UPDATED May 22, 2008 (Old Expressions)





The Toilet Tissue Roll

We hear so much about the toilet tissue roll and how it should be placed on the roller. Many say that it should roll 'over' and others say 'under'.

From experience, I think there is an easy answer to this much-publicized dilemma.

I believe that if the polls were taken showing the sex and age of the family members, the people voting for rolling 'under' are mothers.

Is there really a mother out there whose child has not, at some time in their young years, brought them the tissue still attached to the roll and feeling very helpful and proud, while the tissue streamed through the house?

As a mother, while my children were young, the toilet tissue in our home ran from 'under' - more difficult for little fingers to reach. As my children grew older, and much to my husband's delight, the roll was changed to come 'over'.

"2sides2aCoin" ~Joan Adams Burchell~ (copyright)


Hummingbird Feeders

Hummingbird feeders hung up and down the streets at almost every home. They always looked clean and filled to the top. Did the liquid nectar never go down and need replacing?

I wondered about this while weeding in my garden early one morning. As I worked, I heard the loud, unmistakable hum that only the wings of the hummingbird makes. I could see the wee bird, not a foot away, going from one red bee-balm to the next. Red flowers! I guess if they were available to them, they liked the real thing - and why not?

On my next walk, I took note of the colours of flowers in the gardens. Wherever there were flowers, it was a certainty that some of them were red.

My question: Why hang a feeder if you have the space and are able to garden? Plant red flowers!

"2sides2aCoin" ~Joan Adams Burchell~ (copyright)


Dogs and Cats

Do you own a dog, a cat, or both? A dog requires a license; a cat does not. A dog is required to be on a leash and not allowed to run free; a cat needs no leash and can roam. A dog must not be a nuisance barker; cats can spoil your night's sleep making noise that isn't questioned. Dog owners stoop and scoop; cats use neighbourhood gardens as a giant litter box.

You may be a responsibe cat owner so I may take flack on this one, but -

"2sides2aCoin" ~Joan Adams Burchell~ (copyright)



Do you rake your leaves in Autumn? If you do, and have neighbours who do not, you know only too well how the story goes. You rake, rake, rake - leaves blowing all over your yard until the snow flies. Then, in spring, you rake again trying to remove the ones that you missed when the cold set in.

Where do the neighbours think their leaves go? I guess they are happy that they just magically blow away - away where?

"2sides2acoin" ~Joan Adams Burchell~ (copyright)


Left, Right, Left, Right

Have you ever heard the discussion of which foot you put into your socks,slacks, shoes, etc. first? Well, I have and the majority of people say "the right". Oh, and I've heard some really wild stories, too, like "it depends on which way the bathtub faces, etc., etc.

Are there really more lefties than righties? Are there switch-hitters, to use a baseball term?

My logic is that if you are right-handed (or footed), you would feel steadier standing on that foot and put your left foot into your slacks or shoe first; or, if you are left-handed (footed), then you would probably put your right shoe on first. Am I really the only one that stands up to do these things?

*2sides2aCoin" ~Joan Adams Burchell~ (copyright)



A visit to the fruit and vegetable section of our supermarket is a must on my shopping day. It is amazing how the many fruits are sized and how we are told what country the fruit came from. This is a definite help for the clerks, and, for the cashiers who have to scan to get the price. I admit that it can be helpful for the customer while choosing the type of apple, orange, tomato or pear that they like. How else would we know if a yellow grapefruit got mixed in with the pink ones? It isn't difficult to peel the innocent-looking sticker from a grapefruit, orange, apple, or even the tough-skinned tomatoes of winter.

But......... can you please tell me how you take the dratted thing off a delicious, thin-skinned pear? I inevitably pull the skin off along with the sticker. Is it just me? Please tell me that it isn't!

The only solution I can come up with is to not remove the sticker until you are ready to eat the fruit immediately. Then ..... don't forget to wash your pear again.

*2sides2aCoin" ~Joan Adams Burchell~ (copyright)


Does 'more' mean 'better'?

When you walk or drive around to see the Christmas lights, do you only see the large displays of breathtaking enormity? Have you ever noticed, here and there, a candle-wreath in a window or a simple strand of coloured lights hung along the front of a tiny home? Perhaps there is a single strand strung lovingly and invitingly around a doorway. If you look closely, some of the lights might even be dim from hanging there since the owner was able to climb up and replace a bulb or two.

The simple string of lights might be all that the residents can manage - physically or financially, but they are celebrating the Christmas season with a heart filled with love. Do you think that the bigger display at Christmas means there is more Christ in it?

I love to see the Christmas lights but I see them all. I notice the smallest and I feel the true meaning of Christmas because ...... someone has given Him their heart.

Upon reflecting, I feel the same way about our flag. Because someone hangs an enormous flag on a flagpole near their dwelling, does that mean the people living in that home are more patriotic than the person next-door who has a small flag?

In my mind, perhaps the only difference is what is in the person's heart.

*2sides2aCoin* ~ Joan Adams Burchell ~ (copyright)


This is a "Spirit Stick" ... Please take it and pass it along in a gesture of Love and Friendship.
(Just in case you missed it on the front page. There are two more gifts in the Memory Album)



Some Old Expressions - some still used.

"Being a dog in the manger" - You dont want it yourself but you don't want anyone else to have it.

"Cutting off your nose to spite your face" - Saying "no" to something that you really would like, just because.......

"Wearing out your shoe leather" - Walking a lot.

"Take the bull by the horns" - Just do it!

"What's good for the goose is good for the gander" - What she can say when 'he' says something to 'her'.

"Don't put all of your eggs in one basket" - Don't depend on any one thing only.

"Make hay while the sun shines" - Do it while you have the opportunity.

"I'm not broke. I'm just badly bent" - Only a penny in her purse. (This was one of my mom's expressions)

"Try sleeping on your back" - My dad said this when my sister complained she couldn't sleep on an empty stomach.

"Pshaw" - My grandmother said this rather than 'darn' (or other). Actually, I was told that it was in an old comic.

"If that's supper, roll on breakfast" - A reply to "Did you enjoy supper?"

"If you break where you crack, you'll be short" - A remark made when someone broke wind.

"I didn't know they piled it that high" - A remark when seeing a really tall child.

"Penny wise and pound foolish" - Someone who pinches pennies and then squanders the dollars.

"Look after the pennies and the dollars will look after themselves" - Save your pennies and you will have dollars.

"A penny for your thoughts" - Said to someone being unusually quiet.

"Get behind me satan - but don't push too hard" - Wanting to do something but feeling guilty about it.

"Small fry" - Children.

"You'll have your head in your hands to play with" - Threat to someone wanting to do something you disapprove of.

"Old man Can't is dead and he left a little boy named Try" - Never say can't.

"Handle that with kid gloves" - Be careful and/or be kind.

"My sufficiency is suffonsified; any more would be double superfluency" - I'm full!

"The Trailer" - A pie was cut into 6 pieces in our house. There were 5 of us and Dad always claimed the "Trailer".

"Poor wee lamb" - This was what my grandmother always said when she saw a baby.

"Well, you just take a run around your collar and slide down your tie!" - Mom to Dad if he criticized her in jest.

"Children should be seen and not heard" - Speak only when spoken to.

"Up the wooden hill" - Upstairs to bed.

"More hurry, less speed" - The more you try to hurry, the slower it goes.

"Take the bitter with the better" - You have to take some bad along with the good.

"Get your skates on" - Hurry up!

"Six of one - half-dozen of the other" - One is the same as the other.

"It's as broad as it is long" - It's the same thing.

"Don't bite off more than you can chew" - Don't take on more than you can handle.

"Waste not, want not" - If you don't waste, you will not go hungry.

"Scratch the mad spot" - Remark you make when you think someone is angry with you unjustly.

"Button your lip" - Be quiet.

"My stomach thinks my throat's cut" - I'm hungry.

"I'm pulling your leg" - I'm teasing you.

"Necessity is the mother of invention" - Really needing something has led us to many good solutions.

"There's a long drink of water" - Remark made when seeing a really tall person.

"A galloping horse wouldn't see it and a blind man would be glad to" - Something to think about when you worry about a small flaw.

"Slower than molasses in January" - Now that is SLOW, here, in Canada.

"A watched pot never boils" - The more you watch for something to happen, the slower it seems to take.

"Put that in your pipe and smoke it!" - Remark made, emphatically, when you were trying to get a point across.

"A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush" - It is better to take one dollar than wait a long while, hoping for two or more.

"Chewing the fat" - Talking.

"Use elbow grease" - Scrub really hard.

"Keeps a stiff upper lip" - Doesn't complain.

"The quickest way to double your money is to fold it and put it in your purse." - One of my mother's expressions.

"I don't chew my cabbage twice." - Said when the person does not intend to repeat themselves.

"Adam's ale" - Water.

"Their right hand doesn't know what their left hand is doing" - When a company or person continually makes mistakes.

"He couldn't chew gum and walk at the same time!" - Meaning one who repeatedly gives excuses for not following instructions.

"I feel as busy as a one-armed paper-hanger with the hives" - I have "too many irons in the fire". (Oops! I guess that is another old saying.)

"Isn't 'that' a fine kettle of fish!" - Not what was expected.

"Picking up the pieces" - Starting over.

"Bending over backwards" - Nothing to do with aerobics - it means trying your best to do something.

"Jumping on the bandwagon" - Joining in.

"Eating crow" - Not a new fowl recipe; means apologizing and taking back what you have said that turned out to be wrong.

"Tooting your own horn" - Nothing to do with a band. Means bragging.

"Adding fuel to the fire" - Nothing to do with your fireplace. Means to keep a disagreement of some kind going - usually intentionally.

"I'll be a monkey's uncle!" - I'll be darned!

"Stir their stumps!" - Hurry them up!

"You cant make a silk purse from a sow's ear." - You cannot make something beautiful without the right materials to work with.

"Take the bull by the horns." - Just tackle the problem!

"A new broom sweeps clean." - New things and sometimes relationships usually look great at first.

"There's more than one way to skin a cat." - There is always more than one way to handle something you are unsure of.

"Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without." -This was one of my mom's. Quite appropriate in the 'olden' days - at least in our family.

"Take that with a grain of salt." - Don't be upset about it.

"A lick and a promise." - A little dusting today and a promise to do better tomorrow.

"Out yonder." -"Outside, perhaps in the back field." This was one of my grandmother's.

"So mad I could spit hot water." - Very angry!

"Chew the fat." - Talk.

"Wet your whistle" - Have a drink. (Since this was one my mom used it would mean water, tea, juice, gingerale)

"Don't burn the candle at both ends." - Don't work day 'and' night; you need 'some' sleep.

"Mind your P's and Q's!" - Don't be nosy!

"Not half bad!" - Good! (That was what my dad meant when he said it.)

"Take the whole kit and kaboodle!" - Take it all.

"Keep your shirt on!" - Wait a minute!

"Don't cut off your nose to spite your face! " - Don't say "no" to something you would like because you are stubborn.

"Beggars can't be choosers." - Be happy with what you can afford.

"Don't look a gift horse in the mouth." - What do you expect for nothing.

"My stars and garters!" - Just another way of expressing surprise.

"That's really the Cat's pajamas." - Cool!

"If it ain't broke, don't fix it!" - One of my husband's old sayings and he meant just that!

"Let's get this show on the road!" - Another of my husband's, meaning Let's get on with it!

"The better the day the better the deed." - An expression Mom used when she had to do something on Sunday that she ordinarily wouldn't.

"A man convinced against his will, is of the same opinion still." - Your opinion cannot be forced on anyone.

"Putting your foot in your mouth." - Saying the wrong thing!

"I was knee-high to a grasshopper." - I was very young.

"An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure." - Take care of things as you use them and prevent needing a major repair or replacement.

"You hit the nail on the head." - You are right on.

"Don't buy a pig in a poke" - Don't by just anything. Choose wisely.

"Rob Peter to pay Paul" - Borrow from one place in your budget to pay something else for which you don't have enough money.

"Do you mind?" - Do you remember?

~ The following ones I had forgotten but were taken from Pamela Perry Blaine ~

"A Bone to Pick" - Someone wants to discuss a disagreement.

"A bad apple" - One corrupt person can cause all the others to go bad if you don't rmove the one.

"Bad Egg" - Someone who was not a good person.

"Been through the mill" - Had a rough time of it.

"At sea" - Lost or not nunderstanding something.

"Bee in your bonnet" - To have an idea that won't let loose.

"Between hay and grass" - Not a child or an adult.

"Calaboose" - A jail.

"Hold your horses" - Be patient.

"I reckon" - I suppose.

"Jawing" - Talking.

"Lower than a snake's belly" - An unprincipled person.

 "Madder than a wet hen" - Really angry.

"Pert-near" - Pretty near.

"Scarce as hen's teeth" - Something difficult to obtain.

"Skedaddle" - Get out of here quickly!

"Sparking" - Courting.

"Sunday go to meetin' dress" - The best dress you had.

"Straight from the Horse's Mouth" - Privileged information from the one concerned.

"Wearing your best bib and tucker" - Being all dressed up.




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