Category Archives: Italian Vocabulary

“Blackbird Days”: Italy’s Distant Cousin to Groundhog Day

Does groundhog see his shadow?

Christmas holidays have come and gone, and by the end of January, many of us have had it with cold, gray, rainy or snowy weather. How much more of this and how much longer ’til spring? If you’re in the U.S., you might check in to find out whether the groundhog saw his shadow. In Italy, there’s a similar spring-predicting folklore, and it centers on the humble blackbird, who according to legend, started out white…


Prefer to read this post in English? Skip to the text in  green.

“Blackbird days”

I giorni della merla sono il 29, 30, e 31 di gennaio. Secondo la leggenda, se questi giorni sono freddi la primavera sarà bella, e se sono caldi la primavera arriverà tardi.  Questo è forse la cosa più vicina nel folclore italiano all’osservanza di Groundhog Day (2 febbraio) negli Stati Uniti, secondo la quale, se la marmotta (the groundhog) vede la sua ombra, l’inverno durerà altre sei settimane. Se invece non vede l’ombra la primavera è in arrivo.

January 29-30-31

“Blackbird days” are the 29th, 30th and 31st of January.  According to legend, if these days are cold, spring will be beautiful, and if they are warm, spring will arrive late.  This is perhaps the closest thing in Italian folklore to the observance of Groundhog Day (February 2nd) in the United States, according to which, if the groundhog sees its shadow, winter will last another six weeks.  If instead it doesn’t see its shadow, spring is on the way.

Merla, blackbird, was once white

La leggenda dei giorni della merla ha le sue radici nei tempi romani quando nel calendario il mese di gennaio ancora conteneva solo 28 giorni.  Secondo la storia, una merla, con uno splendido candido piumaggio, veniva regolarmente strapazzata da gennaio, mese freddo e ombroso, che si divertiva ad aspettare che lei uscisse dal nido in cerca di cibo, per gettare sulla terra freddo e gelo.

January casts bitter cold & snow

The legend of  “blackbird days” has its roots in Roman times when the calendar month of January still only contained 28 days.  According to the story, a blackbird, with her splendid, snow white plumage was usually thrown about by January, a cold and overcast month, who amused himself by waiting for her to leave her nest in search of food, and then casting bitter cold and frost onto the Earth.

Merla sings to mock January

Stanca delle continue persecuzioni, la merla un anno decise di fare provviste sufficienti per un mese, e si rinchiuse nella sua tana, al riparo, per tutto il mese di gennaio, che allora aveva solo ventotto giorni. L’ultimo giorno del mese, la merla, pensando di aver ingannato il cattivo gennaio, uscì dal nascondiglio e si mise a cantare per sbeffeggiarlo.

Tired of the ongoing harassment, one year the blackbird decided to gather enough provisions for a month and closed herself in her burrow, taking refuge for the entire month of January, which at the time had only 28 days.  The last day of the month, thinking to have outsmarted the wicked January, she left her hideaway and started singing to mock him.

January gets mad and borrows days from February

Gennaio se ne risentì così tanto che chiese in prestito tre giorni a febbraio (che allora aveva ancora 31 giorni) e si scatenò con bufere di neve, vento, gelo, e pioggia. La merla si rifugiò  in un camino e lì restò al riparo per tre giorni. Quando la merla uscì, era sì salva, ma il suo bel piumaggio si era annerito a causa del fumo e del fuliggine, e malgrado cercava di ripulirsi non ci riusciva.

Merla seeks refuge in a chimney

January took such great offense that he asked February (which then still had 31 days) for a loan of three days, and he went crazy with snow storms, wind, ice, and rain.  The blackbird took refuge in a chimney and there she stayed sheltered for three days.  When the blackbird came out, she was indeed safe, but her beautiful plumage had blackened from the smoke and soot, and despite her efforts to clean herself up, she wasn’t able.

Since then Merla’s feathers have been black

Il potente gennaio si godette la scena e poi disse con il suo vocione: “Che questo serva da lezione a voi e a tutti gli animali: non si scherza con le stagioni, con il freddo o con il clima. Non ci si può prendere gioco della Natura. Da oggi in poi io (gennaio) avrò 31 giorni e gli ultimi tre giorni saranno i più freddi dell’anno. Per ricordare a tutti questa storia, i merli porteranno per sempre queste piume nere”.

Blackbird Days proverb

Powerful January was amused by the scene, and then he said in his thundering voice, “ Let this serve as a lesson to you and to all the animals:  You don’t joke with the seasons, with the cold or with the climate.  You cannot mock Nature.  From today forward, I (January) will have 31 days, and the last three will be the coldest of the year.  To remind everyone of this story, the blackbirds will forever more bear black feathers.


Well, here where I live, the last three days of January were not very cold, so, I guess that means spring is still long way off… *sigh*. How about the weather where you are? Heard of the “Blackbird days” story before? What’s your take on animal and weather folklore?

Posted in Italian Customs, Italian Holidays, Italian Vocabulary, learn italian | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A proposito di propositi… Speaking of Resolutions… + Quizlet Practice Set!

So yes, the title if this blog post is a play on words: A proposito di, meaning “speaking of,” propositi, meaning “intentions/aims/objectives/goals”, as in the expression i buoni propositi per l’anno nuovo, or New Year’s resolutions.

And speaking of resolutions, you might be wondering why I’m bringing them up now, given we’re already three weeks into the new year…

Il primo gennaio, Jan 1st

Well, while while many are not fans of making New Year’s resolutions, it’s undeniable that it’s a hot topic at the beginning of the year… But studies show that as early as three weeks into the new year, many have already abandoned or started to slack off on their resolutions, and that only 8% ultimately reach their goals. With such high failure rates, it’s no wonder so many people don’t even bother setting them in the first place.

It turns out though, that there’s an art to creating goals that will get you where you want to go.  This week, I’m sharing an article that we read in Italian Story + Conversation class on creating more effective goals that can work for you.

Mangiare sano – Eat healthy

Whether your New Year’s resolutions and goals need a little tweaking, or you just want to practice your Italian, this is an interesting read. The article is in Italian and English (scroll down), with the extra bonus of an interactive Quizlet vocabulary practice set created exclusively for my students and readers (see below)!


Buoni propositi per l’anno nuovo: consigli per renderli efficaci

Risparmiare soldi – Save money

Non c’è anno nuovo senza buoni propositi. Per molte persone la fine dell’anno e l’inizio della scuola sono i momenti migliori per decidere le cose da buttare e stabilire i nuovi obiettivi. Ma pochissime persone realizzano i loro buoni propositi. Ecco una miniguida per avere più successo con i tuoi obiettivi.

  1. Non esprimere desideri generici: esempio? “Essere ordinato” è troppo vago; Meglio:  “metterò in ordine la mia stanza e il garage. E li terrò in ordine”.
  2. Creare obiettivi specifici e a piccoli passi: per esempio, invece di semplicemente “Dimagrire”; Meglio: “perderò tre kg (chilogrammi) entro febbraio, e poi altri tre entro aprile.”
  3. Monitora i progressi per rimanere concentrato sull’obiettivo e

    Dimagrire – Lose weight

    sapere se sei sulla strada giusta.

  4. Condividi l’obiettivo: Non necessariamente su Facebook, ma il fatto di condividere i tuoi propositi e obiettivi con un amico o un parente ti aiuterà a rimanere concentrato sulla loro realizzazione.
  5. Non strafare: Pensa a tutto quello che vuoi realizzare nel 2017, e poi scegliere uno semplice da raggiungere entro gennaio, e gli altri dopo.

Click here to access the interactive Quizlet Vocabulary Practice Set and use the password JODINA.


New Year’s Resolutions: Suggestions to Make Them More Effective

Fare ginnastica – Exercise

It’s not a new year without resolutions. For many people, the end of the year and the beginning of school are the best moments to decide what to “toss out” (change) and to set (establish) new goals.  But very few people achieve their new year’s resolutions. Here is a mini-guide to have more success (be more successful) with your goals.

  1. Don’t express generic wishes: Example? “Be neat, orderly” is too vague. Better: “I will put in order (straighten up, organize) the bedroom and the garage. And I will keep them in order.”
  2. Create specific goals and in small steps (break them into small steps): Instead of simply “Lose weight”; better: “I will lose 3 kg. by the end of February, and then another 3 by end of April.”
  3. Monitor your progress to stay concentrated (focused) on a goal and to know whether you’re on the right track.

    Migliorare il tuo italiano – Improve your Italian

  4. Share your goal(s): Not necessarily on Facebook, but the act of sharing your resolutions and goals with a friend or relative will help you to stay focused on reaching them.
  5. Don’t overdo it: Think of all you want to accomplish in 2017, and then choose an easy goal to reach by the end of January, and the others after.

What are your resolutions & goals for the year? Can you make them more specific, manageable, measurable? Do you have any Italian language goals?

[Let me know if you like this and find it helpful… If I know people are using it, I’ll create more practice materials!]

Buona fortuna con i vostri buoni propositi!

Good luck with your resolutions & goals!

Posted in Italian Vocabulary, learn italian | Tagged , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Arriva la Befana | The Befana Is Coming

Around Italy, i ragazzi, the kids, are getting ready to hang their calze, stockings, by il camino, the chimney, with care, in hopes that la Befana soon will be there.

i bravi, the good ones, will get caramelle, candies, and little regali, presents, while i cattivi, the bad ones will get carbone, coal.

While Babbo Natale, Santa Claus, comes on Christmas Eve, la Befana arrives during the night between January 5/6, coinciding with l’Epifania, Epiphany.

There are other noteable similarities and differences between the main present-bringer, Santa, and la Befana.

Just like Babbo Natale, la Befana travels through the air. In place of a sleigh with flying reindeer, befana dollla Befana flies a broomstick from house to house where there are bambini, children, entering by way of il camino.

Where Babbo Natale is rotund, merry, white-bearded and dressed in red and white, la Befana is depicted as a smiling, grandmotherly-looking witch, wearing tattered clothing and covered in soot astride a broomstick.

Just like Santa Claus, la Befana’s origins are nebulous, mainly the stuff of folklore, with many variations.befana + re magi
The most common story I encounter is that la Befana lived along the route the Magi took to Bettlemme, Bethlehem. In this version, they stopped at her house seeking food and shelter, but she wasn’t feeling sociable and sent them away.

Later, la Befana had a change of heart and set out to find the Magi to accompany them to find the Christ Child. But by then, she was too late to catch up, and she never found the three kings or the baby Jesus.

So, as the story goes, to this day, at this time of year, she still travels the world, leaving gifts for every child, lest they be il Gesù Bambino, the Baby Jesus.

Poster for a Befana event

January 6, the Epiphany, marks the official end of the Italian Christmas holiday season. It is also said that la Befana takes away the old year, and i dolci, sweets, and regali she brings symbolize seeds to grow in the new year.

Many cities and towns hold special events and parties dedicated to celebrating la festa dell’Epifania/la Befana, Epiphany holiday. People play bingo and cards, and gather outdoors in the piazze, squares, for festivities, including music, processions, live presepi, nativity scenes, mercatini, open-air markets, and live appearances by la Befana.

And while it’s mainly a celebration for the kiddos, you’ll find adults getting in on the action, too, dressing up and parading around as la Befana.

Feeling festive? Perhaps you want to get into the act, too… You could wish people “Buona Befana!,” a popular greeting on January 6 in Italy.

This could be a great time to adopt a fun new tradition, with kids, family or friends. All you need is una calza, a stocking!

Buona Befana, and hope she brings you caramelle!

Have you heard of la Befana before? Do you have any special observances for Epiphany?

Have fun practicing the Italian words in this story on Quizlet!! Click here to access the Quizlet Christmas Round-up list, and use the password JODINA.

Posted in Italian Customs, Italian Holidays, Italian Vocabulary, learn italian | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Holiday Vocab Round-up! Top 30 Italian Christmas Words & Phrases + Quizlet Practice Set!

Ciao ragazzi!

Before going on holiday break, my students asked if I would create some materials to help them practice their Italian and stay engaged with the language during the holidays…

So, here’s a round-up of the most popular Italian Christmas words and phrases. I’ve set it up the same as the “Words of the Week” (WoWs). WoWs are words we choose and practice each week from the materials we’re working on in class.

I’ve added this week’s WoWs below, to a list I created in Quizlet. If you’re already familiar with Quizlet, then you know how engaging and fun it is to use the many interactive exercises it features to build your vocabulary and strengthen your memory. Click here to access the Quizlet Christmas Round-up list and use the password JODINA.

  1. Natale: Christmas
  2. la vigilia di Natale: Christmas Eve
  3. il presepe, il presepio: Manger, nativity scene
  4. i regali: gifts, presents
  5. gli addobbi: Decorations
  6. le luci: lights (also, “le luminarie”)
  7. le palline: ornaments (lit. little balls)
  8. l’albero di natale: Christmas tree
  9. la stella: star
  10. il vischio: mistletoe
  11. le castagne: chestnuts
  12. le caldarroste: roasted chestnuts (also called castagne arrostite)
  13. il panettone: Italian Christmas cake (dome shaped with candied fruit and raisins)
  14. le lenticchie: lentils (eaten to ensure good fortune in the new year)
  15. il cenone: big dinner, from the word cena (dinner) plus the suffix -one, indicating ‘large’
  16. la chiesa: church
  17. santa messa: holy mass
  18. Gesù Bambino: Baby Jesus
  19. Babbo Natale: Father Christmas (babbo is a colloquial word originating in Tuscany and meaning dad, daddy, pops)
  20. Buon Natale!: Merry Christmas!
  21. Buone Feste!: Happy Holidays!  
  22. Auguri di stagione!: Seasons Greetings!
  23. Capodanno: New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day (lit. the ‘end of the year’)
  24. Buon Anno!: Happy New Year!
  25. Prospero e felice anno nuovo!: Prosperous and Happy New Year!
  26. l’Epifania: Epiphany, celebrated Jan 6th
  27. i re Magi: the wise men (three kings, magi)
  28. la Befana: gift-bringing witch (comes on Epiphany)
  29. la calza: stocking (to hold candies and small gifts la Befana brings)
  30. i biglietti di auguri: greeting cards

Got any Italian holiday questions or words to add to the list?

Let me know if you like this and find it helpful… If I know people are using it, I’ll create more practice materials!

Posted in Italian Holidays, Italian Vocabulary, learn italian | Tagged , , , , , | 16 Comments

“Piove” — An Italian song about rain


(Note: English translation follows.)

Per festeggiare la pioggia inaspettata questo weekend a San Diego (ne abbiamo molto bisogno) propongo la canzone “Piove” di Jovanotti.  Jovanotti, per chi non lo sapesse, è uno dei miei cantautori italiani preferiti. “Piove” è una canzone d’amore, che si tratta di una persona che aveva deciso di non inamorarsi mai più ma che poi si innamora di nuovo… paragonando in questo caso l’amore alla pioggia in un posto (il cuore) dove non piove da molto tempo.

TRANSLATION

To celebrate the unexpected rain this weekend in San Diego (we really need it), I propose the song “Piove”/Rain, by Jovanotti.  Jovanotti, for anyone who didn’t know, is one of my favorite Italian singer-songwriters. “Piove” is a love song about a person who’d decided never to fall in love again, but then does fall in love again… comparing in this case love with rain in a place (the heart) where it hasn’t rained for a long time.]

For Rainy Day words (Parole Piovose) see this earlier blog post.


SONG VIDEO

LYRICS IN ITALIANO

Ritornello:

Piove! Senti come piove! Madonna come piove! Senti come viene giù!
Piove! Senti come piove! Madonna come piove! Senti come viene giù!

Verso 1
Hai visto che piove? Senti come viene giù!
Tu che dicevi che non pioveva più!
Che ormai non ti saresti mai più innamorata!
E adesso guardati sei tutta bagnata!
E piove! Madonna come piove
sulla tua testa e l’aria si rinfresca,
e pioverà fin quando la terra non sarà di nuovo piena
e poi si rasserena!

Ritornello

Verso 2

Senti le gocce che battono sul tetto!
Senti il rumore girandoti nel letto!
Uhm, rinascerà sta già nascendo ora!
Senti che piove e il grano si matura,
e tu diventi grande e ti fai forte,
e quelle foglie che ti sembravan morte,
uhm, ripopolano i rami un’altra volta
è la primavera che bussa alla tua porta!
E piove! Madonna come piove
prima che il sole ritorni a farci festa!
Uhm senti! Senti come piove!
Senti le gocce battere sulla tua testa!

Ritornello x  2

Verso 3

Tu che credevi che oramai le tue piantine
si eran seccate e non sarebbero cresciute più!
Hai aspettato un po’, ma senti come piove
sulla tua testa! Senti come viene giù!
Non eri tu che ormai ti eri rassegnata
e che dicevi che non ti saresti più innamorata?
La terra a volte va innaffiata con il pianto,
ma poi vedrai la pioggia tornerà!

Ritornello x 2

LYRICS IN ENLGLISH

Refrain:

It’s raining! Listen to* how it’s raining! Madonna** how it’s raining! Hear how it’s coming down!

It’s raining!

Listen to* how it’s raining! Madonna** how it’s raining! Hear how it’s coming down!

Verse 1
Have you seen that it’s raining? Listen to how it’s coming down!
You said it wouldn’t rain anymore!
That by this point you would never fall in love again!
And now look at yourself, you’re all wet!
And it’s raining! Madonna how it’s raining
on your head and the air is refreshed,
and it will rain until the earth is full again
and then it will clear up!

Refrain

Verse 2
Hear the drops that beat on the roof!
Hear the noise as you roll over in bed!
Uhm, it will be reborn, it’s being born now!
Listen as it rains and the grain matures,
and you will become great and regain your strength,
and those leaves that to you seemed dead
uhm, they will repopulate (rebloom on) the branches again
It’s Spring knocking at your door!
And it’s raining! Madonna how it will rain
Before the sun comes back to make a party for us!
Uhm listen! Hear how it’s raining!
Feel the drops beating on your head!

Refrain x 2

Verse 3
You who believed that by now your little seedlings
had dried up and would never grow again!
You waited a while, but feel how it’s raining
on your head! Listen to how it’s coming down!
Wasn’t it you who by now had resigned yourself
And who said you would never fall in love again?
The earth is sometimes watered with tears,
but then you will see the rain come back!

Refrain x 2

(*Sentire is the ‘sensory’ verb and can mean hear, feel, listen.)

(**Madonna is the Virgin Mary and is often used as an exclamation, like saying Oh my God!)

Ahh, la pioggia, a volte triste, in altri momenti romantica.  A volte nutre, ad altre destrugge. Come ti fa sentire TU la pioggia?

[Ah, the rain, sometimes sad, other times romantic. Sometimes it nourishes, and other times it destroys.  How does the rain make YOU feel?]  Comments welcome below!

Posted in Italian Music, Italian Vocabulary, learn italian | Tagged , , , , , , | 3 Comments

2 for Tuesday: Scioglilingua | Tongue Twisters

[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!

3 tigri contro 3 tigriEccone 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! 🙂 ]

10-100-1000 limoniSuggerimenti & Consigli:

  •  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!

See more tongue twisters here: Italian Tongue Twisters | Sopra la panca…

Posted in Expressions, italian tongue twisters, Italian Vocabulary, learn italian | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Fave 3 Friday: Handling the Holidays – Calma, sangue freddo e un respiro profondo | Calm, cool and a deep breath

[Note: Any text in Italian is followed by the English translation.]

Le feste invernali sono alle porte e per molti di noi, il Natale può essere una ricorrenza tanto bella quanto stressante. Forse per l’ansia di trovare il regalo perfetto, partecipare a cene e ricevimenti, o per alcuni, sentire la mancanza di familiari lontani o assenti. Quello che ci serve è una boccata di aria fresca, con lo sfondo romantico della Costiera Amalfitana. Ecco tre immagini catturate la scorsa primavera che vi voglio regalare…

The winter holidays are upon us (literally, “at the doors”), and for many of us, Christmas can be an event that is as stressful as it is beautiful. Perhaps it’s the anxiety of finding the perfect gift, attending dinners and parties, or for some, feeling the absence of family who are far away or have passed. What we need is a breath of fresh air, with the romantic Amalfi Coastline as a backdrop. Here are three images captured last spring that I want to give you as a gift…

Sogno o realtà? Sulla strada per Ravello percorrendo la Costiera Amalfitana… / Dream or reality? On the road to Ravello traveling the Amalfi coastline.

Sogno o realtà? Sulla strada per Ravello percorrendo la Costiera Amalfitana…  |  Dream or reality? On the road to Ravello traveling the Amalfi Coastline…

VillaRuffolo + Sea.WM

Golfo di Salerno visto dai giardini di Villa Rufolo a Ravello.  |  The Gulf of Salerno seen from the gardens of Villa Rufolo in Ravello.

Positano.WM

Cartolina da Positano: l’incantevole paese della Campania, con le sue case color pastello costruite direttamente sul precipizio.  |  Postcard from Positano: The enchanting town of Campania (region) with its pastel colored houses built right into the cliff.

Sono sicura che ora va meglio. A volte basta poco per rilassarsi e gestire lo stress. Voi come ci riuscite? E cosa fate per ritrovare il vostro equilibrio?

I’m sure that now you’re feeling better (lit. “it’s going better”). Sometimes it takes very little to relax and handle stress. How do you manage it? What do you do to regain your balance?

Auguri di stagione!  |  Seasons greetings!

 

[Grazie al mio collaboratore speciale, Lobsang Burzacchini]

Posted in Fave 3 blog posts, Italian Holidays, Italian Vocabulary, learn italian, Photo Foto Blog, travel with jodina | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Fave 3 Thursday: Parole di gratitudine | Words of Gratitude

[Note: Any text in Italian is followed by the English translation.]

ringraziemento-harvest-cneterpiece-pumpkins-candles-aplesNello spirito della gratitudine e in osservanza del Giorno del Ringraziamento, ecco tre cose per cui sono grata:

In the spirit of gratitude, and in observance of Thanksgiving Day, here are three things for which I am grateful…

  1. I miei studenti e i lettori di questo blog, senza i quali non potrei seguire la mia passione nell’insegnamento di questa bellissima lingua. |  My students and blog readers, without which I couldn’t follow my passion of teaching this beautiful language.
  2. Internet, senza il quale sarebbe molto più difficile fare quello che faccio.  |  The internet, without which it would be much more difficult to do what I do.
  3. Gli amici e i familiari, vicini e lontani, che mi appoggiano e spronano a modo loro,  tramite i mezzi a disposizione (telefono, social media, contatti diretti), a dare il meglio ringraziemento-Snoopy+woodstock-reverse imageper inseguire, sviluppare e condividere i miei obiettivi e idee, cosa che mi da uno scopo nella vita. Grazie!  |   Friends and family, near and far, that support and spur me on in their own ways, by available means (phone, social media, direct contact) to give my best in following, developing and sharing my goals and ideas, which gives purpose to my life.  Thank you!

Buon Giorno del Ringraziamento a tutti!  E voi di che cosa siete grati?  |  Happy Thanksgiving Day to all!  What are YOU grateful for?

 

[Grazie al mio collaboratore speciale, Lobsang Burzacchini]

 

Posted in Fave 3 blog posts, Italian Vocabulary, learn italian, Vocaboli Italiai | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Fave 3 Friday: Una, due, tre porte in Toscana | One, Two, Three Doors in Tuscany

[Note: Any text in Italian is followed by the English translation.]

“Chiusa una porta si apre un portone.” Significa che quando perdi un’occasione c’è subito un’altra opportunità. Quindi, nella vita, siate ottimisti e fiduciosi!

This Italian idiomatic expression translates roughly as “Closed one door, a bigger door opens.”  It means when you miss out on one chance, there will be another, perhaps better, opportunity soon after. The English equivalent is “When one door closes, another opens.” Therefore, be optimistic; trust life!

Ecco tre delle mie foto preferite di porte in Toscana. Chissà che si nasconde oltre la soglia…  Riccamente ornate con le loro cornici di pietra, uno immagina che sia qualcosa di incantevole.

Here are three of my favorite photos of doors in Tuscany. Who knows what’s hidden beyond the entryways… Richly ornate in their stone frames, one imagines that it must be something lovely.

Greve in Chianti Door WM

 

1. Sulla sinistra | On the left:

Porta di legno soleaggiata e circondata da piante a Greve in Chianti. | A sunny wooden door surrounded by plants in the town of Greve in Chianti.

N.56 Studio Legale Parbuono.Montepulciano.Door.WM

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2. A destra | On the right:

Una vecchia porta a Montepulciano. Adoro la visuale dei vecchi mattoni, le crepe, e l’intonaco dei muri intorno. Notate il nome sulla targhetta a destra: Studio Legale Parbuono, traducibile approssimativamente come “uno studio legale che sembra buono”.  |   An old door in Montepulciano.  I like how you can see all of the old bricks, cracks, and plaster on the walls around it.  (The name plate to the right says Studio Legale Parbuono, which roughly translates to “Seems Good Legal Studio”. Lol!)

n. 10 via della foruna.Montepulciano.Door.WM

 

3. A sinistra | On the left:

Nº 10 di via della Fortuna a Montepulciano. Vorrei risiedere ad un indirizzo così speciale.  C’è persino un vecchio ferro per pulire le scarpe! | No. 10 Fortune Street in Montepulciano. I’d like to live at such a special address. There’s even an old iron shoe cleaner!

 

 [Grazie al mio collaboratore speciale, Lobsang Burzacchini]

via della Fortuna.MonteP.street sign.WM

 

Quale porta è la tua preferita? / Which door is your favorite? Sei ottimista? / Are you an optimist? Adoro leggere i vostri commenti! / I love to read your comments!

Posted in Fave 3 blog posts, Italian idioms, Italian Vocabulary, learn italian, Photo Foto Blog, Sayings, Vocaboli Italiai | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Fave 3 Friday: Words To Live By | Parole di vita

Questa settimana condivido tre parole preferite. | This week I am sharing three favorite words:

assaporare | passioni | apprezzare

savor | passions | appreciate

Permettetemi di contestualizzare. Questa settimana ho saputo che è venuta a mancare un’amica d’infanzia. Un tempo eravamo molto vicine, poi, traslochi di famiglia, scelte di vita differenti e soggiorni in paesi distanti, avevano creato molta distanza tra noi. Comunque sia, occuperà sempre uno spazio prezioso nel mio cuore e nella memoria dei ricordi.

Let me put those in context. This past week I learned of the passing of a childhood friend. At one time we were very close, but family moves, different life paths and far-away travels had put distance between us. All the same, she will always hold a cherished place in my heart and in my memories.

Ancora una volta lheart with hands, sunseta vita mi ha ricordato di quanto può essere effimera. Era giovane, vivace e conduceva un’esistenza piena e significativa, finché un tumore non ha deciso di prendere residenza nel suo cervello. La notizia mi ha profondamente rattristato e ricordato che viviamo sempre di tempo preso in prestito e l’unica certezza è il momento presente.

Once again life reminded me of how fleeting it can be. She was young, vibrant and living a full and purposeful life, until a tumor decided to take up residence in her brain. The news saddened me greatly, and reminded me that we are always living on borrowed time, and that the only certainty is the present moment.

Sulla sponda opposta di tristezza e lacrime, la morte della mia amica mi ha ispirato ad onorare la sua memoria e rinnovare il mio voto a vivere pienamente.

On the other side of sadness and tears, my friend’s death has inspired me to honor her memory by renewing my vow to live life fully.

Ecco ancora quelle parole… parole di vita: | Here again those words… words to live by:

Asapora ogni giorno. |  Savor each day.

Non rimandare l’inseguimento delle tue passioni. | Don’t put off following your passions.Jenny Behnke

Apprezza ciò che è bello e dì alle persone importanti nella tua vita che le ami. | Appreciate what is good in life and tell the important people in your life that you love them.  

In memoria di Jenny Behnke. | In memory of Jenny Behnke.

 

 

Posted in Fave 3 blog posts, Italian Vocabulary, learn italian | Tagged , , , , , , , | 12 Comments