Christmas: nut, angel, chimney, present

Christmas Idioms

Idiom Explanation Example
be on the side of angels be on the right side As a human rights lawyer, she’s on the side of angels.
all one’s Christmases come at once extreme good fortune, happines or delight When I passed the exam it was like all my Christmases had come at once.
a white Christmas snow at Christmas time I hope we have a white Christmas this year.
light up like a Christmas tree (Australian English) look dazzling/look very happy The view from the penthouse suite looked over the city which lit up like a Christmas tree at night time.
off the Christmas card list an expression of annoyance towards someone I crossed my friend Madeline off the Christmas card list after she cancelled our lunch plans three times in a row.
to smoke like a chimney smoke constantly My grandmother used to smoke like a chimney but now she has given up.
use a sledgehammer to crack a nut use extreme measures to solve a simple problem Sending eight men to carry two small suitcases is using a sledgehammer to crack a nut.
a tough nut to crack a difficult problem or a competitor who is hard to defeat The Chinese market is a tough nut to crack for foreign investors.
make a present of something make it easy for someone to steal or take something from you – Oh no! Someboday’s stolen my purse!
– Well, what do you expect? You made a present of it by leaving it in an unlocked car.
display incorrect answers

Exercises C1

Complete the sentences with the words below.

chimney – Christmas tree – nut – present

  1. After months of separation, Imogen’s face lit up like a   when she finally saw Barry again.
  2. The team that we’re playing tomorrow hasn’t lost a match yet. They are going to be a tough   to crack.
  3. Martin made a   of his bike. He left it unlocked in the middle of the courtyard.
  4. As we waited for the train my friend smoked one cigarette after another to pass the time. She smoked like a   until the pack was empty.

Choose the correct idiom.

  1. Sally was so happy when she won the talent show. It was like …
  2. Peter has taken his family to Hawaii for Christmas. I think it’s safe to say …
  3. Whenever we get into trouble at school, Alexander makes sure he doesn’t get punished.
  4. I told my mother I had a cold and asked her to buy me some medicine but instead she drove me straight to the hospital.
  5. After the Miller’s refused our dinner invitation, …

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