Recent Blog Posts
- La Pasqua: Easter Eye Candy [a foto blog]
- Top 10 Reasons People Study Italian
- International Women’s Day – Auguri alle donne!
- Verona is for lovers… and graffiti artists + Valentine’s Love Phrases
- “Blackbird Days”: Italy’s Distant Cousin to Groundhog Day
- A proposito di propositi… Speaking of Resolutions… + Quizlet Practice Set!
- Arriva la Befana | The Befana Is Coming
- Lentils for Luck – Italian Recipe for a Prosperous New Year
Category Archives: Expressions
[Note: Any text in Italian is followed by the English translation.]
Gli scioglilingua sono un ottimo modo per esercitare la tua pronuncia in Italiano!
Tongue twisters are an excellent way to practice your Italian pronunciation!
Eccone due divertenti che ha condiviso il mio amico Lobsang di Torino. Li ho provati lo scorso sabato nella mia classe di conversazione e studio dell’italiano e gli studenti si sono divertiti un mondo facendo esercizio.
Here are two fun ones my friend Lobsang from Torino shared with me. I tested them out this past Saturday in my Italian Study & Conversation class, and the students had a blast practicing them.
Tre tigri contro tre tigri. | Three tigers against three tigers.
Dieci limoni, cento limoni, mille limoni. | Ten lemons, a hundred lemons, a thousand lemons.
[P.S. No, they don’t make sense… of course not, they’re tongue twisters!]
- Ascoltare le registrazioni audio
- Pronunciare lo scioglilingua lentamente, poi due volte di fila, infine tre volte senza fermarsi
- Aumentare la velocità senza sacrificare la pronuncia corretta
Suggestions & Advice:
- Listen to the audio recordings
- Say the tongue twister once slowly, then twice in a row, and finally three times without stopping.
- Pick up speed without sacrificing correct pronunciation
Tre tigri contro tre tigri.
Dieci limoni, cento limoni, mille limoni.
Divertiti e fammi sapere come va! Hai mai usato gli scioglilingua come modo di fare esercizio in italiano? Lo trovi utile, difficile, divertente? Quali sono i tuoi preferiti? Lascia un commento!
Have fun and let me know how you do! Have you used tongue twisters before as a way to practice Italian? Do you find it useful, difficult, fun? What are some of your favorites? Leave a comment!
March 8th is International Women’s Day. This day is observed widely in many countries around the world. Oddly though, it is not observed in the United States. In fact, the first time I’d heard of it was shortly after I’d moved to Italy.
In italia la Festa della Donna si festeggia l’8 di marzo. | In Italy, Women’s day is celebrated on March 8th.
Gli uomini regalano i fiori, solitamente le mimose, alle colleghe di lavoro e a tutte le altre donne importanti nelle loro vite… mamme, sorelle, fidanzate, ragazze, ecc. | Men give flowers, usually mimosas, to their female colleagues and to all the other important women in their lives… moms, sisters, fiances, girlfriends, etc.
Contrary to popular belief, the mimosa is not just a popular cocktail made from succo d’arancia (orange juice) and champagne, though I suspect this drink was inspired by the true mimosa.
The mimosa is the fragrant and fluffy yellow pom-pom-like flower of the acacia tree. California is full of these trees this time of year, as is Italy, which is why this flower is so common on this day. I love the smell of these flowers — their fragrance zooms me straight back to wonderful memories.
Below are a few Women’s Day auguri (greetings) to share with someone special:
- “Questa mimosa è bella come te che splendi e profumi nel giorno della tua festa.” | This mimosa is as beautiful as you that shine and are fragrant on your special day.
- “Auguri a tutte le donne del mondo ed in particolare alla mia che è la più bella che ci sia!” | Good wishes to all the women of the world and in particular to mine who is the most beautiful there is!
- “La donna è la colonna portante del mondo, senza te tutto crollerebbe e la nostra famiglia andrebbe in rovina… Grazie donna, grazie mamma.” | The woman is the main supporting column of the world, without you everything would collapse and our family would go into ruin… Thank you woman, thank you mom.
Women’s Day is a celebration of all that is wonderful about women, and it is a day to pause and reflect on the accomplishments and importance of the role of women in our world. It’s also a moment to consider improvements and changes needed to better the quality of women ‘s lives in general, and especially of women and girls whose rights and life conditions are extremely compromised or perilous.
Remember to give an extra hug or shout out to the women who matter in your life today. And remember also the women whose lives are not what they could be. We’ve come a long way baby, ma c’è ne ancora di strada da fare! (there’s still a ways to go!)
Have you heard of Women’s Day before? Do you celebrate it? Which mimosa do you prefer, the flower or the cocktail? 😉 Love your comments!
That is the question for italophiles on this day of San Valentino. The answer, it turns out, depends on the object of your affection.
“Ti amo” (I love you) is reserved for romantic loves, while “Ti voglio bene” (I want/wish you well) is used to say I love you to everyone: family, friends, and lovers. Per non fare brutta figura (to not make a faux pas) watch the video!
After the video, check out the round-up of Italian love phrases to help you sweep your adorato off their feet! Plus a link to send free online Italian Valentine’s Day cards.
Video: Saying “I love you” in Italian
Be your own Don Giovanni with these romantic phrases!
- Buon San Valentino (Happy Valentine’s Day)
- Ti amo. (I love you. Used only for romantic love.)
- Ti adoro. (I adore you.)
- Amore mio (My love, my beloved)
- Tesoro mio (My treasure)
- Ti voglio bene. (I love/care about you. Used for all types of relationships: family, friends, lovers.)
- I tuoi occhi brillano come le stelle. (Your eyes shine like stars.)
- Sei bella come una rosa. (You are as beautiful as a rose.)
- Per sempre (Forever)
- Per sempre tua/o (Forever yours)
- Sono pazza/o di te. (I’m crazy for you.)
- Anima mia (My soul)
- Sei incredibile. (You’re incredible.)
- Sei bellissima/o. (You’re beautiful.)
- Sei un dono. (You are a gift.)
- Sei stupenda/o. (You’re fantastic.)
Send a free online Italian Valentine’s card to someone special at www.kisseo.it.
Got a favorite Italian love phrase or anecdote? Leave your comment below!
On the first leg of this trip to Italy (en route to meet up with the group I am currently leading on a tour in Tuscany), I was able to spend several days in Milan… a place I called home for nine years.
Dopo tanti anni di assenza (piu’ di dieci!) e’ stato bellissimo tornare a Milano. [After so many years away (more than ten!) it was wonderful to return to Milan.] Questa citta’ mi e’ sempre stata vicina al cuore. [I have always has a soft spot in my heart for this city]
In addition to it’s ancient yet cosmopolitan good looks, its vibrant feel, and its stylish residents (not to mention un sacco di memorie — a boatload of memories), this visit was especially poignant for me because I was able to meet up with a slew of old and dear friends that I hadn’t seen in forever. My friends and I owe a debt of gratitude to Facebook, for without it we might never have found each other again.
L’amicizia vale piu’ dell’oro — Friendship is worth more than gold.
Durante il mio soggiorno ho fatto proprio una tonnellata di foto in giro per Milano. [During my stay, I seriously took a ton of photos in Milan.]
Eccone alcune delle mie preferite.
Una colazione deliziosa: Caffe’ macchiato e un bacio fatto in casa /
A delicious breakfast: Espresso coffee with a spot of milk and a homemade “bacio” (kiss,” like the famous candy “i baci di Perugina”)
Risotto all’ortolana al Ristorante “A Santa Lucia” vicino al Duomo / Vegetable risotto at “A Santa Lucia” Restaurant near the Duomo
Il mio fioraio preferito, a Piaza Cordusio, in centro. / My favorite flower vendor, Cordusio Plaza, in the center.
Le bici a noleggio (“Bike Sharing”: €36 all’anno, €2.50 al giorno) — quanto mi piace quest’idea! / Bikes to rent (Bike sharing: €36/year, €2.50/day) — I love this idea!
Il Duomo, la cattedradale di Milano. / The Duomo, Milan’s cathedral. I learneded that duomo does not mean “dome,” but rather comes from the latin word “domus,” meaning house of God, or casa di Dio.)
Il simpaticissimo proprietario del Ristorante Bella Riva sui navagli. / The very engaging owner of the Bella Riva Restaurant in Milan’s canal district. (Yes, Milan has canals!)
Il delizioso “Panino Ricco” (con speck e brie) dal bar piu’ vicino al mio albergo, Hotel la Vignetta. / The delicious “Rich Sandwich” (that’s the name of the sandwich on the menu, speck is a type of Italian cured meat) at the cafe nearest to my hotel.
Una riunione dei Milan-Easy Toastmasters, il club che ho aiutato a fondare io. / A meeting of the Milan-Easy Toastmasters, a club that I helped start up.
Una pubblicita’ per la Shiseido, la societa’ giapponese di cosmetici. C’e’ scritto “Grazie!” / An advertisement for the Japanese cosmetics company Shiseido. It says, “Grazie!”
Lungo il Corso di Porta Ticinese. / Along the Porta Ticinese Avenue.
Dei ragazzi che camminano sulla corda in Parco Sempione. / Guys walking on a tightrope in Sempione Park.
Mi sono presa una di quelle bici a noleggio ed ho fatto giro a Parco Sempione! / I got myself one of those rental bikes and took a spin around Sempione Park!
Leggenda milanese: Si dice che se metti il tacco sui “gioelli” del toro in questo mosaico nella Galleria Vittorio Emanuele e fai un girotondo assicuri il tuo ritorno a Milano! / Milanese legend: It is said that if you put your heel on the bull’s “jewels” in this mosaic in the Victor Emanuel Gallery and you spin around, you are sure to return to Milan!
Which of these pictures is your favorite? Have you been to Milan? What are some of your favorite memories? Love to read your comments in the section below!
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Ecco (Here is) Lisa’s second blog post! If you didn’t read the first one, it’s here: Guest Blog Part 1
In breve (in short), Lisa, one of my students, is living her sogno (dream) by spending sette settimane (seven weeks) a Firenze (in Florence), where she has affittato un’appartamento (rented an apartment) and si è iscritta (she has enrolled) a una scuola di lingua italiana (in an Italian language school) — un sogno condiviso da molti (a dream shared by many). Lisa is sharing le sue esperienze (her experiences) in a series of guest blogs that I am featuring here on my website.
Che bella giornata a Firenze oggi!
My dream trip is well into it’s 4th day, and I am finally feeling rested and over the incredible jet lag.
I have been in the advanced intermediate class at the Koinè Institute for three days now and am absolutely loving it! Jodina did an amazing job preparing me in the advancement of my Italian skills! Tante grazie bella 🙂
There are only five of us in class, all from different countries, with the only common language being Italian. You can imagine the fun we have trying to communicate – LOL. All kidding aside, we do manage to have some quite lofty conversations. Today we discussed the lowered bond rating for Italy and how the euro has not helped the Italian public’s cost of living.
I am throughly enjoying myself here in this magnificent city. Last night I was entertained by a free opera performance in front of The Duomo and a fabulous jazz trio in another small piazza. It is a wonderful city for the solo traveler, as you never feel alone. There are friendly people everywhere, and so many activities from which to choose.
Arrividerci a tutti!
La Contessa* Lisa DeLucchi 🙂
[*This is Lisa’s soprannome (nickname) in the Italian Conversation & Study Group.]
Ecco some Italian vocabulary from Lisa’s blog post:
- to have jet lag: soffrire dal fuso orario
- advancement of Italian skills: progresso in italiano
- students from different countries: studenti da paesi diversi
- kidding aside: scherzi a parte
- lofty conversation: conversazione elevata
- the cost of living: il costo della vita
- a magnificent city: una città magnifica
- an opera performance: un concerto lirico
- friendly people everywhere: gente amichevole dappertutto
Do you dream of an adventure like Lisa’s? Do you have a story of your own to share? We welcome your comments below!
Una delle mie studentesse (one of my students), la simpaticissima Lisa DeLucchi, is living her sogno (dream) by spending sette settimane (seven weeks) a Firenze (in Florence), where she has affittato un’appartamento (rented an apartment) and si è iscritta (she has enrolled) a una scuola di lingua italiana (in an Italian language school).
I’m pretty certain Lisa’s adventure is a dream shared by many of my students and readers. Che bello allora (how nice then) that Lisa has graciously agreed to share her experiences in a series of guest blogs that I will be featuring here on my website, completo con delle fotografie (complete with photos).
Ecco il suo primo blog (here is her first blog post). Auguri e grazie a Lisa! (Good wishes and thanks to Lisa!) E a voi, buona lettura. (And to “y’all”, happy reading.)
My dream journey has officially begun! After a 13-hour flight from LA to Rome, a 5-hour layover to take a 20-minute flight to Florence and a wild taxi ride from the Vespucci airport to my apartment by a crotch-rearranging driver, I am safely nestled in my abode :). I am both cross-eyed with exhaustion and wide-eyed with excitement.
My 3rd-story (4th in the US) apartment is superbly located between the Duomo and Piazza Della Signoria, smack dab in the center of Firenze. It is within walking distance of every amazing sight this gorgeous city has to offer. My first short stroll was to none other than the wine shop! The owner was so friendly and we enjoyed a cheery conversation. I naturally left with 2 bottles of vino and some delectable snacks to enjoy while imbibing my first official “bicchiere di vino” in Italy!
I can already tell that I am most definitely an Italian by nature as well as by heritage. I feel alive here with all of the bustling city noises and rather loud voices resonating up through my open windows. Life really is more beautiful in Italia!
Good night and good-bye from Firenze!
Ecco some Italian vocabulary drawn from Lisa’s blog post:
- a 13-hour flight: un volo di tredici ore
- a 5-hour layover: uno scalo di cinque ore
- exhausted, dead tired: esausto(a), stanco(a) morto(a)
- excitement, excited: emozione, emozionato(a)
- to take a stroll: fare una passeggiata, fare due passi
- a wine shop: un’enoteca
- a snack: una merenda, uno spuntino, un boccone
- a glass of wine: un bicchiere di vino
Do you dream of an adventure like Lisa’s? We welcome your comments below!