Saturday, February 14, 2015

Reddit Russian101 - The Alphabet (Part 1)

Reddit Russian101 put up a few videos on the alphabet four years back. As for going over the Cyrillic alphabet, it's one of the longer videos on YouTube. What I liked about it is starting about 6 minutes in they add a list of easy words to read in Russian, and give you plenty of time to read along. You will find it a useful video to pause and practice typing and spelling each word, pronouncing each word as you type it.

Is learning the Cyrillic alphabet hard? No!

The Cyrillic alphabet is just different, and has a few sounds English speakers aren't immediately familiar with. But, don't think of learning the letters in the Cyrillic alphabet as hard, think of it as a challenge that you are ready to face because you want to open up a whole new world of new languages. For me right now, it is just the Russian language I'm working on, but there was a moment when I first started reading the Cyrillic alphabet that I realized I'd conquered the first step for other languages too. It was amazing to think a whole section of the globe suddenly was full of towns that I could read the names of!

Learning the Cyrillic alphabet takes some time, not as much time as learning our first alphabet, but I wouldn't suggest paying for some app or program that makes bold promises. There are plenty of free resources online. I have a lot of resources right here on my blog. Because I post these videos and sites as I find them, the tags in my blog will lead you to posts that won't necessarily be in a useful order if you are brand new to the Russian language. On my website I have started a  Learning Russian Online list that organizes the resources I've found.

Back to this particular video ... As I watched Lesson 1 (Part 1) - The Alphabet by Reddit Russian101, I practiced typing (Learning to Type in Russian). Here are the easy to read words in the video. You can also find the pronunciation of these words at Forvo.


The Reddit University Russian page has links that Reddit users have posted. The list is not that active, but you will likely find some helpful resources.

Reddit Russian101 - The Alphabet (Part 2)

This video by Reddit Russian 101 is a great exercise in practicing your ability to spell with the letters in the Cyrillic alphabet. It goes with their video Reddit Russian101 - The Alphabet (Part 1). They suggest in the video to get some practice in with the alphabet before these exercises. In my list of resources for Learning Russian Online, I've separated these videos in the timeline.

This video is a great reminder not just to read a bunch of words Russian and try
to memorize them. Take the time to listen to the language and try to write them down yourself. Even if you get it wrong, you'll be exercising a different skills that will help you in the long run.

I found completing the exercises #1 and #2 easy because I type using Google translate.

Don't be afraid to try exercise #3! But, keep in mind that successfully writing down the long sentence at the end of the video would be much easier with even more experience with Russian grammar and words.

As for myself, I've will set myself a reminder to come back in a few months and try to write the sentence after I have some more experience.

Exercise #3 starts about 6:50 into the video.

Learning to Type in Russian

As you learn Russian online with a computer or laptop, you will find learning to type on a Russian keyboard very helpful. Learning to type will not just help you learn the Cyrillic alphabet, but when you are knew to Russian it can help you with pronunciation of new words if you voice them as you're slowly typing them. Learning to type in Russian will be a great way to increase your skills in spelling, reading, and increasing your vocabulary.

The Learn Russian site on will show you:
Here is a post with video by the polyglot Moses McCormick on how to install the keyboard of a foreign language in Windows 8: How to Install and Use Foreign Keyboards.

Once you have the keyboard installed, at you can find and buy a Russian keyboard.

Or, if you're like me and don't want to spend $30 on a keyboard, or waste money on keyboard stickers that aren't permanent, you can use a cheat sheet.

I get by by using a Russian keyboard layout cheat sheet image taped to my computer's monitor. I created a few images to choose from and posted them on this post:

Using Google Translate to Type

Lastly a tip on learning to type. Practice typing Russian words into Google translate. It helps with self-correction, because if you get something wrong ... Google Translate will not understand you and won't give you the English word you're looking for. 

How to Install and Use Foreign Keyboards

A video from Moses (laoshu505000) about how to install the Cyrillic keyboard on a Windows 8 system. He's a polyglot so it is interesting to see how people with multiple languages installed on their system can toggle between the different options.

When I first started to learn to type in Russian, I created what Moses calls a "map" and saved those images on my Flick account. You can find the images I created of the Russian keyboard here: Russian Keyboard Layout Image for Printing.

Borscht for Lunch at Aroma Club in Reno

Borscht for Lunch at Aroma Cafe

Borscht for Lunch at Aroma Club 

In Reno, Nevada you'll find a small Russian cafe and coffee shop called The Aroma Club located behind the Round Table Pizza in Reno Town Mall Shopping Center across from the Atlantis Casino, on the same side of South Virginia as the Peppermill Casino.

Besides coffee, drinks and pastries they have some soups like borscht (борщ). You can find the standard menu on their website, but on their Facebook page I've noted they will advertise specials that often feature other Russian style dishes. They have options for vegetarians and vegans.

Incidentally, the name Aroma Club ... not related to coffee. They also sell hard to find European perfumes or fragrances.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Charles Murray: Why America is Coming Apart Along Class Lines

Coming Apart: The State of White America, 1960-2010 by Charles Murray. An old interview on Reason where libertarian author Murray talks about how marriage has been changing in the last decades, and also a historical context. They talk about the rise of the welfare state.

►Balanço◄ - Mrs. Beat

Mrs. Beat by Balanço and composed by Davide Penta. A cool find at the Polido Nobre Channel at YouTube most retro music from the 60's and the 70's. Check out their "retro grooves, cocktail melodies, space age pop music from all over the world and some contemporary derivatives of retro Easy Listening including Yé-Yé, Bossanova and early Shibuya-Kei."

HBDC's Randall Honey Badger ZAZZLE Store Merchandise

Promo clip for Randall's Honey Badger store at Zazzle.

Mermaid Eyes Make-Up Tip

Mermaid Eyes - Mermaid inspired make-up eye shadow tip for your eyes by Julie G via YouTube.
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Китайский язык для начинающих | Уроки китайского языка - Приветствие

Another Russian teaching Chinese via YouTube. This video shows the etymology of characters in 你好 ... Здравствуйте.

Russian Geography Lesson 01 - Уральские горы

Today I have been working through chapter three in my The Everything Learning Russian Book with CD: Speak, write, and understand Russian in no time! book by Julia Stakhnevich. I have been using Forvo today to practice Russian pronunciation by looking up some Russian cities and other geographic names. Awhile back I'd found the RuskyED channel on YouTube where he has a series of videos regarding the geography of Russia. Check out his site to find the other videos in his geography series. Places in the first video...

Москва - Moscow

Новосибирск - Novosibirsk

Владивосток - Vladivostok

Уральские горы - Ural Mountains

Тихий океан - Pacific Ocean

Озеро Байкал - Lake Baikal

How to Say "Russia" in Russian

A 14 second video from RT's old LearnRussian channel at YouTube describing how to say "Russian" in Russian. Short and sweet. I spent some time today looking up Russian geographic names at Forvo to practice their pronunciation.


Российская Федерация

Thursday, February 12, 2015

уроки китайского языка часть 1

Вова Ли - Vova Lee has a new YouTube channel teaching Chinese for Russian speakers. I am new enough to trying to learn Mandarin that I am still memorizing the pronunciations of Pinyin written in English. Even though Russian isn't my native language, since I can read Cyrillic, I found the Russian pronunciations to be a useful tool. Definitely an interesting channel for Russian speakers that are interested in learning Mandarin Chinese. His channel is just weeks old and I'm hoping it will be here for awhile.

Russian lesson - Learn colors in context

A Russian lesson to teach colors in context. The video not only lists the colors, but has some information on forming sentences with adjectives and nouns. Here is a page on Master Russian with some information about how Russian Adjectives must agree with nouns in number, gender and case. On the same sight a Russian Visual Dictionary – Colors that has a list of the same colors used in that video with sound file very handy so you can go down the list and practice pronunciation.

Researchers discover how many licks it takes to get to the center of a T...

"Finally, an answer to an age-old question. In a new study, scientists say they can figure out how many licks it takes to get to the center of almost any lollipop." 2500 licks? Never!

Even though I was amused by this little tidbit of information, I wanted to remember that nowhere on the CBS News YouTube channel have they saved for historical information how the leaders of France, Germany, Russia and the Ukraine were involved in peace talks in Minsk, Belarus. If they want videos about things like Tootsie rolls so they can attract social media traffic, why not just get out of the news business and just go full out tubing?

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Top 5 German YouTubers And What They Earn | Get Germanized

Get Germanized talks about the top 5 German YouTubers, sharing approximate ad revenue they earn on YouTube. Incidentally, his language isn't exactly work friendly if you're in public.

The site where you can get more information is What an interesting site! According to Social Blade the Taylor Swift VEVO channel earns upwards of a million bucks a month. You can find lists of approximate revenue of popular YouTubers so you can estimate how many more views you need on YouTube to earn a living. Ha.

Learn How to Decoupage Rounded Objects

A video that is just over six minutes long showing how to decoupage a glass to create a toothbrush  holder. A simple craft project to personalize your bathroom. They have several ideas about how to apply this technique to other objects.

You can find custom wrapping paper at, and at Amazon there is a large selection of dishwasher safe Mod Podge.

The Chunking Trick

"Play along with these few memory tests to find out how good your memory is and how you can improve it. BRAIN GAMES AIRS MONDAYS at 9P." A clip from National Geographic showing a few brain games.

This video gives a name why it is easier to remember a telephone number than a long string of numbers. As for me? It sure is easier to remember a phone number when I'm familiar with the area code. I'm pretty good at remembering a phone number if it is in nearby area code! I'm not so great at remembering an area code that I can't place. Long ago I had a call center job, so I have many of our country's area codes in my long term memory. Over time I got into this habit of thinking in terms of ... Vegas 123-4567, or DC 123-4567.

Drone Footage: Tesla Tower in Russian winter

Wintertime drone footage from "Tesla Tower" near Moscow, Russia via RT. More information about this wireless energy transmission project theorized by Nikola Tesla from RT here: Russian scientists raising funds to rebuild Tesla Tower, satisfy world energy hunger.

Easy Filipino 8 - Santa Claus Wish

Easy Filipino takes on Christmas in Tagalog via YouTube.

A few words or phrases from video that can be clearly  heard in the video.

Hesu Cristo
Jesus Christ


Maligayang pasko sa lahat
Merry Christmas to all


Merry Christmas po
polite Merry Christmas


An easy-to-prepare fruity Magic Potion Float that would be great for slumber or girly birthday parties from SimpleCookingChannel via YouTube. All you need is vanilla ice cream, soda water and some raspberry concentrate syrup. As raspberry cordial syrup that the presenter is talking about in this float isn't available in the US, here are the options for raspberry concentrate at Amazon.

Razamazazzle: The Well-appointed Space Traveller Gets Accoutred

Razamazazzle: The Well-appointed Space Traveller gets accoutred: Space tourism on the rise We're taking our first baby steps in the sphere of space travel but soon, with the benefit of hindsight, it ...

Above is a blog post created with Highton Ridley's SeeMyBest Pro tool for promoting your Zazzle products within a blog post.

Below is a video (Belinda the Blogger using SeeMyBest Pro) demonstrating how to use his All about the free SeeMyBest Zazzle webpage creation tool.

Chryssa Wolfe - Successful Entrepreneur is Both Artist and Home Designer

Interview video with artist and home builder Chryssa Wolfe. - "A Washington area business woman is enjoying a fulfilling - and lucrative - career as an artist and a home builder. VOA’s Julie Taboh caught up with the busy entrepreneur to find out how she has achieved success, especially in the male-dominated construction business."

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Russian Strawberry Hubba Bubble Bubble Gum

A picture on Twitter of strawberry Hubba Bubba chewing gum from Russia via Twitter.


ПРЕМЬЕРА! Маркус Рива - Тату

Curious about how to say tattoo in Russian? This new video on YouTube will help.

тату -
тату-мастер -
tattoo artist

Ты хочешь себе тату? - Do you want a tattoo?

Some news via Twitter that I found in interesting. Here in the US, our constitution protects freedom of speech thus some idiots get inked up with symbols of hatred. 

Ice age tattoo...

№11 How I study English

Antonia Romaker, creator of a YouTube Channel that teaches both Russian and English talks about some of the ways she learned English.

She noted that when she and her family were studying, they spent many hours a day.

Starting at about 2:35 she gives a few tips and ideas on how her family used movies and entertainment as their own homemade curriculum.

Easy Italian 3 - Life at the Border

Tony from Easy Languages YouTube channel talks with some Italians about life at the Italian-French border in Menton, France. Some words:

Buongiorno a tutti - hello everyone.
la frontiera - border, frontier
frontiera franco-italiano  
chilometri - kilometers
io non parlo francese - I don't speak French

Maker Moment: Pura Vida Bracelets on ZazzleTV

Zazzle recently released a new video featuring the Maker Pura Vida Bracelets. Here is early post with their customizable handmade artisan bracelets from Costa Rica. This gift reminds me of trading friendship bracelets from my childhood. A modern take on retro style.

"More than just your everyday friendship bracelet, these bracelets represent a philosophy. The phrase “Pura Vida” (pu•ra vi•da) means "pure life" in Spanish, but it also means enjoying time slowly, celebrating and appreciating the simpler things in life. From vibrant colors to earth tones, Pura Vida Bracelets has any combination for you!"

Sunday, February 08, 2015

A Spoonful of Russian - Learn Russian Online from Russian Tutor: Russian Vocabulary - Borrowed Words in Modern Russ...

A Spoonful of Russian - Learn Russian Online from Russian Tutor: Russian Vocabulary - Borrowed Words in Modern Russian: Borrowing: The best way to think about the borrowed words in Russian is from a historical perspective. The influx of foreign words came ...

From the Spoonful of Russian blog here at Blogger, I got in another round of Russian vocabulary today by learning some borrowed words. A few samples from this video are Internet, browser, guitar, and boyfriend.

I've been practicing my typing with videos like this one... list below. The correct pronunciation of each of these easy Russian words can be heard in the video.

ток шоу

Russian Vocabulary - Antonyms (Антонимы)

Spent a few minutes watching vocabulary videos to memorize and pronounce some Russian antonyms. This video has about 5 minutes worth of common anyonyms like big and small, tall and short, left and right and few and many. "A fun way to learn Russian is by learning the words with opposite meanings. Here are some antonyms for you. Via YouTube channel from blog: Learn some Russian today! Russian for beginners."

Customizable Polka Dot Ink Pens at Zazzle

This weekend at Zazzle they've introduced customizable ink pens via the maker Pen Company of America. The trim on the pens is available in black, blue, green, red and pink. The ink colors are the standard black, blue and red. Below I've set up a few polka dot patterns in black and white, blue and white, red and white, pink and white, and a jade green and white. With each of the options you can change the background color to your liking using Zazzle's system. As always at Zazzle, you can add text if you'd like to make these into promotional pens with your business name and website on them.
Jade Polka Dots Blue Ink Pen
Jade Polka Dots Blue Ink Pen by annaleeblysse
Browse White Pens online at
Lapis Polka Dots Black Ink Pen
Lapis Polka Dots Black Ink Pen by annaleeblysse
Check out other White Pens at
Hot Pink Polka Dots
Hot Pink Polka Dots by annaleeblysse
View White Pens online at zazzle

Create Your Own Photo Ink Pins at Zazzle via the Pen Company of America

This week Zazzle released some new customizable pens available via the maker Pen Company of America. The trim colors are black, blue, green, red, and pink. The ink colors available now are black, blue and red. Already there are many options in the marketplace. Here are a few templates set up to accept a photo. Zazzle has a low minimum requirement of just six pens. The bulk rate is fairly low and currently at just 250 pens the price drops 49%.
Purple Galaxy Cluster
Purple Galaxy Cluster Custom Photo Pen Minimum 6 by annaleeblysse
Browse for Pens at Zazzle