury, arsenic and cadmium. These chemicals have been captured from the chimneys of the phosphate fertiliser industry as they are too toxic to be allowed into the air. The phosphate fertiliser industry is required to have caps on their chimneys which capture the fluoride so that it does not poison the surrounding environment. Many people do not realize that fluoride contamination is what kick started the in the Green movement. See this informative and riveting interview with the author of The Fluoride Deception which explains how fluoridation came into being. As a result of the fluoride being extracted from the chimneys it contains trace amount of these various heavy metals and even though the levels are low, no amount of arsenic, mercury, lead or cadmium should be added to drinking water.

So why add it to the water?

It used to be thought that children needed fluoride as to harden the enamel of their growing teeth. However, nowadays most of the top fluoride researchers, including top New Zealand ones, know that fluoride needs to be applied directly to the teeth to reduce dental decay. Therefore, there is no good reason to continue fluoridation but it appears the Ministry of health is determined not to lose face and most councilors are more concerned with votes than people’s health.

To stop fluoridation in New Zealand we need thousands of people to be informed and to do something about it. Please visit our web site and subscribe to our periodic emails and “like” Fluoride Free New Zealand facebook.


This blog was written by Fluoride Free NZ 

So there you have it folks, there are some powerful arguments in there.  Now it's your turn find out more about Fluoride and the

toxic and harmful effects it could be having on your family.

Have a good week

Kate x

Thursday, 10 October 2013

Wicked....but ruined!

I want to start today's blog by congratulating the cast and crew of 'Wicked' for one of the most spectacular shows I have ever had the pleasure to see.  The sets, the amazing costumes and the artists both chorus and principals were exceptional.  Thank you so much for bringing your show to New Zealand.  My seven year old daughter was absolutely blown away and is proudly parading around in her purple wicked t-shirt this morning.

Now the compliments are over it's time to move on to what this blog is really about!

A complaint to the management of the Civic Theatre Auckland -

Yesterday afternoon my young daughter Charlotte and I went to see Wicked at the Civic Theatre in Auckland.  As a single Mum I had saved for near on four months to pay the $220 for two tickets in C row in the stalls.  As the date of the performance crept nearer I can't tell you how excited Charli and I were to be coming once more to the beautiful Civic Theatre to see a show.  In fact so excited we couldn't sleep the night before it felt like Christmas eve!

Charlotte was just three years old when I brought her to see her first show and we have saved every year to see some truly amazing shows at this lovely theatre, including Phantom, Mamma Mia and Mary Poppins.

I have never had cause to complain, I have often felt the sting of the overpriced merchandise and refreshments but nothing that has ever overly bothered me.  Until last night......

As the curtain rose yesterday afternoon we were taken away to the beautiful and at times truly magnificent land of Oz, we laughed, we cried, we hid during the scary bits and as the curtain came down for the interval we headed up to the foyer to buy one of theatres greatest traditions an icecream.  By the time the curtain went up for the second half we were settled into our seats our icecreams finished ready for the next half and that's when it started.

A rustle made me turn sideways to eye up the person sitting next to me, a teenager, who had during the interval purchased a large bag of popcorn and a large bag of candyfloss. I looked a little in disbelief wondering how they could have smuggled it into the theatre when the people sitting the other side of me also opened a bag of popcorn, a Mother and daughter, then to my utter dismay a person behind me too.  Before I knew it all we could hear was the constant rustle of what seemed like a bottomless supply of snacks ruining any chance we had to hear properly or from that point on enjoy the performance.  Even my seven year old daughter turned to me and said 'Mum I can't hear properly the lady next to me is making so much noise'.

Now I am not usually one to complain but the theatre is one of my loves.  The fact that I paid over $200 for tickets, $25 for a programme, $40 for a t-shirt, $10 for ice-creams and money on drinks too, I think gives me a right to be able to sit and enjoy a performance without having it ruined by people eating through it!!

When we entered the theatre at the beginning of the show I actually heard an usherette reprimand someone who had brought a sandwich in to eat (which at least would have been quieter!), but is of course not acceptable but in your wisdom you think it's alright for people to devour noisy snacks as long as they are purchased from you for a live theatre show.   I didn't pay $10 to sit in the cinema or $40 to go to the circus, I paid $220 for Stalls tickets!!!!!!!!!!

What has happened to theatre etiquette?

This is what the second half sounded like!
There are some beautiful quiet moments in Wicked where the two witches are exchanging dialogue ....for us these were accompanied by 'scrunch, scrunch, rustle, rustle, scrunch, scrunch'.  What is the obsession we now have with having to eat all the time???  I go to the cinema now and we have pizzas, chips, popcorn, you can even have a three course meal now if you want to.  What happened to just being able to go and sit and enjoy a performance why do we have to stuff our faces to enjoy it?!

I spoke to the  Manager of the Civic afterwards and he asked me 'What do you think we should sell?'  I said 'How about nothing! I don't want to listen to other people eating, ice-creams are brilliant because they are finished before the curtain even goes up for the second half'

As I said to the Manager this is about greed plan and simple and now I am not talking of people's greed to eat constantly but the greed of the theatre.  How else can we make money, what else can we sell to make an extra buck!  Well this time Civic you have got it wrong, there is no way I will ever go to another show unless these sorts of foods are banned from your theatre.  You won't let people bring them in and you shouldn't be selling them yourself, stop being so greedy!

Let's get back to the time when you felt a sense of occasion going to the theatre.  When you dress up and act like civilized people.  I mean seriously can people not last 3 hours without needing to stuff their faces??  What truly amazed me about these people is they seemed to have no conception that the noise might be upsetting other theatre goers or even worse the poor actors themselves!

During the performance I was one of three people who turned to the various culprits to tell them to sshhh, so this upset was not purely me, other people were bothered by it too.

I have spent many years working both as an actress and as an usherette during those times when acting work was unavailable.  In the West End you would be thrown out for eating, it's as serious as leaving your mobile on! It is also incredibly disrespectful for those on stage, I only hope that the poor actors can't hear it!  This has to be a new thing for the Civic because I have never had this experience before, I just hope it is some horribly short lived experiment that they will think better of!

I can't tell you how bitterly disappointed I was to have our evening ruined.  We had been looking forward to it for so, so long.   I have written to the management of the Civic and I will let you know what happens when I get a reply.  I have a feeling though it might be time to take up a petition against them.  I can't stand the thought of not going to the shows there but it felt like a total waste of my money from the interval onwards.

I just hope they listen, it is just such a shame to see a theatre drop it's standards of behaviour in favour of making money.  Come on Civic show us you care!!

Have a great day folks

Kate x

Reply from The Edge to which I replied that I would like to be kept informed on future developments, I have to say it might have been nice if they had offered us a partial refund or something but there you go, most important thing is that they are going to look into it, I just hope they actually do!! 

Dear Kate,

Thank you for your feedback regarding the distracting noise the packaging of some confectionary items make when used by patrons, it is most appreciated.

In the past few years The Civic has had several productions with exceptionally long running seasons like Jersey Boys and Mary Poppins with audiences of many thousands and this is the first feedback of this nature that I have received.

It is of course not our goal to effect anyone’s enjoyment negatively. In fact we are selling themed confectionary, cocktails and suchlike to add value to the experience even before our patrons enter the theatre and enjoy the actual event. In this case being able to buy Wickedly green fudge, candyfloss and a themed cocktail.

Having said all this, you say that your experience was negatively affected by the noise of the packaging and this is enough for us to look into this matter and see whether we need to make some changes, be it by not selling certain items altogether or changing the packaging.

Once again thank you very much for your feedback, I will personally visit a few performances to get an idea of the extent of the problem and address it accordingly.

Best regards,

Frank Bischoff | Head of Visitor Experience