Back At Work???…

Yep, this time the word ‘Work’ is referring to employment…

Well, not exactly – not yet… i’m doing my internship for my playgroup/childcare course – unpaid, of course. But from now till Autumn, at least, i’ll be spending my Tuesday mornings with 7 adorable, always active, mostly loud, sometimes difficult boys of 3 to 4 years old.

My very first morning was yesterday and what an eventful first morning it was.

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See that beige little house – that’s where the playgroup is. Doesn’t look like much but it’s quite nice inside…

i got there nice and early, only to find out that on Tuesdays the lady in charge (Monica) doesn’t come in very early. She arrived just 15 minutes before the playgroup was due to start. She says on Tuesdays, the kids tend to arrive right on time or a little late so no rush. She is really laid-back, both with the running of the playgroup and in her interaction with the parents.

It all started well. i was not a stranger to the boys. i had visited their group last October when i was just observing different types of childcare situations. But one of the boys’ mother just had a baby and he was not wanting to leave his mummy that morning. So Monica convinced him (let’s call him M) to wave bye at the window, while his mother promises to come pick him up very soon.

So like i said before, Monica is quite laid-back with the running of the morning. No big timetable to follow, no planned craft to do – unlike playgroups i hear about back in my home country.

We gather the boys, sing a couple of songs and then they are off to play. One of the boys, J, kept wanting to have snack and dragged his backpack around with him, asking if anyone wants to eat. We ended up having an early snack. A couple of the boys weren’t ready for snack just yet and we left them to play. They joined us quite quickly when they realised everyone was sitting down to eat without them.

They all bring their own snack and are really good with sharing their food with others. They do lots of food exchanges – i was very amused. A couple of the boys finished early – one of them was M.

M went off to play with R just round the corner from our snack table. The others were still eating so we stayed with them. i popped my head around to tell them playing around the big tables is not a good idea. The room is a shared facility with the Lunch-table for older kids so there are much bigger tables in the big room. i go back to the snack table and almost as soon as my head was turned we heard a loud BANG and then crying.

M had fallen. i suspect he was trying to swing between 2 big tables. i have done that in my childhood days and broken my tooth. He had a big bump on his forehead and his upper lip was bleeding. i picked him up and handed him to Monica. While she took care of him, i got the other kids to finish up their snack, go to the next room to play while i cleaned up the snack table.

M won’t let her even put a cold pack on his bump and the only thing which calmed him down was dialing his mother’s mobile on Monica’s phone. It wasn’t serious but Monica had to carry him the whole time till just 5 minutes before the end.

We tried to get everyone back to the circle to sing a few songs before the end but they were all so distracted by the incident. The mums arrived early and it was all good.

So i was super nervous about this first morning and now that it’s over, i’m looking forward to next Tuesday and i think i will enjoy these Tuesday mornings with the boys ;)

syc

Sunny, Warm and the Beach…

What more could you ask for when on a short holiday on an island in Spain? :)

Last week, we spent 4 days on the beautiful island of Majorca! It was a much-needed break for all of us – a few days to just do nothing but enjoy the warmth and each other’s company.

The best way to take you through our trip is in pictures – so here we go:

This is our first view of the island from our plane. We landed, got information about when our shared transport was going to leave and ate our sandwich lunch on the kerb, in the sunshine. i like that they offer this shared airport transfer, you share the bus ride with other tourists and as they get dropped off at their hotels, we got to see a bit more of the island. Of course, i had to choose a resort which was the furthest away, so we were the last to get dropped off.

Left: View from the plane, Right: Having lunch...
Left: View from the plane, Right: Having lunch…

We got to the resort (Hotel Playa Garden) and had a surprise, the staff immediately spoke German to us, without even asking if we did speak German. That’s how many of their guests are German-speaking!

This is the AMAZING view from our room balcony and the view of one of the 3 pools. i didn’t ask for a sea-view room but i’m so thankful (Praise the Lord!) we were blessed with this room!

i LOVED that view!
i LOVED that view!

As you can see, Tobias wasted no time in getting comfy. He slept on the pull-out which he loved and we had the double bed in the other room.

The pictures are a little dark but in reality, there was lots of light coming into the room.
The pictures are a little dark but in reality, there was lots of light coming into the room.

There is also a small kitchenette which means you can cook your own food if you want or need to. It is fully equipped, you simply need to bring or buy your supplies. We booked the room without meals and had the option to add meals once we were there. Which was an excellent way of doing things, cos we could try out the food in the resort but also had the option of going out and exploring the local options.

We loved the breakfast there and so had all our breakfasts in the dining hall. We had one dinner there and decided we preferred eating out. The food was ok but it was not spectacular.

i can understand why lots of families with young children would choose to come to a resort like this and not leave it for a week. They have a kids club where you can send your kids to for the morning, have lunch there and then it’s lazing by the pool or beach till dinner at the dining hall.

Left: Mini Disco for the kids after dinner, Right: Mini Clubhouse...
Left: Mini Disco for the kids after dinner, Right: Mini Clubhouse…

After dinner that first night, we took a long walk on the beach – AHHH… it was good to be by the beach and smell the ocean air! We found the provision shop just outside the hotel which meant you could buy almost everything you needed for your trip. We filled up on snacks and bought provisions for a picnic lunch there.

The beach photo does not do justice to the really nice view there... i like the convenience of that little shop!
The beach photo does not do justice to the really nice view there… i like the convenience of that little shop!

We found out, to our surprise, that cycling is a HUGE thing on Majorca! At the airport we saw people with various signs, waiting for tourists who booked bike tours. This Max Hurzeler company is very big. We saw lots of cafes and restaurants flying their logo, apparently these are places where their tour groups stop for breaks and meals. There is also a big bike test center and many bike rental places in Alcudia, the town our resort was nearest to.

Cycling around the island is the thing to do!
Cycling around the island is the thing to do!

We spent our second morning wandering around the open market and the streets of the old town of Alcudia. It was lovely.

The market sold the usual scraves and handmade items, cheap watches and clothing, as well as wonderful local produce...
The market sold the usual scarves and handmade items, cheap watches and clothing, as well as wonderful local produce…

The old town was previously a walled-city. Today the wall is no longer whole but large parts of it remain. There is a section which you can walk on even. And it provides a great view of the area around.

It's wonderful to walk around and get a feel of what the town might have been like during its prime...
It’s wonderful to walk around and get a feel of what the town might have been like during its prime…

sunnywarmbeach20140415iWe traveled to town by bus. It wasn’t hard, there was only a couple of buses which serviced the road our resort was on and the timetable was straightforward. We had dinner that second evening at a Spanish-run-American-Tex-Mex. It was nice. Then we walked back to our resort – there was no more bus service by the time we finished dinner, besides the walk helped us digest and again allowed us to see more of the area.

One of the bus drivers was an Englishman ;) And the head waiter at that Tex-Mex was a funny guy and we got free mini margaritas...
One of the bus drivers was an Englishman ;) And the head waiter at that Tex-Mex was a funny guy and we got free mini margaritas…

On our walks, we noticed, sadly, that a few resorts appeared closed down. We had not expected to see that as we had always heard how many people loved coming to Majorca. So maybe they have not been doing as well as they did in their heyday. There was even a small hospital with an ER, however, that too was closed.

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This was the view on our walk back to our resort… looking inland…

The third day was spent lazing around. We tried out the whirlpool at their spa facility. There was only a few hours a day you could go in there with kids. Then we headed to the beach, enjoyed the sun and had our picnic lunch. The boys braved the cold ocean.

It was simply too cold for me... while we were sitting at the beach, we saw a couple of Chinese ladies walking the beach, offering massages for 10Euros...
It was simply too cold for me… while we were sitting at the beach, we saw a couple of Chinese ladies walking the beach, offering massage for 10Euros…

After lazing by the pool for the afternoon, we headed out to visit another little town called C’an Picafort. It was more built-up than Alcudia but seemed less touristy. Lots of shops were not yet ready for the tourist season. It was, after all, just the beginning of Spring.

This was the main street at C'an Picafort...
This is the main street at C’an Picafort…

On the fourth morning we checked out and rode our shared transport back to Palma airport. Along the way, we picked up passengers and saw different parts of the island. i loved the drive through the center of the island where there are wide plains and orchards. There were also lots of unused, run-down windmills near the airport – i wondered what they were used for.

The plains set off the mountains so nicely... the orchards are lovely - i wondered what type of fruit trees those were... i wish i had gotten a picture of a complete windmill, painted in white and blue, but there were very few complete ones...
The plains set off the mountains so nicely… the orchards are lovely – i wondered what type of fruit trees those were… i wish i had gotten a picture of a complete windmill, painted in white and blue, but there were very few complete ones…

So that’s the end of our trip. It was good. In fact, hubby thinks it’s good enough to go back and explore even more of the island. Tobias isn’t too sure. i think mainly because this was his first relax-do-nothing holiday, not quite his thing to do nothing – hehheee… but i think we will go back. i just won’t go in high season. Our resort was about 65% to 70% full as it was, and i found it quite crowded. i can’t imagine what high season would be like!

But Majorca is definitely worth a visit, if you have not gone before.

Missing the sun and the warmth…

syc