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Santorini…….with special guests from DownUnder

Santorini – one of the most photogenic places on earth………

Lots of wedding photos in this beautiful spot

Lots of wedding photos in this beautiful spot

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We went on a volcano – volcanoes have lava in them – but it was 3km in the ground. There were some smelly spots and also some smoke coming out of a hole. It was hard walking cause it was a big mountain.

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We got there by a wooden boat called ‘Captain Yiannis’. When the boat ride finished we went on a cable car back to the top of the cliff – we walked down at 10 o’clock in the morning but we were a bit tired in the afternoon and it’s very steep.

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Santorini is lovely and nice and the buildings are nice and lovely. We came to Santorini with Millie and Desley. We played lots together. We played hide and seek with Millie and we had breakfast with each other. There was a pool at the house we stayed at. It was a really fun time.
By Zoi

We travelled 270 vertical steps to find the dream photo – I can’t believe I’ve said so many OMGs – just the most beautiful place in the world and seeing it through 5 children’s eyes is another experience in itself. I have the huge photo on my wall – that Cher (my daughter) bought me in anticipation of one day being able to see the real thing. And now I have……. and much, much more.

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Sunset was amazing over the water from Oia and we even got to see the moon from the top of the world cafe.
Santorini has lived up to its expectations and much more.
By Des

My favourite thing about Santorini – was playing hide and seek with Millie and the pool and the cable car – the doors were awesome – it was much funner than than getting a donkey.

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We got to the top and had an ice cream – I had a cup of ice-cream with chocolate mini bombs of dark chocolate and white chocolate and I wanted a cone so the nice man put an upside down cone in my cup.

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I didn’t learn much about volcanoes on our tour cause I was having so much fun on the rocks. But I know that when a volcano erupts it can’t fire the whole world. They erupted when the dinosaurs were around but this one will erupt again in about 20 years because it erupts about every 75 years and last time was in 1950.

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I love Wirra and Judd and Corey and I miss them so much.
By Moocha

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After travelling 2 hours via a rather bumpy ferry we reached Santorini, but the journey was worth it! What a beautiful place to visit with such a beautiful family; the Milikings. Have had such an amazing and adventure filled time, made even better by the great company!
By Millie

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We watched two sunsets at a really lovely town called Oia (pronounced ‘Ia’) – we also went to the same Restraunt on the two nights – the barman of the restaurant was really funny and he called Desley a New Zealander and he also liked to play tricks on her – one of the very very funny ones was he brought her a bottle of wine and when he was close he pretended to drop the bottle.
He liked to play lots of tricks and do lots of funny things with Desley.
On the second night he wore a hat that he made himself – he bought a green hat and a painted some of the hat and also glued a red or yellow donkey – which is local beer from Santorini and also had nuts and bolts on the hat.
They also made us very comfortable they saw that it was windy and got out lots of blankets and lanterns when we got there. We ate tomato fritters and fava bean dip which is a local delicacy and prawns that were grilled and in a saganaki.

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One day when a big massive eruption happened here, I was very surprised that no one lost there lives – in one year there were 14 eruptions and the first one was very small so everyone moved off the island and went to other parts of Greece and then there were lots of small ones and then the big eruption.

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It looked like a donut then but now it looks much different – it looks like a crescent moon with a few extra bits added on the side. It would normally take two hours to reach Crete in a really fast speed boat but with the massive eruption and earthquake there was a tsunami wave that reached Crete in just 20 mins and wiped out about half of Crete. All that was long ago – apparently it happened in 1653 BC which is about 3666 yrs ago.
The sunsets were very beautiful we have some really good photos – we will make a gallery – goodbye see you later
By Toby

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In Santorini the history about the volcano is amazing because of how it formed an island every time it exploded and it’s expected to explode in about 15 yrs – normally they estimate that volcanoes explode every 75 years or so and sometimes they are little and other times new islands come up.

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I liked walking down to the old port from Fira because I just liked walking. There were so many donkeys going up and down and others waiting for people. The donkeys almost squashed you to the wall when they are going past you.
Emilio thought the boat we went on to see the volcano was like a pirate boat made of wood and lots of sails.

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After we got off the boat we went out for dinner for my mum’s birthday – we had a yummy dinner though it was cold in the wind but an amazing view. I liked the sunset.

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Before dinner we went to a big rocky place that was an old castle where everyone sits to watch the sunset. Then we went out for dinner.

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For morning tea the next day which was mum’s real birthday we had lots of yummy cakes on our balcony – very yummy. We have enjoyed having Desley and Millie stay with us – it’s been fun.
I have barely drank any water because it tastes disgusting cause it hardly rains here and they take the water out of the sea and take the salt out and add chlorine. It tastes revolting so we’ve been drinking soda water.
By Yasi

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We took a bus to Heraklion and we went to the port then we saw lots of big boats. The boat we went on to Santorini was quite small compared to the other boats – but it wasn’t a car ferry it was a speed ferry. The boat rocked so much – I felt sick and after the boat we got picked up in a mini van and mummy drove a small car. Toby and Baba and I went to an office where we had to pay some money for the Car insurance but the car was free with the house we rented.
When we got to the house we got shown our rooms.
Baba and mummy, Zoi and Emilio shared an apartment which was room 206. Desley, Millie, me and Toby and Yasi (for one night) stayed in apartment 207. It had a wooden upstairs part where me and Mille and Toby and Yasi stayed. Yasi and Toby had to go top to tail for the first night. Yasi only stayed one night then she moved to mummy and baba’s apartment.

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After we settled in we had lunch by the pool and we had a swim in the pool. We said the water was so cold like Lake Baikal. The we went to the black sand beach called Perissa beach. I made a sand castle and then I got bits of seaweed and stuck it to the back and made eyes and a mouth out of rocks in a circle shape on top and I found some little shrubs and ripped them up and put them as hair and fringes and eyebrows.
Then Mille and Zoi made one too and I kept adding to mine too. I kept leaving and said I’ve got a summer job and I went to go cover the boys in black sand and I kept saying they looked like Ninjas and that’s because they did.
When we went home we had dinner. We had pasta for dinner and we had a little bit of entree outside. Emilio went inside cause he had an earache. And we decided to move inside for dinner and we had pasta.
Emilio went straight to bed but Zoi stayed up for 10 mins – baba told her that he would come and get her soon. Zoi said 5 minutes but baba said no 10. We watched Madagascar 3 with Mille and then after 10 minutes Zoi went to bed, but we got to stay up with Millie and watch the rest.

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Millie is a friend from Wangaratta – she’s Jeanette’s daughter and she was travelling so she decided to come over to visit us. She is very fun because she is.
The next day we went on a walk through the small streets of Fira to the next two villages called Firostefani and Imerovigli.

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The streets were very nice to walk through – I kept turning back to keep up with the others cause they were so slow. Then baba and mama picked us up there by car. Then we went to a Ammoudi beach and had a picnic lunch and then we walked around the cliff to have a swim.

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When we got there we saw some people who had dropped their camera and were diving to get it. We got dressed and had a swim and Mille, Yasi, Toby and I went to a place that was really good for jumping off the cliff.

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The others jumped off a couple of times first but when we were about to leave Millie said we will swim over to the island and back and then I said – ‘ when I get in the water’ and then Mille said ‘which is never going to happen’ and then I said ‘oh really’ as I jumped in.

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Then we walked back and we had a little drink at a cafe where Desley was waiting. Desley is one of babas friends from Bowen and she’s our naughty aunty.

We went up the cliff to Oia and found a beautiful place to take photos where you had to go on roofs – they were round dome roofs where people were having wedding photos. And after everyone had taken their photos we had a go of a few family photos and then we went to go find a dinner place and to watch the sunset. It was a rooftop restraunt – the barman was very funny. He kept saying Desley was from New Zealand – when she is actually from Brisbane in Australia. She called him a Russian but he’s really from Serbia. He was very funny and he pretended to drop the wine bottle he threw it up in the air and caught it. Then another thing he did – Desley said ‘ I’m not from NZ I’m from Brisbane, Australia’ – he said “same thing”.

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Then the next day we went on a boat tour. We left the caldera which is the ring of land around a volcano ( the main part where all the tourists stay on), and landed on the volcano island we had a bit of a walk up to the active bit. At the end of that walk there was a hole where you have to put your hand in, to feel the steam and heat – the lady told us lots of information.

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The group of Islands that create Santorini are Thira, Thirassia, Aspronissi,and Nea Kameni (new burnt island) that was left over from the last major volcanic eruption, 3600 years ago. The volcano erupted when there were people living on the island, similar to the people in Crete called the Minoans. These people had lots of signs that the volcano was going to erupt and so they all left to other places. We know this because they have never found any bones or signs of dead people from that time.

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Another island is called Palea Kameni (old burnt island) and that’s where we stopped to go swimming in a hot spring. It was browny yellow water cause of the sulphur that comes from the volcano. The ship stopped 40 metres away from the hot springs and we had to jump off the ship and swim. It was pretty easy swimming. The sulphur in the hot springs could even make your bathers pinky red. Mine didn’t do that because sometimes it stains and sometimes it doesn’t. The water was warmer but not too hot. When we go back to the boat we set off to go to another part of Santorini called Oia where Desley and Millie got off the boat. When we got back to the port we talked about what transport we were going to get up the cliff. Toby, mummy and I chose donkeys and the others went up in a cable car.

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The donkeys were fun, they were just like mountain horses. I felt sad for the donkeys cause they had to walk all the way up and down the steep hill all day long. When we met up with the others they had an ice-cream, so they walked us to the same ice-cream shop. You get to pick the flavour ice-cream – there weren’t many flavours – I had vanilla and my toppings were little white choc and dark choc balls and Santorini honey. It was delicious.
When we got to the car park we saw a donkey that was sad and tied up. We picked up Desley and Millie and we went to sit on some stairs for the sunset. After sunset we went to funny man’s restraunt again. It was yummy and you can find out more in the other blogs about mummy’s birthday dinner.
By Kiki

Santorini is definitely up there in my all time most amazing places to have ever visited. The children have written lots about fascinations with volcanoes etc. I wanted to focus on just how utterly beautiful the buildings, the crystal blue sea and the sunsets were.

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When you see postcards about Santorini it is very easy to think – oh yeah they have used filters and photo shopped that etc etc but hey – it really is that beautiful. The white buildings and the blue topped churches are such a glorious contrast to the blue sky and the blue sea way down below, they are so inviting and truly delicious to the eye. I don’t think you would ever get time to watch TV on Santorini cause the views are just mesmerising and almost put you in a trance.
We were staying in the southern part of the island in an area called Perissa and luckily our cheap accommodation came with a car. We don’t normally hire cars due to the costs though it was so handy having a mini-van that fit us all. It meant we really got to see the island and especially my favourite part which is right over on the north tip, Oia. It wasn’t as crazy with tourist party-goers as Fira and had the most incredible white washed views and sunsets. The vibe is very relaxed as if time goes a lot slower (even by Greek terms) and the people were super friendly.

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You often walk around and think how can they possibly build on that cliff and that hill – away from any roads – well our friendly barman told us – ‘all done by donkey – donkeys deliver everything in these streets – there’s no other way’. Poor donkeys!
Santorini would have to be the most photogenic place I’ve ever been to – you almost can’t take a bad photo! It glistens in the sun. Thank you Santorini – I can’t wait to come back.
By Christos

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Guilt has got me writing, “Nine people went to Santorini, and eight people have written (or dictated) for the blog” he (Christos) says…. How do I say something new? And boy do I have a surprise for you at the end.

I found it fascinating to read that much Greek literature both in the modern day and historically call Santorini ‘Thera’. So where did Santorini come from? It actually came from the French who fell in love with St Irini church on the island group and referred to the group of Islands for that reason. Saint Irini easily morphs into Santorini. Good one huh? My trivia for today.

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What an amazing place. I was overwhelmed by the beauty of parts and like Christos loved the town of Oia. I was fascinated to hear that this town was 80 percent destroyed by an earthquake in 1956……. I remain fascinated by the layers of sediment from the volcanoes eruptions over the years. The pumice, the volcanic ash, the red rock. And how it makes the land feel so alive and ever-changing. Coming from Australia, that is so relatively geomorphologically (is this the right word?) stable, the changing world and impact of human kind on the earth seems so much more tangible. I’m not saying that humans have an impact on when volcanoes or earthquakes happen, I just feel that human connectedness to the living earth is easier to grasp as a concept, because the earth too is changing and growing.

Talking about changing, as the kids have mentioned, my age changed whilst in Thera or Santorini, and guess what I got for my birthday? Do you remember my ‘fashion blog’ entry from the Ukraine and Thessaloniki?

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Well, I said I would try and get a photo in a one piece suit for you… Well here I am, gracing the beach back in Crete. Special hey? I hope someone has a fancy dress party that I can wear it to soon…. It’s not quite my style, I had hoped for strapless, but the texture is ‘slimy’ to say the least. The kids love it.

By Mama Miliking

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My Labyrinth Park Excursion

Saturday 19 October 2013

My school went on excursion to the Labyrinth Park today. My four mates went too. I have five mates but one of them weren’t there so I just had 4 friends today – their names are Mano, Engli, Andoni, Georgio, and my other one that missed out is called Nikola.

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The bus was waiting and waiting for us in the morning at the port where the Submarine leaves from.
It was so fun – I got to go in the maze and Engli beat me in the maze but I beat him in the racing cars.

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I like the mini golf and I even went on a horsey with Engli. Then we went to go and look at the goats and the ponies and the chooks and the bunny rabbits, then we saw the wild dogs. Then we all had an ice cream and hopped on the bus again to go home. I sat next to Engli on the way back. We played games and talked about the bits where we were at the restraunt and were flicking the ice-cream in our mouth with the spoon. Engli only talks Greek – I understand lots but don’t speak too much yet.

I could tell you all the words I know but I’m too excited right now. I’ll tell you a few.
When we eat we say …. ‘Efharisto sti Gi gia afto to fagito’ and then ‘Kali orexi’ that means ‘ thanks to the earth for this food’ and ‘good appetite’
‘Oh re’ means ‘oh man………’
‘Pame’ means ‘let’s go’
‘Stammata’ means ‘stop’
‘Boris’ means ‘can you?’
‘Endaxi’ means ‘allright’ or ‘OK’
‘Orea’ means ‘nice’ or ‘beautiful’

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Every Monday, Wedneday and Friday we go to ‘gymnastiki’ and do sport at the running track near our home. Mr teacher is Kirie Paskali and I really like him cause he’s nice to me and does good games with us – like run and there’s a stick and we have to put the cone on it and who ever gets there first wins – its is awesome.

At swimming (it’s called ‘kolimbi’) We do bike kicking bubbles, head in the water, normal swimming and we do kicking without moving – you have to very smart to kick without moving – you have to hold on to the edge – my teachers are Kiria Eleni and Kirie Kosta. I go every Tuesday and Thursdays – I am getting so much better at swimming – that’s all for today – bye
Love Moocha

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I went to the maze park and rode a horse – but not galloping – just walking – and then I went in the maze and found my way out. I rode the horse for about 5 minutes but it seemed like a long time.
This is my friend Mina she was not he horse at the back of me. Mina is my friend – my other friends Georgia wasn’t there. The mini golf was really fun – we were catching up to Engli – it was a great day.

By Zoi

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Semi-Submarine Excursion

Saturday 19 Oct 2013

Today I met my friend Igli and his sister Olivia and together with Yasi and Kiki we all went with our class on an excursion. We went on a Semi-Submarine trip. Half of my class came on our trip cause there were two trips today.
We sailed off at 1pm, and then we sailed to a place where there are lots of fish and they started feeding little fish to the bigger fish.

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Half way through the feeding some seagulls came and caught a few fish – we could see their legs and we heard their sounds. We saw lots of different types of fish that I don’t know the names of – one of the types were sardines. The boat went to different places – we didn’t get to see any dolphins or eels or turtles this time – but the earlier class saw a really big turtle apparently.

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We sat in the underwater compartments and watched all the feeding – it was really good.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After baba picked us up Igli and I went to the small soccer field and had a little kick around. We shot at goals with the soccer ball that Uncle George got me.

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Before we went to the Semi-Submarine I read such an exciting book that I just didn’t want to leave – it is called – the Famous Five number six – I cant put it down. Igli is a funny person – he knows little English but knows the rudest signs and words. He reminds me lots of Shelby – cheek and funny. That’s all folks – talk soon
by Tobes

 

Today I went on a submarine and I saw lots of fish – some looked like swordfish – people were throwing out bait to the fish – there were big feeding frenzies – it looked cool.

We went on a Submarine with my class – I would say there was as much rubbish and tyres in the water than the fish – all kind of things- its funny cause you don’t see rubbish near the beach.
By Yasi

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Zoi’s busy day

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Today I was the class helper, I had to sit next to my teacher, Kiria Leftheria, and pass around a toy bunny that we look after – we give it names – I named it Bella. I had to give out paper to the other kids. I had to show them photos of me and I had some homework to do – a page all about me!

 

 

 

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When I was going home they gave me a poster they drew for me and a diploma of being a helper. They said I was kind and gentle.
My teacher said I could do a puzzle while all the other kids made my beautiful picture for me.
I walked home with mum and Emilio.
Baba hid behind the kitchen cupboard and scared us when we got home in the kitchen.

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For lunch we had tuna bolognese – that is my best meal ever in the whole world.
I talked to grandma on the phone and even played reading eggs and Lego.

 

 

 

 

 

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At 5 o’clock we did athletics on the field near our house. My teacher’s name is Kirie Paskali – we run and do lots of activities and competitions. Then we had a swim and I was splashing baba lots. He tried to catch me but I was way too fast – he caught Emilio’s leg.

By Zoi

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Toby’s trip to the doctor…….

Toby’s trip to the doctor

Guess what happened to me on Friday night?
I had to go to the doctors but I didn’t break my leg or do anything serious like that – everyone in the Agios Nikolaos soccer team has to have a check up to see if their heart and their health is ok. Most of you might think it was scary or boring but it was actually really fun.
Let me tell you why it was fun – because I wanted to know how much I weighed, my height, and I found it interesting to see what sorts of instruments they use. I’ve never been treated in a hospital in the 10 yrs I’ve lived – except when I was born at the Wangaratta Base Hospital.

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The instruments that the paediatrician used was an instrument that they put to your chest and listen to your heartbeat in different spots – baba said it’s called a stethoscope. One thing that was very interesting was what she did with a thing that she used that had 3 attachments together and she had one of them on my arm and another was a blow up thing and when she pushed it pumped up the thing on my arm. Then she had the stethoscope on my arm past the thing where the attachment was. She was checking my bold supply and pressure while the arm thing was really blown up. Baba said I need to learn its name – I can call it a blood pressure machine or a sphygmomanometer – such a long word isn’t it.
I always wanted to know how high I have grown in the 6 months I have been away – I have grown 4 cm in 6 months. When I left I was 134cm now I’m 138.5 cm. My weight has gone up too- I’ve put on a kilo since we’ve left. The doctor couldn’t really believe that I hadn’t been to a doctor before except to get my ears checked. She gave us the form we needed and she wanted me to do blood tests just to check how things are. My baba said ‘why if he’s ok?’ She said ‘just to see’ but I don’t think we’ll do that.
In am loving football (but it’s called soccer in Australia) -the soccer they play here so so different to home. They play with much bigger goals and pitches and they train 3 times every week for an hour and a half as well as a match every Saturday or Sunday.


I’m in the Agios Nikolaos team with kids that were born in 2003. Our uniform is blue but the match colour of the uniform is white. I don’t have a uniform yet cause it hasn’t arrived but I just play in blue shorts and a Chelsea top. The boys here are much better than me – much calmer when they get the ball and they don’t hesitate as much as me when they get the ball and someone is charging at them. When I was in Australia Mr Van Bergen and my other coaches didn’t allow us to bump or push anyone out of the way so that I could keep the ball but here when you are just about to get the ball off them they give you a good bump. They are much better keeping the ball in the air with their knees or feet but I’m practising with my new ball that Uncle George (the first) and Aunty Meri got me. When baba watches me he thinks I’m getting better and better. I got one goal in the last two games and have had about 15 touches.

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At training the other day we were about to start training and some other kids and I were practising so I kicked the ball to the goals and as I kicked it bounced a meter and a half from the goal posts and bended back into the goals and got in. When I was telling the family at dinner they laughed and laughed and said – ‘wow we should make a movie called ‘Bend it like Toby Miliking”. I thought it would be too expensive to make a movie cause we would need to find actors and directors and a place to film and all that kind of stuff. But the whole family laughed and said we could make our own by ourselves and Kiki was going to play Jules – and Yasi was going to be Jasminda – I was going to be a soccer boy, Zoi wanted to be the older sister who gets married. Mum is going to be the mother but we thought Giagia could be the grandma who says ‘you shouldn’t be encouraging her to run around in shorts – she doesn’t even want to learn how to make spanakopita’. And Giagia’s best friend Teta vasa could be the woman who measures up the dresses to make and says -‘ no problem I can make these little mosquito bites look like juices juicy mangoes’. It was pretty funny.

I’m getting better at soccer and bye bye.
By Tobes

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Our ‘Master Chef’ excursion in Elounda

Toby and Kalika and I went to a Elounda to cook on a class excursion today.

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We went with a mother of one of our friends from our class called Ioanna. It takes about 20 minutes to get to Elounda -it’s a famous place full of resorts and hotels. Lots of rich people go there.

 

 

 

 

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With a famous chef it was so much fun. We chopped up, all the ingredients. We chopped tomatoes, onions, mushrooms, leeks, basil and mint. The chef made us taste some leaves that smelt and tasted like a lemon but I thought that was a bit weird.

Then we made some brown dough which is like usual dough with brown flour and we added olives from a plate. The veggies were mixed with rice and then we rolled out the dough and put the rice and veggie mix in it and then folded it over.

We pressed it down and put them in a wood fired pizza oven. It was like dark pizza with stuffing in it. They were really delicious. The chef is a bit of a joker and funny guy like lost of chef are, cause he was putting flour and chilli powder on our cheeks – it was really funny.

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One of the guys called Mihali had flour on his cheeks and all over his shirt and he wouldn’t smell the chilli powder so the chef put it on his nose and his mum put his sunglasses on and then he had a photo taken – it looked so funny.
There was also another chef from the Restraunt who was the helper and she new English and the famous chef said to her ‘Don’t use English’ so we could learn more Greek and today was the most Greek I’ve understood so far. I could understand nearly everything they were telling me and they were telling me a lot. It was a fun day.

When we got home from Elounda we played at the beach and we came home to do Greek homework and then Toby, Kalika and I went walking on our own to look at some some nice long sleeve tops for Toby for when we go back to the village and it might be cold.

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Kalika and I already found some yesterday. My baba’s mum – our Giagia, sent us some money so we used that money to buy our tops. We also went to the printing shop to buy some postcards to send. We will send some to school soon.

By Yasi

 

 

 

Today (Sunday) at 10.30am we met a friend from school at her house with another friend from school and her mum. So the two friends from school and us all set off to Elounda, in their car, to meet a famous chef.

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It was fun on the way there – the view was good, and we talked about school and stuff like that.

This is our teacher Kiria Athanasiou

This is our teacher Kiria Athanasiou

When we got there it was really exiting to meet the master chef of Greece, called Mr. Vazevanis. He was really nice, we met my whole class there with our teacher.
For 3 hours we spent chopping, cooking and eating the food that we made.The food was unbearably delicious.

 

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I had about 10 pieces of the little ‘brown rolled over pitas’ or I don’t really know what else to call them.
First thing we did was go in and wash our hands with detergent.

 

 

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Then we went to the kitchen which was outdoors so you can see what they’re making when you sit in the restraunt and it is right next to the sea and also in sight of Spinalonga Island.Then we all went to a chopping board and started chopping the stuffing.


We had a little fun with putting the flour all over the table to roll out the dough – we had so much fun that we started throwing the flour on each other, making flour marks on our arms and T-shirts and even putting flour marks on our faces.
My friends Igli and Mihali and Giannis were playing so much that we got it all over our clothes and faces – it was enormous fun.
Mihalis had two big flour marks on both of his cheeks and then the chef let us smell some spicy thing that looked like cinnamon – then Mihali wouldn’t smell it and the chef put it near his nose and it went so close that after the chef took his hands way Mihali’s had a brown tip on his nose.

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Rolling out the dough was also very fun. It was hard cause there was only one rolling pin but it was also fun pitting the olives and put it into the stuffing and put the stuffing in with the dough.

 

 

 

 

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Then we played while we waited for the food to cook – Igli and I and other friends were taking photos of the chef and food and the beautiful scenery. Then we were allowed to save some for our parents so we took 3 back to baba and he said they were delicious too. Mummy wasn’t home so we saved her some.
By Tobes

 

 

Today I got to go with the big kids class to a restraunt called ‘The Ferryman’ in Elounda. We did some cooking.

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When we sat down after working we could see Spinalonga Island – it looked tiny in comparison to the other big islands around it.
Yasi was the one who spotted Spinalonga first – it was so camouflaged by the others islands.

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The meal was delicious – I had about 10 of the little pitas – in Greek ten is deka. It looks like ‘δεκα’. I enjoyed the excursion because I love cooking and eating the delicious food.
By Kiki

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We love Cousin Cara

Our week with cousin Cara, Meri and George was just awesome. They were our first visitors here in Crete and all of us fitting into this 2 bedroom apartment wasn’t even a problem. It turned out great. The kids just loved having Cara in their room……..it just went so fast though and we were all sad yesterday when they were picked up to be whisked away to the airport. Hopefully they can come back before we leave next year. Unfortunately the weather had a turn for the worse and it wasn’t nearly as warm as it had been for the last 6 weeks – but we still swam every day. Here are some of the musings of the kids – we’ll start with Cara who is making a guest appearance on the blog…….. (Baba Miliking)

On Wednesday we had a party for my birthday down at the rocky beach. Before we got to the beach for dinner we went to Spinalonga island. image imageSpinalonga used to be a leper colony in the first half of the 1900s. We went on a boat that was pretty big. We found a perfect place to sun bake but then we had to jump up cause it was time for the boat to stop so we could jump off and have a swim. There were so many people waiting so we couldn’t get out very quickly. We jumped from the lower platform of the boat and as soon as you jumped in, the water got in your eyes and they felt all salty. Because of all the salt you couldn’t drown you just floated.

When we got to the island Emilio found and old fashioned nail that kind of looked like a piece of bark.

imageI loved how Spinalonga was surrounded by water and the water was such a beautiful colour and it looked quite crystal. With all the islands in the middle it was hard to tell which one was Spinalonga. Spinalonga means long spine in Italian.

When we got back to Agios Nikolaos we went to my birthday dinner and Christos bought blowers which was a terrible idea cause we made too much noise with them.

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We got to swim for a bit just before the party but there was so many rocks that when we came out we had rocks in our bathers. At the party Emilio must have been hungry cause he finished everyone’s cakes and he still wanted more.
Before we left in the morning we got to have an early swim at the beach- we bought down my lilo and we were sitting on the lilo talking and we were floating out past the buoys. When we came back in there was no one at the beach so we had to carry all the things back by ourselves. We had to carry flippers, goggles, towels and thongs. Everyone we passed when we walked across the road gave us a weird look.

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Before we got on the Spinalonga boat we went to Dodoni cafe – the best ice cream in the world. I had a Cookie Spookie which is an ice cream which has Oreos and Oreo ice cream as well – it was delicious. We love that cafe. I had such a great birthday with my cousins.

By Cousin Cara

imageI like cuddling my awesome uncle George – he took me on the dodgem cars– and Cara gave me chocolates and Meri gave me a barbie bag.

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Cara came to pick me up from my school – but we got to have two days of no school when Cara was here. But we can’t have days off unless we have cousins here.

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I loved Cara’s birthday party – she looked very good in her sparkly party dress – there was a party cake that baba bought -It was an Oreo chocolate cake and had sparklers.

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Cara slept next to me in our room – all the kids were together and some nights I had to sleep on a camping mattress. It was fun having Cara in our room.

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At the fair I loved the dodgem cars best and the cars that go around like a little train. It was very fun.

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I really miss them and I want them to stay with us here for 10 weeks.
By Zoi

We went to Spinalonga which is an island that they used to take sick people to who used to have leprosy and other diseases that people didn’t want to catch. We took a boat to Spinalonga.

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It was a big boat with three different platforms – we went on all three and we loved the top floor cause there was sun and we were lying on our towels and some fake grass sun baking. Half way to Spinalonga the boat stopped and we jumped off the back and swam. There is a little platform on the back of the boat and we were treading in water that was really deep for 45 mins.

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Before they pulled the ladder up I hopped out of the water. Then after that was over we got back on the boat and we went to Spinalonga. We got our tickets and found the English guide who told us lots of things about Spinalonga. Like there used to be a big market on the street we walked along.

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She took us to a church where there were thousands of weddings. It was only used for weddings and baptisms. Funerals were held at the church at the top of the hill. Then she took us to another place called the ‘disinfecting room’ – I didn’t stay for long because I was feeling sick that day and had to tell mummy to take me out – I felt like I was going to faint and I fainted earlier that day when I was standing in front of the fan. It was the second time I had ever fainted.

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Through a big gate door you could see the sea and we were there for a bit – then baba and Meri walked around the island and met us back on the boat. When we got back on the boat we spent the whole time of the way back on top.
By Kikibelle

Yesterday (Saturday) we tried to go to a water park but it was closed cause it was too cold and windy – so instead we went to a park called the Labyrinth park.

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There was a maze where you had to get a stamp from each marker and if you got it all then you got to do mini golf for free. The maze was not that hard but it was for baba and Meri – Meri had to climb under one of the barriers to get out, and baba had to go through the entrance. They found it hard.

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We had lunch there and we got to feed donkeys and ponies and goats some seeds and carob pods. When we got home we were allowed to have a video night and then we were given a seven minute challenge to get to bed so that we could all lie in bed together and watch another movie on Sunday morning. It was really fun. We watched pink panther 2 – it was so funny. We just finished it and even got to have toast in bed but now it is time to go to the beach cause its Cara’s last day here.

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The week has been great with Cara.
By Yasi

This week cousin Cara came over to have a week long stay with us. She came with her parents – Aunty Meri and Uncle George (the first) – during their time here George and Meri were generous enough to walk me to soccer practice and to take us out for dinner while mum and baba had a romantic dinner on their own.

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They also took us to the fair and brought us dinner many times. Thanks so much Meri and George.

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George even took me out to buy a soccer ball that was the right size for me – he knows lots about soccer cause he used to play – he’s awesome.

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My two favourite things at the fair was a ride called Indiana Jones which is a really fast roller coaster and it feels like you are going to roll off the side but at the last second it turns sharply and you go with it. It was very fast and fun. On my first time on Indiana Jones I said ‘This is going to be scary’ to Cara and she said ‘No it’s not cause once I went on a ride that went upside down and all that kind of scary stuff’, but when we started to go it was so fast and so many sharp turns that she said ‘Ahhhhh I take that back!’
Equal favourite was the dodgem cars. I was really good at the dodgem cars and I was by myself driving the first time we went on them. I did lots of sharp turns and had lots of appropriate crashes. On our second night at the fair I was in a car with Yasi and Meri was with Kalika and Meri said ‘We’ll race you guys to the end’. Meri turned one way and we turned the same way and we had a massize crash.
On Saturday we were going to go to the water park but the weather was bad for the first time that we’ve been in Crete.

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Someone suggested the Labyrinth park. It is a really cool park with horse rides and mini four wheel motorbikes that can’t go too fast and horse arenas and animal feeding. There was even a cafe to have lunch. However, the best thing there was the labyrinth. The labyrinth is a big massive maze and you get a piece of paper to take to some hut places and you have to get a stamp from each place – then you have to try to get out. If you have all the stamps and you keep your piece of paper you can go to the mini golf kiosk and get your equipment for free and have as many rounds as you want.

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Cara’s birthday dinner party was also very fun- because we went to this pretty good Restraunt and had some pretty delicious food and then baba had already brought some hats and party whistles. We were too loud with the party whistles so we played this game of trying not to blow the party whistles till the cake came – in the middle of the game no one noticed that the cake had come. So I blew my whistle to let them no but they thought I had lost the game. I was actually whistling to tell them the cake was here. The Restraunt was right by the beach so we had a swim first. It was a super day.
By Tobes

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My cousin Cara, Aunty Meri and Uncle George came to visit. George has got a pinky finger that is really strong and is called Mr Claw. Also George’s dad is called Emilio. Nice name.

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We took Cara to the Dodoni Ice cream cafe to taste the real Greek ice cream – the lady there is called Mariana and she knows my name and gives me hugs and kisses when I go there. I had a happy clown ice cream with smarties and chocolate sauce and an ice cream cone to make a hat – it’s really yummy. We all got to choose our own thing – we didn’t have to share. Awesome.

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I liked jumping off the boat on the way to Spinalonga. There was lots of fun stuff to do that day. The sea was like a big pool and was very very blue.

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Meri is a treat and clothes and present monster! – we love her so much.

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We played at the beach lots with Cara – but Cara would sometimes not let me on the lilo because she didn’t believe I was a good swimmer, but I am now cause of all my swimming lessons and also we swim everyday.
By Moocha