Happy Thanksgiving Day!

Today is Thanksgiving Day and most Americans will get together to eat a traditional dinner which consists of:

roast turkey (pavo asado)

mashed potatoes (puré de patatas)

green beans (judías verdes)

corn (maíz)

cranberry sauce (salsa de arándanos)

and pumpkin pie (pastel de calabaza)

And here are some jokes inspired by this menu.

Which side of a turkey has the most feathers? The outside.

What’s the best thing to put in a pumpkin pieYour teeth.

What did the cranberry say to the turkey?

Nothing. Cranberries can’t talk.

What do you get when you cross a potato with an elephant?

Mashed potatoes.


Small vs little

Small and little both refer to the size of something but small is more common and neutral.

I have a small/little flat in the town centre.

Little (not small) also expresses sympathy or a liking:

We spent our holiday in a lovely, little cottage by the sea that I would love to go back to next year.

When talking about children, little refers to age (= young) while small refers to height (= short):

He plays the piano very well considering he is so little (young).

He was too small (short) to ride his brother’s bicycle.

In comparative and superlative sentences, small is used rather than little:

Even though our car is smaller than theirs, it uses more fuel.

It is the smallest camera I have ever seen – it looks like a toy.

However, little can be used to talk about quantity but small cannot be used in this way:

Could I have a little bit of mayonnaise, please?

He couldn’t resist having a little ice-cream after his meal.


Big vs large

Big and large both refer to something/someone that is of a more than average size, extent or capacity.

They live in a big/large house which has 10 bedrooms and five bathrooms.

My husband comes from a big/large family. He has four brothers and two sisters.

However, big also means important:

My company organises a big event for its customers every year.

Don’t worry about arriving late. It’s no big deal. (No tiene importancia).

Big also means ‘older’:

My big brother is five years older than me.

Big and large are also used in the following expressions:

to be a big mouth = a person who is indiscreet or boastful.

to be too big for one’s boots = to be arrogant

to be larger-than-life = impressive, amazing

Think big = be ambitious



A November poem

«November comes
And November goes,
With the last red berries
And the first white snows.

With night coming early,
And dawn coming late,
And ice in the bucket
And frost by the gate.

The fires burn
And the kettles sing,
And earth sinks to rest
Until next spring.»

Elizabeth Coatsworth