Spanish Phrases for Wants, Desires & Cravings in Spanish
1. No ver la hora – to not be able to wait
No veo la hora de mudarme.
I can’t wait to move [as in to a different home, house, apartment, etc.].
Ella no ve la hora de ver a su marido.
She cannot wait to see her husband.
No veo la hora de que llegues.
I can’t wait for you to arrive.
The expression “no ver la hora . . .” literally means “to not see the hour . . .” But instead of using the expression “no ver la hora,” you can also literally translate and say the following:
No puedo esperar a mudarme.
I can’t wait to move.
Ella no puede esperar a ver a su marido.
She cannot wait to see her husband.
No puedo esperar a que llegues.
I can’t wait for you to arrive.
Depending on the situation, I sometimes prefer to use “no ver la hora” instead of “no poder esperar.” I think it sounds a little more . . . poetic. For example, I have been in the States for nearly two weeks now visiting family. When I texted my “novia” (girlfriend) in Medellin, Colombia today I wrote:
No veo la hora de besarte.
(I can’t wait to kiss you).
2. Tener ganas – to feel like (action)
Tengo ganas de comer algo dulce.
(I feel like eating something sweet.)
Ella tiene ganas de dormir.
(She feels like sleeping.)
Be careful when using the phrase “tener ganas.” Depending on the context, the phrase “tener ganas” by itself can suggest that you have sexual desires.
(I want to make love/Quiero hacer el amor.)
3. Tener antojo – to have a craving
Tengo antojos de chocolate.
I have a craving for chocolate.
Ella tiene antojos de cosas dulces.
She has a craving for sweet things.
By the way, earlier today when I sent my “novia” in Colombia a text message saying “no veo la hora de besarte,” (I can’t wait tokiss you),” she responded by texting “Tengo antojo de un beso tuyo” — which means “I have a craving for your kiss.”
Useful Spanish Phrases: Learn the Different Uses of “ponerse al día”
One of the most useful Spanish phrases is “ponerse al día”. See below the many examples of different contexts where you might use this very important expression that mainly means “to get updated”, ” to catch up”.
Tengo que ponerme al día de trabajo.
I need to get up to date with work (because you are behind).
Todavía tengo que ponerme al día en el nuevo puesto.
I have lots of new things to learn still in the new job.
Tengo que ponerme al día con las noticias, llevo mucho tiempo fuera.
I need to get up to date with the news, I’ve been away for ages.
Las mujeres deben trabajar fuertemente para colmar la brecha y ponerse al día.
Women must work hard to bridge the gap and catch up.
Ella es sólo estaba esperando por nosotros para ponerse al día.
She’s just been waiting for us to get updated.
Mamá debe ponerse al día con muchos casos.
Your mom’s got a lot of cases to catch up on.
Hay tantas cosas para ponerse al día.
So many things to catch up on.
Debe ser agradable verse y ponerse al día.
Must be nice to see each other again and just catch up.
More Uses of “ponerse al día”
Tengo que ponerme al día con el inglés
I need to get back to where I was with my English/study more and get my English going again.
No, así pueden ponerse al día.
No, you could just catch up.
Sería estupendo para ponerse al día.
It would be so great to catch up.
Supongo que querrán ponerse al día.
I guess you two can catch up.
Me doy cuenta de que tendrá que ponerse al día.
I realize he’ll have to catch up.
Puede ponerse al día cuando llegue aquí.
He can get updated when he gets here.
Estoy tratando de ponerse al día con todo esto.
I’m trying to catch up with all this.
2 Spanish Phrases to Understand: “Do you have a dream?” and “Are you sleepy?”
It is a beginner mistake that I heard someone make over the weekend. It can make the difference between saying “I am sleepy” and “I have a dream.”
Medellin is a city that is known for its nightlife. Over the weekend I went to “un bar” (a bar) with some American friends and some Colombian friends. After a few drinks, we discussed going to a “discoteca” (night club). But one of my Colombian friends named Andrés said — in English — “I am tired.”
An American friend name Michael who wanted to show the Colombians that he can speak Spanish as well as they can speak English then asked Andrés:
“Tienes un sueño.”
Andrés responded in English:
“Yes, I have a dream. I hope to someday become a doctor.”
Well, I don’t think Michael really want to know about the career aspirations of Andres. I think what he really wanted to ask Andrés was “Are you sleepy?” — since Andrés just finished saying that he was tired.
However, if you want to ask someone “Are you sleepy?” this is how you ask:
¿Tienes sueño? (informal)
¿Usted tiene sueño? (formal)
But if you want to ask someone “Do you have a dream?” this is how you ask:
¿Tienes un sueño? (informal)
¿Usted tiene un sueño? (formal)
I wanted to share this with you so that you never make the mistake of asking someone “are you sleepy?” when you really want to ask “do you have a dream?” or vice versa.
This post about the English to Spanish translation of “Do you have a dream?” and “Are you sleepy?” is courtesy of Patrick Jackson LearningSpanishLikeCrazy
Bet you don’t know these 3 Spanish Phrases!
I am still in central Florida assisting a “tía” (aunt) move into an “hogar de ancianos” (retirement home). I can’t wait to get back home to Colombia. Extraño Medellín mucho (I miss Medellin a lot).
Today, I called an “amiga” in Colombia to see if I could send her some money to go pay my utilities so that they don’t cut them off before I return. (I have found paying bills online in Latin America to be somewhat complicated compared to paying bills online in the States).
When I called my “amiga” about paying the utilities, I noticed that I used 3 words that I did not learn when I was studying Spanish and still living in the States. But I learned these words after relocating to Latin America — and I find them to be very useful:
1. Anotar – jot down, write down quickly
Déjeme anotar su dirección y su número de teléfono y yo la contactaré tan pronto como me sea posible.
Let me jot down her address and phone number and I will contact her as soon as I can.
2. Giro – bank transfer, Western Union transfer, Money Gram transfer, etc.
Te enviaré el giro mañana.
I will send you the bank transfer tomorrow.
3. Servicios públicos – Utilities (or just “servicios” for short) “Servicios públicos” literally means public services.
Te van a cortar los servicios.
They are going to cut-off your utilities.
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Basic Spanish Phrases & Words for Talking about the Bank
el banco – the bank
los ahorros – the savings
el billete – bill
los billetes grandes – large bills
la caja – the cash desk
el cajero – the cashier
el cajero automático – the ATM machine
cambiar – exchange
el cheque – the check
el cheque de viajero – travelers cheque
el código SWIFT – the Swift code
la cuenta – the account
la cuenta bancaria – the bank account
la cuenta de ahorros – the savings account
el débito – the debit
el depósito – the deposit
la deuda – the debt
el dinero – the money
en efectivo – cash
las monedas – the coins
el préstamo – the loan
la tarjeta de crédito – the credit card
la ventanilla – the cashier’s window
The Making of a Common Mistake in Spanish
Here’s the story of a very common mistake in Spanish…
Today was a long and tiring day.
I was going to go to bed as soon as I got home but I heard an English speaker make a common mistake in Spanish this afternoon at the gym where I work-out here in Medellin, Colombia.
You have to know it just to make sure that you never make the same common mistake in Spanish.
I don’t recall the English speaker’s name. But from his accent, I can tell that he is from New Zealand or Australia. Let’s just say that his name is Fred.
Fred is the type of guy who you always see at the refreshment stand at the gym. Usually drinking some type of nutritional shake while talking to the “muchacha” who works at the refreshment stand.
You hardly if ever see him on an exercise machine or lifting weights. It seems like he only goes to the gym to drink protein shakes and talk to the cute girl behind the refreshment stand.
Well this afternoon while Fred was at the refreshment stand in the gym, a Colombian guy asked Fred a question in English:
What happened to the girl who used to work here?
Fred, wanting to show the Colombian guy that he speaks Spanish as well the Colombian speaks English responded:
Ella dio nacimiento gemelos.
This is a very common mistake in Spanish! Fred was trying to say “she gave birth to twins.”
Well, the Spanish word “dio” does mean he/she gave.
And “nacimiento” does mean birth.
And “gemelos” means twins.
But “ella dio nacimiento gemelos” is not how you say “she gave birth to twins.” Do you know why? Because in Spanish one does not give birth. Well, at least not linguistically.
In Spanish, one “gives light” (dar a luz). So Fred should have said:
“Ella dio a luz gemelos” (she gave birth to twins.)
Spanish Phrases: Idioms and Verbs
Here are some examples of Spanish “dichos” (idioms/sayings) that we you will find useful:
1. Perder la chaveta (to lose your mind, to lose your marbles)
Mi tío no está bien; parece que perdió la chaveta.
(My uncle is not well; it seems he lost his marbles.)
2. Ser un perro viejo (to have experience in something, to be an old hand, literally, “to be an old dog”)
En la mecánica, mi papá es un perro viejo.
(In mechanics, my dad is an old hand.)
3. Meter la pata (to ruin an opportunity, to blow it)
Mi novia era buena conmigo y yo metí la pata.
(My girlfriend used to be nice to me and I blew it.)
Here are 3 important Spanish verbs that you have to know:
1. Although the Spanish verb “demandar” looks and sounds like the English verb “demand,” the Spanish verb “demandar” does not mean “to demand.” Demandar means “to sue” as in “to sue in a court of law.”
Voy a demandar a la empresa donde trabajaba porque no me pagaron el dinero que me debían.
I am going to sue the company where I used to work because they didn’t pay me the money that they owed me.
2. The Spanish verb “avisar” may look a lot like the English verb “advise.” But “avisar” doesn’t mean
“to advise.” “Avisar” means “to inform.”
For example, “¿me avisas?”
Will you inform me?)
3. The Spanish verb “contestar” does not mean “to contest,” as in to argue against or to dispute. The Spanish verb “contestar” means “to answer.”
Anoche te llamé pero tu no contestaste.
Last night, I called you but you did not answer.