Top 4 ways to keep your Spanish up over the holidays
Hola amigos, it’s my favourite time of year - Christmas and New Year holidays! And if your year has been anything like mine you are haaaaanging out for a little time off. In true Kiwi Christmas style I’m headed to the beach for a week where I’m going to get in as many long walks and surfs as I can and only eat food that can be prepared outside. Ahhh… bliss.
As a proud language nerd I’m also super excited to free up some time for Spanish and Māori practise. I’m not about to close the curtains and sit down to a hard wooden desk to study the imperfect subjunctive here people - I’m not a ruddy Saint. I just want to do something light and fun to keep it all ticking over. It took one bucket of Christmas cookies and 3 cups of tea to nail down my Spanish holiday activities list and I was so happy with it I thought it’d be a crime not to write it up to share with you all (over another 1/2 bucket of Christmas cookies). Enjoy!
1. Read Spanish Books
Obvious Lingogo plug I know, but what better way to keep your Spanish up on holiday than settling in to read some super entertaining, dual-language ebooks?! Trust me this will not feel like work. Plus when you return to your normal routine rather than feeling rusty you’ll have improved! To help you out we’re throwing a sale until New Years Day - enter the code 'Lingogo' when you purchase a subscription through our website to gain full access to our brand spanking new library of more than 45 books and receive 20% off! Then find a hammock and some watermelon, (or cosy chair by a fire and something delightfully warming and heavy to our Northerners), settle in, and enjoy!
2. Listen to Spanish Songs
I am so incredibly happy that Spanglish songs are all over mainstream radio right now, and just in time for holiday playlists. Step one: go to Spotify, search ‘Spanish pop’. Step two: Listen - on your road trips, at every Christmas party on your calendar, during BBQs, and while you’re cooking up a Christmas feast. Crank any Spanish pop song at a New Years party after 8pm and the dance floor will go off. If it’s a party filled with NZers and our famously rigid hips it will be ugly. However it will also be fun and hilarious (which is an intensely motivating combo). Get started with my current jam: Échame la culpa by Demi Lovato. Embrace the pop guys!
3. Cook and Bake Spanish Food (or convince someone else to and just eat it)
Everyone’s favourite past time during holidays - EAT! During the working week an egg on toast is about as gourmet as I get. How good are holidays for actually being able to take your time and enjoy putting a meal together!? Check out this blog for a recipe that tickles your fancy. I’ll be steadily working my way through the ‘Cakes, Pies and Tarts’ section. Don’t judge guys, I’m eating this pastel purely for academic purposes.
4. Drink Spanish Drinks
It’s time to celebrate amigos and if that celebration happens to involve a drink or two have I got the recipes for you. Choose with booze or without. What better way to literally enter the New Year ‘practising’ Spanish? OK, I know I’m pushing this one a bit. Also I just found out about a Spanish drink called ‘kalimotxo’. It’s literally red wine mixed with coca cola, which is highly terrifying and has me deeply questioning the inclusion of this activity at all… follow at your own risk!
I know it all sounds very lighthearted but this holiday plan truly does have substance. The hardest part of achieving fluency in any language is maintaining motivation. The holidays are the perfect time to let all the pressures of language learning (and life) go and to just have fun. Incorporating any amount of Spanish into that process will restock your energy levels and set you right up to achieve your new year's fluency goals.
When have you ever been given homework to read books, dance, cook beautiful food and sip amazing drinks? We picked the right obsession amigos. Tag us or send in your holiday pics as you try these out! I’d love to see you getting into it.
Thank you so much for your support this year. 2017 has been insanely challenging and I’m so grateful for the positive feedback and support I’ve received from our little community. I wish you a very merry Christmas. Bring on 2018.