From the category archives:


Q: I hosted a small dinner for friends. One of the couples was 2 hours late and said nothing about it (no apology, etc). I said nothing and still have not mentioned it to them. Should I have said or done anything about their tardiness?’ A: It may be that they got the time wrong, […]


Q: Where do you put an iced tea spoon after you have stirred your tea with it? A: If there is a plate under the glass, you put it there. If not, you may put it on another plate if you have a place setting. If there are no other plates, you may put it […]


Q: Most everyone I know drinks bottled water. You see bottles everywhere, including meetings and meals. Is it proper to bring a bottle of water to the table or for that matter to serve one at a meal? Should I offer guests a glass and or ice for the water? Thanks. Glenda ‘ A: Unless […]


Q: I got an invitation today for a Sunday brunch at 9:30 am. In my book, that’s too early to call it brunch. Are there any rules on that? A: That is indeed early for brunch. It really is breakfast, but perhaps the hosts are planning a menu array that is more brunch-like so chose […]


Q: I am having a birthday party for my soon to be five year old. I have made goodie bags for the kids that were invited. My dilemma is that often parents will bring their other children. What do I do when I don’t have enough for the other kids that were not invited, but […]


Q: Is it polite to apply lipstick at the dinner table,either at home or at a restaurant when it doesn’t involve gazing into a mirror, making a production out of it, using a lip liner? A:  A quick application that is over almost before it began is fine. Anything more should be taken care of […]


Q: My husband and I will be visiting my brother and sister in law for 2 or 3 days. Is it okay to offer to pay for groceries? A: Yes, it is thoughtful for house guests who stay for more than a day or two to offer to take the hosts out for lunch or […]


Q: As an Assistant, I was asked to bring in tea to a conference room. I had no tray, just a hot water container, cups and tea. I clumsily brought it into the room and set it on the credenza at the back of the room. The guests were already sitting at the table. I […]

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Q: I would like invite my friends and family to celebrate my 40th birthday with me at a restaurant. The brunch will be at noon on a Sunday. The restaurant charges $17.00 per person. I would like to know if I am responsible for paying the restaurant charges or if it is appropriate to ask […]


Q: Is it appropriate for a person to have multiple baby showers? I have a friend who wants a shower and this is her 5th child in 6 years!!!!! She always quotes Emily Post, so I thought I would go straight to the source. A: Yes, every baby is entitled to be celebrated with a […]