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From My Words

Tag Archives: Navajo

Winter time on YouTube….


Typical Navajo Hogan in the winter. Taken from Wiikiibíídiiya…

There are many things that Navajos did in the winter to keep from getting bored. Here are three different Winter things that we enjoyed or some of us still do.

Coyote Stories. Believe or not, there are some people that have not heard a coyote at all. YouTube showcases some of these stories. They were pretty cool, old Flash like animation. These stories are in Navajo.

Coyote and Lizard

Coyote and Beavers

Coyote and Horned Toad

Coyote and Skunk

Nothing beats the old oral traditions though. Hearing these stories brought back memories of Grandma telling me a stories.

Then there are the String games that we like to play. All these are constellations on in the night time sky. This is all introduction to the story of how the Coyote threw the stars into the sky. Sometimes told during the story.

The Next is the Shoe Game. It’s lots of fun and played with two teams. Here is how the shoe game got it’s start via Flash animation.

There are many other ways we as Navajo pass the time in the winter months. These are only a few. (:


The First Four

In the Navajo Tradition, there are many ways we identify ourselves. One was is the complex clan system. Take mine for example, Tábąąhá nishlį́ dóó Haltsoí bááshishchį́į́n. I am Water’s Edge People Born for the Meadow People. We can further expand on this adding our grandfather’s clan from both maternal and paternal sides. These tell our relations. It gets more complex than that, I won’t go into details. But some people have often wondered how the clans started.

It was the result of Changing Woman and the first people. After Changing Woman had moved to an island in the western ocean the sun had created for her, some of the first beings followed her. After the first beings became lonely, they moved back to their original home. At this point, Changing Woman thought that there should be more people and thus the first clans were born.

Changing Woman rubbed the skin from her breast, her back, and under her arms to create more human beings. The people from her breast were named Kiiyaa’ą́ąnii or  Kinyaa’ą́ąnii (Towering House). The people from her back were called Honágháahnii (One Who Walks Around). The People from under her left arm were called Hashtł’ishnii (Mud people) and from her right were called Tódích’íí’nii (Bitter Water).

Each of these original clans were given a protective animal guardian. Kiiyaa’ą́ąnii was given Shash (Bear). Honágháahnii was given Náshdóí (Cougar). Tódích’íínii was given Tł’iish Tsoh (Bull Snake). Hashtł’ishnii was given Dahsání (Porcupine).

This is the origin of the first four clans.

New Project

It’s been a while since I have been able to get my thoughts down. So I have been thinking of ways I can help me and possibly some of you better at speaking Navajo. I am in the process of putting my thoughts on paper.

The idea I have is sort of like a conversational dictionary type of resource with downloadable audio. Sort of like a class at home type of thing. It has been nagging at me for some time time now and I think it is time for me to make an effort into making this.

I will be sharing this little experiment with a few people. If successful, I will try to put more of an effort in making more…

For now, this is me signing off of my blog, hopefully I will begin this project soon. For now, I will update you on how it fares…

Looking forward to more Diné Bizaad here though. Stay tuned…


Looked in wikiibíídiiya for anything about the months in Navajo. There really isnt anything in there so I guess I can post one here. I guess we can start at the beginning of the Navajo year.

Bik’ehgo Yoołkááł Náhidizídí

  • Ghąąjį’ (October) This is the month known as the month of the Coyote. Winter is approaching here.
  • Níłch’its’ósí (November) Skinny or slim wind. Named so because the wind is starting to get colder. It begins to pierce through some of the regular clothing.
  • Níłch’itsoh (December) Large or colder wind. Hibernating animals are hibernating. The beginning of Winter Games and Story telling.
  • Yasniłt’ees (January) Named to describe the look of the snow. As the snow melts and freezes, it gives the illusion of the snow frying. Winter Games are over and the Story Telling time is coming to an end in this month.
  • ’Atsá Biyáázh (February) Named for the little eaglets that are beginning to hatch.
  • Wóózhch’ííd (March) Named for the first cry of the eaglets. Spring is approaching.
  • T’ááchil (April) Named so as the eaglets begin to lose their down feathers for smaller feathers. Usually the first sign of spring, plants begin to grow.
  • T’ą́ą́tsoh (May) Larger, stronger feathers of the eaglets begin to grow.
  • Ya’iishjáá́shchilí (June) Early wild crops are beginning to ripen.
  • Ya’iishyááshtsoh (July) Wild crops are ripe. Mostly used in ceremonial purposes.
  • Bini’ant’ą́ą́ts’ózí (August) Small or slim Harvest. The first corn begins to ripen.
  • Bini’ant’ą́ą́tsoh (September) Large Harvest. All planted crops are ready for harvest.

Then there is a lesser known month so named for the 13 moon cycles in the year. Bini’na’al’aashii –  The last month in the Navajo year.

These are the months in the Navajo Calendar. If i have made any mistakes or left anything out, please feel free to post them.


Dííjí t’áá doole’é baanashá. Shichidí shitsá haashídza. Doo diits’íída. Chidí bitoo’ bii’ nílínígíí ’át’é dats’í. ’ákoshíí shichidí ’ádiin hwoodonaał.

Naalnish ’ałdó’ bits’ashwood. Ya’iishyáástsoh góne’é naalnish łaa nááná naashnish do. ’Áko shíí t’áá shita yá’át’ééh do.

T’ááłá’í náhaigo shíí Na’nízhoozhídi násídá do éí dooda’go Be’ak’id baa’ahoodzánídi násídá do. T’óó dats’í deeshniił.