I think it’s quite charming how a few of my expat friends have adopted a British accent or at least sound more proper when they speak. While I don’t think that will happen to me, I can’t help but slip in a few of the common sayings or slang.
Everyone uses “Cheers”, “Fab” and “Brilliant” or “Brill” for short, but there are some other fun words and sayings that I’ve noticed people use.
Arse over elbow: head over heels.
At the mo: at the moment.
Cheeky: naughty, sneaky or flippant. Can be used positively or negatively. For example, you can go for a “cheeky pint” at the pub, someone gave you a “cheeky smile” or a rude person was being very “cheeky” to you.
Cracking: very good or the best.
Dear: expensive or costly.
Dishy: attractive or good looking.
Early days: being early on. For example, a few weeks after giving birth is still “early days”.
Lie in: sleeping in.
Neat: tidy or trim but used to describe things you wouldn’t expect, like “What a neat baby bump” meaning a small belly.
Scrummy: delicious food.
I’ve also had to learn a whole new world of baby vocabulary. Being a first time mom, I’m not sure if the Brits share any of these terms with North America, but a lot of them were new to me.
Pram, buggy, pushchair: refers to different types/sizes of strollers.
Cot bed: full size crib that converts to a toddler bed.
Cot: small crib.
Crib: even smaller crib that is kept beside your bed and often swings or rocks.
Moses basket: small cushioned basket for beside your bed.
Baby grow: onesie.
Grobag: sleep sack.
Poppers: snaps (buttons) to fasten clothing.
I think I’ve got the hang of it and have figured out how to not sound so foreign when talking with the ladies in my mom’s groups. However, I’m sure I thoroughly confuse friends and family when I accidentally use the British terms with people from home and vice versa.