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[10 Dec 2012 | No Comment | ]
Manners Monday :: The Holidays

Since the holidays are upon us, I thought I’d take this opportunity to remind us of a few things to keep in mind as we celebrate with others:
1. Don’t arrive early. It is better to be five minutes late than five minutes early. The final 15 minutes before a party are crucial to your host. If you’re going somewhere unfamiliar and you are unsure of how long it will take to arrive, that’s fine. If you arrive early, drive around the neighborhood and enjoy the new scenery. Noting your hosts’ …

Manners Monday, Miscellaneous »

[25 Jun 2012 | No Comment | ]
Manners Monday :: Email Etiquette

This post is based on a presentation I created for work regarding business email etiquette, but many of the same principles can be applied to personal email as well.
First, there are a few things you should already know, but just incase you’ve been living under a rock:

Don’t SCREAM. In the electronic world, all caps is the equivalent of shouting, and we all know that it is impolite to shout.
Word messages carefully. Sarcasm can be easily misread, so use it sparingly and only in situations where you know it will be …

Manners Monday, Out and About »

[31 Oct 2011 | No Comment | ]
Manners Monday :: Bring a Gift

In October I’ve been focusing on table manners in order for us all to “up our game” during the holiday season which is right around the corner. As is typical during the season, we all are hosting and being hosted at one another’s homes more frequently, so now we should be ready to be on their best behavior at the table.
Today’s lesson isn’t about table manners, but more about honoring your host when you’ve been invited to someone’s home for dinner or a party. Bring a gift. It can be …

Featured, Manners Monday »

[24 Oct 2011 | No Comment | ]
Manners Monday :: Table Manners, a mix

For todays Manners Monday, I’m going to cover a variety of table manners – answering a few questions plus throwing in some others. For this reason, I won’t go as in depth on each item. If you’d like more clarity, let me know in the comments and I’ll add to it.
– Pass the salt and pepper together, even if a guest only asks for one. It prevents having to search for the lost shaker the next time someone needs one.
– Napkins: In the lap as soon as you sit down, …

Featured, Manners Monday »

[17 Oct 2011 | No Comment | ]
Manners Monday :: Breaking Bread

There are some table manners that should go without saying: napkin in your lap, no elbows on the table, don’t chew with your mouth open (which means don’t talk while you’re chewing). There are others that are less well-known.
One that my mother was religious about instilling in me (as one for ladies) is about eating bread. While I was taught this as a rule for women, it doesn’t hurt for men to follow it as well. Break bread into bite-size pieces to eat, and butter your bread one piece at …

Cooking, Featured, Manners Monday »

[10 Oct 2011 | No Comment | ]
Manners Monday :: Wait for Your Host

Today is part two of October’s series on Manners Monday :: Table Manners. (Last week we Set the Table.)
When having dinner around a table, no one should begin eating until the person who has provided the meal (i.e., host or hostess) has been seated and has lifted his or her fork.
Let’s look at the practicality (since etiquette, at its core, is practical) of this first. Meals are meant to be enjoyed, together. If people begin eating as soon as they sit down – particularly with a buffet – it is …

Cooking, Manners Monday, Miscellaneous »

[3 Oct 2011 | No Comment | ]
Manners Monday :: Setting the Table

Welcome to the October series of Manners Monday where we’ll hone our table manners in preparation for hosting and being hosted at numerous holiday gatherings for the next two months. And while I’m sure I’ll reference her many times, I’d be remiss if I didn’t go ahead and mention in advance my mom. Everything that I know and love related to entertaining is straight from her heart – as she is the quintessential hostess. So, thanks Mom. This is for you.
As Maria said in The Sound of Music, “Let’s start …

Headline, Manners Monday, Miscellaneous »

[26 Sep 2011 | No Comment | ]

No “Manners Monday” today. Instead, I’m gearing up for a big October about table manners. In the meantime, enjoy the past posts and send table manners questions to me at readbabbette (at) yahoo (dot) com.
Previous Manners Monday:
Manners Monday :: Addressing Familiar Names Properly
Manners Monday :: Making Introductions
Manners Monday :: Thank You
Manners Monday :: Introduction
Also, afraid you might miss a post? I’ve added a tool for subscribing at the bottom of the page. Just enter your email address, and you can receive Lit&Leisure straight to your inbox.
See you next Monday where …

Manners Monday, Miscellaneous »

[19 Sep 2011 | No Comment | ]
Manners Monday :: Addressing Familiar Names Properly

This may be the single most common rule infraction, mostly because people don’t know that such a standard exists or why. In fact, I believe that most of time when it is kept, it is either by accident or for the wrong reasons.
This is the rule: when using the familiar (first) names of a couple, the woman’s name goes first. Example: Jane and John Smith.
As evidenced by this month’s Architectural Digest, this rule is broken broadly and often. This doesn’t make it OK. At Manners Monday, we strive for excellence.
Many …

Manners Monday »

[12 Sep 2011 | No Comment | ]
Manners Monday :: Making Introductions

It happens all the time: you are the common denominator at a gathering of folks who don’t know each other. Your friends are meeting your parents, your spouse is meeting your boss, you’ve just run into a work acquaintance while shopping with a friend.
Etiquette is founded on navigating common social interactions that can sometimes be uncomfortable. The rules associated with manners are often determined by relieving people’s discomfort. In this case, there is that moment when someone is face to face with another person that they don’t know and yet …