Tag Archives: A Kid’s Life

A Kid’s Life: Melbourne, Australia

14 Jan

Hello everyone.  Time for a new interview in my A Kid’s Life series.  I have to admit that I’m really proud of this series and all of the great interviews I’ve had over the past few years.  I’ve loved “virtually meeting” every single one of these families and luckily enough I’ve kept in touch with them all.  These families have been warm, friendly and open to share the details of their daily family grind.  I have big plans to meet them all in their native countries in the coming years (don’t worry, I won’t show up unexpected on your doorsteps!).  But what a great excuse to travel around the world!  Here are the previous interviews in case you missed them: Italy, Japan, USA, The Philippines, Tasmania, Canada, BelgiumNew Zealand, Holland, Germany, Colombia, France, Switzerland, South Africa, India.

Today we get to hear from Bron and her family who live in Melbourne, Australia.  I thought it would be interesting to hear from a family living on mainland Australia after reading all about family life in Tasmania in a previous interview.  I was curious to see if there were differences between the two.  So far I’ve noticed that more languages are offered in Tasmanian schools, both love to eat Weetbix for breakfast and dinner is eaten at about the same time that Italian kids eat their afternoon snack!

Bron contacted me last week about participating in the interview and after hearing her family’s story and feeling her energetic and positive energy just by reading her email I was excited to read all about their life.  Bron and her husband Andrew have three kids.  Their oldest son, Cooper, has Cerebral Palsy (Dystonic Quadriplegia) as he received a brain injury due to lack of oxygen during the birthing process (read more here).  What this means is the damaged parts of his brain can’t communicate properly with the muscles all over his body.  His whole body is affected including his arms, legs, trunk and mouth.  He is cognitively a typical 8 year old boy who loves cricket and Lego though!

Last year Cooper started a fundraiser which involved him walking for 1km using his walker.  He ended up raising $15, 000 AUD to help build a kindergarten in Cambodia.  The family visited the school several times and were overwhelmed with the reception and gratitude that they were shown (especially Cooper).  

Is this not an amazingly inspiring family?

Bron writes a blog about her family life in Melbourne, Cooper’s developmental accomplishments and their travel adventures.

And now let’s hear what they have to say about daily life in Melbourne, Australia…

Sihanoukeville in Cambodia

Sihanoukeville in Cambodia

What country do you live in?

We live in Australia, in the state of Victoria.

Are you and your husband the same nationality?

Yes we are both Australian born in different cities/states.image-4

Do you both work. Or does someone stay home?

Andrew works as an arborist and I’m a stay at home mum.

How many languages are spoken in your house?  Which one(s)?

We speak English.  We also learnt a lot of sign language and gestures before our son began to verbally communicate.

How many kids do you have? What are their ages?

We have three kids.  Cooper is 8, Pepper is 5 and Elwood is 2. Continue reading

A Kid’s Life: India

22 Nov


Hello all.  I’m still here (after over a month’s absence on Jillian In Italy).  We’ve had a difficult month but things are slowly starting to get back to normal.  Thankfully.  All I can say at the moment is that I’m so grateful for my family and our good health.  So so grateful.

Today I wanted to share a new interview in my A Kid’s Life series.  Learning about regular family life and traditions from around the world is one of my favourite things and since I started this series a few years ago I’ve learned so much about different cultures around the world.  And as much as I love to hear about how different a culture is from the other side of the world I also find it so fascinating that there are so many similarities between all of our daily grinds.

Today we’re going to hear from Kanchan and her family who live in Dehli in Northern India.  I actually “met” Kanchan on Instagram (follow her here) and I was immediately in awe of her colourful photos of their life and surroundings (not to mention the gorgeous colourful fabrics that she sometimes photographs!).  I’ve been fascinated with India for years and we’re actually in the midst of seriously contemplating a family trip there in the near future.

From the beginning Kanchan was warm and friendly and so open to share her family’s daily life and culture with us here on Jillian In Italy.  Kanchan, who lived for over 20 years in Dubai, decided to return to India so that her two daughters would be close to family and friends and learn and appreciate all that Indian culture has to offer.

So let’s hear all about their life in Delhi.

A temple in Delhi

A temple in Delhi

What country do you live in?

We live in India

How many kids do you have?  What are their ages?

We have two girls.  Diya is 12 and Naina is 10.  And we have two beloved daschunds.

At the Amer Fort, Jaipur

At the Amer Fort, Jaipur

Are you and your husband the same nationality?
Yes, we are both Indian

Do you both work?  Or does someone stay at home?

I used to work for an airline in Dubai (Emirates).  Now I am mostly at home with my girls.  My husband does financial consultancy from home.

How many languages are spoken in your house?  What one(s)?

English and Hindi.

At what age do kids start school in your country?

Most kids that we know start school at two and half years old.  By three and a half they go to Kindergarten in a proper school.  Our schools are mostly English medium and the curriculum is 10+2.

Continue reading

A Kid’s Life : Switzerland

5 Jun

I’m really excited to have a new interview for my A Kid’s Life series on the blog today.  Over the last  months I’ve been busy looking for interesting families from around the world and I’ve found a few great ones that I’ll be interviewing in the coming weeks.  I was recently reading back through the previous interviews from Italy, Japan, America, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, The Philippines, Colombia, Germany, Belgium, France and The Netherlands and I still love to hear what family life is like in all these countries and cultures.  Learning about all the little differences in our daily lives is fascinating and I’ve discovered that my kids absolutely love reading these interviews as well. They get a huge kick out of learning things like a baby’s first food in Japan (fish paste!), that school starts really early in Colombia and The Philippines (7:30am), the fact you can learn Chinese as a 2nd or 3rd language in Tasmania and that kids in Germany only go to school for half days (they thought that one was quite unfair).

Today we’ll be hearing from a family living in Switzerland.  I met the super dynamic Elisa at The Hive blogging conference a few weeks back and I immediately Ioved her energy and positive personality.  I just wish I’d met her at the beginning of the week-end and not 5 minutes before I was leaving to catch my plane!  Elisa lives with her family in Zurich, Switzerland and has a great blog called Globetrotting In Heels where she writes all about fashion, travel and much more (she’s really funny!).  I loved her candid interview and am now craving a good Swiss roesti and raclette dinner.

So, let’s hear what family life is like in Switzerland…

What country do you live in?

We currently live in Zurich, Switzerland.

Are you and your husband the same nationality?
No, my husband is Swiss, I’m Italian. Ok, technically I should probably say yes, since I am a naturalized Swiss citizen and now have a Swiss passport, but really, it’s purely a burocratic thing. I’m no more Swiss now than I was a few years ago – but don’t tell the Immigration Office, ok? 😉

Do you both work? Or does someone stay at home?
Right now my husband Sascha works and I mostly do the mom thing, do some volunteer work and the occasional freelance assignment. I’ve also recently gone back to school, so I am studying for an international diploma.

How many languages are spoken in your house? What one(s)?
Three: Italian, German (mostly of the Swiss variety) and English.

How many kids do you have? What are their ages?
I have two girls: Sarah is 13 and Stella is 7.

3-girlsLondon

At what age do kids start school in your country?
Kids start school at 7 but both my daughters started at 6. When they are ready they are ready. I never would have pushed if they weren’t but when kids aren’t challenged they get bored, and when they get bored they get in trouble! Best to avoid that by keeping a child occupied and give him enough new things to keep him/her interested and engaged.

Click to continue reading all about family life in Switzerland!

Continue reading

A Kid’s Life: Colombia

15 Jan

I’m really excited to have a new A Kid’s Life interview on the blog today.  As I’ve mentioned before, this is a great way to see how families from around the world live their daily life.  We get a peek into a different culture by seeing what an average family’s daily grind is like.  So far we’ve had interviews with families from Italy, Japan, America, The Philippines, Canada, Belgium, Germany, Holland, New Zealand and Australia (Tasmania).  I’ve loved all the families I’ve interviewed and I hope to meet some in person in the future. Today we have a visit from a wonderful Colombian family.  I was put into contact with Andrea through Giova who did our Holland interview.  Andrea lives with her family in Bogota, Colombia.  She’s an architect who is currently at home with her daughter and an avid and passionate crafter (check out her hair accessory line here on Facebook).  Andrea is a hands-on mother who spends every afternoon with her daughter and beloved dog Niebla going to parks, playdates or doing something artistic. After reading the interview I am in shock at what time school starts at Andrea’s daughter’s school.  I won’t be complaining about our 6:45 am wake-ups anymore.  And I can relate to the birthday parties that she talks about attending so often. We also seem to have one every other week.  Oh the joys of having popular and well liked kids! So read on and find out what life is like for this Colombian family.

01

What country do you live in? We live in Colombia, in Bogotá, the capital city. Bogotá is huge, and it´s hectic and beautiful at the same time. Are you and your husband the same nationality?  Yes, we are both Colombian, and we are also Spanish.  Do you both work? Or does someone stay at home?  I stay at home and sometimes work from home. How many languages are spoken in your house? What one(s)?  We speak Spanish. My husband and I also know English. And my husband knows German because he attended a German school as a kid. Now our daughter is attending that same school and is starting to learn German too. I wish I spoke German, but I’ve tried and it’s not easy at all!

05

How many kids do you have? What are their ages?  We have one girl, Gabriela. She is 5 “and a half”, as she would say. Click to continue reading interview! Continue reading

A Kid’s Life: Germany

11 Dec

Time for another interview in my A Kid’s Life series.  This series is a way for all of us to see how families from other countries and cultures live their daily life.  It’s surprising how similar some of our daily habits are around the world!

This time we chat with Petra who lives with her family in Germany.  Petra is one of my all time favorite people .  We met in university a long time ago and have kept in touch all these years.  She’s kind, down to earth and so hilarious.  And the fact we both ended up in Europe is such a bonus.  We’ve caught up in person a few times over the years and it was wonderful.  When together we revert back to our young (and slightly immature) selves.  Petra is super creative and spends lots of time doing amazing crafts and art with her kids.  I have many fond memories of sewing evenings with her in snowy Quebec City during our university days.

After reading Petra’s interview I’m in shock at one particular aspect of German culture.  People, school ENDS for the day  at 11:50am.  How do parents manage? And it’s amazing to think that the German kids get only 6 weeks of summer vacation while the Italian kids get 12 weeks of summer vacation.

Petra talks about her multi-lingual and multi-cultural household with such humor and let’s us in on daily life in Germany.  Enjoy!

What country do you live in?

We live in southern Germany, near the French border.

Are you and your husband the same nationality?

No, I am Canadian and my husband is French. We found each other in Germany.

Do you both work? Or does someone stay at home?

We both work. My husband works full time and I work part time in a kindergarten. I work mornings 4 days a week and one afternoon; that way I can be home for the kids in the afternoon.

How many languages are spoken in your house? What one(s)?

I speak to the kids in English and my husband speaks to them in French. My husband and I speak French with each other because, well, his English is just not as good as my French. The kids speak mostly English with each other, but German is becoming more and more used. We all speak German fluently.

How many kids do you have? What are their ages?

We have 2 kids. Alexis, our son, is 7 and Nellie is 5.

At what age do kids start school in your country?

Kids start school at 6. Kindergarten is not obligatory, but most kids start going at the age of 3. In the state where we live, kindergarten is free of charge starting when the child is 2 but in other states, such as in the one where I work, one must pay the kindergarten fees.

During the school year what time do your kids usually wake up?

The kids get up at 6:30 and then the race begins. Usually they are fed, dressed and their teeth have been brushed by the time I shove them out the door at 7:20. There is, however, no extra time for such frivolities such as fancy hairdos nor last minute homework corrections with this schedule.

What do your kids typically eat for breakfast?

Alexis normally eats about a half a loaf of bread (good, grainy, German bread) with butter and jam in the morning and drinks cold milk (Germans don’t like the cold drink thing, but I’m Canadian, eh, and grew up drinking stuff cold). Nellie always starts off by trying to get some candy (yeah right) and when that doesn’t pan out she ends up eating a piece of cheese, a piece of fruit and drinking cold water. There is a morning snack at both kindergarten and school (prepared by yours truly) so there she gets some bread (who are we kidding, it comes back with the jam licked off and I can see where she scraped the butter off with her teeth) and Alexis eats another 2 pieces of bread and probably eats the leftovers from any classmates who are not big eaters.

Click to read the rest of the interview…

Continue reading

A Kid’s Life: Holland

1 Nov

Time for another interview from my A Kid’s Life series.  Over the past months I’ve absolutely loved doing these interviews and learning about what families from around the world are up to on a daily basis.

Today’s family lives in Holland but is by no means the “average Dutch family”.  Both parents are from Colombia and have lived all over the world over the last 20 years.  Giova (the Mama) told me that she has adopted traditions and customs from all these different cultures and integrated them into their daily life.  I can relate to that!

Giova is one of the writers behind the charming blog One Bunting Away (the other is her sister who lives on the other side of the ocean).  She’s a creative soul and sweet as can be.  The sisters write about their lives and what they find beautiful and inspiring.

Giova is the also the proud mama of two boys of very different ages.  As you’ll see from her photos that there is nothing cuter than a big brother holding his little baby brother’s hand.  Heart melting really.

Now let’s hear a little about their daily life….

What country do you live in?

We live in Holland, but we are not Dutch.

Are you and your husband the same nationality?

Yes, we were both born in Colombia. We left 20 years ago.

Do you both work?  Or does someone stay at home?

We both work from home

How many languages are spoken in your house?  What one(s)?

Spanish is what we speak between us, but we all speak English, even the little one has started.

How many kids do you have?  What are their ages?

Two. One is 11, and the other is 2

Continue reading

A Kid’s Life: New Zealand

8 Oct

Time for another post in my A Kid’s Life series.  This series is a great way to learn about other countries and cultures by looking at families and their daily routines and traditions.  I love hearing about what people from a different country eat, how they spend their free time, what sort of activities the kids do and about the local school systems.

Today we are visiting with Hana from New Zealand.  Hana is a self proclaimed eternal optimist and dreamer.  She has the blog A Happy Adventure  where she writes about parenting and making her daughters lives as magical as possible.  I absolutely adore her Little World series!  I’ve never met Hana but I just know she’s one of those cheerful, positive,creative and witty people that we could all benefit from spending time with.

I’ve always been interested in New Zealand and I loved reading about Hana and her family’s daily life there.  She talks about Christmas in such a different way than I’m used to (camping and beach!) and now I’m curious about what pikelets and kumara are!

So let’s meet Hana and her family…

What country do you live in?

New Zealand

Are you and your husband the same nationality?

Yep – we are both kiwis – in fact we both grew up in the same part of NZ, meeting at High School.

Do you both work?  Or does someone stay at home?  

My husband, Barry, works outside the home, and I stay at home with our girls.

How many languages are spoken in your house?  What one(s)?

One – English.

How many kids do you have?  What are their ages?

We have three girls – Ava will be five next week, Lola is three and Belle is 21 months.

At what age do kids start school in your country?

Children in New Zealand generally start school on their 5th birthday.  Although, oddly, it isn’t a legal requirement to be at school until they are 6.

Continue reading

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