Kids in Ibiza are proud to introduce you to hard working mum of 4 and childrens author Jo Gibson, who splits her time between London and her family home here in Ibiza.
‘Mousey’s adventures in Ibiza’ is a lighthearted tale, which takes inspiration from her time spent on the island and family experiences here. The book encourages children’s imagination, has many familiar and amusing strands that parents can relate to and aims to further recognise Ibiza as a family friendly holiday destination.
What brought you to Ibiza?
I share a family home here with my sister, and both our families are toing and froing (yes, that’s actually a bona fide phrase even though it looks weird in print!) between here and Surrey, England. We bought it a few years ago, after spending 24 mad hours around the island viewing places. Then, at the end of the day we sat down in a bar on Talamanca Beach, looked out across the perfect seascape, and made our decision there and then to settle there. We had to spend as much time here as possible!
Tell us about your children:
I have 4 boys, spanning a huge age range between 24, 21, and 6 year old twins. The eldest have been through university and hang out here on the island when then can. The younger ones, Tom and Harry are the main characters in my books.
Tell us about your children’s book
I work in communications back in the UK and spend most of my life writing about something or other, and so it was natural for me to commit my thoughts to paper. It also gave me the headspace I needed to do something creative for myself. The book is all about a day out with the children last summer. We were waiting for a taxi outside Pacha when one of my kids lost his favourite toy (happens to everyone) but he was so distraught that I pretended I’d seen her (Mousey) spring to life and run off under the Flower Power props. He kept asking what had happened to her so I had to make up a parallel universe where lost toys hang out and do their best to get back to their best friends. Then, one day, few months later I started scribbling the story down in rhyme, and before I knew it I’d written a book.
Who do you think your book will appeal to?
Any parent whose child has ever lost a favourite toy. I’ve written the book primarily as a legacy for my own children, but I’d like to think the story might inspire other parents to get creative and make up imaginative stories about lost toys. It’s even more fun if the children contribute to the storyline or you can weave in the funny things they say.
Why did you choose Ibiza as the back drop for your children’s book?
Firstly, we really did lose Mousey in Ibiza (I’m sure she is still out there somewhere!) and secondly I’m hoping to raise the awareness of Ibiza to a further reaching family audience. In some circles it still has the 90s reputation of 24/7 party party, and I think that because of that the island can be often overlooked as a family destination. I’ve even opened an Instagram account – MouseyIBZ – in the hope that families will post their favourite family friendly Ibiza places to help find Mousey. 😉
What’s your mama trick to manage children and work?
I believe that mamas should self care, and by that I mean take time out to look after their own health and well-being. That can mean different things for different people. I make sure that I segment activities, and ensure I get time to do the things I need to as well as the things I like to do. It makes me a more focused person, and better able to deal with my 6 years olds who can fill any space with their infinite energy. It also means that I can give 100% to the task in hand, whether that is hanging out with the kids or writing a communication strategy for my day job.
I also stopped feeling guilty about delegating care by sending them to holiday clubs – the kids have a great time, and like all children need interaction with other kids to improve their social skills and grow into good, kind little people. Everybody’s a winner.
What’s your favourite day out with your family?
We love to do really simple things together, walking, eating, swimming and chatting. Here is would be a walk to Talamanca beach, stopping en route at the park, and then to Passion for a smoothie. On the way back we often grab a chocolate pizza from iPizza in Talamanca, before heading back for a splashing in the pool. Very simple, inexpensive stuff but it’ll be ingrained in their memories as magical times.
What’s your best day (and night) spent on the island when not working and off mama duty:
When I’m not here with my family I often bring my girlfriends over. Favourite places are Nassau Beach Club for the music (and the Kids in Ibiza kids club @ Tanit next door), strolling on the cobblestone roads up to Dalt Vila in the evening for tapas and sangria (I particularly like the open areas in the middle that resembles the market square in the castle from the film Chitty Chitty Bang Bang). In the evenings we might head to Pikes for its 80s nostalgia. I love singing around the piano and imagining George Michael filming Club Tropicana in the pool – I know it’s a cliche but that’s the story of my youth. It’s surprising how energising Ibiza can be for tired mums who generally go to bed at 10 am back in the UK.
My book, Mousey Ibiza Adventures is available online at Amazon, Barnes and Noble and Foyles. I can be contacted via Instagram @ MouseyIBZ and email firstname.lastname@example.org
If you can help me in my quest to find Mousey and bring Ibiza to the attention of more parents please post pics of family friendly places you think she might be hiding. Thank you!
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