I remember several of these little phrases!!!!
I have used many of them.......... how many do you remember?
A LICK AND A PROMISE
'I'll just give this a lick and a promise,' my
mother said as she quickly mopped up a spill on the floor
without moving any of the furniture.
'What is that supposed to mean?' I asked as in my
young mind I envisioned someone licking the floor with his
or her tongue.
'It means that I'm in a hurry and I'm busy
canning tomatoes so I am going to just give it a lick with
the mop and promise to come back and do the job right later.
'A lick and a promise' was just one of the many old
phrases that our mothers, grandmothers, and others used that
they probably heard from the generations before them. With
the passing of time, many old phrases become obsolete or
even disappear. This is unfortunate because some of them are
very appropriate and humorous. Here is a list of some of
those memorable old phrases:
1. A Bone to Pick (someone who wants to discuss a
2. An Axe to Grind (Someone who has a hidden motive. This
phrase is said to have originated from Benjamin Franklin who
told a story about a devious man who asked how a grinding
wheel worked. He ended up walking away with his axe
sharpened free of charge)
3. One bad apple spoils the whole barrel (one corrupt
person can cause all the others to go bad if you don't
remove the bad one)
4. At sea (lost or not understanding something)
5. Bad Egg (Someone who was not a good person)
6. Barking at a knot (meaning that your efforts were as
useless as a dog barking at a knot.)
7. Barking up the wrong tree (talking about something that
was completely the wrong issue with the wrong person)
8. Bee in your bonnet (To have an idea that won't let
9. Been through the mill (had a rough time of it)
10. Between hay and grass (Not a child or an adult)
11. Blinky (Between sweet and sour as in milk)
MY GRANDMOTHER LOVED TO DRINK
BLINKY MILK! YUCK !!!! SAID IT WAS GOOD FOR YOU...
SHE LIVED TO BE 99..
MAYBE SHE KNEW SOMETHING I DO NOT!
12. Calaboose (a jail)
13. Catawampus (Something that sits crooked such as a piece
of furniture sitting at an angle)
14. Dicker (To barter or trade)
15. Feather in Your Cap (to accomplish a goal. This came
from years ago in wartime when warriors might receive a
feather they would put in their cap for defeating an enemy)
16. Hold your horses (Be patient!)
17. Hoosegow ( a jail)
18. I reckon (I suppose)
19. Jawing/Jawboning (Talking or arguing)
20. Kit and caboodle (The whole thing)
21. Madder than an old wet hen (really angry)
22. Needs taken down a notch or two (like notches in a belt
Usually a young person who thinks too highly of himself and
needs a lesson)
23. No Spring Chicken (Not young anymore)
24. Persnickety (overly particular or snobbish)
25. Pert-near (short for pretty near)
26. Pretty is as pretty does (your actions are more
important than your looks)
27. Red up (clean the house)
28. Scalawag (a rascal or unprincipled person)
29. Scarce as hen's teeth (something difficult to
30. Skedaddle (Get out of here quickly)
31. Sparking (courting) NOW I LOVE THAT!
32. Straight From the Horse's Mouth (privileged
information from the one concerned)
33. Stringing around, gallivanting around, or piddling (Not
doing anything of value) My Grandmother used to say "just Piddling, now my Mom says it all the time.
34. Sunday go to meetin' dress (The best dress you had)
35. We wash up real fine (is another goodie)
36. Tie the Knot (to get married)
37. Too many irons in the fire (to be involved in too many
39. Under the weather (not feeling well this term came from
going below deck on ships due to sea sickness thus you go
below or under the weather)
40. Wearing your 'best bib and tucker' (Being all
dressed up) NEVER HEARD THAT ONE...
41. You ain't the only duck in the pond (It's not
all about you)
42.....Now I need to add one.
My grandmother was not a cussing woman, never heard her say too many bad words.
Her favorite when things would go wrong was Flidder Dick.
I can still hear her say that today. Where did she get that?
Anyone else ever hear that?
Well, if you hold your horses, I reckon I'll get this
whole kit and caboodle done and sent off to you. Please
don't be too persnickety and get a bee in your bonnet
because I've been pretty tuckered out and at sea lately
because I'm no spring chicken. I haven't been just
stringin' around and I know I'm not the only duck in
the pond, but I do have too many irons in the fire. I might
just be barking at a knot, but I have tried to give this
article more than just
A lick and a promise