Choose the right words to fill in the blanks:
"I can cook, but only if the recipe has fewer than three ingredients."
"Fewer" is used for plural/countable nouns, and "less" is for singular nouns.
"A long time ago, we used to be friends."
"Used to" is a past-tense verb, so it needs that D!
"Without further ado, here are the top 20 baby names of 2015."
"Ado" means fuss or trouble; "adieu" means farewell.
"These culinary creations will whet your appetite."
"Wet" means to make wet, while "whet" means to make sharper or stronger.
"Here's a sneak peek at the monsters in the new Doctor Who Christmas special."
A peek is a look, and a peak is the top of a mountain. Pique is an emotional response to indignity (or a verb that means to cause such a response).
"The writers should have known better than to kill off a favorite character."
"Should of" may sound similar to "should've," but it's not good grammar!
"Regardless of how much they practiced, the players knew they were going to lose."
"Irregardless" is a nonstandard form of "regardless," and most dictionaries discourage using it.
"The world is on tenterhooks waiting for Beyoncé's next album."
Being on tenterhooks means being kept in suspense. "Tenderhooks" is not a real thing.
"The weather just gets worse the farther west you go."
"Farther" refers to distance; "further" refers to degree.
"To keep it simple, you can make do with concealer, mascara, and a neutral lipstick."
To "make do" means to get along with what you have, i.e., to make (something) do (well enough for your purposes).
"Fans waited with bated breath for Zayn Malik to break his silence."
To bate is to diminish, so "with bated breath" means they were nearly holding their breath with anticipation.
intensive purposesintents and purposes
"For all intents and purposes, it was a declaration of war."
The phrase is "for all intents and purposes" — not just the intensive purposes, all of them!
"By the time police started investigating, the statute of limitations had expired."
A statute is a written law or regulation; a statue is a sculpted figure.
"They formed a judging panel composed of 11 chefs and bakers."
These words are sometimes used interchangeably, but they're technically opposites: To compose is to make up; to comprise is to be made up of.
"The Pokédex implies that humans nearly hunted the Farfetch'd into extinction."
To imply is to suggest; to infer is to guess or surmise.
"Their deep-seated frustration had simmered for decades."
"Deep-seeded" may sound right, but it's actually "deep-seated" — picture someone seated firmly on a throne.
"If you don't jibe well with dairy, go ahead and leave off the cheese."
To jibe is to be in agreement; to jive is to tease (or to dance to jive music).
"When you see a SALE sign, your curiosity is piqued."
To pique is to cause an emotional response, like curiosity or annoyance. "Peaked" means at a high point, and "peeked" means looked.
"My favorite animals are rodents — e.g., gerbils, hamsters, and guinea pigs."
"E.g." stands for "exempli gratia," which means "for example," while "i.e." stands for "id est," or "that is" — so use e.g. for examples and i.e. for providing clarification.
"Starting a workout regimen can be intimidating, but it's also totally rewarding."
A regimen is a plan for staying healthy, whereas a regime is a form of government and a regiment is a military unit. Totally different!