October 18th, 2011
Phones make it easy to keep up on friends and family. Today many have their own cell phones. The house-family phone is seldom used by all the family. However there is etiquette we need to understand about what is proper regarding phones and taking messages.
The rules for the phone are usually established by the parents. However a general rule-of-thumb is:
- Be polite when you answer the phone.
- Smile – your smile comes through your voice. Some families put a large sign beside the phone that says, “Smile.”
- Be considerate when using the phone and don’t talk too long in case someone else needs to make a call.
- Remember to say thank you when you hang up.
- Find out who is calling. Ask, “May I tell her who is calling?” Or, “Who’s calling please?”
- Don’t yell to tell someone the phone is for them. Say to the caller, “Just a minute,” then go to the person and tell them they have a phone call.
- If you don’t know the caller or they called you by mistake never give your name and number to them. Simply say, “You have reached the wrong number.”
When taking a message:
- Some families have a spiral notebook beside the phone to jot down messages. Write the date and the name of the caller and if there is a specific message. Don’t be shy about asking over and over for them to spell their name or repeat the number. Better to be a little embarrassed then than later.
- When you leave a message on someone else’s answering machine, speak clearly and repeat your name and number.
Did you know your cell phone NEVER belongs on the table?
Turn your cell phone down or off when visiting with a friend. Be polite and consider how others feel when you spend your visiting time talking to some one else.
If you are expecting a call that is important, tell your friend and say that you will need to answer it. But otherwise don’t cheat your friends special visit time with talking to someone else.
Gracious Girls put the needs of others first.
October 18th, 2011
Sleepovers can be fun however they can be tricky too. Sleepovers need to be considered carefully before one chooses to attend. Consider:
- Do you know the family?
- Do you know what the hostess is planning ?
- Do you know who will be home?
- Do you know if the party will be up all night? No sleep!
Some questions you can ask are:
- What will we be doing (movie or activities – if it is a movie – what is the title and how is it rated)?
- Will your parents be there? Which one/ones? Will she/he be up all evening with the guest?
- What will we have for food?
- May I bring something for snacking?
- Do I need to bring a sleeping bag?
If you choose to attend:
- Do take your own personal bathroom needs.
- Take a bag for dirty clothes so they can be kept separate from the clean clothes.
- Keep personal items in one place, perhaps a corner of the room. Shoes, socks, underwear, brush all stay in one spot. Makes it easy to clean up and makes taking all your items home a little easier.
- Help to clean up.
- Do not go home crabby. If you find you are crabby (due to lack of sleep) confess you are tired and not kind to be around and ask if you can take a nap. Don’t treat your family bad just because you are tired.
*Be careful ladies. Sleepovers can be a challenge for you in standing firm in your values and beliefs. A Gracious Girl is a woman of integrity, a very special china teacup. Think carefully before responding to the invitation.
October 9th, 2011
The Hostess with the Mostess will:
- Send out invitation about two weeks in advance. Be creative and write your own. It can be a flyer if you like. today it is okay to do email invitations. However the older folds still like a written note sent in the mail. Be kind.
- Have an attitude of serving. Think of ways you can serve your guest.
- Ask if your guest have any food restrictions.
The Hostess with the Mostess will:
- Be organized by thinking ahead.
- Ask mom if there is any extra chores she would like help with.
- Tidy your room and the bathroom.
- Plan the food to be served and prepare as much as possible ahead. Ask mother if she would be willing to help.
- Have a dish of snacks like M&Ms and nuts on the table for the guest arriving early, or if you will not be eating right away.
- Have paper plates and cups available near the drink container.
- Show guest where the treats are and encourage them to help their selves.
- Greet each guest as they arrive and introduce each one to the others.
Enjoy your role as Hostess.
October 9th, 2011
Most of us enjoy receiving gifts. Many of us enjoy giving them. Can you imagine there are a few etiquette rules regarding gifts?
Usually gifts are a result of our receiving an invitation. It is good to remember that the first invitation we receive needs to be a priority.
Does that mean we have to go to an event we don’t want to attend? Does it mean that we have to give a gift to someone we really don’t even like or know well enough? No No on both accounts. However we do need to pay respects by RSVP-ing. RSVP just mean we need to respond by saying yes or no. It is good to write a RSVP or call. If you don’t want to attend, simply say something like, “Thank you for including me in your party. I will not be attending.”
A good rule-of-thumb priority is to remember that family is more important than friends. Friends come and go but family will always be family.
A few things to remember:
- The first invitation is the one we need to RSVP to first. We don’t wait to see if something better comes up.
- Simply say no thank you if you do not want to attend.
- When RSVP-ing that you will attend, says something like, “Thank you for including me and I look forward to attending.”
- Take a moment and write a pretend RSVP.
Giving a Gift:
- Choose the gift carefully. Be attentive and give something they would like and enjoy. Not necessarily something you want.
- Remove the price tag. When purchasing clothing, you can ask for a gift receipt and they can exchange it if need be.
- Wrap the gift. Be creative. Some have used brown paper bag as a paper and put a beautiful bow on it. Or some have used the “funnies” from the Sunday paper. Bags are very popular today and work very well if you don’t feel creative.
- Include a card. Don’t make them guess who the gift is from.
- Even when bringing a little hostess gift to someone, include a little card that says something like, “Thank you for including me.” And sign your name.
- Give your gift with confidence. Never apologize for the gift.
- Never say things like:
- “I know you won’t like this.”
- “This is a dumb present.”
- “I couldn’t spend very much.”
- “I didn’t know what to get you.”
- “You probably already have one of these.”
- Put on a smile and do say things like:
- “Happy Birthday.”
- “This is for you.”
- “I hope you like it.”
- “I enjoyed picking it out for you.”
- Timing is important. Be prompt in giving a gift.
- Give with pleasure; put on a smile. enjoy the giving as a gift of love.
Receiving a Gift:
- Always receive a gift with great pleasure and with a smile.
- Say something like:
- “Thank you so much.”
- “I’m going to enjoy reading this book.”
- “This will look so nice in my room.”
- “I’ll sure stay warm in this sweater.”
- Thank them verbally, take your time opening the gift and ooh and aah over it while unwrapping it.
- Treat it like the treasure the person giving it thinks it is.
- Show appreciation for the color or item or thoughtfulness.
- NEVER NEVER NEVER ask for presents.
- NEVER NEVER NEVER complain about it.
- NEVER NEVER NEVER ask how much it cost.
- If you don’t like the gift, is it okay to return it? Yes. Be appreciative for the gift but if it doesn’t fit or you just hate the color, or you already have one (or two), you can take it back. You can save it as give to someone you know might like it. But Always send a thank you for the gift.
- Always send a thank you note.
- Say something personal like, “The socks are a great color and they will keep my feet warm this winter.” “That was very thoughtful of you.”
- Today it is proper etiquette to call and say thank you and to send email or text or FaceBook but remember if you have older folks who generously gave you a gift, they enjoy written notes. Be thoughtful.
- If the gift is money. In your thank you note, let the person know what you spent it on. If you saved it to get a more expensive item, tell them you are saving it to purchase (what ever it is).
October 9th, 2011
Yes, there is a proper way to approach a chair and to exit a chair (or couch). Sometimes young people will rudely pull the chair out from where we thought it was to sit and we fall on the floor. I hope this hasn’t happened to many but I am sure it has for some.
Of course there are times we sit on the floor and relax by crossing our legs “Indian Style” and that is appropriate. But in certain settings like at church or at the theater, or nice restaurant we may want to sit in a little more “lady like” position. We never want to plop!
It feels awkward at first but is really easy and comfortable when we practice in the comfort of our home.
Good way to Sit:
- When preparing to sit, you leg should touch the edge of the chair, lower the body (without bending over) to the place where the chair is, touch the edge of the chair with the hand and sit on the edge and scoot back in the chair. Practice now.
- Sometimes scooting is a challenge due to fabric that wants to grab your garment. After you have scooted back then you can adjust your garment.
- Never rub your hand on your back-side to hold your garment in place as this accentuates the part of the body you don’t want to show off.
- Never bend over while sitting down either. This may give others the opportunity to see down your top.
Good way to Get Up:
- When preparing to exit the chair, place your hand on the edge of the chair to balance you and scoot forward.
- Stand straight up without bending over. Practice again.
Actually this is very easy and you’ll feel good at special places as you get comfortable with the steps.
Have fun. Your friends will be so impressed. Good job!
October 9th, 2011
When a Gracious Young Woman walks she will NOT:
- Slump her shoulders – this is causing her body to look strange.
- Tilt her nose in the air – as to give appear she is in love with herself.
- Or hang her head low – this gives the appearance that she doesn’t think much of herself.
- Swing her legs – she is in a world all her own and someone could get hurt as she pushes by.
- Exaggerate her hips – isn’t very modest looking.
- Look as stiff as a soldier – a little too rigid and looks unfriendly.
When a Gracious Young Woman walks she WILL:
- Take small steps – practice walking in steps about the size of one’s shoe size.
- Hold her shoulders nice and straight – this shows kindness to her frame.
- Hold her head to look eye level at those coming toward her – giving an air of confidence in being a woman.
- Will smile and be friendly – to those she passes on the street.
To check posture, stand close to a walk with each part of your body from heels to tip of head tightly leaning on the wall. It feels strange at first but doing this exercise will help get the feeling of how you want to walk. Tighten up the shoulders on the wall, then roll them down. This helps balance a nice frame for holding your body. While learning to walk in a more lady like manner, practice by exaggerating as you walk around the room and laugh a lot.
June 27th, 2011
There are times when we aren’t sure what is appropriate for and with our disabled friends. The National Organization on Disability has given us some basic things to remember:
- Relax. Don’t be embarrassed by using common expressions such as: I have got to run now; See you later, or Have you heard about… even if the person does not run, see or hear well, People with disabilities use these phrases all the time.
- Everyone likes to be greeted by name. Introduce yourself to the disable person and speak to them using their name.
- It is appropriate to shake hands. If the hands are limited in use, touch and acknowledge the introduction. Even if it is a prosthesis. Touch is important.
- Often we have the desire to help a disabled person. Before you do anything for them, ask if they want you to assist and then listen to the instructions carefully.
- Don’t make the origin or details of one’s disability the first topic of conversation. It is best not to ask personal questions until you become real friends.
- Be considerate of the extra time it may take a person with a disability to get things done.
- Speak directly to the person with a disability rather than to a companion or sign language interpreter who may be along.
- Terms change over the years. Such as crippled; deaf and dumb; and wheelchair-bound are no longer accepted by people with disabilities. Many have negative associations. Instead say person with a disability; Mary is hard of hearing; Denise uses a wheelchair. this type of language focuses on the person first and their disability afterward.
- Avoid excessive praise when people with disabilities accomplish normal tasks. These tasks do not require exaggerated compliments.
- Don’t lean into a person’s wheelchair. It is an extension of their personal space.
- When speaking with a person in a wheelchair for more than a few minutes, sit down so that you will be eye level with them.
- Don’t pet a guide dog while it is working. Always ask if you can pet them and don’t assume.
- Don’t raise your voice when speaking to a hard of hearing person. Your body language speaks volumes.
- When offering assistance to a visually impaired person, tell them your name and where you are standing. When walking let the person take your arm and then tell them when you are approaching inclines or turning right or left.
- Don’t allow your fears of saying or doing the wrong thing prevent you from getting to know someone that has a disability. A “hello” works well.
- If possible volunteer at community events and help in making them available. Become an advocate for your disabled friends.
Relax, and enjoy being a friend to the disabled by treating them kindly and respectfully. Eye contact, a simple smile and hello is a wonderful beginning.
January 26th, 2011
Have you wondered how to eat watermelon? At a picnic it is quite alright to hold the slice of watermelon on a napkin and eat it with your fingers. However if it is served on a plate at the table it is more polite to eat it with a fork. Cut it into small bite sizes. If there are seeds, simply place the seed on your fork and place them on the side of your plate. If it is served cubed and in a bowl, eat it with our spoon. Enjoy.
July 24th, 2010
- It is kind to place calls between 8 a.m. and 10 p.m. on weekdays: 10 a.m. and 10 p.m. on Saturdays: and noon on Sundays.
- Unless you are expecting a call, let the second call go into voice mail. If you decide to answer the second call, simply tell them you will return their call.
- If possible, return personal calls the same day or at least within twenty-four hours.
- Keep the conversation friendly.
- Keep a smile and a friendly voice when speaking on the phone.
- When entering an establishment, refrain from having lengthy conversations on the cell phone and put it on vibrate. Only answer the phone if you are concerned about your husband or children or some emergency.
- Don’t be chatting on the cell phone while trying to order or pay for items.
- Don’t talk about on the cell phone while shopping about personal matters, arguing, and using loud or course speech.
- Cell phones do not belong on the dining table. In fact cell phones do not belong at the table.
- Use discretion and be considerate of others.
June 2nd, 2010
Have you ever wanted to pick up your soup bowl and drink it from the bowl itself? Well now you can with this two handle bowl. I researched and found that it is a broth soup bowl. It is to be picked up and sipped instead of using a spoon. So go for it. I have one antique set and can’t wait to use it.