Building Your Home Bar

Are you tired of paying way too much for mixed drinks in bars? Do you like mixing your own drinks, but aren’t sure what you need to keep on hand? You’re in luck, because I love making my own drinks, and maintain a home bar. I’m also cheap AF. Let’s get started!

Quick list:

Liquor: Vodka, rum, tequila, gin, and whiskey

Liqueurs: Triple sec, kahlua, Irish cream, peach schnapps, blue curacao, and bitters

Mix-ins: Lime juice, lemon juice, cranberry juice, orange juice, lemon-lime soda, dark soda, grapefruit juice/soda, pineapple juice, tonic water/club soda, red bull, grenadine, and simple syrup.

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Uh, why?

Liquors are the base of any bar. I would recommend at least one kind of vodka, gin, rum (I prefer white rum), tequila (I prefer silver over gold), and whiskey. Whiskey isn’t my thing, so I don’t keep it around myself, but even if you don’t like something straight, you might enjoy it in cocktails, so I would still recommend getting one of everything when you’re starting out.

Liqueurs are almost as important. They make cocktails really come together. Triple sec is in a lot of cocktails, as are kahlua, Irish cream, and peach schnapps. If you like fruity tropical drinks you want blue Curacao. It’s not really a liqueur, but bitters are used in a lot of cocktails, especially whiskey cocktails.

Juices, sodas, non alcoholic essentials include: lime juice, cranberry juice, orange juice, lemon lime soda (Sprite or Sierra mist), dark soda (cola or Dr. Pepper), club soda, grenadine, and simple syrup. Others include grapefruit juice or soda, pineapple juice, sweet and sour mix (you can make your own though!), lemon juice, red bull.

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With these ingredients you can make basic, classic cocktails like margaritas, cosmos, old fashioneds, gimlets, and many more! Always keep in mind that this is your bar. If you don’t like gin, don’t buy gin. If you love rum, get three different kinds of rum. The best part about your bar is it’s tailored to you: to your tastes, preferences, and budget.

Did you enjoy this post? What are your home bar essentials? Let me know in the comments! Share via Facebook or Twitter, and as always, follow me here on WordPress for more GREAT content like this.

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Learning a Language Part 3/3: Putting it All Together

Welcome to the final segment of our 3 part summer series on learning a new language! Part 3 puts together everything you learned in parts 1 and 2, and includes more tips for mastering the basics. Like parts 1 and 2, this guide was written by our guest, David Anthony. I hope you enjoyed our summer series!
(Catch up with part 1 and part 2)

Part 3:

So now you’ve got a language to learn, and the resources to learn it. Great! How do you go about putting it all together? Well, that’s exactly what we’re going to talk about today. If you only take away one thing from this article, it needs to be this: You can’t learn to speak a language without speaking it.

I know, it sounds very intuitive. Many people put off speaking for as long as possible, and this isn’t going to get you very far. Don’t be nervous, just go out and speak. Speak as much and as often as possible.

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The very first thing you need to do when you start out is start to learn the most useful vocabulary first. Ignore grammar, ignore learning the writing, just sit down with a phrasebook and learn how to say greetings. Learn how to ask about prices, learn some numbers, learn any culturally relevant phrases. This gives you the bedrock that you’ll build on. By ignoring grammar in the beginning, you can get to speaking sooner and learn some whole sentences. Once you move on to learning grammar, knowing these sentences will reinforce the grammar concepts. As you get more familiar with the general structure and sounds, start to incorporate more grammar and vocab into your study. Here’s a list of the 625 most common words in everyday communication. This is a good place to start, as it gives you the most bang for your buck vocabulary wise. When used in conjunction with a good overview of useful grammar, you’ll make fast language gains and quickly find yourself being able to make whole sentences easily.

As you move past the simple vocab and grammar into more intermediate territory, it’s time to get a little more creative. This is also the more fun part of studying a language, as you can understand much more than you could at the beginning. Now’s the time to start really getting into some more higher order vocabulary and grammar. I like to use news articles, tv, music, and any other media in your target language. Find something that’s interesting to you, and start reading or listening. When you find a word or phrase you don’t understand, look it up and try to make a note of it so you can work it into your study rotation.

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There’s a widespread misconception that young children learn languages better than adults. This is false. The reason it seems that way is because children constantly practice, and they get a lot of repetition. To apply this to us as adult learners, this means that you need consistency and intensity. Consistency is the most important study tool you can use. Try to study every single day. Even if it’s just for 20 minutes before you go to sleep. A few minutes every day is better than 5 hours a day once a week.

The other half is intensity. Although 20 minutes a day is better than nothing, becoming fluent with that little study is virtually impossible. That’s why many people have “studied” a language for years, and never make it past the most basic phrases. To reach a B2 on CEFR, which I personally think is the lowest level one could claim fluency at, you need anywhere from 600-1800 hours of study, depending on the language you’re learning. Basically, you need to be willing to put in the time if you ever want to reach fluency. Don’t let it discourage you, you just have to be willing to put in the work. People who learn languages quickly don’t do it because they’re doing anything differently, they’re just studying consistently and speaking as much as possible. There’s nothing wrong with dabbling in a language. Plenty of people just want to know a few words, and couldn’t care less about fluency. I’m not telling you to not do that, just be aware of what your goals and aspirations with the language are.

The last thing you need to do is push yourself. Find things that are challenging to read or listen to. Try to express a controversial opinion in conversation. Discuss politics and religion, even if you don’t feel ready. Learning a language is like exercising. You need to push yourself to see results.

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All of this might be a little discouraging, but it’s not meant to be. In fact, it’s quite empowering. All you need to do is put in the work and practice as much as you can. The rest will fall into place. Study every day, speak as often as you possibly can, and push yourself. You’d be surprised by how quickly you can become conversational in a language just by doing some hard work. There’s a million other things out there that are much more in depth than this article. If you want to get more detail about how you should go about studying, I would check out Gabriel Wyner’s book Fluent Forever. He goes into much more detail about some study techniques and tools that I personally found very useful. He’s also the guy who put together that useful 625 list! I hope this article helped you out. Feel free to contact me with any questions you have about language learning.

Thanks for reading! Are you multilingual? What are some of tips for learning a language? Tell us about it in the comments below! Did you enjoy this post? Share it via Facebook or Twitter. And, as always, follow me here on WordPress for more GREAT content like this!

Disclaimer: if you follow the Amazon links in the body of this post and make purchases through them, I will receive a small compensation from Amazon. This compensation comes from Amazon, not from you, and the price you see through my links is the same as the price you would see otherwise. However I have no association with Wikipedia or Gabriel Wyner. In an attempt to bring you the best content, we linked to the sites that we felt were the most relevant, compensation notwithstanding.

Images:

http://ods.matera-basilicata2019.it/en/open-talks/iaconesipersico-education-and-communication-open-source/

https://www.rhodes.edu/content/multicultural-affairs

10 Inspiring Hermione Granger Quotes

Hermione Granger is an amazing character. She is kind, brave, smart, independent, loyal, clever, vulnerable, hard-working, and is always willing to stand up for what she believes in. The following are just a few of my favorite Hermione Granger quotes.

10. “Just because it’s taken you three years to notice, Ron, doesn’t mean no one else has spotted I’m a girl!” Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire p.400

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Hermione likes Ron, but she’s not willing to let him be a jerk. Sometimes he was downright clueless. Instead of waiting for him to figure out what he wanted, she went out and lived her life.

9. “Are you planning to follow a career in Magical Law, Miss Granger?” asked Scrimgeour (Minister of Magic).

“No, I’m not. I’m hoping to do some good in the world!” Hermione

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows p.123-124

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When speaking to the most powerful wizard in Britain, Hermione shows nothing but sass. That takes some serious lady balls!

8.“Harry, you’re a great wizard, you know” Hermione

“I’m not as good as you.” Harry

“Me! Books! And cleverness! There are more important things– friendship and bravery and– oh Harry, be careful!” Hermione

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, p.287

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While she is often seen as a know-it-all, Hermione is truly quite humble. Here we see how much she admires Harry, and recognizes (at 12 years old, I might point out) that the things she is good at are not the only things worth being good at.

7. “Just because you’ve got the emotional range of a teaspoon doesn’t mean we all have.” Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix p.459

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Harry and Ron spend much of the later books perplexed by the opposite sex. Hermione acts as translator for the boys, and often gets frustrated with their dense responses. This quote is mostly here because it makes me laugh.

6. “We’ll go with you wherever you’re going.” Ron

“No–” Harry

“You said to us once before that there was time to turn back if we wanted to. We’ve had time, haven’t we?” Hermione

“We’re with you whatever happens.” Ron

Harry Potter and the Halfblood Prince p. 651

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This one is a combo Hermione/Ron quote. It made the list because it demonstrates their unwavering loyalty to Harry and the cause the Order fights for. This is the time when they agree to drop out of school and join Harry on his journey to destroy the Horcruxes. Hermione, who loves school, who values her education and the pursuit of knowledge doesn’t hesitate to agree to leave Hogwarts to travel with Harry and Ron.

5.“And just look at these books! …Harry, this is wonderful, there’s everything we need here!” Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix p.390

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Books=Happiness in Hermione’s mind (and mine). She sees a room full of books as the answer to all of her problems, all she has to do is read.

4. “Well, if you two are going to chicken out, fine. I don’t want to break the rules, you know. I think threatening Muggle-Borns is far worse than brewing up a difficult potion.” Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets p.165

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Hermione is a rule-follower by nature. Attending Hogwarts means everything to her, but she’s willing to risk expulsion if it means solving the puzzle they’re facing and stopping the prejudiced attacks on Muggle-Born students.

3.“The way they were treating her! Mr. Diggory, calling her ‘elf’ all the time… and Mr. Crouch! He knows she didn’t do it and he’s still going to sack her! He didn’t care how frightened she’d been or how upset she was — it was like she wasn’t even human!” Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire p.139

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One of Hermione’s most admirable qualities is her fearless pursuit of justice for everyone in the magical community. Perhaps influenced by being a Muggle-Born and a bit of an outsider, Hermione always stands up for the underdog, to whomever is challenging their rights. Her outrage at the treatment of House elves is brushed off by her best friends, but she relentlessly pursues her goals of freeing the enslaved race of magical creatures.

2. “I hope you’re pleased with yourselves. We could all have been killed– or worse, expelled.” Hermione Granger, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, p.162

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Hermione always has her priorities in order. She knows what she wants and refuses to let anyone get in the way.

  1. “I mean, you could claim that anything’s real if the only basis for believing in it is that nobody’s proved it doesn’t exist!” Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows p.411

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If I was to pick a single quote from the whole series that sums up Hermione, it would be this one. She’s skeptical, thorough in researching whatever her latest project is, and refuses to settle for less than the absolute truth.

Do you agree with my choices? What are some of your favorite book quotes? Share them in the comments below. Did you like this post? Share via Facebook or Twitter and as always, follow me here on WordPress for more GREAT content like this!

Sources:

The Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling

Images:

https://www.vanityfair.com/hollywood/2015/11/emma-watson-harry-potter-hair

http://www.cinemablend.com/new/What-Emma-Watson-Regrets-About-Harry-Potter-94597.html

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/some-people-are-pissed-off-about-the-casting-of-a-black-hermione-granger_us_5678486fe4b06fa6887e188a

http://www.sheknows.com/entertainment/articles/820401/Emma-Watson-dishes-Harry-Potter-and-the-Deathly-Hallows

http://emmawatsonstars.blogspot.com/2011/07/hermione-granger-with-her-books.html

How I fell In Love with Traveling

My family doesn’t have a lot of money. When I was a kid our family vacations were a long weekend away to the beach or mountains, not more than 4 or 5 hours from home. At 12 years old I had visited 4 states (including the one I lived in) and had never been on a plane. I had no idea that that year I would been given a life-changing opportunity.

I grew up in a small town in central North Carolina. My parents grew up in central North Carolina, and so did their parents. This is how things are in small town, USA: people don’t really leave. When I was 10, I moved from the small town I grew up in (that my dad grew up in, and his parents, and their parents…) to the middle of nowhere about 20 minutes away. We didn’t even leave the county. Neither of my parents had been abroad (now my dad has visited Mexico once on a day trip, before passports were required for US citizens) and my grandfather was stationed in Guam with the Army Air Corps in WWII, but that about sums up international travel in my family. Basically, we are small-town folks.

One day, when I was in 7th grade, I got a letter in the mail. I had been offered an opportunity to be a student ambassador with the People to People program, founded by President Dwight D Eisenhower in 1956. The program I was invited to participate in took 12-14 year-olds to England, Ireland, and Wales for 20 days over the summer. My parents were ecstatic. After a brief (and terrifying; I have suffered from social anxiety for a long time) interview process I was accepted into the program.

Over the course of about 9 months, I attended monthly meetings with the other kids participating in the program, and our parents, of course. We learned about cultural differences, what we would get to experience in the program, etc. We were also encouraged to fundraise–while the program was government-run it was not free. I did my best, but begging for money has never been something I’m good at, so my parents ended up taking on most of the cost (thanks, Mom and Dad!).

In June after 7th grade, I packed my bags and my parents drove me to the airport. Security was pretty tight as this was only a few years after 9/11, so we said goodbye outside of security. And I was on my way to another continent with 4 adults and about 20 other kids, none of whom I really knew.

After an overnight flight that I was way too excited to sleep on, we landed around 7-8am GMT and hit the ground running. The whole first day was spent sightseeing, with no time to rest. Despite not drinking coffee, I was wide awake all day. Everything was so similar to life at home in North Carolina, but so different. At times I’d forget I was on another continent, then I’d see another castle (we just don’t have those in the US) or a building twice as old as my homeland. Obviously everyone in England speaks English, so that wasn’t a barrier, but there are diffences nonetheless.

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While I did get more sleep than the first day, the rest of the trip was just as fast-paced and exciting as the first. We spent the first few days in England, the next few in Wales, a week in Ireland, then reversed: back to Wales, and to England again. It was a whirlwind. I think I called my parents once (this was before smart phones!). I had found the thing I loved more than anything else. And about 11 years later I still haven’t found anything that tops traveling in my book.

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The UK wowed me with castles and culture, Ireland blew me away with endless green scenery (and more castles), but my favorite part of my trip were the last few days, which were spent in London. I had never been to a city even close to that size, and the fast pace, the culture, the diversity of a big city thrilled me. We saw the tower of London, Big Ben, rode the London Eye, took in a show, but the best part was just absorbing everything. Even in July the rain made it chilly enough everyone stopped for hot drinks midday (okay, mine was hot chocolate, I still don’t like coffee or tea). I loved just watching everyday people going about their everyday lives, whose lives were different than mine.

I still love it. After that trip, I decided I was going to move to Ireland one day. And while my dreams have gotten less specific, I still plan to live abroad. Maybe it will be Ireland, maybe it will be Stokholm, or Lucknow, or Rio de Janeiro. Maybe it will be all of those places and more. I’ll let you know when I get there.

What made you fall in love with traveling? Tell me about it in the comments below! Did you enjoy this post? Share via Facebook or Twitter, and as always, follow me here on WordPress for more GREAT content like this.

There’s More To Elephants Than You Think

You are probably familiar with elephants…

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Yeah, these guys:

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You were probably taught that there are two species of elephants, Asian elephants, and African elephants. You were also most likely taught that they’re distantly related to Wooly Mammoths.

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It’s true that for years the family Elephantidae was believed to have two extant (currently living) species: Elephas maximus (the Asian elephant) and Loxodonta africana (now known to be the African savanna or bush elephant).

However, in recent decades it has been discovered that African elephants actually fall into two species, Loxodonta cyclotis (the African forest elephant) and Loxodonta africana (the African Savanna Elephant).


(Top photo: African forest elephant; bottom photo: African savanna elephant)

Recently as of 2001, morphological comparisons of skull measurement and molecular tests were performed on nearly 300 elephants, and distinct differences were found between the two kinds of African elephants

The forest elephant differs from the savanna elephant in several distinctive ways, including:

  • Ear shape
  • Tusk anatomy
  • Distinct skull morphology

This lead scientists to often classify the forest elephant as a subspecies, L. a. cyclotis.

However, there was much controversy and these differences were often ignored.

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By using previous data gathered from mitochondrial DNA analyses, scientists have found that the closest living relative of the extinct woolly mammoth is the Asian elephant.

(Top photo: Asian elephant; bottom photo: Wooly Mammoth)

It is now believed that the two species of African elephant actually diverged from one another in the more distant past than Asian elephants diverged from the extinct genus Mammuthus (including Mammuthus primigenius, the woolly mammoth), meaning that African elephants are far less closely related than scientists once believed.

The mtDNA (Mitochondrial DNA) analysis suggests that wooly mammoths and Asian elephants diverged 5.8–7.8 mya (million years ago).

MtDNA analysis also suggests that the 2 species of African elephant diverged earlier; about 6.6–8.8 mya.

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Through DNA analysis scientists discovered a lot of new information about elephants. They realized that African elephants actually fall into not one, but two species. They learned about the extinct woolly mammoth, and its connections to the extant Asian elephant. Finally, scientists concluded that African elephants diverged from one another in the more distant past than Asian elephants diverged from wooly mammoths.

Do you like elephants as much as I do? What do you think about these discoveries? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

Did you enjoy this post? Share via Facebook or Twitter, and follow me here on WordPress for more GREAT content like this!

Sources:

African Elephant photo 1: https://www.worldwildlife.org/pages/species-spotlight-african-elephant

Asian Elephant photo 1: http://elelur.com/mammals/asian-elephant.html

Wooly Mammoth photo 1: http://kids.nationalgeographic.com/animals/woolly-mammoth/#woolly-mammoth-standing.jpg

Elephant family photo 1: https://iso.500px.com/baby-elephant-photos/

Nadin Rohland, David Reich, Swapan Mallick, Matthias Meyer, Richard E. Green, Nicholas J. Georgiadis, Alfred L. Roca, Michael Hofreiter “Genomic DNA Sequences from Mastodon and Woolly Mammoth Reveal Deep Speciation of Forest and Savanna Elephants” Plos Biology

Alfred L. Roca, Nicholas Georgiadis, Jill Pecon-Slattery, Stephen J. O’Brien “Genetic Evidence for Two Species of Elephant in Africa” Science Magazine

Learning a Language Part 2/3: Essential Resources

Welcome to part 2 of our 3 part summer series on learning a new language!  Part 2 covers some of the resources you should use to effectively learn a new language on your own.  You won’t see expensive courses like Rosetta Stone on this list–it’s designed for your average 20-something backpacker.  Like part 1, this guide was written by our guest, David Anthony. Look out for new installments on the last Sunday of every month. Enjoy! 

(Catch up with part 1 here)

PART 2:

Whew! So you’ve finally whittled down the language you want to learn. Let’s use Turkish as an example. You just love Turkish coffee, the language sounds beautiful, and you’re just dying to see Istanbul. Perfect! You have a specific passion about Turkish culture and the language. Now what the hell do you use to actually learn? Rosetta Stone? Textbooks? Passive listening of internet radio? I’m going to give you what you need to really get started, and it’s probably going to cost you less than 50 bucks.

For resources, I would recommend you start with 3 things: A phrasebook, a grammar book, and a dictionary. I also like to buy a textbook with audio when I can find a good one, as it gives you dialog examples you won’t usually find in the other three. Below I’ll list some examples of each, and where to get them.

PHRASEBOOKS

  • Berlitz: These are the best bang for your buck in my opinion. Packed with thousands of words and phrases that are organized by topic, they really are a good starting place. The best part: You can find them on Amazon for less than $5 used in most cases.
  • Lonely Planet: Lonely Planet has a better selection than Berlitz from what I’ve found. They have phrasebooks for smaller languages like Nepali, Thai, and Croatian. This makes them an invaluable resource when trying to pick up a less commonly taught language. These can also be found dirt cheap used on Amazon.

GRAMMAR BOOK

  • _________ An Essential Grammar: I like the essential grammar series because they present “conversational grammar.” Without getting bogged down in nuanced rules you’ll barely ever use, they just teach what’s necessary to make yourself understood. Short and to the point, they make learning grammar much easier than you remembered in school. I used this series for most of my languages with success.

DICTIONARY

  • Langenscheidt publishes easy to use, pocket sized dictionaries for a number of languages. Don’t be fooled by their size, these are serious references that you’ll be able to use at virtually all stages of the language learning process.
  • Hippocrene dictionaries are also an option for some less common languages. They can be a bit hit and miss, so look around until you find something that works for you.

Now, those three are really all you need if you’re looking to get away as cheap as possible. With the internet and a patient native speaker for practice, you can make an incredible amount of progress. Personally, I like to find a good “textbook” or course book with audio for extra practice, and it can also show you what real world conversations feel like and sound like.

TEXTBOOK

  • Personally, I’m a fan of Teach Yourself/Complete series. Some people love them, some people hate them. They have books for close to 30 languages, which vary widely in quality. Look carefully into the reviews and see if the Teach Yourself book for your language is any good. They often come with dialogs as well, which for me is one of the big pros. They’re easy enough to find on Amazon, just search “Teach Yourself _____” and they should come up. Pro tip: They were recently rebranded as “Complete ____,” but the older “Teach Yourself” editions are virtually identical. The older editions are much cheaper, so grabbing those can save you a bit of money.
  • The Colloquial series is another good choice. Colloquial is a well known resource with a surprising number of language options. Much of the same rules for the Teach Yourself/Complete series apply to Colloquial.
  • Assimil is an option I haven’t had the chance to try yet, but I’m very interested in doing so. Published in France, Assimil has the largest variety out of all the series I’ve talked about. They have offerings in 70 languages, including Creole, Ancient Greek, and even Egyptian Hieroglyphics! There’s two big downsides to Assimil: First off, getting them is often expensive. The courses are not cheap to start with, and they’re usually shipped from France. A friend who uses Assimil recommends ordering several at once to cut down on overall shipping price. The second downside (depending on how you see it) is many of their courses are published in French. If you speak French well enough to understand the instructions, it’s probably one of your best options. Don’t worry if you don’t, since they have about 14 courses published in English, most of which are for more popular languages.

DIGITAL

There’s thousands of digital resources you can use, but I’m gonna touch on three really quickly that I think are great

  • Duolingo is a completely free resource that’s great for getting a good base in a foreign language. Standing alone, it won’t do much to develop your conversational abilities. When mixed with other resources though, it’s a great introduction to another language. The general consensus is that finishing the entire course brings you to an A2ish level on the CEFR scale. They’re constantly adding new languages, so I only see Duolingo becoming more popular as time goes on. Give it a look.
  • Italki is another essential digital resource. Using it, you can find language partners to practice speaking with, which is 100% essential to learn anything beyond simple phrases. I’ll get more into how to learn a foreign language in a later post, but one thing you need to know right now: you will not learn a language unless you practice speaking with other people. There’s no way around it. Italki is great for finding a tutor to teacher if you choose that route (oftentimes you do have to pay them for this time, but the rates are reasonable). I find myself using Italki less nowadays, and focusing more on Hellotalk for language partners.
  • Hellotalk is a free app that is set up exclusively for finding language partners. It’s easy to use, and they go through a lot of effort to filter out spam. I personally like it better than Italki, because it’s less focused on getting you to pay for a teacher. It has an in-house messaging and search function, so you can be up and running in minutes. Check it out

This is just a 10,000 foot view of all the resources out there. I could write an entire book about everything that’s out there. Spend some time searching and asking around, and you’ll definitely find what you want. In the next post, I’ll start getting into how to actually put all this together and start learning and speaking quickly. Good luck!

Thanks for reading! Are you multilingual? What are some of your favorite resources? Tell us about it in the comments below! Did you enjoy this post? Share it via Facebook or Twitter. And, as always, follow me here on WordPress for more GREAT content like this!

Disclaimer: if you follow the Amazon links in the body of this post and make purchases through them, I will receive a small compensation from Amazon.  This compensation comes from Amazon, not from you, and the price you see through my links is the same as the price you would see otherwise.  However I have no association with Duolingo, Berlitz, or any of the companies mentioned above.  In an attempt to bring you the best content, we linked to the sites that we felt were the most relevant, compensation notwithstanding.

21 Signs You Grew Up In the Country

Currently, I live in the city, and I have for most of my adult life. However, I spent my childhood in the middle of nowhere. It was fun to take a trip down memory lane and put together some things that are unique about living in the country. Enjoy!

  1. The nearest grocery store was 20+minutes away
  2. Waiting for 2-3 cars at an intersection was considered “traffic”
  3. You couldn’t see your house from the road
  4. You couldn’t see your neighbor’s house from your house
  5. You laugh when your friends describe their suburb as “the country”
  6. There was nothing in walking distance of your house
  7. You can recognize different types of crops
  8. You know the difference between cow-poop smell and horse-poop smell and pig-poop smell
  9. Your friends couldn’t find your house because the GPS won’t navigate to it properly
  10. Cable companies don’t offer services where you lived
  11. Hearing gunshots was not a cause for concern; you just assumed it was someone hunting
  12. Your neighbor’s cows or horses or goats have gotten loose and wandered into your yard
  13. You’ve had to stop in the road to figure out whose cows are blocking the cars
  14. You’ve been in a traffic jam caused by cows
  15. You know someone who claims that they got hit by a deer, not the other way around
  16. Folks near you drive pickup trucks for practical purposes like hauling horse trailers or carrying farm equipment
  17. You didn’t grow up with “neighborhood kids” because there was no neighborhood (and sometimes no kids)
  18. You could see the stars pretty much every night, so “star-gazing” wasn’t really a thing
  19. You could be loud and the neighbors wouldn’t complain because they couldn’t hear you
  20. The internet was really slow. Really, really slow.
  21. You enjoyed showing your friends from the city how to navigate through the woods, catch lightning bugs, and avoid poison oak, poison ivy, and briers

Did you grow up in the country? What are some other signs you grew up in the middle of nowhere? Share them with me in the comments below!

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