Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Emma at Scuala Nuoto

Last September Emma began Scuola Nuoto, or Swimming School.  Every Monday from 5:50 until nearly 7 in the night, we spent at the Sporting Club here in Milano Due.  This month her lessons ended and, a few Saturdays ago, Emma had her Festa della Nuoto where she and her class mates got to demonstrate their new skills and then receive a medal of participation.  It was such a special moment and I am so glad they made a big deal of it for the kids, and for the parents.  

And in advance, I apologise for the poor filming quality - through a glass darkly indeed!.  I have to get something better than my camera to film these moments!!

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Evie on her Scoot Bike

Evie had no interest in the little pink bike, and then yesterday, decided that she would ride EVERYWHERE on it.  Kids are amazing.  Brava Evie!

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Out of Libya!

Good news from our friend Issac, who has safely returned to Ghana! Issac worked in our home when we lived in Libya in 2009/2010.  When the problems began in Libya in late this February we bagan calling him on a weekly basis to make sure he was safe.  It was dangerous being there he told us, but true Issac-style, he was quick to laugh and tell us not to worry.  Which we did anyhow. He told us he would ring us if he tried to leave the county.  It has been nearly a month since we spoke to him last and Marcus got the call on Thurday last that he had arrived home in Ghana.  Safe!!!!  He was totally zinging with excitment and we and the girls were whooping and yelling and the line was'nt that good...so details are scetchy, but it seems he made it from Tripoli to Tunisia, then onto Morrocco, then Senegal and I  think he said from Dakar to Ghana.  When we talk to him again I will get a more detailed account, but it did'nt sound like a stroll.  He left behind everything he owned and carried a little cash and his papers.  We are so proud that he made such a dangerous journey and made it home safe at last!  

We have a fantastic book called "We are all Born Free: The Universal Declaration of Human Rights in Pictures", published by Amnesty International. Each of the articles is accompanied with a beautifully illustrated picture from a well-known children's illustrator.  I have looked at it with Emma, and much of the issues are pretty heavy for a 5 year old so I keep the conversation age appropriate. To Emma, it just seems like common sense that every one be entitled to these things.  But when we read "We all have the right to belong to a country" and the illustration is of a lone boat, afloat in the middle of the ocean...filled with refugees,  Emma says "Do you think Issac is on a boat somewhere?  Where is he going to go?  How will we know where he is?  I think the guy there (pointing at picture) looks like Issac. What if we call Issac and it rings and rings and rings.  If he doesn't answer,  do you think he is dead?"  When Marcus and I talk about things that you just don't want to reveal yet to your five year old, such as the horrors of war and violence, we often spell it.  Or we wait for another time to dicusss what is going on in Libya.  I was really suprised how aware she is of what is going on, and the impact it could have on our friend Issac. What we even feared to think, she had no problem vocalising it.  At any rate, I am glad that today he is in his home country.  Issac, I hope you write that book someday!

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Easter in England

We have just returned home from Easter in the Cotswolds.  It was wonderful, the weather was spectacular! It was hard to believe it was England and not the Mediterranean.  It has been two years ago THIS WEEK that we left Houston and touched down in England for our, what we refer to as, refugee stint before we moved to Libya.  I remember it was so cold that May, that I had to go out and buy mittens and hats for the girls.  Check the pics and you shall see that there is narry a winter garment to be found. 
Clifton Suspension Bridge, Bristol.  Can YOU see Marcus?

Clifton Oberervatory's Camera Obscura, viewing Clifton Suspension Bridge

My first Pims and Lemonade, compliments of Uncle Nick!  

Clearing the stile, with a little help from Poppy

Look at the blooms!!
Easter egg hunting!
Checking out the spring lambs

Clothes are always optional with Eve