Good afternoon! I hope this day finds you feeling blessed and thanking God for all He has done for you!
Today I wanted to share a list of Table Manners that I ran across the other day while reading this book entitled, “Lists to Live By”. I don’t know about you, but sometimes we’ll go out to eat at a nice restaurant or maybe we’ll go to someone’s home for dinner and the chaos and lack of manners that I witness at the tables are crazy and uncalled for. Granted, when you have small children (I’d say about three and under), it’s understandable that there will be some chaos! 🙂 Maybe more than some depending on the orneriness of your child…a..k.a my son! 🙂
It seems that people of this day and age, children and adults alike, just do not know proper table manners.
While reading over this list, some things popped out that I could be implementing more to my children. All of them were good reminders for me as well. I love to see well-behaved children. To me, 9 times out of 10, it is a reflection of the diligence of the parent to train their children and it is an encouragement to me to do more. On the other hand, I really do not like to see children that have no idea what a table manner is. I get it, they are not my children. But I honestly look at them and feel sorry for them. Their parents are really not doing them justice by not instructing them about right and wrong at the table. It just makes such a difference, when you and your family are invited out by someone or over to their house and your children know how to act at the dinner table. I want to help we, as parents, to avoid that embarrassment of when our children act out of hand and I also want to remind us as parents to implement these manners into our lives as well, if we haven’t already, so our children will imitate what they see. I want my children to be well-pleasing, well-mannered and welcomed back again without hesitation.
PLACE ~ no elbows on the table unless all the dishes are removed following the meal
CHEW ~ with your mouth closed
HOLD ~ the silverware correctly
CUT ~ one bit of meat at a time
PASS ~ food to the right
PASS ~ both the salt and pepper shakers
SIT ~ up straight in your chair
MODIFY ~ your voice so that only your tablemates can hear you
EXCUSE ~ yourself to individuals on each side of you if you must leave the table
REFUSE ~ food only if you must by saying kindly, “No, thank you”
SAY ~ “Please pass the…”
WATCH ~ to see that all the condiments near you are passed around the table
UNFOLD ~ a large restaurant napkin halfway. Place the fold toward your knees. Leave it in your lap until you leave the table, except when you use the napkin.
EAT ~ at a moderate speed. Don’t make others wait for you to finish.
PLACE ~ used silverware on a plate, not on the tablecloth (even during a course)
EAT ~ quietly, making no noise with your mouth or silverware
REMOVE ~ seeds, pits, gristle etc. from your mouth with the utensil you used to put it into your mouth. Do not use a cloth napkin. Small bones may be removed with one’s thumb and forefinger for safety.
REFUSE ~ beverage by simply saying, “No, thank you.” Do not invert the cup or glass. (The wait staff may turn it over)
*And then on a side note, I personally have my children ask to be excused and then wait for the answer. If the answer is yes, they thank the one who prepared the meal for their food. If the answer is no, they may not be excused, then they are to wait patiently and talk quietly with the friends or family that is near them. A little pet peeve of mine is when the kids start to eat before prayer is said, or they rush to the front of the line instead of respecting their elders and preferring one another and also gulping their food down and then leaving the table before anyone else has even had a chance to take a bite! Sorry, maybe that’s three pet peeves. 🙂 Just things that I work on with my kids. They may not be as important to you and that’s fine. My kids have not arrived, but it’s all in the training. I know that it is not in vain!
And at dinner time in your own home would be the perfect place to train. Don’t wait until you are out in public and then you expect your children to have all these manners if you have not taken the time at home to train them. Make it a fun time and maybe at each meal, practice just one – like no elbows on the table until the dishes are removed. Then the next meal or so, implement another one and remind them of the first one. It will be fun watching your children trying to remember the one special manner of the night!
Practice makes permanent!
Happy manner teaching!!!
Love and smiles,