Tuesday, November 16, 2010


 Plants find support within the city walls to continue growing.
 "You need only support and self confidence to go on studying this difficult language."

Your friend,

These are the words my friend gave me when I told her I was feeling discouraged about continuing with my Croatian classes. 
 Support, we all need it!


  1. Its so true, we all need a bit of support! I have those moments too with my Hungarian. Sometimes it just seems impossible to grasp. This is a perfect post for my Tuesday morning

  2. The most important thing in learning a language is not to feel discouraged and to use the language shamelessly even though you know what you are saying is not perfect or even close to what you want to say. Learn with Beli and pick up her methods and never ever give up!

  3. I was just talking about this today as well! Learning a new language is never easy, but we learn so much through perseverance!

  4. Learning a new language can be difficult although it’s so easy for children to learn; they've no shame or worries about mispronouncing a word. If you feel a little timid (Which is absolutely normal) I would suggest this: Start speaking to children until you feel more comfortable speaking to adults, they’ve a beautiful soul and will always correct you when you mispronounce a word or explain a word you might not understand.
    That’s what I did when I was learning a new language and I can’t tell you how much it helped me. Good luck, you can do this!!

  5. That is VERY VERY true!! That's the theme, sorta, of my own blog post today!!!! :-)

  6. with time and patience...you'll get there !

    thank you so much for your comment and interest on the advent calendar. I was looking for your email address to send you a message as i didn't put the advent calendar on the etsy shop. If you are interested, i can have one calendar ready to ship to France on monday with the quotes written in French too if you wish.
    Can you send me your email address and i send you more infos (price + shipping) about it ? thank you

  7. Diana, I knew you spent time in Poland, but I didn't know you were learning another language. It's very important to have a support group, so I'm not alone right?

  8. Jelena, sometimes I feel ashamed because Beli knows more than me. but I told my friend that even if I can't make it to classes, I will continue studying on my own. Even if it means staying up late in the evenings while Beli sleeps (usually when I have free time.) I have to get serious about it. I don't want to be a quitter. thank you for your words of encouragement.

  9. @traveling Mama,

    Tina,so we are not alone, adults learning a foreign language. for you it's therapeutic to work with your hands (ie: making cards) for me, I guess it's blogging. (ps. I love your shop profile posts)

  10. Thank you Ana, you are right, kids don't mind correcting you, but adults they just kinda smile at you (even though they want to laugh) but don't want to correct you. I do have my Mother-in-law correct me, because I can ask her to slowly repeat the phrase when I mispronounce what I'm trying to say.

  11. dear Elisa,

    getting ready to go to Holland (we are dutch), I am reading your thoughts about the Croatian language.
    so let me tell a bit, to inspire you.

    english, german, a bit of french, I learned it all and I keep pushing schoolgoing kids in our croatian surroundings to learn english, the world language.

    when we came here this year all I could say was "hvala, polako and jedan pivo".
    being a "communicator" not being able to communicate was horrible to me, but day after day I managed to talk a bit more, so today I dare to not only go to people here for a coffee and sit deaf/dumb/blind, but we talk !!!!

    I still make a million mistakes and thousands of moments I don't understand at all what people say, but they understand so they slow down, and we have (hvala Bogu) in interactive communication.

    I will never speak the language like native Croatians, so what, as my English is limited too, but when I keep on pushing like I push those kids, I will manage, and so will you !!!!!!!

    I don't like Nike (bloody commercial), but I love their "Just Do It", and what about Obama who said: YES WE CAN !
    and for finals, my own "famous" words:
    "you don't have to be perfect, aiming for it is perfect enough" !

    radi ti, svaki dan !!!!!!
    hvala na blog, pozdravi I vidimose, Pim.

  12. Oh, Elisa, I am so amazed by the fact that you know so many languages. I think it's wonderful that you're learning Croatian, and I can imagine it is so difficult for you, but really, I'm so proud that you continue to stick with it! I'm sure that at times it's ridiculously frustrating (I feel this way so often as I attempt to figure out French under the scrutiny of my French mother), but I really admire your commitment to it! :)
    Good luck, Elisa!

  13. @Poetess,
    you are a good person!

  14. Pim, I will take your own 'famous' words to heart. So so true. thank you so much for your encouragement. I admire that you are pushing the kids to speak English. hava a safe trip. and I will translate what you said:

    "work, every day"!
    "thank you for the blog, greetings and see you."

    Fala lipa Pim!

  15. Allison, thank you. I really appreciate your words of encouragement. I really do. I think you have to want to learn the language or at least be interested in it so even when it gets challenging, you still have a desire to continue. Did your Mom speak French to you growing up? I know it's difficult (especially growing up in the States)to continue with your native tongue unless you really immerse in the culture. I lost a lot of my Spanish through my years in High School and College (so now how I wish I can speak more grammatically correct). But I can get by. I'm sure you know more French than you give yourself credit.

  16. It's always hard to learn a new difficult language. I'm currently learning Mandarin with the traditional characters, which makes it much more difficult. But I'm planning to move to Taiwan and I need to be at least able to communicate, write and read on a basic level. I know my native language Slovenian can be difficult for foreigners. My girlfriend can use few phrases, but when I start to explain her the grammar and why we have so many endings, that change seemingly randomly, she's totally lost. I know Croatian is similar to Slovenian, but many think it's a bit easier to learn. I hope you find courage to learn in the future. Mastering it will be very rewarding in the future. Good luck.

  17. What a lovely post to encourage yourself (and others, by the way)! At the moment I am working with some new foreign students from France and Poland in my studies, and as their German is still poor we often have to communicate in pieces of all languages we have. But this is fun, it often creates a lot of laughter and in the end we even manage to transport the intentions. The most important thing is: don't be shy to talk even if you know it's not the right words! It doesn't matter! Keep on practising! ;o)

  18. Thanks MKL. in some ways croatian grammar is similar to spanish, you have to conjugate the verb depending on the pronoun, but I will have to say croatian has way way more rules!

    Hey Bravo to you, it must also be challenging to learn a language with characters. I will continue to persevere and good luck on your life abroad.

  19. Tania, thank you.I can imagine the fun you must have communicating, I do something similar with the ladies from my class. Every Thursday we meet for coffee or to do some crafts, or catch a movie and since we are from all around the world, Croatian is the common language so that's what we speak, we use our hands a lot but it's fun. I will try to get out of my comfort zone...

  20. Such wonderful words of support! I believe in it. And these are lovely pictures. Thank you so much for dropping by - I love meeting new bloggers and thrilled it led me to your lovely blog! (I've had some expat adventures, though never had to learn Croatian! :), and excited to also meet others who are going through/have gone through the same).

  21. Jude,thanks for stopping by and for your kind words, it's always nice to 'meet' other fellow expats.

  22. Elaine, I always love coming by your blog. I read 4 posts all at once! I'm also trying to learn a new language, Indonesian. I hear Croatian is very hard, so I can't imagine trying to learn a difficult language since learning a new language at this age is hard enough even though Indonesian is considered one of the easiest languages in the world! I have learned a very basic and can get by with what I have learned. Maybe because I know that I can get by, I haven't felt motivated to go further with the language lately although I'm still taking the class. I want to get motivated. Let's work on the language learning together! Kaho

  23. Kaho,
    that's interesting about Indonesian being an easy language but like you said, it's still difficult to grasp it (at our age) so yes I like the idea of motivating each other. Maybe if i remind you once in a while, hey kaho, how are your lessons going. and vice versa.


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