Got Your Costume Ready? Carnaval Begins In Spain!

by Becky on February 8, 2013 · 4 comments

in Fun, Travel

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It’s time for Carnaval! Back home, you know it as Mardi Gras. Here, they’re celebrating all weekend, and Barcelona is alive with riotous fun. Last night, the city kicked things off in the Born District. Follow along with the Eleven O’Clock Kids, including Miss Primrose, our newest import, as we check out the parade, the costumes, the lights, the colors–all of it!

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Yep. Definitely a technicolor event! Even the flowers in the Born neighborhood knew to bump up their color. (Or maybe they were blushing for the benefit of Miss Lavender and Miss Primrose?)

Jen February 8, 2013 at 8:40 am

WOW. This is absolutely incredible. It makes me want to jump on a plane and head over to Barcelona. As I look at your blog, I think about the amazing power of “living in the moment”. What an incredible journey your kids are having….and beyond anything they would learn in the 4 walls of a classroom.

Becky February 8, 2013 at 9:39 am

Jen, funny that WE had to get on a plane and come to Barcelona to re-learn how to live in the moment. Hopefully the lesson’ll stick when we go back home. XX

Aurora February 9, 2013 at 6:07 pm

Great photos! It is fun to live vicariously a little bit through your adventures in Spain. I was wondering how much Spanish you all knew before you got there? I speak Spanish and have tried to teach it to my kids since they were very young, they do understand it but really resist speaking. Just wondered if you had any tips. 🙂

Becky February 10, 2013 at 10:34 am

Aurora, one of the reasons we moved here was to try to bring our kids someplace where the majority culture didn’t speak their language. I took years and years of Spanish all through school, minored in it in college, studied in Spain for a summer, lived in Bolivia for nearly eighteen months, and absolutely LOVE the language. But I didn’t begin to really speak it well until I lived someplace where I was forced to communicate in Spanish. Then, all of the schooling seemed to kick in, and voila!–I was speaking. Sure, haltingly at first, but then better and better. My husband and I thought we’d try to speak Spanish in our home, but we found it difficult. Here, there’s more of an obvious necessity. If I could go back and do it all over again, I’d speak Spanish consistently maybe an hour a day (my kids used to rebel when I tried!–they didn’t like it!), like, without fail. And I’d have put post-its all over my house, like, all the time, with simple vocab words or conjugations of commonly used verbs. Repetition is golden, I’ve found. I finally started buying picture books in Spanish when Goose came along, but I should have had those in abundance, since I think the addition of pictures to text is a great teaching tool and creates interest. I’d have dialed my kids into the PBS Kids shows offered in Spanish, like Plaza Sesamo. It kills me that here, all children speak both Catalan (since ALL public school instruction takes place in Catalan) and Spanish. It kills me that the (apparently) cute boy my older daughter met in the library the other day speaks Spanish, German, Dutch, a little English, and probably a couple of other languages as well, as he’s an intern studying tourism here. But here in Europe, people treat second language acquisition more seriously. I guess my advice would be small steps CONSISTENTLY practiced. If I had a do-over, that’s what I’d do. Good luck, and, most of all . . . HAVE FUN!


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