Heavens to Betsy!

Heavens to Betsy it is cold outside!

I just said to this to myself as I took a bite of bread pudding and stood there in my kitchen looking at the winter sky, listening to the wind rattle the window screens.  When I walked out to the mailbox a little while ago, my face was truly hurting from the cold.

Anyway, I had this little chill, and made that little statement, and wondered what in the sam hill made me use that phrase… and then I got this little grin.  Because I love phrases like that.  And I love to say “what in the sam hill”.

My Great Granny Calton was the master of colloquialisms.  Her language was salted AND peppered with the most delightful phrases.  She was fine as frog’s hair and fit as a fiddle.  She would dance at your wedding if you did her a favor.  And you could be sure, if she was the least little bit surprised by anything, she’d drawl out a long “For the love of Peter and Paul!”

Do you have a favorite or two?  I know I’d love to read them, and others would too.

Believe it or not – G just walked through the door and declared, “I’ll tell you what!  It’s colder than a well digger’s knee out there!”


21 Responses to “Heavens to Betsy!”

  1. KIm Mann says:

    Nana used to say “for pity’s sake”, and I always thought she was saying “Petie.” I wondered who Petie was, but just figured it was a nickname for “Pete.”

  2. Sandy says:

    For pity’s sake… you’re right! Said with heavy stress on both syllables!

  3. Sharon Davis says:

    Our friend, Preacher, used to say, What in the Sam hill, one of his great nieces told his wife he was cursing, she thought he was saying, “What in the Sam Hell”, so much for Texas drawl. They told that story 100 times. Mother always said things were as “cold as blue blazes” HUMMMM, wonder how cold that is.

  4. Sandy says:

    Well, it certainly is cold as blue blazes today!

  5. Pam Stevens says:

    My Dad always said (and still does!) “I’ll dance at your wedding if you….” get me a cup of coffee or whatever…and some of us have held him to that! Coming from the south, he has a lot of sayings, but the one he says all the time is that he’s “finer than a frog hair split four ways with a broad axe!” Now that is pretty fine for an 84 year old!

  6. Sandy says:

    Love that Pam!
    My great-grandmother was always telling me she’d dance at my wedding when I was a little girl. And she was there, and I have the most delightful photo of her kissing my cheek!
    I’ve never heard of frog’s hair being split so fine!!

  7. bette says:

    One of my favorite compliments from Rex’s mom was, “We sure are of a whatness!”
    His dad and mom both had so many weather saying I am sure, because they farmed and care for animals all of their lives.
    In the fall they would declare,
    “This is really going to be a cold winter. The silks on the ears of corn are really thick.”
    Or, “The horses hair is thicker.”
    “Freeze is just around the corner because the careless weeds are just 2 inches tall and seeding out.”
    After the first north wind in the fall, “It’s six weeks until our first freeze.”
    It is fascinating to watch and actually see how accurate these old saying are! Watch ad see.

  8. Sandy says:

    I’ve never heard “We sure are of a whatness!” That’s great!

  9. Cheryl says:

    Brie and I, especially, have picked up the saying of Rudy’s mother who passed away 5 years ago at the age of 100. Not sure I can spell it…”Ohey, doey (as in “oh” and “doe”). It always has to be either preceded or following by a good southern sigh. My mother used “mercy” as a great exclamation. Wish I could remember ones from my dad and maternal grandparents, but the brain is frozen. I know they used the “blue blazes” one and “what in the sam hill”. And Dad would say, “For Pete’s sake!” A veterinarian I used to work for constantly said, “There’s more than one way to skin a cat. And there’s more than one way to _______(whatever he was doing at the moment!), too. I love the “frog hair” one! I was wondering what “We sure are of a whatness” means! Interesting.

  10. Sandy says:

    “Mercy!” I always love that one!

  11. Sandy says:

    Today a friend came over and was telling me she hadn’t been on the computer in… and she kind of paused, and I instantly said “in a coon’s age!”

    What in the sam hill?? I’m some kind of old-timer!

  12. Scott says:

    I remember a great uncle, when he was impressed by most anything would say ” That’s just slicker than a cats gut”. Don’t know what that means exactly but it usually ment he was impressed. The other I remember is “you aint just whistling Dixie”. Kinda like a good ole southern amen.

  13. Sandy says:

    Some of these are just hilarious! Now.. I’ve been known to use the “whistlin’ Dixie” phrase a time or two!

  14. Marcea Clive says:

    Here are 3 that I can think of now.
    “he’s like a bull in a china closet”, “don’t count your chickens before they hatch” and “deader than a doornail”
    Not sure how a dead doornail looks, but I have said that one many times. Maybe when a car wouldn’t start?
    This has been a fun blog. Enjoyed reading all the comments, too.

  15. Sandy says:

    Oh, I do love “deader than a doornail”. I say it too! Someone, somewhere was the first person to say these things. That’s fun to think about!

  16. Linda Davis says:

    Love it! Steve and I both come from families full of quirky little sayings. “Now that is the pot calling the kettle black”, “handier than a pocket on a shirt”, “Well I’ll be a suck egg mule” (from John Wayne’s movie El Dorado and Jake’s favorite), “Deader than a doornail”, “stiff as a board”, “madder than a hornet”, “fine and dandy”…these really throw our daughter-in-laws…they didn’t grow up with it. Regina recently asked Steve how he was doing and he said “fine and dandy”…she was quiet for a while and then asked “What’s dandy?” Hmmmm that stumped Steve! :O)

  17. Sandy says:

    Linda, I love all of those. Funny… you can happily say you’re”fine and dandy” — OR you can be a little bit mad about something and say “Well… that’s just fine and dandy!”

  18. Lori says:

    “Well if that don’t beat all…” I think your blogs are “the best thing since sliced bread”, Sandy! By the way, my mom always says “for Pete’s sake”. I’ve never heard it as “pity’s sake”.

  19. Robin Green says:

    My sixth grade teacher always used to say, “Good night nurse!” when she was aggravated. In childhood, when Lawrence and his brothers & sister told my father-in-law they had done this or that, he would say, “You no more did that than you flew to Egypt.” or “Anyone who did that would sleep in his underwear.” Truly, he used those sayings millions of times.

  20. Sandy says:

    Thanks Lori… and you’re the cat’s pajamas!

  21. Sandy says:

    Oh Robin! All these colorful expressions. I’ve learned all kinds of new things to say! Last night I saw a monkey on TV and remembered “Well, I’ll be a monkey’s uncle!”

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