Saturday, February 21, 2015

Dr. Benjamin Carson's Amazing Speech at the National Prayer Breakfast wi...

Oldie but goodie. Dr. Benjamin Carson's Amazing Speech at the National Prayer Breakfast.

Shake - สั่น (Chinese Version) Boy Sompob OST Lovesick The Series

Shake - สั่น - (Chinese Version) - Boy Sompob OST. Lovesick The Series [Official Lyric Video]. Sing along with Chinese characters and Pinyin letters.

See the original Thai song Shake on a video with lyrics and English translation. 

สั่น (Shake) - บอย สมภพ OST. Lovesick The Series [Official Lyric Video]

สั่น (Shake) - บอย สมภพ OST. Lovesick The Series [Official Lyric Video]. A lovely song in Thai with lyrics and English translation. The video is available on the official channel of boyzmusic or boyz Sompob, the Thai singer, song writer and producer. Because he has so many Chinese fans, he created a Chinese version of this song as well.

Basic Greetings in Mandarin Chinese: Hello, How Are You, Thank you, Goodbye

Basic Greetings in Mandarin Chinese: Hello, How Are You, Thank you, Good-bye etc. 你好!

Learn basic Chinese greetings with Emma including these simple phrases. You can find most of these short phrases on Forvo with a nice pronunciation from a native Mandarin Chinese speaker for some repetition practice.

Nǐ hǎo. 


hǎo ma? 
How are you?

Wǒ hěn hǎo.
I'm fine.


Xiè xiè.
Thank you.


Nǐ ne? 
How about you?

Bù kè qì! 
You're welcome.

Zài jiàn! 

Friday, February 20, 2015

Vlogging Cameras: Canon N, Canon N2 and Canon N100 Review and Comparison...

Vlogging Cameras: Canon N, Canon N2 and Canon N100 Review and Comparison | iJustine. The Canon PowerShot N2 Digital Camera (White or Black) has not released yet on Amazon. When it is, it looks like the price will be $2.99. Here is a video review by iJustine comparing Canon N, Canon N2, and the Canon N100. She talks a little about vlogging.

Speak Chinese - Tones

A short and sweet video about the basics of Chinese tones using a vowel sound as the example, and not words. - Learning Chinese as a second language is an exciting, enriching process and New York Chinese Language Center teaches you to make the most of your thrilling new skill.

Habit 2 - Begin With the End in Mind

In this video LingQ founder Steve Kaufman compares language learning to ideas in The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey. Setting a goal is so important for learning a new language.

With Russian, my goals are pretty typical. I want to learn Russian so I can read Dostoevsky in his native tongue. I want to be able to communicate proficiently when I get the chance to travel in Russia. I want to be able to understand the news, videos, songs and movies without subtitles or text. I don't think of fluency as my end goal, yet at the same time I also don't think in terms of my goal of learning Russian ending.

What I mean by that is when I got out of high school, I didn't think in terms of being done learning Spanish. I am not a fluent speaker, but the Spanish language is very much a part of my life. For decades I genuinely enjoy listening to Hispanic music, watching Spanish movies, reading the news in Spanish, or talking with people I run across in their language.

I think that making a habit of using a language is an important part of working toward the goals we set. The first video in Kaufman's "seven secrets of successful language learning" series talks about spending the time to learn the language. I think it is fundamental to think of goal setting in terms of spending the time to develop a habit. Spending time with the language has to become a habit if we're to succeed meeting our goals.

That's probably why Covey used the word "habit" in his book's famous title. A more recent look at The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business by Charles Duhigg.

Learn How To Say Sorry in Chinese

Video that teaches how to say "I'm Sorry" in Mandarin Chinese. This phrase is in Pimsleur Mandarin Lesson 1. Check out the Dui Bu Qi - Daily Mandarin Lesson for a sound file and more examples of how to use this phrase.

duì bu qǐ

I'm sorry
I am sorry
Excuse me 

The Seven Secrets of Successful Language Learning: #1 Spend The Time

I find LingQ to be a great tool for learning Russian. I have no trouble spending time with the language because I enjoy it. I do all of what he says. I watch Russian movies on my Kindle Fire. I watch and listen to tons of Russian songs on YouTube. As you can see from my blog, I watch all kinds of videos that YouTubers have taken the time to teach others Russian. Every day I spend time at LingQ going through their podcasts and following along on my iPhone or home computer.

But, there is one thing about this video that I think is a little misleading about a foreign language learning. When Steve Kaufman mentions that we need to spend time with the language and that he isn't talking about drills, grammar and an annoying classroom environment. I think it is important to recognize LingQ is one tool where you can listen to podcasts in multiple languages and read the correct words at the same time. But LingQ isn't quite enough.

I don't mean this to be at all a negative review of LingQ. I've seen other videos Steve Kaufman has shared on YouTube where he shows a wall full of dictionaries, books and other language sources. Because of this I'm positive that he uses more than LingQ as just one of his tools to learn new languages. I might be wrong, but I also don't think that he totally forsakes learning grammar. I think he just means ... try to make the tasks fun and not a chore.

When it comes to practicing Russian on LingQ, there is a user named Evgeny (you'll definitely find those if you're studying Russian there) and he talk about patterns and sometimes name certain cases and other grammar features in Russian. I had no trouble looking for grammar information online and then applying it to what I'd been listening to at LingQ. When teaching myself languages online on my own, I haven't found studying sentence composition, pronunciation and grammar to be unpleasant.

Леди Гага - "Водку пей" - Lady Gaga's Poker Face in Russian

Someone put up a parody video based on the style of Lady Gaga's song Poker Face in Russian.

I found it because I noticed that apparently American singer Lady Gaga got engaged to actor Taylor Kinney.

Some other words I learned via Twitter ... ШОК! - Shock!

#ЛедиГага - Леди Гага hashtag - Lady Gaga hashtag in Russian

Леди Гага выходит замуж! - Lady Gaga is getting married!

имидж - image

«Оскара–2015» - 2015 Oscars

Бейонсе - Beyonce
Эд Ширан -Ed Sheeran
Стиви Уандера - Stevie Wonder

«Грэмми» - Grammy Awards

Garmin vívofit: set up with your computer

The Computer Setup for Your vívofit page on Garmin Connect.

I'm saving another helpful video for a friend that is interested in the Garmin Vivofit Fitness Band - Black Bundle (Includes Heart Rate Monitor). They are not a smartphone user, so they're interested in connecting with the Garmin Vivofit using their home computer.

Garmin Vivofit - How to Add Heart Rate Monitor

Garmin Vivofit - How to Add Heart Rate Monitor - A short video showing how to set up a Garmin Vivofit Fitness Band - Black Bundle (Includes Heart Rate Monitor) using the iPhone app. I am saving this video and link for someone interested in this product.

Learning more than one language at a time: some useful tips

Polyglot Luca Lampariello answers the question “Is it possible to learn more than one language at the same time, and if so, how should I go about doing it?” in a 13:34 minute video and accompanying blog post.

I think he hits the nail on the head that for  most people two is the practical limit to learning languages effectively for most people because who has time to get a good base (net) with four or five languages at the same time?

I'm not afraid of learning working on two languages at the same time. I've been working on Chinese and Russian. They're different enough I'm not confused. At least not yet. I'm not really worried about overcoming challenges I may run across because I'm interested enough that I'll keep plugging away. If I waste a little time, I'm not really in that much of a hurry, I'll have had fun along the way so it won't matter to me.

But along these lines, there is one thing I've noticed when I'm studying Russian. Spanish is my second language, and sometimes Spanish sometimes seeps into my mind when I'm working on Russian. I think it because Russian and Spanish have some sounds in common, and since I knew Spanish already my brain was finding it a little easier to relate to the Russian sounds from Spanish than from English.

So, my question for a polyglot might be ... do you work on a third language from a second? Or do you always work on languages from your native tongue?

I like to watch videos on YouTube that Russian speakers have created teaching Mandarin words and phrases because I find it easier to read the Russian alphabet then Pinyin at this stage in my learning. So far isn't confusing me to think of connecting new Mandarin words to both Russian and English equivalent. I would be curious to know if others find it useful or not so helpful.

Pimsleur Russian Lessons

I'm a bit of a spendthrift, so rather than buy Pimsleur Russian, I checked out the CDs from my local library. Unfortunately by local library only has the Conversational Russian option, and not the comprehensive sets of Russian lessons. I find the format of Pimsleur easy to follow, and the lessons in nice bite-sized chunks. I have also noticed that words I've learned to pronounce in Russian via Pimsleur tend to translate faster with my Google Translate app. I use that app on my iPhone to practice my pronunciation.

Here are a Pimsleur Russian options at

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Learn Chinese - May I ask, Can you speak English

Learn Chinese - May I ask, Can you speak English (YOU LEARN SERIES/ LANGUAGES)

Ten (10) minute video that teaches how to ask "May I ask, can you speak English?" in Mandarin Chinese. The first part of the video features the whole phrase, then he breaks it down by character teaching how to write them as well as pronounce.


Skype Translator (demo Microsoft)

Saving this video demo ... I'm curious about keeping an eye on the development of Skype Translator. Looks like some people are able to use it now in a "beta" version of sorts to help Skype develop the idea.

University Heights Bridge in NYC

This cool photo of the University Heights Bridge in NYC was features on the Twitter Tuesday Shadows Flickr blog. He shadows of decorative wrought iron railing is beautiful. The whole post reminds me I don't spend enough time on shadow photography.

University Heights Bridge, 10.25.14

Here are a few of my own shadow photos that I had fun taking.

Photo of weathered iron in light and shadow beneath a bridge or railroad trestle near Multnomah Falls outside Portland, Oregeon.

Shadoe photo of the shadows of bunting flags falling on drab cement. Monotone photo but it isn't black and white.
Bunting Shadows on Cement Poster
Bunting Shadows on Cement Poster by annaleeblysse
Shop for Posters & Prints online at

Some abstract shadow photos. The Harris shutter effect takes multiple exposures with different colored filters so that any movement shows up in a rainbow of color. This is what the Harris shutter effect does to shadows of branches and leaves dancing on a sidewalk on a windy day. I thought the patterns of colors made the sidewalk look tie-dyed.

Create and hang homemade duì lián

I was out and about on Chinese New Year and saw some duì lián (对联) hanging in at the Peppermill Resort Hotel in Reno, Nevada. Here is a blog post on Yoyo Chinese with description of the tradition and some ideas on how to create create and hang your own duì lián (How Chinese People Celebrate Chinese New Year).

Happy New Year

Create Your Own Favorite Color Unicorn Wall Decals

Pick a color! Any color! You can use Zazzle system to create your own fantasy creature set or single unicorn wall decals with a unicorn either trotting or rearing up. All you have to do is customize them with a new color or keep the black unicorn silhouette look. When you customize these stickers, you'll see there are over a hundred shape options.
Choose A Color Unicorn Room Graphic
Choose A Color Unicorn Room Graphic by annaleeblysse
Browse Unicorn Wall Decals online at
Pick A Color Unicorn Room Sticker
Pick A Color Unicorn Room Sticker by annaleeblysse
Look at Unicorn Wall Decals online at
Choose A Color Unicorn Prancing Wall Sticker
Choose A Color Unicorn Prancing Wall Sticker by annaleeblysse
Check out other Unicorn Wall Decals at

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Ordinals in Russian (first, second, third...)

A helpful video from the Russian Grammar YouTube channel created by Dr. Curtis Ford via the University of South Carolina. This lesson talks about ordinals in Russian. Ordinals are numbers turned into adjectives that will be declined in Russian as other adjectives.

двадцать первый
двадцать второй
сто первый
двести первый

Black and White California or Nevada Lake Tahoe Area Wedding Posters

The shapes of the states of California and Nevada in black and white with customizable red heart shape that you can move to commemorate a Lake Tahoe destination wedding, or maybe the couple's home town. Right now the heart shape is placed over the Lake Tahoe area but you can move the heart shape around as that image is independent of the map shape. You can also customize the background color and add a custom text message for the happy couple.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Hard and Soft Consonants in Russian

A couple helpful pronunciation videos on the Russian Grammar YouTube channel created by Dr. Curtis Ford via the University of South Carolina. The first of these videos focuses on hard and soft consonants in Russian, and the second continues with using the hard and soft signs. If you'd like some more practice with pronunciation check out the Phonetics pages at Learn Russian by RT.

"A brief introduction to hard and soft consonants in Russian: how to pronounce them, and how they're spelled."

"This tutorial gives more detail on use of the letters ь and ъ - the soft and hard signs - in Russian. To get the most of this video, be sure to watch our tutorial on the basics of hard and soft consonants."

Dr. Ford has a handful of useful grammar videos on that channel. Definitely worth subscribing to for a new learner.

What Fifty Shades of Grey Readers Have In Common

Description of the video: "What do readers of Fifty Shades of Grey have in common? A recent study showed strong correlations between health risks in women's lives - including violence victimization - and consumption of Fifty Shades of Grey material. Stefan Molyneux speaks with Dr. Amy Bonomi about the study's findings and what can be learned from the popularity of Fifty Shades of Grey."

When I this book first came out, I was so frustrating that the media portrayed 50 Shades of Grey as a book everyone loved, and yet it just wasn't a well written book. I even remember the ladies on The View even embarrassed poor President Obama by asking him if he'd read the book. They were giggling like school girls in love. It was pretty pathetic display, even for The View.

Watching this video by Stefan Molyneux I'm double disappointed and frustrated that the media continues to hype Fifty Shades of Grey. It is yet one more example of how out of touch and clueless the mainstream media is in presenting culture and news accurately. How could they have missed that the vast majority of women that bought this book didn't like it and didn't even finish reading it?

Toward the end of this video interview are warning signs for domestic violence that women should watch for in a relationship.

Cool Futuristic Sci-Fi Sky Video - Marina Massanova - Catatonia

Marina Massanova - Catatonia / ELLO UP^ /

English language song Catatonia by Marina Massanova on a Russian music video YouTube channel. The song isn't exactly my style, but I think the science fiction style futuristic sky and scenery in the video is awesome.

Here are a few comments in Russian I saw on the YouTube page.

Видео конечное крутое!
Какой красивый клип!
Неплохо, мне понравилось.

EARTH NIGHT returns with new premieres Tuesday, March 10th 2015 at 9/8c

Saw a reminder promo video that Earth Night is returning to BBC America in March with Wild Alaska and Frozen Planet. From the promo it looks like they'll have some amazing footage! From description beneath this video they're focusing on the arctic and antarctic.

France Flag Wedding Merci Thank You Heart Stickers

Blue, white and red colors of the flag of France with thank you in French. Merci! Thank you stickers for a destination or French themed wedding.

Pin It!

Custom 2015 Pi Day Gifts at Zazzle

There is an epic Pi Day in 20015 when sequential time will occur on 3/14/15 at 9:26:53 (3:14:15 9:26:53) following the sequence of pi. You'll find pi symbols on customizable products at There is typically a great sale going on and you still have plenty of time to get a Pi Day tee. Look for more color options for pi symbols on a wide range of gifts in the Silhouette Emporium online shop.

Epic 3:14:15 9:26:53 Pie Day
Epic 3:14:15 9:26:53 Pie Day Men's Dark Tee by silhouette_emporium
Build a t-shirt from Customize this one with your own text.
Pi Symbol Mugs
Pi Symbol Mugs by silhouette_emporium
Make mugs online at Zazzle. Add a personalized text message.

White Grunge Pi Symbol iPhone 5C Covers
White Grunge Pi Symbol iPhone 5C Covers by silhouette_emporium
Shop for other covers for the iPhone 5C at Zazzle. You can change the size and placement of the pi symbol.
Navy Blue Pi Symbol Trucker Hats
Navy Blue Pi Symbol Trucker Hats by silhouette_emporium
There are other hat colors available. Check out more Navy Hats at Zazzle.
Navy and White Pi Symbol Pendants
Navy and White Pi Symbol Pendants by silhouette_emporium
Make your own photo necklace charms at Delete the navy blue color image and use Zazzle's system to change the background to your favorite color.

How to Say "Yes" and "No" in Mandarin Chinese Lesson with Yangyang - Grammar 009

Yangyang shared a grammar lesson in Mandarin Chinese explaining how there is no equivalent to "yes" and "no". She demonstrated the grammar needed to answer what English speakers think of as a "yes or no" question in Mandarin.

Better Ways to Say "I Don't Understand" in Chinese

A video demonstrating a variety of ways to say "I don't understand" in Mandarin. They link to an article with more information.

tīng bù dǒng

Monday, February 16, 2015

Chinese Jujube - ююба

Ziziphus jujuba / Jujube Fruit / Chinese Date / 3inзule

Yesterday when I was watching a food based Russian alphabet video (Tasty ABC - Delicious Alphabet - Russian ABCs in the Kitchen) I found the word ююба. It translates to jujube on Google Translate, but I could see by the image on the video that they were talking about a fig of some kind and not Jujubes candy.

So I got curious about these Chinese figs that aren't so popular here where I live in the States. Via Yandex I found Ююба — Китайский Финик, from a Russian blog called Taste of Thai (looks like they have some yummy recipes). You can also search ююба images on the Russian search engine.

Russian Letter З - Звук З

буква З в виде дракона

Short YouTube videos practicing sound combinations for the Russian letter З with different vowel sounds.

Звук З 

буква З

The only sharing option was the link, embedding the video not allowed so I found some nice graphic art on Flickr of a seahorse that resembles буква З.

Азбука для детей. Учим буквы. Буква Щ

Russian language alphabet video for children learning their letters. This video might be presented in Russian, but new learners to the Russian language will understand enough for the purposes of spending 2 minutes practicing a few words samples featuring букву Щ. Here is this channel's playlist for learning other letters: Учим Буквы.


#30 Russian alphabet - Щ: the sound and the letter

Antonia Romaker's YouTube Channel has videos teaching both English and Russian. Her videos do a nice job of sharing helpful information such as this one talking about the difference in pronunciation between the Russian letter Ш and Щ. In this episode she talks a bit about position of the tongue as being what changes the sounds.

She talks about the comparison of Щ to the shch in "fresh cheese" in so many resources as being almost right. She brings up "ship" and "sharp" instead. Very helpful new bit of information, but  I think the "fresh cheese" comparison is still helpful if you think about tongue position. When I was reading books in the past that said Щ is a shch sound like in "fresh cheese", I didn't take it to mean that it is a sh-ch sound with break. I caught on that it is the tongue placement English speakers use when transitioning from "fresh" to "cheese" that can help us pronounce Щ. Note tongue placement when you say "fresh cheese" as compared to "cheddar cheese" or "bleu cheese". It is different.

Make sure to check out Antonia Romaker's Russian Alphabet playlist on YouTube for some other helpful pronunciation videos.

Panthera's Story

A video introducing Panthera's mission is to protect the future of the world's 37 different wild cat species around the globe. They share a few programs dedicated to preserving tigers, lions, jaguars and snow leopards. They talk about wild cat predators being a keystone, or absolutely vital part of ecosystems that we can't lose. "Our vision sees endangered wild cat populations rebounded, critical habitats and core populations connected by genetic and biological corridors, and a global commitment to protect these iconic species through near and distant futures."

Learn more about Panthera

For the Love of Jaguars - Nat Geo Live

A new video via Nat Geo Live YouTube Channel featuring a 21:31 minute presentation about jaguars by Alan Rabinowitz. The first few minutes are a bit about the history of jaguars moving from Europe into the New World. He shares some fascinating beliefs about jaguars among the Olmec and other ancient cultures as well as modern jaguar culture. He talks a bit about modern issues that have endangered the jaguar and how he got into studying and protecting this lovely animal. He shares a lot of information about jaguars such as they have a complex way of communicating with each other.

The jaguar featured prominently in a shape-shifter paranormal romance book I wrote years ago and have yet to self publish for Amazon Kindle. (So many projects, so little time.) Still, I took the time to watch this video. Perhaps other authors will find it a great video resource for researching the jaguar, jaguar culture, Olmec, central America, Brazil, or Mexico.

"Jaguars have captured the imagination of humans since ancient times, but face extinction in the modern day. Alan Rabinowitz, dubbed the 'Indiana Jones of wildlife protection' by Time magazine, has spent years seeking out these mysterious animals in order to protect them."

Learn More About Rabinowitz's Work

Learn Russian alphabet in 10 minutes!

The title of this video isn't a promise, it is the length of the exercise.

This YouTube video is a great 10 minute exercise to help you memorize the Russian alphabet while practicing pronunciation and reading words. The words shared are not difficult to read, and plenty are given in a fairly short amount of time. This video exercise is a great length for adding to your "Watch Later" list at YouTube and read aloud with the presenter on a coffee break at work.

If you'd like to practice writing or typing these words you've been reading after watching the presenter has the transcript with all the words shared posted here Learn Russian alphabet in 10 minutes! on her Russian Language Guide blog.

You may also find the Phonetics lesson at LearnRussian on RT very helpful.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Using To Memorize the Cyrillic Alphabet

When I was learning the Cyrillic alphabet, it was the Learn Basic Russian course at was pretty much helped me cement the new letters into my old Roman alphabet trained brain. These screen shots below are a quick look at how the site works.

First you'll plant a seed of new information such as the Cyrillic letter Р sounds like the Roman letter R. You can flip though memes that other users have created that might help you remember the new bit of information. This meme demonstrating that the country of Russia starts with a Р in Cyrillic alphabet was the most helpful for me. If you can remember what Россия looks like in writing, you got at a couple letters down.

Memrise Basic Russian Sample

As you start using the system, you'll hear the sounds and pick the right letters over and over using a variety of exercises. I used their iPhone app a lot more often than the desktop version. These images below show a few of the different exercises.

Memrise Basic Russian Sample

Memrise Sample

The Memrise app and site worked fast for me. I used it for maybe fifteen or twenty minutes a day in between other exercises on other sites. The app offers a review of previous lessons, and I didn't have to "water" my memories that many times before they were memorized. After a couple days, most of the mistakes I'd been making with the alphabet disappeared.

After I found Memrise is when it hit me for the first time that I was able to read Russian words. Most of the words I'd learned before, I'd memorized. I had one of those moments of clarity when I realized that I'd opened up a whole new world. It amazed me to think that I can look at a map of Russia now and read all those place names. I might not be ready to hit Tolstoy, but I could surely read Dr. Seuss.

When it comes to learning more Russian with my Memrise app, I haven't gotten that involved with the other Russian courses. Instead, I'm using the Memrise iPhone appto learn Mandarin Chinese.

Пин-код - Russian Cognitive Cartoons for Kids (with Subtitles)

Russian educational cartoons for kids with subtitles in Russian. Pin Code (Пин-код) cognitive cartoons teach some scientific ideas in an entertaining fashion. This particular episode is about magnets, magnetism, the magnetic poles, the solar wind, and even information about bees.

магнитный полюс
магнитное поле
северное сияние
солнечный ветер

NOTE: TVSmeshariki is in the top 10 Russian Federation YouTubers according to Social Blade.

Russian Chicken Salad Potluck Dish - Салат Арбуз (Watermelon Salad)

When I was working on memorizing the Russian word for watermelon (Арбуз), I ran across this fun looking party or potluck chicken salad dressed up to look like a big slice of watermelon. Салат Арбуз ... Watermelon Salad.

The presenter speaks Russian, but you don't have to speak the language to understand how she's putting together the chicken salad. The salad ingredients are cheese, olives, chicken, and mayonnaise. The decorations are tomatoes, cucumbers, and some more olives.

Tasty ABC - Delicious Alphabet - Russian ABCs in the Kitchen

In case you haven't run across the word before, "буква" is Russian for "letter". As in буква а, буква б, буква в...

This cartoon talking ABC cartoon video has words spelled out for each sample word. The YouTube channel that created this cartoon is full of videos for teaching Russian to Russian kids. It is definitely a good channel to subscribe to if you're new to learning Russian and want to increase your vocabulary watching images and hearing a native speaker.

This particular video is about 20 minutes long. If all you want to do is work on vocabulary, it might seem a little long. But, if you're still learning the Cyrillic alphabet the animation pauses give some time for typing along in Russian on Google Translate. Typing the words in translator is also helpful to see the definition of Russian foods and dishes that aren't common in the English speaking world.

"Развивающий мультфильм: Вкусная Азбука - Вкусный Алфавит, создан для малышей, с целью помочь детям выучить русский алфавит. Изучать буквы в этом развивающем мультфильме детям помогут знакомые продукты и еда. А так же мы надеемся, что красочные картинки еды поднимут аппетит малышам :)"

Find more information about Learning Russian Online.

You can find most of the dishes on Russian Wikipedia or, the popular Russian search engine.

лагман - Russian ramen soup adapted from the Chinese the 拉麵 (lāmiàn).

манты - Another Russian dish adapted from the Chinese 饅頭 (mántou) for steamed bread.

халва - Eastern desert with named borrowed from Arabic word for sweetness حَلاوة.

шашлык - shish kebab

эскимо (Eskimo Pie)

ююба - Chinese date jujube

Russian Alphabet Song - the official soundtrack from Talking ABC applications

"Песенка про АЛФАВИТ - официальный саундтрек приложения Говорящая АЗБУКА -- Детская песенка из букв русского алфавита. Изучаем русский алфавит легко, быстро и весело."

This song might be for preschool age children, but listening to it sure made it easy for me to memorize a few animals and creatures in Russian while I was studying the Cyrillic alphabet. In no time at all I'd see cute animal pics on Pinterest and be thinking ... ah, what a cute ёж.

While listening to the songs on YouTube I pause and practice typing and sounding out the pronunciation of words in Google Translate. If you make a typing exercise of listening to this video, you'll see юрок has another definition in Google Translate. At Russian Wikipedia (Википедия) note that юрок is short for вьюрок. Also, you can check out Википедия to see why единорог and носорог have рог in common.

The song in this video comes from Jutiful's Talking ABC Russian app in the iPhone store. The apps are available in English, Russian and Ukrainian versions. Incidentally, they have the songs in English and Ukrainian on their YouTube channel also.

I did download the Talking ABC Russian Lite version of the iPhone app. It allows you to listen to part of the alphabet song and see some of the clay animations. In the app every time you flip though to another letter, the narrator says the letter's sound. I think has better quality and design than other Russian alphabet apps I did buy, so $2.99 is a nice price. If you have a child learning either English, Russian or Ukrainian alphabet this app might keep them entertained for at least a few hours.

Another resource you'll find very helpful when you're new to learning the Cyrillic alphabet is the Russian Alphabet page at Learn Russian by RT. The page is set up with graphics demonstrating a word for each letter in the alphabet. The sound recordings have the letter coupled with the Russian word. I noticed that if you click sound icons quickly, you'll hear just the letter.

An idea for increasing your vocabulary or memorizing the names of animals is to make Pinterest into visual азбука and search for the Russian words. Russian speakers will have posted some amazing images. When I looked up акула, I quickly saw images of акула-молот (hammerhead shark), and a китовая акула (whale shark). You can also check for pronunciations of Russian words at Forvo.


юрок (вьюрок)