Each month, Let’s Talk will focus on sayings that might sound funny or confusing to a new language learner. So if you have ever thought “What did they mean by that?” or “What are they trying to say?” this column is for you.

The COVID-19 pandemic is having an impact on so many things in our daily lives. We have been forced to evaluate everyday things and to adapt and change to new circumstances. One of the key factors in keeping everyone as safe as possible is staying home and limiting our exposure to others. And since we are in our homes more than usual, this month’s column focuses on homes and what they mean to us.
Here are four idioms – expressions in which the meanings of the words are not the same as the meaning of the saying – that one might hear used in connection with houses and homes.

Home is where the heart is — A person’s home is where their loved ones are.
“Although we have moved around quite a bit, we managed, because home is where the heart is, after all.”

Eat someone out of house and home — To consume so much as to put a strain on a home’s resources
“With four teenagers in your home, don’t be surprised to be eaten out of house and home.”

Get your house in order — Solve your problems or get organized
“Anton needs to get his house in order before he makes any more big life decisions.”

Coming home to roost — To have current problems due to previous actions
“Maria’s car was towed today. Her unpaid parking tickets have come home to roost.”

If you have questions about sayings you have heard Americans use that you don’t understand, or if you questions about American culture, please email your questions to Claudia at [email protected] and “Let’s Talk” will be happy to help.

Claudia Jakubowski has her Masters Degree in TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages).