Sunday, January 15, 2023

¿Prefieres el invierno o el verano?

Durante el invierno hay mucha lluvia o nieve.  Las temperaturas son bajas, con mucho viento.  Los deportes del invierno incluyen el esquí, ir en trineo y patinar en el hielo.  

Aquí en Oregon, el invierno dura desde diciembre hasta marzo.

Pero si vives en el hemisferio sur, estos meses son el verano.  La gente visita la playa, les gusta nadar o jugar al béisbol.  No necesitan los abrigos grandes. Así que, si no te gusta el tiempo de ahora, puedes viajar a Sudamérica y tomar el sol.

Tuesday, November 2, 2021

Día de los Muertos is NOT Halloween

Here's the link for an interesting article from a school in Puebla, México.  It even has a glossary at the end if you need vocabulary help, and you can click on the arrow to listen as well.  Good information and great reading practice!  The subject is vast;  there is a lot of information out there.

And, if you like movies, try Coco, a Disney Pixar film that takes place at this time.  It's available on Netflix as DVD only.

And you can search this blog for an earlier post about Día de los Muertos.

Tuesday, October 19, 2021

 el 19 de octubre 2021

New class starting today!  For really truly absolutely beginners!  If you're already registered, great.  If not, the class is full but I'll be offering it again in the Winter Term.  Hope to see you then.

¡Bienvenidos, todos!

I'll post the notes from this class under the tab that says OLLI Classes 2018-21.

Monday, March 8, 2021

New OLLI class is starting on March 30, 2021.  We meet twice a week, on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons, 3:30-5, for four weeks, ending on April 22. OLLI is still offering classes via Zoom, and we are finding fun ways to make this work for learning languages.  This class is called More Spanish for Advancing Beginners.  It's intended for OLLI members who have a beginning level of proficiency and would like to advance a bit.  Hope you can join us!

Sunday, December 13, 2020

        La Virgen de Guadalupe, patron saint of México 

                               and all the Americas

Her feast day is December 12 and is always a huge event.  This year, however, is different.  The Los Angeles Times notes that in Mexico City:

"For weeks, church and civic authorities have been urging people to stay away from the storied shrine — erected alongside the hillside where, according to Catholic teaching, Mary, the Mother of Jesus, appeared to a peasant, Juan Diego, in 1531, just a decade after the Spanish conquest. The apparition and the central artifact of veneration — an image of the Virgin that is said to have been imprinted on Juan Diego’s cloak, which is now preserved and on view at the shrine via a moveable walkway — helped solidify Catholicism among Mexico’s indigenous masses."

"Bowing to the COVID-19 pandemic, Catholic and civic leaders canceled this year’s celebrations, which usually draw up to 10 million fervent disciples, including many who travel long distances to give thanks and seek the protection of the patron saint of Mexico. Saturday was the actual feast day, but visitors began arriving weeks before, many camping along the route.

The shrine, the most visited Roman Catholic site in the Americas — and second in the world only to the Vatican — was closed from Thursday through Sunday. A massive security deployment sealed off nearby streets. The basilica’s environs took on a ghost-town appearance except for the overwhelming police presence.

The shutdown came as Mexico is experiencing an alarming spike in coronavirus cases. Mexico City, home to almost 9 million people, is at the epicenter. Mayor Claudia Sheinbaum warned Friday of a COVID-19 emergency and issued an urgent appeal for people to stay home."

Monday, September 21, 2020

New OLLI class Tuesday, Sept. 22

Bienvenidos a todos los estudiantes de Inching into Intermediate Spanish.

Busca la página OLLI CLASSES, 2018-2020.

Monday, August 3, 2020

Taco Chronicles - yummy series on Netflix

If you'd like to see how real tacos should be, take a look at the Taco Chronicles on Netflix.  Each one tells about a different type of taco and shows various examples in different places.  If you're not hungry now, you will be after watching this!

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Medical terms to know

I'm posting a link to good, short article from Gritty Spanish about basic communication about medical problems.  Master these now for some future travels.  Incidentally, you might add Gritty Spanish to your language-learning resources.

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

El Cinco de Mayo - ¿Qué es y por qué celebrar?

I first posted this several years ago, but it bears repeating (and a good workout for your Spanish language studies.)  I recommend having a Corona beer, even today, the 6th of May.

El Cinco de Mayo

NO ES LA INDEPENDENCIA DE MÉXICO.  Eso se celebra el 16 de septiembre, cuando en 1810 el Padre Miguel Hidalgo del pueblo Dolores dio su "grito de independencia" de España.

 El cinco de mayo conmemora la Batalla de Puebla de 1862, en la cual los mexicanos ganaron una victoria sobre el ejército grande y poderosa de Francia.

El presidente Benito Juárez había pedido prestado mucho dinero de Inglaterra, España y Francia. Pero no pudo devolver el dinero.  Inglaterra y España negociaron con Juárez, pero Francia quería conquistar a México e invadió su territorio.

Durante esta guerra los franceses avanzaron desde Veracruz hacia la ciudad de México con mucha confianza y seis mil soldados.  Pero en la ciudad de Puebla, el 5 de mayo de 1862 después de una larga batalla, el pequeño ejército mexicano ganó y los franceses tuvieron que retirarse.  Los franceses perdieron más de 500 soldados mientras los mexicanos, bajo el general Zaragoza, un tejano, perdieron solo 100 hombres.

Aunque los franceses lograron conquistar a México y lo controlaron durante seis años hasta la ejecución del Emperador Maxmiliano y su esposa Carlota en 1867, se considera la Batalla de Puebla como una victoria simbólica contra el imperialismo europeo en las Américas.

En México se celebra muy poco el cinco de mayo, excepto en Puebla.  En los Estados Unidos ha llegado a ser una ocasión para celebrar la herencia y la cultura mexicana.

Para más información, recomiendo

Monday, May 4, 2020

Zooming in at OLLI

May 5, 2020 is the start date for my new OLLI class, Spanish for Advancing Beginners.  The class is currently full, and I have requests from several people already who would like to join if anyone drops.
Since it's my first time using Zoom for teaching a class, I am reluctant to invite more students to join us.
But I have high hopes after watching my TPRS guru, Blaine Ray, teaching online classes from complete beginners through amazingly advanced students. We'll be taking it slowly, remembering that each person learns at their own speed and readiness.  And, of course, we will have some fun!

Monday, March 30, 2020

¡Vamos al cine!

¡Vamos al cine! Let's go to the movies! ¡We're going to the movies!

En español, "the movies" in general is "el cine."
But "el cine" can also be the movie theater.  En Ashland hay dos cines, el Varsity y el Ashland Street Cinema.

¿Cuál es tu película favorita?
What's your favorite movie (or film)?
We used to use "película" in our cameras as well until digital photography took over.

Ahora podemos ver películas en la tele. 
Now we can see movies / films on TV.

"Dolor y Gloria" es un film por Pedro Almodóvar.
Here we're using the word film, possibly to indicate the high quality or artistic merit we expect, and are definitely given in "Pain and Glory."  This film is the very best Almodóvar has made, in my opinion.  I loved it.  Watch it!  Listen to the language.  Enjoy.

And if you enjoy streaming movies at home, read this from
streaming n (audio, video) (voz inglesa)streaming nm
  ver por internet nm
 Streaming allows you to watch TV shows online without downloading them first.
 El streaming te permite ver los programas de la tele en línea sin tener que descargarlos antes.

Keep learning Spanish!  The online possibilities are endless.  Take advantage of them.

Sunday, January 26, 2020

Go see the Prado at the Varsity Theater in Ashland ! ?

At 2:00 pm on Monday, Jan 27, and again at 4:00 pm, the Varsity is screening a documentary about the incredible Prado Museum in Madrid.  Go take a look!

"The first cinematic journey through the rooms, stories and emotions of one of the most visited museums in the world. Its wealth of over 8000 art treasures is a spell-binding experience drawing almost 3 million visitors to Madrid every year."
Initial release: June 3, 2019 (Czechia)

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

¿Te gusta el invierno?

Hoy está nevando en Ashland.  Me encanta ver la nieve y me gustaría esquiar.  Pero tengo que ir a clase en OLLI.  ¿Cómo voy a llegar allí?  Podría caminar con mis botas puestas.  Podría montar en bicicleta pero no sé si sería buena idea.  O bien, podría manejar el carro, pero tampoco me encanta la idea.  Sería un experimento con mi cuatro por cuatro.  Ah, ya sé.  Lo más probable es que voy en autobús.  Pasa muy cerca de mi casa y me lleva directamente al Campbell Center.
¿Qué haces tú cuando nieva?

Sunday, October 6, 2019

Posting again, it works!

Last May, I found myself unable to post new pages.  In September, I figured out why.  So, go ahead, you'll find my latest class notes right where they ought to be.

Monday, September 2, 2019

OLLI Fall 2019 - Still Advancing in Beginning Spanish

Hola, queridos estudiantes.  Welcome to class.  We start on Wednesday, Sept. 18, at 9 am.  Notice that this term we meet on the SOU campus, in the Stevenson Union / Student Union, in Room 319 (on the third floor). Remember also that we meet twice a week, on Fridays also at 9 -11 am.  Bring your ears and willingness to participate.  See you soon!

Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Problems with this blog - sorry

  I can edit all the pages, but when I try to update/ publish, they don't show up.  If anyone can help, please let me know.

Meanwhile, a friend has suggested this video, Extra, to help you learn Spanish.  It's funny and generally comprehensible.

Sunday, February 17, 2019

OLLI Class: Spanish for Advancing Beginners 2019, Spring Term

Welcome / Bienvenidos OLLI students
a la clase de Spanish for Advancing Beginners
Spring / Primavera 2019
Wednesdays /miércoles and Mondays /lunes, 
May 8 - June 5 
3:30 - 5:30 pm

This class will be held in the Campbell Center at SOU, Room C, on Wednesday and Monday afternoons, for two hours, 3:30 - 5:30, for a total of 8 sessions.  Note that this is TWICE A WEEK.  Each class is different and builds on the ones before.  We start on May 8; there is no class on May 27, Memorial Day; the last class is June 5.

This is NOT a class for people who have never studied Spanish before at all.  However, if a few years have passed since your last exposure to Spanish, that's OK.  It will come back.  If you've had some classes in basic Spanish and have a general grasp of grammar, you'll be fine in this class.  Knowing about verb conjugation (in present tense, at least), common vocabulary, gender endings, and approximate pronunciation will be very helpful.  
(Just a note to folks who've done some serious study of Spanish and can function on your own -- you would be better served by enrolling in a class more appropriate to your needs.)

No textbook is required.  Your primary way of acquiring the language is through listening and reading.  In class, you'll listen (and contribute fun details to our stories); then, at home, you can read the notes I post here as well as the stories we create together in class.   

I'm looking forward to seeing you in class! 


Monday, July 23, 2018

Intermediate Spanish: Dudas y Preguntas

Fall Term, 2018 
Tuesday and Thursday afternoons, 
3:30 pm - 5 pm, 
September 11 -- October 4.  

The class will be conducted entirely in Spanish, but students are urged, even required ¡?! to ask for clarification or repetition at any time.  It's open to students who feel relatively comfortable reading in Spanish but may hesitate to talk because they're nervous about vocabulary, usage or grammar.  We'll be telling stories and amusing ourselves too much to worry a lot, but this will be a great time to resolve some of those nagging doubts.

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Class Cancelled April 19, 2018

Lo siento muchísimo, pero no me encuentro bien.  No puedo dar la clase hoy.  Estoy muy triste.  Gracias por venir a esta clase, ha sido muy interesante para mi. - Teri

Monday, April 16, 2018

Top 10 sure signs you've gone native in Spain

If you live in a country for a while, you start picking up their customs without realizing it.  It's called
For example, "You have breakfast in a bar."
"Cultural Adaptation".  What do you think of these habits?  ¡Ojo!  These apply to Spain, not necessarily to every Spanish-speaking country!  (From The Local, news of Spain in English.)

Friday, March 23, 2018

New class starting April 3, 2018!

It's an intermediate class called "Dudas y Preguntas" in which we will tackle some of those common questions about Spanish.  As of this moment, there is still room in the class for a few more students, so sign up with OLLI if you think it's for you.  If you're not sure, leave me a question in the "Contact us" part of this blog.  ¡Hasta pronto!

Thursday, February 1, 2018

So how do you learn a language?

Here's a very very brief look at some prominent theories of language learning and development.  There are links to each one, as well.  FluentU has lots of useful videos, lessons and other aids to language learning.

Monday, January 29, 2018


Shakira won the 2018 Grammy Award for Best Latin Pop Album.  You can listen on You Tube (haz clic aquí here.)

Here's the entire list of nominees and winners in the LATIN field.  You can probably find some good music here.


Best Latin Pop Album:
Lo Único Constante — Alex Cuba
Mis Planes Son Amarte — Juanes
Amar Y Vivir En Vivo Desde La Ciudad De México, 2017 — La Santa Cecilia
Musas (Un Homenaje Al Folclore Latinoamericano En Manos De Los Macorinos) — Natalia Lafourcade
El Dorado — Shakira -- WINNER

Best Latin Rock, Urban or Alternative Album:
Ayo — Bomba Estéreo
Pa’ Fuera — C4 Trío & Desorden Público
Salvavidas De Hielo — Jorge Drexler
El Paradise — Los Amigos Invisibles
Residente — Residente -- WINNER

Best Regional Mexican Music Album (Including Tejano):
Ni Diablo Ni Santo — Julión Álvarez Y Su Norteño Banda
Ayer Y Hoy — Banda El Recodo De Cruz Lizárraga
Momentos — Alex Campos
Arriero Somos Versiones Acústicas — Aida Cuevas -- WINNER
Zapateando En El Norte — Humberto Novoa, producer (Various Artists)

Best Tropical Latin Album:
Albita — Albita
Art of the Arrangement — Doug Beavers
Salsa Big Band — Rubén Blades Con Roberto Delgado & Orquesta -- WINNER
Gente Valiente — Silvestre Dangond
Indestructible — Diego El Cigala

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Beginning Spanish at OLLI, Winter 2018

Today's the first day of this class.  3:30-5:30 at Campbell Center, SOU, Ashland.
Stay tuned, come on back tomorrow to see notes from this class, right here.  Hasta luego.

Saturday, January 6, 2018

El Día de los Reyes Magos

Hoy es un día festivo en muchos países hispanos. Es el 6 de enero, el Día de los Reyes Magos, el Epifanía.
En la tradición cristiana los Reyes Magos del este llegaron a Belén para adorar al bebé Jesús Cristo después de su nacimiento el 25 de diciembre.  Ellos llevaron regalos de mirra, incienso y oro.  Entonces en muchos países se dan regalos en el día 6 de enero y se supone que los regalos vienen de los Reyes Magos.
En España el día más importante para los niños no es el 24 ni el 25 de diciembre.  Es el 6 de enero.  Oficialmente las fiestas empiezan el día 5, en que las familias españolas esperan la Cabalgata (parade) de Los Reyes Magos.  Los Reyes montan a camello o van en carrozas (floats), tirando dulces a los niños.  Más tarde en casa los niños dejan en un lugar prominente sus zapatos y también unos platillos de dulces o comida para los Reyes y los camellos.  En la mañana del día 6, los niños “buenos” encuentran sus regalos de los Reyes.
Otra tradición importante es la comida.  El Roscón de Reyes es una torta redonda, con fruta confitada encima.  Dentro del roscón (o rosca) se encuentra una figura miniatura de un rey y también un haba (fava bean).  Las familias y amigos comen el roscón en el desayuno o como postre.  La persona que encuentra el rey es el rey de la fiesta y va a tener buena suerte durante el año, pero la persona que encuentra el haba tiene que pagar el roscón.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Escucha la música para aprender español

Take a look at this post by FluentU another source of language learning.  They suggest some fine Spanish-language songs.  It's fun to listen and find your own favorites.  Personally, I've always liked the group Maná, and I'm thrilled to find a song of theirs on this post.

Incidentally, if you're looking for the lyrics to almost any song in Spanish, look for "letra" + name of the song.  I've posted the "letra" for Mana's song, Mi verdad, in the Música section of this blog.

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Fall 2017 OLLI class starting soon

My latest Spanish class at OLLI starts this coming Wednesday, Oct. 11, at 1:00 pm at the SOU Campbell Center.  It's for Real Beginners, those with absolutely no knowledge of Spanish except for maybe "tequila, por favor."  We'll be telling stories together in an active environment, with participation from everyone.  Notes from the class will be posted in the OLLI classes 2017 section of this blog.  Hasta luego.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Lecturas culturales

The Spanish Institute of Puebla offers classes in México, but for those of us who can´t go there, they also offer many online services, free! Gratis! Por ejemplo, since I'm on their mailing list, I got (tuve) this recently about el día de la Candelaria, 2 febrero.  Plus you can listen to someone read it aloud!

Take a look (Echa un vistazo):

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

El Día del Amor y de la Amistad

"Feliz Día de la Amistad" "Feliz Día de San Valentín"

En México como en otros lugares del mundo hay una costumbre a echar "piropos" a las mujeres.  Estos pueden ser graciosos, serios, sexuales, vulgares, o bien una expresión de admiración o amistad o amor.
A continuación verán algunos que he encontrado en la maravillosa red (www):

 La mejor que me ha pasado en la vida, es que tu estés en la mía.

En este día tan especial de San Valentín, yo solo quiero decir que te quiero sin fin.

 No supe lo que era la amistad hasta que a mi puerta viniste a tocar.

No necesito muchos amigos, con uno como tú tengo suficiente.

No me dejes de amar, ni siquiera cuando te hayas ido para siempre.

Me gusta tanto una buena comida, como tu amor y tu alegría.

Me gustaría ser bolso para conocer tus secretos.

En el día de todos los enamorados te doy lo que siempre te he dado. Amor por todos lados.  

Y también, unos poemas del gran poeta del Romanticismo, Gustavo Adolfo Bécquer, 1836-1870, de Sevilla, España, de su obra Rimas y Leyendas: 

[A ella. No sé...]
Por una mirada, un mundo;
por una sonrisa, un cielo;
por un beso... ¡Yo no sé
qué te diera por un beso!

Los suspiros son aire y van al aire.
Las lágrimas son agua y van al mar.
Dime, mujer, cuando el amor se olvida,
¿sabes tú adónde va?

Rima XXI
¿Qué es poesía?, dices, mientras clavas
en mi pupila tu pupila azul,
¡Qué es poesía! ¿Y tú me lo preguntas?
Poesía... eres tú.


Sunday, January 29, 2017

technical difficulties

Problemas con el blog.  I am having a lot of trouble posting changes on my Current OLLI Class page.  Please be patient.  Suggestions welcome!

Uupdate:  Apparently Blogger and MS Word are incompatible.  I added a new page, OLLI Classes 2017.  It should work.

Monday, December 12, 2016

(Today, 12 December, is the feast day of the patron saint of México.  Whether or not you are a believer, you should know about her as a part of Méxican culture and the language you are learning.
Para la historia de la Virgen de Guadalupe, que es importantísima en la cultura de México, pueden leer esto de la iglesia Católica:
OR take a look at the Huffington Post version, in English.

 Más de dos millones de mexicanos rinden tributo a la Virgen de Guadalupe (de Noticias Telemundo)

Basílica de la Virgen de Guadalupe
Los feligreses viajan desde diferentes lugares de México para honrar a la Virgen
México.- Más de dos millones de mexicanos se han reunido en la Basílica de Guadalupe para rendir tributo a la Virgen Morena en el 485 aniversario desde que se le apareció al indígena Juan Diego, que se cumplirá mañana.

En una peregrinación ordenada los fieles comenzaron a llegar a la Basílica desde el inicio del fin de semana y para continuar una tradición, le cantarán "Las mañanitas" a la virgen a las 12 de la noche.

Personas con imágenes de la Guadalupe en diferentes tamaños entonan cantos de agradecimiento, piden deseos y realizan promesas a la figura más querida del país, a la cual los creyentes asocian con milagros en sus familiares y sus allegados.

Por caer en fin de semana la jornada previa a la celebración, las autoridades calculan que este año podría implantarse un récord de fieles en la Basílica que podría llegar a más de siete millones de visitantes.

Para dar seguimiento a posibles delitos las autoridades instalaron cinco puntos de denuncia ante Ministerio Público, aunque hasta ahora se mantiene un saldo blanco y el ambiente es festivo y de devoción.

Virgen de Guadalupe

Se espera que este año más de nueve millones de personas visiten el temple de la “Virgen Morena”.

Durante casi 500 años, la imagen de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe ha sido el símbolo de esperanza, paz y amor, uniendo a los pueblos de todo el mundo como una sola familia de Dios. Su día de fiesta, 12 de diciembre, ha sido designado como un día nacional de oración y solidaridad para las familias de inmigrantes por la Conferencia de los Estados Unidos de los Obispos Católicos.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Why is a tip called a propina?

According to, A.Word.A.Day, with Anu Garg,
it's from Latin.  And the English version is propine, which I notice my computer underlines as an English misspelling and which I had never known before. 


(pro-PEEN, PYN)

verb tr.: To gift, tip, or pledge.
noun: A gift or tip.

From Latin propinare (to drink to someone’s health, to present), from Greek propinein (to drink first, to give), from pro- (for, before) + pinein (to drink). Earliest documented use: 1448.

“The priests of a neighbouring convent, in expectation of the ample donation ... which Cedric had propined, attended upon the car.”
Walter Scott; Ivanhoe; A. Constable & Co.; 1820." "

Saturday, September 17, 2016

¡Viva México!           ¡Viva México!        ¡Viva México!


El 16 de septiembre es el Día de la Independencia de México.  Se celebra en todas partes del país, con música, danza, comida, fuegos artificiales y más.  En el Zócalo del D.F. (la plaza central) el presidente de la república aparece y da "el Grito, o el Grito de Dolores."  Y la gente responde con mucho entusiasmo.

En realidad México no consiguió su independencia de España totalmente hasta 1821, pero se celebra el inicio de la Guerra de Independencia cuando padre Miguel de Hidalgo y Costilla  dio un discurso en el pueblo de Dolores en el estado de Guanajuato, y la gente empezó a luchar contra el gobierno de España.

Nota que el 5 de mayo no tiene nada que ver (has nothing to do) con la independencia.  Ese día marca una batalla contra los franceses en Puebla en 1862.

Saturday, March 5, 2016

Películas en la biblioteca

Our wonderful Jackson County Library has movies en español on DVD for you to borrow, gratis!  One that I particularly like is Living is easy (Vivir es facil, con los ojos cerrados).  It takes place in Spain, with a high school English teacher who LOVES the Beatles. 

You can request these titles, just like requesting a book.  ¡Búscalas!

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Local bilingual magazine: Caminos

Para practicar tu español e informarte sobre los eventos en el Rogue Valley, puedes visitar el sitio web de Caminos, o bien, busca su revista impresa en varios lugares del valle.

Give it a try!  ¡Inténtalo!

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

New OLLI class beginning Feb. 17, 2016

A new class at OLLI at SOU is starting on 17 February, at 9 a.m.  It's full of eager students, ready to advance their knowledge of Spanish.  ¡Bienvenidos a todos!
You might want to roam around this site, see what other classes have done.  Reading and listening are the ways we acquire language, so that's what we'll do in class.  After each class, notes will be posted here, on the "Current OLLI Class" tab.

Saturday, September 5, 2015

No se aceptan devoluciones / Instructions not included

I just heard that this movie is now available on YouTube.  Enjoy!  This is the one we'll be watching in class at OLLI in October.

Al cine en español

There's a new class coming up at OLLI at Southern Oregon University this October.  It's called Al cine en español.  We'll be using a movie, and maybe a video or two, to help decipher spoken Spanish.  We'll watch a bit, stop, think, go back, repeat...with vocab and grammar help as appropriate.

Other opportunities are available on the site.  Great videos from many lands, at all levels from "newbie" to "native/bilingual".  There are subtitles as well as word-by-word explication.  Check it out.

Using video/film to learn language gives you lots of advantages - time, repeats, colloquial language. and no embarrassment about not getting it all the first time! 
  • Take it slowly. Give yourself time to think, try listening without subtitles a few times first.
  • Don't tackle an entire film.  Choose one or two scenes at a time.
  • Choose one variety of Spanish, for example, Mexican, peninsular Spanish, Argentinian, etc.  
  • Choose videos you enjoy!  
  • Listen most carefully to monologues or simple, two-person dialog sections.  Busy street scenes or group conversations are more difficult to manage.  
  • Try putting yourself in the place of one of the characters and see if you can say his lines yourself.  
And, if you can get a few laughs, even better!
¡Que te diviertas!

Friday, May 8, 2015

Feliz Cumpleaños, Enrique

Hoy es el cumpleaños de Enrique Iglesias.  ¡Cumple 40 años!  Algunas de sus canciones que más me gustan incluyen "Alguien soy yo," " Nunca te olvidaré,  y claro, "Bailando. "  Si no conoces a Enrique, búscalo en YouTube o en la sección de Música en este blog.  Enrique es el hijo de Julio Iglesias, otro cantante español excelente.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Como vivir bien

(Borrowed from an anonymous Facebook post)

  • Speak Spanish
  • Kiss French
  • Dress Italian
  • Spend Arab
  • Party Caribbean
  • Eat Peruvian

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Academy Award nominee

Relatos salvajes, película argentina. Watch the trailer.
Another chance to practice listening to Argentine Spanish--maybe it will win the Oscar!  Maybe it will even come to Ashland!

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

New class starting now!

Several students from Adelante Dos have asked for more classes.  We start tomorrow, 11 Feb, at 11:00-12:30.  There will be four classes in the series, on Wednesdays, last one on 4 March.  Contact me through this site, phone or by email if you want to join us and didn't sign up at the last class.
¡Hasta luego!

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Spanish word of the day


This site often has useful vocabulary.  But it also has very advanced expressions as well, so you can pick and choose.  Here are a few words from today's list.


el inodoro - toilet
el lavabo - sink
el papel higiénico - toilet paper
el grifo - faucet with soundclips - travel

cualquier cosa - anything at all
cualquiera de los dos - either of the two
cuatro letras - a few lines
cuatro palabras - a few words

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Una buena película: Valentín

Valentín is about a small boy living in Buenos Aires with his grandmother in the late 1960´s, seeing his father occasionally and wondering why his mother never comes to see him.  It's a lovely, touching story.  The actors speak very intelligible Argentinian Spanish, so it's good practice to listen.  And, you can read the subtitles, too.  I found it on Netflix Instant streaming but you may find it on Amazon as well.   La recomiendo.

Monday, January 12, 2015

Adelante Dos, Winter OLLI class, started today.

OLLI winter class started today.  If you are looking for the class notes, click the "Current OLLI Class" tab.  If you are looking for Bailando, by Enrique Iglesias, check the Música tab.
If you didn't make it to class today and you were on the list, be sure to contact the office if you want to continue with the class, or if not, please let them know so someone on the waiting list can join us.
And remember, this class meets twice a week, Mondays and Wednesdays. 
¡Hasta el miércoles!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Small class under way

Our first class of this series took place yesterday, 18 de noviembre, with four students.  We will continue tomorrow, 20 noviembre, at 3:00 p.m.  Skipping Thanksgiving week, we will have two more lessons the following week at the same time, on Tuesday, 2 diciembre and Thursday, 4 diciembre.  Join us!
See the tab for Current OLLI Class for more information (even though it is not an OLLI class.)

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

New Class starting Nov. 18, 2014

NEW small group class scheduled!
Starts Nov. 18, 2014, for advanced beginners/low intermediates. 
We'll have 4 or 5 sessions, 1.5 hrs each one, 3:00-4:30 pm.  Dates are Nov. 18, 20, (possibly Nov. 25), Dec. 2, Dec. 4.
$60-$75 for the series, depending on that pre-Thanksgiving class, or $15 each session.
Contact me for Ashland location.
I'd love to have you join us.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Reading in Spanish

There are a number of wonderful books available online.  Try this one, courtesy of our friend "Pancho," from Children'  Poke around their site, and feel free to share your finds with us.  Gracias, Pancho.


Friday, November 7, 2014

¡Más español!

  • Hay un grupo de conversación y lectura española que se reune todos los jueves desde las 3:00 hasta la 5:00 de la tarde. Tiene lugar en el piso de arriba, en el "study room" en la biblioteca de Ashland. Todos están bienvenidos.

  • Unos estudiantes de la clase ¡Adelante! están tratando de organizar unas lecciones privadas con Teri. ¿Qué les parece cada martes a las 3-4:30, el 11 de noviembre-9 de diciembre?  ¿Otras ideas?
     Si tienes interés, mándame un correo electrónico a
  • Estoy pensando en ofrecer una clase "Singing in Spanish" durante el trimestre de primavera en OLLI. Si tienes interés, o experiencia en la música o cantar, dímelo, por favor.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

La Llorona

La llorona is a folktale told throughout Mexico and the American Southwest.  It tells about a young woman, her wealthy husband, and her children.  For an extensive look at this legend, try this article from a New Mexico newspaper, 2007, by Paul Harden.

Also check the Canciones / Songs / Música section of this blog for three versions of the song, Llorona.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

El Cinco de Mayo

NO ES LA INDEPENDENCIA DE MÉXICO.  Eso se celebra el 16 de septiembre, cuando en 1810 el Padre Miguel Hidalgo del pueblo Dolores dio su "grito de independencia" de España.

 El cinco de mayo conmemora la Batalla de Puebla de 1862, en la cual los mexicanos ganaron una victoria sobre el ejército grande y poderosa de Francia. 

El presidente Benito Juárez había pedido prestado mucho dinero de Inglaterra, España y Francia. Pero no pudo devolver el dinero.  Inglaterra y España negociaron con Juárez, pero Francia quería conquistar a México e invadió su territorio. 

Durante esta guerra los franceses avanzaron desde Veracruz hacia la ciudad de México con mucha confianza y seis mil soldados.  Pero en la ciudad de Puebla, el 5 de mayo de 1862 después de una larga batalla, el pequeño ejército mexicano ganó y los franceses tuvieron que retirarse.  Los franceses perdieron más de 500 soldados mientras los mexicanos, bajo el general Zaragoza, un tejano, perdieron solo 100 hombres.

Aunque los franceses lograron conquistar a México y lo controlaron durante seis años hasta la ejecución del Emperador Maxmiliano y su esposa Carlota en 1867, se considera la Batalla de Puebla como una victoria simbólica contra el imperialismo europeo en las Américas.

En México se celebra muy poco el cinco de mayo, excepto en Puebla.  En los Estados Unidos ha llegado a ser una ocasión para celebrar la herencia y la cultura mexicana.

Para más información, recomiendo

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Yerba mate al estilo argentino

You can find "yerba mate" in various grocery stores.  This video is from a friend of mine, who filmed her Argentinian friend Alicia making and enjoying mate.

¿Entiendes el español de argentina?

Friday, January 10, 2014

How can you speed up learning?

Here's a fascinating talk about learning new things, especially languages.  Much of it is based on studies by Dr. Stephen Krashen, whose work has also informed my methods of language teaching and learning.

Chris Lonsdale:  How to learn any language in six months.

Watch.  See what you think.  Try it on Spanish, I'm trying it on Russian.  Good luck.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Archeological discovery in Ecuador

The Telegraph, from Great Britain, has recently reported on a fascinating archeological site in Ecuador that presents more questions than answers so far.  It appears to be a huge wall at a 60-degree angle, up to 260 feet tall.  Take a look.  I also found it very interesting to read the comments of interested readers, especially since the explorers themselves comment and respond to questions and speculations.

Un pensamiento

"Every language is a world. Without translation, we would inhabit parishes bordering on silence."

     ---George Steiner, via archipelagobooks

Monday, December 16, 2013

Tradiciones navideñas

Las posadas begin today in México.  Every night for these nine nights before La Navidad, many people celebrate this tradition in their neighborhoods or cities.  Las posadas literally translates in English as "the inns" or "the lodgings" and symbolizes the Biblical journey of Mary and Joseph as they searched for shelter in Bethlehem before the birth of Jesus.

The nine-day celebration lasts from December 16 to Christmas Eve (Noche Buena) or "Holy Night") and includes a candle-lit procession of children and parents reenacting Mary and Joseph's journey through Bethlehem.  As with all holiday traditions, there are numerous variations.  Not every Hispanic country celebrates Las posadas.

The holiday ritual includes a lively and colorful pageant of neighbors and friends (the "pilgrims" or peregrinos) - costumed as Joseph, Mary, angels, shepherds and the Three Wise Men - who travel from house to house until they reach a designated home where Las Posadas will be celebrated that year. Each night they may be admitted to a different house, where celebrations take place on a minor scale.  Upon arrival at a home, the hosts or "innkeepers" meet the procession at the door to begin the holiday fiesta with an exchange of lyrics from the traditional Pidiendo Posada.  The song includes lyrics asking for lodging, and the pilgrims continue to be refused entrance until they are recognized as the Holy Family.  On the last night, 24 December, the designated hosts throw the biggest party.
Parties often include food, drink, prayers, music, fireworks and piñatas.  Hot chocolate, tamales, buñuelos, arroz con leche, orange and beet salad are among the traditional foods offered.

Thursday, November 28, 2013