Holy what?

In English we tend to put the word holy in front of a lot of other words. It doesn’t mean that the word is religious, it is just an expression that we use to show surprise. It’s used much like the phrase Oh my gosh! Here are a few phrases that use the word holy.

Holy cow!

Holy moly!

Holy guacamole!

Holy smoke!

Holy mackerel!

Holy Moses!

There are a few other phrases that I left out, but only because they were a bit vulgar.

If you snooze, you lose!

Here are some fun sayings that you can learn.  I like them because they rhyme and because they are quite useful.

If you snooze, you lose!

This means that if you wait too long, you may miss an opportunity.

Tim – Hey, I was going to sit there!
Sally – Well, if you snooze, you lose!

See you later alligator.

This is a fun way to say bye.

In a while crocodile.

This is the response to See you later alligator.

What’s the plan, Stan?

Even though the person you are talking to is not named Stan, you still use the word Stan because it rhymes. This phrase is used to find out what someone has planned for that day.

Sorry, Charlie!

This is like above, even though the person you are talking to is not named Charlie, you still say Charlie to them. This is a sarcastic way to say sorry.
Little girl – I wanted the last corn chip.
Mother – Sorry, Charlie!

Conversation Exchange

I ran across a neat little website the other day when I decided to try to find some people to help me practice my French. It’s called Conversation Exchange. The site’s purpose is to link people together who are trying to practice different languages. You can find people who want to have pen pals, correspond over IM or skype or want to meet in person. The choice is yours. You will be able to practice English with fluent speakers while also helping them with another language that you know fluently. The best thing about this site is that it’s free and even though there is some advertising, there is not too much.

If you have used this site before, leave me a comment and let me know what you thought about it.

Three Ways to use Facebook to Learn English





Have any of you started to use Facebook yet?  If you haven’t started yet, I just wanted to let you know it’s another great place, like Twitter, to practice your English.

There are lots of ways to utilize Facebook, so you can practice English.  Below are three ways to learn English on Facebook.

1. You can connect to other English learners through joining groups and pages.

Here are a few pages to ‘like’:

The English Guru – This is my Facebook page. I try to engage people by having interactive conversations. I also post links to aid you with your English learning.

Livemocha – I just love Live mocha’s website. Their page on Facebook is a great resource as well.

EnglishBrnoCZ – Nina posts a lot of great links, tips, and videos that will help you in your English learning journey.

2. Posting your status

You can post things that are happening to you that are important, funny, interesting, etc.   Then, your friends can respond back to you and you can have a conversation.  Having a conversation on Facebook is nice because you can see the entire conversation and multiple people can join in the fun.

3. Connecting and reconnecting to English speaking friends

You can connect to your Twitter friends and other friends who speak English on Facebook. You can talk with your friends via Facebook email, IMs, posting on their wall or replying to their statuses.

All in all, Facebook is a great social media tool, not only to find long lost friends, but a great place to make new friends and practice English.

Animal Sounds in English

Have you ever noticed how every language interprets and spells animal sounds slightly different?  Here’s a list of some animal sounds in English.

Cat – meow

Dog – ruff, bark

horse – neigh

duck – quack

rooster – cock-a-doodle-doo

bee – buzz

mice – squeak

turkey – gobble

pig – oink

sheep – baa

goats – meeeh, baa

chick – cluck

cow – moo

donkey – hee-haw

frog – ribbit

bird – chirp


Riddle Me This, Riddle Me That

I know you all are very serious in your English language learning, but every once in awhile it’s nice to do something fun.  So, today let’s talk about riddles!!!  Riddles are little language puzzles.  Usually a statement or question that has a double meaning.  Leave me a comment with a riddle that you have heard before and like a lot.

Here are some of my favorite riddles:

1.  It walks on four legs in the morning, two legs at noon and three legs in the evening. What is it?

2.  What is in seasons, seconds, centuries and minutes, but not in decades, years or days?

3.  The more you have of it, the less you see. What is it?


1.  A person.  We crawl on all fours as a baby, walk on two legs as an adult and use two legs and a cane when we’re old.

2.  The letter N.

3.  Darkness

If you enjoyed these, you can find these and other at:  http://dan.hersam.com/riddles.html

Good Luck!

These are symbols of luck in the United States.  Post a comment about things that bring luck in your country.

Four leaf clover – If you find a 4 leaf clover in a clover patch, then you will have very good luck.  Usually they are only 3 leaf clovers. The 4 leaves represent fame, wealth, love and health! 

Rabbit’s foot  – To carry a rabbit’s foot is good luck. I had one as a child, I sure do hope it was fake, because to me carrying a foot around is kind of gross.  

Break a leg –  This is something you say to an actor/actress right before they perform.  It’s believed if you say this, then the opposite will occur – good luck.  If you say ‘good luck’ to an actor before a performance, then something bad will happen to them. 

Crossing your fingers – Many believe that if you cross your fingers it will bring you good luck. Also, sometimes people cross their fingers if they are lying. It’s almost as if it is okay to lie if you cross your fingers.

Pinch, poke, you owe me a Coke!

Pinch, poke, you owe me a coke. 

Have you ever heard that phrase?  It’s a silly thing some kids say (and some adults too), when two people say the exact same thing at the same time.

For example:

Person A and person B both say at the same time: “Glee is my favorite TV show.”

Then, Person A (or B) will quickly say, “Pinch, poke, you owe me a coke.” 

Sometimes with kids there might be a little pinching or poking, but nothing serious.  And rarely does anyone ever really get a free coke. 🙂

Trick or Treat!

“Trick or Treat, smell my feet, give me something good to eat.”  This is a little rhyme that some kids say when they knock on someone’s door to get candy on October 31st – Halloween.  Most kids simply say, “Trick or Treat” though.  Luckily the people at the houses usually just hand out treats and usually do not play any tricks.

Last year, I took my kids out trick or treating for almost 3 hours.  We walked all over our neighborhood, knocking on doors where the lights were on.   If the lights are not on at the house,  then we didn’t go to them because this is a sign that the people at the house are not giving away candy.

Lots of churches and communities also have  Halloween festivals either held on October 30th or October 31st. There are cake wheels, where you can place you money on a number and then the wheel is spun.  If the wheel lands on your number, then you win a home made cake.  There are also costume contests and lots of other games to play.

Carving a Jack o’ lantern is one of my favorite activities.   Since I live in a warm climate, we carve them on October 30th or 31st because they get rotten fast!  Up North, when we lived in Canada,  we carved them much earlier and kept them lit at night for a few weeks.

This year my youngest son will dress up as a tiger, my oldest son will be Luke Skywalker from Star Wars.  My daughter will dress up as a black cat.  They each decided what they wanted to be and of course they are all very excited!