Blog December 18, 2012 by St Giles

English Language Tips: Seasonal Expressions & Vocabulary

Are you studying English in the UK, USA or Canada this Winter? Get ready for the Christmas season with these seasonal expressions, from Frances, our Director at St Giles Vancouver.

  • Ho Ho Ho! – this is what Santa always says!
  • Bah Humbug! – this is what grumpy people say when you say Merry Christmas! (this comes from Charles Dickens)
  • Boxing Day Sales – common in North America and the UK, most stores have big sales on December 26 (so make sure to visit them if you are here then!)
  • Mistletoe – If you are walking or standing under this plant, you should kiss your partner!
  • St. Nick – another name for Santa Claus or Father Christmas
  • Christmas Crackers – colored paper rolls with a toy, a hat and sometimes a joke inside.  They are placed on the table with Christmas Dinner and it is a tradition for two people to hold the paper roll end and pull to make a loud “SNAP” sound.  Then you open it to get your hat and toy.
  • Egg nog – a traditional Christmas drink that is made of egg, milk, and alcohol
  • Wreath – a circle of pine branches to put on doors at Christmas time
  • Tree Skirt – a decorated cover for the bottom of the Christmas tree to hide the tree stand
  • Christmas gifts – presents, prezzies, stuff under the tree, what Santa brings!
  • Christmas cake – made of fruit and nuts with alcohol
  • Christmas pudding – similar to Christmas cake but has more alcohol and is served with cream
  • Christmas stocking – these are hung near a fireplace if there is one and filled with small gifts. They are opened first on Christmas morning, traditionally with a mandarin orange in the toe of the sock

Do you know any more seasonal expressions that we have not included? Comment on this post if you do!

We wish everyone a very merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!