We are not human beings having a spiritual experience, we are spiritual beings having a human experience

Tuesday, May 08, 2012

A little PA Dutch for you ...

As some of you may already know, I am the daughter of a Pennsylvania Dutch family and; therefore, grew up hearing quite a few different words and phrases as a child. For better or for worse, I have heard these words so many times over the years that I could never forget them or their meanings even if I tried! LOL!!!

Here are just a few words and their meanings (as best I could define them in English, that is) that I still remember to this day ...

Wilkum (vill-come) - welcome (pretty obvious, right)
Katz (kaatz) - cat
Hount (huunt) - dog
Furschtain (fersh-stane) - understand
"Du bischt?" (doo bish-t) - "How are you?" or "How be you?"
Kum esse (coom-essa) - come eat!
"Cumst du here" (comest do here) - "come you here"
Dunna wetter (doon-ah-wetter) - bad weather
Dopick (dopp-ic) - clumsy
Schuslik (shuss-lick) - this describes someone who is carelessly rushing and not taking their time.
Wunanosik (woon-ah-nosick) - nosey
Umlikelick (umm-like-lic) - stubborn or bull-headed
"Du Gut in himmel" (do gutt in himmel) - "Dear God in heaven"
Schlek (sh-leck) - junk ( as in "junk food")
Die musik (dee musick) - the music
Peensik (pean-sick) - fussy or picky person
Daresent (dare-sent) - better not or "dare not"

And, of course, perhaps the strangest phrase of all and one that every PA Dutch child has heard growing up:

"Kanst du mikka funga?" ("Caan-st do micka fung-ah")
("Can you catch flies?")

"Ya, wusse hukabliba!" ("Yaa, vussie huck-a-blibe-ah!")
("Yes, when they sit still!")

Yes, I suppose you could say that my childhood was a tad "different" to say the least? LOL!!!


  1. That's amazing; for I have a hard enough time speaking my own language seeing I was born almost completely tongue tied.

    When I was a little boy my mother slapped me across the face, and here's the reason why:

    I saw a truck drive by, and I said to my mom, "Look mom, it's a truck."

    But the thing of it is, is that my word truck didn't come out as the word truck.

    1. Lon ~ LOL!!! You have just put a little smile on my face, Thank you, my friend!!!



  2. How wonderful, Kim :) I especially loved the strangest phrase :D

    Love the sign...does it have a meaning?

    Hugs and Blessings,

    1. Jan ~ The signs go back to the 1800's when German imigrants came to PA. Many people who practice Pennsylvania Dutch Pow Wow (a belief system, not a religion) in the old country used these beautiful signs for purposes of protection (specificially to keep their barns from burning down), and such by hanging them on their doors. The four leaf clover one is for luck, of course. :)

      Many blessings,


  3. What a neat post! Always loved the Pennsylvania Dutch signs. In fact, we have three large ones hanging on our outbuildings. Lol, I got a good chuckle from Lon A's post, because I remember my brother had the same exact problem! :-)

    Brightest Blessings,


    1. Ametrine Knowing-Willow ~ That is so cool that you come from PA, too and that you have PA Dutch signs around your house! They are beauitiful! This makes me smile!!! ;)



  4. This is adorable and so much fun!!! Can you catch flies? Yes, when they sit still. I wonder if that "meant" something? Other than what it says?
    Big Hugs ;o)

    1. Stacy ~ I think it actually meant exactly that because Amish and Mennonite children are not allowed to have fancy toys and such when they are little so playing a game of "catching flies" was probably just that! LOL! ;)

      My family is not Amish or Mennonite, which is where the PA Dutch language came from, but my Great Aunts and Uncles and my grandmother spoke it fluenty all the same.

      Big Hugs,


  5. Very interesting! Thanks Kim ;o)
    I am so happy you commented on my blog today, because as I always say to you, your blog goes missing! Before I saw your comment, I was just about to e-mail you, because I thought something had happened! I was worried! I am on my way to catch up on your wonderful blog ;o)
    Hugs, xoxoxo

  6. In my family, which has some Pa. Dutch heritage, we used the term 'peensik' (who knows how it's spelt) to mean 'tiny.'

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. Kurt, yes my father used that term quite a bit when I was growing up as well. I believe you are right about the meaning. My parents never really explained exactly "what" it meant, but I tried to figure it out in the way that they used it!