Thursday, July 7, 2011

Time's Going by So Quickly!

Well, now that summer's in full swing, it's hard to find time to post! After dinner (which usually ends around 11:30 or midnight), I usually Skype or read a little before hitting the hay and preparing for the next day, so it's difficult to summon the energy to blog! Even on my days off, I usually take a walk to the nearest Starbucks or take the bus to the city, and try to keep my mind off the daily challenges of being an au pair so that I can unwind a little.
Regardless, I can't believe it's already JULY 7th. June seemed like such a long month, because for the first week Brenda and I were desperately awaiting the arrival of our trip, and after that one blissful week of vacation, I was starting a new job in a new home in a foreign country alone. The adjustment process crawled by and it was a really difficult first week or so. However, July seems to be going by so quickly!
I finally have a new appreciation for how difficult it is for parents to keep their kids busy during the summer. Though they often want to watch TV, it always makes them irritable and cranky to be staying still for so long, so it's a real challenge to find something they will agree to leave the TV for. It's also difficult to find activities that both Laura and Danny will enjoy. Not only are they different genders, but they have different personalities and what entertains one bores the other to tears.
Luckily, our next door neighbor's au pair just got in this week, and the two girls that live there are Danny and Laura's best friends, so we've been able to establish some English playdates. The mom next door is an English teacher, so her girls are much more accustomed to speaking English. Sometimes I just speak Spanish to the kids because I know they will understand, and that's something I'm really trying not to do anymore. They hired me to speak English, so I'm really trying to make a conscious effort--even though the vast majority of the time the kids will try to ignore me.
Yesterday, we went to a teacher store and got a few English activities. We got a board game that I think was still a little too difficult for them, and made them more frustrated than anything else, but hopefully it's something they can work up to. We also got a set of go fish cards with animals and two workbooks, which I'd like to start today.
Laura's at work today and tomorrow, and though her husband works from home on those days, it's really just me and the kids all day. It's hard to keep them entertained when I can only play with them around the house and down at the pool, so I'm sure these are going to be long, challenging days!
Also, little Laura's been sick these past few days. She's had a bit of a fever that comes and goes. That's definitely been difficult to keep her calm (and not upset that Danny's playing), while keeping Danny busy. Yesterday, we went and saw Cars 2 (because it came out yesterday in Spain), and that was a good activity for both of them.
However, next week is our last week in Madrid, which means my last week of having to keep them busy on my own, since Laura will be on vacation. We leave for Asturias on July 23rd, which be nice and difficult for a lot of reasons. I'm looking forward to seeing more of Spain, and not having to take care of the kids on my own. And it's only 60-70 degrees there now, so that will be refreshing (especially at night, because it's often so hot here it takes me a while to fall asleep). However, Laura mentioned to me that they don't have internet up there, which will definitely make me last three weeks really hard. Skyping has been a godsend many a night, and while I'm thankful I will still have blackberry messenger, it will still be hard without Skype or Facebook. I want to look into buying one of those mobile wifi jump drives (if anyone knows what they're called, that might make it easier), because I don't want to be miserable and lonely my last few weeks. It will already be hard because Devin leaves on the 20th, and I saw with Brenda how hard goodbye's are. While I know what to expect this time around, and I won't be as scared as I was when she left, I imagine it will still make me really homesick.
But all in all, life is tiring and hard, but really good! I still love Spain and enjoy teaching English, so not much to complain about. Devin comes in exactly 7 days, and I come home in 37! Whew.
Hope all is well back home. Miss you all!

No comments: