So, recently, I seem to have ticked off a few people. Apparently, I had missed a very important memo in regards to the announcement of an engagement. So, I’m going to get my Emily Post on and highlight some important etiquette rules that might easily be overlooked and land you into hot water with friends and family.

  • Announcing an engagement– Be sure to inform both sets of parents first. Then announce to close family members (brothers and sisters) and close friends. No one wants to find out via Facebook or secondhand. Send out an engagement announcement instead.
  • Disconnect– Sure we all have high tech gadgets now, but when having dinner or visiting with friends, put down the phone. Unless you are an emergency room doctor, it can wait.
  • Send “Thank You” notes– Sure saying “thank you” is nice, but putting in the extra effort to write a hand written note really goes a long way. Email does not count.
  • Email etiquette (aka netiquette)– Don’t forget that emails can often be misinterpreted so be sure to refrain from discussing delicate topics via email. Also, do not forget that emails are permanent and can easily be forwarded. Choose your words wisely.
  • Come bearing gifts– When invited to someone’s home, always bring a gift (even if it’s something silly or small). It shows that you appreciate the invitation.
  • Table manners– You would think this would be a given, but apparently it’s not. Don’t chew with your mouth open (breathe through your nose, folks). Don’t smack your food, slurp your food, or clang your utensils to your mouth.
  • Make an introduction– I can’t tell you how many times people have gotten themselves into trouble by not introducing friends or acquaintances to one another. It gives the impression that you either forgot one of their names or are hiding something.
  • Hats off– know when it is appropriate to have on a hat. Baseball game- yes. Dinner table- no.
  • When in doubt, ask– If you aren’t sure of something, it is always better to ask for clarification sooner than later. You aren’t sure of the dress code? Ask. You don’t know what to buy? Ask.

While I may be spending a little time in the dog house for now, hopefully I will keep you in good standings with family and friends.