to be but a few steps - быть рядом, в двух шагах
but yesterday - но вчера
nothing but - ничего кроме
He is but a child. - Он всего лишь ребёнок.
We have relationships of many different sorts - with our children, our parents, our boss and our friends, to name but a few. - Мы вступаем во множество самых различных отношений: с нашими детьми, с нашими родителями, с нашими начальниками и нашими друзьями, и это ещё далеко не всё.
shaken but not stirred: If you say that someone has been shaken but not stirred by an experience, you mean that they have been slightly disturbed or emotionally affected by it, but not deeply enough to change their behaviour or way of thinking .
last but one/last but three etc: You can use phrases such as the last but one, the last but two, or the last but three, to refer to the thing or person that is, for example, one, two, or three before the final person or thing in a group or series .
there but for the grace of God go I: If you are talking about someone who is in a bad situation and you say ' There but for the grace of God go I ', you mean that you are lucky not to be in the same situation as them and you feel sympathy for them.
have only oneself to blame/have no-one but oneself to blame: If you say that someone has only themselves to blame or has no-one but themselves to blame, you mean that they are responsible for something bad that has happened to them and that you have no sympathy for them.
lose/win the battle, win/lose the war to lose the battle but win the war: If you say that someone has lost the battle, but won the war, you mean that although they have been defeated in a small conflict they have won a larger, more important one of which it was a part. If you say that someone has won the battle but lost the war, you mean that they have won the small conflict but lost the larger one.