1. Marine Mom

    My son is currently serving in the military and will be coming home to stay in about a year. He will be bringing a new bride and her daughter with him. They will be staying with us a couple of months until they both get jobs and their own place to stay. My concern is that they really won’t have anything to start a home with. Since the wedding will take place this summer in the Phillipines, family and friends will not be able to attend. We’re planning to give them a “homecoming” party so friends and the family can meet his new family. Would it be possible to have them register somewhere for household items, in case people would like to help them get started? And how would you get the word out without being rude?

    • Elizabeth

      Technically, no, your plan is not really within the bounds of what’s proper. What you are proposing is a wedding/bridal shower, but without actually calling it one. Normally, only people who will be invited to the wedding are invited to the wedding/bridal shower. If you do call it a homecoming party, which does sound like the right name for the event, I think it will not occur to most people to bring a gift, as it sounds more like a celebration of return which is not typically a gift-giving event.

      It’s unfortunate that, due to his deployment and abroad wedding, that he will not reap the benefits of having something close to home. Hopefully some of your closer family will still give him a wedding present, and you can certainly send out wedding announcements to your closer friends and family when it happens. (Not that this is the point of wedding announcements, but they are a good way to let people know that a wedding has occurred!) Otherwise, the happy couple can host a housewarming party when they move into their new place, and be thankful for the blessings they (will) have received.

      Every person who finally leaves the nest and has to get their own place has to deal with this situation. The solution for cheap but decent household goods amongst my friends has always been: IKEA.

  2. Marine Mom

    Thanks Elizabeth! I had a feeling that was the case since I couldn’t find any information to back up my idea :) We will be sending out announcements, and I’ll continue looking for great deals to set aside household items for their return. Wish there was an IKEA near me!

  3. Brenda

    This is a new post or question. I have a problem with someone I am very close to. She will interrupt anyone that is talking with a quick correction of their speech. Like if they didn’t say a word exactly as she thinks it should be pronounced or if they use the wrong tense of a word. She quickly says what she thinks is correct. It totally destroys your train of thought, not only for me but others also. It is also the tone of voice that she uses to correct. Is this considered rude? I think it is rude and wanted your opinion on this.
    Thank you so much, Brenda

    • Elizabeth

      Brenda, of course this is rude. I think it was Miss Manners who said that the only person you have a right to correct is your minor child. (It’s also OK in some teacher-student situations – but I digress…) The question for you is how to deal with it. Depending on your relationship to this person, you could either distance yourself and just avoid conversations with them, or bring it up in a more direct way. The next time it happens, you could say “Susie, I know you think you’re being helpful, but when you correct me it’s really distracting. Informal speech is inherently colloquial, and as long as we understand each other, there’s really no reason to bring it up. Could you please stop?”

      Unless you are in a position of power over this person (they are your niece, student, employee, etc) she will probably not listen to you. I think everyone has had that experience where a mentor or a person in a position of authority has pointed out some annoying or rude thing and said, essentially, to cut it out. Unfortunately, most people don’t get the message until it comes to a head in a higher-stakes situation.

  4. Nina

    I really dislike this sort of thing! I am a professional editor, which makes some of my friends nervous that I will correct their grammar in casual conversation. If they mention it, I always say, “Don’t worry–I don’t work after 5.” Perhaps this is an alternative to Elizabeth’s other good suggestions. If someone harps on your grammar or how you pronounce things, you could just say, “Oh, yes, I know the rules, but I don’t worry about them with friends/in social situations/after 5.”

  5. One idea might be to webcast the wedding in the states from the Phillipines. Invite all friends and family to the event, and put a note: “If you cannot attend the actual ceremony overseas, you can come and see it on the big screen (either a big TV or Data Projector) being webcast live. You can also leave gifts for the family at the webcast location.

  6. Barry

    When did the medical professionals title of Doctor (Dr.) become correct formal titles in social, non-medical situation formal invitations? It was my understanding in the early 1970’s that in formal social invitations, no professional titles are used unless the invitations are going to a professional organization. i.e., use Mr. and Mrs. on formal invitations to weddings, debutant balls, etc., and use Dr. and Mrs. when sending formal invitations only to the medical community.

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