April 2, 2010 | Spanish

Sunshine and Studying

I feel like being outside.

This was a phenomenally beautiful day in New York City. It was the kind of day that makes me feel as though all I should do all day long is walk around Central Park and enjoy the sunshine, but since I ran there in the morning, and since I had actual things I needed to get done—such as studying Spanish!—I retired to our apartment for much of the afternoon.

I managed to get through the twelfth lesson of Pimsleur III by tonight, so I am zipping along. But I am in a hurry to move even faster and get to the more advanced stuff. The Spanish Pimsleur is too easy for me overall, but as I do it, I am being reminded of some grammatical concepts I’d forgotten, and I am also learning some adult vocabulary (I mean relating to the business world, not porn) that I was never taught in junior high or high school Spanish classes.

Looking out our kitchen window this afternoon, Brandt and I saw two workers dangling by ropes from our building’s roof. They are conducting a building inspection, I forget for what exactly. What a job!

A Very New York Kind of Job...

...and One That Is Not for Everyone

You don’t see this kind of thing every day, unless maybe you are addicted to action movies, which often seem to feature some drama involving professionals whose duties include scaling the sides of tall buildings.

Comments (4)

Anukriti Kunwar • Posted on Sat, August 31, 2013 - 12:43 am EST


I aboslutely loved ur blog! Its so nicely maintained.
I want to ask you is pimsleurs effective? I started with spanish and did 3 levels, due to something not in my hands had to leave it. I have full series of pimsleurs spanish. Will it be effective if i start with?

Ellen Jovin • Posted on Sat, August 31, 2013 - 1:19 am EST

Thank you for the compliment, Anukriti!

In answer to your question, I love Pimsleur and would definitely recommend it. I used it for 16 of the 17 languages I have studied so far (there is no Pimsleur for Yiddish, unfortunately). The company has recently added a new Level 4 for Spanish, with 30 more lessons, bringing the total number of Pimsleur Spanish lessons to 120. I am about to try the new Level 4.

A total beginner can use Pimsleur, something that is not true of many products. Rather, supposedly beginning-level products often require some previous knowledge of the target language.

One more thing: I never do Pimsleur in isolation. I like to simultaneously use different methods of studying. For example, I am a huge fan of grammar drills (not everyone is), so I have used things like McGraw-Hill’s “Practice Makes Perfect” series for Spanish as well. I have various Spanish book reviews with ratings on my site at

I hope that helps. Let me know if you have any more questions!

Elena :)

Leslie Greffenius • Posted on Tue, April 25, 2017 - 7:50 pm EST

Hi Ellen:

I just discovered this blog and love it, too! I am in the same situation you were in in 2010: I studied Spanish in school and have used it at some points in my life, but I haven’t used it much in a while - and since I most recently studied Italian, I need to make sure that I can separate out Spanish as we are going to Barcelona next month. Learning languages is so much fun; I haven’t done it in a while though. I love your idea of using a foreign language to target another foreign language, so maybe I will try out Spanish for German speakers.

Thank you!


Ellen Jovin • Posted on Mon, December 04, 2017 - 2:09 pm EST

Hi Leslie, so have you tried Spanish for German speakers? I am curious to know! :)

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