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Leibster Awards for bloggers

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I had never heard of the Leibster Awards before my good friend Katrina Buttigieg (A Pocketful of Time) http://www.apocketfuloftime.wordpress.com nominated me earlier in the week. Thanks Katrina, very kind of you. Basically, it’s an award for bloggers to pass onto fellow bloggers as a means of support and encouragement. There are no judges and such but in fact every person nominated ‘wins’ by helping get blogs with less than 1000 followers more traffic. It has been really fun to reflect on blogging and answer these questions.
The process of being nominated involves answering eleven questions posed by the nominator. I just suddenly thought – as Miliking-meanderings is a family blog we should all answer these questions – wow! That would be a feat! Give us at least a week for that one!

 

Here are the eleven questions Katrina gave me:

What was the name of your first pet?
There were lots of animals around in my village in Greece and I’m sure I played with the cats and chooks and the cows, donkeys etc. Though my first pet that I actually remember personally is ‘arnaki’ (which means little lamb in Greek) – my baby lamb when I was four years old though I only had him for about 6 months or so because the neighbours in suburban Northcote were complaining about the lamb sounds (and the hens – my folks simply thought they could leave their little Greek village and create a new village in the middle of Melbourne!) so my dad killed it and cooked it up for Easter. This whole experience really cemented my vegetarianism. I refused to eat meat as a child but then my dad forced me when I was 12 years old as he thought I wouldn’t grow. I ate meat selectively till I was 20 years old at which point I made a distinct break and have been vegetarian (and vegan for 7 years) since. Even in the years I ate meat I wouldn’t go near lamb at all. I really loved my little ‘arnaki’.

2. Who was your childhood idol?
Mmmmmm! I find it so hard to pick just one person when asked these questions. So many – though if I focused on my early teen years I would have to say Boy George, Madonna, George Michael, the Thompson Twins, John Lennon and Billy Idol. I got my first record player for $50 from my neighbour when I was 12 years old and my first record was ‘1982 – Out of the Blue’ – these artists where all very popular in that time and transported me out of the insular world I had grown up in as a shy Greek boy who wouldn’t play any sport and was teased a lot at school. Music became a big part of the 1982 -1986 years for me so these amazing artists were a part of that. I would be able to sing every word of their songs and my walls were covered with their posters. Why I loved them was because they weren’t afraid to be different and created their own styles – they weren’t followers. It was a fun time.

3. What languages do you speak, or which would you love to learn?
When I arrived in Australia in 1973 (3 years old) I knew fluent Greek, Macedonian and Albanian. We came from a small mountainous area in Northern Greece about 17 km from Yugoslavia (now Macedonia), and 30kms from the Albanian border. Everyone in my village spoke Greek but half the village came from Albanian ancestors and the other half from Macedonian ancestors. My mum’s side were Albanian speakers and my dad’s side were Macedonian speaking. Whilst there were lots of my dad’s relatives in Australia there weren’t any of my mum’s so the Albanian language was lost for me.
Then obviously I learnt English in my school years in Australia. In the evenings twice per week I had to attend Greek school for 3 hours – I was pretty much forced to do this until HSC (VCE now) and I didn’t really like it though I am so pleased now that I’m living in Greece.
From 1980 I visited Bulgaria 9 times to see my grandparents there and other relatives and I learnt Bulgarian there -there are many similarities to Macedonian though also quite different. Especially the written language which follows the Cyrillic script.
After school I went to Monash university to do a science degree and after my first year I was a bit bored with science and much more interested in having fun in my uni years. I was standing in line on enrolment day (in the days when things weren’t all done on line) and I was tossing up whether to do Physics or Chemistry. I overheard another student say that you could do a first year subject from another faculty as your 2nd year minor. My years were pricked up, I flicked through the Arts faculty booklet and opened up to Japanese – that sounded really groovy and trendy and I wouldn’t have to go to boring pracs. I was in – that’s how I started learning Japanese which ended up being my major along with Computer science and Maths.

While I was living in Japan in 1992 my dream was to move to Florence and study photo journalism (not really sure why now!) so I met a wonderful Italian friend – Angela Villella (when I called a wrong number in Tokyo) and she taught me Italian.
Whilst a language coordinator at Salesian College in Sunbury VIC, I wanted to introduce Indonesian so a group of language teachers started learning Indonesian and I got to 2nd year uni level with my studies.
When I was living in India for 3 months when I was 23 years old, I swapped language lessons with a Tibetan monk and learnt some Tibetan there which I just loved.
So back to the question:
Advanced: English, Greek, Japanese
Intermediate: Bulgarian, Macedonian,
Beginners: Italian, Indonesian
Lost: Albanian, Tibetan
Would love to learn: Latin, Ancient Greek and/or Sanskrit – for the study of these are for pure enjoyment and I think would satisfy my left brained love of languages.

4. Beaches or mountains?
Oh I so love both, I couldn’t choose – that is probably why I love Crete so much – great beaches and very hilly and mountainous. Also another favourite place is Andalucia in Spain where the mountains meet the sea.

5. If there was a movie of your life story, who would you want to play you?
Andre Aggasi or Paul Kelly – I’ve had a lot of comments that I look like both these men. Also Andre Aggasi was an incredible tennis player and Paul Kelly songs are just amazing.

6. What is your biggest achievement to date?
Being in a loving relationship with Sandy for almost 14 years (relationships are great fun but also can be hard work) and our five kids – Yasmina, Toby, Kalika, Zoi and Emilio. They are mega tiring but also bring us so much joy.

7. What is the best advice you’ve ever been given?
A few of my favourite bits of advice are:

‘Look within yourself for the answer’. (From my Oki-do yoga teacher, 1994)

‘If there’s a heaven I’ve been good enough to get there, if there’s not it doesn’t really matter’. (My first wife Kylie said this to me when she saw me reading ‘The Tibetan book of Living and Dying, 1998)

‘Eat well, travel often’. (When Sandy and I got married we decided to not worry about paying our mortgage early but to always eat good food and not skimp on travel – living in a country area in Australia, where there isn’t great cultural diversity we decided to consciously invest in travel to widen the kids’ perspectives and experiences and eat really good food as the foundation of health). 2001

‘Work like you don’t need the money, love like you’ve never been hurt and dance like nobody is watching’. (This is probably one of my favourite quotes of all time, sometime in the 90s)

‘Daddys’ need healing hugs’ (my two and a half year old daughter Kalika – as she gave me a hug after my grandma died in 2008)

8. Favourite place in the world?
I hate this question – I have far too many. I guess if I wasn’t Greek I would pick Spain as my favourite country – especially the south. The mountains are high and glorious, the sea is exquisite and I just love Spain cause it is a country where everyone displays PDA’s (Public Displays of Affection) – no matter what age, body size or whatever, if they love someone they show it – I think that’s fantastic.
And I have to make a reference to India – the country I just love and feel challenged by all in the one breath. I could go on and on – so many beautiful places and people in the world.

9. Favourite meal and who would cook it for you?
Beautiful fresh sourdough whole grain bread with Cretan olive oil and feta drizzled in olive oil and oregano for starters. Then white bait and fresh Greek salad for main. Followed by fresh baklava and a beautiful frappe. All made by my lovely wife Sandy – she’s such a good cook. (I cook as well – I don’t want to sound like a typical sexist Greek male!)

10. If you could invite four people, living or dead, to dinner, who would they be?
Oh I love this question. I would definitely want to invite either Socrates or Plato for either would be so stimulating. Sarah Palin – cause her politics horrifies me and I would love to see how she copes with a vegetarian meal. It would be great to confirm if she really is for real with all the wacky and crazy things she says – it would be fun to hear Socrates pick up on her goofs!
Pink – I think she’s amazing and is really, really, clever – she’s the kind of naughty you wouldn’t mind your kids being – rather than the Paris Hilton or Miley Cyrus type of naughty! She would probably also do an interesting serenade to Socrates in between main and dessert and she would definitely have words for Palin.
And last but certainly not least – Tom Bowen cause I would love to chat to him about the Bowen technique (which has been such a gift in my life) and quiz him on how he developed it. I think he’d have a great sense of humour – very important at a dinner party.

11. What song always makes you smile when you hear it?
Any song from Midnight Oil’s – Blue sky mining album – we played it constantly (it was the only CD we had) while on a 3 month road trip around America in 1990 when I was an an exchange student there. Lots of happy memories come up when I hear the music and we got to see them twice in concert in that year.

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11 RANDOM FACTS ABOUT ME:

1. My little finger on both hands has a kink at the join – I can’t straighten it (apparently a kidney sign in metaphysics)

2. I really, really don’t like milk chocolate – love good quality dark chocolate.

3. My 3rd toe nail on my left foot grows so much quicker than the others and curls.

4. I’ve got an addictive personality (I’m currently a naughty naturopath and addicted to frappes in gorgeous coffee shops and made by beautiful Sandy)

5. I’m 20kgs lighter than when I was 16 y.o.

6. I have embraced sport now that I have very very sporty and active kids.

7. I’m very black and white – I’m in training to see more grey.

8. I panic in water above my head.

9. My favourite colour is red or magenta.

10. I was 20 y.o when I saw my first stage musical but now I try to make up for my deprived childhood.

11. I still cant explain what the off-side rule is in football (soccer), even after I have heard the explanation many times.

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In order to pass the Leibster award I am required to nominate between five and eleven other bloggers who have less than 1000 subscribers and ask them eleven questions as well. I have recently been following Katrina Buttigieg (A pocketful of time) http://www.apocketfuloftime.com and Jacqueline Damen (PS Don’t tell mum) http://www.jacqulinemaree.wordpress.com and after reading the fine print I can renominate them (if they accept of course). I would also like to nominate Lorraine Reguly from Poetry Perfected, poetryperfected.wordpress.com who has done a lot of work in collating the rules of the Leibster award. Thankyou Lorraine – you made it all sound very clear.
Other blogs that I have intermittently followed are some travel ones of people I don’t know personally so I would like to nominate them also – and ummmmmm! After checking their number of followers all have been over 1000 so that rules them out. Will have to add another 2 bloggers soon. Any suggestions of blogs I would enjoy?

Questions to answer:
1. What is your first solid memory?
2. How old were you when you met a current friend that you’ve had for the longest time? What has kept you friends?
3. If you could fly off to anywhere in the world right now, where would it be, and why?
4. What is your favourite quote?
5. What is your most embarrassing moment (that you’re happy to share!)?
6. What has been the best meal you’ve had this year?
7. What do you daydream about?
8. What has been the most touching movie you have ever seen?
9. What has been your most memorable sporting moment?
10. If you could spend a day with anyone in the world, living or dead, who would it be and what would you do?
11. What makes your heart sing?

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The Official Rules Of The Liebster Award
If you have been nominated for The Liebster Award AND YOU CHOOSE TO ACCEPT IT, write a blog post about the Liebster award in which you:
1. thank the person who nominated you, and post a link to their blog on your blog.
2. display the award on your blog — by including it in your post and/or displaying it using a “widget” or a “gadget”. (Note that the best way to do this is to save the image to your own computer and then upload it to your blog post.)
3. answer 11 questions about yourself, which will be provided to you by the person who nominated you.
4. provide 11 random facts about yourself.
5. nominate 5 – 11 blogs that you feel deserve the award, who have a less than 1000 followers. (Note that you can always ask the blog owner this since not all blogs display a widget that lets the readers know this information!)
6. create a new list of questions for the blogger to answer.
7. list these rules in your post. (You can copy and paste them from here.)
Once you have written your post, and published it, you then have to:
8. Inform the people/blogs that you nominated that they have been nominated for the Liebster award and provide a link for them to your post so that they can learn about it (they might not have ever heard of it!)
I would like to add that you can nominate someone who already has been given this award, as long as they have less than 1000 followers/subscribers. The idea behind this award is to recognize new bloggers and help promote them! The benefit is that you get from doing this is that you get some promotion, too! (Think about it, if they are obligated to link to you, then whomever lands on their site could also click the link and land on yours. If you multiply the number of people who can potentially see and land on your blog, you can clearly see that you will get more readers, more business and reach more people. This is just another way to help get your blog “out there”!) Also, I have created a place for you to post links to your blog, too. You can do this by visiting Post Your Links Here To Promote Yourself and Your Blog!
*NOTE TO NEWCOMERS: I appreciate you using this post to help you in your quest for understanding more about this award. I put a lot of time into creating this post (and I mean A LOT!), and one way you can show your appreciation to me is to share a link to my poetry blog, Poetry Perfected, since it is new and has very few readers! Please find the link to it on my poetry page. Please share it, I beg you! Thanks so much! (You can use whatever sharing buttons you have accounts at; the more the merrier! If you let me know in the comment section that you shared it, I’ll repay the favour! Thanks again!) ALSO NOTE: You have my full permission to use whatever information you have found in this post on your blog as long as you link back to my blog! You might find this post helpful, too: How To Add Images (Awards) To Your Sidebar.

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Thanks everyone – Christos

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Kalika’s Greek Language Lesson

GREEK LANGUAGE (ΕΛΛΙΝΙΚΗ ΓΛΩΣΣΑ)

These are some Greek words that I wrote up that I thought you might want to know:

These are the Greek capital letters

These are the Greek capital letters

No – όχι (ohi)

Yes – ναι. (ne)

Sweet dreams – Oνειρα γλυκά. (Onira Glika)

Good night – Καληνύχτα. (Kalinihta)

What is your name? – Πως σε λένε. (Pos se Lene)

My name is……….. Με λένε………….. (Me lene………..)

Back – Πίσω (Piso)

Forward- μπρος. (Bros)

Where is?- Που είναι; ( Pu ine?)

This is the order that you write the small Greek letters

This is the order that you write the small Greek letters

This is how to say the Greek 'alphabeta'

This is how to say the Greek ‘alphabeta’

By Kiki – more lessons to come soon

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Interesting expressions

Interesting expressions

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Emilio to mummy when he was in one of his gorgeous moods on the beach.
‘Your tummy must have been very beautiful to have such beautiful kids like us. And then there would have been gold and jewels on the outside of your tummy.’

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At the beach Zoi was playing with and wobbling Christos’ ‘taut’ tummy.
Zoi – ‘Have you had a baby in your tummy?’

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When we were in our first tiny accommodation in Agios Nikolaos – when the cupboard door was open it would hit the light fitting and it would swing around everywhere. The kids would run for cover thinking it might fall and Emilio would have his arms out following it around in case it fell and said…….
Emilio – ‘Come to papa’. (Kids wanted me to put this in but I think you had to be there!)

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Emilio – while walking home from school and seeing a postcard of two bare female bottoms that had just sat in the sand.
‘Mummy can we buy two of those cards to send to Wirra and Judd.’

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While walking back to Kritsa Village from Kritsa gorge
Christos: ‘That sign says Agios Nikolaos that way but we came from the other way.’
Yasi – ‘This is Greece!’

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On the way to Primary school #3 passing a woman cleaning her concrete
Toby – ‘Baba, Greeks sure do love to water their concrete’.

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Baba helping Yasi with her homework
Baba: ‘Yasi you don’t cross your t’s (τ) in Greek. There’s enough crosses in this country already.’

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While sitting at a cafe on their day off (due to the prep teachers strike) – only a metre or two from a woman.
Emilio – ‘Baba is that woman who’s smoking really poisonous.’ (Must give him a lesson in tact)

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German tour leader on a bus on the way to Samaria gorge
‘When I say 15-20 minutes, I mean 15-20 minutes because I am German, not Greek!’

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While swimming off the boat going to Spinalonga – Cara talking to Yasi

Cara – ‘ Oooohhh! Your parents are kissing…….Yuk!’

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Man in shop

Meri – ‘Are these Ice watches real?’

Shop owner – ‘Yes of course they are real………copies!’

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While watching Mamma Mia:

Toby: ‘Mummy, what does ‘dot dot dot’ mean?’

Moochie & Kalika: ‘You know – it’s what they used to do in the olden days’.

(Moochie loves saying this repeatedly now)

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Kalika usually uses the stairs to get to our 2nd floor apt. Today she bought a new top with some money Giagia sent her as she had no long sleeves at all – and she loves it.

Kiki: ‘I’m going in the lift so I can look at myself in the mirror.’

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Kiki’s Cretan Tales

Kritsa Gorge

Today we went to Kritsa Gorge. We got there by bus to Kritsa and then used our legs.

Kritsa is really hilly and steep

Kritsa is really hilly and steep

It was only a short bus ride and on the way to the bus stop I carried Toby’s backpack which had all our picnic lunch stuff and I didn’t think it was that heavy, but baba thought I was being very brave.

Heavy backpack

Heavy backpack

'Φαράγγι Κριτσας' means 'Kritsa gorge'

‘Φαράγγι Κριτσας’ means ‘Kritsa gorge’

Today is a sort of special day because it is mummy’s and baba’s anniversary. They have been married 12 years. They were only married for two years when they first had kids.
At the gorge there were lots of cliffs and overhangs. We did a lot of rock climbing which we really love to do. I made it up all the steep parts even with the backpack on.

Once there was a rock and there were metal things to hold onto on the sides.

Hang on!

Hang on!

There was like a passageway almost like a slide cause it was so slippery. I wouldn’t dare anyone to use it like a slide cause it lead into a hole. This hole was a rock hole that looked like a well and it had some water in it. I would not use the water to drink cause you could die and it was black water with a goats skull in it.

Quite slippery

Quite slippery

This is the end of summer so there’s not much water around. Now do you see why you shouldn’t use it as a water slide?
We stopped for lunch after about an hour of walking in the gorge and we had a picnic – veggies and homemade falafel tuna patties and homemade professional tzatziki made by Sandy King (it’s the best) and feta cheese and olives. I found the the top two – well the only two really- relaxing rocks at lunch break.

Ah! I need a rest

Ah! I need a rest

I also found the best rock to climb. I love finding climbing rocks. Nobody else (who tried) could get up and down with no help. Of course before we left from that spot we had some of mummy’s delicious home made apple and banana and chocolate cake. We also had a chubbachup- mine was a lemon lime and watermelon. Mine was from El Questro which I got for my birthday in May from a girl that picked us up hitching from Amalia gorge back to our campsite. I’ve had it so long cause we only keep them for hiking when we really deserve them and we haven’t really done any real hiking since China.
Climbing Kritsa gorge was really fun except at the end when we went out of Kritsa gorge it was a nightmare cause we couldn’t find the right path and it was hot. I had to give the big kids the backpack for about 4mins to give my shoulders a rest. We kept walking up a path which was the wrong path then mum found a small goat path down the mountain – I slipped twice on this goat path and one time I got blood on my knee – we followed the path until we found a made road and then a man was walking who pointed to the road that lead back to the village.

I just want to go home - it's hot!

I just want to go home – it’s hot!

Kids: 'Are we lost?' Mummy: 'No just geographically challenged'

Kids: ‘Are we lost?’ Mummy: ‘No just geographically challenged’

Pushing through on goat tracks

Pushing through on goat tracks

Plumbing nightmare

Plumbing nightmare

The road back to Kritsa

The road back to Kritsa

However it was 3-4km away but at least we knew where we were going. When we were walking into the village we were carried away by some dogs that were in someone’s yard – there was no way out but dogs find ways – the biggest dog of the two little ones was squashed behind a cushion half against the wall and half against the cushion. They were just adorable especially the smallest puppy. The mother was worried about us hurting her little pups but she couldn’t stop us because she was on a lead, she just barked and jumped. Now we are sitting at a cafe in Kritsa because the next bus back isn’t for another two hours – because it is Sunday. I got a Calippo – a lemon-lime Calippo which was yummy. All the kids except Emilio had a Callippo cause it makes you cool – Emilio had a vanilla ice cream with chocolate on top. Baba had a frappe like he always does cause he loves them and mummy had an iced-choc and they got a baklava to share but us kids ate most of it.

School
This week we had our second week at school and I have figured out how to spell ‘Ελα’ all by myself. In English it would be spelt epsilon, lambda then alpha. The word in English would be ‘ela’ which means ‘come’. I’ve also got some other words that I typed up which I’ll put into this blog if you would like to learn some. Actually I was thinking of putting that into a separate blog so I’ll do that next so its easy to look up.
My teacher is named Kiria Soula. She is a good teacher cause she just is. She checks if I’m ok.

This is my finished homework

This is my finished homework

My 'Γλωσσα' language homework

My ‘Γλωσσα’ language homework

My 'Μαθεματικα' Maths homework

My ‘Μαθεματικα’ Maths homework

Every single night I get so much homework. Two pages. One of Greek language and one of maths. Mummy mainly helps me cause she’s learning Greek too but sometimes baba has to help with the words.

My favourite subject at school is English cause it is really easy and our English teacher is a super doper fantastic teacher.

I just finished school but PE was last so I was so hot

I just finished school but PE was last so I was so hot

I also like Sport stuff we do outside but it makes you really ζεστη (hot). I have to carry about 16 books in my backpack and it is really heavy.

Acqua Pool – Water Park
Last weekend we took a bus to Hersonissos which is on the way to Heraklion which is the capital of Crete. There we had to wait half an hour for the Acqua pool’s shuttle bus to come pick us up. It was worth the wait. We loved the tsunami slide lots.

It was like a vertical drop but we were on a donut. Then you go right up the other side and you keep doing this but you eventually slow down.
There is also a racing slide which is an ordinary racing slide with four separate slides like normal slides and you can race each other.

The girl up top who checked if everything was safe made a secret handshake with us which she did each time we went down.

Toby never beat me in the races. I was skilled. He kept pushing me as we ran up the stairs because he doesn’t like losing. He thought that his shorts created more friction.
There was a covered slide and when you came out you went into a bowl – it looked like a cereal bowl and the slide lead to this cereal bowl.

Can you see me in the bowl?

Can you see me in the bowl?

.......and there I fall out!

…….and there I fall out!

You kept going around this bowl until you fell into the opening which was quite scary but the only way out of this slide. You fell head first into a pool that was 2.75m deep.

There’s also a Black covered slide which is completely dark and you came out on a curve not straight. When I was in the middle I saw tiny lights and I said in my head ‘Oh oh, who turned the party lights on?’ It was about 10 seconds later and I dropped into the pool.
There was also the blue water slide and it was a pool at the start of it which you hopped into the pool and you got yourself into the water slide by pulling on a rope.

Here we come

Here we come

We love water slides

We love water slides

It can get crowded

It can get crowded

This water slide was not covered. After a bit you would find a pool and then you would have to keep trying to get back into the current to keep going – it was hard cause we were on this huge donut. Then you went down on the water slide and reached another pool which always had a person to help you – the person made us do donuts on our donut by pulling our legs and spinning us. Then we got to this third pool after which it was really hard to get back to the water slide. Once I was almost on the water slide again when I got stuck on the edge but eventually I got back onto the slide and soon after that I dropped into the main pool where all of those water slides drop into (on that slide lots of people lose their donuts and I was one of them – I went on the water slide again bare bottomed but Toby saved the donut by catching it by its handle and we all went down the water slide to the main pool.)
We also went on the ‘Lazy river’ which was way too lazy so we had to do things like donuts, walk, swim while mama and baba where being lazy and just lying on their donut floating along. They were lazy enough not to notice us coming up to them. I gave baba a big surprise by sneaking up to him and not making a sound.

There was even a little kids area.
I went on every single ride and it was awesome. We went to the water park cause it was on the weekend after our first week of school and we were lucky kids and mama and baba were really proud of us on our first day of school.
By ΚΑΛΙΚΑ

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School, Massage tables and coastlines…….

Start of school…….Start of work…….

As I sit on this bus and on the right I see the beautiful blue sea – more beautiful and blue than a precious gem, many tourist hotels, villas and beach umbrellas dot the coast.

The crystal blue sea

The crystal blue sea

The coastline can be quite dramatic

The coastline can be quite dramatic

On the left side of the bus a rocky landscape, scenic, gorgeous and simultaneously harsh as it has been basked in the sun and heat year after year. Small villages of white homes dot the landscape.

Rock on one side, sea on the other

Rock on one side, sea on the other

Crete is very very rocky and mountainous

Crete is very very rocky and mountainous

Today the kids started school or at least they went for an hour to attend the official blessing by a priest (I so feel sorry for them having to wear a long robe in this heat) – right outside in the courtyard of the school on basketball court – all kids decked in their finest clothes, hair gelled up or in fancy braids and not a single hat in sight.

Lining up for the official blessing to open the school year

Lining up for the official blessing to open the school year

Entering school on the first day

Entering school on the first day

No sun smart policy at Municipal school #3. Though admittedly the sun is very different here in Greece – it is hot but doesn’t seem as harsh – the ozone layer above possibly much more intact than in Australia. None of us have been burnt the whole time we have been away (even Sandy) – though most of us are certainly quite tanned.

Anyway – at the official blessing and the following address by principal and parents’ association head, many of the children where talking and not listening – I think if I was the teacher – many a detention slip would’ve been given out. When I was a student teacher at Salesian College – Rupertswood I was always told by my mentor George Toth – ‘don’t smile, give them clear instructions and boundaries and make sure they know you mean business’.

The principal addressing the school

The principal addressing the school

They all had to stand in their class lines (Thankfully Yasi and Toby are together and in a small class of 16 kids though their teacher was absent today and Kalika is in grade 2B with a lovely teacher called Ms Soula) and then they were lead upstairs to their classes to get acquainted etc. I was so nervous for them but also so proud of them for just waltzing up and going with the flow. There school is a concrete jungle though at least they have a view of the sea.

The courtyard where school starts with prayer every morning

The courtyard where school starts with prayer every morning

The concrete school - with a view

The concrete school – with a view

They will obviously learn language incredibly quickly though I’m sure it will be a struggle for a few months. Fingers crossed. Emilio and Zoi on the other hand are in the compulsory prep year of kinder (Kinder is one optional year at 4 yrs old and then a compulsory year at 5 years old followed by Primary school which is grade 1-6), though in a different direction to the primary school so Sandy took them and they were very happy to be in separate classes and since they are used to a school environment they just went and played while many of the kids who were going to kinder for the first time clung to their parents or had to be peeled off them. So that was a relief. My children love me telling them the story of my first day at school – Merri Primary School in Nth Fitzroy, Melbourne. I was just over 5 yrs old and didn’t know any words of English at all (I had moved to Australia about a year and half before though was surrounded in a Greek environment and my parents didn’t know any English) and I just clung onto my mum’s skirt and cried my head off, lovely Mrs Finger (my Prep teacher) had to drag me from my mum and I was so nervous and shy that I didn’t know how to ask to go to the toilet so I wet my pants – it was horrible. My kids always giggle at the wetting my pants scenario!
Tomorrow is the first full day of school where they’ll get their school books etc and start classes – they seem pretty ok about it at this stage. We’ll see – and their school experience will definitely be the marker we use to see if we can stay here in Greece for a year.
Getting close to Heraklion now – I had to come to the big city today to buy my massage table (tried to find a second hand one but second hand stuff doesn’t often happen in Greece – they don’t like using other people’s stuff – which explains why my mum cringes every time we tell her about our humongous savings at op-shops that we love to frequent.)

School teachers' protest signs

School teachers’ protest signs

Managed to find a man bag in my shopping - don't know how I survived for 6 months without!

Managed to find a man bag in my shopping – don’t know how I survived for 6 months without!

Tomorrow I have my first Bowen client and I’m quite excited cause I really love treating people with Bowen and the € much needed as these Miliking kids eat so much food and despite Greece being cheaper than Northern Europe it still is quite an expensive country to live in.
Have an awesome day.

By Christos

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Kiki’s day out with mummy

This blog has been a bit slow in coming up though Kiki just wrote another and we realised we have been so busy with getting into school and activities etc – oops – sorry -so this blog was written by Kiki before school even started –  Baba Miliking

Today is Thursday, me and mummy are having a girls day together. We picked some photos to print off and went to a cafe to wait.

Dolphins by the sea

Dolphins by the sea

This is part of the Venetian wall

This is part of the Venetian wall

 

We had a humungous waffle with strawberry, crunched up oreo biscuits, ice-cream and nutella of course because it was called a nutella waffle. I had a caramel milkshake and mum had a frappe but she couldn’t finish it because she was too full from the waffle.

The biggest Nutella waffle you've ever seen

The biggest Nutella waffle you’ve ever seen

So yummy!

So yummy!

We went to a dinosaur museum, it had what an earthquake feels like and what to do during an earthquake and we experienced some pretty bad earthquakes in Japan and Taiwan.

The Crete Museum of Natural History

The Crete Museum of Natural History

This map shows you all about the plates everywhere in the world

This map shows you all about the plates everywhere in the world

This is what to do if you're in an earthquake

This is what to do if you’re in an earthquake

We went in a discovery centre and put on a hard hat and saw a pretend cave that looked like real crystal.

Explorer Kiki

Explorer Kiki

Inside the cave

Inside the cave

There was a handle to turn in a tsunami making display. You could see if a tsunami is safer when a house is on a cliff top or a gentle slope. I thought the cliff was safer but the cliff also could be damaged.
I also rode on a dinosaur!

I'm a dinosaur rider

I’m a dinosaur rider

You should have seen how big a tyrannosaurus’ mouth was. Isabelle Christison could fit lying down on its tongue or use it as a blanket.

Such a big mouth

Such a big mouth

It's so big

It’s so big

I was given some dinosaur stickers, i got two of each one, then I lost one. After the awesome museum, we went to the Nike factory store and I got some really groovy pink runners.

By Kikibelle

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Our first day at ‘Nipia’ #2

This is our school sign painted on the wall

This is our school sign painted on the wall

Today was my first day at Prep which is called ‘nipia’ in Greece. Guess what – my teacher’s name is Katerina. I was a bit sad when mummy left because it was my first try at Greek school. We played this awesome game – trying to beat my friends racing – I won.

This is the yard with all the parents on the first day

This is the yard with all the parents on the first day

This is the playground outside

This is the playground outside

We had a break for some food and I had a hard honey toast sandwich which is called a ‘paximadi’. I also ate some pistachios and a choccie bikkie that mummy made.

There are some fun puzzles and games

There are some fun puzzles and games

Some other boys and me played a trick on our teacher – we knocked on the table like someone was knocking on the door and she had to go to the door and no one was there – she didn’t see us knocking. It was funny.

By The Pirate bear

 

I liked the kitchen toy at my class and there was a pretend computer and a pretend phone. My teacher is called Lefteria and she’s really really nice.

This is on the first day but I'm not normally in Moochie's class

This is on the first day but I’m not normally in Moochie’s class

I walked in and was a little bit brave – I wasn’t scared of the teachers but scared a bit of the other kids. When I came to little school – it’s called ‘Nipia’. I did puzzles and other people in my class did other games and things.

These are shapes with lots of Greek words

These are shapes with lots of Greek words

I had two really hard breads with butter and I had grapes to eat. We went out to play and the teacher read us a book and my mummy picked us up.

By Zoi