Saturday, 25 February 2017

EV99 - Quotes for the homeland

To mark the 99th birthday of the Republic of Estonia, Delfi Newspaper published a list of 15 quotes (in Estonian) by some of humanity's great thinker relating to love for your homeland. 


1. "Kõigist raskustest hoolimata on Eesti õppinud selgeks ühe olulise tõe: kui tahad, et sind koheldakse riigina, tuleb ka käituda riigina." Lennart Meri

2. "Ärge küsige, mida saab kodumaa teie jaoks teha. Küsige, mida saate teie kodumaa jaoks teha." John Fitzgerald Kennedy

3. "Isamaa on ju nagu naine: kui sa ütled, et sa teda armastad, siis pead teda ka kasutama, muidu on sinu armujutt tühine." Anton Hansen Tammsaare

4. "Võõramaa libedal jääl oli palju raskem ennast püsti ajada kui kodukandi tuttaval pinnal." Erich Maria Remarque

5. "Ei ole suuremat valu, kui isamaa kaotus." Euripides

6. "Meist igaühest sõltub Eesti püsimine." Lennart Meri

7. "Me võime kurta - ja tihti just seda teemegi - et Eesti väiksus ei lase meil midagi teha. Seejuures kipume aga unustama, et tugevus peitub sisus." Toomas Hendrik Ilves

8. "Eesti suurim turvalisusrisk on harimatus." Jaak Jõerüüt

9. "Meie väikesele rahvusele on hariduse edu iseäranis tähtis, sest ainult iseseisvale rahvuslikule kultuurile tuginev väikeriik võib püsida ja püsima jääda teiste suuremate riikide keskel." Johannes Käis

10. "Eesti riigist saab kõigi siin elavate inimeste kodu vaid eeldusel, et selle elanikud oma kodu hoiavad ja kaitsevad, mitte aga ei ürita seda kodu maha müüa või põlema panna." Toomas Hendrik Ilves

11. "Meid, eestlasi, on niivõrd vähe, et iga eestlase siht peab olema surematus!" Jaan Kross

12. "Eesti rahvas on arvult väike. Seepärast ei tohi mitte ühegi inimese saatusele käega lüüa." Toomas Hendrik Ilves

13. "Kõigist raskustest hoolimata on Eesti õppinud selgeks ühe olulise tõe: kui tahad, et sind koheldakse riigina, tuleb ka käituda riigina." Lennart Meri

14. "Eesti ei saagi kunagi valmis. Ta kasvab paremaks ja tugevamaks. Ta küpseb avatumaks ja suuremaks. Meie ühise armastuse ja hoolimise toel." Toomas Hendrik Ilves

15. "Kõigist tundmusist koledaim on see, kui sa usu oma rahvusesse ja isamaasse kaotad." August Gailit

Source: Eesti Vabariik 99: 15 tsitaati kodumaa kohta

Friday, 24 February 2017

Head Vabariigi aastapäeva Eesti! Happy Independence Day Estonia!

The Republic of Estonia turns 99 today!

The tri-colour flag will be displayed with pride in every Estonian home.

Elagu Eesti!

President Kaljulaid bestows state decorations on 113 individuals



To commemorate the 99th anniversary of the Republic of Estonia, President Kersti Kaljulaid bestowed 113 state decorations on individuals yesterday for their distinguished work and support of the Estonian nation. The event took place at the NUKU Theatre in Tallinn.

It is great to see some familiar names among the recipients. Maie Barrow in particular has done an excellent job preserving Estonian heritage and culture in Australia. Congratulations!


2017 RECIPIENTS OF ESTONIAN STATE DECORATIONS

The Order of the National Coat of Arms, 2nd Class

Taavi Rõivas, Prime Minister of the Republic of Estonia from 2014-2016

The Order of the White Star, 3rd Class

Marek Helm, developer of the tax and customs system

Andrei Jämsä, rower

Priit Perens, promoter of banking

Allar Raja, rower

Kaspar Taimsoo, rower

Lembit Ulfsak, actor

The Order of the White Star, 4th Class

Tõnu Aas, power engineer

Hiie Asser, promoter of language immersion, school director

Jaan Janno, mathematician, Tallinn University of Technology professor

Anne Kahru, ecotoxicologist, Estonian Academy of Sciences researcher and professor

Tiina Kallavus, school director, promoter of special needs education

Sirje Keevallik, atmospheric physicist, professor at Tallinn University of Technology

Ivi Kesküla, judge

Epp Maria Kokamägi, artist

Ülle Kruus, art historian

Mare Kõiva, folklore researcher

Andrus Maruoja, state official

Andrus Miilaste, judge

Natalia Miilvee, prosecutor

Ülle-Marike Papp, social scientist, promoter of gender equality

Peeter Peedomaa, promoter of entrepreneurship

Anti Puusepp, promoter of entrepreneurship

Riina Reinvelt, ethnologist, developer of the Estonian National Museum

Aarne Siimsen, state official

Niina Sõtnik, school director, promoter of education

Aare Toikka, producer, theater director

Indrek Treufeldt, TV journalist, lecturer

Peeter Urbla, film director, promoter of culture

Raul Vaiksoo, architect

Martin Veinmann, actor, teacher

Taavi Veskimägi, promoter of the energy sector

Raivo Vilu, biotechnologist, Tallinn University of Technology professor

Andres Ülviste, prosecutor

The Order of the White Star, 5th Class


Anneli Ammas, journalist

Väino Aren, actor

Angela Arraste, dance teacher

Maie Barrow, preserver of Estonian heritage in Australia

Aavi Dobrõš - recorder of history

Ivo Felt, film producer, sound engineer

Igor Garšnek, composer, musicologist

Rein Grünbach, art teacher

Johan Patrik Göransson, clergyman, keeper of Estonian-Swedish cultural heritage

Taimi Hillak, promoter of entrepreneurship

Maaja-Katrin Kerem, qualifications system developer

Ülle Kikas, promoter of education

Harri Koiduste, promoter of wrestling

Kaja Kärner, radio journalist

Mart Laanpere, promoter of the digital sector in education

Ira Lember, author

Ulla Länts, radio journalist

Silja Lättemäe, journalist

Kadri Mälk, jewelry designer

Janika Mölder, gymnastics trainer

Anne Oruaas, promoter of local life in Harju County

Sirje Plaks, promoter of lifelong learning

Rein Purje, recorder of history

Rein Raudsep, geologist, state official

Evar Riitsaar, artist, promoter of Seto culture

Ann Roos, organizer of children's creative contest "Sten's fairytale contest"

Ants Roos, organizer of children's creative contest "Sten's fairytale contest"

Ülo Roos, historian

Olivia Saar, children's author

Harry Seinberg, athletics trainer

Laine Sepp, music teacher

Juhan Sihver, Estonian broadcasting historian

Liivi Soova, promoter of handicrafts and folk art

Toomas Mihkel Sõrra, preserver of Estonian heritage in the U.S.

Tõnu Talvi, conservationist

Tiiu Teesalu, historian

Peeter Vähi, composer

The Order of the White Star, Medal

Reet Kaljula, promoter of the will to defend

Krzysztof Mieczysław Kaminski, servant of the Estonian Embassy in Poland

Tiina Kivikas, adjuster

The Order of the Red Cross, 2nd Class

Tõnu Endrekson, rower

Enn Jõeste, pathologist

Kaiu Suija, oncologist, helper of cancer patients

Karin Varik, children's surgeon

The Order of the Red Cross, 3rd Class

Märt Elmet, cardiologist

Ants Kass, orthopedist

Janek Laev, rescue officer

Toomas Tartes, surgeon

The Order of the Red Cross, 4th Class

Marianne Kuzemtšenko, helper of individuals with autism

Annika Laats, clergyman, organizer of pastoral care

Katarina Seeherr, music therapist, helper of individuals with special needs

Teija Tuula Marjatta Toivari, hospice developer

Reet Veenpere, speech therapist

The Order of the Red Cross, 5th Class

Arne Aas, blood donor

Priit Kaja, blood donor

Allen Leego, blood donor

Tõnu Lukk, blood donor

Aina Pääro, promoter of health

The Order of the Cross of the Eagle, 1st Class

Werner Freers, promoter of defense cooperation, general, Germany

The Order of the Cross of the Eagle, 3rd Class

Arnaud Coustillière, promoter of defense cooperation, vice admiral, France

The Order of the Cross of the Eagle, 4th Class with Swords

Eduard Meemann, freedom fighter

The Order of the Cross of the Eagle, 4th Class

Margo Grosberg, active serviceman, major

Illar Jõgi, police official, police lieutenant colonel

Hendrik Lõbu, security police officer

Merike Pappel, security police officer

The Order of the Cross of the Eagle, Silver Cross

Ramil Sadikov, active serviceman, sergeant major

The Order of the Cross of the Eagle, Iron Cross

Janek Pinta, police official, senior superintendent

Maarja Punak, police official, senior superintendent

The Order of the Cross of Terra Mariana, 2nd Class

Alexander Russell Vershbow, supporter of security cooperation, U.S.

The Order of the Cross of Terra Mariana, 3rd Class


Heinrich Brauss, NATO deputy secretary general Deputy Secretary General

Pär Anders Nuder, promoter of Estonian-Swedish relations

James J. Townsend, Jr., supporter of security cooperation, U.S.

Tadahiko Yoshino, promoter of Estonian-Japanese relations

The Order of the Cross of Terra Mariana, 4th Class

Norbert Angermann, promoter of cooperation in history, Germany

Serge Arnould, former honorary consul in Lyon, France

Bo Hugemark, promoter of Estonian-Swedish relations

Michael N. Schmitt, promoter of cybersecurity cooperation, U.S.

The Order of the Cross of Terra Mariana, 5th Class

Nils Riess, producer, promoter of Estonian theater, U.S.

Arvo Sulo Survo, promoter of Finno-Ugric culture, Finland

To view photos of the ceremony, please click here:
President andis täna riikliku teenetemärgi 113 inimesele

Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Happy Birthday! Palju õnne sünnipäevaks vanaema!

February 22nd is a very special day to me. It is my grandmother's birthday as well the birthday of a few other significant people in my life. My grandmother would have turned 103 today if she were still alive but sadly we lost her in 1989. Her memory lives on however, in the fascinating stories my father often shares with me and in the photos that surround my home. 

Hertha Lestal

My grandmother experienced a lot during her lifetime. She lost her father at a young age, then her mother passed away a few years after making the move from Tartu to Tallinn. In September 1939 she married her Baltic German husband and moved to the Warthegau region as part of the Baltic German Resettlement Program. She lived in Łódź, Poland for several years during WWII before fleeing to the West to escape the advancing Red Army. My grandmother had a deep-seated fear and hatred of Russian soldiers from that chapter in her life. The Soviets were known to commit horrendous atrocities, not just in the Warthegau region but across Europe. After the war my grandmother took refugee in the displaced persons camp in Hamburg known as 'Zoo Camp'. While there she divorced her cheating husband who had abandoned the family and slowly embarked upon a new life. She meet my grandfather Alexander during her time in Hamburg and joined him when he emigrated to Australia in 1948. They both wanted to start a new life together far away from the destruction of war. Australia gave my grandmother the fresh start she needed but she always said 'Europa die Best'.

I will remember my grandmother for many things but she was best known for her dolls clothes. She had a small business making dolls clothes and my father and uncle often acted as her sales agents. They delivered her dolls clothes all across Sydney. When I used to visit her as a child I loved gazing upon her sewing room that was full of colourful fabrics, ribbons and lace. She had cupboards full of dolls clothes all carefully marked denoting size.  It was heaven for me!



Of course I have preserved many of my grandmother's dolls clothes but I wish I had more.

Monday, 20 February 2017

Independence Day flag-raising ceremony to return to Governor's Garden (ERR NEWS)


The Chancellery of the Riigikogu has decided that the traditional morning flag-raising ceremony on Feb. 24, Estonia's Independence Day, will return to its original location in the Governor's Garden next to Toompea Castle.

The ceremony has been held in the courtyard of Toompea Castle, the seat of the the Riigikogu, for the last 17 years. Prior to that, it had been held in the Governor's Garden adjacent to the building from 1989-1999.

"People have taken beginning Independence Day with the raising of our blue, black and white flag so close to heart over the years that there is no longer enough room for us in the courtyard of Toompea Castle," spokespeople quoted President of the Riigikogu Eiki Nestor as saying. "Therefore I invite everyone to the flag-raising ceremony in the Governor's Garden, where you will have a much better view of the flag being raised on the Tall Hermann Tower."

The ceremony on the 24th will begin at 7:33 a.m. with the raising of the Estonian flag as the national anthem plays. Following this, the President of the Riigikogu will give a speech and the Archbishop of the Estonian Evangelical Lutheran Church (EELK) Urmas Viilma will read a blessing.

The flag-raising ceremony is traditionally attended by members of the Riigikogu and the government, representatives of constitutional institutions and the diplomatic corps as well as members of the color guards of patriotic and student organizations and the public.


Thursday, 16 February 2017

Estonian documentary 'Patterns of Freedom' to premier in Australia

Patterns of Freedom is a universal story of refugees and their search for identity in the face of loss and exile. This multi-award winning film focuses on the indigenous Estonian women, who fled their homeland in the 1944 Baltic Diaspora, with nothing more than a fierce love of their culture and the skills in their hands. These mothers and grandmothers passed on the handcraft skills of their ancestral homeland to generations growing up in exile.


Wednesday, 15 February 2017

A Look at Married Couples in Estonia

To mark Valentine's Day, the Estonian Statistical Office posed the question, 'what is the portrait of couples in Estonia?' They sifted through data on the register and drew these conclusions.

Between 1970 - 1980 approximately 12,000 marriage ceremonies took place in Estonia each year. Since the 1990s the number of new marriages per year began to fall sharply with only 5000 - 6000 couples deciding to tie the knot.


As of 1st January 2017, there were nearly 250,000 married couples in Estonia. Many marriages end as a result of divorce or death or a partner. Currently, of the lasting marriages, 88% of married couples have lived together for at least five years. Slightly more than half of couples (52%) have celebrated their silver wedding anniversary. Although 50 years of cohabitation seems relatively rare, however, more than 15 000 couples have reached this milestone. In Estonia, the average marriage lasted nearly 25 years.


If we then look at names in Estonia, popular names of couples who have been together the longest (58 years on average) are: Aino & Evald (7 couples) and Helmi & Ülo (5 couples). Popular names of new couples, i.e. people who have been married for an average of 1-2 years are Anna & Nikita (6), Kairi & Martin (5), and Anton & Veronika (7).

In honour of Valentine's Day, it is interesting to note that there are 32 couples in Estonia with the names Valentin and Valentina, who have lived together for nearly 30 years on average.


To read the full ERR report (in Estonian), please click here: Eesti abielupaaride koondportree