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Social Etiquette and Good Manners/Questions Answered by Expert Amanda Gamble

SubjectDate Asked
Applying a gift to benefit the giver1/4/2013
  Q: Two and a half years ago I had medical issues that caused a financial setback to me and my family. ...
  A: I am sorry to learn of your health issues. I know that it can cause a ripple effect into every other ...
Handiling Uninvited/Unwanted Guest in Front of Other Holiday Guests12/27/2012
  Q: I have a bit of a situation to look forward to this Christmas and I am hoping you can answer my ...
  A: The time stamp on this question read 11:52 PM on Wednesday,December 26th,2012. I do not know if you ...
opening gifts12/24/2012
  Q: We visited our relatives 2 days before Christmas. We brought presents for the kids and put them ...
  A: It was yours to do with as you wished once it was handed to you. It would have been fine to have ...
xmas cards12/17/2012
  Q: My mom passed away on Christmas day last year. My husband asked if I was sending out cards this ...
  A: I can think of no reason why you should not send out cards if you wish to do so. As the holiday ...
Death etiquette12/15/2012
  Q: My sister's brother in law recently passed away and I am unsure of proper etiquette regarding what ...
  A: Please write a note or send a card to whomever you feel would most benefit from hearing from you. ...
Obituary etiquette12/5/2012
  Q: Do you list adult step children/adult step grandchildren on an obituary if they did not call or ...
  A: Melissa, Entirely up to you. An obituary is about information,not about revenge. If these "steps" ...
Signing Christmas cards after death of spouse12/4/2012
  Q: My wife passed away about a month ago. I want to continue our custom of sending Christmas cards to ...
  A: Please know how sorry I am for your loss. As you say,everyone who will get the cards already ...
dinner11/14/2012
  Q: I am having my godchild and her new husband and sister over for dinner. Can I invite other friends ...
  A: Please do. It will give the newlyweds a chance to tell everyone thank you for being a part of their ...
announcing graduate's divorced parents prior to speech6/3/2012
  Q: my daughter is the valedictorian of her high school class. Her father and I have been divorced for ...
  A: The correct form is "....Amy Doe, daughter of Rebecca Hanson Doe and Fred and Helen Doe." If your ...
Thank you card5/25/2012
  Q: I had an emergency surgery, I received a get well card with a gift if cash from several co-workers. ...
  A: Even if you are not religious,the co-workers almost certainly meant well by praying for you. ...
graduation party / continuing education5/16/2012
  Q: My daughter will receive her bachelor degree tomorrow, but is going on for a Masters and a Ph.D.. We ...
  A: Anyone may give a party at any time and for almost any reason. A party to celebrate a student ...
Girlfriend dilemma5/15/2012
  Q: I am in a quandary, one of my longest and bestest friends recently needed some advice on engaging a ...
  A: I get this type of question more often than you would think. I am sorry,I know that it is hurtful ...
Graduation Party - Dual Honorees5/5/2012
  Q: I have a son graduating college and a daughter graduating high school, both within a month of each ...
  A: Half of your problem is easily solved by asking your children how they feel about a joint party. If ...
Graduation invitations.4/28/2012
  Q: I am putting together my high school graduation invitations and my mom was wondering what is the ...
  A: If it is an invitation to the graduation itself ( the Elmwood High Class of 2012,etc) then your name ...
Headstone Etiquette4/28/2012
  Q: our question is this: my father passed away ten years ago and our stepmother and our stepsister ...
  A: I am so sorry. It was a bit premature to order the marker without consulting you and your sister. I ...
Declining a verbal wedding invitation4/16/2012
  Q: Gamble :-) !! How to politely decline a wedding invitation? There is this guy who was once my ...
  A: Please know that you probably cannot decline In a way that will not hurt or offend him. If he is as ...
parents 50th anniversary3/27/2012
  Q: My siblings and I are throwing a 50th anniversary party for my parents--and my parents would like to ...
  A: Your sister is correct on this one. You should never ask a guest to pay for the privilege of being ...
bridal shower hostess gift3/19/2012
  Q: My shower is in two weeks in Chicago and I live in Phoenix. My future mother in law is hosting it ...
  A: I don't know how large the gifts would be that you would give to the sisters and daughter, but ...
accepting gift of cash3/13/2012
  Q: We received a letter from a good friend recently and I let my children open the envelope. Inside ...
  A: This entirely up to you and what you are comfortable with. It was a gift from a friend who wanted ...
clarifying an invitation3/5/2012
  Q: Good morning. I received this note from a friend. I am still unsure if we are invited or we have ...
  A: The wording is a bit confusing,but after reading it through a second time,I think you are not being ...
baby gift giving3/1/2012
  Q: I helped another woman plan a baby shower for a lady last summer who had not yet delivered her son. ...
  A: There is no need to buy another gift unless you expressly wish to do so. An announcement is just a ...
manners for children2/26/2012
  Q: How far can I go in exemplifying good manners to children who are related to me only by marriage? I ...
  A: I understand what you are trying to do and wish that you could continue doing it. However,the ...
A Puzzling Association !2/22/2012
  Q: Greetings ! Hoping all is well....perhaps you can shed some light on this matter. I happen to ...
  A: Well,either he was pulling a scam or hoping he had the money to send you things and did not. As an ...
questionable wall art2/19/2012
  Q: While visiting relatives recently my children who are 14 yr old boy/girl twins were in the basement ...
  A: As this is not just any relative but your brother,you may speak to him plainly about it. As the ...
Paying for widowed friend's dinner2/17/2012
  Q: We have a close female friend, widowed about two years ago. Before her husband's death, we often ...
  A: If your friend wants to pay her own way and has insisted repeatedly that she be allowed to do so,it ...
not knowing2/15/2012
  Q: My two friends and I booked a room away for a ski getaway for two nights....the week before i had a ...
  A: Please split it into thirds. I am hoping that your friends will say "Don't be ridiculous, we will ...
listing deceased grandparents in birth announcement2/14/2012
  Q: My daughter is having a child in March and we are working on the birth announcement. We want to ...
  A: If the Neuroths were still married at the time the first spouse passed away,you may correctly use ...
Graduation and Wedding2/13/2012
  Q: My daughter mother decided to leave the marriage when my daughter was very young. As a young father ...
  A: First,please know how very sorry I am that you are in this position. I can't imagine how painful ...
christmas gifts2/13/2012
  Q: if one is invited to dinner at a close friends home for Christmas, in addition to my bringing them ...
  A: Consider the invitation and the hospitality you receive there to be your gift. That lowered ...
Who should give a baby shower?2/1/2012
  Q: My son's wife's mother informed me that the immediate family does not do the baby shower. I thought ...
  A: Brides and Expectant Mothers should be given a shower for their first wedding and baby only. The ...
Book of Remembrance1/19/2012
  Q: Is there an etiquette about how to phrase an entry in a book of remembrance in regard to roles. My ...
  A: You may include any of the deceased's biographical information that you wish. Even if she ...
Amanda Gamble, HSC course1/18/2012
  Q: My name is Sara and i am a current year 12 student. As part of my subjects for 2012 i have chosen ...
  A: What an interesting topic! I think your best bet would be to create a series of questions that would ...
Grave Headstone1/18/2012
  Q: Why is the mans name,when married,always on the left and the wife's name is on the right? I have 3 ...
  A: Please know how sorry I am for your loss. There is no hard and fast rule about the order of ...
interrupt1/16/2012
  Q: is it ever correct to interrupt someone as they are speaking?
  A: Absolutely. Courtesy demands that you yell out a warning about an avalanche, no matter how badly it ...
food1/16/2012
  Q: Recently a new friend was at our home. For desert we offered small handmade choclate treats. Our new ...
  A: You certainly may send or give him more if you wish,but it is not necessary. ...
Sympathy Flowers to home or funeral home1/14/2012
  Q: My sister,s Mother-in-Law, whom I have never met, passed away. I would like to send flowers to the ...
  A: It is absolutely appropriate to send flowers for the service of someone whom you have never met. All ...
wedding attire1/7/2012
  Q: My son will be getting married in October. It will be a black tie optional evening wedding. The ...
  A: The bride is absolutely correct. You may,in good conscience, wear the gown length of your choice. As ...
gift giving to children1/7/2012
  Q: My son and his wife sent his nephews cards with money for Christmas. One nephew is 12 the other is ...
  A: No,it was not wrong to tell your son the consequences of his actions. Much depends,of course on how ...
gift giving and receiving1/7/2012
  Q: My son and his daughter gave me a scarf for Christmas this year and did not get my husband of 30 ...
  A: How odd. Yes,if the family only had a certain amount to spend on gifts,a present that could be used ...
wording on invitation1/1/2012
  Q: My husband is being honored by a group. He is being inducted into their hall of fame. We would ...
  A: Am I right to assume that you will only be invite a few people? If yes,a handwritten note to each ...
Birthday gifts for adult12/24/2011
  Q: With my 60th birthday approaching, I would like to ask adult friends and family who live out of ...
  A: No one is never to assume that anyone is going to give then a present,so it is not appropriate to ...
Family party etiquette12/20/2011
  Q: Gamble, My niece and her husband had a baby daughter three years ago.They live in the next town ...
  A: All parties have a beginning and an end time,even if it is not expressly stated. It sounds as if the ...
Etching on a gift12/15/2011
  Q: I am giving my boss a special bottle of bourbon. Is it acceptable to put the following etched on ...
  A: Unless you work in a very small office where he normal boundaries between boss/employee are ...
Announcements12/10/2011
  Q: My son is getting married next Saturday in a small private ceremony by a Justice of the Peace. They ...
  A: An announcement is merely news for people who might be interested in learning it. So,as soon as the ...
signing christmas card12/7/2011
  Q: I am divorced 5 years and still communicate with my x's family. My children are in their 20's ...
  A: The children now living on their own shouldn't be included in the signature for the card. It is fine ...
Christmas Card Etiquette12/6/2011
  Q: My father passed away on November 16. I want to include pictures on my Christmas card with him and ...
  A: Please know how sorry I am for your loss. As it was such a recent event,of course you are not in a ...
family secret santa11/25/2011
  Q: Every year my husband's immediate family has a secret santa. There are 7 of us, all adults, and our ...
  A: If the upstairs tenant was drunk,do you really expect her to remember what that little slip of paper ...
Etiquette over Christmas Holidays11/21/2011
  Q: I have been engaged to be married for over a year to my fiancee. We've been together although we do ...
  A: When a man and a woman decide to marry,they are each leaving their families to form a new one. A ...
adult traning11/19/2011
  Q: Gamble I was asked by my pastor to teach an etiquette class to the new members who are young ...
  A: Perhaps it would be best to have an informal discussion for the first meeting. It would give you a ...
etiquette following a memorial11/18/2011
  Q: How do i respond to notes of condolences , gifts and support, after loss of my only sibling? Nieces ...
  A: Please know how sorry I am for your loss. Only if you and your nieces feel up to the task, please ...
Wedding Invite Etiquette11/8/2011
  Q: So I am getting married in a few months and some questions about proper etiquette on addressing ...
  A: Your instincts are correct on most of them. It is "Dr. and Mrs. Smith". For a female doctor and her ...
Gravesite etiquitte10/27/2011
  Q: I am in the process of adding my fathers name to a gravestone in several multi-generational plots. ...
  A: The monument company that will be making the changes will charge you the appropriate amount. There ...
Overnight guests10/21/2011
  Q: I was raised that an overnight guest always strips the bed to assist the hostess the morning of ...
  A: When you are the guest,ask your hostess if she would like you to strip the bed,etc. It is something ...
good humoured non response10/18/2011
  Q: Respected Mam, After browsing several web pages i have come across to this website.I have ...
  A: It sounds as if you are not mentally present when these friends and relatives are speaking to you. ...
1 female and 2 male co-workers expecting babies10/14/2011
  Q: I am in a quandry on what to do here. We have one female co-worker who is expecting and two males ...
  A: While I appreciate that you do not wish to make the men feel left out,please just give the party for ...
Neighborly Fense10/11/2011
  Q: We bought our home 3 years ago and the neighbor always says he is about to clean up his messy yard ...
  A: You have spoken to him repeatedly and he (for whatever reason) is not interested in doing what you ...
Appropriate First meeting gift.10/6/2011
  Q: My wife and I are going down to N. Y. city in a few weeks. We will be going out to diner with our ...
  A: Rissberger, Even if this boyfriend's mother is hosting the dinner,it is not necessary to take ...
picking up the check9/23/2011
  Q: Our family is going to a restaurant to celebrate our parents 50th wedding anniversary. In attendance ...
  A: Please try to explain to your Mother one more time why it is important to you and your sister to ...
Acknowledgments9/20/2011
  Q: A church member has sent a monetary gift in memory of several people, including some who died many ...
  A: Please do write a note to thank the donor of their gift in honor of their loved one. Grief and the ...
Ex spouse etiquette9/20/2011
  Q: In the past 2 years my adult step-children have begun inviting their mother to functions pertaining ...
  A: This is a very complex question. You are correct in assuming that there are times when you will have ...
fish menu for a large group of people9/19/2011
  Q: congratulations on your answers/ advice as they seem to be so helpful! I am in an awkward situation ...
  A: The menu is set and you should just trust that your co-workers will behave appropriately. It is ...
Birthday Party Thrown For Me9/18/2011
  Q: .. Recently my husband threw a birthday party for me. It was suppose to be a surprise, but one ...
  A: It sounds as if the night just wasn't living up to anyone's expectations. It was everyone's fault as ...
Tombstone Writing9/14/2011
  Q: My mother was predeceased by her husband (and is not being buried right next to him). She was also ...
  A: I am so sorry for your loss. It is perfectly correct to note that someone was a beloved________ even ...
Baby Shower Ettiquette8/15/2011
  Q: My sister in law had a baby 3 months ago. After the baby was born, I stopped by to visit and ...
  A: No,you did not need to take another gift. If the thought of showing up empty handed makes you feel ...
spreading my husband's ashes privately 17 yrs ago now being addressed8/15/2011
  Q: My husband died 17 years ago. I was 40, he was 50. At the time he died his relationship with his ...
  A: The last rites for your husband were yours alone to arrange as you saw fit. His funeral was attended ...
Company at ones home8/7/2011
  Q: Is it acceptable to have guests at your home and periodically disappear to your bedroom for a period ...
  A: The automatic response is no,it is not polite to leave your guests so that you may read. You don't ...
anniversary7/25/2011
  Q: My boyfriend is a widower and his wedding anniversary is coming up next week. He's been widowed 3 ...
  A: Please acknowledge that this day is coming up and then ask him what he needs or wants. Mourning ...
18th birthday and off to college party7/22/2011
  Q: I would like to give my son a potluck picnic for his 18th birthday as well as a celebration of him ...
  A: You may ask guests to bring a dish after explaining that it is a 'pitch in'. Then they may accept or ...
Who should be invited to Sweet 167/21/2011
  Q: We would like to invite all the coaches who volunteer their time in our junior bowling league and ...
  A: Please do invite the spouses at a minimum. It is not necessary to invite the entire family. The ...
Neighbors borrowing lawn equipment7/19/2011
  Q: I appreciate your help in advance. My wife and I have been racking our brains on how to handle this ...
  A: Have you considered getting a second hand snowblower to keep around for loaning out? I suppose it ...
houseguest rooming with a stranger7/11/2011
  Q: I will be a house guest at the end of July while attending a wedding in a remote part of the US. ...
  A: I am sure the time you will be spending with this stranger will be very limited. The room is just a ...
Inviting add'l guest6/24/2011
  Q: Friends of my husband and I are having a Garden Party something they do annually. It is set up like ...
  A: As this is an annual party and you know how informal it is, go ahead and call the hostess. Make it ...
Death of a co-worker6/24/2011
  Q: A co-worker died yesterday. What is proper etiquette for removing his personal belongings from his ...
  A: Please know how sorry I am for the loss of your co-worker. You may box up the items from his office ...
College graduation gift6/15/2011
  Q: I was just invited to a college graduation party for my co-workers husband. He just finished his ...
  A: Most non-traditional students are just looking to celebrate coming to the end of a long and winding ...
Greeting guest6/9/2011
  Q: At a large party..daughters graduation, must the hostess greet guest first, or should guest say ...
  A: If the hostess can manage it,she should greet each guest as she sees them come in. With large 'open ...
wedding/ monetary gift giving6/8/2011
  Q: My husband and I have been invited to the wedding of my daughter's friend whom we see about three ...
  A: Give what wish to give and make no apologies. If this woman is any kind of true friend to your ...
Father of the Bride Invite W/O Wife6/8/2011
  Q: What is the proper action to be made by the father-of-the-bride--when his daughter has made it known ...
  A: It is up to the father of the bride to decide. I would first have a talk with the bride. A mature ...
Graduation Open House6/2/2011
  Q: When invited to an Open House for a relative, what if any, are the proper etiquette rules to ...
  A: It is perfectly acceptable to ask for sugar or silverware. You may not ask to see the areas of the ...
Wedding Etiquette5/31/2011
  Q: We've been invited to an after party for a friend's son's wedding. This will be a big wedding and ...
  A: You do not need to take any kind of present to a post reception party. There are very few occasions ...
men's hats5/29/2011
  Q: i have recently started to wear hats/not baseball caps but panama hats.they are quite expensive ,so ...
  A: Before John Kennedy made hats unfashionable,restaurants had either a coat check or more ...
Disposal of Chewing Gum5/23/2011
  Q: Please advise, Yesterday my wife chastised me for spitting gum out the car window while stopped at ...
  A: It is unsanitary to spit in public. It should never be done if it can be helped. Gum is trash. It is ...
College graduation ediquette5/20/2011
  Q: My daughter is graduating from college and has only a limited number of tickets to the ceremony She ...
  A: She should invite the relatives that she most wants to be there. What is important about this day is ...
Save the Date & Invitation Question5/19/2011
  Q: I am hosting/throwing my own 40th birthday party this July. Because I know how busy people get over ...
  A: Please do not send an invitation to those people who have already declined. There is no good way to ...
birthday potlucks5/19/2011
  Q: My fiancée and I received an invite to a birthday party for my brother's fiancée (who I really don't ...
  A: The cake is more than enough of a contribution to this party. Please ignore the gift request list ...
Cocktail party..What to bring when told to bring nothing5/15/2011
  Q: My boyfriend and I will be attending a brief cocktail gathering at the home of and an acquaintance ...
  A: She put it in writing. That is a very strong indication that she means what she says. Take nothing ...
Overnight guest at boyfriend's parents home5/15/2011
  Q: I am a post grad student meeting my boyfriend's parents for the first time and staying at their home ...
  A: Follow your instincts on this one. If you feel weird about sharing his room with him then it will ...
Debutante Ball5/11/2011
  Q: Do the girls have to be in White if they are in Pastel colors what color tuxedo should the guys ...
  A: It is traditional for young women making their bow to society to wear white or very pale colors. The ...
ex girlfriends son's graduation5/8/2011
  Q: My ex girlfriends son graduates from high school. I always liked him and got along with him. His ...
  A: Yes,by all means send the young man a sincere note of congratulation and a gift if you wish to do ...
Mother's Day5/7/2011
  Q: I married my husband in 2004. He has 5 children from a previous marriage; I have no children. ...
  A: Put down the spatula. You are not to cook any meals on Mother's Day. Have a talk with your husband. ...
ex is business partner?5/5/2011
  Q: I'm going out with a guy who jointly owns rental property and land with his ex. She is always coming ...
  A: If things are operating in a way that suits him,he will have no reason to change them. If it bothers ...
Wedding attire5/5/2011
  Q: I am married to the father of the groom. They are divorced so the mother of the groom will also be ...
  A: Please ask the bride for guidance on this or better yet to go shopping with you. There are too many ...
graduation celebration5/1/2011
  Q: My son (from high school) and I (from junior college) are graduating - my graduation takes place one ...
  A: The details of the joint celebration may be included in any announcements or invitations going out. ...
Baby shower4/28/2011
  Q: my son is expecting his first child (out-of-wedlock) in July. I am the grandmother. I met my son's ...
  A: You have done the correct thing by attempting to get to know the mother of your grandchild. Please ...
Surnames4/26/2011
  Q: My son wants to name his son after his deceased grandfather. His grandmother is still Mrs... No ...
  A: Absolutely. A "Junior" can only be given to the son of the man with the same name. A "II" ...
Passing of friend's father-in-law4/26/2011
  Q: My girlfriend's husband's father (father-in-law) passed away. She has been my friend since ...
  A: Please address the card and your message of condolence to both your friend and her husband. It ...
Funerals flowers4/23/2011
  Q: I have 3 siblings who all live hundreds of miles apart. When a close family friend passing away my ...
  A: If you wish to send your own flowers and notes,please ask your sister to stop including you on the ...
Debutante4/19/2011
  Q: I have received an "announcement" from a college friend that her daughter has made her debut in ...
  A: No action is required. An announcement is merely a way to convey news. Think of it as a very short ...
Out of Town Guest Query3/30/2011
  Q: I will be visiting another country and will be staying with a friend and her two teen children for a ...
  A: You do not say what country you will be visiting. As a general rule,no you would not be expected to ...
pregnancy3/28/2011
  Q: My son (19) had a one night stand with a young lady (24) and now a baby is arriving in 2 weeks. She ...
  A: A.M., While I can certainly understand your point of view,I hope that you will go to this ...
College Graduation of my 36 yr old Son3/25/2011
  Q: I'm wondering what the etiquette is re: my Ex-husband, my son (married w/one child) and I paying for ...
  A: If you wish to do something for your son,you certainly may. The parents of a 36 year old man have ...
condolances3/25/2011
  Q: my mother-in-law passed away recently.is it required to reply to sympathy cards sent to us by mail? ...
  A: Please know how sorry I am for your loss. No,you do not have to respond to sympathy cards that are ...
trying not to be offended3/21/2011
  Q: This last Christmas I ended up getting our sister in law a $40 gift, and on Christmas morning she ...
  A: You should give gifts based on what you can afford to give as well as your level of affection for ...
Teen Birthday Party etiquette3/20/2011
  Q: I hosted a birthday party for my son who is in 7th grade and just turned 14. Most of the guests ...
  A: This doesn't surprise me in the least. You are correct,the need for gifts as a highlight to the ...
Potluck etiquette3/20/2011
  Q: I was at a womens social event. We all brought a pot luck item for the dinner part of the evening. ...
  A: , There is sort of an unspoken agreement that once the party is over you don't take food ...
Funeral3/18/2011
  Q: my fiance recently passed away and its been very dramatic for me cause he literally died in my arms ...
  A: I am deeply sorry for your loss. Approach the family when you find an opening and phrase it in a ...
Memorial services3/12/2011
  Q: When planning a memorial service how long is too long after the death. The deceased is to be ...
  A: Have the service when you are able. There is no 'correct time frame' for a memorial service in the ...
Sweet Sixteen Party3/1/2011
  Q: I am throwing a sweet sixteen party for my daughter in our home. My daughter has chosen the colors, ...
  A: Any gift with strings attached that feel more like a noose is gift that you should reject as ...
Graduation Second Masters2/23/2011
  Q: My husband will soon graduate from his second Masters Degree Program. Despite his many years of ...
  A: Throw the man a party! It is high time that he got to celebrate his achievements. Anyone may give a ...
To give money or not?2/22/2011
  Q: I am 44yrs old and dating someone 26 who lives with at his fathers place. I currently was living ...
  A: Please do not give money in a card. Your instincts are correct,though. If you are living there as a ...
solicitation @ the work place2/21/2011
  Q: My question is in regard to parents and grandparents soliciting @ work, on behalf of their children ...
  A: Not my favorite encounter with other people either. You only have so much money to donate to charity ...
returning a gift of money2/19/2011
  Q: My sister that I had not seen in 25 year came for a visit but did not stay with me. While here I ...
  A: As I do not know why you had not seen your sister in 25 years,but if you want to keep or maintain ...
new in the neighborhood2/11/2011
  Q: 2 weeks ago we moved in a new house. Busy with all chores we did not have time to look around. ...
  A: This is easy enough to solve - please go to the neighbor who sent the card for information. You may ...
funeral monies1/26/2011
  Q: received monies for funeral from coworkers and religious friends who did not know my mother. ...
  A: Please know how sorry I am for your loss. The money collected by your co-workers and friends was ...
gift giving1/24/2011
  Q: I rarely receive thank you notes from my family members and friends for gifts, and staying at my ...
  A: It would not be tacky of you to ask your family members what they would like to receive as gifts. In ...
addressing a former First Lady1/18/2011
  Q: What is the proper way to address (in speech) and list in print, a former Governor's wife? The ...
  A: When speaking to her "Mrs. Daniels" is the correct form to use unless and until she asks you to call ...
SIlence in Conversations1/17/2011
  Q: My boyfriend isn't a very strongly opinionated person so often when we have conversations about ...
  A: No. He's your boyfriend you get to find any of his personality quirks or habits as annoying and/or ...
Personal Questions1/3/2011
  Q: I work as a waitress while I'm finishing up college. A lot of customers ask personal questions about ...
  A: While it can be annoying certainly,it sounds as if they are just trying to take a polite interest ...
Houseguest etiquette12/30/2010
  Q: Recently I was presented with a situation. My fiances 26 year old daughter, whom I consider an ...
  A: Both and neither. Perhaps need to get married and set some ground rules for who and what comes into ...
Gift from future mother in law12/29/2010
  Q: My fiancee's mother in law is having a difficult time accepting our engagement because she is a ...
  A: There is nothing to be gained by refusing the gift. I am sure that it feels very disloyal to your ...
Gifts - receiving12/29/2010
  Q: We have a small home. Is it appropriate to request that gifts not be too large, especially those ...
  A: If you are asked what you or your other family members would like for a birthday or other gift,it is ...
gift unwillingly accepted12/28/2010
  Q: My fiance (we've been together 2-1/2 years, engaged for about 8 months) is uncomfortable accepting ...
  A: The etiquette is cut and dried. You are allowed to give someone to whom you are promised almost any ...
Unwanted Baby Shower12/28/2010
  Q: My wife and I just announced to our families that we are having a baby. The day before we told our ...
  A: The good news is that you do not have to do anything that you do not wish to do. If this situation ...
addressing envelopes to families with different last names12/28/2010
  Q: I read your answer to a previous question about addressing an envelope to a married couple that has ...
  A: This one is your call. How do you think of your household? I can understand not taking your ...
Proper Response to an Insulting Gift12/27/2010
  Q: My son and daughter in law were given gifts by her brother and sister in law of lottery tickets($10 ...
  A: McGrail, The proper response is to say thank you to the gift givers. 'Thank you' is the only ...
Extravagant gift12/26/2010
  Q: My son is casually dating a girl who came by on Christmas day (uninvited but not unwelcome)and ...
  A: Returning such an expensive and personal gift is the right course of action. Your son is dating this ...
greeting card envelope etiquette12/23/2010
  Q: when attaching a greeting card to a gift, is it proper to place the recipients name on the outside ...
  A: I am sorry that I did not see this question earlier,I overlooked it somehow. Yes, it is absolutely ...
waving your hand while talking to someone12/22/2010
  Q: Am I some how warped, or does the rest of the world also consider it rude to be waving one's hand at ...
  A: You are not warped. It is very rude to wave your hand in the face of the person whom you are ...
Christmas card to divoring couple12/16/2010
  Q: My uncle is divorcing. There are young children involved. My gandma called me and asked that I not ...
  A: You are absolutely right to listen to your grandmother on this one. There is nothing wrong with ...
gift giving12/15/2010
  Q: My boyfriend and I got into an arguement about "fairness" in gift giving to our respective children. ...
  A: So,in the interest of 'fairness' he spent as much on your son's rehab bills as he did for his ...
remarried12/13/2010
  Q: I have been married to my husband for 17 mos. His first wife passed away. We have been together for ...
  A: There is nothing that can be done about the cards and invitations directly. The best you can do is ...
opening wines that guest bring12/8/2010
  Q: I hope you can help me. There is an on going quarrel between my brothers wife and I.In October my ...
  A: You were right to open that bottle of wine. It was a casual party. It is sort of universally implied ...
Christmas etiquette12/5/2010
  Q: Greetings. For the past two years, my mother's boyfriend has been starting various stuff with me, ...
  A: I am a little surprised that your mother allows this man to treat you so poorly. I am sorry. ...
family portrait and a fiancé12/4/2010
  Q: Gamble, I am writing to seek the best advice on how to handle a situation regarding family portrait ...
  A: You must pretend that this woman is here to stay. That everyone is delighted with your ...
Requesting the return of a gift12/2/2010
  Q: I have had a friend request the return of a gift. The situation is that the gift was purchased for ...
  A: Unless the gift was engraved or embroidered with the words "With Much Love To Aunt Ethel" the giver ...
facial expressions when conversing12/1/2010
  Q: When one has had to disagree with one's partner in conversation, or to give evidence for one's own ...
  A: There are too many variables to give a 'one size fits all' answer for this question. Is the ...
Years of Service Gift11/30/2010
  Q: After many years of working at an organization, I resigned and gave a two-week notice. At a going ...
  A: No,not it is not 'necessary',but it is thoughtful. As you say,you were handed the present by the ...
Death and Family Calendar11/29/2010
  Q: We have a family calendar that is printed once a year. Last year my husband's mother passed away. ...
  A: This is a personal decision entirely. One of my sisters and I were just doing the same task for a ...
Christmas Cards11/27/2010
  Q: My mother passed away in November. My father wants to send out Christmas cards informing people ...
  A: Please know how sorry I am for your loss. I am sure that the next several weeks will be difficult ...
Christmas cards11/22/2010
  Q: My husband and I have 2 children. I always included all 4 of us on our Christmas cards. Now our ...
  A: Once a child is living on his or her own,it is time to stop including them on the Christmas cards. ...
music recital11/21/2010
  Q: My granddaughter is having her first recital.It is a private event with just grandparents attending. ...
  A: It is not necessary to give her anything,but what is the point of being a grandparent if you can't ...
Thanksgiving dressing11/17/2010
  Q: I have invited my family (brothers, sisters, parents, aunts, cousins, nieces, nephews) over for ...
  A: You are the hostess. While it would have been nice if your guests had decided to abide by the ...
Birthday cake/song11/12/2010
  Q: At what point in the birthday party (90th) should the song be sung & the cake cut? Middle or end? ...
  A: While there is no right or wrong way to have a birthday party,I tend to agree with you. The maximum ...
Sympathy Card11/3/2010
  Q: My grandmother passed away, what is proper etiquette about giving a sympathy card to my uncle and ...
  A: As she was just as closely related to you as she was to them,you do not need to give them a card. If ...
thanksgiving dinner11/3/2010
  Q: My husband has sole custody of his 3 sons by his first marriage. In April of this year the oldest ...
  A: As the hostess it's really your call,but in your shoes,I would welcome the girlfriend. Here is my ...
Offer to pay for event10/29/2010
  Q: Im a maid of honor at my sister's wedding so its a part of the job to do the bachelorette party but ...
  A: Call the maid of honor and ask if she would allow you to be 'absentee hostess' by paying for the ...
Birthday Dinner Party10/23/2010
  Q: I am hosting a dinner party in honor of my 65th birthday and retirement. Who makes the toast?
  A: May, You may give a toast,not in honor of yourself but to express thanks to your guests for all ...
boss's day cards10/18/2010
  Q: My question, what is the proper etiquette in giving cards to co-workers on birthdays or bosses day? ...
  A: Pass the card around for whomever is there at the office to sign. Once the majority of people have ...
Housekeeper etiquette10/10/2010
  Q: Recently, my housekeeper of 3 years told me that there were too many toys on my floor to justify her ...
  A: You are the employer. You need to set the parameters or what is and isn't part of her job. Perhaps ...
Couple giving a ride to a male10/1/2010
  Q: Recently I agreed to give a male co-worker a ride home after company dinner, and my wife will be ...
  A: She was correct. You don't say what sort of a car you have,but almost no back seat is comfortable. ...
Christmas cards9/29/2010
  Q: Recently divorced because of economy still live in same house hold holidays and birthdays do I still ...
  A: While it is nice that you get along well with your ex-husband, signing the cards jointly is gong to ...
Stopped talking9/26/2010
  Q: I have a two-part question about something that has really been bothering me lately. I am the ...
  A: It is rude? Yes,incredibly. You are not this child's servant or paid employee. You are the mother of ...
wedding engagement gift9/25/2010
  Q: Ideas for first granddaughter of several to become engaged fiance is leaving for active duty in one ...
  A: Sansone, As I do not know your budget or the tastes of the couple involved, I cannot give you any ...
follow up to difference in public/private space9/19/2010
  Q: Below I'm including the first email I wrote to another person, I have a follow up question. She ...
  A: It won't be easy for you to do certainly,but you do owe Jason and your partner an apology. ...
Etiquette for separated couple when one is undergoing major surgery9/17/2010
  Q: After a marriage of six years, my spouse and I are separated for nearly two years now. We are both ...
  A: I am not sure what "I had sponsored my spouse with child" means. But do what you feel is best here. ...
thank you notes9/12/2010
  Q: Is it ever too late to send a thank you? My son graduated 8th grade last year and he wrote the ...
  A: By all means send those notes! These things happen. Blame it on the amnesia that strikes busy Moms ...
Buying tickets from a friend9/8/2010
  Q: I recently received an email from a friend who was asking her network of email friends if anyone was ...
  A: Your friend misrepresented the cost of the tickets to you so that she could realize a measly 20 ...
Christmas cards9/6/2010
  Q: When an adult child no longer lives at home but has not married, should his/her name still be ...
  A: Once the adult child has moved out and is supporting himself,it is time to stop signing his name to ...
step grand daughter9/5/2010
  Q: My step granddaughter just got married.She has not been close to her grand father.When we asked for ...
  A: You already know the answer to this one,yes it is very rude. The real question is this --is it worth ...
gift for puppy?8/31/2010
  Q: My son and his girlfriend just got a puppy. Should I surprise them with the gift or should I ask ...
  A: You can't go wrong by getting them a chew toy or a box of treats for the new puppy. No need to ask ...
What to do with Food?8/29/2010
  Q: A friend of mine had a fantasy football draft over his house. I decided to bring 2 containers of ...
  A: The general rule is to leave the food that you brought with you . However,if there is some ...
Death of estranged husband's mother8/29/2010
  Q: My mother-in-law was recently ill and just passed away and my husband and I have been ...
  A: Please write a condolence note to your father in law and anyone else (the sisters,etc) that you feel ...
Baby Shower for 2nd child8/26/2010
  Q: I have been asked to help plan a shower for a 2nd child. If this proper? The grandmother is ...
  A: A shower is supposed to be a party given by the woman's friends. Never is it to be given by a family ...
Should I attend my grandmother's funeral?8/26/2010
  Q: My grandmother just passed away and I'm wondering if I should go to her funeral. My mother has a ...
  A: If you loved your Grandmother and it is important for you to go to say your farewells,please do. ...
Cards8/25/2010
  Q: When rec. gift cards or any cards from friends attending your retirement party should you open those ...
  A: Read the cards later. Acknowledge them along with the gifts (if any) and just tell them what you ...
call back8/25/2010
  Q: my son and wife never return phone messages. i leave a message hi its me call me, they want a full ...
  A: There was no question in your message,so I will just go on the assumption that you want your phone ...
Almost Ex Mother-in-laws funeral8/24/2010
  Q: My husband is divorcing me due to a mid-life crisis/affair. I did not want the divorce, but also ...
  A: 'Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.' Your in-laws dying before the divorce is final is ...
Who Pays For a Birthday Vacation?8/22/2010
  Q: A friend would like to do a mini-vacation with friends to celebrate her 45th birthday. One person ...
  A: You are correct on this one.The trip really isn't about the 45th birthday,that is just a catalyst, ...
what is appropiate for a charity donation8/22/2010
  Q: i am creating a hamper to give to a charity to pass onto a family in need at christmas time. my ...
  A: Generic or no name brands are fine to include if they are products that you use and like. The ...
no social skills mother in law8/20/2010
  Q: My son and his fiance are expecting a child together, the girls mother has asked the people that she ...
  A: There are several different ways to respond to rude or intrusive questions: "What an ...
death of an ex daughter in laws father8/15/2010
  Q: I have an ex-daughter in law that I have a good relationship with. Her father just died. Her ...
  A: Edwards, Please do the things that you would normally do to show your concern for a friend going ...
Gift for baby shower hostesses8/14/2010
  Q: Two friends are throwing a Baby Sprinkle for me. It's an evening event that will last only a few ...
  A: Please send the friend hosting the party thank you notes after the party. Recount some of your ...
Lending personal items8/13/2010
  Q: My sister recently moved close to me in May. Since then, both my husband and I have helped her ...
  A: Good heavens no! You are not wrong to refuse the request entirely. Nor is it wrong to put conditions ...
wedding gift8/12/2010
  Q: My husband and I received a wedding invitation. Here's the dilemma- it is from a neihbor of over 4 ...
  A: Tell then that you are sorry that you cannot come. You don't have to say too much,but if pressed,the ...
MULTIPLE EVENT PARTIES AND GIFTS8/5/2010
  Q: iF YOU ARE INVITED TO A BIRTHDAY, GRADUATION, CONFIRMATION BACKYARD BARBECUE DO YOU NEED TO PURCHASE ...
  A: Good heavens no! You never have to 'pay for the privilege' of beign invited anywhere as a guest. If ...
dinner guest8/3/2010
  Q: We have been invited to casual vegan dinner hosted by a French couple. What should we bring as a ...
  A: Flowers would be just as appropriate and welcome in the vegan household as they are in the ...
Baby shower etiquette8/3/2010
  Q: Do I need to get a gift for a baby shower I'm not attending? It is my husband's 1st cousin who we ...
  A: No,there is no need to send a gift unless you really want to. Please do write her a note or send a ...
anniversary party8/2/2010
  Q: My 4 siblings and I are planning a 50th anniversary party for our parents for next summer. I was ...
  A: While it is a wonderful thing for you and your siblings to give your dear Mom and Dad a ...
Acknowledge help from community during loss of loved one7/27/2010
  Q: I would like to know the proper etiquette and proper phasing for acknowledging and/or thanking our ...
  A: Please write a brief note to anyone who comes to mind as having been particularly helpful. Don't ...
boyfriends mothers birthday dinner7/24/2010
  Q: My boyfriend's family is going to a country club dinner for his mothers birthday. This would include ...
  A: He is still thinking in terms of 'I' and 'me' while you are in the 'we' and 'us' stage. You say that ...
Rock and A Hard Place - Personal Vehicles at Work7/19/2010
  Q: I'm between a rock and a hard place. The economy being what it is, I have taken a position as and ...
  A: You need to say something. Politely,of course,but speak up. "Fred,this past year at Mead and Son ...
bridal tea/shower7/19/2010
  Q: Amanda, the women in our church is hosting a bridal tea/shower for my daughter. They would like to ...
  A: Please call it a tea. Showers originally began as small and almost impromptu parties given by the ...
What are my roles as a maid of honor in a vow renewal?7/19/2010
  Q: What are the roles for a maid of honor in a vowes renewal? A friend has asked me to be her maid of ...
  A: Please ask your friend what she wants and expects from you. I know this sounds simplistic, but it ...
Two Birthday Honorees7/17/2010
  Q: Gamble, My daughter received a 9th birthday party invitation from her friend (good buddy) at Day ...
  A: I think buying something that they can both enjoy is the perfect solution. There is nothing wrong ...
Being a dinner guest7/13/2010
  Q: I was fixing an informal, but "structured" dinner -- Chicago Style hot dogs, complete with special ...
  A: Yes,a dinner guest should politely accept whatever is served by the host and eat what they can. ...
Food Line Manners7/12/2010
  Q: At a Family Reunion dinner food buffet, what is the proper line-up of individuals, i.e., Seniors, ...
  A: The elderly and or infirm first and then parents helping their small children fill their plates and ...
baby shower etiquette7/10/2010
  Q: I have a rather complicated situation regarding my baby shower. My aunts are hosting a dual ...
  A: You are over thinking this situation. You are the mother to be and the guest of honor at these ...
death7/4/2010
  Q: a good friend passed away yesterday and widow is also a very good friend. when i called today to ...
  A: Gorman, Dropping by to see your friend is the only thing that is really needed here. If you feel ...
my gift was sent back7/4/2010
  Q: My husband and his mother have never really gotten along but I have tried to keep peace in the ...
  A: No,this kind of behavior is not 'allowed'. It is inappropriate to say the least,but there is nothing ...
ex-spouse7/2/2010
  Q: My girlfriend of three years has two children, one late 30s and one a couple years older. She and I ...
  A: It doesn't matter if your girl friend knows of no one who has a problem with this arrangement. It ...
Sister-In-Law Sitting Duties7/1/2010
  Q: Gamble, I do not know how to handle this situation without severely displeasing my in-laws. My ...
  A: The world came to a dead stop for me when I read this line: "I nearly lost the baby due to a ...
Awkward situation6/29/2010
  Q: A friend of mine recently witnessed a situation that left him baffled as to how he should respond. ...
  A: Ignoring the mishap is the correct thing to do if the person is handling the situation without ...
a thank you note6/29/2010
  Q: Please help me with wording of a thank you note to the bride's parents who we do not know for their ...
  A: You do not say what your relationship is to the bride. Is she your future daughter in law? If this ...
Beach House Invite6/26/2010
  Q: My aunt is letting me use her beach house for a week. Over the course of the week I am inviting ...
  A: No,it isn't rude or wrong. Simply say something like "Dana,I'm glad that you've found Fred,you seem ...
Obituary6/25/2010
  Q: How do you include the name of an illegitimate child born during a 32 year marriage to a person's ...
  A: The child does not have to be named. Was there a parent/child relationship of long standing or was ...
communication6/23/2010
  Q: My son is engaged. He is also deployed in the army. His fiance has little or no contact with us and ...
  A: Unfortunately,there isn't much you can do except for continue to stay in contact and keep extending ...
funeral etiquette6/19/2010
  Q: When my dad passed away, my mom insisted on a specific seating arrangement. She would be first, ...
  A: First please know how sorry I am for your loss. While it is traditional for the family to occupy the ...
twin gift giving6/18/2010
  Q: My twin boys graduated from high school recently and one of their friend's parents gave them $50 ...
  A: You are not required to give him two gifts as a family. If the boys each wanted to pick out ...
Addressing divorced women circa 1966/676/17/2010
  Q: I'm researching genealogy and am confused about the way women were referred to in the mid-1960s. ...
  A: Unfortunately,as with 2010,people in 1966/7 people did not always follow the rules that were laid ...
Inviting People to Going Away Dinner Party6/16/2010
  Q: I just invited some of my friends to my going away dinner party. Am I expected to understand that ...
  A: As the host of this party it was incumbent upon you to clarify the plans. This can be done by saying ...
Found Money Etiquette6/11/2010
  Q: Gamble, I was chaperone to a group of four girls at a class trip, (including my 9-year-old ...
  A: As you already promised the girls you' split the money between them,you need to keep your word. ...
Bare Feet6/5/2010
  Q: My mother-in-law (MIL) came to live with us a couple of years ago. Our house now is the shared home ...
  A: This is your house and you do have the right to set some rules for conduct in the common areas of ...
Right thing to do6/3/2010
  Q: When you walk into a room where people are talking what should you do.
  A: Walk in and depending on the kind of conversation,either say hello or remain quiet until someone ...
social situation6/2/2010
  Q: An old boyfiend of my wife was sending her messages, phone calls, inviting her out for beer and ...
  A: Married women should not go out on dates with former boyfriends. I'm sorry,but meeting him alone ...
graduation5/28/2010
  Q: Is it proper to to give yourself a graduation party from a 1 year college at age 58?
  A: I apologize for the tardy reply,I was sure that I had answered you and was shocked to see the ...
Graduation announcements to family5/22/2010
  Q: My daughter just graduated from high school. Because our family is geographically dispersed, she ...
  A: What do you hope to accomplish by lecturing your brother? He obviously does not feel close to your ...
Answering a question with a question5/21/2010
  Q: I'm married and a constant battle I have with my wife is that she often answers questions with a ...
  A: It's not necessarily rude to answer a question with a question when you are looking for more ...
Jr High Graduation gift for 13 going on 14 year old5/20/2010
  Q: attending graduation party for friends daughter. Have known her for 8 years. What would be the ...
  A: I cannot comment on the dollar amount. There is no one size fits all answer jsut as there are no ...
restaurant seating5/18/2010
  Q: When dining out with your husband, who sits where? I recently was seated and my husband sat across ...
  A: When two people are dining out,they sit across from each other. Only teenagers who are in the throes ...
Graduation Announcements5/17/2010
  Q: If you are not sending money, is a card of congratulations acceptable...or would no response be ...
  A: Good wishes for someone's future endeavors are always appropriate to pass along. I kept the notes ...
party etiquette5/17/2010
  Q: I hosted a bridal shower for my daughter recently. I want to do the entire thing myself but when the ...
  A: What an odd duck! Look,you already know she behaved poorly,the question is...what to do about it? ...
Inviting teachers to our home...5/15/2010
  Q: My daughter is finishing up her last year of preschool this year. We would like to invite all of her ...
  A: , Yes,it is absolutely appropriate to have this thank you party for everyone who has had a ...
Friend Etiquette5/14/2010
  Q: I have an old friend (30 years)that I get together with about twice a year. We both have kids and ...
  A: It is not wrong to expect to have a leisurely visit when you only see this friend once or twice a ...
mother's 90th birthday - $ gifts5/14/2010
  Q: We are planning a 90th birthday party for our mother who. like most seniors, lives on a fixed income ...
  A: No,there is no polite way to ask for gifts. Presents should never be mentioned in an invitation at ...
Appying makeup at your desk at work.5/11/2010
  Q: What is the proper office etiquette on how much makeup a women can apply at her desk in a public ...
  A: A woman really should go to in to the bathroom to put on or repair her make-up. I wouldn't be too ...
Graduation Invitations5/5/2010
  Q: Is is proper to send a graduation announcement to a family who also has a graduating senior from ...
  A: Graduation Invitations was your subject line,but your question said graduation announcements. They ...
Graduate School5/4/2010
  Q: Is it appropriate to give a gift to your thesis advisor when completing the master's or the Phd? ...
  A: If you want (genuinely) to say thank you to someone who has guided and mentored you,you may. It is ...
Happy Birthday Song before Presents?5/3/2010
  Q: I had my son's 12th birthday party this weekend and just finished eating and my son along with half ...
  A: You get to do things in the order that you wish to do them. There is no right or wrong when it comes ...
Refusing flowers4/28/2010
  Q: My sister had a cat put down. Her four sister got together and sent flowers. She refused them, ...
  A: Wow. As it was a gesture of sympathy and support from her sisters,it was unkind of her to refuse ...
Ask Guests to Pay Entrance Fee?4/27/2010
  Q: I am having a 60th birthday party at a park that has an entrance fee of $10.00. I am providing food, ...
  A: If they have to pay,they are not guests. A host/ess never gives a party that s/he cannot afford. Why ...
hat and caps4/25/2010
  Q: Is there a difference between hats and caps socially? And if so is there etiquette differences that ...
  A: Yes and no. Hats,when worn by ladies (this is becoming rarer each year) do not need to be taken off ...
BIRTHDAY WISHES4/23/2010
  Q: Is it bad etiquette to wish a mutual girl friend of your wife happy birthday. What would be the ...
  A: It is appropriate to wish a friend of your wife's a happy birthday. After all,the two of you are ...
should I pay?4/21/2010
  Q: My wife's birthday is coming up in about a month and I was considering asking some of her friends to ...
  A: A host never throws a party that he cannot afford. Let it be your treat if you can afford it. If you ...
death announcement4/20/2010
  Q: My mother just passed away. Our family is going to put an announcement in the newspaper. Now ...
  A: As the spouse has abandoned the marriage (either by default or design) I'd say that they are no ...
mandatory to attend?4/20/2010
  Q: My brothers step daughter is getting married. We do not know her very well. I am having difficulty ...
  A: If you are finding it difficult to attend and do not wish to go,simply decline the invitation. ...
Divorce4/18/2010
  Q: My husband was previously married to a woman he had dated in high school. They were married for ...
  A: You don't say how long you and your husband have been married,but ifthis bothers you it is time for ...
Wedding gift thank yous after death of spouse4/17/2010
  Q: A family member married in last year; a small wedding and everyone attending knew the husband's ...
  A: Anyone who has experienced the loss of a close family member is given a pass from the 'normal' rules ...
etiquette4/16/2010
  Q: We are in our 50's and would like to know the correct etiquette for listing my name in his mothers ...
  A: You would not normally be listed as a survivor in the obituary of a woman to whom you are related. ...
Daughter's Graduation From High School4/16/2010
  Q: My daughter is graduating high school. She has been solely raised by me her mother. My daughter's ...
  A: An announcement is sent after an event happens. It is merely news that you wish someone to have. An ...
High school graduation announcements4/15/2010
  Q: What is the proper protocol for who to invite and who not to invite for high school graduation ...
  A: An announcement is sent after an event has occurred. It is just news that you wish to pass on to ...
Professional title on headstone4/11/2010
  Q: Our uncle just passed away. He was a surgeon in the US Army. Is it appropriate to put M.D. after ...
  A: Yes,it is absolutely appropriate to put any biographical information that you wish on a grave ...
husband's funeral4/10/2010
  Q: My husband and I have been married for 17 years. He has two daughters and a son from two previous ...
  A: If you want more scandal and drama,by all means block them from the funeral. Have a private service ...
College grad. announc.4/9/2010
  Q: My daughter graduates in a few weeks from college. I would like to have a few announcements printed ...
  A: Announcements are always sent after the event has occurred,never before. Even when the details are ...
HS graduation announcements for twins4/9/2010
  Q: My twin daughters are graduating from two different high schools next month. When sending ...
  A: It's Mr. And Mrs. Mike Rophone on the outer envelope or two lines (i.e.:) Judge Linda Rophone Mr. ...
niece's wedding4/8/2010
  Q: Should I attend my nieces wedding? My brother's only child is having a 4:30 PM formal church ...
  A: What a mess. I would decline the invitation. The 26 year old's behavior is nothing short of ...
Proper way to handle this..4/6/2010
  Q: I am helping one of my best friends daughters, throw their dad a 40th birthday party. Another couple ...
  A: Please speak to the (host) couple and ask their 'permission' (in a sense) to throw this other party. ...
College Graduation Announcements4/6/2010
  Q: My daughter will graduate with her masters next month. We want to send announcements but let people ...
  A: No one should ever be expected to pay for the privilege of being invited somewhere. Gifts are ...
bare feet on leather sofa4/4/2010
  Q: My 16 year old daughter and I just returned from a five day visit with my mother and older sister in ...
  A: Your sister most certainly should not have screamed at her niece. Let's give her a break though. ...
Family Visits4/1/2010
  Q: my question is: When family comes to visit us (we are 2 adults, 2 kids), how much are we expected ...
  A: Lee, You are already providing a roof over your guests heads,let the meals out be dutch and the ...
Calling card title3/31/2010
  Q: I am a retired captain (34 years) from a large law enforcement agency. Is is proper to use the ...
  A: I was unsure of this answer so I asked a friend of the same rank and situation what he has done or ...
Senior Recital/Graduation3/31/2010
  Q: I need help with the wording on my son's high school graduation announcements. Everyone will be ...
  A: Announcements and invitations are two different things. Announcements are sent after an event has ...
City Council Etiquette3/30/2010
  Q: Gamble, I Have written an important letter to a member of the Detroit City Council. I want to ...
  A: Please address them as Councilman Doe. On the envelope Councilman John Doe ...
Should a non-Jew wear a yarmualke?3/29/2010
  Q: Should a man that is not Jewish wear a yarmualke during a Jewish ceremony/service such as a bar/bat ...
  A: Covering or uncovering your head is a sign of respect depending on the religion/culture. It is just ...
Who decides the restaurant?3/28/2010
  Q: My husband and I have a continual issue in dining at restaurants with my in-laws. They maintain that ...
  A: Split decision on this one. Yes,as the hosts they make the plans and choose the restaurant. As you ...
RSVP Etiquette3/26/2010
  Q: While chairing a benefit committee I asked a pal to co chair. Week of rsvp deadline she finally ...
  A: While I agree that you should be able to take it for granted that a co-chairman of a committee will ...
graduation3/26/2010
  Q: I have my youngest graduating from high school and my middle graduating from college. I am planning ...
  A: Either form is appropriate. You are holding one party for two boys so one invitation makes perfect ...
(re)Adoption Celebration3/25/2010
  Q: I adopted a toddler in Russia six months ago. My State requires that I re-adopt her here to obtain ...
  A: Congratulations and by all means have that party. This is a separate ceremony after all. I am sure ...
Tipping/ gift giving needed?3/25/2010
  Q: In several weeks I will be flying out to the home of a successful hollywood personality for personal ...
  A: This is a business transaction where you are paying someone for their professional services. A gift ...
Birthday Present Requesting Etiquette3/25/2010
  Q: I recently received an e-mail from my sister-in-law about my nephews present for his next birthday ...
  A: "When training my own children on present giving/receiving I always tell them that gifts are a ...
Female Letter Salutation3/23/2010
  Q: What is the proper salutation for a female company owner? Dear Ms. Dear Mrs. Dear Madam What is the ...
  A: Women in business should go by their own names,i.e. Ethel Barrymore. As using the honorific 'Mrs.' ...
Is it polite to refuse a gift from a co-worker?3/19/2010
  Q: For the past four years I have worked with a small group of women who, when I started, had the ...
  A: Now that the gift has been sitting there,unopened on the floor of your cubicle for several ...
Baby Shower3/17/2010
  Q: Is it proper for a grandma-to-be to give a baby shower for an out-of-state daughter who will be ...
  A: No. A bridal or baby shower is meant to be given by a woman's friends,never her family members. It ...
Grave Marker3/15/2010
  Q: My mother recently passed away and was buried beside my father. My father died approximately 40 ...
  A: Headstones serve two purposes and you hit upon both things in your question. They are used to honor ...
Ex-wife invited to child's birthday party3/12/2010
  Q: Ms. Gamble, My fiance's sister-in-law (his younger brother's second wife) is holding a first ...
  A: What a mess. These are not nice people. If the ex-wife and her mother hate you and are openly ...
Adult birthday gifts3/11/2010
  Q: I have been invited to a birthday dinner for an acquaintance. The person giving the dinner is a ...
  A: You are never required to give a gift for any life event. However,if you are worried about being the ...
Birthday Gift3/11/2010
  Q: My girls were invited to their cousins birthday party last week. We had to cancel that morning ...
  A: As you already have the present for the cousin,go ahead and give it to him and tell him again how ...
50th Wedding Anniversary3/9/2010
  Q: I was hoping you could tell me, when a couple is celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary and they ...
  A: They may skip the celebration,pay for it themsleves or be the guests of honor at a party thrown by a ...
Helping a lady with her coat3/4/2010
  Q: I recently had a male stranger assist me with my coat. I had never met him and we have no mutual ...
  A: It is unusual for a stranger to help a woman with her coat,but as I was not there I can't say what ...
Donation is Xmas gift3/1/2010
  Q: Last Christmas, very dear friends sent an email that instead of giving gifts, they would be making a ...
  A: No,you did not. If you got a general,non-specific e-mail how were you to know that the announcement ...
parents want to be close to ex-2/26/2010
  Q: I have been divorced for 10 years, the cause was multifactorial on both of our parts, but my part ...
  A: Why after 10 years do they feel the need to visit him and rehash old events? That seems very odd ...
Awkward in all situations2/26/2010
  Q: Anytime anyone is with me where I am placed in a leading role in a social/casual situation, I become ...
  A: This is more of a question for our psychology experts. You have gotten into a pattern that repeats ...
visit sick friend/coworker2/26/2010
  Q: A friend/coworker had surgery and is staying home alone to recover. What would be visiting ...
  A: Usually the last thing a person recovering from surgery wants is visitors. Call to inquire how they ...
Sympathy Cards2/26/2010
  Q: When you have received notice of a passing and you will be going to the funeral within a week, when ...
  A: Perkes, You may send a note of sympathy before or after the funeral,but please do not take it ...
funeral parlor2/24/2010
  Q: What are the social behaviors that should be done when attending a funeral parlor?
  A: You are there to provide whatever comfort and support that you can to the family and other friends ...
Daughter getting married2/22/2010
  Q: My 25 year old daughter has lived with her partner for the past five years. They have their own ...
  A: Your feelings are you own and you are certainly allowed to be hurt and upset. Your daughter should ...
How to decline politely2/20/2010
  Q: My cousin has repeatedly written to ask if we can get together when she visits my area next fall. ...
  A: If you can't even bring yourself to have lunch with this woman, just say that it would not be ...
Business card protocol for committee members2/19/2010
  Q: Any advise for business card protocol for committee members? They are unpaid volunteers who wanted ...
  A: If you don't feel that the committee members can use the cards appropriately,then make a blanket ...
Injured Ex2/19/2010
  Q: My serious ex from a couple years ago got seriously injured in a snowboarding accident. I don't know ...
  A: First thing to do is relax. There is no correct way to feel. Your emotions are your own. Your ...
birthday2/18/2010
  Q: is it proper for my current wife to arrange a birthday party at our house inviting her ex the sons ...
  A: You don't say who is having the birthday. I am going to assume that is a child from your previous ...
Replacing a Family Headstone2/18/2010
  Q: I'm not sure if this is an etiquette question as such but I'd appreciate your unbiased advice ...
  A: It is not unheard of to replace grave markers. If the siblings are in agreement,then it is no one ...
40th Birthday Party2/18/2010
  Q: I am coordinating a 40th birthday gathering at a local wine bar in Chicago. I am renting the space ...
  A: A hostess never gives a party that she cannot afford. Offer only what you can and do so without ...
Group Trip2/17/2010
  Q: My friend invited me and two other women to celebrate her birthday with her in Hawaii. During the ...
  A: The woman should not have invited extra people on the trip,but at least she asked the hostess for ...
How to Tell Someone They are Not Invited When They Still Refuse to Take No for an Answer2/16/2010
  Q: We are having a Bat Mitzvah for our daughter next month. We have invited the entire 6th and 7th ...
  A: It sounds as if she is being deliberately obtuse. You have told her in many ways as you can that she ...
placing our 50th anniversary picture/info in newspaper2/16/2010
  Q: In placing our 50th wedding anniversary ad and picture in our newspaper,names of our children were ...
  A: Kottenstette, While it would not have been inappropriate to include the name of your children's ...
daughter in law2/10/2010
  Q: My son and daughter-in-law have just announced that they are getting a divorce. I want to stay on ...
  A: For now,do what you have always done for past birthdays. With the news being so recent,there is no ...
Family after divorce2/9/2010
  Q: I am a divorcee and my question is. My now x-brother in law and x-sister law have two kids. I am ...
  A: Merely introduce them to each other. You don't need to go into too much biographical information. ...
multiple invitations2/8/2010
  Q: I am mother of groom and live 2 hours from bride/groom they live same town as MOB,etc. So far I ...
  A: No,you do not have to attend every single function,but you do have to be invited to them all. Talk ...
weddin invitation2/8/2010
  Q: My husband's nephew is getting married(his mother is doing the whole thing)The wedding invitation ...
  A: Please give the young couple and their families a break on this one. Should you have had your names ...
50th wedding anniv.2/6/2010
  Q: We are planning our parents 50th wedding anniversary. Is it in-appropriate to plan it the week ...
  A: It is not at all inappropriate to hold the celebration in the days or even weeks before or after ...
Adoption2/6/2010
  Q: We are adopting a foster child that we have had for two years. We are very excited and would like to ...
  A: Please do not give the judge a gift of any kind. I do not know what state you are in but several ...
it's getting awkward2/4/2010
  Q: i met a mom in my daughter's kindergarten class last year and we hit it off. we hung out together a ...
  A: It is hard to form new friendships in adulthood that are beyond the casual one you describe. ...
College Graduation Announcements2/2/2010
  Q: After taking a three year break from college to work, my 26 year old son went back to school to ...
  A: Absolutely. It is always appropriate to send out announcements. They have nothing to do with ...
table manners1/29/2010
  Q: Is it bad manners to sing at the dinner table?
  A: What an interesting question. Why would you want to sing anything but "Happy Birthday" at the dinner ...
Univited Spouse1/27/2010
  Q: My wife's friend had a birthday party & only invited my wife. I know the friend but we are not ...
  A: The only excuse for not inviting the spouse to a birthday celebration is if the party is gender ...
ex mother in law passes away.1/26/2010
  Q: I was married for 25 years, my husband left me for another woman. Now his mother is in poor health ...
  A: You use the term 'children' four times in your question. While I understand and applaud your need to ...
Thank you notes - what is too much?1/25/2010
  Q: I was just wondering if you could offer an outsiders' opinion on a 'saying thank you' situation. A ...
  A: You are over thinking this one. Relax. The first thank you was merely an acknowledgement that the ...
engagement party gift1/22/2010
  Q: Last week my son's fiance's parents threw an engagement party, I was unsure what to give as a gift, ...
  A: A sarcastic thank you note is never an appropriate response to any gift,of course,but to write such ...
thank you for memorial donation1/21/2010
  Q: if recipient agency of memorial donations sends thank you notes to donor,, do I, as family member of ...
  A: If you are up to the task,please do write a note. It doesn't have to be too long,a few lines will ...
Lost/Found1/21/2010
  Q: While working for a public transportation company, there are may items that are lost on our buses ...
  A: My thoughts are these: 1) Does the company/government agency have a policy? If not,it may be ...
Memorial Contributions1/20/2010
  Q: I have a question concerning contributions made in memory of someone who died. Is it improper to ...
  A: While you may give a memorial gift to a charitable cause not mentioned in the obituary, it still ...
Invitation to an Open House1/17/2010
  Q: We have been invited to a "Open House" to celebrate friends new house. It is not called a House ...
  A: Only if you wish to do so and don't have to think too hard about what to give them. Buying a present ...
addendum to "how to decline" question1/16/2010
  Q: (this relates to my previously sent question - sorry I didn't send earlier) p.s. Previously, my ...
  A: S., No,it doesn't really change my response,but I do now see why you feel more guilt! You do not ...
40th B'day1/16/2010
  Q: I would like to know if its considered proper etiquette to register to Tiffany's or any department ...
  A: Gift registries have nothing to do with etiquette. They were started by merchants who wanted to ...
how to list family1/13/2010
  Q: I really need this answer asap -- sorry -- my 13 year old sister is involved in a important school ...
  A: Your sister will most assuredly not be the only child with an unconventional family. If the point is ...
Hosting my own Birthday Dinner1/8/2010
  Q: I am turning 40 in 2 months. My friends are all very busy in their lives right now. I was wondering ...
  A: Anyone may give a party at any time and for almost any reason. If you phrase the invitations in the ...
Issues With My Adult Stepson1/5/2010
  Q: I am 44 years old and have been married 16 years to man who came into the marriage with a teenage ...
  A: B., Oh dear. Well as the saying goes "As the twig is bent the tree is inclined". It's too late to ...
Birth/Death Announcement1/4/2010
  Q: A co-worker recently gave birth to identical twins, but one died soon after birth. What's the ...
  A: A short note may be sent on plain writing paper in black ink. I will give you a template: Dear ...
Gift to daughter for PhD graduation1/4/2010
  Q: Our daughter will soon be completing her studies for a Ph.D. in Virology. What is an appropriate ...
  A: There are no limits on what a parent may give to a child as a gift. No matter if it's for a Ph.D. ...
Taking wine and food to a party1/2/2010
  Q: Would it be bad manners to take wine, hors d'oeuvres, or dessert to a party without asking or ...
  A: If you expect her to serve them,yes. It would throw her menu into disarrangement. A bottle of wine ...
Woman or man's name first12/31/2009
  Q: What is the proper etiquette when addressing a card to a woman and man? When signing your first ...
  A: There is no 'right or wrong' here. Even the late great Emily Post showed the names in both ways. ...
debutante club protocol12/31/2009
  Q: My son was an escort for a debuntante several years ago, and I was not invited to the event. My ...
  A: I can't imagine in 2009 that being a 'divorced single mom' would be cause to bar you from any club ...
check as a coworker gift12/30/2009
  Q: I work as a church musician, and during the holidays a few members of the congregation like to show ...
  A: Send a thank you note indicating which charity you have donated the money to. It solves the problem ...
good words12/30/2009
  Q: i want to invite all the high rank people to our office christmas party but i dont know what to say. ...
  A: Loney, I have never gotten a question from your country before,welcome! Please just use the ...
death12/27/2009
  Q: Is it appropriate to send a sympathy card just from me to my husbands sisters who live across the ...
  A: You are correct,it is his loss as well and there is no need for siblings to send each other flowers ...
son's girlfriend12/20/2009
  Q: We are wondering what the etiquette is for giving a Christmas gift to our son's girlfriend. They ...
  A: Gifts are never required. They should be given because you wish to so. If they were married,I would ...
visiting etiquette12/20/2009
  Q: We are NJ residents and our 17 YOA daughter wants to visit her 23 YOA boy friend staying a his ...
  A: Your child who is a minor in the eyes of the law,objects to you being responsible parents by calling ...
debutante party12/18/2009
  Q: Amanda, I am invited to a debutante party at a restaurant. My invitation reads: "7-9 Receiving, 9 ...
  A: Where is the fun in that? The adults get to pay for the party but they are forbidden to stick ...
Wedding RSVP12/18/2009
  Q: My Aunt recently informed me that she had committed, months ago, to babysit her grandchildren the ...
  A: Please tell her that you are sorry that she will be unable to attend,but you understand that she has ...
Travelling12/17/2009
  Q: When leaving on a trip should people call you to say good-bye or should you call them? When ...
  A: When someone is leaving either party may initiate the call. If the caller is not the one who is ...
birthday gifts12/17/2009
  Q: Son-in-law is about to turn 50 and we want to have a surprise party for him. His wish is to go to ...
  A: It is not terrible because you said the magic word-"family". Who among us has not 'chipped in' for ...
announcing a death via the mail12/16/2009
  Q: My father just passed away, with it being the holidays we'll be having a memorial later in January. ...
  A: Please for give the tardy reply. If your mother feels up to the task of writing the cards, she ...
Lending a car to a friend12/15/2009
  Q: Hey Amanda, I recently lent my spare car to a friend so he could go to his finals for college on ...
  A: So,in effect he wanted something for nothing. The use of a car and gasoline at a critical moment in ...
Death and the ex - what do I do12/14/2009
  Q: My husband's ex passed away. This woman caused nothing but problems to my husband, his other ex ...
  A: As the children are all now adults,you do not need to attend. Let your husband go to the services ...
Gift giving12/13/2009
  Q: What is the statue of limitation for giving a birthday gift after the birthday party is over? Is it ...
  A: The gift should be given at the earliest opportunity,of course. If you are not going to see the ...
Office Birthdays12/11/2009
  Q: I work in a small office (a local government) with about 20 employees. Traditionally when someone ...
  A: Oh for heaven's sake. What fun is life if we don't celebrate the small things? Should the parties ...
etiquette12/10/2009
  Q: friends of ours lost there only child to an accidental death. He was at a friends house and a ...
  A: While the accident was undoubtedly horrific and heartbreaking for them,they are probably trying to ...
Sympathy card to son-inlaw12/9/2009
  Q: Is it appropriate to send a sympathy card to my son-in-law with regard to the lose of his father and ...
  A: Your daughter suffered the loss as well. Even if she was not particularly close to her father in ...
Dating12/9/2009
  Q: I have been going for walks with one of my classmates for about two months now and plan to ask her ...
  A: I apologize for the late reply,I felt I had to consult some experts of my own. Namely,my nieces and ...
My graduation party12/9/2009
  Q: My daughter was so helpful in making my graduation party invitations and sent them out to my church ...
  A: Offer to your guests only that which you can comfortably afford. They will come to see you and to ...
Returning gifts previously given12/7/2009
  Q: I was taught that to give a gift back to a giver is not only rude but should never be done, if you ...
  A: A gift should be accepted with thanks even if it is something that the recipient does not care for. ...
Titles (?) given to step - step grandchildren12/6/2009
  Q: What is the relationship between a person and a grandchild when the grandchild is born to your ...
  A: I am sorry to report that I am siding with your wife on this one. When it comes to a "step" ...
Baby Shower12/6/2009
  Q: My best friend and I are having babies 2 months apart. We are from the same hometown, but we each ...
  A: You (and your friend) should have no say or part in planning a party where you are the guests of ...
table manners12/5/2009
  Q: Many years ago, I was taught it was appropriate to cut three pieces of meat at a time. Is this ...
  A: It is acceptable to cut a few pieces of meat at a time. Cutting one bite at a time is time consuming ...
gift12/5/2009
  Q: My sister-in-law has bought a Mickey mouse t-shirt for my 18 year old step-son...he's a college ...
  A: The only appropriate response to any gift,no matter how poorly chosen,is to say thank you. What is ...
Invitation etiquette12/3/2009
  Q: Several weeks ago I sent out an evite to a party I have hosted for the past several years. The party ...
  A: Please call them and invite them to the party. Say you were looking over the invitation list (they ...
No Gifts Please12/3/2009
  Q: I am a Leasing Consultant in a Social Services Program... and I work with quite a few people from ...
  A: Put up a sign,but say "As of January 1st,2010 Employees of X Agency Are No Longer Permitted To ...
friend leaving "gifts" in car or car port or by front door12/3/2009
  Q: I am a woman who lives alone and deal with multiple issues, cronic fatigue from Lupus and ...
  A: Sometimes with those people we are closest to,it is time to put aside formality and get down to ...
Debutante Brunch12/1/2009
  Q: My daughter and I have been invited to a debutante brunch being given for two sisters that are close ...
  A: Do you mean a brunch given for the girls either the day of or the day after their dance? That is how ...
Family Gathering and Allergies12/1/2009
  Q: I have a dog, my brother has a baby that is allergic to dogs. We had a brief baby / dog encounter (5 ...
  A: If there is a chance of endagering your nephew's health,of course the dog should stay behind. A pet ...
Christmas after a death11/30/2009
  Q: My youngest son died six months ago. There are people I've known for a long time but only send ...
  A: Please know how sorry I am for your loss. It must be a very difficult and stressful time for you as ...
eating11/30/2009
  Q: I wanted to ask if it was considered impolite to have a 16 girl who has very good table manners to ...
  A: It is inappropriate if others find it offensive or disgusting to look at. Please ask her,for the ...
Sorority function11/27/2009
  Q: I am attending a formal sorority party. My friend is a member of the chapter but I am not. I ...
  A: If the sorority colors are navy and white,by all means wear the dress as no one would give it a ...
Family visits11/26/2009
  Q: My husband and I visit with his brother and sister-in-law for Christmas every year, alternating ...
  A: Ah! The double edged sword! When you are the guest,you should conform to the rythms of the household ...
Thanksgiving reservations11/26/2009
  Q: I am acting the hostess this Thanksgiving family members that may not have anywhere to go, as my ...
  A: The person who bears the blame here is your brother. Why did he raise his daughter to behave in this ...
Invitation to a dinner party11/25/2009
  Q: I have been invited to my son's in-laws for Christmas dinner. I have met them only once, 10 years ...
  A: Yes,if you want to make a baklava for them please do. Your instincts are correct when it comes to ...
dinner invitation11/25/2009
  Q: What would be the proper gift to give a hostess you don;t know?
  A: A consumable like wine,fine chocolates or flowers. Well,flowers are not to be eaten,clearly, but ...
Self-Invited guests to Thanksgiving Dinner.11/24/2009
  Q: I am hosting a large gathering in my home for Thanksgiving this year. We have planned on roughly ...
  A: The best thing to do is to say nothing and hope that they have made other plans. You do not want ...
gift enchange11/23/2009
  Q: should you ever return a gift to the giver? a few years (2) back my BIL got my name in the family ...
  A: Please do not give the cards back to him. We are often hurt and disappointed when other people do ...
Christmas after Divorce11/22/2009
  Q: I have a sticky situation that I'm not sure what to do about. My mother-in-law divorced her third ...
  A: Yes,by all means,make the card. No gift is ever required,so while you don't 'owe' him anything it ...
Standing - to shake hands, when someone enters the room11/22/2009
  Q: Recently I was at a fairly formal dinner and my pastor who is also a prominent professional in the ...
  A: That he corrected you at all is shocking. That he corrected you in public is beyond the PALE. You ...
deb ball11/21/2009
  Q: I have been invited to attend a deb ball for my son's girlfriend, I am unable to attend, do I send a ...
  A: As it is your son's girlfriend,it would be a nice gesture to send a bouquet of white flowers to her ...
unsociable behavior11/21/2009
  Q: Planned ahead family gathering at a 4th of July outing to watch Stone Mountain fireworks, laser ...
  A: The son is upset by his own girlfriend's rude behavior? That is how your question reads so I hope I ...
Thanksgiving Etiquette11/20/2009
  Q: I have a dilemma that I don't know how to handle. My mother-in-law has invited my parents over to ...
  A: I am a bit confused,when she accepted the invitation did she tell you M-in-L she was bringing the ...
Unwanted guest at Family Thanksgiving Dinner11/20/2009
  Q: My husband invited someone that I despise to our Family Thanksgiving dinner after we discussed it ...
  A: This is your call to make,not mine. You made your wishes known to your husband,your next of kin,and ...
the returning univited holiday guest11/20/2009
  Q: How does one insist that an adult nephew (by marriage)make his own lodging arrangements when his ...
  A: Your nephew is not picking up on the social cues (subtle and not so subtle) for this situation. You ...
Seeing my Father for first time in 27 years11/19/2009
  Q: I am seeing my Father for the first time in 27 years. We will be meeting face to face in a ...
  A: Why do you need for your father to know this information? Is it a control issue? This is a ...
Christmas gifts11/19/2009
  Q: Times being what they are, I would like to stop sending gifts to those people that I am not as close ...
  A: Dear Family, With the state of the economy as well as the fact that we are all already ...
overnight guest11/19/2009
  Q: Having to fly quite some distance at quite an expense to attend my neices wedding, my sister offered ...
  A: You already know the answer. You did nothing wrong. This man is an abusive ass. I can't imagine how ...
jewish gay wedding11/19/2009
  Q: My brother is finally getting married (58 yrs old- a dynamic intellectual and awesome guy). They are ...
  A: That sounds like it is going to be a great party. My only advice is to have fun. If you have gay ...
Theatre curtain calls11/18/2009
  Q: Is is appropriate to hiss or boo as a sign of appreciation at the villain during a curtain call? ...
  A: In the spirit of the over the top over acting done at those types of plays,it is absolutely correct ...
Christmas Party11/17/2009
  Q: I am hosting a Christmas party at my home with family and close friends. In addition, some of my ...
  A: I understand your anxiety,our professional lives and our work lives can't help but to become ...
Wedding Gift for Hairdresser11/16/2009
  Q: My hairdresser is getting married around Christmas. I always give her a generous Christmas gift. ...
  A: Whatever you want to give her and can afford is what is appropriate. I cannot give you a dollar ...
Engagement/Wedding Invitations11/15/2009
  Q: My son and his finance announced their engagement 3 weeks ago. Now they are planning on sending out ...
  A: An announcement is merely information. You send them to people who might be interested in learning ...
Dinning out with a group11/15/2009
  Q: One evening I (age 19) happened to be out with my boyfriend (age 18) when my mother called to invite ...
  A: You did exactly the right thing in thanking the woman who actually paid the bill. If your Mom had ...
50th Wedding Anniversary11/10/2009
  Q: Is it proper to have a cash bar at a 50th Wedding Anniversary Party?
  A: Technically,no. But as a guest at far FAR too many functions where the hosts (in a reasonable and ...
suspenders and belts11/9/2009
  Q: I am not overweight and do not need this to hold up my pants, but I like the look of wearing a belt ...
  A: I am sorry that I didn't address the question head on for you. I will do so now. This is not an ...
Lunch Etiquette11/9/2009
  Q: While fortunately, I cannot complain about intentionally horrendous behaviours from my ...
  A: That your Mother in Law is Jewish has nothing to do with the situation as I see it. That she is ...
Informal Family Gathering11/9/2009
  Q: A relative and myself were discussing about getting our family together at our cousins restaurant. ...
  A: Don't be hard on yourself,this is much different than sending out engraved invitations and then ...
Thanksgiving invites11/8/2009
  Q: My brother was recently married and now his wife's family is a part of ours. For Thanksgiving I ...
  A: Your new sister-in-law should not have simply invited someone else to your Thanksgiving dinner. It ...
my family & their relationship with my ex11/3/2009
  Q: I had been married for 18 years with 3 kids. I have a large family and some of them are staying in ...
  A: While I can appreciate not wanting to go into detail with your family on the exact causes of the ...
Christmas Card/Recent Death11/2/2009
  Q: In January of this year a good friend from high school passed away unexpectadly. We lived in ...
  A: Please do send the cards. It will most certainly be a difficult time for the whole family, but it ...
restaurant etiquette11/2/2009
  Q: I was out to dinner with my husband at a fine restaurant. During the course of our meal, a couple ...
  A: Berger, You did the correct thing. The man just said hello spontaneously because you caught each ...
questions11/1/2009
  Q: How do I address my wedding invitation to my godfathers widow? Is it also proper to send her a ...
  A: She is Mrs Milford F Renquist until the days she dies or until she remarries. It is not ...
First Date - Is Housewaming Gift Appropriate (just moved into new home)10/30/2009
  Q: I will be going on a first date with a guy that I know through friends. He will be moving into his ...
  A: Err on the side of caution and pass for now. The home will still be new for several more months yet ...
Invitation not wanted10/29/2009
  Q: A female co-worker is getting married within the year and she plans on inviting everybody in the ...
  A: Simply wait for the invitation to arrive and then decline it politely. Sending your regrets closes ...
surprise birthday party10/28/2009
  Q: my mom is giving my dad a 60th surprise birthday party and was wonder was it ok to register for ...
  A: Jenkins, No,it is not appropriate to register for gifts for a birthday. People are to be ...
Sending Invite to Someone Who Had Death in Family10/27/2009
  Q: We are christening our daughter and would like to invite a close family whose daughter sadly passed ...
  A: Life goes on and inviting this family to the Christening is appropriate. Do include a note ...
signing cards10/26/2009
  Q: I live with my boyfriend but generally I sign birthday cards to my family etc with just my name. Is ...
  A: Clearly your family members know that the two of you live together,so if you want to sign both ...
How to educate relatives about etiquette rules when they visit me10/26/2009
  Q: My husband's nephews and nieces visit us almost every weekend as they live in the same town. They do ...
  A: You do not say how old these nephews and nieces are,but it doesn't matter really. This is your house ...
How to Deal with my Brother-in-Law's Wife10/22/2009
  Q: My MIL has a favorite child who is now married. Because of his status in her eyes, she desperately ...
  A: There is not much that you may do without causing a great deal of trouble. Your Mother in Law is not ...
Wedding Invitation10/22/2009
  Q: Recently we sold our house. Our realtor mentioned that the buyers were a nice young couple about to ...
  A: What a thoughtful gesture you made towards this couple. As you cannot attend the wedding, please ...
Obituary Question10/20/2009
  Q: My father in law passed away a few weeks ago and my sister in law and I were both very hurt when the ...
  A: You most certainly are family. You were the daughters in law of the man who died. It counts as does ...
first birthday party10/18/2009
  Q: My parents are divorced and so are my husbands. My daughter is turning one in November and I am ...
  A: The time to put your foot down is now. If you give into these demands and have three birthday ...
My sister in law10/17/2009
  Q: my question is about my sister in law. Long story short my husband died in a car accident last year ...
  A: Thompson, Please know how very sorry I am that you find yourself in this situation. You are not ...
daughter in law10/16/2009
  Q: When my daughter in law speaks of me to my son or daughter she refers to me as "Mary" instead of ...
  A: She calls you Mary? How odd. Does she give any reason for calling you by a completely different ...
Boyfriend's grandfather's birthday present?10/14/2009
  Q: My boyfriend's grandfather's birthday is coming up and his mum suggested to my boyfriend to bring me ...
  A: Yes,chocolates are the perfect choice for this Grandfather. Any luxury item that is consumed is a ...
grandson nickname10/12/2009
  Q: My son and his wife nicknamed our grandson,their son, Tre. He is a Steven the third. We don't care ...
  A: How can calling a child by it's given name be disrespectful? It's on the birth certificate. Just ...
Conversations in party atmosphere10/12/2009
  Q: I like to entertain and have most relative get-togethers at my home for multiple generations. ...
  A: When your guests are not strangers to each other,but members of the same family,the hostess does ...
Extended family - gift giving10/9/2009
  Q: What is the appropriate way to handle gift giving to extended family members? Our daughter is ...
  A: Your brother is free to do as he wishes. Your idea of having him send a general card and let his ...
Wedding etiquette10/8/2009
  Q: My wife's cousin was in a very serious car accident yesterday. It is very questionable at this time ...
  A: The groom and his family might not be in the mood for much gaiety,let them lead the way and set the ...
Signing cards10/7/2009
  Q: Our son has just recently moved out to begin his first job in Minnesota. Normally, I sign cards ...
  A: When the child moves out,it's time to stop signing his or her name. However,you may write "I'm sure ...
Wedding Ring Etiquette10/6/2009
  Q: When my father passed away roughly a month before his wedding date two years ago, his fiancee picked ...
  A: It would have been entirely correct and appropriate for her to have returned the rings as part of ...
Appropriate protocol for fundraising members10/5/2009
  Q: I work on a series of committee's at my daughter's private, non-profit, all girls school. Being ...
  A: Outrageous. If you are working an event that you helped organize,you do not pay for tickets. Nor ...
sharing a tip10/5/2009
  Q: My guestion is, I am a bartender and the other night we had a 50th anniversary party for 35 people ...
  A: To whom was the extra hundred dollars given? If it was to you and you wish to split it, then please ...
Comments on House Size10/4/2009
  Q: I own a home that is much larger than most of my friends. Occasionally when we have people over ...
  A: If you don't wish to respond,you don't have to. Simply letting the comment and the moment pass is ...
proper form of address10/3/2009
  Q: How does one properly address a female Methodist bishop? Thank you, MM
  A: Bishop Winsby in conversation and The Reverend Ellen Winsby of (Methodist area designation) for an ...
Get well card after death10/3/2009
  Q: I learned of someone's illness and later decided to send a get well card. However the very day that ...
  A: No,do not apologize for the get well card. They understand that it was an issue of poor timing ...
New Roommate10/2/2009
  Q: A friend of ours (mine & my fiance's) is in a tough spot right now and needs a new place to move ...
  A: Laundromats probably do not let the water temperatures get truly hot. Maybe it's to save on the gas ...
Extremely Difficult Social Question10/1/2009
  Q: how are you? I have a difficult question on how to deal with a social situation. Here's the ...
  A: When I saw the line "... I was recently toying with sending her another email.." I gasped and said ...
5th Anniversary Party9/30/2009
  Q: Next year my husband and I will be celebrating our 5th anniversary. My question is: Is it okay to ...
  A: By all means have a Do Over! Let it be known that while the first wedding was nice,the day went by ...
No more Christmas presents9/28/2009
  Q: Each year my brothers and sisters send Christmas presents to me and my family. Two years ago, I ...
  A: You have done exactly the right thing. You let it be known that you wished to stop exchanging gifts ...
shoes in the house9/25/2009
  Q: I try very hard to keep my house clean. It is very important for me to take care of the things I ...
  A: Please just ask them when they come in or better,before they come over if possible. This isn't just ...
Name on the head stone9/24/2009
  Q: Can a last name be added after the biological fathers last name? She was never adopted by the last ...
  A: Whomever purchased the plot and the stone gets to make the decisions as to what name is put on it. ...
Inviting people to party9/24/2009
  Q: I am inviting some friends out for drinks for my birthday. At first it was going to be a few people ...
  A: This should work itself out without too much stress or drama. It would have been a good idea to have ...
How to sign Christmas Cards9/23/2009
  Q: My 4 yr. old just recently died and I know our lives are changing. Silly question, when it comes to ...
  A: Please know how very sorry I am for you loss. You do not have to send cards if it is too painful or ...
Baby shower invites9/22/2009
  Q: My daughter is pregnant with twins.. She made out her list of people to invite and her ...
  A: Who is the hostess of this shower? The mother to be is asked to provide a list of people that she ...
uninvited visitors9/22/2009
  Q: My husband and I are expecting our first child in November. When we bring the baby home, we would ...
  A: When you and your husband married,you each left your families to form a new one. This new family,be ...
profanity9/22/2009
  Q: Is it permisable in todays society to offer a seminar on communication and present a film with a lot ...
  A: It depends entirely upon the audience and the forum. It would be outrageous to show such a film to ...
godparent etiquette9/18/2009
  Q: Beside religious values and gifts as they grow, are there any special things Godparents buy or do ...
  A: Their primary role is as spiritual advisers for the child. It is entirely up to the Godprents how ...
correcting someone9/16/2009
  Q: Ms. Gamble: I am writing to get your opinion about when it is appropriate to breach etiquette. In ...
  A: It made me laugh as I am not known to be 'politically correct'. When I wrote the response,I was ...
Monetary Bereavement Gift9/16/2009
  Q: My daughter and son-in-law just lost a full-term baby boy. They have received numerous personal ...
  A: What a terrible time for you and your family. I am so sorry. You may use the money in any way that ...
Thank-you9/14/2009
  Q: My husband's employer is generously sending us on a vacation in appreciation for all his hard work. ...
  A: Please do write the thank you note and get a gift as well. It's hard to make suggestions for someone ...
Daughter's ordination ceremony8/25/2009
  Q: My daughter is going to be ordained as a Lutheran Minister. Her Grandmother, ( as well as me) are ...
  A: As she is your daughter is absolutely appropriate for you or her Grandmother to give her any gift ...
Invitation etiquette8/25/2009
  Q: Is it proper etiquette to post "no gifts please" on a birthday invitation
  A: Technically,no. A host/hostess never mentions gifts on an invitation. S/he is supposed to be so ...
Bedroom barger8/23/2009
  Q: My question is this... My Husband and I stayed with close friends at their home in Florida for a ...
  A: If she is a friend of such long standing this surely is not the first time that you have had to have ...
guest invitation8/21/2009
  Q: I am hosting my birthday party and I would like to invite someone who I have been friends with for ...
  A: Have a talk with your friend. Try not to criticize "the friend" too much,avoid it all together if ...
party invite8/21/2009
  Q: I am hosting my own birthday party at a small cafe with an evening of dinner and dancing. However ...
  A: Simply invite the people that you wish to have come at the later time with invitations to do so. ...
College Graduation party8/21/2009
  Q: My son is graduating from college in December. He is the first in both my family and my husband's ...
  A: Anyone can give party at any time and for nearly any reason. Your son has (or will) mark an ...
baby shower invite8/20/2009
  Q: My sister-in-law (wife of husband's brother) is having a baby shower, hosted by her family. I did ...
  A: Was the note specifically about the shower and did the greeting contain specific names? Or was it ...
How to leave a dinner or party8/20/2009
  Q: When you are attending a dinner or party at a friend's home and you are ready to leave what is the ...
  A: When the guests start offering excuses say exactly what you wrote in my question. "The reasons don't ...
include mom?8/20/2009
  Q: My parents are divorced but I spend equal time with both my mom and my dad and long-time stepmom. ...
  A: Good news. As the guest of honor and not the host/ess of this party,the list of who does or does not ...
widow manners8/19/2009
  Q: should a widow of 6 years still wear her wedding & engagement rings if she is in a new relationship?
  A: If the woman is seeing someone seriously,she should remove the rings or move them to her right hand. ...
Birthday Favors - Are they really expected?8/19/2009
  Q: Is it REALLY expected that I give the children that attend my son's birthday party a bag of candy, ...
  A: You certainly do not have to give the party guests anything in the way of gift bags or party favors ...
sympathy8/19/2009
  Q: In the death of a girlfriend's mother, should the sympathy card go only to the girlfriend, or ...
  A: As the whole family is affected by this loss,please include them all. The degree of grief felt may ...
Birthday happy hour8/18/2009
  Q: I have 6 girlfriends who I have been going out with every Wednesday for a drink, a movie or some ...
  A: As you were the first to have a birthday with the 'new tradition' perhaps everyone was a little ...
50th Birthday reception8/17/2009
  Q: Is it appropriate for my husbands exwife to take a piece of fruit from his dessert plate? This ...
  A: Sharing food from a plate is an intimate gesture,even if it isn't romantic. (Friends,parent and ...
Visiting Relatives8/16/2009
  Q: A few weeks ago, I received a call from my relatives, that I have not seen in a while, and they told ...
  A: As it sounds like a big crowd,you may ask for separate checks at the beginning of the meal. If Uncle ...
birthday party etiquette8/15/2009
  Q: My teenager was invited to a surprise birthday party for a friend at the park. The party was planned ...
  A: While the standard rule is that no host/ess gives a party that s/he cannot afford,this is a special ...
baby shower gifts after stillbirth8/15/2009
  Q: a dear cousin recently had a stillbirth at 8 months gestation. Does she need to return the baby ...
  A: The correct thing to do and I mean this sincerely,is whatever your cousin feels like doing. She is ...
christmas cards after death8/15/2009
  Q: my mom die July the 2009 is it ok to send Christmas cards this year or is that wrong.
  A: If you feel up to sending out holiday greetings,you certainly may. If,when the time comes you find ...
Quinceanera8/14/2009
  Q: My friend who is turning 15 in October has asked me to be a part of her Quinceanera. I am a white, ...
  A: As you have never been to a Quinceanera before,let me tell you a little about it and what to expect. ...
50th wedding anniversary8/12/2009
  Q: My parent's 50th wedding anniversary is approaching. My Father passed away 5 years ago and I am ...
  A: "In loving memory of Bill Jones" if you wish to be private about it and not draw attention to the ...
Hosting an In-Home Sales Party8/11/2009
  Q: Amanda, I am being pressured by my sister-in-law who sells Tupperware to host a Tupperware Party in ...
  A: If you weaken and host even ONE of these parties,it will never ever end. You must nip this nonsense ...
Birthday celebration with husband !8/9/2009
  Q: My husband and me have regularly different views about birthdays. We spend birthdays together. I see ...
  A: When it comes to birthdays,there is no "right way" to celebrate. Never mind the cultural ...
Hello8/9/2009
  Q: I'm having my 13th birthday soon and I want to invite my friends in MY AGE GROUP. BUT,my parents ...
  A: I am very sorry for the tardy reply. Please explain your point of view to your Mother as calmly and ...
7 year old B-day Party8/7/2009
  Q: My son is divorced and shares custody with his ex-wife. He started dating a lady approximately one ...
  A: As no seven year old is immune from the charm of opening an actual present,I am glad that you ...
IT'S MY DAY OFF AND ASKED TO WORK8/7/2009
  Q: My superintendent asked me to work for a weekend (my day-off) and told her she can have that day off ...
  A: Yes,it is fine to tell your superior that you need notice well in advance if she needs to change the ...
SHOULD I PAY THE BILL8/7/2009
  Q: In a bar mostly I hang out with my friends, I don't drink and when I eat I limit myself with a ...
  A: Ask for a separate check. With computerized ordering and billing (which the restaurant business ...
open house/graduation party8/1/2009
  Q: Is it bad etiquette to have a open house for your high school senior if they are Not going away for ...
  A: Well,whomever it was that told you that was quite wrong. You are celebrating the graduation from ...
proper English7/30/2009
  Q: I am about to get married, and I was creating return address labels for us and I ran into a ...
  A: You may either have the labels read "Mrs & Mrs John Smith,Jr" or Nancy & John Smith,Jr. ...
how to deal with lack of guest room/ bathroom at parents home7/29/2009
  Q: I am married and have 2 toddlers. We live in a different city than my parents do. I have a great ...
  A: If the visits are so contentious that you are fighting with your parents,please do stay in a hotel. ...
Baby Shower7/27/2009
  Q: My son and his ex-girlfriend are having a baby. We found out about the baby 3 months after they ...
  A: Technically,you are not the one who should give the baby shower. It should be the expectant mother's ...
Correspondence Cards7/25/2009
  Q: Is it appropriate to send a happy birthday note on a correspondence card instead of a birthday card?
  A: Absolutely! A personal note conveying your best wishes for someone's health and happiness in the ...
Opionianted7/24/2009
  Q: A 50's something friend (with a large extended family) never tires of presenting her ...
  A: If this friend is important to you and you do wish to maintain the relationship,by all means speak ...
How do I cancel an adult bday party after invitations have been sent?7/20/2009
  Q: I'm really not sure how to proceed. My family has been planning a (unwanted) small party for our ...
  A: "Due to unforeseen circumstances,we regretfully recall the invitations issued for September ...
How to politely tell someone they weren't invited7/18/2009
  Q: How do you politely tell someone that thay weren't invited on a trip? A friend & I are taking our ...
  A: This is tricky and likely her feelings will be hurt since you said nothing at the time. But try ...
Stagette Party7/16/2009
  Q: I'm hoping you have some advice you can share about my situation. You sound like a kind person and ...
  A: While you certainly are well within the bounds of propriety to politely decline any invitation that ...
etiquette article7/16/2009
  Q: I'm sane`, I'm a journalist for Weigh-Less magazine in South Africa. I'm writing an article about ...
  A: I will be happy to help. Let me know when your deadline is. I have quite a few things going on right ...
Thank Yous7/15/2009
  Q: How do I write a Thank You for money in the time of bereavement..I don't want to say thanks for the ...
  A: You may thank them for their thoughtfulness or their 'kind gesture'. Tell them that it is support ...
Addressing a Mr. & Dr.7/14/2009
  Q: What is the proper way to to address correspondence to a married couple who share the same last name ...
  A: Please use two lines: Dr. Elizabeth Banks Mr. Jefferson Banks ...
RSVP7/14/2009
  Q: I have yet to receive any RSVP's for my son's birthday party and I need to know how many people are ...
  A: No,this is a time sensitive issue,so go ahead and call. Try not to make them feel guilty about it ...
Wedding Invitation Wording7/12/2009
  Q: My brother is getting married in August. I just received the invitation yesterday. To my dismay, I ...
  A: Either form is correct. The first,where the bride's parents are the only ones who are named,are a ...
Daytime Wedding/Evening Reception Attire7/12/2009
  Q: We have just received an invitation to a family member's wedding. The wedding is scheduled for 2:30 ...
  A: As the dress is a dark color and a length that can work for both times of day,go ahead and wear it. ...
one month anniversary party etiquette7/12/2009
  Q: I have a work colleague who invited me to her "one month wedding anniversary party," and, since I ...
  A: No,no gift is required. No one ever has to pay for the privilege of being invited as a guest. If you ...
cruise wear etiquette7/10/2009
  Q: I am cruising on The Queen Mary 2 and the formal dress code is for Black & White, does this require ...
  A: The definition of Black/White Tie is much more flexible for women than it is for men. You may wear ...
Birthday cards7/9/2009
  Q: A few days ago an envelope arrived addressed to both my wife and my eldest son. Their birthdays are ...
  A: Instead of condemning your mother,applaud her! Most cards and letters do not come close to exceeding ...
Dr and Mrs. question7/8/2009
  Q: I have scanned previous questions and answers regarding proper addressing etiquette for couples in ...
  A: No,in the case of the woman being a doctor,a military officer,a judge,office holder,etc. you simply ...
Funeral Ettiquette7/8/2009
  Q: My husband recently passed away. My husband's brother and his family were there. My niece took it ...
  A: Dozier, If you can possibly stand to,please let this all pass. To engage this woman in an ...
Etiquette of goods distribution before/after death7/8/2009
  Q: What are the positives of earmarking or giving your goods away before you do? What would be the ...
  A: This really isn't an etiquette question but I will see what I can do. The upside to gifting things ...
Dance School Prize Giving7/8/2009
  Q: I founded and ran a very large dance school for 25 years and sold it to 2 of my students. I was ...
  A: Your role was,correctly,whatever the school's owners wished it to be. If you were asked to be a ...
going away party7/4/2009
  Q: I have a good friend that is leaving the state. He has been a big part of our community and very ...
  A: While it is a wonderful idea to show this man and his family how much they will be missed,please ...
Graduation card w/money for daughter's boyfriend7/3/2009
  Q: Is it appropriate for my husband and I to give our daughter's boyfriend more than a card for high ...
  A: If you and your husband wish to give him a gift (in any form) as a token of your esteem for ...
1st Birthday Gift question7/3/2009
  Q: Is there any polite way to ask for a contribution to FLORIDA PREPAID COLLEGE FUND in lue of toys and ...
  A: Gifts of any kind should never be mentioned in an invitation. No one should be made to feel as if ...
strangers ask "having anymore kids?"7/2/2009
  Q: I have 5 boys ranging from the age of 9yrs to 9 months. I have received inquiries from strangers if ...
  A: It sounds as if you are doing a fine job fending off inquires on your own! The tight smile that ...
Wedding Gift Verbal Thank You.7/1/2009
  Q: Is it appropriate for the Bride and Groom after receiving and opening a gift to give a verbal Thank ...
  A: Verbal thank yous are (or should be) automatically given. However, since the gift was given during ...
Friend visits from out of state and parents dont send compensation for expenses7/1/2009
  Q: Recently I agreed to allow my 13 year olds' school mate (who recently moved out of state), to come ...
  A: I am surprised that the child's parents did not think to provide for their child's basic care. ...
Very late wedding invitation6/30/2009
  Q: An old friend of mine is getting married. We have barely kept in touch over the years, and I would ...
  A: You seem awfully quick to assign yourself the rejected loser role on this one. Are you sure that ...
tomstone etiquette6/30/2009
  Q: our son was living with us at the time of his death.he was separated from his wife off and on for ...
  A: Please put the wife's name on the marker if they have children. Not knowing the outcome of their ...
What is right6/27/2009
  Q: We were invited to a birthday party for a woman in her late thirties. It is a party on a riverboat ...
  A: A hostess never gives a party that she cannot afford. Especially not in honor of herself. Your ...
proper headstone punctuation for woman married twice6/26/2009
  Q: My Mother was married, divorced and then married again. I would like to put all of her names on the ...
  A: You may (correctly) either have: Lydia(Thomas)Watson Doe or ...
Gift check6/24/2009
  Q: I've sent my nephew checks for birthdays and most recently his high school graduation, and was ...
  A: If you meant for the child to have the money originally,stopping the check would not be the correct ...
Priviate Invite Etiquette6/23/2009
  Q: I am having a 50th birthday party and can only invite a limited amount of guest. While I have many ...
  A: People are going to hear about the party. Even if you swear every last one of the invited guests ...
school home work6/23/2009
  Q: what shoud we do during school assembly 2.what should we do running tape water
  A: We don't normally help with homework questions,but I think the answers are as follows: Be quiet and ...
50th Birthday Party6/21/2009
  Q: Is it appropriate to invite both people of a recent divorce to a 50th birthday party if the person ...
  A: This is a question where there are variables that influence the answer. It is not inappropriate to ...
SURPRISE 50TH BIRTHDAY PARTY6/20/2009
  Q: I AM PLANNING AN INFORMAL BUT VERY SPECIAL SURPRISE 50TH BIRTHDAY PARTY FOR MY HUSBAND, IN A HALL ON ...
  A: If the party is this important to you,by all means,send out save the date cards. It might not keep ...
gifts for the uber-wealthy6/19/2009
  Q: A friend's child has been invited to the bar mitzvah of a child of one of the wealthiest families in ...
  A: It's a lovely idea for the adults to give and get donations to favorite charities. Even those who ...
graduation ceremony6/19/2009
  Q: Is there a specific order for the entrances of the participants for the "march" during a high school ...
  A: While it is traditional for the adults to enter first,it is not inappropriate to make up your own ...
Mother's Death6/18/2009
  Q: My mother passed way 8 weeks ago and my father began talking about his "friend" 4 days after the ...
  A: You are not being too sensitive,none of us can control grief,only our response to it. Speak to ...
Seating6/17/2009
  Q: My husband's grandson has invited both of us to his wedding in August. I am my husband's second ...
  A: McLennan, You and your husband should be seated together and placed where ever the couple decides ...
Debutante Etiquette6/17/2009
  Q: , My niece is making her debut later this summer. A souvenir journal (partially a fund raiser)will ...
  A: WOW. Thank you for forwarding the other "bit of advice". I am really TRULY sorry. I hope that you ...
Thank you notes6/17/2009
  Q: My sister in law had a birthday party for her 2 year old foster child that she insists on having her ...
  A: You are correct,this isn't about the child,this is about her failed attempts to become a mother. ...
Wedding invitations6/16/2009
  Q: We sent out save-the-date cards for our wedding and several people have already gotten back to us ...
  A: Do not send them invitations. When you next call,write,e-mail or see them,simply say "Tom and I are ...
Card signing etiquette6/16/2009
  Q: My daughter is part of a school choir. The choir director is retiring. We collected money for a ...
  A: Be gracious and go ahead and sign everyone's name. This always happens with group gifts,some people ...
Food in a meeting6/16/2009
  Q: I have a coworker that eats very strong smelling oatmeal for breakfast every morning. She even ...
  A: Are you her immediate superior? If so,yes,go ahead and speak to her in private. "Jenny,we all value ...
Beach house guests6/16/2009
  Q: One of our long time friends has recently gotten engaged and brings her fiance with her to our ...
  A: Either stop inviting the friend and her fiance to your home or,if this woman is a very close ...
graduation cash6/12/2009
  Q: My neighbor/friend of 14 years and I are mothers of graduating high school seniors who have been ...
  A: No,you do not have to EVER 'match gifts'. In fact,you never have to give anyone a present for any ...
House guests and Bedding6/11/2009
  Q: We are staying overnight with some very nice people we don't know very well as yet. The next day, ...
  A: Ask the hostess if she would like for you to strip and remake the bed with fresh sheets. She will ...
hostess gift?6/10/2009
  Q: I live in a building with ten condo units. One of the residents invited everyone to her unit for ...
  A: There is no need to take a hostess gift to a cocktail party. I do think that it would be MUCH more ...
wedding anniversary6/9/2009
  Q: Are we supposed to send each of our kids gifts for their wedding anniversaries? Is just a card ...
  A: No,you are not required to send your kids gifts for their wedding anniversaries. A card is more than ...
niece's wedding6/8/2009
  Q: My younger sister sent an invitation to our Dad (who is 90 and will not be able to come) with me as ...
  A: Obviously you are very hurt by all of this. However,there is nothing wrong with using one ...
recipients of gifts not thanking giver6/8/2009
  Q: There are several nephews on both sides of the family who do not call, send a thank you or say ...
  A: If they get no pleasure in receiving the gifts and you are no longer deriving any joy from sending ...
ungreatful guest6/7/2009
  Q: I have a female single cousin who earns a very good income and doesn't hesitate to spend on herself. ...
  A: 'No good deed goes unpunished' as the saying goes. Listen,being polite does not mean having to be a ...
Debutante Ball6/6/2009
  Q: My college age son has been asked to escort one of his high school friends (they have always been ...
  A: As he is an adult (and they are old friends) please have your son call his friend directly. He can ...
social gathering & dates6/5/2009
  Q: I recently got engaged and my fiance has been taking me to many social gatherings, some of which ...
  A: Your fiance should be aware of your comfort level and do his best to minimize your anxiety at ...
invite to twin's high school graduation6/4/2009
  Q: A friend was invited to twin girls high school graduation. He met one about 5 months ago, and only ...
  A: He asked your thoughts on what,exactly? I am happy to help but there is something missing in your ...
reception 6-7 months after wedding6/3/2009
  Q: For financial reasons, my husband and I had an (in-town) elopement at the end of last December this ...
  A: Wolfe, Who has advised you that it is "not okay" to have a renewal of your vows in a church? If ...
Graduation announcement6/2/2009
  Q: We have received a graduation announcement for the grandson of my husband's cousin who lives in ...
  A: and Mrs. Miller, No,there is no need to send money or a gift. An announcement is merely ...
Church Pledge6/2/2009
  Q: Should we continue our church pledge if we move out of state?
  A: If is was a donation to be made over X number of years as part of a capital campaign,please honor ...
Gift Return6/1/2009
  Q: We recently celebrated an anniversary and were given a surprise party by our children. We received ...
  A: It would be insulting to your friends if you returned their gifts. I understand and applaud the ...
birthday party ettiquette6/1/2009
  Q: I am planning my husband a 30th birthday party and thinking about doing the same thing. Is that ...
  A: A hostess never gives a party that she cannot afford. It is better to serve your friends and family ...
High School graduation6/1/2009
  Q: Is it proper to send out high school invitations as announcements to friends who have been ...
  A: If you write a note with or on the invitations letting the person know that you are just passing on ...
senior graduation ettiquette6/1/2009
  Q: Should I give "neighbors,Friends" a senior graduation announcement for a teen....even though most ...
  A: If they do not know the graduate,they should not be sent an announcement. Announcements are meant ...
gift or no gift5/18/2009
  Q: My best friends wife who has a reputation of being selfish and manipulative, is being thrown a ...
  A: Glad tidings,no gift is necessary. You are never ever under any obligation to take a gift to any ...
birthday5/17/2009
  Q: Some friends and I would like to celebrate a friends birthday at a restaurant.I know it is not ...
  A: Just spread the word via the grapevine that this is what is expected. As you go out with this group ...
high school graduation etiquette5/15/2009
  Q: Amanda My son just found out that he is 1/2 credit short of graduating from high school. We have ...
  A: If he is going to go through the ceremony with his class,please go ahead and behave as if he is ...
Poaching friends5/15/2009
  Q: I belong to a country club. A long-standing friend is also a member, but we do not socialize with ...
  A: Once two people are introduced to each other,they are under no obligation to include the person who ...
Birthday Cards5/14/2009
  Q: My husband comes from a large family. All are married and have children. There are many birthdays ...
  A: Greeting cards are not a requirement,just something nice that people send to mark life milestones. ...
Baby Shower Gift Etiquette5/14/2009
  Q: I attend a co-ed group meeting once a week. There's a guy who is part of my sponsored family ...
  A: Strictly speaking,it was 'wrong' of her to invite you to her baby shower. The guest of honor's ...
apology5/14/2009
  Q: When you ask someone to do something and they say they will do it, then they don't do it, for ...
  A: As you cannot use control other people's behavior and pointing out someone else's slip in mannersis ...
graduation gift etiquette5/13/2009
  Q: My son recently took part in his university graduation only to find out he did not graduate. He ...
  A: Please see to it that he does indeed complete this last class. As he has done 99% of the course work ...
High School Graduation5/13/2009
  Q: Is it appropriate for the graduate to open gifts at an Open House? I thought maybe the guests who ...
  A: Yes,it is fine to open the gifts at the party. Just make sure that you have a small table off to the ...
Wedding gift5/13/2009
  Q: So my question is an easy one for some for me and the bridesmaid it's not . I'm a maid of honor in ...
  A: The bride is being very gracious and if you want to skip getting the couple a gift,do. She ...
College Graduation Decor5/12/2009
  Q: I am about to attend a graduation for my associates degree and am confused about my gown and decor. ...
  A: Anything from your high school days must be left behind. This is a separate school,separate ...
need help5/12/2009
  Q: Do you have any suggestions on a ceremony to present to two very out going, hard working board ...
  A: A ceremony? Why not simply have the board president get up and give a small speech giving the ...
Birthday Invitation5/12/2009
  Q: We are flying to California from Florida for my Son's 1st Birthday, but I don't want people to bring ...
  A: Please tell the guests exactly that,that you only wish to see them and have them there to celebrate ...
Dress for Swan Lake Matinee5/10/2009
  Q: I am going to Swan Lake Ballet. I was planning on going in the evening but it didn't work out. My ...
  A: While the words of the Cole Porter song "Anything Goes" certainly apply,I am afraid you will feel ...
Graduation5/10/2009
  Q: My son got 6 invitations to graduation parties. He nor us(parents) got an actual announcement. He ...
  A: No one ever has to pay for the privilege of being invited to any party by bringing a gift. It is not ...
daughter-in law relationship5/9/2009
  Q: My son recently married a nice girl from our community. However, I am having difficulty connecting ...
  A: Your daughter in law is clearly doing the best that she can in the same awkward and new situation ...
proper dress5/7/2009
  Q: What is the appropriate dress for a music teacher at an afternoon music recital? I will be leading ...
  A: A simple day dress or skirt and blouse in dark colors would be most appropriate. You want to 'look ...
Who pays for the food?5/7/2009
  Q: I am planning the 50th wedding anniversary party for my parents. We have 36 people on the guest ...
  A: A host/ess never gives a party that s/he cannot afford. If all that you can offer your guests is ...
being a date to an out of town wedding5/6/2009
  Q: A friend/co-worker (just a good friend, I have a boyfriend) has asked me to be his date to an out of ...
  A: As you are doing him the favor by agreeing to be his date for the wedding,he gets to pick up the tab ...
college graduation5/6/2009
  Q: I recently received a college graduation announcement from my business partner's daughter. They are ...
  A: An announcement is merely information. They are sent out after an event has happened and the only ...
Etiquette sending high school invitations5/5/2009
  Q: It has always been said where I live that you are not to send a graduation invitation to family if ...
  A: That is correct,there is no point in sending an invitation to a family that has a child in the same ...
could you help me??/5/5/2009
  Q: My daughter is having her graduation on June 12 at night. when should I send out party announcements ...
  A: Please have the party whenever you wish. If your daughter has a large number of friends having their ...
bar mitzvah5/5/2009
  Q: There are 49 kids in my son's grade. For the most part everyone invited everyone to their bar/bat ...
  A: Please stay with your original guest list and let the chips fall where they may. This is going to ...
Dating Economics5/4/2009
  Q: I've been dating someone seriously for over 4 months and we spend a lot of time together at my ...
  A: The first thing that popped into my head was "A new girlfriend". I doubt that you are interested in ...
Birthday Invitaiton Etiquette5/4/2009
  Q: My friend is getting ready to celebrate her daughter's 1st Birthday... and the party is going to be ...
  A: While you are never suppose to say anything about gifts on an invitation as it presumes that you ...
Graduation open house invitation prohibiting alcohol and tobacco use at my residence4/28/2009
  Q: I am hosting a high school graduation open house for my grandson, whom we have raised since infancy. ...
  A: Brown, Do you really expect this to be a problem? If you do not serve alcohol,there shouldn't be ...
Child's Birthday Party/ sick children4/28/2009
  Q: My son's first birthday is coming up and we've invited all the in-laws and lots of other friends ...
  A: If you are that worried about your child's health and the risks posed to it by your family,please ...
Graduation Announcements4/28/2009
  Q: Please advise how soon prior to a high school graduation should the announcements go out? Also - is ...
  A: An announcement always goes out after the fact. Invitations before, announcements after the event ...
A relative's favorite charity4/27/2009
  Q: Gamble, My husband and I donate to several worthwhile charities - in addition to money we have given ...
  A: Please ignore this letter. If she did not have the courtesy to explain why this was so important to ...
Printer's Error Results in Huge Faux Pas4/27/2009
  Q: Gamble - for many years, a printer made small cards for me, much like business cards, with my name ...
  A: Please say nothing. The people (if any) who caught it are not going to say anything as they think ...
wasw to appropriate to end this relationship and ask why she excluded me from her home4/25/2009
  Q: I am puzzled. I have had a friend for several years who has been to my home several times. ...
  A: When there is no question mark present after a long note,I am never sure what the person wants. ...
50th anniversary party4/23/2009
  Q: We plan on having a 50th anniversary party for my parents. There are five girls in the family ...
  A: Sigh. There is always one in every family,isn't there? The proper seating arrangement is the one you ...
A friend asked me to help with her baby shower4/21/2009
  Q: A friend emailed me to ask if I would help plan her baby shower which is being held at her home. ...
  A: I am trying to get past the audacity of someone asking others to give her a party in the first ...
baby gifts4/20/2009
  Q: In my neighborhood when someone has a baby we all chip in $20. I have always chipped in and really ...
  A: Once per family is enough. Speak to your neighbors at a time when this subject isn't pressing (so it ...
anniversary of friends mother4/20/2009
  Q: My friends mother past away suddenly this past May of 2008. One year will soon be here. What can I ...
  A: Write her a note letting her know that you are thinking of her as she faces this difficult ...
Sympathy card4/20/2009
  Q: I recently found out a high school boyfriends mother passed away its was 35 years ago that I knew ...
  A: As you know,there is no time limit to grief. Sometimes we can feel the loss of a loved one very ...
divorce etiquette4/20/2009
  Q: My daughter will be making her confirmation and I want to know who I am required to invite for this ...
  A: As your daughter is taking the very adult step of joining her church as a full member,please ask her ...
High School Graduation4/19/2009
  Q: My Daughter is Graduating in June. I would like to send a notice to a few of my friends who are ...
  A: As these are very close friends of yours,just hand write a line or two in the invitation. I do NOT ...
family issues4/18/2009
  Q: How does one communicate to family members that unsolicited advise is not desired?
  A: As family members usually mean well,it is best,if you can stand it,to simply say "Thank you. You've ...
Sending out thank you sympathy cards4/18/2009
  Q: My Dad passed and I want to send many thank you cards out for all the flowers, donations and ...
  A: Please know how sorry I am for your loss. If you wish to sign only your family's name,you certainly ...
divorce etiquette4/15/2009
  Q: I am just wondering what the approriate thing is to say to someone when they tell you there divorce ...
  A: Try to nod wisely or say something neutral along the lines of "Well..I'm sure this has been a ...
napkin handling during dinner at a restaurant4/15/2009
  Q: Is the waiter supposed to refold one's napkin after leaving the table for a short period? I say no, ...
  A: Good heavens NO. Even in the nicest of restaurants the wait staff should not handle the napkins ...
friendship etiquette4/15/2009
  Q: My husband and I are very social people and make friends easily. We have met many friends, since ...
  A: When you introduce people,they are free to form their own friendship and pursue whatever common ...
Do not like a friend of a friend4/15/2009
  Q: My dear old friend from college frequently invites me and my husband to parties and events. ...
  A: Speak to her privately and make sure she understand that you are not asking her to choose or take ...
Headstone Etiquette4/15/2009
  Q: When having the wife of the deceased name placed on a headstone of her husband should it be her ...
  A: The more common practice is to have it marked "Jane Smith Jones" with the idea that if the married ...
name to be called4/14/2009
  Q: I live in Japan and teach English to my husband's first cousin's 20 year old daughter. What should ...
  A: As she is an adult,she should call you be your first name if that is all right with you. If it is ...
Wedding invitation etiquette4/14/2009
  Q: My brother and sister had a falling out. It was his fault but he feels it's her fault. So, now his ...
  A: Do you feel that you must give a reason? I understand not wishing to go,but telling your brother ...
College Graduation4/14/2009
  Q: I have a niece and several cousins and friends children who are graduating from high school this ...
  A: Very few people actually want to attend a graduation ceremony that does not involve a close ...
Bonus at Time of Death for Aide4/14/2009
  Q: My mother recently passed away and she had an aide that took wonderful care of her 24/7 for the last ...
  A: The rule of thumb for this sort of thing is a week's pay. But do what you feel comfortable with and ...
Request for proper invitation wording for guest attire4/14/2009
  Q: We are hosting a formal 50th wedding anniversary celebration for my parents and would like to ...
  A: Usually the expectations for guest attire are written in one or two words and placed at the bottom ...
Re Debutant ball4/14/2009
  Q: I am living in Australia and my son goes to a very traditional private school.He is attending a ...
  A: If this young woman has invited your son to her debut,she should provide the tickets. More to the ...
Manners Slip/Rude Host...4/13/2009
  Q: My husband and I were at a cook out a few weeks ago at the home of a friend and my husband had a ...
  A: This is a story that has been around for years,no one knows it is true or not,but the meaning is ...
To give or not to give4/13/2009
  Q: One of my coworkers never gives gifts but expects us to give her gifts at holidays and for her ...
  A: To give or not to give? If you have no desire to spend your hard earned money on presents for this ...
houseguest4/13/2009
  Q: We are to be staying for 2 Nights with my husband's brother & his wife. I do not know them ...
  A: Offer under the general guise of 'family pitching in' but then take your hosts' words at face value ...
High school graduation4/13/2009
  Q: When you should you mail out graduation notices?
  A: By notice do you mean an announcement? Those are always sent out after the event has taken place. ...
edicate for giving present4/11/2009
  Q: i wanted to know if I should give a card and present or just a card to someone at a going away party ...
  A: Gift giving is always a personal choice. There is no right or wrong. You give presents because you ...
graduate school acceptance/ 30th birthday4/11/2009
  Q: My 29 yr. old daughter lives in Illinois and I live in Massachusetts. She is coming for a visit ...
  A: You may certainly give a party for any reason that you wish. To combine the two is fine. An ...
retiremebt party4/11/2009
  Q: My niece friends are giving her a retirement party. They are charging $55.00 a person.I have one ...
  A: No. While it is wrong to ask people to 'pay for the privilege' of being invited anywhere as a ...
Guests inviting additional guests4/10/2009
  Q: I am hosting a family get together and have a sister who has invited a family friend. This friend is ...
  A: A guest should not invite other guests. It isn't their party,the host/ess has thought out the ...
Obituary Etitque4/9/2009
  Q: Should you list a widow in a death announcement? My mother remarried and her husband passed away, ...
  A: Yes,please do mention her. You say where and when he was born and to whom,the schools he went ...
Signing and Addressing Cards4/9/2009
  Q: When signing or addressing cards, should I include the names of unmarried adult children not living ...
  A: As a general rule,no,you do not include the unmarried adult children. If they are off on their ...
work cafeteria etiquette4/7/2009
  Q: The cafeteria at work is set up with very long tables with chairs on each side. I eat alone so I try ...
  A: If the people are unknown to you and are having a conversation that doesn't directly include you,it ...
Teenage boys n earrings4/7/2009
  Q: My son is 18 years old now and he wants to wear earrings. Very few accept boys wearing earrings in ...
  A: I am not an expert on life in the Maldives,but as I understand it, it is primarily a nation that ...
High School Graduation Invitations4/5/2009
  Q: I have a daughter about to graduate from high school. We are wondering if it is proper to send ...
  A: Please send them announcements but not invitations. An announcement goes out after the event is over ...
proper name4/5/2009
  Q: Lady had been married for 20 years, maiden name was smith. married name has been Johnson, is now ...
  A: She may properly style herself: Jane Smith if she has decided not to take her new husband's name ...
dinner conversation4/5/2009
  Q: Is it proper to make comments about or discuss the food you are eating while dining?
  A: If you are among "foodies" please go ahead. If you are not,stick to topics less controversial,such ...
MY BIRTHDAY DINNER4/3/2009
  Q: THIS QUESTION HAS BEEN ANSWERED SOMEWHAT ON YOUR WEB SITE BUT I NEED IT ANSWER FOR ME. I WILL BE ...
  A: Coles, An invitation automatically implies that the person being asked to join you is your guest ...
Ex's wives and family events4/2/2009
  Q: My common in law bf and I are in our 40's he in his late 40's we have grown children and ...
  A: Out of respect for your feelings this boyfriend should ask these women to not come to family events ...
Wedding Announcements4/2/2009
  Q: Would it be proper for grooms parents to send announcements to their friends after the wedding? We ...
  A: It is absolutely appropriate. It is still your news to share with whomever you'd like to know it. ...
baby shower4/1/2009
  Q: I am hosting a baby shower for one of my friends. She and her mom have suggested that I hold it at a ...
  A: As you are the hostess of this party,you get to decide where it is held and all of the other ...
graduation announcement timeline4/1/2009
  Q: What is the proper timeline as far as how early high school graduation announcements should be ...
  A: An announcement always goes out after the event is over. Invitations,on the other hand,may go out a ...
ETIQUETTE3/31/2009
  Q: SOME OF OUR HOUSE GUESTS TEND TO REMOVE ALL THE BED LINEN FROM THE MATTRESS BEFORE LEAVING, IS THIS ...
  A: There are wonderful things called mattress covers. You buy them for a new mattress to protect it or ...
Different moms3/30/2009
  Q: My sister and I have the same dad but different moms. Am I related to her mom or any of her moms ...
  A: Is your half sister's Mom your step-mother at this time? If so, then,yes,you are related. If she is ...
etiquette3/30/2009
  Q: I called my brother and told him i was coming over with my fiance. we get to the house and he lets ...
  A: A gracious host or hostess welcomes people into their home by greeting them. However,since she had ...
Baby Shower Invitation3/30/2009
  Q: My daughter's friends are hosting a baby shower for her. At my request, my daughter is including ...
  A: Irving, How close can these friends of yours truly be if they are unaware of your daughter's ...
Gifts for Bridal Shower Hostesses3/29/2009
  Q: I am the mother of the bride. I was told that I need to buy gifts for my four friends who are ...
  A: Levin, No. You may if you wish,but it is not required nor should it be expected. These women are ...
Dessert Bar3/27/2009
  Q: I am throwing a co-ed baby shower and plan to serve a food buffet as well as a dessert bar. Should I ...
  A: If you have the space there is nothing wrong with putting the desserts out at the same time as the ...
Hosting a baby shower3/27/2009
  Q: Is it proper for the grandmother to be to host a baby shower? My son is an only child so there are ...
  A: The only people who may properly give a woman a bridal or baby shower are her friends. Showers ...
Protocol for Graduation Invitation3/27/2009
  Q: I have searched for the proper answer to this one and cannot find one that relates to it. My ...
  A: You are not required to send (or take) a gift for any occasion. No one has to 'pay for the ...
how to show my support3/26/2009
  Q: My boss - male in the 60's - is having colon cancer surgery. Should I send a card, flowers, a book? ...
  A: None of the things that you mention are inappropriate gestures of support and concern. I don't know ...
Graduation Announcement3/25/2009
  Q: My daughter will soon graduate with a doctorate of dentistry-and will soon after become an associate ...
  A: Elizabeth Doe Smith has graduated from Winston University with a ...
bearevment card3/24/2009
  Q: A family member died (not immediate family) and I would like to know if it's proper to address the ...
  A: Please address the note to both your relative and her husband. Even if he was not close to his ...
Invitation to do brunch together to celebrate3/24/2009
  Q: My birthday is coming up and I am not in the position this year to throw a party. I really want for ...
  A: Yes,if you are sending out invitations,you are the hostess and bear the responsibility for the ...
Graduation gifts3/23/2009
  Q: Amanda, Recently I was preparing to graduate from a four-year college with a bachelor's degree. ...
  A: I wish I knew how "off track" you are here. Is it that you are short a class or two and will ...
$ given in your honor3/23/2009
  Q: I have in-laws that give in-direct gifts to their adult children and now their grandchildren. They ...
  A: Absolutely nothing. The only appropriate response to any gift, even the ones that you do not like,is ...
seating at booths3/21/2009
  Q: When a couple is sitting on the same side of a restaurant booth, does the female sit on the inside ...
  A: It is okay for the man to go in first so that the woman does not have to slide and wrinkle her ...
Gift at wedding for future step children3/21/2009
  Q: My son is getting married and will have three new step children. He wants to, during the ceremony, ...
  A: Please make it something that they can each keep and use well into adulthood. Engraved pocket or ...
Acknowledge a thank-you gift?3/20/2009
  Q: Is there etiquette precedence to acknowledge a thank-you gift? My sister-in-law stayed a weekend ...
  A: It isn't a 'must' but it's a nice thing to do. (Saying thank you for a thank you gift with a ...
Who pays for dinner3/18/2009
  Q: Boyfriend and girlfriend's parents are meeting for the first time over dinner. Both sets of parents ...
  A: If the boyfriend (couple) can afford to do so,he (they) should pay the check. The parents are ...
ex girlfriends3/17/2009
  Q: My boyfriend recently "dropped in" on his ex girlfriend whom he has not had any significant contact ...
  A: You don't need to let it go,you need to let him go. He obviously still has feelings for this woman. ...
Sporting Event tickets3/17/2009
  Q: On one of the social networking sites I saw that an old acquaintance had 4 available tickets to an ...
  A: Don't make too big a deal of it,but after saying thank you it wouldn't hurt to say "...and you're ...
Wedding gift3/17/2009
  Q: My daughter received a check from one of her cousins as a gift as he was unable to attend the ...
  A: Tricky. Sending the thank you note is a must,of course. I am with you in not saying anything more ...
Declining a party in my honor?3/17/2009
  Q: A good friend is insisting on throwing me a birthday party to celebrate an upcoming milestone. It's ...
  A: Absolutely. Please thank the hostess for her kindness,but that it would be uncomfortable for you to ...
Sympathy Card Etiquette3/17/2009
  Q: Is it poor etiquette to send a sympathy card a few months after the person passed away?
  A: No,it is perfectly appropriate to send a note well after the final rites are over. Sometimes we ...
Party for a Doctoral graduate3/16/2009
  Q: What title do you put after the graduate name when giving a party after commencent ceremony
  A: Boswell, It is common practice to write the celebrant's first name only in icing on the cake,but ...
Was this wrong?3/16/2009
  Q: My mother-in law was unhappy with a birthday gift my wife (her daughter) gave to her. Several days ...
  A: Of course you were right to be appalled. What mother does that? Answer: A really bad one. Or at ...
Graduation3/16/2009
  Q: What is an appropriate graduation gift for someone receiving an associate's degree?
  A: Something the person would like or could use. It also helps if it is something that you can afford ...
Wedding response3/15/2009
  Q: If you are invited to a wedding after the first round of invitations are out and responded to and ...
  A: NO! Even if you were going you still wouldn't have to take a gift. No one ever has to pay for the ...
money3/13/2009
  Q: how are some ways a 11 year old can earn money
  A: An 11 year old is probably too young to babysit,but have you thought about asking family and family ...
Who pays for casual birthday party in a restaurant?3/13/2009
  Q: My girlfriend "Diane" is having a birthday soon and her boyfriend arranged to have a surprise dinner ...
  A: The rule of thumb is,that no host or hostess should ever throw a party that they cannot afford. If ...
friendship and rent.3/11/2009
  Q: i own an apartment in mumbai INDIA. the market rent is Rs 25000/- with a security deposit of Rs ...
  A: Have you thought about it from his point of view? It may seem insulting to him that his best friend ...
Graduate school ettiquette3/11/2009
  Q: My son is graduating from veterinary school as a DVM. What is the ettiquette for announcements? ...
  A: Party invitations and announcements are two different things. An announcement is simply a way to ...
Baby shower3/11/2009
  Q: What is the typical protocol for where the mother-in-law of the mom-to-be should sit at her ...
  A: Well,as a bridal and baby showers are supposed to be informal events given by a woman's ...
just asking!3/10/2009
  Q: Good day Ma'am! I just want to know if it is a bad manner in table if you talk that too much. ...
  A: You're welcome,Rocky. -A.J.G.
death etiquette3/9/2009
  Q: My ex father-in-law died last December but I just heard about it a few weeks ago. I wasn't real ...
  A: No,it wouldn't be the least bit inappropriate. You are sincerely sorry for the loss of this man. ...
House Guest Nightmare3/9/2009
  Q: I have a friend that moved to another state a couple years ago. Once my boyfriend and I visited her ...
  A: Oh honey,no. No,no,no. Do not let yourself be treated like this. Do not allow your home to be used ...
Divorcing Friend3/5/2009
  Q: I have a situation where my neighbor and close acquaintance is in the middle of a divorce. Her ...
  A: You already know what to do,it was in the body of your letter. Trust your instincts here. Your first ...
Recognizing Wedding Anniversary after the death of a spouse3/5/2009
  Q: My husband and I are very close to another couple. Sadly, the husband has just died, and their ...
  A: Please do not send an anniversary card but do write her a note. She will be thinking of her husband ...
envelope addressing for bridal shower3/5/2009
  Q: What is correct? Mrs. Leslie or Mrs. Husband name or something else.
  A: If your friend is known socially by her husband's name,then Mrs Fred Smoot goes on the envelope. If ...
Christening party3/5/2009
  Q: I invited a friend that lives in a different state and that I have known since high school to my ...
  A: Tell her it would not be fair to subject her or the boyfriend to the upheaval that surrounds a new ...
weddings3/4/2009
  Q: I would like to know if there is a certain way of handling weddings, baby showers and wedding ...
  A: A woman should be given one bridal and one baby shower in her lifetime. The original 'showers' ...
graduation announcement3/1/2009
  Q: Would it be proper to indicate in our daughters' announcements for her graduate level medical degree ...
  A: An announcement and an invitation are two very different things. An announcement is merely news to ...
Adult Child Etiquette3/1/2009
  Q: Every time I go to lunch or dinner with my 34 YEAR OLD daughter, I am expected to pay. She never ...
  A: Children are what we raise them to become. Now that she is an adult,the time to correct her behavior ...
step family @middle school graduation parties2/28/2009
  Q: there will be a photographer on hand and I want to know do i take photos with my son and his step ...
  A: Why can you not do both? There is no 'right' answer to this. Only you know what his relationship is ...
Bridal Tea2/26/2009
  Q: We are having a Family Only wedding. A Bridal tea is being hosted for future daughter in law and I ...
  A: Please do not invite anyone to the tea who will not also receive an invitation to the wedding. ...
exwives and girlfirends2/24/2009
  Q: i have been dating a man for nearly three years. he has been separated/divorced now for about 3 1/2 ...
  A: There is nothing inappropriate about your boyfriend attending the funeral of his former ...
Borrowing and returning items2/24/2009
  Q: Gamble! Thank you for your time and advice! 4 years ago my mom sent me 10 handmade scarves, while ...
  A: The best rule of thumb to follow when loaning something out is to never expect to get it back. ...
non invite to a lingerie shower2/24/2009
  Q: My brother is getting married in April and my sister and I are brides maids in the wedding. We found ...
  A: Of course you have the right to be upset. No one can or should tell you how to feel. It is how we ...
Birthday Invitation Etiquette2/24/2009
  Q: I am planning my 30th birthday which well be held at a local restaurant. I would prefer for my ...
  A: A hostess never gives a party that she cannot afford. Please scale back your plans to include only ...
Gift-giving at 50th Anniversary celebration2/23/2009
  Q: I was invited to a small party for my friends parents (50th anniversary). There was no mention of ...
  A: Spaulding, Usually after 50 years of marriage,people have enough 'stuff' and really do not want ...
Family dinner dishes2/23/2009
  Q: A bit of background...My sister and I and our respective families go to my Mom's on Sunday's for ...
  A: This is very simple,really. What do these family dinners mean to you? What price are you willing to ...
How to tactfully change service providers2/22/2009
  Q: I have been going to the same colorist for several years and using another sytlist to cut my hair. ...
  A: It is kindest to simply not book your next appointment. Drift off as it were. She provided a service ...
Grandmother's Shower2/22/2009
  Q: Recently, a friend of my mother's (who I do not know well) offered to throw me a baby shower. I had ...
  A: If your Mom can con someone into throwing her a "grandmother shower" then so be it. But suggest that ...
Name for return address2/20/2009
  Q: For a college graduation announcment: Is the student's name OK for the return address? There are ...
  A: The envelope is strictly business. The information on it needs to be clear for the sake of the ...
Thank you etiquette2/19/2009
  Q: I was recently informed that I had been the winner of a local radio contest for a free total tattoo ...
  A: It is never wrong to say thank you. This means a great deal to you. (the tattoo removal) Let them ...
Birthday Registry2/19/2009
  Q: I’m planning my daughters first birthday party. There will be mostly family attending and some of ...
  A: It might be helpful,but it is not appropriate. No matter how much your friends and family love this ...
Greeting Cards2/18/2009
  Q: A friend of my wife, which was invited to our wedding and had social gatherings with us has always ...
  A: Your wife's friend is not the problem here. He or she is being ridiculously petty. Who carries on a ...
Birthday Wishing Well2/18/2009
  Q: I have been asked to a 40th Birthday Party and on the invitation they request "no gifts please" but ...
  A: The worst breech of etiquette anyone can make is to point out someone else's faux pas. The term ...
no gifts for children2/16/2009
  Q: My child is 3 1/2 years old. He has just been invited to the 2nd birthday party this year requesting ...
  A: It isn't a trick,I promise. Many parents are realizing that their kids have more toys than they ...
birthday gift age2/16/2009
  Q: What is appropriate age to stop giving gifts for birthday. I have a niece who is turning 18. Is it ...
  A: At the age of 18 she becomes an adult. She is free to join the military,marry and to enjoy all sorts ...
Who pays how much for a dinner bill2/16/2009
  Q: Who pays how much for a dinner bill I joined 2 friends at a pub; they are engaged to be married. ...
  A: Oh dear. Our starry eyed bride to be is taking the Gospel according to Mark a little too seriously. ...
christening lunch dilemer2/15/2009
  Q: i am christening my two daughters shortly and plan to have nibbles after at a near by pub, my ...
  A: Offer what you can afford to give your guests without apology. Can you have coffee and tea available ...
Going away party2/13/2009
  Q: Our family is moving to another country in April. We would like to see our friends and family before ...
  A: Absolutely. You may give a party at any time and for almost any reason. This is an excellent reason! ...
Gift Giving2/12/2009
  Q: My neice has legally adopted her husbands son from his previous and are having a celebration at ...
  A: How nice of you to want to do something to commemorate such a special day. I don't know how ...
Charity giving etiquette2/12/2009
  Q: My in-laws, with whom I have a very awkward relationship, have begun to send a gift card at ...
  A: "It is my strong belief that if you give a gift of charity in someone else's name, it is proper to ...
Tastefully wording on Lingerie Shower Invitations2/10/2009
  Q: I'm giving a lingerie shower and would like some examples of "tasteful" wording on the ...
  A: Guests are asked to remember when shopping that Sarah's elderly and easily shocked great Grandmother ...
salutation2/10/2009
  Q: how do you address letter - husband is a Mr. and the wife is a doctor....would it be: Mr. John and ...
  A: If she has taken her husband's name then socially,she still may be properly addressed as "Mrs. John ...
Quick Question2/10/2009
  Q: Unfortunately, my brother has recently passed away. We have everything arrainged including flowers. ...
  A: Please know how very sorry I am for your loss. Yes,it is appropriate to take flowers to the memorial ...
inconsiderate in-laws (and husband too)2/9/2009
  Q: Let me start by setting up the situation. We invited my in-laws over for dinner one Sunday. We had ...
  A: The problem isn't with your in-laws,it's with your husband. The in laws,either through expressed or ...
Headstone Etiquette2/9/2009
  Q: Please tell me what is appropriate for the following: 1. My grandmother was married a second time. ...
  A: Please know how sorry I am for your loss. Ninety nine is certainly a long life,but it doesn't mean ...
Attire-Private Dining Room2/9/2009
  Q: Is it permissable to allow the wearing of 'jeans' in a private, 'elegant' (formal table setting; ...
  A: I am a little confused by your question. (As to who owns the place and what it is a part of) No ...
Neighbourhood party2/8/2009
  Q: I don't know where to start. We are a pretty socially shy family. My husband has never gotten past ...
  A: It is puzzling to me that in this day and age there are people who would consider your son 'not ...
our baby2/6/2009
  Q: we have a 16 mo. old. my husband is persian and i'm american. the babies hair has been getting ...
  A: Yes,she was out of line,but it's a bell you can't un-ring. Your poor dear husband was probably just ...
etiquette2/5/2009
  Q: should i take a gift to a business open house?if so any ideas? thanks, sue lange
  A: Are you invited as a potential client or is this a friend/family member who is opening a business? ...
What should I have done?2/5/2009
  Q: I was entering a building with my manager and I was holding the door. At the same time an old friend ...
  A: Don't be too hard on yourself here,it happens to all of us. We get trapped by someone who is talking ...
Sympathy card2/4/2009
  Q: My mother-in-law passed away. In addressing the envelope, do I include my son and grandchildren's ...
  A: Please address your condolence note to whomever it is intended for. If all of these people live in ...
etiquette for stepmother to be2/4/2009
  Q: i'm having conversations with my daughter about her future step mother's involvement in my ...
  A: Your instincts are correct,you should not get involved. Your divorce is over and done with. If you ...
seating at anniversary party2/4/2009
  Q: We will be having a party to celebrate our 40th anniversary. How should the attendants be seated? ...
  A: What attendants? The original bridesmaids and groomsmen,etc? I am happy to help,but am confused by ...
Proper Gift2/3/2009
  Q: I have been invited to attend the ceremony of a friend who has been promoted to Colonel in the Army. ...
  A: If you cannot think of something off the top of your head,then it is okay to pass. In fact,you are ...
rsvp2/1/2009
  Q: what is the proper way to answer a RSVP to a wedding....specify what follow the M on the response ...
  A: The M is followed by r,s,rs,etc. (Mr. Ms. Mrs.) if the person responding is a doctor,minister,naval ...
30th Birthday party1/31/2009
  Q: I'm throwing a surprise 30th birthday party for my husband. We are having it at a local bowling ...
  A: Perfectly reasonable. You are having the party at the bowling alley. It (bowling)is not the sole ...
Salutaton for same sex couple1/31/2009
  Q: I have two female friends who have recently married. How do I address the envelope? Before the ...
  A: Do they live in France? If so,you were not incorrect. For this newly married couple,until you find ...
bridal shower1/31/2009
  Q: Is it bad luck to open gift at a shower with a knife or a scissors
  A: This isn't etiquette,this is superstition. In some cultures, opening a bridal shower gift with a ...
birthday invitation wording1/30/2009
  Q: My daughter would like to have some friends go with her to a local resturant to celebrate her 17th ...
  A: If you tell someone that they must pay for the privilege of being invited somewhere as a guest,it ...
Texting Thank You's1/30/2009
  Q: If someone texts you thanking you for a gift.Do you need to acknowledge them? Do you need thank them ...
  A: No need to 'thank them for thanking you' but there is no harm in acknowledging the text with a ...
emial vs phone call1/30/2009
  Q: Beyond the practical side, when is it proper to use a phone call over an e-mail and/or vice versa, ...
  A: As both are extremely informal means of communication,one is no better (or worse) than the other ...
leg crossing1/29/2009
  Q: what is the proper way for men and women to cross their legs?
  A: A woman may cross her legs at the ankle or at the knee. But if she crosses them at the knee,she ...
Wording on wedding invitation1/29/2009
  Q: Re: parents of the groom - wording on Wedding invitation: Should it be: Doctor and Mrs John Everett ...
  A: If John E Smith Sr is deceased,then junior does move up a spot. Some men never do change their names ...
hem of long dress1/28/2009
  Q: Is there a proper hem length of a long dress? What I mean is should the shoes be hidden or seen? You ...
  A: I am going to turn to the immortal words of Mr Cole Porter for the answer "In olden days a glimpse ...
duties when visiting1/28/2009
  Q: Should I always take a gift? Also when staying over night do I strip the bed of it's linens and ...
  A: It depends entirely upon how well you know your host/ess. If it is a family member or good friend,it ...
Daughter-In-Laws Baby Shower1/28/2009
  Q: This is actually a two fold question and lengthy because it is complicated. I am a first time ...
  A: It is your daughter's ticket. She is an adult and it is her responsibility to roll with the crazy ...
anniversary invitations1/27/2009
  Q: It's our 50th anniversary and I want to send out save the date cards how far in advance should they ...
  A: The more formal the event the longer the lead time. Six months for a truly big (or at least ...
formal invitations1/26/2009
  Q: our historical group will be sending an invitation to our governor and congressman what is the ...
  A: Grant, Dear Governor Daniels, On behalf of the Heirloom Tomato Society,I would like to ...
Gift for college graduation open house?1/26/2009
  Q: I am invited to a college graduation Open House. What is the proper gift for a college graduate, or ...
  A: The older the graduate (the more advanced the degree) the less appropriate it is to give them a ...
meeting my boyfriends family1/26/2009
  Q: my BF and i have been dating for over 4 years, He is 37 I am 35. He's a dentist, I'm a drug ...
  A: The first thing to do here is relax. This will be a walk in the park compared to what you have been ...
Is Velvet appropriate any time1/24/2009
  Q: Is a formal velvet dress or skirt/jacket acceptable any time it is cold or only during the holidays? ...
  A: Velvet is supposed to be worn only from October 1st to March 1st unless it is an evening coat or ...
baby shower ettiquette1/23/2009
  Q: your reply was that you had already answered this question for me before but you must have me ...
  A: The 'answered before' means that it is in the archives and available to be searched. But I will be ...
Proper Use of Education Honorific1/23/2009
  Q: Good Day, I have a question about the proper use of education honorifics. A few years ago I ...
  A: I wouldn't say "missed",I don't think a memo was circulated. But,yes,it used to be that people very ...
50th anniversary party1/23/2009
  Q: I am trying to put together an anniversary dinner for my parents 50th anniversary, but with the cost ...
  A: Campbell, A hostess never gives a party that she cannot afford. No one should ever be made to 'pay ...
Can't afforf it, don't want to.1/22/2009
  Q: A couple of my work colleagues always want me there to celebrate their birthdays at expensive ...
  A: As this is only a twice a year inconvenience,it is better to either go to the birthday party or ...
Ex-in-laws in Obituary and Memorial Service1/21/2009
  Q: I recently married a man who has two ex-wives. His mother is dying of cancer and we will be writing ...
  A: It is absolutely appropriate to list anyone the family agrees upon as survivors of your Mother in ...
Invitation wording/Party etiquette1/20/2009
  Q: I've chosen the venue and am playing golf with close friends and clients in the morning, cocktail ...
  A: No one should ever be asked to pay for the privilege of being invited somewhere as a guest. ...
Divorced parents visiting child1/19/2009
  Q: My daughter lives in another city from myself and Ex-wife. She has asked us to visit to meet groom's ...
  A: As long as the two ex-spouses can get along without committing murder,mayhem or general scandal,it ...
thank yous and $1/19/2009
  Q: I have been staying with a friend while I attend a three week condensed college course. She has done ...
  A: You have already paid her and it would be a bit awkward to add on to the amount now,as if it were a ...
Advice on giving advice on giving advice1/19/2009
  Q: Amanda- I just received an email from my mother in which she offered advice and correction under ...
  A: Is there any hope of changing who she is and how she reacts to things? Some people can manage to see ...
bridal shower or celebration1/19/2009
  Q: My daughter is getting married soon and has chosen a destination wedding with only immediate family ...
  A: Yes,you are correct,you never invite people to a shower when they have no reasonable expectation of ...
Giving back gifts to the gift giver.1/18/2009
  Q: I recently purchased a Christmas gift for someone in my future husband's family. I did enclose the ...
  A: You are correct,it is rude (and a little odd) for them to make such a request. The whole purpose of ...
Asking to include a friend in an invitation1/17/2009
  Q: I have been invited to my co-worker's annual party. She invites a lot of people, and it is a ...
  A: While normally it is taboo to ask to bring a friend to someone else's party,in this case (a large ...
widow of son attending ex-father-in-laws funeral and obituaries1/16/2009
  Q: I have been very close to my former father and mother-in-law. My first husband died in 1998 and I ...
  A: Please know how sorry I am for your loss. The next of kin,the closest surviving relative has the ...
daughters engagement1/16/2009
  Q: do I have to invite my ex to my home for an engagement party for her daughter
  A: If you (or she) cannot make it through the party without getting into an argument or causing a ...
gifts1/16/2009
  Q: if your invited to a wedding anniversary dinner should you bring a gift or if you give the couple a ...
  A: If you have been invited to an anniversary dinner,the host is responsible for the expenses of the ...
college graduation announcements1/15/2009
  Q: Gamble I am wondering who announces a college graduation if the graduate is married? the parents? ...
  A: When the graduate is married it is appropriate to have the announcements read simply: ...
Nephews/Nieces1/13/2009
  Q: We have been giving birthday money for our nieces and nephews for years. But when the kids finally ...
  A: It's a little silly and (depending on how the kids feel about it) demeaning for an adult to get ...
60th birthday1/13/2009
  Q: A group of women have offered to host our friends 60th birthday. Several hostess's have suggested ...
  A: A guest should never be expected to pay for the privilege of being invited somewhere. The group of ...
Following Memorial Service1/12/2009
  Q: another month or so, and wonder if it is proper to invite guests back to my home for a light ...
  A: Please know how sorry I am for your loss. Yes,you certainly may have friends and family come back ...
Bridal Shower invitation1/10/2009
  Q: Would it "proper" to send out Bridal Shower invitations that include 2 dates and 2 locations so the ...
  A: As it is your intent to be considerate of your prospective guests,giving them a choice of two ...
Gift Etiquette1/10/2009
  Q: A very good friend gave me a Christmas gift that is something I don't like. I am surprised that ...
  A: If this woman is truly someone that you consider to be a 'very good friend' why in the world would ...
Addressing envelopes to government officials1/9/2009
  Q: I have written a letter to my local military base commander and know how to address that letter, ...
  A: Please excuse the tardy reply,I have no idea where your question went after it was sent,but it only ...
Gift Giving at PHD party.1/8/2009
  Q: Is it proper to give a gift at the reception ?
  A: While it is not inappropriate to give a newly liberated graduate student a present,it is not ...
Returning a Christmas gift to giver1/8/2009
  Q: Is it appropriate to return a Christmas gift a friend gave to you if you have a falling out with the ...
  A: No,you do not want to add insult to injury. The person gave you the gift for Christmas. The holiday ...
walking Etiquette1/6/2009
  Q: A man and woman are walking on the street, to which side of the woman is the man walking?
  A: The man walks on the outside,closest to the awful,muddy,dangerous road. Etiquette demands that the ...
Condolences1/6/2009
  Q: I just learned of a death of an old friend's mother who has passed away 3 and a half weeks ago. As ...
  A: It is absolutely appropriate to send her a note of condolence. Just a few lines will do. Dear ...
legacy members of a debutante society1/6/2009
  Q: I am on the board of a debutante society club. This club was formed 21 years ago in which I became ...
  A: Each has it's own merits. The upside to making people re-apply is that you can get rid of dead wood ...
Sympathy Cards1/6/2009
  Q: Amanda, My father-in-law passed away a few days ago, and I am wondering if my husband and I are are ...
  A: No,there is no need for members of the immediate family to send anything to each other. If there is ...
Earrings as a gift1/5/2009
  Q: I received a pair of very pretty pierced earrings from my boyfriends mother for Christmas that match ...
  A: Please write a thank you note and do not say anything that will indicate that you are anything less ...
Graduation Parties1/5/2009
  Q: My friend is having a Graduation Party for her granddaughter. Instead of gifts she wants to tell ...
  A: A money tree is never in good taste. Nor is telling people that you expect gifts of any kind. A ...
10th wedding anniversary1/4/2009
  Q: Is it tacky to have a party for our 10th wedding anniversary? We want to invite our family and close ...
  A: Anyone may have a party for any reason they wish. As long as the focus is on treating your guests ...
messy house1/4/2009
  Q: The best friend of my son and his wife keeps a very messy, dusty, and cluttered house. It is really ...
  A: Easy resolution,if your son and daughter in law wish to see this woman,why do they not invite her to ...
Birthday Party Dates1/3/2009
  Q: My husband's 40th birthday is Jan. 28th and I figured we would do it the Saturday or the Saturday ...
  A: Anyone may give a party for almost any reason and at any time. A few weeks or months past the actual ...
Bridal Shower1/3/2009
  Q: I'm planning a wedding for my daughter. We have many out of state guest. Do you invite the out of ...
  A: Please leave the out of state guests who have no reasonable expectation of coming to the shower off ...
present for my mother-in-law turning 80.1/3/2009
  Q: My husband and I are planning a surprise 80th birthday party for his mother. We are having it in our ...
  A: Money trees are never in good taste. What you did for your own dear Mother's party was perfect. Ask ...
Guest of a guest -- Thank-you note?1/2/2009
  Q: I was invited by a friend to accompany him to a Christmas party last month. One of the host couple ...
  A: You may thank your host,as you were his guest. Leave the thanking of the party givers via note to ...
bedding1/2/2009
  Q: can you advise me of the correct way to place pillows on the bed. i have always placed them so the ...
  A: I was always taught to place the pillows as you do,with the case openings facing inward,away from ...
Banquet Invitation Addressing1/1/2009
  Q: My organization is hosting an awards banquet. I am trying to figure out the proper way to address ...
  A: Have you ever heard the story about Julie Andrews as a child? She had a freakishly adult voice and ...
unwanted guest ...12/31/2008
  Q: My cousin and her husband left their corporate careers a few years ago for a "bohemian" (their word) ...
  A: Wow,no one can accuse him of being shy,can they? If two days are all that you are comfortable ...
Birthday/W/A etc...12/30/2008
  Q: How do you handle this? At a social gathering; we met a couple. We exchanged e-mail and phone nos ...
  A: What couple wants to share their wedding anniversary dinner with virtual strangers? I find that a ...
No gift to give12/30/2008
  Q: What should I do about a new friend buying me a Christmas present? I met him on Halloween, have ...
  A: He probably got you something because he wanted to and did not expect anything in return. You are ...
Accepting an invitation after declining12/30/2008
  Q: What is a polite response to friends who decline an invitation, then call at the last minute to say ...
  A: From this point forward,only invite these people to large, informal gatherings where it doesn't ...
Which name goes first?12/30/2008
  Q: Recently a friend asked whose name goes first? When addressing a married couple, does the husband's ...
  A: No,it does not matter. People seem to think there SHOULD be a rule about this,but honestly,there is ...
rude relative12/29/2008
  Q: I have been in a relationship with the same man for three years. Everytime we visit his twin ...
  A: This man should not allow anyone to treat you like dirt. Not a friend,not a store clerk,and most ...
family dinner left overs12/29/2008
  Q: This question, I realize, is rather family-dynamic specific but follows up on your advice about left ...
  A: You took it to your parents' house,so it was theirs to do with as they wished. No,your sister should ...
Birthday12/28/2008
  Q: My husband and I are invited to a 40th birthday party at a pricey restaurant. The invite was sent ...
  A: It's an option. "Please,no gifts" would be a request. This is your host/ess saying "...if you want ...
New Years Christmas Celebration12/27/2008
  Q: My husband's "family" Christmas is held at our home on New Years Day. We also host a New Years Eve ...
  A: It is appropriate to leave Christmas decorations up until the feast of the Epiphany (also known as ...
Missing Christmas Gift12/27/2008
  Q: Every year that I've worked at my company there are generous gifts given especially by the higher ...
  A: Please say nothing about what you suspect. Thank you boss (either in person or by note) for the ...
Invitations12/26/2008
  Q: I have a dear friend that always counters an invitation with another ...
  A: If you two are truly close,please speak to her. Perhaps she is unaware of her actions and how they ...
Nowhere man / No Reply (without The Beatles)12/26/2008
  Q: I'm a computer programmer in a multinational. I have 20+ years of experience, and 6 with the ...
  A: You are not incorrect in feeling that basic civilities are the norm between coworkers. It shouldn't ...
after receiving money12/25/2008
  Q: After receiving the gift of money, is one obliged to tell the giver what the money will be used for?
  A: No,you are not obligated to say what the money will be spent on. However,if you are writing a thank ...
Gifts for coworkers12/22/2008
  Q: One of my coworkers gave me a holiday gift. I work in an office with about 15 other people. My ...
  A: Do not give any gift other than the one you had already planned to give. It is better not to show ...
Invitation to Debutante Coterie Ball12/22/2008
  Q: I have an invitation to such a ball, however, it says nothing about RSVPing and I will be out of ...
  A: Please write a note declining the invitation with regret. You do not have to give the girl making ...
dating brother in law12/18/2008
  Q: My sister passed away several months ago and I want to know if it is acceptable to date my brother ...
  A: If you two wish to date each other,that is your business and no one else's. For your own sake,you ...
X-Spouse vs girlfriend12/17/2008
  Q: I am divorced and am currently living with my girlfriend. I have been with my girlfriend for several ...
  A: It is in your best interest at this point to maintain as cordial a relationship with your ex-wife ...
Gifts after death12/17/2008
  Q: My husband passed away 6 months ago. I received a Christmas card from an acquaintance which included ...
  A: Why on Earth did they send you money? Please help me to understand the context so that I may advise ...
Christmas card to a recent widow12/17/2008
  Q: Do you send a Christmas card to someone who has just lost her husband. What do you say inside? ...
  A: You may say that you know that this first Christmas without Joe will be a difficult one for her and ...
newspaper birth announcement12/16/2008
  Q: I am preparing my son's newspaper birth announcement. He was born in October of this year and my mom ...
  A: Include them in the grandparents and great grandparents section but say "the late Jane Jones" and ...
etiquette when giving rides to others12/15/2008
  Q: I would like to know the proper etiquette when a person offers to give you a ride and is going to ...
  A: When someone is offering to give someone else a ride,it is general practice that they are acting in ...
Holiday Open House12/14/2008
  Q: What is appropriate amount of time to stay at a holiday open house. Hours are 2 pm - 6 pm. My ...
  A: It is appropriate to stay for as long as you wish. While most people do stop in for a half hour to ...
Address12/14/2008
  Q: At what point do you stop using Master in an address? I.e. Master John Doe A friend stated when and ...
  A: In America,the term Master is rarely used at all. Even by the 1930s it was considered pretentious to ...
Hosts music playlist.12/14/2008
  Q: When I was at a former friend's home recently. I asked to play a certain song that was relevant to ...
  A: I am very glad that you used the word 'former' in front of friend. No one has to put up with that ...
Long Term House Guest Expecations/Manners HELP NEEDED!!12/12/2008
  Q: This is my second marriage. My new husband and I live in my (from previous marriage)/our/ home with ...
  A: It is not too much to expect a family member and long term house guest to help. It sounds as if your ...
Announcing Pregnancy12/11/2008
  Q: My husband and I are not quite 3 months pregnant and have asked our families to keep quiet until we ...
  A: Use "I" language so as to get your feelings across without making the grandmothers defensive. Once ...
addressing envelop12/11/2008
  Q: How do I address an envelope to a family where the Husband and his wife have different last names ...
  A: Happy to help... Dr. Elizabeth Lewis Mr. Frederick Smith ...
Death of an acquantance's son12/11/2008
  Q: I just found out 2 days ago that a girl I went to high school with lost her 14-year old son in an ...
  A: What a terrible situation. Please write your friend a note and let her know what it is you hoping to ...
Attending estranged step-mother's mother funeral??12/11/2008
  Q: My step-mother's mother died today. I have not spoken to her in several years, despite another ...
  A: If your sister would like you to come to the calling hours,then please do. I am going to assume that ...
Thank you notes12/10/2008
  Q: Should a hostess send a thank you note when a gift is brought to a party?
  A: If she has thanked the person for the gift at the time,she does not need to send a note unless she ...
use of Jr. and Sr.12/9/2008
  Q: I read your answer about shifting a Jr. to Sr. after the death of the previous Sr. My question has ...
  A: The suffixes are important and as the world gets more populated and more reliant on technology,it is ...
social hello/goodby12/9/2008
  Q: need another opinion....went to party with fience was on call and had to leave early...upon ...
  A: A hug or a kiss on the cheek is harmless enough as a general rule. Most Americans are comfortable ...
Christmas cards12/9/2008
  Q: Should two adult sisters who are living together give out joint Christmas cards to relatives? If ...
  A: They may send out joint cards or not as they wish. The sister would each sign their own name. ...
bridal tea etiquette12/7/2008
  Q: My mother and I would like to host a "bridal tea" for my future sister in law. It is going to be a ...
  A: There will still be an expectation by the guests to be invited to the wedding itself. It would be ...
in-law visits12/4/2008
  Q: My son and daughter-in-law along with our one year old grand daughter are coming to visit for ...
  A: Please speak to your son about this and tell him what you have told me. See how he views it and if ...
Overnight Company12/4/2008
  Q: I feel a bit overwhelmed with overnight company. We do not have a guest bedroom. One of the ...
  A: The only thing wrong with you is your (apparent) inability to say "No". Who are these people and ...
Christmas cards with child after divorce12/4/2008
  Q: My ex-husband and I have been divorced for almost a year and we a a four year old son. His father ...
  A: If we have learned nothing else from author and philanthropist Marlo Thomas,we have learned this ...
Why no acknowledgement from my family?12/4/2008
  Q: I recently sent my cousin and her husband a floral tribute for my cousin's mother-in -law's funeral, ...
  A: You get to say who is or isn't worth your time and attention. There are so many hours,days,months ...
RSVP12/4/2008
  Q: Is it ever appropriate (space restrictions etc) to state after an RSVP, "anyone not replying will ...
  A: If there are space restrictions you have invited too many people! There should always be room for ...
Mothers Death and Christmas cards12/2/2008
  Q: My mother just passed away on 10/22/08 and I want to send out Christmas cards. I have a sister and ...
  A: Please do not write 'in memory of' as that suggests that the Christmas cards themselves are a ...
1st time Visiting Turkish boyfriend at Thanksgiving12/2/2008
  Q: .. This was an awful situation. I took my Turkish boyfriend who has been in the states for 7 months ...
  A: It amazes me that after your sister was treated so poorly by this cousin that you would still ...
Baby shower gift giving12/2/2008
  Q: My name is Mary. I just had my only daughters baby shower. When we went back to her home, my ...
  A: You are correct,a gift is a gift and the only appropriate response is to say thank you. We are ...
Christmas Open House12/2/2008
  Q: I've been invited to my new boyfriend's parent's Christmas Open House. I'm wondering if I should ...
  A: Please take nothing more than a small gift for your hosts. A box of chocolates or a bottle of wine ...
70th birthday invitation and gifts12/2/2008
  Q: My mother would like to receive gifts at her 70th birthday party, yet doesn't want to open them ...
  A: Presents are never to be mentioned on an invitation. No one should be made to feel as if they must ...
rude hosts of a party12/1/2008
  Q: This is a problem that has bothered me for years but I have never figured out the correct way to ...
  A: Let it go. They were not good hosts,but what purpose can be served by telling them so? None. The ...
Wedding ring11/30/2008
  Q: Im widowed and was wondering can you wear your wedding ring on another finger.Or should I just stop ...
  A: The choice is yours to make. It is appropriate to keep wearing the rings as they are,move them to ...
Invittion for Dessert11/30/2008
  Q: I have been invited for dessert (cake and ice cream) on my Father's birthday by his wife. The ...
  A: She has the right to set the terms of the invitation. You have the right to decline the invitation ...
Open House Gift Opening Etiquette11/29/2008
  Q: I am hosting an Meet and Greet Open House for my cousin and her husband who recently adopted a child ...
  A: Please have a table close at hand for people to put any cards or gifts on. This will relieve your ...
How To confirm someone received your wedding gift11/29/2008
  Q: I ordered a wedding gift for a coworker and had it shipped directly to their house - it has been ...
  A: Say just that: "I hate to ask but I have been feeling a little apprehensive..did the people at UPS ...
tombstone "etiquette" inscriptions11/28/2008
  Q: My in-laws ordered their pre-planned tombstone this year and I happened to attend a funeral at the ...
  A: People use (and have for 100s of years) grave markers as a genealogical reference point. It is not ...
Party invitation-RSVP11/26/2008
  Q: When inviting people to a party what is the proper procedure to follow up with close friends that ...
  A: Jim, By all means give them a call. You don't have to make them feel guilty,of course,but there is ...
memorial service for the father of my kids11/25/2008
  Q: he was 57 I am 48 The boys are 14 & 15 We lived with this man until we fled to a shelter ages 2 & 3 ...
  A: Let someone else give the eulogy. Go to the service with the boys and yes,as you say,be civil. It ...
Staying with relatives at Christmas11/25/2008
  Q: My brother and his family live about a five hour drive (in good traffic and ideal weather ...
  A: No,there are no rules regarding having out of town guests for a holiday. Your brother is within his ...
spreading of ashes11/24/2008
  Q: My mother died in August. We did not have a ceremony of any kind at that time even though many ...
  A: Please forgive the tardy reply,I am not sure how this question slipped past me for so many days. ...
gift giving.out of town bat mitzvah11/24/2008
  Q: I received an invitation for my first cousin's daughters Bat Mitzvah. We have recently moved out of ...
  A: You are never required to give a gift in return for an invitation. Regardless of the event or ...
Running into people you know at social function11/23/2008
  Q: I attended a wine tasting event with my boyfriend. While there, we ran into one of the cook's from ...
  A: Nicole, No,you didn't screw up. No,he was not right to criticize you in public about this or ...
cutlery when meal has been finished11/23/2008
  Q: I am a trainer for an airline and i was wondering when a guest finishes his meal what are the ways ...
  A: Please do not tell people to do things "ASAP" when they are the ones doing you a favor. It is ...
wedding gifts displayed in home11/22/2008
  Q: I am an interior decorator and home organizer. I have been asked to display wedding gifts in a ...
  A: They are meant to be placed in a room or area that is not a high traffic spot. If there are two of ...
thanks giving dinner11/21/2008
  Q: what is the proper time for thanksgiving dinner
  A: When the turkey is done. Best regards, ...
baby shower group gift thank you11/20/2008
  Q: I received a gift card from my co-workers as a baby shower gift. Since it was from a group of ...
  A: Please write a general note of thanks to the entire group and place it or post it in an area that ...
Birthday invitation - no gifts please11/19/2008
  Q: my husband and I are invited to a 70th birthday party at a pricey restaurant. The invitation said ...
  A: Please honor their request and go without a present. I am sure that your hosts feel that having you ...
Engagement ring11/18/2008
  Q: My daughter and her boyfriend want to get engaged. They don't have allot of money for a nice ...
  A: This is a lovely and generous offer. Please speak to your daughter as this is a family heirloom. ...
Sympathey Card11/17/2008
  Q: I know to use "Mrs." on the envelope, but do I use my niece's first name or her newly passed ...
  A: It is appropriate to call her Mrs. John Doe until she remarries or indicates that she wishes to be ...
Engagement Party list11/17/2008
  Q: My family and I threw an engagement party for a close family friend's daughter. As is the custom ...
  A: No,you were correct. If your in-laws do not know the couple and are not likely to be invited to the ...
Fast food drive up11/16/2008
  Q: I am an order taker at a world wide fast food chain and I don' know how to handle people on ...
  A: I loved your question. There is little doubt that this job is one you won't be staying with long. ...
Name11/16/2008
  Q: I have been dating my boyfriend for almost a year. He insists on having his kids, 7 and ...
  A: Anyone under the age of 21 should address you by your honorific, especially if their parent is ...
Mother of Groom11/13/2008
  Q: For an evening wedding does it make a difference if the motehr of groom wears sandals or closed ...
  A: The word "sandal" covers a multitude of styles. But I am going to assume you aren't talking about ...
Stillborn Etiquette11/12/2008
  Q: One of my health care providers has suffered the terrible loss of a newborn. The baby was full ...
  A: She probably won't wish to talk about something so personal and painful once she returns to the work ...
addressing family with different last names11/12/2008
  Q: I have a son from a previous marriage who has a different last name than I and my current husband ...
  A: You may sign simply "Tom,Nancy,Justin and Amy" on the bottom of the greeting cards and 742 Evergreen ...
funeral ettiquette11/11/2008
  Q: My children's grandmother just passed away, her son and I are estranged and he doesn't see or take ...
  A: The children's father's wishes should be considered at this time. They are still his children and as ...
Thanksgiving11/11/2008
  Q: For the past 3 years my girlfriend, her husband and two children have been invited to our home for ...
  A: Please go ahead and give her a call but wait for her to mention Thanksgiving. With any luck,she will ...
food at work11/7/2008
  Q: A co-worker of mine frequently brings homemade baked goods and keeps them at her desk for all to ...
  A: It's a little weird and sad to have a private club where you only serve cake to co-workers you ...
Christmas Cards11/6/2008
  Q: When I moved out on my own, I sent Christmas cards to my friends and family simply from me. Now I've ...
  A: Go ahead and send the cards jointly. Everyone on your list knows you are living together,correct? ...
Giving a gift to then find out its not wanted.11/6/2008
  Q: wondered whether you can kindly offer some advice on the correct social etiquette in the following ...
  A: Gracious! What a mess. This friend of your Mum's doesn't sound like a very nice person. She has no ...
Thank you notes when you return a gift11/6/2008
  Q: My Mother-in-law bought me an article of clothing for my birthday. I appreciate the time she took ...
  A: Say nothing except thank you when writing the note. You don't have to lie,but there is no reason to ...
50th wedding anniversary newspaper article11/5/2008
  Q: My husband and I have 3 children from our marriage and I helped rear my 3 step children. What is ...
  A: After 50 years,you get to claim them as your children if you wish. If you are afraid the (adult) ...
40th Bday11/3/2008
  Q: Is it appropriate to have a 40th bday celebration or is the BIG 50 more appropriate to wait for?
  A: Anyone may give a party at any time and for almost any reason. There is no birthday that is 'more ...
Thank you cards11/3/2008
  Q: I received a couple birthday cards in the mail from my in-laws. Should I send a thank you card in ...
  A: While it is not necessary to send a thank you note for a greeting card,it is not inappropriate. Why ...
lady at church11/2/2008
  Q: I am not sure if this is an etiquette question but this is as close as I can find on this website ...
  A: Well..clearly she's on the run from the law. Kidding,but no,you are correct,her behavior was strange ...
Wording for party invitation11/1/2008
  Q: We are hosting a Christmas party for my husband's work. How can we word the invitation not to bring ...
  A: You are correct,to whom the card is addressed tells the tale of who is expected. Please spread the ...
Party for a young man that graduated Coast Guard Basic Training10/31/2008
  Q: We were invited to a congratulation party for the son of our friends. The party is a celebration of ...
  A: Your instincts are correct. This party is more about having his friends and family together in one ...
Family Christmas gift exchange10/31/2008
  Q: For the last several years we have exchanged Christmas gifts with our brothers and sisters families ...
  A: If this is your wife's sister you are speaking of,please have your wife speak to her sibling. ...
Define "Hosted By"10/30/2008
  Q: When someone sends you an invitation to a luncheon and it says "Hosted By Cathy", does that mean ...
  A: Yes,you are absolutely correct. The term she wants is 'party promoter'. No one should be required to ...
thank you note for clothes that don't fit10/30/2008
  Q: I received a birthday gift of clothes from some close family members. The clothes do not fit, and ...
  A: Please just write a thank you note. You don't have to lie, but you don't have to tell the whole ...
joint birthday party10/29/2008
  Q: My husband and I are about to celebrate our only child's 1st birthday next weekend. We are having a ...
  A: Nip this in the bud,please. You are not required to hold joint birthday parties if you do not wish ...
future step-grandparents etiquette10/28/2008
  Q: My daughter (in another state) is divorced with a 2 year-old child and is engaged to an individual ...
  A: Please ask your daughter what she (and her husband) would like to have the 3 year old call you. Have ...
Ph.D Graduation Announcement10/28/2008
  Q: Our 28-year-old daughter is graduating with her Ph.D. in about 6 weeks. We would like to send ...
  A: Congratulations! Yes,by all means send out announcements after your daughter graduates. ...
wedding invitations10/27/2008
  Q: We are church ministers for over 50 years. Our grandaughter is getting married. Because we have kept ...
  A: Please send the former cogregants a wedding announcement after the ceremony takes place. An ...
Throwing your own 50th Birthday Party10/26/2008
  Q: I will be turning 50 in just over a month. Though I know someone in my family or a close friend will ...
  A: Anyone can throw a party for any reason and at any time. This is not an ego trip for you,you ...
Mother in law10/26/2008
  Q: How many times a week should you call your mother in law?
  A: It is appropriate to call your Mother in Law anywhere from zero to 100 times a week. It depends ...
Questions about black-tie gala10/26/2008
  Q: I am 28 years old and a freshman at a state university and was given an admissions scholarship by my ...
  A: Congratulations! Please do not stand around waiting for someone to speak to you. As you are an ...
Wedding Etiquette with divorced parents10/24/2008
  Q: I'm throwing a wedding shower for my friend "Misha." She is the only daughter of a long and ...
  A: As you are the hostess of this shower,you should refuse to take money from either parent. Please ...
University Invitations10/24/2008
  Q: I am the new first lady of a university and will be sending out a couple of thousand invitations for ...
  A: You are in the odd position of having a party that is a cross between business and social events. ...
Sympathy Etiquette10/22/2008
  Q: What is etiquette (sympathy) when a cousin passes away? Should a card be sent to remaining family ...
  A: Please write a short note expressing your sympathy to these remaining family members. The ...
A Planned Social Gathering10/21/2008
  Q: A while ago I hosted a party for a sporting event. I supplied all of the Food, and all of the ...
  A: A host never throws a party that he cannot afford. Charging people no longer makes them guests,it ...
Answering Questions with Questions10/21/2008
  Q: I was recently told it was rude to answer a question with a question. I am a slightly sarcastic and ...
  A: No,it is not always rude to answer a question with a question. It depends on the question and the ...
Birthday Dinner10/21/2008
  Q: I'm 48 years old, and married, so birthday's don't mean much. But my brother and his wife would like ...
  A: As she was the hostess,it was up to her to decide whom to invite. She was being very considerate by ...
birthday gifts for my children10/20/2008
  Q: I feel that even though her mother my husbands sister buys she is also obligated to buy for my ...
  A: We should all buy gifts for people because we want to and should never expect anything in return. ...
how do I comfort my daughter inn law10/19/2008
  Q: My daughter in law just lost her father her mother is already gone how can I or should I try to give ...
  A: Tell her how sorry you are for her loss,explain that you don't know how vest to help her during this ...
sons treating us as guests?10/19/2008
  Q: My question is,, should your father and mother be concidered guests? My son insists on refering to ...
  A: This is the first time I have gotten this question. Usually (and frequently) I get parents or adult ...
introducting people10/18/2008
  Q: When is okay not to introduce people to one another? I was just in a situation that and now I feel ...
  A: It's a hard call sometimes as to when to introduce people to each other and when not to. You did ...
what is best to recognize this marriage10/17/2008
  Q: My brother met his now fiance on a Ukrainian Bride web site two years ago. She is now cleared to ...
  A: What would make you feel most welcome were the situation reversed? A wedding reception,even if it is ...
Graduation announcements10/17/2008
  Q: My daughter is graduating from college soon. Space at the ceremony is limited. Do you only send ...
  A: Announcements and invitations are two different things. An announcement is sent after an event ...
civilians addressing military personnel in the workplace10/16/2008
  Q: I work for a public university. A new leader was recently appointed to my unit. He is a retired ...
  A: Please use his honorific unless he asks you to do otherwise. We call our physicians,elected ...
Kindergarten Invitation10/14/2008
  Q: My 5 year old daughter received an invitation to a classmate's birthday party. In the list of usual ...
  A: What is the world coming to? No,it is never appropriate to mention gifts in any way on an ...
Leave a patial bottle or not10/12/2008
  Q: A friend of mine recently invited me over to her apartment. She said she would cook dinner, and ...
  A: I hope for your sake she's pretty,because she sure doesn't sound very nice. If you take a bottle ...
football game manners10/12/2008
  Q: How should a parent move a toddler into & out of stadium seats? The width between the two rows is ...
  A: It is up to the parent to decide how best to get their child from point A to point B. On the face of ...
white on cruise ships10/11/2008
  Q: Help settle a friendly disagreement between my partner and myself. I maintain that the "No white ...
  A: In 1819,the ship Thaddeus set sail from Boston headed for Hawaii. The good Christian missionaries ...
70th birthday guest list10/11/2008
  Q: My siblings and I are planning a 70th birthday party for our mom. Our neice felt slighted that her ...
  A: You are correct in not wanting to play hostess to strangers. This isn't the day for it. If it were a ...
motherinlaw and divorce10/10/2008
  Q: my son is in the divorce process which is a bit messy :-( his ex to be still emails me once in a ...
  A: Please do what you feel is best for you in this situation. You are best able to determine her ...
B'nai Mitzvah invitation reply wording10/9/2008
  Q: we have been invited to a very formal B'nai Mitzvah. We would like to send a more personal note in ...
  A: Please send the celebrant the personal note of congratulation under separate cover. Did that answer ...
Bar Mitzvah Gift10/9/2008
  Q: My son is invited to a Bar Mitzvah for triplets. He is friends with one but obviously knows the ...
  A: Please give gifts to all three of the brothers. Money and incomes are relative things. Only you and ...
Baby Shower10/8/2008
  Q: I am 4 months pregnant and my best friend just found out she was pregnant a month ago. My friend ...
  A: A woman is given a shower by her friends. It was originally meant to be a simple gathering at which ...
business party invitation10/8/2008
  Q: We are hosting a company Christmas party at a new facility this year. As this is a more upscale ...
  A: Decide on the dress code for this party (i.e. cocktail,business casual,etc.) and include it on the ...
Thank you notes10/8/2008
  Q: I wanted to know what the standard time line is for sending out "thank you's" for different gifts ...
  A: Andrea, The truly courteous thing to do is to write the thank you notes for gifts as soon as you ...
Dresses for evening wear at a resort10/8/2008
  Q: The question is: What dresses be appropriate for a office conference at a resort. We are advised ...
  A: As you are allergic to the salt water and probably sensitive to the sun,why not get some linen ...
Speaker etiquette10/7/2008
  Q: Twice in the last several years I have attended events associated with adult alumni at which a ...
  A: Yes,someone,even if it was an audience member should have stood up and said "Mr. X,you were invited ...
grown children and step-families10/6/2008
  Q: Gamble, My question is how should I acknowledge my mother's husband. I am 19 and live at college ...
  A: Well..your question has a contradiction in it that troubles me. First you say that your mother was ...
engagement party gift10/6/2008
  Q: As the mother of the bride, what is an appropriate engagement party gift? I feel like money is too ...
  A: There is no way for me to answer this question. Retired from the board of a Fortune 500 company or ...
death10/6/2008
  Q: i recently began seeing a very nice gentleman. we have only had two dates and they were both very ...
  A: Do not send a text message. Have you tried to look up this woman's obituary on line? If you know ...
ExHusband passed away10/4/2008
  Q: I just have a simple question (maybe). I received a phone call this morning from my brother who ...
  A: It would absolutely be appropriate to send a card or flowers to either his wife,his mother or both. ...
Recital Etiquette10/4/2008
  Q: We have been invited to a Senior voice recital. Do we bring a gift as a congratulations? If so ...
  A: You do not have to bring a gift,but if you wish to give the student a note of congratulation or ...
Baby Shower10/4/2008
  Q: Is it appropriate for me, the future grandmother, to host a baby shower for my daughter if the only ...
  A: Anyone may give a party at any time and for nearly any reason. Showers are meant to be given by the ...
addressing married couple-dr. & mr.10/2/2008
  Q: I am going to a wedding that is for Dr. Courtney Williams and Anthony McCracken. How do I address ...
  A: Unless she chooses otherwise,she will be Mrs. Anthony McCracken socially. If she is taking his ...
Social Conversation10/2/2008
  Q: My wife's brother and his companion were recently at our home for cocktails and dinner. During ...
  A: Aversion therapy administered via shock collars. (Available at any better pet or tractor supply ...
Concert Tickets10/1/2008
  Q: I bought 4 tickets to see my favorite band. One was for me, one for my friend Darren, and two more ...
  A: While I understand what your intent was,the bottom line is that you sold the tickets to your friend. ...
rsvp etiquette10/1/2008
  Q: My sisterinlaw makes a luncheon at her house every fall to get the family together. The family has ...
  A: It is time to give your sister in law a new address book. Complete with the addresses,e-mails and ...
Retirement Luncheon Invitation9/29/2008
  Q: I work in a protocol office. We have been asked to compose and mail formal invitations to a ...
  A: You are absolutely correct. No one should ever have to 'pay for the privilege' of being invited as ...
No gifts please9/29/2008
  Q: My husband and I recently renewed our vows. With the invitation I had a card that read: The ...
  A: No,your Mother's friend is quite wrong. No gifts means no gifts. It doesn't get much plainer than ...
Married couples with different names9/28/2008
  Q: What is the correct way to address an invitation to a married couple with different last names. Is ...
  A: Trick question! A woman is never properly known by her given name with the honorific 'Mrs' in front ...
desperately need advise/ encroaching priest9/25/2008
  Q: This is a real dilemma for our family. We have moved to a different part of Texas and built a home ...
  A: You are not responsible for him. End of story. Please tell him that it is just not possible for him ...
90th Bday Reception/Party9/24/2008
  Q: My Mothers 90th birthday is upcoming, and expressed to my family I would like to do a "reception" ...
  A: You shouldn't give two seconds of thought to what your brothers' vision for the party is! Fried ...
people staying at our house uninvited and rent free9/24/2008
  Q: We have recently purchased a house ultimately at which both our sons will live whilst attending ...
  A: These are YOUR sons. You are allowed to get down to brass tacks with them. Decide what you feel is ...
obituary of death of mother-in-law9/23/2008
  Q: My mother-in-law passed away. Her son and I have been separated for 4 years (married 19), have 3 ...
  A: It is not inappropriate,but it is the family's choice. The editor of the obituary column is given ...
Halloween Party9/22/2008
  Q: I am thinking about hosting a "halloween party" for my kids. Our neighborhood is very large and ...
  A: So,if it rains the kids are out of luck completely? That's no fun. Better not to plan the party at ...
Where do I draw the line - invites to husband's surprise 40th9/22/2008
  Q: I am unsure as to where to draw the line as to who gets invited to my husband's surprise party that ...
  A: This is a problem for hostesses from London to Bombay. Not to worry. You can not invite everyone. ...
Retract holiday invitation9/20/2008
  Q: I invited a family for Thanksgiving about 2 weeks ago, and haven't received a response. I feel like ...
  A: If you are going to take the trouble to call and retract the invitation,why not just say instead ...
Boyfriends daughters baby shower9/19/2008
  Q: My boyfriends ex wife is having a baby shower for their 23 year old daughter whom I have met a ...
  A: You are always entitled to your feelings. We're human beings,we cannot help having negative emotions ...
Children's Birthday Party Etiquette9/19/2008
  Q: My children all have their birthdays in the same week. Calvin will be 7 on October 17, Maia will be ...
  A: It is never appropriate to mention gifts in any way on an invitation. No one ever should be made to ...
Transfering9/18/2008
  Q: I currently work for a wine, beer and liquor distributor in Arizona but my boyfriend just moved to ...
  A: You are entitled to a personal life. If you have found happiness with this man,congratulations,damn ...
lending out your things9/18/2008
  Q: I lent my trailer to my son to move a bed to his place he said he also had to do a tip run, the ...
  A: No,it is not unreasonable to expect your adult son to treat you with common courtesy. You did him a ...
Need to cancel a family commitment9/16/2008
  Q: I have a step niece in New Jersey who is having her Bat Mitzvah this weekend. We committed to come ...
  A: Please have your son write a note of congratulations to his step cousin and let that be his ...
Dining Out When Someone Else Pays9/14/2008
  Q: When a person, we'll call "the guest" has been invited out to eat by someone who is paying the bill, ...
  A: It is quite the opposite. The guest orders first since they are the ones being treated to the meal. ...
proper technique with a fork9/13/2008
  Q: My husband and I are in disagreement regarding the proper use of a fork while dining. He think it ...
  A: "Switching hands" is the correct way to dine in America. I am not going to be critical of your ...
proper hostess etiquette9/12/2008
  Q: my question is , in other words since my boyfriend had to work for 3 days and I was home with his ...
  A: Would it have been nice if they had? Yes,of course. Their son's guest is their guest. However,you ...
husband's ex wife9/12/2008
  Q: My husband's ex wife is terminally ill and has been given just weeks to live. Together they have ...
  A: This is a fine line you are going to have to walk. Going to the funeral may be seen as disrespectful ...
Out of town guests in our home9/10/2008
  Q: Amanda, My husband and I are inviting three couples and there children (4 total) to come into town ...
  A: Stay in your own bedroom,please. It cuts down on the confusion and besides,which couple do you pick? ...
pictures9/9/2008
  Q: I was brought up in the south and there are very defined ettique rules. I live in California now ...
  A: Please display the photographs where you will most enjoy seeing them. It would only be in poor taste ...
engagement9/9/2008
  Q: My son just called and said he proposed to his girlfriend, she accepted but there is no wedding date ...
  A: Please call the parents of your future daughter in law right away. If it is possible to have dinner ...
Awkward gift situation - kids9/8/2008
  Q: My son and his best friend have birthdays a day apart. We have known the family since the boys were ...
  A: As you offered to 'pay your share' on more than one occasion and were turned down,they probably ...
upon death of spouse when to remove wedding ring8/22/2008
  Q: How soon after the death of a spouse it is considered "proper" to remove one's wedding ring?
  A: The surviving spouse may take off the ring right away (some people insist that it be buried with ...
baby showers and grandmothers8/21/2008
  Q: Our daughter will have two baby-showers, one thrown by our side of the family and one by her ...
  A: Your wife is not obliged to go to both showers. She did not have enough advance notice for the ...
bridal shower hostess gifts8/20/2008
  Q: I just recently had a bridal shower given for me. Well, I just heard from a few coworkers that I ...
  A: No,the guest of honor at a shower does not give gifts,she gets them. Write each of your hostesses a ...
house guests8/20/2008
  Q: I just finished having my sister-in-law and her 3 kids (10, 5,and 1) stay with my husband and my 2 ...
  A: Having good manners is a two way street. You certainly have the right to a quiet work ...
Guests Inviting Guests8/18/2008
  Q: Ms. Gamble - Recently, a friend of mine sent out an invitation to a few people, including me, ...
  A: Call for clarification on this one. A breezy "..invite whomever you want.." could be interpreted as ...
appropriate color for a female guest to wear to a debutante ball...8/18/2008
  Q: My daughter was invited to a debutante ball. She has an elegant floor length gown, the color of ...
  A: If your daughter is over thirty,she may wear it. If she is a peer of the debutante,she should find ...
Problems with a neighbour not saying thank you.8/18/2008
  Q: I have a neighbour who has recently moved in and is very unfriendly. I live in a studio flat on my ...
  A: Not to worry,you don't sound like a victim. Not enough whining. It is not unreasonable for your ...
Question8/17/2008
  Q: I am planning on asking 8 or 9 of my husband's close friends to dinner for his 40th birthday at a ...
  A: Short answer,you don't. A hostess never gives a party that she cannot afford. If you can only give ...
Funeral Etiquette8/16/2008
  Q: My ex-husband of 25 years' mother died. The reason for our divorce was that he was having an affair ...
  A: If you were close to your former mother-in-law and truly wish to go express your sympathy to the ...
male-female ordering etiquette8/13/2008
  Q: Who is generally expected to order first in a restaurant, the man or woman? I find the ...
  A: If you are unhappy,please speak up. You should order first and should not have to 'go dutch' when ...
Housewarming !8/12/2008
  Q: My husband and I are having a housewarming. We have been married for four years and are pretty much ...
  A: It is never correct to mention gifts in any way on an invitation. To do so is to tell people that ...
issue with addressing people by their names!8/10/2008
  Q: My mom has an issue with people who don't use her name (at least occasionally) when talking to her ...
  A: Your mother can do nothing more than she already has. She has asked that her future daughter in law ...
family vacation8/9/2008
  Q: My family is taking a vacation together and we decided to rent a beach house. Now, there are 7 ...
  A: Get a common concensus among the other families as to what "IS" a family unit. Any adult who has ...
social stationary uses8/7/2008
  Q: lately i have been receiving correspondence cards where the sender has run a quick pen line thru ...
  A: Old,old custom. It shows that the letter or note has been written by the person and to a friend or ...
Wedding Reception8/7/2008
  Q: We are caterers. our bartender brought his daughter to a function where the only children present ...
  A: Unless the child was unruly or eating her weight in cake,go with the basic 'babysitting' rate for ...
Adult children relationship to parent's spouse8/5/2008
  Q: My ex-husband remarried when our sons were in their teens, to a woman who never wanted to be a ...
  A: The key phrase here is "the children are adult". Meaning they know perfectly well who did and did ...
Addressing Envelopes Etiquette8/5/2008
  Q: I am in the process of sending out invitations for my Dad's 60th surprise party, however, I am ...
  A: Don't be nervous. Make a phone call to the couple that lives together and simply ask. Apologize and ...
Card wordings8/5/2008
  Q: I wanted to give a card to a coworker who will be having a major surgery in two weeks. I can't seem ...
  A: Good call,most 'get well' cards are either too cheerful or too grim,no middle ground. Dear Tom, ...
broken engagement8/4/2008
  Q: My daughter's fiancee' called off their June wedding back in January. They have spent several months ...
  A: Your daughter and her young man received gifts to celebrate their engagement,which did indeed ...
Lab Coat Etiquette8/4/2008
  Q: Are long lab coats for MDs only? I am an RN, and a Diabetes Education Coordinator and ordered a ...
  A: On this subject I defer to my sister,Anne Gamble,RN This is from a conversation with her after I ...
no gifts please at wedding party8/4/2008
  Q: We are having a party to celebrate our wedding, about 6 weeks after the ceremony. We are both 60, ...
  A: You are correct,gifts are never to be mentioned in any way,shape or form on an invitation. It ...
Seating8/4/2008
  Q: When dinning out should couples sit across from each other? For example in a booth. Should the ...
  A: A couple may sit on the same side of the booth when (and only when) their ties to organized crime ...
Apartment etiquette during campaign season8/3/2008
  Q: Amanda: I live on the third floor of a five-floor walkup in New York, and I'm a supporter of Barack ...
  A: As long as placing something semi-permanent on your door doesn't violate the terms of your lease,go ...
business cards - when there is no business8/2/2008
  Q: I am between teaching positions as I work on my doctoral dissertation, what information should be ...
  A: As these are for 'networking' purposes,please include any information that you feel is relevant. ...
new neighbor's and fence8/1/2008
  Q: first I would like to thank you for taking time to read this I will try to be brief but also ...
  A: First arm yourself with the facts,then go speak to her or write her a letter. Where are the property ...
Dating a Widow7/30/2008
  Q: How does one know when is the appropriate time to approach a women who has been widowed? I have been ...
  A: It is still considered appropriate to give a widow or widower a full year before expecting them to ...
birthday gifts7/30/2008
  Q: My son is have a rather large birthday party and we do not feel that he needs anymore gifts/toys. I ...
  A: Smith, Normally,presents are never mentioned on an invitation in any way,shape or form. ...
Wedding Seating7/29/2008
  Q: My brother is getting married in a few weeks and I was just informed that I will be sitting away ...
  A: Speak to your brother calmly and tell him how this seating plan makes you feel. It may not change ...
being kick all the time7/29/2008
  Q: i dated a girl that work in another department now she date my boss. i dumped her and i assume she ...
  A: Begin looking for a new job or keep your head down until this storm blows over. He won't be able to ...
Friend's Birthday Party7/28/2008
  Q: I just co-hosted a birthday party for a friend at my house. I put much of the party together and ...
  A: Please go ahead and say something. "Hope,thank you so much for co-hosting Jane's birthday party with ...
dinner guest inviting another guest7/28/2008
  Q: so dinner will be their treat. When I mentioned the dinner in front of the boyfriend's 14 year old ...
  A: Please do not put your hosts in an awkward position by asking if the child can tag along. At 14 he ...
50th wedding anniversary7/25/2008
  Q: My in-laws will be celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary in Sept. 2009. They have 5 children. ...
  A: When you and your husband married,you each left your families to form a new one. Your primary duty ...
Mother In-Law Gift Etiquette When She's Visiting7/24/2008
  Q: My wife is very close with her mom, and I have the perfect relationship with my Mother In-Law since ...
  A: Oh Gary,Gary,Gary... Have you ever heard the saying "You can be right or you can be happy"? ...
Do I give a gift for the shower and wedding?7/23/2008
  Q: My step-nephew is getting married for the second time (I attended the first wedding, but was not ...
  A: Dead Diane, You are never required to give a gift for any celebration. No one ever has to pay for ...
50th wedding anniversary gift7/23/2008
  Q: We have been invited to a 50th wedding anniversary for parents of relatively close friends. Should ...
  A: After 50 years of marriage,they have probably accumulated all of the "stuff" they need. You are not ...
60th anniversary dinner7/23/2008
  Q: My husband and his siblings are going to have a 60th anniv. dinner for their parents at a nice ...
  A: No one should ever be required to pay for the privilege of being invited as a guest. Please consider ...
wedding invite7/22/2008
  Q: I am invited to my cousins wedding however my 6 year old daughters soccer final and award ceremony ...
  A: Explain the situation to your cousin so that there will be no room for misunderstanding or hurt ...
social dinner invite7/22/2008
  Q: I am having a bbq dinner and inviting an associate/friend. I don't know if he has a significant ...
  A: No need to overly worry about it. Just write something like this: Dear Tom, Pat and I are ...
Houseguests7/22/2008
  Q: My husband and I have a vacation home. Each of the past 3 years, long-time friends of ours have ...
  A: Good heavens no. It's your home and you may have whomever you like come to stay,especially family. ...
Etiquette for death of daughter's friends Father7/21/2008
  Q: The father of my 11 year old daughter's friend, whose parents were recently divorced (NOT amicably), ...
  A: Direct your flowers or notes of condolence to the child. She has suffered terribly with this divorce ...
Etiquette concering ex7/21/2008
  Q: My fiance has 2 grown children and 5 grandchildren. When the grandchildren have birthday parties or ...
  A: As you are planning on marrying this man,please do what you can to establish and maintain a good ...
Is it too much to ask of my "house guest" that he let me know when he will be around or not?7/21/2008
  Q: I have a friend staying with me. He stayed with me recently for close to 2 months prior to going ...
  A: First off,you are a SAINT. Two months of that with nary a word? In a studio apartment? Now he's back ...
Gift for Eagle Scout ceremony7/21/2008
  Q: My husbands nephew,whom we rarely see will be receiving his eagle scout next weekend, is it proper ...
  A: Appropriate,but not expected. In other words,only give the nephew something if you really want to. ...
protocol in attending bridal showers7/20/2008
  Q: I am invited to my girlfriend's son's wedding. I have purchased a gift certificate, advice received ...
  A: You are right not to wish to be roped into paying for this party. A hostess should never give a ...
Baby #2 and kids are not 2 years apart7/20/2008
  Q: One of my best friends is pregnant with number 2. She just registered and is wanting a big shower ...
  A: A woman should never ask for or even hint that she wants or expects a party given in her honor. ...
failed adoption7/19/2008
  Q: I have a dear friend who less than 24 hours after bringing her newly adopted son home, received a ...
  A: Letting her know that you are thinking of her would be kind. While there is nothing you can say or ...
wedding gift7/18/2008
  Q: How much money is appropriate these days to give at a wedding? This is a close friends daughter. ...
  A: As I do not know you or your financial situation,I cannot answer your question. Two dollars might ...
WEDDING GIFT7/16/2008
  Q: It's been so long...do I remember the wedding gift is sent to the bride before the wedding? We're ...
  A: Yes,please do mail the check to the bride at her home and make it out to her with her maiden name. ...
Bridal Shower7/15/2008
  Q: As matron of honor in my friends wedding, I am hosting the bridal shower. Do I need to give a gift ...
  A: Please get her a token gift at the very least. I understand that you will be spending time,energy ...
Bridal shower gift7/15/2008
  Q: A friend of mine invited me to her bridal shower. My question is, should I buy a gift from the ...
  A: A registry may be looked upon as a list of suggestions. You do not need to follow it at all. If the ...
wedding venue7/15/2008
  Q: My daughter is engaged and living with her fiance in Atlanta. My husband and I live in the DC ...
  A: As you know a bride is traditionally married in her hometown. Even as few as fifty years ago a ...
25th wedding anniversary7/14/2008
  Q: my sister and I are planning my parents 25th wedding anniversary. our budget is pretty tight...so we ...
  A: A hostess never gives a party that she cannot afford. The friends and family who will be there to ...
holiday visiting etiquette7/11/2008
  Q: My son and daugther in law have been married for 3 years. They live 4 hours away. We invite them ...
  A: It sounds as if it is time for your husband to have a heart to heart talk with your son. There is a ...
Mom's 75th Birthday Party7/10/2008
  Q: We would like to have a money tree at my Mom's 75th birthday party because at her age, what do they ...
  A: There is never a polite way to ask for gifts. An invitation shouldn't ask that the recipient 'pay ...
Parents7/10/2008
  Q: I have a tiny efficiency apartment in New York and my parents want to visit for a few days. When I ...
  A: No it was not wrong to suggest that they stay in a hotel. You do it saying "No,I won't hear of you ...
houseguest7/9/2008
  Q: My daughter is a full time college student home for the summer. Her boyfriend, a full-time out of ...
  A: If you have spoken to her about her role and responsibilities are towards the family and all she can ...
etiquette - bat mitzvah addresses7/7/2008
  Q: When doing a Bar/Bat Mitzvah these days, it's fairly commonplace to invite only one parent (usually ...
  A: Please address her as "Mrs John Doe". It is never correct to use a woman's given first name with ...
thanks to neighbors7/6/2008
  Q: My cul-de-sac neighbors recently hosted a party for my family complete with gifts. I have about 15 ...
  A: If you have gone to the trouble to write notes to each person (or family) please follow through by ...
wedding gifts7/4/2008
  Q: What is the proper gift/ behavior for a partially estranged father at his sons wedding? The step ...
  A: If he (the biological father) is invited to be at his son's wedding,he is no different than any ...
how to address a sympathy card7/3/2008
  Q: I worked with a gentleman who passed away and would like to send a card to his wife. Should I write ...
  A: She properly remains Mrs John Doe until she remarries or dies. It does matter (although the ...
Retirement party7/2/2008
  Q: We have an employee retiring after 38 years of service. When we send the invitation to her ...
  A: Either speak to her or write her a note. Dear Janet, On July 3,we are planning to hold a ...
50th Anniversary party6/30/2008
  Q: My in-laws have been talking about having a 50th Anniversary party this August. The last time it ...
  A: Oh good heavens. What are you? A mind reader? Why didn't your father in law take your husband aside ...
wedding question6/30/2008
  Q: I have a question about wedding etiquette. I am my sister's matron of honor- she also has a maid of ...
  A: Unless your sister is having a very formal wedding reception, there is no reason you can't sit next ...
Family visitors from out of the country6/29/2008
  Q: My brother and sister in law moved out of the country within the past year to a lower cost area. ...
  A: Well..there isn't much more that can be said,is there? You have already come to the conclusion ...
wording for a party invitation6/28/2008
  Q: I am planning a get together for my husband's 40th, at a nice restaurant I need to know how to word ...
  A: A hostess never gives a party that she cannot afford. To ask people to pay for their own dinners is ...
Bridal Shower Gifts6/27/2008
  Q: Is is appropriate to give a bride a gift at her bridal shower which is listed on her wedding ...
  A: Please go ahead and pick an item off of her registry if you wish. Since the things listed were ...
4th of July Party6/27/2008
  Q: I'm hosting a very small 4th of July cocktail/dinner party. After accepting our invitation, a ...
  A: Please tell your friend what you have told me,that this is a very small dinner party and the guest ...
proper etiquette for greeting dignitaries6/7/2008
  Q: I'm doing a little research trying to figure out the proper way to greet dignitaries from various ...
  A: No,I am sorry I can't tell you of any particular title. If you have any specific country and ...
Birthday and Retirement Celebrations6/5/2008
  Q: My co-workers are celebrating certain birthdays in our office. They decide on the date, place, and ...
  A: Are you in a position to change the policy? If you are,do so right away. If not,then take it upon ...
formal dinner6/5/2008
  Q: I know that the forks are on my left and the knives are on my right, and I know that you eat dinner ...
  A: Your fork should be in your dominant hand. If your utensils are stainless steel you may cut the ...
gift for graduation of boss' son6/4/2008
  Q: I just received an announcement for my boss' son's high school graduation which is in 3 days. I ...
  A: Please write the young man a note of congratulation and be done with it. There is a *good reason for ...
Bereavement card etiquette6/3/2008
  Q: My mother-in-law recently passed away and my co-worker/friends -- along with the company CEO -- were ...
  A: Please know how sorry I am for your family's loss. The act of writing the thank you notes should be ...
How to accept donations towards restaurant meal?6/3/2008
  Q: It's my partner's 50th birthday and I've organised a meal in a restaurant to celebrate with ten of ...
  A: Let the friends approach you. If you ask them,it could cause embarrassment. You made the request,so ...
Etiquette6/2/2008
  Q: An answer to yourHi, My best female friend's daughter is expecting next month...and as a single man, ...
  A: The flowers will be in horrible shape if you wait around with them for 9 or 10 hours. Send (or buy) ...
Wedding Date with a friend...6/2/2008
  Q: Ok here goes. A good friend of my recently asked me to go out as her date to a wedding that she ...
  A: Valid constructive advice,huh? Well..you've come to the wrong place for that,mister. Kidding,of ...
Canceling a party/celebration6/2/2008
  Q: we were planning my son's baptism to be held in a city that was convenient for both my parents and ...
  A: You were absolutely right to change the plans to accommodate your Dad's situation. That your in-laws ...
Thank You Cards6/1/2008
  Q: I always wondered what is the right thing to do when you receive a thank you card. Do you ...
  A: You just mention to the children casually that you received the lovely thank you cards and add ...
Seating arrangements for couples at restaurant5/31/2008
  Q: Can you please tell me the correct seating arrangements at a restaurant when 2 couples are dining. ...
  A: <Error 187> INVALID RUN INVALID RUN INVALID RUN INVALID RUN INVALID RUN INVALID RUN # # ...
graduation party invites5/21/2008
  Q: My son is graduating, and we are planning a party. In the meantime, we have been invited to several ...
  A: No one ever has to 'pay for the privilege' of being invited somewhere as a guest. Ever. No present ...
death of ex-partner's common law spouse5/20/2008
  Q: My question is a little complicated. I recently learned that that the common law spouse of a woman ...
  A: If you wish to write a note to her,please do. An unexpected phone call from you would be an ...
Dining Etiquette-male ordering5/20/2008
  Q: I have recently gone out with a man who orders dinner for me. I would assume that he was observing ...
  A: In China the man does indeed do all of the ordering of the food. In 2006,Reader's Digest did a ...
Birthday5/19/2008
  Q: My question is about creating a registry for a birthday. I'm the oldest of 8 siblings...obviously we ...
  A: Thin ice here,but if your family members asked directly for you to give them a list of things your ...
Dinner with co-worker5/17/2008
  Q: I've been invited to dinner by a former co-worker. He stays in touch with some of us at work, and ...
  A: No,don't take anyone unless you would just be more comfortable at dinner having someone along. It's ...
graduation announcements5/17/2008
  Q: We are sending announcements to all aunts and uncles, but was wondering if they should be sent to ...
  A: You certainly may send the announcements to the cousins if you wish. An announcement is merely ...
Two Bar MItzvah Celebrations--and Gifts?5/17/2008
  Q: My son has a friend whose parents are divorced and are not on great terms. The friend will have two, ...
  A: Neither parent should expect your son to 'pay for the privilege' of being a guest by bringing a ...
Invited/Uninvited?5/17/2008
  Q: My cousin invited me to a wine tasing tour and noted that she will get together with two other ...
  A: Please call the cousin who made the original invitation and ask for clarification. As in "Did I get ...
Dress Code5/16/2008
  Q: My husband and I have been invited to attend "An Evening got our Members" where we golf. The event ...
  A: Bergeron, All of these made up dress codes drive me mad. Stick any two words together and feel ...
60th wedding anniversary announcement5/16/2008
  Q: My husband's parents are celebrating their 60th wedding anniversary and we would like to put an ...
  A: Thomas and Irene Doe will be celebrating their 60th wedding anniversary with a private family ...
Getting Married5/16/2008
  Q: I am getting married in Aug 2008 and as I am currently working on the wedding invitations I would ...
  A: While I understand the problem you have,it is never appropriate to mention gifts in any way on an ...
To cancel kid's party or not - low response?5/16/2008
  Q: My 8 year old son invited all of his 2nd grade class to his birthday party at a local bowling ...
  A: The worst thing you could do would be to cancel this party. Your child will be so hurt and ...
Graduation Party Gifts5/16/2008
  Q: Our son is graduating from elementary school. One of his friend's parent is throwing a graduation ...
  A: Everything you need to know is in the line "It's just and excuse to throw a party." No need to take ...
invitations5/15/2008
  Q: I would like to invite my brother and his live in girlfriend to my son's graduation. How do I ...
  A: Please use two lines: Jane Arkin Herbert Doe ...
graduation5/14/2008
  Q: I was wondering how early you should send out high school graduation announcements ANSWER: Dear ...
  A: This is a commonly confused pair of terms,so I am happy to help. An invitation asks someone to ...
Graduation Announcement5/13/2008
  Q: We just received the graduation annoucement we are to send out for our daughters high school ...
  A: Half past two o'clock is correct,two thirty o'clock is not correct. Usually with invitations almost ...
gift giving by 13-year-old son5/13/2008
  Q: I have a 13-year-old son. I have been divorced from his mother since he was small, and we share ...
  A: It has taken me nearly a full 24 hours to cool down sufficiently so that I may answer this. As ...
addressing a wedding invitations5/13/2008
  Q: How would you address a wedding invitation to a couple who is engaged to be married in a couple ...
  A: Jane Doe John Adams 123 Race Street Yourtown,ST ...
death5/13/2008
  Q: My Uncle recently passed away. My mom asked my sister and I if we were planning on giving a card, ...
  A: It is not unusual for people to give money to a family. This is usually done for a young family who ...
Etiquette regarding joint birthday party5/12/2008
  Q: I have a close friend who is turning 60 this August. I had planned to throw her a big party but ...
  A: Anyone may throw a party for any reason and at any time. I don't understand your territorial ...
Wedding gifts5/12/2008
  Q: We are getting married and have received some cash gifts. We do not want to receive wedding ...
  A: It is never appropriate to mention gifts on an invitation. So, you did the correct thing there. ...
cemetery etiquette5/12/2008
  Q: I'm not sure this falls under the realm of etiquette or not. I might just need advice. I recently ...
  A: Please know how sorry I am for your loss. It is a stressful time for you made all the worse by other ...
declining an invitaion5/12/2008
  Q: my daughter has been invited to be a debutante and she is not sure about doing this. i feel that a ...
  A: If she is really sure that she does NOT want to participate,make her write the letter herself. It ...
Fence Etiquette5/10/2008
  Q: My neighbor wants to replace the fence that surrounds his yard. His yard is elevated above my and ...
  A: Robert Frost wrote "Good fences make good neighbors". If the wall would benefit you as well,why not ...
Baby shower gift giving5/8/2008
  Q: I own my own business and have 12 girls working for me. Over the last year several girls have had ...
  A: For the love of mud,stay OUT of it. This kind of drama is not something a boss should be getting ...
Bridal Shower for Stepdaughter5/7/2008
  Q: My stepdaughter is getting married in June. The shower is at the maid of honor's home but the bride ...
  A: Your stepdaughter should not have any part to play in the planning of this party. It is supposed to ...
Receiving a Graduation Invitation LATE5/7/2008
  Q: I received an invitation from my nephew's mother 2 days before the graduation, which was being held ...
  A: I don't know what you were planning to give the boy,but if it was cash,please up the amount out of ...
Graduation Announcement5/6/2008
  Q: My daughter is receiving her DVM soon. She (we) want to send out announcements to our friends. We ...
  A: Either you or your daughter may send the announcements. Remember, you're just sending information to ...
college graduation party4/25/2008
  Q: I want to plan a party for my son's graduation, but I'm not sure about the time-frame. Is is ...
  A: Judy, You may have it on the day or in the weeks after the event. Everyone understands how hectic ...
Thinking of You card for an ex father-in-law4/25/2008
  Q: I just found out that my ex father-in-law has been diagnosed with stomach cancer. I have been ...
  A: Write a straight forward note to the man. "Dear Joe, Although she admitted later ...
Return address4/25/2008
  Q: My sister and I are addressing envelopes for thank-you cards to those who acknowledged the recent ...
  A: On this we must defer to the wishes of the good people at the United States Postal System. Please ...
House warming party4/24/2008
  Q: Just moved into a new home, I will be giving a crawfish boil/house warming party. I really need some ...
  A: To ever mention gift on an invitation is wrong. The only time you may ever express a wish for ...
College Graduation Announcement Etiquette4/23/2008
  Q: In two and a half weeks I will be graduating from college. I have gone through some bad times and it ...
  A: Your uncle couldn't BE more wrong. An announcement is merely INFORMATION. There is no action ...
co-worder4/23/2008
  Q: My boss is stealing my clients by under charging them,is this ok as a boss?
  A: It is highly unethical,but as he is your boss,there is probably very little that you can do except ...
Wedding Invitation ettique4/22/2008
  Q: I am divorced and my ex wife has remarried. Our son is getting married and the invitation reads. ...
  A: It would correctly read "his son",but if your son feels closer to his stepmother,then there is ...
Tupperware Parties4/22/2008
  Q: Should you happen to decide to attend a party, are you obligated to buy at least one thing? I am ...
  A: I've answered this one before,so I'll share that one with you. As to "why?"--I have no idea. I ...
Two dads, one bride...4/22/2008
  Q: My soon to be daughter-in-law has a dilema...she has both a father and a step-father that feel they ...
  A: As much as you would like to help your future daughter in law,this is one you need to stay out of. ...
Birthday Gifts4/21/2008
  Q: We are having a first birthday party for our triplets. Due to the crazy amount of unneeded toys and ...
  A: You may say that you are requesting that no gifts are given, implying that you only want to share ...
talking back4/21/2008
  Q: hey amanda i dont know why,but i always talk back when my mom or sisters are mad at me, i just ...
  A: Perhaps it is the manner and tone in which you tell them your side of the story that is the problem. ...
sympathy cards and email4/20/2008
  Q: After the recent death of my husband I have received many cards and e-mails. I appreciate the ...
  A: Please know how very sorry I am for this loss in your life. Those who have suffered a death in the ...
doctoral graduation announcements4/20/2008
  Q: I understand that graduation announcements are traditionally "announced" by the parents. However, ...
  A: Please send out the announcements in your name. It's far too cutsey to pretend the children are ...
Graduation Announcement--Who is the Sender--parent or Graduate?4/18/2008
  Q: The inside envelope on the college graduation envelope should be addressed to the person as if you ...
  A: Whomever has the pen in their hand at the critical moment makes the call. If the parents ...
Bridal Shower4/17/2008
  Q: I am divorce and so is my spouse to be, what is the protocol regarding the type of bridal shower I ...
  A: As bridal and baby showers are to be thrown by the woman's friends, you don't have to think about ...
Flowers vs. Plants for death of friends mother4/17/2008
  Q: My co-worker and good friend's mother passed away. 1/2 of our co-workers want to chip in for a ...
  A: Plants or flowers are equally acceptable. So take a vote or get a mixed basket with both live plants ...
mother of the bride4/16/2008
  Q: I am the long time lover of the mother of the bride and I have been unavoidably invited to attend ...
  A: Barker, Please decline the invitation. It would cause undue stress for the parents of the bride to ...
graduation gifts4/16/2008
  Q: In recent years we've noticed that kids graduating from high school are expecting a monetary gift. ...
  A: Frankly,what the little dears expect is not remotely important. You are never required to give ...
RSVP Etiquette4/15/2008
  Q: I was invited to a party that requests an RSVP. To me RSVP means to reply if you are coming to ...
  A: RSVP is Répondez s'il vous plaît", a French phrase that translates into "please respond". Anytime ...
reply card4/14/2008
  Q: My husband is a physician and over the years we have recieved countless invitations with reply ...
  A: Absolutely! If the ubiquitous 'M' does not apply,be ruthless with the pen! People in the ...
Funeral Etiquette for the family re: plants/flowers sent4/14/2008
  Q: This past weekend was my Grandmother's funeral. My ex-fiance, as well as my employer both sent ...
  A: Please know how sorry I am for not only the loss of a beloved relative,but for the conflict with ...
Gift giving4/13/2008
  Q: I am recovering from a major surgery from two weeks ago and will not be returning to work for ...
  A: A perfect gift (to me) would be a letter of thanks,written from the heart. Express sincerely what ...
funeral etiquette4/11/2008
  Q: What is the proper etiquette for a funeral of your ex-husbands' mother? We have 3 grown children 6 ...
  A: Please sit on the friends side of the church and look to your former in-laws for clues as to the ...
Mother/wedding gifts4/10/2008
  Q: I was recently married and my mother is demanding to be given a copy of the list of gifts we ...
  A: Just say "Well,Mom,I was too embarrassed to say it before,but once we wrote the thank you notes,we ...
Graduation announcements for deceased parent4/10/2008
  Q: I will be sending out graduation announcements for my son's H.S. graduation. His father passed away ...
  A: Thomas Ford Mitchell son of John Mitchell and Kristen Doe ...
introductions-guest of subtenant4/9/2008
  Q: I'm divorced, middle-aged male and sub-tenant on a ranch property consisting of six acres. The main ...
  A: Burns, The next time you see your landlord/friend and can casually work it in,just say "You know,I ...
grad gift giving4/8/2008
  Q: I had someone ask me this morning if you're required to give graduation gifts to other seniors (at ...
  A: You never have to give a gift for any occasion. All you need to do is consider your level of ...
Undergraduate Graduation4/7/2008
  Q: I need help ASAP! My boyfriend, his brother, and I are all graduating in May. We are having a ...
  A: After all the advice I gave you,that is what you took away from it? No,I don't have to allow for ...
wedding scheduling4/7/2008
  Q: My daughter has been planning her JUNE WEDDING since last MAY. The brides guests will mostly come ...
  A: It sounds to me as if this niece's wedding is a very convenient excuse not to spend the time and ...
Visiting parents bedroom assignment4/6/2008
  Q: I have this idea that when a young couple receive their parents, or an older "distinguished" guest ...
  A: No one should have to give up their bedroom for a guest under normal circumstances. The host and/or ...
Announcments for College Graduation4/5/2008
  Q: My daughter will be graduating from college later this month. What is the correct etiquette for ...
  A: Dawn, An announcement is merely information to be sent to those people you feel would be interested ...
Engagement Party Question4/4/2008
  Q: My fiance and I have extremely large families. We are planning on throwing an Engagment Party and ...
  A: There is simply no polite way to invite the family members to a wedding related function but not the ...
Rude not to invite mother to stay for dinner?4/4/2008
  Q: Recently, I invited my mother (who lives a few steps across the street) to come over and spend a ...
  A: Your reasons for not asking her to stay were sound and reasonable. Good manners do not require you ...
Surprise Party Dates4/3/2008
  Q: Is it okay to throw a surprise birthday party two weeks after the persons actual birthdate? Previous ...
  A: Anyone may give a party at any time and for nearly any reason. Please go ahead and have the surprise ...
invitations4/2/2008
  Q: How soon is too soon to send out invitations to a Baby Shower I am cohosting and how late is too ...
  A: Two weeks used to be plenty of time for casual parties like a shower. However,with everyone's crazy ...
wedding invitation list4/2/2008
  Q: My son will be married in Aug. The wedding will be 3 hours from here in a small church. We have ...
  A: ABSOLUTELY! Anyone can throw a party at any time and for nearly any reason. Of course you want to ...
Dining out etiquette4/1/2008
  Q: I have a question regarding meal orders when dining out. My fiancé and I will be meeting two other ...
  A: Try not to split one item. See if you can't each get a salad or other side dish. Make sure that you ...
Not invited to the wedding4/1/2008
  Q: My uncle's daughter is getting married in June, the "Save the Date's" have already gone out and I ...
  A: This sounds like a simple case of being overlooked. Accidentally. I say this because you didn't tell ...
Funeral Thank you cards3/30/2008
  Q: My mother recently passed away and we have been debating if Thank You cards should be sent to all ...
  A: While it is unnecessary to send notes of response for cards and letters of condolence,you may if you ...
engagement protocol3/28/2008
  Q: Our son is getting engaged. What is the etiquette regarding calling the brides parents? Who gives ...
  A: The bride's family usually gives the engagement party. However,if they cannot afford or have no ...
BAPTISM3/27/2008
  Q: I WILL LIKE TO KNOW WHO PAY FOR A CHILD BAPTISM THE PARENTS OR GOD PARENTS
  A: The parents take care of the expenses associated with the baptism. A Godparents are responsible for ...
dress code for a sweet sixteen3/25/2008
  Q: the sweet sixteen young lady will be wearing red and white; she would like everyone invited to ...
  A: The best way to get the word out is by using the grapevine that exists in every social group,but ...
Wedding etiquette3/24/2008
  Q: My husband and I have been invited to my nephews wedding but my three adult children and their ...
  A: Finch, You have expressed your hurt and disappointment to the groom and he is unmoved. An odd ...
Bad Gifts3/22/2008
  Q: My Mother insists on sending my son cheaply/poorly made clothing that doesn't fit his body type or ...
  A: While I certainly sympathize with your feelings,you've already answered your ownI know that I should ...
wedding gift when you can't attend?3/21/2008
  Q: A family friend is getting married in another state (about a ten hour drive). Some of my family ...
  A: Send them a letter of congratulation and offer any thoughtful insights you have learned about ...
Funeral etiquette3/19/2008
  Q: My boyfriend's mother passed away Monday night after being in a nursing home for 3 years. I've only ...
  A: Ask him. Simply say what you said to me. That you care for him deeply and want to support him in any ...
Wedding Invitation Ettiquette3/17/2008
  Q: I understand that it's a no-no to include bridal registry and other gift information with wedding ...
  A: While I understand and applaud the sentiment,it's still taboo. Soliciting gifts,even for a selfless ...
Proper footwear to go out to eat.3/17/2008
  Q: I like to go to dinner with my husband at family type casual restaurants like Chili's, Red Lobsters, ...
  A: This is not an etiquette question. It is a relationship question disguised as a conflict over what ...
Should I follow up people that didn't attend my party celebrations3/16/2008
  Q: Last night was my hen's night. It was a fairly intimate event with less than 15 people and almost ...
  A: While I am sure that you are disappointed in your friends behavior,it is best to say nothing. "We ...
Debutante ball invitation3/16/2008
  Q: My husband and I received an invitation to the debutante ball from 3 girls.We will not be able to ...
  A: While it is not necessary to send a gift,you may,if you wish send the girls flowers on or near the ...
40th Birthday3/15/2008
  Q: I'm planning a surprise 40th birthday for my husband at a bowling alley. Should the guests pay for ...
  A: A hostess never gives a party that she cannot afford. Address the invitations specifically to the ...
baptism announcement3/15/2008
  Q: I baptized my third child on the same day as her first birthday party. the party was a huge affair, ...
  A: By all means,send out an announcement to whomever you please. An announcement is merely information ...
Why we say "I'm Good" or "Fine" when asked "How are you?"3/14/2008
  Q: I was recently put under the microscope by a somewhat grouchy (at the time) friend, when he recently ...
  A: It is just part of normal social interaction. "How are you?" "I am well,thank you,and you?" A ...
Wedding Invitation Parent Wording3/14/2008
  Q: Gamble, I am trying to write my wedding invitation verses and I am stuck on how to word the names ...
  A: Mr. and Mrs. Joe Smo Smith request the honor of your presence at the marriage of their daughter Ann ...
College Graduation3/12/2008
  Q: I will be graduating this August with my BS in Business administration. I am 37 years old. I also am ...
  A: By all means,send invitations to your graduation if you wish. Do remember that no one but your ...
Whistling3/12/2008
  Q: May I ask when it is rude to whistle. I was always told it is rude to whistle when not in private.
  A: The 'rules' came about because most whistling is very annoying. Few people who whistle do it ...
baby shower's3/12/2008
  Q: I recently received a message on myspace from the step-mother of my husband's best friends wife ...
  A: "step-mother of my husband's best friends wife..." What? Oh, never mind,it doesn't matter. It's 20 ...
Conversational Etiquette3/11/2008
  Q: Today I was having a conversation with my mother (86) and my son (17). In the middle of the ...
  A: What matters here is that your Mother felt left out. You should have just said "I'm sorry Mom. We ...
Gum Chewing3/11/2008
  Q: When is it considered bad manners to chew gum?
  A: The penalty for smuggling gum into Singapore is a year in prison and a 10,000 dollar fine. This ...
son's wedding3/10/2008
  Q: My son proposed 4.5 weeks after he and his fiancee started dating. They have set a date of June 20, ...
  A: There really is nothing to be done. I understand that you are trying to smooth the path for your son ...
sympathy cards3/9/2008
  Q: My sister-in-law recently died. My husband has been getting some sympathy cards addressed to both of ...
  A: Please know how sorry I am for your loss. Death is an awkward and painful event for everyone ...
Theater3/8/2008
  Q: At the theater, when one is passing in front of other patrons in order to reach his/her seat, should ...
  A: Apostolou, Emily Post said you face forward,toward the stage. What her reasoning was,I do not ...
New neighbor3/7/2008
  Q: I rented and moved into a house 2 weeks ago. Earlier this week there was a calling card in my ...
  A: No 'hostess gift' required. Just show up and be charming and polite so that she knows there isn't an ...
Dissertation Chair Gift?3/7/2008
  Q: I'm about to finish graduate school. Should I give my dissertation chair a gift? And if so, what ...
  A: Congratulations! Give a gift,but make it personal. You've paid for your education,so a ...
paying for friend's dinner3/7/2008
  Q: Recently, my husband and went out to eat with his cousin, whom we don't see very often. As we sat ...
  A: There is nothing wrong with getting the matter settled before you eat. I prefer to have a word with ...
Wedding Shower3/6/2008
  Q: I am the maid of honor for my sisters wedding. She is planning to invite only immediate family and ...
  A: If you do invite these relatives to the shower but not the wedding itself,be prepared for fifty ...
2 cats and 1 fiance3/5/2008
  Q: Yesterday, my fiance called me to ask how my day went. I told him how it went and asked him how his ...
  A: Oh dear. What is he going to do when you have kids? This isn't about the cats. Fights in ...
Unannounced Visitor!!3/5/2008
  Q: My roommate and I are in a bit of a situation. We live in a basement suite, while the landlord and ...
  A: That is a tough spot to be in. She doesn't sound as if she has much of a life and I would bet ...
hotel bill single vs family3/5/2008
  Q: Recently we planned on ending our husbands and some of the kids painballing. I found a place and ...
  A: Split the cost evenly,but see to it that the men without children get some benefits. Like maybe the ...
"address" for baptism reception3/4/2008
  Q: My son is being baptized soon, and at our church, baptism takes place during the regular worship ...
  A: "Reception to follow in Holloway Fellowship Hall immediately after the service." Lets them know it ...
Class Reunion Protocol3/2/2008
  Q: It is time for my 30th class reunion. The class officers did the 5th, 10th, and 20th. However, ...
  A: Make one last effort to contact these two class officers. Leave a message saying "If we don't hear ...
College Graduation3/2/2008
  Q: Our eldest daughter, and the eldest grandaughter, is graduating from college in May. What is the ...
  A: Announcements is merely a way of conveying information. There is no action required on the part of ...
Sending a birthday card to my son's ex-girlfriend2/29/2008
  Q: I would like to send a birthday card to my son's previous girlfriend, who is truly sweet and whom I ...
  A: While I understand why you want to do it,you have the maturity and life experience to know that it's ...
"Future Lawyers"?2/29/2008
  Q: Gamble: I am a high school student with high hopes of becoming an attorney. I have done Mock ...
  A: I can certainly see where it would annoy you,but try to let it go. The next term that you will be ...
Charging Guests for Friend's B-Day Party2/29/2008
  Q: I'm throwing my best friend a 30th b-day party at a Karaoke bar. The private room for 2hrs is around ...
  A: Never give a party that you cannot afford. People never should have to pay for the privilege of ...
proper word phrasing2/19/2008
  Q: I am throwing a party for my father's 70th birthday. I am a poor teacher, however. So, I can pay for ...
  A: It is criminal what we pay teachers,isn't it? A hostess never gives a party that she cannot afford. ...
anniversary party2/15/2008
  Q: I will be attending a combination 25th and 50th Wedding Anniversary party. Renewing of vows will be ...
  A: He should wear the tie and if he sees others are not wearing them,he can ditch it. Better to be ...
Recomendation letters2/15/2008
  Q: I was asked to write a recommendation letter for a neighbors son for a scholarship for college. At ...
  A: Most scholarship committees and private clubs that require a letter want it to be private. They want ...
inlaws2/14/2008
  Q: My baby is due in three months and my inlaws are already planning on staying with us when the baby ...
  A: Madness. You are going to be giving birth and,almost immediately after,be forced to sleep on the ...
Responding to an invitation to a "party that is not a party" ie tupperware, Partylite,2/14/2008
  Q: Is there an obligation to respond to the RSVP of a non-party like a tupperware party? Or is it ...
  A: Oh don't get me started on poorly disguised pyramid schemes. "Recruit 3 friends and become a ...
Mom's birthday invitation2/14/2008
  Q: I'm having a birthday party for my mom at a local restaurant. I am trying to figure out how I am ...
  A: A hostess never gives a party that she cannot afford. Please consider adjusting your plans to just ...
passed bar exam party2/13/2008
  Q: I was invited to a party for a cousin who passed the bar exam. They are now officially an attorney ...
  A: Send a card or a note of congratulation only. She just needs your good wishes for a successful ...
baby shower etiquette2/13/2008
  Q: I am having my second child, which was a hard won battle at 42. My friends keep saying "When is the ...
  A: An announcement is merely information that is sent to those who may wish to know it. No action is ...
Bridal Shower2/13/2008
  Q: I would like to have a Bridal Luncheon/ Shower for my son's fiance at a lovely Inn.My son and fiance ...
  A: A relative may give a party in honor of the bride to be,they may not properly host a shower. ...
Engagement Party2/12/2008
  Q: Who should give an engagement party when the couple is paying for their own wedding? How long after ...
  A: Anyone may give a party at any time and for any reason. With an engagement,the party needs to be ...
etiquette for a widow recently bereaved2/12/2008
  Q: What is the etiquette for a widow recently bereaved regarding responding to notes of condolences, ...
  A: She gets a pass on 'normal' for a solid year. No one who has suffered such a loss has to do ...
How to address a sympathy card after the death of a husband2/11/2008
  Q: how do you address a sympathy card to the widow? Should it be Jane Smith or Mrs. Jane Smith or Mrs. ...
  A: She is "Mrs Robert Smith" until she dies or remarries. She can also be properly addressed as "Jane ...
Getting Married2/11/2008
  Q: I would like to know if it is improper to get married on your birthday. I am planning a wedding and ...
  A: No,there is nothing incorrect or unlucky about getting married on your birthday. I wish you and your ...
Table manner early start2/11/2008
  Q: I considered myself well mannered, however at a recent gathering in a restaurant, a group of 20 ...
  A: One of the people who hasn't been served needs to say "I hope everyone else will agree with me ...
correcting others2/11/2008
  Q: My Mom thinks it is bad manners if you use improper grammar or mispronounce peoples' names. So she ...
  A: Your Mom should only correct those she has personally brought into this world. Everyone else she ...
PotLucks2/10/2008
  Q: I have been called rude because I hosted a potluck dinner this fall. My husband & I are in our ...
  A: In 1621,a very famous pot luck was held in this country. We now celebrate the anniversary annually ...
complaints2/10/2008
  Q: I recently hosted a Valentines Ball for a City Wide social group. Each person paid $27.50 for a ...
  A: If people paid for their tickets,you were not the hostess,you were the planner or organizer. At ...
how to address bridal shower invitations........2/10/2008
  Q: how do address bridal shower invitations for just women with daughters, can I say Mrs. Jane Smith ...
  A: Please use two lines: Mrs Robert Smith Misses Amy & Ann Smith ...
Proper Etiquette when interacting with someone who rejected you2/10/2008
  Q: This is my first time on your site. I am a bisexual sophomore in college and a few weeks ago I ...
  A: Lauren, Asking someone over to your room is a casual thing. It wouldn't be clear to anyone that ...
Not be introduced2/10/2008
  Q: My husband has the habit of not introducing me. If we are at a store and someone comes up and speaks ...
  A: First what you do is kick him. In the shin. What? Your state and local laws don't allow for that ...
An adult visiting-daughter's response2/9/2008
  Q: A adult daughter has been home with her parents for week one of a 16-week stay. The Dad has just ...
  A: As they raised her,they may respond in pretty much any way that they see fit. The options are to ask ...
destination wedding invitations2/8/2008
  Q: We are getting married in Las Vegas in October and will be sending out save the date cards shortly ...
  A: These are special circumstances,ignore 'the rule' and do what you need to do to get a proper head ...
Was I wrong being upset about a birthday gift?2/8/2008
  Q: I had a birthday in December and my friends and I went out for a birthday dinner. I thought that a ...
  A: In short,yes,you were wrong. You over-reacted and behaved like a child. I don't know what her ...
Unexpected guests2/8/2008
  Q: I need to know how to handle unexpected company that show up every January from out of state. These ...
  A: It's your house and it's time to take it back. Having good manners does not mean you have to be a ...
Debutante gifts2/8/2008
  Q: Our guest list for my daughter's debutante ball includes good friends of ours, but they are not well ...
  A: Only very close family and friends give a deb gifts. People who are so close to the girl that they ...
Funeral's2/8/2008
  Q: My mother passed away a few years ago. She lived in Texas and my husband’s brothers lived in ...
  A: Each situation is different and as I do not know your family, there is no way to comment on the ...
Receving duplicate gifts from friends2/8/2008
  Q: I was left in a tight spot recently regarding duplicated birthday gifts from 2 friends. Friend #1 ...
  A: You meant to do a kindness by heading off a 'smart Aleck' (and don't we all have those in our ...
Addressing a family with different last names2/8/2008
  Q: In the situation where the Mom kept her last name and kids have Dad's last name. How would you ...
  A: Just use two lines,or three depending on how old the kids are. Elise Howard ...
Etiquette for writing thank you cards for gifts2/7/2008
  Q: I've been having an argument with my mother about something. My mother insists that no matter the ...
  A: Perhaps I can help you look at this situation differently. For whatever reason,this great aunt feels ...
Taking food to someone's home2/7/2008
  Q: If someone is in town after an extended absence and you call that person and ask if you can come ...
  A: Please give them a couple of options and leave it open to other suggestions. As in "I was thinking ...
Baby shower2/7/2008
  Q: A friend is adopting a baby from China and I would like to host a shower for her. In speaking with ...
  A: A hostess never throws a party that she cannot afford. Offer your guests only the coffee and dessert ...
40th anniversary question2/7/2008
  Q: My parents will be celebrating their 40th wedding anniversary on Feb. 17th. My father is in poor ...
  A: Add a line like this one at the end of the announcement: While Mr and Mrs Thompson are unable to ...
TABLE SETTING2/6/2008
  Q: For a formal dinner for 10, I have 10 wine glasses and only 4 water glasses. It is OK to set your ...
  A: You don't say just who is coming to dinner,but I am guessing it's family and friends? Please go ...
when are thank you cards necessary2/6/2008
  Q: A friend of mines in-laws are mad at her for not sending thank you cards to the people that came to ...
  A: Good heavens NO. Listen,this friend of yours has suffered a horrible loss. She officially gets a ...
Vow renewals2/6/2008
  Q: What is the gift giving expectations for a couple who are renewing their wedding vows after 25 ...
  A: A gift is never required for any reason or any occasion. So it has to be a question of how much ...
wedding dress mob2/6/2008
  Q: can the mother of the bride and mother of the groom wear the same color dress
  A: If the dresses were of a dark color,say navy,then it would be fine,people would be looking at the ...
ordination of a bishop2/5/2008
  Q: I was invited to a ordination of a bishop (a distant relative) I responded by rsvp date that I would ...
  A: You are not required to give a gift,but if you do,the traditional route is to make a donation to the ...
Destination wedding etiquette1/31/2008
  Q: As mother of the groom can I have a after wedding reception for our side of the family - we are a ...
  A: Absolutely. Anyone may give a party for any reason and at any time. I wish your son and his bride ...
All expense paid wedding1/31/2008
  Q: A very close friend is having a wedding in Maui, small about 50 people. He is paying for flights ...
  A: It doesn't matter if they get married in the park and served you all day old donuts or have a ...
party invites - adults only1/31/2008
  Q: How do I politely state (in a surprise birthday invitation) that party is for adults only AND ...
  A: Dear Members of The Westwood Trails Group, On Saturday,February 16th there will be a surprise ...
wedding gown1/31/2008
  Q: the back to my gown is open,but im not going braless.a strapless bra wont help because you can still ...
  A: Well..not sure that this is technically an etiquette question, but I'm here to help. I Googled the ...
How can I get this woman to quit bothering me?1/31/2008
  Q: My mother died in April 2003. A lady whom I had not seen in about 23 years came over. All she did ...
  A: Losing a parent can be stressful,I know. This woman probably meant well,but if it was 'creepy' to ...
singing manners1/31/2008
  Q: Is it bad manners to hum or sing along with recorded music in the presence of my husband, in our ...
  A: Frohmader, Well..let's see..if the couple is newly wed,singing out of tune would be considered a ...
death of a friend's husband1/31/2008
  Q: We took up a collection at work for good friend who just lost her husband and there is controversy ...
  A: Have someone write her a check and include it in with a condolence note. Dear Sue, We are ...
appropriate gift1/30/2008
  Q: Is there an appropriate for a college graduate who made All-American for football. Family having a ...
  A: Mercurio, You are not required to give a gift unless you expressly wish to do so. Let your level ...
wedding shower1/30/2008
  Q: What is the protocol on giving a shower or come and go tea for a bride who is planning a small ...
  A: Please do not invite people to the shower if they have no hope of getting an invitation to the ...
engagement party guest list1/30/2008
  Q: Our wedding is in Aspen, CO...we live in Atlanta, GA. We are having a pretty small wedding and ...
  A: Please don't invite people to the engagement party if you have no intention of sending them an ...
Formal attire for Franco-Mexican wedding1/29/2008
  Q: My husband and I are attending a 4 PM wedding in Cuernavaca on Feb. 16 (two very wealthy families). ...
  A: Well..I e-mailed a few people in Cuernavaca and still have not heard anything,so I guess I will have ...
favors for neighbors1/28/2008
  Q: I live on a street where neighbors are generally very friendly and social with each other, though we ...
  A: You don't need a concrete reason to say no. The phrase "I'm sorry,it just wouldn't be convenient for ...
Is it appropriate to kiss on the lips?1/28/2008
  Q: I've been dating a man for a year and a half. He is best friends with a woman. I accept this, ...
  A: How..European of him! Look,bottom line,you are the girlfriend. If you are not okay with this,then ...
Baby/wedding showers1/28/2008
  Q: I was taught by my mother that family members do not host showers for other family members. This ...
  A: Your Mom's advice was absolutely correct. It's one thing for close friends to give you a small ...
Photo Christmas cards1/27/2008
  Q: When sending photo Christmas cards should the whole family if they live under one roof be in the ...
  A: You may have anyone in the photo that you wish. Keith Richards,if he's passing by,can be in your ...
Birth Congratulations1/26/2008
  Q: When someone has a new baby, is it correct to congratulate just the parents? I have noticed ...
  A: It is always a good idea to make a fuss over a new baby to the siblings. After all,they may not ...
gift registry1/26/2008
  Q: How many stores should a person normally register at. I heard two but I was unsure. is it bad ...
  A: Gift registries are at complete odds with etiquette. They were created by stores as a way to make ...
surprise party invitations1/25/2008
  Q: I am planning a surprise birthday party for my fiance. The plan is for everyone to meet at a local ...
  A: You are hosting the party,your young man is the guest of honor. All expenses would be paid by you. ...
Vacation House1/25/2008
  Q: A wealthy friend who lives in the UK came into a lot of money and decided to rent a vacation house ...
  A: You are correct. You cannot and should not pay her back 'in full'. This is her gift to you and let ...
golden anniversary gifts1/25/2008
  Q: We are planning a 50th anniversary party for my parents.They never had a real wedding or honeymoon ...
  A: There is never a polite way to ask for gifts. While I understand your desire to give your parents a ...
miscarrage1/25/2008
  Q: My niece had a miscarrage, is it OK to send a sympathy card, or a plain card and write in it, don't ...
  A: Please write her a note letting her know how sorry you are that this terrible loss occurred. It's ...
75th Dinner Birthday Party1/24/2008
  Q: A church member has asked me to print programs for her mother's 75th birthday party. The family is ...
  A: You do you have any more information to share with me? This is too incomplete a question for me to ...
Country Club Sponsor1/24/2008
  Q: A friend of mine wants to have her wedding reception at a local country club. To do this, she has ...
  A: Please don't get involved in this situation. It will be miserable for you all around. Your friend ...
Brides maids dress1/23/2008
  Q: Should parents of bride pay for BRIDESMAIDS DRESS.
  A: Only if they can afford to do so. Not many people can pay for the dresses,so it is sort of ...
50th Anniversary Dinner (out of town)1/23/2008
  Q: My husband is planning our 50th Anniversary getaway, that includes dinner planning at an expensive ...
  A: A host never gives a party that he cannot afford. Your friends should not have to 'pay for the ...
Wedding GIft Giving1/23/2008
  Q: If I attended the Bridal Shower and gave a gift, is it ok to delay the wedding gift for a few ...
  A: You never have to give a gift for any occasion. It is not 'required'. I am sure that your friends ...
Proper time to send Fundraiser Invitations1/23/2008
  Q: How long before a fundraiser should we send the invitations? We are sending Save the Date cards ...
  A: If you send the cards out too early,you run the risk of people forgetting. Six months out is ...
Funeral1/23/2008
  Q: My friend's mother-in-law recently passed away and my sister and I (who are friends with her)sent ...
  A: As politely as you can manage,please smack your sister upside the head and tell her to get over ...
"Black Cocktail Attire"1/22/2008
  Q: I am attending a casino theme party and the attire is listed as "black cocktail". What exactly does ...
  A: It's official. The world has gone mad. There seems to be a great need for people to make up these ...
Weddings & receptions1/22/2008
  Q: I'm getting married in August 2008.. I want to know if it is considered "cheap" to make you own ...
  A: It is never wrong to stick to a budget you have made or use the materials that would be best for ...
ex-girfriend of husband & card signing1/22/2008
  Q: I would like your opinion on a touchy situation; every year on my husband's AA anniversary a card is ...
  A: I think it's great that your husband has found a program that he can stick to and you shouldn't ...
my ex husband father died should i attend the funeral1/22/2008
  Q: My ExHusband of 10yrs father is passing away. They have given him a week. This is the grandfather of ...
  A: Can you not call him? You have children together,you must still speak occasionally. Just tell him ...
Birthday invitation - Dutch treat1/22/2008
  Q: My friend is having a surprise 50th birthday party for her husband next month and would like it to ...
  A: I'm sorry,but there is no polite way to tell people that they must pay for the privilege of being ...
Gifts from biological mother1/22/2008
  Q: My husband recently received custody of his 3 children (my stepchildren) from his first marriage, ...
  A: It wasn't wrong for you to have the children write thank you notes. It was very thoughtful. I do ...
how child address adult1/22/2008
  Q: We recently moved to a new neighborhood. Two male neighbors have requested that our children call ...
  A: The children should call the men by their first names. Even though it goes against what you would ...
Thank you notes1/22/2008
  Q: If the recipient of the gift thanks you at the time you give the gift to them, is a thank you note ...
  A: You don't say how old your nephew is in your question. If the person (any person) receiving the gift ...
parents gift for second daughter's wedding1/21/2008
  Q: My daughter is planning to get married this year. She doesn't anything more than a court house ...
  A: You owe her nothing. She is not entitled to anything more than you wish to give her. End of story. ...
thank you envelope1/21/2008
  Q: How do you address a thank you envelope for a bridal shower gift from a friend or famliy member? My ...
  A: If you're writing the thank you note,you get to choose. An honorific is never 'wrong' but as of the ...
Addressing a thank you note to a child1/21/2008
  Q: Is it still appropriate to address a male child as "Master" (John Smith)? If so, at what age do you ...
  A: The honorific 'Master' is appropriate to use up until the age of 13. It has fallen out of fashion,at ...
To use or not to use the gravy ladle1/19/2008
  Q: My question may seem somewhat trivial but it is a real difference of opinion at our family "holiday" ...
  A: To well, or not to well, that is theWhether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer The slings and arrows ...
Graduation Invitations1/18/2008
  Q: My daughter would like to invite a few of her teachers from grade school,middle school,and high ...
  A: As the invitations (to teachers) are going to be few in number,please have your daughter write each ...
Sequence or Order of Professional Designations1/18/2008
  Q: Is there a sequence or order to Professional Designations that a person lists? Is it in the order ...
  A: Please list them in the order they were earned by you. Makes it simple and logical for the person ...
Christmas thank you cards1/18/2008
  Q: Is it neccesary to send a Christmas thank you card to friends and family when the Christmas cards ...
  A: If you did not get the gift in the presence of the giver, please do send them a note. You are ...
Street Meetings1/18/2008
  Q: What is the proper etiquette on acknowledging a stranger on the street? (ie-saying hello, nodding or ...
  A: Depends entirely on the size of the city. What will be a friendly gesture in one place will get you ...
not invited to be in cousins wedding1/17/2008
  Q: My husband is very hurt that he is not invited to be a part of his 1st cousins wedding party, they ...
  A: We are often hurt and disappointed when other people fail to meet our expectations. Meanwhile,the ...
Drinking off a bottle.1/17/2008
  Q: Is it good manners to drink off a soda/beer bottle at a dinning table?
  A: No. It looks horrible and why people do it,I will never know. Unless someone is at the beach or ...
60% Seating at a Wedding?1/17/2008
  Q: I am getting married in June 08' and renting a Tent. We will have one main tent and then a side ...
  A: Perhaps I should have given a straight answer. But,you guessed it,I have never heard of this ...
Thanks you cards at Christmas Time1/16/2008
  Q: My question is, is it appropriate to send thank you cards to the people who send us Christmas gifts? ...
  A: I wonder where your neighbor ever got that idea? It is never wrong to send a thank you note for a ...
Engagement Party Gift1/16/2008
  Q: If you are invited to an engagement party, is a gift expected? This is a first for me.
  A: You are never required to pay for the privilege of being invited as a guest. This applies to any ...
Evening Wear1/16/2008
  Q: For a black tie event is it necessary to wear a long evening gown or is social cocktail length ...
  A: Ah,that's the joy of being a woman. We can get away with either and not apologize for it. Yes,a ...
Tipping/Dinner Parties1/16/2008
  Q: Gamble, I am going to host a dinner party at a restaurant to celebrate my birthday. I was wondering ...
  A: Pre-paying for the valet parking is an excellent idea. Very thoughtful of you. Most restaurants ...
Whistling inside the house1/16/2008
  Q: Is it improper to whistle inside the house and what is the reasoning for it?
  A: If it is your house,you are free to whistle in it. The 'rules' came about because most whistling is ...
Travel Expenses for family guests1/16/2008
  Q: My sister moved to Florida ten years ago. She has four daughters. I and my family live in ...
  A: The only person responsible for a guest's hotel bill is the guest. If the financial burden is too ...
Mom's retirement party1/15/2008
  Q: My mother is retiring from a long successful career in publishing. My stepfather and I felt we ...
  A: Anyone may give a party at any time and for any reason. I think that celebrating your Mom's career ...
question on etiquette1/15/2008
  Q: my question is My daughter just got engaged I am planning on making a surprise engagement party the ...
  A: No,there is no polite way to ask for gifts on an invitation,I'm sorry. People never should be made ...
hostess gifts1/13/2008
  Q: Is it better to open a bottle of wine that you receive as a gift from a friend who you have invited ...
  A: As the hostess,the choice is yours. Most people do not open the wine that is brought simply because ...
Funeral etiquite1/13/2008
  Q: One of my best friends just lost her uncle that she hasn't seen in years due to his incarceration. ...
  A: By saying "This is obviously a deeply distressing event for everyone. I think it would be best if I ...
driving from events1/13/2008
  Q: When departing a dance or social event, is a man obligated to wait for a woman in another car to ...
  A: No. Once you have seen the woman to her car,your obligation has ended. It is up to the woman to ...
No Gift Southern custom?1/13/2008
  Q: My daughter was married in the church she has attended since birth. Many of our guests did not give ...
  A: A wedding is a sacrament. A solemn religious service that is one of the most important in our lives. ...
Thank yous1/13/2008
  Q: How should I properly thank someone who has given money for a Catholic Mass?
  A: Write a simple note of thanks. "Dear Mrs Simpson, Your kind donation for the Mass in ...
shower invitations1/12/2008
  Q: Is is proper to invite a relatively "new" girl friend of the groom's dad to a shower when their ...
  A: WOW. Yes,it will make for an uncomfortable situation, but if the bride wants this woman at the ...
tombstone1/11/2008
  Q: my mom recently passed away. she was married 4 times we are not sure what to write on the ...
  A: This is entirely up to you to decide. Grave markers may contain as much or as little information as ...
child birthday party invite etiquette1/11/2008
  Q: I have a 5 year old daughter, and a girl in her class is having a birthday party but has only ...
  A: Ouch. Inviting everyone in the class is the best policy. No,there is nothing to be gained by ...
High School Graduation Gift1/10/2008
  Q: I received a high school graduation announcement from my friend's daughter whom I have never met. ...
  A: An announcement is merely information. It is send to those people who might be interested in ...
Grieving ex-boyfriend1/9/2008
  Q: My present girlfriend's ex-boyfriend of more than a year ago recently died. Prior to his death she ...
  A: Let's just start out by saying this,you are always allowed to feel exactly as you do. It is how we ...
Special Diets and Dinner Parties1/9/2008
  Q: My husband and I both have medically necessary special diets, each of us having a different disease ...
  A: Decline all invitations to meals and stick to social outings that avoid all food issues. Art ...
birthday party etiquette1/9/2008
  Q: I have always believed that if a child is invited ot a birthday party and is unable to attend that ...
  A: No one is ever required to give a gift for any occasion. If they attend,if they don't...they never ...
manners1/9/2008
  Q: Is it rude to come over to someone's house and talk about any new item they have purchased? Any ...
  A: Most of us enjoy it when someone admires a new lamp or vase in our home. The comment should be ...
1st communion1/9/2008
  Q: We are in the process of planning our sons 1st communion, and we do not know what to do in regards ...
  A: Sorry,son's life,I meant to say... Dear Carmen, This is a very serious and important day in your ...
timing of wedding gift1/9/2008
  Q: My family is all gathering this weekend for a small wedding for my brother (36)down on the beach in ...
  A: The bride and groom do not want to have to ship or haul presents back home. Please listen to the ...
Cat sitting for in-laws1/8/2008
  Q: My question is about my in-laws cat. They are on vacation in Florida and my husband and I are ...
  A: Would you really do that to your in-laws? Make them come home from a vacation to care for a cat? ...
picking up the meal check1/8/2008
  Q: We will be visiting several cities out of state and meeting friends for a meal. Are the visitors or ...
  A: The visitors and the natives are supposed to fight over who gets to pick up the check. As in ...
Birthday party at restaurant1/8/2008
  Q: My father is going to host a surprise 70th birthday party for my mother at her favorite restaurant ...
  A: No,you aren't wrong here. Your sister is the one who needs to step back and see the big picture. ...
retirement party1/8/2008
  Q: people at work are hosting a retirement party for our secretary. She lives with spouse and 1 child ...
  A: You don't say what kind of party this is,but I am going to guess that it is not an open house or ...
blowing your nose1/8/2008
  Q: Is it bad manners to blow your nose at the table, while others are eating?
  A: Yes. Some people wouldn't mind,but most people find it disgusting. Anyone who needs to blow their ...
relationship - man and woman differences in money spending1/8/2008
  Q: I have a new relationship, we are both professional middle aged people, he is richer than me. Is ...
  A: I think it is up to each couple to decide for themselves what the terms of the relationship are. I ...
chipping in for flowers for a funeral1/8/2008
  Q: am organizing a group of people to chip in for flowers for a funeral. Most of us are single. ...
  A: BEVERLY YOU DIDN'T SCROLL DOWN FAR ENOUGH. HAPPENS ALL THE TIME! BEST ...
Debutante Gifts1/8/2008
  Q: My daughter was recently in two debutante balls. She received gifts from fellow debutantes, for ...
  A: It is not traditional for the debutantes to exchange gifts,but there is no harm in it. These ...
Adult Birthday Party Favors1/8/2008
  Q: I am planning a 60th birthday party for my husband and specifically requested no gifts please. Am I ...
  A: Only give party favors if you wish to do so. You may also decide for yourself what to give and if ...
Party arrival eitiquette1/7/2008
  Q: Wondering if you think it's OK to tell a host you will be at a kid's birthday party, but plan to ...
  A: Parents of toddlers (and their friends) should be tolerant of the situation they find themselves ...
invitations1/7/2008
  Q: Sending invitations toa formal party. When should invitations be sent..two weeks ahead or more?
  A: If it is very formal (as well as important to you) please consider giving your guests a month's ...
Bar Mitzvah Invites1/7/2008
  Q: We just found out that a girl from my son's class whom we invited to his Bar Mitzvah is making her ...
  A: While I certainly understand and applaud your desire to protect your son from any social hurt he may ...
Etiquette1/7/2008
  Q: It is very kind of you to give free advice about social etiquette and I do need your advice. ...
  A: You do not say what church the bishop belongs to,but I will guess Catholic. I will add some others ...
dress material --appropriate for wedding in FEbuary, March or april1/7/2008
  Q: I have a cream colored dress I would like to consider for my second marriage. I am 68 yrs. old. The ...
  A: Well,it depends on the ruffles,doesn't it? I mean,we have all seen women past the age of 30 or so ...
being a guest in a home1/6/2008
  Q: I was recently hosting a new friend in my home. I asked them to attend my church service wit on ...
  A: Religion and religious views are deeply private and entirely personal. Anyone may invite others to ...
funeral thank you1/6/2008
  Q: Amanda, I have been asked to send out the thank you notes for my mother-in-laws funeral. What do I ...
  A: Dear Mark and Karen, Ethel has asked me to pass along her sincerest thanks for the ...
Birthday Party with Kosher Guests1/6/2008
  Q: My husband and I are hosting a birthday party for our two year old son. Two of the families ...
  A: Burying the family silver in the garden and Kashering the kitchen would be a bit much for a two ...
personalized baby gift for shower1/6/2008
  Q: I am going to a baby shower and the mother to be knows and shares that her baby will be a girl and ...
  A: In some cultures a personalized baby gift is an omen of misfortune to come for the child. This is ...
gift for nephew graduation with no relationship1/6/2008
  Q: After 20 years of sending a Christmas and birthday gift to my nephew, I decided this year not to ...
  A: I had some sympathy for the kid until "he blocked me on Facebook". That is a pretty overtly ...
baby's 1st birthday1/5/2008
  Q: This is my baby's 1st birthday. She has alot of toys already, so I'm wondering if it's okay to put ...
  A: I am so sorry,but there is never a proper way to ask for gifts on an invitation. You may never ...
wedding shower gifts1/5/2008
  Q: My spouse and I are among 18 couples hosting a couples wedding shower. The cost will be about $300. ...
  A: This is an easy one,and it applies to any party,event or celebration: You are never required to give ...
gifting etiquette1/5/2008
  Q: I received Christmas cookies on a pretty holiday plate from my neighbors. Am I supposed to return ...
  A: Err on the side of caution by returning her plate. If she meant that to be part of the gift,she will ...
becoming a debutante1/4/2008
  Q: How does someone go about becoming a deb? The lines aren't clear. I know that my city has one every ...
  A: Jackie Kennedy did it by putting on a $60.00 dress and appearing at a tea party her mother gave in ...
etiquette on entertaining and being sick w/flu1/4/2008
  Q: On Christmas Eve my family went over to my sister-in-laws to celebrate. When we arrived my ...
  A: While I certainly understand your revulsion at having to spend time with someone who was ...
addressing physician1/4/2008
  Q: we are throwing my sister-in-law a surprise party and want to inviter her boss who is a physician ...
  A: The honorific Dr. replaces Mr/Mrs/Ms. So the envelope would read: Dr. John T Frederick ...
Home school Graduation announcement1/4/2008
  Q: I will soon be graduating from an online homeschool program and receiving something similar to a ...
  A: I am happy to announce my Graduation from the * Online Homeschool Program ...
Bride-to-be gift request1/4/2008
  Q: My cousin is to be married this upcoming summer (2008), she and her fiance have lived together ...
  A: It is not the job of a parent to hold back when they see that their child (even as an adult) is ...
Table Manners1/3/2008
  Q: My friend invited me over to just sit and chat.While I was over he prepared some chili.He then ...
  A: You did exactly the right thing by refusing to eat that which you did not want. You don't need to ...
wedding party gathering1/3/2008
  Q: My fiancee and I would like to have our wedding party meet each other prior to the wedding. We have ...
  A: Sounds like fun. The key here is to treat it as you would any potential group gathering. It isn't ...
40th birthday1/3/2008
  Q: We are invited to a 40th birthday party for my cousin's husband. Do we bring a gift and what is an ...
  A: You are never required to take a gift,but you certainly may if you feel like doing so. As for what ...
address label1/2/2008
  Q: In my upcoming wedding, I am not sure how to properly address things where a husband a wife are both ...
  A: Please use two lines on the envelope: Dr. Jeffery Wagner ...
bridesmaid refusal?1/2/2008
  Q: I was asked to be a bridesmaid in an upcoming summer wedding. I have only known the bride for a ...
  A: Kappos, Certainly! Tell her how honored you were that she thinks well enough of you to ask you to ...
thank you notes1/2/2008
  Q: I mailed out thank you notes for Christmas gifts I received. One of my co-workers said I shouldn't ...
  A: When is it ever wrong to say thank you? Yes,it is generally accepted that if you thank someone in ...
Repeat Marriages1/2/2008
  Q: I have a close friend that will be getting married for a third time, it is his first. She wants the ...
  A: The best course of action is to keep your thoughts to yourself. Yes,it is sort of ridiculous for a ...
Etiquette on how to answer personal questions1/2/2008
  Q: I was wondering the best way to answer questions that seem too personal or nobody else's business, ...
  A: You never have to answer any question that you consider too invasive. As to the rent question,you ...
Failed Adoption Gift Etiquette1/2/2008
  Q: My girlfriend recently experienced a failed adoption. She had a few baby showers hosted by family, ...
  A: Whatever she wants to do is the right thing. Anyone who has suffered such heartbreak is not expected ...
Dinner Party Etiquette: Taking Leftovers Home1/2/2008
  Q: I have a curiosity question. I was recently at a dinner party in which I was asked to bring the ...
  A: Leaving it behind would be the polite thing to do as the guest. You brought it for their dinner ...
Appropriateness of Gift12/31/2007
  Q: I am hoping that you might be able to help me with a Green Gift that was received. As the mom, I am ...
  A: Bettor, No,that was a very strange gift. Far too personal and far too public. You were not wrong ...
Sending Late Condolence gift12/31/2007
  Q: I just found out a friend, for whom I have not seen in 4 months, lost her father about 3 months ago. ...
  A: Your friend is no where near finished mourning the loss of her dear father. Please,go ahead and do ...
Gift Giving etiquette12/31/2007
  Q: Is it appropriate to give an eleven year old child a gift set that includes deodorant?
  A: Some children mature faster than others. There are eleven year olds who need to use that particular ...
Addressing a Married Friend12/31/2007
  Q: My friend got married a few year back and is having a child. How should I address him in ...
  A: If you are writing a private letter to your friend, feel free to address it to him alone. If it is a ...
Dinner party at a restaurant12/31/2007
  Q: I want to have a surprise 30th birthday party for my husband but unfortunately, my house is too ...
  A: A hostess never throws a party that she cannot afford. No one should ever have to 'pay for the ...
Friends in common12/31/2007
  Q: When a friend introduces two mutual friends, the two mutual friends really hit it off, having even ...
  A: Technically,once you have been introduced to someone, you are free to pursue a friendship with them ...
birthday party invitation12/30/2007
  Q: Hey, I want to have a dinner birthday party for my Mother's 75th birthday at a local restaurant but ...
  A: I'm sorry,but there is never a polite way to ask anyone to pay for the privilege of being a guest. A ...
official domestic partner aniversary date12/30/2007
  Q: when would are anniversary date be? the day he said yes, or the date on are domestic partner papers. ...
  A: Whenever the couple decides that the anniversary should be. Some couples celebrate the day they ...
my daughters birthday12/29/2007
  Q: My daughters birthday is right after Christmas. She is having a big party with 25 friends, I've even ...
  A: It is never right to mention gifts on an invitation. Guests shouldn't be asked to pay for the ...
Etiquette regarding donations12/29/2007
  Q: What is the proper method of notifying an individual of a donation? If someone asks for donations ...
  A: The organization in question will generally send a note to the person (or family) letting them know ...
Table setting12/29/2007
  Q: I have 2 identical china patterns with the exception of the borders: one setting has silver, while ...
  A: Good heavens! Don't listen to that advice. Very few people have complete sets of china. Either they ...
70th Surprise Birthday Dinner12/29/2007
  Q: we are giving our mother in law a surprise dinner party at a restaraunt. How do we say on the ...
  A: A hostess never throws a party that she cannot afford. Please consider adjusting your plans to ...
Wedding Invitations12/29/2007
  Q: How do I word wedding invitations to say that in lieu of gifts we'd like money for a down payment on ...
  A: Simply put,you don't. No bride and groom is ever due any kind of gift from anyone. To mention gifts ...
bratty spoiled kids or lack of manners?12/29/2007
  Q: My husband and I have our hands full with our 21 month old daughter, whom we are already teaching ...
  A: OH DEAR. I am so sorry that circumstances prevented me from getting to your question sooner. I hope ...
black and white ball women12/28/2007
  Q: What should women wear to a black and white ball. I will be attending alone. Please include glove ...
  A: What part of the country? What are your hosts expecting? Black tie? White? Semi-formal? There are ...
Calling a spouse "the girlfriend" or "the old lady"12/28/2007
  Q: I'm 35 years old and my common-law boyfriend calls me "the old lady" or "the girlfriend". I told ...
  A: If the nickname is upsetting to you,then yes,you have every right to object to it. Now,as to how you ...
gift exchange12/28/2007
  Q: What's the best way to handle a brother who doesn't repricate in gift exchange for holidays and ...
  A: No one is ever required to give gifts to anyone for any reason. Nor is anyone entitled to receive a ...
Nieces inviting themselves12/28/2007
  Q: My 12 year old niece (actually, second cousin)invited herself to stay with me for a week so I asked ...
  A: Why are you letting children run your life? There is a very handy word in the English language you ...
inviting boyfriends to Christmas12/27/2007
  Q: my questions is regardiing my sister-in-law. We always have Christmas Breakfast(Brunch) at my house ...
  A: Just wait until July when it won't be a hot button issue and say "I was thinking about ...
Family After Sticky Divorce12/27/2007
  Q: My house is the place for the special family gatherings. My husband has one brother who has 2 adult ...
  A: I'm with you on this one. There is too much history of painful and deceptive behavior for those kids ...
Bad Manners or Personal Choice?12/27/2007
  Q: My father's been staying with us over the holidays. Last night, my father bought fish for dinner ...
  A: Your husband could have said "Chuck,that is so nice of you to go out and get fish for dinner! You ...
immoral behavior12/27/2007
  Q: In-law family members are aware of my husband's immoral behavior and abuse. A recent separation has ...
  A: "Cutting" people is an old an effective tactic. It should be used sparingly,but you seem to have a ...
addressing a thank you note12/27/2007
  Q: I am unsure about addressing a thank you note to a student (age 11) and her mother who invited me ...
  A: On the outer envelope.please write: Mrs. John Doe Miss Delia ...
New years eve party12/26/2007
  Q: When having a buffet style new years eve party, very casual. What are the appropriate decorations? ...
  A: Christmas decorations may be properly kept up until "Twelfth Night". Which is celebrated January 5th ...
Declining gifts12/26/2007
  Q: My sister-in-law don't speak to each other and I no longer go to my husband's family functions ...
  A: Please do not give in to the impulse to explain to this woman why she is so horrible. I am sure she ...
Thank you note after a long, ongoing illness12/26/2007
  Q: I have had a longterm and ongoing illness with four brain surgeries in the past year. I owe at least ...
  A: Good heavens you have been through quite a bit,haven't you? Please,do what is easiest on you at this ...
Hostess Etiquette12/26/2007
  Q: If you are related to the hostess and just attending the party, who should be the first to greet the ...
  A: I would hope that decent civil people who are glad to see each other (or at least pretending) would ...
invite12/26/2007
  Q: Our neighbors invited my husband and six year old over to their Christmas party and not me. I am ...
  A: Was it a written invitation or a verbal? I find it very hard to believe that they would exclude you ...
Christmas card etiquette12/25/2007
  Q: A friend of mine is married to a man and together they have two small sons(6 & 3). Her husband has 3 ...
  A: If a family wishes to send a photo of everyone (even those who do not live at home any longer)they ...
Thank you for welcome gifts.12/25/2007
  Q: My boyfriend and I recently moved to a new home. The neighborhood is very small (12 houses) and ...
  A: Yes,please. Lock in the good will of these neighbors by writing them each a note. Dear Sam and ...
food allegies at dinner party12/25/2007
  Q: I have been invited to a very small dinner party (one other couple)that will take place in three ...
  A: Allergic as in could die if you are around it? If this is the case,do not stand upon ceremony,speak ...
entering another's home12/23/2007
  Q: Just wondering if it's unreasonable to expect someone to wait at your front door until they are ...
  A: The trick of telling people who are always running late that the event is earlier has never appealed ...
Boorish Son-in-Law12/23/2007
  Q: I understand your response about not criticizing a daughter's husband. My question is how much ...
  A: Please do not mistake good manners with being a doormat for potentially criminal actions. Refraining ...
Funerals12/22/2007
  Q: My husband's ex-mother-in-law has died. My husband and his first wife were married 15 years, and ...
  A: A token gesture is all that is called for here. This is more about the adult son your husband and ...
etiquette12/22/2007
  Q: etiquette gifts for ex-daughter-in-law, what is really proper?
  A: , Every person and every situation is different. Some divorces are civil,some are contentious. ...
Debutante Ball12/22/2007
  Q: My 18yr. old daughter is invited to a Debutante Ball this month. What color and type of dress is ...
  A: You will likely see other girls in every color and style of dress,pay no attention to them! You ...
Restaurant etiquette12/22/2007
  Q: Before beginning to eat I always wait for all at the table to be served. Is there a magic number of ...
  A: Rick, Yes....one. One person to say "Please,everyone,go ahead and start if you wish. I am sure the ...
Invitation12/22/2007
  Q: I asked a friend to spend an afternoon with me and she accepted. I made some plans and checked they ...
  A: Yes,I think you deserve better and can do better than this woman! She wants to change plans,okay. ...
Christmas party12/22/2007
  Q: My friend invited me to thier Christmas party. A couple weeks later she told me that things had ...
  A: Why were you not allowed to come to a party that they were hosting,even if it most/all of the other ...
graduation announcements12/22/2007
  Q: I just graduated from a university, but I didn't send announcements because I had one class that I ...
  A: Absolutely! In fact,the only proper time to send an announcement is after the event has occurred. ...
anniversary card12/22/2007
  Q: If the spouse has died, do you still give them an anniversary card? If not, what do you give ...
  A: As the minister/rabbi/judge said,'till death do you part'. There really is no anniversary to ...
Refusal of a Gift12/21/2007
  Q: It has been almost 4 years since I last spoke to my biological father. I broke off contact once I ...
  A: Write a note saying that this is a difficult decision for you,but you have come to feel that you ...
Best way to handle rude behavior12/21/2007
  Q: At a recent business social gathering, the guest speaker was an old friend of mine I hadn't seen in ...
  A: The 'most correct' thing for you to do is to pretend it didn't happen. It is much easier to play by ...
more Christmas Card questions12/21/2007
  Q: My mother sends our Christmas card addressed to "my name" and family. Is this acceptable or rude?
  A: Acceptable,but a little odd. Most of the time a John Doe and family address line is reserved for ...
Should I return a graduation gift, and if so, how?12/20/2007
  Q: Last weekend, I participated in commencement exercises, but afterwards found out that I didn't pass ...
  A: If this is a course you are planning on repeating as soon as you can manage it,please just keep the ...
Gift Giving for the Grandchildren12/20/2007
  Q: Every year we have a certain Grandparent that is unfair in the gift giving department. Some of the ...
  A: Have the spouse who has the 'bad parent' speak to them. It cannot be the in-law. Explain that it is ...
Hat etiquette12/20/2007
  Q: I was always taught not to take off one's hat and place it on a table, especially the dining table. ...
  A: Yes,there is such a rule. It is not the biggest error a person could make in his or her life,but ...
addressing retired military12/20/2007
  Q: When writing a letter to a retired enlisted military person, how should you address the envelope? ...
  A: Welcome to etiquette post 9/11. This one is a gray area. The Department of Defense recommends that ...
Candles at luncheons12/19/2007
  Q: We are having an all company business/holiday luncheon and I wish to find out the rule on whether ...
  A: Candles are never to be used at the table during daylight hours. Think of them as the DMV wishes us ...
Etiquette12/19/2007
  Q: My niece just lost her unborn baby at 4 months along and my brother in-law sent them a card to ...
  A: Anyone who has suffered the loss of a loved one is exempt from anything and everything approaching ...
Addressing card to couple living together12/19/2007
  Q: My daughter is living with the father of her daughter, but they are only engaged, not married yet. ...
  A: Please use two lines: Jane Thompson Robert Doe 675 ...
Employee Manners12/19/2007
  Q: I hired an acquaintance for a longterm job overseas. He is the best kind of human being and shows ...
  A: Yep. Rock and a hard place my friend. However,this must be dealt with and not just for his sake and ...
Doctorial Graduation Ceremony12/15/2007
  Q: During all the Pomp and Stance of graduation, is it proper etiquette for a doctoral candidate who is ...
  A: Yes. Even if it were a fly by night diploma mill,a graduate gets to wear all that stuff. Really,it ...
Party Un-Invitation12/14/2007
  Q: A sorority sister had a party for her husband and only invited "certain" sorority sisters to the ...
  A: How do you tastefully let her know that she has offended the "left-out sisters", but yet not sound ...
Leaving dinner party early as habit (rude?)12/14/2007
  Q: My wife and I generally dine with family on Friday nights at a variety of local restaurants. When ...
  A: You are correct on this one. Now,how you plan to change the behavior is up to you. This seems like ...
Etiquette Address Question12/14/2007
  Q: Is it appropriate to address an envelope to a woman whose husband is deceased using his first name? ...
  A: A woman never uses the honorific Mrs. with her given first name. She may be Mrs.John Doe until she ...
Addressing Married Couples12/13/2007
  Q: When addressing married couples eg. John and Mary Smith, does one write "Mr. John and Mrs. Mary ...
  A: "Mr and Mrs John Smith" is correct as is using two lines: John Smith Mary Smith 123 Doe ...
delayed death announcement / Xmas letter12/13/2007
  Q: My wife died a year ago. We would send out an annual Xmas letter to distant friends telling what ...
  A: Please know how sorry I am for your loss. Use your own judgement here. I would suggest writing a ...
Singing at the table...12/13/2007
  Q: A friend and I were discussing this at dinner this evening and wondered where, or what, the origins ...
  A: " No singing at the table, No whistling in. bed, Or the devil will get you, As soon. as you're ...
Addressing Christmas Card in his, mine, ours household12/11/2007
  Q: Typically, when addressing holiday cards to a family, I'll write The Jones Family & their repective ...
  A: Please use as many lines as it takes to get everyone included. Mr. and Mrs. John Batten ...
Sending children's birthday party invites when the guest's parents are divorces12/11/2007
  Q: We invited all of my son's classmates to his birthday party. A few of the children's parents are ...
  A: In a perfect world the parents would still be able to communicate with each other about all aspects ...
wedding anniversary card12/11/2007
  Q: . can you tell me whether my husband should give his brother a greeting card for his wedding ...
  A: It is only 'mandatory' for the couple and any children they have together to recognize the ...
Christmas Wish List Eitquette12/11/2007
  Q: Here's the situation: I subscribe to a newsletter put out by a singer from Tennessee. The ...
  A: YES. I don't know what more to say about this. It is stunningly poor etiquette to ever reference ...
"Christmas Invitation"12/11/2007
  Q: My wife's work is having a Christmas party during non working hours. The invitation does not address ...
  A: Lush, If the spouses are not named on the invitation,then they are not welcome. I'd have your wife ...
Time frame to give Graduation gift12/10/2007
  Q: What is the time frame to give someone a graduation gift from college?
  A: The closer to the graduation date the better,of course, but there are always exceptions. If you ...
Christmas Cards12/10/2007
  Q: We want to send a Christmas card to our niece and her mother. Mother is living with her daughter. ...
  A: Since it is your niece's house,please put her name on the first line and her mother's on the ...
Blazer with waistcoat12/10/2007
  Q: is it ok to wear a waistcoat with a blazer many thanks Tony
  A: My gut reaction is "no",that the blazer is too informal or unstructured to go well with a ...
standing up when im being introduce to someone12/10/2007
  Q: My boyfriend and i had an argument last week during a bussines/social event. First while I was ...
  A: In a business setting,there are no 'differences' between men and women. A woman does not expect ...
wearing white12/10/2007
  Q: Is it ok to wear white in February or march? My sister is going to the Westminster dog show. She ...
  A: Is it really white or is it egg shell,ivory,cream or any of the hundred names? True white is not ...
No Eye Contact12/10/2007
  Q: Background: I was sitting at a bar with a male friend. X, a male friend of my friend approached us, ...
  A: I think you were right to think that the girlfriend had no manners. Your friend didn't help the ...
Signing Holiday Cards12/9/2007
  Q: My boyfriend has about 300 holiday cards to send out to various personnel that work with him and has ...
  A: I am going to assume here that the majority of these people are not known to you. If you were his ...
Addressing a PhD as Dr.12/9/2007
  Q: I recently sent out several invitations for a dinner party and one went to a couple where one was ...
  A: Rob,Rob,Rob. Here is where you went wrong: "When, in return, I suggested that a Ph.D. shouldn't ...
gifting obligation to ex-husbands niece's and nephew's12/9/2007
  Q: I have been divorced for about a year now. The ex lives 4 hours away. I live by his family. I see ...
  A: You are never under any obligation to by a gift for anyone. Ever. Only you can decide if you ...
SYMPATHY THANK YOU CARDS12/9/2007
  Q: Can you please help me with wording for writing thank you's for people whou have sent mass cards. I ...
  A: It's a matter of writing a few lines from the heart. "Dear Mrs. Parks, The mass card you sent in ...
Greeting etiquette when visiting12/9/2007
  Q: What is the proper etiquette when it comes to greeting people? If someone has known a person for an ...
  A: No one is supposed to say hello first. Everyone is supposed to extend a greeting as soon as they ...
giving out gi12/9/2007
  Q: I am graduating from college soon and feel I should give my husband and kids a gift for supporting ...
  A: A wife and a mother never needs an excuse to give her family gifts. For any reason or no reason,it's ...
more pizza eating etiquette12/8/2007
  Q: My wife Lynne is a picky eater who picks much of the topping off of pizza leaving it in a pile on ...
  A: While they shouldn't have to eat what toppings they don't care for,piling them on a napkin is ...
invite to birth son's wedding problem12/7/2007
  Q: When I was in college, I got pregnant and gave the baby up for adoption. Since our priest arranged ...
  A: I am so glad to know that things are working out for you. As I am blind to the errors in my own ...
receiving 'charity'?12/6/2007
  Q: My wife and I just closed a business. Acquaintances of ours, parents of our daughter's friend, were ...
  A: How odd and how awkward. Did these people misunderstand your situation? You don't say how old the ...
Housewarming Gifts? Do's & Dont's12/6/2007
  Q: I just purchased my very first home, therefore I do not have many household items since I have ...
  A: To ever mention gift on an invitation is wrong. The only time you may ever express a wish for ...
house gift12/6/2007
  Q: I will be traveling with a girlfriend of mine we will be staying at her sister in laws house one ...
  A: Something disposable/consumable. Flowers,candy,fruit.. any temporary luxury item. You don't want to ...
Male co worker with no manners12/6/2007
  Q: I have a co worker that feels that he is perfectly correct in his thinking that his bodily functions ...
  A: Ew. Well,you certainly cannot say anything to him directly. Take it up with management and just be ...
Christmas Cards12/6/2007
  Q: This seems a no-brainer, but I'm stumped at trying not to make my older children feel left out. ...
  A: Generally,you only include the people who are living under your roof. The thought being that the ...
a small friendly get together12/6/2007
  Q: My friend and her husband are having a small informal Holiday get together. It is an open ...
  A: By ten the party will be pretty well over and you will be denying yourself a chance to visit with ...
daughter graduating from medical school12/6/2007
  Q: My daughter will be graduating from medical school soon. I am unconfortable in sending out ...
  A: Congratulations! A medical degree! That is quite an accomplishment and you must be very proud. I am ...
Baby Shower Gift Etiquette12/5/2007
  Q: One of my cousins had a baby shower a couple of weeks ago. Sadly, the baby was stillborn. What ...
  A: Whatever she wants to do is the right thing. Anyone who has suffered such a loss is not expected to ...
donor listing12/5/2007
  Q: My husband is a medical doctor and we have always been listed as Dr. and Mrs. Robert XXX. The time ...
  A: The only way to do it is have two lines if you keep the "Dr" in front of his name. You cannot ...
Inlaw etiqutte12/5/2007
  Q: Every holiday my husband and I are at the mercy of his families schedule (my family is out of the ...
  A: "How do you let other family members know that you are wanting to create your own traditions and ...
50th wedding anniversary dinner party12/4/2007
  Q: My parents will be celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary this winter. We would like to have a ...
  A: A hostess never throws a party that she cannot afford. Please just invite everyone to the restaurant ...
Thank you note12/4/2007
  Q: Should we write a Thank you letter for my husbands Christmas Party? The party was held out of town ...
  A: How could thanking someone for something that they have already done be considered 'brown nosing'? ...
Family gatherings at our house12/3/2007
  Q: My wife and I have the big house and all that goes with it for family holiday entertaining. We love ...
  A: If she gets sick if she eats a big meal later than 4 PM,then by all mean,fix the woman a plate! Tell ...
Social Introductions "boyfriend"?12/3/2007
  Q: I am a divorced woman, age 40, who is seriously dating a man in his 50's. We are not living together ...
  A: Oh,but the word "friend" is the absolute BEST word in the dictionary. It can convey an air of ...
How to ask guests to bring spirits to a B-day party12/3/2007
  Q: I am hosting a bday party in a very nice hotel suite equipped with everything. I am ordered many ...
  A: If you're under the age of say,25,just go ahead and ask. If you are above that magical "We're all ...
What is the socially appropriate way to talk about my divorce?12/3/2007
  Q: I'd like to know what proper social etiquette is when it comes to talking about my divorce. More ...
  A: You may say "My husband was stationed there." That is certainly a true statement and if the ...
My boss brings home holiday present given to the office12/3/2007
  Q: Last year, I was not working at my current job during the holiday season. I found out from my ...
  A: In the strictest terms of etiquette,you would say nothing and bear this doctor's stinginess in ...
New Years party food/drink request12/3/2007
  Q: I'm having a New Years party consisting of a dozen of close friends and family. I'm looking to ...
  A: God,in His infinite wisdom,came up with the "pitch in" shortly after Adam and Eve were tossed from ...
Etiquette - guest house11/30/2007
  Q: We have a small but comfortable guesthouse. We enjoy having people (usually family) occasionally.We ...
  A: I think we're saying the same thing,just using different terms. Mental illness is ...
etiquette of borrowing11/30/2007
  Q: What is the etiquette involved with borrowing other peoples things?
  A: Tanya, If you loan something out,don't expect to get it back at all. If you cannot live with that ...
Staying with a relative for extended period of time11/30/2007
  Q: My husband, two children and I moved across country recently. We stayed with my brother and his ...
  A: Your heart and mind are in the right place here. Please follow your instinct and choose something ...
Debutante Ball11/29/2007
  Q: My wife and I have been invited to attend a Debutante Ball by one of my partners. His daughter is ...
  A: Only a parent or Godparent may poperly give a gift to the girl making her debut. It is ...
holiday etiquette11/29/2007
  Q: I just ended a "friendship" that was bad for me. We have same friends tho... should I still go to ...
  A: Jennifer, It is best to remove yourself from the situation entirely for the time being. If you ...
calling parents for the holidays11/28/2007
  Q: Regarding the holidays, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Birthdays, etc... Who should call to say have a ...
  A: You were raised to do the calling,but your kids were not. How did that happen? There is no rule ...
Debutante Ball11/28/2007
  Q: We are not attending our neices deb. ball. What is the protocal for the night of the ball as a gift ...
  A: Please send a bouquet of white flowers to her with a note wishing her luck on the day of her party. ...
Hostess Etiquette11/27/2007
  Q: When my sister-in-law hosts Thanksgiving dinner or any other event, for that matter, she always ...
  A: She's either passive aggressive or OCD. It's your call. A good host/ess puts more emphasis on ...
thank you notes11/27/2007
  Q: I was recently in a bad car accident and was hospitalized for 3 weeks. During that time I was ...
  A: Just write from the heart. Tell them what it meant to you that they cared enough to trek out to be ...
Christmas Card Letter after Divorce11/27/2007
  Q: My ex husband and I sent letters with our Christmas Cards every year until last year when we were ...
  A: You are not trying to shame him and you are not writing anything that defames or demeans ...
grandsons christening11/27/2007
  Q: what exactly does the grandfather give
  A: There are no restrictions on what a grandparent may give to their grandchild. It can be anything ...
hostess gifts11/27/2007
  Q: Do you send a thank you note for a hostess gift. It seems like a thank you for a thank you.Thanks!
  A: The note doesn't have to be strictly limited to the gift. You say how glad you were to see them,how ...
Nephew's death11/26/2007
  Q: My nephew has died in an accidental death. He is my only brother's son. Is it appropriate for me ...
  A: Do whatever you need and want to do for your brother and any other member of your nephew's family. ...
Boyfriend who lost a friend gift11/26/2007
  Q: My boyfriend of 2 months just lost his good friend in a car accident and I was wondering what is the ...
  A: This is going to be a very difficult and confusing time for your boyfriend. If he has never suffered ...
Ex-husband's funeral, children over 1811/26/2007
  Q: I was married to my children's father for 20 years and he passed away last week unexpectedly. Our ...
  A: You do not wish to go. Your legally adult children have told you that you must do what is best for ...
Graduation announcement etiquette11/26/2007
  Q: My daughter is currently employed and we need to know the appropriate company/office recipients for ...
  A: There is no need to send anyone in her company an announcement. Announcements are a way to convey ...
Bar Mitzvah Invitation Reciprocity11/25/2007
  Q: Last year my daughter invited her whole grade at her small school (35 kids) to her bat mitzvah, and ...
  A: Please,please tell me that you didn't embarrass this family and yours by demanding to know why your ...
Christmas Drop in11/24/2007
  Q: I'm not sure if you are the right person to ask, but thought I would try anyway since all my ...
  A: A 'drop in' party,also known as an 'Open House' is most traditionally 2-4 hours in length. Afternoon ...
Table clothes11/24/2007
  Q: What is the proper overhang for a table cloth?
  A: Emily Post circa 1940 says "Half a yard all around" but the fabulously stylish Jackie Kennedy had ...
etiquette for Christmas party11/24/2007
  Q: My wife and I are invited to a Christmas party at a friends house. We have known this couple for 15 ...
  A: You are not required to take them anything,but think along the lines of a fancy box of chocolates or ...
Thanksgiving dinner11/23/2007
  Q: my boyfriend and I were invited to Thanksgiving dinner at his cousins home. I am a diabetic and they ...
  A: Your boyfriend is correct here. It is not up to a host/ess to remember and accommodate every ...
initiating contact with friend11/23/2007
  Q: When a friend/acquaintance is due home from a trip or vacation, is it proper to call them or wait ...
  A: There are no hard and fast rules about this. Everyone must use their own best judgement based on the ...
RSVP Etiqutte11/23/2007
  Q: My wife and I have been invited to a party at the home of my boss. The number to RSVP to on the ...
  A: As you are both listed on the ivitation,either of you may call. If your wife is more comfortable ...
Dinner party gift11/21/2007
  Q: I have been invited to a dinner party for eighteen at a foreign ambassadors residence. I am friends ...
  A: Take nothing,but send your hostess flowers the next day with a note of thanks. Use the formal (and ...
Wedding Invitation Ettiquette11/20/2007
  Q: This past year 4 of my close friends from college all got engaged and the weddings were this summer ...
  A: This is a question only you can answer. I don't know the people involved or how much their ...
Debutante Etiquette11/20/2007
  Q: My husband, my children (both unmarried adults) and I are invited to a party honoring a debutante. ...
  A: Only the parents (or someone so close to the girl that they wouldn't need to ask) should give gifts. ...
etiquette regarding exes11/20/2007
  Q: My husband has a daughter who is 20 years old. He was never married to her mother but he did however ...
  A: As this is her child's christening,she may invite whomever she wishes. I'm sorry if this causes ...
Breaking Holiday Tradition11/20/2007
  Q: How can I gently break a holiday tradition that some may be happy with but others may be sad about. ...
  A: This conversation would have gone over better in July, when the season was long past and not in the ...
college grad11/19/2007
  Q: My son graduated college in may but people keep asking if he is out of school How can i send a ...
  A: An announcement is merely a means of conveying information to those who may be interested in ...
proper addressing fundraising thank you envelopes11/17/2007
  Q: We held a fundraiser for a family member and we had planned to hand write the adresses for the ...
  A: Since you hate receiving pre-printed envelopes,you shouldn't send them out. It's not wrong to use ...
The "third" question11/16/2007
  Q: If I am addressing an envelope to John and Mary Francis, and he is the III (third), how do I do it? ...
  A: Make no mention of the III. By using first names,John and Mary Francis are unique. It is unlikely ...
children coming to the door to ask for bathroom permission11/16/2007
  Q: I just recently had a falling out with a neighbor. The argument was over her 8 year old son coming ...
  A: Oh for Heaven's sake! What is wrong with that woman? Why did she not point out to her child that he ...
Compahy Christmas Party11/15/2007
  Q: I work for a doctor's office. Our company Christmas party is going to be held at one of our ...
  A: No,you would just say "Jack and Lisa Smith's house". To put "Dr. Jack" is awkward as well as being ...
friendship11/15/2007
  Q: If I am invited by one friend to go shopping, is it okay to invite another friend who really doesn't ...
  A: Since you were not the one issuing the initial invitation,please ask your friend first before ...
birthday announcements11/15/2007
  Q: Our neighbor had said she was going to combine her sons birthdays this year and have a party ...
  A: Dania, I am not sure what your neighbor is thinking or what she means by it. However,an ...
Christmas gifts for kids spouses11/15/2007
  Q: Both of my children got married this past summer and we are looking ahead to the first Christmas ...
  A: As I get letters from the new daughter in laws about this, I am happy to share what I know. They get ...
Christmas cards soon after death of wife11/14/2007
  Q: My wife passed away Sept 29. I don't know if I should send Christmas cards. I certainly will not ...
  A: Please know how sorry I am for you loss. You are going through a terrible time right now and nothing ...
Bereavement gift from coworkers11/14/2007
  Q: Our building will "sometimes" collect money to purchase sympathy gifts when a co-worker's relative ...
  A: I have never heard of a 'bereavement gift',I'm sorry to say. Co-workers will collect money to buy ...
WEDDING ETIQUETTE11/14/2007
  Q: For my daughter's wedding - where do I seat my mother's caregiver. She is the daughter of the lady ...
  A: Let common sense be your guide here. How likely is it that your Mother will need help or attention ...
Terrible guilt about invitations11/14/2007
  Q: We have a nice home but it's not huge. We live in a neighborhood filled with people our age, who we ...
  A: Yes,you are worrying over nothing! You have a limited amount of space in your home. You and your ...
business card protocol11/14/2007
  Q: I am a Realtor, and hold several designations directly related to my business (GRI,SRES,ePRO,CRS). ...
  A: Yes..after awhile people just get confused or stop reading. So just pick the three that are most ...
lutheran ordination11/14/2007
  Q: Could you please advise me on what would be appropriate recognition for a male Lutheran candidate ...
  A: You don't have to get him anything unless you expressly wish to do so. Here are a few ideas,but ...
Donation and Critique?11/13/2007
  Q: I have a question regarding the etiquette of sending a donation and letter to an institution that I ...
  A: By all means,if an institution that you loved and was key to making you who you are is going down ...
Family members divorcing11/13/2007
  Q: My husband has a cousin who he has been very close to since childhood. We just found out that her ...
  A: You call her right away. Just say "Gina,I just spoke to your Mom and she told me the news...how are ...
50th Bithday Party11/13/2007
  Q: Who should pay? I am having a bithday party for my husband'sc 50th birthday at a winery. Are we ...
  A: Your question reads "I am having a birthday party..",so therefore,you are the hostess and ...
No Host Bar11/13/2007
  Q: We're having a party where there will be a bar but we don't want to be obligated to pay for ...
  A: Please have no bar at all. Your guests will take what is offered to them if you present it without ...
Fiance guarding my back in social situations11/12/2007
  Q: I was recently at a function with my fiance and his co-workers/friends. We were having a good time ...
  A: Karla, You did exactly right thing. I know you walked away because you were stunned,but even if ...
introduction11/12/2007
  Q: When introducing yourself in person or over the phone is it appropriate to refer to yourself as Mr., ...
  A: Please use both your first and last name. It is too (potentially) confusing to just use your ...
Christmas Gift Giving11/12/2007
  Q: I have a very large family, and I'm recently married, which makes it larger. My husband and I are ...
  A: Size of family doesn't matter a bit,you never have to buy gifts for anyone simply because they might ...
ballet11/12/2007
  Q: My 8 year old daughter will be dancing in the nutcracker and she will be doing four performances. I ...
  A: Flowers may be presented either on 'opening night' or 'closing'. Since these are for an eight year ...
greetings11/12/2007
  Q: If your are in a room and someone comes in, who is say hello first? The person who just came in or ...
  A: Neophytou, One person should greet another as soon as they see them. It should be so instantaneous ...
chrtistmas Gift11/11/2007
  Q: My daughter has a best friend Barb who has 2 little girls that I buy Christmas Gifts for every year. ...
  A: No,it isn't appropriate! Gracious,that was bold of her. Just ignore the e-mail. You didn't get it,it ...
bridal shower11/11/2007
  Q: What sort of present should the mother of the bride bring to the wedding shower?
  A: She doesn't have to bring anything as she is presumably buying and giving things to her daughter ...
Sharing Expenses11/11/2007
  Q: If a couple and a single person are going on a trip should the single person have to pay half the ...
  A: Marilyn, A third is more equitable,but if the single feels some resistance from the couple,s/he ...
Christmas wish list11/11/2007
  Q: I am writing as a married, mother of three children, with a question regarding my husband's family. ...
  A: Oh dear. No,you are not wrong to feel as you do. Who wouldn't be offended by such unsolicited ...
Donations rather than Gifts11/10/2007
  Q: My daughter is having a Birthday party and rather than gifts we would like the guest to bring a ...
  A: While giving to charity is a wonderful thing,there is simply no way to politely mention gifts of any ...
Etiquette for RSVP on a child's party11/10/2007
  Q: I was wondering what is the proper etiquette for responding to a child's birthday party. I am having ...
  A: While I can certainly understand your frustration,no good can come of printing out a page on RSVP ...
girlfriend visiting ex husband11/9/2007
  Q: my girlfriend is traveling to california for a 12 day visit with her adult (20 and 24)children..she ...
  A: No,your reaction isn't wrong. This is your relationship, these are you thoughts and feelings,speak ...
terminology11/9/2007
  Q: Is there a term (like parents-in-law) for the parents of married couples? Thanks!
  A: Parents-in-law never caught on a phrase. People generally say "My husband's parents" or "My in-laws" ...
different languages11/8/2007
  Q: When ever we have family events with my husbands mother and sisters they speak Spanish to each other ...
  A: Where is your husband in all of this,please?! Why isn't the man who promised to love and cherish you ...
who is saluting first ?11/8/2007
  Q: Me and my coworker, we work both in the same office. My question is who is saluting first if one is ...
  A: If by saluting you mean say hello or greet,the answer is you both should say it almost at the same ...
Debutante's Ball11/8/2007
  Q: Miss Gamble, I was reading another question somebody had asked you previously and it briefly ...
  A: Debutante ball is a term that covers many different parties and dances. Some with their own ...
Graduation Attire11/8/2007
  Q: I recently graduated from a small career college and we are having a "graduation ceremony". There ...
  A: Oh all these new clothing classifications make me crazy. "Resort Cocktail" "Red Carpet" "Zoobliee ...
Generous With Your Time/House/Money11/8/2007
  Q: I hate when I feel forced into either giving up my home or my time and money at my extended family's ...
  A: Deep breath Allison,deep breath...now exhale...again.. Okay! Are you feeling a little better now? ...
Hostes Gift11/7/2007
  Q: At the same occasion I received two wrapped hostess gifts. One was a very nice, expensive hostess ...
  A: Open them both and don't worry about anyone feeling uncomfortable. If you express genuine gratitude ...
The new baby11/7/2007
  Q: My sister-in-law (my husbands brother's wife) just welcomed her second child. Are we required to ...
  A: You are never required to give anyone a gift for any reason. But,having said that,why wouldn't you ...
Party Manners...11/6/2007
  Q: My siblings and I are throwing our mother a sixty-fifth birthday party, and we're stuck on one ...
  A: No,there is no polite way to ask people to 'pay for the privilege' of being a guest on an ...
New Home11/6/2007
  Q: We moved in to our first home a week ago and have received cakes, cookies and bread from our new ...
  A: Please go ahead and write them each a short thank you note. Normally,this would not be necessary,the ...
wedding lodging11/6/2007
  Q: Our daughter is planning a wedding in Mexico at a beautiful and expensive hotel. We have rented a ...
  A: Oh dear. She is using the word 'traditionally',is she? Well..if that's the road she wants to go ...
wedding dress etiquette11/6/2007
  Q: What would you wear to a Saturday afternoon, 4:00, wedding that will be held in a Victorian ...
  A: That sounds as if it going to be a very nice wedding. Please wear a pretty garden dress. Meaning ...
Never brings a gift11/6/2007
  Q: My husband's cousin & his wife are always invited to every birthday, and holiday function that we ...
  A: Martinez, Why exactly are these people invited to every family function? It's not about the ...
Use of a calling card11/6/2007
  Q: I seem to recall it being an acceptable practice to draw a line through one's name on a calling ...
  A: Nope. You are not out of step with the times. Pay no attention to that Bob Dylan character,he's been ...
office brute11/6/2007
  Q: This is probably a common problem, but I feel like I've exhausted all the advice I've gotten from ...
  A: I am sorry to hear that you are being taken advantage of in this way. I wish I had some brilliant ...
friends family11/6/2007
  Q: While at a party I asked a friend to come meet my cousin. She refused. She had no interest. I was ...
  A: That is a pretty minor request to make of a friend. Was there some other reason she wouldn't come ...
Thanksgiving dinner11/5/2007
  Q: My cousin is hosting thanksgiving dinner for the second year that our family has been getting ...
  A: Traditionally,yes,the person hosting a holiday (or any other) dinner party at their house is ...
Inviting an ex-sister in law to baby shower.11/5/2007
  Q: Is it inappropriate for a woman to invite her ex-sister in law to her baby shower which is for a ...
  A: Let me get this sorted out. Jean invites Lisa to her baby shower. Jean was married to Lisa's brother ...
a simple thank you11/5/2007
  Q: My son and daughter in law live many states away. They have no children. Each year, for the past 4, ...
  A: Talk to your son. Privately and when you are calm about it. Say something positive first,then bring ...
Addressing an envelope11/5/2007
  Q: I'm sending a thank you note to a pastor and his wife; they are both ministers, but not pastoring a ...
  A: They still worked hard to get their credentials,why deprive them of their honorific just because ...
Rent disbute11/5/2007
  Q: Should 3 friends sharing a house pay different amounts for different room sizes and ...
  A: This calls for a house meeting where everyone expresses their opinions on the subject until a common ...
Pantyhose/stocking in winter with peep-toe shoes?11/5/2007
  Q: I really dislike stocking/pantyhose. I can't remember the last time I even wore them. We are ...
  A: I think that going without hose is something best reserved for the summer months and a great tan. In ...
Is my boyfriend being a control freak?11/4/2007
  Q: Im writing to you because an issue came up today that became the source of a disagreement between my ...
  A: If you are living together,then the house is 'yours' equally. So your brother may get permission ...
neighbor children11/3/2007
  Q: My husband & I have no children, but have a basketball hoop on our garage. Last summer we agreed ...
  A: Your question made me laugh out loud. You all are too sweet. YES,there are other options! A) Now ...
Cash Bar11/2/2007
  Q: I would like to throw a 54th birthday party for my husband at a restaurant that has a banquet room. ...
  A: Serve only what you can afford,don't make your guests pay. Consider having a limited number of ...
My Boss' Brother11/1/2007
  Q: My boss' Brother just passed away today. The Brother lived out of town and that is where the ...
  A: Direct your expression of sympathy to the brother. If you can,send flowers or a planter to the ...
dinner dress11/1/2007
  Q: I'm invited to an dinner/event that requires "red carpet attire." Is this a long/formal dress?
  A: I have a friend who is a theater producer in Chicago. Here is a "cut and paste" of my friend's ...
Bridal Shower Invitation11/1/2007
  Q: I am getting ready to throw a bridal shower for a friend at a restaurant. We are not charging for ...
  A: With a bridal shower thrown by friends for a friend,you may make it 'specific'. Lingerie ...
Guest calls hostess' husband names11/1/2007
  Q: Recently I was put into an awkward situation, and found I did not know what to do to diffuse a ...
  A: The only thing you could have done was build a time machine,go back to the day you met this woman ...
Birthday Slideshow11/1/2007
  Q: I am planning a birthday party for my husband. I would like to have a slide show of photos from his ...
  A: The shorter the better. I know you love him and think he's the greatest thing since sliced bread,but ...
Birthday Party10/30/2007
  Q: I would like to through a birthday party for my husband's 35th birthday party. I'm looking to ...
  A: Say nothing to your guests. Speak to the head waiter, or dining room manager before you have the ...
Friend's possible miscarriage10/29/2007
  Q: Gamble: A very good friend of mine is expecting. She recently found out from her doctor that there ...
  A: Can you call the husband privately? Not that he won't be devastated by this news,but he will ...
attending my ex-husband's funeral with our son10/29/2007
  Q: My ex-husband died as a result of an accident on Friday. We have a 6 year old son together. He is ...
  A: Six is awfully young to go through something like this without his Mom beside him. I understand that ...
graduation photos with ex wife10/29/2007
  Q: Is it proper social etiquette to have graduation photos taken with your ex wife just because your ...
  A: How is it a contradiction? He doesn't want anything to do with his ex. What he wants to do is be a ...
Company for Thanksgiving10/28/2007
  Q: My niece is attending a local university for graduate school and decided not to go home, several ...
  A: "Her family could stay in a hotel in the university town and come over here for Thanksgiving ...
ovarian cancer tournament canceled10/24/2007
  Q: For one year I worked at putting together a golf tournament in memory of my sister who passed away ...
  A: I am so sorry that you were forced to cancel after so much hard work. You managed to put together ...
Birthday Party Etiquette10/24/2007
  Q: My mother (ret school admin) wants to have a large 75th bday party/luncheon at a restaurant in LA ...
  A: For whom is this party being given? You don't say. If the guest of honor is also the hostess (i.e. ...
Is there such a thing as apartment etiquette?10/24/2007
  Q: My friends are soon going to be moving into an apartment and they've asked me to tell them what the ...
  A: Well,no..no specific 'rules' to speak of for apartment living. Obvious things apply. Be considerate ...
Asking someone else to throw a party10/23/2007
  Q: The (paid) coach of my 10-year-old son's soccer team is a single 20-something. His mother is the ...
  A: That is the craziest thing I have heard in a very long time. A "money tree"?!? Those things are ...
Holiday party for adults?10/23/2007
  Q: Gamble, Last year I sent out Crane invitations to a 7pm holiday cocktail party, addressed to ...
  A: Stick to your guns! The people who got bent out of shape are the ones who do not 'get it'. ...
private chef etiquette10/23/2007
  Q: i am private cheffing for a prominent person. thanksgiving meal. i want to buy the the best ...
  A: Your dedication to your craft is admirable. I don't know where you live,so I cannot advise you on ...
Funeral10/22/2007
  Q: How do I express sincere thanks to co workers who came to the visitation services of my mother? I ...
  A: A few lines telling them that you appreciated their concern and support during those difficult days ...
Acknowledgin nephew's birthday after forgetting nephew's sibling's birthday10/22/2007
  Q: I apologize for the lengthy subject line! My husband's nephew is having a birthday soon and I'm not ...
  A: Please go ahead and send the other boy a gift as well. Just send it with one of the many humorous ...
After-Wedding "Celebration" Invites10/22/2007
  Q: My fiance and I live in Colorado, where he and his family also all live. I am originally from the ...
  A: I am on your side on this one. No two ways about it. I agree with your thinking and the way you wish ...
engagement10/22/2007
  Q: My daughter has been engaged for two years and will marry in Dec.2008. My husband and I have not met ...
  A: Karen, By all means! Invite them to dinner. Get to know these people,they are probably just as ...
card signing10/21/2007
  Q: Is it proper to sign a card "as always," ---- and --- Instead of for instance congratulations ...
  A: Shari, The way to close a card depends entirely upon the relationship between the sender and the ...
Who pays?10/20/2007
  Q: As a cashier, in a cafeteria type restaurant, there were times I was undecided what to do this ...
  A: Fortunately for you,you don't have to decide. You can't! You don't have enough information about who ...
Birthday Gifts for Inlaws10/20/2007
  Q: Both my brother and I are married. When I give my brother a birthday gift, should it be from just ...
  A: Good news or bad,depending on how you look at it: The decision is yours alone. Some people are ...
sneezing -bless you10/20/2007
  Q: After people sneeze, some people say "Bless you, or Guzuntite." I don't mean it, but I say it. ...
  A: Smith, Gesundheit means "health" in German. Only you know if you want to say things that you do ...
Adressing grown-ups10/19/2007
  Q: Gamble, I am noticing that a lot of the grownups in my neighborhood are having their kids call ...
  A: Things have changed for the worse I'm afraid. It's like the trend of wearing baseball caps ...
breaking a glass at a dinner party10/19/2007
  Q: I was invited to Thanksgiving at my brother's house 4 years ago A crystal glass that was on the ...
  A: A hostess should be gracious in the face of stemware tragedy. She should insist that it is no big ...
Retirement Party10/18/2007
  Q: Im from NYC and I was just invited to a retirement party from this couple that owns a couple of ...
  A: Good riddance to these people I say! Let Florida have them. It is not a party,but a fundraiser if ...
wedding reception seating10/18/2007
  Q: I recently attended a wedding in Maine,I'm from Pennsylvania. Several co-workers,myself and my ...
  A: The hostess was thinking about six hundred other things at the time she made the seating chart. This ...
death10/18/2007
  Q: I recently lost my Grandmother and recieved sympathy cards. What is the proper way to address them? ...
  A: While it is not necessary to send a return note for a message of sympathy,you may if you wish to do ...
etiquette regarding someone's death10/17/2007
  Q: Someone I know at work recently lost his mother in a car accident. I work in another department ...
  A: His privacy has already been violated,if you consider it that way,by all of you talking about this ...
Quiceanera10/17/2007
  Q: My daughter is having a quiceanera party. We would like to know the right way to ask her friends ...
  A: Usually just asking the boys and girls is 'traditional'. However,if you are planning a very ...
making amends for being bad wedding guest10/17/2007
  Q: I think I have been a bad wedding guest. My family was invited to the wedding of our nephew ...
  A: As this is your husband's sister,if he wants to write a thank you apology and give a gift,let him! I ...
graduation invitations list10/17/2007
  Q: My daughter is graduating from high school in May and we have no idea who to send out the ...
  A: Couldn't be simpler. Only invite those people who love your kid enough to sit in a miserable hot gym ...
1st Bithday Party10/17/2007
  Q: My sister-in-law and I are throwing our boys a 1st birthday party together (they are two weeks ...
  A: While the books all do say you may never refer to gifts in any form on an invitation,I think when ...
Rude Mother-In-Law10/10/2007
  Q: My partner's mom recently invited herself to visit this past weekend and only gave us 3 days notice ...
  A: Couldn't be simpler. The next time say "I'm sorry,but that wouldn't be convient for us. Perhaps we ...
Addressing stepparents10/10/2007
  Q: At what age does one refer to their stepparent as "my father's wife" or "my mother's husband" ...
  A: You've answered your own question. "My daughters...really don't want to.." The appropriate age is ...
Ex spouse and New In Laws10/10/2007
  Q: My husband's family invites his ex-wife to every family function from weddings to holidays. The ...
  A: Is it appropriate for her to be invited? Sure. It is their house,they may invite whomever they ...
Friendship10/9/2007
  Q: my friend has a realy bad attitude when ever she is mad at her boyfriend or anything she give me ...
  A: This really isn't an etiquette question. You can't control anyone's behavior but your own. So there ...
Dinner Invite10/9/2007
  Q: My husband's 40th birthday is coming up and I am taking him to dinner. I mentioned to a few other ...
  A: Just make it clear when you invite the couples that as much as you would like to treat everyone to ...
Paying for my Birthday Dinner10/9/2007
  Q: My friend of several years invited me out to dinner to celebrate my birthdy. It was her idea, not ...
  A: Yes,if she invited you out to dinner to celebrate your birthday,it would be natural to assume that ...
Sitting Manners10/9/2007
  Q: I have a question of what is an appropriate sitting position in a social/formal environment. And ...
  A: No,it is not appropriate for a gentleman to sit in the manner you describe. He should reserve that ...
friend receiving an award10/8/2007
  Q: A friend of mine is receiving an award for being outstanding in his field of work. My spouse and I ...
  A: Please send him a note of congratulation telling him how pleased you are for him and how much you ...
invitation wording10/8/2007
  Q: I am hosting a party for my husband's recent accomplishment of completing his doctorate degree. ...
  A: Deanna, In honoring Douglas S Duncan for his achievement in completing his doctoral degree. It's ...
Addressing an invitation to a former mayor10/8/2007
  Q: I am hosting an event at which our former mayor will be a "sponsor." How should he be listed on the ...
  A: This one is a bit of a sticky wicket. In fact,it is a controversy that rages (yes..RAGES) in the ...
Gum Chewing10/7/2007
  Q: My sisters husband has a position of prominence in our church and she continually chews gum thru ...
  A: If this is your sister,then you may speak as plainly as you need to. Not saying be unkind,but ...
Weekend away, who pays10/7/2007
  Q: Gamble, I have a question I have been unable to which I have been unable to find the proper answer. ...
  A: You are absolutely right,assume that it is dutch unless someone says something to let you know that ...
Monetary gifts for elderly birthday10/7/2007
  Q: We are giving my 90 year old grandmother a surprise birthday party. How do we tactfully ask those ...
  A: Lavern, I'm sorry,but there is no polite way to ask for gifts of any kind. That anyone thought ...
death on a honeymoon10/5/2007
  Q: My neighbors, whom we've only known for a year, were just married in his home state where all his ...
  A: Please do not send the wedding card or gift. It will only cause you neighbor more pain and mental ...
questioning age10/5/2007
  Q: I have a friend whom I lift with. on occasion we have discussed protein supplements. My friend ...
  A: The only thing to do here is apologize to the man. Do I think you were wrong given the ...
All expense paid vegas trip10/5/2007
  Q: My girlfriend of several years takes an annual "girls" trip to Vegas and invites 3 of her friends. ...
  A: Please call your best friend and have him come over. Then as a favor to me,have him smack you upside ...
Office Wedding Gift10/4/2007
  Q: my boss is getting married. No one in the office is invited, but others are discussing whether we ...
  A: It is never a good idea for an employee to give anyone who is above them on the corporate ladder a ...
Hosting My Birthday Party10/4/2007
  Q: How can I politely say in my 40th birthdday party invitations that I have reserved and will be ...
  A: The very fact that you are sending invitations can and should do the explaining for you. A host/ess ...
invitation etiquette10/4/2007
  Q: I am having a birthday for my twin 7 year olds. We have all agreed that we do not want guests to ...
  A: If we want to get very technical,it is never correct to mention gifts one way or the other on an ...
being asked my age10/3/2007
  Q: I have repeatedly been asked how old I am by various people. For whatever reason I find the question ...
  A: You did everything you should have,ignoring,deflecting, joking..none of it mattered because you were ...
Retirement party invite10/3/2007
  Q: My husband and I just received an invitation for a BLACK TIE retirement party for someone that he ...
  A: Sarah, Please,please tell me that in the body of the 'invitation' it says something like 'for the ...
adult daughter and male overnight guest10/3/2007
  Q: I need your help solving a dispute between myself and my husband. We have a 19 year old daughter ...
  A: While it is your home and you need to feel comfortable with the rules you set,I can't imagine why ...
Invitation etiquette10/2/2007
  Q: I am throwing my father a surprise 50th birthday party. There will be approximately 30-40 guests. It ...
  A: A hostess never throws a party that she cannot afford to pay for. I know you mean to do a nice thing ...
Dual Birthday Party10/2/2007
  Q: The mother of my son's friend (from a preschool he no longer attends, if that matters) called to ...
  A: While it is not required that you bring both boys a gift, we are talking about a three year old ...
Graduation Announcement if Divorced10/2/2007
  Q: My oldest son will be graduating from high school next June and I would like to know how to word the ...
  A: Your instincts are dead on. Everything is perfect as is, unless your son wants to include the new ...
1st birthday party10/2/2007
  Q: my daughter is turning one and we're giving her a party. we don't have a lot of space in our new ...
  A: There is no polite way to ask for or even mention gifts on an invitation. Unless asked directly ...
Gifts before the Ball?10/1/2007
  Q: I will be attending a formal, black-tie political fundraiser, 'Governor's Ball' with a woman I have ...
  A: While I have every sympathy for a man in love,please, I beg of you,leave the grand romantic gestures ...
College Graduation Day Etiquette10/1/2007
  Q: I'm also one of few students to be the member of two honor's societies. One of which provides cords ...
  A: Melissa, Your commencement ceremony is no time to be modest. It is your day to shine after four ...
Anniversary question9/30/2007
  Q: We want to have about 35 people who are family and friends to meet us at a restaraunt for a dinner ...
  A: No,I am sorry,you cannot plan a party in honor of your anniversary and ask other people to pay for ...
entering the home9/30/2007
  Q: situation: my husband and my son were home playing video games while my daughter and i attended a ...
  A: Have you ever heard the saying "As the twig is bent the tree is inclined"? If you don't teach your ...
Graduation reception colors9/30/2007
  Q: Is there a rule regarding the colors that you must have at a high school graduation reception? For ...
  A: In the first half of the 20th Century it was common for individual classes to have their own 'class ...
Friend's Party9/30/2007
  Q: A close girlfriend of mine was hosting a party for her husband's birthday. My husband and I rsvp'd ...
  A: She certainly may invite whomever she pleases to a party. If she was aware of the tensions between ...
When people tell you to call them9/30/2007
  Q: Last night I had an enjoyable date, but I ended the evening not interested in seeing the person ...
  A: Katherine, The phrase "I have your number" is a useful one. It can mean a few different things,is ...
housewarming9/29/2007
  Q: What is the time line for having a housewarming, after your move in date?
  A: There is no hard and fast rule about this,but within three months of moving in is reasonable. ...
Houseguests9/28/2007
  Q: My husband and I own a vacation home in ski resort town in Colorado. As you can imagine, it is a ...
  A: While I sympathize with the extra duties having guests presents,your husband's instincts are correct ...
How to properly address a former Mayor9/28/2007
  Q: How do I properly reference a former Mayor? (I am talking about a former Mayor in an article.) ...
  A: Call him "..the former mayor of Elmwood Springs,Ron Kirk,said today that.." Just use it once,after ...
baby shower thank you's9/27/2007
  Q: my daughter was given a shower on July 14th of 2007, it is September 25 and we JUST sent out Thank ...
  A: Should the thank you notes have gone out within two weeks of the party? Yes. Does the fact that she ...
Etiquette with Relatives9/27/2007
  Q: I am expecting my first baby in December and my Mother and Father-in-law would like to come for the ...
  A: What do you mean he's 'acting very strange'? If he is an adult and this is his mother,he is free to ...
etiquette9/26/2007
  Q: Two days after we found out that we are pregnant, my fiance informed me that "there is someone else, ...
  A: These two people had no problem ruining your relationship and have no interest in behaving in a ...
Black and White Ball9/25/2007
  Q: My husband and I are going on a cruise on the QE2 and have received the itinerary which states that ...
  A: For the "Black and White Ball" your husband wears a tuxedo and you would wear a floor length gown of ...
Graduation awards9/25/2007
  Q: We award cords and medals to our top GPA students. Are there awards that can be given for students ...
  A: All of these traditions and customs came into being because someone,somewhere,made them up. So you ...
No show to a dinner invitation9/24/2007
  Q: It's my first time on your website. I need your etiquette expertise. My husband and I invited our ...
  A: Yes,of course you have the right to be disappointed. It's how you act on that disappointment that ...
Why?9/24/2007
  Q: Why do you volunteer your time to this service? Do you have to answer every single question? ...
  A: I enjoy helping people. No,I do not have to answer every question. If the question is rude,makes no ...
social etiquette and good manners9/23/2007
  Q: Several years ago, my family travelled to visit my sister in a large US city. After a long day of ...
  A: Small children have very little control over themselves. It would have been embarrasing if you had ...
Declining an Invitation9/22/2007
  Q: The residents group of a small group of 7 villas wishes to celebrate the 90th birthday of one of the ...
  A: Simply call and tell the couple "I'm sorry,I thought I would be joining everyone at Chez Louis,but I ...
Girlfriend at Bat Mitzvah9/21/2007
  Q: Amanda, I have been in a relationship for 2.5 years, it is quite serious, we are discussing ...
  A: Couldn't be simpler for you. Treat the woman with a great deal of kindness. It will totally throw ...
how to address an envelope9/21/2007
  Q: How do I address an envelope when the woman is pastor of a church and her husband ...
  A: Please use two lines on the envelope. You don't say what denomination the church,so I will leave it ...
Etiquette with a colleague9/20/2007
  Q: In a work trip I will have to share bedroom with a female colleague (we are friends but not lovers ...
  A: Your company can't spring for two rooms? Okay,this is beyond the norm as far as etiquette questions ...
softdrink only party9/20/2007
  Q: my husband and I don't drink alcohol/pork and therefore when we have parties we don't serve these ...
  A: No,you are under no obligation to provide alcohol for your sister. A hostess may serve what she has ...
Open House gift9/20/2007
  Q: Our financial planner, whom we have known for many years, has moved to a new location and has ...
  A: You and your husband are both correct,oddly enough. There is no need to take a gift unless you ...
Sharing other people's news9/19/2007
  Q: When is it correct to share someone's news with other people? I had a disagreement with my sister ...
  A: Your sister was wrong to rain on your parade. If it is a significant event (as you described it) ...
Social Etiquette9/19/2007
  Q: I recently received a party invitation calling for "cocktail casual" attire. What is cocktail ...
  A: Stephanie, Simply put,it is anything that the host/ess wishes it to be. It's a made up term,but ...
Introductions9/19/2007
  Q: I am attending an informal work event with my husband and good friend, neither of whom will know ...
  A: Introduce your friend first,not just because she is a woman,but because in a way,she is your guest. ...
ambassador9/19/2007
  Q: What, in your opinion, is a suitable gift to a US ambassador posted in Europe? 100 euros or less ...
  A: A book,fiction or non,that will give them a new and different perspective on the country to which ...
another wedding9/18/2007
  Q: My husband's sister recently got engaged and has asked me to be a bridesmaid in her wedding. She is ...
  A: Tell her you'll catch her on the fourth trip down the aisle. Kidding. If your husband is okay with ...
inlaws9/17/2007
  Q: to make a long story short, my sister in law has always been jealous of me and it has cause a major ...
  A: Three hours away is a considerable distance for anyone to drive. I would advise not inviting her and ...
introductions9/17/2007
  Q: My friend often fails to introduce me as he claims he does not remember the name of the other person ...
  A: What you do is take the situation into your own hands. If he fails to introduce you within the first ...
baby shower9/17/2007
  Q: Is it o.k. for a new mom to give herself a baby shower? I thought it was always taboo! It is ...
  A: No,the foundation of civilization may have some cracks in it,but so far it has not crumbled ...
Celebration of life9/15/2007
  Q: I don't know if this is in your area of expertise or not but I need insight into some of this. In ...
  A: Please accept my sincere sympathy on the loss of your nephew and your father. The timing and the ...
bridal shower9/15/2007
  Q: My dilemma is this...My mother-in-law and I are throwing a bridal shower for her nephew's bride to ...
  A: I am not familiar with local customs in every region of the country,so I will defer to your ...
bridal shower invitations9/15/2007
  Q: How should a married woman be addressed for a bridal shower? Ms. Mary Smith? Is just Mary Smith ...
  A: It is acceptable to address an invitation to someone without using an honorific. (Mary Smith) It is ...
Invitation Protocol9/15/2007
  Q: My mother's sister's daughter sent my mom an invitation to her daughter (nieces) wedding. My mother ...
  A: Matthew 6:34 came to mind when I read your question. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof. ...
Tet9/15/2007
  Q: What is the holiday Tet and who celebrates it? Tracy
  A: Tet is the Vietnamese New Year. Based on the Chinese calendar,the holiday comes around late January ...
selling tickets9/14/2007
  Q: we received 4 baseball tickets to a game we could not attend. I had the opportunity to sell these ...
  A: You don't say who gave you the tickets and under what circumstances. That makes all the difference. ...
Don't have anything nice to say!9/14/2007
  Q: I was looking for some type of quote in regards to good manners and if you don't have anything nice ...
  A: The quote "If you can't say anything nice,don't say anything at all" has been around so long that ...
dinner @ boss's house9/14/2007
  Q: My family has been invited to a cookout/pool evening with my boss and his family in his home for the ...
  A: A hostess gift is not necessary for a casual party. Just go,enjoy yourself and write a short note ...
engagement party9/14/2007
  Q: My close friends, a couple, are having an engagement party which the soon-to-be groom's father will ...
  A: There is never any situation where a guest "must" give a gift. You have been invited to a ...
Family visit planning - the holiday and vacation buzzkill9/13/2007
  Q: I have a question regarding family and visiting, especially (but not limited to) the holidays. My ...
  A: Please do the following things for me. Look at the birth date on your driver's license and subtract ...
Lost gift. :(9/13/2007
  Q: I'm looking for some guidance as to what to do. My grandfather sent me and my wife a check and a ...
  A: If your grandfather doesn't keep a perfectly balanced checkbook and is not likely to notice,please ...
baby shower9/12/2007
  Q: My niece is throwing a baby shower for my daughter. My daughter delivered her baby the week the ...
  A: As time is short and the situation a little unusual, please feel free to start making phone calls to ...
conversation9/12/2007
  Q: What does one do when two people on each side of you carry on personal conversation and ignoring the ...
  A: That's a tough spot to be in. You can't force your way into a conversation that is clearly meant to ...
first birthday invitations - wording about gifts9/12/2007
  Q: My brother and I are having a joint first birthday party for our 2 babies which turn one at the same ...
  A: As I am sure that both households are overflowing with toys, I think it would be very nice of you to ...
host charging guests?? Is that right?9/12/2007
  Q: When I got the party I was astonished since the food wasn't even professional!Even the cake was made ...
  A: Nilly, The only surprise here is that anyone at all attended this thing. A host/ess never gives ...
Children and the theater9/12/2007
  Q: We are going to watch the Disney's Lion King in Honolulu. I know someone who's taking their 3 year ...
  A: The Lion King is much like the ballet The Nutcracker. It is expected that children will be in the ...
general conversation etiquette9/11/2007
  Q: My husband and I constantly get into bickering matches during a normal conversation because one of ...
  A: Oh no,no,no. You are not dragging me into this mess, you married the boy. Seriously,this is for ...
Bar Mitvah Etiquette9/11/2007
  Q: We are not Jewish, so I need your help in bar mitvah etiquette! We were invited to a neighbor's bar ...
  A: You may go to the celebration after the religious ceremony. Hopefully you absence won't be ...
engagement party etiquette9/9/2007
  Q: My fiance and I were planning on having a more casual engagement party - cocktails and hors dourves ...
  A: They will be expecting it. Put yourself in their shoes, you're invited to an engagement party,which ...
Office Birthdays9/9/2007
  Q: Our policy for birthdays has been each person contributing $5 and sign a card. In addition, ...
  A: The salon owner need to take Miss Thing aside and point out to her that she was given a shower by ...
Correct Terms9/9/2007
  Q: Could you please tell me the correct term for 'lounge'? We have some terribly posh friends who refer ...
  A: This is an interesting one! More about language than etiquette,but here's what I know: In the ...
invocation/benediction9/9/2007
  Q: if you have an invocation, must you have a benediction?
  A: They are fundamentally the same thing,an appeal to God for assistance or a blessing. In the common ...
"No Gifts Please"9/9/2007
  Q: My cousin in Knoxville, TN has invited our family to a surprise 80th birthday party for his mom. On ...
  A: At the age of eighty,there is probably very little that your dear aunt needs or wants. Some people ...
The use of Jr. after death of Sr.9/8/2007
  Q: My friend XXX X. XXXXXX, Jr. M.D recently lost his father, XXX X. XXXXXX, Sr. Phd. My friend is ...
  A: Your friend is correct. He becomes "senior" or if there is no "III" he may become just "Dr. XXX X. ...
Bragging Parents of Adult Children9/8/2007
  Q: How do you delicately get another couple to stop bragging about their adult children when out to ...
  A: Unfortunately there is little that you can do or say to discourage these people without causing them ...
neighbor's son is aggressive9/7/2007
  Q: Our next door neighbors have a son (Ronny) who is the same age as our son (Clay) (5 1/2yrs, just ...
  A: Is being polite and not causing a rift with the next door neighbors more important than your ...
ayuda9/7/2007
  Q: I am a 44 years man who do not like get shaved. I get shave because I work in a pharmaceutical plant ...
  A: This isn't really an etiquette question. Facial hair on men is,generally speaking,a matter of ...
Bridal Shower & Wedding Gifts9/7/2007
  Q: We're invited to a bridal shower and wedding for a relative (2nd cousin's daughter-in-law) and ...
  A: "What you can comfortably afford" is the correct answer. Wages and prices are all relative things. ...
Baby shower9/7/2007
  Q: My sister and I are throwing a baby shower for a close relative, the mom-to-be's mother-in-law has ...
  A: Simply tell the woman that while you appreciate her offer,you would be delighted if she would come ...
Family Planning9/7/2007
  Q: Is it proper to ask an acquaintance when will they have a baby? I find that women with children ...
  A: No,it is never polite to ask a woman when she wants to start a family. There are too many issues ...
Gifts to the Bride's Parents9/6/2007
  Q: Is it customary for the Mother of the Groom to present a gift to the parents of the Bride. I feel I ...
  A: A gift is not traditional of required,but please do write these nice people a letter. It doesn't ...
Daughter's friend9/5/2007
  Q: I have custody and am raising two of my daughters three children. One of the two I have had a ...
  A: No,you aren't wrong,she was rude. However,when you agreed to have her in your home as a guest,you ...
engagement gifts9/5/2007
  Q: Someone has said that when attending an engagement party that the man of the family attending is ...
  A: Lorene, UNTRUE. No one ever has to pay for the privilege of being a guest at any party or ...
baby shower8/16/2007
  Q: I'm hosting a baby shower for my daughter's 1st baby. She & the baby's dad are not married & are ...
  A: Please do invite this woman to the baby shower. No matter what becomes of your daughter's ...
Difficult Situations8/16/2007
  Q: During the past year, several members of my church has had very tragic events to occur. One member's ...
  A: By simply asking them what they need from you. As in, "I cannot imagine what you are going through. ...
wedding invitation8/15/2007
  Q: My husband and I have been married for 3 years and have a 2 year old daughter. We dated for several ...
  A: Your husband is absolutely correct in refusing to go to a wedding to which you were not invited. He ...
giving flowers after a concert?8/15/2007
  Q: i'll be attending a school concert and a couple of my friends are performing. is it appropriate to ...
  A: Deborah, If you wish to give your friends flowers,please send them backstage before the concert. ...
returning dinner invitation8/14/2007
  Q: I invited a friend to dinner on two occassions and had a very good time, but I have yet to receive ...
  A: What you need to ask yourself is this "What is this person's friendship worth to me?" Is this a ...
Gift for bf's family8/14/2007
  Q: We are staying at my boyfriend's brother house this weekend (different states) and wondering what ...
  A: Think along the lines of a disposable luxury item,like food,alcohol or flowers. You don't want to ...
Graduation8/14/2007
  Q: My daughter just graduated with her master's degree (she is 32 and married). I did not help her ...
  A: While you are not obligated to do anything for your daughter,but you are also free to mark the ...
"Thank you" etiquette8/13/2007
  Q: My husband and I recently took our niece and her best friend on a roadtrip to tour college campuses. ...
  A: Your instincts are correct on this one. Say nothing. You went on this trip and made all the effort ...
25th wedding anniversary8/13/2007
  Q: My husband and I just celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary. We planned my husbands parents 25th ...
  A: p.s.- You also asked how you should respond when a special occasion for them comes up or they need ...
please recommend8/13/2007
  Q: Kindly recommend the best web site to teach social Etiquette. Thanks
  A: AllExperts.com,of course. We have thousands of 'banked' answers to every type of etiquette question. ...
Invitation Etiquette8/11/2007
  Q: Amanda, My future sister-in-law will be having a reception out of state. What would a proper way of ...
  A: Word of mouth only. It is never appropriate to mention gifts in an invitation. When and if people ...
death of spouse and birthday very close8/11/2007
  Q: My friend's wife passed away the other day. I've sent a sympathy card and he should get it today ...
  A: As there will be nothing happy about this particular birthday for him,please do not send a card. It ...
Death of ex-spouses Mother8/10/2007
  Q: My recent ex-spouse and Mother of our child (divorced 2 yrs ago) has informed me of the death of her ...
  A: As this woman was the grandmother of your child,you really should make a gesture. Flowers would be ...
Nephews first birthday.8/10/2007
  Q: I am currently dealing with a difficult situation! A month ago my best-friend and her mom invited ...
  A: Please go on the camping trip. You have already committed to it,your husband thinks you should go ...
College Graduation Announcement - Early Graduation8/9/2007
  Q: My daughter is graduating early from college (in December). The college does not have formal ...
  A: Either option is open to you and entirely appropriate. I think I would cut down on confusion by ...
80th birthday party for mother8/9/2007
  Q: My brother suggested we invite about 110 guests to celebrate my mother's 80th birthday. He is intent ...
  A: You are absolutely correct on this one. You cannot call yourselves hosts,nor call these people ...
hosting a party8/8/2007
  Q: I am hosting a nice engagement party for some friends. I have asked 7 other good friends of the ...
  A: You don't need me at all. Your instincts are absolutely correct. A host/ess never gives a party that ...
adjustments in relationship8/8/2007
  Q: ..i would be obliged if u'll be answering to my problem.i am married for 2 years but not staying ...
  A: Okay,let me see if I have this straight. You and your husband are living apart temporarily because ...
dressing for a salior graduation8/8/2007
  Q: my boyfriend will be graduation from a naval recruit basic training camp (so basically boot camp to ...
  A: By all means,dress up for this event. It is an important occasion for your boyfriend and he deserves ...
birthday party question8/8/2007
  Q: Good day to you, I need some advice from a 3rd party who will give me an honest answer. I am ...
  A: Of course you should celebrate both birthdays! I would mention to your husband's family only that it ...
addressing other doctors8/8/2007
  Q: Approximately 90% of my work-related e-mail correspondences are to PhDs and MDs. I have a difficult ...
  A: Yes,as soon as someone addresses you by your given name, by all means feel free to respond in kind. ...
Engagement gift etiquette8/8/2007
  Q: Should the parents of the groom make sure to give an engagement gift? Should it be something for ...
  A: The parents of the groom aren't required to give an engagement gift unless they particularly wish ...
Baptism8/8/2007
  Q: I live out of state. My son is baptizing my granddaughter. Here is my question. They want me to ...
  A: A christening is usually a very private and special event that only includes the very closest of ...
Absent hostess8/7/2007
  Q: I was out of town, my neighbors invited my husband to eat dinner at their house. My husband had a ...
  A: A lady may accept or decline any invitation that she wishes. The people who came to your home did ...
Seating a lady at dinner date8/7/2007
  Q: I am divorced after 30 years. So now I am taking a lady out to dinner every now and then. If ...
  A: You are absolutely correct. Best of luck to you as you saunter forth into a world that no longer ...
Wedding Invitation Inner Envelope8/5/2007
  Q: What is the proper addressing for relatives( close vs. distant), friends ( close vs. ...
  A: The inner envelope may be addressed in whatever way you are comfortable with based on your ...
Children disturbing others in church8/5/2007
  Q: Is it not rude for a parent of young children ( about 3 -4 years old) to let them make so much ...
  A: If you want these children to become the sorts of people who will be good stewards to the church in ...
gift for quinceanerra8/5/2007
  Q: I was invited to a quinceanerra of a young girl who worked for me and give her $50 and a card. I now ...
  A: There is absolutely no reason that a 15 year old girl shouldn't be thrilled to receive a fifty ...
Family Etiquette8/4/2007
  Q: I have a recurring issue with my sister. At least twice a month, I get a call from my sister ...
  A: You don't have to lie,nor do you owe her any explanation. You are an adult woman with her own ...
50th Wedding Anniversary8/4/2007
  Q: My sister and brother are asking that the guests bring no gifts. We love some of the sayings but ...
  A: I'd be happy to help,but..I think in your frustration you forgot to ask me a question. Please ...
Thank you notes8/4/2007
  Q: Do you send thank you to people who sent me cards after my mother in law passed?
  A: Only if you wish to do so. You are under no obligation or time constraint. The bereaved get a pass ...
business meeting with a Jewish man8/4/2007
  Q: I recently attended a business luncheon with a Jewish contractor - everyone at the table ordered ...
  A: One of the things most identified with kashrut (or keeping 'kosher' )is the separation of milk and ...
Baby shower8/3/2007
  Q: My best friend is expecting twins and I would love to throw her a baby shower. However, I'm a ...
  A: Graduate students should avoid throwing parties all together. The guilt of not being in your carrel ...
sister-in-law slight?8/3/2007
  Q: I have a sister-in-law that is also my neighbor and whom I consider a friend. I recently made a ...
  A: This worries me. This response by your sister in law was totally out of line. Even if you did hurt ...
Engagement ring etiquette8/3/2007
  Q: I have been married for a little less than one year. My husband commissioned my original engagement ...
  A: You poor thing! Losing a piece of 'family' jewelry is just the most horrifying experience and yet,it ...
answering questions about8/3/2007
  Q: My male co-worker is constantly asking me questions about (or questioning) my wardrobe choices for ...
  A: Well,you seem to have exhausted all the options that I would have given you. Usually one or a ...
Co-worker's family funeral8/3/2007
  Q: My female co-worker's mother just passed away and I am wondering if I should attend the funeral. I ...
  A: If you feel the need to be there for this colleague, then please go. Only those with the most base ...
surprise party8/2/2007
  Q: Amanda, I am throwing a surprise party for my husbands 30th birthday. I am inviting about 30 people. ...
  A: Unfortunately,people stop being guest the moment you ask them to pay their own way. Invite them for ...
new house8/2/2007
  Q: I remember when I lived in New York when you moved to a new place a friend would leave a loaf of ...
  A: In the movie "It's a Wonderful Life" Mary Baily presents those things to the Martini Family when ...
Hosting a bridal shower "dutch"8/2/2007
  Q: I am a bridesmaid and have agreed to assist the other bridesmaids throw a bridal shower for the ...
  A: Unfortunately they stop being guests the minute you ask them to pay their own way. You all may ...
FOLLOW-UP to "Married Couple With Different Last Names"8/2/2007
  Q: So then, using the same example of Lisa Thompson and James Bradley, you mean that the wife would ...
  A: If the woman has chosen not to take her husband's last name,then,no,there is no way to indicate ...
hi8/1/2007
  Q: i have someone the office, that has a friend, and they fool around, they don't work, they just fool ...
  A: Unless you are this person's superior(or 'boss')there is nothing you can or should do. Ratting her ...
Brother8/1/2007
  Q: My 43 yr old brother has the feeling that on weekends "he's on his own time schedule and no one is ...
  A: As long as Sid is living on his own and paying his own way in the world,he gets to do exactly as he ...
dinner invitation: inquire about menu?8/1/2007
  Q: My wife and I were recently invited to dinner with a couple across the street. They are strangers ...
  A: It would have been rude to have asked before accepting or declining the invitation and basing your ...
addressing chief justice7/31/2007
  Q: I'm interested in trying to contact U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts in connection with ...
  A: An envelope to him should read: The Honorable John G. Roberts, Jr, Chief Justice of the Supreme ...
Declining Reception Invitation7/31/2007
  Q: My brother, his wife, and his oldest daughter and I have been on poor terms for some time. Clash of ...
  A: Write a brief note to the bride letting her know your intentions. Let her know that you're pleased ...
envelope7/30/2007
  Q: I recently married a retired USAF colonel and I want to know how to write a return address on an ...
  A: Carroll, He is still entitled to use his title socially. "Col. Lawrence Jackson,USAF (Ret.)" is ...
Proper Color Attire for a daytime wedding7/30/2007
  Q: My grandson is to be married in an afternoon ceremony. His bride has chosen colors of blue and ...
  A: You do not have to dress in the colors the bride has chosen for her bridesmaid's dresses and the ...
Dual Baby Shower7/30/2007
  Q: I am hosting an office baby shower for two co-workers that are having babies. In some cases the ...
  A: While it should go without saying,there will be some people who will be confused as to what their ...
invitation7/29/2007
  Q: My wife and I get invited to birthday parties all the time. The invitation will be addressed to My ...
  A: What this sounds like to me is not a lack of respect on the part of the hosts,but a lack of ...
Correcting Others7/29/2007
  Q: I have a sister that corrects me in some way almost everytime we talk on the phone from the ...
  A: Good news! Since it's your sister,you can tell her in words of one syllable to knock it off. She's ...
sympathy cards7/27/2007
  Q: Is there an acceptable time frame to send sympathy cards. How long after the funeral is it still ...
  A: If you have ever suffered the loss of a loved one,you know that grief can last for years. It comes ...
greeting another person7/27/2007
  Q: Is it rude when you say Hello/Hi to someone, that you only say Hello/Hi and do not include their ...
  A: It isn't rude to say hello without a name. It doesn't say anything about the greeter. This isn't ...
Fence Issue7/26/2007
  Q: My wife and I had a rock wall with fencing constructed on our property line between us and our ...
  A: Please stop and really think about this before you say anything to them. You wanted the fence ...
open house gift giving7/26/2007
  Q: My family is invited to an open house celebrating the hosts daughter's admittance to medical school. ...
  A: No gift is required,but if you want to take something, think along the lines of a gift card to a big ...
unwanted "friend"7/26/2007
  Q: I have a sticky situation concerning a yearly trip that is taken with a group of longtime friends. ...
  A: I'd say it's time for a whole new circle of friends. You have very good reasons for not wanting to ...
Gift by check7/26/2007
  Q: What is the time frame for a recipient of a check as a gift to cash the check?
  A: Ideally,before they get their next bank statement so they may properly balance their checkbook. ...
sympathy cards7/26/2007
  Q: When sending a sympathy card for the death of a mother, do you put the child and the child's spouse, ...
  A: Please address the note to both the adult child who lost the parent and their spouse. No matter how ...
Twin Baby Shower Etiquette7/25/2007
  Q: When having a baby shower for twins, are you buying for the babies, or for the parents. We are ...
  A: Buy what you can afford. If you want to get something that will serve both kids (lamp for the ...
tipping etiquette7/25/2007
  Q: I remember hearing that a tip for knowing how much to tip at a restaurant is based on whether or not ...
  A: How interesting! I have never heard that one before. As you know,15 percent is the minimum standard ...
Wedding Shower Etiquette7/24/2007
  Q: We are having a small ceremony of 30 about 2.5 hours from home in Oct (a really quick decision) and ...
  A: You don't say what your role is in the wedding. "We" covers a whole lot of people. If you are the ...
cocktail dress7/24/2007
  Q: Is Winter White a proper color to wear in November?
  A: In what context? Is the wearer a bride? Is the clothing made out of wool,silk,cotton? What part of ...
sympathy thank you cards7/23/2007
  Q: My grandfather was killed four months ago and I have not had time to send thank you cards. Alot of ...
  A: Please know how sorry I am for your loss,it still must be terribly difficult for you and your ...
high school graduation7/23/2007
  Q: I recently had a graduation party for my son. I invited a friend of mine who I have known for at ...
  A: I don't understand why you would be shocked and hurt. Think a minute. Why did you throw the party ...
50th Birthday Party Invitation7/23/2007
  Q: I recently received an invitation for a friend (not a close friend) to attend her 50th birthday ...
  A: Wishing wells (if the intent is to use them to get checks and cash) are hideously wrong no matter ...
debutantes7/22/2007
  Q: How do you become a debutante? What do I have to do? Where do I go? & Who do I talk to? How old do ...
  A: Traditionally,you make your debut at the age of eighteen. Your parents are the ones who help you ...
Bridal Attire7/21/2007
  Q: I am having a late afternoon/evening wedding in The Bahamas. My dress is strapless and formal. I ...
  A: If you don't want to wear stockings or a closed toed shoe,don't! It's your wedding and whatever ...
in law visits7/20/2007
  Q: My husband's mom and grandma live in Hawaii and pay for him to visit once a year approx.(This will ...
  A: When you and your husband married,you each left your families to form a brand new and entirely ...
birthday7/20/2007
  Q: I would like to treat a friend for his birthday. His wife accompanies him. Do I pay for her meal ...
  A: They are sort of a package deal. You can't very well say "As for you..you're on your own!" when the ...
Vacation Etiquette7/20/2007
  Q: What is the proper etiquette for an invitation for a child to go on vacation with a friend and their ...
  A: When another family invites your child to go on vacation with them,they assume all of the costs. A ...
Pre-printed Holiday Cards7/20/2007
  Q: I receive some holiday cards that have the couple's names already printed inside by the company that ...
  A: A personal signature and a line or two is the proper way to close a holiday card to friends and ...
Married couple with diifferent last names7/19/2007
  Q: How would you address a merried couple who had different last names?
  A: On an envelope you use two lines: James Bradley ...
neighbors noisy love life7/18/2007
  Q: I live in a four-unit town house and have new neighbors who just moved in two units down. Of course ...
  A: While I appreciate your desire not to embarrass your neighbors or yourselves,don't be too vague when ...
destination wedding gift protocol7/18/2007
  Q: My 28 yr. old cousin/godson is getting married in Ft. Myers Beach. I will be flying from Chicago to ...
  A: It doesn't matter if the ceremony takes place in a city park in your hometown or in the most ...
gift of flowers7/17/2007
  Q: I recently gave my boyfriend a birthday party and invited a few people. We live together. My ...
  A: Roses in America are considered a token of love. Red roses are most strongly associated with ...
addressing a retired Supreme Court Justice7/17/2007
  Q: How do I address Sandra Day O'Connor at a social occasion or in a receiving line?
  A: Madame Justice or Justice O'Connor are both correct. Very few offices allow for the retention of ...
graduation gifting7/17/2007
  Q: When two children from the same family are graduating - one from high school, the other from college ...
  A: An announcement is merely a means of conveying information to those who might wish to know it. ...
graduation ceremony7/17/2007
  Q: What is the proper way to award a diploma to a student. I am planning a summer graduationceremony ...
  A: The good news is that you get to make up the ceremony to suit the people involved. What would be ...
Late minute decline7/17/2007
  Q: I would like someone's advice on this situation. It's a long story, so I apologize in advance. I ...
  A: This is a tough spot to be in. You gave your word that you would do this,but on the other hand they ...
Monetary gift or not7/17/2007
  Q: I received an invitation to attend an affair on Saturday for a 95 year old lady from a lady whom I ...
  A: No gifts means just that. All she wants is to have her friends and family there to help her ...
Dining out with relatives as guests7/15/2007
  Q: My husband & I were invited to his brother's house for July 4th. We brought main course for one ...
  A: Splitting the check was a good compromise. As the hosts, they should offer to pay. As the guests,you ...
cutlery7/15/2007
  Q: I was wondering if you could help me with that question regarding cuttlery: As a rule, the forks ...
  A: I love this question! It is correct to put a spoon on the left for spaghetti,but very few people do ...
hosting b-day party at a restaurant7/14/2007
  Q: I have invited friends and family to join us at a restaurant for my husband's 50th b-day. Am I ...
  A: Rebecca, Unless you stated the 'terms' (i.e. Dutch treat) before giving them a chance to accept or ...
sister in laws7/14/2007
  Q: I've been married for two years now and I'm in love with my husband. I've only met my husband for ...
  A: When your husband married you he promised to take care of you and place your happiness and welfare ...
hotel etiquette7/13/2007
  Q: When staying at an upscale hotel, what is the proper attire to traverse to and from the pool and spa ...
  A: Common sense and modesty should forbid traipsing around in your bathing suit alone,certainly. Almost ...
widow7/12/2007
  Q: What type of gift would you give a 3yr, widow for her husbands birthday? We just want to make her ...
  A: Get her some flowers and say,without much elaboration, 'We all just wanted you to know that we were ...
Addressing informal invitations7/12/2007
  Q: How do you address an informal invitation? We addressed our wedding invitations "Mr. John and Ms. ...
  A: So..you friend is a tad hormonal these days? Tough spot to be in for you! There are any number of ...
Wedding Gifts7/12/2007
  Q: I got married over a month ago, and have STILL not received a gift from a few people who attended my ...
  A: Oh Michelle,Michelle,Michelle. With an attitude like that,it's a miracle that you have any friends ...
First Birthday Party "Potluck"7/11/2007
  Q: My family received an invitation for a first birthday party for a friend's daughter. We were shocked ...
  A: There is nothing wrong with a pot luck or pitch in,but the host or hostess needs to tell everyone ...
Sister-in-law7/9/2007
  Q: I have a sister-in-law who is quite a bit younger than my husband and I. She is 21 and in college ...
  A: The first thing that comes to mind is "start locking your doors"! If she has a key,change the locks ...
Graduation party invitations7/9/2007
  Q: My oldest daughter is graduating from high school and has lived with her father since the divorce. ...
  A: I can certainly understand why you feel hurt as you have made the effort to invite and include him ...
Etiquette in not RSVPing7/9/2007
  Q: When people don't rsvp to a formal anniversary dinner, what do you do? Do you still include them on ...
  A: You call them on the phone and find out if they are or are not coming. While it is very wrong not to ...
Graduation Gift timeframe7/9/2007
  Q: Regarding sending a high school graduation gift, is there a timeframe that must be met? We received ...
  A: An announcement is only to be sent after an event has taken place. It is also merely information for ...
Wedding7/9/2007
  Q: I am having my two sisters and two best friends in my Bridal Party. My Fiance is having his ...
  A: You are being silly. Have the other brother be an usher. It is,after all,an extremely important job. ...
father's girlfriend breakup7/9/2007
  Q: my dad broke it off with a women he has been with for 9 years, never married. I have known her and ...
  A: If you are still on good terms with her,please do call her or see her. I am sure that she is ...
where to sit7/7/2007
  Q: when two guys (not gay) go out to eat and the table is a square 4 seater where are you supposed to ...
  A: There are rules governing where a woman sits in relation to a man and to the restaurant itself,but ...
Child's birthday gift etiquette7/7/2007
  Q: I work at a restaurant and was verbally invited to the first birthday party of a fellow waitress's ...
  A: You never have to take a gift to any celebration of any kind. It is entirely up to you if you want ...
College Graduation and In-Laws7/6/2007
  Q: I am graduating this August on my first year anniversary of my wedding. My parents are flying in, ...
  A: Yes,since your mother in law expressed an interest in attending,please invite her. That she is ...
Respect for American flag7/5/2007
  Q: Are women required to take off their hats during the playing or singing of our National Anthem?
  A: It depends entirely upon the hat. If it is a proper hat as worn by little old ladies at First ...
Who is being rude?7/5/2007
  Q: My brother and his wife had some extra tickets and invited me, my husband and two children to an ...
  A: As your brother and his wife were the host and hostess of the day,it was wrong for you to invite ...
appropriate dress7/4/2007
  Q: My husband has been invited for a formal function in UK. The dress code states lounge. I want to ...
  A: Women's 'lounge' can be a classic tailored suit of a good material,with either skirt or trousers. A ...
Wedding Rehearsal7/3/2007
  Q: Do you invite the host and hostess of the reception to the Rehearsal Dinner?
  A: Yes,absolutely. If they decline,don't be upset. They might have a million details to oversee for the ...
Business Card Protocol7/3/2007
  Q: Is there protocol as to how many professional designations you should have on a business card? I ...
  A: Burrows, It is correct to show only three of your degrees on a business card unless there is some ...
overnight guests7/1/2007
  Q: After staying overnight at a friend's house, what do you do with the bed linens...remove and fold? ...
  A: Never make up the bed unless you are staying more than one night. Either leave it unmade or strip it ...
verbal grapevine invite to distant wedding6/30/2007
  Q: One of my(50 yr old)husband's 50 1st cousins invited bro & his family(to take ...
  A: What a mess. As this is a wedding and not a barbecue, feeling uncomfortable about the way in which ...
Wedding Shower6/29/2007
  Q: I have an etiquette problem. I am a pastor's wife, and it is tradition that the church give a ...
  A: The brides are right to feel uncomfortable. When a woman is invited to a bridal shower (no matter ...
Use of PhD6/29/2007
  Q: Gamble, I have recently been appointed to the Board of a Foundation and although the Foundation's ...
  A: You are exactly right and didn't need me at all! If you are uncomfortable with the foundation ...
General Conversation with a Friend6/29/2007
  Q: I have a friend who I speak to on a dialy basis and she ALWAYS repeats entire stories NUMEROUS times ...
  A: Why again is this woman your friend? If you cannot tell her she's repeating a story without her ...
morning greetings in the workplace6/28/2007
  Q: My coworkers (in New York City) are insistent that a person entering the office in the morning must ...
  A: Alexander the Great wept when there were no more worlds to conquer. I weep for a world where this ...
Boss's Engagement Party6/27/2007
  Q: I have been invited to my bosses engagement party. I feel obligated to bring a gift, but with a ...
  A: Oooh when business and social etiquette collide! As the employee,you are never supposed to give a ...
dinner invitation etiquette6/26/2007
  Q: My husband and i are planning a mass to celebrate our tenth wedding anniversary and we will be going ...
  A: Please forgive the tardy reply,I thought I had answered this but it must not have gone through. ...
Anniversary invitation6/26/2007
  Q: We received an invitation to a "Surprise" 25th Wedding Anniversary, hosted by the couples only ...
  A: Now,about that anniversary party. The hosts don't want gifts,but know (correctly) that the guests ...
son sleep at wedding6/25/2007
  Q: i am going across state to a wedding and the wedding reception will be at a house and i am going to ...
  A: I am curious about something and I hope you'll let me know what happened so that I may inform ...
birthday/graduation invitation6/25/2007
  Q: My daughter just graduated High School and in 2 weeks will turn 18. In 3 weeks I want to throw a ...
  A: Yes,of course you may hold a dual celebration. Just say so in the note you send to the guests. In ...
newspaper birth announcement6/23/2007
  Q: I want to have our son's birth announced in the local newspaper, and the information I have put ...
  A: It is appropriate to include the step-grandparents if you wish to do so. Basically the idea is to ...
High School Monetary Awards6/22/2007
  Q: Is it proper to send a "Thank you" to organization's that give high school monetary awards?
  A: Yes,by all means,when an award of any significance is given,write a note thanking the group. Every ...
graduation invitation vs annoucement6/22/2007
  Q: My son graduated from college back in May. My husband and I had a party for him. I sent invitation ...
  A: An announcement is merely information for those who may wish to learn it. No action is required of ...
quinceanera gift6/21/2007
  Q: I have received an invitation to a quinceanera celebration for a young lady I do not know. The ...
  A: How odd to get an invitation to a party where you don't know the 'birthday girl'. Perhaps after the ...
4th wedding6/21/2007
  Q: My cousin is getting married for the 4th time. The guy she is marrying has never been married ...
  A: Ah! The triumph of hope over experience. You have to admire her persistence. You don't have ...
shower & wedding invitations6/21/2007
  Q: My boyfriend and I have been dating seriously for 9 months now and being that my family does not ...
  A: You are correct,the best course of action is to say nothing. The designation "and guest" is used ...
College Graduation6/20/2007
  Q: Amanda, I am graduating from college July 28th. Keep in mind I am 32 yr old working adult. However, ...
  A: What exceptional people you work for...very generous! Yes,by all means,invite them. Whether it was a ...
the bruch on sunday following the bar mitvah6/20/2007
  Q: when is it apprpriate to send the out of town people i'd like to invite to the brunch on sunday an ...
  A: See? You didn't need me at all. You have it exactly right. Once you hear from the out of town guest ...
invitation etiquette6/19/2007
  Q: Gamble: I am responsible for inviting over 100 guests to a party in honor of my Grandmother's 90th ...
  A: S.G., While it is considered to be improper to mention gifts one way or another on invitations,in ...
friend take son to bed?6/18/2007
  Q: I am going camping with my family and friends and we will go to a lake near the campground and will ...
  A: You don't say how old your son is and how much trouble she will have to go to to bet him settled for ...
Bridal Shower6/18/2007
  Q: My daughter will be married in Aug in San Diego. She was raised in Central CA, some 6 hours away ...
  A: The wording of your original question lead me down a wrong path,it read to me as if you all had ...
50th Anniversary Memories Box6/17/2007
  Q: My parent's 50th wedding anniversary is this summer. They have chosen for our immediate family to ...
  A: I think that is the best and nicest thing that you could give your parents. It is not ...
Taking someone to a show as a gift6/14/2007
  Q: I've been invited to my good friend's 30th birthday party. Recently, although I have a a good job, ...
  A: Write her a note in the birthday card that you give. "Dear Sue, Your friendship has always meant ...
addressing a sympathy card6/13/2007
  Q: A friend recently lost her mother. Should the card be addressed: Mrs. Robert Baker and family or ...
  A: Please address the card to Mr and Mrs Robert Baker and if you know the names of the children,list ...
my daughters baby showe6/12/2007
  Q: My daughter and son inlaw will be having their first baby in 3 months. My daughters two best friends ...
  A: While I can certainly understand why you are upset by this situation,you are absolutely doing the ...
Combining a July 4th Party with a childs birthday party6/11/2007
  Q: My daughters birthday falls on July 2nd. Every year we have a 4th of July Party. Instead of two ...
  A: Yes,you may certainly combine your parties. A note in with the 'main' invitation is an effective way ...
Etiquette for birthday parties6/10/2007
  Q: Our daughter went to her friend's (6 yrs.) birthday party at Chuck E Cheese. The birthday girl's ...
  A: The party was for the children. The adults were just there to chaperone and keep things from ...
"My Kids Only" Birthday Party for Mom?6/9/2007
  Q: I am planning a 40th birthday party for my wife. I want to make this an adults-only event with ...
  A: As long as you stow the kids in another part of the house with some movies,a pizza and parental ...
wedding6/9/2007
  Q: what do you send as a wedding gift 300 miles away? How do you send money? Is that inappropriate? ...
  A: You are not required to send a gift at all if you do not wish to do so. A gift of money is not ...
Multiple graduates6/8/2007
  Q: All three of my children are graduating this year (college, high school, middle school) and we are ...
  A: Anyone celebrating a life event such as a birthday, wedding,graduation shouldn't expect any presents ...
Decline a Lunch Invitation6/7/2007
  Q: My sister recently switched jobs and sent her new business cards to her clients at her old job ...
  A: She should accept the lunch appointment. Better to know what is what with this guy before wasting ...
guest attire at traditional Jewish wedding6/7/2007
  Q: We are invited to a traditional Jewish wedding at Temple at 5:30 in the evening. I am not Jewish, ...
  A: "Modest attire" means covered arms and chest,no ultra short skirt lengths,either. Very conservative. ...
Thank you card6/7/2007
  Q: I belong to a Mom's club in my area. We have collected donations to present the President with a ...
  A: If you enjoy the club and want the fun to continue, please sign the card from the group as one. ...
Present for graduating senior.6/6/2007
  Q: I have 2 friends with children graduating from High school. I would like to give the kids money so ...
  A: As all wealth is relative,there is no set amount I can give. 20 dollars would be too much for some ...
caregiving and etiquette6/6/2007
  Q: What is the etiquette for thanking someone that was a caregiver to you in their home? For instance, ...
  A: If you are the one doing the caring,expect nothing. We do these things for the people we love ...
How long should you mind a stranger's belongings?6/6/2007
  Q: I was at a library and a stranger implied that she wanted me to watch her stuff (book bag and ...
  A: Once you accept responsibility for 'her stuff' you are sort of on the hook to stand guard until she ...
uninvited guest6/6/2007
  Q: My brother has a lady friend (they are on and off)...they also have one child together. I do not ...
  A: I have read both of your questions regarding your brother's girlfriend. I understand that you ...
High School Graduation Attire6/5/2007
  Q: What is the proper attire for a mid-afternoon high school graduation for parents?
  A: I think that graduations are supposed to be dignified ceremonies honoring the hard work of the ...
asking for payments for copies, and information.6/5/2007
  Q: I am researching my family tree. I have a considerable amount of photographs, documents, and other ...
  A: As an amateur genealogist myself,I know too well how much you can spend in fees. 2 dollars here,5 ...
30th Wedding Anniversary6/4/2007
  Q: My husband and other siblings are hosting a 30th wedding anniversary party for my in laws. We are ...
  A: If you are hand writing the invitations,you have a simple task ahead of you. "Dear Tom and Ann, ...
etiquttee at a family wedding6/4/2007
  Q: My family just got back from my sisters daughters wedding . 18 all together. We booked rooms and ...
  A: By calling a junior member of the family,your sister knew she was going to get to vent her spleen ...
attending multiple graduation open houses6/3/2007
  Q: our son is graduating friday for high school and my husband and i wiil be attending multiple open ...
  A: You are not required or obligated to give the graduates anything save for your good wishes for their ...
too generous graduation gift6/2/2007
  Q: My mother's partner sent me a check as a gift for my high school graduation that is too generous and ...
  A: McCoy, If your instinct is to return the check,then by all means please do so. Dear Mr. and ...
Wedding Gifts6/1/2007
  Q: My son will be getting married in Aug. He is in the Marines boot camp now. They are not sure where ...
  A: As good as your reasoning is,there is no polite way to ask for gifts of any kind when inviting ...
Using a gift card to buy a gift6/1/2007
  Q: I am to attend one of my close friend's wedding. I would like to buy a particular home decor piece ...
  A: You are absolutely in the clear to use the gift card. It's not technically re-gifting. If you passed ...
Graduation gift giving6/1/2007
  Q: We are invited to several graduation parties mostly of my 17 year old daughter's friends who are ...
  A: You do not have to give a gift if you do not want to or it would place too great a strain on the ...
Addressing Sweet 16 Invites6/1/2007
  Q: My daughter is having a sweet 16 party do I put her name, my name or both of our names for the ...
  A: As you are the hostess who is giving the party your name is given as the return addressee. The ...
Ambassador5/31/2007
  Q: I have a thank you letter to send to a retired embassador. How do I address it?
  A: Ambassador to the United Nations or to a country? An ambassador from the United States or from a ...
boyfriend's brother's med school graduation5/31/2007
  Q: I am attending my boyfriend's brother's graduation from medical school. The brother and the ...
  A: You are right to feel uneasy over having your name added to the girlfriend's gift. I'm sure she ...
gifts for nieces/nephews5/30/2007
  Q: Between my husband and myself we have 10 nieces & nephews which we have been buying birthday & ...
  A: Put an end to this madness and stop buying gifts! If you are unhappy and they are unhappy with ...
Surprise party5/30/2007
  Q: My sister and I want to have a surprise 70th birthday party for our mother at a local restaurant--we ...
  A: A hostess never throws a party that she cannot afford. Have you considered inviting your guests to ...
Proper address5/25/2007
  Q: I recently married and when I went to order return address labels I was at a loss as to which is ...
  A: If you are using your husband's name socially (as in you wish to be known as Mrs. Michael Smith ) ...
birth announcements5/25/2007
  Q: My little girl just turned 2 months old is it to late to send birth announcements to family and ...
  A: HECK NO. New parents can get away with sending out announcements quite late as they have been ...
Family Holidays5/25/2007
  Q: Amanda, My husband and I have been married for over a year now. Over the past year, we have spent ...
  A: When you married,you each left your families behind (figuratively) to begin a new family with new ...
Returning a gift to the giver?5/24/2007
  Q: I have only recently developed a relationship with my grandmother, as she and my father were ...
  A: This is really up to you. There is nothing improper about keeping the gift your grandmother so ...
writing a card to a co-worker's wife who is very ill5/24/2007
  Q: I've been working with a teacher for 19 years and I just found out his wife (with whom I've shared ...
  A: No one will know better than you what to write. This man is your friend. You are hurting keenly for ...
baby shower invite - not close5/24/2007
  Q: I have been invited to a baby shower for a neighbor that I am not close with - all of my neighbors ...
  A: Skip it. For two reasons: 1) Showers are meant to give a woman a few things with which to start ...
Baby Shower invitation etiquette5/23/2007
  Q: How do you address the proper attire for a more formal (not black tie or anything - just dressy ...
  A: You included the answer in your own question! See? You don't need me at all. The words "Dressy ...
10th Wedding Anniversary5/23/2007
  Q: My husband and I are celebrating our 10TH wedding anniversary in July.We are having an affair and ...
  A: You may add a line saying " John and I want nothing more than to have our loved ones with us." ...
The Only Non-Mommy at the Elmo Cake5/23/2007
  Q: Carla* and I have been very close friends for most of our lives. Seven years ago, she became a mom ...
  A: Let's see..she only calls when she wants a babysitter or the kids' birthdays roll around. At these ...
Graduation gift for daughter5/22/2007
  Q: My daughter has graduated Magna cum latte from a 4 year college. She has always made us very proud ...
  A: Magna cum laude! Congratulations,that's no small achievement and you have every right to be proud. ...
what to write in baptism card5/22/2007
  Q: I have a store bought baptism card that I would like to add a personalized note inside. Please ...
  A: Write whatever is on your mind about these particular people becoming parents. Change it to suit ...
yelling, calling down the stairs5/22/2007
  Q: at dinner earlier I pointed out to our guest. who were all from different countries that in North ...
  A: Michelle, It's your marriage. If annoying your husband to make a point is your idea of a good ...
hs graduation5/22/2007
  Q: I received a high school graduation invitation from my daughter who lives with her father, (our ...
  A: I think this is a question for our psychology experts. Her manners were..lacking..as you say,but I ...
Maturity5/22/2007
  Q: I am Freshman representitive and student at my highschool and I was recently Shocked by a rude ...
  A: The best way to shame them for their hurtful editorial is by taking the high road. Gently concede ...
bridal showers5/21/2007
  Q: If you are invited to more than one shower for someone who is getting married, are you expected to ...
  A: No,you do not have to give a gift for any event. It's purely a matter of choice. No one is ever ...
Graduation response time5/21/2007
  Q: Can you tell me how long you have to send a graduation card and gift to a college graduate. Had a ...
  A: Wow,that relative has a bit of nerve! You owe the college graduate nothing,by the way,but if you do ...
Who Gets a High School Commencement Invitation?5/21/2007
  Q: I have a child graduating from high school this year. A very good friend of mine also has a child ...
  A: My apologies. I am getting nothing save graduation etiquette questions this month. As you can ...
High School graduation etiquette5/20/2007
  Q: My daughter is a junior in high school. Many of her graduating senior friends have invited her to ...
  A: She is not required to give them gifts. As she has so many friends and,I am going to assume limited ...
construction of graduation announcement mailing5/20/2007
  Q: Please advise the proper configuration to mail out graduation announcements. We are a military ...
  A: If you are having these made up at a printer's shop, please go ahead and have them set up anyway you ...
High School Graduation5/19/2007
  Q: My daughter is graduating High School from a home schooling program,is it proper send out ...
  A: I believe you meant to say 'announcements' in your question. Please do go ahead and say everything ...
college graduation gift5/18/2007
  Q: What is the proper gift card amount to give a college graduate. The graduate is a daughter of a ...
  A: There is no proper amount except the one you want to give and can comfortably afford. For a single ...
Is it acceptable for twins to send a joint invitation to their high school graduation?5/18/2007
  Q: My identical twins are graduating from high school. The school has provided a very limited number ...
  A: Please do send one invitation and include both cards. Technically,you are never to mention gifts one ...
Reponding to Invitations5/18/2007
  Q: My daughter is graduating from high school and we have been invited to several of her friends' ...
  A: Decline and tell them you cannot attend because you have out of town guests. They may say "It's ...
newspaper listing for 60th anniversary5/17/2007
  Q: when listing children of the couple there is one son who is deceased and was married but the widow ...
  A: As a general rule,this is up to the person issuing the invitation. Was she particularly close to ...
Manners5/17/2007
  Q: On Mother's Day I went to the second service at church with my husband. My 6 year old daughter was ...
  A: This is about intention. Your husband was not trying to abandon you or hurt your feelings. You both ...
college graduation5/16/2007
  Q: .. My son is graduating from college, and I have only ONE announcement left. I have to choose ...
  A: Please send it to the boy's godparents. No matter what the issue is,they still might like to know ...
Graduation gift5/16/2007
  Q: A fellow employee has invited some of us at the office to her college graduation pizza party at a ...
  A: No one is ever required to 'pay for the privilege' of being a guest. No gift is required. If you ...
Son Graduating From College5/16/2007
  Q: My son is graduating college this Sunday with honors. He paid for college with scholarships. We ...
  A: When he was turning 16 and expecting a new Porsche Carrera for his birthday,did he get it? You ...
Family5/15/2007
  Q: How do you mend a relationship after nearly 30 years? My mother and I are so distant. I've written ...
  A: Forgiveness is a gift we give ourselves. I am sure that you have heard this before,but it is indeed ...
Judge and Reverend Etiquette5/14/2007
  Q: Can you please tell me the proper etiquette when mailing to a Judge. Does the letter address Judge ...
  A: You are correct on both counts. The envelope reads: The Honorable John Doe Superior Court De Witt ...
Graduation5/14/2007
  Q: My son is in grad school and will be getting his PhD this fall. I am proud of his accomplishments ...
  A: An announcement is what is called for here. It is merely news you wish to share with people who ...
college grad gift?5/14/2007
  Q: Is it appropriate/expected to give something to a child of a nephew for college graduation?
  A: Drexler, Appropriate,yes. Expected,no. No one better than a grad student to understand the value ...
graduation gifts5/14/2007
  Q: My wife and I have recieved graduation announcements from several old friends children. Some of ...
  A: Good news! You are never,ever,ever required to give anyone a present for any reason or at any time. ...
high school graduation invitations5/12/2007
  Q: When a graduation gift is received before the invitations are sent, should the invitation still be ...
  A: Yes,please send the invitation. After all,you want them to come to the ceremony itself,do you not? ...
High school grad monetary gift5/12/2007
  Q: I live in the N.O. area. What is the average monetary amount given for a student graduating from ...
  A: Andy, The appropriate amount to give in any part of the world is what the giver feels compelled to ...
Graduation Invitations5/11/2007
  Q: Are there supposed to be two envelopes for high school graduation invitations? Thanks, Vanessa
  A: "Supposed"? No. But it isn't wrong either. You use the outer envelope for the address,return address ...
house warming/new home owners5/10/2007
  Q: My husband and I are about to sign on our first home! It is a very elegant home in a posh ...
  A: No matter how loving and generous your families are, there is never a polite way to ask for gifts. ...
high school graduation5/9/2007
  Q: My son is graduating this year and I am not sure of who I should send an invitation to. Is it just ...
  A: This is simpler than you think. High school graduations are tedious and miserable affairs for ...
death announcement responsibility5/9/2007
  Q: is the surviving spouse the sole person responsible for announcing a death? There are family friends ...
  A: During such a sad and stressful time,the person who thinks to call distant relatives and friends is ...
Graduation gift question?5/9/2007
  Q: Amanda, I have been invited to an open house graduation party. There are four girls who are ...
  A: You are only required to go and enjoy the party. So, no gifts for the other three girls necessary. ...
Request for monetary gifts5/9/2007
  Q: It's my mother's 60th birthday party and she has been saving to complete construction on her own ...
  A: There is never a polite way to tell people they must pay for the privilege of being a guest. You ...
greetings5/8/2007
  Q: my husband is under the assumption that I should greet him first as he returns home from work. I ...
  A: Your question reminds me of the folk tale "Get up and bar the door". There are several versions from ...
High School graduation etiquette5/8/2007
  Q: It is getting close to graduation for me and my mother told me that I was not supposed to send an ...
  A: You must admit it's kind of pointless to send invitations to people who will already be in ...
Vow Renewal5/7/2007
  Q: My husband has asked me to renew our vows after 30 years of marriage. I am so excited as we were ...
  A: Howard, What a great husband! Now,there is no polite way to ask for gifts of any kind. ...
Graduation party5/7/2007
  Q: My daughter is graduating HS and leaving for college out of town where she will live full time. I ...
  A: Unfortunately,there is never a polite way to ask for gifts. You may,however,tell people what you ...
proper way to address a married couple5/7/2007
  Q: When sending out a greeting card to a married couple, I think you would address them as "Mr. and ...
  A: If you can bring yourself to leave off the honorific, two lines will do the trick: John Smith ...
My Wedding My Vow Renewal5/6/2007
  Q: I got married last year in quite a rush before I had medical treatment. I still had 60 guests to the ...
  A: The best advice I ever heard about weddings was this: 'What things are going to make you feel ...
Graduation Gift5/6/2007
  Q: My son's girlfriend sent us a invite to her college graduation this week. While we are unable to ...
  A: She may just want you there to celebrate this happy milestone in her life. At least I hope that is ...
Socializing tips5/5/2007
  Q: I'll be getting into university soon. I wish to make a lot of friends there but the thing is I am ...
  A: Be friendly,be relaxed and most of all,be yourself. People love a good listener and if you are not ...
Meaningful Graduation Gifts5/5/2007
  Q: I have several nieces and nephews that I will be buying high school graduation gifts for over the ...
  A: This is not an etiquette question,but I will give it a go anyway. I think you are certainly on the ...
25th Wedding Anniversary5/4/2007
  Q: Our 25th anniversary is just a month away. We are only planning a getaway for the two of us. We ...
  A: Congratulations! Of course you want to share your joy with friends and family. Have a great time on ...
college graduation announcements5/3/2007
  Q: Where I can obtain a sample of pleasant wording to use in a college graduation announcement? ...
  A: Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Doe,Jr. are pleased to announce that their ...
dating after death of spouse5/3/2007
  Q: How long should a woman wait after her husband dies of a long illness? The illness lasted 7 years. ...
  A: The old rule used to be that you waited a year. This should be ignored if you have found someone ...
Graduation Announcements & Invitations5/3/2007
  Q: My daughter is graduating from High School. We have Graduation Announcements to send out. We also ...
  A: Are these note cards a single card,no fold? If so, please go ahead and use them as inserts into the ...
english etiquette5/3/2007
  Q: Is it true, that according to english etiquette, whenever you greet anyone, at any hour of the day, ...
  A: No,in England (as well as America,Canada,Australia,etc.) you use the salutation that is appropriate ...
College Graduation Invitations vs. Announcements5/3/2007
  Q: I am graduating from college this spring. However, my university has pre-printed graduation ...
  A: "Must" is a pretty strong word there,Miss Soon To Be Graduated. I say strike a blow for independence ...
sympathy cards5/2/2007
  Q: My father recently passed away. I have received alot of sympathy cards from my co-workers. Should ...
  A: Please know how sorry I am for your loss. There is no need respond to sympathy notes or cards unless ...
No Acknowledgement for Gift5/2/2007
  Q: New neighbours moved next door to us, who we do not know, however , we do know his Mother. ( We ...
  A: Give the man's mother a call and tell her you dropped off a 'welcome to the neighborhood' gift and ...
College graduation5/2/2007
  Q: My son's university is allowing each graduate 8 guest tickets. I would like to include an insert in ...
  A: A announcement and an invitation are two different things. Do you have pre-printed invitations to ...
high school announcements5/2/2007
  Q: We would like to insert a card into the announcement indicating where our son will be going to ...
  A: Hays, As announcements are merely a way of conveying information,so feel free to include any of ...
Inviting people out for dinner on my birthday5/1/2007
  Q: My birthday is coming up and I sent an e-mail invitation to some friends asking them to join me for ...
  A: The rule is a host/ess never throws a party that they cannot afford. However,there is no shame in ...
how do I put graduation invitation/announcements together5/1/2007
  Q: I have an announcement, a name card, an invation to an after party and a picture. I have two ...
  A: Please fit everything into the 'inner' envelope. The outer envelope has the address and holds the ...
Baby Shower Invites4/30/2007
  Q: I was recently offended b/c my sister in law when she only invited only 2 people from my brothers ...
  A: I think your anger has clouded your ability to write. Who is pregnant? Who is giving the party? The ...
Wedding Invitation Wording4/27/2007
  Q: My son is getting married this year and we are now trying to formulate appropriate wording for the ...
  A: It is,by tradition,worded "Lt Colonel and Mrs. Thomas Jackson" and "The Rev. Dr. and Mrs. Daniel ...
tipping4/26/2007
  Q: I am going to a concert and it will costs $45.00 to valet park. Given the cost of this service, is ...
  A: FORTY FIVE DOLLARS TO VALET PARK!?! Madness. But,please remember that the kid parking your car is ...
Blowing one's nose in public4/26/2007
  Q: Is it proper to blow one's nose in public, whether it's a foghorn sound or not?
  A: "In public" is a prety broad term! Let me put it this way,people should blow their noses as ...
Sending Graduation Announcements4/25/2007
  Q: How many weeks prior to high school graduation should we mail our announcements?
  A: An announcement is not the same as an invitation and therefore may be sent out prior to of after the ...
wedding etiquette4/25/2007
  Q: How can someone accept a wedding invitation they have n't received! Our daughter is being married ...
  A: But,they already have been invited. By your husband. Should they have waited for the written ...
Graduation gift, yes/no4/25/2007
  Q: We were invited to a H.S. graduation party in Missouri. We obviously can't go. Are we suppose to ...
  A: No,you are never under any obligation to give (or send) a present for any celebration. No one has to ...
high school graduation parties4/24/2007
  Q: My spouse and I are having a disagreement regarding high school graduation parties. My sister is ...
  A: McCoy, Please tell your husband that anyone may throw a party for any reason and at any time. If ...
High school graduation announcements4/23/2007
  Q: How do parents of twins go about sending graduation announcements?
  A: When wording the announcements (which are not the same as invitations) simply include both names ...
gifts at child's party4/21/2007
  Q: In a situation where you have a very large party and limited time at a facility should the birthday ...
  A: Grant, If the guests and their parents took the time and spent the money getting a gift,the ...
Girlfriend Graduating4/19/2007
  Q: My girlfriend is receiving her Masters Degree and I want to throw her a party. Her single mother is ...
  A: Anyone may throw a party for any reason and at any time. So,by all means,celebrate your girl's ...
Graduation gifts4/18/2007
  Q: I have 2 grandchildren graduating this spring, 1 from high school, 1 from college. Should I give ...
  A: The only person you have to consult on this matter is yourself. There are no 'rules' regarding ...
Who should receive a college granduation invitation4/18/2007
  Q: As the mother of a daughter graduating college...who should I send invitations to? The graduation ...
  A: Please do not send invitations to people who have never met your daughter. As you know,a ...
expenses when traveling with a friend4/17/2007
  Q: I invited a friend to join me on a recent road trip to see a sporting event. Should expenses be: 1. ...
  A: As you are the host,you pay the travel expenses unless you said something about it up front. As in ...
dutch lunch4/16/2007
  Q: My daughter-in-law is graduating from college next month and would like friends/family to join her ...
  A: Call or write those people you wish to join you at the restaurant. Set out the 'terms' before asking ...
get well cards4/16/2007
  Q: I recently found that my childhood best friend has leukemia and is undergoing chemotherapy, and I ...
  A: What your friend needs is a nice long letter from you to entertain her and keep her mind off of her ...
Greeting Kiss - on Lips or Cheeks?4/15/2007
  Q: I live in Sydney, Australia. An Anglo culture, largely identical to the USA. When I give a ...
  A: Aside from your utter horror at the prospect of iced tea,all y'all aren't so different from your ...
College Grad ?4/12/2007
  Q: I was wondering.....I have a cousin whom I actually just met for the first time this year, that will ...
  A: You're welcome in advance! An announcement is just that, a way of passing on information to people ...
College Graduation4/11/2007
  Q: I'm a 27 year old non traditional student that has been slowly working on my bachelors since high ...
  A: Anyone may throw a party at any time for any reason. Listen,you have worked hard,you DO want to ...
Couple graduating4/9/2007
  Q: My husband and I are both graduating from college. Should I send each of our announcements in one ...
  A: Please forgive the tardy reply,for some reason several questions were in some sort of cyber limbo ...
inlaws or a widow4/8/2007
  Q: Should I still refer to my dead husband's family members as in laws? I have remarried, but I remain ...
  A: I thought you understood,that that IS the 'rule'. You may make or keep any relationship in this ...
Introductions4/6/2007
  Q: I have earned a MD and I am currently a resident physician. Is it pretentious for me to introduce ...
  A: As far as your patients are concerned,your first name IS 'Dr.'. How do you expect to inspire ...
wedding etiquette4/6/2007
  Q: Can we include a card in our invitation stating something to the effect that seating is limited at ...
  A: Are you providing on site child care for the youngest guests? If so,then,by all means say so on an ...
Bridal Shower4/5/2007
  Q: I am throwing my daughter's bridal shower. There are some women guest's that I'm definitely ...
  A: Under no circumstance is the Mother of the Bride to throw her daughter a shower. Nor should any ...
Mother-in-Law Rude?4/4/2007
  Q: My mother-in-law sends cards to my husband and I for just about every holiday (valentine's day, ...
  A: Wait. Your mother in law's name is John Doe? I'd much rather talk about that than the card issue. ...
Aunt's Wedding4/4/2007
  Q: My Aunt is getting married for the second time this summer. I was wondering what type of gift is ...
  A: It is not usually correct for a younger person to give and older person money as a gift. If you ...
writing sympathy cards for other family members4/4/2007
  Q: My daughter and son-in-law just experienced a devasting loss of 3 little newborns who lived only a ...
  A: In the face of such a devastating loss,no one could expect the parents to write notes. In fact,any ...
College graduation4/2/2007
  Q: We live in Florida and will be traveling to New Orleans in May for our son's college graduation. ...
  A: You may invite (or not) anyone you like to "meet you" at the restaurant. If you choose to include ...
Bridal Shower4/2/2007
  Q: I just had a bridal shower. I have three bridesmaids. My mother and my sister (who is not the maid ...
  A: Please take a deep breath. Now..did your Mother really "ruin your shower"? If she did,you need to ...
bridal shower4/2/2007
  Q: I have been invited to a bridal shower for one of my oldest friends. I am unable to attend and have ...
  A: You do not have to send a present for the shower that you cannot attend. If you have sent your ...
jewelry4/1/2007
  Q: I am interested in wearing more rings, but I am hesitant to wear anything on my left ring finger, ...
  A: Please wear the ring or rings on any finger that you wish. Yes,there is a traditional assumption ...
Graduate School Graduation Announcements4/1/2007
  Q: Gamble, I am very excited to be graduating from law school shortly and want to share the news with ...
  A: You aren't as challenged as you think you are. An announcement,by it's very nature,is simply a way ...
wording on invitations3/30/2007
  Q: I am sending out baptism invitations and on the invitation I want to invite everyone out to eat ...
  A: There is no polite way to word an invitation telling people that they must "pay for the privilege" ...
Polite way to turn down family's requests for loans3/29/2007
  Q: My husband comes from a large family. We are financially stable, although we live very modestly. ...
  A: Your husband must have a private talk with his father. It should go something like this: Dad,you ...
Graduation3/29/2007
  Q: I am interested in giving my daughter's boyfriend a monetary gift for his college graduation. They ...
  A: Don't give any more than you can afford. I know,this sounds obvious,but you'd be surprised at how ...
Neighbor Fence3/28/2007
  Q: Our neighbor(whom we've never met)to the back of our property rang our doorbell last night (3/27) ...
  A: Please do not give into these awful people! As you point out,they have given you no choice in the ...
Guest List3/28/2007
  Q: I am in the process of planning a 30th Birthday Bash. I have many friends that I would like to ...
  A: You either have to invite all of the men or none of them. If you want to makes this a 'girls' night ...
daughter's wedding3/28/2007
  Q: My daughter is running her own show for her wedding. She is handling everything. I was informed ...
  A: Please reread the first line of your question-- " My daughter is running her own show for her ...
Addressing envelopes3/28/2007
  Q: Is it wrong to address an envelope to an acquaintance/friend as... The Smiths 2345 Main St. ...
  A: Yvette, Since it is for a business I think being as professional as possible would be the way to ...
getting married on your birthday3/28/2007
  Q: I would like to know if it is improper to get married on your birthday. I am planning a wedding and ...
  A: As far as I know and am able to research,there is no social taboo or negative superstition about ...
birthday3/27/2007
  Q: I was wondering how to put in my sons invitations that he does not need any more toys, books, etc... ...
  A: There is no polite way to ask for gifts. To do so in any form implies that you really don't care if ...
Bridal Lunch Invitation3/27/2007
  Q: How do I tell the guests to this sit down lunch in a restaurant that they will need to pay for their ...
  A: A host/ess never throws a party that s/he cannot afford. They stop being guests the minute you ...
Coming out party for 15 year spanish girl3/27/2007
  Q: I need to know what the proper gift would be from my son who is part of her court. Thanks
  A: All of the traditional and symbolic gifts are given to the cumpleañera by her family or religious ...
bridal shower invites3/26/2007
  Q: I am hosting a bridal shower for a friend of mine who already lives with the groom and they have a ...
  A: I'm sorry, but there is never a polite way to word such a request. If you are asked directly "what ...
addressing wedding invitations3/26/2007
  Q: My daughter, a doctor is marrying a doctor. Many of the guests are doctors or have spouses who are ...
  A: Please use two lines: Dr. Elizabeth Kilmer Mr. Eric Thompkins 1223 Maple Lane Yourtown,ST. ...
guests bringing food3/25/2007
  Q: I'd like to have a surprise 50th for a friend. There is no way i could afford to pay for food etc. ...
  A: As long as you tell people up front that this is a surprise pot luck in honor of your friend,there ...
madrina de quinceneara3/25/2007
  Q: I was ask to be a madrina for my nieces quincenera. I'm lost on what to wear should it be formal, ...
  A: Lourdes, Please,I beg of you! Ask the cumpleañera! Sorry,I have nieces of my own and I think that ...
Birthday Thank You Cards3/24/2007
  Q: I had 2 surprise parties thrown for me recently to celebrate my 40th birthday on March 11, what is ...
  A: Jay-who-is-writing-on-the-25th-of-March, I write mine the minute I get home,but that's just me. ...
Parties and cligues in a classrom3/24/2007
  Q: My son is almost twelve and is in a mixed grade classroom of 16 of mostly 5th and 6th graders (a ...
  A: My heart goes out to your little guy and to you as well,no one likes to see their child suffer. ...
Baby shower etiquette3/23/2007
  Q: I moved away from my home state right before becoming pregnant. My sister wants to throw a baby ...
  A: Do not invite people who have no reasonable expectation of coming to the shower. If these are ...
Bridal Shower invitation wording3/18/2007
  Q: I'm hosting a bridal shower at a local upscale restaurant. A friend pointed out that guests may ...
  A: Just give them the who,what,when and where of the party as you normally would. To make mention that ...
fence3/15/2007
  Q: When we moved into our house we put up a vinyl fence on 2 sides of our property, the other side ...
  A: "Good fences make good neighbors" as Robert Frost said. If you decide to go in on the cost please ...
Bridal Shower Etiquette3/14/2007
  Q: How would you recommend handling a situation in where one (myself) was asked to stand up for an ...
  A: Couldn't be easier. You simply apologize to the bride and say that you were so please and flattered ...
Taking parent for granted/bad manners3/14/2007
  Q: My Son who recently has been in a depression for 2 years and whose wife left him during this time, ...
  A: If he were not depressed,in debt and going through hell with his marriage,I might try to give you ...
gift for new friends hosting a cocktail party3/13/2007
  Q: My husband and I are invited to an informal cocktail party at a new friends home we just met at a ...
  A: You don't need to take anything unless you really wish to do so. For an informal cocktail,it's just ...
Dining3/11/2007
  Q: When eating fish with long fine bones that cannot be chewed, what is the proper way to deal with the ...
  A: You have it exactly right,your instincts are spot on. You do the best that you can to remove or work ...
Wedding Shower Etiquette3/10/2007
  Q: I am the mother of the bride and am invited to both showers given for my daughter. I am going to ...
  A: Good Heavens NO. You are the mother of the honoree. I would imagine you're already doing quite a bit ...
kids birthday party when you don't know the kid3/10/2007
  Q: I am going to my boyfriends great nephews 11th birthday party. My boyfriend is giving a very ...
  A: Your boyfriend is right on this one. As you are a guest at a child's birthday a hostess gift would ...
Nails and I-Pods...3/10/2007
  Q: Would it be rude of me to listen to my i-pod while getting my nails done?
  A: No! You are the customer and if you wish to listen to your i-Pod,by all means,go ahead and do so. ...
blue jeans & funerals3/8/2007
  Q: IS IT PROPER TO WEAR BLUE JEANS TO A FUNERAL?
  A: Is it a biker funeral? To be held at a saloon outside of Sturgis? If yes,then by all means,wear ...
when to stand for anthems3/7/2007
  Q: I would like to know if you should stand for a anthem if you are not in the exact location it is ...
  A: No matter where you are,no matter what county's anthem is being played,you need to stand. It was ...
Dinner Invitation at Home3/1/2007
  Q: My wife and I are making a long trip to NY for business reasons. We have been invited for dinner at ...
  A: As you are travelling a great distance,it would not be practical for you to bring anything. The day ...
My kids wear their coats indoors3/1/2007
  Q: Amanda, Here is my dilemma. I always ask my kids to take their jacket/coat off when they enter a ...
  A: J. It is a little "How soon can we blow this hot dog stand?" for them to keep their coats on ...
death etiquette2/28/2007
  Q: What is the proper way to handle a next door neighbors death. We look after each others animals but ...
  A: What will allow you to be able to look them in the eye next time you see them? I would think flowers ...
50th birthday party2/28/2007
  Q: I'm giving myself a 50th celebration at an elegant dinner club with a cover charge of $25.00 each. I ...
  A: A host/ess never throws a party that s/he cannot afford. No,you may not ask your guests to pay the ...
greeting manners2/25/2007
  Q: is there a specific courtesy when someone enters a room and someone is already in the room does it ...
  A: I get this question all the time and frankly,it puzzles me. It's as if there is now some strange ...
Girlfriend isn't introducing me when2/23/2007
  Q: Here's a stumper for me and I'd very much appreciate your thoughts. When out with my girlfriend at ...
  A: A girl who is not smart enough to know how to get around a forgotten name is not going to be smart ...
wedding shower2/21/2007
  Q: I was asked to help plan a shower. I got one email telling me when the day would be,I sent a ...
  A: You should stick to your guns and just keep saying or writing "Thank you,but I have made other plans ...
Etiquette of sending a belated sympathy card2/19/2007
  Q: I recently learned by chance, of the death of my ex fiance's father. He died in Decemeber of 2005. ...
  A: It is never too late to send a letter of condolence. The circumstances of your break-up with the ...
Artists Reception2/15/2007
  Q: We have been invited to an Artists Reception. The artist is a friend of ours but not a close friend. ...
  A: You are not required to bring anything nor buy anything if you do not wish to. There are all sorts ...
how to indicate gathering is dutch treat2/12/2007
  Q: i am co-ordinating a casual reunion dinner for my husband's college classmates and would like to ...
  A: In your note,phone call or e-mail,please say something to this end: As so many of us from the class ...
21st Dinner RSVP2/11/2007
  Q: My parents have recently sent out 'at home' invites for a sit down dinner to celebrate my 21st ...
  A: Congratulations! You won't understand this quote by Robert Southey for several years,but I hope you ...
Sympahty Thank Yous2/7/2007
  Q: The founder of our small company passed away Tuesday morning and the company is receiving sympathy ...
  A: There is no reply needed (or expected) for cards and letters of sympathy. If other companies or ...
party invitations2/6/2007
  Q: We are planning a surprise birthday dinner for my mother whom will be 80 this month. We are on a ...
  A: A host/ess may never throw a party s/he cannot afford. Otherwise,it's as if you're holding a ...
Death2/5/2007
  Q: My cousin's husband died in late January. My cousin's birthday is coming up on February 9th. Is it ...
  A: Please do send her a card. It won't be the happiest birthday she has ever spent,but it would be made ...
Baby Shower1/30/2007
  Q: My daughter has a baby who will be 2 in July. She is now expecting twins in June. I gave her a ...
  A: Baby showers are traditionally given only by friends of the mother to be and only for the first ...
How To Introduce Him?1/30/2007
  Q: I actually have two questions I am hoping that you can help me with. First one...my significant ...
  A: As to your first question,you may introduce each other in any manner you like. It's no one else's ...
"Wording" on a Bridal Shower Invitation1/27/2007
  Q: Amanda My mother and I are getting ready to send out invitations for my sister's bridal shower. She ...
  A: The AMC Gremlin and Mullet haircuts have been done before too. There is never a proper way to ...
Bar Mitzvah & Gift1/27/2007
  Q: We were invited to a bar mitzvah. We are not particularily close to the family. The boys parents ...
  A: All you must do is decline the invitation and send the young man a short note of congratulations. ...
wedding1/25/2007
  Q: who should pay for what?
  A: The only thing the bridegroom's family must contribute is the bridegroom himself. The rest of the ...
condolences1/25/2007
  Q: I seem to remember years ago ( maybe 30 years ago) that my now retired military officer father (he's ...
  A: At your earliest opportunity,please pick up the phone and thank your father for raising you ...
death etiquette1/18/2007
  Q: Recently a close friend of mine lost an infant soon after birth due to a condition diagnosed when ...
  A: Much of what you have said to me would be a balm to their broken hearts. Write them a letter,a ...
High School Graduation Announcements1/18/2007
  Q: What is appropriate in sending high school graduation announcements? Do we send one to most of our ...
  A: An announcement is just a way to convey information to people who would be interested in knowing it. ...
Graduation Party1/17/2007
  Q: My daughter is graduating from high school in June. We have an annual summer party the last Saturday ...
  A: There is no polite way to mention gifts,even if it's to say "don't give them". The most correct way ...
addressing envelope1/17/2007
  Q: I am trying to figure out how to address a c/o envelope. I'm sending a letter to a household that ...
  A: Your instincts are correct. This is about not confusing the poor mailman. So it is best to address ...
Baby Shower1/16/2007
  Q: I just needed to clarify something for the record... First, as the grandmother of the unborn child, ...
  A: Anyone who wishes to host a baby shower (or any other party for that matter) may do so. SO if you ...
Thank u for material sent per email1/15/2007
  Q: I have recently sent recipes and photographs to people whom I saw on holiday and also included a ...
  A: You should never send anything to anyone in hopes of getting a thank you. You send things because ...
Hotel Room Bill Splitting1/13/2007
  Q: How do you split the bill if you are a single person sharing a hotel room with a couple. Should the ...
  A: Fifty fifty is the way to go here if you are the 'single'. If you are part of the couple and feel ...
Birthday Invitation1/10/2007
  Q: First of all, is it acceptable to use "wishing well" for a birthday celebration? Secondly, should ...
  A: If by a 'wishing well' you mean a place where people may put gifts of money,no. There is no polite ...
Debutante etiquette1/9/2007
  Q: Is it appropriate to send a congratulatory note to a debutante after her ball?
  A: Anyone may write a note for any reason at any time. A congratulatory note detailing a someone's ...
thank you card etiquette1/9/2007
  Q: When receiving only a sympathy card after my brother passed away, do I send a thank you card back? 2 ...
  A: It is not customary to send a thank you for a card of sympathy. If you see either of the VPs it ...
College graduation gift giving1/8/2007
  Q: The daughter of my first cousin recently graduated from college. I received a formal announcement ...
  A: No. An announcement is merely a way of getting information to people who would be interested in ...
Family Holiday Parties1/8/2007
  Q: My grandaughter called to ask if she was invited to our Christmas Eve party. I told her sure and ...
  A: No,you are not just a 'grouchy old grandmaw'. If this had been some other inconsiderate guest,then ...
birthday party invitation1/8/2007
  Q: we are throwing my husband a 40th birthday party, we are requesting attire be dress to impress/after ...
  A: There is no polite way to ask for any kind of a gift, not for a wedding,not for a birthday... ...
Family Christmas1/7/2007
  Q: My brother in law and husband had a huge fight this last summer. My husband has called his brother ...
  A: This really isn't an etiquette question,but yes,your mother in law would have been better served to ...
Wedding gifts1/6/2007
  Q: Gamble: My daughter is getting marry in June. However, she has been living with her boyfriend for ...
  A: Short answer:You can't. There simply is no 'decent and polite' way to ask for any present,cash ...
Baby Showers1/6/2007
  Q: Is it ok to throw a baby shower for the soon to be second child?
  A: Jennifer, Usually a woman only gets one baby shower in her life. After that first child it is ...
Sympathy cards1/6/2007
  Q: We had a friend at church whose mother passed away. We want to send a sympathy card. My question is ...
  A: Colston, Please address the card to both the daughter and her husband. No matter what his ...
Gift for a third child1/6/2007
  Q: I am invited to a shower for someone having their third child. What kind of gift is appropriate? ...
  A: Usually an expectant mother only gets one baby shower in her life! She must have some very good ...
Splitting Holidays1/5/2007
  Q: I recently married and my husband and I just completed our first round of full "split" holidays. It ...
  A: When you and your dear husband married,you each left your families to form a brand new one. While it ...
gift envelopes1/4/2007
  Q: I would like to know how to address the envelope to the couple before the wedding.
  A: You send the gifts to the bride before the wedding. So it's: Miss Jane Doe 123 Any Street ...
Should guests limit the amount they eat?1/3/2007
  Q: I had a New Year's Day open house for a few friends and neighbors. I provided all of the cooked ...
  A: A considerate guest would take into account that others may not have arrived/eaten and limit ...
Asking NOT to get a gift12/30/2006
  Q: One of my sisters-in-law has asked not to receive any more gifts for holidays from my husband and ...
  A: Since she is so concerned with people who do not have a "proper" home,I would make a donation to ...
Deutante Gift12/29/2006
  Q: My daughter is a debutante this year and the ball is TOMORROW NIGHT. We have spent a ton of money ...
  A: As you know,no one is ever required to give a gift to anyone else for any reason. If you want to ...
one of 20 RSVP - do we still have the gathering12/29/2006
  Q: We recently sent out invitations to our new neighbors (we moved into the area) for a "get to know ...
  A: I am certain that you will have plenty of neighbors coming to your door tomorrow night. No one ...
manners12/26/2006
  Q: I am having dinner with somebody , and the guy blows his nose and toss the tissue on the table. vey ...
  A: First let me say: EW. That is gross. You cannot point out someone else's bad manners without being ...
Panty Hose12/26/2006
  Q: My older daughter is getting married New Years Eve and having a very formal wedding. My 10 year old ...
  A: Ten isn't old enough for pantyhose anyway. Those are to be saved for your first real pair of heels. ...
"black tie optional"12/24/2006
  Q: We are inviting 150 guests to a dance in June from 4-7 usbfoPM. Is it OK to put on the invitation ...
  A: By using the word 'optional' you are going to wind up with 2 guys in a tuxedo and one lady in a ...
Intoducing new person to a known group12/23/2006
  Q: At a pending social event, I will be introducing a new friend to current friends. How is proper ...
  A: In both formal and informal social settings,introduce women to the men,older people to the younger ...
BYOB ettiquette12/23/2006
  Q: I am hosting my first family Christmas dinner. I asked 3 family members to bring whatever they ...
  A: Barbara, No,it's your family and you have no need to stand on ceremony with them. It's not that ...
cash for christmas12/22/2006
  Q: we want to give my parents a cash gift for christmas for them to spend on a fun trip because things ...
  A: Perhaps you should give them a box of travel brochures instead and explain that you want them to ...
Proper Debutante Gift Giving Etiquette12/21/2006
  Q: My son (3rd year college) and both my wife and I are invited to a good friends college age ...
  A: First,thank you for your kind wishes this Christmas season and I return them most sincerely. ...
Addressing Christmas Cards12/21/2006
  Q: I know what the rule is when addressing envelopes to a couple with different last names, but how ...
  A: Such a conundrum! With a couple who resolutely refuse taking each other's last names in any ...
Etiquette when meeting Arch Bishop of Canterbury12/21/2006
  Q: My husband and I will be in UK in a few weeks. He is a minister and we will be meeting with the ...
  A: You don't say what time of day or evening these meetings will take place and what the circumstances ...
Engagement Party12/20/2006
  Q: I am hosting a small formal engagement party at a restaurant for my daughter. The invitations were ...
  A: You were absolutely correct to issue the separate invitation for the junior bridesmaid. You are ...
blended family gift giving etiquette12/20/2006
  Q: Our marriage is blended- we have been together for three years. I have two daughters and my husband ...
  A: I think all those girls are lucky to have you. It's not easy merging two families and even more ...
Company Party Invitations12/19/2006
  Q: We are having a company party were employees are allowed one guest. Say my married boss is invited ...
  A: If she is known socially as Mrs. Adam Jones,then that (Mr. and Mrs. Adam Jones)way of addressing the ...
Introducing your boyfriend or girlfriend12/18/2006
  Q: When in a business setting is it proper to introduce your boyfriend or girlfriend as just your ...
  A: The best way is to merely say "This is Tom Smith" and give NO qualifiers. Very mysterious! I think ...
envelope address12/18/2006
  Q: How should an address be written for a married couple with the same last name when the wife is a ...
  A: Please use two lines: Dr Jane Doe Mr Tom Roe 123 ...
telephone manners,etc12/18/2006
  Q: 1)My mother lives with me and my husband. My sister is upset that mom lives with me because she is ...
  A: This goes so far beyond etiquette that I feel I must send you to an AllExperts psychologist. ...
Christmas card signatures12/17/2006
  Q: My household is not of the norm...we are 2 daughters with elderly mother living in the same house & ...
  A: If you wish to sign as you always have,there is nothing wrong with it. You are acting in your dear ...
taking abottle of wine12/17/2006
  Q: When do you take a bottle of wine to one's house? A couple invited us to have drinks and appetizer ...
  A: Accuso, Your husband was correct on this one,a quick visit to someone's home for drinks before ...
Debutante Ball12/17/2006
  Q: I have been invited to one of my close friends debutante ball in Pittsburgh, PA. I was unclear as to ...
  A: No,you do not have to give her anything unless you want to do so. The only appropriate gift for a ...
should i attend?12/16/2006
  Q: My fiance's friend from work is throwing a suprise party for her boyfriend at a restaurant. My ...
  A: I hope that the party isn't today/tonight. I need more lead time than that,usually. In case it's not ...
Ballet12/16/2006
  Q: Is it proper to clap while a ballet dancer is dancing. While a dancer is performing particularly ...
  A: People should wait until the performance is over before applauding. I understand that often the ...
etiquette for invitations considering ex-spouses and current spouse12/15/2006
  Q: My son and his current wife are consistently invited to special dinners that include his ex-wife and ...
  A: Let me get this straight: Tom and Lisa Doe are often invited to dinners at Tom Doe,Sr's house. Tom ...
Becoming friends of friends12/15/2006
  Q: My wife and I met a couple who we enjoyed talking with at the party of a mutual friend. I sent an ...
  A: As you received an invitation to a party of theirs, there is no reason not to have them over for ...
Chrismas Open House Party12/15/2006
  Q: we have been invited to a christmas open house party by parents of my son's new friend. should we ...
  A: No,it is not necessary to bring a hostess gift for an open house. These are large informal, affairs ...
Birth Announcement12/15/2006
  Q: Is it appropriate to send out birth announcements for the birth of a baby born to an unmarried ...
  A: If she is keeping the child and wants to announce it's arrival then she absolutely should. Even if ...
Christmas gifts for dog walker/grooomer12/15/2006
  Q: I'm not sure what is appropriate gift giving for my dog walker. I have someone who comes twice a ...
  A: Oh this whole holiday tipping thing is just getting out of hand! I'm sorry,what? Oh. Let's see. ...
Brother in law and his Wife12/15/2006
  Q: I have two children ages 15 and 13. My brother in law has a 9month old and a 3 year and a child that ...
  A: You 'handle it' by smiling and making sure that your children say 'Thank you Uncle X and Aunt Y'. ...
Constant caughing12/15/2006
  Q: My stepson is home sick and spends hours in the living room playing video games and constantly ...
  A: I think he should be resting in his room as well,but it is not my place to say so. This is between ...
65th Formal Birthday Dinner12/14/2006
  Q: How do I word the invitation "saying no children" invited. CB
  A: By being very clear on the invitations as to whom you are inviting. First names,please. Paul and ...
please no children - part 212/14/2006
  Q: I read your response on how to politely request no children at a gathering. We did written ...
  A: Since the guest-to-be was nice enough to say "if not, it's not a problem" then use that to your ...
Addressing envelopes to Mr. and Mrs.12/14/2006
  Q: Personally, I want to acknowledge the woman in a Mr. & Mrs. situation. Is it proper to address an ...
  A: You may not write 'Mr.& Mrs. John & Jane Doe' on an envelope. Socially,she is Mrs. John Doe unless ...
Graduation gifts12/14/2006
  Q: What is the proper way to handle the graduation for a person who graduated from college 8 years ago ...
  A: You are never EVER required to give anyone a gift for any reason. Period. No one 'deserves' a ...
addressing Christmas cards12/12/2006
  Q: I am sending a Christmas card to a woman who is divorced but still uses her married last name. What ...
  A: You have several options. If you wish to use an honorific, "Mrs. Jane Doe" indicates a divorced ...
Death12/12/2006
  Q: My wife died, very unexpectedly, on Oct 27. She always sent Christmas cards to friends about this ...
  A: As you are the one in deep mourning,you and only you get to decide what is right and appropriate. ...
What makes a Party a Black tie Affair12/11/2006
  Q: Lately I've been invited to two black tie weddings where of course my husband and myself went with a ...
  A: Shamah, Unfortunately,all that a dress code promises is that other guests are expected to be in ...
un cocial behaviour of husband12/10/2006
  Q: How to make him inderstand how rude it was at our daughter's boyfriend's parents Xmas party to: 1. ...
  A: I am sorry that your husband did not make more of an effort for your daughter's boyfriend's ...
Can I personally deliver flowers?12/10/2006
  Q: Is it correct or acceptable to personally deliver flowers, for example Poinsettias (Christmas season ...
  A: Yes,of course you may deliver flowers in person. Now, as to if you should stop by her office,it ...
Requesting a Thank You12/9/2006
  Q: My sister told me that she was going to send my children a gift for Christmas but that she would ...
  A: This isn't about etiquette. Your sister has gotten upset about something and you should speak to her ...
Jewish Wedding Ceremony Etiquette12/7/2006
  Q: I'm hoping this board can help me out. My fiance and I are getting married next month. We actually ...
  A: These situations are why God,in His infinite wisdom, created the church/temple secretary. Call the ...
Etiquette as a couple12/6/2006
  Q: My girl friend is independent (I like it) and acts as one. But sometimes I feel awkward by her ...
  A: You have described the life of a politician's spouse perfectly. Here's the real question for me: How ...
phone calls12/6/2006
  Q: I have recently met a girl who I really enjoy being around. However, I cannot see her very often due ...
  A: "Immediately" seems to say that you must drop all as soon as you get her message. Returning the call ...
overnite guest12/5/2006
  Q: We have been invited to stay overnight at our daughters soon to be inlaws. Our son has just asked ...
  A: You may not ask your host and hostess to squeeze in another guest. If you do it can put them in a ...
Divorce and Christmas Etiquette12/5/2006
  Q: This is my first Christmas after my divorce. My ex and I were married for 16 years and we are still ...
  A: As you are still friends,why don't you speak to your ex about this? Most of my divorced friends do ...
Baby Shower12/5/2006
  Q: I have a friend that is on her 5th child. No no one has offered to do a shower for her, so I ...
  A: Usually a woman only gets one baby shower in her life. After that it's assumed that she has ...
Christmas Gift Giving12/5/2006
  Q: My husband will be seeing his son and grandchildren; ages 43, 19,16,13 on Dec. 23 when they come ...
  A: Please have some token gifts for the 'lady friend' and her children. It could be a gift bag with ...
Wedding Date Etiquette12/4/2006
  Q: My best friend is a male who lives far away. I am also in the process of moving. I asked him to be ...
  A: Everything I needed to know was in this line: "I never told my friend I asked someone before him." ...
reception flow12/2/2006
  Q: My aunt is getting married in two weeks. The vows will be exchanged in a church before everyone goes ...
  A: Gayla, You may do things in whatever order you wish,but I would suggest feeding the guests first ...
out of town family staying at my house12/1/2006
  Q: I have a sister who is married and has 2 boys. I'm married and have 1 child. When they visit from ...
  A: Your house,your rules. Do not feel guilty and DO not apologize. Just tell them that it it only ...
silverwear11/30/2006
  Q: how do you set your silverware? i mean were to put the napkin, glass, fork, knife, spoon, and if ...
  A: Kurtz, Please place the napkin at the far left of the plate with the forks next in order of use. ...
Invitation to a small dance11/29/2006
  Q: My husband and I received a formal invitation to a "small dance in honor of our daughter" to be ...
  A: The only thing to do here is make a phone call. To the hostess or to another friend who is going and ...
Surprise Party11/28/2006
  Q: I was invited,online by my son's girlfriend. She was hosting a surprise Birthday party for him. When ...
  A: This is a difficult thing to say,but you raised your son. So,if he did not begin introducing you to ...
Graduation dinner ediquette11/28/2006
  Q: I am 33 and am finally graduating college in 3 weeks. I have invited only my immediate family to ...
  A: Congratulations on your very wonderful achievement! Now, it is true that a hostess may NOT throw a ...
death of a schoolteacher's spouse11/28/2006
  Q: Our five-year-old daughter's spouse died unexpectedly due to a heart attack. What is the correct ...
  A: During a time like this,you'd have to go pretty far to do "too much". Please write her a short ...
Christmas money from Mother11/27/2006
  Q: My Mother has decided that it's easier to pay each of her 4 adult kids $300 per family for Christmas ...
  A: As none of you are entitled to a gift of any kind for any occasion,there is nothing for you to do ...
Etiquette for Gatherings11/27/2006
  Q: When invited to someone's home for dinner, and bring along a dish for the group to consume, is it ...
  A: Once you hand the dish off to the host/ess the food is hers to do with as she pleases. If she urges ...
family visit etiquette11/27/2006
  Q: My husbands' sister has recently invited herself to visit for a weekend at our new home. I have ...
  A: The key to handling this woman is to be relaxed,friendly but in control. Call her up and say "Tom ...
Grateful Relatives?11/26/2006
  Q: My wife and I are very well off financially and my wife likes to go out to dinner at least twice a ...
  A: Your son's tail you may jerk a knot in,at your convenience. Your father-in-law you may just have to ...
Bringing food when invited for dinner11/24/2006
  Q: My question involves whether or not bringing something when someone invites you for dinner when you ...
  A: You have answered your own question. No,a guest should not bring food or try to help prepare the ...
gift giving11/24/2006
  Q: A niece is getting her law degree in December. We have given gifts for high school and college ...
  A: As with any other life event,you are not obligated to give a gift. You should only give a present if ...
walking etiquette11/23/2006
  Q: A theatre history professor of mine once told our class that the reason the gentleman walked on the ...
  A: Garbage thrown from windows is going to land on whomever is underneath it,no matter what order they ...
Crackling from eating sunflower seeds at work11/22/2006
  Q: Amanda: How would you deal with someone at work, who’s habits are annoying enough that no matter ...
  A: Please forgive the tardy reply. I had a faulty laptop combined with the Thanksgiving Holiday! ...
Approaching fellow board members regarding business investment11/21/2006
  Q: I would like to approach several social acquaintances regarding their interest in investing in a ...
  A: Please forgive the tardy reply. A malfunctioning laptop and the Thanksgiving Holiday have put me ...
Gift giving11/21/2006
  Q: I ordered a gift basket to be delivered to my bosses home. When I looked up the status of the ...
  A: An employee never gives a superior a gift. I wonder if he was ebarrassed by the gesture and doesn't ...
best response available11/20/2006
  Q: please tell me the most charming way to respond when someone ask you "how are you?. is it rude if i ...
  A: Ah! The 'How are you' question! I wish that I knew where you lived. Different expectations for ...
gum chewing11/17/2006
  Q: Is it polite to chew gum in public?
  A: The penalty for smuggling gum into Singapore is a year in prison and a 10,000 dollar fine. This ...
rude office behavior11/15/2006
  Q: We have a girl in our office who always answers EVERYONE'S questions! When someone asks me a ...
  A: Speak to her about it privately. NOT just after the next time it happens though,you want her to be ...
Addressing sympathy card to widow11/15/2006
  Q: When the husband passes away, do you address the sympathy card to the wife as Mrs. or Ms.?
  A: Please continue to use the honorific "Mrs." A widow is entitled to use her 'married name' until she ...
birthday etiquette11/14/2006
  Q: I have a long list of hardships I have had to face with inlaws. I will not go on and just ask a ...
  A: No,you are not obligated to give gifts,be treated like a chambermaid or allow your husband to be ...
Inadvertent Bragging11/13/2006
  Q: I have a good friend who, in the past year, has moved in with her boyfriend and had several raises ...
  A: If she were not a good friend I would advise you to say nothing and just avoid her company as much ...
How much do you make?11/12/2006
  Q: A relative/acquaintance asks you how much money you make (you have a relatively well paying job) how ...
  A: 'Enough,thank you.' or 'Oh,I do all right.' Follow this with a change of subject and you should be ...
Debutante Ball11/12/2006
  Q: My brother was recently asked to escort a young woman to her Debutante Ball. The ball is given by a ...
  A: First,let me point out as gently as I can that any relationship where your brother cannot speak ...
Thankgiving Invitation?11/10/2006
  Q: We were "invited" to the family Thanksgiving. No one discussed anything with us, we were just ...
  A: W, It was a strange way to go about 'inviting' someone to Thanksgiving. Telling then that you have ...
just about two weeks before the baby shower and 20 people did not RSVP yet11/9/2006
  Q: I am hosting a baby shower in about two weeks. The invitations went out 6 weeks prior to the ...
  A: Diane, Yes,if you have no other way to contact them,there is no reason why you shouldn't send out ...
Walking and sitting11/8/2006
  Q: I know that it has always been proper for the man to walk on the curb side. It has/had to do with a ...
  A: Don, Let the lady go into the aisle first,but offer to change seats with her if some 7 ft. behemoth ...
The ins and outs of doors !11/8/2006
  Q: My mother was good at teaching manners and to this day if I should not hold a door for ANYONE, I ...
  A: Use the other door if it won't create more problems than it solves. As for the other,I am a fan of ...
Vegas Wedding11/8/2006
  Q: I was married in Las Vegas 2 weeks ago. My husband & I will have a ceremony on our one year ...
  A: Jo, Yes,of course you should send out announcements! You have information that you want to share ...
House Guests11/8/2006
  Q: My brother is coming to visit from Australia in Feb. for 3 months. He always stays with my husband & ...
  A: Here you go: Dear John, I can't believe that it's almost Thanksgiving! Pretty soon you and X ...
50th wedding anniversary-in laws11/7/2006
  Q: My in laws will be celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary next year. My husband and his ...
  A: A host/ess never throws a party that they cannot afford. No guest should ever have to pay for the ...
thank you's11/7/2006
  Q: should you thank someone for sending you a birthday card? does it matter if it's a friend or family ...
  A: No,you do not have to formally thank someone for sending you a birthday card. If you speak to them ...
Anniversary question11/3/2006
  Q: My dad passed away a little over a year ago. Their anniverary is coming up next weekl. Is it ...
  A: No,not exactly..but what would be nice and appropriate is to call her or see her and let her know ...
seating11/3/2006
  Q: Should the lady enter her seat from the left and exit from the right when being seated by a man or ...
  A: There is no set rule for this because no 2 dining rooms or restaurants are arranged the same way. ...
In-Laws down-play my Birthday11/2/2006
  Q: I will let it go. That makes the most sense. But, you said that I'm trying to control their ...
  A: " I have told my husband this, and he said he'd tell them how I feel, but, I just don't want to get ...
question for invitation11/1/2006
  Q: My son is marrying a girl from Calgary and the wedding will be there Dec. 30. She is very limited ...
  A: I'm not sure what your question is here. Are you concerned about people calling Canada long ...
Table setting10/31/2006
  Q: What is the proper placement and length of a table runner? Should it be used with a tablecloth or ...
  A: According to the 1922 edition of Emily Post,a runner may be used on either a bare table cloth or one ...
manners10/30/2006
  Q: Amanda,I ask you a question a few days ago about hosting a party, specifically asking if it was rude ...
  A: No,you do not have to welcome additional and univited guests to the party. As you know it will be a ...
Inviting guests10/30/2006
  Q: I am home-host for two visitors from Europe who are here to study US business methods for 3 ...
  A: It is interesting your husband should feel as if he were being treated like a servant when he is ...
College Graduation10/29/2006
  Q: I will be graduating this May with my Bachelor of Arts from a great college located in Ohio! Other ...
  A: An announcement is merely conveying information to people who would be interested to know it. There ...
Registering a 1-year-old for a birthday! Ugh!10/29/2006
  Q: My cousin has spent the past three years registering for gifts (literally!). First she registered at ...
  A: Nicole, Your cousin clearly has a problem. She has bought in and is addicted to the fantasy that ...
Birthday gift exchange10/27/2006
  Q: I have a friend I've known for a very long time. We were close in high school, but went to seperate ...
  A: In the first place,your parents rule and I don't mean maybe. That is the sweetest thing I have ever ...
Name10/27/2006
  Q: If a man is a Jr., II, III and so on, will he still keep that at the end of his name if his father ...
  A: Happy to help. With a name you have a title (or honorifc)at the beginning and a suffix at the ...
Wedding gifts10/27/2006
  Q: My husband and I got married last year and my 2 questions refer to 2 couples that attended our ...
  A: This isn't about 'settling accounts',so please let that idea go and relax. No one ever has to pay ...
Wedding Gift Registry10/26/2006
  Q: Gamble, A friend of mine and I are attending the wedding of a mutual friend. The mutual friend ...
  A: In the first place,what is wrong with this woman (the bride)? Including not one,not two but three ...
engagement party gift10/25/2006
  Q: My nephew has just gotten engaged and we are looking forward to attending the up coming engagement ...
  A: First,please know that you are not under any obligation to give a gift. No guest has to 'pay for the ...
Topics at Wakes and Funerals10/25/2006
  Q: I have an old friend who is upset with me, but she will not tell me why she is upset, because she ...
  A: Debbie, I know that your mental distress over the situation led to asking your friend again what ...
Rude Friend/"Sister"10/25/2006
  Q: Let me give a small background. I am 21 years old, live on my own, and not super close to my family. ...
  A: Think about things from her point of view for a minute. She is jealous. She is the youngest of ...
Sympathy card10/25/2006
  Q: I lost contact with a friend of mine and just found out that her mother passed away about 5 weeks ...
  A: Grief knows no time limits,it is perfectly appropriate to send a note of condolence. Please write a ...
Office Etiquette - the Mothman10/24/2006
  Q: Amanda, I have asked a dozen or so people for advice, and so far have not received a workable ...
  A: Someone must speak to him privately,there is no need to humiliate him. Now,mothballs can be ...
introductions10/24/2006
  Q: I am dating a man exclusively and have no plans of terminating our relationship. I also have no ...
  A: That is why I love the term 'friend'. It is very mysterious and carries all sorts of weight. ...
Debutante gifting10/24/2006
  Q: My employer has been invited by a business associate to a "party" for another business associate's ...
  A: Hammons, The only gift suitable for your employer to give or send is a bouquet of flowers. White ...
Headwear and the National Anthem10/24/2006
  Q: Should a female remove her hat during the National Anthem? At ball games the anouncer says: Ladies ...
  A: Yes,please,if you are wearing a baseball,cowboy or novelty hat like a Wisconsin Cheese Head or Dr. ...
An Old Friend Becomes A Pest10/24/2006
  Q: My husband and I have a close mutual childhood friend. I met Eddie when I was 5, and my husband met ...
  A: Did your parents ever say "My house,my rules"? This is what you and your husband need to remind ...
a soiled coat10/24/2006
  Q: I am in a bit of a quandry over the question of my girlfriend's ruined coat. She came to my house ...
  A: Why did no one think to hang the coat up in a closet? Since your girlfriend threw the coat over a ...
manners10/23/2006
  Q: For the past two years in October I have hosted a birthday party for my own daughter and my great ...
  A: In your first line you say "I have hosted a birthday party". That is all I needed to know. You ...
gift card use10/23/2006
  Q: A friend from another state mailed me a baby shower gift. She included a gift card for a store that ...
  A: Write her a thank you note and make no mention of the gift card being something you cannot use. I ...
Baby's First Birthday10/23/2006
  Q: I am planning my son's first birthday party. I am inviting a lot of family we don't see very often, ...
  A: The absolute rule is that you may never make mention of gifts one way or another because you should ...
baby shower10/17/2006
  Q: how many baby showers should a person have ? one for each child or just for the first child?? in ...
  A: Since the mother to be never thorws a shower in her own honor,it is entirely up to her family and ...
Bat Mitzvah gift giving etiquette10/14/2006
  Q: Please let me know what is the proper etiquette for gift giving. Our friend's daughter is ...
  A: No guest has to 'pay for the privilege' of being invited to a celebration. Presents should be ...
Themed formal event10/12/2006
  Q: I'm going to an event that is a Chinese theme with colors red and black. It's a black tie event. ...
  A: Your gown does not have to be black or red unless the invitation specifically asks guests to dress ...
Sympathy cards10/11/2006
  Q: My husband just had his leg amputated due to his diabetes. He received sympathy cards for his loss. ...
  A: Well..not really,you wouldn't send something like that for an appendix. However,if you're deciding ...
MOTHER COMING TO TOWN10/10/2006
  Q: My husband and I have a two year old daughter. We live in TX and most of our family is in Kansas. ...
  A: This really isn't an etiquette question. This about you and your husband negotiating the terms of ...
Wedding Shower gift10/10/2006
  Q: On Saturday I thru a Wedding Shower for my Daughter in-law to be. Everything went well however, I ...
  A: Greggs, The bride to be should be sending any thank you notes for gifts received,not the hostess ...
House Guest10/9/2006
  Q: My brother in law has informed us that he is planning a visit from overseas. He has made the ...
  A: Even is you didn't have health problems,it would be your right to say no. Even if you had a 22 ...
FENCE10/8/2006
  Q: We haved lived in our new construction home about a year and have not put a privacy fence up yet. ...
  A: Since you agreed and made no effort to have input on the type of fence,yes,you should pay. It's not ...
good morning to seniers10/8/2006
  Q: I'VE TO GO COLLEGE IN COLLEGE BUS, WHICH I GET AT A CERTAIN PLACE. WHEN I ENTER MY SENIOR STUDENTS ...
  A: Just smile and say "Good morning everyone" and then sit down. Trust me,in the morning,on the ...
Address sympathy card10/8/2006
  Q: Jane's father died. Do I address the card just to Jane or do I include her husband (the ...
  A: Please address the card to both of them. Jane Doe's father was a part of Jim Doe's life --good,bad ...
engagement ring10/7/2006
  Q: Which hand do you wear the engagement ring, and do you have to have both engagement ring and wedding ...
  A: Traditionally,the engagement ring is worn on the third finger of the left hand. No,you do not have ...
Cancellation10/5/2006
  Q: Friend A bought tickets to a play for four of us who agreed to go. She told us how much we owed her ...
  A: Friend B should pay for her ticket. She entered into the agreement with Friend A and and the rest of ...
Birthday Party Etiquette and Exchanging Gifts10/5/2006
  Q: a friend of 2 years, invited me to her birthday dinner last week. A couple of days before she ...
  A: K., Please explain to me why this woman is your friend? No,you are not wrong,she behaved very ...
teaching my fraternity manners10/5/2006
  Q: I've been asked to teach a group of 14 guys with mixed levels of etiquette experience as much as I ...
  A: Wow. You aren't asking much,are you? Let's see..off the top of my head? 1) If they are ever ...
paying at birthday dinner10/4/2006
  Q: My SIL invited my husband and I to a birthday dinner for my brother at a nearby restaurant. There ...
  A: A host/ess should never throw a party that they cannot afford. When you invite someone to ...
Gift for a Boss's wedding10/3/2006
  Q: My boss is getting married and the entire office is invited. We are having an office debate...is it ...
  A: Dear heavens NO! Do not give a superior (work wise) cash. Normally you wouldn't give a boss a gift ...
proper attire10/3/2006
  Q: What would be the proper attire to wear to the Barbra Streisand Concert in Atlanta?
  A: Well,Babs' favorite designer is Donna Karan,that should give you a starting point. Think comfortable ...
Choosing compatible guests10/3/2006
  Q: How can I kindly deal with good friends who are hurt if I don't invite them every time I have a ...
  A: Speak to them later when the situation has cooled down a little and they are more apt to listen. ...
aniversary dilemma10/1/2006
  Q: My parents have requested no party for their 50th aniversary. My family plans to take them out to ...
  A: By sending an announcement,all you're doing is giving information to people who might wish to know ...
How to eat fish with proper utencils...10/1/2006
  Q: could you please tell me how to properly eat fish with the special fish- utencils(the fork and ...
  A: Happy to help. If the fish is served with the head intact,please remove it. Holding the fish in ...
Birthday Call9/29/2006
  Q: Two days before my mothers birthday, I stopped by her house with flowers, a card, a cake and a visit ...
  A: We never know what is important to people,do we? No, you did nothing wrong as far as I'm concerned. ...
Money gift dor Quincenera?9/29/2006
  Q: I am attending my exhusaband nieces Quincenera, I have always gotton along with his family, we have ...
  A: The giving of a gift for any occasion is entirely optional. The person giving the gift should do so ...
overnight guest etiquette9/28/2006
  Q: Amanda: I'm hoping that you can shed some light on the following situation. Is it considered rude ...
  A: What is to understand? They are selfish and not considerate of your time,money or property. Just ...
Sympathy Card9/28/2006
  Q: My bosses brother in law passed away. I will adress the card to both, however, I do not know the ...
  A: Send the card to "Mr. and Mrs. John Doe" and express your sympathy on the loss of Mrs. Doe's ...
Thank you note.9/28/2006
  Q: I'm so embarassed to even ask this question and I don't know why it's taken me so long...but I can't ...
  A: For heaven's sake,write those notes! You won't feel better until you do. Look,just use humor. Tell ...
Business thank you9/27/2006
  Q: I work for a small Non Profit organization. We recently had a fundraiser, a golf outting. When the ...
  A: By all means,write them a thank you note! Mention how thriled you are that the event was a success ...
guests giving gifts9/26/2006
  Q: When a guest attends a wwedding and there is not a gift that has been received, do you ask the ...
  A: Lalich, Absolutely NOT. No one should ever expect a gift for any occasion. You invite people to ...
How do you say "please no children"9/25/2006
  Q: I am having a dinner party but have many friends with children. What is a gracious way to put ...
  A: Hansen, How are you inviting them? By phone? By written invitation? If it's by phone ask about ...
Answer9/25/2006
  Q: When a couple becomes engaged I know the man receives congratulations. What is the proper responces ...
  A: Davidson, Felecitations is the proper thing to say to a bride elect. However,this has fallen out ...
American social rules of behavior9/24/2006
  Q: I am looking for an article on abovementioned subject. How to behave in first encounters in ...
  A: The book "Star Spangeld Manners:Miss Manners Defends American Etiquette" is great. It explains why ...
engagement9/23/2006
  Q: My sister is getting married for the third time, she is having a dinner at a restaurant for family ...
  A: Not unless you want to. At this point the poor woman should have accumulated enough dry goods to ...
Proper telephone message procedure9/23/2006
  Q: Recently my Office Manager asked me to answer the phones while she stepped away from her desk. The ...
  A: Powell, You are correct. The practice of asking what the call is regarding is essential for the ...
50th Wedding Party Dinner9/22/2006
  Q: My husband and I will be hosting a 50th Wedding Anniversary Party for his parents in March 2007. ...
  A: Pitt, A host/ess should never throw a party they cannot afford *unless* they are having an ...
hostess/host gift9/22/2006
  Q: I have been invited to a poker party by one of my co-workers. She is pregnant, so wine or the like ...
  A: If the hostess has told you repeatedly that she needs nothing,then that is what you must bring. You ...
ex husband sister getting married9/21/2006
  Q: My ex husbands sister is getting married and i was invited to the wedding.Should i go? Or should i ...
  A: Stephanie, Why did your ex sister-in-law invite you to her wedding? Are you close? Are your kids ...
Addressing professionals9/21/2006
  Q: I have a friend that addresses her primary care doctor by her first name. I find it extremely rude. ...
  A: Sphar, A lady never points out a lapse in someone else's manners. That rule goes double for a ...
wedding9/21/2006
  Q: How much do you give to the officiate/minister after the ceremony? Who hand the check to the ...
  A: When you are meeting with the minster to reserve the church,ask him at that time what his fee is. He ...
Responding to cards9/19/2006
  Q: Is it proper etiquette to respond with a note to the sender of a card, i.e. get well, birthday, ...
  A: While you do not have to answer every card that you get (especially if you are ill or mourning a ...
Wedding thank you's9/19/2006
  Q: What is the appropriate time to send thank you notes for gifts received at a wedding. My ...
  A: She has is wrong. People have up to a year to SEND a wedding present. After a year the couple is no ...
Thank you card9/19/2006
  Q: Is it really necessary to send an additional thank you card in the mail, if the person giving the ...
  A: No,if you thank someone at the time they give you the gift,you do not have to send a thank you note. ...
Overnight Guest Etiquette9/19/2006
  Q: What are the expectations of overnight hosts and guests? Since we do not have children, my husband ...
  A: Your instincts are correct. Taking a small hostess gift or something for the kids then offering to ...
proposal9/18/2006
  Q: How long do I wait after divorce before proposing to my new girlfriend? My wife left me for another ...
  A: As soon as the ink is dry on the final decree,you are free to offer your heart and hand to whomever ...
Birthday Party Favors9/17/2006
  Q: My friend is planning a birthday party for her thirteen year old boy. It is sort of a "coming out" ...
  A: Pressley, Please avoid the term "coming out" when speaking of a 13 year old boy. With males of ...
guest list for 30th anniversary party9/17/2006
  Q: My husband and I will be celebrating our 30th anniversary on Nov. 24, 2006--the day after ...
  A: You're overthinking this. It is your party. As with any event that you are hosting,you may invite ...
50th wedding anniversary9/16/2006
  Q: We are giving my parents a 50th wedding anniversary. What is proper attire for a Sunday afternoon ...
  A: Holbrook, You may certainly have any sort of party you wish. If you want "adults only",say so. ...
Engagement Party9/16/2006
  Q: Should you take a gift to the engagement party? If so, what sort of gifts are appropriate? ...
  A: You do not have to give a gift unless you wish to. This applies to any celebration you are ever ...
hairdressers9/16/2006
  Q: how do i politely say to the hairdresser that i DO NOT want to chat. i get tired of their incessant ...
  A: No matter how tempting it is to say "IN SILENCE PLEASE" you must resist that urge. Hairdressers are ...
Introductions9/15/2006
  Q: How should a newly married couple be introduced at the wedding reception if the bride is a doctor. ...
  A: Kristen, Ask the bride how she wants to be introduced. She may choose to be known socially as ...
wedding invitations9/15/2006
  Q: My partner and I have a 5 month old baby girl. We were invited to her sister's wedding out-of-state, ...
  A: While I can appreciate that the bride wants an "adults only" wedding (and it is her right to have ...
Black Tie9/14/2006
  Q: My husband and I have been invited to a gala event for the Canadian American Society in October. The ...
  A: Maudlin, Since your husband is going with a dark suit,a cocktail dress is more appropriate for you ...
Restaurant Tipping9/13/2006
  Q: From time to time I entertain people in various restaurants. If the group is six or fewer, the tip ...
  A: Annoying,isn't it? I dislike the practice very much but a business may set their own rules for these ...
party invitations9/13/2006
  Q: What is the proper format for a RSVP on a invitation? If you are requesting a call back, do you ...
  A: The R.S.V.P. goes at the end of the party "details". You may either center it or put it off to the ...
wedding bulletin9/12/2006
  Q: In a wedding bulletin which lists the members of the wedding party, and the grooms parents are ...
  A: List whomever you'd like,there are no reasons not to honor (or leave off) step-parents if you'd ...
his last birthday9/11/2006
  Q: Next week is my father's birthday. Unfortunately, I know it will be his last birthday, and I don't ...
  A: Please know how very sorry I am that you are going through such a difficult and painful experience. ...
Mother in law9/11/2006
  Q: I sincerely hope you can help me, my husband and I met 6 yrs ago through his mother, my next door ...
  A: Your mother in law sounds like a very hostile person. Your husband needs to speak to her about her ...
Quinceanera9/11/2006
  Q: I'm a single mom planning my daughter's quinceanera. Although I'm a struggling single parent I plan ...
  A: I can understand wanting to give your child a lovely 15th birthday party,but don't go into debt for ...
good fence=good neighbor??9/11/2006
  Q: We recently moved into a new neighborhood. The neighbor that lives behind us has a very ...
  A: What keeps the dog in your yard? Do you not have a fence? Or is it a common fence you both are ...
Gift Giving9/11/2006
  Q: When the invitaion suggets "no gifts", is it inappropriate to bring a gist?
  A: If they don't want any gifts,please respect their wishes. They probably feel they have enough ...
Party Ettiquette9/9/2006
  Q: I have a friend that is planning her own 40th b-day. She asked me if she could call my sister in law ...
  A: This is a complex one,so let's just start with the strict etiquette of the thing and then go from ...
college graduation gifts9/8/2006
  Q: Amanda, I will soon be graduating from college, and already I'm having family and friends ask me ...
  A: If there is nothing that you need or want,keep telling them exactly what you have told me: "I'm just ...
social etiquette9/7/2006
  Q: i had a work friend (who was also a personal friend outside work) who said that her sister had got ...
  A: Why do I feel I am not getting the whole picture here? That you felt the need to tell me the ...
introductions9/7/2006
  Q: How do I introduce my date at my class reunion? If I introduce him as Dr name name ( he is a phd ...
  A: Only a medical doctor (for people or animals) may properly be called "Dr.". Oh,sure,I hear all ...
25th Annivesary party etiquette8/20/2006
  Q: Is it appropriate or mannerly to request family member or friends not bring children to our 25th ...
  A: Absolutely you may decide the guest list and 'type' of party that you want to have. It's odd to me ...
Using PhD Title8/18/2006
  Q: I own a business and one of my new employees has a PhD in clinical psychology. The position that ...
  A: No,don't put the PhD on the new employee's business card. It's not wrong to use it on a business ...
Address Dr & Mr8/17/2006
  Q: Do you know the proper way to address an envelope to a couple when the Doctor is the female? ...
  A: Only a medical doctor may be properly addressed as "Dr". I know many academics claim the ...
mother-in-law8/16/2006
  Q: Is is appropriate for a mother-in-law to attend your obstetrician appointment?
  A: Stiger, It depends entirely on the relationship between the mother-in-law and the mother-to-be. ...
neighbors8/15/2006
  Q: Our neighbors across the street brought us over an interesting version of shrimp cocktail in ...
  A: In my neck of the woods,you don't return a plate to a friend or neighbor without something on it! ...
Makeup Etiquette while dining out8/14/2006
  Q: What is the proper etiquette regarding putting on makeup, lipstick, etc. at a dining table while in ...
  A: It is considered innapropriate to take care of any grooming issues at the table. It only takes a ...
first call8/14/2006
  Q: A friend sent me a message about two weeks ago telling me that she will be in town in a couple of ...
  A: Normally,you would wait a bit to let your friend or relative make the first move. We all are tired ...
Addressing a Sympathy Card8/14/2006
  Q: When addressing a sympathy card to a friend who has lost a parent, should it be addressed to peson ...
  A: Address the card to both the person and their spouse, no matter how good or bad the "in law" ...
retirement party gift8/14/2006
  Q: Should I bring a gift to a retirement party. The invitation only states location and time. thank ...
  A: A guest is never required to 'pay for the privlege' of being invited somewhere. So,no you are not ...
Adoption Ediquette8/14/2006
  Q: My wife and I received a formal notice of adoption from some close friends. Their newly adopted ...
  A: A short note of congratulation would make your friends very happy,I'm sure. Since she is an older ...
Annoucement for graduating and starting new career8/13/2006
  Q: I have been asked to help my friend prepare an announcement for her son. She is the parent of a ...
  A: An announcement is just as you say,the sharing of news with people who will be interested to know ...
Addressing Wedding Invites to Doctors8/13/2006
  Q: Getting married in a few months and we need your advice on how to address our wedding invites. We ...
  A: 1) Drs. John and Jane Doe is correct. 2) Dr Jane Doe Mr John Doe 3) Yes,Dr and Mrs John Doe is ...
Group -thank you card8/12/2006
  Q: My husband's work threw him a baby shower at his work. Fifteen people all chipped in for gift. My ...
  A: Write a thank you note to the whole group,don't send a card. Since they went to the trouble to chip ...
Responding to Wedding Invitation8/12/2006
  Q: A good friend of mine from high school is finally getting married. Although it has been 15 years ...
  A: You know from a strict etiquette standpoint that you cannot go adding guests onto your personal ...
gifting (or not) for life achievement8/11/2006
  Q: I have been invited to a "party" at a reception hall for a daughter of a friend who has received her ...
  A: Giving gifts is entirely a personal choice that should be based SOLELY on your affection for the ...
Interview with magazine8/10/2006
  Q: Please answer these questions. 1. Full name: 2.Where do you live? 3. Education: 4. Titles? 5. What ...
  A: We don't see your e-mail address at all. The site just sends the 'questions' with no identifying ...
thank you notes8/10/2006
  Q: None of my gifts are acknowledged by my nieces--in writing or verbally. This includes wedding, ...
  A: Call your attorney and cut them out of the Will. Kidding! There is nothing that you can do other ...
Sister-In-Law8/9/2006
  Q: Greetings and thank you for taking the time to answer my questions(s). My sister-in-law will often ...
  A: It is time for your wife to have a talk with her sister. (Or if this is your brother's wife,you need ...
wedding invitation8/9/2006
  Q: Is it Mr. and Mrs. Gerald White? Mr. Gerald and The Honorable Mary White? Mr. Gerand ...
  A: The outer envelope should read: Judge Mary White Mr Gerald White 123 Any Street ...
A refused gift at work8/9/2006
  Q: I offered a co-worker a dozen fresh ears of corn after he stated that he and his wife enjoyed the 6 ...
  A: That is really odd. You did not want money for the corn and said as much. Even if he thought you ...
Entering a room of people8/9/2006
  Q: When entering a room of people, be it family or friends, who should speak first, the people or ...
  A: If you're entering a private home,the host/ess should be quick to welcome you,but there is no hard ...
Hosting the bar8/7/2006
  Q: I am having a hosted bar for my husband's 50th birthday party. I don't want the bar to be hosted ...
  A: "Last call will be at 9:00 pm for the saftey of our guests." Says you are worried about drinking ...
party etiquette8/7/2006
  Q: My 2nd daughter is about to turn one, and she is "overblessed" with toys. What (if any) is the ...
  A: I gave my parents a water buffalo for Christmas last year,so I understand your thinking. However,you ...
bridal showers8/7/2006
  Q: if a cousin is out of state, and they will be invited to the wedding, would you also invite them to ...
  A: Do not invite the cousin to the shower if she has no hope of attending. Since the entire purpose of ...
graduation announcements8/7/2006
  Q: My daughter was not able to graduate with her class in may because she was short a few credits. ...
  A: Yes,it is perfectly acceptable to send out an announcement. It lets people know information ...
Protocol of wedding gift thank you's8/7/2006
  Q: My 37-year-old sister-in-law was born and raised in Sweden, and still lives there. After 3 children, ...
  A: Under normal circumstances,no,it is not your place to say anything to the bride (or groom) about the ...
Dinner party conversations - using girlfriend name vs. she/her/etc.8/7/2006
  Q: My girlfriend advised me that it is proper etiquette for me to refer to her by name ("Charlotte") ...
  A: Unless she,oops,Charlotte,rules over a Kingdom with a name beginning with "The United" she has lost ...
My own birthday party8/6/2006
  Q: I am turning 40 in November and my partner says that it would be rude to invite people to my own ...
  A: Anyone can have a party for any reason at anytime. As long as you're paying for it and are not going ...
birthday present etiquette8/4/2006
  Q: Amanda, I am in the begining stages of planning my child's 2nd birthday. Although it is not ...
  A: You may only indicate what your son wants and needs if asked directly. You cannot bring it up by ...
Not showing up to a 21st8/4/2006
  Q: I was recently invited to a 21st and let the person know that I would attend. He is not a close ...
  A: Write him a note of apology. You don't have to grovel or make elaborate excuses. Just wish him a ...
Proper Attire for Daytime Formal Wedding8/4/2006
  Q: My husband & I have received the most formal wedding invitation we have ever seen...it is extremely ...
  A: Formal for daytime means a short dress or suit,hats and gloves are optional,but in this case,I'd ...
House guest8/3/2006
  Q: When invited to a friends home and we know that they have a cleaning lady, do we leave a tip for her ...
  A: Vandermoon, No,in a private home a guest does not tip. Your host or hostess will take care ...
bridal shower8/3/2006
  Q: Is it proper to send bridal shower invitations to relatives and friends that are not invited to the ...
  A: You cannot invite people to a bridal shower whom you have no intention of inviting to the actual ...
appropriate sympathy gift8/3/2006
  Q: I have a friend who's father-in-law suddenly passed away from a heart attack. Due to another family ...
  A: The funeral was today? Since it is after the fact by now,I would just write a very sincere note of ...
Engagement Party Gifts8/3/2006
  Q: I ahve been invited to an engagement party this Saturday and the invitation did not say anything ...
  A: Blackburn, You are never required to 'pay for the privilege' of being invited to a life event. ...
Appropriate Thank You Gift for Pet Sitter8/2/2006
  Q: A work associate and his family watched my dog for a few weeks while I went on vacation. They ...
  A: Since they have refused and then returned money,you cannot buy or give them anything without (as you ...
Sweet 16 gift8/2/2006
  Q: My husband, 2 boys and I were invited to my husbands god-daughters sweet 16 birthday party at a ...
  A: Pierro, You don't say how old your boys are. If they are under six,yes,they can get away with ...
wedding shower etiquette7/31/2006
  Q: I have been asked to attend a wedding shower for someone who I don't know well. The groom is a ...
  A: Julius, No,you don't ever need to take (or send) a present for any life event. Not a wedding,not a ...
Step grandchildren addressing step grandmother7/31/2006
  Q: My husband has two children ( ages 12 and 13 ) from his previous marriage. All four of their " ...
  A: A family must decide for themselves (and among themselves) what honorifics will be used when two ...
Mother in Law is Rude!7/31/2006
  Q: Please tell me if I am being sensitive. Several weeks ago my mother in law invited her mother from ...
  A: You and your wife left your respective families and started a new one the day you married. Your ...
Family response7/30/2006
  Q: I apologize for sending this again. I felt the need to explain, and had not in my first request. I ...
  A: My remains the same. You are feeling hurt because your sister did not behave as you expected her ...
How soon should you respond to a graduation announcement (from family),especially7/30/2006
  Q: What is the proper time frame in which you should expcet a person to respond (phone call, card, ...
  A: An invitation to a graduation ceremony is one thing, but a graduation announcement is another. An ...
Wedding etiquette7/29/2006
  Q: I am invited to both the wedding shower and wedding of a family member. I am unable to attend ...
  A: No,you never have to send a gift (or bring a gift) to any life event that you are invited to. Not a ...
cash graduation gift7/29/2006
  Q: My best friends sons have graduated from college and high school this year. I gave the son who ...
  A: You are never required to give a gift. No one has to "pay for the privilege" of being invited to a ...
Rude Friends7/28/2006
  Q: I'm a 21 year old college student who works part time. I'm very busy with work, school and taking ...
  A: Let me get this straight. You have 'friends' who abuse your home,your hospitality,barge in and out ...
Birthday Invitations7/27/2006
  Q: I am organizing a surprise birthday party for my wife and I am thinking of asking guests to please ...
  A: I think it is lovely that you want to do something for your wife. HOWEVER,a host/ess should never ...
Thank you to sympathy cards7/27/2006
  Q: My mother-in-law recently passed away and my husband and I have received a lot of sympathy cards ...
  A: It is entirely up to you. When it comes to the death of a loved one,people are not expected to do ...
adoption gift7/27/2006
  Q: Our Granddaughter has remarried. Her husband of three yrs. is adopting her 10 yr. old boy. We are ...
  A: Atwell, How lovely of you to want to do something to commemorate such a special day. The things ...
Proper Dress7/25/2006
  Q: What is the proper attire for an afternoon tea? I am invited to a bridal shower tea and we are ...
  A: Knee length would be more appropriate for an afternoon tea. Floor length skirts aren't unheard ...
thank you card7/25/2006
  Q: Due to a recent illness many people sent me get well cards. Do I need to send thank you cards to the ...
  A: No,not unless you feel like doing so. If they made an effort to write a long newsy letter,that is ...
dining out taking home doggie bags7/25/2006
  Q: My boyfriend and I were at a moderately priced restaurant for dinner. Hr did not finish his meal so ...
  A: The restaurant was not going to serve the bread to anyone else,the price of it had already been ...
Informal Dinner guests7/24/2006
  Q: I need to know if I am making too much of this. I invite people to my home for an informal ...
  A: Hollinger, The courtesous thing to do here is to at least PRETEND that what you have brought is for ...
social etiquitte7/24/2006
  Q: Is it proper etiquitte to send a thank you note when you have been given a thank you gift? I am ...
  A: If you thank someone in person for the 'thank you' gift, you don't have to write a note. You may if ...
Quinceanera Gift7/23/2006
  Q: We have been asked by my husband's niece to purchase the guest book and pen for her Quinceanera. Is ...
  A: The guest book and the pen are gift enough. You are never required to give a present for any life ...
untidy neighbors7/22/2006
  Q: We recently put our house on the market. During a recent open-house, several people noticed our ...
  A: I'm sorry that you feel the neighbors are ruining the curb appeal of your house,but until you start ...
Who to invite.7/22/2006
  Q: I know this may sound like I should know this, but who do you invite to the engagement dinner?
  A: If you are the bride,you must have dinner with both sets of parents and your intended first. NO ...
invites7/22/2006
  Q: my live in boyfriend was invited by his parents out to dinner. they called me to make sure it was ok ...
  A: They made the effort to ask your permission,so they were trying to let you know that they weren't ...
theater ediquette7/21/2006
  Q: Which is proper --- facing towards or away from someone while crossing in front of them at the ...
  A: You face them so that they can clearly hear and see you as you look chagrined and say to them ...
Proper Introduction7/21/2006
  Q: Waht is the proper way to introduce my girl friend to my extended family (cousin, etc.) ?
  A: Keep the introductions short and simple unless your girlfriend really cares deeply about what degree ...
etiquette for7/20/2006
  Q: I am invited to my sister's, or my father's home for the holidays or any other time of the year. If ...
  A: The strictest rule of etiquette says "A host/ess never gives a party that they cannot afford". ...
Seating of Couples at Dinner7/19/2006
  Q: When 2 couples go out to dinner, is it the norm for one man to be seated next to the wife of the ...
  A: When two couples dine out,it is 'the norm' for a husband and wife to be seated next to each other so ...
child's age7/19/2006
  Q: When is it appropriate to start giving a child's age in years instead of months? (i.e., 2.5 years ...
  A: This isn't so much about etiquette as it is about common sense. The reason we give a baby's age in ...
Childs birthday party7/18/2006
  Q: Recently my twins turned three. We had a catered event in our yard asking invited guests to rsvp ...
  A: The problem wasn't your other guests,it was your sister in law. You hould have said "I'm sorry that ...
phone etiquette7/17/2006
  Q: My husband contends that when the phone rings, it should be answered. I contend that the person ...
  A: If you are not inclined to answer the phone,you do not need to drop everything to get it. The phone ...
grooms men7/17/2006
  Q: this is about a jewish wedding. My fiance has asked his groomsmen including my brother. The ...
  A: Your sister should not be offended that her husband was not asked to be a groomsman. The groom ...
manners7/16/2006
  Q: i don't want to sound rude or something, but is there any meaning behind "manners" in general? They ...
  A: People can indeed be nice without knowing the rules of etiquette. Etiquette is fundamentally about ...
we pay when invite couple to lawn concert?7/16/2006
  Q: We are calling 2 couples to invite them to a Cleveland Orchestra concert. We would have lawn tickets ...
  A: As long as you state 'the terms' in the initial invitation,you may make it dutch treat if you wish. ...
dress etiquette7/16/2006
  Q: Gamble- My husband are planning a trip to Las Vegas next week that includes dinner at Emeril's ...
  A: Please have your husband wear long trousers,not short. They can be a lightweight and light colored ...
50 anniversary7/15/2006
  Q: I am planning a cruise for my parents 50th anniversary. How do I send an invitation to this cruise ...
  A: It would be easier and less stressful for all involved if you wrote a letter to everyone. Yes,you ...
american culture/manners7/15/2006
  Q: I'm Brazilian (forgive my English)and my boyfriend is American. We have had problems about good ...
  A: Of course this isn't true..he is just being a man and trying to take advantage of the situation. I ...
Guests Who Invite Themselves Over7/15/2006
  Q: Ever since my husband and I moved overseas to pursue our postgrad studies, all kinds of people have ...
  A: As you are there to study and not play inn keeper,it is time to say,in words of one syllable,that as ...
mother to be not able to attend7/14/2006
  Q: I have already sent the invitations and the mother to be cannot attend the shower. She cannot fly ...
  A: Dixon, So..you're having a surprise shower for a woman who is too far away and too ill to attend? ...
dinner etiquette7/13/2006
  Q: QUESTIONS IN REGARDS TO INTRODUCTIONS AT DINNER PARTIES. UNFORTUNATLEY I WROTE I MY QUESTION VERY ...
  A: Jones, I apologize for giving you a flippant answer before. Yes,if your husband knows the ...
introductions to a dinner party7/13/2006
  Q: WHEN INVITED BY YOUR BOYFRIEND TO A BIRTHDAY DINNER OF 10 PEOPLE. IF YOUR SPOUSE DOESN'T INTRODUCE ...
  A: Jones, Well..no,it isn't wrong to introduce yourself to the host of the party..but the bigger ...
Graduation Etiquette7/12/2006
  Q: I am a part of a close family. My cousin was graduating from college, and my 2 other sisters and I ...
  A: Mathias, Was it an invitation or an announcement? Past tense or future? Very important. It sounds ...
Family visits7/12/2006
  Q: My mother and father inlaw have visited my wife and I the past 39 years. 2-3 weeks 2 times a year ...
  A: No,it is not unreasonable for you to dislike having company stay for more than a week at a time. I ...
House guest etiquette7/12/2006
  Q: My husband and I are invited to The Cape for a long weekend by some VERY WEALTHY aquaintances and we ...
  A: Don't try too hard. They know you don't have the kind of money that they do and it would spoil the ...
Music Recital Etiquette7/12/2006
  Q: Our daughter is giving her first harp recital, and I wonder if it is appropriate to bestow a small ...
  A: I think it's a lovely idea to give the instructor a token of your thanks. It depends entirely on ...
Invitation from somebody who doesn't respond to mine7/12/2006
  Q: I have read the archive and am very impressed with the answers you give. I have a dilemma: a month ...
  A: At times we need to put the strict rules of etiquette aside and get down to brass tacks with our ...
Engagement Party7/12/2006
  Q: I am actually going to lump two questions in one email. 1st - I am a disc jocky and also karaoke ...
  A: Please know that you are never obligated to give a gift for any life event. Not a wedding,not a ...
Male Dress etiquette7/11/2006
  Q: A man I work with was told by his wife that he cannot wear brown shoes with tan pants for a wedding ...
  A: This man's wife is quite wrong. Of course you may (and should) wear brown shoes with tan pants. The ...
boyfriends family7/11/2006
  Q: I will be meeting my boyfriends family this weekend to celebrate his birthday. I have been invited ...
  A: By all means,take the woman some flowers. Be casual and humorous about it. "Since you did all the ...
Engagement ring7/11/2006
  Q: Which hand are you supose to wear the engagement ring on. I always thought it was the right hand, ...
  A: Russell, In the United States,the United Kingdom and Canada the engagement ring has always gone ...
graduation announcements7/11/2006
  Q: My son is graduating from college and his father and I are divorced. It is appropriate wording to ...
  A: Congratulations! You are right on the money with a small change: John Clark and Mary ...
Introductions7/11/2006
  Q: I am a high school teacher and I often run into my students in public when I am with friends or ...
  A: Put the ball in your student's court. You're the adult, you're the authority figure,take charge. It ...
Interacial Dating7/10/2006
  Q: I went to my boyfriend's cousin's Birthday party for the weekend. From the first moment we ...
  A: Your boyfriend threw you to the wolves and you're writing to me about what you could have done ...
social ettiquette6/20/2006
  Q: Two questions actually. After 16 years of having and raiing children, have just returned to a social ...
  A: Women do not stand when someone enters the room unless it is a head of state or..the judge who is ...
Timing of Graduation Present6/19/2006
  Q: I was recently invited to my nephews high school graduation but unable to attend. I sent a gift and ...
  A: Davis, As you were not required to send any gift at all but did so out of love and affection for ...
who should pay for a trip6/19/2006
  Q: My ex inlaws continually invite my child to Arizona to see them and insist that i should help pay ...
  A: My mother died when I was quite young and her family would invite me for visits. My father always ...
To accept or not accept6/19/2006
  Q: Ok here's the deal. My dad's wife and I don't get along. Period. We never will. I'm pregnant with my ...
  A: Accept the present if it from both your father and his current wife. To reject it is to reject him ...
birthday gift6/19/2006
  Q: My friend has turned 65 years of age. I am inviting several friend to a surprise party for her. This ...
  A: While it is lovely of you to want to help your friend, you cannot ask for gifts outright. No one ...
Greeting6/18/2006
  Q: Should we kiss both cheeks when greeting western? Which side should we kiss first?
  A: Greeting people by kissing them on either cheek is European,but not always Western. In America and ...
Should I ask for all my money or should I give her a small amount to keep?6/16/2006
  Q: I have a friend whom I hardly an in contact with but now and then (2 or 3 times a year) makes these ...
  A: Since she claims that you two are such close friends, tell her that you are sure she will refund ...
Ladies Removing Hats during the National Anthem6/15/2006
  Q: Do women need to remove their hats when the national anthem is played? Thank you.
  A: If they are wearing a baseball cap or a cowboy hat, I say yes. The whole point of exempting women ...
borrowing a newspaper in the breakroom6/15/2006
  Q: There are a few of us in the breakroom who bring newspapers from home to read during break. We have ...
  A: Not ONE of you has said tersely "Y'know..CARL,they sell these things for a mere 50 cents. It's quite ...
GRADUATION GIFT6/14/2006
  Q: REGARDING ENGRAVING A SILVER GRADUATION GIFT. WHICH IS PROPER? THE DATE AND THE NAME OF THE ...
  A: I would engrave it with the name and date of the graduate/graduation. Otherwise,future generations ...
50th anniversary invitations6/14/2006
  Q: My husband and I are having our 50th Wedding Anniversary coming up. Our daughters are going to give ...
  A: Brnich, The thinking behind gifts and expressing a desire for (or against) getting them is that it ...
Graduation Announcement Etiquette6/12/2006
  Q: I recieved many graduation announcements...Some graduates I am in contact with and others I am not. ...
  A: Dominguez, No,you are never obligated to give a gift under ANY circumstance. Not for a birthday,a ...
Baby Shower Etiquette6/12/2006
  Q: My husband and I are expecting our first child in July. My sister wanted to throw me a baby shower. ...
  A: Yes,your mother in law should most certainly been included. By not inviting her you have excluded ...
Baby shower6/11/2006
  Q: I am very upset. I received a phone call from my duaghter(20)who is having her first baby. Her ...
  A: Sendaj, As much as I sympathize with your position,there is a fact you must face. Your cub,Mother ...
adoption party? announcements?6/11/2006
  Q: I am currently awaiting the finalization papers for adopting my step daughter. My wife and I have ...
  A: What a lovely idea! Yes,by all means,celebrate this special day however you please. I would ask ...
Wedding Invitation/Un-invitation6/9/2006
  Q: I've always enjoyed your column. I hope you can help with something that happened today. It has ...
  A: First,stop feeling guilty. It's not going to help anything and may cause a premature aging that ...
Teen Birthday Party6/9/2006
  Q: Giving daughter a birthday party (14 yrs. old) with 5 girlfriends, overnight at the beach. The ...
  A: No,I think it's a great idea to give them some "walking around money". (I assume they will be safe ...
dinner invite and etiquette for paying6/8/2006
  Q: we are having a family dinner for my grandma's 90th bday...just immediate family. other family ...
  A: Since it is JUST immediate family,spread the word via telephone or write 'The restaurant assures us ...
Graduation dinner party6/8/2006
  Q: My husband and I are hosting a dinner at a restaurant (in a private room) for friends and family to ...
  A: It's your party,so you may do as you wish! I don't know how many you are having,but you or your ...
dinner6/7/2006
  Q: If I was invited to someones home for dinner for the first time and I just met them should I take ...
  A: You do not have to take anything,in fact it is better not to as the host/ess may feel obligated to ...
Must I pay?6/5/2006
  Q: I am throwing a get together for my parents 40th wedding anniversary at a local restaurant. I am ...
  A: Tammy, While I am sympathetic to your situation,the rule still holds,a hostess may never throw a ...
College Graduation6/5/2006
  Q: What is proper for a college graduation celebration. Should a gift be given? If so what is ...
  A: There is no life event that requires a gift. No guest must 'pay for the privilege' of being invited ...
manners6/5/2006
  Q: Is it bad manners to wear your coat at the dinner table? (an outside coat) and if it is, why is it? ...
  A: Engstrom, Unless you are very ill or elderly (poor circulation) why would you want to wear an ...
Dining Etiquette?6/5/2006
  Q: when casual dining in a restaurant it is usual to thank the waitress or server when they take used ...
  A: It is never wrong to say thank you. Some of my older etiquette books say to ignore any and all wait ...
Flipping the Bill6/5/2006
  Q: My best friend wanted to go to a concert but she doesn't drive and needed someone to take her...I ...
  A: This isn't about etiquette,this is about standing up for yourself.Having good manners does NOT mean ...
social etiquette6/4/2006
  Q: My daughter is part of a court for a girl's quinceanera. What should she be doing as part of the ...
  A: Support before and during the big day is an attendants chief role. Think of her as a bridesmaid. ...
Birthday Party Reciprocity6/4/2006
  Q: My daughter is going to be 10. She was going yo have a small party of 6-7. Another friend invited ...
  A: The ancient Roman Senate,with it's gossip,intrigue and vicious backstabbing PALES in comparison ...
Graduation gift6/3/2006
  Q: My cousins daughter is graduating next week and my wife and I have been sent many e vites to her ...
  A: You are in no way obligated to give any kind of a gift unless you WANT to. No one has to 'pay for ...
graduation jewelry from Dad6/3/2006
  Q: My daughter is graduating from high school and i would like to give jewelry as a gift. What would be ...
  A: Paris, Just about anything that you want to give is fine,since you are her father. Traditionally,a ...
Graduation Gift Amounts6/3/2006
  Q: My high school children (Junior and Freshman) are invited to many graduation parties for their ...
  A: Your chidren are not obligated to give a present of any kind for any party or celebration. Ever. Not ...
Master's graduation6/1/2006
  Q: What is the etiquette concerning gifts when attending a graduation for a Master's program?
  A: This rule hold for any party or celebration for anyone at any time: A guest never has to pay for the ...
Guests Inviting Other Guests6/1/2006
  Q: Ms. Gamble, I have this really close friend who I often invite to do various things with me ...
  A: The key to your"Sarah and I are lifelong, great friends, but this issue is getting sore with me." ...
Family Dinner-Who pays?6/1/2006
  Q: We are having a 50th wedding anniversary party for my in-laws and several out of town family ...
  A: A host may never throw a party that they cannot afford. So there is no appropriate way to say ...
Anniversary5/31/2006
  Q: My brother in law verbally invited me to his parent's 50th wedding anniversary party. I feel odd ...
  A: Even if a footman carried the hand engraved invitation to your door,you would not be expect to give ...
invitations5/31/2006
  Q: I recently sent our graduation invitations to my mother-in-law and aunt-in-law. I was informed by ...
  A: Aunt Ginger needs to take up meditation or Tai Chi or something. This is to a graduation,not to a ...
Husband's Manners5/31/2006
  Q: I actually have two questions for you regarding my husband. Number one...my husband has very good ...
  A: Have you considered homicide? Kidding. We both know that chewing with your mouth open is poor ...
occupation question5/27/2006
  Q: is it impolite to ask a person's occupation as breaking the ice at a first introduction?
  A: In France,yes,it is considered horribly rude to ask what someone 'does' for a living. In America,we ...
Returning graduation gifts for family members5/27/2006
  Q: I apologize for the multiple e-mails. There was a glitch in the website that caused me to ...
  A: You expected certain behavior (reciprocal gift giving) from your sister and did not get it. I can ...
Work etiquette5/26/2006
  Q: When entering the workplace, who should say goodmorning first the person who enters the building or ...
  A: The person who says "good morning" first should be the one who has already had caffeine. ...
introductions5/26/2006
  Q: Is it proper for a woman to stand when being introduced to someone? I know a man should stand up ...
  A: In a business setting,men and women are equals and the woman would stand. In a social ...
how do you address a wife w a husband jr5/25/2006
  Q: We are getting married July 15th and his last name is Tornone and he is a jr. If we are being ...
  A: They should never write John and Danielle Torone,Jr. That indicates that your mother is named ...
high school graduation walk5/25/2006
  Q: during the initial walk in of the high school pre-graduates, is it proper/required for all to stand ...
  A: McIntosh, You stand for brides,judges,minister and MOST certainly for The President of The ...
etiquitte with friends5/24/2006
  Q: a friend of my husbands and mine suggested that we(an old group of friends) all meet up at the house ...
  A: Your question was very hard to follow without names or letters to designate whom it was you were ...
Be-lated Shower Thankyous5/24/2006
  Q: In December of 2005, my mother and I hosted a Baby Shower for my brother's girlfriend who was ...
  A: Do not write the notes as if they were from Briana. That is both a little too 'cute' and not your ...
couples going dutch5/24/2006
  Q: I am taking my boyfriend out to a restaurant for his birthday and would like to invite a few other ...
  A: I don't mean to sound patronizing,but I am very pleased with you for not springing this on the ...
dinner conversation etiquette5/24/2006
  Q: My girlfriend puts bacon bits on her salad. I commented something like, That is gross. We ...
  A: It's not so much what you said but how you said it. Just saying 'That is gross!' is only attacking ...
Hostess Gift5/23/2006
  Q: If one recently throws a party and someone sends an extremely generous hostess gift afterwards, is ...
  A: A thank you note or a phone call should be sent/made. I still find e-mails a little too impersonal ...
GED/graduation presents5/23/2006
  Q: I have a niece that quit school her junior year. She did finally take classes to get her GED. Now ...
  A: Again,anyone can have a party for any reason,anytime. You are NEVER obligated or required to give a ...
Escort/Marshall for Debutante Ball5/23/2006
  Q: My daughter will be presented at a local charity's debutante ball soon. Her father will be ...
  A: The young man shouldn't have accepted the invitation if he could not show up dressed appropriately. ...
Talking loudly5/23/2006
  Q: I believe it is rude to talk loudly (on the cell phone, or with friends) if I'm in public and the ...
  A: No,your friend is not right about this one. Calling attention to yourself by shouting or speaking ...
Wedding Gifts Etiquette - couple moving cross country right after wedding5/22/2006
  Q: My son is getting married soon and I am wondering how to best let friends and family know that while ...
  A: The best that you can do is spread the word far and wide thatthe couple will be moving right after ...
engagement party gift giving?5/22/2006
  Q: Would you advise to bring a gift to an engagement party?? I was planning just a card. Is this OK? ...
  A: Nandan, You do not have to give anyone a gift unless you WANT to. Any celebration that you are ...
Graduation / GED5/22/2006
  Q: I recieved a graduation party announcement for my 16 year old niece who did not receive her high ...
  A: Your niece getting her G.E.D. is certainly reason enough for her family to give her a party. While ...
Graduation Gift?5/22/2006
  Q: My husband and I have been invited to a graduation party. Do I send a gift. We will not be able to ...
  A: Case, You are not required to send a gift. (You wouldn't be obligated to take one if you DID ...
Who Pays5/22/2006
  Q: My new girlfriend of 5 months invited me to join her and her girlfriend for dinner this evening. The ...
  A: The rule is simple: S/he who asks,pays. Back when dinosaurs roamed the Earth and I was in high ...
slice order while eating pizza5/21/2006
  Q: What is the proper slice order for eating pizza? If one slice is already taken, do you take slice ...
  A: There really is no 'proper order' to eating a pizza. Whatever side is closest to you would be the ...
Hostess gift for fundraiser5/21/2006
  Q: Should I bring a hostess gift to a fundraiser at a private home
  A: No,this is a party strictly to raise money for some political candidate,orginization or charity. YOU ...
Personalized Anniversary Gift Etiquette5/19/2006
  Q: When getting personalized gifts or party favors for an anniversary party is there an etiquette rule ...
  A: I have looked in several books and found the same information that you have. It has always been my ...
Stilton Cheese5/18/2006
  Q: Is it good social etiquette to remove the crust from stilton cheese and leave it on the side of the ...
  A: as adults. Some lovers of Stilton eat every scrap,but I find the rinds to be too tough for my ...
graduation announcements5/17/2006
  Q: How do I handle all of the graduation announcements from teens we barely know, are not close to, ...
  A: You are not required to do anything. An announcement is just that,the sharing of news. That you ...
Gift giving/ addressing invitations5/16/2006
  Q: Is it true that you should send a separate invitation to anyone in a household 18 or older? If ...
  A: As to your first question,you do not say what the invitation is to. If it were a dance or a ...
college graduation5/15/2006
  Q: Is it ok to send a card to congratulate a college graduate without including a gift?
  A: Absolutely! There is never any life event for which you MUST give a gift. Not a wedding,not a ...
Graduation Invitations5/15/2006
  Q: Is it poor etiquette to send high school graduation invitations to other families who have ...
  A: Hall, Well,it is sort of pointless to send an invitation to an event that these people will ...
Daughter5/15/2006
  Q: My daughter just got out to the navy after 5 years. My husband and I are use to being alone and ...
  A: There really wasn't an etiquette question in your e-mail,but I can tell that you are frustrated. It ...
Daughter5/15/2006
  Q: My daughter has lived with her high school sweetheart for 4 years. They have a 3 year old daughter. ...
  A: You cannot say much of anything to your daughter about her relationship. If the guy is an abusive ...
Post Graduation Luncheon5/14/2006
  Q: My wife and I recently were invited to attend a close friend's daughter's college graduation.This ...
  A: A host/ess should never throw a party that they cannot afford. In short,you are right to be a ...
Parents 50th Anniversary Party5/12/2006
  Q: What is the proper wording on the invitations to request monetary gifts only? Thank you
  A: It is never acceptable to ask for any kind of a gift, monetary or otherwise on an invitation. There ...
Funerals5/12/2006
  Q: My boss's father has just recently passed away. What are the appropriate gifts or customs for ...
  A: I don't know how big a company or business you work for. Generally,going to the calling hours (or ...
attire for the ballet and what to give the ballerina5/9/2006
  Q: I have been dating a ballet dancer for several months now and her opening night performance is day ...
  A: A dark suit should be fine for tomorrow night. I am going to assume this isn't a black tie affair ...
Graduation (High School)5/9/2006
  Q: When having an open house after the High School Graduation.....what should I put on the insert that ...
  A: What do you want the guests to know about the open house? After the ceremony please join us at 123 ...
High School graduation invitations5/8/2006
  Q: I have been told that you shouldn't send a high school graduation invitation to the family of ...
  A: It is pointless to invite people who are going to be at (or in) the same graduation ceremony as ...
Politely turning down a public request for charity5/7/2006
  Q: It's very awkward to turn down a request for charity especially when it's going toward a children's ...
  A: I always tell people that I have charities that are important to me and that I support. ...
yearly birthday dinner obligation5/6/2006
  Q: My husband and I are invited to attend a birthday dinner every year for a friend of ours. His wife ...
  A: People should never throw parties that they cannot afford. No guest should have to 'pay for the ...
thank you notes to siblings5/4/2006
  Q: My siblings and their families get together for holidays and birthdays. My oldest sister sends ...
  A: While I know some people feel as you do about thank you notes from family members,I am not one of ...
Thank you gifts5/4/2006
  Q: A group of friends and I recently vacationed in Las Vegas. When we arrived at our hotel we were ...
  A: I'm on your side on this one. The hotel bungled the reservations,they needed to rectify the ...
Graduation Announcement Responses5/3/2006
  Q: I have received 3 graduation announcements this week. What is the polite way to respond? Is a gift ...
  A: An announcement is just that. The sharing of such news requires no gift unless you absolutely want ...
Introducing friends5/2/2006
  Q: My question is: what is the proper way to introduce a best friend to another best friend??
  A: If you walk into a room with Jane and Sue is there, present Jane to Sue. "Sue,I'd like for you to ...
wedding5/2/2006
  Q: My nephew is getting married in another state. All of his relatives live in MI and the wedding is ...
  A: The parents of the bride are under no obligation to pay for the travel expenses of their guests. ...
Graduation invitations5/2/2006
  Q: My daughter is graduating from high school. Her last name is different than mine (divorce). How ...
  A: If the invitations to the party were being sent out by themselves,you and your new husband's name ...
Wedding RSVP5/2/2006
  Q: Help my sister is getting married May 28th. My furture Brother-In-Law e-mailed me to let me know ...
  A: It's a little silly to send invitations to the parents and sister of the bride,doubly so since you ...
50th Birthday Trip4/27/2006
  Q: I have 3 years to worry about this, but here goes. My family has begun the mini-tradition (only 2 ...
  A: The rule of thumb (which we are going to flat out ignore here in a minute) is that a host/ess may ...
dress attire for graduation4/26/2006
  Q: My boyfriend will be graduating from law school in mid-May. The graduation will be indoors, in ...
  A: Elli, Don't be intimidated! You will see everything there from NASCAR T-shirts to expensive Chanel ...
weddings4/21/2006
  Q: I am feeling a bit overwhelmed. One of my best friends is getting married Sat April 22, Thank God ...
  A: Betty, Forgot you aren't on East Coast Time! Here's yeaterday's answer: Answer - Dear ...
Money spent as a bridesmaid4/20/2006
  Q: I am feeling a bit overwhelmed. One of my best friends is getting married Sat April 22, Thank God ...
  A: Whooo boy. The bride is completely out of control and I hate to say it,but you let her abuse you ...
Responding to "remarks of politeness"4/14/2006
  Q: Gamble, As I was walking around school a few minutes ago, I happened to accidentally block ...
  A: Anglin, Generally some counter remark to indicate that they are the ones who should be asking ...
bar mitzvah invitation4/13/2006
  Q: My son is anticipating his bar mitzvah next month. This is a formal event, with printed invitations ...
  A: Let her know that she may come to the temple if she wishes,but explain (with regret) that in order ...
Thank you notes4/11/2006
  Q: My son is graduating from high school in May. I am concerned about thank you notes because his ...
  A: He can type them. If he signs his own name and makes some mention of why he is typing (or word ...
Asking someone to speak in private4/10/2006
  Q: Is it rude to quietly motion to someone to leave a room if you need to speak to them in private?
  A: It depends a little on the situation,of course. If you CAN interrupt by saying to the assembled "I'm ...
husband calls someone's spouse his/her "better half"4/8/2006
  Q: Gamble, When meeting acquintances' spouses, my husband says "...and he/she must be your better ...
  A: You hit the nail on the head exactly: "I have believed that when used to refer to own spouse this ...
proper gift4/6/2006
  Q: My daughter is graduating next month to become an R.N. I haven't a clue as to what would be a proper ...
  A: My sister, Anne Gamble is an RN. She says a good Littmann Stethescope is something she would use a ...
Invitations4/3/2006
  Q: I'm planning a 25th anniversary party for my parents. In addition to this I would like to send them ...
  A: While I appreciate what you are trying to do for your parents,you cannot give them a gift that you ...
good manners4/3/2006
  Q: I want to know who should say good bye when someone is leaving on a trip. My brother in law comes ...
  A: Rosanna, Why don't you go to him? If he is leaving for half a year,there are many things to take ...
50th anniversary Open House4/3/2006
  Q: My parents and their children are planning an Open house for their 50th anniversary. My dad says he ...
  A: Whomever is hosting the party pays. If the children are planning in honor of their parents,they ...
when to mail Easter card4/3/2006
  Q: When should I mail an Easter card/gift to a friend? Is now too early? I was thinking to have it ...
  A: Easter is on the 16th of April this year,so anytime from today on is fine. There is no real 'rule' ...
Internet stranger4/1/2006
  Q: I am on someone's E mailing list. She is a regular in a chatroom I'm often in, we say hello, but ...
  A: No,you're not wrong to feel as you do. We've gotten to a very strange place in our society. With ...
Don't want to be friends3/28/2006
  Q: Hope you can help my wife and I out. We have "friends of friends" whom we see at social gatherings ...
  A: It would hurt them terribly to hear you say in any way,shape or form that you do not wish to be ...
Gifts for Twin(s)3/28/2006
  Q: My son was invited to a Bas Mitvah for twins. He goes to school with one of the girls, but doesn't ...
  A: Sadowsky, Two gifts since the party is for both of them. If you wish,the second gift may be a ...
NON-PROFIT FUNDRAISER3/28/2006
  Q: Our local Historical Society is hosting a dinner acknowledging the society's 100 years and honoring ...
  A: Yes,you should offer a pair of tickets to the dinner to the owners of the businesses you're ...
Thank you notes3/26/2006
  Q: I recently attended a baby shower. During the shower all the guest were handed a blank white ...
  A: While the "Mother to Be" is not the hostess of the party,she should take the trouble to track down ...
MOB Pantyhose Outdoor Wedding3/26/2006
  Q: I'm the Mother of the Bride.The Wedding & Reception are going to be outdoors at an Antebellum ...
  A: Whatever you do,please do not wear KNEE HIGHS! Those are fine with dress pants,but barely. As ...
Gifts3/19/2006
  Q: Gamble, I have been quite ill for the past 2 months, and have been unable to work. I have been on ...
  A: Malames, I am sorry to hear of your illness but glad to know you are on the mend. I have drafted ...
birthday wishes3/19/2006
  Q: Is there any "rule" or just a tradition to wish "hapy birthday" to someone THE EVENING BEFORE THE ...
  A: I have never heard of any tradition other than wishing someone a happy birthday on the actual day. ...
Dinner Invitation3/19/2006
  Q: What to do when invited to dinner at someone's home but you have complicated dietary requirements? ...
  A: The polite thing to do is to let the hosts know that you don't want her to change or alter her plans ...
Meeting new people3/18/2006
  Q: I am very shy and feel often quite socially awkward. Can you give me some tips on how to conduct ...
  A: This is a little too broad a subject to answer,but I will try. The trick is to stop thinking about ...
Business letter to City Council3/17/2006
  Q: I have written an important letter to the members of a municipal city council. I don't know their ...
  A: Snelson, " To the members of the Anytown City Council, My name is John Snelson of 123 That ...
bridal shower gift3/12/2006
  Q: Am I expected to send a gift to a bridal shower that is 3000 miles from my home? I will be attending ...
  A: No,you do not have to send (or for that matter take) a gift to any party,ever. No guest has to 'pay ...
Baby Shower Gift Giving3/5/2006
  Q: I am sorry to have e-mailed you a second time within an 8-9 hour period, but I have another ...
  A: You are not required to give a gift if you do not wish to do so. There is no party of any kind ...
Thank You Notes for Wedding Presents3/4/2006
  Q: My brother's wedding was at the end of July 2005. Since we are Muslim there were two parts: the ...
  A: Ariel, It was wrong of them to stick you with this job. It was up to the 'happy couple' to send ...
Okay to bring outside food to a restaurant3/1/2006
  Q: Is is good manners to bring outside food or drink to a restaurant? For instance, if you bring chips ...
  A: Most restaurants forbid 'outside food' as it violates health codes,can negate their insurance and ...
An Unexpected Guest3/1/2006
  Q: After I broke up with my boyfriend in early January, we decided we'd keep in touch and occasionally ...
  A: Yes,you have the right to feel that way. Since he lives four hours away he didn't just 'drop by'. ...
gift recipient etiquette2/26/2006
  Q: Recently we visited young friends (28-30 years old)to meet their new baby. We'd been on the road ...
  A: It is sort of strange for them to open the gift without you there, You did hand it to them ...
Wedding etiquette2/22/2006
  Q: This is an extremely embarassing situation! But here goes... I was married a year and a half ago. It ...
  A: PLEASE mail them right away! It is not too late. Since they are dated,don't open them,just mail ...
Lit candles2/21/2006
  Q: Is there a rule about lighting candles on a formal table during the day. For example: If you are ...
  A: Candles have no place on a table before dusk. Not even as part of the centerpiece,if you want the ...
Gift for engagment party2/19/2006
  Q: are gifts required to be given if you are invited to an engagement party for a young couple?
  A: No,you are never required to give a gift for any occasion. No guest has to 'pay for the privilege' ...
wedding invitations2/16/2006
  Q: I am getting married in a few months and we are accepting monetary gifts only; how do i go about ...
  A: Any reference to gifts in any way,shape or form is by it's very nature,rude. Here's why: When you ...
wedding attire etiquette2/14/2006
  Q: What should I do if I find that I am under-dressed or dressed inappropriately at a wedding?
  A: I'm sure that your friends or relatives are more interested in having you there for the joyous event ...
Wedding ring2/14/2006
  Q: How long after a spouse dies can the survivor continue to wear a wedding ring?
  A: Till the day they die if they wish. Obviously,if the widow or widower hopes to date and remarry,they ...
Thank you note2/6/2006
  Q: My friends and I were invited to a birthday party at a restaurant and it was absolutely beautiful ...
  A: Schirmer, No,you aren't in the wrong. She just got her notes out first. Since she had gifts to ...
question about entertaining/etiquette2/6/2006
  Q: I'm not sure if you can answer this or not, but I didn't know where else I should direct this ...
  A: Yes,you and your partner/husband/etc would clear (pass the food from the left,clear from the right) ...
paying for dinner2/4/2006
  Q: Amanda, My husband and I don't know the proper etiquette in who or how to pay for dinner at the ...
  A: Lackett, Have your husband take your son aside and ask if he is planning to pay for dinner. He is ...
Re: Holidaying with Friends1/31/2006
  Q: We (me, my husband and two young children) have a few holidays on this year, however very dear ...
  A: Please forgive the tardiness of my reply,I kept getting error messages when I tried to send my ...
Bas Mitzvah Invitation1/31/2006
  Q: I am not Jewish and my husband has not been involved in Judaism for many, many years. His niece ...
  A: Bernstein, Please forgive the tardy reply,every time I tried to send my answer through I would get ...
Engagement Dinner Invitation Etiquette1/30/2006
  Q: My sister is having an engagement party for my fiancée and I at a restaurant that isn't very cheap. ...
  A: The site has been down,not allowing me to send the answers through..sorry for the delay. Dear ...
Correcting Someone's Grammar and/or Ettiquette1/28/2006
  Q: Gamble, I have a brother-in-law that loves to correct other people's grammar and/or ettiquette in a ...
  A: It is considered a worse breech of etiquette to point out someone else's mistake than the mistake ...
family relationships1/26/2006
  Q: Two and a half years ago an ex-lover came back into my life due to being deathly ill. I was very ...
  A: I think you've answered your own question. By rejecting her they are rejecting you. Where she is not ...
lunching together1/26/2006
  Q: ------------------------- Thanks for the reply but what I find is that unless you mention the terms ...
  A: As long as you say up front how you would like the bill to be handled who could take offense? It's ...
guests and their children1/25/2006
  Q: I have an on-going problem that I'm not sure how to handle. My husband and I do not have children, ...
  A: Horrible. I've also noticed a decline in the willingess of parents to properly supervise and/or ...
Baby shower1/23/2006
  Q: My 17 year old daughter is expecting in March and I have planned a shower for her. My husband's ...
  A: If your daughter is keeping the baby,then a shower is not inappropriate. Her age has nothing to do ...
Ediquette manners1/21/2006
  Q: I recieved flowers because of a lost love one. What is the proper way to respond?
  A: You are under no obligation to do anything,really. Those who have lost a loved one are given a pass ...
toasting for a 50th anniversary dinner1/18/2006
  Q: What is the proper etiquette for toasting my parents for their 50th anniversary? The lady that is ...
  A: The woman whom you are employing to provide the venue and catering for this wonderful milestone in ...
bridal shower and wedding invites1/17/2006
  Q: I am giving a local bridal shower for my daughter with local guests. Shi is having a destination ...
  A: Yes,absolutely. Even if the odds are slim to none that they will come to the wedding,you must invite ...
Yelling in the house1/13/2006
  Q: My wife and I have a 10,000 square foot house and my wife is always yelling at me from one room or ...
  A: Bishop, This is one of my pet peeves as well. Typically you cannot hear the other person clearly ...
who decides what social etiquette is...society or the individual?1/13/2006
  Q: I'm doing a research project on social etiquette. My thesis question is stated above. Could you ...
  A: Gina, You pose a question much like "Which came first,the chicken or the egg?" Society makes the ...
Wedding1/13/2006
  Q: I sent in the response card for a wedding saying both my husband and I would be attending. The ...
  A: As the bride and her caterer are expecting you and a 'plus one',it doesn't matter if it's your ...
money instead of wedding gifts1/10/2006
  Q: We are a military family living in Germany. My daughter will be married in the United States, in ...
  A: Jordan, I'm afraid you won't like what I have to tell you, but the blunt truth is you cannot ever ...
initials on stationery to be used before and after the actual wedding1/8/2006
  Q: I am recently engaged and plan to marry in December of this year. My fiancee has some questions in ...
  A: Farrell, Congratulations! 1) For the engagement and shower gifts she should write the note and ...
Dining Etiquette1/6/2006
  Q: When at home, does proper etiquette call for using a fork and knife or the hands to eat a Hot ...
  A: While I have never had a Hot Pocket,I believe they are a snack food meant to be eaten without ...
Stating you feel tired1/5/2006
  Q: Is it rude to state that your tired when you meet people? My boyfried will honestly tell anyone ...
  A: You mean,when he's meeting them for the first time? Rude is a little too strong a word,it is a it ...
Rude Friends of my Husband1/4/2006
  Q: My husband and I were married almost three years ago. His best friend and wife have not been very ...
  A: Lancaster, This woman is bad news. For her to allow her daughter to behave like that in the home ...
How to blow your nose?1/4/2006
  Q: During this season of colds and flu a frequent topic of conversation in our office is the practice ...
  A: If possible you should excuse yourself from the room or at least the immediate area to blow your ...
Birthday invitation1/3/2006
  Q: How can I say "No gifts, please" on a birthday invitation in a tactful way? Thank you
  A: The etiquette books all say it is in poor taste to refuse gifts before even getting them,but to ...
Dinning Etiquette1/3/2006
  Q: My stepdaughter, who is 27 and lives in another city, visits us each year at Christmas. She has a ...
  A: Duncan, This question is one that I wrestle with every once in awhile. The rule is women may ...
Dinner gifts1/2/2006
  Q: My wife and I have been invited to her mother's house for dinners or barbecues many times since ...
  A: You are certainly not required to take a gift to your mother in law's house every time she has you ...
Invitation Ettiquette1/2/2006
  Q: I am a bit confused by the responses I recently received from an impromptu invitation. I sent the ...
  A: Michele, If you are vauge in the invitation,you cannot be too surprised when they invite extra ...
Not showing up to a Party1/2/2006
  Q: My husband and I had a New Year's party. A dear friend told me that she and her husband would be ...
  A: I can see why you would be hurt. The question for me is: What kind of party was it? A sit down ...
christmas pressies12/30/2005
  Q: is it acceptable nowadays to sell unwanted Christmas presents on the internet no matter how bad they ...
  A: I answered this question this morning and I agree that you should NOT sell prsents on the internet. ...
christmas gifts12/30/2005
  Q: is is right to sell unwanted Christmas gifts on the internet, without the person who bought it ...
  A: Oh dear. Selling a Christmas gift on eBay before a week is up is a bit too hard hearted for my ...
birthday12/27/2005
  Q: ..my partner and i love to throw parties and our bitrthdays are very close to each other. is it ...
  A: Absolutely not! The more parties the better I say. The only things you cannot do are: Expect ...
table manners12/22/2005
  Q: Should both hands stay on the table while eating, or just one is ok? I was raised in Latin America ...
  A: Etiquette tends to be regional. What is 'correct' in Latin America isn't always the case in other ...
Birthday dinner gift card12/18/2005
  Q: Ms. Gamble, I want to take my girlfriend to a nice dinner for her birthday. For my birthday last ...
  A: No,it's not wrong to use the card to take her out to dinner. Someone gave the card to you and ...
Toasting of drinks12/18/2005
  Q: I understand that you should not touch glassess during a toast as this means a sailor will die. Do ...
  A: I had never heard this superstiton before, so I did some research. The only referance I found was ...
dinner invitation12/16/2005
  Q: My mum and I are inviting some people out to dinner at a restaurant to help celebrate her partner ...
  A: A host/ess may never throw a party that s/he cannot afford. There is no polite way to ask someone to ...
Gifts at Job12/16/2005
  Q: My boss gave me a christmas gift, in fact he gave gifts to all his employees, honestly I dont like ...
  A: An employee never gives a superior a gift. It's hard to explain,but it's part 'not blurring the ...
Step Daughter Etiquette12/15/2005
  Q: I have an etiquette question regarding my step-daughter. My step-daughter does not live with me, my ...
  A: Yes,unless she is an adult living out on her own,she is still part of your family and should be ...
Sympathy Thank You Cards12/14/2005
  Q: My husband passed away last week. I have recieved several sympathy cards. Some cards had money ...
  A: Please accept my sincere condolences on your loss. As for writing notes,the choice is entirely ...
Sweet Sixteen12/13/2005
  Q: I am throwing a formal sweet sixteen for my daughter and she is going to have 15 courts. My ...
  A: Oh dear. This is a tricky one. Generally the people who agree to be in say,a wedding party, agree to ...
silly situation with the invitation12/10/2005
  Q: It's been interesting to browse through an archive with all different questions being answered. I ...
  A: No,I'm sorry,there is no polite way to rescind an invitation. The only thing you could do 'to get ...
Recieving a Birthday Gift12/5/2005
  Q: Is there a gentle way of telling someone, or is it even appropriate to tell that someone, that the ...
  A: Nothing wrong with telling your very nice husband the truth. Gently of course,it was a very generous ...
Makeup Required?12/4/2005
  Q: I am a first-year student at a women's college. I generally understand all the implications of ...
  A: You already know the answer to the question,you just want help telling your mother? Is that it? :) ...
Giving a gift when you can not attend a party.12/2/2005
  Q: My son is 4 years old and this is his first year in preschool. He was invited to a classmate's ...
  A: Paro, No,you wouldn't give a gift unless the other child is such a close friend that you'd want to ...
Party12/1/2005
  Q: I am throwing a surprise anniversary party with my siblings for my parent's 25th. We plan to keep ...
  A: you've answered your own question without even knowing it: "She is very harsh and unkind and ...
Proper Dress Attire11/30/2005
  Q: Chrstmas Open House on a Sunday 2:00 PM to 6:00 PM. Does husband wear a suit & tie? Is velvet ...
  A: Crispen, As there was no indication of the formality or informality of the open house,the clothes ...
Son-in-law has horrible manners11/29/2005
  Q: My daughter has been married for a year and over that course of time I have come to see that her ...
  A: Marie, Oh dear. It's a very distressing situation indeed. The bad news is,you may say nothing to ...
Christmas Eve Party Invitation11/28/2005
  Q: We will be hosting a traditional Cuban Christmas Eve party...very informal pig roast. We expect to ...
  A: Centeno, As it is an informal affair,don't worry too much about wording. Say what you need and ...
No wedding gift to brother (groom)11/28/2005
  Q: My husband's twin brother got married in September. My husband was not asked to be the best man (the ...
  A: There are a few things that stand out to me. The first is,this is an issue between your husband and ...
Thank you card for birthday gift11/28/2005
  Q: I have a tendency to over-send Thank-You cards. My in-laws (with whom I hardly get along with) talk ...
  A: If you thank the gift giver in person,there is no need to write a thank you note. I'm like you,I ...
thank you notes11/27/2005
  Q: I recently attending a debutante party hosted by six families in honor of their daughters. I am ...
  A: Yes,please write a brief note to each family. They laid out a good bit of money for the even and I ...
Thanksgiving Dinner Time Changed Last Minute11/25/2005
  Q: My boyfriend and I have been dating about 1 1/2 years and live an hour apart. We are both in our ...
  A: I can certainly see why you would be upset. You accepted a dinner invitation for a specific time and ...
help11/18/2005
  Q: I live in Venezuela and I need your help: what about greating evryone when you get on a public bus? ...
  A: There is no need to greet everyone on a public bus. A polite smile is all you need. Wish "buen ...
Restaurant Seating Etiquette11/16/2005
  Q: Last night my boyfriend and I were led by the hostess to a table by the window; I was walking in ...
  A: A lady may choose where she would like to sit. She indicates this by stopping by the chair and her ...
Disgusting cold11/15/2005
  Q: My co-worker has a cold and she snorts, spits into trash cans and doesn't cover her mouth. How can ...
  A: Explain that she is in danger of re-infecting herself if she doesn't blow her nose into a ...
College Graduation Gift giving11/15/2005
  Q: My 24 yr old daughter graduated from College of Charleston in 2003. She received gifts from family & ...
  A: Technically,you may not put "No gifts please" on an invitation. It presumes that you were expecting ...
office party manners11/9/2005
  Q: Every year our company holds its annual "Christmas Ball" at the local country club. It is held on a ...
  A: I don't know how many employees you have to reach,but a few things come to mind. The basic idea is ...
50th Wedding Anniversary Dilemma11/9/2005
  Q: Gamble, My Mom died a month and a half ago and it will be the date of my dad's and mom's 50th ...
  A: Please accept my sincere sympathy on the loss of your mother. No one is ever prepared for the death ...
Jewelry gift11/8/2005
  Q: Is it acceptable for a woman to accept a fairly valuable ring from a man who is not her fiance or ...
  A: Janet, No it is not appropriate. The only acceptable gifts a young man may give to a young lady ...
Thank you cards for co-workers11/7/2005
  Q: Amanda - Recently I had several women from the office over for a luncheon at my new home. They ...
  A: Please mail the thank you notes. It's a little too 'I can't be bothered' to just hand them out. ...
Telephone etiquette11/5/2005
  Q: What is considered an acceptable time to call someone's home? Between what hours? And is this ...
  A: I am going to assume this is an ex-husband and you had children together that you need to discuss. ...
Table Manners11/4/2005
  Q: I have always taught my children to cut their food with their fork in their left hand, then eating ...
  A: Denyce, You are and have been teaching your children the proper way to eat their food. Yes,they ...
returning calls10/29/2005
  Q: After my mother passed, My family has drifted apart. They claim they want to be close however,when I ...
  A: Please forgive the tardy reply. Look,this isn't an etiquette question. It can't be so easily ...
Proper etiquette and hats...10/27/2005
  Q: Is it proper etiquette or manners for a male to be seated in a room wearing a hat?
  A: The fast answer is "No,a man should NOT wear a hat indoors." But that leaves out a few things. ...
50th wedding anniversary10/25/2005
  Q: We are to celebrate our 50th soon and this is a little complicated. We live in a small town where we ...
  A: I would not post a general invitation on the bulletin board. If there are people that you ...
Baby shower10/21/2005
  Q: My seventeen year old daugter is expecting. Her boyfriend has a large, close-nit family, who live an ...
  A: Yes,please extend every courtesy and make every effort towards the baby's paternal grandparents. You ...
Performance Occasion10/18/2005
  Q: Through research I have found you and your advice for all of these different queeries on the all ...
  A: You rock. Sorry,let me start over... Dear Mr. West, This will surely go down in my personal ...
How to address a married couple with different names10/17/2005
  Q: Greetings, Recently a dear friend was married and decided not to change her name. The question ...
  A: The envelope should look lke this: Elizabeth Smith Thomas Jones 100 ...
Taking food to a party10/13/2005
  Q: I was just wondering if it was rude for the host of a party (combined welcome home and birthday) to ...
  A: Generally a host/ess should not throw a party that they cannot afford. However,pitch-ins (or ...
Proper wording for Business Invitations10/12/2005
  Q: I am organizing a business event and need to know the proper wording for the invitation to convey ...
  A: There is no need to indicate that the hors d'oeuvres will be ample. People will be able to see that ...
Dinner gone bad.....10/8/2005
  Q: We recently ate a very casual dinner with a couple at their home that we had met in a class and had ...
  A: Life is too short to foster friendships with people that you do not genuinely care for or about. ...
Southern Debutante Ball10/7/2005
  Q: I have been invited to be the escort for the daughter of a family friend for her debutante ball. ...
  A: Private ball or one in which many girls are presented? Which role are you taking? Are you a stand in ...
Hotel Etiquette10/5/2005
  Q: I work the night audit at a hotel, and was wondering if there is a setting of general rules for ...
  A: Anderson, There are 'rules' for hotel guests,but not many as they are paying customers,so to ...
guests paying for their own dinner10/2/2005
  Q: My sister and I want to throw a party for our mom's 60th birthday but we can't afford to buy dinner ...
  A: A host should never throw a party they cannot afford. So,yes,it is rude to invite people to dinner ...
defending my boots!!9/27/2005
  Q: I have an out-of-state sis-in-law who is very stylish and extremly envious. whenever she visits, she ...
  A: From a strict etiquette stance,the proper thing to do is be gracious and share the information with ...
Birthday Party Invitation from neighbor9/23/2005
  Q: We've been invited to d birthday party by a neighbor we've known for about one year. It's her ...
  A: You are not required to take a gift for the neighbor. Please remember tht no one is required to 'pay ...
desire to participate in game9/21/2005
  Q: Several months ago my best friend and her husband visited an elderly lady who greatly enjoyed ...
  A: No,you are not being rude by asking not to play. It's only a game and one that you do not enjoy. ...
Etiquette9/20/2005
  Q: My family (husband and two small children) is going to visit friends and staying overnight. She is a ...
  A: Depends entirely on how well you know these friends. A post visit thank you note is a MUST,of ...
Trip Cancellation8/13/2005
  Q: I agreed to go on a trip to Italy with a group of 12 friends. One person organized the trip 10 ...
  A: MADNESS! If she refunded your money and asked the other 10 (11 including her) to pick up the for the ...
Restaurant Seating8/13/2005
  Q: Whenever my wife and I dine at a restaurant, I always have her walk in front of me when the maitre ...
  A: Allen, No,no and no to your friend. I just wanted to put your mmind at rest before I had to leave ...
opening gifts8/10/2005
  Q: I've been to a childs birthday party at a gymnasium where they wait until the party is over and open ...
  A: No. The parents put time,money and effort into bringing a gift,it's wrong not to acknowledge it by ...
graduation etiquette8/2/2005
  Q: My father received a letter from his sister. In the envelope was a graduation picture of a young ...
  A: If your father is not close enough to know the identity of the person in the picture,he certainly ...
Sweet Sixteen party invitation7/29/2005
  Q: A co-worker has given me an invitation to her daughters sweet sixteen party. I am friendly with the ...
  A: How odd! A 'Sweet Sixteen' party is for the honoree and her friends. (Meaning peers!) 1) No idea ...
Dinner Etiquette7/26/2005
  Q: Gamble, I recently hosted a dinner party in honor of my husband's birthday. The guests included my ...
  A: My Dear Mrs.Cox, You are to be congratulated for showing such restraint in the face of ...
congratulations/sympathy?7/7/2005
  Q: I have a friend that was pregnant with twins. A few days before going into the hospital to deliver, ...
  A: You have hit the nail on the head. You must do both, celebrate as well as sympathize. It is a ...
In the midst of a lengthy...7/6/2005
  Q: In the midst of a lengthy telephone conversation on an unrelated subject, a friend of my late wife ...
  A: Jim, As this conversation happened a few months ago,it makes it easier to bring the subject up. I ...
family etiquette6/28/2005
  Q: My in-laws live in Florida and we live in the Midwest. They have business in the midwest, but in ...
  A: Here's how I see it. When you and your wife married, you each left your families to create a new ...
Etiquette6/24/2005
  Q: I have just completed my sophomore year as a Dietetics major, and have spent the past two years ...
  A: I think I would explain exactly what you just did, more briefly of course. 'That's the great thing ...
Guests6/23/2005
  Q: If person A is invited to person B's house and person C drops over unannouced is it in poor taste ...
  A: I think that you already know the answer to this one. Person A was a guest. Invited by B, A should ...
RSVP6/17/2005
  Q: I am sending invitations for an open house to meet a new born. Hours will be specific. Do I need ...
  A: No RSVP is needed for an open house. With an open house,it's understood to be a casual gathering ...
Birthday Etiquette6/14/2005
  Q: My son received many birthday cards, some with cash. I think he should sit down and write thank you ...
  A: AH! A fly in the old marital ointment. Well,may I suggest treading lightly as you tell her "Ha ha ...
If the mother of a husband...6/7/2005
  Q: If the mother of a husband dies, do you address sympathy cards to both husband and wife or to ...
  A: Winebarger, Mr and Mrs John Jones and family. (I'm going to assume that the children are old ...
Hotel bedroom etiquette6/1/2005
  Q: How should I leave the bed when I leave a hotel - just tidy it, or strip the sheets off & leave them ...
  A: As a paying guest,you are not required to do anything with the sheets. (Be it at a hotel,motel or ...
high school invitation distribution5/19/2005
  Q: It is proper etiquette to put an invitation up in the breakroom at work, instead of sending every ...
  A: Patton, You don't say what the invitation is to in the body of the question. The subject line just ...
calling cards5/18/2005
  Q: Amanda, I may have inadvertantly given you an incorrect address to respond to my questions. My ...
  A: Benas, It seems that,yes,calling cards are becoming popular again. The true 'calling card' had ...
Gift giving5/16/2005
  Q: My nephew is graduating from law school. He doesn't want to have a party until he passes the bar. Do ...
  A: Salisbury, There is no 'rule' for a situation like this,do whatever your heart tells you to do. ...
Gift Giving Etiquette - College Graduation5/16/2005
  Q: I'm graduating from college this Saturday, and although I'm not having a graduation party, I've ...
  A: No guest EVER has to 'pay for the privilige' of being invited anywhere. You are never required to ...
Toddler "No Gift" Party4/19/2005
  Q: I was recently invited to a morning Playgroup Party for a child in our regular playgroup who was ...
  A: You did EXACTLY the right thing as did the hostess. Drive around any neighborhood in America on a ...
Eating shrimp on skewers4/19/2005
  Q: What is the proper way to eat shrimp that is served on skewers?
  A: I have no idea why,but this question won't stop popping up as unanswered even though I have 'sent ...
laundry days4/4/2005
  Q: Let's suppose I am on vacation, and far away from home, and needed to use the laundromat. Is it ...
  A: It all depends on how busy the laundromat is. Clearly, if the place is empty or only half full,go ...
Furneral Etiquette4/3/2005
  Q: After some one dies what is the proper order of responsiblity for making furneral/memorial ...
  A: Jay, Please accept my sincerest sympathy on the death of your brother. The brothers should ask ...
fashion4/3/2005
  Q: What is the difference between black tie optional, formal, and semi-formal?
  A: Black Tie Optional: Is not as strong a statement for formal attire as "Black Tie" or "Black Tie ...
Table etiquette3/25/2005
  Q: Gamble, I come from a country where 75% of the scolding time from our parents is related to your ...
  A: Never apologize for being excited about etiquette! Yes,it is our custom here in America to keep one ...
Mother-in-law rude?3/10/2005
  Q: My mother-in-law is a piece of work. Her birthday was last week and she emailed her 2 children (my ...
  A: Please forgive the tardy reply,I got the flu after avoiding it all winter! Guess I let my guard ...
Registering for a Birthday2/23/2005
  Q: I was recently invited to a friend's 33rd birthday party by his wife. The party is really just a ...
  A: Simons, MADNESS. What is the world coming to? No guest should have to 'pay for the privilege' of ...
anniversary2/22/2005
  Q: My parents will be celebrating their 30th anniversary early this summer. My sisters and I would ...
  A: While it is very sweet of you and your sisters to want to give your parents a trip,you may not ...
death of office member's family2/22/2005
  Q: My fiance' dated a co-worker in 1998. They dated for 3 to 4 months. They still work together for ...
  A: Elizabeth, He should go to the 'calling hours' and stay for a few minutes. Hopefully he can pick ...
Sharing Popcorn ?2/21/2005
  Q: I recently went to the movies with my wife and a new friend from work. I bought popcorn and snacks. ...
  A: Wow! Not only rude,but disgusting,too. Why he would think that it as okay to get grabby with your ...
Etiquette2/21/2005
  Q: Etiquette Quiz 1. When in a dark theater, and there is no usher, the man should: a. Walk behind ...
  A: Mark, I am really torn about answering this one. We are not supposed to do 'homework' ...
Etiquette Changes following a War2/17/2005
  Q: Elmer, What changes do you forecast in etiquette following the war in Iraq and Afghanistan? A ...
  A: In the on going effort to redefine etiquette in the 21st century,it has come to us here at the ...
Friends Sick Husband2/17/2005
  Q: I have a friend whose husband had surgery for a brain tumor. I am casual friends with this person ...
  A: I wouldn't go to the hospital if you are only a casual friend of the patient's wife. Brain surgery ...
engagement ring2/16/2005
  Q: AFter a woman marries, which side of the wedding ring does she wear her engagement ring on? That is ...
  A: The wedding ring is the BIG deal. I know,it's not flashy,but that's the one on which the vows before ...
opposite families2/15/2005
  Q: Gamble, I hope you are able to help me. My fiance and I have a long term engagement and are madly ...
  A: You cannot tell your beloved "Darling,I am worried that your family is going to get into a drunken ...
Inlaw Baby Shower2/8/2005
  Q: My sister in law is expecting this summer. However, we have not exactly ever gotten along, not even ...
  A: Hmm..I have one of those. The mantra you have to adopt and repeat is "I love my brother,I love my ...
inviting to dinner2/1/2005
  Q: I'm planning a surprise dinner for my mom at a restaurant. I'm a student and have a part-time job. ...
  A: Yes,you are the hostess of the party,so the burden of paying falls to you. For EVERYTHING. ...
Roses for Valentines1/3/2005
  Q: Is it ok to give a guy roses for Valentines Day? Thanks
  A: Absolutely it is okay to give a man flowers. I would NOT suggest roses though. Too expensive around ...
family relationships12/26/2004
  Q: Here is my situration, I'm usually caught in the middle of family members who disagree. I hate this ...
  A: Wooo boy. That's a mess. It was not inappropriate for the girlfriend to send a graduation invitation ...
Addressing an invitation12/24/2004
  Q: My Wife and I are planning a party. One of our friends is in the middle of a divorce and separated ...
  A: As John is going through a divorce,I doubt that he wants to bring the soon to be ex Mrs! ...
Signatures on cards/letters12/22/2004
  Q: I would like to know the proper order in which to list the names of family members when signing a ...
  A: You have been doing just fine without my help! That is the standard (and traditional) way to sign ...
Office Etiquette12/21/2004
  Q: I have been working for my boss for less than 2 months. His mother passed away yesterday. What is ...
  A: Can any of you attend the calling hours or funeral? The calling hours are a brief stay to let him ...
Dinner Etiquette12/17/2004
  Q: We have been invited by our next door neighbors to their home for an informal dinner. I know that it ...
  A: If you want to give flowers either give them the day before or the day after. To bring them is to ...
Dinner/Ballet etiquette12/15/2004
  Q: I always get nervous going out for meal dates as I feel like I'm going to do something to embarrass ...
  A: OKAY--part two! You've made it to the theatre a half an hour before the curtain. THEY will have a ...
Wedding etiquette12/15/2004
  Q: My sister is getting married in February. Both she and her fiance are older and have an establised ...
  A: Please forgive my tardy reply. I meant to put myself on 'vacation' status until after the holdiays, ...
Last Minute Dinner Time Changes12/13/2004
  Q: My husband and I were invited to a 5:30 dinner/birthday party for my = girlfriend's daughter at our ...
  A: How bizarre! There was no reasonable excuse for why the party was moved up at the last moment? "A ...
Gift for hostess12/13/2004
  Q: I'm a female and I've been invited to a friend-of-a-friend's christmas party. The party will be ...
  A: Unless you have a moral objection to alcohol,bringing a bottle of wine is still a good gesture. You ...
Entertaining12/12/2004
  Q: If dinner is taking longer than anticpated to prepare what should one do so guests don't get too ...
  A: The answer in a word is Crudites! Raw vegetables to nibble on while they wait. Cheese and crackers ...
adoption ediquette12/5/2004
  Q: My friends have just adopted two, unrelated, teenage children, one boy, one girl. They are having ...
  A: You are never 'required' to bring a gift to any party. Not a wedding,not a Bar Mitzvah,not even a ...
party ettiqutte?11/14/2004
  Q: My husband and I were invited to a "black tie" dinner by a couple we don't know well. Since we are ...
  A: ARE YOU KIDDING ME? That is just breathtakingly awful. Everyone has been invited to something that ...
opening doors and holding elevators11/2/2004
  Q: When a person (male or female) opens a door or holds an elevator for another, wouldn't the proper ...
  A: Well,yes,most people say "thank you" automatically. It costs nothing to say it. You don't even have ...
Door salesmen10/30/2004
  Q: Yesterday I had an Indian man knock on my door trying to get people to support a childrens charity. ...
  A: Here's my formula: "Oh how wonderful,it sounds like a very worthwhile cause! I support Books For ...
proper title10/22/2004
  Q: I am sending a letter to a gentleman and his wife. The wife is a medical doctor. What is the ...
  A: Kulesa, The address should read as follows: Mr.Jim Jones Dr.Jennifer ...
Thanksgiving - Offer Accepted and then Declined10/19/2004
  Q: Gamble, A few weeks ago, I invited my cousin and her soon-to-be husband to our home for Thanksgiving ...
  A: When it comes to family,I don't much believe in standing on ceremony. If you are genuinely hurt by ...
Etiquette10/10/2004
  Q: We have accepted an invitation to go to a high priced charity dinner. Our hosts paid for our ...
  A: That is a dilemma! Am I to assume that you already have left town and this event is in the next day ...
Where to Kiss10/7/2004
  Q: I do some volunteer work with a lady every week. When we greet each other we first kissed each ...
  A: What country are you from,where is she from and where are you now? I ask because as you say,the ...
Etiquettes10/7/2004
  Q: Madam, Am Avi Nash from India. Due to multi-cultural, multi-ethnical background, we follow a set of ...
  A: How much of a stranger are we talking about? Is this someone that you see across a crowded room or ...
Re: Walking in public9/29/2004
  Q: I was browsing the site and read the question "Walking in public" and your answer. I was wondering ...
  A: The first part was true,the man was supposed to walk on the "outside" or closer to the street. The ...
Loud and Obnoxious Person Wants to Visit!!!8/4/2004
  Q: Good Evening, My husband Ron's ages old drinking buddy from his military seafaring days wants to ...
  A: Yes,I can see where you would want to put the brakes on reviving the 'good old days'. We all grow ...
Seeking Advice on Etiquette7/22/2004
  Q: A couple from a club I go to invited me over to their place for tea and I spent an enjoyable two ...
  A: It is wrong to correct people's grammar or the way they pronounce a word. However,as you said,you ...
Public display of affection7/21/2004
  Q: What is the general rule about kissing and or touching in public? Is it at all acceptable? ...
  A: Ah! The wonderful but much maligned PDA! Wonderful if you're the one happy and in love,oblivious to ...
Bridal Shower7/15/2004
  Q: My daughter and her finance in the Navy were recently married in a simple ceremony for the immediate ...
  A: Drager, No,you cannot make it a "cash shower". If you want to spread the word quietly that nothing ...
wedding7/15/2004
  Q: is it proper etiquette for a second marriage bride to keep her first husband's name? she has been ...
  A: Yon, Have you made your feelings on this subject clear to your intended? If this is truly a "deal ...
answering email7/14/2004
  Q: I recently sent my son and daughter in law and email referring to information on family vacation ...
  A: I am trying to figure out from the limited information you gave why you are upset. Did they agree to ...
Rewards Credit Cards7/13/2004
  Q: When splitting the tab at a friendly dinner out, is it an etiquette faux pas to pocket the cash of ...
  A: DEAR HEAVENS NO. Look,let's go at this thing properly. These are good enough friends that you are ...
Quinceanera Etiquette7/6/2004
  Q: I have looked all over the 'net, yet I still can't find the answer to this! Hopefully you will have ...
  A: Please forgive me,but I have a splitting headache that won't seem to go away. What I am going to do ...
wedding7/5/2004
  Q: I work at school in a small town, where almost everybody knows each other. The teacher I am working ...
  A: By all means send the happy couple a card or a note congratulating them on this occassion. No matter ...
invitation7/3/2004
  Q: My sister and her husband planned to see a movie. My husband and I decided to see it also. I asked ...
  A: I'm not sure how your sister got the impression that you and your husband were inviting them to the ...
Uninvited visitors6/29/2004
  Q: I have a acquaintance who "just drops in" frequently. She never calls, just stops out of the blue to ...
  A: WOW. You've already explained the "house rules" (i.e. NO dropping by with out call) and she is flat ...
Thank card for a thank you gift?6/28/2004
  Q: Gamble, I am a kindergarden teacher and receive many gifts throughout the year from students and ...
  A: Ford, It's never wrong to write a thank you note for a gift received! However,if you have just ...
reply to wedding invite6/18/2004
  Q: I was invited to a black tie wedding and the reply card is blank except for in small print at the ...
  A: Something to the effect of "Jennifer and Mark Smith regretfully decline due to a previous ...
Guests bringing food to a birthday party?5/26/2004
  Q: I am planning a surprise birthday party for my mother. However, I live 1300 miles away from her, ...
  A: No,it's not improper to have a "theme" for the party. If that's what you want, an upscale exotic ...
Reserved Seating Arrangments5/7/2004
  Q: I'm planning a dinner for my son who is graduating from collge. He's married, and me and his father ...
  A: Johnson, As you are the hostess (and paying for the event) please make up the seating chart to ...
graduation attire for guests5/5/2004
  Q: What is the appropriate attire for guests at a morning college graduation ceremony? Please let me ...
  A: At a college graduation ceremony,unless you go in your birthday suits,you will not stand out or make ...
gum4/20/2004
  Q: How do I address a person who pops their gum at work?
  A: You can always feign a nervous condition and scream in fright everytime you hear the pop. Then look ...
don't know what i'm doing4/16/2004
  Q: i don't feel like i really know what good manners are. what does a well-mannered teenage girl act ...
  A: WOW...that's not too broad of a question! The thing to remember about being well mannered is to ...
Dinning manners4/8/2004
  Q: I live in Puerto Rico. I was born and raised in Ponce the second largest city in Puerto Rico. After ...
  A: Mayoral, As I understand it,"buen provencho" is only said once, at the start of the meal. In your ...
bridal shower invitations4/6/2004
  Q: I'm throwing a tea party bridal shower for one of my friends, and I don't have much experience with ...
  A: GOOD NEWS! Since you're throwing the party,you get to make the rules. You get to decide if you want ...
invite4/5/2004
  Q: Is it ok to invite other people to a private party that were not invited? I have a friend that ...
  A: Dean, No,it is not okay for a guest to invite others to a party unless told to do so by the ...
Galantry3/22/2004
  Q: I have a free speech to prepare about galantry for tomorrow. I have to know the origin of the ...
  A: We're not supposed to answer 'homework' questions,but since this for a speech...I'll make an ...
thank you gifts3/22/2004
  Q: My 13 year old was invited to spend Spring break with his best friend at his fathers home out of ...
  A: Yes,you are right to want to reward this brave man! No matter how polite and well behaved the boys ...
Thank You for Flowers3/3/2004
  Q: My mother in law botched my son's first haircut (for me) by beginning the haircut without me. She ...
  A: I don't know if you will get this,but I had a conversation with some friends about the questions I ...
Etiquette experts3/3/2004
  Q: I am trying to find an etiquette expert in my area. I am not having any luck looking in the Yellow ...
  A: Miller, You don't say where it is that you live. However, you can try looking under the key words ...
Rude sister in law3/1/2004
  Q: My sister in law really irritates me. She does the most disgusting things when we have family ...
  A: Cochran, This is one of my pet peeves too. New parents seem to be OBSESSED with discussing their ...
acknowledging a gift2/23/2004
  Q: What is the proper way to acknowledge a cash gift? I w ill be retiring soon, and a former co-worker ...
  A: The wording of your note is perfect. I might add the word 'generous' in front of gift,though. Other ...
Dinner Etiquette: When to put the napkin in your lap2/16/2004
  Q: I'm having a friendly debate with someone about when to place the napkin in your lap. She says that ...
  A: Interesting dilemma when you aren't quite sure of the ? standards ? employed by the establishment ...
medicines and breathing treatments in living room2/7/2004
  Q: he takes both the medication and the breathing treatments at perscribed times of the day I feel it ...
  A: Hagar, Tough one. I can understand not wanting to turn your home into a hospital ward. Does your ...
Who pays for non-family invited guests at anniversary dinner?2/7/2004
  Q: Ms. Gamble--we're planning a very small 40th anniv. fete for in-laws, just immediate family and ...
  A: Berry, Unfortunately,there is no polite way to ask someone to "pay for the privilege" of being a ...
red carpet attire?2/5/2004
  Q: i don't know if i'm in the right place to ask this , but i'll try... i have noticed that some movie ...
  A: Sure you're in the right place! I am always happy to help. I do not know the answer BUT I have a ...
Wedding1/8/2004
  Q: My 26 year old cousin is getting married at the end of February. Her mom called my mom to say who ...
  A: Escobar, Rude doesn't even begin to describe it. A person is never EVER expected to "pay for the ...
Son and girlfriend problems12/15/2003
  Q: Okay, Son and girlfriend have a major fight (several) girlfriend tells her boss my son hit her. ...
  A: Phillips, Wow,dragging the boss and co-workers in to your son's relationship is a huge mistake,but ...
Condo Etiquette12/7/2003
  Q: If you live on the top floor of a condo complex and plan to have a party extending past 11:00pm ...
  A: , Yes,it is the wisest course of action to invite the neighbors below and beside you. Instead of ...
jewish wedding - guest etiquette11/18/2003
  Q: We are invited to Jewish Wedding Ceremony and reception (black tie affair). The bride's family is ...
  A: Only parents or eccentric great aunts should give the happy couple cash. Those gifts,generally very ...
BYOB11/16/2003
  Q: I'm having a fairly large group over for Thanksgiving dinner. In order to not have costs get too far ...
  A: Kind of violates the whole spirit of the day to restrict people to only what they've brought. Can ...
restaurant manner11/1/2003
  Q: I have to go with friends in a medium level restaurant, for certain reasons i don't want to remove ...
  A: It was never considered appceptable to wear a hat indoors, ever. But that was 50 years ago. People ...
Guests10/10/2003
  Q: Just some basic guidelines - When you invite people for dinner/barbeque should you be considerate of ...
  A: It depends on your definiton of 'guests'. People have a reasonable expectation of being fed within ...
Dear Amanda, My sister-in-law...9/29/2003
  Q: My sister-in-law insists that when gifts are given at a small christening celebration, 25 people, ...
  A: No,you aren't wrong. I don't know where you get your toys,but I personally have to: drive several ...
baby shower9/27/2003
  Q: My only son (only child) and his wife are expecting their child in a few short weeks. They live ...
  A: Of course you were hurt! This child means a great deal to you --as well he should. Of course you ...
Is a thank you note enough?9/3/2003
  Q: I am struggling with some college courses that I am taking. My boyfriend's sister is working toward ...
  A: Who in heaven's name told you NOT to get her a thank you gift? Are the boyfriend and his sister from ...
etiquette for trips7/31/2003
  Q: If my friend invites a child to go with her daughter on a family vacation who should be expected to ...
  A: The family extending the invitation should pay the expenses. Your friend is asking the child to be ...
Baby shower7/29/2003
  Q: Who usually gives a baby shower? Is it OK for parents to do it? And is it OK for friends and ...
  A: The parents to be may not throw a shower for themselves. The whole point of a shower is for ...
Dr. Title7/25/2003
  Q: I appreciated your response to my question two months ago regarding Gravestone Protocol. Now I have ...
  A: Simmons, I was always taught that only a medical doctor may use the honorific "Dr.". Most of the ...
Dog who piddles ...7/22/2003
  Q: Amanda, I have a two year-old miniature Dachshund named Bonni. She loves to greet house guests at ...
  A: Wallerstein! If the disobedient house guests are friends,make them clean up Dear Bonni's accident. ...
Dear Amanda Gamble, I am...6/27/2003
  Q: I am helping my future daughter-in-law address wedding invitations. My question regards the use of ...
  A: Becker, A widow keeps her husband's name for the rest of her life or until she remarries. If her ...
engagement party--gift?6/25/2003
  Q: Gamble, My partner and I have been invited to an engagement party taking place in two weeks time. ...
  A: Out of the 600 plus questions that I have answered, only a small percent get any kind of feedback. ...
dining etiquette5/20/2003
  Q: I am wondering what to do with the butter/cracker wrappers, creamer containers etc.? After everyone ...
  A: In a casual restaurant that serves crackers,butter and creamer in packets,put the empty containers ...
Friends5/17/2003
  Q: Hey, I am having this huge argument with a friend from work over the right to own/use 'insults' or ...
  A: The owner of the newly coined insult does indeed retain rights to the insult for the duration of ...
Need help ASAP5/15/2003
  Q: A relative of my sister's husband rented a vacation house and invited my sister and her family ...
  A: Ramos, You can not just show up and hope that you will be a welcome addition to the house party. ...
grauation gifts5/15/2003
  Q: My husband & I will be going to a college graduation dinner for my husband's cousin's 2 sons who ...
  A: Kuzawa, If the family of the graduating sons want nothing other than you and your husband's ...
ex-wife5/7/2003
  Q: My boyfriend and I have lived together for over 1 year. His mothers 80th Birthday party is coming ...
  A: Gargiulo, I can certainly understand why you are upset! Does the boyfriend's sister have a problem ...
Who pays for wedding4/24/2003
  Q: Gamble-- This question is just for curiosity's sake. I've long been married. I was under the ...
  A: Please forgive the tardy reply.I thought that I had put myself on 'vacation status' and no questions ...
Walking in public4/14/2003
  Q: I have heard that when walking with a woman in public, she is to walk on the outside during daylight ...
  A: The woman walks on the "inside" of the sidewalk and does not go first up a staircase,etc. This has ...

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Amanda Gamble

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I will answer any etiquette question you`d care to ask! I will be happy to give friendly non-judgmental advice on any situation. Certain cultures and religions that outside of my personal scope of knowledge but I usually know whom to ask when I have a question. Time specific questions may or may not get answered by your deadline.

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I have been writing a daily etiquette advice column for 12 years. I have taught as well as given lectures on the subject.

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Life and other institutions.

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