One year more

Uf, today it is my birthday! I’m getting old. 45 years already. An old fart.

This birthday is in the middle of lots of chaos. A pandemic with viri everywhere. Kids that have been grounded for months. Tickets to the main land that gets cancelled all the time. A strange year! My with for this birthday was simple. A nice family photo that represents the times in which we are living right now. Nice for later.

As an additional cherry on the cake we also received some other good news. Alex finished his school year very well, and today we received this notes. All his notes were 9s or 10s. We are very happy with that. Alan also has some good results. The can add and substract all by himself!

Schoolwork at home

It could have been so easy. It should have been easy, but it is not. I’m talking about the schoolwork our kids get to avoid getting far behind. It looked so logical. Use the internet and just do lots of things from home. It should work, but it has mostly been very frustrating. It is unbelievable that almost everything that could go wrong really does go wrong.

Our kids school uses an app to communicate with the parents. We managed to log in on the app, and then the problems started. The entire interface was customized. No menu, no normal buttons. It took me a couple of days to (by change) figure out how to change the active chapter of a digital book.

Then we have the errors. Of course you can have a typo somewhere, but tasks that need to be returned with incorrect answers required are truly demotivating. Some questions require a true or false, and only allow you to continue if you give the wrong answer.

English. The professor is not a native, but reading simple tests displays a lot of errors that can easily be picked up. It’s not tomato or tomato, but “Tomatoe”. Unbelievable. Out of every three pages with questions one page has one or more errors.

To finish it all off we get PDF’s with additional exercises. For some reason these have huge URLs in them that you need to copy. Manually.

http://xx!$^&*()yy_+`-={zz}|[]:OHNEE-TREKT-HAAR-UIT-HOOFD;JohnnyBoy@www.leiden365.nl/blog/?p=8767&whatallemaalnogmeer&EenHelERieDelTexts/Lekker/Lange/URL

It is clear that the current situation is new for everyone. The idea is to keep the kids occupied so they will not lose to many of the knowledge they have. Next period they will probably try to make it all up. For the parents it is a bit more frustrating. Work during the day and in the evenings solve problems so we can do the schoolwork together.

Stage 1

Since yesterday we are in stage 1. This means we are able to go outside a bit more and we have more liberties. We can go take the car and go for a ride. Small shops can open and some bars are opening up although with only few clients allowed. Luckily the effects of the Corona virus are not so very big here in Gran Canaria. The worst situation was in Madrid and the big cities. Here the kids are enjoying the additional freedom we have. Going out to play for an hour a day has a very good effect on the morale. If all goes well in two weeks we’ll be going to stage 2.

Phase 1: One hour outside

A little baby at Doramas! (as seen through the fence)Today is a Sunday, and it is the first day were are allowed to go outside again. Well, only if you have kids under 14 you are allowed outside for one hour a day. Maximum one parent, maximum distance of 1 km from your home, Maximum three kids, always maintaining a distance of 2m from others. Quite a lot of rules and some seem difficult to check/enforce, but it is a step in the good direction. We walked for about an hour in the sun in our neighborhood. All the parks are still closed but we did spot a little baby swimming in a nearby park.

One more week

Only one more week. One more week and we will be able to get out of the house again. After one month of being locked in at home it will be a big event to be able to get out of the house again. Still, it will be little by little, but still better than nothing.

Good cop, bad guy


The cops are dispatched to retrieve a case full of gold, but some bad guy also wants a piece of the action. A shootout is the result, and the bad guy bites the dust. After the cops depart the scene a stray dog checks out the aftermath.

A combination of playmobil toys, the Stop Motion app, some ketchup and lots of patience we made our very first very short film. Enjoy!

Sport – Body Project

What to do when you are locked in your home for a couple of weeks. In the beginning I did very little and this was quickly noted in my weight. I have gained a couple of kilos while doing nothing at home. All the stress caused by two bored kids didn’t help at all in bringing down my weight. Luckily I found a great solution. We have been training for 20 to 40 minutes every day with YouTube and team body project.

Simple exercises and a very motivational trainer who really gives you the idea that every movement you make it a big win. Really great and even the kids like to join in which makes it even better. After the short workout we get short time of quiet and relaxation at home while the kids recover the energy they burned.

Covid-19 update

With a pandemic running around there is a clear need to do something. In Spain all non essential things have been stopper for two weeks already. Last weekend these two weeks have passed and have been extended for a couple of weeks extra. Probably we will have to stay at home for around two months. There is a first time for everything, and this is clearly the first pandemic experience for all of us. A strange situation.