Rolling your ‘R’s

Having exhausted the delights of ‘I spy’ and ‘I went to market’, we were passing the time on a long car journey with some ‘trabalenguas'; Spanish tongue twisters. A game certain to challenge and amuse in equal proportions in a car carrying one native speaker (our seven year old son) and two adult learners of […]

Silent Sunday

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Contrasts

Last weekend we nipped across the mountains of the Cordillera Cantábrica to León. At the top of the mountain pass, just over the border from Asturias, we stopped at San Isidro ski station to have a little play in the snow. (And to give the poor old motor-home’s engine a chance to cool down after […]

Monday Morning Moves

This was how Monday morning was supposed to go: arise refreshed, calmly feed, water and dispatch child to school, hit the gym at opening time (8.30, this is Spain after all), have invigorating workout, return home raring to go and race through lengthy list of tasks. Boom! Take that Monday. Here’s how Monday morning actually […]

Welcome to the Jungle

This week we’re back to school after the Easter break. The whole ‘back to school’ thing is still new to us but any pangs of sadness I felt on Monday morning were considerably lessened by the sight of Jack in a big hug with his teacher and then being bundled on top of in a […]

Straddling Centuries

Yesterday was a fairly typical Asturian Diary day, probably best described as a straddling of centuries (not as painful as it sounds). It started, as is newly customary, with an early morning walk to the bus stop where Jack boards his taxi to school. Eager to leech some benefit out of being out and about […]

Is It Really that Time Already?

The application period for admission into state schools is now open here in Asturias. It’s a snappy 10 days, 10th-20th April, so there’s no time to hang about if, like me, you’re planning to pack your little darling off to school here for the first time come September. The Spanish government currently offers each child […]

Mother’s Day

My mother died when I was eight years old. For many years after, Mother’s Day was just a cruel and painful reminder of what I had lost and of how I was different from my friends at school. In later years the date just failed to register at all with me. Now I have a […]

Springtime

Richie is away for a fortnight and I’m determined that Jack and I will have an extra-lovely time together to compensate for Daddy’s absence. Of course I’m delighted to have an excuse to put all non-essential chores on hold and devote myself entirely to playing. (Not that the lack of an excuse has ever stopped […]

Fitness and Training in Motherhood

The Saturday before last dawned cold and bracing as Europe was hit by a Siberian cold snap. Not the weather for venturing into the great outdoors with a toddler who hates wearing hat, gloves and coat. Languishing in bed listening to BBC radio on the internet and drinking PG Tips (life abroad eh?) I had […]