Everything is coming up rosesMeaning: you can say "everythingscoming up roses" if everything isturning out very well for someone orfor something.For example:Everythings coming up roses this year.Our business is doing well, our sonBrett got into college, and Josies hadher first baby - so were grandparentsas well!
Lightning never strikes twice inthe same placeMeaning: the same misfortune orbad luck will not happen again tothe same person. This saying isoften shortened, with the samemeaning, to: "Lightning neverstrikes twice."For example: My friend has just had abad luck, so I decided to console him:Lightning never strikes twice.
let the cat out of the bagMeaning: If you let the cat out ofthe bag, you let someone knowa secret.For example: Wed planned a surpriseparty for Donna, but some guy sheworks with let the cat out of the bag, sonow she knows.Dont forget that this is a secret, sowhatever you do, dont let the cat out ofthe bag.
a one-track mindMeaning: If someone has a one-track mind, they spend most oftheir time thinking about onesubject.For example: Brians had a one-trackmind since he started his own company.All he thinks about now is business andmaking money
(your) heart isnt in itMeaning: If your heart isnt insomething youre doing, youdont really want to do it.For example: Ali was studying to be adoctor, but his heart wasnt in it so hedecided to follow his real dream andstudy film-making instead.We could tell that Sallys heart wasnt init when she tried singing jazz, so we saidshe should stick to pop songs.
back-of-the-envelope calculationsMeaning: quick calculations;estimates using approximatenumbers, instead of exactnumbersFor example: I dont need theexact numbers right now. Just giveme some back-of-the-envelopecalculations.
up to your neck / up to your eyeballsMeaning: If youre up to yourneck in something, or up toyour eyeballs in something,youve got too much of it andits become a problem.For example:Im up to my neck in emails and Idont think I can get away at the
virgin territoryMeaning: You can say somethingis virgin territory if its never beenexplored before or never beendone before.For example: The internet was still virginterritory when we made our first websites.Our company has designed many productsfor other companies, but producing themand marketing them ourselves is virginterritory for us.
give the green lightMeaning: If you give something thegreen light, you give permissionfor it to be done, or allow it tohappen.For example: The government has given thegreen light to our tree-planting project, sowe can go ahead and start organizingthings.As soon as our CEO (Chief ExecutiveOfficer) gives the new product the greenlight, well start planning production.
nothing to write home aboutMeaning: If you say something isnothing to write home about, youmean it isnt very important or itisnt very good.For example: We saw a movie today and itwas nothing to write home about. It was justa typical action movie.Helen said her date with the guy she metonline was nothing to write home about, andshe probably wouldnt see him again.
have your hands fullMeaning: If you have your handsfull, youre busy.For example: Id love to teach you but Ivegot my hands full at the moment and I canttake on any more students just now.Marianne has her hands full raising herkids, so she wont be working again untiltheyre all in school.
call it a dayMeaning: If you call it a day, youstop doing something thatsusually related to work.For example: We couldnt do any more workbecause of the rain, so we called it a dayand went home.After running a hotel for nearly thirty years,we decided to call it a day and dosomething else.
make ends meetMeaning: If you make ends meet,you earn just enough to pay for aplace to live and your dailyexpenses.For example: My wife and I both have towork full-time just to make ends meet thesedays.Does the government really think elderlypeople can make ends meet on theirpensions?
ignorance is blissMeaning: You can say "ignorance is bliss"when you want to say that not knowingabout something unpleasant can be betterthan knowing about it and worrying about it.For example: Whats the point in knowing aboutall these problems if we cant do anything aboutthem? Sometimes ignorance is bliss, you know.I didnt go to the doctor at first because I wasthinking ignorance is bliss. But now I wish Idgone and had some treatment, of course.
dig your heels inMeaning: If you dig your heels in, youstubbornly resist something or refuse tochange.For example: Even though the developer offeredthem more than their houses were worth, theowners dug their heels in and refused to sell upand make way for the office block.When their record company told the band tochange their style and make more commercialmusic, the band dug their heels in and refused tochange.
grease someones palmMeaning: If you greasesomeones palm, you pay thema bribe.For example: The only way to get a governmentcontract around here is to grease someonespalm.If you want to get out of jail, grease the wardenspalm and the guards will let you escape.
get off on the wrong footMeaning: If you get off on thewrong foot, you startsomething poorly, or begin witha mistake.For example: I got off on the wrong foot in my newjob when I forgot to pass on an importantmessage to the boss.Helen got off on the wrong foot in herperformance when she forgot the first few wordsof the song.
get away from it allMeaning: If you get away from itall, you go somewhere toescape from your usual dailyroutine.For example: Jerry looks stressed out. I think heneeds to get away from it all for a while.We havent had a holiday for months and wereally need to get away from it all.
face the musicMeaning: : If someone has toface the music, they have toaccept the consequences ofdoing something wrong.For example: To avoid facing the music and acceptinghis punishment for doing something bad, our littleboy will tell lies with the skill of a well-trained actor.Henry stole some money and bought a car, andwhen he realised hed have to face the music hedrove across the border to escape.
kill timeMeaning: : You kill time whenyou do something to amuseyourself while waiting forsomething.For example: I had to kill time at the airport because ofthe delay so I bought a book of crossword puzzles.We kill time on long trips by playing this game in whichsomeone thinks of a country, and the next person has tothink of another country that starts with the last letter ofthe first one, like Thailand, Denmark, Kenya,Afghanistan, Nepal, and so on.
start from scratchMeaning: : If you start fromscratch, you begin something fromthe very beginning without usinganything else as a starting point.For example: Our website is terrible, so we shouldget rid of it altogether and start again fromscratch.I was being interviewed for a radio show, but theguy forgot to turn on the recorder. He realisedafter about ten minutes, so we had to start againfrom scratch.
a ray of sunshineMeaning: : Something is a ray ofsunshine if it brings happiness tosomeone.For example: The birth of Debras first grandchildless than a year after her husband died came asa much-needed ray of sunshine in her life.After years of struggling to get established as awriter, the publication of her first short story wasa ray of sunshine for Ruth.
all hell broke looseMeaning: : You can say "all hellbroke loose" if a situationsuddenly became violent orchaotic.For example: I was walking through the station onmy way to work when I heard this hugeexplosion, and then all hell broke loose.Everything was fine in the club until someoneyelled, "Fire!" and then all hell broke loose aspeople started running and screaming andpushing each other.
quit while youre aheadMeaning: : This phrase can beused to express the idea that oneshould stop doing something thatsrewarding but risky beforesomething bad happens.For example: Michael Schumacher got a lot out ofcar racing, and he was smart enough to quitwhile he was ahead.Youve already made a good profit from the sharemarket, so why dont you sell your shares andquit while youre ahead.
go down a treatMeaning: If something goes downa treat, its a great success andeveryone enjoys it.For example: The speech Lenny made at hisdaughters wedding went down a treat. Everyonethought it was very funny but also very moving.Geraldine made some pancakes for breakfastand they went down a treat. They were reallydelicious.
a sight for sore eyesMeaning: If something or someoneis a sight for sore eyes, you areglad to see them.For example: Its been raining here for a week, soit sure was a sight for sore eyes when we sawthe sun this morning.Hey, Ozzie! Youre a sight for sore eyes, man.Havent seen you for ages.
chew the fat | chew the ragMeaning: If you chew the fat, orchew the rag, you have a long,friendly chat with someone.For example: I sometimes call Wendy late at nightand we chew the fat for an hour or so beforegoing to sleep.Why dont you come over on Sunday morningand Ill make some breakfast and we can chewthe rag for a couple of hours?
once in a blue moonMeaning: If something happensonce in a blue moon, it happensvery rarely.For example: We hardly ever go out these days,though once in a blue moon we might go and seea movie.My daughter lives in Brazil and she only comes tosee us once in a blue moon; maybe every two orthree years if were lucky.
the rat raceMeaning: The rat race is the highlycompetitive and stressful world ofwork and business.For example: Sally is sick of the rat race. Shesgoing to quit her job in London and move to aquiet village and open a small cafe.My uncle says that success in the rat race canmake you rich, but it can also turn you into a self-
once and for allMeaning: If you do something onceand for all, you do it in a way thatsfinal and it means youll neverhave to do it again.For example: Jim said hes decided once and forall that hes going to stay single and never getmarried again.I was tired of getting new glasses every fewyears so I decided to solve my eyesight problem