Back to School 2020: Coronavirus, ignorance, doubts and conflicting emotions.

What will happen with back to school 2020 in Spain?

 

back to school 2020

 

What are your thoughts? How are you feeling? What do you know? What do you wish you knew?

By now, most parents are longing for the “vuelta al cole”, after the seemingly endless (although, these days we wish they were longer) summer holidays we enjoy in Spain. However, this year we are clouded in incertitude. The future is currently clouded by the continuing presence and threat of Coronavirus.

As I write this post, Friday, August 21st 2020, I am anxiously awaiting an email from our children’s school. On Monday this week, we received an email advising, amongst other things, that today we would be explained how “back to school 2020” would be organised.

I must tell you that I am not too concerned about our children going back to school, I am confident that their school will take all the necessary precautions and that our children are old enough and wise enough to take the necessary precautions. However, I am unhappy that our children are returning to school earlier than usual and that there is a possibility they will be expected to attend a school trip at the start of the term. Can you imagine? Around 200 students in a camp together, having been so careful for so long. It is my nightmare!

I am also concerned about the long term health effects, catching the virus may cause our children to suffer.

However, as new measures are currently being imposed across Spain due to a new spike in cases, I am hoping that the school’s plan will be changed. I am hoping that by the time I post my ramblings here that I will be able to tell you the outcome!

And about the spike in cases in Spain … can anybody tell me why Spain is portrayed so badly in newspapers, online portals and TV programmes all around the world? What have they done so wrong? Or is it really a scaremongering tactic? And if so, to what avail?

Yes, there are more cases being detected. Yes, there are lots more tests being carried out. Yes, the track and trace system is tight. Yes, strict measures are put in place in an attempt to slow the spread. And yes there are much fewer hospitalizations and deaths. But how long will this last …

 

covid spain back to school 2020

 

 

I asked on social media for parent’s thoughts about back to school 2020 in Spain. Here are some comments:

 

 

I’ve seen letters being published by some of the local AMPAs with their demands but can’t help hoping that plans are being worked upon and we have to have a little faith in those to whom we entrust our children who also have a vested interest in keeping the children and themselves safe. Either that or my head is well and truly buried in the sand!

 

Hey Lisa, I’m going back to teaching this year after a 5 year break and in answer to your question – we don’t know what is going on. There are plans for all 3 scenarios – all virtual, semi-presencial and all in person. Our daughter would be starting nursery at the same school as a 2 year old and we are planning to keep her home at least the first few weeks if need be to see if it’s actually safe and how things go. I don’t feel like things are under control – too many questions and variables – if I have a fever (for some other cold or run of the mill illness, does my whole class and their families quarantine? Will the 20 child bubble group I’m meant to teach actually be a bubble – how can that be controlled on weekends with extended families and the inevitable Sunday lunches? Too many questions and lots of anxiety.

 

Hi 👋🏼 here there is no news yet, the mommies I know don’t know either. My kids are in infantil, primaria and ESO. We live in Castilla y Leon. For me, I really hope the kids go back to school as it has been a real struggle to keep up with their homeworks and projects from home, even though they were in contact with their teachers and class online on a daily basis ( the child in primaria ) but most importantly for their social skills and their interactions with school kids and teachers. Of coarse safety is a top priority, and if it is decided that going to school is high risk, then that is that.

 

Nothing yet here in Mijas Costa. My son is due to go back to school on the 10th September. It’s pretty shocking that we have had no updates from the school but they got their school fees 🤷🏻‍♀️Definitely would hate to hear home schooling again 🙈

 

Hi! My son’s 4 and due to my start Reception soon after preschool. He needs it and he’s so excited. They’re going to be in preschool for the first two weeks to get them used to being back in school and then onto “big school”! I’m excited for him to go to, he’s an only child and it’s just me, him and my Mom so he’s going to learn so much more being around his friends again.

 

In Sotogrande on September 8th. We just received today (18 August) a thorough and complete re-opening document with Covid-19 health and safety measures. All parents must read and sign this before children return. How do I feel about it? Cautiously happy. Social interaction is crucial for our students well being. However, the policing of their distance to one another, (no hugging, no touching, no high-fives) is very sad to imagine, but not impossible. I taught in Japan for two years and they all bow to one another and there really isn’t any touching, so we will adapt to other ways of showing our affection. We must make that a key component of returning to school.

 

 

Here is an extract from the initial email from our children’s school about back to school 2020 plans:

 

in spite of everything that is happening, we continue to work with hope instead of fear of the unknown because we know that far beyond the security of certainties, human beings need the security of a community, of belonging to a group linked by bonds of commitment and affection (especially during moments of uncertainty and adversity). This is how we have evolved as a species over time and this is how, this year too, we will give the best of ourselves and create learning conditions in which our children feel that, whatever happens, they will never walk alone.

 

As a parent, I do value the social interaction going to school provides our children. Mixing with and learning in the presence of children of their age is an integral part of growing up. It is part of what helps them develop. However, we also need to weigh up risks and rewards. It is easier for me to say this as our children are now 13 and almost 16 years old. I do feel that parents of younger children are dealing with a much bigger challenge.  How do you cope? What do you feel?

During the initial lockdown in Spain, our children received a minimum of 3 to 4 hours, online classes in the morning each day of the week. Classes were taught by their usual teachers, all students were present and joint tasks and projects were set for later in the day. Despite the expected initial hiccups and technical challenges (by some students and a couple of teachers!) classes ran smoothly and the sense of routine made the whole experience a lot more bearable for us all.

Based on this, I am preparing us for the possibility of returning to online classes. Even if this does not happen initially, I expect it may happen at some point. Some parts of Spain are already preparing for a mix of presential and online classes.

This is our school’s comment on online vs presential classes:

 

With regards to Technophobia and Technophilia” which divides, sometimes excessively the state of opinion between those who advocate the advantages of classroom-based and online education, the truth is that during the last months of the previous academic year it became clear that there is good and bad online education, as there is also good and bad classroom-based education. We have been and are, without the slightest doubt, in the first group of both and we firmly believe that the two complement each other and offer advantages.

However, in the current situation it is not a question of arguing in favour or against, but rather being aware that in the circumstance of uncertainty both are necessary as part of a routine or habit that allows a transition to one extreme or the other in the event that the health authorities consider it necessary.

No matter what, a decision needs to be made and soon. Tension is rising in many parts of Spain. Both teachers and parents need to be reassured that the education, health and safety of the children are the priority. Articles like this one published in El Pais in English is not what we all need right now.

back to school 2020 spain

Like many times during this pandemic, fingers are pointed, people search for blame. We are all fighting this together. Surely, cohesion and teamwork is better than fragmentation and fighting … or am I still living in my bubble?

UPDATE: At 10 pm we finally received the 29-page document from the school. I am disappointed to say that they are still insisting on taking around 200 children to an activity camp from August 29th. How crazy is that? Or am I crazy for not agreeing with it?

To be continued …

Things To Know Before Going To Spain

When people think about going to Spain, they often think about packing their sunglasses, making sure they have a hat, and the number of beaches they’re going to enjoy. But actually, Spain has much more to it than just beaches and balmy evenings. There are several things that you should know before you head to Spain. 

swimming pool mijas

Of course, you want to plan your hot look with gorgeous sunglasses, a beautiful summer dress or some cool linen shorts, but like everything is better when you’re prepared.

 

Learn some Spanish

Like almost all countries, many people speak some (or fluent) English, however, learning a few key phrases is just proper etiquette. You’re going to want to be able to ask some questions like Donde Esta…? Where is…? And some simple greetings like Buenos Dias or Hola. And yes, you’re going to want to finish with gracias, because it’s just nice

What is important to note, is that Spanish is not the only language; in fact, some regions have a second official language like Catalan, Basque, or Galicia. And while you don’t need to learn these extra languages, as almost everyone will speak Spanish, it wouldn’t hurt either.

Here you can learn some basic Spanish phrases: 67 Essential Spanish Phrases

Water

Many people who visit quite a few European countries still don’t know that you can actually drink the tap water. Big cities like Barcelona and Madrid both have very safe tap water to drink. In fact, in Madrid, it comes fresh from the Guadarrama mountain range – if you like cool facts. So you’ll be much better off bringing a reusable water bottle, then you will keep buying bottles of water in the local stores. It will save you money in the long run.

Hospitality

Spain is famous for its Tapas culture. This means when you order a drink in almost all cases, it’s going to arrive with a small bite to eat. Sometimes it’s potato chips/crisps other times its olives. It may even be ham or cheese, depending on where you are. 

This is a polite gesture and is an indicator of how hospitable Spain can be. This free and tasty snack is simply meant to be enjoyed alongside your drink.

Goodbye Siesta

The siesta was historically common throughout Southern Europe, the Mediterranean, and even in mainland China. That traditional daytime nap has been put to bed. It has been reported in previous years that Spaniards actually work some of the longest hours in Europe, making a siesta something that most of them are not likely to see. 

However, if you’re there on holiday, or have a very generous working schedule, you can feel free to nap. But you’re unlikely to see people taking a siesta. 

Fashion

When you arrive in Spain, whether it be for a holiday or for a relocation you’re going to notice the Spaniards are pretty snappy dressers. And you can spot a tourist a mile away with flip-flops and jogging bottoms. 

Choose lightweight fabrics and you too can deal with the heat while looking fabulous. 

Midday shopping

It’s not uncommon to find that many shops and businesses will close for a couple of hours in the middle of the day. So ideally try not to plan to have anything done between 1pm – 4pm while you are on holiday; other than enjoying the fact that you are on holiday. 

Many people enjoy long lunch breaks, especially when the midday heat is so hot. In the bigger cities, supermarkets and larger stores are often open, but you can’t guarantee that you’re going to find a smaller shop open in the middle of the day if you live in a village. 

Although you will find the shops do stay open later in the evening. And many people, especially people who enjoy shopping, enjoy the fact that Barcelona and Madrid usually stay open until around 10 pm in the evening.

Ditch the Sangria

Unless you really love Sangria, then it’s quite a tourist drink. Most locals instead enjoy a Tinto de Verano, which is a summer wine. It consists of red wine and lemonade mixer. 

Ideal for those long warm evenings. If you’d rather blend in with the locals than tourists and avoid paying a premium for that overpriced Sangria, go for the Tinto de Verano.

Meat Eaters

If you are a meat-eater, there is something that you simply cannot leave Spain without sampling. You will find it on most menus because it is one of the most beloved foods, called Jamon. Jamon is cured ham, and the most likely one you’ll find is Jamon Iberico. This is the best quality that you can get, and that comes from Blackhoofed Iberian pigs. 

These pigs are quite luxurious and are fed extensively on acorns, which gives them their unique flavor.

Public Transport

Public transport is efficient and fast. The Spanish train system is ideal for getting between major cities, however in the south of Spain and certainly, towards some of the smaller cities, there aren’t always those connections. Here buses are equally fast and efficient and certainly are the best option if you’re going off the beaten path. 

It should be noted that the train can be the most expensive option for public transport.

Eating Time

When the shops are closed, lunch is on. This means you will enjoy a wonderful lunch between 2 and 3:30 pm, but that pushes evening meal hours to much later in the day, typically from 9 pm till 10.30 pm. So you have to plan trips accordingly or take snacks in your bag if you can’t get with the schedule. 

Tipping isn’t required and isn’t expected, it’s really something that you should just do anyway. Outstanding service or service, in general, should always be respected. 

Indulge in the Culture

Many people when they get to Spain want to eat as much paella and drink as much Sangria as possible. And while that’s fun for many, there is a better way to enjoy Spanish culture. You will notice that the Spanish culture is much more about taking your time, enjoying the people in your family that you are spending time with, and the scenery. Relaxing and enjoying life. Go with the flow rather and fall into the tourist traps. 

worst cities in spain

Rest on a Sunday

You are unlikely to find anything that is open on a Sunday, this is a designated day to get lunch with friends, visit family, relax and unwind. So if you’re planning on being in Spain for a Sunday, or you really want to make the most of that Spanish culture while you’re integrating; then plan Sunday as simply to be a day of family, food, and fun. 

Big Cities and Little Villages

Large Spanish cities are busy and modern and filled with people from all over the world. They’re exciting and have a lot to do. It will give you a considerable taste of Spanish culture, but there are many tourist traps to keep an eye out for. 

The smaller villages remain a space for century-old traditions that can still be found to this day. Spain is known as a country of traditions and culture. But to understand all of the different facets of that, try a few days in the city followed by a few days in smaller villages.

 

Spain is exhilarating and welcoming, with a rich history and the lives of culture. If you like spending time with family and friends and indulging in wonderful food, then it might be just time that you spent a little bit longer in Spain.

 

Inland Costa del Sol – A different way of living!

When it comes to quality of life, southern Spain tops the charts in just about every category that relates to health, gastronomy, comfort and happiness with its endless sunshine, over 320 days per year! It’s no wonder Spain is one of the most visited countries in the world.

Living in Spain is a dream for many. If you visit inland Costa del Sol, up in the mountains, you will discover the authentic Spanish whitewashed villages with charming cobblestoned narrow streets, lovely shady squares with flamenco music playing in the background, and a great choice of local cafes and fabulous restaurants.

inland costa del sol

More and more foreigners seem to be moving to inland Costa del Sol. Although many people like the fabulous beaches and nightlife that the coast has to offer, if you move slightly more inland, up into the hills, you get to discovery and enjoy the real Spain, you will seek a way of life that seems almost untouched by tourism, it’s like taking a step back in time.

The valleys scenery is spectacular in all directions. As roads wind their way up the mountains, the views get better and better. The Guadalhorce Valley includes 8 municipalities; Alhaurin de la Torre, Alhaurin el Grande, Almogía, Álora, Cártama, Coín, Pizarra and Valle del Abdalajís. All are within a 30/40 minute drive from the coast, so really not far at all and the road infrastructure is very good making a journey by car a relaxing and enjoyable experience. If you want to be a little bit more adventurous you can branch off from the main road and take any of the many dirt tracks and you will quickly come across herds of goats and sheep and often mules ploughing between the olive trees.

inland costa del sol

The lifestyle that this part of Spain will offer you is incredibly rewarding in so many ways.

For one, the opportunity to get to know and live within an entirely different culture is something most people never get to experience.

inland costa del sol

You can spend a lifetime exploring this natural habitat either on foot, bicycle or horseback.

You will be amazed by the quality of life and how cheap it is to live well in this part of Spain.

inland costa del sol

Water costs are very low, particularly in the inland areas. Homeowners pay a municipal tax that is a fraction of the rate that you would pay in other European countries. Other expenses such as home and car insurance are also much lower.

Eating out is very reasonable.  The average price for a full menu del dia (menu of the day), is between 8-10€ available in nearly all bars and restaurants.

In local bars, you pay no more than 1-1.50 € for a beer, glass of wine or a cup of coffee. And for groceries there is a wide choice of supermarkets. The local markets offer cheap fresh produce and a wide range of household necessities.

inland costa del sol

Another very important factor to take into consideration is the crime rate which is low in this part of Spain. When you compare the crime numbers to other countries, we are quite fortunate to have a lower crime problem.

Aside from the wonderful weather, there is also less pollution in this part of Spain. The major industries are mainly located in the north of the country. This part of Spain relies mainly on agriculture and tourism.

Life here in the mountains runs at a much slower pace. This is something that most foreigners would find strange at first, but this kind of lifestyle is certainly welcomed. This can have a huge impact on your health, as it can significantly reduce stress levels.

inland costa del sol

Spain prides itself as having a very diverse and rich culture. In these old towns and villages there are a lot of activities that not only serve as a form of entertainment, but also as a means of conserving old traditions and practices. Fiestas and festivals are the perfect example. Residents continue to practice old customs.

For years, the warmth of the people have made it a wonderful tourist attraction. The regions wonderful personality makes visitors feel immediately at home, integrating them into their culture. This joy permeates in the streets, especially in summer and that energy can be contagious. A typical Andalusian is a helpful person, willing to help others, especially visitors, making southern Spain a favourite destination for foreign visitors for years.

Andalucía is the best place in the world for the good life according to The Telegraph and this is not the first time it’s been granted such a popular destination.

Another bonus for people living inland from the Costa del Sol are the seasons. In this part of Spain you can really appreciate the changes of vegetation and enjoy the four seasons of the year and what they have to offer.

inland costa del sol

Although the climate in Andalucia is characterised by hot and dry summers and mild winters, between seasons you can enjoy the changes in flora and fauna. You will see snow-covered mountain peaks in the winter and lush green pastures in the spring covered with almond blossom and bright yellow endless fields of sunflowers. Autumn brings a palette of dark ochre and green colours that paint the landscapes of Andalucia.

The Natural Park, ‘Sierra de las Nieves’, is one of those destinations worth discovering with its authentic white villages and its beautiful natural spaces. It is one of the areas of Malaga, as the name implies, where it can snow in winter.

inland costa del sol

The villages in the Sierra, with its highest peak Torrecilla of 1.919m, are surrounded by extensive fields of almond trees that are a delight when in pink blossom.

The Guadalhorce Valley, also known as the orchard of Málaga, is where you will find endless fields packed with fruit trees.

inland costa del sol

No wonder so many northern Europeans travel south in search of their Mediterranean dream home.

If you have not yet visited this part of Spain…what are you waiting for!?

Inland Costa del Sol is waiting for you!

 

This article was written by Kelly Summerelle of Mediterranean Homes a local family run business. We have worked with Kelly for many years.

 

If you are thinking of moving to the Malaga area, renting or purchasing a property,

Contact us

and, together with Kelly, we will find you your ideal inland Costa del Sol property!

 

mediterranean homes spain

 

My Thoughts on Brexit in Spain: Finally Looking Forwards after Three Years of Living in Limbo

brexit in spain

 

 

Before I start, I need to be brutally honest with you.

I am not in the slightest bit interested in whether you voted to leave or to remain. I don’t care about the figures in the millions and billions being thrown around by opposing sides. Who knows what we should believe. Who we should believe. When the Brexit in Spain bombshell actually landed, I was on the point of saying that I didn’t care whether the UK was in the EU or not. But that would be taking it too far.

Of course, I care.

I care a lot.

But I’m a realist.

I grew up with the EU. 

snake in the tunnel theoryWho else remembers the “snake in the tunnel” explanation of the euro currency being explained in A level economics classes?

As an Erasmus student, I was fortunate to spend two years at university in France. What an experience! Without the Erasmus grant, this probably wouldn’t have been possible. (Please note that despite not earning over the required wage, post-graduation, I paid back every penny of my UK student loan!).

Since graduation, I have travelled and worked my way around most parts of Spain and the islands and many in France. My ability to work wherever I went meant my trips were self-funded. Europe has been my home and I never envisaged the day that it may not be for my children…

June 23rd 2016 I went to bed with a sinking feeling in my stomach.

The following morning I awoke into the land of the unknown. To face the aftermath of Brexit in Spain.  In Limbo Land. Little could we have imagined that Limbo Land would be our home for the next three years …

And so to current day, January 31st 2020.

Whether you love him or loathe him, Boris did get Brexit done (actually, he’s so far only done a half job but we’ll look at that later). Finally, it was time to look forward. For the main part, the part that makes our family life in Spain and the lives of others looking to relocate to Spain, at least until the end of 2020, things are finally much clearer.

Call me selfish if you like, but my priorities lie with my family, friends and many acquaintances. I am speaking about those of us who have endeavoured to follow procedures and play by the rules for living in Spain. The many couples and families who we have helped make the move to Spain have also followed our lead and played by the rules. And thankfully we can all now breathe a huge sigh of relief.

I am not saying obstacles may not lie ahead. But life would be boring without a few challenges along the way, wouldn’t it 😉

 

How has Brexit in Spain affected our lives so far?

 

We have literally spent three years living in limbo. Carrying on with life as best we can (and I must admit we do that pretty well!) swimming amongst the tide of never-ending misinformation flying around all media channels both on and offline. Always with hope and belief that everything would work out in the end. Just not knowing when that end would come.

One of the worst experiences was the ever-growing divide of “Them and Us”.

But, who is Them and who is Us?

Are we talking Leavers vs Remainers?

Or maybe EU Residents vs Non-EU Residents?

Or Brits living in the UK vs Brits living abroad?

No matter where you looked, there were constant battles. Nastiness. Bitterness. Accusations. Personal battles amongst people who had considered themselves friends. Not to mention the scenes witnessed against non-British people in parts of the UK.

For a long time, I was embarrassed to think that I was British. Having lived in the EU for more than half my adult life, why was my passport now going to make me only British?

So, after long deliberation, I decided to take steps to help my children obtain a Spanish passport. After all, they were born in Spain. But as many of you will know, it isn’t that easy. But is it worth it? I don’t know! How can I know?  I know the procedures, I know the rules but what I don’t know is if we should move forward or sit and wait.

 

So what will we do next?

 

We will do what we have always done. We’ll keep calm and carry on. We’ll keep updated and informed, to the best of our ability. We will be ready to take whatever action is required as soon as it is needed.

And, of course, we will keep you updated and informed about everything we learn, via our Facebook page.

Remember, all official updates can be found:  https://www.gov.uk/guidance/living-in-spain

Our informative articles about moving to Spain & property purchase: https://movetomalagaspain.com/articles/

A fabulous Facebook Group for Brexit Updates: https://www.facebook.com/groups/brexpatsinspain

 

Oh, and before I go, no matter what you voted, nor what you believe, I hope everything works out for you, your family and friends, wherever in the world you may be. Challenging times may lie ahead but we can all get through this together!

 

And then my friends, came the CORONAVIRUS … (to be continued!)

Easy Healthy Banana Bread Recipe: No Sugar & No Butter

easy healthy banana bread recipe

 

In this post, due to popular demand, I am sharing a really easy, healthy banana bread recipe with you.

This was today’s Day 6 lockdown in Spain achievement: Not only is it delicious, but it is also butter-free and sugar-free.

With the amount of cooking I am doing to fill in time, I need to look for healthier alternatives.

Otherwise, when we are allowed to go out of the front door, we won’t be able to fit through 

 

 

Ingredients for the healthy banana bread recipe:

  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup melted coconut oil or olive oil (or a mix)
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup Greek yoghurt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup mashed ripe bananas about 2-3 medium bananas
  • 1 3/4 cups wholewheat flour or plain flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon or mixed spice
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • big pinch of  salt
  • dark chocolate chips or chopped walnuts, raisins, pecan nuts (optional extras!)

 

Instructions:

  • Pre-heat oven to 170C / 325F.
  • Grease a 9×5 inch loaf pan and set aside.
  • In a medium bowl, sieve the flour, cinnamon/mixed spice, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl, beat the eggs, oil, honey, greek yoghurt and vanilla for a couple of minutes. Stir in the mashed bananas, flour mixture and chocolate chips (plus any other add-ins of choice.
  • Pour the batter into the greased pan.
  • Bake for 50-55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
  • Cool for 10 minutes, slice and enjoy!

 

healthy banana bread recipe

 

Full credit to the original recipe that I adapted slightly to suit our tastes: https://gimmedelicious.com/healthy-moist-banana-bread/

Casa Global Gift: Help Us Make a Difference for Children in Spain!

casa global gift

 

 

As I write this article, introducing you to Casa Global Gift, the world is in an unusual situation. Coronavirus pandemic is affecting people worldwide. How long it will last, nobody knows. Our lives are being lived from day to day, awaiting further instructions and guidance from the powers that be.

Here in Spain, we have been in self-isolation, housebound for five days so far. We were initially told it would be for 2 weeks, we now expect it to be for longer, a minimum of 4 weeks. We cannot focus on that though, we need to focus on how to better a difficult situation.

This may not be the ideal time to share this post about Casa Global Gift with you but I hope it makes you stop and think for a while.

We have so much to be grateful for. Let us look at what we can for others. Not only now, when we may have more time to do so, but also once life returns to as it was before…

The children and families that this charity is providing for, have a lifetime of worries and concerns. Sadly, for most of them, their lives will never be “normal”. They don’t have a 2 or 4-week window to survive. They have a lifetime. And every little effort to make this easier for them is very welcomed.

 

 

What is the Global Gift Foundation?

The Global Gift Foundation is an international non-profit organization, based in Marbella, Spain, created in June 2013 by Spanish entrepreneur and philanthropist Maria Bravo.

Declared of public interest, it was duly registered in the National Register of Foundations of the Ministry of Health, Equality and Social Policy, with the number 29-0090.

Their Mission:

  • To create a positive impact on the lives of children, women and families in need.
  • Empowering women and changing social mindsets and roles.
  • Promote and educate about the educational and social inclusion of children with special needs.

 

What is Casa Global Gift?

Casa Global Gift, located in Marbella, is one of the main projects of the Global Gift Foundation. Its objective is to provide state-of-the-art therapies and treatments to children with special needs and/ or rare diseases in a warm space where children feel at home.

It is a space of social innovation, collaborative work and training where other charities and social entities will be based, benefiting from the synergistic effect that allows us to share more experiences, resources, activities, and be part of a great team that contributes towards progress in equal opportunities, creating a major impact on society.

Their mission is to improve the quality of life of the children and their families, through therapeutic, pedagogical and leisure programs, to promote their development, independence and social inclusion. 

Casa Global Gift will offer the most innovative therapies and rehabilitation machinery, as well as workshops and leisure programs designed to promote social inclusion.  

It will also be the only centre in Spain with a copper-coated unit specially designed to treat children with Cystic Fibrosis. 

Casa Global Gift activities Casa Global Gift activities

 

Thanks to the enormous effort of generous donors, sponsors, collaborators and the entire Global Gift Foundation team, they are now close to the opening of this wonderful house where hundreds of children and their families can receive workshops and therapies.

How can YOU be part of the Casa Global Gift project?

You can make a difference and contribute to this fabulous project by donating your time and skills through volunteer programs. Now that many of us have more time on our hands, why not think of ideas of events you can organise when we return to normality? Please feel free to share your ideas in the comments below and we will pass them on for you.

If you cannot donate your time then you can help by contributing through financial support offering the amount that best suits your monthly possibilities.

ES94 2100 1755 2402 0060 5772 – DONATE NOW https://www.casaglobalgift.org/en/

Help us spread the word by following them on social media and sharing!

facebook.com/casaglobalgift/ 

instagram.com/globalgiftfoundation/ 

twitter.com/GlobalGiftFound 

youtube.com/globalgiftfoundationong

What are WE doing to support this project?

All proceeds from the sale of our book, Moving to Spain with Children, are being donated to this beautiful project. We are also offering consultations for monetary donations to Casa Global Gift.

moving abroad with children

We are also offering a 50% discount on our downloadable ENGLISH & SPANISH language learning materials on Cooking with Languages. All monies raised using the DISCOUNT code “CASAGLOBALGIFT” at checkout will be donated to them 

VISIT THE SHOP & DONATE NOW!

 

casa global gift discount

 

Please watch out for details of future fundraising events to raise money for this charity, on our Family life In Spain Facebook page: HERE

Keep safe everybody!

#YOMEQUEDOENCASA

#QUEDATEENCASA

Best-Selling Nu Skin Products in Spain

In a culture that greatly values youth and beauty, skincare is a huge priority for Spaniards. Of all the countries in the world, Spain ranks 13th among the top 15 spenders in the skincare market. The country’s consumers are constantly on the lookout for the most effective and scientifically-backed products, which explains why products from Nu Skin Spain are rising in popularity. 

 

Spain ranks 13th among the top 15 spenders in the skincare market. #nuskinspain Click To Tweet

 

Everything Nu Skin does is driven by science and the desires of its target audience. As a global distributor, Nu Skin has many cultures to appease, but by combining aspects of science and nature, the company is able to appeal to a broad audience. Its product range has something for everyone. This article will overview some of the most popular products in Spain’s market and how they’ve been proven in clinical trials. 

 

Spain’s Beauty Ideals and Practices

 

When walking the streets of Spain, you’re bound to see bright, dewy, and seemingly age-resistant complexions that appear to defy environmental factors and the passage of time. While Spaniards are minimalist when it comes to makeup, skincare is something they take very seriously — especially in their constantly sunny country. Natives are careful to avoid sunbathing, knowing that the sun is a huge factor in ageing and skin cancer. They’re diligent with using sunscreen and moisturizer; they eat a well-balanced diet, and they follow a strict skincare routine to keep their skin as youthful as possible.

 

Spaniards also make an effort to stay informed about potentially harmful ingredients in skincare products. There’s a new demand within the country for botanical ingredients and formulations that have been proven to work. Nu Skin’s product lines support this growing demand, and here’s how.

 

Carefully Selected Ingredients

 

Spaniards value high-quality raw materials and potent ingredients, and Nu Skin delivers exactly that in all its products. Its scientific teams actively search out “all of the good,” meaning they work around the clock to identify the best high-quality ingredients for its skincare lines. By utilizing naturally derived materials and synthetic boosters for over three decades, the company has seen marked results in clinical trials

 

Spain’s Best-Selling Skin Care Products

 

Nu Skin ProductsEpoch Baobab Body Butter

 

Two aspects of life in Spain make this all-over moisturizer so popular; the first is that most people bathe in hard water, which can have a harsh drying effect on the skin. The second is that oil is a huge commodity there, especially in beauty products, and Epoch Baobab Body Butter is abundant in natural oils that support smooth, supple skin.  

 

Scientifically speaking, the baobab fruit pulp extract is a humectant and emollient that prevents dryness and conditions the skin to help it retain more moisture for longer. Together with the macadamia nut oil, which mimics the effect of the skin’s natural sebum, this monounsaturated fatty acid can easily be absorbed and maintain the skin’s natural water barrier. 

 

Nu Skin Products180 Face Wash

 

Skincare isn’t just for the women of Spain. Men, too, are conscious of their skin health. The 180 Face Wash was designed with both genders in mind to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and improve skin texture while minimizing the impact of spots caused by Spain’s ever-blazing sun. When combined, vitamin C, sesame oil, soybean oil, grape seed extract, and ginseng extract work together to even out skin tone, prevent moisture loss, reduce free radicals, and tighten the skin.

 

Nu Skin Products

ageLOC Radiant Day SPF 22

 

Spain is sunny for 295 days of the year on average, which doesn’t make it easy to maintain the light complexion favoured by those who live there. As such, the ageLOC Radiant Day SPF 22 has become a must-have product for a Spaniard’s skincare arsenal. This SPF contains a powerful anti-ageing blend of ingredients (including jojoba, shea butter, bamboo extract, and ageLOC) that scientifically stimulate youth cell turnover, reduce the appearance of wrinkles, and ensure easy absorption by the skin. 

 

Scientific Research Leading to ageLOC Product Line

 

Anti-ageing science is a hot topic in the beauty industry right now. People all over the world are desperately seeking the secret to eternal youth, and Nu Skin is making strides toward revealing those secrets and making solutions available. 

 

Wrinkles are a direct result of extracellular matrix depletion, which causes the skin to lose its elasticity. This depletion can be attributed to environmental factors including the sun’s UV rays or smoking, which can destroy the elastic tissue that keeps the skin looking young. Science has discovered that select antioxidants and vitamins can reduce the appearance of ageing and protect the skin from sun damage.

nu skin spain

In 2017, Aging Cell published a study conducted by scientists from LifeGen Technologies and Nu Skin. The purpose of the study was to determine healthy patterns of gene expression in various tissues and use them to discover ingredients for their formulas with the same healthy-ageing patterns.

 

The experiment was successful; Nu Skin identified some of the genes that impact how we look while we age. This led researchers to conclude that healthy ageing can be supported by combining ingredients that mimic healthy ageing in a variety of tissues and applying them to skincare products. 

 

These ingredients were named super markers, and today, Nu Skin’s ageLOC science targets those super markers to influence the way people age. ageLOC technology creates a balance of super markers with their youthful genetic patterns and applies this science in Nu Skin product development.

Nu Skin Products

Browse Nu Skin Spain’s Anti-Aging Product Range

Whether you live in Spain or elsewhere in the world, you can browse Nu Skin’s product range to find a solution that suits your needs. With more than 200 personal care products, you’re sure to find exactly what you need to look and feel great — inside and out.

Save Money on Electricity in Spain: Introducing Bulb

BULB say they can help us save money on electricity in Spain: We’ve already signed up, have you?

 

What would you say if we told you that there was finally a way to  Save Money on Electricity in Spain? Yes, you heard us right, we said … Save Money on Electricity in Spain!

A few years ago we shared our disgust and dissatisfaction about the service or lack of service provided by Spanish electricity companies and the extortionate charges (read here). Finally, four years later, there may be some light  (no pun intended 😉 ) at the end of this tunnel.

When Bulb contacted us an offered to explain their services we were all eyes and ears and ad impatiently waiting to learn more. By signing up to their website you will be on their waiting list …

Join BULB waiting list

 

Over to you guys …

save money on electricity in spain

Bulb is coming to Spain. Who are we and what do we believe in?

We’re Bulb, a new electricity company that is about to launch in Spain. Our mission is to help people reduce their bills and carbon emissions. We’re currently the fastest growing supplier in the UK, with over 1.5 million members. We have recently switched our first member in Spain and are excited to have more family, friends and beta testers join us before the end of the year, followed by a full launch next year. If you want to be one of the first to have access to the service in Spain, you can join the priority list at www.bulb.es. If you register with this special link, you’ll receive €20 credit when your switch completes. 

 

Why Spain?

We’re expanding internationally to help even more people lower their bills and cut carbon emissions. When we started Bulb in the UK, we saw the same problems at lots of the big providers – poor service, high tariffs, inefficiency and little support for renewables. We wanted to give people a better choice about where to get their energy from. We looked closely at countries across the world when deciding where to take Bulb next. The most important thing was to work out where we could be most useful. Spain (as well as France and Texas) were the best bets for saving members a significant amount of money on their bills, whilst providing carbon neutral energy and an excellent member experience.

 

100% green electricity sourced in Spain

We provide our members with 100% renewable electricity from Spanish generators. For every unit you use, we make sure a unit is produced and put on the grid by a renewable source – solar, wind and hydro. 

This helps people cut down on their carbon emissions. By being with Bulb and using green electricity, all our members are helping to protect the planet. Every year, the average Spanish Bulb home lowers their carbon impact by 906 kilos of CO2 per year. That’s the hard work of around 314 trees.

save money on electricity in spain

Illustrations by Aurelia Lange

 

One smart tariff for all

By keeping things simple, we help members to reduce their energy bills. We have been working on delivering a competitive tariff that will help people save money. We’ve done the maths and our smart tariff is 125€ cheaper than the Big 3 stable plans for an average home in Spain. It’s one of the lowest on the market, renewable or not. Our tariff also reflects the real cost of energy. This way everyone is always on the best possible price.  

 

How can we be cheaper? We’ve developed in-house technology to help us keep our costs low. We have also automated many of our back-office activities to increase team efficiency. This helped us keep our costs low and we decided to pass these savings on to you. We believe that’s what’s fair. 

 

A simple electricity bill

Energy does not have to be complicated. And, if you have any questions, you should receive the best service. You shouldn’t have to wait thirty minutes, or speak with five different people, to reach a solution. For us, it is important to provide outstanding service and take care of our members. All of our support is available in both Spanish and English. In the UK, we are proud to have more than 24,000 reviews on Trustpilot with a score of 4.8 / 5.

 

Join Bulb before anyone else

If you want to be part of Bulb in Spain from the beginning, join our priority access list here.

Sign Up For Updates and Save Money on Electricity in Spain!

 

Hope to hear from you soon,

Team Bulb

 

 

Our Family In Spain Traditions: Three Gifts at Christmas

Have you heard about the Three Gifts at Christmas tradition? Do you know where the idea originates from?

If you are looking for a way to enhance yet declutter your festive season, the Three Gifts at Christmas idea may be for you.

I think it is a great way to ensure money is wisely spent on gifts that are both required and desired rather than simply buying for the sake of it, as can sometimes be the case.

Our children are growing up fast and as much as we loved our old festive traditions of Christmas Eve Boxes and fun Family Stockings, I have become increasingly aware of the frivolity of it all and the waste we create. Maybe I am becoming even more Bah Humbug and grumpy in my years … I’ll leave that one for you to decide.

So, what is the origin of the Three Gifts at Christmas idea?

As we have mentioned before, despite the fact that Santa Claus, Father Christmas, Saint Nicholas, Papa Noel (and whatever else you may call him) has been growing in popularity in Spain over the past years, The Three Kings (Los Reyes Magos) are still the most respected and celebrated in this country.

After all, it wasn’t a well sized, jolly, white bearded man in a red outfit that bore gifts to the newborn Jesus was it? Or was that just in the Simpsons or whatever else they told our children… (joke ;-))

 

However, I don’t want to dwell on that too much as I appreciate we all have our own beliefs and interpretations of events. I am here to share our ideas and interpretations with you. 

The three gifts at Christmas idea appears to have originated from the gifts brought by the three kings, that of: 

  • Gold
  • Frankincense 
  • Myrrh

What is the Meaning of the Three Gifts?

 

During research for this idea, I googled the three gifts at christmas idea and found many interpretations. I thought that this post on Keeper Of The Home offered a clear explanation of the meanings of the three gifts  

Gold

The gift of gold symbolizes something of great value. It’s to be something the child wants – something precious to them. 

You can let your child choose this gift or you can simply buy something you know they really want. This is the one you can really have fun with…but don’t go overboard. I’ve always found great deals on my “gold” items – and most of the time I buy used things. Buy used and save the difference.

Frankincense

The gift of frankincense symbolizes something spiritual. Frankincense was burned in the temple as part of worship. For this gift, we give something that helps with the child’s spiritual walk.

Our interpretation: As we are not religious, something for the mind / educational / learning

Myrrh

Myrrh was a medicinal item back in the day. This gift symbolizes something for the body. I’ve heard it told that the Wise Men brought this gift to Jesus in preparation for when he would die for us. This item can be any number of things: clothing, shoes, cologne, underwear. 

Our Family In Spain Version of Three Gifts at Christmas

So, this year, we are limiting our gifts to three per person. There will be no Christmas Eve box nor family stocking. There will however be lots of homemade decorations and naughty foods. After all, both Nana and Granny are coming to visit so we cannot kill the festive spirit totally … I’m waiting for next year to do that (but  Shhhh for now, that’s a new blog post for in the new year 😉 ) 

 

Our three gifts will be:

  • Something for the HEART
  • Something for the BODY
  • Something for the MIND

As our children are now older and thankfully, incredibly thoughtful, we will all participate in selecting gifts for each other. We like to keep it interesting!

 

What will we end up with? Who knows.  And, to be honest, that does not really matter at all. It is the general build up and anticipation that is still exciting. Amusing threats and insinuations have already begun. Imagine what 15 year old Joshua thinks would be good for his dad’s body and his mum’s mind!  Ha ha ha! 

 

Have you tried the Three Gifts at Christmas idea? What do you think?

Nu Skin Spain Distributor: Work Opportunities in Spain

Are you moving to Spain or maybe you are already living here and are looking for work opportunities? Have you considered working as a Nu Skin Spain distributor?

Many women in Spain choose to seek employment outside their new home, however, there are also many women who choose to stay home and solely handle household responsibilities. While this is a fulfilling and noble calling, you might be looking for a little something extra to enhance your day. After all, enjoying some self-earned extra income never hurt anybody, did it now?

Nu Skin Spain may be the answer…

Why Work With Nu Skin Spain?

Since 1984, Nu Skin has been an innovator in the beauty and skincare industry and, in recent years, a leader in direct marketing. In fact, in late 2019, Nu Skin was a fourth-time winner of the Direct Selling News “Best Places to Work in Direct Selling” award.

nu skin spain

Something for Everyone

There are currently over 200 personal care products available through Nu Skin, making it easy to find products that work for anyone — regardless of age, gender, or social status. Vault, a professional ranking and review company, listed Nu Skin as the eighth-best personal care company in the world because of their range of products and their global reach.

Global Humanitarian Efforts

Another thing that helps Nu Skin stand out in the market is their humanitarian efforts across the world. The “Force for Good” campaign provides service projects and relief efforts throughout the global markets, including creating school kits for children in orphanages in Singapore, teaching children safety skills in Greater China, and more. When you join as a distributor with Nu Skin, you become part of their efforts to help the world.

 

Benefits of Direct Marketing

As an affiliate distributor with Nu Skin Spain, you will experience a variety of benefits that you won’t get in a traditional office setting. However, the best of these benefits is this: freedom. When you become a direct marketer, the only person in charge of you is you.

Flexible Scheduling

Working as your own boss allows you to pick your own schedule, including how many hours you work. Choose to work part-time at 20 hours, full time at 40 hours, or as much or as little as you want to fit the lifestyle you have.

 

nu skin spain

Work Anywhere

Since the majority of direct marketing is done online, you can work anywhere you can take your phone. Relaxing on the beach in Marbella? Yep, you can work there. Visiting friends in Madrid? Don’t forget your phone. Having a quiet night at home? Make some extra money while you watch TV. No matter where you are or what you are doing, you can work for the Nu Skin business.

 

Extra Income

Perhaps you are looking for some extra ”fun” money or you want to bring in a little more to help with the bills. Being a direct marketer with Nu Skin can help you with that. Nu Skin is a popular global brand that has been extremely successful in recent years. Invest time and energy into your own little branch of this business and you could potentially make a couple hundred extra every month.

 

Reviews From Other Distributors

Still on the fence about becoming a direct marketer with a company like Nu Skin? Here are some reviews from other distributors so you can get a feel for it.

“I love it because I worked when I wanted. When you decide to stop, you can, and you can pick it back up where you left off when it’s convenient for you. You’ll definitely receive what you put into it. I would recommend it to anyone who would want to do it.”

“A typical day at work is a typical day at home or on the road because it’s work from anywhere, which I strongly enjoy and love. I have learned so much.”

Join and Find Freedom

If you’re living in Spain and want the complete and total freedom to work and earn money from home, or want to get away from restrictive work schedules, consider joining Nu Skin Spain as a direct-marketing distributor.

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