From the category archives:

Everyday

Q: Is it my responsibility to clean up leaves that fall from my tree onto my neighbor’s lawn? I have raked them up at my neighbor’s a couple of times, but don’t feel like I need to do it daily. A: No, that is one of the burdens of fall – when leaves from your […]

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Q: My granddaughter’s birthday is in December and she will be 12 years old. I casually asked her what are some of the things she would like as a gift for her birthday and Christmas. Her answer was ‘Cash’ or a ‘Gift Card’. I told her that I thought it really isn’t good manners to […]

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Q: How often should you tell the waiter thank you when he serves you your water, food, etc.? A: Every time he does. He is doing something for you, you thank him for doing this. A simple thank you is courteous and not intrusive on any other conversation occurring at the same time.

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Q: We are taking a cruise for our 50th anniversary. We would like to have friends with us but can’t afford to pay for them all. Is there a ‘not tacky’ way to invite these people? A:  Tell those friends whose company you enjoy what you are planning and tell them that if they are […]

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Q: Do the old traditions of not wearing linen after labor day still apply? A: That really never has been a fashion tradition or rule. Linen, depending on its color, can be worn from early spring through mid-fall, weather permitting. The Memorial Day-Labor Day rule is for wearing summer white clothing or accessories. Therefore, if […]

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Empty Handed: Proposing Without a Ring

by epi on September 18, 2014

Q: I have a question regarding the etiquette of proposing to my girlfriend: Is is acceptable to propose without an engagement ring, but with a smaller ring instead? My girlfriend is somewhat particular about her tastes, and I want her to be involved in picking out an engagement ring. But, to me, it seems that […]

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Q: I am in a quandary about tipping. What is the proper etiquette if you place an order (at a restaurant such as Cracker Barrel) and YOU go pick it up as take out? Should there be a tip? A: No, there is no reason to tip unless the counter clerk has gone out of […]

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Q: At a family meal recently there was some friendly discussion regarding the passing of the food. So, which way is it? Do you pass to the Left or the Right? A: You pass to the right, or counter clockwise. You pass it from your right hand to the person on your right’s left hand. […]

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First Dibs: Who Should be Served First?

by epi on September 13, 2014

Q: When hosting an informal dinner party who should the hostess serve first…children or adults? A: Children, so the adults with them can help them with their food before being served themselves.

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Q: What is the proper way to introduce a girlfriend/boyfriend to friends / family / coworkers etc that you are involved in a romantic relationship with. (I’m a divorced male dating a divorced female, we both have children that are often with us from the previous marriage) A: You don’t need to define every relationship […]

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