Understanding Slovenian Idioms #010

An interesting way to learn Slovene (and speak like Slovenians) is to know and understand how to use their idioms. And the day that you will actually be able to use an idiom correctly, you will be so proud!

  • Nositi hlače – To wear pants
    It means “to be in charge”, the one that makes the decision and has the last word. There is a similar expression in English “to wear the trousers” and in French “porter la culotte”.
  • Kapo dol – Hat down
    It means “bravo”, when you recognize someone’s achievements. The expression comes from the habit of taking the hat off as a sign or greeting or respect.
  • Gledati skozi rožnata očala – To see through rose-colored glasses
    It doesn’t refer to a fashion item, but it means to beautify something, like to see something more beautiful that it really is. Just like the French expression “voir la vie en rose”.

Discover more Slovene “lessons” that might interest you: Slovene Numbers & NumeralsSlovene Nouns & PronounsSlovene VerbsSlovene AdjectivesSlovene SyntaxSlovenian Idioms, Slovene Adverbs.

Slovene Nouns with Two Declensions

In Slovene, nouns are divided into three genders: masculine, feminine and neuter. Each gender has their own declensions and exceptions as well. Some Slovene nouns are actually written the same, but of different gender, meanings and of course, declension.


Kap : drip or stroke

If kap means “gutter”, which is the lowest part of the roof that gather rain down a drain, it is masculine and the declension is normal. If kap means “stroke”, it is feminine and the declension is special: “third” second feminine declension.

KAP (m)(E)KAP (ž)(E)
1kapkap
2kapakapi
3kapukapi
4kapkap
5kapukapi
6kapomkapjo
  • Sosedov strešni kap je upokravjen (The neighbor’s roof gutter is broken).
  • Sosed je imel kap (The neighbor had a stroke).

Klop : bench or tick

If klop means “bench”, it is feminine and declined with the “third” second feminine declension. If klop means “tick”, it is masculine and the declension is normal. Although, even if they are written the same, the accented pronunciation is different.

KLOP (ž)(E)KLOP (m)(E)
1klopklop
2klopiklopa
3klopiklopu
4klopklopa
5klopiklopu
6klopjoklopom
  • Dedek sedi na klop in čaka svojega vnuka (Grandfather sits on the bench and waits for his grandson).
  • Hočem cepljenje proti klopu (I want the vaccine against tick).

Med : brass or honey

If med means “brass”, a metal composed of copper and zinc, it is feminine and declined with “third” second feminine declension (Usually, medenina will be used instead.) If med means “honey”, it is masculine with a little exception: the singular form in second sklon has two endings: -u or -a.

MED (ž)(E)MED (m)(E)
1medmed
2medimedu / meda
3medimedu
4medmed
5medimedu
6medjomedom
  • Kupil je okvir iz medi (He bought frame made from brass).
  • Rad pije čaj z medom (He likes to drink tea with honey).

Pot : path or sweat

If pot means “path”, it is feminine and in the “third” second feminine declension. If pot means “sweat”, it is a masculine exception, where the singular form in second sklon has two endings: -u or -a.

  • Marljivost je pot do uspeha (Hardworking is the path to success).
  • Majico ima mokro od potu (He has his t-shirt wet from sweat).
POT (ž)(E)POT (m)(E)
1potpot
2potipotu / pota
3potipotu
4potpot
5potipotu
6potjopotom

Prst : finger or soft soil

If prst means “finger”, it is masculine with a normal declension. If prst means “soft soil”, it is feminine with a special declension: “third” second feminine declension.

  • S prsti je pokazal, da je star pet let (With his finger he showed that he is 5 years old).
  • Katere vrste prsti je najboljše za orchidea (Which type of soil is best for an orchid)?
PRST (m)(E)PRST (ž)(E)
1prstprst
2prstaprsti
3prstuprsti
4prstprst
5prstuprsti
6prstomprstjo

Red : order or row

If red means “order”, it is a masculine exception: the ending -ov is added in dual and plural form with all skloni. If red means “row”, like a row of grass, it is feminine and declined with the “third” second feminine declension.

  • Ne razumem besednega reda (I don’t understand word order).
  • Ljudi so čakali v dolgi redi (People waited in long row).
RED (m)(E)RED (ž)(E)
1redred
2redaredi
3reduredi
4redred
5reduredi
6redomredjo

Fortunately, there are not many nouns that have different meaning AND gender – but it is always interesting to know that they do exist. If you know any other examples, do share them with me!

Understanding Slovenian Idioms #009

An interesting way to learn and understand Slovene is through its local idioms. While using them, you get to speak like Slovenians and get an insight of the heritage and culture.

  • Beliti si glavo – To whiten your head
    It doesn’t mean to paint your head in white, but to think about something very hard in order to remember it (so much that you might grow some white hairs…).
  • Iz te moke ne bo kruha – From this flour there will be no bread
    As we know, flour is needed to make bread, but also other ingredients and actions (such as kneading and baking) as well. It means that not every effort will yield the expected result.
  • Nositi vodo v Savo – To bring water in Sava
    Sava is a river that goes through Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Serbia. Bringing water to Sava, means that all efforts made no difference.

Discover more Slovene “lessons” that might interest you: Slovene Numbers & NumeralsSlovene Nouns & PronounsSlovene VerbsSlovene AdjectivesSlovene SyntaxSlovenian IdiomsSlovene Adverbs.

Discover Slovenian Facts #002

Hey guys,
as you guys know, I’m currently attending a Slovene course and of course, I’m learning a lot of different things and discussing different topics as well. The other day in class, we talked about how some of the Slovene grammar was quite strange and almost “illogical”. After some thoughts, it is actually true, but also interesting and it can make it easier to remember.


Five Cats Sleep

To show it, I will just use a random example, such as “five cats sleep“. As you know, Slovene has three genders: masculine, feminine and neutral. Obviously, cats can only be male (m) or female (ž).

  • 1 mačekm / mačkaž spi (One cat sleeps).
  • 2 mačkam / mačkiž spita (Two cats sleep).
  • 3/4 mačkim / mačkež spijo (Three/four cats sleep).
  • 5 mačkovm / mačkž spi (Five cats sleep).

As you can see, when the amount reaches 5 (and more), the verb is conjugated in singular. That’s in Present tense.

There is another particularity with the participle used in Past tense and Future tense.

  • 1 mačekm / mačkaž je spal / spala (One cat slept).
  • 2 mačkam / mačkiž sta spala / spali (Two cats slept).
  • 3/4 mačkim / mačkež so spali / spale (Three/four cats slept).
  • 5 mačkovm / mačkž je spalo (Five cats slept).

Even more strangely, when the amount reaches 5 (and more), the participle changes into its neuter form. Even if the subject is masculine or feminine.

Of course, it also works when a quantifying adverb, such as veliko (a lot), dovolj (enough) nekaj (some), is used instead of a specific number.

  • Veliko študentov2(M) ima avto (A lot of students have a car).
  • Nekaj ljudi2(M) je pilo kavo (Some people drank coffee).

BONUS – Večina (most) and polovica (half) can function as a noun or as a quantifying adverb.

  • Večina1 je čokolado (Most eats chocolate).
  • Večina žensk2(M) je čokolado (Most women eat chocolate).

But be careful in Past and Future tense.

  • Večina1 je jedla čokolado (Most ate chocolate).
  • Večina žensk2(M) je jedlo čokolado (Most women ate chocolate).

It’s so fun to discover some “strange” grammatical rules, because of the “illogic”, it is easier to remember. I’m sure there are many more. Can you think of any, or some that you found especially weird? Please share them with me!


Discover more Slovene “lessons” that might interest you: Slovene Numbers & NumeralsSlovene Nouns & PronounsSlovene VerbsSlovene AdjectivesSlovene SyntaxSlovenian IdiomsSlovene Adverbs.

Let’s discover together,
Anna.

Enrolled to Slovene Course

Hey guys,

my two kids are officially in daycare, so I decided to take the time to “officially” focus on studying Slovene again.

I just enrolled to my 3rd Slovene course with Center za slovenščino kot drugi in tuji jezik, using my first prize in their Creative Contest (you can check more about it here)! Although, this time will be my first online course.

As you know, for any courses, there are some kind of “placement test”, so I do need to revise too! (Even if I write about Slovene, it doesn’t mean that my Slovene is perfect, far from it – but hoping to improve everyday!)

And instead of browsing over my old notes, I just read my eBook – 7 Days of Basic Slovene (given as a thank you gift for supporting me via Ko-fi)! Now, I’m waiting for the oral interview!

I’m so excited to revise Slovene and learn some new topics!

Holidays in Terme Čatež

With the Slovenian turistični bon (tourism voucher), we went 5 days 4 night in a private apartment in Terme Čatež and now we are back! I’m a bit tired but the kids had a blast, so it was all worth it.

Terme, also known as pools resort but with thermal water, are hotspot destination for holidays in Slovenia. There are different size and type. Terme Čatež is quite big, and ideal for family fun with kiddy pools, slides and waves. Enough to fill up a whole day.

Summer Thermal Riviera are the outside pools, with really warm water (26-36°C):

  • children’s pool with little slides, surrounded by a lazy river
  • a pirate island for older kids
  • a Olympic pool with lines
  • two square pools for fun swimming
  • a big big slides with swimming rings
  • a bigger irregular shape pool with different slides
  • a path with flow
  • a fountains and waterfalls
  • massaging bubbles
  • pool with waves

Winter Thermal Riviera are the inside pools, with even warmer water (31-33°C):

  • a big irregular shape pools with different massaging bubbles spots
  • children’s pool
  • rectangle pool with a nice the bubble seating area
  • waterfalls
  • pool with alternating waterfalls and waves
  • two slides suitable for kids
  • bigger slides section (were closed)
  • children’s pool with pirate ship
  • a big spiral slides that connects with the outside pool
  • a small pool with a fountain (waterfalls)

Personally I liked the inside pools better, because the kids could go by themselves on the slides and we just had to wait to catch them below. A lot easier for supervision, and the water was deep enough for adults to have fun as well.


Beside swimming, eating and resting – we also took a short drive to Brežice. It’s a nice town for a little evening walk.


Holidays are always nice, but it’s also good to be home! And our cows are soon coming back from their mountain pocitniče (holidays) as well!

Changes in Learning Materials!

Hey guys!

As I’ve mentioned before my yearly subscription is coming to an end, I’ve decided to stop using Powtoon EDU for creating video. I will be using Canva and I hope to be able to create fun and interesting videos about Slovene!

Upon this decision, I’m also compiling my eBook 7 Days of Basic Slovene (Week 1-2-3-4) into one single pdf – which will be available as a Supporter Post only, via my Ko-fi page. And my Anna’s cheat sheets will be made into spreadsheets, available on my blog in Learning Materials.

(Special Thanks to Monika V. for checking mistakes and typos. I really appreciated it!)

Cheat sheets and individual eBooks will be removed. If you have supported me in the past and would like to get the entire pdf, you can contact me.


Since I start writing my blog, I’ve been trying different new things: photography, videos, eBooks, printables… It’s all great and fun, but also a lot to keep track.. I’ve enjoying the journey and learning a lot as I go, but I want to keep things simple. For you, and for me.

(No, this is not a goodbye post!) Just making changes to the learning materials available on my blog.

I’m also very grateful for your support and positive comments 🙂 It means a lot to me!

Naljlepša hvala!

Slovene Mistakes by my Kids

I might sound weird, but I communicate mainly in Slovene with my kids which is totally not my mother tongue. Obviously, my Slovene is not perfect and my kids also make some funny mistakes as well. Most of the time, I have no problem with them because it is part of the learning process. Although, some mistakes are so “bad” that I just have the urgency to correct them immediately!

But remember:

It is better to speak with mistakes, than to not speak at all”.


Radam

When my son is eating with gusto (YAY), he would often say “radam” or “to radam“. Well, I’m very happy that he likes his food, but unfortunately, “radam” is not a verb… He actually should be using “všeč mi je” (I like) to express that he likes it.

I have a feeling that he confuses it with “rad imam” (I like), which is also used to express that you like something.

Všeč mi je” is used with the first sklon.
Rad imam” is used with fourth sklon.

“Močem”

Sometimes, when I ask my son to do something, like putting his shoes on or going to the potty, he would start making a little crisis and screams “močem” or “ne močem“. Well, I’m actually not sure if he means to say “nočem” (I don’t want to) or “ne morem” (I am not able to).

It’s actually sounds like a combination of both. Either way, it’s not happening.

Both “nočem” and “ne morem” are model verbs.

Pomagiš”

A while back, my daughter would keep saying “a lahko mi pomagiš” instead of “a lahko mi pomagaš” (can you help me) when asking for help. Like 500 times per day. I’m not even sure where she picked it from. After a while of refusing to help her until she says it correctly – she finally got it!

Verbs in present tense have different “endings”, beside the conjugation.

Smo jedali”

My son likes to report what we did (or ate) during the day, so he often says “smo jedali” instead of “smo jedli“(we ate). He would just add an extra syllable “je-da-li“…

And another similar one when he tells off his sister… “Mami je rekala” instead of “Mami je rekla” (mommy said) – because what mommy says is the rule (especially, when it works in his favor… haha).

The participles for past and future tense are Root of Verb + L_ (Learn more here.)

Most of the time I speak Slovene with my kids, but I do explain a few things in English, scold them in French (so, they won’t understand too much) and teach them some Cantonese words and phrase. That’s the joy of speaking many languages!

What about you? Any funny mistakes that you or your kids make? Or that you’ve heard? Please share with me!

Check out my Interview on Let’s Go Slovenia!

Hey guys,

last week, I’ve been interviewed by Let’s Go Slovenia (in sync with the Olympics!). A very nice website, where Marijana and Samo share their local expertise about visiting Slovenia – lots of interesting info and photos!

Within my interview, you will learn more about me and how I started writing my blog and some of my personal thoughts about Slovene! It also features a new video about Slovene, so don’t miss it out!

Hope that you will like it: Learn Slovene with Anna in Slovenia (but first read this interview).

And yes, let’s learn Slovene together 😉

Video – Opposites in Slovene

Hey guys,
as my yearly subscription is coming to an end, I’ve decided to stop using Powtoon EDU for creating video. I’m going to to try out Canva.com instead. I have to say that I am quite happy with the results and how easy it is to use. I hope that you will like it too!

If you want to try Canva.com for your projects, you can use my Referral Link (here).

We will both earn Canva Credits for premium elements for free!

I didn’t make a “vocabulary list” for “Slovene opposites – Nasprostja” because I highly encourage that you create your own! By writing them down and using them, it will be a lot easier to remember!

Do let me know how you like (or not like) my new video. For more videos, don’t forget to subscribe to my YouTube channel: Anna in Slovenia!