Thursday, August 23, 2012


Anyone who knows me remotely well knows that I'm a sucker for languages. I look back on college and kick myself for not doing a linguistics minor or double major. What was I (not) thinking? It's not the end of the world though, because if anything college just teaches you how to learn. It's most definitely not the only time of your life spent learning (and I am talking about school-y stuff, not life stuff). I graduated a year ago, and since I'm a Canadian waiting for a greencard in the US, I can't work here yet. It's been nice, I'll be honest, to have the freedom and time to do what I want., and the break from reading academic papers and writing my own has been a delight. Oh, and no deadlines? Amazing. It's all been lovely and, in my opinion, well deserved (I worked hard). And I should mention, I have worked hard at other things in this last year; I'm not totally lazy.

I was a bit burned out when school ended, especially with Arabic. That language killed me for two and a half years, so I took a much-needed break.

Anyway, about two weeks ago I started craving learning again. Like real, hard, disciplined learning. So, I'm happy to announce that I'm diving back in. (I just realized this sounds like an announcement of grad school plans, which it's not... maybe eventually, but not yet).

No no, I'm simply pushing myself again. I'm getting back into arabic, learning more Español, and, this is my favorite part, learning Swedish! I'm obsessed with all things Sweden these days, and I really don't know where it came from, but let me tell you, it's insatiable. If I'm not playing with my Swedish language apps, or listening to a Swedish podcast, I'm reading Wikipedia articles about Vikings, or browsing Ikea catalogues... nothing new there, but I'm proud to say that I can now pronounce the product names. That's about where I am with Swedish. I'm working on the alphabet and how to pronounce it all. It's got just a few extra letters (ö, ä, å) but it's just like English, in that pronunciation makes next to no sense whatsoever. :)

I try to read through things out loud to work on pronunciation, and I'm just learning vocabulary with a handy little app I found. I have yet to delve into the grammar, or even know where to look to learn it.

And here's where I bear my testimony. I'm a Mormon, or a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I love the church for so many reasons, the main ones being that it's true, simple, answers my questions, and helps me to be happy. Aside from all that though, it's just an incredible organization. Since it's a worldwide church, we have materials in nearly every language. This is SO helpful for a language learner like me. I have used the church's Arabic and Spanish websites a ton, and now the Swedish one is helping me. I decided to jump in and memorize The Living Christ... In four languages. I started a week ago and I have the first paragraph down in English, Spanish, and Arabic, and about half in Swedish. It's tough in Arabic because I really know no church vocabulary, so I'm learning a lot. Swedish is just hard because it is, in every sense of the word, foreign.

Wish me luck as I finish paragraph one in Swedish and tackle the first half of paragraph two this week!

*I also have to recommend doing this. It's been enlightening. If you know a foreign language give it a shot, and if not, do it in English! You won't be sorry. The Family: A Proclamation to the World is next on my list!

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