Tuesday, 3 November 2020

Top Ten Tuesday ~ Top Ten Non-Bookish Hobbies

"Top Ten Tuesday" is an original feature/weekly meme created on the blog "The Broke and the Bookish". This feature was created because they are particularly fond of lists at "The Broke and the Bookish".

It is now hosted by Jana from That Artsy Reader Girl.

Since I am just as fond of them as they are, I jump at the chance to share my lists with them! Have a look at their page, there are lots of other bloggers who share their lists here.

Non-Bookish Hobbies
(let’s get to know each other! What do you do that does not involve books or reading?)

I think for most of us that is a tough question. I am sure none of us reads 24 hours a day and, yet, if we have do define ourselves, the first thing we can come up with is that we love reading. At least that's the fact for me.

Now, what else do I like? First, I've always liked to create something. And for the last twenty years, my family had to endure my love of cardmaking.

I better carry on in alphabetical order. It's not just the food, it's more the companionship. We have lived among Americans for decades and have adapted their way of Thanksgiving for our German friends and family. That's just as important to us than our holidays. I absolutely love baking bread, cakes and cookies, as well.

I used to play games with my family when I was little and then we carried on playing with our boys. And we still play with our friends and family. We just love it.
I love languages. I often get asked how many languages I spek. That's a tough question. It depends on how well you need to speak a language before you can put it in the category "I speak the language". Let's start with the easy ones.

German - my mother tongue

English - I started learning it in 5th grade, that's about half a century ago and I still learn more every day. I lived in England for six years and have worked with/lived among English speaking people more than half of my life. So, I guess, that definitely goes into that category.

French - I started that in 7th grade. I lived in Brussels for a while and went back to visit at least once every year since 1980. I wouldn't call myself perfect but I can easily put it with the languages I speak.

Esperanto - Started this in 1977 and used it a lot in international meetings. It is such an easy language that I can also communicate with it without any difficulties.

Dutch - I'm from Northern Germany where we speak Low German which really is more related to Dutch than High German. (Check here on Wikipedia). Then I lived in the Netherlands for twenty years. Again, one of the languages I would say I speak.

That makes five. Those are also the languages where I read the original book if I get a copy of it. Now it gets toughter. While many who leave school probably know less then I do in those languages, I wouldn't say I speak them. I know enough to be able to read an easy text, get the gist of something. I can even talk to a person one to one (not without ease) but I certainly cannot follow a conversation between two natives.

Spanish - 11th grade but my teacher was sick half the time and that was that. I have been following up with books and online courses (Duolingo, for instance).
Italian - I really wanted to learn this for so long becaues I love the sound of it. It's not too difficult when you speak some other Roman languages already but I never found the right course, the beginner's courses were too easy but I needed to learn the basics. Now, with Duolingo, I'm on the right track.

Latin - 9th grade - not my most glorious subject at school, I didn't like it at all. I've picked it up again but I doubt I will ever be able to really read a long text.

Swedish - my son moved to Sweden for his masters' degree. We meant to visit us, so I started learning it on Duolingo. I've finished the course there but with Corona, we never managed to go. Still, another language that I can read.

Find me here on Duolingo.

I've had pen friends from all sorts of countires since I was about thirteen. Still love it. I send more cards nowadays than letters but I communicate with many of my friends via e-mail.
I just love studying maps and everything that relates to it. Where is Kazakhstan (to quote one of my favourite quizmasters, Richard Osman), what is the capital of Burkina Fazo (Ouagadougou, one of the coolest names there is), what does the flag of Suriname look like (green-white-red-white-green stripes with a yellow star in the middle)??? Fascinating.
Next to languages and geography, this was one of my favourite subjects in school. Still love it.
Granted, my husband is the better photographer but I love it, as well. All the pictures on this page are taken with my camera, the one you can see in this photo.
I have always loved any kind of puzzles, starting with crosswords and not yet ending with Sudoku (here, I especially love the Killer variety).
I have always loved traveling and I found a husband who does, as well. While we can't go on any trips at the moment, we enjoy looking at our photographs from past years.
Aachen, Amsterdam, Belfast

Lübeck, Brussels, Strasbourg, Bonn


  1. You love Killer Sudoku?! You LOVE it?! How? Haha. These are some really mind-boggling hobbies, and truly international in scope too. And the card-making sounds absolute fun. Happy TTT!

    My own list here: https://lexlingua.co/non-bookish-hobbies-top-10-tuesday/

    1. LOOOOOL. I knew that one would shock some. I just love it, can't be helped. But, as you can see, I also added Maths to my hobbies and likes. 😉🤣

      But yes, I've lived an international life, lived in four countries (my sons in even more) and worked in international environments all the time. Couldn't imagine another life.

      Thanks for your visit and for leaving your link. Will hop over there soon.

  2. Look at all the languages you speak. Wow. I feel like I can talk in English and Spanish and (not as much as I wish) French.

    1. I get that comment a lot. Even from other Europeans. But to any of my overseas friends I always say, we have a lot more chances to practise what we've learned. So, it's easier AND more fun. Mind you, I was quite shocked myself when I added up the languages, didn't know there were so many. LOL

      All I can say, don't give up on a language you really would like to know. It's easier nowadays than it used to be with the internet and the possiblity to get books in foreign languages. Start with children's books, that's the best way.

      Thanks for your visit. Will have to see what you wrote.

  3. I also love games! Which game (or types of games) are you favorites? I really like trick-taking card games, like The Dwarf King (which I found an old copy of at a game store and loved, but haven't been able to find for purchase anywhere!) and also games like Labyrinth where it's a bit of strategy and a bit of chance. :)

    1. My favourites are board games, especially the strategy games because I don't have to rely entirely on how the dice fall. Labyrinth is one I love a lot. In Germany, there is always a "Game of the Year" and a lot of them are just brilliant but I doubt all of them have been "translated" i.e. published in other countries.
      Oh, and quiz board games like Trivial Pursuit. Yes, those are the kind of games I love.
      I've never heard of "The Dwarf King". Will have to explore.

      Thanks for visiting.

  4. I love games and learning languages, too. :) And my grandfather emigrated from Germany to the United States many years ago.

    My post.

    1. That's what I love about this topic, how we find out things like that. I'll visit your page soon. Thanks for leaving your link and thank you so much for your visit and comment.

  5. Food has become a bad hobby here. LOL. We just get so bored and want to eat.

    1. I think that's a general problem at the moment. Hubby and I have decided to go shopping only every three weeks and try to empty our quite full freezer a little. LOL

      Thanks for visiting.

  6. Wow, that's a lot of languages! I studied Spanish in high school and college. My husband lived in South America for two years and speaks the language fluently. When he speaks to me in Spanish, I can understand pretty well. I thought I would get along just fine when we visited Chile a couple years ago. Nope! I was completely lost! They speak Spanish really fast and with a lot of slang. My Spanish is not AT ALL what I thought it was. Ha ha.

    I love that you've picked up the Thanksgiving tradition. It's one of my favorites because it's all about gratitude and spending time with loved ones while eating delicious food. What's not to love?

    Happy TTT!

    1. Very true. What's not to love? Couldn't think of anything. We do have something similar in our Harvest Festival at church but it's not a family thing like Thanksgiving. Our European friends and family all love it. And they love all the food. Turkey, sweet potatoes, corn bread, spiced carrots, corn on the cob, maccaroni and cheese, baked beans, corn pudding. Oh, and all the pies, lemon meringue, pecan, blueberry, pumpkin ... I'm sure I forgot something but I think I thought of the majority. LOL

      Speaking different languages is such a rewarding thing. It can be quite frustrating to begin with but it is so deserving in the end. We wouldn't be able to talk if none of us hadn't learned a foreign language. Anyway, I totally understand your problem with Chileans. First of all, any Spanish speaking people talk really, really, really fast. And then it's not the same in every country. Even people whose mother tongue is Englsh have difficulties if they come across someone from a different area with a heavy accent. I had some different kind of English teachers in school, some from the UK, others from the US (Wisconsin and Illionois) but still, I had to get used to American accents when I met the first ones. So, don't give up on your Spanish. Watch some Spanish films with subtitles (helped me a lot with my Englisch), read some children's books, it all helps. Oh, and try Duolingo (see links above ^^). It really helps.

      Anyway, thanks for your visit. Will have to see what you wrote. :)

    2. Very true. And film-watching is a great suggestion. I met a kid in Chile who speaks English really well and he told me he'd learn to speak it from listening to American pop/rock songs!

    3. One of the reasons why smaller language communities (like Dutch or Danish) often speak better English than larger ones (like French, Spanish or German) is that they don't have the money to dub all their films and show them in the original. So yes, watching movies or listening to music is a great way.

      When I went to school, there was a little booklet published every month with the newest song texts. Even though I had hardly ony money, I managed to get them somewho and learned all the songs by heart. And looked up the words I didn't understand in the dictionary. Helped me a lot because in those days, that was about the only thing I could get in English - besides my school book which I read front to back and then back to front and then started at the beginning again. LOL

  7. I love travelling too, definitely looking forward to being able to do it again. I'm so jealous that you speak so many languages, I only speak English fluently. I know a little Spanish and German, but not really enough to converse properly.
    My TTT: https://jjbookblog.wordpress.com/2020/11/03/top-ten-tuesday-288/

    1. Wir können es ja mal versuchen. 😉😁
      No, honestly, try Duolingo, it really helps improving your language, watch movies in the original with subtitles, read children's books ... and if you want help with your German, I'm always here.

      Thanks for your visit and your link, will see you there.

  8. I love baking too! Here is my Top Ten Tuesday. Thank you!

    1. It's such a deserving task. Everyone likes the result, even if they don't look like they're from a professional.

      Thanks for visiting and leaving your link. I'll see you on your page.

  9. With all of the books you've read, I thought you read 24 hours a day! LOL. This is a well-rounded list of hobbies. Writing letters and cardmaking is quite fun!

    Here's my list of hobbies!

    1. LOOOOL. You're right, I really don't have more time for other stuff. But somehow I always manage. Mind you, I haven't worked after I had my children, at least not for money (volunteered everywhere, though) and now that hubby is retired, I have even more time.

      Thanks for your visit.

    2. It's nice that you have free time! After reading your post, I would like to check out Duolingo to tray to learn a new language or two.

    3. I have recommended this to many people and they all have said it's great. I wish you much success.

  10. Great list! I would love to learn languages too!

    Here’s my TTT!

    Ronyell @ Rabbit Ears Book Blog

    1. Thanks, Ronyell. It's easier when you really can use them. However, start with a language you always wanted to learn on Duolingo (links ^^). It's so rewarding.

      Thanks for visiting and leaving your link. Will visit you soon.

  11. How wonderful to know so many different languages! I took German lessons in college, but I'm very out of practice. I just started trying to learn again. Such a beautiful language.

    And your photography is great—I especially love your travel photos.

    1. Thank you so much for your comment. If you live in the middle of Europe and are surrounded by countries that mostly speak a different language from you, it's a lot easier to practise your skills, so don't blame yourself, blame the fact that you were born into a language that everyone around you speaks.

      And thanks also for the comment about my photos. Of course, I chose the best ones and all those cities mean something to me. We used to live near Aachen, my eldest son lives in Amsterdam, my youngest used to study in Belfast (and in Bonn). He is now in Göteborg but due to the pandemic, we were not able to visit him and, therefore, I don't have a picture of the town. My husband and I met in Brussels and Lübeck and Strasbourg are just two cities we have visited several times and love them. So, I see them a little with rose-tinted glasses.

      Thanks for visiting, as always. Nice talking to you. Have a good weekend.