Live vs Life and Living Life to the Fullest


Me and my friends in Bolivia.

The verb to live and the noun life can be quite confusing, especially when it comes to spelling and pronunciation.

The trickiest part is knowing the difference between the pronunciation when both the noun is in the plural and the verb is in the third person: even though they are spelled the same, the pronunciation is different.

Let’s take a look at this difference:

Live as an Adjective

Live can also be used as an adjective. For example:

  • I prefer listening to live music.
  • The news is always done live.

Living Life to the Fullest

This is a common expression and basically means to make the most out of life; to live your life to your full potential.

This article lists 101 ways to live life to the fullest. Here are some from that list.

1. Create Your Own Opportunities.

“If opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door” – Milton Berle

2. Stop Complaining.

“Never tell your problems to anyone…20% don’t care and the other 80% are glad you have them.”  – Lou Holtz

3. Stop putting life on hold.

“Life is short”

4. Do things you love.

(Enjoy your English learning and don’t get stressed!)

5. Go dating (if single).

(If you’re single, date somebody who speaks English 😉 )

Do you live life to the fullest?

Pronunciation Box

Pronunciation: Words Containing ‘ough’, ‘ought’ or ‘aught’

If I want to challenge my students I usually ask them to pronounce the following words: cough, bought, tough, though, thorough, through, drought, rough.

In total there are eight different ways to pronounce words that contain ‘ough’. We’re going to look at those pronunciations and hopefully make things a little easier by placing them into groups. You’ll also see some ‘augh’ words included.

I suggest that you practice listening to the audio and repeating the sentences. Enjoy this process and don’t worry too much about trying to remember everything.

3rd Sound

This is very common for these type of words, and you’ll notice that the following are mostly irregular verbs in the past simple or past participle.

  • Caught
  • Bought
  • Fought
  • Thought
  • Taught
  • Ought

Some Examples: (Notice the other words that have the same pronunciation.)

  • Yesterday I taught 5 classes.
  • I thought that there was a free tennis court, but they were all occupied.
  • They fought a lot at university.
  • I’ve bought so many things.
  • You’ve bought enough clothes to last you years!
  • I caught a cold yesterday and now I have a cough.
  • I’ve sorted out all of my files on the computer.
  • I ought to go.
  • They thought that we ought to go.

A Little Challenge

Try and say the following:

Throughout my time at university I always walked through the park. Although the park was a little rough it was safe enough. We were taught to always walk with someone though I thought that was a little excessive.

There was a draught when I was younger, and although we had just bought a new hosepipe, we couldn’t use it. I got a cough that summer and also fought a lot with my sister.


The Weather

HurricaneThis post will firstly look at the storm which has been named Sandy that hit the east coast of the US yesterday (29/10/12). We’re going to look at some of the language used to describe the storm as well as learning some vocabulary, phrases, and grammar used to describe the weather.

Let’s start with a summary of what has happened adapted from this report:

Adapted Story

Millions of people on the east coast of the United States have woken up to devastating scenes after punishing winds and devastating floods left around 7.5 million people without power and caused 15 lives.

President Barak Obama declared a major disaster in the New York area which allowed funds to be given to habitants. The storm has moved inland with weakened yet still strong winds.

It has been said that the storm has been the most destructive in the history of the subway system. It has also closed Wall Street for two days running, the first time since 1888.

According to the American Red Cross, nearly 11,000 people spent the night in 258 shelters across 16 states.

Floods – this is when water overflows and submerges land.

Funds – money saved for a particular purpose.

Shelters – a place that gives protection against danger (in this case bad weather).

The storm first hit the Caribbean, directly hitting Jamaica, Cuba, and the Bahamas, but most damage and deaths occurred in Haiti.

Phrases About the Weather

Learning some basic phrases to be used when talking about the weather will help you a lot with your fluency. The grammar used will probably be different to your native language.

We’ve included audio recordings for the following weather related phrases.

Asking Questions:

  • What’s the weather normally like?
  • What’s the weather like (today)?
  • How’s the weather?
  • Is it hot?
  • Is it cold?
  • Is it dry?
  • Is it raining?

Talking About the Weather Today:

  • It’s cold today.
  • It’s freezing! (this means very cold).
  • It’s mild. (To be used during the winter when it isn’t cold).
  • It’s warm. (About 16-23 degrees, relative to where you live).
  • It’s hot. (About 23 degrees +)
  • It’s raining. (More common).
  • It’s rainy.
  • It’s snowing. (More common).
  • It’s snowy.
  • It’s sunny.
  • It’s dry.
  • It’s sleeting (rain and snow).
  • It’s foggy/misty.

To emphasize the different types of weather, we can use the following:

  • It’s quite hot.
  • It’s very hot.
  • It’s really hot.
  • It’s too hot.

Talking About the Weather Tomorrow:

When talking about the weather in the future, we tend to use either ‘going to’ or ‘will’.

  • It’s going to be cold tomorrow.
  • It’ll be cold tomorrow.
  • I heard that it’s going to be cold tomorrow. (Listen for ‘gonna’).
  • It’s going to rain tomorrow. (Listen for ‘gonna’).

‘Going to’ is more common in everyday speech, but you will more likely hear ‘will’ when listening to the weather forecast.

Using Conditionals to Talk About the Weather:

We especially use the zero and first conditional a lot when talking about the weather. This is because what we normally do or what we will do in the future depends on what the weather will be like:

  • I love playing golf, but I don’t play when it rains.
  • If it rains on Saturday, we’ll stay in.
  • If it’s warm this weekend, we’re going to go for a hike.
Pronunciation Box

Past Simple Pronunciation for Regular Verbs – “ED”

Forming regular verbs in the past simple can be straightforward once you know the rules and have practiced conjugating them. But how do you pronounce them?

This is something that a lot of English learners have difficulty with as there are three distinct sounds. But after learning the rules, familiarizing yourself with them, and then practicing the examples, you will be able to pronounce them correctly when speaking.

This article will outline the three different sounds of the past simple regular verbs along with ways to practice.

The 3 sounds are:

  1. /id/ e.g., wanted
  2. /t/ e.g., worked
  3. /d/ e.g., covered

3. /d/

This is used for all voiced sounds.

  • I covered the cake in icing.
  • I played football all day.
  • He offered me the job.
  • I returned the video.

Practice the sounds above and repeat them after the recording. Listen for the ending of each sound and practice saying this out loud. It takes time to familiarize yourself with these sounds and the more you see of them the more natural it will become.


Choose the correct sound for each verb.

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Advice vs Advise

Advice vs Advise

In this lesson you will learn the difference between “advice” and “advise.” I hear a lot of mistakes being made when my students try to use these two words.

Take a look at the following video (watch it in HD!)


The video above should explain this in detail, so the post is going to be short. English throws up lots of little problems (as you have probably noticed), especially when the verb and the noun have only slight variations.

“Advice” and “advise” is a great example of this. Here is the difference in meaning: “Advice” is a noun and “advise” is a verb. A common error when using “advice” is to put it in the plural – the noun is uncountable; so never say, “He gave me good advices.

Some Examples with “Advice”

  • Thanks for the advice the other day, it really helped.
  • Can I give you some advice?
  • My teacher gave me a lot of advice about what to do at university.
  • That’s a great piece of advice.

Some Examples with “Advise”

  • She advised me to work harder if I wanted to progress.
  • I strongly advise you to stop calling her.
  • My doctor advised me to stop eating so much junk food.

Another difference between the two words is the pronunciation (as you can hear from the audio); “advice” has an /s/ sound and “advise” has a /z/ sound.


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What’s the best piece of advice that you have ever received? Write your answers in the comments section below!