Ask B: Is it ok to use your phone when when in the company of others?

 

Dear B,

Sometimes when I’m with family or friends I notice that people are on their phones, either texting or looking at social media. Sometimes I even find myself on my phone too because they are. I always thought it was best to put your phone away when in the company of others, however have things changed? 

Sincerely, 

C


 

Dear C,

I am passionate about this topic, and this is a question I am asked a great deal! When you are spending time with someone, from a fabulous brunch, to hosting guests at your home for the weekend, to a business meeting, to celebrating a birthday with a backyard bbq, be courteous and keep your phone (on vibrate) in your handbag or pocket. I encourage you to focus on being present and enjoy the beauty of every experience you have. If you are checking your phone every few minutes (likely scrolling social media or texts, am I right?), not only will you miss the magic of where you are, but you will also likely offend those you are with and send the message that your phone is your main priority. If you remember one thing from this post, remember this: etiquette is about kindness and respect for both yourself and others. Give those you are with your undivided attention, and I promise you will be so happy you did!

The one exception is that in the event you are expecting an urgent call, let whomever you are meeting with know, and kindly excuse yourself to take the call when the time comes. When you finish the call, place the phone back on vibrate and stow it away – out of sight and out of mind!

Modern Etiquette: Navigating The New Normal of Summer

 

Summer has arrived, and with it the desire for beloved warm weather traditions. While there are memories to be made, marshmallows to be roasted, and waves to be splashed in, this summer will also look a bit different, and so I wanted to share some etiquette tips on how to navigate the new normal.

Like everything in life, etiquette is dynamic and constantly evolving with our world. However, the heart of etiquette will always remain the same: to be kind, respectful, and make others feel comfortable. And so, here are my modern etiquette tips for this summer, and I hope everyone continues to stay safe and healthy!

 

RSVP’s, Events and Seeing Friends 

If you’re invited to an event this summer, be it birthday party, backyard bbq or swim party, it’s a personal choice on whether or not you feel comfortable attending. As always, be sure to RSVP ASAP. In the event you are taking a hiatus from seeing friends, be honest with the host and thank them for the invitation, and they will be sure to understand.

 

Weddings

If you were invited to a wedding this summer and choose not to attend yet already RSVP’d yes earlier this year, be sure to let the bride and groom know right away, and of course send a gift. If you were invited to a wedding and it was canceled, still send a gift as well, and consider a hand written note with well wishes to the couple. They will appreciate your thoughtfulness!

 

Greetings 

Hugs and handshakes were once the greeting of choice for so many, however unless it’s your family, it’s best to stick with a friendly smile and a wave for everyone else right now.

 

Masks 

It’s no secret that wearing a mask protects you and others. If you’re out and about and will be in close proximity to people at the grocery store, shopping, having your haircut, etc., I encourage you to wear a mask. It’s the considerate thing to do!  So many brands offer beautiful masks for children and adults, and even donate proceeds to incredible causes in support of COVID relief. I just bought this mask, and love this pack of three, and these adorable prints for kids.

 

Dinning Out 

As restaurants open up, you might consider enjoying a meal out. If so, be sure to check with the restaurant first to confirm if they require you to wear a mask (aside from eating your food), need a reservation, and if there is any other new protocol.

 

Playdates 

Just like parties and events, it is a personal choice as to whether or not you feel comfortable setting up playdates for your children. If you ask a friend to get together and they decline, strive to be understanding if they aren’t ready to be around friends yet. Conversely, if you’re invited and choose to not go, be honest and your friend will hopefully understand. In the event you do get together, try to play outside in the fresh air, keep a bit of distance, have everyone pack their own snacks and drinks, and bring hand sanitizer!

Ask B: End of Year Teacher Gift Ideas

 

Dear B,

This is the last week of school for my three kids, and given the fact we haven’t been in the classroom for a couple months, are elaborarte end of the year teacher gifts still necessary? If so, any recommendations?

Sincerely,

H


 

Dear H,

This is a great question! Teachers – especially now in these uncertain times – go above and beyond for our children, and strive endlessly to help shape their education and lives. Yes, I think a gift for each of your children’s teachers would be lovely and deeply appreciated by them! The gifts don’t have to be expensive to be meaningful, and so try and choose something you think would bring a smile to their face. Here are a few ideas: