with bells on

with bells on (one's toes)

Fig. eagerly, willingly, and on time. Oh, yes! I'll meet you at the restaurant. I'll be there with bells on. All the smiling children were there waiting for me with bells on their toes.
See also: bell, on

with bells on

Ready to celebrate, eagerly, as in Of course I'll come; I'll be there with bells on. This metaphoric expression alludes to decorating oneself or one's clothing with little bells for some special performance or occasion. A well-known nursery rhyme has: "See a fine lady upon a white horse, Rings on her fingers and bells on her toes, And she shall have music wherever she goes" (in Gammer Gurton's Garland, 1784).
See also: bell, on

with bells on

1. People say with bells on to emphasize how extreme or successful something is. We wanted a speaker who could make a difficult subject interesting. Simon Singh succeeded with bells on. At Disney you get the fun factor with bells on.
2. People say they will be somewhere with bells on to mean that they will definitely be there and are very enthusiastic about it. We are sure that if you really care about your children, you will be here with bells on, helping out.
See also: bell, on

with bells on

enthusiastically. North American informal
1989 Mary Gordon The Other Side So, everybody's waiting for you with bells on.
See also: bell, on

with bells on

mod. ready to go; eager. I promise to be there at five in the morning with bells on.
See also: bell, on