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Friday the 11th of July, 2008
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Good Morning!

Welcome to another Essential Weekly Vitamin. Cada vez estamos más cerca de las vacaciones de verano (summer holidays) y es normal que durante estos días, todos mantengamos conversaciones relacionadas con ellas. Hoy hablaremos de las vacaciones en inglés y trataremos vocabulario que habitualmente utilizamos.

Existen dos maneras de entablar una conversación sobre las vacaciones. Como en todo tipo de situaciones, podemos empezar con preguntas a la otra persona o explicar nuestros propios planes:

Where are you going for holidays?
¿Dónde vas de vacaciones?

Where do you spend your summer holidays?
¿Dónde veraneas?

I am going on holidays to the Caribbean.
Voy a ir de vacaciones al Caribe.

I spend my summers on the coast.
Yo veraneo en la costa.

Si vas a la playa (beach), no puedes olvidar una serie de complementos:

-Umbrella (sombrilla)
-Towel (toalla)
-Sun glasses (gafas de sol)
-Sunscreen / Sunblock (filtro solar)
-Swimsuit (bañador)
-Bikini (bikini)
-Swimming costume (bañador, sobre todo de mujeres)
-Kite (cometa)

Pero no solo puedes veranear on the beach, también puedes aprovechar para practicar deportes acuáticos.

-Scuba diving (submarinismo)
-Snorkeling (buceo con esnórkel)
-Jet Ski (moto acuática)

Otra opción es ir a la montaña y practicar otros deportes (sports):

-Horse riding (montar a caballo)
-Trekking (senderismo)
-Rock climbing (escalar)

De todas formas, si prefieres tomarte unas vacaciones más tranquilas, puedes optar por la opción de hacer turismo por la ciudad y pasear por los lugares de interés (sightseeing), dar un paseo (a walk) tranquilo por la montaña o realizar una excursión de un día (day trip) por algún lugar curioso.

Nos despedimos con esta Essential Weekly Vitamin hasta después de las vacaciones. Volveremos a enviar la Daily Vitamin a partir del lunes 15 de septiembre.

Ziggurat will also be on holidays from August 4th to August 29th.

Have a nice summer!

Thursday the 10th of July, 2008
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Good morning.

Tomorrow's Essential Weekly Vitamin for Spanish-speaking learners of English will be the last Daily Vitamin until Monday, September 15th. Therefore, today I wanted to take this opportunity to encourage you to make a plan to stay in contact with English this summer.

If you are a Ziggurat student or a Daily Vitamin Plus! subscriber, these months might be a good time to:

1) review and revise the almost 1000 Daily Vitamins that we have created since October 2003.
2) listen to Daily Vitamin sound files to improve your pronunciation and listening skills.
3) do the monthly activities that we have created, which will help you to consolidate the content covered for each month.

A couple of years ago I had a student return from summer holidays with a stronger level than when he left. (This is a true story!) During the summer he read in English, watched films and DVDs in English and went to Scotland with his family (among other things). There is no reason not to improve your English in the summer.

To help give you ideas, I'm attaching a document (in Spanish) with some suggestions for Summer English activities. I hope you find them useful.

Have a great summer and we'll see you on September 15th.

Wednesday the 09th of July, 2008
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Good morning. Today's expression was one of the first Daily Vitamins that we created. It was sent in November of 2003.

Today's expression is: around the clock

It means: happening all day and all night; twenty-four hours a day.

Example 1:
Many companies now have customer service departments that stay open around the clock.

Example 2:
I have been working around the clock to get the report done. I hope to have it for you in the morning.

If you have any questions about this expression, please post them in the Daily Vitamin Plus! forum section on our website (

Enjoy the rest of your day.

Tuesday the 08th of July, 2008
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Good morning.

Today we finish up our series of Daily Vitamins about stuff by looking at the verb Stuff.

The verb Stuff means: to push something into a container or an empty space.

Example 1:
When my four-year-old son goes to swimming class, I have to stuff his clothes into a very small bag for him to carry.

Example 2:
I stuffed the papers into the envelope and quickly brought it to the post office.

We often use the participle/adjective stuffed (relleno) to refer to culinary dishes which include filling some type of food with small pieces of meat or vegetables.

Example 3:
On Thanksgiving in the US and Canada, it's very common to serve stuffed turkey (pavo) for dinner.

We also use it to refer to the play animals that children often have in their rooms (peluches).

Example 4:
When I was a child, I had lots of stuffed animals, but my favourite was a stuffed bear named Sleepy.

If you have any questions about stuff, please post them in the Daily Vitamin Plus! forum section on our website (

Have an excellent day!

Monday the 07th of July, 2008
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Good morning! I hope you had a good weekend.

Today we continue with our stuff series with a few expressions.

Today's first expression is: to know your stuff.

It means: to know a lot about something.

Example 1:
If you have any questions about English, you can ask Rachel. She really knows her stuff.

Today's second expression is: to do your stuff.

It means: to do what you have prepared to do.

Example 2:
Speaker 1: I'm very nervous about making this speech.
Speaker 2: Don't worry. You're prepared and you are going to do a great job. Now get out there and do your stuff!

Today's third and final expression is: ...and stuff like that.

It's used: to refer to things that are similar or related to what you are talking about.

Example 3:
Speaker 1: What did you think of my speech?
Speaker 2: It was excellent, but you need to work on body language; you know, smiling, eye contact and stuff like that.

If you have any questions about today's Daily Vitamin, please post them in the Daily Vitamin Plus! forum section on our website (

Have a great day.