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English Made Easy - Idioms


Watch the video. Write down the expressions Emma teaches, then see if they occur in the list below. (B2)

1 - As right as rain: (British, informal) to feel perfectly all right, perfectly fit.

  • I feel fine today, I'm as right as rain afterthe flu.

2- Be a breeze (Mainly British, informal): to be extremely easy to do.

  • Cooking for 25 people was a breeze for her.
  • Everyone thinks the test was a breeze.

3- Be snowed under: to have a lot of things to do, usually more than you feel able to deal with.

  • I'd love to come but I'm snowed under at work right now.

4- Break the ice: to say or do something to make someone feel relaxed or at ease in a social setting.

  • He told a few jokes to break the ice.

5 - (The) Calm before the storm: the quiet, peaceful time before an expected period of violent activity or argument.

  • The in-laws were about to arrive with their kids so she sat on the sofa with a cup of coffee enjoying the calm before the storm.

6 - Chase rainbows: when someone tries to do something that they will not achieve

  • I think she's chasing rainbows if she thinks she can get into Oxford with her bad grades.

7 - (Come) Rain or shine: used for saying that something always happens or someone always does something in spite of bad weather of difficult conditions .

  • She runs six miles everymorning, rain of shine.

8 - Every cloud has a silver lining: every sad or difficult situation has a posive side.

  • The trip was cancelled, so I had time to go to the match last Sunday. Every cloud has a silver lining.

9 - Fair-weather friend: a person who is only your friend during good times or when things are going well for you but disappears when things become difficult or you have problems.

  • She was a fair-weather friend because she was interested in me once I had lost my job.

10 - Get wind of: to find out about something secret or private.

  • He got wind of the closure of the company so started looking for a new job immediately.

11 - Have your head in the clouds: to be out of touch of reality. Your ideas may not be sensible or practical.

  • He has his head in the clouds if he seriously thinks he's going to get a promotion soon.

12 - It never rains but it pours (American English: When it rains, it pours): used for saying that problems often seem to happen all at the same time.

  • First he lost his keys to the house, then his wallet and then his car broke down. It never rains but it pours.

13 - It's raining cats and dogs (rather old fashioned): it's raining very hard.

  • Take you umbrella and a jacket because it's raining cats and dogs outside.

14 - On cloud nine: to be very happy.

  • They were both on cloud nine when they fell in love with each other.

15 - Put on ice: to postpone for another day.

  • The project has been put on ice until our boss decides what to do next.

16 - Ray of hope: there is a chance that something positive will happen.

  • There is a ray of hope after all, it looks like we won't be losing our jobs.

17 - Save for a rainy day: to save for the future when it might suddenly be needed (unexpectedly).

  • Don't spend your entire wage in one night. You should save for a rainy day.

18 - Steal my thunder: to get attention and praise for doing something that someone else had planned to do; to take attention away from someone else.

  • Senator Johnson accused the President of stealing his thunder on the tax issue.
  • Don't wear that dress to the wedding; the bride won't like it because you'll be stealing her thunder.

19 - Storm in a teacup (American English: Tempest in a teacup): a lot of trouble about something that is not important.

  • Those two are always arguing about something, it's just a storm in a teacup.

20 - Storm is brewing: There is going to be trouble or emotional upset.

  • She looks very angry. A storm is brewing.

21- Take a rain check: decline something now but offer to do it at a later date.

  • Thanks for inviting me to dinner but I can't this week. Can I take a rain check on that?

22- Throw caution to the wind: to go crazy and forget all responsibilities or commitments.

  • They threw caution to the wind and quit their jobs in the heat of the moment.

23- Under the weather: you are not feeling well.

  • Paul isn't coming with us because he feels a little under the weather.

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