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“Life is a train of moods like a string of beads; and as we pass through them they prove to be many colored lenses, which paint the world their own hue, and each shows us only what lies in its own focus.” –Ralph Waldo Emerson




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Happy Friday!

It’s time to lighten things up a bit. Last week a reader emailed me this humorous video about Facebook. So, today’s post is for all you Facebook fans, as well as the haters. I’ve been keeping in contact with some friends via Facebook for a little over a year now. And like the author (David Ippolito) of this song, I sometimes wonder why people feel the need to share certain things on Facebook. Now let me state for the record that I have nothing against Facebook. I share this video with you all in the spirit of fun.




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“What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.” –Oliver Wendell Holmes


What do you want people to say about you at your funeral? How will you be remembered?


I saw this video the other day and it reminded me how important it is to cherish the time we have with our loved ones (family and friends). It also made me think how sometimes we get caught up complaining about things that really aren’t that important. Be thankful for what you have, instead of complaining about what you don’t have.

Years ago Stephen Covey wrote a book that I mentioned in an earlier post titled, The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People. In Habit #2 – Begin with the end in mind, he means to “begin today with the image, picture, or paradigm of the end of your life as a frame of reference or the criterion by which everything else is examined. Each part of your life – today’s behavior, tomorrow’s behavior, next week’s behavoir, next month’s behavior – can be examined in the context of the whole, of what really matters to you most. By keeping that end clearly in mind, you can make certain that whatever you do on any particular day does not violate the criteria you have defined as supremely important, and that each day of your life contributes in a meaningful way to the vision you have of your life as a whole. Beginning with the end in mind means to start with a clear understanding of your destination. It means to know where you’re going so that you better understand where you are right now and so that the steps you take are always in the right direction.”

Think about it. What do you want people to say about you at your funeral? What character would you like them to have seen in you? What contributions, what achievements would you want them to remember? What difference would you like to have made in the lives of other people?


Beautifully Imperfect



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“Visits always give pleasure – if not the coming, then the going.” –Portuguese proverb

Do you think you know how to be a good houseguest?

There are some things in life we take for granted — like assuming that everyone knows how to behave, what to do, and what not to do while visiting someone’s home. Even if that someone is a family member, you still need to remember you are a guest in their home. The holidays can be an especially stressful time even without guests staying overnight.

“When you’re invited to someone’s home for a weekend or longer, knowing what to do to maintain harmony is essential. Sharing living quarters can bring out tensions between guests and hosts like nothing else – and it’s up to you, the guest, to do your best to avoid tense situations.” -Sue Fox, Etiquette For Dummies

How to Be a Good Houseguest

Here are some important things to consider when you plan to stay over at someone’s home:

1 – Be sensitive. Did you call and ask if you can stay? Or did the host invite you to stay in their home? They may feel obligated to say yes, or even to invite you. Listen for anything between the lines. Do they really mean it? Is there space for you to sleep?

2 – When asked to spend the weekend with friends, never assume that bringing your pets, children, friend, or family member is acceptable if you aren’t directly told or invited to do so. Never ask if your children are included in a weekend invitation. Assume they are not unless your hostess specifies otherwise. Don’t ask to bring your pet.

3 – If you have special dietary requirements, please let your host know before you arrive. You may also want to bring some of your own food.

4 – If you’ve brought your children, bring along a supply of portable snacks.

5 – Bring a small gift for the host as a gesture of appreciation. Bring a bottle of wine (or liquor), a picture frame, candle, flowering plant, or a gift that you know your host would appreciate. Nothing too extravagant. Coming in the door bearing gifts is always a good way to start off the visit.

6 – Know when it’s time to go home; don’t wear out your welcome. If you agreed to leave on Sunday afternoon, don’t extend your stay until Monday morning. Remember the old Benjamin Franklin saying, “Fish and houseguests begin to smell after three days.” He was speaking from the point of view of the host.

7 – Offer to pick up the tab sometime. You are saving money by not having to pay for a hotel. If your host takes you out on excursions to see the local sights or you go out to breakfast, lunch, or dinner, you should pay your own way or better yet, treat your host. A good guest would also offer to purchase the gasoline if they take you sightseeing.

8 -If you stay longer than a weekend (three days or more), offer to take your host and hostess out for dinner one night. If there are other houseguests involved, you can all split the cost.

9 – During your stay you must adapt to the host’s lifestyle. Don’t try to run the show. Be adaptable. Be open to the host’s suggestions for meals and recreation. Be ready for anything – or for nothing.

10 – Give your host some space. Usually, both guest and host need some “breathing room” away from each other. Depending on the length of your visit, you might want to spend an afternoon or an entire day out of the house (alone or with your family) and leave your host in peace. Don’t rely entirely on your host and hostess for entertainment. Don’t make other plans without letting your host know.

11 – Don’t accept an invitation before checking with your host. If you have friends in the area who invite you over to their house, tell them you have to check with your hostess before accepting their invitation and be sure to ask if it’s all right to bring your host and hostess with you.

12 – Offer to help. By simple observation, one should be able to notice what needs doing. Ask your hostess if you may help with any household chores.

13 – Clean up after yourself, make sure not to leave your belongings strewn around the house, and make your bed. When your stay is over, empty any wastebaskets and ask your host where to put the used bed and bath linens.

14 – Tidy up after yourself. If you are sleeping on a pull-out convertible sofa bed, take the sheets and blanket off each morning, fold them, and put them along with your pillows away in some out-of-the-way place (you can leave the sheets on the mattress before folding the bed). When it’s time to go to bed, it’s up to you to turn the sofa back into a bed.

15 – Keep the bathroom clean. Don’t splash water everywhere – if you make a mess around the sink, clean it up. Don’t throw anything on the floor, and don’t forget to flush! Men should keep the seat down.

16 – Before taking a bath, ask the hostess if there’s any limit to the hot water supply and, if there is, use the hot water sparingly so others will get their fair share. After the bath, clean the tub.

17 – Return a borrowed item as soon as you no longer need it – and in as good shape, or even better than as when it was lent to you.

18 – If you break it, you fix it. If you break a glass or piece of china, tell your hostess. If it’s something valuable, take it home and have it repaired. If you accidentally leave a stain on a bureau or side table, again tell your hostess and offer to pay whatever the refinishing charges will be. If you stain upholstery, rugs, or other fabric, insist on paying the cleaning bill.

19 – Telephone – Don’t tie up the telephone; if you make a long-distance call be sure to charge it to your credit card or ask the operator for charges and reimburse your host. Don’t answer your host’s telephone without asking. This rule applies even if you’re right next to the phone.

20 – Bring your own toiletries. Don’t count on your host having stocked the guest bathroom cabinet with everything you might need.

21 – Be on time for meals and other activities. If you want to have breakfast in your bathrobe that’s fine, provided you come to the breakfast table looking neat, hair combed, and wearing bedroom slippers.

22 – Be considerate of someone else’s house; don’t sit on furniture in a wet bathing suit; keep your feet off the furniture; don’t hog the bathroom.

23 – Keep your voice down late in the evening or early morning, and if the guest room has a television, keep the volume low.

24 – If you must smoke, ask the hostess if she minds your doing so in her house; if she does, then smoke only out of doors. Never smoke in bed.

25 – Don’t make the first move to go to bed. When to end the evening is the host’s prerogative. You can hint that you’re tired, but the custom is to wait for the host to give you the signal. The exception is when your hosts are family or close friends who won’t mind if you retire early or stay up late.

26 – On the day you leave, take the sheets, blankets, and pillowcases off the bed, fold them, and leave them neatly on the top of the bed.

27 – Appear to enjoy yourself. Even if you aren’t having the best time, act as if you couldn’t be more pleased.

28 – Check your bedroom and bathroom before leaving to be sure you haven’t forgotten anything. Then check it a second time. It’s inconvient for a hostess to have to mail something you’ve left behind.

29 – Be courteous. Treat any household help courteously.

30 – Always send your host a thank-you note or letter of appreciation.


“Hospitality is making your guests feel at home, even if you wish they were.” -Author Unknown


References:

Emily Post’s Etiquette, by Peggy Post, 17th edition

Amy Vanderbilt Complete Book of Etiquette: 50th Anniversary Edition, by Nancy Tuckerman, Nancy Dunnan, and Amy Vanderbilt

Miss Manners’ Guide to Excruciatingly Correct Behavior, Freshly Updated, by Judith Martin

Etiquette for Dummies, by Sue Fox

EHow article

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Happy Friday!

If you think Facebook (http://www.facebook.com) is only for the young or middle-aged, think again. I found this video that shows you are never too old for facebook, flirting, wanting love, or getting jealous. Enjoy!


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Are you on Facebook?

Facebook http://www.facebook.com was once thought of as a social networking site for the young. Not true any more. I was finally coerced into joining Facebook and was amazed at how many people over the age 40 are members. To my surprise, I’ve reconnected with people from my high school, and keep in better contact with friends and family members. I’ve even gotten some friend invites from several young men that I don’t know. Hmmm, I guess there are guys on there trolling for women. I was a little flattered but I just ignored those requests. Since I’m a Facebook newbie, my blog buddy – Digitalcitizen http://digitalcitizen.ca, shared a Facebook Etiquette/Netiquette Guide he wrote. I’ve also found other Facebook manners/etiquette tidbits.

Here’s a rather humorous video on Facebook manners:


Here’s Digitalcitizen’s Facebook Etiquette/Netiquette guides
http://envirostats.digitalcitizen.ca/2008/11/09/a-practical-facebook-netiquette-guide/
http://envirostats.digitalcitizen.ca/2008/11/26/a-detailed-facebook-etiquette-guide/


If you’re already using Facebook, I think you’ll get a kick out of this video titled “Facebook Breakup”:

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Facebook humor – A Slap in the Facebook

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Many of us have been saddened by the loss of our loved ones. We are never ready for it, even if we know it’s coming. A couple years ago I was at the funeral of my co-worker’s mother. I had never seen so many people get up and speak about a person with so much love. It had to be over twenty people who spoke fondly of this 71 year old woman. As I listened to the stories from her life, I was moved not just by the love others felt for her, but by her zest for life. She was truly an example of someone who lived her life to the fullest. I’ve always been one to go after what I want but lately I had been feeling stuck. This was just the extra push I needed to make a change in my life.

There has been a poem going around for years titled “The Dash,” by Linda Ellis. My sister-in-law read this poem at my father-in-law’s funeral. It begins with, “I read of a man who stood to speak at the funeral of a friend…” And half way through it says, “What matters is how we live and love, and how we spend our dash.”

Read the poem, watch the video and take the time to think about how you are living your dash.


“The Dash” is a copyrighted poem by Linda Ellis. There is a link on Linda’s blog where you can read the poem.
http://lindaellis.typepad.com/my_weblog/2007/11/the-dash.html


Here is the video version of “The Dash” poem:



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What Will They Say At Your Funeral?


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