Hubby and I kicked off this summer in style by taking our dream European Vacation! What made it extra special was that we had family and friends to visit!!

Hubby's heritage hails from the hinterlands of Germany. His mother is a very special woman; not only did she raise 12 children, (I married #8) she also hosted family members from Germany on occasion. Heck, what's three more when you have a house that full? She remained especially close to two of her cousins who had children around the same time that she did. Three sisters came for an extended visit when my husband was a young lad still living at home. The three sons from the other cousin came to visit much later once my husband and I were married, and we gladly hosted them in our tiny house.

Thus formed our lifelong bond with hubby's family in Germany. Fast forward about 20 years, and one of the daughters from one of the sisters had inquired about a study abroad in the USA. Could we assist to find out some info? Well hubby got to work right away on that, and we learned that the school our kids attended did participate in study abroad! We would be happy to host her at our house for six months. We sent our two youngest to Germany to get to know her and accompany her back to the USA, as she had never been on a plane before. It was a most wonderful experience. We gained a daughter!

Now my family has not kept in contact with any relations in Europe ( heck I am not even exactly sure where I hailed from- perhaps I crawled out from beneath a rock?) But- being an adventurous sort, I did go with my college French class to France to study at the Sorbonne for one month. It was a fabulous trip, and while there, I met a lovely lady, and we became pen pals and life long friends! She and her husband visited us a few times in the US and we visited them a few times in France.

Then we had our children, and the visits stopped but not the letters. The year after our German gal came to visit, my pen pal's daughter came to visit for a month. I guess she liked us as she then obtained a six-month visa and returned, and then a 3-year student visa, and she is attending university here. Her English is impeccable! She speaks fluent American!!! So we gained another daughter! And her brother has since visited us a few times.

The next year, another of the German sisters had a son who wanted to study English in the USA. Our children had met him when they went to Germany. His family came to visit us and the young man stayed on for six months. We gained a son!

So we had places to go and people to see. We discussed our plans with our friends, and they got to work planning and arranging all of the details for us. It was like Santa's elves'- we just made the wish, and they made it happen with hotel and train arrangements. It was indeed the trip of a lifetime. We were able to see all of the family in Germany. In addition, on our way to France, the father of one of my best friends ( also from Germany ) met us in Cologne and whisked us away to the fantasy bakery and cathedral. Then we went to France where we were spoiled by my penpal and her family!

In our 16-day trip we were able to spend a lot of quality time with our family in Germany and our friends in France. We ate drank and made merry. We visited cathedrals and castles, enjoyed gardens and gastronomical delights, but for me, the very best part of the trip was visiting with these fabulous people! We are so fortunate that they studied hard in school and learned English!

We spent some time in the car together while driving to the Netherlands, Berlin, Prague and Dresden, and I would like to recount one of the many discussions we had while whiling away the hours :-)

Hubby and I were advised that one of the questions on the English fluency exam was to note the differences in the terms apt, liable and prone. At first, it seemed to me that these terms could be used interchangeably, but upon further reflection, we determined that:

Apt- some action one may have an aptitude for and thereby be inclined to do- If we go to the beach we are apt to swim

Liable- having to do with liability- If you spit on him he is liable to smack you

Prone- perhaps having a physical predisposition towards something. She is prone to diabetes as it runs in her family.

Apt and Liable seem to be conditional almost requiring an "if". Prone seems to be used in statements.

Now- let's see how close we were. Here is how defines the terms OK I almost went crazy waiting for all of the ads to load on Saaaaaaaaad. I am liable to run out of patience!


inclined; disposed; given; prone:
too apt to slander others.
Am I apt to find him at home?
unusually intelligent; able to learn quickly and easily:
an apt pupil.
suited to the purpose or occasion; appropriate:
an apt metaphor; a few apt remarks on world peace.
Archaic. prepared; ready; willing.

Usage note:

Some usage guides insist that apt followed by an infinitive can or should be used to mean only “inclined, disposed”: He is apt to ignore matters he regards as unimportant.In fact, apt is standard in all varieties of speech and writing as a synonym for likely in contexts that suggest probability without any implication of a natural disposition toward: Hostilities are apt to break out if the confrontation is not soon resolved. She is apt to arrive almost any time now.


legally responsible:
You are liable for the damage caused by your action.
subject or susceptible:
to be liable to heart disease.
likely or apt:
He's liable to get angry.

Usage note:

Liable is often interchangeable with likely in constructions with a following infinitive where the sense is that of probability: The Sox are liable(or likely) to sweep the Series. Some usage guides, however, say that liable can be used only in contexts in which the outcome is undesirable: The picnic is liable to be spoiled by rain.This use occurs often in formal writing but not to the exclusion of use in contexts in which the outcome is desirable: The drop in unemployment is liable to stimulate the economy. Apt may also be used in place of liable or likely in all the foregoing examples.


having a natural inclination or tendency to something; disposed; liable:
to be prone to anger.
having the front or ventral part downward; lying face downward.
lying flat; prostrate.
having a downward direction or slope.
having the palm downward, as the hand.

Word Origin and History for prone

c.1400, "naturally inclined to something, apt, liable," from Latin pronus "bent forward, leaning forward, bent over," figuratively "inclined to, disposed," perhaps from adverbial form of pro- "before, for, instead of" (see pro- ) + ending as in infernus, externus. Meaning "lying face-down" is first recorded 1570s. Literal and figurative senses both were in Latin; figurative is older in English.

Likely ( I'm adding this for fun )

.adjective, likelier, likeliest.
probably or apparently destined (usually followed by an infinitive):
something not likely to happen.
seeming like truth, fact, or certainty; reasonably to be believed or expected; believable:
a likely story.
seeming to fulfill requirements or expectations; apparently suitable:
a likely place for a restaurant.
showing promise of achievement or excellence; promising:
a fine, likely young man.

Usage note:

Likely in the senses “probably destined” and “probably” is often preceded by a qualifying word like very, more, or quite: The board is very likely to turn down the request. The new system will quite likely increase profits. However, despite statements to the contrary in some usage guides, likely in these senses is standard without such a qualifier in all varieties of English: It will likely be a bitter debate. The shipment will likely arrive on Thursday.

Gosh it could go on and on! We could include inclined, and subject but I haven't the patience!!!

I can't imagine being tested on the nuances of the German or French language. So we are liable to continue hosting guests so that they can fine-tune their English!

Recipe ( I failed at finding the Edamame, bok choy, boiled peanut, tofu, celery salad tossed in chili oil recipe but did get to try this excellent salad of Peaches, tomatoes and feta :-)

Summer Peach, Tomato and Feta Salad


1/4 cup thinly vertically sliced red onion
1/2 pound ripe peaches, pitted and cut into wedges
1/4 pound heirloom beefsteak tomatoes, cut into thick wedges
1/4 pound heirloom cherry or pear tomatoes, halved
1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon honey
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup (1 ounce) crumbled feta cheese
2 tablespoons small basil leaves or torn basil


1. Combine first 4 ingredients in a large bowl.

2. Combine vinegar, olive oil, honey, salt, and pepper in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk. Drizzle vinegar mixture over peach mixture; toss well to coat. Sprinkle with cheese and basil.

More Quotes:

"Political language... is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind."

-George Orwell


"The world's most famous and popular language is music."



"If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart."

-Nelson Mandela


"The most terrifying words in the English language are: I'm from the government and I'm here to help."

-Ronald Reagan


"As soon as there is language, generality has entered the scene."

-Jacques Derrida


"We call that person who has lost his father, an orphan; and a widower that man who has lost his wife. But that man who has know the immense unhappiness of losing a friend, by wht name do we call him? Here every language is silent and holds its peace in impotence."

-Joseph Roux


"The English language is nobody's special property. It is the property of the imagintion: it is the property of the languge itself."

-Derek Walcott


"Language is a virus from outer space."

-William S. Burroughs


"Tears are the silent language of grief."



"The great enemy of clear language is insincerity. When there is a gap between one's real and one's declared aims, one turns, as it were, instinctively to long words and exhausted idioms, like a cuttlefish squirting our ink."

-George Orwell


"The finest command of language is often shown by saying nothing."

-Roger Babson


"The top 10 verbs in the English language are all irregular, even though irregular verbs make up only 3 percent of the language."

-Erez Lieberman Alden


"The greatest obstaclea to international undertanding is the barrier of language."

-Christopher Dawson


"About the use of language: it is impossible to sharpen a pencil with a blunt axe. It is equally vain to try to do it with ten blunt axes instead."

-Edsger Dijkstra


"It is useful to the historian, among others, to be able to see the commonest forms of different phenomena, whether phonetic, morphological or other, and how language lives, carries on and changes over time.

-Ferdinand de Saussure


"Ina way, writing is an incredible act of individualism, producing your language, and yet to use it from the heart of a crowd as opposed to as an individual performance is a conflicting thing. I do stand alone, and yet it's not about being an individual or being ambitious."

-Arundhati Roy


"I believe in a visual language that should be as strong as the written word."

-David LaChapelle


"To handle a language skillfully is to practice a kind of evocative sorcery."

-Charles Baudelaire


"Englis has been this vacuum cleaner of a language, because of its history meeting up with the Romans and then the Danes, the Vikings and then the French and then the Renaissance with all the Latin and Greek and Hebrew in the background."

-David Crystal


"I'm a firm believer that language and how we use language determines how we act, and how we act then determines our lives and other people's lives."

-Ntozake Shange


"The only way to learn a language properly, in fact, is to marry a man or that nationality. You get what they cll in Europe a 'Sleeping Dictionary.' Of course, I have only been married five times, and I speak seven languages. I'm still trying to rememver where I picked up the other two."

-Zsa Zsa Gabor


"I grew up listening to people speaking broken English. I probably picked that up. And I probably speak English almost as a second language."

-Christopher Walken


"I personally think we developed language because of our deep inner need to complain."

-Jane Wagner


"I keep thinking, we teach children to use language to solve their disputes. We teach them not to hit and fight and bite. Then look what adults do!"

-Naomi Shihab Nye


"Words may be false and full of art; Sighs are the natural language of the heart."

-Thomas Shadwell


"The limits of my language means the limits of my world."

-Ludwig Wittgenstein


"As societies grow decadent, the language grows decadent, too. Words ae used to disguise, not to illuinate, action: you liberate a city by destroying it. Words are to confuse, so that at election time people will solemny vote against their own interests."

-Gore Vidal


"Mechanical dificulties with language are the outcome of internal difficulties with thought."

-Elizabeth Bowen


"My first language was shy. It's only by having been thrust into the limelight that I have learned to cope with my shyness."

-Al Pacino


"When the heart speaks, its language is the same under all latitudes."

-Elia Maillart


"'I am' is reportedly the shortest sentence in the English language. Could it be that 'I do' is the longest sentence?"

-George Carlin


"French is the language that turns dirt into romance."

-Stephen King


"The four most beautiful words in our common language: I told you so."

-Gore Vidal


"The leader has to be practical and a realist, yet must talk the language of the visionary and the idealist."

-Eric Hoffer


"Language is a form of human reason, which has its internal logic of which man knows nothing."

-Claude Levi-Strauss


"What makes us human, I think, is an ability to ask questions, a consequence of our sophisticated spoken language."

-Jane Goodall


Next Post date: September 5, 2016
Click on the image below to access the mystery link.
August 1, 2016

Happy Birthday Rob, Gil Sarah, Sara, David, Jean, and so many others in August!!!!


“There's no such thing as dead languages, only dormant minds.”

-Carlos Ruiz Zafon


“Those who know nothing of foreign languages know nothing of their own.”

-Johann Wolfgang von Goethe


“Into the face of the young man who sat on the terrace of the Hotel Magnifique at Cannes there had crept a look of furtive shame, the shifty hangdog look which announces that an Englishman is about to speak French.”

-P.G. Woodhouse


“The dictionary is based on the hypothesis -- obviously an unproven one -- that languages are made up of equivalent synonyms.”

-Jorge Luis Borges


“England and America are two countries separated by the same language.”

-George Bernard Shaw


“Since there is no real silence,
Silence will contain all the sounds,
All the words, all the languages,
All knowledge, all memory.”

-Dejan Stojanovic


“The conquest of learning is achieved through the knowledge of languages.”

-Roger Bacon


“BELLADONNA, n. In Italian a beautiful lady; in English a deadly poison. A striking example of the essential identity of the two tongues.”

-Ambrose Bierce


“To God I speak Spanish, to women Italian, to men French, and to my horse - German.”

-Emperor Charles V


“Each letter of the alphabet is a steadfast loyal soldier in a great army of words, sentences, paragraphs, and stories. One letter falls, and the entire language falters.”

-Vera Nazarian


“Über die deutsche Sprache: „Sie halten sich für tief, weil ihre Sprache unklar ist, ihr fehlt die clarté der französischen Sprache, sie sagt nie exakt das, was sie sollte, so dass kein Deutscher jemals weiß, was er sagen wollte – und dann verwechselt er diese Undeutlichkeit mit Tiefe. Es ist mit Deutschen wie mit Frauen, man gelangt bei ihnen nie auf den Grund”

-Umberto Eco


“Different languages, the same thoughts; servant to thoughts and their masters.”

-Dejan Stojanovic


“Do you wish to speak in Provençal, French, or Latin? They are all I can manage, I'm afraid."

"Any will do," the rabbi replied in Provençal.

"Splendid. Latin it is," said Pope Clement.”

-Iain Pears


“There are hundreds of languages around the world, but a smile, speaks them all.”



“A co-op woman, old, tired, Jewish, fake drops of jade spread across the little sacks of her bosom, looked up at the pending wind and said one word: "Blustery." Just one word, a word meaning no more than "a period of time characterized by strong winds," but it caught me unaware, it reminded me of how language was once used, its precision and simplicity, its capacity for recall. Not cold, not chilly, blustery. ...
"It is blustery, ma'am," I said to the old co-op woman. "I can feel it in my bones." And she smiled at me with whatever facial muscles she still had in reserve. We were communicating with words.”

-Gary Shteyngart, Super Sad True Love Story


“Il aime que les langues se parlent en sous-main, qu'elles tissent des dialogues impalpables, invisibles à l'oeil qui ne les traduit pas. Qu'on ne distingue plus les affluents du fleuve principal.”

-Nathalie Azoulai


“But I can't translate it the right way, that's why I always use so many foreign languages around you, because there're some things that simply can't translate, that are beautiful when you read them the original way.”



“Naturally, translators who dare to complain about these mistakes [e.g. false friends] are labelled hairsplitters and pedants (FR: pédants pinailleurs), but it is a badge we should wear with pride.”

-Emma Wagner


"One language sets you in a corridor for life. Two languages open every door along the way"

-Frank Smith


“Annoyance has made me bilingual.”

-Gayle Forman


“We humans speak many languages; flowers on the contrary speak only one language: The language of beauty!”

-Mehmet Murat Ildan


"Banished men should never speak their native tongue; it comes bitter from their mouth. And this language suits a traitor better, I think; drips off one's teeth like sugar-syrup."

-Ursula K. Le Guin


“La idea de no tener una lengua materna me preocupa. ¿Es como sentirte un nómada dentro de tu propia cabeza? no me puedo imaginar no tener palabras en las que refugiarme. Ser huérfana de lengua.”

-Meg Rosoff


“If ever an obsolete term urgently needed redefining, the humble 'glove compartment' would surely win any contest hands down.”

-Alex Morritt


“Language is present in a piece of writing like the sea in a single drop.”

-Kato Lomb


“We Americans are reluctant to learn a foreign language of our own species, let alone another species. But imagine the possibilities. Imagine the access we would have to different perspectives, the things we might see through other eyes, the wisdom that surrounds us. We don’t have to figure out everything by ourselves: there are intelligences other than our own, teachers all around us. Imagine how much less lonely the world would be.”

-Robin Wall Kimmerer


“In Japanese and Italian, the response to ["How are you?"] is "I'm fine, and you?" In German it's answered with a sigh and a slight pause, followed by "Not so good.”

-David Sedaris


“With languages, you can move from one social situation to another. With languages, you are at home anywhere.”

-Edmund de Waal


“For the barrier of language is sometimes a blessed barrier, which only lets pass what is good. Or-to put the thing less cynically-we may be better in new clean words, which have never been tainted by our pettiness or vice.”

-E.M. Forster


"The language of friendship is not words but meanings."

-Henry David Thoreau


"Language has created the word 'loneliness' to express the pain of being alone. And it has created 'solitude' to express the glory of being alone."

-Paul Tillich


"My least favorite phrase in the english language is 'I don't care.'"

-James Caan



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