Sunday, July 6, 2008

Teaching Table Etiquette.....

First of all, I have to say welcome back! I have had a great vacation and really could use one more but we have things to do so I will just have to hang in there this last month. I was contemplating ending my blog career but over my break, I had so many great emails thanking me for this blog and the information shared that I decided that as long as I have ideas, I will put them out there. It is a good motivation for me to learn more and research and to also receive good ideas from you other talented moms out there. Thanks for the encouragement....here I go.

I am getting ready for my last summer cooking class with my little chefs and we are ending the class with an etiquette lesson. This I feel is a lost art these days and I will do my best to teach my kids, especially the boys so they can help carry on the tradition. I was blessed to be taught manners as a child through teen elect classes and from my grandparents who would take me out to nice restaurants. They would make sure I followed all the rules. I remember one night in particular when my Grandpa Carl took me out to Black Angus for steak. He taught me how to properly cut the steak with a knife and would not let me leave until I did it right. When I first started dating, I would critique the boys I was dating to see if they followed the rules. Very few got them right. I was for some reason very hooked on how to butter a roll correctly. No one ever got this right. (For those wondering, you break off a small piece at a time and butter it.) It is rare anymore to see any of the rules of dining followed. I am adamant that my children chew with their mouths full, keep elbows off the table and use correct cutting technics. They do a pretty good job of this but often I hear a complaint about why we need to do this at home. I respond that not only is it a form of respect for me and our home, that also if they practice the rules here, they will use the rules elsewhere.

For FHE we will be learning how to properly set the table. For those of you also wanting to have this lesson, here is an easy way to remember it.....


Think of the word "forks". Starting with the left hand side, "F" for fork goes first, "O" is for the round plate, drop the "R", "K" is for the knife and "S" is for the spoon. Now, make a "B" with the left hand and a "D" with the right hand. The "B" is for the bread plate at the top left and the "D" is for the drink on the top right.

A couple more rules: The knife blade always points to the plate. The napkin goes along side the forks or on the plate. If you are setting two forks, the taller fork goes next to the plate.

I hope my children are showing off their skills at their friends home. To me it is a show of respect for those who have prepared the meals for us and for those who we are in company with. I think very few are taught this anymore. Now, pass it on!

5 comments:

Megan said...

Glad you had a nice break! You deserve it!!! I like this idea! I was horrified when I saw Dave gripping his fork and eating like it was a baseball bat. I nicely taught him how to hold his fork and he practices often...he needs to know this for his business trips!!! I grew up with parents that taught us very good table manners. We were also not allowed to leave the table unless we said, "may I be excused?". It shows respect. Love ya Shari!!! Great idea!

Cherstin said...

Oh, so glad your back. We all missed you! I love this idea for a family night. Manners aren't top priority to 4 young boys but that doesn't mean it shouldn't be. And i like the above comment about asking to be excused from the table. Every little thing that can be done to show respect is so important. We are really big on showing respect in our home. And seriously it's the little things that make the most differance.

Brian and Aubrey said...

Glad you are going to keep blogging :) I look forward to checking your blog often. For all the yummy recipes I need to try and for all the healthy tips you share. I love it! Thanks for the "FORKS" reminder when setting a table.

Carrie said...

I love your blog! I have learned so much and have been inspired to do so much! Thank you for all you do! And manners are huge in our home, too! We'll be doing a table setting lesson too!

Katie Evans said...

Glad you're back and I'm glad to find out that I'm not the only one who preaches the importance of the lost art of tabel manners. I remember my etiquette classes. I sure appreciate having those skills now. Thanks for sharing your ideas - don't every quit okay!