- If you are going to be a houseguest during this holiday season, remember to practice good etiquette and hopefully, you will be invited back again.
- Never show up at someone’s home with your pets or when you are ill.
- Don’t overstay your welcome.
- Offer to help out around the house.
- Don’t abuse the hospitality of the host. Never place a long-distance call from the host’s phone without permission.
- Don’t expect your host to be your event planner for the stay. Entertain yourself and better still, offer to take your host out for dinner.
- Please clean up behind yourself—or go to a hotel!
- You should always arrive with a gift, say thank you during your visit, and send a thank-you note after the visit.
Party Host Duties
- Plan ahead and make sure that you have plenty of time to greet your guests at the door. Take their coats/handbags and make introductions to other guests, if necessary.
- Offer your guests a beverage.
- Mingle with all your guests, not just one person.
- When your event is over, walk your guests to the door and thank them for coming.
~Party Guest Duties
- If you are an invited guest this Thanksgiving or Christmas, offer to bring a dish and find out which dish your host would prefer that you bring.
- Be sure to bring a small gift for the host.
- Dress in a casual holiday style.
- Arrive on time and introduce yourself to everyone present.
- Offer to help in the preparations but don’t monopolize the host’s time; the host is a very busy person on Thanksgiving or Christmas Day!
- After the meal is finished, offer to help the host with any cleaning in the kitchen.
- Mingle with family and friends, thank your host, and leave.
- Remember to send a thank-you note to the host the next day.
~Dining Etiquette ~ The holidays are a perfect time to instill social and dining etiquette skills to children and also to practice proper table manners yourself.
- Recruit the children to help in setting the table for the meal. Teach them the proper table setting for the style of dining and meal that you are planning to serve.
- Upon arriving at the table, stand behind your chair and wait until the host/hostess has been seated.
- Don’t touch your napkin or anything else until Grace has been said.
- If you don’t know what to do, watch the host/hostess.
- Sit up straight, don’t talk with food in your mouth, and keep your elbows off the table, please.
- Don’t lick your fingers—wipe them on your napkin under the table. Gently dab the corners of your mouth with your napkin—don’t wipe your mouth. And, please, keep your napkin on your lap until the meal is complete, then place it—loosely folded—to the left of your plate.
- Don’t leave your flatware in the rowboat position—angled half on the table and half on the plate. Once you pick up a piece of flatware to use, it is never returned to the table.
- Participate in the conversation at the table; remember, don’t discuss politics, religion, health issues, or controversial subjects at the dining table. Talk to everyone at the table, not just the person next to you.
- Do leave a bite of food on your plate; this shows that you did not come for the food alone, but for the fellowship, as well.
- Don’t push your plate away when you have finished eating, that’s just tacky.
Please enjoy this wonderful holiday season with grace!