Thirteen ways to mind your manners at the table

Nowhere can your manners (or lack of) show up quicker than at the table. With our busy lives, less and less time is being allotted to eat meals, and manners have been all but forgotten. Soup slurping, not using napkins, grabbing for items that they need to get at – it’s enough to make your stomach ache.

But there’s hope! With some common sense and respect for the other people you are dining with, you can improve your table etiquette quickly.

Here are few tips to start with:

  1. When you sit down at a table, remove the napkin from the table and put it in your lap right away.
  2. When eating at a restaurant, do not start your meal until everyone at the table has been served.
  3. When eating at someones home, do not start your meal until your host or hostess has started eating.
  4. When eating bread, break small pieces off and eat them. Butter only the small portion you are eating at that time. Put the remainder on your plate or bread dish.
  5. Use your utensils from the outside – in.
  6. Once you have used a utensil, do not put it back on the table to use again.
  7. Do not talk with your mouth full.
  8. Do not take food off of other people’s plates.
  9. Do not pick your teeth at the table. If something is caught in your teeth, excuse yourself to the bathroom and remove the food there.
  10. If you need to leave the table, say “Excuse me, I’ll be right back.” and go do your business. More information about where you’re going or what you’re going to do is not necessary.
  11. When you’re not eating, rest your hands quietly on the table or in your lap.
  12. When eating at someones home always remember to thank your host or hostess for your meal.
  13. When passing food at a table, always pass it in a clockwise direction.

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!


12 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Jenny said,

    Great list! My grandmother would be so proud of you for knowing all of this and proud of me for reading them! πŸ™‚

  2. 2

    Stacy said,

    So important! Thank you. Now, how do I get my hubby to read your blog?

  3. 3

    Chelle said,

    Good stuff. There is nothing worse that poor table manners.

    My boys are forever grumbling when I remind them of their manners (or lack thereof) πŸ™‚ .


  4. 4

    Janet said,

    And don’t burp!

  5. 5

    Janet, as always, has a really good point.

    I must confess to knowing all of this and trying to impart it to my children. Not an easy task, but I figure if I get ’em young, it’ll pay off in the long run.

  6. 6

    Jen said,

    I should print this up for my boys. So broccoli is not a finger food, right?

  7. 7

    Lisa said,

    You forgot “TAKE YOUR HAT OFF!” It makes me cringe when people (ok, male people) come to the take with their hat on.

    Mine is up too, happy Thursday!

  8. 8

    I have to echo Jen. I should print this out and tape it up for my sons to read. Great list and a good reminder.

    I don’t have TT up this week, but I do have a contest if anyone is interested in winning a free ebook. Come over to my blog and check it out. You can click on my name above. Hope to see you.

    Happy TT day.

  9. 9

    Adwina said,

    Interesting points. Will remember all of them.


    Happy TT.

  10. 10

    Amanda said,

    I like your site the layout is great just VERY bright. 😦

  11. 11

    PJ said,

    Interesting list. I have been taught well, as the only point I didn’t know was the last one.
    Feel free to check out my TT.

  12. 12

    I guess I have manners. πŸ™‚

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