Manner Monday®: Senior Spotlight on Courtney Thompson

May is knocking on our door, which means graduation is fast approaching!  We’re kicking off our Senior Spotlight this season with Courtney Thompson.  We will post the remaining Senior Spotlights as regular blog posts, over the next few weeks and will also announce them in the ‘Weekly Update’ emails.  If you’re not receiving the ‘Weekly Update’ emails, please visit this link to update your choice of which emails you would like to receive: http://eepurl.com/hHJu

In the meantime, I’d love to introduce you to Courtney.  She asked me if she could speak at the final ball of the season this year as she had a few words to share with her fellow students.  She also asked if I trusted her to speak without me seeing her speech first and I said absolutely. Little did I know that she would have me in tears (good tears) by the end of it all!  Thank YOU Courtney for reminding us of why we do what we do!

“Starting in seventh grade, I remember feeling intimidated when I walked into the Marriott hotel for my first class.  I was very shy and closed off and I remember asking myself if this would turn into another school where cliques form and quiet girls get left out, because everyone there seemed to know everyone else.  However, when we lined up to enter the ballroom, I had a feeling it was going to be different.  My escort and I walked up to this lady who was the instructor, I suppose.  She wore this big smile, the kind that you can’t help smiling back at.  Through that entire year, I knew only one person, but Mrs. Vega never forgot my name and that’s what encouraged me to return.

At the ball my ninth grade year, I sat with these girls that all seemed to know each other, but they didn’t leave me out of a single conversation.  I was taken aback because it was unusual that someone would go out of their way to continue a conversation with me. To this day we are still friends because every class after that they continued to approach me and include me in conversation.  That is how I became friends with Presley, Jordan and Payton.

The way those girls reached out to me inspired me to reach out to others who maybe didn’t know anyone or who looked uncomfortable.  My efforts in this actually changed my perspective on myself as well.  I became more confident in myself, and my interactions with other people; for example, one of my biggest fears in the world was public speaking.  It was so bad that I would pass out sometimes and word spread of this, soon all my teachers knew not to call me out.  However this class taught me to see this as a challenge and here I stand in front of all of you, speaking.  I learned that there is more to this class than learning proper etiquette or the placement of dining utensils.  Mr. and Mrs. Vega have been teaching all of us to embrace who we are and do so with confidence so that everyone can see the light within us.  We have become a family within this program because not only do we learn to accept ourselves, but also we learn to accept and be open-minded toward our peers.  I came into this class hoping to find people like me, and I found that plus something greater; people who are the exact opposite.  It’s better because there is never a dull moment; you are always learning something new about the people around you.  Mrs. Vega is my role model.  She has inspired me to become someone I never thought I could be.  I’ll always remember a quote she shared with us by Eleanor Roosevelt, “Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people.”   That quote itself has led me through many tough situations and I will always remember it.

Expeditions In Etiquette has been the biggest blessing.  It has given me the ability to be comfortable in every situation and more importantly, to help others gain confidence as well.  It has made me a better friend, a better student, a better sister, and a better mentor.  No matter what comes along, I know the lessons that I’ve learned here can never be taken away from me.  Expeditions In Etiquette will always be a part of me because I would not be the same person today if I had not walked into the Marriott hotel and introduced myself to Mrs. Vega six years ago.  I love this program and I hope to make an impact on someone’s life one day, like Mrs. Vega made an impact on mine.”

And… I have a kleenex in hand – wow… again, thank you Courtney. Thanks for letting us know in such heartfelt words how you feel. We love you, and we love what we do!!!

Click to Tweet:   “Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people.”-EleanorRoosevelt #MannerMonday http://bit.ly/SrSpotCT

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In other news…

Spring Special Registration Discount is available
Registration Information for 5th-8th Grades for 2015-2016 Season

Registration Information for 9th-12th Grades for the 2015-2016 Season

Multi-Season Discount
You’ve asked and we have listened!  We now offer a multi-sesason discount to families who would like to register a child for three consecutive years in the program.  As each season builds on the previous; maximum benefits are achieved by continued exposure for a minimum of three years (many students participate for 8 consecutive years).

As always, thanks for reading!
– Carey Sue

 

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Classes, Etiquette, Manner Monday, Manners, Senior Spotlight

Manner Monday: The Oklahoma Standard

In case you missed the live ceremony Sunday of the 20th Anniversary of the Oklahoma City Bombing , I wanted to share something with you that was a highlight of the event and felt important to pass along.

You may have heard the phrase “The Oklahoma Standard” by now. It’s the phrase that has evolved to describe Oklahomans in general and how our community is known. It’s how our citizens come together during a disaster with servant hearts and do whatever is needed to help others. It’s also the attitude of our community on a daily basis when we see our neighbors in need.

As a way to honor those who were killed during the bombing, “The Oklahoma Standard” initiative was created. In a nutshell, the project asks us to commit to at least one act of ‘service’, on act of ‘honor’ and one act of ‘kindness’ during the month of April.

I’m looking at this as a great opportunity to share “The Oklahoma Standard” with the young people in our life. We all know our children learn best by watching our actions; my husband and I are going to start by taking our son to the Oklahoma City National Memorial Museum.

If you would like to learn more, please visit:

okstandardlogo

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Family, Manner Monday

Manner Monday®: Treating Others Like A Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader

I was recently at the Dallas Love Field airport, getting ready to board the same flight as a small group of 10 Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders. It was obvious who they were as they all had matching Cowboy Cheerleader logo luggage. They were beautiful young ladies. They were dressed respectfully, and they had flawless hair and makeup. They looked camera ready, which I think I’ve heard is part of their contract. If I haven’t already painted a good enough picture for you, I’m sure you can imagine it was definitely fun people watching in the waiting area. Between the grown men and women who were literally tripping over themselves as they walked by, turning to get a better look, to the sweet young girls who were looking up to the Cheerleaders with huge smiles.

What I really loved about the whole process was how the Cheerleaders stopped and put their technology away and would give each little girl 100% of their attention and focus and ask the little girl questions as if she was the star. The exchange always ended up with the parent getting a picture of the young girl with her new BFF’s.

I’m sure the Cheerleaders receive extensive training on how to act in public, but it was reassuring to see the interaction and what appeared to be their genuine interest in each person who approached them. They didn’t seem putout or annoyed, they truly acted as if it was their pleasure to accommodate the interruption.

For all of the negative stereotypes that are associated with the beauty behind the Cheerleader image, it was definitely enjoyable to watch how poised and professional these young ladies were. I’m thinking the training they’re receiving behind the scenes, as a Cheerleader, will serve them well into the next phases of their professional careers.

It all was a good reminder for me to treat the person I’m interacting with as if THEY were a Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader.

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Click to Tweet: Treat the person you’re interacting with as if they were a Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader! #MannerMonday

 

In Other News…

I’m hosting a Free Webinar to learn more about our programs.  Do you know someone who may be interested? They can register for the free webinar that will take place Tuesday, April 14, by clicking on the button below. We only have a limited number of ‘seats’ so please sign up now!:Reg for webinar

During the webinar, I will go into detail about all of our programs for our:

  •  5-8th grade programs
  •  9-12th grade programs
  • Adult Business Training
  • How the classes are setup
  • The M/F ratios
  •  And much, much more!

If you have a specific question you would like answered during the webinar, please feel free to shoot me an email via the ‘contact us’ form and I’ll make sure to include it. We’ll also have time at the end of the live webinar for Q&A, so no worries if you don’t have a question now.

AND if for some reason you’re not able to make it to the live webinar, please go ahead and register anyway, we will send a recording of the event out to everyone who registered so you can watch it at your convenience.

 

As always, thanks for reading!
– Carey Sue

 

 

 

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Business Etiquette, Etiquette, Fashion, Manner Monday, Manners

Manner Monday®: Announcements, Invitations, and When to Mail Them

Graduation is fast approaching and I’ve recently been getting questions about ‘invitations’, ‘announcements’, when to mail them.

In many cases, during a student’s road to graduation the “it takes a village” quote is all too familiar. Many parents want to stand on the rooftop and shout it out… Wahoo!!! He’s graduating!!! Thank you for helping!!!

Tweet it out:  A student’s road to graduation makes many parents want to stand on the rooftop and shout it out… Wahoo! He’s graduating! #MannerMonday

So let’s break down the options for sharing the good news:

Graduation Invitations
This is an invitation to the actual graduation festivities.  Many schools have a strict limit on how many people may attend in support of each student.  This may determine your list for the ‘invitation’ group.  If you want to have a party so more people can share in the celebration, you could host a graduation party and extend invitations to the other close friends and family who may have been left out of the ceremony itself.

As the recipient of an ‘invitation’; if you are able to attend, a gift should be given to the graduate.  If you are not able to attend, you may still send a gift, but it is not required.

Graduation Announcements
An announcement does not extend an invitation to an event; its sole purpose is to ‘announce’ the news to whomever you think might be excited to know of the accomplishment.  Many people may have lost track of time and did not realize that Johnny is already a senior.  They would be excited to hear about this great stage in his life (and yours).  Those who receive announcements are not obligated to send a gift.  A hand-written note would be a great way to respond to the announcement, sharing your excitement for the achievement.  Of course, if the recipient of an announcement would like to send a small gift, they are welcome to do so.

With all of that being said.  Some parents will want to send announcements to everyone they know, others will choose to send them only to close friends.  I think the extent of the list will fluctuate for different families and situations.

And unfortunately, some people do send invitations and announcements as a ploy to receive gifts.  We can only hope that the invitation or announcement we receive was sent in the spirit of the occasion and respond accordingly.

When should I mail invitations?
Formal Invitations should be mailed 4-6 weeks before the event. Less formal invitations can be mailed 2-4 weeks prior. Of course keeping in mind the more time you give your guests to plan and mark the calendar, the better the chances are of them being able to join the festivities.

When thinking about how much time to allow, think of time and respect as the same. If you send an invitation a week before the event and you expect someone to attend, you’re being disrespectful of his or her time and calendar. By giving them ample time to plan and make arrangements to attend, the more respect of their time you’re nonverbally showing them.

When should I mail Announcements?
Announcements can be mailed before or after the event. If mailing them after, try to do so no later than two weeks after the event. Too much longer, and the event is ‘old news’.

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In Other News…

I’m hosting a Free Webinar to learn more about our programs.  Do you know someone who may be interested? They can register for the free webinar that will take place Tuesday, April 14, by clicking on the button below. We only have a limited number of ‘seats’ so please sign up now!:Reg for webinar

During the webinar, I will go into detail about all of our programs for our:

  •  5-8th grade programs
  •  9-12th grade programs
  • Adult Business Training
  • How the classes are setup
  • The M/F ratios
  •  And much, much more!

If you have a specific question you would like answered during the webinar, please feel free to shoot me an email via the ‘contact us’ form and I’ll make sure to include it. We’ll also have time at the end of the live webinar for Q&A, so no worries if you don’t have a question now.

AND if for some reason you’re not able to make it to the live webinar, please go ahead and register anyway, we will send a recording of the event out to everyone who registered so you can watch it at your convenience.

 

As always, thanks for reading!
– Carey Sue

 

 

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Uncategorized

Free Webinar to Learn More about our Etiquette Programs

To register for the free webinar to learn more about our Programs click here.
We only have a limited number of ‘seats’ so please sign up now!:Reg for webinar

 

Before the webinar, I’d like to take a few minutes to introduce myself:

During the webinar, I will go into detail about all of our programs for our:

  •  5-8th grade programs
  •  9-12th grade programs
  • Adult Business Training
  • How the classes are setup
  • The M/F ratios
  •  And much, much more!

If you have a specific question you would like answered during the webinar, please feel free to shoot me an email via the ‘contact us’ form and I’ll make sure to include it. We’ll also have time at the end of the live webinar for Q&A, so no worries if you don’t have a question now.

AND if for some reason you’re not able to make it to the live webinar, please go ahead and register anyway, we will send a recording of the event out to everyone who registered so you can watch it at your convenience.

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If you have not yet signed up for our Email newsletter updates, you can do so here:

Sign up for email updates

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For Class Schedules, please visit the individual location (Oklahoma City or Edmond) page.

To register for our 5th-8th grade programs, please visit the Registration page.

Register for Classes Now

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In the Introduction video, I mentioned connecting via Social Media, the direct links can be found via the icons in the upper right hand corner of this page.

 

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Uncategorized

I’m Curious: What’s your favorite Tip for Teaching Table Manners to Kids?

It seems like there’s not a week that doesn’t go by, where I don’t get an email or phone call from a young mother asking for help in teaching table manners to her little ones.  The calls and emails always start out by saying how they’ve heard we offer classes for older kids, but they need help with their young ones – now.   I love sharing tips with these ladies to help them along their journey.

Would you mind sharing two things with me?  I value your time and promise it will only take a minute!

1 – your FAVORITE tip I’ve shared with you over the years (it doesn’t even have to be table manners related).

2 – what is the ONE thing you think is most important when teaching children table manners?

Please don’t respond to this, take just a minute to click on this link so I can keep all of your answers organized and in one place:  http://bit.ly/TableMannersTip

Thanks in advance!
– Carey Sue

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Etiquette, Manners

Manner Monday®: April Fools Day

I did a segment with Channel 4 on April Fools Etiquette for the Family and the Office.
We don’t have the video available, but here is the transcript:

AprilFoolEtq

Q – When do kids think a prank is good fun, and why do parents need to tread carefully from the start?

A – Parents REALLY need to tread lightly, we need to set good examples of what’s acceptable and what isn’t.

This is a great time and opportunity to have a conversation with your kiddos about pranks and practical jokes.

Ask them what they think is appropriate, then you can guide the conversation and point out that what they think may be funny, may actually be mean or offensive to others.

 

Q – It seems a lot of families have a ‘prankster’ who goes a bit too far? What’s going on with this person?

A – Do you see a pattern occurring?
Are they pulling the pranks as a way to get attention?
What is the motive behind the prank?
Is the prankster well-meaning, but ends up getting excited and over-zealous?
Or is their intent to see how far they can push the limit or boundaries?
Determine the motive before taking action.

 

Q – So how do you talk to a serial prankster – and still feel like you can sit down together next Thanksgiving?

A – If you do see a pattern occurring, it’s important to point it out and make sure the person realizes what they’re doing.

Explain the unintended potential consequences of their behavior: How is it affecting his reputation?

He may think it’s funny, but others think of him as annoying, ignorant, prejudiced or narrow-minded. Make sure to point out the impact of the pranks on others; people may be avoiding him and not want to be around him.

 

Q – Now lets talk about Office Pranks. What are the three elements to avoid at all cost?

A – Humor that falls into the category of sex, race, or religion does not belong in any office, period.

As an adult, playing a few pranks in the office can lighten the mood and bring some fun and excitement into the workplace.  On the other hand, it can cause stress, create unnecessary problems, breed animosity and cut into productivity.

If you like to get into the spirit of the day and you’re busy scheming and planning the perfect prank, ask yourself  “how would I feel if this joke were played on me?”

Many pranks may seem funny to you, but fall into the gray area and need to be administered with extreme caution. Everyone needs to be aware that what is funny to one person, can be offensive to another.

 

Q – Lets continue on the theory that a good laugh is a good moral booster in the workplace. What else should you keep in mind?

A – Make sure to be a good role model and keep your pranks good-natured and squeaky-clean. And if a coworker does take something personal or the wrong way, simply stop, apologize and don’t argue that it was funny or that they lack a sense of humor. Apologize, clear the air, and move forward.

Also, keep in mind the timing of your prank.  It may be April Fools Day on the calendar, but if you’re timing is wrong and if your prank is unprofessional – you may end up being the Fool.

 

 

 

In other news…

Spring Special Registration Discount is available
Registration Information for 5th-8th Grades for 2015-2016 Season

Registration Information for 9th-12th Grades for the 2015-2016 Season

Multi-Season Discount
You’ve asked and we have listened!  We now offer a multi-sesason discount to families who would like to register a child for three consecutive years in the program.  As each season builds on the previous; maximum benefits are achieved by continued exposure for a minimum of three years (many students participate for 8 consecutive years).

As always, thanks for reading!
– Carey Sue

 

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Business Etiquette, Etiquette, Family, Manner Monday, Manners

Manner Monday®: Technology in the Car

So if you’ve been following Manner Monday for a while, you know I’m not a fan of kids using technology (dvd, games, etc.) in the car. In our family, we do not allow movies, or games, on short trips. We look at this time as a great opportunity for conversations and teaching moments for our son about driving, navigation, landmarks, and a whole host of other things including music ‘appreciation’ like AC/DC, George Strait, and Bruno Mars to name a few J. I’ve heard from moms of older kids, that as their children venture into the tween/teen years, some of their best conversations have taken place in the car. And not to mention how I can’t help thinking that the time will get here before we know it when our Cub will be driving, and we want him to know how to find his way around town.

But as we all know ‘rules’ can also come with exceptions to the said rule… and a long car trip, yes, that is definitely one of our exceptions to tech check, load up and bring out the tech! We still try to point out learning opportunities, but realistically, technology just makes those long trips manageable. For instance, how many times have you heard ‘are we there yet’, and ‘how much longer’ shortly after you pull out of the neighborhood?!?! One way we make tech work for our family on long trips is by teaching our son how to use the timer and map apps on our devices. As we start out on our adventure, we pull up the map app and figure out what our best route is and the estimated travel time, and then we open the clock app and enter that travel time into the timer. Our son knows that instead of asking us ‘are we there yet’, or ‘how much longer’, he can look at the iPad to answer his own question. So far, for us, it’s working like a charm.

What about you, how do you make technology work for your family on long trips?

Tweetable: “A way we make tech work for our family on long trips is by teaching our son how to use the timer and map app on our devices.” #MannerMonday

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IMG_1024   IMG_1034

In other news…

Spring Special Registration Discount is available
Registration Information for 5th-8th Grades for 2015-2016 Season

Registration Information for 9th-12th Grades for the 2015-2016 Season

Multi-Season Discount
You’ve asked and we have listened!  We now offer a multi-sesason discount to families who would like to register a child for three consecutive years in the program.  As each season builds on the previous; maximum benefits are achieved by continued exposure for a minimum of three years (many students participate for 8 consecutive years).

As always, thanks for reading!
– Carey Sue

 

 

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Etiquette, Family, Manner Monday, Manners

Manner Monday®: Sunglasses

Happy Spring Break!

Spring is in the air (hopefully) and that means sunglasses are coming out of hibernation.

Eye contact is a huge part of human interaction, it helps to gauge honesty, character, and helps to make a good first impression. When engaging in outdoor face-to-face conversations, start things off right by taking off your shades.  Unless you’re Jack Nicholson or Corey Hart – the last thing you want is to appear ‘shady’ (pun intended).  And speaking of Corey Hart, don’t wear your sunglasses at night (yes I went there)!  It worked for him, but if you try it, you’ll look like a goof whose trying to revive your break dancing career from the 80’s.

Do your best to keep the sunglasses off during the conversation, unless of course, you have a medical condition.  If it’s really bright and you find yourself squinting and squirming, apologize to the other person you need to put the shades back on due to the bright sun.

Another nice gesture, when you’re on the go and interacting with another person via a drive through, take your sunglasses off at the window so you can look them in the eye and say thank-you during the transaction.

When choosing your shades, think about the environment you will be in – if you have really cute, trendy, blingy shades, they may be perfect for your summer vacation, but may not be the best choice for a professional situation.  Too much bling will be a distraction for others.  Something a bit more conservative will help to keep the focus on you and the professionalism you bring to the relationship.

Bottom line, you don’t want your sunglasses to create a barrier to relationships or opportunities, just a buffer from the sun and protection for your eyes – their intended purpose.

Tweetable: Remember to take off Sunglasses when speaking to others, don’t let them create a barrier to relationships or opportunities. #MannerMonday

 

Sunglasses_at_Night_(Corey_Hart_album_-_cover_art)

 

In other news…

Spring Special Registration Discount is available
Registration Information for 5th-8th Grades for 2015-2016 Season

Registration Information for 9th-12th Grades for the 2015-2016 Season

Multi-Season Discount
You’ve asked and we have listened!  We now offer a multi-sesason discount to families who would like to register a child for three consecutive years in the program.  As each season builds on the previous; maximum benefits are achieved by continued exposure for a minimum of three years (many students participate for 8 consecutive years).

As always, thanks for reading!
– Carey Sue

 

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Uncategorized

Manner Monday®: Is it rude to cut my salad with a knife?

Q – ‘We were told today at lunch that it is poor manners to cut a large chunk of lettuce in a salad. We were quite surprised. Is this true?’ – Linda

A – First off, I hope that it was told to you in conversation and not directed towards you as if you were breaking the law. If the latter is the case, then the person correcting you would be creating a much bigger etiquette violation than anyone who may be using a utensil ‘incorrectly’.

To answer the question, this is actually an ‘old-school’ rule that really no longer applies. Old-fashioned knife blades were made from steel or iron and they had a tendency to react with vinegar or citrus juice in the dressing, the knives also had a tendency to discolor/brown the edges of cut lettuce; hence the utilitarian need for the rule.

This is one of the numerous ‘old-school’ rules that continue to get recycled but don’t really apply. Plus, can you imagine tacking the trendy ‘wedge’ salad without a knife? Today it boils down to courtesy and respect versus usage of fork and silverware. As long as you don’t look like a Neanderthal at the table, you’re good!!!

Tweetable: Dining Etiquette boils down to courtesy and respect versus usage of fork and silverware. Just don’t look like a Neanderthal! #MannerMonday

Wedge Salad

 

 


In other news…

Spring Special Registration Discount is available
Registration Information for 5th-8th Grades for 2015-2016 Season

Registration Information for 9th-12th Grades for the 2015-2016 Season

Multi-Season Discount
You’ve asked and we have listened!  We now offer a multi-sesason discount to families who would like to register a child for three consecutive years in the program.  As each season builds on the previous; maximum benefits are achieved by continued exposure for a minimum of three years (many students participate for 8 consecutive years).

As always, thanks for reading!
– Carey Sue

 

No comments | leave a comment
Business Etiquette, Etiquette, Family Dinner, Manner Monday, Manners